9.13.2013

HENRY HOLBROOK AT THIS VERY MOMENT


a little bit about huck in the month leading up to his third birthday.

mister henny loves animals. all day long he is talking about animals. especially these little squishy plastic animals you get for 50 cents out of the toy dispenser at the grocery store in our hood. fifty cents and out pops out a little plastic egg and inside are all sorts of bizarre plastic monstrosities. 

he and brandon have been going to this little toy dispenser all year hoping to get a penguin. easily thirty dollars they've invested into this machine to get that penguin, and our house is completely overflowing with the miniature animals that resulted, none of which, of course, are penguins, but all of which huck loves like his own flesh and blood. sometimes he lines them up on the floor in one looooong line according to species.

last weekend the boys capped off their traditional saturday morning playground trip with a stop at the toy dispenser and his time they came home with pride in their chests because the penguin! they got the penguin! i am happy to report that penguin has been enjoying the prime position in huck's fist at bedtime, and that he and cow have become fast friends. ask henny about it, he'll tell you the whole story. but they aren't friends with the purple dragon. it's complicated.

huck loves to sing. all sorts of songs, and he prefers to shout them from his stroller or the top of dad's shoulders, usually on the same note but always at the same volume: loud. he caps off performances with a particularly dramatic high note -- "how i wonder what you are-aaaaaah!" don't try and sing along with him, this is a solo performance. when i try and join in he waves me away with the back of his hand and says, "shoo, mommy!" yeah, we're working on it.

he's suddenly become a little more adventuresome with food, which, thank the freaking heavens. i was pretty convinced it was going to be peanut butter and nutella sandwiches until he was thirty, but the last few weeks he's discovered all sorts of new things. if we're eating something that he's curious about he'll ask to try some and i know i shouldn't, but i really like it when he pulls a face afterward and says, in a very serous tone, "that's too yucky."

henry always says thank you, and is very quick to say sorry. if he trips on the carpet he'll brush himself off and sheepishly say, "sorry!" if another boy at the playground pushes him and the boy's mom asks him to apologize, henry will usually apologize first. because he's sweet. when he gets a little heated about being told what to do, he always apologizes to me almost immediately. "sorry mommy." he's kind of a dreamboat.

he has stick straight hair like his father and freaky monkey toes that move independently of each other like his mother. (totally gonna teach him to write his name with them, that trick really comes in handy at parties.) he loves answering the door and brushing his teeth, he hates having his hair washed, his favorite charlie and lola is the one with the alligator costume, when i pop his toes he giggles and says, "you got me!" and every time we turn the tv on he says, "noooo! not felicity!!!!" 

i love being this boy's mama. he will always be the coolest thing i have ever done.

352 comments :

  1. internet people :( you keep doing what you're doing, it's fantastic.

    three sounds like a great age! can't wait to get there with my little man!

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  2. Your mama heart is so beautiful and thoughtful. our boys are just a few weeks apart-- when i turn on the tv mine says, "not f-o-o-d!"

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  3. he is too cute. just too cute! I adore your writing, and have a special place in my heart for anyone else who knows the magic of Felicity :)

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  4. I've been one of those silent readers, but no more! Keep it up! Love your essays about your days! Love your sponsored posts! No need to change a thing :)

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  5. Natalie, just want you to know (I'm a lurker, not a poster) I adore you and think you're just a peach. And a gem. A real gem. Stay golden, girl.

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  6. What a cutie! This makes me so excited for the day that I am blessed with little ones!

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  7. He's gorgeous! Such a sweetie!
    golddustk.blogspot.co.uk
    x

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  8. Wow. I don't believe Huck is almost three. He is SO cute. I think he looks a lot like your brother Blake when he was a little tot.

    Come by my blog for a fun hair product giveaway...who doesn't love a Freebie!!

    xo Amanda
    www.delicepastiche.com

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  9. I don't normally comment, but I just wanted to say that I pretty much love your blog no matter what you post. You do what you want and what you need to, and I'm sorry you get mean comments. I'll never understand that. If I don't like a blog, I just choose not to read. I love all your Huck posts, and I'm having trouble believing he's almost 3. Crazy. I have a niece who is 3, and I absolutely love it. She's so much fun.

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    Replies
    1. Oh! I wanted to tell you that after all your Felicity tweets, I pulled back out my first two seasons to rewatch. I'm absolutely loving it. I just started rewatching the 2nd season. I remember being so mad that they left the first season a cliffhanger, and I didn't know who she picked. So much love for that show, and thanks for the reminder of how I love it.

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  10. I <3 your blog, sponsored posts and all. I have a Henry that turns three in December AND my name is Natalie. I blinked at least four times in a row when I discovered your blog and these coincidences. Keep at it!

    Natalie

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  11. Hi Natalie! I just wanted to say thanks for your posts! I'm one of those readers you mentioned who enjoy your blog daily, but keep quiet. Today I decided to not be quiet and say I appreciate being able to read your blog, see a glimpse of your life and family and city. I read your blog for several reasons. It's a lot of fun and can be a nice, quick little escape for me from the (happy) chaos of the two tiny boys (who are both climbing all over me as I type this) I spend my days with. One of the nice things about social media is that we can share our experiences from all over the globe and feel connected in a small way. At times I feel a little isolated in my little corner of Idaho, and I know that feeling can come anywhere. So it's nice to hop on heynataliejean.com and laugh about the things Huck is doing that mirror my own 3-year-old boy. And hearing you talk about some of the dilemmas, joys, etc. that you and your husband experience are ones I can identify with. So, when I'm up to elbows in PB&J and Thomas the Tank Engine, and can't call my best girlfriend to talk about it all, i have another outlet that helps me say, Yes, there are other women out there who are moms, who are making it and rocking it! Sounds a lot more profound in my head. :) I also read your blog because I enjoy writing too, and coming to your blog I can get an infusion of good writing that's intelligent, whimsical, enchanting, well-thought, yet reads as effortless. So, this is now a long comment, but I just wanted to say thanks. I'm mostly silent, which makes me feel a bit stalkerish :), but I do read. And with gratitude, and always lifted spirits when I'm finished! Thanks Natalie!"
    Crys

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  12. Gosh he is just so precious!!!!

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  13. shame on anyone who decides to spend their precious time and energy purposefully being mean spirited to others. Natalie, you, your family and this sweet blog are lovely! I'm grateful you share snapshots of your life and your thoughts here in this space. I love reading your posts and sincerely appreciate you taking the time to write them. Just know that for every nasty comment left by some unreasonably disgruntled person, there are probably hundreds of readers who don't comment but instead, savour your writing and photography graciously and quietly. keep up the great work lady!

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  14. I adore your blog! LOVE it's uniqueness and I love to see what exciting thought or phot you'll post next! Don't listen to opinionated people who aren't respectful of you. It's YOUR blog, do it YOUR way. Keep it up! :)

    Jordan Ann

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  15. People can be frustrating online and nit pick about everything. You aren't though, you're rad! Also who cares if you do a sponsor post or that you forgot to mention it? It's pretty obvious when it's sponsored. That's how you can keep up with the blog and support your family just like they do (fill in the blank) to support theirs.

    ~From a devoted reader who loves all your posts :)

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  16. screw 'em.

    and your babe is the cutest, thanks for sharing.

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  17. I never comment, but I greatly appreciate your willingness to share. Thanks for keeping it real!

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  18. I love your blog and your little Henry! Thank you for posting things like this because it makes the long school and work day a little brighter. We're going to go Taylor Swift here for a minute and remember that "people throw rocks at things that shine" and you and your beautiful family SHINE! Your humor, writing, and all around everything on this blog is spectacular and extraordinary. Please never stop!

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  19. I love your blog, sponsored posts or no sponsored posts. It is a joy to me every day and something I cherish. If people are mean in the comments, they must just be having a bad day. People like to take out their anger on beautiful things.

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  20. omg huck is adorable. you should post a video of him talking because i still can't really believe that he does that.

    and i dunno what it is about toddler boys, but whenever my sister tries to sing with her sons, the younger one (a month younger than henry) will immediately tell her to stop. the four year old used to be the same way. weird...

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  21. the mean ones are gross, and we all know it.

    the good ones love you, and we love that huck baby, too.

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  22. I don't usually comment . . . Thanks for this post, but also thank you for your sponsored posts. I can get a little overwhelmed when it comes to beauty fashion etc, and it's really nice to have a little guidance. You provide that guidance and I appreciate it :)

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  23. I'm a huge Natalie and Henry fan! Thanks so much for this post. I have a two year old boy too, and I just think the world of him. I'm always telling myself he's the best thing I've ever made/done. I love feeling a connection with you guys and reading about your adventures. Happy Friday!

