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  • 05/13/2020 12:12 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)



    We are recruiting for our 2020-21 Board Term!

    As we begin recruitment for next year's Petaluma Mothers Club Board we’d like to offer a few updates. Our club will be refocusing our attention to highlight the good we bring to each other and our community. Not only do we want to ensure you have safe places to openly communicate with each other, but also that there are a variety of opportunities to see each other outside of our extraordinary Facebook space. Our focus is to reunite our commonalities and celebrate parenthood together.

    As you read through the descriptions below, I hope you feel inspired to be part of this new board and are as excited as we are to be part of this time of regrowth.

    You can influence our future. You can influence change.

    The board will now have three bodies of office: Executive Officers, Directors, and Coordinators. The updated position descriptions as well as approximate time commitments for each role are below. The Executive Officers have already been voted into their roles as this traditionally happens in April.

    We will be holding another virtual recruitment event, please see the link below to register:

    Click here to RSVP for Thursday. May 21st @ 8:00 PM

    If you are inspired to join the board, please review the job descriptions below and fill out the Interest Form below letting us know which positions you are interested in and why.

    Interest Form

    Please feel free to email me at president@petalumamothersclub.org for questions.

    Warmly,

    Jessica Marcy, President

    Allison Moghadassi, President Elect

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    Director of Membership Services

    Approximate hours per month: 3-5

    The Director of Membership Services is a voting member of the board that acts as the point of contact for new member information and dissemination including but not limited to general membership and Wild Apricot questions. This position oversees and reports to the board each meeting on progress of the Meals in a Pinch program as well as the Club Scrapbook.

    ● Maintain accuracy of information that is emailed to new members (including welcome note, discount list, playgroup links)

    ● Respond to phone inquiries (emailed transcripts) and forward as necessary

    ● Adjust phone message when needed

    ● Coordinate with the Director of Events to host a welcome Table at public PMC events, including display of recent Scrapbooks

    ● Check daily for member approval requests on Wild Apricot

    ● Archive any lapsed (inactive) members in order to keep the contact list below 500

    ● Help members troubleshoot dues by resending an invoice or directing them where to pay

    ● Create member/volunteer reports as requested

    ● Manage membership application and make changes as necessary

    ● Attend Board Meetings Monthly and report on all projects assigned to your position as well as the positions that report to you.

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    Meals in a Pinch

    Approximate hours per month: 2

    The Meals in a Pinch Coordinator coordinates meal trains for PMC members as requested, remind new mothers to participate

    ● Send questionnaire to recipient and use info to create a meal train on Mealtrain.com

    ● Offer 5 meals (advise requesting delivery every other day)

    ● Post Meal Train link to Facebook Event group

    ● Send blast email through Wild Apricot a few days before meal train begins

    ● Check in with recipient to ensure they are receiving their meals

    ● Submit thank you announcements to Blogger for high meal train participation

    ● Report any updates to the Director of Member Services before the Monthly Board Meeting. May attend Board Meetings but not mandatory.

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    Club Scrapbook

    Approximate hours per month: 1

    The Club Scrapbooker compiles photos and press clippings and shares them with the Director of Communication as well as add them into an organized scrapbook by end of term

    ● Maintain archive files of noteworthy Blog Posts (big events) by saving the copy and image in a google doc

    ● Provide scrapbooks to Welcome Coordinator

    ● Report any updates to the Director of Member Services before the Monthly Board Meeting. May attend Board Meetings but not mandatory.

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    Director of Community Outreach

    Approximate hours per month: 3-4

    The Director of Community Outreach is a voting member of the board that coordinates with the Community Calendar Coordinator to identify events or programs the PMC should participate in or support. This position also works closely with the Director of Events for any large community based events we should support such as the Sonoma/Marin Fair, Rivertown Revival, and the Butter and Eggs Day. This position reports to the board each meeting on progress of the Service Projects and Community Outreach efforts being done on behalf of the club.

    ● Inform members of community volunteer and donation opportunities

    ● Events include Butter and Eggs parade, CPR class, changing station at Fair & Rivertown Revival, Kid Power, car seat check, ACS Relay for Life

    ● Collaborate with Director of Programs on 1-2 programs/events

    ● Inform Publicity about potential press releases

    ● Submit event recaps to Blogger

    ● Attend Board Meetings Monthly and report on all projects assigned to your position as well as the positions that report to you.

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    Service Project Coordinator

    Approximate hours per month: 2

    The Service Project Coordinator organizes service projects throughout the year, focusing on children, women, or families in the community. Request minimum of 2 projects per term.

    ● Examples include diaper and clothing drives

    ● Can plan event or partner with Director of Programs and Director of Events

    ● Submit blog articles about volunteer opportunities in the community

    ● Create and manage events in Wild Apricot and FB Event group

    ● Partner with The Director of Events on Signup Genius

    ● Assist The Director of Community Outreach on any events scheduled, including ACS Relay for Life

    ● Maintain list in Google drive of past contacts, events, and successes.

    ● Submit blog articles and photos from events planned

    ● Report any updates to the Director of Community Outreach before the Monthly Board Meeting. May attend Board Meetings but not mandatory.

