The Mommies Network Introduction

Our Mission is to provide a safe, secure, FREE place for mothers to find support and encouragement from other mothers and to empower them to be better women, parents and community leaders
The Mommies Network is a 501c(3) non-profit organization dedicated to helping moms find support and friendship in their local community. We were founded April, 2002 and currently have 119 communities in 33 states, with over 30,000 active members nationwide.

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Thursday, June 25, 2015

The Minimalist Guide To Decorating A Kids Room #decor #kids

~The Minimalist Guide to Decorating a Kid's Room~
By Jane Blanchard
A minimalist approach to designing a child’s room can yield many benefits. A number of design suggestions for kids’ rooms seem cluttered and noisy, and they often impose a high level of maintenance upon a family. Cluttered spaces have even proven to increase stress levels for children and adults. With a few targeted and minimalistic design choices, you can make a child’s room both fun and functional.
Open Space


Children like to play, and the reality of childhood is that they’re going to spend more days playing indoors than they’d prefer. One way to make life a little easier for kids is to create an open space within a room, allowing them to use their imaginations rather than dealing with a lot of furniture and items. This carries with it the added benefit of making it easier for a child to clean a room, and parents can readily tell whether the job has been done right.
Containers

A child’s life includes owning a lot of prized possessions, and all of those toys, stuffed animals and collectibles need to be contained. By installing a few containers in each bedroom, parents can teach children the value of maintaining an orderly personal space. When they want to need where something special is, they’ll be able to locate it quickly because they’ll know exactly where it belongs. An added bonus is that dressers can double as both sources of visual interest and storage.
Focus on Colors

Children often enjoy personalizing their own spaces, and they’ll take that effort as far as their parents might permit and then a little further. If a child is old enough to understand the basic process of designing a space, that’s a good time to help them starting discussing how to personalize a room. The focus of this effort should be on color choices, rather than radical designs. A minimalist approach can allow parents to create a space that they and their children can live with for years to come.
Area Rugs


A child’s room can be a maintenance nightmare, but one way to attack the problem is to install areas rugs. They can be removed and cleaned, and parents can place a different rug in the room in the meantime. When the inevitable messes of childhood happen, a cheaper area rug can be thrown out.
For more design ideas, head to Modernize.com.

Do you have great ideas or photos of your own kids room redo's, we would love to hear about them, even feature your photo's, email blogs@themommiesnetwork.org.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Word-full Wednesday #mommiesnetwork

A Word--full Wednesday... we hope to add a sparkle to your eye and a smile to your face each week with positive thoughts, quotes and photos.



“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”– Ralph Waldo Emerson



”Often we women are risk averse. I needed the push. Now, more than ever, young women need more seasoned women to provide that encouragement, to take a risk, to go for it. Once a glass ceiling is broken, it stays broken.”– Jennifer Grahnolm
 

 

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Let's Get Crazy .... Qcrazy #deals #frugal #Charlotte #NC

Are you in or near the Charlotte North Carolina area? Planning a trip soon to the area or know somebody who lives near Charlotte?
Have we got some Crazy.......savings.....Qcrazy that is, for YOU!
Attention members and supporters of The Mommies Network,

We are working with Qcrazy, a coupon and fundraising company, that has supplied us with over $6,500 of Charlotte discounts to local restaurants, businesses, and services. Non-profit supporters, relatives and friends can access these coupons directly on their smartphone!
Great news... It's only $25 to support The Mommies Network by purchasing this coupon booklet including all $6,500 worth of deals. A large portion of proceeds from the purchased booklets will be given back to help moms find encouragement from other mothers, and overall empower them to be better women.

Click on this link to get your coupons & deals on your phone:
Directions to get your coupons will be on your email receipt.
Some of the deals will include coupons to these awesome businesses:


Please help us pass this message along to raise money! Forward and/or e-mail this message to your friends and family. Post it on your Facebook page, Twitter page, Instagram page, etc. to get out the word for us.


Come on let's get Crazy! Qcrazy !