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  24. what a precious boy.

    and good for you for keeping your head up and saying / doing what you want!

    xo, Sara

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  25. i never comment on your blog but i read it EVERYDAY and love it.

    in the words of miley "forget the haters cuz somebody loves ya."

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  26. Good for you. Keep on keepin on and don't let the buggers get you down! This is YOUR space.

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  27. The mean ones are just bored and icky.
    My now six year old son, went through a very similar phase at his juncture into 3, at the time McDonalds was including superhero action figures in their happy meals and he was in love. IN LOVE. I mean we wouldn't actually get McDonalds most of the time, just go in there every three days to get his new toy. There were bags and bags full and he loved them so, so much. It was silly and he probably hasn't had a second thought about them in years but I still keep them just in case he gets an itch to play with the hundreds of little plastic superhero's.

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  28. I am so sorry that you have received horrible comments for whatever reason...I can't really see why people would leave those. I have actually never understood the whole leaving a mean comment thing. Why can't people just not read if they dislike something? I mean you wouldn't eat at a restaurant you didn't like, why read a blog if you are unsatisfied? You write a beautiful blog about your adorable family! Misery loves company...keep your head up :)

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  29. Hey Natatlie Jean!

    I am one of the people who whined about the sponsored posts. I certainly never meant to be mean spirited and I hope it didn't come across that way. I feel pretty ashamed of it, actually, because I really am a supportive reader! (Maybe I felt like I was being a supportive consumer by voicing my opinion about the sponsored posts? But that is all kinds of backwards and unkind.)
    I left an apology comment for being so lame, and I do hope you keep doin' you. It's weird how sometimes, as a reader, I can forget that this blog doesn't belong to me, it's belongs to you and your beautiful family to do as you please. And I have enjoyed it for years, and Lord knows it has brought many a beautiful, introspective moment. So thank you for that, and please accept my apology if I've ever given you anything besides gratitude in return.

    Maggie

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  30. thank you for inspiring me and reminding me that its okay to be my goofy, witty self, and for making me fall in love with writing again.

    keep on doin your thang girl

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  31. gosh, mean comments are the worst! Don't people have more important things to do than be mean? I'm sorry that you have had to deal with this Natalie.

    I love your blog so much and the words you write always bring a smile to my face. And isn't that the point? Sponsored posts or not, your blog is my first click everyday when I log into my computer.

    Thank you for sharing bit of your life and your beautiful family with us, I for one am grateful.

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  32. I wouldn't normally comment on a blog, but Natalie I have to tell you that since finding your blog this past year you have truly inspired me. Your writing just simply speaks to me and I feel as though we are kindred spirits and would be the best of friends. haha Keep doing what you're doing. You are an amazing mom, wife, writer, blogger, and most importantly person. Oh and I must admit that that adorable Huck keeps me coming back too time and time again! Thanks for sharing your lives with all of us!

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  33. I generally remain quiet too, but like those above me, have chosen to comment today. I love your blog. I love reading about your life and your family and NYC and I even love reading your sponsored posts. I think it's beyond great that you've been able to find a platform and an outlet for something that you so clearly love doing and that you're great at (I am obsessed with your writing style; can't wait for your book!), but that also helps support your family! Keep up what you're doing—you do it wonderfully! Pay no mind to those who hate. It seems as though you have a wonderful community of supporters here, and we'd be devastated if the "haters" won. And Huck, he's so adorable! Thanks for sharing everything that you do; I definitely appreciate it!

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  34. Thank you for still posting this despite all of the negativity. You have such a lovely family and you truly brighten my days with your posts, sponsored or not. Why shouldn't you be rewarded for your hard WORK! Your voice has spoken to me like no other writer has. When you were not posting as frequently (totally understandable) I freaked out and tried to find other blogs to read. I didn't find a blog that quite compares to yours. Imposters really! Nothing as good as what you got goin here. Keep it up. We will keep reading and supporting.

    And yes, Huck is the dreamiest dreamboat around! What joy he must bring you everyday!

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  35. oh i love this post. he is so cute. i love watching him come into his own. you are a great mother. and i don't mind the sponsored posts because they help you take care of your family so you get to be there for all the wonderful little moments.

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  36. I'm so supportive of your blog, sponsored posts or not. It's a weird and unique and special thing to share parts of your life on a blog, and I love that you do!

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  37. Natalie, this post made me laugh and smile. Thank you SO much for sharing the beauty of your family - whether it be the good or the bad. It is so nice to come to your little corner of the internet and read your words and tales and get a glimpse into the reality of raising a little. It's sad when people try to bully us into doing what they think is best, putting their own opinion above everyone else's. If they don't like it, they shouldn't read it!

    Haters gonna hate. Boo-yah.

    Keep rockin, girl. ;)

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  38. i don't comment much, but i'd like to cast my vote of appreciation too. i'm glad you don't let the mean, rude people stamp you out. thanks for keeping the rest of us in mind! :)

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  39. I honestly gasp when I see your blog posts in my feed, so as one of those dedicated readers I have to say thank you for not letting the mean spirited people get you down.
    I ate this post up ! I read every word every letter just soaking in the glory that is Henry Holbrook. You must be the proudest momma, he is a glorious child and I think I can speak for everyone when I say he is the cutest most personality ridden child and we love him to bits (whether or not we actually know him). And just so you know, he actually is the cutest kid I have ever seen, I am not kidding. Anyway, thank you for keepin on !

    Madeline | Its a Mads Mads World

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  40. Keep on doing what you are doing, Ms. Natalie. Your blog posts, sponsored or not, bring a little slice of lovely into my life on the daily and I do so appreciate that. So chin up, buttercup and know that all of us on Team Natalie Jean, well, we got your back.

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  41. Always a non-commenter because I'm dumb but I just have to say how much I love and appreciate your blog. Please don't stop and please! for heaven's sakes! make money off of your blog! Geez louise. Readers have got to get over "bloggers shouldn't be businesswomen/making the money". So silly. We trust you to never to share sponsored posts you don't believe in and that's the end of that. I personally loved your last three sponsored posts...inventive, informative, Natalie-ish. Loved them. Perfect, girl.

    I've bought BB cream, fake eyelashes, nail polish, etc etc because of your blog. No shame. I love my fav blogger shopping recommendations. Keep em coming.

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  42. I am joining the long (deservedly long) list of people who is a silent but devoted reader of your blog. I don't remember where or how I discovered it but it's fabulous (and I'm super excited for a whole book!!). You have an amazing family and write lovely posts about them and I'm always excited when I open your blog and find a new post (sponsored or not). Your unique voice comes through whether the post is sponsored or not and that's why I keep reading. Thanks for everything you share with us! :)

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  43. I don't understand people who take the time to be bullies. There are so many things that are far more fun to be doing with one's time. Anyway, I read a lot of blogs quietly, but I thought this was as good a time as any to leave a little ditty!

    Your blog is lovely to read and even your sponsored posts are well written and include little tidbits about your life. I don't mind them one bit! This is one of my favorite blogs to read, in fact:)

    So, know that there are many quiet readers out there who admire your writing and wish you only the best.

    On a completely different note: I must know more about the penguin and cow's complex relationship with the dragon. It sounds pretty serious but highly intriguing;)

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  44. your blog posts are simply wonderful & make me smile every time. the way you phrase things is perfect and makes me want to sit back and read your whole life if you'd let me. henry sounds like a perfect little gentleman and i can only hope my kids are as sweet & hilarious as yours.

    and just in case you didn't get enough support from others, this is your corner of the internet, and you can do whatever you want with it. just know that whatever you do, i'll be right here cheering for you & reading away because you're awesome natalie jean. and also, since you switched from being nat the fat rat, i've noticed a change in you, and in the blog. in such a good way! you seem like more yourself, like you don't have to act like something else for any person & i admire that so much. keep on keepin' on. you're an inspiration to the rest of us (if not just me).

    xo
    laura

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  45. Natalie, I'm another one who doesn't normally comment, though I did recently send you an email to tell you how much I appreciate your blog.

    I read a few other blogs and can spot a sponsored post a mile away and typically don't read them. However, I do actually read yours, because I like you and your writing a lot. I will never understand people that focus on the things they hate instead of the things they love. I think it says a lot more about them than you. But having a thick skin is hard (I know from experience). Good luck and thank you for sharing your posts with us anyway.

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  46. stop it. he is just too cute!

    p.s. blog on lady! blog on!

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  47. I've never commented before, and I figured this was a good post to start! You are fantastic Natalie! (eventhoughwevotedfordifferentpresidents) And I think your blog and your family and your life is terrific! You are fantastic, and a fun blog writer to read, every time. You win the award for terrific. Or maybe Henry does. He's cuter, after all. ;)

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  48. Yes, keep the positive going. Thank you for sharing your joy & this little treasure with all of us.