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    Director of Publicity

    Approximate hours per month: 3-4

    The Director of Publicity is a voting member of the board that oversees all publicity for the club. This includes but is not limited to: social media (Facebook & Instagram), distribution of flyers and other materials (digital and some hard copy), and updating club materials. Reports to the board each meeting on progress of distribution and content and checks in with Directors who may need publicity for events, programs, etc.

    ● Work with Director of Community Outreach and Director of Events to create Press Releases for Press Democrat and Argus-Courier

    ● Event info/press release will be sent to online distribution sources as appropriate

    ● Submit public PMC events to event calendars on various websites

    ● Print flyers for distribution (150 each for Fall Carnival, Spring Tea, and Egg Hunt TBD # for other events) and send 2 flyers to each school on the school list

    ● Work with Director of Events to get volunteers to help distribute flyers and brochures

    ● Maintain brochures including restocking at local business’

    ● Explore new ways to increase club membership

    ● Research and evaluate local publications for advertising options

    ● Point of contact for questions that arise as a result of publicity

    ● Attend Board Meetings Monthly and report on all projects assigned to your position as well as the positions that report to you.

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    Discount Program Coordinator

    Approximate hours per month: 1-2

    The Discount Program Coordinator creates and maintains relationships with local businesses to provide the Club with local discounts as well as set up Dine & Donate events every month.

    ● Recruit local businesses for discount program

    ● Confirm accuracy of discount program, published on website

    ● Contact participating businesses and provide ‘spotlight’ article to Blogger throughout term

    ● Plans and executes Dine & Donate event every 4-6 weeks

    ● Report any updates to the Director of Publicity before the Monthly Board Meeting. May attend Board Meetings but not mandatory.

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    Director of Online Services

    Approximate hours per month: 6

    The Director of Online Services is a voting member of the board that oversees maintenance of the PMC website and it's innerworkings. This includes membership renewals, invoices, and event registrations. All questions regarding online services will be directed to this position. This Director reports to the board each meeting on progress of membership numbers, outstanding invoices, state of business ads and website updates.

    ● Confirm accuracy of website including Presidents Note, contact info, discount list, resource guides

    ● Confirm ability for new members to sign up

    ● Partner with Business Ads to manage new and existing ads

    ● Own and manage PMC emails (xyz@petalumamothersclub.org), modify/add new addresses as needed, reset passwords as requested

    ● Renew subscription with web host

    ● Renew URL (petalumamothersclub.org)

    ● Attend Board Meetings Monthly and report on all projects assigned to your position as well as the positions that report to you.

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    Business Ads

    Approximate hours per month: 4

    The Business Ads person is responsible for reaching out to local businesses to sell ads/paid blog features on our website. This position organizes the ads for the Director of Online Services as well as foster and maintain relationships with local businesses

    ● Manage emails to potential advertisers and manage existing ads

    ● Confirm all ads on website are up to date

    ● Communicate billing status with Treasurer

    ● Compile mailing list each month

    ● Check res and dimensions of new ads

    ● Change out email message

    ● Send out invoices

    ● Collect and track payments

    ● Manage dropbox folder for ads

    ● Send spreadsheet & mailing list to editor by deadline

    ● Report any updates to the Director of Online Services

    before the Monthly Board Meeting. May attend Board Meetings but not mandatory.

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    Director of Communication

    Approximate hours per month: 6

    The Director of Communication is a voting member of the board that creates and solicits Blog content. A minimum of 4 posts must be uploaded a month (one is the monthly President's Letter and another is birth announcements). This Director position reports to the board each meeting on progress of the blog, photos taken for the blog as well as at major events, and any projects assigned to the designer.

    ● Research, collect, and organize weekly content. This should include birth announcements, PMC event recaps, recipes, crafts, member of the month, playgroup spotlights and business spotlights

    ● Work with Board to create content

    ● Ensure edits are complete before posting

    ● Ensure accuracy of the blog page and contact information within the website

    ● Attend Board Meetings Monthly and report on all projects assigned to your position as well as the positions that report to you.

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    Club Photographer

    Approximate hours per month: 2

    The Club Photographer ensures that photos are taken at all PMC events and volunteer functions and submits them to the Director of Communication, Director of Publicity, and the Executive Officers.

    ● Gather photos from other members from playgroups and or events and share with the Executive Officers, Director of Communication, and Director of Publicity

    ● Provide digital images monthly to the Director of Communications as well as Executive Officers

    ● Report any updates to the Director of Communication before the Monthly Board Meeting. May attend Board Meetings but not mandatory.

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    Designer

    Approximate hours per month: 5

    The Designer will design brochures, flyers, and posters when given the appropriate time and information. The Designer is also responsible for maintaining the club logo and branding of the club.

    ● Design Facebook images for all events as well as full page flyer for Fall Carnival and Egg Hunt. Planner is responsible for confirming text, Designer responsible that image is approved before distributing

    ● Create template for MNO and Programs FB events

    ● Confirm logo is on all images

    ● Send approved files to Publicity for publication and printing

    ● Report any updates to the Director of Communication before the Monthly Board Meeting. May attend Board Meetings but not mandatory.

