Archive for Meet Our Members

Meet Our Members: MaryAnne from Mama Smiles

Let’s meet MaryAnne from Mama Smiles.

What do you write about?
Parenting, learning, creativity, and play!

Where do you live?
North of Boston, Massachusetts

How long have you been blogging?
Three and a half years

Do you have a favorite blog post of your own?
Sensory Wall Mosaic Art for Kids

What are two or three of your favorite blogs to read?
ikat bag: http://www.ikatbag.com/
Blissful E: http://blissfule.me/
Mouse Grows, Mouse Learns: http://learningwithmouse.blogspot.com/

What inspired you to start a blog?
I wanted a way to capture life with young children – especially the nice moments that can be forgotten in the sleep-deprived haze of parenting!

How many children do you have?
4, agea 6, 4, 2, and a newborn

Why did you join Boston Parent Bloggers?
I wanted to connect with other local bloggers.

What are some of your favorite blogging platforms, plugins and/or tools?
I love wordpress, and favorite plugins include Akismet, Broken Link Checker, CommentLuv, and Comment Reply Notification.

Meet Our Members: Momma from Momma Kiss

Let’s meet Momma from www.mommakiss.com.

What do you write about?
life as a married but work week single mom; my passion for breast cancer research; my 2 little boys; being daughter, sister, friend, wife and mom. I tend to be snarky and I blog anon!

Where do you live?
MetroWest, Massachusetts

How long have you been blogging?
since March, 2008.

Do you have a favorite blog post of your own?
This is one of my early blogs – Mommy Farted

Still makes me laugh.

What are two or three of your favorite blogs to read?
Funny or snot: http://www.funnyorsnot.com/
Things I can’t say: http://thingsicantsay.com/
The flying chalupa http://www.theflyingchalupa.com/

What inspired you to start a blog?
I like to write, and loved to share words, just as an outlet.

How many children do you have?
2, age 4 and 6

Why did you join Boston Parent Bloggers?
Trying to see who is near me that also blogs. Not everyone “gets” it.

What are some of your favorite blogging platforms, plugins and/or tools?
Oye. Um, WordPress – I just switched. I’m not that savvy, I know how to post and edit, that’s key :)

Meet Our Members: Lollie from Fortuitous Housewife

Let’s meet Lollie from http://www.fortuitoushousewife.com.

What do you write about?
Parenthood – the highs & lows, raves & rants.
Cooking – breaking out of the Mac & Cheese and Chicken Nugget box.
Craftiness – a craft-challenged Mom & two Star Wars obsessed boys.
Momming style – striving to conceal the jiggly bits, balance of function, comfort and budget all while desperately trying to stay semi-fashionable.

Where do you live?
Needham, Massachusetts

How long have you been blogging?
Since January 2011

Do you have a favorite blog post of your own?
http://www.fortuitoushousewife.com/2012/01/wii-bit-o-blackmail.html

What are two or three of your favorite blogs to read?
Scary Mommy, Take the Side Street, Lost in Suburbia

What inspired you to start a blog?
No one was paying me to write (journalism & features), I was buried in a sea of little boys, and friends encouraged me to share my riffs & rants on parenthood – so off I ventured into the blogosphere.

How many children do you have?
2, age 6.5 & 4.5

Why did you join Boston Parent Bloggers?
I love that there’s a community of blogging parents right here in my adopted home town!

What are some of your favorite blogging platforms, plugins and/or tools?
Started on Blogger, preparing to migrate to self-hosted WordPress in the next month or so.

Meet Our Members: Ashley from The Savings Momma

Let’s meet Ashley from The Savings Momma.

What do you write about?
I write about saving money in everyday life, whether it be frugal recipes, DIY household tips, online shopping, or anything else that help save people money!

Where do you live?
Cape Cod, Massachusetts

How long have you been blogging?
I have been blogging since 2009.

