This post was written by our friends at Celebrity Baby Scoop.
Hilary Duff has joined the campaign to support Johnson’s Baby Cares partnership with Save the Children for the second year in a row. The actress recently visited the Save the Children early childhood education school in Yucca Valley, California – where she met with families who benefit from the program.
Celebrity Baby Scoop recently had a chance to catch up with Hilary about the Johnson’s Baby Cares program, her 1-year-old son Luca, and her biggest motherhood rewards.
Celebrity Baby Scoop: Tell us about partnering with Johnson’s Baby for Johnson’s Baby Cares. What’s it all about? Why did you get involved?
Hilary Duff: I can’t believe I have my first year as a mom under my belt – time flies. Looking back on it, I’ve been thinking a lot about the support I received from my family, friends and fans over the past year, and how their words of encouragement really helped me get through some challenging days.
Unfortunately not all moms have the same support system or even basic everyday resources to help them with motherhood. That’s why I’m proud to partner with Johnson’s Baby Cares for the second year on its newest campaign centered around Johnson’s Baby “Care Cards” – which is helping to deliver encouragement and positive support to moms across the country, while also raising funds for families and babies assisted by Save the Children.
Now, everyone can help in an easy and fun way! Visit Johnson’s Baby’s Facebook page to send a digital Care Card filled with love and inspiration to a special mom in your life. For every card sent, shared or liked Johnson’s Baby will donate $1 to Save the Children to benefit early parenting and childhood education programs.
CBS: How’s baby Luca doing? Is he into everything these days now that he’s walking?
HD: “Luca’s incredible! I can’t believe he is already 13 months old. He’s certainly an active boy and yes, even more so now that he is walking. In fact, he basically skipped the walking stage and went straight to “speed walking.” I spend my days on my feet trailing him around the house and yard!”
CBS: How has your life changed in the last year since you’ve become a mother? What are the greatest rewards of motherhood? Biggest challenges?
HD: I really love being a mom.Motherhoodchanges the way you see the world. I’ve always been passionate about giving back, but now I’m more passionate about supporting causes that help other moms and babies, like Johnson’s Baby Cares.
I’m rewarded by Luca every day, whether it’s with a new smile or an accomplished milestone, but the biggest reward has to be discovering this tremendous newfound love that I had no idea existed within me. Every day brings new challenges, but you learn to trust yourself and your instincts to help get through them.
CBS: You seem to have the ‘perfect’ life with a great career and family life. But do you think women can REALLY ‘have it all’? Have you had to make sacrifices now that you’re a mom?
HD: Nobody’s life is perfect but in this day and age women are able to find a balance between work and home life. Of course my life has changed but I don’t think of them as sacrifices because I was ready for this new chapter!
CBS: We saw you and Mike enjoying Coachella. Comment on the importance of making time as a couple. Do you think it’s important? Do you have regular date nights?
HD: Yes of course it’s important to make time to focus on your relationship. But it’s not always easy! We aren’t huge planners, we tend to do things last minute but we enjoy going out for nice dinners or spending time with friends.
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Calling all Hayao Miyazaki fans! The acclaimed Japanese filmmaker’s animated film My Neighbor Totoro is turning 25 this year. The whimsical movie tells a tale of friendship and sisterhood that the whole family will enjoy. And the Disney version features the voices of real-life sisters, Elle and Dakota Fanning. To celebrate its anniversary, Disney and Studio Ghibli are releasing it—along with another Miyazaki classic, Howl’s Moving Castle—on Blu-ray for the first time ever on May 21.
We are excited to announce that Disney and Studio Ghibli are also letting us give away a Miyazaki Blu-ray gift basket, containing these two films along with The Secret World of Arrietty, Whisper of the Heart and Castle in the Sky, a $200 value. To enter, just leave a comment at this post. You can comment once a day between now and the end of the day on Wednesday, May 22, 2013. You can also read the official rules, or find additional information about the films here.
