about me

    Emily Malone

    culinary arts grad. nutrition facts lover. vegetarian chef. marathon runner. country music maniac. failed dog trainer. barre fanatic. loving mama.

    Contact Emily

    EmilyBMalone@gmail.com

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    5K - 23:28

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    1/2 Marathon - 1:57:39

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    A Look Back.



Meeting Other Moms.

One of the things that has helped make both my pregnancy and my time as a new mom so special, has been my network of other new moms.  When I first found out I was pregnant, I couldn’t wait to tell Lisa, one of my closest Virginia friends.  She was pregnant too, and I was so excited for us to go through this new experience together. 

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Of course, I ended up moving to Seattle when I was 18 weeks pregnant, but we have continued to watch each other’s lives change through the magic of Skype and g-chat. 

One of the biggest fears I had with moving all the way to the west coast was that I didn’t know anyone out here.  I was sad that I would be going through a major life change, and wouldn’t have friends to lean on.  Of course I have my friends back home, and with all the technology available now we can stay pretty connected.  But that doesn’t replace being able to text a friend to meet for coffee or a walk, or just sit on someone’s couch and cry for an hour if you need it. 

I am very lucky that so many wonderful people in Seattle reached out to me upon arrival.  Living my life so publicly online can be both a blessing and a curse at times.  In this case, it was my saving grace.  As we settled into our new city, I received a number of emails from like-minded readers who reached out to welcome me and who offered to get together.  Many of the emails I received were from women who were also pregnant themselves, looking to share baby talk and go for walks to stay active.

It’s hard to believe, but as of this month I have lived in Seattle for as long as I lived in Virginia.  In the nine months since our arrival, I have made some wonderful friends who have really helped shape our experience out west.  Not having family or other support here has been tough, but I have found great support in these other moms (and moms-to-be!) that has helped make this feel like home. 

At the end of this past summer when I was giganticly pregnant, I did my best to stay active by meeting other pregnant friends for walks in the afternoons.  It is funny how much two pregnant strangers can relate to one another, and how quickly you become comfortable sharing all the gory pregnancy details.

These days, most of my pregnant friends have had their babies – just like me!  And the bellies walking around the lake together have become strollers.  During one of our many Greenlake walks, my friend Nicki and I had discussed the idea of getting all our new mom friends together, and we finally put it into action last week.

We started a very casual and informal new moms group, and we all get together once a week with our babies.  There are six of us total (and only ONE baby girl!), and we take turns hosting at our houses while the weather is still too cool to meet in parks or outside.

Last week was our first time meeting together, and unfortunately it was during a day when Cullen was not at his finest.  He woke up in a great mood today, so I was hopeful that this week’s group would be a bit more successful.  

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When you consider that Seattle is a major city, I am amazed at how small it feels sometimes.  Of the six moms in our group, there are only two houses I need to drive to – the others are all walkable.  Hard to believe considering we met through email, but my friend Paige actually lives just one block over from me!  This morning, with my happy boy all bundled up for a cold day, I met Paige at the corner and we walked and talked the whole way there.

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There is something so refreshing and energizing to me about being around other new moms.  Even though I know I can share my feelings and thoughts with others too, there’s just something really comforting in knowing that we are all in the trenches together.  We all do things differently and make different choices, and yet I never feel like there is judgment.  Everyone is tired, no one cares (or honestly even notices) if your baby cries, and we are all usually in need of a good laugh.  And having five other moms to ask questions to is far more reassuring than any Google search or parenting article.

For a group who came together very randomly, we all really seem to mesh well together.  Our six little peanuts were all born within 8 weeks of each other – Sept 29, Oct 14, Oct 21 (TWO babies!), Oct 30, and November 25th!  It is so fun to see how alike and different they all are at their various stages.

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We’ll have to keep taking group pictures of them to watch as they grow!  It’s good for Cullen to be around new faces and surroundings, and I try to get him out as much as possible when I can.  He had so much fun today just watching everyone and listening to all the voices.  He crashed hard as soon as we got home. 

