23 breastfeeding photos that convey the perfectly imperfect reality of nursing.

Suzie Blake is an Australian artist and photographer. She's also a mom to 3-year-old Max and 9-month-old Xavier. She's currently breastfeeding Xavier, and that got her thinking about something.

Blake noticed that when a photo of a mother breastfeeding is widely circulated, it's usually a celebrity or model dressed to the nines, baby expertly positioned, mom looking — well — model-perfect.

Photos like this one, of model Nicole Trunfio breastfeeding her baby on the cover of Australian Elle.


And this one of Giselle breastfeeding her baby. I mean ... few words are necessary. This. Is. Stunning.

What would I do without this beauty squad after the 15 hours flying and only 3 hours of sleep #gettingready💄💅😉 O que seria de mim sem esse esquadrão da beleza depois de voar 15 horas e só dormir 3 horas. #mepreparando
A post shared by Gisele Bündchen (@gisele) on

There is absolutely nothing wrong with high-profile women sharing photos of themselves breastfeeding. It's a good thing. I even wrote about Trunfio's photo and her accompanying thoughts on motherhood and breastfeeding because normalizing breastfeeding is very important. (To be clear, breastfeeding is soooo normal. But as a society, we don't really treat it that way.)

But as it goes with celebs, models, and famous people, the majority of us don't exactly look like them.

"I was seeing a lot of photographs of mothers breastfeeding in the media but none I could relate to," Blake told me. "I just wanted to see a photo of a woman breastfeeding in circumstances similar to my own, not one that had been airbrushed or in a studio setting."

We have a lot of discussions about normalizing breastfeeding, and yet the photos we usually see aren't exactly "normal." As Blake said to me, "Breastfeeding is not this fantasy experience where you lounge on an ornate sofa in high heels and full makeup." ( Sigh. Real life is so ... real.)

"The media is saturated with photographs of women who are airbrushed to 'perfection' (whatever that means), and it upsets me that now the breastfeeding mother is being presented in the same way," she said. "Seriously, give a woman a break! Breastfeeding is hard enough, let alone having to live up to some totally unattainable stereotype."

And that's what led her to begin a pretty cool photo project that she's calling "What Does Breastfeeding Look Like?"

Blake wants to photograph lots and lots of everyday women breastfeeding their babies in everyday circumstances, which are rarely glamorous, so she launched an Indigogo fundraiser so that she can create a large collection of photos of nursing moms.

She got started with a bunch of photos, 23 of which you can scroll down to see. I suspect most moms who have breastfed will be able to relate. And for the rest of us who haven't, it's positive to see the way so many babies eat every single day.

1. Suzie

First up: The photographer herself! All photos belong to Suzie Blake. She shared them with me for the article, and I've posted them here with her permission.

2. Sarah

3. Ellie

4. Angela

5. Amma

6. Marcella

7. Kira

8. Yvette

9. Catharina

10. Sheri

11. Lena

12. Claire

13. Sofi

14. Fiona

15. Kimberley

16. Heather

17. Karlysis

18. Jacqui

19. Susan

20. Brooke

21. Lulu

22. Kat

23. Kristie

In addition to taking these photos for moms who breastfeed to relate to, Blake is taking them for everyone.

She explained to me that she wants moms-to-be to see them and feel inspired to breastfeed. She wants breastfeeding moms to feel like they can relate.

"I would also like all people to see these images ... it's nothing to be shocked about," she said. She thinks that if more people saw women breastfeeding in everyday, real life circumstances, "they'd be less likely to get all up in arms about it."

Blake would like everyone to be educated about breastfeeding — children, teenagers, and adults ... both men and women. "It needs to be seen for what it is, not what what it's being sold as," she said. Breastfeeding isn't just an issue that matters to moms of infants and toddlers — it affects all of society (we were all babies, after all).

If you'd like to see more photos like this from Blake, you can learn more about her project and support the Indidgogo campaign if you'd like.

With any luck, one day pictures like this won't serve a purpose other than to preserve memories for families!

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Amazon

Shopping sustainably is increasingly important given the severity of the climate crisis, but sometimes it's hard to know where to turn. Thankfully, Amazon is making it a little easier to browse thousands of products that have one or more of 19 sustainability certifications that help preserve the natural world.

The online retailer recently announced Climate Pledge Friendly, a program to make it easier for customers to discover and shop for more sustainable products. To determine the sustainability of a product, the program partnered with third-party certifications, including governmental agencies, nonprofits, and independent labs.

With a selection of items spanning grocery, household, fashion, beauty, and personal electronics, you'll be able to shop more sustainably not just for the holiday season, but throughout the year for your essentials, as well.

You can browse all of the Climate Pledge Friendly products here, labeled with an icon and which certification(s) they meet. To get you on your way to shopping more sustainably, we've rounded up eight of our favorite Climate Pledge Friendly-products that will make great gifts all year long.

Amazon

Jack Wolfskin Women's North York Coat

Give the gift of warmth and style with this coat, available in a variety of colors. Sustainability is built into all Jack Wolfskin products and each item comes with a code that lets you trace back to its origins and understand how it was made.

