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Sen. Elizabeth Warren: 'Childcare is part of the basic infrastructure of this nation'

Sen. Warren's DNC speech focused on the fundamental truth of the childcare crisis.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren: 'Childcare is part of the basic infrastructure of this nation'

[Editor's note: Motherly is committed to covering all relevant presidential candidate plans as we approach the 2020 election. We are making efforts to get information from all candidates. Motherly does not endorse any political party or candidate. We stand with and for mothers and advocate for solutions that will reduce maternal stress and benefit women, families and the country.]

The childcare crisis in the United States predates the COVID crisis, but it was exacerbated by it. Parents across the country have been tweeting and screaming this in recent weeks and at this week's Democratic National Convention they got some high-profile help from Sen. Elizabeth Warren, who said what so many have been agonizing over this summer: the United States needs high-quality child care affordable for every family.

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"I'm here at the Early Childhood Education Center in Springfield, Massachusetts, which has been closed for months," she began while sitting in front of a classroom bookshelf decorated with toy letters spelling out the acronym for Black Lives Matter.

"Childcare was already hard to find before the pandemic. And now, parents are stuck—no idea when schools can safely reopen and even fewer childcare options. The devastation is enormous. And the way I see it: big problems demand big solutions."


    "I love a good plan," Warren continued, touching on some of Joe Biden's plans for 2020 and beyond.

    "Let me tell you about one of Joe's plans that's especially close to my heart: child care. As a little girl growing up in Oklahoma, what I wanted most in the world was to be a teacher. I loved teaching. When I had babies and was juggling my first big teaching job down in Texas, it was hard. But I could do hard. The thing that almost sank me? Child care."

    Then Warren told the story she told Motherly last March: "One night my Aunt Bee called to check-in. I thought I was fine, but then I just broke down and started to cry. I had tried holding it all together, but without reliable childcare, working was nearly impossible. And when I told Aunt Bee I was going to quit my job, I thought my heart would break. Then she said the words that changed my life: "I can't get there tomorrow, but I'll come on Thursday." She arrived with seven suitcases and a Pekingese named Buddy and stayed for 16 years."

    Like celebrities Amanda Seyfried and Chrissy Teigen, Sen. Warren was able to do what she did because she had a family member willing to help her out. And she knows not every American parent has that.

    "I get to be here tonight because of my Aunt Bee," she explained. "I learned a fundamental truth: nobody makes it on their own. And yet, two generations of working parents later, if you have a baby and don't have an Aunt Bee, you're on your own. And here's why that's wrong: We build infrastructure like roads, bridges and communications systems so that people can work. That infrastructure helps us all because it keeps our economy going. It's time to recognize that childcare is part of the basic infrastructure of this nation—it's infrastructure for families."

    Sen. Warren noted Biden and Harris's plans for quality, child care affordable for every family, universal preschool and better wages for childcare workers.

    "Today, America has the most COVID deaths in the world and an economic collapse—and both crises are falling hardest on Black and Brown families. Millions out of work. Millions more trapped in cycles of poverty. Millions on the brink of losing their homes. Millions of restaurants and stores hanging by a thread," Warren continued.

    She concluded by urging voters to go to polls and "stay in this fight so that when our children and our grandchildren ask what we did during this dark chapter in our nation's history, we will be able to look them squarely in the eye and say: we organized, we persisted, and we changed America."

    By its very nature, motherhood requires some lifestyle adjustments: Instead of staying up late with friends, you get up early for snuggles with your baby. Instead of spontaneous date nights with your honey, you take afternoon family strolls with your little love. Instead of running out of the house with just your keys and phone, you only leave with a fully loaded diaper bag.

    For breastfeeding or pumping mamas, there is an additional layer of consideration around when, how and how much your baby will eat. Thankfully, when it comes to effective solutions for nursing or bottle-feeding your baby, Dr. Brown's puts the considerations of mamas and their babies first with products that help with every step of the process—from comfortably adjusting to nursing your newborn to introducing a bottle to efficiently pumping.

    With countless hours spent breastfeeding, pumping and bottle-feeding, the editors at Motherly know the secret to success is having dependable supplies that can help you feed your baby in a way that matches lifestyle.

    Here are 9 breastfeeding and pumping products to help you no matter what the day holds.

    Customflow™ Double Electric Breast Pump

    Dr. Brown's electric pump

    For efficient, productive pumping sessions, a double electric breast pump will help you get the job done as quickly as possible. Quiet for nighttime pumping sessions and compact for bringing along to work, this double pump puts you in control with fully adjustable settings.

    $159.99

    Hands-Free Pumping Bra

    Dr. Brown''s hands free pumping bra

    Especially in the early days, feeding your baby can feel like a pretty consuming task. A hands-free pumping bra will help you reclaim some of your precious time while pumping—and all mamas will know just how valuable more time can be!

    $29.99

    Manual Breast Pump with SoftShape™ Silicone Shield

    Dr. Brown's manual breast pump

    If you live a life that sometimes takes you away from electrical outlets (that's most of us!), then you'll absolutely want a manual breast pump in your arsenal. With two pumping modes to promote efficient milk expression and a comfort-fitted shield, a manual pump is simply the most convenient pump to take along and use. Although it may not get as much glory as an electric pump, we really appreciate how quick and easy this manual pump is to use—and how liberating it is not to stress about finding a power supply.