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To any other new moms or pregnant ladies, I would highly recommend checking out the mom groups in your area. I have found the parenting community in general to be overwhelmingly supportive and helpful, both online and in person.

There is so much that I love about Seattle – the gorgeous mountain views, the amazing restaurants, and the countless parks and trails.  But I don’t think I would enjoy any of those things nearly as much if I didn’t feel like I had a network here to share it with.  Making friends and meeting other moms has helped make what has felt like our “new” city for so long, finally feel like a place I might belong. 

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79 Comments so far
Leave a comment

jane richardson     at 9:51 pm

oh this brought back such memories! I have the EXACT same couch picture with my mommy group’s babies…all of whom are 23 years old now. We have gone through alot together- illnesses, joys, college, and many are empty nesters now. (not me- i still have an 8 year old!) Stay together, stay connected. It’s so worth it.

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Lauren @ Sassy Molassy     at 9:51 pm

I love the line up of babies. That’s awesome that you found a great group of women so close to you. A network of friends really does add comfort and safety to a new place.

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Danielle     at 9:53 pm

I totally agree! My hospital had a mom’s group I joined with my first. It was exactly what I needed in those early weeks, and we still get together from time to time. It’s so fun to watch the little ones grow!

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Missy N     at 10:03 pm

What adorable babes!! I love the line up pic of the babies! What a great idea to get together with other new moms and a great social time for the babes! I’m not pregnant and I have no children, but if I do, I will certainly find new moms to connect with!

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ashley     at 10:06 pm

Yay for the 6 baby pic! What a fun terrifying couch! Is that your dog? He’s probably like WTH?

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Christine @ BookishlyB     at 10:18 pm

Ah! That picture is so cute. Your’s is the only one that has a semi-smile. Adorable.

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Chelsea     at 10:20 pm

That’s so great that you’ve met so many moms in SUCH a close vicinity! And six of them with their birthdays so close?! That’s just madness right there haha. I hope I can have the same when I become a momma <3

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ashley     at 10:46 pm

Oh my gosh, that photo is priceless!!! Sounds like an amazing group of moms! So glad you’re getting cozy in Seattle. :)

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Elisabeth     at 10:57 pm

The group photo is just precious! (Cullen’s socks are adorable, by the way) It’s wonderful that you’ve found a great, new group of friends, especially since you’re so far from your families! :)

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Sarah     at 12:17 am

My new moms group saved me when my first was born, and saved me again when my second was born and we lived in a new city. Glad yours is going well! I’m still close with a lot of the moms from those groups (my oldest two are now 5 and 7, and I’m home with my 4th and have no desire to leave my house in the few quiet moments I get when the older ones are at school/preschool!). If you’re lucky, these relationships will last for you and Cullen for years!

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emily     at 1:19 am

Cullen looks so mischievous sitting on the couch!
Such a good positive read knowing how things have worked out so far from your families and great that Cullen is getting used to being with others at such a young age. I admire bloggers who put so much of their lives online – I am loving following along here :)

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Michelle     at 1:41 am

Hi there, just recently found your blog. Love it! Congratulations on your little one! Just a few months prior, I joined the mom club as well with a little girl. There’s really nothing like it!

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Jessie @ Graze With Me     at 1:54 am

I agree, moms groups are so important! I go to a weekly breastfeeding support group as well as a welcome to motherhood group & I love them! The BF one is great since I can weigh Lyric every week to see how much she’s gaining. I’ve already met a couple women who I’ve gotten together with, yay!

Btw, it’s so funny there’s only one girl in your group. Out of most of our friends & family w/new babies we have the only girl. I swear 2011 was the year of the boy!

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Angela @ Happy Fit Mama     at 2:12 am

In 2010 we had a baby boom where I work. There were 4 of us pregnant that year in our very small dept. It was great to have those other women to compare our aches, pain, joys, fears, etc. After the babes were born, we decided to get together every month for a Babyfest. It’s been hard to keep it up with schedules but it is something we all look forward to. Mom groups are the best!