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  49. Natalie,
    Keep it up sponsored posts and all! I mean a girl has to pay the bills right?? And by the way they always seem very honest and genuine.

    From another Natalie who has been called nat the fat rat (and something about a cat comes after that but I tuned that part out from an early age) all her life and my personal least favorite fatalie. Oh rhyming you have created some real clever nicknames!

    Natalie

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  50. I'm another quiet reader who wants to say thanks so much for writing! I love your style, and enjoy reading your posts so much, including your sponsored posts, because they're still you!

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  51. Best kid. Best mama. Best blog. Way to keep your head up. We may be quiet, but we are many. Love all of your posts, Natalie.

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  52. Also, I appreciate that you identify your sponsored posts clearly. There is no mistake about what is sponsored and what is not-- this transparency speaks to your ethics. And the haters, they are just jealous Pantene, etc. didn't ask them directly about their opinions.

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  53. Hi Natalie,

    I'm sorry to hear you have received mean-spirited comments. I did notice some comments that were deleted were simply asking if certain posts were sponsored. I think your fans deserve full disclosure, as they truly trust your opinions and just want to see transparency. I just want to point this out because I think it might discourage future interactions with faithful readers.

    Enjoy the weekend.

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    1. hi s. my sponsored post did clearly state it was sponsored. after responding and pointing that out, it devolved into petty bickering from a few stubborn commenters who must not have read it clearly enough, so I decided to delete all of the disclosure-related comments. if you go back and read it, I clearly state, "this is a sponsored post." I can understand why certain readers felt so urgently that they had to make a huge issue out of it, if I squint and imagine really hard that there isn't anything better to think about. I am not above constructive criticism but in that care, well,
      honestly. what was that about? read the post. I disclosed.

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    2. I noticed the disclosure, but I know some people didn't and were simply confused. Sorry, I didn't mean to make it sound like you didn't disclose, as I know you did. I also didn't follow along enough to know the extent of the damage, so maybe I shouldn't have tried to say anything. Perhaps maybe people make a big issue out of things because they care so much about the blog and feel a personal relationship with it, however unreasonable that might seem. But that's speculation on my part. Thanks for your response.

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    3. I read the post, saw the disclosure, and really enjoyed the explanation of the fun date you guys had. You have a great way of still keeping a sponsored post personal for people but still explaining the product in a way that makes people want to jump! Sponsored posts are how you do what you do...so keep doing it!

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  54. I'm sure all of the above and below comments are an out pour of love for you and your blog. I will be no exception. I follow many blogs, but few of them get me to stop and read every post. You have such a wonderful way of telling stories. I can understand the hesitation you must be feeling, but for those of us who love to read about your little adventures, I hope that you can ignore the petty people. Thank you for sharing today's post. Your pictures of Henry can always brighten up a dull day.

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  55. I love you Natalie Jean, and your little Henry is my favorite. You just brush the nasty McNastersons off, ya hear? Ain't nobody got time for that.

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  56. I'm one of those silent readers :) and when I say reader, I really mean it. When I first starting reading your blog around January (I think), I went back to the beginning and read every. single. post. That's how much I like it and you! I got really sad when I read your tweets yesterday about re-thinking things because I got worried that the rude people "won" and you would give up this blog, or at least make it more impersonal. Your honest, vulnerable posts are my favorite. I think you do a fantastic job as a blogger, a wife, and mother, and I love that you share that with us.

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  57. I never post, but Love Love Love your blog, sponsored posts included. I heard a great piece on NPR yesterday. It was about a new book - Wonder. They talked about choosing to be kind. While their discussion focused on the book characters I immediately thought about all of the internet meanies. It's amazing how a little internet anonymity allows people to think they can suddenly be hurtful jerks. Deep breath and know that there are A LOT more people that love you - we're just terribly shy.

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  58. I'm one of the silent readers too! Love you, love your blog, love that you won't let haters and bullies get you down. I love reading your blog because you are so REAL but also so GOOD. It makes me feel like it's ALMOST attainable to be as cool as you are. :) You have no idea how much silent love and support you have. Please keep blogging forever and ever.

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  59. I love all your posts. Sponsored ones included-- you still manage to keep the entertaining and interesting. Obviously, posts about NY and Huck top the list as my fave ever, but the sponsored ones are good too. Keep it up Natalie. Btw, nice name, my name, Natalia, is the spanish version of Natalie.

    -Natalia

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  60. I absolutely love this. All your posts make me can't wait to be a mommy.

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  61. Keep doin' your thing sister. Sorry for all the haters. Some people just don't know how to be nice.

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  62. I absolutely love this. All your posts make me can't wait to be a mommy.

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  63. I'm a silent reader too, but I read every one of your posts and enjoy them all immensely, INCLUDING the sponsored posts. Of all the sponsored posts I've read, I enjoy your absolutely the most. You're just such a fun writer to read! And your boy is a genuine national treasure.

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  64. It makes me sick that people could be so unsupportive and just plain mean over a sponsored post! They clearly don't understand how blogging works. I'm so sorry you've had to deal with those who feel they can hide behind their computers and just say whatever they want with little, or more likely, no thought about your feelings and your family. I love your honesty, including what you post about your sponsors. Don't let the haters get you down. You're a real gem and that's hard to find nowadays. Xoxo

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  65. Another silent reader here, so happy that you continue to post! I LOVE each and every one of your posts - thank you so much for writing your blog and sharing with all your readers! You are such a talented writer and I always look forward to what you have to say. I'm so sorry that you had to be subjected to mean-spirited, pointless comments - but just walk confidently and proudly and remember that those piddly comments don't matter in the long run. Hearts!!!

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  66. Kudos to you for that brilliant intro. Perfectly said. I admit that sometimes I pause a bit when I see sponsored posts that don't feel organic, but at the end of the day, you are an immensely talented writer who needs to make a living. If people can't understand that, their loss. I will definitely keep on reading.

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  67. I love reading you blog.... Your a great mom and you know whats best for your toddler... don't let anyone to you something else...My son is almost 3 also ...huck is is cute I love reading about the cute things he does :O)

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  68. Natalie,
    I check your blog every day. I check it on my phone when on vacation. I email my other blog loving friends about it once a week. I reccomended it to the new receptionist at my favorite eyebrow waxing studio! I cried at your last post about your brother. I've cried at many others and laughed at (with) many more. I'm a silent reader but today I felt I had to comment. Its hard to ignore rude comments, here's sending you some positive vibes and blog love.

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  69. I've never commented before, but I just wanted to say that I think you hit the nail on the head with "it's just a blog". It's sad to think of people hiding behind their computers, posting such mean things...and even scarier to wonder if they behave this way in real life. I think we should just feel sorry for people who have nothing better to do with their time than tear apart others. I have a little guy younger than Huck and I love seeing what's to come through you guys. Please don't get discouraged, there are more lovers than haters out there. :)

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  70. Reading your blog is always one of the treats of my morning. And this post made my heart melt.

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  71. I'm a silent reader and a huge Natalie fan. Pay no attention to the negative stuff - keep doing your thing :)

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  72. Henery reminds me so much of my middle Nathan. He's such a sweetheart about everything. I love your blog and your writting style!! SCREW YOU MEANIES DIDN'T YOUR MAMA TEACH YOU IF YOU DON'T HAVE ANYTHING NICE TO SAY NOT TO SAY ANYTHING AT ALL!!!

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  73. Natalie, I check your blog daily (probably more than daily if I'm being honest) and I never comment, but I wanted to let you know there are so many of us out here who think you are wonderful, amazing, beautiful, and inspirational. I'm so sorry that there are people trying to get you down, hopefully they will find better things to do with their time. Thank you so much for sharing your little slice of life with us!
    Lauren

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  74. Huck makes me look forward to when I'll be a mom one day. Did tears just surface??? Maybe...

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  75. Also, not sure if this will be deleted because I don't want to give anyone recognition, but I personally think there should be laws against Internet bullying. Some forums are taking it way too far.

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  76. i'm another reader not post-er, but wanted to say hi! as much as you can, try not to let the naysayers get you down. perhaps they just haven't learned to scroll if they don't like something? regardless, love your blog, can't wait for the next post!

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  77. I am a silent reader too, and I just wanted to send you some love today! Keep on keep'in on lady! Your blog is lovely - sponsored posts and all. Personally, I think it is cool to see a woman making a living doing something creative she loves. Nobody gets mad at athletes for wearing Nike, its just how the world works! Hatters gonna hate - just keep fighting the good fight!

