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messy house, kids toys mess, messiest house

This is what life with kids looks like.

There is a big difference between what parenthood looks like in real life versus how it appears on social media, especially Instagram. We’ve seen this fake version of parenting so many times that it has become a cliché.

Mom and her children are somewhere beautiful on vacation or in a field with wildflowers in full bloom. Everyone is dressed in matching white linen outfits that are somehow perfectly clean. Mom is wearing a big floppy hat, large sunglasses and looks well-rested.

This may be somebody’s version of fantasy but it sure isn’t real life.

The problem is that when people look at these images they consciously or subconsciously compare themselves to these families and wonder why they seem to be coming up short. In reality, most parents of young children are tired, could use a long shower and are in a living room that looks like a clown moved in.


There are bright-colored bowls and bottles strewn about. Random Legos are embedded in the carpet and a naked dolly with frizzy hair is stashed away in a corner. Being the parent of young kids is all about survival, and appearances are the last thing most have the time or energy to worry about.

Let’s not even get started on the ecological disaster that is the bathroom.

A Twitter user named Amanda injected some much-needed reality into social media on Saturday when she asked a simple question to her followers. “Can we get a realistic mom/parenting photo thread going? No aesthetic filters, no staging - what does the room you’re in look like RIGHT NOW?”

She received an outpouring of posts that were photos of the mess, clutter and chaos that accompanies being the parent of a small child. Trashed bathrooms, bedrooms with boxes stacked sky-high, tired parents, toddlers with saggy diapers and lots of toys strewn all over the place.

And the laundry. No one ever has the time to get all the laundry done.

The photos would give most neat freaks apoplexy but they did a great job at showing how most people with young kids actually live. Sure they may clean up the house when they’re having company or act as they have it together on social media, but this is how day-to-day life looks.

It’s great that so many parents were totally fine sharing photos of their mess.

But there’s one thing that is unmistakable about these photos, they’re filled with love.

Here are some of the most real photos that Amanda received after asking what people's lives look like “RIGHT NOW.” If you have a small child and your house is a disaster, these photos should make you feel less alone.

After scrolling through those photos, don’t you feel a bit better about yourself? Just know that doing your best doesn’t look like a family decked out in matching linen staring at sunset on Waikiki Beach. Nope. It looks like a stack of laundry on a La-Z-Boy chair, a carpet that’s littered with Legos and love, lots and lots of love.

Joy

1991 blooper clip of Robin Williams and Elmo is a wholesome nugget of comedic genius

Robin Williams is still bringing smiles to faces after all these years.

Robin Williams and Elmo (Kevin Clash) bloopers.

The late Robin Williams could make picking out socks funny, so pairing him with the fuzzy red monster Elmo was bound to be pure wholesome gold. Honestly, how the puppeteer, Kevin Clash, didn’t completely break character and bust out laughing is a miracle. In this short outtake clip, you get to see Williams crack a few jokes in his signature style while Elmo tries desperately to keep it together.

Williams has been a household name since what seems like the beginning of time, and before his death in 2014, he would make frequent appearances on "Sesame Street." The late actor played so many roles that if you were ask 10 different people what their favorite was, you’d likely get 10 different answers. But for the kids who spent their childhoods watching PBS, they got to see him being silly with his favorite monsters and a giant yellow canary. At least I think Big Bird is a canary.

When he stopped by "Sesame Street" for the special “Big Bird's Birthday or Let Me Eat Cake” in 1991, he was there to show Elmo all of the wonderful things you could do with a stick. Williams turns the stick into a hockey stick and a baton before losing his composure and walking off camera. The entire time, Elmo looks enthralled … if puppets can look enthralled. He’s definitely paying attention before slumping over at the realization that Williams goofed a line. But the actor comes back to continue the scene before Elmo slinks down inside his box after getting Williams’ name wrong, which causes his human co-star to take his stick and leave.

The little blooper reel is so cute and pure that it makes you feel good for a few minutes. For an additional boost of serotonin, check out this other (perfectly executed) clip about conflict that Williams did with the two-headed monster. He certainly had a way of engaging his audience, so it makes sense that even after all of these years, he's still greatly missed.

Noe Hernandez and Maria Carrillo, the owners of Noel Barber Shop in Anaheim, California.

Jordyn Poulter was the youngest member of the U.S. women’s volleyball team, which took home the gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics last year. She was named the best setter at the Tokyo games and has been a member of the team since 2018.

Unfortunately, according to a report from ABC 7 News, her gold medal was stolen from her car in a parking garage in Anaheim, California, on May 25.

It was taken along with her passport, which she kept in her glove compartment. While storing a gold medal in your car probably isn’t the best idea, she did it to keep it by her side while fulfilling the hectic schedule of an Olympian.

"We live this crazy life of living so many different places. So many of us play overseas, then go home, then come out here and train,” Poulter said, according to ABC 7. "So I keep the medal on me (to show) friends and family I haven't seen in a while, or just people in the community who want to see the medal. Everyone feels connected to it when they meet an Olympian, and it's such a cool thing to share with people."

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Hold on, Frankie! Mama's coming!

How do you explain motherhood in a nutshell? Thanks to Cait Oakley, who stopped a preying bald eagle from capturing her pet goose as she breastfed her daughter, we have it summed up in one gloriously hilarious TikTok.

The now viral video shows the family’s pet goose, Frankie, frantically squawking as it gets dragged off the porch by a bald eagle—likely another mom taking care of her own kiddos.

Wearing nothing but her husband’s boxers while holding on to her newborn, Willow, Oakley dashes out of the house and successfully comes to Frankie's rescue while yelling “hey, hey hey!”

The video’s caption revealed that the Oakleys had already lost three chickens due to hungry birds of prey, so nothing was going to stop “Mama bear” from protecting “sweet Frankie.” Not even a breastfeeding session.

Oakley told TODAY Parents, “It was just a split second reaction ...There was nowhere to put Willow down at that point.” Sometimes being a mom means feeding your child and saving your pet all at the same time.

As for how she feels about running around topless in her underwear on camera, Oakley declared, “I could have been naked and I’m like, ‘whatever, I’m feeding my baby.’”

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