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hannah alehandra     at 2:15 am

What a lovely post, Emily. Cullen looks adorable with all the other babies! Much love, from England.

http://hannahalehandra.blogspot.com/

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Brittnie (A Joy Renewed)     at 3:36 am

I am so glad you are settling in and feeling connected. That is so important. It is hard to believe that you have been in Seattle for 9 months now. Crazy how fast time passes.

I am so blessed to have several friends that are about 6 months ahead of me in parenting. It has been especially helpful now that I am registering and asking a million product questions and they are able to give me their advice, input and suggestions of what is needed, not needed, etc.

Friendship, fellowship and connection is amazing and so necessary to have that sense of fulfillment. So glad you are feeling it as a new momma!

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Jayna     at 4:13 am

My playgroup is my sanity. . . seriously, I could NOT have lasted this long as a stay at home mom without those women and their families!!!!

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Tricia     at 4:18 am

That picture of them all on the couch is ADORABLE!!!!!

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Simply Life     at 4:23 am

oh my gosh, I LOVE that picture of all the babies- you definitely have to keep that as your kiddos get bigger! We moved from Seattle to the east coast (no family either place) without knowing a soul and it’s NOT easy- I’m so inspired and impressed at how you were already able to build such a community!

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Erica     at 4:27 am

This is very helpful. I moved to a new city at 26 weeks pregnant. I haven’t made any new mom friends yet, but a lot of my male coworkers have young (>6 month) babies and they have been a surprisingly great resource for me! I’m hoping to get into a mom group soon.

I just have to say, you seriously have the world’s most adorable baby. Until mine is born, of course ;-). But look at that face!

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katie@newmamamac.blogspot.com     at 5:18 am

i am dying over that group shot!!!! absolutely love it!!!

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Katie KS     at 5:24 am

I love the picture. We have lots of pictures with E and her little friends and it is so fun to “recreate” them as they get older. I was lucky with her to have somewhere close to 20! friends and relatives give birth while I was pregnant or within 9 months after her birth – of course many of them are spread across the country, but it’s been fun! I also had a lot of friends have boys in ’11 – definitely outnumbering the girls! Due to working FT, I’ve never been able to get in a play group or Moms’ group, sadly. I have SAHM/PT/WAHM mom friends who love them. My friend who moved from here to Seattle this past summer is in a couple through her school district out there that are free … not sure if they are in every district or just hers (and don’t know which it is) but it might be another avenue to look into as he grows!

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Meagan     at 5:30 am

Like you, I have come to realize that networking is EVERYTHING. I’m glad you’re in such a good spot!

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Callie @ The Wannabe Athlete     at 5:38 am

I love that photo of you and Cullen together! Beautiful! I agree with you – the support of other moms has been incredible. I feel so lucky that two of my best friends had babies within 3 months of me!

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Megan S     at 5:43 am

I’m so happy for you that you’ve found that. Moving to another city during such a major change has got to be terrifying! Cullen gets cuter by the second and you look beautiful:)

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Jessica     at 5:45 am

OMG, that group picture may be one of the cutest things I have ever seen.
I am SO glad you have found a group of friends! I can only imagine how hard it must have been to move across the country.

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Leatitia @ The Sweetest Year     at 5:48 am

Reading this makes me so happy for you. I’m glad you found a new group of friends to talk to ‘face-to-face’. Girlfriends are the best. :)

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Sarah @ See Sarah Eat     at 5:51 am

What a great idea! I’m glad you were able to make some friends at the same stage in life as you. I love the last pic of Cullen, looks like he’s raising his fist in the air at a rock concert or something ;)

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Cheryl     at 5:53 am

Emily, I am really happy that you and these other young women reached out to each other. My husband was in the Navy for 24 years and those early years when I had my children, were tough being away from family. I met and got involved in military wives meetings to meet other new moms and made some wonderful friends. They became just like family. Now, here I am almost 30 years later with grown kids, but the other Navy wives I met in those early days, are still some of my closest friends today. Only problem is now we all have miles between us, but we are still close in the heart.

