WASHINGTON– Moving to a new city can be tough for anyone, but it can be especially challenging for mothers.
Playdate meetups, reliable babysitters, kid-friendly barbershops and the best pediatricians– it takes time to learn where to find all these things and moving to a brand new location can mean starting from scratch.
At least, that’s how it was for Courtney Whittington.
“My husband and I are both from Baton Rouge,” explained Whittington.
They’d lived in DC before as a young couple and just moved back two years ago– now with three kids in tow. One of the first things Whittington did upon her return was a quick Google search for DC Moms Blog.
The umbrella network boasts over 80 city-specific mom blogs and it’d been an invaluable resource for her in Louisiana. Surely, she thought, there was one for DC.
“I used this site all the time,” said Whittington. “It was my go-to for connecting with other moms and finding out what’s going on in Baton Rouge.”
San Francisco, Portland, Denver, Boston… Even Janesville, Wisconsin’s got one. But the nation’s capital, surprisingly, didn’t make the list.
“Where can I sign my kid up for karate? Where can I find a good dentist?”
These were questions newcomers to DC (or those newly returning with children, as in Whittington’s case) didn’t have answers to, and without a pre-established network of other parents, there wasn’t an easy place to find them.
While there are a variety of neighborhood-specific parenting list-servs (and the infamously intimidating DC Urban Moms forum), because many of them are run on Yahoo’s clunky, dated platform, accessing information means searching and sifting through thousands of email chains spanning back years.
There was no central hub for all DMV parents– a place where one could find carefully edited blog posts, up-to-date guides on all things local and thoughtful reflections on what it’s like to parent in (and just outside of) the District of Columbia… without the judgements on your stroller brand.
So Whittington decided to change that.
“Motherhood can be very isolating,” she said. “A lot of us don’t have family here, or we’re single moms, or our husbands travel a lot. Regardless, all of us need that community. I want this to be a tool for moms to feel connected.”
The newly-launched DC Moms Blog plans to cover the gamut of motherhood-centric topics.
“We’re building a plethora of stuff,” said Whittington. “Anything from ‘top ten things to do at the National Zoo’ to ‘how I was able to wean my child from their pacifier,’ or ‘how to maintain mommy friendships in a very transient city–’ things that are helpful to know, things that I wish I knew when I moved here.”
Content is all produced from actual DC moms– Whittington leaned on DC’s unique demographics to pull together a diverse team of around 35 women from the DMV area who will write articles, create guides and curate lists of resources for fellow mothers.
“We want all women to feel represented on the blog,” said Whittington, who hopes this new site will prevent other mothers from feeling as lost as she did upon her return to the District.
Whether those moms are seeking parenting advice or summer camp options, preschool suggestions or playdates, the idea is the same– they should be able to find information that’s “wonderful, resourceful and relevant.”
And they won’t have to start from scratch– or enter into a flame war.