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10 Ways I’m a Failure According to Mommy Blogs

The mommy blogs are silently judging me.

I feel their condemnation every time I scan through pictures of the cool moms’ color-coordinated lives, perpetually clean children, and hyper-organized homes.

There are some things that are just part of motherhood, according to these blogs, and no one bats an eye to question that. No more! I’m not ashamed to admit that I fail to meet these ten “basic” requirements for life as a mom:

1. I don’t keep a homemaking binder.

What are these things?! I have neither a written weekly cleaning schedule nor the time for scrubbing my entire house in a week or – let’s be serious – in a month. It has never occurred to me to track my daily water consumption or keep a calendar of in-season produce. I absolutely do not have a written personal mission statement, decorated pages of inspirational quotes, or a list of feel-good books to read.

2. I would cry if I had to homeschool my kid.

I love my son completely, but we would both go bonkers being tethered together 24-7. With no guilt and a smile on my face, I wave goodbye to him each weekday morning. He happily goes off to be with trained teachers and a diverse group of peers while benefiting from a comprehensive curriculum. Meanwhile, I enjoy the fulfillment of my own career and some adult conversation while looking forward to his enthusiastic return.

3. I won’t spend an entire afternoon food shopping.

I can’t fathom planning a month’s worth of meals and doing all of my shopping in a single trip. No one has ever spotted me buying 40 pounds of ground beef at Sam’s Club or Costco. I don’t sketch out a game plan to hit four supermarkets each week in order to score the best deals ever. I’m the girl sprinting through a single local store while grabbing what I need and generously trying not to run down the children and elderly in my path.

4. I’ve never spent a full day preparing a freezer full of meals.

There’s no deep freezer in my garage to accommodate a year’s worth of slow cooker meals in the event of apocalypse. I don’t keep a written inventory of my freezer’s contents either. Heck, I like being surprised when I dig around and discover something in the freezer’s recesses!

5. I haven’t put my family on an organic, vegan, or gluten-free diet.

We eat real food, people. Give us some burgers, a bowl of pasta, and a chocolate cake. We like our milk from actual cows, not soybeans or almonds. Sure, I’ll serve my kid a vegetable instead of a bag of chips for dinner. Then I’ll give myself a pat on the back for being awesome.

6. I don’t cook up my own cleaning and personal care products.

I’m not ashamed to admit that I buy laundry detergent, lip balm, deodorant, and shampoo. If I need shower cleaner, I purchase the spray bottle with the encouragingly-happy cartoon bubbles. They don’t judge me for my practicality or lack of a daily bathroom scrubbing routine.

7. I refuse to use cloth diapers.

I can’t be the only person who wants to deal as little as possible with what comes out of a baby’s bottom. I will happily conserve electricity, recycle cans, and carpool, but the environment is going to have to deal with the disposable diapers originating from my house.

8. I don’t have a coupon organization system.

Who are these women with massive, bedazzled 3-ring binders in their shopping carts? I’ve got a dusty box with expired coupons from my pre-child days when I had time for perusing ads over a glass of wine. Now I feel proud when I don’t lose the coupons the cashier physically hands me as I check out at the supermarket. Ten points for me if I remember to use one before they join their brethren in the expired coupon heap.

9. I’ve never made a busy bag in my life.

Did you just have to Google “busy bag”? I did the first time I saw the phrase pop up on a mommy blog. As far as I can tell, their purpose is to make me busier. As a completely non-crafty person, I have never felt a compulsion to cut out complicated felt shapes, paint popsicle sticks, or decorate two dozen clothespins. My kid would just want to play with the bag anyway.

10. I need to talk about something other than my kid.

I am more than just “Mom.” Don’t get me wrong; I love being Mom, but I was an interesting person before motherhood and I still am. In addition to a uterus, I’ve got a career, interests, opinions, and a brain. Thank you for asking me about my kid, but let’s also discuss science, politics, or your wild Saturday night (because I fell asleep at 8:30).

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When model Mara Martin was one of 16 finalists selected to walk in the 2018 Sports Illustrated Swim Search show, she was thrilled to fulfill a lifelong dream. And when she woke up the day after the show to see that she and her baby daughter had made headlines around the world, she was thrilled all over again.