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    Director of Playgroup Engagement

    Approximate hours per month: 2

    The Director of Playgroup Engagement is a voting member of the board that oversees all Facebook Playgroups and posts to the main FaceBook pages as well as communicates any information and changes to the Playgroup Admins. This position reports to the board each meeting on progress of any and all Facebook issues and concerns for the group.

    ● Maintain current playgroup roster

    ● Contact Playgroup Leaders with news and updates

    ● Coordinates seasonal playspace

    ● Assist new members in joining appropriate playgroups

    ● Monitor inappropriate content in playgroups, and act as mediator with President when necessary

    ● Recruit Leader to create next years playgroup (should set up in November)

    ● Share photos and short write ups for Playgroup Playdates with Director of Communications

    ● Attend Board Meetings Monthly and report on all projects assigned to your position as well as the positions that report to you.

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    Playgroup Administrator

    Approximate hours per month: 3

    Facebook playgroup admins will be responsible for the following: approving member requests, monitoring and moderating conversation, outreach, and engagement. This includes coordinating with playgroup events to ensure photos and a brief write up are submitted when appropriate.

    ● Monitor inappropriate content in playgroups, and act as mediator with President when necessary

    ● Post an Ice Breaker Question weekly for the first year to keep the community strong and engaged. Post bi-monthly after the initial year or as the Administrator and Director of Playgroups see fit.

    ● Ensure photos are taken at playgroup playdates and a short description of the event to share with the Director of Playgroups monthly

    ● Report any updates to the Director of Playgroup Engagement before the Monthly Board Meeting. May attend Board Meetings but not mandatory.

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    Director of Events

    Approximate hours per month: 2-4

    The Director of Events is a voting member of the board that oversees all major events ensuring budgets, tasks, and plans are executed and accounted for. Is responsible for filling volunteer positions for such events and working with the Event Coordinator to lead contact to troubleshoot and problem solve issues before each board meeting. Reports to the board each meeting on progress of events.

    ● Prepare SignUpGenuis.com in coordination with event lead

    ● Post SignUpGenuis.com link to Wild Apricot and Facebook Event group

    ● Ensure positions are getting filled

    ● Send reminders via Wild Apricot blasts and bumping FB post

    ● Inform Event Coordinator of any issues getting positions filled

    ● Maintain list of members who have completed 2 hours of service

    ● Coordinate annual board recruitment with President

    ● Create and Maintain a checklist with suggested dates to have tasks completed for Fall Carnival, Family Dance, Egg Hunt, and Spring Tea

    ● Attend Board Meetings Monthly and report on all projects assigned to your position as well as the positions that report to you.

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    Event Coordinator

    Approximate hours per event: 20-30 (this includes all planning through the year and adds up all committee member hours)

    The Event Coordinator is the lead contact for a major club event and is responsible for but not limited to hiring vendors, planning activities, maintaining budget and recruiting a planning committee for the event. This position reports monthly to the Director of Events for board meetings.

    ● Create, manage and lead committee

    ● Secure venue for events including fees, deposits, arranging payments, and securing insurance certificate from Treasurer

    ● Solicit sponsors, goods, or services from local vendors to offset cost of event

    ● Submit monthly progress report to VP, including financial summaries

    ● Send Designer info to create image/flyer promoting event

    ● Create and manage events in Wild Apricot and FB Event group, send public event info to President to post on public FB page

    ● Send Thank You notes to vendors and donors

    ● Responsible for storage and provide written inventory of materials to VP *notes provided for individual events

    ● Report any updates to the Director of Events before the Monthly Board Meeting. May attend Board Meetings but not mandatory.

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    Director of Resources

    Approximate hours per month: 4-6

    The Director of Resources is a voting member of the board that creates and updates postpartum resources with an emphasis on mental health and general resource guides as well as oversees the creation and maintenance of the Community Calendar. Works closely with the Director of Publicity on any opportunity for us to cross promote the PMC and community events, works closely with the Director of Programs to ensure we don't plan anything as a club at the same time as a widely attended community event, and works closely with the Director of Publication to ensure we are writing about events we as a club participate in and to help promote community events to our members via the blog. Reports to the board each meeting on progress of these guides and brings awareness to other Directors and Executive Officers about community events pertinent to our club.

    ● Create and update Resource Guide of postpartum resources, provide to Webmaster

    ● Create blog posts quarterly with updated guides

    ● Partner with local doctors and community members to inform new moms about PMC

    ● Update guides quarterly by adding new businesses where appropriate, and confirm previously listed information

    ● Confirm availability of guides to members through PMC website (Preschool, Birthday Party Venues, Pumpkin Patch, Summer Camps)

    ● Ensure Preschool Guide is updated and completed 1 month before Preschool Night

    ● Develop new guides as requested, and provide to the Director of Communication

    ● Attend Board Meetings Monthly and report on all projects assigned to your position as well as the positions that report to you.

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    Community Calendar Coordinator

    Approximate hours per month: 2-3

    The Community Calendar Coordinator is responsible for updating our community calendar of events. Weekly research on recurring events relevant to our community, i.e. library story times, playspace hours, music classes, etc.

