Things I will and won’t miss about Movies for Mommies

December 11, 2009

Things I won’t miss about running Movies for Mommies:

  • The Monday panic. Every other Monday I had to book the next film, but so did every theatre booker in the country. Getting a hold of distributors took a lot of time, and many times they couldn’t give me the film I wanted.
  • Stocking the screening. Every week MFM screened, I had to make sure supplies were in place. My husband or I shlepped to the Ridge or Fifth Avenue or Park or wherever all the time, moving around the films themselves, dropping off welcome kits, baby food, chips and more.
  • Not having time to devote to MFM, and the guilt that I wasn’t doing enough. I’ve got a busy consulting practice, and I never had enough time to do MFM justice, at least not in the last few years.
  • Some of the personalities I’ve had to deal with over the years. ‘Nuff said.

Things I’ll miss:

  • The popcorn. I love movie theatre popcorn, and whenever I’d work the door, the staff always gave me some free.
  • The baby Halloween costumes. I always offered a discount if mom brought baby in costume at Halloween. I started it just because I loved to see the babies in costume. My favourite to date is still the two cousins who came dressed as identical dragons.
  • Always having great baby gifts for friends.
  • Getting my kids to work for me, either at the door handing out samples or booster seats, or from home stuffing all the flyers in turn into the welcome bags. We haven’t had to tackle the allowance issue yet because I paid the kids for this work. Now we have to tackle it.
  • Being a pioneer at this. I was the first to license Movies for Mommies from the founder. I was the first to start parent-infant film screenings in BC. I was the first to do date nights for parents and babies, and now lots of other MFM locations, as well as some copycat versions from the multiplexes, do them. I was in the first wave of mompreneurs who had an idea of how to amuse mom on her full year of mat leave. 2001 was the first year we got a year, and that’s when my first baby was born. It was my boredom in his first year that led to me looking for entertainment. As I used to say, he’d be happy going anywhere, but I was getting sick of malls and coffee shops. Of course, now there are a plethora of mompreneurs with great ideas of how to amuse a mom on mat leave. You guys are lucky.
  • The community feedback. Not everyone answered back when I posed questions on the e-newsletter, but many did. Even when you hated my film choices, or thought I over-shared personally, I still loved that you wrote me emails back.
  • The community resource of the e-newsletter. The mommies are a knowledgeable group, and someone always had an answer when I had a question. I found a piano teacher, a recipe for round challahs, someone to take away our moving boxes, and more. Craigslist‘s got nothing on the mommies.
  • The soapbox. I have used the e-newsletter and my audience over the years to promote many causes near and dear to my heart, including charities (Alzheimer’s Society, Terry Fox Run, BC Children’s Hospital) and baby-related groups (I’ve been a sucker for the UBC Infant Language Study Centre for years!), political causes (remember national daycare?), and my own personal milestones (remember the triathlon I droned on about when I turned 40?).
  • The contra. I did a lot of great trades with other businesses over the years. Some of it was promotional, like with the Vancouver Courier and Urban Baby & Toddler magazine. But a lot of it was for personal gain, like the food preparation companies, the grocery delivery services, the theatre shows. I traded advertising at Movies for Mommies for a lot of great stuff for myself and my family over the years. I’ll miss that.

But perhaps the thing I’ll miss most is writing the e-newsletter. It was a great outlet for me over the years, telling funny stories about my family and my personal life. But that’s why I now have this blog. So if you liked my writing before, stick around here and come back to this blog. It’s my new outlet, and hopefully, it will be a small consolation for all the things I’ll be missing out on now that I no longer run Movies for Mommies.

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Finally starting a blog

May 22, 2009

I’ve run Movies for Mommies for seven years now, and for nearly every week of those seven years I’ve written an e-newsletter. In each e-newsletter I write pithy, funny, revealing, helpful, or goofy stories about being a mom, being a working mom, dealing with my family, understanding my generational place in the world, living in Vancouver, raising a family, being a consultant, and other fun stuff. I’ve written about moments I’m proud of, like when my baby learned to walk or I completed my triathlon, and moments I’m not so proud of, like when I forgot to register my kid for baseball and he almost didn’t get to play or when I got old — um, make that older.

For years mommies who read my e-newsletter tell me they keep reading it long past when they have kids young enough to come to the Movies, and they say it’s because they like to read what I write. So after seven years, I’ve decided it’s time to start blogging.

I can’t promise I’ll be any good at this. Well, I know I can write — I do that for a living. But can I keep this up on a regular basis? I hope so. I’ll try to blog at least a few times a week. I’ll keep it as personal as my e-newsletter has always been, but I’ll also bring MFM news as I have it, because I hope that everyone who has read my e-newsletter over the years will drop in here to read this blog.

But now, it’s a beautiful, sunny day in Vancouver. The kids just left for school with hubby, the house is mine, and I’m going to — well, I’m going to do some client work. But then later I might go for a bike ride. Because it’s sunny. And I can. And I need the exercize. Sunshine = bathing suit season, after all. But that’s a whole other blog post for another day. 😉