Bluesign: Bluesign products are responsibly manufactured by using safer chemicals and fewer resources, including less energy, in production.


Amazon

Amazon All-new Echo Dot (4th Gen)

For the tech-obsessed. This Alexa smart speaker, which comes in a sleek, compact design, lets you voice control your entertainment and your smart home as well as connect with others.

Reducing CO2: Products with this certification reduce their carbon footprint year after year. Certified by the Carbon Trust.


Amazon

Burt's Bees Family Jammies Matching Holiday Organic Cotton Pajamas

Get into the holiday spirit with these fun matching PJs for the whole family. Perfect for pictures that even Fido can get in on.

Global Organic Textile Standard: This certifies each step of the organic textile supply chain against strict ecological and social standards. Each product with this certification contains 95%-100% organic content.

Amazon

Naturistick 5-Pack Lip Balm Gift Set

With 100% natural ingredients that are gentle on ultra-sensitive lips, this gift is a great gift for the whole family.

Compact by Design (Certified by Amazon): Products with this certification are packaged without excess air and water, which reduces the carbon footprint of shipping and packaging.


Amazon

Arus Women's GOTS Certified Organic Cotton Hooded Full Length Turkish Bathrobe

For those who love to lounge around, this full-length organic cotton bathrobe is the way to go. Available in five different colors, it has comfortable cuffed sleeves, a hood, pockets, and adjustable belt.

Global Organic Textile Standard: This certifies each step of the organic textile supply chain against strict ecological and social standards. Each product with this certification contains 95%-100% organic content.

Amazon

L'Occitane Extra-Gentle Vegetable Based Soap

This luxe soap, made with moisturizing shea butter and scented with verbena, is perfect for the self-care obsessed.

Compact by Design (Certified by Amazon): Products with this certification are packaged without excess air and water, which reduces the carbon footprint of shipping and packaging.

Amazon

Goodthreads Men's Sweater-Knit Fleece Long-Sleeve Bomber

For the fashionable men in your life, this fashion-forward knit bomber is an excellent choice. The sweater material keeps it cozy and warm, while the bomber jacket-cut, zip front, and rib-trim neck make it look elevated.

Recycled Claim Standard 100: Products with this certification use materials made from at least 95% recycled content.

Amazon

All-new Fire TV Stick with Alexa Voice Remote

Make it even easier to access your favorite movies and shows this holiday season. The new Fire TV Stick lets you use your voice to search across apps. Plus it controls the power and volume on your TV, so you'll never need to leave the couch! Except for snacks.

Reducing CO2: Products with this certification reduce their carbon footprint year after year. Certified by the Carbon Trust.

Wikiimages by Pixabay, Dr. Jacqueline Antonovich/Twitter

The 1776 Report isn't just bad, it's historically bad, in every way possible.

When journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones published her Pulitzer Prize-winning 1619 Project for The New York Times, some backlash was inevitable. Instead of telling the story of America's creation through the eyes of the colonial architects of our system of government, Hannah-Jones retold it through the eyes of the enslaved Africans who were forced to help build the nation without reaping the benefits of democracy. Though a couple of historical inaccuracies have had to be clarified and corrected, the 1619 Project is groundbreaking, in that it helps give voice to a history that has long been overlooked and underrepresented in our education system.

The 1776 Report, in turn, is a blaring call to return to the whitewashed curriculums that silence that voice.

In September of last year, President Trump blasted the 1619 Project, which he called "toxic propaganda" and "ideological poison" that "will destroy our country." He subsequently created a commission to tell the story of America's founding the way he wanted it told—in the form of a "patriotic education" with all of the dog whistles that that phrase entails.

Mission accomplished, sort of.

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If the past year has taught us nothing else, it's that sending love out into the world through selfless acts of kindness can have a positive ripple effect on people and communities. People all over the United States seemed to have gotten the message — 71% of those surveyed by the World Giving Index helped a stranger in need in 2020. A nonprofit survey found 90% helped others by running errands, calling, texting and sending care packages. Many people needed a boost last year in one way or another and obliging good neighbors heeded the call over and over again — and continue to make a positive impact through their actions in this new year.

Upworthy and P&G Good Everyday wanted to help keep kindness going strong, so they partnered up to create the Lead with Love Fund. The fund awards do-gooders in communities around the country with grants to help them continue on with their unique missions. Hundreds of nominations came pouring in and five winners were selected based on three criteria: the impact of action, uniqueness, and "Upworthy-ness" of their story.

Here's a look at the five winners:

Edith Ornelas, co-creator of Mariposas Collective in Memphis, Tenn.

Edith Ornelas has a deep-rooted connection to the asylum-seeking immigrant families she brings food and supplies to families in Memphis, Tenn. She was born in Jalisco, Mexico, and immigrated to the United States when she was 7 years old with her parents and sister. Edith grew up in Chicago, then moved to Memphis in 2016, where she quickly realized how few community programs existed for immigrants. Two years later, she helped create Mariposas Collective, which initially aimed to help families who had just been released from detention centers and were seeking asylum. The collective started out small but has since grown to approximately 400 volunteers.