    ● Confirm Calendar link is pinned to top of FB Event page

    ● Keep track of all events at Chamber of Commerce, involve PMC where appropriate

    ● Update the Calendar in Wild Apricot Weekly/Monthly

    ● Do a weekly search on community events relevant to 0-5 year olds

    ● Report any updates to the Director of Resources before the Monthly Board Meeting. May attend Board Meetings but not mandatory.

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    Director of Programs

    Approximate hours per month: 5

    The Director of Programs is a voting member of the board that oversees all programs for the club as well as plans and hosts Mom's Night Out events once a month. They are also responsible for reporting to the board each meeting on progress of all club programs as well as attendance and overall success of the event.

    ● Ensure a variety of activities are set up for Mom's Night Out: such as paint night, nails, movie night, karaoke, shopping night, etc.

    ● Coordinate with Community Calendar Coordinator, President, and Director of Programs on Days and times of all events

    ● Coordinate with vendors to reserve space and request discount when possible for Mom's Night Out

    ● Provide food, drink, or subsidized ticket depending on event for Mom's Night Out

    ● Arrange for attendees payment to be made at time of RSVP for Mom's Night Out when appropriate as well as any program that requires assistance

    ● Ensure budget is met and funds have been received when applicable for Mom's Night Out

    ● Create and manage events in Wild Apricot and FB Event group

    ● Coordinate and/or host monthly new member socials- Create and maintain a sign up sheet for all Directors to host one a month

    ● Assist Program Coordinator with any events and or work with the Director of Events for assistance

    ● Attend Board Meetings Monthly and report on all projects assigned to your position as well as the positions that report to you.

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    Program Coordinator

    Approximate hours per month: 3-5

    The Program Coordinator plans monthly programs/events including Preschool night in January and Super Playdate in June. Updates the Director of Programs for our monthly board meetings.

    ● Set up a program every 1-2 months via in person or zoom

    ● Recruit guest speakers and negotiate speaking fee when necessary

    ● Collect feedback from members for future speakers and classes

    ● Collaborate with Director of Community Outreach on 1-2 programs/events

    ● Secure venue for events including fees, deposits, arranging payments, and securing insurance certificate from Treasurer

    ● Create and manage events in Wild Apricot and FB Event group

    ● Purchase refreshments, oversee set up/clean up, greet guests, and introduce speaker at event

    ● Follow up with written thank you to guest speakers

    ● Submit event recaps and photos to the Director of Communications

    ● Report any updates to the Director of Programs before the Monthly Board Meeting. May attend Board Meetings but not mandatory.

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    Field Trip Coordinator

    Approximate hours per month: 5

    The Fieldtrip Coordinator plans and hosts monthly field trips and updates the Director of Programs for our monthly board meetings

    ● Examples include airport, firehouse, police station, pumpkin patch, Sports City soccer/baseball

    ● Create and manage events in Wild Apricot and FB Event group

    ● Submit event recaps and photos to the Director of Communications

    ● Report any updates to the Director of Programs before the Monthly Board Meeting. May attend Board Meetings but not mandatory.


  • 04/23/2020 1:30 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    One of the hardest things about Shelter-In-Place for me and my family is not being able to see our extended family. Our kids are fortunate that they have both set of Grandparents in relatively close proximity, so they see them often. Having little ones and explaining why we can go over to their Grandparents house, and why they can’t come to ours is a daily battle. I’ve run out of ways to try to put words to these crazy times we are living in. Since I can barely wrap my head around it, image how it is for your little ones. I know I’m not alone with this struggle. 

    So when I was searching Pinterest for ideas on what we would do in “Preschool” this week, I came across this post:  link (https://www.theleangreenbean.com/mail-a-hug/). You can MAIL A HUG. So my preschooler and I worked together and had a blast doing it. It’s super easy! 

    We’d all rather give a hug, but why not mail one while we wait?

     

    Materials Needed:

    A roll of paper (but if you don’t, just tape a bunch together until you get the length you need!)

    Crayons

    Scissors

    An Envelope (and a sense of humor on how to fold the hug without squishing little paper fingers)

    A Pen to Address the Envelope

    A Stamp

     

    Have fun and remember. We’re all in this together so if you have any ideas on projects or helpful hints during this time, please feel free to share them with blogger@petalumamothersclub.org

     

  • 03/01/2020 9:18 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    As mothers we all really want to have those million little keepsakes and that’s something I’ve been trying to find to do since becoming a mother. I’m not crafty and I truly am not into art so most little things my daughter makes is adorable but I could care less if it’s kept or thrown out. Something I always loved was the clay hand prints! It’s easy it lasts forever and it could even become an ornament  for the Christmas tree! Buuutt it can break. Sooo does it really truly last forever. Not so much. So one day I found this idea on Pinterest and fell in love with it. We can all also take a moment to laugh at the fact that doing a hand print with a baby and toddler is a joke and that’s why they look the way they do, but the point was is that I did hand prints that is on a canvas that could last forever like a piece on the wall. It was easy, it wasn’t perfect but it was okay and I do love it! 

