Dear Jelly Bean Journals Community,
Thanks so much for visiting our blog. We are so excited to start this adventure together and share it with you. We first met through a mutual friend in Chelse’s hometown. Kerstin had recently relocated to the area to be with her now husband. We had spent a little time together before Chelse realized Kerstin’s name was “Kerstin” and not “Kristen.”
(Kerstin: My name is pronounced wrong so often, I get tired of correcting people. When I first met Chelse, I had no idea how close we would become, so I let it go. By the time I realized this, I was embarrassed to tell her she had been saying my name wrong for weeks.)
Our friendship developed over time as our lives mirrored each other. We became engaged within months of one another, got married in the same time frame, bought homes in the same neighborhood, and were a trimester apart during our first pregnancies. It sounds like we made a strange, middle-school pact to live our lives together, but we honestly didn’t. It was mostly happenstance that we were going through the same things at the same time but it certainly helped us grow and bond as friends. We have a special connection that we can’t really explain and just like any relationship we have had our ups and downs. Our husbands have become great friends and now we are watching are sons begin a friendship.
(Chelse: Our friendship is the first relationship I have established of this sort. Friendships are different when they are experienced during times in life with spouses, children, and all of the “adult” things we do. I wasn’t just “Chelse” when we met. I was set in my career, a wife, and eventually became a mom. We had a solid grasp on who we were, and even though we have changed and grown, we are not totally different people than when we met. Kerstin and I are such different women and I am constantly learning from her. On the same note, she supports my choices and cheers me on when I need it.)
(Kerstin: Chelse and I have a relationship based on honesty and acceptance. Maybe this comes from establishing our “adult friendship.” I have never had to be anyone but myself with her and she understands how my experiences continue to affect me and accepts me as I change and grow. When life is busy with babies, husbands, families, careers, and everything else that fills up a day, we sometimes don’t get to visit for a couple of weeks. While I miss her, I trust in our friendship and that we are each doing what we need to do for ourselves and our families. And when we get to catch up, we don’t miss a beat.)
We have found a nice balance between challenging each other and supporting each other. We don’t always agree on each other’s choices especially regarding parenting style or tactic but we are always open to listening and learning from one another. We understand that what is right for one of us and our family is not always right for the other. We have so much in common but also navigate our careers, family lives, and social lives very differently.
We decided to start a blog for three main reasons. First, we were both looking for an outlet to be creative writers, share ideas and experiences, and to challenge ourselves. We are both continually looking for ways to grow and learn and feel this blog can be a source for ongoing development. Secondly, we both enjoy reading blogs and have received information, support, and advice from others. We’d like to be able to offer a supportive community where stories, information, and opinions can be shared. Already, in the short time we have been mommas, we have experienced all sorts of positive and negative judgement. It’s important to us to show that two moms can do things differently and both can have great kids and be successful parents, wives and career women. Lastly, we hope this blog will help document our memories, moments, and experiences with our children and families.
We hope you will continue to visit and read our stories and blog posts. We plan to share experiences, opinions, comfort, a few laughs, and what’s worked for us. We look forward to this journey and sharing these experiences with you. We hope you will interact and share your stories and information with us as we build a supportive, fun, and friendly community.
Keep your eyes out for our individual introductions coming in the next couple of weeks. See you soon!
Chelse & Kerstin