The first day of school is, for so many parents, bittersweet. Sure, it marks the return to "routine," wake-ups, drop-offs, pick-ups, and even ‘pick-me-ups’ – (thank you, pumpkin-flavored coffee.) But the first day of school is also a significant milestone for parents sending a child off to school FOR THE FIRST TIME. And when that first-timer also happens to be the baby of the family, it gets downright emotional.
For mommy-blogger Deva Dalporto, that day emotion-filled day was today.
Dalporto has been preparing herself for this moment for a while, she shares in her blog,
"[For] that feeling of freedom and possibility. That excitement over all the amazing things I am going to do with my free time. Alone. In an empty house. Just me.”
For most of us, psyching ourselves up for that first day consists of a heart-to-heart with the mirror, but Dalporto had a different approach. She invited two of her friends over, and it wasn't to chat over a comforting mug of pumpkin-flavored coffee. Dalporto wanted them to help her make a music video. A rap music video.
Dalporto, you see, isn’t just a mommy-blogger, she’s also a viral-music-video star. Her music parody hits include “What Does The Kid Say,”(Ylvis - The Fox parody video) "Let It Go," (parody video) and “I’m So Cranky,” (Iggy Azelea "Fancy" parody), and you can find them on her blog (or just click on the links provided here, but she’d really like you to check out her blog.) Dalporto’s blog, My LifeSuckers, is about “a mom muddling through life with [her] two adorable life suckers and [her] life-sucking husband,” and to-date, has almost 13,000 followers – and that’s just on Facebook. Her videos are popular too, with views totaling in the millions for YouTube alone.
Back to the new music video, which was released earlier this month. It’s an original this time – titled “Back to School Mom Rap.”
Dalporto took a few moments the other day to tell Examiner about this most recent release, to share a little about her summer, and to talk about getting ready for the new school – and dropping off her youngest for his first day of kindergarten.
Examiner.com: If you had to write an essay titled "What I did over my summer vacation," what would the first few lines be, and do those sentences measure up to what you had envisioned?
Dalporto: Let’s see. It would probably be like this:
“What I Did Over Summer Vacation by Deva Dalporto
I did 4,000,000 loads of laundry. I washed 5,000,000 dishes. I spent 14,000,000 hours cleaning up after my kids …”
So yeah, not exactly what I had envisioned. I thought there would be more swimming and less housekeeping.
Examiner.com: What are your views on school supplies lists and back-to-school shopping in general?
Dalporto: I’m always oddly excited about back to school shopping. I loved going with my mom when I was a kid, so I always think shopping with my kids is going to be great. I envision this awesome bonding time where I buy them all the things they’ve been dreaming of and they smile up at me adoringly and say, “Thank you, you’re the best mommy ever!” And then reality strikes and it’s an annoying outing with lots of tantrums and pouting … from all of us. This year my son was rolling on the floor of H&M screaming, “No more stores!” I was like, “I hear ya, kid.”
Examiner.com: I see you have back-up singers now. How grueling was the selection process?
Delporto: I actually did all of the singing (I wouldn’t want to blame anyone else!). I wanted the video to be a goofy version of a rap video, and I knew my friends Abbey Campbell Cook and Cheri Lyle Hudnut could bring the silly, so I asked them to be my Fly Girls. We’re old friends. We waitressed together back in our aspiring actress days, so I was confident they could pull it off. We had a blast shooting this! The camera battery kept dying (er, terrible planning on my part) so we had lots of time to chat and catch up between takes. It was fun!
Examiner.com: This is an original song -- that's a pretty big deal! Which came first, the tune or the lyrics?
Dalporto: I wanted to write a rap, so I jotted down some ideas and preliminary lyrics. Then I went on the hunt for the music. I’m not a musician (even though I play one on YouTube), so I needed a background track. I came across Deal – The Villain’s awesome tune “Faith’s Witness” on freemusicarchive.com and loved it. It fit my rap perfectly and inspired the “school, school” chorus. I contacted Deal – The Villain and he was pretty much the nicest person on earth. He gave me his blessing to incorporate his music in my crazy rap and I am eternally grateful.
Examiner.com: Who did your choreography?
Dalporto: Ha! Is that what that was? Abbey, Cheri and I just goofed around with the camera on and said, “Let’s do the cabbage patch! Let’s jog in place!” It was total improv, as all my videos are. We had a blast!
Examiner.com: Who are your musical influences?
Dalporto: Well, if I could be anyone when I grow up it would be Katy Perry. I love her cheeky sense of humor and man that girl has pipes. But I love all music. I love hip hop, love rap, love pop, love folk rock singers like Ani DiFranco. I love, love Joni Mitchell. I love The Black Eyed Peas--will.i.am is pretty much a genius as far as I’m concerned. And I’m a huge fan of 90’s hip hop, like Salt N’ Pepa and Big Pun. I’m all over the map.
Examiner.com: What do you like most about making these videos?
Dalporto: It’s incredibly fun. It’s like grown up play. I feel like I’ve finally found the thing I was meant to be doing. And I love that I can just create them myself. (I selfie shoot them all pretty much; just turn on the camera, hop in front of it, and go crazy.) I love the whole process, but the editing is probably my favorite part. I love piecing it all together. It’s like a big jigsaw puzzle and editing satisfies my perfectionist OCD tendencies.
Examiner.com: If you could collaborate on a music video with anyone at all, who would it be?
Dalporto: Werid Al Yankovich. I’ve loved him since I was a kid. He was my idol. Funny that I ended up following in his footsteps. I’m a big lover of puns and a parody is the ultimate pun. I think Mr. Yankovich and I could do a mean duet of “I Got You Babe” except it could be about being sick “I Got the Flu Babe.” Actually, I kinda love that. Al?
Examiner.com: Your youngest is in kindergarten this year, how are you holding up?
Dalporto: SOB!!!!!!!! I’ve actually been a wreck for months. My friend noted that my blog has been more sentimental lately, and I think the fact that my littlest is off to kindergarten is the reason why. As much as they drive me crazy, I don’t want my kids to grow up. I always tell them to “stay little.” I’m going to be a mess on the first day of kindergarten. I just hope I can keep it together until he walks into the classroom so he doesn’t see me cry.
And he didn’t see her cry, Dalporto shared in today’s blog post, titled “My Baby Started Kindergarten,”
Until he walked away.
[About Deva: Dalporto is a former senior editor at Nickelodeon, and is currently working on a book -- a collection of humorous essays about motherhood. She recently contributed to the popular mommy-blogger anthology I Just Want to Be Alone with co-authors Jen of People I Want to Punch in the Throat, New York Times bestselling author Karen Alpert, (aka the Baby Sideburns blogger), and fellow NickMom contributors/bloggers Kim Bongiorno and Christine Burke.]