Do you have a favorite blog post of your own?
Yes, I wrote a 2 part series called “Supermarket Smarts” covering marketing tactics used by stores to get the consumer buying more.

http://thesavingsmomma.com/upermarket-marts-part-1/

http://thesavingsmomma.com/upermarket-marts-part-2/

What are two or three of your favorite blogs to read?
That’s a tough one, there are so many! Two of my all time favorites are:

Confessions of a Stay at Home Mom

Blessings Multiplied

What inspired you to start a blog?
When I started couponing about 10 years ago, I did so primarily to save a little money. In 2009, when things became really tough for my family, I began couponing heavily. I think one day, I just woke up and realized that saving money isn’t limited to using coupons, so I began researching and educating myself on all the other ways to save money. By the time I retrained myself on how to spend less and save more, people were chomping at the bit to know how I was doing it. That is when The Savings Momma was born.

How many children do you have?
I have 2, age 2 & 7

Why did you join Boston Parent Bloggers?
I was looking for a network of parent bloggers, geographically close to me to keep in touch with. Living on Cape Cod, well…..it’s an experience, but there aren’t any resources for bloggers. My passion is blogging, and really the only “extra curricular” thing I get to enjoy so I figured it would be great to connect with other bloggers close to where I live.

What are some of your favorite blogging platforms, plugins and/or tools?
Honestly, I am such a tech-wimp. I have a wonderful IT lady who helps me with all the technical bits :) Don’t know what I would do without her!

Meet Our Members: Charlene from Charlene Chronicles

Let’s meet Charlene from Charlene Chronicles.

What do you write about?
Fashion and Fitness, Technology and Travel, Home and Parenting with a focus on Moms.

Where do you live?
Metrowest, Massachusetts

How long have you been blogging?
Since the spring of 2008, but only since 2010 as Charlene Chronicles.

Do you have a favorite blog post of your own?
Hmm, I guess it depends on your interests. But a lot of people like these:

How to Start a Running Program
Monthly Page Views are So 80s
Conference Swag
Making Your Blog Functional

What are two or three of your favorite blogs to read?
Honestly, I don’t have any favorite blogs as I love to pop in and out of many of them. I also have such varied interests that I read blogs in many niches. Generally, my favorite topics are the social media blogs. They often provide great tips for better blogging, neat new plugins, and amazing apps. I find most blogs posts I want to read on Twitter and thus find other people to follow and engage with at the same time. I use hashtags like #socialmedia or #technology to find interesting blogs. Or even if I am not going to a conference, I may follow the conference hashtag to find other like minded bloggers to follow their posts. However, I think everyone in Boston Parent Bloggers are fun to follow and read, so as these Member Spotlights get posted, it will be great way to ensure that I’m following them.

What inspired you to start a blog?
My wedding. I created a website with wedding details for our guests but I started adding funny stories about our wedding preparations. Then it grew into stories about our marriage and my pregnancy with my first son. I switched to a semi-serious stage when I started my Metrowestmama blog just 12 days after my son was born. A few months later, that became more of a Facebook group when I started my blog CharleneChronicles. My inspiration now is being a Mom and keeping a business focus in my life (which sometimes seems like an oxymoron.)

How many children do you have?
Two. An almost 2.5 year old and a newborn.

Why did you join Boston Parent Bloggers?
I joined because I was already friends with a lot of these great women and men, and it was wonderful to see it morph into a more formal group with opportunities and information to be shared in a timely, friendly, supportive way.

What are some of your favorite blogging platforms, plugins and/or tools?
This is constantly changing in the evolving world of social media, but as of this particular hour as I write, I love the Zemanta, And the Winner Is, WordPress plugins. A great tool is Click to Tweet, and I am currently obsessed with Pinterest. Not so much with Google+ but I am on there anyway.

Meet Our Members: Kelly from Tiny Sophisticate

Let’s meet Kelly from tinysophisticate.com.

What do you write about?
Family, fashion, food, fun…and sometimes a little bit of marketing/business! Basically…my life!

Where do you live?
Metrowest, Massachusetts

How long have you been blogging?
I began blogging in early 2011.

Do you have a favorite blog post of your own?
Things My Kids Will Never Know

Dressing Like a Mom

A Great New Baby Gift

My Disney Adventure

What are two or three of your favorite blogs to read?
I love blogs that have a sense of humor. If they are teaching me something, I want step by step tutorials. If it is just funny…it better be funny.

