The first and third Tuesday of each month during the school year is the Lake Centre MOPS (Moms of Preschoolers).
It is such a gift to Mums of young children who are looking for friendship, solidarity and a few child free hours!
This is my 3rd year of going and I love it so much I decided it was time to give something back. So I volunteered to be a small group leader.
Each time we meet, we sit in groups of about 7 or 8. The kids go to day care rooms based on their age. They take all kids from 9 month old babies to 4 and 5 year olds not yet in school. There are about 60 ladies - the numbers restricted by the number of kids they can safely look after in the day care. Little babies get to stay with their Mums - which is great for me because I get to snuggle them once in a while!
When we first arrive, we have some time to chat over a coffee and then, after the announcements, we get to go and eat a breakfast that each group has taken it in turns to bring. Delicious egg based casseroles (see this post for a recipe), bread, muffins, cookies, fruit and yogurt... So much good food!
There is always a speaker or an activity - topics that make you cry, ones that are so useful that you are scribbling down notes and spa days where you come out sparkling!
There is also a craft each week so you even get to bring something home.
This week we decorated clothes pegs with washi tape and added magnetic strips to use on my memo board and made a bracelet for our kids with our phone number on:
Each meeting is different and sometimes there is barely time to catch up with your friends outside of your care group.
And it's the care groups that I'm involved with this year. The small groups go off to separate rooms for the last 20 or 30 minutes and discuss the topic of the day or just share what is going on in their lives. I've had two great leaders so far and I am hoping I can do as good a job as them.
I feel so lucky that my English ex-pat friend introduced me to such a wonderful group of ladies. Life here would have been very different for me if I hadn't been blessed with MOPS.