We all struggle with finding a work-life balance that best suits our families. Whether you’re putting in 60 hours a week at a law firm, spending evenings in a boisterous kitchen or working the overnight shift at a hospital, finding that balance can seem impossible. But what happens when your work is your life? Well, that’s called motherhood.
The mothers of the MOMs Club of Woodbury know that no full-time job is quite like that of being a parent. Which is why the nonprofit group brings local moms together in a supportive, nonjudgmental environment.
MOMs Club of Woodbury president Sarah Foote says the club is open to all moms in Woodbury, including stay-at-home moms, full-time working moms and everyone in between. With 30 to 35 members in the Woodbury chapter of the international organization, Foote says they try to keep the club small to create a greater sense of community.
“We used to have two Woodbury chapters, but now we’re just one,” Foote says. Chapters are typically capped at around 60 members to make sure they stay relatively small and close-knit.
Foote says she joined the club when she first moved to Woodbury in 2015 because she wanted to find a supportive group of moms who were in a similar place in life. Now a mother of three, Foote became president of the Woodbury club two years ago.
“Many members tend to leave the group once their kids are in full-time school, but some moms stay longer, especially for our monthly Moms’ Night Out,” she says.
The club has several different fundraising and service events throughout the year in addition to monthly play groups, Plan And Play business meetings as well as Kids Away Moms Play (KAMP) activities.
Former board member Carly Paz says she first joined in December 2016 when her son Mateo was 3 months old. As a first-time mother and new to the area, she says she was glad to meet other moms who could offer advice about motherhood and Woodbury.
“I’ve learned about resources, activities in the area, what’s normal and what’s not,” Paz says. “ It makes you feel like you’re part of a bigger group and not so isolated, which I often feel as a stay-at-home mom.”
Paz says the MOMs Club is especially helpful as she’s looking for a preschool to send Mateo to in the fall.
“It’s so nice to get other moms’ opinions. I’ve never felt judged or looked down upon,” Paz says. “It’s a very safe place to share what’s going on or concerns you’ve had. I’ve definitely cried in front of the other moms before.”
In addition to its regular activities, the MOMs Club has a Sunshine Committee, which offers meals and babysitting when a member has a new baby or is dealing with a family crisis. Paz says when her father passed away in June 2018, the Sunshine Committee delivered meals to her family.
Newer member Diana Hafdahl says she joined after transitioning from working full-time to staying at home with her daughter Martha because she wanted social opportunities with other moms and children.
“It’s a super flexible and supportive environment. I can go to as many or as few events each month as I want,” Hafdahl says. “If I’m unable to make it to an event, our Facebook page is very active with moms offering advice, asking questions or just saying they had a bad day and need someone to talk to. It’s ongoing support every day.”
To get in touch with the MOMs Club of Woodbury, fill out an interest form online. Once they’ve confirmed you live within the boundaries of Woodbury, you can fill out a get-to-know-you form and attend a meeting. Each mom pays a yearly fee of $25.