I love younghouselove.com. I think I’ll copy their entire house someday…but I actually feel like I learn from John and Sherry.

I love the bloggess.com…who doesn’t! I mean, most of the time, I’m in tears laughing so hard.

I enjoy charlenechronicles.com, especially some of her “business” focused posts on the blogging industry, trends, etc.

There are a lot of blogs that I frequent…too many to mention!

What inspired you to start a blog?
Life inspires me…and I needed a way to record it all. As a new parent, I’m navigating this new world and figuring out what it all means to me. If I can share my experiences with others, or just have a record for me and my family some day, it makes me happy! I also like to talk…and write so it all works.

How many children do you have?
2, daughters ages 3 and 10 months

Why did you join Boston Parent Bloggers?
I joined BPB for a chance to meet people who have similar interests to me. Networking is key not only in the blog world but in every industry and in life. I’ve met some great people and look forward to making new friends and connections.

What are some of your favorite blogging platforms, plugins and/or tools?
I’ve been pretty loyal to wordpress and obviously Twitter and Facebook. I am hoping this year I engage more with Google +. It’s had a slow start but as a Google offering, you know it will take off or morph. I’m also focusing a lot on videos in 2012 and other creative ways to engage with readers.

Meet Our Members: Laurie from The Family That Laughs Together

Let’s meet Laurie from The Family That Laughs Together.

What do you write about?
I write about my journey as a parent, business owner, wife, friend dog owner, and social worker. I try to be mindful and enjoy the ride of this busy life and learn and find joy from my experiences. I also write reviews and participate in giveaways…and enter many myself!

Where do you live?
North Shore, Massachusetts

How long have you been blogging?
A little less than a year.

Do you have a favorite blog post of your own?
http://www.thefamilythat.com/2011/08/25/words-i-never-thought-i-would-muster/

Anything with Skyfox and Tommy always makes me laugh

What are two or three of your favorite blogs to read?
I like Adventures in Parenting- you can just feel the love and joy Kate gets from her family
http://www.adventuresinparenting.me/

I really like to read Tykes Mom’s Blog, simple and good advice
http://the-north-forty.com/

What inspired you to start a blog?
I have always kept a journal (since i was in 2nd grade) and I feel like a blog is a really cool way to keep a journal. The idea of making a little money and opening myself up to new opportunities is also very exciting. If I ever get the chance to travel and write about my families experiences I will have completed a life long dream of mine!

How many children do you have?
1 age 3 and one on the way!

Why did you join Boston Parent Bloggers?
I am interested in learning more about blogging and joining a community of writers and parents.

What are some of your favorite blogging platforms, plugins and/or tools?
Still new to blogging platforms and all the lingo – I do like using facebook and twitter and connecting with readers. I love when I get a message from someone I don’t already know and they share some insight into a dilemma I am facing- it shows what a small world we live in.

Meet Our Members: Marshall from The Four Father

Let’s meet Marshall from thefourfather.com.

What do you write about?
I’m a 41-year-old married father of a 8-year-old daughter, 5-year-old son, and twin boys who are almost two(ish). I was a recent “victim of the economy” who’s back in in the work force again after a few months on the beach. I will periodically offer something up that will either be about my new circumstances, my family, or something in my past that contributed to getting me to the where I am now.

Where do you live?
North Shore – Lynn, Massachusetts

How long have you been blogging?
Since early November 2011.

Do you have a favorite blog post of your own?

This has proven to be my most popular thus far:

http://thefourfather.com/2011/11/30/a-girl-a-boy-and-a-pink-flamingo-named-dot/

What are two or three of your favorite blogs to read?
http://thebloggess.com
http://themommahen.com/
http://www.everywhereist.com/

What inspired you to start a blog?

Becoming unemployed and the very strong urging of my lovely wife who was probably tired of me talking about all these things just to her.

How many children do you have?

4, ages 8, 5, and twins at 2(ish)

“ish” explained here: http://thefourfather.com/2011/11/20/the-completion-question/

Why did you join Boston Parent Bloggers?