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Laura     at 5:56 am

Cullen’s shoes are adorable!

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Katie @ Shared Bites     at 6:26 am

That photo is hilarious – love it! So glad to hear your found a good group of mommy friends. :)

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Jenna     at 6:29 am

Such a great post! It is scary moving to a new place – good for you for putting yourself out there and building a fabulous support group. I have been in a new place for a year and a half and just now feel like I have that core group. You know, the people you call-up to do nothing. Also, I am DYING over that little button-up collar shirt that Cullen is wearing. Adorbs.

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Amanda Perry at Sistas of Strength     at 6:38 am

That’s awesome that you’ve met so many new moms. I live 15 minutes from where I grew up and haven’t had a chance to meet too many new moms in my area bc I have been working. I need to get on that!

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Katie @ Serenity in the Storm     at 6:45 am

Thanks for your post. This is something I worry about when I think about having kids–having a community. Only a couple of my friends are planning to have babies and I remember when I was little, all my parents friends were having kids at the same time. It was so great to always get to play together and have a whole bunch of houses that felt like second homes. This gives me some hope that I can find this kind of community in Seattle. Thanks!

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Beth B.     at 7:03 am

This was a great post. Thanks so much for sharing how the blog world helped you with adjusting and the move. Sounds like you’ve been blessed with a great group of ladies!

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Heather     at 7:08 am

love the cute line up photo of the babies, can’t believe they were all born so close to each other. I think it’s great that you found them!

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Halley (Blunder Construction)     at 7:12 am

LOL that picture of the babies lined up on the couch!! You should photoshop a steal beam underneath them, they’ll look like a bunch of grumpy construction workers taking break :)

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Allison K     at 7:23 am

I am about the be in the same boat. We are relocating to a small town in wyoming in about a month. I will be 30 weeks when I arrive and I hope I can find some other pregnant women!

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Leah     at 7:56 am

Emily, you should write a book on relocating across the country (while getting ready to have a family). The idea of forming a support network is key. I moved 100 miles from home years ago, but without a local group of folks to share life with I can’t imagine how lonely urban life would be (I’m from the country).

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Kristen @ Change of Pace     at 7:59 am

My husband deployed while I was pregnant with my second child and joining a moms group was such a blessing. It was so nice to have friends that could relate to me. I love the picture of all the babies! So cute!

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allpointswhole     at 8:23 am

Thats awesome! And its so true that when they are that little, you need that mom time and you easily relate.

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Mandy     at 9:08 am

Aww.. I wish I was in Seattle, not Tacoma, so I could join! I do agree though, having a new mommy network makes things so much easier. Mine is mostly online, but together with my mom on MSN, local friends whose babies are only a few months older and my husband’s family.. it’s a pretty good support network.

Glad you worked something out! All 6 babies are precious.

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Erin @ Girl Gone Veggie     at 9:08 am

What adorable babies! So glad you met such an awesome group of moms to help support you during such a big time in your life!

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Gina (Yogattude)     at 9:20 am

I LOVE the couch picture…they look so darn cute lined up!

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Katie @ Healthy Heddleston     at 9:39 am

Love the babies on the couch picture!

Ever since moving to Maryland I’ve been thinking about ways to meet new friends (especially soon to be mommies or new mommies), meeting people via blogging and twitter really has been the most helpful! In fact, your friend Lisa and I have become twitter buddies and we are working out a time to meet!

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marci     at 9:40 am

Mom friends are great! I have one group of friends where my baby will be the youngest of a year’s worth of babies. And our other group of friends aren’t pregnant yet, so I hope to meet some with babies of the same age too.
Our group also has 90% boys! I’m the wildcard one right now! Still unknown with 6-8 weeks to go.