Martin breastfed her 5-month-old daughter Aria while walking in the runway, and the story spread quickly.

"It is truly so humbling and unreal to say the least," Martin wrote in an Instagram post Monday. "I'm so grateful to be able to share this message and hopefully normalize breastfeeding and also show others that women CAN DO IT ALL! But to be honest, the real reason I can't believe it is a headline is because it shouldn't be a headline!!! My story of being a mother and feeding her while walking is just that."

SI Swimsuit Editor MJ Day says the breastfeeding moment wasn't planned in advance, but it worked out wonderfully. Day was speaking with the models backstage when she noticed Aria was peacefully nursing away. Having breastfed her own two children, Day recognized this as a powerful moment in the making, according to SI Swimsuit.

"I asked Mara if she would want to walk and continue to nurse. She said 'Oh my gosh, yes! Really? Are you sure?', and I said absolutely! I loved the idea to be able to allow Mara to keep nursing and further highlight how incredible and beautiful women are," Day explained.

Martin hopes that her moment in the spotlight can help other mamas feel comfortable nursing when and where they feel like it, but she doesn't want to overshadow some of the other women who took part in the show.

"One woman is going to boot camp in two weeks to serve our country," she wrote. "One woman had a mastectomy (@allynrose), and another is a cancer survivor, 2x paralympic gold medalist, as well as a mother herself (@bren_hucks you rock) Those are the stories that our world should be discussing!!!!"

And thanks to Martin's powerful motherhood moment, now, people are.

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Dear Jeff Bezos and all who have anything to do with Amazon Prime Day,

I just want to start by saying—I know you are trying to be helpful. I love you all for that. I honestly do. But, you are kind of making me feel a lot of pressure today. Like, in a good way, but also, in an anxious way.

Let me explain…

On any given day, as a mother to three children, I have a certain level of anxiety. While it's not constant, I do have my anxious moments. Why? Because there are various versions of the following: Me asking my two older daughters to get their shoes on what feels like 500 times as I am changing my 9-month-old's very, very, very messy diaper while I am trying to figure out what I can throw on to wear in about five seconds while I am repeating brush your teeth, brush your teeth in my head so I, in fact, don't forget to brush my teeth.

Not even to mention the mental load that weighs on my mind every single day. Remember to flip the laundry, fill out the school forms, cancel that appointment, reschedule this appointment, order more diapers, figure out what we're having for dinner, squeeze in a shower, lock the basement door so the baby can't get down the stairs, find better eczema cream for my middle daughter, get more sunscreen...the list goes on and on and on.

But then you Amazon Prime Day me and I'm having a lot of feelings about that.

Because you're reminding me of things I need to order, to think about, to be on top of more.

The little potty that's on sale reminds me that I need to step up my potty training game for my 2-year-old. That super cute dollhouse reminds me that I need to think about my daughter's first birthday in two months (WHAT!). That face mask reminds me that I need to remember to wash my face before bed because I forget waaaay more than I remember which is terrible.

But then I realize, these deals are going to save my mental load by fixing my life. Right?

Like, I never knew I needed an Instant Pot until you told me it was only $58. Now I am scouring Pinterest for meals I want to prep in my own. THIS POT IS THE TICKET TO GETTING MY LIFE IN ORDER.

Do we need more plates and cups for the kids? I mean really they only probably need about two plates and two cups each but YES. Yes I do need more cute kids kitchenware. THESE PLATES ARE THE TICKET TO BEING A GOOD MOM.

What would I do if I had five Echo Dots? I don't know, but let's find out because they're only $29! THESE DOTS ARE THE TICKET TO EFFICIENCY.

If I order a Vitamix at 30% off, I know I'll lose the baby weight. Think of all the smoothies I'll mix up! I mean, I just lost a pound even thinking about the smoothies that thing can whip up. THIS VITAMIX IS THE TICKET TO A SEXY BOD.

Buying this trendy, floral dress will step up my mom style significantly. THIS DRESS IS THE TICKET TO KEEPING MY COOL.

Okay, then after I add all the fixers to my cart, I realize… I have 99 things, but necessity ain't one.