I live in the Boston area, my writing is heavily influenced by my kids, and my writing is on a blog. That may be a bit wise-ass-ish. That is also a highlight of my writing style and, again, probably a big reason my wife wanted me to stop talking to her so much.

What are some of your favorite blogging platforms, plugins and/or tools?
I am honestly too new to the whole thing to figure that out. At some point I hope to sit down with someone who understands the internet and computers better than I do and they can explain everything that I am NOT doing correctly.

Meet Our Members: Leah from Pearls & Oysters

Let’s meet Leah from Pearls & Oysters, Oh Baby Boston, and Foodie Family Eats.

What do you write about?
I write about food and family. Raising kids and feeding them in addition to where to go out and eat on date night or with the kids. Some travel is included especially since where to eat on the road is always a question with picky eaters.

Where do you live?
Cambridge, Massachusetts

How long have you been blogging?
For about 5 years.

Do you have a favorite blog post of your own?

Not yet, but I do really like my first post I did on examiner.com http://foodiefamilyeats.wordpress.com/2008/10/09/pizzanight/

What are two or three of your favorite blogs to read?
http://smittenkitchen.com/
http://labelsareforjars.wordpress.com/
http://angrychicken.typepad.com/

What inspired you to start a blog?

I thought I was just keeping a journal for myself…and then it snowballed into a job freelance writing. Now I still mostly blog for myself but I enjoy the community of bloggers and am always happy when to share information with those who are interested.

How many children do you have?

2, ages 5 and 7

Why did you join Boston Parent Bloggers?

I like the community of bloggers and to find out about the different interests as bloggers, as parents, as “business” folk.

What are some of your favorite blogging platforms, plugins and/or tools?
I like wordpress.

Meet Our Members: Gilda from Evan and Lauren’s Cool Blog

Let’s meet Gilda from Evan and Lauren’s Cool Blog
(Gilda is also a guest blogger for Label Daddy.)

What do you write about?
Local shows, area attractions, activities in the area, product reviews, crafts, cake decorating, and the adventures of our family.

Where do you live?
Billerica, Massachusetts (right outside of Boston – 20 minutes away)

How long have you been blogging?
4 years as of April 2012

Do you have a favorite blog post of your own?

My favorite one is when I got to work with Disney and have an In Home Celebration. I love Disney and sharing my knowledge with others, and I got to gather items to rebuild my daycare provider’s daycare. Her house had just burned down and she lost almost everything. This was a great way to host a wonderful event and give back.

http://evan-and-lauren-a.blogspot.com/2010/04/42510-celebrating-giving-back-and.html

It goes along with this post:

http://evan-and-lauren-a.blogspot.com/2011/11/111511-mickey-mouse-will-always-have-my.html

What are two or three of your favorite blogs to read?

Mommy Niri – She was my friend before she started blogging (I already was). She is great and very grounded due to what she has gone through in life. http://www.mommyniri.com/

Occasional Rambling – She is my friend Dorene who started me blogging – http://www.occasionalrambling.com/ Though she hasn’t been posting much since her 3rd child. :-)

http://www.adventuresinparenting.me/ – I love people that move to Boston from some where else and share their thoughts. I have lived here forever so she has a different outlook.

Quirky Fusion – I also have known Christy for quite a while. Starting with Gymboree classes, and we have two common friends. http://quirkyfusion.com

And of course all of the Boston Parent Bloggers.

What inspired you to start a blog?

I love sharing pictures with friends and family. In fact when we got married I created a Wedding Web Page. I guess that was my true start. I am technical as I went to school at WPI for Aerospace Engineering – Read:

http://evan-and-lauren-a.blogspot.com/2010/02/21710-what-do-you-want-to-be-when-you.html

So sharing pictures and being technical was great. I could combine two passions. Despite the fact that my husband is a computer developer I learn on my own how to set stuff up.

How many children do you have?

2, a boy age 6 and a girl age 4

Why did you join Boston Parent Bloggers?

When I joined Twitter I noticed Christy on there and then made the connection.

What are some of your favorite blogging platforms, plugins and/or tools?
Statcounter for statistics
Google Reader
Blogger – I guess not my favorite but it was what I use
Linkys