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Serena Williams

The Hate Meghan Markle Gets

This week, I was in awe to see all of the British and American press making a big deal over the fact that Serena Williams, Amal Clooney and Gayle King threw Meghan Markle a baby shower which some are estimating cost close to a $500,000, when you consider the security and private jet to NYC from the UK and back.

Some are discussing whether it was too lavish.

My thoughts: first, no one knows if that estimated number of the cost is entirely accurate.

Second: So what?

I’ve been covering celebrity baby showers for as long as this blog has existed, which is over 10 years, and I do not recall anytime that news and gossip outlets discussed the cost of a celebrity baby shower.

Granted, I do understand that baby showers are uncommon among the British, so any shower at any cost may seem exorbitant. However, Kensington Palace had to come out and state that Markle paid for the cost of travel and her stay herself.

They may have pointed out how lavish they were but none reported on the cost, to my recollection.

Let’s take a look at other celeb showers because, what does one expect from people who are rich and/or wealthy and have resources and funds to throw lavish affairs?

For example, Cardi B‘s shower featured a 16-foot topiary floral wall, room entrance ways that resembled a 6-car subway train, and several rooms draped in 26,000 pink and white flowers.

Vanessa Bryant and Kobe Bryant‘s shower featured a floral wall.

In June 2016, Nicky Hilton had a baby shower at The Towers at the top of  the Waldorf Astoria hotel in New York City. 

Kim Kardashian had what looks like a dozen cherry blossom trees in her baby shower venue for baby Chicago and her sister Kylie Jenner had an elaborate outdoor baby shower for baby Stormi.

Khloe Kardashian had tons of pink roses, topiary and florals at her shower.

Here are some snaps from baby showers Other celebs had:

Ciara

Naya Riviera

Adrienne Bosh

Tia Mowry Hardrict

Tamera Mowry-Housley

Jessica Simpson

Andy Cohen

Honestly, I think this young woman is getting more criticism than her predecessor non-royal wife, Duchess Catherine, Kate Middleton.

It reminds me of the criticism Michelle Obama received to the cost of her clothing, hullabaloo which was not similarly made over the cost of Barabara or Nancy Bush or Hillary Clinton‘s First Lady clothing prior.

US Olympic Track Star Allyson Felix Is Married and Just Had a Baby

Allyson Felix, the most decorated U.S. Olympics woman track and field star with nine Olympic medals, secretly married and had a baby last month.

She revealed the news in a feature published Thursday at ESPNW, where she also explained, like the scrutiny and judgment Serena Williams felt, she felt pressured to put off starting a family so not to jeopardize her athletic career.

She married long time boyfriend and fellow Olympic sprinter husband Kenneth Ferguson, got pregnant  and at just nine weeks along, competed in a race and again at 4 months but both times, she ran noticeably slower. 

She said in the piece:

“When I ran back-to-back slow times this June, people started to wonder why.

My coach talked to me about shutting it down for the season. My brother wanted to make sure I wasn’t hurt.

It was time to tell them what was really going on.

I was pregnant.”

The baby, a little girl she and hubby named Camryn Grace Ferguson, came early at 32 weeks  via emergency Caesarean section and is still in the NICU.

https://twitter.com/spikesmag/status/1075766875710054403

Felix shared some of her birth story and anxiety over motherhood in her Twitter account  including her reaction to being told by doctors at her 32-week check up that they didn’t like the baby’s heart rate and to go to the hospital.

https://twitter.com/TeamUSA/status/1076247620945920002

She was just about to go do a photo shoot that would result in the pictures she would use for making her big public announcement about the pregnancy and thought it could wait. She explained:

I’m an athlete. I know how to take care of myself. I know how to eat right and get enough rest. And I’d been doing everything right throughout the whole pregnancy.

When I got to the hospital, I knew pretty quickly that something was very wrong.

Per Yahoo!