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  78. Dear Natalie,
    I have been a reader of your blog for around a year now and I have never commented. I usually simply enjoy reading it, mostly because it is very "exotic" to me (i'm a French atheist working as a researcher in Germany and have never lived in the US). I do wish you would write more about some topics than others, because I am interested in them (for instance, how do you handle your faith/religion on a daily basis), Anyway, as you see, I enjoy reading your blog, I have opinions on it, but I never expressed them. I only discovered the existence of GOMI a few days ago and I have to say that even though the idea of having such discussions about blogs seem rather odd to me, I understand it as a website where people go to discuss what they read. And this is something that i think you should take into consideration: most people who read your blog don't know you and therefore don't hate or like you, they have opinions on your work as a writer and someone who markets her lifestyle. I am guessing that you also do that with friends or family: you talk about what you read, what you saw (movies, tv shows etc). So my point is: keep writing if you like it, keep "feeding your family to the wolves" if this brings you benefits (financial, emotional, etc), but be aware that by becoming a professional blog writer, you allow people to have opinions on your work. And yes, some people do not express them in a nice or classy way, and they should. But not all critical opinion on your blog is hateful, sometimes it's just a criticism of your work. I don't think that you should grow a thicker skin, but you should definitely be aware that being a professional writer (be it an academic or a blog writer) means that your work is open to criticism, and as a professional, you have to listen to them, decide if they are helpful, and include them in your work, or discard them. I know that this is extremely hard, and it's hard to not take it personally (and how could you, you write about something very personal), but it's part of the job of being a writer.
    I hope you won't think that my comment is hateful, it is not meant as such, i'm simply trying to engage in a fruitful discussion with you (or you already have thought about all of that and i'm just the annoying reader giving my two cents).

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    Replies
    1. I understand that, from an intellectual level. it's very odd from a personal level, but I understand it. it's fine because I don't have to read it, it happens somewhere else and just like all Internet patrons, I have a choice whether or not to read it. when it comes here, I'm surprised and baffled. I will never understand why people feel the need to insult me anywhere, much less why they think they should say it to me. Internet rules are bizarre, I would never expect to be told to my face that my pants make me look frumpy, or that I'm a sell out. why should manners be any different on the Internet? anyway this is becoming a tangent. all I meant to say was, discussion about my blog on other forums is what it is and I don't get the hype, I mean, whatever. but a constant barrage of bullying comments ony own space or readers who see willing to turn on me on a dime, that frustrates me on a much different level. and I'm sure you understand that that level of vitriol would make me feel less inclined to share things that are personal to me and my family. that's all. anyway, I appreciate your readership and your comment and for whatever it's worth, I made my peace with the discussions about me that go on in other places, and I've just learned not to read it. whew! marathon comment.

      Delete
    2. I think a fair influx of people have begun writing on GOMI recently because they feel like it's the only place in the blog world where they know they won't have their opinions screened and shot down. You have to admit this. And I think in reality, your readers know this too. They know that negative commentary won't likely be published. Censorship has a shelf-life, and I think truly respectable writers know this - hence not deleting every comment that doesn't flatter them. Like Elise, I hope as well that you know this comment is not meant to be vicious.

      Delete
    3. right. it goes on over there. so why in heaven's name should it go on over here, too? keep in mind that books don't have open pages in the back for you to write your thoughts and criticisms on. I don't know that I think that argument about writers and censorship is very applicable here.

      Delete
    4. It goes on over there because it is not allowed to happen here. Do you see what I'm saying? By all means, delete blatantly vulgar comments. But I know from experience of commenting on other blogs with genuinely constuctive criticism that it would never see the light of day, or it would be published and then immediately be deleted minutes later.
      I'm curious as to what you are then, if you don't find my argument about writers and censorship relevant here? I assumed that being a blogger falls under the spectra of being a writer, even if not professionally. If you are purely an advertisement (or I guess, advertiser) then simply say so. I agree that being critical of an advertisement is ludicrous.
      Again, I am not meaning to be foul. I am truly appreciative of your responses. I think a lot of negative reception could be cleared if some readers were given an honest, real, transparent look at what the intentions behind, and the outcomes of their favorite blog are.

      Delete
    5. This isn't a book, this is- as you worded it - just a blog. Before you are quick to dismiss your readers' opinions - please remember that the reason why you have sponsorships and an income from this blog is because in it's infancy, your blog's content was substantial enough to hold it's own and garner the attention from readers.

      I have no problem with your sponsorship posts, I personally feel like they are done tastefully, but I would probably stop reading this blog if I discovered that you're deleting people for simply voicing a concern with the amount of sponsorship posts. Why shouldn't people be able to express that? I just have no interest in following a blog that becomes disconnected from it's readers. If you're going to become a brand and become a professional, I agree with the poster above.

      Just to clarify: I believe that personal attacks that provide no useful critique do not come with the blogging territory and should be deleted.

      Delete
    6. One last comment, hope it is not deleted, I am out. Unfollowing today. Best to you!

      Delete
    7. Books dont have open pages in the back to write criticisms on but there are still many ways to critique them, obviously. You know this since you are writing a book and hopefully you will be able to handle some heat and feedback you might receive. Readers interacting with both books and blogs is critical to every author! So why I somewhat understand that you would delete hurtful comments, by deleting them you are telling readers that you refuse to interact with them and their opinion isn't important. Not caring about them is honestly what I believe leads people to judging your pants. Ha! I've been reading for a few years now and I definitely preferred Nat The Fat Rat to Natalie Jean, but I cannot hate you because of that opinion. After all, it is your blog and you can do what you want. Keep doing what you do, but just try not to lose what brought so many people here in the first place, someone they could relate to. Making money off a blog is just business, but losing some of what made your blog what it was is deeper. But again, I know it is also just a blog and you are just a girl with a family you are proud of. Best Wishes!

      Delete
    8. Her blog is not written to be critiqued. It is written as a way for her to document the life of her family. We aren't talking about academic writing, or anything fancy. We are talking about a wife and mother who has been blessed with a gift to write and has a forum online to do so. She doesn't need or deserve critiques and she doesn't owe her readers anything. This is her blog, she can say and do what she wants. If you don't like it then don't read it, simple as that. Personal attacks and negativity would bother anyone when they've put as much time and energy into something as she has into this space. People need to stop taking themselves so seriously. It's a blog, it's a personal blog that has happened to have gained her some popularity. If you don't like it don't read it and please don't say anything. She's just a mom doing her thing, let her. You can give "constructive criticism" if your a teacher grading papers or even if you are reading a news paper article. This is her life people, if she wants to write about a date she went on with her husband, she can do that and ya know what, if a company paid her to do that, more power to her. People need to grow up and realize they don't matter nearly as much as they think they do.

      Delete
  79. I'm also a silent daily reader and I absolutely adore you and your blog! I think you are an amazing Mom and your writing is always such a joy to read! I feel sorry for those who can't just sit back and enjoy life or move on!!

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  80. Golden rule. Always. I love your little-lovely-curated life online and thank you for letting us share in it. I don't comment very often, but I follow you here, and on T/P/Ig, and I enjoy the content you provide, and often look to you for a little style inspiration (I actually found you after Maggie Mason posted about meeting you at the white party where you paired the baseball tee with a tutu and was similarly inspired). Wishing you nothing but the best.

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  81. Hi Natalie, I too am coming out of hiding to say, "hello", and to let you know how much I appreciate the voice that you bring to the blogosphere--your sense of humour and your heart! Thank you for choosing to continue to be you, bravely.

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  82. Another silent reader crawling out of the creepy cares-about-an-internet-stranger closet! You're funny,honest, talented,brave,inspirational, and have the cutest darn son around. What's not to love. Ignore anyone who tells you otherwise. Love and thanks from London xx

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  83. Haha "nooo not felicity!!" That made me giggle. A lot. :) Also, no silent reading here!

    xo

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  84. haters gonna hate! ignore them! I love you, your beautiful family and this blog. Thank you for sharing!

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  85. I've been reading your blog for about a year now, and I love your posts! I love your writing and your adventures and your sweet adorable family. Thank you for sharing your life with all of us. I especially wanted to you thank you for sharing your struggles with infertility. They have given me faith that I can make it through mine. Basically, you are awesome :) And don't forget it!

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  86. Sending you some mama love! People must try really hard to be offended by anything that you write. For the life of me I cannot find anything that you have produced that has elicited anything but joy and good information to me. Weird. What miserable people. I always tell my daughter, people cant hurt your feelings unless you let them. And although that is so hard to think about instilling in your sweet little boy, those life lessons are coming soon.. And the more you believe it, the easier it will be for you to be that example to him. Hang in there. and 2 things. Once I emailed you, you emailed me back, and now somehow the other day I noticed that you are in my "favorites" on my phone. Cool. And 2. Make these. They will make your weekend better.

    1 cup karo syrup
    1 cup peanut butter
    1 cup of sugar

    bring to a boil and simmer until at "soft ball" stage. Don't simmer too long. about 3 minutes.

    Pour over about 7 cups of rice crispies. More or less depending on your preference of gooey rice crispy treats.

