May 15, 2008

This Is Not My Soliloquy

When I first started blogging, I didn't realize that there was really anyone else out there like me, and I never would have thought they'd read what I had to say. I was talking to myself and that was quite alright. Suddenly what I was doing had a title- Mommy Blogger- and I found out my little corner of the Internet was actually in a really really big neighborhood. A community actually. One that continues to grow and water itself and grow some more. And I love being a part of it. I love that I'm not talking to myself anymore (at least online...)

So I'm a Mommy Blogger and I write about Mommy stuff and life stuff and how much I love my kids and never want them to leave my side and then the next day how I can't wait to get away from them. All the blogs I read, the people that leave comments here, and my readers- you are all my entourage. I take you with me wherever I go. What a resource to have in any time of need. I can reach out and have an answer in an instant- right at my finger tips. Who needs Google anymore when you've got a Mommy Blogger on your side? We know people. We know lots of people. We're a strong army of knowledge and wit and emotion and power.

We don't have to hang out in real life to care about each other, cry on virtual shoulders, and lift each other up or make each other laugh. From the truly heartfelt and thoughtful gifts like dresses to the congratulatory flowers delivered to my doorstep yesterday from my blogging friend MJ. I feel the love. And it rocks. You rock.

So next week I get to have another little get away. A night out in the big windy city and an opportunity to share my voice as a Mommy Blogger. Maria Bailey from BSM, one of my favorite people, is bringing some companies and bloggers together to help set the record straight at something she's calling Mommy Monologues. How do we want our voice to be heard? How do we want to be approached about product reviews and as a brand?

And do you want to be approached at all? We're a target market. Maybe one of the biggest. Because when someone in my online entourage says something, I listen. And that has more power than any magazine or commercial you're going to fast forward during The Office tonight.

But what we have to say is worth something. To each other, we share freely. When companies want to cash in on this "something special" that we all have, we have to wise up. Kick off the Crocs and put on our lipstick and power heels and think this through. We remain in charge of where this is all going. Because without our everyday rants and raves and cries for help, without our openness and honesty and reality, there is no voice.

If you've chosen to rebel against marketing to Moms and ads and the commercialization of it all, stand your ground. I applaud the bloggers who know that route isn't for them and stick with it. But if you're like me and are open to what professional possibilities lie ahead, I invite you to come along for the ride. Maria has formed a new site called Mom Select for the Mom Bloggers that want to learn more about connecting with companies. This is a great place for you if you aren't sure where to start. And ask me anything- I am always glad to help. There isn't anything I won't share with you. I've gotten where I am today because of other bloggers, too. We're all in this together. It's not a competition. It's not a race to who gets the most comments or has the most touching or funniest post of the day. It's just about being you and being real. There is strength, there is purity, and there is community in that.

And so, if I'm being honest, when I said yesterday that we don't have cookies for breakfast or even lunch... well... if I said that this morning, I'd be lying.

27 comments:

  1. Thanks girl, I am a mommy blogger and I like you didn't know I was going to have a title when I got started, but now I love that it can actually be something I love to do and may one day make $$ with. I want to be marketed to but I live in a small community and most moms around here don't even know what a BLOG is much less what a mommy blogger or mommy blogging group is. I so want to be a part of one of those like you have in Chicago. I would love to be invited to fancy smancy maommy blogger events. how can I do that where I am?? HELP!

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  2. Oh yes, we had no idea what we were getting ourselves into, did we? :) No idea it would ever get a name!

    I think that moms finally have a way to get their own voice out there, and judging by the traffic all our little blogs get, people are listening! I can't wait to see where all this goes some day. So thrilled to be a part of our community and especially part of your audience. Loved this post!

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  3. When I started blogging I had never even heard of a blog! I thought "cool! I want one of those!" lol. I'm glad to wear the title "Mommy Blogger" now:) and I love the perks that come along with it!

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  4. This is a great post, Steph. I so agree that all mommy bloggers (I'm boldly including myself in this category...!) are not the same. Some are open to pitches, others are decidedly, um, NOT. :)

    But we are a force that is not to be ignored. So I think it's great to come up with a way that we can agree works for (most) everyone when it comes to participating in this whole new world we've collectively carved out for ourselves with the help of each other!

