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What it's Like Being an Insta-Dad

*We’ve partnered with BabyBjörn to show how modern dads are redefining parenting norms. We often hear the phrase: the woman behind the man. But what about the man behind the woman? Especially when that woman is a fast growing star on the Insta-mama scene? We’ve been wondering just that ever since we caught a glimpse of Noam Dekel on Dikla Goren (aka, Girl Plus Two)’s Instagram feed. Dikla’s handsome husband can often be spotted juggling several (or all!) of the Israeli couple’s 3 kids, and we can only imagine how much he’s wrangling behind the scenes to help make it all look so effortless...even when we know it can’t possibly be. It turns out this Brooklyn daddy is truly as hands-on as it seems. Noam tirelessly supports his wife while she pursues her dream career, and he balances his real estate development job and caregiving on the daily. Which is why we thought he’d be the perfect fit for our BabyBjörn #dadstories series, featuring fathers who are not just talking the talk, but also walking the walk. Often literally…while babywearing. Below, Noam talks about the juggle familiar to so many corporate dads who want to truly be present in their children’s and partner’s lives, and gives us a glimpse into what life looks like when you’re the man behind the mom on everyone’s Instagram feed. What did you think fatherhood would be like before you had your first baby and how has the reality matched up to that? I always wanted to be a dad, but I didn't really know what to expect before our first baby, Yuli, was born. I knew it would be exciting, hard and rewarding, but not how exciting, hard, and rewarding. The reality was much stronger and more powerful than what I had envisioned, as far the hard work and responsibility. But the priceless moments definitely made it worth it. There's nothing I like more than hearing my kids say, "I love you Aba!" What does being "present" as a father mean to you? It means a lot to me. I see many friends who are very busy with their work and the regular routine. Luckily, I get to spend more time with my kids than the average person. In my eyes, it's very important for your child to have a father figure, and I always remembered looking up to my father to teach me the important things. Is it hard to unplug from the responsibilities you have at the office? It's very important to unplug from work (even though it's hard sometimes) because the kids want to spend time with you and they need your full attention. It's also nicer to listen to them instead of checking my phone every second, so I try to do my best in this area, and if I forget, they like to remind me. What's your typical schedule during the week/weekend with the kids? From Monday through Friday, I take the boys to school and daycare and Dikla picks them up. Usually, I take our oldest son Yuli to swimming and tennis class, but in the past couple of months, Dikla has been doing so because I have been really busy with work. On the days that I'm free for lunch, Dikla will pick up the kids from school and take them out to the park for lunch, and I will join them for a little bit. When we all come home in the evening, I usually play with them for a little and then get them ready for bed. My weekends are mostly spent with the kids. It’s a time for us to kick back and relax, even though it doesn't always feel that way. We usually spend the day all together making breakfast/brunch. The kids love to make French toast with Dikla, or Shakshuka with me, every weekend, even when we are on vacation. Why is getting out and about with the kids so important to you? Because if we don't, they will go nuts indoors and drive their parents crazy! I like to travel lightly so I can be flexible. I don't really like strollers, especially the huge double ones. The BabyBjörn Carrier One is so comfortable and it even looks good! It’s definitely much easier to maneuver when we have our little princess in the BabyBjörn, while the boys play in the playground. How are you and Dikla a parenting team? We are really trying to share to load. I'm sure sometimes one of us ends up doing more than the other but generally, I take the mornings: waking up early with the kids, getting them dressed, feeding them breakfast and taking them to school. Dikla is not a morning person so we let her sleep in the mornings. On the other hand, Dikla takes care of the night shifts with Romi, which usually entails waking up two or three times a night. What's it like when Dikla isn't around and you've got all 3 kids? It doesn't happen a lot, but when it does, I enjoy the alone time with them a lot. I try to play a game that everyone can enjoy together or do an activity that they all can be part of. This is especially hard to do because each child wants your full attention (and all of them are under 6 years old!). Dikla's Instagram feed makes parenting look so beautiful....but are there days you wish your life wasn't on camera? How do you draw the lines between private and public? Parenting is a beautiful thing indeed, and you are correct, sometimes I do like a break from the “camera." But you get use to it, and above all, I'm supporting my wife, so if that's what I have to do, I will keep doing it with a smile. What's one piece of advice you'd give a father-to-be? Always be calm and cool regardless the situation. Never freak out. Original photography by Ren’ee Kahn-Bresler for Well Rounded. Check out BabyBjörn’s #dadstories here, then share your own on Instagram (or get the dad in your life to share his!) using the hashtag #dadstories. Don’t forget to tag @wellroundedny and @babybjorn_us!