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Sarah     at 10:05 am

Seattle is a wonderful city like that. We moved from Seattle to the east coast a few years ago. The people in Seattle are some of the friendliest people in the country. We are so struck by this everytime we make the trip back and forth. I am so glad you have met some wonderful women, and you will continue to do so. I really pray your love/hate turns into a love/love with the city. I can’t begin to describe how much I miss it, but we will return someday. It’s not going anywhere :)

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Shayla @ The Good Life     at 10:21 am

I just love this post and it warmed my heart so very much <3 We're still trying to get pregnant, but once we do get pregnant, I often wonder who I can confide in since all my friends don't live nearby and are in a different stage in life than we our. Knowing that your experience with mom groups was so positive definitely gives me hope in finding one when it's my turn and makes me more confident in building one in my area :)

And I have to say again, I just absolutely love love reading these types of posts from you. I have really loved reading your posts ever since you got pregnant and reading about you being a mother, about Cullen, and other musings about the likes are so wonderful. You are such a fantastic writer in that I can feel your emotions through your words so very well and I look forward to your posts so very much :)

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Lisa @ The Splattered Apron     at 10:27 am

Cullen just gets cuter and cuter by the day, I just want to hold him! I was sad when you moved to Seattle but happy that we’ve been able to stay in touch so well :-) God bless modern technology! xo

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Teagan     at 10:52 am

you look really beautiful and happy in the pic of you and Cullen. just fyi :)

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Amber K     at 11:07 am

That is so cool that you have found new moms so close to you! That sounds like a perfect way to get together with other women who know exactly what you’re going through.

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Allison     at 11:13 am

My now 11 year old son (Oct. 22 birthday) is in 5th grade with several of the kids from his first playgroup, which we joined when he was about 4 months old. It is amazing to see how much they have changed. When I look back as playgroup pictures, I just have to laugh at how much they have changed (the hair!) and how, in many ways they are still the same. It goes by very quickly. Well, as you know, some days don’t go by very quickly, but the years do. Luckily for me, most of my friends all had their second when I did so my daughter just fit right in to the playgroup.

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Lexi @ Cura Personalis Foodie     at 11:27 am

That picture of all 6 babies is adorable! I love how some are clearly NOT happy haha

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Jana     at 11:52 am

You are so lucky!! After I started reading your blog I was so sad that we moved!! We used to live in WA…not super close to Seattle but down in Puyallup….we could have had playdates!! Anyways….we have moved around a lot as well and we are now in Minnesota. Here I am finding it the hardest place to make friends. It seems as though everyone sticks to themselves or already has enough friends! But I’m not getting discouraged…it will happen ;o) So happy for yoU!

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Kayla     at 12:26 pm

Love the classic babies lined up on the couch pic! I have One of me like that as a baby! Cullenlooks so content!

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Colleen     at 2:20 pm

love all the little babies lined up.

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La.     at 2:44 pm

Before having a child I thought Mom groups were SO DUMB! I honestly thought that they ONLY got together to complain about their children (why have any at all if this is all you do) and back stab husbands who can’t POSSIBLY understand. Boy was I wrong! There is something about another mother telling you that it is OK to feel like a failure after a terrible day…because you aren’t. They help keep you sane and happy as a Mother. My friendships with other mothers are very different than my friendships of those who don’t have children. You need both! I’m glad you found a safe niche!

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Ashley B     at 3:17 pm

Very cool. I’m not pregnant nor plan to be anytime soon, but I wish I had a group of like-minded friends to get together with. Don’t get me wrong, I have a nice set of close friends, but none of them are even remotely interested in the way I choose to live my life. They freak out over the fact I drink raw, organic milk from a neighboring farm or cringe when I talk about raising chickens.

You lucked out! I guess the perks of being a public blogger out weigh the downfalls.

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Maria @ Beautiful Busy Bee     at 3:18 pm

Awww, so cute how Cullen already has a little group of friends! I love the picture of all the babies, reminds me of “red sofa” photos of babies adopted from China.

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[New Balance] Nicole     at 3:45 pm

That is such a cute picture of them all on the couch!!!