    Excited to hear the results!! Have an amazing time in the Windy City!

    Jane

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  5. Steph -
    Great post! Since the beginning of the year somehow (not really sure) got into some really great product reviews. It's been so fun, and it's true...if one of my bloggy friends post about something I "just gotta have", I at least look into it, if not get it myself.

    I thank you (and some of your bloggy friends) for really paving the way.

    Even if I never get to review another products or if my stats dropped to 10 hits a day, I probably would still blog. Because in my mind, this bloggy habit is cheaper than therapy. And that's what I'm doing, living life and venting about the ups and downs. I don't know what I would do without it.

    Who would have known that 2 years ago?

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  6. You are cracking me up on the cookies for breakfast!

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  7. I checked out Mama Select last week. Very interesting what Maria has accomplished and what she is doing for Mothers who Blog. Keep us updated!
    - Audrey

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  8. Thanks for putting it out there Steph...I'd love to do more with my blog...but don't (didn't) know where to go!

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  9. And to think I didn't even know what a blog was less than a year ago. Wow!

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  10. love the blogging community.

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  11. THanks for the links. I am so glad to be a part of the blogging community.

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  12. the mommy blogging community is so very cool!
    on to another topic...i've been thinking and wondering about vaccines for a while now and have recently started researching about them. i've put my feelers out to friends and family to get their input, and already i'm catching a lot of flak...yikes! i read noah's story...amazing. thanks for sharing it. and for the resources on vaccines you shared. very interesting stuff! enjoy your weekend!

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  13. I love having girlfriends, online and off. It is a great community of women! I still haven't committed to the ads/no ads political side of things, but product reviews are a fun way for me to try new things and hopefully help out some small businesses along the way, too.

    Oh, and if you could submit my name for the Disney trip next year, that would be cool...

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  15. although i'm not a mommmy - yet - i really love reading your blog. thanks for all your insights and your shares with your readers!!! i wanted to tell you that the new layout is great. and also - prayers for you and "baby girl" are being offered up from way down here in the south! :)

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  16. Hey! Thank you so much for the info! I am super excited to get more involved in the mommy blogging world. By the way, I love being in your "entourage"...hahaha! You kids are super cute and you give great advice and outlooks-love it!

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  17. So glad to have found you on Twitter! I love that you have little things to say all day long.

    I also appreciate your writing style- wish I was better at that and the opportunities that mom bloggers are getting!
    I love blogging about things I love!

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  18. Rock on, hon! I would love to get myself out there a bit more, but keep getting distracted by the one thing that makes me marketable!!

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  19. Great post! I love your last point.

    I hate to see blogging as an exclusive club and think we can all benefit from sharing the transparency--whether we are ad-bloggers or not.

    Here's to encouraging one another.

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  20. This is a wonderful post! Thanks and thanks for the info!

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  21. Sounds like an exciting development. I'll stay tuned to hear more on the big venture. :)

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  22. I never knew what blogging was a little over a year ago, but thanks to you I found out.
    And I agree with you 100% about the caring for each other even though we don't hang out in real life.
    Great post Steph, mom bloggers rock!

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  23. Love your post. Love your positive attitude. Clearly, not all Mommybloggers are the same and there are many different opinions on the Marketing & PR pitches hitting our audience. People are different and this makes the world go round - however, I find the negativity out there a drain as I'm all about the harmony and the feel good! So keep up the good work and hopefully you'll be getting more invites where you can hideaway the crocs to slip on your heels and lipstick to impress!

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  24. Sweet post I do love this little community that mommys bloggers is! it's nice to see that your not alone!!

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  25. I am so happy to say that it's people like you, my mommy blogger friend, that make this community so very fun to be a part of!!

    It is my hope that we can all throw out the idea that this is somehow a competition, and come together, united as mommies. United as Mommy Bloggers!

    You ROCK, Steph!

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  26. Glad you felt the love sent your way!

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