Childhood Icons Turned Working Moms

I grew up in the 90s. Which means at the end of every school week, I foamed at the mouth in anticipation of the TGIF television line-up and sleepovers with my girlfriends. My favorite show of all-time? Full House.

When Mary Beth and Brandy both wrote about famous TV working moms, I started to think back to when I didn’t really think in the “working mom” mindset, but looked up to young women as role models. Coincidentally, many of the “young women” in showbiz who I envied/idolized/emulated as a young woman myself, are now (in one way or another) working mothers.

Candace Cameron Bure
(photo credit:

Candace Cameron BureAlthough I’m roughly the same age as the Olsen twins, I grew up with DJ Tanner as my role model. She had great hair, loved 80s music, learned hard lessons before her sisters had to (I have oldest child syndrome, too), struggled with her weight, exercise routine and self image, faced romance and heartbreak, and as an adult, made strong, independent choices for herself. I related to her as a child and as a teenager.

Now, in my late twenties, as a working mother, I can still find inspiration from Candace Cameron Bure. Though she took time away from full-time employment as a new mother after she married, she is now a veteran mother of 3 and returned to “working” on-screen and off-screen when her children were still young. She’s acted, produced, published a book, and managed to balance marriage and raising her three children with strong convictions and priorities.

Tia and Tamera MowryTia and Tamera
(photo credit:

They weren’t really separated at birth, but I can still see the little cartoon that opened that show and hear the theme song playing in my head if I close my eyes. I loved the dynamics of Sister Sister: the sisterly love that I never experienced having only a brother, the difference in personalities as one was a school nerd and the other not so much, the teenage craziness—parties, curfews, boys, boys, boys—and obviously, their gorgeous hair. In the show, Tia’s mother worked hard sewing unique pieces of clothing to start a business. I didn’t pay much attention to that back then. Who knew that years later, both sisters would blog and tweet about their lives as working moms?

Tia became a mom first, which I didn’t find out until after I joined the Twitter cult and saw that Tamera was pregnant. These girls, like Candace Cameron Bure, seemed to stay so down-to-earth, out of the typical get-a-DUI-and-sleep-with-lots-of-people Hollywood scene throughout their teenage years and into adulthood. I always admired that. I always wondered why and how they managed that. And now, I follow their blogs and admire them as mothers, and as well-rounded, inspirational women.

On their blog, they offer tips on EVERYTHING a momma could wonder about from using doulas to losing baby weight to getting your kid to eat vegetables to breastfeeding to balancing work, marriage, and motherhood. And they show some seriously cute pictures of their boys, Cree (Tia’s son) and Aden (Tamera’s son).

It’s nice to look at women who I kinda grew up with and realize we took similar paths at similar times, and learned similar lessons. Hopefully, our children will grow up in a generation that respects and adores the mother–and for us, the working mother. Hopefully, our children will realize that whether their mothers were corporate gurus, Hollywood stars from adolescence, or lowly teachers like myself, they did the best they could and always—always—put family first.

About the author

Shannon is a graduate of University of South Florida, a high school English teacher, and an aspiring author. In April 2011, she and her husband met the love of their lives: a son named William. Shannon is currently learning to balance teaching 115 teenagers and being William’s mommy. You can find her blogging at Momma Bird and tweeting as @bluebird_momma.


  1. Jamie says:

    I loved these shows too! Cameron spoke at the Hearts at Home Conference this year and I heard she was amazing. A great role model!
    Jamie recently posted..March 2013 Round-UpMy Profile

  2. Chaton says:

    I love Tia and Tamera and have enjoyed following their lives and expanding families on the Style Network. Being a working mom is a challenging and rewarding job, isn’t it?! I love your description of your son in the bio. I write about my own quest for balance in my stilettos on my blog,
    Chaton recently posted..Reading on the Run: How to Be Happy in Love and MarriageMy Profile
    Twitter: chatonsworld


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