And be sure to check out this fun clip of My Neighbor Totoro:
In a welcome piece of good news from Washington today, the Department of Health and Human Services has proposed major new regulations to help protect children in child care centers and family child care homes. “Many children already benefit from the excellent care of high-quality child care providers who are meeting or exceeding the proposed requirements,” said HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. “However, too many children remain in settings that do not meet minimum standards of health and safety. These basic rules ensure that providers take necessary basic steps to shield children from avoidable tragedy.”
I met recently with parents whose children had died in child care because these types of regulations did not exist. These parents have been working to help make sure that a similar tragedy wouldn’t happen to other families, and their advocacy has paid off. Child Care Aware of America has led the charge for safety and quality improvements, and we’ve been privileged to partner with them on their efforts. Most parents would be shocked to learn about the current minimal standards.
For all child care providers who accept federal funding through the Child Care and Development Fund, the new regulations would require:
- Health and safety training in certain areas
- Compliance with state and local fire, health and building codes
- Comprehensive background checks (including fingerprinting)
- On-site monitoring
States would also have to post information online for parents about health, safety, and licensing. The proposed regulations will be open for public comment for 75 days.
Check out blog posts by multitalented mompreneur Rosie Pope every week at Parents.com!
I went to Washington, D.C. last week as an advocate for RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association, a nonprofit organization that promotes reproductive health and equal access to family building options for those who are battling reproductive disorders. Infertility strips you of any feeling of power or control. Not knowing when or if you will be able to have children is completely debilitating, and 1 in 8 couples in the United States deal with some form of infertility. For me and the other advocates whose lives have been touched by infertility in some way, this trip was an opportunity to get a little power back.
To be able to walk the hallways of government buildings in D.C. and visit the men and women of our government was the most incredible experience. Having recently become an American citizen, it was thrilling to be able to exercise my rights under the First Amendment. And while there are still many injustices in the coverage of infertility for families throughout the United States, I was there to specifically support The Family Act of 2011 S. 965, a proposed tax credit for costs associated with infertility medical treatment, and to push for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to cover veterans whose injuries at war have resulted in their infertility. As it stands today, when veterans are injured in action and that injury causes infertility, their health insurance will not cover them in this regard. After putting their lives on the line to protect the freedom of us and our children, we then deny them the chance to have children themselves.
I find myself getting quite emotional writing this (and I am still shocked that I managed to hold it together while in Washington), but this is an important issue that needs to be recognized. I feel honored to have been amongst so many courageous and moral men and women fighting for fertility rights during my trip. In one sense, I felt enamored with the government system because of the fact that I, little old me, could make an appointment—or just show up at the different state offices—and present my case to anyone that would listen. But at the same time, I was also disheartened by the long battle ahead on behalf of the rights of Americans and our military heroes who want to have children. I am no stranger to budgeting problems, and the money to fund the effects of this act is going to have to come from somewhere.
While there is still much left to be done to bring light and awareness to this issue, the chance to instill my passion and educate people with the power to make a change was an amazing opportunity. I hope that when my daughter and her friends want to have children, for the 1 in 8 of them that may be affected by infertility concerns, they won’t have to think twice about whether their health insurance will cover them for their infertility treatment. After all, it is hard enough to struggle through infertility, but to layer on financial hardship or be unable to afford treatment is something that no family in our modern society should go through.