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Suzanne     at 3:59 pm

That picture of all of them on the sofa is so adorable! And I love that Cullen’s sleeping with his arm sticking out. Too funny.

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Emily @LivingLongfellow     at 4:32 pm

Wonderful that you have such a great mommy community. I hope I have that someday :)

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Monica     at 4:34 pm

Haha, I love Cullen in the group shot! So darn cute. I can’t find Mom groups in the area that are free (or less than $100) so I am getting creative with a La Leche League near me. I just want to meet other new moms in my area!

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Kat     at 4:53 pm

So jealous! All of the mom groups near me are either too far or meet during my working hours.

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Vanessa Miller     at 5:59 pm

Another liker of the babes on the sofa. Glad you have a strong supportive group to share the journey.

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laura (starloz)     at 8:28 pm

my mum met her very very best friend in a mother group, 34 years ago!

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Lindsay     at 1:54 am

My husbands bosses wife suggested that I attend prenatal yoga classes at local studio she goes to as that is where she met lots of her mom friends. They even have a non-yoga meet up once a week for moms-to-be and current moms. I am planning on starting up going in the next few weeks in hopes that I’ll meet some other prego ladies.

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Catherine     at 6:05 am

The picture of all six babies pretty much melts my heart.

And reminds me why I’d never want more than one baby at a time. :)

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Lauri     at 8:00 am

So glad you have made so many friends, living wthout family is hard and friends ARE your family!!!! I wish I had known more new moms when I was home on maternity leave but wokring full time it was even harder to meet them and none of my friends had kids. when my son was 18 months old, we finally met our neighbors that live directly behind us (how had we never met??) and foudn out they had a girl the same age as our son! well those kids turned 4 this past fall and have been best friends since we met that day way back when. And we have grown really close with the parents as well, even celebrated Christmas Eve together the past 3 years! So some of these women may turn into your best life long friends!!

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Melissa Dempsey     at 12:16 pm

Hi there,

How did you find the other new moms in your area? We have a 4 week old and all of our friends have toddlers/or work outside the home…it would be great to find a few moms to start a group with…any suggestions?

PS-LOVE your blog! Especially since your son is about 6 wks older than Sienna Rose-it gives me hope that the long nights will get better :)

Melissa

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Michelle (The Runner's Plate)     at 12:28 pm

What you said at the end is SO true. I live in Anchorage, AK with beautiful mountains all around, access to a lot of outdoor activities, etc., but I have struggled living here for 4+ years because I have not connected to people. I have had the hardest time meeting people, making friends, and I do not feel like I fit in here.

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Faith     at 2:39 pm

I am so glad for you that you’ve found such a wonderful support system there! That picture on the couch is priceless!

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Alex @ Raw Recovery     at 9:33 am

The picture of all the babies is priceless! I love all the outfits you put Cullen in. He is so stylish!

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Gabrielle Reply:

I was thinking the same thing about Cullen… right down to his shoes!

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Nicole     at 4:04 pm

What an adorable picture of all the babies! I’m so glad you have a group of new moms to hang out with. Once a week is perfect!! Can’t wait to watch them grow. :)

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alex     at 8:14 pm

I love this. I am 23 weeks now and thinking of mommy groups i can join…I know how important it will be for the support!

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Kristi     at 6:37 am

Thanks for this post! Although I am not a new mom (my ‘baby’ is now 6 1/2), I can relate to being in a new area and needing to find a support network.

Cullen is getting so big – and is so cute! Love the group shot of all the little ones.

[Reply]

A Day In The Life Of A Five Month Old Baby. | Daily Garnish     at 9:41 pm

[...] is, I try to always have some sort of afternoon activity planned.  One day a week we head to moms group, which Cullen LOVES.  He is so into watching other babies!  (Check out the hand holding [...]

A Day In The Life Of A Five Month Old Baby. | Daily Garnish     at 9:41 pm

[...] is, I try to always have some sort of afternoon activity planned.  One day a week we head to moms group, which Cullen LOVES.  He is so into watching other babies!  (Check out the hand holding [...]

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