    $29.99

    Nipple Shields and Sterilization Case

    Dr. Brown's nipple shields

    There is a bit of a learning curve to breastfeeding—for both mamas and babies. Thankfully, even if there are some physical challenges (like inverted nipples or a baby's tongue tie) or nursing doesn't click right away, silicone nipple shields can be a huge help. With a convenient carry case that can be sterilized in the microwave, you don't have to worry about germs or bacteria either. 🙌

    $9.99

    Silicone One-Piece Breast Pump

    Dr. Brown's silicone pump

    When you are feeding your baby on one breast, the other can still experience milk letdown—which means it's a golden opportunity to save some additional milk. With a silent, hands-free silicone pump, you can easily collect milk while nursing.

    $14.99

    Breast to Bottle Pump & Store Feeding Set

    After a lifetime of nursing from the breast, introducing a bottle can be a bit of a strange experience for babies. Dr. Brown's Options+™ and slow flow bottle nipples were designed with this in mind to make the introduction to bottles smooth and pleasant for parents and babies. As a set that seamlessly works together from pumping to storing milk to bottle feeding, you don't have to stress about having everything you need to keep your baby fed and happy either.

    $24.99

    Washable Breast Pads

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    Mamas' bodies are amazingly made to help breast milk flow when it's in demand—but occasionally also at other times. Especially as your supply is establishing or your breasts are fuller as the length between feeding sessions increase, it's helpful to use washable nursing pads to prevent breast milk from leaking through your bra.

    $8.99

    Breast Milk Storage Bags

    Dr. Brown's milk storage bags

    The essential for mamas who do any pumping, breast milk storage bags allow you to easily and safely seal expressed milk in the refrigerator or freezer. Dr. Brown's™ Breast Milk Storage Bags take it even further with extra thick walls that block out scents from other food items and feature an ultra secure lock to prevent leaking.

    $7.99


    Watch one mama's review of the new Dr. Brown's breastfeeding line here:

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

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    14 outdoor toys your kids will want to play with beyond summer

    They transition seamlessly for indoor play.

    With Labor day weekend in the rearview and back-to-school in full swing, most parents are fresh out of boxes to check on their "Fun Concierge" hit list. It's also the point of diminishing returns on investing in summer-only toys. So with that in mind, we've rounded up some of our favorite toys that are not only built to last but will easily make the transition from outdoor to indoor play. Even better, they're Montessori-friendly and largely open-ended so your kids can get a ton of use out of them.

    From sunny backyard afternoons to rainy mornings stuck inside, these toys are sure to keep little ones engaged and entertained.

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    Besides offering a fantastic opportunity to hone focus, coordination, determination and taking turns, lawn games are just plain fun. Set them up close together for the littles and spread them out when Mom and Dad get in on the action. With their low profile and rope rings, they're great for indoors as well.

    $30

    Balance board

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    Balance boards are a fabulous way to get the wiggles out. This one comes with a rope attachment, making it suitable for even the youngest wigglers. From practicing their balance and building core strength to working on skills that translate to skateboarding and snowboarding, it's a year-round physical activity that's easy to bring inside and use between Zoom classes, too!

    $75

    Detective set

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    This set has everything your little detective needs to solve whatever mystery they might encounter: an eye glasses, walkie-talkie, camera, a red lens, a periscope and a bag. Neighborhood watch? Watch out.

    $40

    Wooden doll stroller

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    Take their charges on a stroll around the block with this classic doll stroller. With the same versatility they're used to in their own ride, this heirloom quality carriage allows their doll or stuffy to face them or face the world.

    $120

    Sand play set

    Plan Toys sand set

    Whether you're hitting the beach or the backyard sandbox, this adorable wooden sand set is ready for action. Each scoop has an embossed pattern that's perfect for sand stamping. They're also totally suitable for water play in the wild or the bathtub.

    $30

    Water play set

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    Filled with sand or water, this tabletop sized activity set keeps little ones busy, quiet and happy. (A mama's ideal trifecta 😉). It's big enough to satisfy their play needs but not so big it's going to flood your floors if you bring the fun inside on a rainy day.

    $100

    Mini golf set

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    Fore! This mini golf set is lawn and living room ready. Set up a backyard competition or incorporate into homeschooling brain breaks that shift focus and build concentration.

    $40

    Vintage scooter balance bike

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    Pedals are so 2010. Balance bikes are the way to go for learning to ride a bike while skipping the training wheels stage altogether. This impossibly cool retro scooter-style is built to cruise the neighborhood or open indoor space as they're learning.

    $121

    Wooden rocking pegasus

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    Your little will be ready to take flight on this fun pegasus. It gently rocks back and forth, but doesn't skimp on safety—its winged saddle, footrests and backrest ensure kids won't fall off whether they're rocking inside or outside.

    $100

    Croquet set

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    The cutest croquet set we've ever seen! With adorable animal face wooden balls and a canvas bag for easy clean up, it's also crafted to stick around awhile. Round after round, it's great for teaching kiddos math and problem-solving skills as well.

    $45

    Wooden digital camera

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    Kids get the chance to assemble the camera on their own then can adventure anywhere to capture the best moments. With two detachable magnetic lenses, four built-in filters and video recorder, your little photographer can tap into their creativity from summertime to the holidays.

    $179

    Wooden bulldozer toy

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    Whether they're digging up sand in the backyad or picking up toys inside, kids can get as creative as they want picking up and moving things around. Even better? Its wooden structure means it's not an eye sore to look at wherever your digger drops it.

    $100

    Pull-along hippo

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    There's just something so fun about a classic pull-along toy and we love that they seamlessly transition between indoor and outdoor play. Crafted from solid cherry and beechwood, it's tough enough to endure outdoor spaces your toddler takes it on.

    $33

    Baby forest fox ride-on

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    Toddlers will love zooming around on this fox ride-on, and it's a great transition toy into traditional balance bikes. If you take it for a driveway adventure, simply use a damp cloth to wipe down the wheels before bringing back inside.

    $88

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