  • 02/10/2020 8:40 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Tis the season for the flu! It’s the most horrible time of the year! (See what I did there) The season for the flu has hit us hard this year, and like most of you I am exhausted with being stuck inside with sick children every other week. I want to hang out with my mom friends and I want my kids to play with theirs too, and yet here we are sick. Again. I know we are all holding on by the last thread but we are ALMOST out of it ladies. So I thought I’d tell you a bit about my past two weeks to help cheer you up/let you know it’s not just you and your children. It’s all of ours. 
    So my child is perfectly fine one day and we are at play dates, I try to keep them very involved as it keeps me involved as well. As we are sitting at dinner my daughter begins to pass gas, so I thought, but listen ladies this was no regular gas this was wet sickness coming from her body, as she ate. Yum right? It’s such a mess I decide to clean her up and a bath is needed for sure, so she gets in the tub and everything is fine she’s happy, playing, normal little 2 year old self enjoying the tub time and all of a sudden she looks up at me with a face that looks like something is wrong and I see it just shooting through the water. Yep. In the tub. Not once but twice. (Obvi I cleaned it out the first go round and started the bath over again). Thought okay it’s just the runs no big deal it’s out now. The rest of the night we were changing her diaper every 20-45 minutes, her bottom was beat red and it lasted two days (the tub seen a lot more the next day too). 
    Don’t worry there’s good news coming, she beat it, it was a two day bug and we all survived it. Four days later my 6 month old comes down with a cough, fever, and running nose. No big deal right? I mean it’s just flu season. We are on day 3 of a sick baby and a happy toddler just trying to live her best life and we are fine just taking it one day at a time. Actually as I write this I can’t help but laugh at what a terrible week and a half it’s been! My point here is, we are almost through it! We are on the last lap almost to the finish line and we can all go back to fun mommy/children play dates! Just hang in there ladies!! 

  • 01/19/2020 5:47 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Quick and Easy Chicken Noodle Soup

    Modified by Allison Moghaddasi

    Original Recipe by All Recipes (https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/26460/quick-and-easy-chicken-noodle-soup/)

     

    I’m a sucker for soups. I love almost all kinds, but since I’ve had the little ones I don’t have as much time to cook recipes that take all day to simmer. So I took to Pinterest. I have a few loves of my life; my kids, my husband, family and friends, Target and Pinterest pretty much in that order. When I stumbled on this recipe its been a game changer for us. What to do with left over rotisserie chicken? Make soup. What to do with left over veggies? Throw them in a soup. So as we all try to battle our way through cold and flew season and you want a decent soup that doesn’t come from a can (no judgement as we’ve got some on our pantry shelves too) here you go. 

     

    Prep: 10 mins

    Cook: 20 mins

    Total: 30 mins

    Servings: 6

     

    Ingredients

    2 tablespoon butter

    ½ cup chopped onion

    ½ cup chopped celery (size depends on if your kid will freak out that there is “green” in there)

    5 (14.5 ounce) cans chicken broth

    ½ pound chopped cooked chicken breast or whatever looks right to you

    1 ½ cups egg noodles

    1 cup sliced carrots

    ½ teaspoon dried basil

    ½ teaspoon dried oregano

    salt and pepper to taste

     

    Directions:

    In a large pot over medium heat, melt butter. Cook onion and celery in butter until just tender, 5 minutes. Pour in chicken broths and stir in chicken, noodles, carrots, basil, oregano, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes before serving. Eat it.

  • 12/31/2019 8:46 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The holidays are wonderful, beautiful, and let’s be honest....terrible! Remember the holidays before children?! You just show up all by yourself/with the partner and it’s all happy fun and games if you show or don’t, but now you’re the one with the beautiful babies and now are expected to be everywhere! Everyone wants to see these babies but no one remembers how hard it was to prep a side or dessert, dress the kids (or pack) dress yourself! (Or pack) show up, and just celebrate right?! No! How can we celebrate when we have to still parent while everyone is trying to kiss on those fragile little babies! And let’s not get started on pleasing everyone including the in-laws! Holidays with children are now so much fun but can be such a stressful time and I’m here to say it’s okay to be glad their over! 
    Now, speaking of the holidays, we must discuss the new year! The holidays are over and now we must talk about the stress we put on ourselves for our New Years resolution. Yes, let’s be better, let’s eat better, be healthier, look better (for us) but let’s be real with ourselves! We are busy moms! We have so much on our plate and let’s not forget to take a moment and be proud of what we have done by bringing these babies into the world with our bodies AND keeping them going every single day! It’s hard work and you should be proud and not stressing over some stupid resolution! 
    Ladies we made it through 2019 without the kids taking over, let’s raise our glasses to still staying in charge of 2020!

  • 11/25/2019 4:39 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    How your child’s lack of sleep (and by default, your own)affects your relationships and/or your marriage

    Was there ever a time when you thought to yourself… “There is a reason why sleep deprivation is a torture tactic?” 

     

    The above comes to mind for many of the families that I work with when their child isn’t sleeping well. I am a children’s Sleep Consultant at Happy Baby Sleep Consulting and I find my families wondering this and more. Some parents are so worn-down that blame quickly replaces the love they felt for one another, or there’s just no energy left for self care anymore, or there’s no desire to maintain the relationships and friendships that once fed you. One mom was so exhausted that she fell asleep while driving and crashed her car. Another was so frazzled that she didn’t realize the mistakes she was making in the kitchen and set part of it on fire. There are so many heartbreaking stories of individuals being unable to cope and/or relationships being deeply affected from ongoing sleep deprivation.