Felix had high blood pressure and the baby’s heart rate decelerated, forcing an emergency C-section on Nov. 28. Camryn was born 3 pounds, 7 ounces and 16 inches. She was immediately taken to the NICU, where she still is being cared for three weeks later.

Felix said her daughter is doing well and will be OK.

She is telling her story now to be open and transparent over the fact that famous people, including athletes have the same struggles as most women. 

“Pregnancy in sports shouldn’t feel risky,” she tweeted. “[B ]ut the reality is that it is. It’s scary to tell an employer you are starting a family & not know if you will be supported.

[I] know a lot of women can relate no matter what field you are in. i want better for my own daughter.”

In the ESPNW article, she said: “I hoped my experiences could help other women who were worried of what starting a family would mean to their careers. To let them know that I too have those anxious feelings.”

Serena Williams Opens Up About Being Insecure As a Mom

Serena Williams shared her insecurities as a mother to a women’s conference on Friday.

“I always have these insecurities that I’m not good enough as a >mom,” the tennis champ told the group of about 10,000 attendees at the Pennsylvania Conference for Women. “We all go through these different emotions that we all don’t feel comfortable talking about. But I think we should.”

The Philly Voice reported that during the event, Williams, who had a post-partum scare, expressed her shock about learning about the disparity of health outcomes with black and white moms.

She also talked about the pride she has in the fact that since becoming a mom,  she has become an outspoken model and inspiration for working women worldwide.

Williams wrapped up her time in the hotseat by saying she wants her 1-year-old daughter to grow up in a world where women support other women.

The success of another woman should be the inspiration to the next,” Williams said.

She and hubby Reddit co-Founder Alexis Ohanian are parents to 1-year old daughter Alexis Olympia Jr.

photo: Getty

 

 

Colin Kaepernick Nick ‘Just Do It’ Campaign: Celebs, Customers Pick Sides

Are you boycotting Nike for selecting former quarterback Colin Kaepernick as its spokesperson for the 30th anniversary of its “Just Do It” campaign?

If so, I’d like to suggest instead of throwing away your Nike products or burning them as some of his detractors and Donald  J Trump supporters have done online, that you consider donating them to homeless Military vets! Here are organizations you can donate to:

Kaepernick, a former San Francisco 49er has not played in the NFL since 2016, the year he began to take a knee during the National Anthem as a silent protest against police brutality. Dozens of other players followed his lead, which led to heavy criticism of the NFL and many angry fans boycotting the sport entirely. Due to this controversy, Nike, which signed Kaepernick in 2011, held off in using him for ad campaigns. However, Nike kept him on their roster even after Kaepernick became a free agent in 2017.

Several celebs including our Bellyitch Bumpwatch alums Chelsea Peretti and his fellow brand spokesperson Serena Williams shared their support online.

On Friday night, Kaepernick and his former 49ers teammate Eric Reid, a Pro Bowl safety who joined in the protests and also now out of the league, were each given huge ovations when they were introduced and shown on the big screen during a match between Serena and Venus Williams at the U.S. Open.

If you are team Kaep and plan to purchase Nikes in support of this campaign and to counter the 3 percentage point dip in stock price the company has suffered because of this announcement, I curated a few pieces from my partners at Shopstyle for you to pick from:

Social Media Helps Celebs Keep It Real About Pregnancy and Early Motherhood

The Independent explores the shift in celebrity pregnancy coverage being more authentic and real about the trials of pregnancy, labor, delivery and early motherhood and credits social media for it

EXCERPT:

Years ago, a pregnant starlet might drop out of the spotlight for a while – only to reemerge in a magazine looking well-rested and snuggling with an angelic infant.

See various People magazine covers: Jennifer Lopez in 2008, resplendent in a floor-length gown with an infant nestled in each arm, above the headline “TWIN BLISS!”; Angelina Jolie in 2006, gazing adoringly at Brad Pitt, as baby Shiloh snoozes away; Julia Roberts, looking dewy and fresh-faced in 2005 as she cradles her twins.

