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For these NFL stars, Super Bowls are great, but parenting is tops.

Some things are more important than a game — like family.

For these NFL stars, Super Bowls are great, but parenting is tops.

When it comes to professional athletes, few things are as memorable as a game day — especially when something big is on the line.

A new video by Just Not Sports features Charles Tillman and Greg Jennings, two former NFL stars with enviable careers. In it, the players are asked if they can name the event just based on being given the date.

Some dates, such as Tillman's performance in Super Bowl XLI as a member of the Chicago Bears or Jennings and the Packers' January 2011 victory in the NFC Championship Game, were easy for them to remember. Other, more obscure games from the middle of a season, were, understandably, a little trickier for them to recall.


But there are some dates you just don't forget — like the birth of your child.

Without hesitation, the two players recalled the dates their children were born. They remembered being in the room and how special that moment was; they wouldn't have missed it for the world.

Last month, Cincinnati Bengals star A.J. Green found himself with a similar choice: miss a game or miss the birth of his child?

The wide receiver announced that if his pregnant wife were to go into labor on a game day (her due date was at the end of September), he'd choose his family over his team. As it worked out, his son was born on a Wednesday, and he didn't have to miss a game.

Still, these are the types of questions that not just athletes, but all working individuals have to prepare themselves for.

Oh, how we love you!! Easton Ace Green. 8lbs, 8oz. 22 inches long. Born September 21. Welcome to the world, Eazy! 💙

A photo posted by Miranda Green (@mirandabrooke_) on

Unfortunately, it's not always an easy choice to make. Fans, teammates, and coaches aren't necessarily on board with a player skipping a game for any reason, even the birth of their child.

In 1993, Houston Oilers lineman David Williams missed a game to attend the birth of his first child. The reaction was brutal. Fans and coaches alike criticized his decision to miss out on the team's game against New England. While it's certainly less likely these days that a team would come out against a player publicly, the pressure to play hangs heavy.

A recent Pew Research report showed that out of 41 countries surveyed, the U.S. is the only one that doesn't offer any government-mandated parental leave. While new parents may have read "What to Expect When You're Expecting" cover to cover, one thing they still might not expect is not being financially stable enough to take time away from work after giving birth. A quick glance at online forums for moms- and dads-to-be shows this is a really tricky situation.

But in the end, we all need to be able to make decisions about what's important in life, and there should be as few barriers as possible to do that.

You may think that it's easy for an NFL player, a millionaire, to make the decision to skip a game to be at the birth of their child — and maybe it is, comparatively. Many people don't have the ability to take unpaid time off work, and unfortunately, there's no mechanism in place for parents to receive paid leave in the U.S.

But that's exactly why paid parental leave — for mothers and fathers regardless of whether their new child is one they gave birth to or adopted or was born via surrogate — should be made a reality in this country. No one should have to miss the birth of their child, and no one should have to miss those important first few weeks of life. Whether you're a football star or a sales clerk, you shouldn't have to miss out on life's most important moments.

Watch the powerful #PlayersGonnaParent video below:

Photo by Anna Shvets from Pexels
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Increasingly customers are looking for more conscious shopping options. According to a Nielsen survey in 2018, nearly half (48%) of U.S. consumers say they would definitely or probably change their consumption habits to reduce their impact on the environment.

But while many consumers are interested in spending their money on products that are more sustainable, few actually follow through. An article in the 2019 issue of Harvard Business Review revealed that 65% of consumers said they want to buy purpose-driven brands that advocate sustainability, but only about 26% actually do so. It's unclear where this intention gap comes from, but thankfully it's getting more convenient to shop sustainably from many of the retailers you already support.

Amazon recently introduced Climate Pledge Friendly, "a new program to help make it easy for customers to discover and shop for more sustainable products." When you're browsing Amazon, a Climate Pledge Friendly label will appear on more than 45,000 products to signify they have one or more different sustainability certifications which "help preserve the natural world, reducing the carbon footprint of shipments to customers," according to the online retailer.

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In order to distinguish more sustainable products, the program partnered with a wide range of external certifications, including governmental agencies, non-profits, and independent laboratories, all of which have a focus on preserving the natural world.

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Even as millions of Americans celebrated the inauguration of President Joe Biden this week, the nation also mourned the fact that, for the first time in modern history, the United States did not have a peaceful transition of power.

With the violent attack on the U.S. Capitol on January 6, when pro-Trump insurrectionists attempted to stop the constitutional process of counting electoral votes and where terrorists threatened to kill lawmakers and the vice president for not keeping Trump in power, our long and proud tradition was broken. And although presidential power was ultimately transferred without incident on January 20, the presence of 20,000 National Guard troops around the Capitol reminded us of the threat that still lingers.

First Lady Jill Biden showed up today with cookies in hand for a group of National Guard troops at the Capitol to thank them for keeping her family safe. The homemade chocolate chip cookies were a small token of appreciation, but one that came from the heart of a mother whose son had served as well.

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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.