     

    As we dive a little deeper into how lack of sleep affects your relationships, it is a sad fact that even just a few nights of broken sleep will affect your ability to cope and deal with others appropriately. The depth of lack of sleep affects more that you think. It’s definitely about your babe and his/her overall health, but also your own. It’s about the health of your partner and the health of the other children in your home (if you have any). It’s about the self-care you give yourself and about the relationships you have outside of your family that sustain you too.

     

    But, you don’t go from fine to a complete and utter mom-bieovernight though. It usually creeps up slowly. For months you’re not noticing that you’re being grouchy, complaining a lot, or being nit-picky. You don’t necessarily see what you’re doing. But it trickles into the way you feel about yourself, the way you show up to the people in your life, to your friendships, your partner. Sleep deprivation has a terrible way of sneaking into everything you do. 

     

    So, I urge you to take a look at how the lack of sleep affects the entire family and the other relationships you have.

     

    Adding a baby will absolutely cause some upheaval; this is also true. There will be some months at the beginning where it’s all about survival mode and that’s ok. But the problem can grow as the child does. Most people wait too long before they start looking for some help with sleep. From a partnership/marriage perspective, some families will be on the verge of divorce when they then consider reaching out for help. The partner has moved into the spare room, they’re not spending time together and they’re not being intimate. This is a difficult reality for some families and it needs to be acknowledged that it happens and it happens a lot more than you might think. 

     

    A 2006 study showed that people who were sleep deprived had an increased tendency to blame others for problems, had a reduced willingness to resolve conflict by accepting any blame, there was an increase in aggression level and they had a lower willingness to behave in a way that would facilitate social interactions. I feel like this would be a lot of moms these days!!... some of us are just done, burning the candle at both ends, with lack of sleep making life much worse.

     

    But there is a light at the end of the exhausted tunnel!

    One of the benefits of working closely with families to resolve their child’s sleep issues is to hear from families… “Solving mychild’s sleep problem saved my relationship with my partner.” This is a HUGE deal!!!

     

    We know that sleep is one of the foundations of a happy and healthy life. So let’s stop trying to tone down the importance of it and start looking at how it impacts our own sense of well-being and our relationships with other people. It takes a lot to keep any relationship and/or a marriage healthy.

     

    And once baby is sleeping better it’s life changing. You’ve gotten back an essential need. You start to feel better. You’re showing up to everything much better, you start to feel good about yourself, you’ve got more energy, there’s more “you” time and you might start feeling better about your partner (if you have one)

     

    If you are still struggling with sleep, I just want to encourage you… just find something that does work. If that is talking with a friend about what they did to get their child to sleep well, do it! If that means hiring a Sleep Consultant because you need the one-on-one help, do it!! I’d be honored to chat with you about your sleep struggles and offer some suggestions. Sleep is so important that it needs to be solved however it can so you can be the best version of yourself possible!!

     

    Charleen McDaniel

    Happy Baby Sleep Consulting

    www.sleephappybaby.com

    (916)605-6198

  • 11/19/2019 8:39 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    How to manage your child’s sleep while traveling

    Have you ever had even just a little anxiety around traveling somewhere and what it might do to your child’s sleep?... I think we all have!! Unless your child is a unicorn sleeper, sleeps well anywhere and no amount of traveling disrupts their sleep. In that case… good for you!!

     

    But for most of us travel and sleep do not seem to go hand in hand, but I’d like to offer that they could!!

     

    Travel always seems to be a tricky endeavor where naps and nighttime sleep can get a little (or a lot) wonky. here’s always something exciting going on… maybe friends and relatives who are anxious to see the baby, or maybe once you arrive at your destination there’s too much to do/see, or maybe you’re just throwing caution to the wind with no sleep plan during your travel/vacation times. But you might find that your child’s sleep never really returns back to what it was pre-travel. 

     

    So here are some sleep tips you can take with you in planning for your trip, once you are at your destination and once you have returned home that will help ease the sleep hiccup that is travel:

     

    Building up to travel:

    1. Don’t over-pack, but don’t under-pack either 

       Bring along baby’s blanket, lovie and sleeping clothes. Anything that smells familiar and reminds them of their home sleeping environment will help them get to sleep in their new surroundings.

       And if you can, even bring a Pack&Play, your own white noise machine (or free app), and monitor. Ok, so this might feel like overpacking, but you’ll thank me later… I promise! And having the monitor might allow you to grab some dinner down the hall if you’re staying at a hotel. My husband and I have done this MANY times, which was great because we didn’t feel stuck in the room once our boys were laid down.

     

    Travel day has arrived!:

    2. Plan to start driving around a nap

       This will depend on age, because at some point you need to just get in the car and get going, but for younger babes taking multiple naps… hop in the car right when they would normally go down for a nap. Often-times babes will sleep better from the motion in the car, but this might buy you a couple hours of quiet before babe wakes up and wants to play, or eat, or the worst kind… wants to get out because they decided they hate the car seat!

