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Seeing my husband become a father made me fall in love even more

I remember leaning against the bathroom counter, watching him, and thinking, "I can't believe you're this amazing."

Seeing my husband become a father made me fall in love even more

[Editor's note: While this is one example of one type of relationship, we understand, appreciate and celebrate that relationships come in all forms and configurations.]

When we started dating, my husband threw himself into learning about my Pakistani background. He listened to Urdu audio lessons in the car to learn the language, and kept a handwritten notebook with common words he wanted to memorize. He figured out how to tear small pieces of naan to mop up spicy curries with his hands. He learned how to greet my dozens of aunties and uncles and chit-chat like a pro, remembering their names and details about their kids.

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I always knew he was someone who did everything with conviction and enthusiasm, but he took it to another level when we became parents.

One of my fondest memories is from one of our first days as new parents. We were up at 3 a.m. trying feebly to get my daughter back to sleep. I had nursed her for hours and was exhausted, so my husband cradled her in his arms as he rocked from side to side beneath the whirring bathroom fan. His eyes were closed; he was probably half asleep. He was humming an indiscernible tune.

I remember leaning against the bathroom counter, watching him, and thinking, "I can't believe you're this amazing."

It was a seemingly ordinary moment. One in the thousands of moments we've shared together, but it was a quiet glimpse into the depths of my husband's character. Depths that revealed themselves to me layer by layer, one shining trait at a time.

In the weeks and months and years that followed, my husband's whole-hearted approach to life began to crystallize for me. He is—and always has been—a jump-in-with-both-feet kind of guy. It took us becoming parents for me to fully recognize that part of him.

My first daughter and I had a rocky start to breastfeeding, but my husband took on the role of assistant lactation coach quite naturally. He came with me to all my appointments with the lactation specialists at the hospital, paying incredibly close attention to how they got my daughter to latch. He applied the same tricks at home at every feed for weeks, ensuring I wasn't in pain and our baby was getting enough milk. On the days I was ready to throw in the towel, he held me while I sobbed, then cheered me on while I tried again.

If it wasn't for him, I'm pretty sure I would have given up on nursing after a week or two.

His zeal for and commitment to fatherhood didn't stop there. He changed thousands of diapers—and will argue that he changed more "number-twos" so I wouldn't have to. He pureed gallons of baby food, and he built miles of train tracks.

With two girls, he learned to master both ponytails and braids. He figured out how to color-block clothes and create cute matching outfits. Through it all, it's clear that he's not just "helping" me raise the girls. He's fully embraced his role as a father.

He is the kind of man who suggests they bury him up to his neck in sand at the beach.

He's the kind of man who will rake a giant pile of leaves on the lawn and let them roll around in it and spread it all out again.

He's the kind of man who runs alongside them when they bike to the park, holding onto their pink unicorn backpacks.

As time goes on, I learn more and more about the kind of man my husband is. His sock-sliding skills, cartoon character voices, and impromptu storytelling abilities are just a few of the things he's revealed to me this year.

On the bad days, when I'm exhausted and losing my patience, I can count on him to make silly faces and cheer up the two grumpy girls who were reluctant to listen to their mother. On the good days, I can count on him to suggest a mischievous idea for us all to get into together. His ability to fully immerse himself into fatherhood makes me a better mother.

I'm thankful he's my co-parent because his excitement and commitment inspire me too. I'm thankful that parenthood has allowed me to see him clearly and fully. And I'm thankful for the moments still to come—both big and ordinary—that will continue to give me new reasons to fall more deeply in love with the man I married.

[This post was originally published on Apparently]

These are only the vitamins I give my children and here's why

It's hard to say who loves these more—my kids or me.

When I became a mama five years ago, I didn't put too much thought into whether my son was getting the right vitamins and minerals. From breastfeeding to steaming and pureeing his first bites of solid food, I was confident I was giving him everything to support his growth and development.

But then the toddler years—and the suddenly picky palate that accompanied them—came along. Between that challenge and two additional children in the mix… well, I knew my oldest son's eating plan was falling short in some vitamin and mineral categories.

I also knew how quickly he was growing, so I wanted to make sure he was getting the nutrients he needed (even on those days when he said "no, thank you" to any veggie I offered).

So when I discovered the new line of children's supplements from Nature's Way®, it felt like a serious weight off my chest. Thanks to supplements that support my children's musculoskeletal growth, their brain function, their immune systems, their eyes and more, I'm taken back to that simpler time when I was so confident my kids' vitamin needs were met.*

It wasn't just the variety of supplements offered by Nature's Way that won me over: As a vegetarian mama, I'm the picky one in the family when it comes to scanning labels and making sure they meet our standards. The trick is that most gummy vitamins are made with gelatin, which is not vegetarian friendly.