    Press into a cake pan

    In a sauce pan melt 3/4 bag of chocolate chips and 3/4 bag of butterscotch chips and spread over the top of your rice crispies.

    Thank me later.

    Love you!

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  87. Your blog is an inspiration and dream come true. I want a little Henny one day.

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  88. Don't ever change what you post about because other people do not 'love' it. It's your blog, lots of us love it and the ones who dont - well they don't have to read it!

    Growing up, I always wanted to be a mother. It was my dream, and when people asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up, I'd jump on the opportunity and respond quickly, "I want to be a mommy". Now that I am 27, my goals and dreams are different in life. I love children, but I do no wish to have my own anymore. So I find other ways to enjoy children, by reading blogs or spending time with family and friends who have them. I love your posts about Henry, every thing about them. Keep on doing what you love. Thank you for being an inspiration, and for sharing your stories with us! And I think you are a fabulous mom!:-)

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  89. I'm not a parent, I'm not a blogger, I'm not married, I'm not uber trendy, I don't live in the US and I can't even shop at most of the places you talk about, and yet I am drawn to your blog almost daily. You are a brilliant writer and I hate that part of your job involves putting yourself out there to be criticized, I can't say I know what that feels like. The point is, those of us who love your blog love it whole-heartedly and appreciate everything you give us. Thanks for reminding us that we should express our gratitude more often. Keep up the great work Natalie! Cheers xo

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    Replies
    1. You are so spot on, Moya. Love you and your blog, Natalie!

      Delete
  90. I can honestly say that I love all of your posts - sponsored or not. Gotta love those weirdos who are just jealous of how cool your job is! I am pregnant with my first little guy, and reading about Huck gets me even more excited to meet him! Lots of love.

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  91. I've enjoyed reading your blog for a long time but have never commented. So hi! Obviously it goes without saying that your child is adorable, seriously one of the cutest kids around and his personality shines through in your photos. I've often read back to your posts before Huck was born while struggling with my own infertility and appreciate your honesty and openness. Thank you!

    I know that some questions about your sponsored posts were deleted -- even some that I didn't think were "hateful" at all! I'm genuinely curious, and I hope you'll give a bit more info, about your work with HowAboutWe and would love to hear more about your experience with their service. If they're going to be featured as a sponsor, I'd like to know what "product" you're reviewing. Are they sending you on 10 dates this year? If so, how awesome for you guys! That sounds super fun! I'm just curious for more information.

    Not all questions are intended to be accusatory or nasty. You lead a life with opportunities that most of us don't, and sometimes readers want more info because you've drawn us in with your writing and photos.

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    Replies
    1. Gosh don't know why my user name is so wonky or why it double posted. Sorry! Clumsy first time commenter here :(

      Delete
  92. I've enjoyed reading your blog for a long time but have never commented. So hi! Obviously it goes without saying that your child is adorable, seriously one of the cutest kids around and his personality shines through in your photos. I've often read back to your posts before Huck was born while struggling with my own infertility and appreciate your honesty and openness. Thank you!

    I know that some questions about your sponsored posts were deleted -- even some that I didn't think were "hateful" at all! I'm genuinely curious, and I hope you'll give a bit more info, about your work with HowAboutWe and would love to hear more about your experience with their service. If they're going to be featured as a sponsor, I'd like to know what "product" you're reviewing. Are they sending you on 10 dates this year? If so, how awesome for you guys! That sounds super fun! I'm just curious for more information.

    Not all questions are intended to be accusatory or nasty. You lead a life with opportunities that most of us don't, and sometimes readers want more info because you've drawn us in with your writing and photos.

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  93. Just a reader, seldom a commenter, taking a second to say thank you for your bravery!

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  94. I also decided to not keep quiet today and let you know you inspire me. Whether through your fantastic writing or contagious motherly love. You go girl!

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  95. I'm just a reader and an insta follower, DUH [insert emoji girl making an x with her arms]. I just wanted you to know that your blog is so rad. You and your family always seem to go on so many fun adventures AND I love New York. I mean, I'm basically living in New York vicariously through your blog posts. I don't get why there are mean people in the world who feel the need to bring people down...but there are. Honestly it's jealousy which I'm sure you know that, but please don't stop blogging or posting pics on insta! Oh, good ol' instagram. :)

    Keep being fun, random, sweet Nat that we read about in your blog posts! :)

    Hannah.

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  96. thanks for being you. love the blog.

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  97. Silent reader #10000000000 here! Personally, yesterday's sponsored post actually made me think about joining the site. And when I opted not to, I still got a great idea from HowAboutWe - batting cages date!

    Just do you.

    What's that funny saying about negativity... haters gonna hate? :)

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  98. girlfriend, i will come here for all time to see the colors of you. the essay colors, the photo colors, and the sponsored colors. i've been oddly really proud of you these last few weeks. i felt like you really started believing in yourself and this silly little blog. you deserve to be heynataliejean, and you deserve to have sponsors who want to reach your readers, because a mighty force we are.
    we are here for you- at least i am. glad to watch you grow in every way. cheers, e
    oh, and also, the penguin!!!

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  99. Don't mind the hateful readers, we LOVE you Nat, you and your beautiful family !

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  100. I love your blog and haven't ever commented before, but I have seriously revamped my entire wardrobe based on your fashion suggestions :) and I love the rest of your posts too!

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  101. I hope you're getting enough positive comments now to drown out the negative ones! I've read your blog for years, and to this day, I always "save the best for last" and read your blog last in the lineup, relaxed with my coffee or wine. Keep up the (very entertaining!) good work!

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  102. hahha! dying over the "not felicity" comment!

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  103. I always remind myself that the people with the most to say on the internet are always the ones who don't have anything good to say-keep your chin up, & remember you have plenty of supporters :)

    Rose
    Blonde in this City

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  104. Hi natalie!
    I am also one of those silent readers who do not usually comment:)
    I just wanted to say...don't listen to the negative comments! Your blog
    Lovely and I look forward to all of your posts, including the sponsored
    Ones! You are beautiful! Keep up the great work!

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  105. I comment occasionally, but wanted to say that I'm sorry that you get negative or hurtful comments on your blog, especially about the sponsored posts. I guess some people don't realize how much actual *work* you put into your blog and think that they are entitled to the entertainment without any sort of "inconvenience" to themselves (i.e. they have to wade through sponsored posts if they don't like them). I mean wtf is the big deal? If you buy a magazine (which you paid money for as opposed to reading a blog for free!) to read stories that entertain you, you're gonna have to flip through some ads and a bunch of sponsored stuff. What is the difference with a blog that occasionally posts sponsored articles??? Some people. Are so crazy. And so, so rude.

    I am an avid reader (found your blog about a year ago, re-read the ENTIRE archives whilst working a job where I didn't have anything to do for 4 months--I know you understand--and now I never miss a post.) I can tell that you think carefully about the sponsors you accept and discuss on your blog and I have NEVER felt like you posted about a product just because you wanted to get paid for it. You always come across as so *genuine* and I think that's a reason why your blog is so popular or at least why it is popular with me. Anyway.... just wanted to say that I 150% support you and your blog (including the sponsored posts) and think you and your wonderful family are awesome. In the name of all that is good and kind, amen!

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  106. I comment occasionally, but wanted to say that I'm sorry that you get negative or hurtful comments on your blog, especially about the sponsored posts. I guess some people don't realize how much actual *work* you put into your blog and think that they are entitled to the entertainment without any sort of "inconvenience" to themselves (i.e. they have to wade through sponsored posts if they don't like them). I mean wtf is the big deal? If you buy a magazine (which you paid money for as opposed to reading a blog for free!) to read stories that entertain you, you're gonna have to flip through some ads and a bunch of sponsored stuff. What is the difference with a blog that occasionally posts sponsored articles??? Some people. Are so crazy. And so, so rude.

    I am an avid reader (found your blog about a year ago, re-read the ENTIRE archives whilst working a job where I didn't have anything to do for 4 months--I know you understand--and now I never miss a post.) I can tell that you think carefully about the sponsors you accept and discuss on your blog and I have NEVER felt like you posted about a product just because you wanted to get paid for it. You always come across as so *genuine* and I think that's a reason why your blog is so popular or at least why it is popular with me. Anyway.... just wanted to say that I 150% support you and your blog (including the sponsored posts) and think you and your wonderful family are awesome. In the name of all that is good and kind, amen!

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  107. Henry is such a handsome little guy-he reminds me so much of my little boy Oliver. He's the same way with saying sorry to everyone and everything, and the same way with food! I'm glad to hear that I have hope in the food department.

    Keep posting! There are so many of people who love your blog and I say if you can make money doing something you love and promoting products you believe in then why not!?!? I wish I could!

