Let’s be totally, horribly honest: if the American public was going to take bets on who would emerge from 2008 in one piece with a gorgeous family, almost no one would have said Snooki.
Yes, it’s awful to say but also, this is a woman we’ve all watched pass out many, many times on TV. Close those eyes and remember those neon skinny jeans and violently deep side parts... This is just us being honest with ourselves. And she knows it, too.
Every interview starts with the interviewer being almost rudely surprised that she’s become an adult since her early 20's. But this isn’t about then, it’s about now. Some might not believe it, but Snooki has grown up into Nicole, and Nicole is a darn good mother. She also loves her family life while keeping her friends close. It’s just wonderful to see her strike that balance. But there’s a lot more to her life than that and we’ve dug to get facts about the princess of the Jersey Shore, who has since been promoted to the queen of the suburbs with her two adorable children.
Back in the day, Snooki didn’t really keep her cool, but nowadays, Nicole is a cool mom.
20 Her Family Has A Three-Legged Cat
You can win over anyone with an adorable pet. Well, almost anyone — the ones you can’t probably aren’t worth winning over.
Nicole’s family also shares a home with an adorable, red-headed tripod. It's definitely the only ginger in the family and while he doesn’t feature too heavily in her Instagram, he’s definitely imparting important life lessons on Nicole’s children about the beauty and importance of animals. Speaking of, if I had made bets nearly a decade ago, no one would have predicted this would be her pet of choice. A bug-eyed chihuahua? Perhaps. A ginger tabby missing a leg? That was out of left field, Nicole.
19 JWoww Is Her Son's Godmother
This one is much more predictable and logical than the cat, but it’s just as heart warming. Nicole and Jenni (aka: JWoww) have stayed closer than sisters in the years since Jersey Shore, and they’re even part of their official families.
When Nicole delivered her first child, a son named Lorenzo, Jenni was the top pick as godmother. Jenni and Nicole’s friendship survived everything; bad nicknames, so much partying, and now, motherhood. It’s adorable how they’ve evolved together while still being the ones who know who the other truly is, and bringing that out in each other every now and then.
18 She Doesn't Give In To Her Children's Tantrums
As we all learned from one very passive aggressive commenter on Instagram, Nicole shared: "Pay attention to my kids? Excuse me, but are you in my house seeing what kind of mother I am? Go enjoy your Sunday instead of talking sh-- to me on an Instagram photo.”
This was after she posted a mirror selfie that also happened to reflect her child on the floor, crying and apparently mid-tantrum. One of the few proven ways to survive a tantrum is to not feed it via positive or negative attention, like depriving a fire of air.
17 She Still Has Fun, But Misses Her Kids When She Does
Her experience on the Jersey Shore reunion highlighted the growth she’s had in the past years. "Obviously, I was excited to be with the roomies and have fun and go out and rage, because I never rage anymore, I’m a 24/7 mom,” she said. “But I missed [my kids] the night I got there. ‘Cause I co-sleep with my kids, so not sleeping with them, I had mom guilt 24/7… But the roomies helped me a lot, being like, ‘Listen, this is your time to enjoy yourself. Go out, be a fool, you have no responsibility. Just have fun.”
16 She Says It's Easiest To Adore Them When They're Sleeping
Nicole’s always been a direct woman and not even her children are spared from that blunt honesty. Sure, they’re loved more than anything, but you speak most directly about the ones you love.
On air, Nicole’s made it very clear that her children are at their cutest when they’re passed out, partially because they actually look like tiny angels but also because they can’t cause any trouble. This explains the abundance of shots on Nicole’s Instagram of her son and daughter napping. Not only does it make for a great picture, it’s how we know that she isn’t stressed for that exact moment in time.