Sunday, May 10, 2015

If I Could Mom...... #MothersDay

photo credit Janet Zeh 

If I could, I'd change the world for you,
I'd create sunshine in each corner
and make sure that only warmth
and beauty
would touch your life.
I'd make sure that only the best 
came your way~~~
beginning with each sunrise~~
so that in each hour of each day,
happiness would touch your heart.
If I could, I'd put a smile on every face
that looked your way,
so that you'd only see 
the friendship side of life.
I'd make your world so perfect
that every morning
would renew your spirit
with the great anticipation
of blessing yet to come.
I'd bring each corner of your world 
the light and beauty it deserves ~~
so that each second, each moment,
and each hour of every day
would be the best for you...
so you would have perfect happiness
~~~ Barbara J. Hall ~~~



Happy Mothers Day from all of us here at The Mommies Network, we hope you enjoy your day today!  Take time today to feel the sunshine, smell the flowers and enjoy all those hugs. 





Thursday, May 7, 2015

Michelle In The Middle Summer Camp!



Last year we partnered with Michelle Icard, author of the phenomenal parenting book Middle School Makeover, to share advice on how to help preteens and teenages through the troubling times that come with transitioning to Junior High. Her book covers everything a parent should know-- from dealing with bullies (or dealing with your child if they ARE the bully), social media rules, sex talks, and everything in between!


Now you have the opportunity to take her advice a step further with Michelle in the Middle Camp! This experience is a fantastic way to get your preteen excited, and prepared, for the new world waiting for them. Through team building exercises and plenty of fun games they will learn about problem solving, empathy, critical thinking, and of course-- confidence! This year they have partnered with SparkPoint Studios and Painting with a Twist to bring some great creative aspects to your child’s experience.



Spots are limited, so be sure to check out what Michelle in the Middle Camp has to offer below, and help your child learn the tools for successful Middle School years (Not to mention a relaxing week to yourself)!!

Friday, May 1, 2015

Global Day For Hope - Planting Awareness #HOPE2015 #PLANTHOPE #iFred



A recent study shows that 1 in 9 kids attempt suicide before graduating high school. The good news: this is preventable, and there are ways to help. The International Foundation for Research and Education on Depression (iFred) uses their Schools for Hope to teach parents, teachers, and students how to fight the leading predictor of suicide-- hopelessness.

This year iFred is starting the first annual Global Day for Hope, this Saturday, May 2nd.  They would like to invite people from all over to spread awareness about depression and how to get help when you need it. Participation is easy! Just wear yellow (the color of joy and happiness) and/or plant a sunflower (or many) for yourself or with friends to take part in this celebration of HOPE!


Don’t forget to share your enthusiasm with your favorite social media sites! Post, tweet, or instagram using #HOPE2015 and #PLANTHOPE. Don’t forget to tag @ifredorg and check out how other people are using this day to shine a positive light on depression and battle the stigma and hopelessness people face every single day.

Check out their facebook event and the Global Day for Hope map to see where sunflowers are being planted for the cause. Together we can work to help those with depression find hope.

For more information on iFred and all of the exciting work they’re doing check out their sites:


Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Bring Your Table To Life, Produce A Better Mother's Day

Spring is here and Mother's Day is just around the corner. Bring some color, creativity and life to your table with this produce flower vase that mom will love.


Marzetti® believes in celebrating Mother’s Day with plenty of creativity! Check out this video for inspiration and to support The Mommies Network. For each like and share, we’ll donate $1 (up to $5,000). Check out the video on Facebook to share HERE  


So how do you make this fun looking arrangement for mom or yourself? Check out this video for complete instructions:


Make sure to check out all the good stuff that Marzetti® offers, salad dressings, dips, slaw dressings, deserts, and salad toppings. 


Saturday, March 14, 2015

Happy Pi Day!


Pi is the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter. Pi is a constant number, meaning that for all circles of any size, Pi will be the same.
The diameter of a circle is the distance from edge to edge, measuring straight through the center. The circumference of a circle is the distance around.

This year is ultimate Pi day, 3-14-15 ........

Pi Day Countdown
Learn more about Pi day at www.Piday.org
http://youtu.be/Vp9zLbIE8zo Watch a cool video showing the domino effect of Pi .


Friday, March 13, 2015

Are you crying all alone? PPD and "Baby Blues" are real #PPD #depression #supportforwomen






As a new mom approximately 21 years ago I can remember feeling so all alone and sad, I was was embarrassed to tell anyone my feelings or that I sat and cried all day and night. I was sure that something was just wrong with me and that I was a terrible mom for feeling so bad. Little did I know that I was suffering from the baby blues and then later postpartum depression that lasted for months. I suffered all alone when I really did not have to. My ex-husband was not supportive at all, he just thought my hormones were off and I was crying "just because".
As a nurse I would have told my patients to talk to their doctor, but as a new mommy I was out of nurse-mode and was unaware of what was going on, so I never said a word to my doctor. Fast forward years later I can look back and see clearly that I needed help and would have loved to find a group like my local Mommies Network chapter to join and have friends to talk to that were going thru the same thing that I was. The TMN PPD support forum's are private and confidential, only moms that have the same common bonds as you are there and will welcome you with open arms and understand what you are going thru right now. If you are not in an area with a local chapter and need support for PPD, find support on our National Chapter. You can check for a group in your area by going to The Mommies Network Here.

Below is some information from familydoctor.org that I found helpful and hope you do too.

Are mood changes common after childbirth?

After having a baby, many women have mood swings. One minute they feel happy, the next minute they start to cry. They may feel a little depressed, have a hard time concentrating, lose their appetite or find that they can't sleep well even when the baby is asleep. These symptoms usually start about 3 to 4 days after delivery and may last several days.