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  108. Natalie, you keep doing what you're doing, lady! It's been said so much now but it's always worth another retooting of your horn... You are amazing! And truly, your blog has brought so much laughter and hope and renewed faith I can't even tell you. About a year ago actually, I was going through an extremely rough time and in reading through your archives I found a piece you wrote when you were struggling so hard for your Henry August... It was about having faith, being still and how our God wants us to know He is with us, and that these times won't seem so difficult in the future. I wrote it down, put it in a tiny frame and have kept it on my coffee table as a daily reminder to keep faith... It lives there to this day, bouying hope and having started to come out the other side of those hard times, it proves truer and truer with each day!

    So thank your.

    Your words and your honesty and your spirit are truly something special. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise. Love and hugs, grace and peace from Portland!

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  109. Ah crap, us lurkers need to step it up huh? I appreciate your willingness to share so much and I'm happy for you, that it's something you can make money off of! Plus, we know you wouldn't post it if you didn't support the brand or product. I personally like wearing stuff that I know the writers of the blogs I love, also wear.

    Your blog is so inspiring, and I think most of us forget you're not our personal bff when we're reading it! "Haters to the left" :)

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  110. I never comment but read every day. Love your blog and good for you for deleting comments. They don't deserve the attention. Lots of love to you and your family. Blogs are weird and wonderful aren't they?

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  111. Ah crap, us lurkers need to step it up huh? I appreciate your willingness to share so much and I'm happy for you, that it's something you can make money off of! Plus, we know you wouldn't post it if you didn't support the brand or product. I personally like wearing stuff that I know the writers of the blogs I love, also wear.

    Your blog is so inspiring, and I think most of us forget you're not our personal bff when we're reading it! "Haters to the left" :)

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  112. Natalie,
    As a long time reader but first time commenter from over the pond in good ole' london town I HAD to throw in my two cents worth after reading this post - my blogging heart goes out to you!
    Your blog is firstly a wonderful read (anyone who quotes as many meg ryan movies as you do gets a MASSIVE thumbs up from me!), and a beautiful documentation of your life and family (HUCK! those cheeks!! you deserve a life long high five just for that little guy!) Its such a shame people cant realise that to maintain such a beautiful blog AND family your gonna need to earn a bit of cash from somewhere and support yourself! And i'm sure you would never publish a sponsored post affiliated to anything you didn't actually like on some level! I actually really enjoyed the posts... (specially the 3-way slacks - rocking me some slacks RIGHT NOW).
    Variety is the spice of life right?
    ... I guess you can never please 100% of people 100% of the time, but its the percentage you DO please that matter - the haters are gonna hate no matter what (as haters, i guess its all they can do) But I feel sad for them - if you get SO bothered by a beautifully put together sponsored post that it impacts your enjoyment of the blog as a whole... maybe don't read blogs dudes. The internet is clearly not for you!
    So all this waffle was to try and say: don't forget that a lot of us think you're the cats pajamas and will always read - no matter what you post... hell... write up the phonebook and I'll still read!
    And hey - if in doubt - consult The Godfather. The sum of all wisdom. The answer to all questions. The godfather is the i-ching.
    Emily x

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  113. We've had a three year old for about six months now and lemme tell you, IT IS THE BEST AGE EVER!!! (so far, at least)

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  114. Mmm let me know if you ever figure the whole thick skin thing out! Online bullying stings and I haven't quite figured out how to not care about mean blog comments! Delete away!! I have to admit I've read and loved your blog for years and I haven't commented very often! But I've loved it all! I think you have a lovely little family and your writing reminds me of JM Barrie which makes me happy! I guess all this is to say, I think you're the bee's knees and you sharing your life on this blog makes me smile. So thank you. And don't listen to the haters. Amen.

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  115. I love your blog and your sweet little family and I hate it that the trolls come out to feed here. I've never understood the psychology behind hateful comments. I know studies have been done about it (something about the anonymity of the internet making people feel like they can say things they'd never say in person), but it still baffles me. You keep doing what you're doing. Sponsored posts and all (what's wrong with a little extra cash to help keep the lights on? nothing!!).

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  116. I'm not usually a commenter, I do occasionally but not consistently, but I just want to say you're awesome. And sponsored posts? Who cares! I don't mind them one bit. I actually enjoy hearing about products or things that work for you. Yeesh people! Anyways, keep on keeping on. Also, if my future kiddo could please be like Huck that'd be great.

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  117. happy birthday to your cute boy(mine turned 3 last monday!)....forget about those mean people...there will always be jealous people..if they don't appreciate your blog then they don't need to follow it!!!!!love from France
    http://cuissesdemouche.canalblog.com/

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  118. What? Seriously, what is wrong with people. I loved your pants post and your date post. Do people seriously expect that blogs should be....just floating bits of fairy dust from the sky with no thought of financial compensation? Like, bloggers OWE the anonymous masses a blog free of advertising just because.

    Your blog rocks, so many people love it, and yay for deleting those naysaying trolls.

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  119. The pic of Henry in his stroller really reminds me of the pic you posted of your brother a few days ago

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  120. i am a quiet non-hater and just want to say that YOU ROCK! besides obviously being an awesome human being (I mean... unless you're really really good at tricking people and put a lot of effort into it, but that would be silly), you are also one of the best writers on the interwebs. for real. I love your little old blog and am so glad I came across it. and every single thing you write about your huck makes me so excited to be a mom one day. xoxo

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    Replies
    1. and forgot to say that I find your sponsored posts to be pretty much the least annoying sponsored posts ever! you take care to make them fun and interesting and if I'm not interested I can just not read those posts... but I usually do anyway because all of your posts are entertaining reads. :)

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  121. I'm a faithful reader (occasional commenter)! Happy birthday to Henry. We use a "magic washcloth" at bath time to wash hair. Wet a washcloth, squeeze it super-tight, then have them put it on their eyes and tilt their head back. As long as they've got the magic washcloth (keep it tight on your eyes!), no soap or water in the eyes! It's magical.

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  122. Natalie, I really like your blog! I'm a lurking reader. When the sponsored posts first started popping up, I thought, hey, a sponsored post that I'm actually interested in reading! I appreciated that it wasn't just a "hey, disconnected paragraph and SPONSOR." It was actually a fully fleshed out post!

    Just don't lose your voice! I'm sure there will be a few bumps as you figure out how to balance sponsorship with your life. Just a thought - I always like reading posts that are informative! What is this product? What does it do? Who can use it? How much are you using it? For example, I was a little confused by the How About We stuff because the last time I heard of them, they were advertising as a okCupid style site, not a Date Planning site. Don't be afraid to give the details! Both the reader and sponsors will appreciate it. =)

    Good luck!

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  123. Natalie - your blog is great! Your family is gorgeous, and you seem like a really fucking cool person. Your sponsored posts don't bother me a bit. Thanks for sharing!

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  124. wow... you're making the blog worth your time financially, whoever had a problem with people being able to make a living (or a little bit extra on the side) must never have been a starving student or in need of some cash. I say good for you for being able to make a profit, or get some free stuff...sigh me up any day.

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  125. I love your blog! You continue to make me laugh, see the good in the world, cheer for the underdog, and appreciate my role as a mother in my own family more and more. That last pic of Henry is totally a YOU face!

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  126. I love your blog! i will keep reading it sponsored or not. i am writing you to encourage you to keep on writing. how am i ever going to live in new york vicariously through you? :)

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  127. I've read your blog for months, and my boyfriend has always read along/asked what was going on with my "mom blogs." He moved hours away, making our relationship a long distance one. The other night on the phone, he asked how "henny," was doing - and that he missed hearing about the mom blogs. we both love your blog & your family, forget tha haters :)

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  128. As Bono says "don't let the bastards drag you down". I've have visited your blog almost every day for the past year and a half and your adventures with your adorable family in the city is a little escape for this work at home mom, who sometimes feels a bit lonely. We too, have struggled with infertility and were then rewarded with an amazing little boy, just a few months older than Huck and now struggle again to give him a sibling. Whether its a goofy post about a stop at a local eatery or a personal account of something a little more major, I always appreciate your truth and honesty.
    So hang in there. It's the cowards who hide behind their computers and spew hateful things, because they are unhappy, jealous, etc. Keep doing what you're doing and know that there are few more people out there that support you and want you as their friend.

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  129. I love your sponsored posts. I love that you show us different companies and I love the way you blog about them. They don't even feel like sponsored posts. How do you do that?!

    I come here for Huck {mostly}. He's got to be the cutest boy ever. My son is just 3 months younger than Huck. I secretly wish they were friends.

    Screw the haters. Keep doing what you do. I'm going to come back no matter what you post!!! Annnnnnd, I can't wait for your book.