15 Her Daughter And JWoww's Daughter Are Besties
The only duo more intense than the power team of Snooki and JWoww? A reboot. The moms know this is coming, considering the best friendship of their two little daughters. Nicole’s predicted all the trouble they’ll get into, saying "The girls are best friends. They will grow up together, they're probably going to kill us, do what we did, but we're prepared.” It makes sense that the only one who could prove a worthy adversary for a mini-Snooki is an ex-Snooki. Plus, it’ll make for great TV. So keep an eye out for that show, in like, 15 years.
14 She's Very Much Over Mom-Shaming
Nicole knows she’s an easy target for the perfect moms of the world who rag on her, but she’s totally over it. When you combine the eagle eyes of the Internet who are always on the lookout for parenting errors, plus the person Nicole was when she was introduced to the American public… she gets more than enough comments on how she’s not good enough as a mother. She’s very much involved and engaged in her children’s lives while still being content with holding on to her identity.
She’s criticized the haters as tearing women apart when they should be building each other up.
13 She Wants More Babies
As I mentioned before: Nicole’s always honest no matter what, but more so about the ones she loves. In this case, that means her daughter. As far as further family expansion goes, Nicole shared that, "I want two more so I think we're going to try sooner than later... I'd like two more boys if that could happen. I don't want another [daughter.] She's too much!”
Nicole is very aware that her daughter is a mini-me, so it makes sense that she’d feel like one Snooki Jr. is enough for a household, especially now that she’s the authority figure.
12 She's A Big Fan Of Her Botox
Nicole’s had work done and doesn’t have the time to deny it. We’ve all witnessed generations of celebrities deny the work they’ve had done, and Nicole has no interest in becoming that cliche.
After seeing herself on television and noticing four forehead wrinkles that didn’t go away, she got the work done so she could “keep being 28.” That's totally fair — the hard partying lifestyle she previously enjoyed combined with the ultra scrutiny of being on television and popping out two kids… that’s a lot to ask for. Do whatever makes you feel the most yourself.
11 She'll Tell White Lies When It Comes To 'Jersey Shore'
Nicole is more than aware that her children will see, or have seen bits, of her televised legacy. She knows why she’s famous and it’s not exactly the model she wants to set for her children. Rather than get bogged down in philosophical issues of ethics, she’s content to tell white lies in order to raise her kids better in the present moment.
Nicole shared that, “I basically explained to him that I’m an actress, it’s scripted (which it’s not), and I’m gonna lie to him until he actually finds out the truth that it’s actually me… I’m just gonna lie to him! And say I’m an actress. And it’s a fake show.”
10 She Handles Family Life Even When She's Away
Nicole isn’t exactly comfortable leaving home or stepping down from her post as mom-in-chief. To prepare for the shooting she did on a reunion of Jersey Shore, Nicole “laid all my daughter’s outfits out because he’s (her husband LaVelle) the worst with changing them… So I laid all the outfits out, I tried to get groceries sent, like, every few weeks with Peapod. So yeah, I was trying to help him, but obviously, you know, it’s hard.”
It’s incredibly sweet that Nicole doesn’t want her husband to have to live as a single parent, even temporarily, and that she knows her partner well enough to know exactly which shortcomings she should compensate for.
9 She Made Herself Ready For Motherhood
Nicole swears she immediately dropped her partying lifestyle once she became pregnant with Lorenzo. Despite her on-air antics, she confessed she loved going out more than any substance. As long as she stayed in, she wasn’t going for a drink in the middle of the afternoon so with a little bit of self-discipline, she transformed herself into a new mom with a good amount of ease. It seems like that despite the pregnancy being unplanned, Nicole decided to roll with the punches and become the person she knew her children would need her to be, regardless of her initial plan.
8 Her Life Changed When She Met Her Husband
The evolution into motherhood was probably easier because Nicole had the right partner for it: "Once I met Jionni, I started to calm down. However, when I got pregnant, I knew things were going to be different. I was terrified. I was never really good with kids, and at one point, I didn't even like kids. When Lorenzo arrived, my whole life completely changed. Everything came naturally and was so beautiful. I found myself not wanting to go out and just wanting to be with him all the time. Lorenzo has made me more mature and more responsible, and he made me grow up."
