You went from hosting intimate in-person events to being viral video stars with millions of views. How did this happen?
C: Everything we’ve done has come from our needs as moms. Between us, we have seven kids. We’ve had three or four babies since we started this. The events were amazing, but everyone wanted us to do the show in different places, even asked us to franchise, and we just couldn’t. The whole point was hosting and building a community. It wasn’t forced; it just kind of took on a life of its own and became an online thing.
N: We’ve been broadcasting live for almost two years. Before live streaming was even a thing, we managed to find software out of Germany that we used to live stream on YouTube. It was really glitchy—it would have been so easy to give up on it, but we knew that live streaming was coming, and we wanted to be part of it. When Facebook Live came along, we were ready.
Did you know you were ahead of the curve back then?
C: She knew. The thing is, we get bored quickly. We just knew we wanted a show, and there was nothing like it, so we did it. We didn’t overthink it.
When did you realize you’d hit your stride?
C: We used to have perfect events, and now we let it all hang out. The minute we let go of caring what people thought of us and became totally OK with who we are was the minute it kind of took off. I applaud every mom blogger out there trying to make a living from it to support her family. The hardest thing to do is be yourself. So we’re really lucky we have a community behind us that tells us every day, “Thank you for being you.”
Hate-following other moms turned me into a cyberbully
What about blowback? Trolls?
C: We’re so lucky to have such a supportive audience. And when we get a mean comment, it’s usually from a man. We probably get 50 emails a day from people thanking us, or telling us about how they feel alone and we made them smile—I can’t tell you what that means to us. It’s worth every single risk.
We’ve also had grown women email unnecessary things. I worked in social work for many years, so I know that often when people are mad, it’s coming from a source of hurt. We always respond that we’re sorry they feel that way, thanks for taking the time to message us and we wish them best. Not in a condescending or mean way, but maybe we can make them feel validated or heard.
What is it like, doing this with your best friend?
C: Nat and I have this constant companionship. In every decision we make, we have each other’s back no matter what. A lot of people love our friendship. We send each other flowers, we prop each other up, and we laugh about all of it.
N: Motherhood brought us together. We were the first of our friends to have babies. We really connected and realized that doing motherhood together was way more fun than doing it alone. The business came along with it, but we were inseparable before we started this. People are very curious about how much time we spend together, how close we live to each other. They relate because they have a friend or want a friendship like ours.
At home, in the car, in bed—are you exhausted by always being “on?” Does the line between work and personal life ever get blurry?
C: We’re really just ourselves. It’s not like we have to go to an office and be “on.” I’m sure our husbands would have something different to say. We love it. I don’t find any of the blur, ever.
N: Ever since we started, it’s like we have this natural instinct of what feels comfortable and what doesn’t. It’s never been anything we’ve had to discuss—we know exactly where our boundaries are. We’ve found confidence in it, and when we do something, we never regret it; it’s always part of the process.
C: Everything we do is what we’re feeling. We’re not: “Let’s make this post because it’s trending,” or “We have to do four posts at this time.” We don’t work that way, ever.
Where do you draw the line?
C: I actually delete a lot of my Instagram photos after the fact, a few weeks down the line. I go back and clean them up. Sometimes, if there’s too much of one kid, I get rid of the photos. I would never want someone to get obsessed with one kid. And we’re really careful of the older girls (who are seven and eight). We would never post pictures of them on their own. Our no-go rule is no cute kid for likes.
N: We would never post anything inappropriate. When we do post, hopefully they have their clothes on!
C: We also don’t use Snapchat, because we don’t like the filters. I don’t want my kids to see me with doe eyes all the time. I don’t want them to think that’s what life is like—they can only post a picture with a halo over their head or something.
We see your kids, but never your husbands—what do they say about all of it?
C: They’re really supportive and they’re as shocked by what we’ve created as we are, in a really great way.
N: It didn’t happen right away, but they’re on board. My husband sees the reaction to what we’re doing; he thinks it’s such a great thing, opening up and being honest, and he feels proud that other women can be a part of it.
C: It took awhile though—it did take awhile! But they’re there now.
What flipped the switch for your husbands?
C + N (in unison): Money, money, money, money!
N: Men are like that, right? First it was money, but they know we’re doing a good thing.
C: Well, the industry changed too. Nat and I had zero experience in any of this. We were the first ones to do it, and now it’s a profession, whereas back then it was more a game. Everything changed as we grew.
N: Our job and the field we’re in became legitimate to so many people who just thought we were playing around before. We were never playing around; it was always legit to us, but it takes time for the world to catch up. This is a thing. When you ask our kids what their mothers do, they say, “They go on TV and they help other moms.”