Child Care Centers Overhaul Proposed By Federal Health Officials
Federal health officials say they will propose Thursday to overhaul federally funded child care centers across the country, beefing up safety standards including background and fingerprint checks for employees and requiring states to better monitor the facilities. (via Huffington Post)
Slightly high lead tied to less reading readiness
Children with even slightly elevated blood lead levels are less likely to be ready to read when starting kindergarten, according to a new study. (via Reuters)
Cracking the Tech Job Talent Crunch by Teaching Kids to Code
For all the parents losing sleep over their kids’ prospects in such a tightfisted job market, I can see at least one recourse: teach them how to code. The earlier, the better.(via Huffington Post)
Judge declines to nix ’79 NYC child-killing case
A man charged with murder decades after one of the nation’s most infamous child disappearances can be brought to trial, a judge ruled Wednesday, turning down the man’s claim that the case was too thin to proceed. (via Yahoo News)
Pop-Tart Gun Suspension: Attorney For Suspended Student Says No Resolution Has Been Reached With School
An attorney for the family of an Anne Arundel County 7-year-old suspended from school after being accused of nibbling a pastry into the shape of a gun says he met with school officials Wednesday in an attempt have the student’s suspension expunged, but no resolution was reached. (via Reuters)
Parents sue South Carolina, hospital over child’s sex assignment surgery
A couple filed a lawsuit Tuesday against the state of South Carolina for what they say was an unnecessary sexual assignment surgery performed on a toddler they later adopted. (via Fox News)
No matter how health-conscious you are or what diet you’re on, there are times when you just can’t pass on dessert.
When it comes to Sandra Lee’s pineapple-passion-fruit cupcakes, Guy Fieri’s caramel apple bread pudding, and Buddy Valastro’s Italian butter cookies, I can’t think of a single reason to say no.
On May 1, I perused the World’s Largest Bake Sale at Grand Central Station, sampling sweets, meeting local bakers, but most importantly, learning about child hunger in America.
Sponsored by the Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign, the bake sale raised both money for the cause and awareness for the more than 16 million children affected by hunger in America.
I chatted with of New York City’s best bakers and browsed their selection of champagne cupcakes, pistachio-cherry scones, and peanut-butter-strawberry-jam doughnuts. All sweets were sold for $5, the proceeds from which were put toward the campaign.
Bake sale host Sandra Lee whipped up her favorite strawberry shortcake and banana split cupcakes for the event, and spoke to me about the urgency of the child hunger epidemic.
“Some working moms are going home with one check, paying rent, and wondering how they are going to feed their kids. Sometimes they have to choose between paying bills and food,” she said. “It shouldn’t be that way in America.”
Buddy Valastro, the “Cake Boss,” said that as a baker and a father, he just had to be part of the event. He also shared with me a personal story about his family history.
“My dad grew up in Sicily and I remember him telling stories of going to bed hungry, after sharing one plate with his family,” he said. “It really puts life in perspective. This is about more than raising money, it’s about saying, ‘Hey, America, this is happening!’”
Ty Pennington, former host of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, expressed a personal connection to the cause and donated a colorful, handmade bake sale stand for the Share Our Strength Auction.
“I may not have a child of my own, per se, but it is staggering to hear that one in five kids goes hungry,” he said. “It really opens your eyes about not wasting as much and makes you think about what we can do to make sure they are fed.”
The Share Our Strength Auction for No Kid Hungry runs through May 31 and features items donated by food masters like Martha Stewart and Emeril Lagasse. This is your chance to take a class in the Cake Boss’s kitchen, dig in to Bobby Flay’s signature Southwestern dishes, or learn to swirl icing like New York’s iconic Magnolia Bakery.
