Kendra Wilkinson: From Girl Next Door to Modern Mom

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How much does motherhood change us? Can we even remember those carefree days before children, waking up at noon on a Saturday, still a little tipsy from the night before, not having to rush our kids to school, soccer practice or ballet?

For reality star Kendra Wilkinson, life changed dramatically after the birth of her first child, almost exactly two years ago (Happy Birthday, baby Hank!). We know her as the crazy, fun, tomboy from Girls Next Door, but the new Kendra is a modern day mom dealing with the same stuff we all do – trying to juggle work, marriage and being a fun, loving mom for her adorable son!

Modern Wife

Kendra and NFL wide receiver Hank Baskett were married in June 2009 and have been busy ever since. As an NFL football star, Hank is on the road a lot, and Kendra stayed by his side through all the teams and trades – including three between 2009 and 2010.

Kendra likes to keep her man healthy: “When we first were living together Hank liked to eat all bad foods, and I was not having that in my house,” she said. “We started to explore new and healthy foods together, and got healthier and happier.” They especially love smoothies!

I asked Kendra what I think every mom wants to know – Is all this sex you talk about really happening?!?! Aren’t you tired? She gave me an honest response. “We have our up and down months, when we are having lots of romantic times, and times when we are not having as much romance.  Just like every normal couple.” She added, “Winter time is when we like to snuggle up together and warm each other up!”

And for modern moms looking to spice things up, Kendra teamed up with Evolved Novelties and started her own collection that she calls “Love Candy,” a romance kit with lotions, oils, and cute lingerie.

Modern Mom

“Modern motherhood means making your own path through uncharted waters.” – from Being Kendra: Cribs, Cocktails, and Getting My Sexy Back 

Over the weekend, Kendra celebrated baby Hank’s birthday with a Cars and Hot Wheels themed party, perfect for any little boy! “There were Hot Wheels and moon bounces that all the kids could play with and of course a Cars cake, and it all turned out to be a lot of fun,” she said.

Kendra loves to spoil her son, but also wants to teach her son how to pick himself up when he falls down. “I grew up outside exploring, touching everything, digging in the dirt (I really thought I could dig to China!), and I used my imagination which is still with me as an adult.  I think that is so important to teach that kind of play to baby Hank.”

She reminded me (and maybe we all need this reminder) not to be so protective of our kids, and let them explore and live their own lives. Even at a young age it teaches our children resilience.  She also believes that getting involved in organized sports is “the most important thing for any kid.”

“I can only speak from personal experience,” she said, “But an organized sport either it be baseball, soccer, football, tennis anything teaches them team work, and motivates them to get up and do something!” Kendra says that she and Hank play tons of sports with their little one. “It keeps our souls young, we want baby Hank to know that he never has to grow up and stop using his imagination and his playful side.”

And would you believe that Kendra would makes her own baby food?!?! Well she does! “When Hank was a baby I would make him everything mashed up, now he is eating whatever we eat for dinner,” she said. “Just the other night he was eating green beans, and I was so proud. We try to make meal time fun, and playing games, so it’s not so much like EAT YOUR FOOD!!!”

Motherhood has also had an impact on Kendra’s relationship with her own mom, especially over the past year. “We are rebuilding our relationship, and trying to forget about the past, and move on and baby Hank is a blessing in all of this.”

Modern Kendra

Like any mom, Kendra still has her own interests, one of them being football! She loves rooting for her favorite teams, the Philadelphia Eagles and the San Diego Chargers, and she “watches football on Sundays, Sunday nights, and Monday nights!”

But would you ever see Kendra playing football in the lingerie league?  “NOOOOOO! I am a tomboy and would never put on those girly outfits to play a sport! NEVER!”

She shared thoughts on the new hot Denver Broncos QB Tim Tebow, “I am very impressed with his ability on the football field. Tebow is the QB everyone loves to hate, and that is when you know you have some sort of power or success is when everyone hates on you. Even though I am a Chargers fan, I still will say I am rooting for Tebow. He is not only playing really well but also a great role model; our children need to see a good sports role model like Tebow right now.”

Kendra talked about her experience of Dancing with the Stars last spring, saying “DWTS helped me get my groove back! After having a baby, your self-esteem and body image is down, and even though the show was very hard and scary it was what I needed in my life.”

During the hardest moments, Kendra credits Brooke Burke as “the only reason why I stayed on the show, her advice and words of encouragement really helped me.”

After talking to Kendra, and reading her new book, Being Kendra: Cribs, Cocktails, and Getting My Sexy Back (a great read btw), I learned that Kendra is just like any other mom, struggling to balance it all. During this busy holiday time, take some time to be entertained by Kendra and how she does it – either by reading her new book or catching up on her reality show (Season 4 that just wrapped up).

Hopefully we get to see more of her and her family in another season of Kendra on E!

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