Now fans are starting to see a different side of postpartum celebrities: Model Chrissy Teigen shares an Instagram story that features her stretch marks and confesses that she’s “super insecure” about her body; actress Olivia Wilde posts an Instagram photo of her messy bun with the caption, “I call this hairstyle, ‘keep the kid alive’ “; tennis legend Serena Williams tweets about balancing work and her daughter: “She took her first steps . . . I was training and missed it. I cried.”

The common denominator in all those examples, naturally, is social media. The advent of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat made stars realize that they could connect with the public on a deeper level about personal subjects – and that fans appreciated honesty about the less-than-glamorous aspects of their #blessed lives.

“Social media has been such a game changer. . . . Celebrities are speaking directly to the fan base. Once they started doing that, things just got a lot more real,” said Kate Coyne, executive editor of People magazine. “One evolution of that concept has been celebrities sharing the realities of pregnancy, infertility, child-rearing, infancy, toddlerhood. It goes hand in hand with what social media is all about.”

Lately, celebrities have also been spilling details about serious medical issues surrounding childbirth. In January, Williams told Vogue that she had a potentially fatal complication during labor, including blood clots in her lungs.

Read the entire piece The Independent:

 

The Perfect Reactions to Serena Williams’ Post-Pregnancy Blood Clot Compression French Open CatSuit Ban

The outfit Tennis champ Serena Williams wore to compete in the 2018 French Open last May triggered the competition to ban her from donning that “Wakanda”-inspired black super hero cat suit for future competitions.

“I believe we have sometimes gone too far. Serena’s outfit this year, for example, would no longer be accepted,” French Tennis Federation president Bernard Giudicelli said in an interview with Tennis Magazine, adding it won’t adapt as strict a clothing code as Wimbledon, which requires players to wear all white, but will have its limits. He added that the FFT will be looking to view collections ahead of next year’s tournament.

The 23-time Grand Slam champ designed the suit with her sponsors at Nike with special compression material and technology to aid with blood clots she has and developed dangerously after delivering her first child, daughter Alexis Olympia Ohanian, Jr. with her husband Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian.

“I feel like a warrior in it, like a warrior princess,” Williams said during a press conference, adding that she felt like a queen from Wakanda, the fictional nation in the movie “Black Panther.”

“I’ve always wanted to be a superhero,” Williams said. “It’s kind of my way of being a superhero.”

Besides making her feel amazing, Williams’ said the outfit choice was also meant to inspire other new moms, especially ones who have also suffered post-pregnancy health issues. “For all the moms out there who had a tough recovery from pregnancy — here you go. If I can do it, so can you!” she wrote on Instagram at the time. She had been in bed for weeks after delivering because of the clots.

I’ve been wearing pants in general a lot when I play so I can keep the blood circulation going,” Williams told reporters. “So it’s a fun suit but it’s also functional, so I can be able to play without any problems.”

This is yet another bump in her road after motherhood.  Not only did she lose her rank when she had a baby last September, but she also suffered postpartum blood clot related near-death experience, postpartum blues too.

Nike had the perfect response to the catsuit ban:

“You can take the superhero out of her costume, but you can never take away her superpowers.

I loved April on Twitter’s response which was supported by another Tennis Legend, Chris Evert!

 

And others not so subtdly pointed out that Serena was not the first to wear a catsuit though the first to be banned for it.

 

Chanel Iman’s Newborn Beat Serena Williams’ Daughter In This Category

Model Chanel Iman‘s newborn Cali Clay Shepard has beat Serena Williams‘ daughter Alexis Olympia Ohanian, Jr‘s record for the youngest child of a celeb to have an Instagram account!

At the tender age of 3-days old, the baby girl’s Insta was up and running and already has over 7,500 followers! Baby Alexis’ account didn’t go up until the little girl born on September 1 was 16 days old.

https://www.instagram.com/caliclayshepard/

She follows behind singer and dancer Teyana Taylor and NBA’s Cleveland Cavalier player Imani Shumpert ‘s daughter Iman Tayla Iman Tayla Shumpert Jr who not only has had a verified account since a baby but is also a female junior, named after her dad — just like Alexis! (Great trend!)