Categories: Food, GoodyBlog | Tags: auction, bake sale, baking, Buddy Valastro, Cake Boss, charity, child hunger, children, Family, fundraiser, Grand Central, No Kid Hungry, Sandra Lee, share our strength, Ty Pennington, World's Largest Bake Sale
16-Year-Olds Able To Vote in Takoma Park, MD
A small Maryland city just outside the Washington, D.C., city limits has voted to lower the voting age for city elections to 16. (via Huffington Post)
Elementary Math, Reading Skills At Age 7 Linked To Financial Success At Midlife, According to Study
It may seem hard to figure, but provocative new research suggests that an individual’s math and reading skills in elementary school are key indicators of his/her socioeconomic status (SES) in adulthood. In fact, the study — conducted by a pair of researchers at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland — showed that math and reading skills at age seven are the most reliable predictors of SES at age 42. (via Huffington Post)
Flu In Pregnancy May Quadruple Child’s Risk For Bipolar Disorder
Pregnant mothers’ exposure to the flu was associated with a nearly fourfold increased risk that their child would develop bipolar disorder in adulthood, in a study funded by the National Institutes of Health. The findings add to mounting evidence of possible shared underlying causes and illness processes with schizophrenia, which some studies have also linked to prenatal exposure to influenza. (via Science Daily)
India Developing Cheap Vaccine Against Major Cause of Diarrhea Deaths in Kids
The Indian government announced Tuesday the development of a new low-cost vaccine proven effective against a diarrhea-causing virus that is one of the leading causes of childhood deaths across the developing world. The Indian manufacturer of the new rotavirus vaccine pledged to sell it for $1 a dose, a significant discount from the cost of the current vaccines on the market. (via Fox News)
Number of Abused U.S. Children Unchanged Since 2008
The number of U.S. children who were exposed to violence, crime and abuse in 2011 was essentially unchanged from 2008, according to a new government survey. (via Reuters)
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Editor’s Note: This guest post was written by Dina Roth Port, mom of two children and frequent contributor to Parents. She is also the author of Previvors: Facing the Breast Cancer Gene and Making Life-Changing Decisions.
You might not like some of her movies. You might think she’s a little out there (at least during those Billy Bob Thornton years.) You might be a little peeved that she can take care of six kids and still look poised and breathtakingly beautiful all the time.
Whether you like her or not, one thing is for sure: Angelina Jolie is a hero. She’s using her celebrity for good by telling women with a genetic predisposition for breast cancer that they are not alone. Some may fear dealing with tough decisions alone, not realizing there are thousands upon thousands of other women who completely understand what they’re going through.
In today’s issue of The New York Times, Jolie publicly shared her very personal decision to have a prophylactic double mastectomy. As she says in her op-ed piece, “I choose not to keep my story private because there are many women who do not know that they might be living under the shadow of cancer. It is my hope that they, too, will be able to get gene tested, and that if they have a high risk they, too, will know that they have strong options.”
Jolie’s letting women around the world know that they no longer have to live in fear of breast cancer. They have options. They can determine cancer risk by testing for a BRCA mutation and taking charge of their health in ways that previous generations never could. Jolie knows this all too well. When she tested positive for a BRCA1 gene, she knew she had an 87% risk of developing breast cancer and a 44% chance of developing ovarian cancer. She knew she was a previvor — someone who has not had cancer but who has a high risk for developing it. Since her mom died of ovarian cancer just six years ago, Jolie knew that it was a major red flag that there might be a BRCA mutation in the family. After finding out that she did inherit the mutation, she decided to do something about it.
Of course, there are naysayers: “I can’t relate to Angelina Jolie. She’s a celebrity with endless resources. Her life is nothing like mine.” But getting a double mastectomy is a very difficult, personal decision for any woman, as I learned interviewing the five women featured in my book, Previvors: Facing the Breast Cancer Gene and Making Life-Changing Decisions, all of whom had to make choices — some had surgery, some did not — just like Jolie. Sure, she may be a famous, multimillionaire engaged to Brad Pitt, but Jolie’s still a woman taking steps that can potentially save her life. And, as a mother, Jolie decided she would do what she needed to do to protect her children (just like any mother would). She is showing women that, after surgery, it is still possible to look and feel feminine and whole. She is also showing women that it’s possible to make tough decisions and still have the support of a loving partner.
I thank Jolie for sharing her story and for encouraging women to learn about the ways they can protect themselves. She is incredibly brave for doing so, particularly since her journey is not over. Thank you, Angelina Jolie, for putting such a public face to the word “previvor.”
More about breast cancer on Parents.com
- Doing Battle Against Breast Cancer
- 6 Ways to Tell Your Kids About Breast Cancer
- Breast Cancer Risks and Myths
Image: Angelina Jolie in Berlin via Shutterstock.