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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 Louis Hansel on Unsplash
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This story was originally shared on Capital One.

Inside the walls of her kitchen at her childhood home in Guatemala, Evelyn Klohr, the founder of a Washington, D.C.-area bakery called Kakeshionista, was taught a lesson that remains central to her business operations today.

"Baking cakes gave me the confidence to believe in my own brand and now I put my heart into giving my customers something they'll enjoy eating," Klohr said.

While driven to launch her own baking business, pursuing a dream in the culinary arts was economically challenging for Klohr. In the United States, culinary schools can open doors to future careers, but the cost of entry can be upwards of $36,000 a year.

Through a friend, Klohr learned about La Cocina VA, a nonprofit dedicated to providing job training and entrepreneurship development services at a training facility in the Washington, D.C-area.

La Cocina VA's, which translates to "the kitchen" in Spanish, offers its Bilingual Culinary Training program to prepare low-and moderate-income individuals from diverse backgrounds to launch careers in the food industry.

That program gave Klohr the ability to fully immerse herself in the baking industry within a professional kitchen facility and receive training in an array of subjects including culinary skills, food safety, career development and English language classes.

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This article originally appeared on 11.21.16


Photographer Katie Joy Crawford had been battling anxiety for 10 years when she decided to face it straight on by turning the camera lens on herself.

In 2015, Upworthy shared Crawford's self-portraits and our readers responded with tons of empathy. One person said, "What a wonderful way to express what words cannot." Another reader added, "I think she hit the nail right on the head. It's like a constant battle with yourself. I often feel my emotions battling each other."

So we wanted to go back and talk to the photographer directly about this soul-baring project.

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When a pet is admitted to a shelter it can be a traumatizing experience. Many are afraid of their new surroundings and are far from comfortable showing off their unique personalities. The problem is that's when many of them have their photos taken to appear in online searches.

Chewy, the pet retailer who has dedicated themselves to supporting shelters and rescues throughout the country, recognized the important work of a couple in Tampa, FL who have been taking professional photos of shelter pets to help get them adopted.

"If it's a photo of a scared animal, most people, subconsciously or even consciously, are going to skip over it," pet photographer Adam Goldberg says. "They can't visualize that dog in their home."

Adam realized the importance of quality shelter photos while working as a social media specialist for the Humane Society of Broward County in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

"The photos were taken top-down so you couldn't see the size of the pet, and the flash would create these red eyes," he recalls. "Sometimes [volunteers] would shoot the photos through the chain-link fences."

That's why Adam and his wife, Mary, have spent much of their free time over the past five years photographing over 1,200 shelter animals to show off their unique personalities to potential adoptive families. The Goldbergs' wonderful work was recently profiled by Chewy in the video above entitled, "A Day in the Life of a Shelter Pet Photographer."