Babybjörn Carrier One in Leaf Print

Babybjörn High Chair in White

Babybjorn Bouncer Bliss

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With two babies in tow, getting out the door often becomes doubly challenging. From the extra things to carry to the extra space needed in your backseat, it can be easy to feel daunted at the prospect of a day out. But before you resign yourself to life indoors, try incorporating these five genius products from Nuna to get you and the littles out the door. (Because Vitamin D is important, mama!)

1. A brilliant double stroller

You've got more to carry—and this stroller gets it. The DEMI™ grow stroller from Nuna easily converts from a single ride to a double stroller thanks to a few easy-to-install accessories. And with 23 potential configurations, you're ready to hit the road no matter what life throws at you.

DEMI™ grow stroller
$799.95, Nuna


2. A light car seat

Lugging a heavy car seat is the last thing a mama of two needs to have on her hands. Instead, pick up the PIPA™ lite, a safe, svelte design that weighs in at just 5.3 pounds (not counting the canopy or insert)—that's less than the average newborn! When you need to transition from car to stroller, this little beauty works seamlessly with Nuna's DEMI™ grow.

PIPA™ lite car seat
$349.95, Nuna


3. A super safe car seat base

The thing new moms of multiples really need to get out the door? A little peace of mind. The PIPA™ base features a steel stability leg for maximum security that helps to minimize forward rotation during impact by up to 90% (compared to non-stability leg systems) and 5-second installation for busy mamas.

PIPA™ base
(included with purchase of PIPA™ series car seat or) Nuna, $159.95


4. A diaper bag you want to carry

It's hard to find an accessory that's as stylish as it is functional. But the Nuna diaper bag pulls out all the stops with a sleek design that perfectly conceals a deceptively roomy interior (that safely stores everything from extra diapers to your laptop!). And with three ways to wear it, even Dad will want to take this one to the park.

Diaper bag
$179.95, Nuna


5. A crib that travels

Getting a new baby on a nap schedule—while still getting out of the house—is hard. But with the SENA™ aire mini, you can have a crib ready no matter where your day takes you. It folds down and pops up easily for sleepovers at grandma's or unexpected naps at your friend's house, and the 360-degree ventilation ensures a comfortable sleep.

SENA aire mini
$199.95, Nuna


With 5 essentials that are as flexible as you need to be, the only thing we're left asking is, where are you going to go, mama?

This article was sponsored by Nuna. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

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Baby stuff comes in such cute prints these days. Gone are the days when everything was pink and blue and covered in ducks or teddy bears. Today's baby gear features stylish prints that appeal to mom.

That's why it's totally understandable how a mama could mistake a car seat cover for a cute midi skirt. It happened to Lori Farrell, and when she shared her mishap on Facebook she went viral before she was even home from work. Fellow moms can totally see the humor in Farrell's mishap, and thankfully, so can she.

As for how a car seat cover could be mistaken for a skirt—it's pretty simple, Farrell tells Motherly.

"A friend of mine had given me a huge lot of baby stuff, from clothes to baby carriers to a rocker and blankets and when I pulled it out I was not sure what it was," she explains. "I debated it but washed it anyway then decided because of the way it pulled on the side it must be a maternity skirt."

Farrell still wasn't 100% sure if she was right by the time she headed out the door to work, but she rocked the ambiguous attire anyway.

"When I got to work I googled the brand and realized not only do they not sell clothing but it was a car seat cover."

The brand, Itzy Ritzy, finds the whole thing pretty funny too, sharing Farell's viral moment to its official Instagram.

It may be a car seat cover, but that print looks really good on this mama.

And if you want to copy Farell's style, the Itzy Ritzy 4-in-1 Nursing Cover, Car Seat Cover, Shopping Cart Cover and Infinity Scarf (and skirt!) is available on Amazon for $24.94.

Motherly is your daily #momlife manual; we are here to help you easily find the best, most beautiful products for your life that actually work. We share what we love—and we may receive a commission if you choose to buy.You've got this.

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Daycare for infants is expensive across the country, and California has one of the worst states for parents seeking care for a baby. Putting an infant in daycare in California costs $2,914 more than in-state tuition for four years of college, according to the Economic Policy Institute.

