Carrie in Waltham, MA @CarrieC50

Mamas Helping Mamas on Mother’s Day

Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms and moms-to-be out there! This year, we are focusing on giving back to moms around the world. Carrie Cronkey, GM of Citrus Lane, a company, shares her favorite ways moms can help other moms this holiday.

I’m a mom of three. And while having three children all under the age of five is just as chaotic and sometimes stressful as you might imagine, I consider myself incredibly lucky (especially at night when they’re all asleep in bed). I’m fortunate for all of the obvious reasons – my children are happy and healthy, they go to a great preschool, have a wonderful nanny, we’re able to take vacations together every year and they have more toys than they need. But when I read about the recent devastation in Nepal, I was immediately reminded of the most fundamental reasons for why I’m so lucky – my children don’t have to worry about things like clean water, soap and shoes.

Which is why for this Mother’s Day, I’m sharing my top five favorite companies who are helping moms and babies of impoverished areas around the world. Not only do these companies make exceptional products, but they work hard to pay it forward. Moms helping Moms. That’s what I want to be a part of this Mother’s day. See below for what these companies do, and how you can help.

(And here you can learn more about helping with disaster relief in Nepal)

  1. TOMS

    I love TOMS, both for me and for my children. They are super cute and super comfortable. TOMS started with a simple idea: buy a pair of shoes for yourself and we’ll donate a pair to a child in Argentina. Now? They’ve expanded to 70 impoverished countries, donating shoes, eyeglasses, clean water and safe birthing resources. Thank you TOMS for giving me a fantastic reason to buy more shoes and accessories!

    > Learn more about the mission

  2. Little Lotus Swaddles

    I’ve been through the newborn stage three times now and I can’t emphasize the importance of a good swaddle. A good swaddle can mean the difference between a comforted baby and a screaming demon. Which is why the people behind Little Lotus swaddles are saints. Not only are their temperature-controlled swaddles and sleep sacks helping moms to get more rest, but for every purchase over $100, Little Lotus sends an Embrace infant incubator blanket to a premature baby born in a developing country. They have helped save 150,000 lives so far!

    They’re still in the fundraising stage, so you’ll get your money back if they don’t reach their goal.

    > Learn more about their campaign

  3. Warby Parker

    If you need to wear glasses to see, than you want to look stylish doing it. Intro: Warby Parker. Have you seen their ads? They’ll make you wish you never got Lasix. Plus for each pair of glasses you buy, they donate glasses to nonprofits that train people in developing countries to give eye exams and sell the glasses at a low cost.

    > See their glasses

  4. Soap Box Soap

    The only way to keep any semblance of order with three kids under five is to completely run them out during the day. Whether it be preschool, dance class, soccer, gymnastics, art class, play dates or a combination of these, at the end of the day my children are in need of a bath. I love the soaps from Soap Box. They feel fantastic and smell heavenly. Plus for every bar of soap I buy they donate soap, fresh water or vitamin supplements to people in need.

    > Check out their soaps

  5. Smarty Pants

    This clever couple came up with a way to make vitamins enjoyable for toddlers and kids–the vitamins could double as gum-drops, but only in appearance. In fact, they add no sugar at all. Instead they’re chock-full of things like Omega 3, vitamin D, fiber, and fish oil. Plus for every bottle you buy, they give vitamins to children in need through Vitamin Angels. They also contribute to Charity Water and Turn The Tide, a nonprofit combatting obesity and chronic disease.

    > Learn more about Smarty Pants

I once heard Motherhood described as a tribe, and felt this warm recognition of truth fill me. We enter this role with our partners or friends by our side, holding our hands. A handful of supporters surround us. But once that baby is born, we become Mom, and are instantly part of a bigger support group. I’ve been in parks where I’ve seen one mom running to help another. I’ve been on message boards where hundreds of moms from around the country give each other advice. I’ve seen that look of love (or pain) one mother feels -- her eyes filling with tears while she hugs her child -- and cried myself. We’re all strangers, but are connected because we love something so deeply. So Happy Mother’s Day to all of you. It’s a day I cherish with my children, my husband, and all the moms in my tribe.