Back in June 2008 when my youngest niece (and the baby of the family at the time) was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia my sister began transforming her husband and kids lifestyle to be healthier. Every time I talked to her or visited I was exposed to information about ‘organic’ and all the chemicals we (all people) are exposed to. I was very skeptical as I was ignorant to the information that was out there. A little over a year later I became pregnant with my youngest son (Tyler) and immediately began taking better care of myself as there was so much information that was offered to me a a pregnant woman. I do have my oldest son (Trevor) that is 12 years old, however, I was so young when I had him (I was 20 when he was born) and it was so long ago that I had no idea of the “natural parenting” world that is out there.
I started by researching what “organic” was and what it meant to me which lead to information about breastfeeding, babywearing and eventually cloth diapers (more on that later!). With each day I was home alone with a newborn the more research online I did. There is so much information out there, and thank GOD for it because the resources in my area (Indiana) are virtually non existent.
I was reading up on and trying to find a good baby carrier when I stumbled across a website that had someone selling the carrier I wanted to try and I had to join the site to view the sale post so I registered at Diaperswappers. For over a month I just searched daily for baby carriers and information about different carriers.
Then one day I saw a post about cloth diapered babies and there were pictures so I peeked! They look like disposables only more colorful! I started reading about cloth diapers (talk about a lot of information!) and it just so happened within a week or so GroBaby changed over to GroVia and was unloading diaper sets on Babysteals.com so I thought it can’t be that bad right? So I bought some! Gulp, wait what did I just pay for? I spent how much money on how many diapers? I prep washed them which took FOREVER (because I washed them 10 times!) and then they not only didn’t fit my chunky monkey boy but he peed right through each one! Talk about devastation and frustration!
I found a thread that you can get “adopted” by a big sister that will take you under her wing and just help with any questions you have. I was adopted by Beth who just so happened to have a chunky thigh baby girl so how lucky was I?! I think I probably asked Beth a million questions and emailed her even more as eery question I had resulted in another one when she answered! After a certain amount of time Beth and I became facebook friends and were emailing each other on a regular basis. One day I was looking through Beth’s facebook pictures and realized she was SO young, I mean in her early 20′s young! I had just assumed she was my age or older and seeing how knowledgable she was I just figured she had to be older. This made me look up to Beth so much. She was the same age I was when I had my oldest son and had so much more information about healthy choices for her baby. She was the mom I wished I was at her age. I looked up to her so much and was so proud of her at the same time! Feel free to follow Beth’s blog here!
Ever try searching “Cloth Diaper”on facebook? Information overload! This was again how I got lots of information. By this time I had tried lots more cloth diapers and was more comfortable actually giving some advice when I saw someone post a question. I actually read questions and smiled thinking about the time I asked the same thing and remembered how overwhelming it can all be in the beginning. Facebook is where I started reading blogs as well, lots of my facebook page “likes” were blogs so I started following them which eventually lead to me becoming a blog contributor. Although I liked contributing, I wanted to do more than just reviews and giveaways of cloth diapers. I wanted to expand into all eco-friendly options for families so the Eco Baby Mama Drama seed was planted (although there was no name for my blog at the time!).
While online I ran into several pages that were so helpful to me. Cloth diapering stores and cloth diaper makers are truly the most helpful people I have EVER e-met! I would love to sit here and list all of them for you all, however, this post is already crazy long and not nearly done so if you want any information feel free to email me or comment on this post and I can email you! Some of my favorites are on the left sidebar listed as sponsors for upcoming reviews and giveaways!
One in particular that I want to talk about is Rosebud Diaper Boutique, Andrea and I started talking online on her store’s facebook page about Nifty Nappy cloth diapers. Pretty simple and not the first time I had talked to a diaper store owner about cloth diapers seeing as by this point I was an addict! However, Andrea and I always seemed to have something to talk about and it turned out we were talking about way more than diapers. Andrea is a great source of information and a great friend to me that I never would have met had I not responded to her post about Nifty Nappy and I have Vilate to thank. Who would have thought that one of my closest friends would be someone I never met!
Another very good friend I met on facebook was Janna, the creative mind behind CCBaby. She introduced me to the world of wool and I am actually going to be dedicating an entire section on my blog to wool with her help! I was clueless about wool and Jana not only helped me but has become a close friend and a working mom both in home and out. Yep, she works outside the home full time and runs CCBaby at her house too!
As all this was going on I started a local (Indiana) cloth diapering babywearing group with a local lady I met through Diaperswappers so we could have play dates and mommy time locally. Our little group has been great for information, support, and I have made more friends! If you are interested in joining it is a private group (we want to make sure there are no weirdos!) Let me know and I can add you to our group!
When I made the jump head first into my own blog I had NO idea what I was getting into! Blogging is hard work! Seriously! I already knew that I would be emailing lots of people trying to get sponsors for reviews and giveaways, however, there is the technical side of blogging too. I am not tech savvy. Seriously, I can’t even type very fast and you want me to post a button? What’s a button? And you think I should turn off comment captcha? How can I turn something off if I don’t even know what it is? LOL!
Honestly, at this point I should have known, but I was still so surprised that when I asked questions to fellow blogging Mama’s they had no issues answering me! And I mean step by step writing out directions for me. I had asked a few ladies questions and gotten the expected “Oh I just figured it out and you will too”, but there were quite a few ladies that have what I consider BIG blogs that not only offered to answer any questions I had, but took the time to respond to comments I had made on their non giveaway posts. I just felt so special that out of hundreds and I mean HUNDREDS of readers, they responded to me and it was a personal note! If I responded or asked about how they liked, handled, and felt about a situation (not necessarily blogging) they responded again! Julie, Jodi, Lindsey, Robyn, all the ABE ladies and so many others, thanks so much for your help thus far and for being my blogging role models! I never really took the time before to comment on non giveaway posts because I thought not only would the writer not read it but that she probably wouldn’t even be interested in my opinion.
Now as a blogger myself I LOVE reading comments and interacting with my readers. It really makes me feel like what I write is important. If my opinion or some bit of information can help just one reader it is really worth it to me. I know over the last year the amount of research and reviews I have read by moms and a couple of dads has been invaluable to me and truly has helped me make decisions and purchases for my family and that really is the reason I started my own blog.
I know this is a very long post and I want to thank you for taking the time to read my little story about how I found friendship, knowledge and support into the next chapter of my life. If I can ever be helpful to any of you please don’t hesitate to contact me.