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As a new mom, the most important thing you can do is to find a group of like-minded moms whom you trust. You will trust these moms with your new mom questions, your deepest, darkest mom confessions, and eventually, the care of your child.
I moved to Hoboken, New Jersey when I was eight months pregnant, about to embark on life as a stay-at-home mom, knowing no one. I describe this place, a tiny one-mile city, minutes outside of Manhattan, as magical, although I didn’t know it yet. Urban and completely kid-friendly, the streets runneth over with strollers and babywearing mamas. At the time, I had no idea how much support a new mom needed, but it was here in Hoboken, that I found my circle of moms, the women who got me through daily life as a first-time mom.
When we finally came up for a breath from mommyhood and realized how much more we could accomplish without children in tow, it was only natural that we decided to create our babysitting co-op together. At first, it allowed us to get that overdue haircut or make a doctor’s appointment, but soon we progressed to date nights with our husbands. This co-op proved so successful that I did not hire my first official babysitter until my son was close to two-years-old. And, with a sitter costing 12 to 15 dollars for one child, that added up to quite the savings.
What You Need to Create a Babysitting Co-op:
Few activities exhaust me as much as shopping with my kids. When my youngest learned to walk, such excursions reached an all time level of craziness that hasn’t really subsided since. The expression “kids in a candy store,” certainly applies; when stores display toys in their aisles, my frustration level hits an all-time high. You know the drill, a fifteen-minute trip turns into an hour plus, ending with me blindly grabbing things from shelves, carrying my children out of the store kicking and screaming. OK, most of the screaming probably comes from me.
“Never again” I remind myself at the end of each and every trip. “Never again.”