When I asked my Mom’s Group facilitator — a woman whose own daughters were over 20 years old — how the conversation amongst rookie moms had changed in the 20 years that she’d been hosting support groups for new mothers, she told me that my generation talked a lot more about products.
Guilty as charged.
My mom friends and I were willing to buy anything that promised to make our lives easier — to make our babies sleep better, to make nursing more comfortable, to make having a baby as a constant sidekick a little less physically difficult. And the industry has exploded since then. There are so many products on the market aimed to make parenting a baby easier, and even more fun, for example, blankets that not only create darkness for a stroller nap, but look CUTE while they accomplish this feat.
Although I can run skeptical when it comes to super adorable burp cloths that cost twenty dollars, I am a sucker for much of the modern design on the market these days for baby gear. Plus, the services, like Stroller Spa (who will transform a stroller you nab from Craig’s List into one that’s pretty much brand new) and Urban Sitter (a resource for finding babysitters when you are clueless about who to call) are fun to learn about as well.
A number of organizations have emerged over the past year that make it easy — and fun — for expectant and new moms to learn about all the products and services available to them.
(Photo courtesy of The Bump Club)
Tickets are sold to evening events with guest speakers, aimed to help expectant moms meet others in their same due date range; some are more expo-style where a large event hall is filled with vendors and goodies for sampling. Most groups offer events for moms with young children, too. Prices range from $15 for a playdate with toddlers at a venue to $80 for an evening event, but admission includes over $100 in samples. Most of these events send attendees home with a goodie bag. It’s like a birthday party for grown ups!
While most of the smaller meet-ups have an education theme, such as “Sleep Safety” or “Green Parenting”, they are sponsored by brands, so the moms will also learn about products.
I’ve met the women behind each of the organizations that follow. Let me know if you’ve got a different club in your area.
The Bump Club. Serving Chicago, Austin, Twin Cities, Los Angeles, and the SF Bay Area, The Bump Club invites moms to events like fitness classes at Lululemon and brunches (with babies included). You can join the club and enjoy numerous discounts, or simply attend events.
To look out for: Gearapalooza, the Bump Club’s baby gear and registry event. In Boston tonight, San Francisco next week, and LA on November 5th.
Big City Moms. Based in New York City, Big City Moms offers new mom support groups, preschool education events, and a huge expo called The Biggest Baby Shower that I attended in LA this year. That event hits NYC, SF and LA.
Club MomMe. Inspired to help pregnant women make friends in their own neighborhood, Club MomMe hosts events in Chicago, Los Angeles, Orange County, Houston, and Denver. Each event is designed to help transition “me” into a MomMe (or Daddy), “even if you don’t yet feel like one!” Events feature social time so that guests can make MomMe Friends, food and drinks, gift bags packed with goodies, and giveaways.