But just like the other offerings from Nature's Way that I've already come to know and love, the children's supplement line is held to a high standard. That means there's no high-fructose corn syrup, gelatin or common allergens to be found in the supplements. The best part? My two oldest kids ensure we never miss their daily vitamins—they are so in love with the gummy flavors, which include tropical fruit punch, lemonade and wild berry.


Nature's Way Kids Mulitvitamin


Meanwhile, my pharmacist husband has different criteria when evaluating supplements, especially when it comes to those for our kids. He appreciates the variety of options from Nature's Way, which gives us the ability to rotate the vitamins based on our kids' daily needs. By keeping various children's supplements from Nature's Way on hand, I can customize a regimen to suit my kids' individual requirements.

Of course, high-quality products often come at a higher price point. But (to my immense gratitude!) that isn't the case with Nature's Way, which retails for a competitive value when compared to the other items on the shelf.

Like all mamas, my chief concern is supporting my children's health in any way I can. While I see evidence of their growth every time I pack away clothes they've outgrown, I know there is much more growth that doesn't meet the eye. That's why, for my oldest son, I like stacking the Brain Builder gummy with the Growing Bones & Muscles gummy and the Happy & Healthy Multi. My 3-year-old also enjoys getting her own mix to include the Healthy Eyes gummy. And both of my older kids are quick to request the Tummy Soothe tablet when something isn't sitting right in their stomachs.* And I'll admit it: I've tried it myself and the berry blast flavor really is tasty!

Although my current phase of motherhood may not be as "simple" as it once was, there is so much to appreciate about it—like watching my kids play and sing and create with their incredible imaginations. Along the way, I've eased up on some of my need for control, but it does help to have this range of supplements in my motherhood tool kit. So while I may not be able to convince my son to try kale, having the Nature's Way supplements on hand means I do know he's right on track.*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food & Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.


This article was sponsored by Nature's Way. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

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Time-saving formula tips our editors swear by

Less time making bottles, more time snuggling.

As a new parent, it can feel like feeding your baby is a full-time job—with a very demanding nightshift. Add in the additional steps it takes to prepare a bottle of formula and, well… we don't blame you if you're eager to save some time when you can. After all, that means more time for snuggling your baby or practicing your own well-deserved self-care.

Here's the upside: Many, many formula-feeding mamas before you have experienced the same thing, and they've developed some excellent tricks that can help you mix up a bottle in record time. Here are the best time-saving formula tips from editors here at Motherly.

1. Use room temperature water

The top suggestion that came up time and time again was to introduce bottles with room temperature water from the beginning. That way, you can make a bottle whenever you need it without worrying about warming up water—which is a total lifesaver when you have to make a bottle on the go or in the middle of the night.

2. Buy online to save shopping time

You'll need a lot of formula throughout the first year and beyond—so finding a brand like Comforts, which offers high-quality infant formula at lower prices, will help you save a substantial amount of money. Not to mention, you can order online or find the formula on shelves during your standard shopping trip—and that'll save you so much time and effort as well.

3. Pre-measure nighttime bottles

The middle of the night is the last time you'll want to spend precious minutes mixing up a bottle. Instead, our editors suggest measuring out the correct amount of powder formula into a bottle and putting the necessary portion of water on your bedside table. That way, all you have to do is roll over and combine the water and formula in the bottle before feeding your baby. Sounds so much better than hiking all the way to the kitchen and back at 3 am, right?

4. Divide serving sizes for outings

Before leaving the house with your baby, divvy up any portions of formula and water that you may need during your outing. Then, when your baby is hungry, just combine the pre-measured water and powder serving in the bottle. Our editors confirm this is much easier than trying to portion out the right amount of water or formula while riding in the car.

5. Memorize the mental math

Soon enough, you'll be able to prepare a bottle in your sleep. But, especially in the beginning or when increasing your baby's serving, the mental math can take a bit of time. If #mombrain makes it tough to commit the measurements to memory, write up a cheat sheet for yourself or anyone else who will prepare your baby's bottle.

6. Warm up chilled formula with water

If you're the savvy kind of mom who prepares and refrigerates bottles for the day in advance, you'll probably want to bring it up to room temperature before serving. Rather than purchase a bottle warmer, our editors say the old-fashioned method works incredibly well: Just plunge the sealed bottle in a bowl of warm water for a few minutes and—voila!—it's ready to serve.



Another great tip? Shop the Comforts line on Comfortsforbaby.com to find premium baby products for a fraction of competitors' prices. Or, follow @comfortsforbaby for more information!

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

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International Network for Aid, Relief and Assistance (INARA)

It's 2020. The world is changing. It's hard to believe but the old decade is over, the new one is here and it is bringing a lot of new life with it. The babies born this year are members of Generation Alpha and the world is waiting for them.

We're only a few months into the new year and there are already some new celebrity arrivals making headlines while making their new parents proud.

If your little one arrived (or is due to arrive) in 2020, they've got plenty of high profile company.

Here are all the celebrity babies born in 2020 (so far):

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