7 She Prefers Parenting Apps Over Books
Despite being an author, Nicole doesn’t pretend to be a big reader. She prefers the support net of her extended family and the additional support net of everyone’s wise aunt: Google.
”If Lorenzo gets sick, I call the doctor or one of Jionni's siblings because they all have kids. I did research to answer questions I had when I was pregnant. Instead of relying on the usual books everyone reads, I found pregnancy apps that were full of great information I found to be relatable. My favorites were What To Expect Pregnancy and BabyCenter's My Baby Today and My Pregnancy Today."
6 She Doesn't Really Believe In Giving Advice
Nicole’s stubbornness shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone who's even seen a trailer for Jersey Shore. She definitely does things her own way and isn’t look for unsolicited advice. That hardheadedness continues into her parenting, but in a much more mature sense now that she's grown up. "I don't tend to take advice very well. Although parenting can be hard and stressful at times, I feel like I have to go through everything and experience it myself.”
Nicole’s self-knowledge that she’ll make mistakes and can’t know anything combined with her obvious devotion to her children is a really lovely, sensible mindset.
5 She Handles The Trolls With A Smile
Plenty of trolls come to Nicole’s social media looking to criticize Snooki… but the woman doesn't care. As far as handling the hatred, the mother of two says she prefers to, "just kill them with kindness... because then they feel stupid.” That makes a lot of sense... Instead of getting into undignified name-calling fights, send them away with a smile on your face so they know they can’t get to you. What’s so much sweeter than “proving” them right is making it clear that you have an entire gorgeous life to care about instead of being hung up on some anonymous hate.
4 She's Proud Of Her Body
Nicole obviously doesn’t have time for the typical commenters who shame celebrities. For one thing, she won’t apologize for her or her friend’s clothing and decisions — in the past or now that they’re mothers. Nicole got into some of the reactions she received from people who didn’t believe she could be both a mother and herself: “Everyone was like, 'Your daughter is going to be so embarrassed, you're a mom now… She looks freaking amazing after two kids. That's empowerment. That's awesome.” So much of the criticism women get comes from this assumption that they can only be one thing, not a multi-faceted person.
3 It's Important To Her That The Children Eat Well
One main difference between Snooki and Nicole is lifestyle, but specifically diet and exercise. Nicole explains that she cared more about her body when her children came along. “Ever since I had the kids I wanted to get healthy and be able to keep up with them and carry them, so I wanted to get healthier and stronger and have a better lifestyle. Ever since I had Lorenzo, that's been my way. These days I eat a lot of veggies and chicken, good fats, and I do a lot of spin classes, boxing and I have a trainer that I train with four times a week."
2 She's Gotten Into Meditation
Anyone who’s had trouble imagining that a rambunctious party girl can grow up into a loving mother will be floored by this new tidbit: Nicole loves to meditate. Daily and of her own free will, at that! Yup, people (women specifically since we’re on the topic) can be multiple things and grow into different versions of themselves.
Nicole confesses to really benefitting from a routine of secular meditation as a way to calm herself and focus. Just because someone is funny and a little raunchy in their daily interactions doesn’t mean they have any less of an inner spiritual life, or an appreciation for stillness and quiet.
1 She's Loving Her Life
The best part of all of these details? They come together to form of a portrait of a young woman incredibly in love with her life, those around her, and the decisions she made to get there. Nicole loves every part of motherhood. She’ll tweet that, “I am SO IN LOVE with my son Lorenzo Dominic! HE’S MY WORLD!” or “Being a mom is an amazing feeling!!! I love my little man to death! Jionni is such a cute dad.” and also “I’m finally able to eat eggs again! While I was pregnant I couldn’t even smell them! Now I’m killing it with egg whites!!! #YUM” Now you tell me that through all this, she isn't tackling motherhood the very best she can!
References: TheTalko, Hollywood Reporter, Romper, Parents, E! Online, Parents, YouTube, YouTube, OK Magazine