I am more than a mommy. But after I gave birth to my first baby girl it took me quite some time to figure that out. I jumped into motherhood head first. The moment the pregnancy test showed that we were expecting, I became a MOM: A scared, neurotic, excited, perfection seeking mom. I read everything I could about labor and delivery and mothering. I began to formulate a plan for labor and delivery and beyond. THIS is the type of parent I will be. This is the type of wife I will be. This is the type of woman I will be. And in my mind it was all perfect. Little did I know how messy things could get...and the best laid plans...well you know what happens to those.
Here I am...8 years later. Working on marriage and life with 4 daughters...my poor husband...I know, I know you're probably thinking it--that's THE number one comment people throw at me. I kind of think my husband is actually pretty lucky! And of course I am very, very, VERY lucky to have found him just after the ball dropped in the year 2000. We are in it together and we balance each other out and this year is the big 1-0 for our marriage! But I digress. I was saying I have four daughters. Jordan, Ava, Olivia, and Chloe born between 2004 and 2010... Each with her own unique personality and quirks. It's fun at my house. Shrieking, girly fun! Diva dance parties? Check. Makeovers? Check. Fashion shows? Check. Princess Sparkly etc. etc. Check. Check. Check. But there are lots of surprises too that aren't so stereotypically girly girl. Building tents out of blankets. Wrestle fests with dad. Races and scraped knees and messes of every shape and kind.
I am a stay at home mom, but I'm more than that of course. I am a thinker -- always have been very introspective. I am a reader--love books. I am a writer--Always have loved to put words down on paper. I really love to pour my heart out that way. I've been writing my thoughts for a long time. I kept a journal all through my teen years. I started blogging a couple of years ago and found a kindred spirit in Janene, I believe. That's why when she approached me with the idea to start More Than Mommies I didn't even hesitate. Not one little bit.
Christine has been writing on-line since 2005.
She began keeping an online journal when her second daughter was in NICU for six weeks. She used "Care Pages" as a way to update family and friends about her daughter's medical condition. "Potato" is six now and doing wonderfully, by the way!
Christine began blogging in 2010 at What Little Girls Are Made Of as a way to share her joy of writing and of being a mother to four girls. For the most part it is a personal blog that she used to talk about things she loved or was experiencing during her days as a stay at home mom.
Christine has also had the opportunity to write for Pampers.com as a pregnancy writer at the end of 2010 and the beginning of 2011.
I've always hated writing “About Me”. I find it difficult to put into words what I would really like people to know about me. I find it even more difficult when someone comes straight out and asks me to tell them about myself – at least with this I can use the backspace as much as I want and you will never know the difference!
If you must know about me then I will tell you the facts:
- I went to Catholic School until I left for college.
- I got a degree from Indiana University of Pennsylvania in Elementary Education.
- I was a Catholic School Teacher for 6 years.
- I got my Masters Degree in Educational Studies from Duquesne University.
- I married the love of my life in 2004.
That’s where things get really interesting. Jerry, my husband, and I have known each other practically our whole lives. We went to the same church, Elementary School and High School. We started dating in 1998 and have been together ever since. We lasted through my last year at IUP and his last 2 years at Penn State Main Campus. After we had both graduated and established that we were employable, he asked me to marry him and I said, yes. We now have 4 (yes, 4) beautiful children. 3 boys and 1 girl. Nate, who is my first born, is only 3 years and 10 months older than my twin boys, Dean and David, who are my babies. Danika, my only daughter, was born 14 months after Nate. So . . . I had 4 babies in less than 4 years. Yes, I was busy.Having all of those kids in such a short period of time wreaked havoc on my social life. I started seeing friends I thought I would always know slip away because we had officially reached different stages in our lives. I knew very few people who were in my situation. I spent a lot of time at home with my babies and my laptop. Thank you, God (and Grandma Fran), for my laptop. Through my laptop I reconnected with some familiar faces from my more distant past through Facebook. I started going to a book club because of it and meeting once a month with some women who WERE in my situation. It felt great to find a newer support system and people who understood what I was going through. The internet kind of showed me that I was more than a mom when I really felt like all I did was change diapers, make bottles and do laundry . . . with a verse or two of Old MacDonald thrown in for good measure.
That is why I wanted to partner up with my real life friend, Christine, to share our stories, tips, tricks, thoughts and such on a blog. I’m actually hoping that we can create a community from this blog, a community of people who are going through the same things and searching for ways to not only cope but to succeed and thrive. I’m hoping that we can meet some really awesome people and learn about ourselves and share what we learn. I’m hoping we can build a community where we can collaborate and talk about how we really are “More than Mommies” even though being a Mommy is something that takes up most of our time and we wouldn’t trade that for the world.
Janene also blogs about family life at Perfecting Imperfection and has been writing there since 2008.