Other  celebrity babies with verified Instagram pages include reality TV star, singer and businesswoman Kandi Burruss‘s son Ace Wells Tucker; record-breaking winning Olympic Swimmer Michael Phelps; son Boomer Phelps, who has 765,000 followers and, Chanel, daughter to reality TV star Cocoa  Austin and her husband Ice T.

Alexis Jr has a verified account of over 435,000 followers and has beat Ace Tucker who had over 425,000  but had 100,000 at just 8 weeks old.

Serena Williams Opens Up About Dealing With Postpartum Blues

In the same week that one of her good friends Beyonce opened up about having preeclampsia before delivering her twins Sir and Rumi, 23-times Grand Slam Tennis champ Serena Williams revealed that she was in the middle of dealing with postpartum blues when she pulled out of the  Rogers Cup tournament citing “personal reasons.”

In an emotional Instagram post, she wrote: “Not only was I accepting some tough personal stuff, but I just was in a funk. Mostly, I felt like I was not a good mom,” adding, “it’s totally normal to feel like I’m not doing enough for my baby…We have all been there. I work a lot, I train, and I’m trying to be the best athlete I can be. However, that means although I have been with her every day of her life, I’m not around as much as I would like to be.”

Williams, who recently gave birth to her daughter Alexis Olympia with husband Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian, also offered  gave up some encouraging words to other moms out there dealing with similar issues:

“Most of you moms deal with the same thing. Whether stay-at-home or working, finding that balance with kids is a true art. You are the true heroes.” Read the post and check out a TODAY video on the story below:

View this post on Instagram

Last week was not easy for me. Not only was I accepting some tough personal stuff, but I just was in a funk. Mostly, I felt like I was not a good mom. I read several articles that said postpartum emotions can last up to 3 years if not dealt with. I like communication best. Talking things through with my mom, my sisters, my friends let me know that my feelings are totally normal. It’s totally normal to feel like I’m not doing enough for my baby. We have all been there. I work a lot, I train, and I’m trying to be the best athlete I can be. However, that means although I have been with her every day of her life, I’m not around as much as I would like to be. Most of you moms deal with the same thing. Whether stay-at-home or working, finding that balance with kids is a true art. You are the true heroes. I’m here to say: if you are having a rough day or week–it’s ok–I am, too!!! There’s always tomm!

A post shared by Serena Williams (@serenawilliams) on

Peep Cardi B and Offset’s Daughter’s $4500 Crib



For a few years early in this blog’s life, I published an annual list of the most expensive strollers, cribs, baby and children’s clothes and maternity wear which I eventually compiled in a book called Bellyitch 100 (you can get it HERE!).

The most expensive crib on that list was made by Art for Kids and cost $4,400.

Cardi B‘s custom made crib for her and husband Offset‘s daughter Kulture surpasses that one. The rapper took to Instagram to show off the crib which according to Vogue’s research cost $4,500, retail.

“I didn’t want to set the crib up until we moved but Offset set it up while I was in the hospital,” she said. “It’s just so gorgeous.”

View this post on Instagram

Thanks @premadonna87 ???

A post shared by MOSTHATEDCARDI (@iamcardib) on

The crib’s designers, Kapesh Designs, said on Instagram that this exact one was custom made, but the fact Vogue could find a similar product in stock on their website proves that claim may not be entirely accurate.however, they had a similar product still in stock.

This little Princess’ crib adds to the crib’s of kids from other famous celebrities like Kim Kardashian West‘s  $4,500 Vetro Lucite crib for her brood (Beyoncé and Jay Z are also allegedly fans of the minimalist baby furniture), while Serena Williams posted a picture of her daughter’s rose gold crib by Incy Interiors to her Instagram story.

h/t Vogue