Paying north of $1,000 for daycare each month is an incredible burden, especially on single-parent families. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services defines affordable childcare as costing no more than 10% of a family's income—by that definition, less than 29% of families in California can afford infant care. Some single parents spend half their income on day care. It is an incredible burden on working parents.

But that burden may soon get lighter. CBS Sacramento reports California may put between $25 and $35 million into child care programs to make day care more affordable for parents with kids under 3 years old.

Assembly Bill 452, introduced this week, could see $10 million dollars funneled into Early Head Start (which currently gets no money from the state but does get federal funding) and tens of millions more would be spent on childcare for kids under three.

The bill seeks to rectify a broken childcare system. Right now, only about 14% of eligible infants and toddlers are enrolled in subsidized programs in California, and in 2017, only 7% of eligible children younger than three years of age accessed Early Head Start.

An influx of between $25 to $35 million dollars could see more spaces open up for kids under three, as Bill 452, if passed, would see the creation of "grants to develop childcare facilities that serve children from birth to three years of age."

This piece of proposed legislation comes weeks after California's governor announced an ambitious plan for paid parental leave, and as another bill, AB 123, seeks to strengthen the state's pre-kindergarten program.

Right now, it is difficult for some working parents to make a life in California, but by investing in families, the state's lawmakers could change that and change California's future for the better.

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When a mama gets married, in most cases she wants her children to be part of her big day. Photographers are used to hearing bride-to-be moms request lots of pictures of their big day, but when wedding photographer Laura Schaefer of Fire and Gold Photography heard her client Dalton Mort planned to wear her 2-year-old daughter Ellora instead of a veil, she was thrilled.

A fellow mama who understands the benefits of baby-wearing, Schaefer was keen to capture the photos Mort requested. "When I asked Dalton about what some of her 'must get' shots would be for her wedding, she specifically asked for ones of her wearing Ellie, kneeling and praying in the church before the tabernacle," Schaefer tells Motherly.

She got those shots and so many more, and now Mort's toddler-wearing wedding day pics are going viral.

"Dalton wore Ellie down the aisle and nursed her to sleep during the readings," Schaefer wrote on her blog, explaining that Ellie then slept through the whole wedding mass.

"As a fellow mother of an active toddler, this is a HUGE win! Dalton told me after that she was SO grateful that Ellie slept the whole time because she was able to focus and really pray through the Mass," Schaefer explains.

Dalton was able to concentrate on her wedding day because she made her baby girl a part of it (and that obviously tired Ellie right out).

Ellie was part of the commitment and family Dalton if forging with her husband, Jimmy Joe. "There is no better behaved toddler than a sleeping toddler, and she was still involved, even though I ended up unwrapping her to nurse her. I held her in my arms while my husband and I said our vows. It was really special for us," Dalton told POPSUGAR.

This is a wedding trend we are totally here for!

Congrats to Dalton and Jimmy Joe (and to Ellie)! 🎉

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The internet is freaking out about how Peppa Pig is changing the way toddlers speak, but parents don't need to be too worried.

As Romper first reported, plenty of American parents have noticed that preschoolers are picking up a bit of a British accent thanks to Peppa. Romper's Janet Manley calls it "the Peppa effect," noting that her daughter started calling her "Mummy" after an in-flight Peppa marathon.

Plenty of other parents report sharing Manley's experience, but the British accent is not likely to stick, experts say.

Toronto-based speech and language pathologist Melissa James says this isn't a new thing—kids have always been testing out the accents they hear on TV and in the real world, long before Peppa oinked her way into our Netflix queues.

"Kids have this amazing ability to pick up language," James told Global News. "Their brains are ripe for the learning of language and it's a special window of opportunity that adults don't possess."

Global News reports that back in the day there were concerns about Dora The Explorer potentially teaching kids Spanish words before the kids had learned the English counterparts, and over in the U.K., parents have noticed British babies picking up American accents from TV, too.

But it's not a bad thing, James explains. When an American adult hears "Mummy" their brain translates it to "Mommy," but little kids don't yet make as concrete a connection. "When a child, two, three or four, is watching a show with a British accent and hears [words] for the first time, they are mapping out the speech and sound for that word in the British way."

So if your baby is oinking at you, calling you "Mummy" or testing out a new pronunciation of "toh-mah-toe," know that this is totally natural, and they're not going to end up with a life-long British pig accent.

As Dr, Susannah Levi, associate professor of communicative sciences and disorders at New York University, tells The Guardian, "it's really unlikely that they'd be acquiring an entire second dialect from just watching a TV show."

It sure is cute though.

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