Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Networking with Other Moms
Although I've lived in this area for a long time, I feel like I'm constantly learning new places. A lot of it has to do with the fact that I have two little ones and that brings new questions. We find ourselves in new situations continually and with that, I often want to throw my hands in the air in frustration. Where do I find a pediatrician? Is there a good children's dentist in town? Where can we go for good frugal fun?
So networking with other moms has become a lifesaver for me. I feel like I'm constantly coming to other moms with a list of questions and ideas. Have you tried this? What about this doctor? Who takes Medi-cal? What about the open gym at the gymnastics center?
Additionally, we've worked out babysitting deals to help with younger siblings. I've sat with little ones while other mommy's check out the new charter school down the street. Although I still have a few years before Big Boy starts, I've gotten some great information from other moms while they do school visits and I watch the kids. I now know who's arts focused, who's science focused, and who's language focused. Just information for things to come.
This was just further reinforced to me when I met a friend at a Lending Library this morning. She had been telling me about this great place to let the kids play and check out toys. We love our regular library, but haven't been able to get into a great routine since Baby Girl was born. So we thought we'd give this place a try. Walking in, there was a place for the kids to play. Then the rest of the place was filled with books, audio tapes, videos, parenting resources, toys, manipulatives, phonics programs, educational tools, etc available for checkout. What a great way to try out new tools before buying. Or have the chance to use big ticket items (some of those educational tools are expensive).
To the point... Networking with other mommies in my area has worked out great for me. we have another library to go to, a new pediatrician and dentist, and a future playdate to check out the bounce house in the next town. Moral of the story... don't be afraid to ask lots of questions or ask for a babysitter in gathering information you can share.
A word to the wise, networking with other SAHMs is just like networking in an other profession. Be sure to give honest feedback and return the favor. Pass on the information you have and share in the fun by inviting others along. Raise the bar and treat your profession with the respect it deserves. And never stop learning.
So what works for you?