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  130. I've never commented before but just want you to know I really like your blog and admire you for sharing your world, despite the inevitable meanies. Keep it up! :-)

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  131. time for my first comment, too! you are so good at this. yours is my favorite blog, and it's well-deserved and impressive that you are able to support your family with it! thank you for bravely putting yourself out there and sharing your story.

    also, you are rocking your clavicut.

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  132. I have a few things to say: 1. I am so pleased you changed your blog name because I always felt terrible associating you with Fat and Rat. 2. I am also a mama to a Henry, so I totally get it. Those boys! 3. I think you are really sweet and cool; a girl that I think is doing an outstanding job at life.

    (Sorry I have never commented before, I always balk when I see 150+ comments on your posts, but I should just add my love to that pile!)

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  133. I read a lot of blogs. Too many, probably - I really hope my boss can't see how many blogs I visit daily.

    Anyhow, I read a lot of blogs and MOST of them have sponsored posts in some way. There are a few bloggers whom I follow whose sponsored posts seem a little disingenuous - a little over the top in their love for a brand/product, a little "out of left field"

    But you, I don't get this from you. The things you "promote", try, like, talk about - whatever - the brands and products you choose to work with always seem like brands or products you'd choose on your own. I value your voice and your opinion. I think these brands are smart to reach out to you as a "spokeswoman" and, even more so, I think you're smart for accepting their offer (when the partnership makes sense). You're running a business here - that's the long and short of it - and a business' goal is profit. If people can't understand that that's their problem, not yours.

    Also, I actually really like your sponsored posts. I've come to trust you. And I trust that when you speak of a product, you've done your due diligence to test it yourself. You've become like a friend who lets me in on a product she loves and tells me I should try it myself. This is obviously what the brands are going for, I'm no idiot, and this is fine by me. Funny enough, I went to the drugstore last night to look for the Pantene product you spoke of recently. I was super bummed I couldn't find it (maybe not available in Canada yet?).

    Anyhow, screw the naysayers - keep doing what you're doing girl. And all the power to you if you can provide for your family doing it.

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  134. I've been reading your blog for quite some time and always appreciate your honesty about life. As a wife of a freelance graphic designer (emphasis on the freelance) it baffles me that other's don't realize how much energy goes into maintaining a blog and energy = time! Most full-time bloggers can't/don't work a full-time job (because well, the blogging becomes the job) so ads are the way to keep the writing in business. So, keep on bringing the sponsors because I want to keep on reading you!

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  135. I can't get over how adorable Huck is! I always imagine what it would be like if he and my daughter, who is a few months younger, were friends. Their personalities seem so similar! And lets be honest, my dream would be to have a blog popular enough to have sponsors! To know that people valued my opinion on things would just be awesome. Keep on doing your thing because we all love it!

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  136. Hi Natalie. Greetings from Japan :) I'm another one of those readers who've been following you for ages but have never really commented. (Actually I think I've commented on your Instagram a few times but not here.)

    Anyway, I just wanted to let you know that your blog is so inspiring. You have a way with words that makes your readers feel like they've been your friend forever. And that's no easy task. Your photos and stories make me smile and remind me that life is great. I hope you'll remember that, like you said, there are far more of us who are supportive of you than those people who waste their time posting negative thoughts. Just look at the number of comments you've received from readers like me who usually keep quiet ;)

    And let me add that Huck is definitely the cutest, sweetest kid! Now I think I'll get back to my toddler who has somehow managed to get cheese up her nose.

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  137. This post made my heart swell!! The penguin oh the penguin!! While I have not been waiting for a penguin of my own, I know the silly joy that comes when such things happen. The little joys that life brings when we finally get that penguin. It's our own personally little family experience nothing anyone else could be apart of or understand. Life is great!! Does this make sense? Probably not. Nevertheless thank you for sharing.

    P.S. was this post sponsored by the toy machine?? (Kidding)

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  138. Thank you for posting this. I don't comment often, but your blog makes me so happy. Your Huck reminds me so much of my Harry. Keep up the wonderful work, both as a blogger and as a mama. XO

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  139. Natalie -

    I feel like we're friends and I don't know you. I love Huck, I think you're a totally cool and extremely fashionable mom (a little jealous of that BTW), your hubs is a cute beardy (like mine), and I eat WAY too much Magnolia Bakery banana pudding because you posted that recipe.

    Keep on truckin'. Hater gonna hate.

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  140. *hugs* natalie, my dear, i think you're handling this all beautifully! i read through your replies to some comments, and i love your point about the mean/negative comments not needing to happen here. this is your space. this is where your friends & family (and mere "i sort of know you cuz we exchanged christmas cards once" ppl) come to see what you're up to & how huck & brandon are doing, etc. i've internet-known you since before huck was born, and i've seen this blog evolve and change and stay the same all at once. you are natalie, and your voice and your heart have always been full of kindness and joy (well, you know, sometimes some grumpy, but everyone deserves some grumpy and sad timnes!). i love that you are able to share bits of yourself here - including when you're asked to write sponsored posts.

    keep up the good work, keep up the kindness and joy (and sometimes the grumpy and the sad) because... just because.

    *HUGS* blessings & love to you & yours as always!
    carrie

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  141. Some people really are awful and have nothing better to do. Their loss. Don't let it drag you down. Thank you for all of your wonderful/inspiring writing. You are an amazing writer; I've thought that since the first post I read (which happened to be the one you wrote about the first week of your son's life...LOVED that post). I had just barely had my first baby when I read that post and it was the most comforting thing to have someone so eloquently put into words everything I was feeling during that first week. Seriously, I was in tears. Another one of my favorites was On Being a Queen. I still think about that post when I'm having hard "stay at home mom days". Thank you and remember there are many of us who love and appreciate what you do :)

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  142. And remember, you don't owe anyone anything (even though many seem to think you do)! Just do what you want to do, it's your space.

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  143. I don’t think I’ve taken the time to comment on your blog before, but I just wanted to take the opportunity to do it now, for the first time.
    I am SO sad to hear that you have felt bullied on your own blog by readers! I love that even when you do sponsored posts, they’re genuinely written in your own style. You do such a great job at being “real” about life, which I appreciate. Thank you for your authenticity! You are doing a great job! :-)

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  144. Oh barf. I still don't understand why people take the time to post hateful things on a lifestyle type blog. Your blog is not required reading-we are not in high school-even though apparently some have not left that mentality behind. Keep it up-I personally can't wait to read your book. Plus all those dorks will buy your book too and then you'll be rich off their (almost unavoidable) inability to keep their opinions to themselves.

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  145. everybody is saying it, but I'll say it too. I think it's so awesome you've been able to turn your blog into something and capitalize on it. that's the dream, right?? so if you have sponsored posts, then more power to you! if you post something someone doesn't like, shouldn't that person just choose to not read it? I don't understand the need to spread that kind of negativity. anyway, you rock.
    ALSO, I am having a baby boy in just under two months, and I have to say your blog (an instagram) makes me so excited to have a little boy. Huck ftw!

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  146. I absolutely loved your post!

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  147. Though you have sponsored posts, you have never ever lost your voice. I admire you. You have capitalized on the amazing niche skills you have and made it a viable opportunity for your family. I have never commented but I have read your blog just about every day for the last 6 months.
    I need to comment more! I need to up the positive comment ratio.
    MK

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  148. I love your blog and your writing - no matter what you're writing about. And I think your family is the stinkin' cutest. :)

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  149. I make it a policy of mine not to be a creeper commenter, but this is my one exception! Love your blog! I happened to go to your ward once when I was in NYC this year and spotted your cute family in the back. Y'all are adorable, especially that little Henry! Fave blog right here! Don't change!
    Ok, going back to silent mode now...

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  150. I love your blog and am glad you're deleting mean comments and (hopefully) not giving them another thought. Good for you! Loved this post :)

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  151. I've read your blog for almost two years now and never commented before, but every thing needs a first! I know it is hard to hear the negative comments, and to make yourself vulnerable on the internet here, but I can truly say that some of your posts have made me feel less alone when I feel vulnerable! Who cares if you throw in a couple of sponsored posts every now in then? You add your Natalie Holbrook touch to every thing you write and that's what keeps faithful readers like me coming back. Love your blog & keep up the good work! xx

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  152. Hi Natalie- I've been reading your blog for a few years now - found it through babble when I was pregnant with my now 2 year old son. I comment every now and then and thought it would be perhaps a good time to share my measly two cents after reading your words on receiving hateful, hurtful words and criticism. I did not read any of the comments you refer to, but honestly, not to blow smoke up your ass or anything, time and again after I read your sponsored posts I think that you do such a good job selecting appropriate sponsors and working them into your life and blog. From the brands to the words you select, I feel like you have a really good balance here, and you do it rather eloquently. I thoroughly enjoy reading all aspects of your blog- essays, sponsored posts, recipes ( I really like your banana bread recipe.) etc... and that's why I come here. I don't understand why people take the time to say hurtful and unkind things, rather than just turn away. Anyway, I hope sharing my thoughts instead of staying silent helps in some small way.