     

    Once you’re there:

    3Try to maintain your home schedule as best you can 

       Changes in the routine are the quickest way to end up with an overtired child. And if you had a great sleeper before, overtiredness will almost undoubtedly cause a reemergence of any bad sleep habits you’ve worked so hard to prevent.

       If your child is tired and cranky, you’re going to have a lousy time. Sticking to the schedule and keeping babe well-rested will assure that the time you do get to spend with friends and family is fun, happy and relaxed.

     

    4Don’t skip naps, or push bedtime to later

       As tempting as it may be to let your child skip a nap (if he/she is still taking them), or let bedtime fall back an hour or two, so that you can fit extra activities in, I highly recommend you resist the temptation and stick to the schedule you’ve kept at home. Overtired could definitely rear its ugly head here, too.

    5. Create your child’s own space within yours

        If you must share a room with your little one, try to create babe’s own space within yours. So, use furniture to your advantage, a partition in the room, get creative… whatever it takes so that babe can’t see you from their crib. 

        And don’t bring them into bed with you if you can avoid it. It will be much harder to return to independent sleep once home, if you weren’t doing this before you left.

     

    Once you’re back home:

    6. Right back to the same routine before you left

       Bounce back into your old routine like you never left. If babe knew a good solid routine and schedule before-hand, there’s comfort in the familiar and it will make returning home that much easier.

     

    Some might argue… we’re on vacation and we’re going to have fun! TOTALLY! DO IT!! But if the wheels fall off too much while you are away, this is often where I hear problems occurring. Families get back from travel and they just can’t get back to the way sleep was before they left and they just end up dealing with the night wakings, or co-sleeping (where they didn’t do that before). So just know that you can absolutely get back into some good solid sleep habits, even if your child wasn’t the greatest sleeper before you left. 

     

    If you need some sleep help, I’d be happy to guide you from a space of exhaustion and possible frustration around how bedtime/nights might be going, to knowing EXACTLY what to do in all sleep situations (travel included) and feeling much more well rested! Happy trails/travels!



    Charleen McDaniel

    Happy Baby Sleep Consulting

    www.sleephappybaby.com

    (916)605-6198

     

     

  • 11/07/2019 9:55 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    How to manage your child’s sleep while traveling

    Have you ever had even just a little anxiety around traveling somewhere and what it might do to your child’s sleep?... I think we all have!! Unless your child is a unicorn sleeper, sleeps well anywhere and no amount of traveling disrupts their sleep. In that case… good for you!!

     

    But for most of us travel and sleep do not seem to go hand in hand, but I’d like to offer that they could!!

     

    Travel always seems to be a tricky endeavor where naps and nighttime sleep can get a little (or a lot) wonky. here’s always something exciting going on… maybe friends and relatives who are anxious to see the baby, or maybe once you arrive at your destination there’s too much to do/see, or maybe you’re just throwing caution to the wind with no sleep plan during your travel/vacation times. But you might find that your child’s sleep never really returns back to what it was pre-travel. 

     

    So here are some sleep tips you can take with you in planning for your trip, once you are at your destination and once you have returned home that will help ease the sleep hiccup that is travel:

     

    Building up to travel:

    1. Don’t over-pack, but don’t under-pack either 

       Bring along baby’s blanket, lovie and sleeping clothes. Anything that smells familiar and reminds them of their home sleeping environment will help them get to sleep in their new surroundings.

       And if you can, even bring a Pack&Play, your own white noise machine (or free app), and monitor. Ok, so this might feel like overpacking, but you’ll thank me later… I promise! And having the monitor might allow you to grab some dinner down the hall if you’re staying at a hotel. My husband and I have done this MANY times, which was great because we didn’t feel stuck in the room once our boys were laid down.

     

    Travel day has arrived!:

    2. Plan to start driving around a nap

       This will depend on age, because at some point you need to just get in the car and get going, but for younger babes taking multiple naps… hop in the car right when they would normally go down for a nap. Often-times babes will sleep better from the motion in the car, but this might buy you a couple hours of quiet before babe wakes up and wants to play, or eat, or the worst kind… wants to get out because they decided they hate the car seat!

     

    Once you’re there:

    3Try to maintain your home schedule as best you can 

       Changes in the routine are the quickest way to end up with an overtired child. And if you had a great sleeper before, overtiredness will almost undoubtedly cause a reemergence of any bad sleep habits you’ve worked so hard to prevent.

       If your child is tired and cranky, you’re going to have a lousy time. Sticking to the schedule and keeping babe well-rested will assure that the time you do get to spend with friends and family is fun, happy and relaxed.

     

    4. Don’t skip naps, or push bedtime to later

       As tempting as it may be to let your child skip a nap (if he/she is still taking them), or let bedtime fall back an hour or two, so that you can fit extra activities in, I highly recommend you resist the temptation and stick to the schedule you’ve kept at home. Overtired could definitely rear its ugly head here, too.

    5. Create your child’s own space within yours

        If you must share a room with your little one, try to create babe’s own space within yours. So, use furniture to your advantage, a partition in the room, get creative… whatever it takes so that babe can’t see you from their crib. 

        And don’t bring them into bed with you if you can avoid it. It will be much harder to return to independent sleep once home, if you weren’t doing this before you left.