I mean, I have everything from waterproof band-aids to bras to dresses for myself and my kids to an alarm clock and books. I basically feel like Oprah—You get an Audible subscription! You get an Audible subscription!—but instead of these products magically being paid for by Queen O herself, the money is coming from my bank account, which is a lot less fun of a game, TBH.

And if I am being honest, I don't need much help with my order-things-from-Amazon-and-pretend-it's-being-paid-for-with-Monopoly-money game as I am quite often coming home to an Amazon package wondering what it could be, opening it with the enthusiasm of a kid on Christmas morning—even though I am the exact person who ordered whatever is inside of that Amazon box.

But today, on Amazon Prime Day, you tempt me with all the deals. And yes, my anxiety, blood pressure and adrenaline rise. And yes, my bank account might temporarily decrease—BUT if we are being fair, with the savings I'm getting on things I would buy anyway, I am basically making our account increase overall. Right?

And while these things aren't going to make me skinnier, or cooler, or more put together—I'm okay with that. I am doing a pretty good job on my own. But some of them will actually help my life in a few different ways at a reasonable price, and I am grateful for that—for real.

Now, Bezos, please end this 404 error nonsense and let me purchase all the things!

Thank you for all the savings and excitement,

Mamas everywhere

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Usually when celebrities post swimsuit photos on Instagram they don't exactly look like your average beach-going mom, but former Bachelorette (and mom of two) Ali Fedotowsky posted a series of bikini photos on Monday that are both beautiful and relatable.

"This might be my most vulnerable post on Instagram ever," she wrote in the caption for the photos which show a postpartum belly that looks like a real postpartum belly.

"At the end of the day, I know it's important to be open and honest about my postpartum body in hopes that it helps even one person out there who is struggling with their own body image," Fedotowsky (who just gave birth to her second child in May) wrote.

In the first photo of the series she's wearing a sarong around her stomach, but in the second and third photos Fedotowsky reveals the kind of stomach many mamas sport: It's not perfectly taut, she's not showing off any abs, but it is definity beautiful.

"If you swipe to see the second photo in this post, you see that my body has changed. My skin around my stomach is very loose and stretched out, I'm 15lbs heavier than I used to be, and my cup size has grown quite significantly," Fedotowsky writes.

The photos are a sponsored post for Lilly and Lime Swimwear (a line made for women with larger busts) but that doesn't mean it wasn't brave. In fact, the fact that it's an ad makes it even more amazing because research shows that when advertising only shows us bodies that don't look like our own, women become "generally more dissatisfied with their body and appearance".

Ali Fedotowsky

On her blog Fedotowsky notes that a lot of comments on her previous Instagram posts have been followers remarking how slim she looks, or how much they wish they looked like she does postpartum. By dropping that sarong and showing her tummy Fedotowsky is showing other mothers that there is nothing wrong with their own.

"While I appreciate the positive comments, you guys are always so good to me, I keep trying to explain that I'm just good at picking out clothes that flatter my body and hide my tummy," she wrote on her blog.

"I bounced back pretty quickly after I gave birth to Molly. But things are different this time and I'm OK with that. I'm learning to love my body and embrace how it's changed. I hope I get back to my pre-pregnancy shape one day, but that may never happen. And if it doesn't, that's OK."

Ali Fedotowsky

It is okay, because our bodies are more than our swimsuit selfies. They the vessels that carry us through life and carry our children and provide a safe, warm place for those children feel love.

Loose skin is a beautiful thing.

Thanks for keeping it real, Ali.

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Amazon shoppers were anxiously awaiting the countdown to Amazon Prime Day, but when the clock struck one, er three, the website went down.

On Monday afternoon shoppers were trying to get their hands on the much-hyped Prime Day deals but instead of low prices, many users just saw 404 errors, continuously refreshing pages, or had issues keeping or adding items to their shopping carts.

CNBC reports shares of Amazon were down during the shopping glitch, and many shoppers took to Twitter and Instagram to discuss how all they could see on Amazon were the dogs who decorate the site's 404 pages.

As cute as the dogs are, shoppers are getting tired of seeing them, so hopefully Amazon gets things back up and running soon. Analysts had projected Amazon would rake in $3 billion dollars this Prime Day. Time will tell how much of that was lost during the great dog picture debacle of 2018.

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