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  153. he is just so sweet and adorable!

    and i love your blog, i have for years. i'm glad you are making money from it, because shoot, you are essentially providing entertainment to lots of people and you should get something in return! (obviously there are other non-monetary rewards you get too, but anyway). sorry about the hate, people need to keep some things to themselves. you are awesome for putting yourself out there!

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  154. Here's yet another comment in a sea of (extremely deserved) praise from another lurker errr reader... You are truly a talented writer and storyteller and I appreciate your thoughtful posts...like seriously. Thank you for taking the time to write them as I can only imagine that the effort it takes to put into some of them. Oh, and you probably have one of the cutest kids... ever.

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  155. As a target of internet bullying myself, I can't help but despise the anonymity the internet gives us. However, at the end of the day it is a way to connect. To connect to people we otherwise wouldn't know. I feel so honored to be a part of your families life - through a blog?!? My boyfriend knows Huck by name and will ask what he was up to today... maybe a little creepy but he knows I'll have a great story to tell, picture or video to show. We all love you. Just keep deleting the hate - at least you have the luxury to do that. Not all hate sites or comments are easily discarded. Holla that you can make money to support your family through sponsorships, the haters are just jelly!
    XOXOXOXO

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  156. As a target of internet bullying myself, I can't help but despise the anonymity the internet gives us. However, at the end of the day it is a way to connect. To connect to people we otherwise wouldn't know. I feel so honored to be a part of your families life - through a blog?!? My boyfriend knows Huck by name and will ask what he was up to today... maybe a little creepy but he knows I'll have a great story to tell, picture or video to show. We all love you. Just keep deleting the hate - at least you have the luxury to do that. Not all hate sites or comments are easily discarded. Holla that you can make money to support your family through sponsorships, the haters are just jelly!
    XOXOXOXO

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  157. Good job mama! Love this and love you and your sweet family. So much. Thank you for being you, and not anything or anyone one else. Loyal, faithful and kind hearted reader. xoxoxo

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  158. Me too, me too! Your blog is my favorite!

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  159. henry gets cuter by the minute, i swear. how sweet to have all of these little things and memories written down. and i just want to give you a big bear hug, Natalie. I'm not a mother or wife but I think you are beautiful at it. your blog is still one of my favorites. i love reading it - you are a fantastic writer. xoxoxox

    ps congrats on sponsors though! i'm sure it is very exciting:) not sure why people have to think it's a negative thing!

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  160. you do you, because you are wonderful and frankly I would read pretty much anything you write because you are sassy and smart and funny and wonderful.

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  161. you're my favorite of the bloggers, natalie jean. i genuinely love seeing huck's face on feedly/instagram, it's adorbs.

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  162. You are my fav. Your baby is adorable...and for the record. Anyone who has anything mean to say about you is jealous of the fact that you can help support your family doing something you love. The facts are, I'd jump all over any of the sponsors you back if my wallet allowed it. You have class, are smart, and seem to be an all around decent lady. Why wouldn't I take your word on a product?!?

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  163. I, too, am one of the "lurkers" but wanted to speak up today to remind you - as if you needed reminding - that it is human nature to remember the negative more so than the positive. Don't dwell on it - chalk it up to another's stupidity and rock on!! I love your blog, read it daily, and we appreciate the work that goes into maintaining a blog of this caliber. We love you, Nat!!! Also - one dynamite kid!!!

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  164. Hey Nat, thanks for sharing- it's made the quiet visitors speak up. I love your blog, love your posts, and visit everyday. So much to love about your blog and those with nothing nice to say can just move along.

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  165. That is not fun. Sorry that you are having to go through this. I love ya. And I love hearing about everything Huck. He is such a little cutie.

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  166. I am not one to normally comment..one of those silent readers from afar...but please keep doing what you are doing. Sometimes a few sponsored posts are necessary, it's what allows you to post beautiful posts like this. Keep doing what you are doing, pretty lady. Maybe one day the mean internet people will learn that they aren't welcomed here. - Court | lovecourtxoxo.com

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  167. I don't understand how all these people write mean things while teaching their children "if you don't have anything nice to say...don't say anything at all".. Please blog on!

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  168. I hope you read this when the nasties are being nasty:
    you ms. Natalie holbrook, you and your blog, have brought me through some dark dark days. You have brought me through crummy jobs, crummier jobs, fununemployment and dark grad school wife days.
    I'd like to think we'd be friends in the real world, but I'm not sure that's true. I'm less girly and more geeky. More Enchanted and less Nora Ephron. But your blog brings me joy on the dark days and the good days. And more then that it gives me hope. Hope that everything in life is a season and that someday my Moscow season will end. And...perhaps most importantly..you inspire me to find the beauty in this season...no matter how hard. ignore the haters. You are fabalous and bringso much light to this world. we love you. ;)

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  169. I don't usually comment, but I don't want to jerks to outnumber me! I think your blog and your family are the cutest.

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  170. I'm generally a quiet reader/instagramer but today I just needed to comment. I can't imagine how anyone could say anything negative about your beautiful space. I just love visiting your corner of the net each day... Such a positive light in the blogosphere and not to mention I almost always "lol" in some way. (And how great is laughing at your phone? So great, of course!) Anyway, keep doing what you do... Oh, and your family is just wonderful. And hey, mean people, be niceeee!!!!! Xo

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  171. Natalie, I'm sure you'll have a couple hundred similar comments to read, but I needed to tell you how much I appreciate you sharing your life on this blog. Two posts especially ("so you say you're reading the old testament," and "on being queen") have recently helped me during some rough months. You have a gift.

    So you keep on doing what's right for your family. They are what matter most. Just know us readers appreciate what you do (even if it's just a silly blog!).

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  172. Dear Natalie,
    It's been almost a year since I found your blog, and I have to say I read it EVERY night. I just love it.
    I think you have a beautiful family, and your son... he is the cutest. He reminds me of my three yrs old nephew, they are very similar.
    It was very sad reading about those mean comments. I hate when people do this. Your blog is perfect. Never stop writing!
    If it makes a difference, reading your posts is part of my routine, and (I'm sorry for this) you even were part of a dream I had as an extra character. I don't want to sound bizarre, I just want you to know how important this site is. It does make a difference, at least in my life.
    So thank you for sharing a tiny part of your life with your readers. It's really grateful.
    Love from Argentina.
    Daniela.
    (I apologize for my English)

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  173. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  174. Natalie, So happy to see all the positive comments here and I sincerely hope that you take them all to heart and let them wash away the negativity. You are allowed to be a businessperson as well as a writer, and how you choose to combine the two things is completely your choice. I have read some of the threads on Gomi and haven't posted on my own blog in quite awhile because they got me so down on blogging. It's scary that by becoming successful as a blogger you also expose yourself and your family to so many people that you don't know. Lifestyle blogging is a strange thing...what makes you so appealing to us as readers is your vulnerability and your honesty, and yet it is also what opens you up to attacks.

    I applaud your bravery and also, frankly, the fact that you are able to post week after week, year after year. It is hard work. You write beautifully, your Huck is adorable, and so are you. Keep writing in whatever way works for you, and know that there are so many of us out here who love to visit your little slice of life, and who truly appreciate the work that you do. Now, go give those two gorgeous boys of yours a hug and eat something delicious while wearing false eyelashes and watching some Felicity:)

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  175. Nat!
    Keep doin what you're doin!

    You are the best!

    Sending love from Texas!

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  176. "Noooo!! Not Felicity!!" made me laugh out loud.

    My son feels the same way about Trulia.com. He yells, "MOM. Are you looking at apartments again?!" But then he plops down beside me and we look at $24M penthouses in SoHo and plan our escape to extreme wealth. (He officially insists we move to New York City. I keep telling him I'm working on it. :))

    Henny is absolutely a dreamboat. Keep doing what you're doing, Natalie Jean! Just don't forget to share your Huck stories. :))

    P.S. I'm tearing up over his age. I mean... THREE? Really? Must it be so?

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  177. Natalie, I've read your blog for a long time and haven't ever commented (that sounds way more stalkerazzi than it should) but I felt like I should tonight. I love your sense of humor and reading about your fertility struggles helped me get through my own. Publish what you dang well want to, sponsored or not. Thanks for being who you are and sharing your precious family with the world.

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  178. To my middle name twin:
    Your blog is the best blog of all the blogs. Thank you for writing, and I'll keep reading. Always. Us Jeans have to stick together, after all.

    Your writing brings hope to my heart, especially when you write about your Huckleberry friend.

    Thanks for making me smile every time you post, no matter what it's about!

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  179. Mostly silent, but big supporter of your blog here! 👋

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