     

    Once you’re back home:

    6. Right back to the same routine before you left

       Bounce back into your old routine like you never left. If babe knew a good solid routine and schedule before-hand, there’s comfort in the familiar and it will make returning home that much easier.

     

    Some might argue… we’re on vacation and we’re going to have fun! TOTALLY! DO IT!! But if the wheels fall off too much while you are away, this is often where I hear problems occurring. Families get back from travel and they just can’t get back to the way sleep was before they left and they just end up dealing with the night wakings, or co-sleeping (where they didn’t do that before). So just know that you can absolutely get back into some good solid sleep habits,even if your child wasn’t the greatest sleeper before you left. 




    How your child’s lack of sleep (and by default, your own)affects your relationships and/or your marriage

    Was there ever a time when you thought to yourself… “There is a reason why sleep deprivation is a torture tactic?” 

     

    The above comes to mind for many of the families that I work with when their child isn’t sleeping well. I am a children’s Sleep Consultant at Happy Baby Sleep Consulting and I find my families wondering this and more. Some parents are so worn-down that blame quickly replaces the love they felt for one another, or there’s just no energy left for self care anymore, or there’s no desire to maintain the relationships and friendships that once fed you. One mom was so exhausted that she fell asleep while driving and crashed her car. Another was so frazzled that she didn’t realize the mistakes she was making in the kitchen and set part of it on fire. There are so many heartbreaking stories of individuals being unable to cope and/or relationships being deeply affected from ongoing sleep deprivation.

     

    As we dive a little deeper into how lack of sleep affects your relationships, it is a sad fact that even just a few nights of broken sleep will affect your ability to cope and deal with others appropriately. The depth of lack of sleep affects more that you think. It’s definitely about your babe and his/her overall health, but also your own. It’s about the health of your partner and the health of the other children in your home (if you have any). It’s about the self-care you give yourself and about the relationships you have outside of your family that sustain you too.

     

    But, you don’t go from fine to a complete and utter mom-bieovernight though. It usually creeps up slowly. For months you’re not noticing that you’re being grouchy, complaining a lot, or being nit-picky. You don’t necessarily see what you’re doing. But it trickles into the way you feel about yourself, the way you show up to the people in your life, to your friendships, your partner. Sleep deprivation has a terrible way of sneaking into everything you do. 

     

    So, I urge you to take a look at how the lack of sleep affects the entire family and the other relationships you have.

     

    Adding a baby will absolutely cause some upheaval; this is also true. There will be some months at the beginning where it’s all about survival mode and that’s ok. But the problem can grow as the child does. Most people wait too long before they start looking for some help with sleep. From a partnership/marriage perspective, some families will be on the verge of divorce when they then consider reaching out for help. The partner has moved into the spare room, they’re not spending time together and they’re not being intimate. This is a difficult reality for some families and it needs to be acknowledged that it happens and it happens a lot more than you might think. 

     

    A 2006 study showed that people who were sleep deprived had an increased tendency to blame others for problems, had a reduced willingness to resolve conflict by accepting any blame, there was an increase in aggression level and they had a lower willingness to behave in a way that would facilitate social interactions. I feel like this would be a lot of moms these days!!... some of us are just done, burning the candle at both ends, with lack of sleep making life much worse.

     

    But there is a light at the end of the exhausted tunnel!

    One of the benefits of working closely with families to resolve their child’s sleep issues is to hear from families… “Solving mychild’s sleep problem saved my relationship with my partner.” This is a HUGE deal!!!

     

    We know that sleep is one of the foundations of a happy and healthy life. So let’s stop trying to tone down the importance of it and start looking at how it impacts our own sense of well-being and our relationships with other people. It takes a lot to keep any relationship and/or a marriage healthy.

     

    And once baby is sleeping better it’s life changing. You’ve gotten back an essential need. You start to feel better. You’re showing up to everything much better, you start to feel good about yourself, you’ve got more energy, there’s more “you” time and you might start feeling better about your partner (if you have one)

     

    If you are still struggling with sleep, I just want to encourage you… just find something that does work. If that is talking with a friend about what they did to get their child to sleep well, do it! If that means hiring a Sleep Consultant because you need the one-on-one help, do it!! I’d be honored to chat with you about your sleep struggles and offer some suggestions. Sleep is so important that it needs to be solved however it can so you can be the best version of yourself possible!!

     

    Charleen McDaniel

    Happy Baby Sleep Consulting

    www.sleephappybaby.com

    (916)605-6198

  • 10/02/2019 1:10 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Do you ever have the feeling of not knowing what to make for dinner? I do ALL THE TIME. I feel like I make the same old thing every night. After having two kids, I have lost my creativity and drive to make a 12 course meal. I finally found something that I would like to share with you all.

    I’m sure many of you have heard of Hello Fresh or other similar types of meal services. They send you weekly meals and you can choose how many people, how often to receive them and what type of meals. This type of service is exactly what I have been looking for.

    Our fellow PMC blogger gave me a free trial to use so I went ahead and put my first order in. It came the next week and the first meal was a hit. Of course, Adam would rather have a slab of meat but the girls would for sure NOT eat a hunk of cow…..so pasta it is!

    You just follow the recipe card that is provided and voila you’ve got a meal!

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