If you're a new mother and have any of these symptoms, you have what are called the baby blues. The baby blues are considered a normal part of early motherhood and usually go away within 10 days after delivery. However, some women have more severe symptoms or symptoms that last longer than a few days. This is called postpartum depression.

What is postpartum depression?

Postpartum depression is an illness, like diabetes or heart disease. It can be treated with therapy, support networks and medicines such as antidepressants. The symptoms of postpartum depression include:
•Feeling sad or down often
•Frequent crying or tearfulness
•Feeling restless, irritable or anxious
•Loss of interest or pleasure in life
•Loss of appetite
•Less energy and motivation to do things
•Difficulty sleeping, including trouble falling asleep, trouble staying asleep or sleeping more than usual
•Feeling worthless, hopeless or guilty
•Unexplained weight loss or gain
•Feeling like life isn't worth living
•Showing little interest in your baby

Although many women get depressed right after childbirth, some women don't begin to feel depressed until several weeks or months later. Depression that occurs within 6 months of childbirth may be postpartum depression.
In rare cases, a woman may develop postpartum psychosis. This is a very serious disease and includes all the symptoms of postpartum depression and thoughts of hurting yourself or hurting the baby. If you have any of these symptoms, you should talk with your doctor immediately

Who gets postpartum depression?

Postpartum depression is more likely if you have had any of the following:
•Previous postpartum depression
•Depression not related to pregnancy
•Severe premenstrual syndrome (PMS)
•A difficult or very stressful marriage or relationship
•Few family members or friends to talk to or depend on
•Stressful life events during pregnancy or after childbirth (such as as severe illness during pregnancy, premature birth or a difficult delivery)

Why do women get postpartum depression?

The exact cause isn't known. Hormone levels change during pregnancy and right after childbirth. Those hormone changes may produce chemical changes in the brain that play a part in causing depression.
Feeling depressed doesn't mean that you are a bad person, that you did something wrong or that you brought this on yourself.

How long does postpartum depression last?

It varies for each woman. Some women feel better within a few weeks, but others feel depressed or "not themselves" for many months. Women who have more severe symptoms of depression or who have had depression in the past may take longer to get well. Just remember that help is available and that you can get better.

What kinds of treatments help with postpartum depression?

Postpartum depression is treated much like any other depression. Support, counseling ("talk therapy") and medicines can all help. Talk with your doctor about what treatment is best for you.

What can I do to help myself?

If you have given birth recently and are feeling sad, blue, anxious, irritable, tired or have any of the other symptoms of postpartum depression, remember that many other women have had the same experience. You're not "losing your mind" or "going crazy" and you shouldn't feel that you just have to suffer through. Here are some things you can do that other mothers with postpartum depression have found helpful:
•Find someone to talk to and tell that person about your feelings.
•Get in touch with people who can help you with child care, household chores and errands. This social support network will help you find time for yourself so you can rest.
•Find time to do something for yourself, even if it's only 15 minutes a day. Try reading, exercising (walking is great for your health and is easy to do), taking a bath or meditating.
•Keep a diary. Every day, write down your emotions and feelings. This is a way to let out your thoughts and frustrations. Once you begin to feel better, you can go back and reread your diary. This will help you see how much better you are.
•Even if you can only get one thing done on any given day, remember that this is a step in the right direction. There may be days when you can't get anything done, but try not to get angry with yourself when this happens.
•It's okay to feel overwhelmed. Childbirth brings many changes and parenting is challenging. When you're not feeling like yourself, these changes can seem like too much to cope with.
•You're not expected to be a "supermom." Be honest about how much you can do, and ask other people to help you when you need it.
•Find a support group in your area HERE They can put you in touch with people near you who have experience with postpartum depression.
•Talk with your doctor about how you feel. He or she may offer counseling and/or medicines that can help.

Just remember that you are not alone in your journey, many women suffer from anxiety, depression and other mental health disorders. I myself have suffered with chronic depression for years, yes I do take medication for it and don't mind telling my story and sharing with others my struggles in order to help other women. Hiding and being ashamed of your struggles will not set you free, talk about them and get help, I did and it has set me free from the monsters that were hidden in my tears for years.

Thank you for letting me share ~~Leslie~~



Thursday, March 12, 2015

And The Winner Is.....Drum-roll Please!! #contests #mommiesnetwork



In February we hosted a recruiting contest for all our local Mommies Network chapters across the country, challenging the chapters to promote, recruit and bring in more awesome moms to join their local communities. All of our chapters did an awesome job! But only one chapter can win!


To determine the winner we took the greatest percentage increase in the number of members, so that each and every chapter both large and small would have equal chances.

Rising to the occasion with the greatest increase in percentage of new members was our Winners .......


Awesome Sauce!!!



 AnnapolisMommies increased their membership total by 22%.  To help them celebrate, The Mommies Network will be sending them a gift card to treat their members to coffee at an upcoming meet and greet. 
AnnapolisMommies was founded by Kristin Hurff on April 15, 2014 to provide support and friendship for moms in Annapolis and southern Anne Arundel county. 

A Woot Woot!! shout-out to our 2nd place winner UpStateSCMommies, great job ladies!! 

Our chapters did great across the board, bringing in over 400 new members.  Keep up the great work everyone!!

Stay tuned for our March Madness contest!