SO. I’ve kept a few creative endeavors on the down-low, and now is the time to share! (Gulp!)
The CorporetteMoms Newsletter
Longtime Corporette readers may remember that when I announced my pregnancy with Jack (now 2.5 years old) I ALSO announced that I’d be starting a new newsletter, devoted entirely to pregnancy, navigating maternity leave, and the return to work. Ahem. I never actually got around to starting it, but it’s always been in the back of my mind as one of my major goals for expanding this site. So, first up: I am FINALLY starting the CorporetteMoms newsletter! There will be two subscription options: one for if you’re pregnant (along with a free eBook with my very best tips for dressing professionally while pregnant), and a second if you’re a working mom interested in news, deal alerts, and other updates.
In the process of developing the newsletter, though, one of the things that frustrated me was the huge variation in how the emails looked in different programs — so it was important to me that each post have a home on the web. So: I am also announcing the launch of the CorporetteMoms SITE, now live at http://corporettemoms.com. The newsletter and site will have a lighter publishing schedule than we have here at Corporette, but there will be at least an Open Thread and news roundup every week, as well as deal alerts for women’s and kids’ clothes and gear. (Because CorporetteMoms has its own database and lives on a separate server for now, it’s likely that we’ll be testing forum software (!) there first… so stay tuned for that announcement, hopefully soon.)
A Call for Guest Bloggers!
But wait, there’s more — I’d LOVE to get some of you guys to be guest bloggers for the CorporetteMoms site. Yes, you! My hesitation in launching a site for working mothers has always been that a) there’s a TON of parenting and mom-deal sites out there (to say nothing of mommy blogs), many of which are doing amazing work (and are addictive reads for me), and b) my own work/life balance is an unusual one. But after a lot of thought, I realized that as an editor I could contribute to and facilitate two kinds of conversations: professional maternity-style posts, and posts about work/life balance from REAL working women. So:
Calling All Maternity Style Bloggers
a) I’m happy to announce that starting immediately, CorporetteMoms will be taking on guest maternity style bloggers. Share your quest to look professional while pregnant, either with snaps of your outfits (send a pic, tell us what you’re wearing, and we’ll do the rest!) and/or(?) with brief posts about the sartorial struggles you’ve faced with maternity-wear. I certainly don’t expect you to post a daily outfit but I hope you’ll tell us about your MVPs, the work-arounds you’ve found, and the maternity suits or work-appropriate dresses or trousers you bought (or the ones you left on the rack). I’d like to get 5-10 women at a time to commit to at least 10 (brief!) posts. (For the outfit posts, I’m OK if you want to crop your head out of the picture!) Apply here!
Calling All Mamas Balancing Work/Life
b) I’m also excited to announce that, also starting immediately, CorporetteMoms will be taking on guest work/life-balance bloggers (and if you’d like to stay anonymous, I’m fine with that!). This is the part that I’m really jazzed about because I just haven’t found anything like it. I recognize that this will involve a significant amount of work from the guest bloggers — and because I know firsthand that working mamas are crazy-busy, I’d consider all interested parties to be ROCKSTARS. Basically, I’ve noticed that while there are a TON of work/life balance articles, almost all of them are written by freelance/WAHM types and offer the same tips. Then, there are the interviews with fancy-moms, like Sheryl Sandberg or Gwyneth Paltrow, explaining their juggle. I’m far more curious about the paths of REAL WORKING WOMEN (some of whom, yes, are the breadwinners in the family). I’d love to get another “class” of 5 women or so to commit to at least 10 (brief! 300 words+) posts each, on topics like:
- how you prepared for maternity leave
- if/how you negotiated flextime or reduced hours
- how your career (and career plans) changed (or didn’t change!) once you went back to work
- how your household changed once you went back to work
- how you handled your first big project (or meeting or trial) after your maternity leave
- if you were a SAHM for a period, how you went (and felt) about going BACK to work
and more. I’m a bit mired in the early childhood years right now because I and most of my close friends have toddlers, but judging by Anne-Marie Slaughter’s famous article in The Atlantic, the balancing struggles continue long after the preschool years, so I’d love to get working mamas from all walks. In my grand vision we can tag the bloggers by city and by profession, so if you’re a lawyer in Chicago about to have your first baby and searching for work/life balance tips, you don’t have to recreate the wheel. (Is it just me or is that how all working mothers feel, like we’re recreating the wheel all the time?)
To those of you who don’t have kids, I don’t mean to disrespect your struggles with work/life balance — depending on how this goes at CorporetteMoms I’ll consider bringing on a similar guest blogger feature here at Corporette (and hey, possibly even personal style bloggers here as well). Otherwise, there are no plans for Corporette’s content to change.
Some Kat News
Finally… there’s one more little creative endeavor to mention. You may wonder, gee, why is Kat suddenly so obsessed with maternity stuff and work/life balance issues? What made her revisit those ideas? So — at last! — I am happy to announce that we’re expecting our second child. Announcing this was inexorably tied in my mind to bringing the CorporetteMoms newsletter and site to fruition, so this announcement is rather delayed. Let’s just say that I’m well into the Waddling Weeks and probably officially in the Whale Weeks of pregnancy. My new editor, Kate (who I should really introduce you guys to in a separate post!), and I are hard at work preparing lots of great content and guest posts for the summer when I’ll be on some semblance of maternity leave.
To those of you curious about how this second pregnancy has gone: It’s about 180 degrees different than the first, in that the pregnancy is such an afterthought. Jack and the blog(s!) take up the majority of my brain capacity, with whatever’s left going to the general family concerns, myself, my husband, and my marriage, so there just hasn’t been a lot of time or energy for worrying about the baby or reading a million pregnancy books. One big change: Having a kiddo in daycare and other classes while having a weakened immune system has not been easy. I caught not one but two stomach bugs in my first trimester and lost about 12 pounds (which freaked me out but didn’t worry my docs at all), and had three head colds in January alone. The food aversions and cravings have been totally different too — Jack was something of an ice cream baby and I couldn’t even look at chicken, fish, or beans when I was pregnant, whereas this kiddo is much more of a pickles baby and has been a-ok with pretty much all foods, with a particular craving for vinegar-y hot sauce. Go figure! Otherwise, the baby and I have been healthy, so please send good vibes that it’ll stay that way.
So… I hope you guys will like the new site and newsletter, and I can’t wait to see how they change and grow once we start building a community like we’ve built here at Corporette!