25 Years of Playgroup

For those of you not in the know, playgroup is when parents get together regularly to complain about parenting and to compare their babies. (Just joking!)

Playgroup actually is a way to let babies and toddlers who aren’t in daycare socialize. (Okay, if you’ve ever tried to get toddlers to socialize, you know that’s a joke, too.)

Playgroup is an excuse for mothers to drink.

And I’ve been in a playgroup for 25 years.

Okay, that’s not exactly accurate, either. I’d thought that Susan and I had given birth in the same hospital at about the same time and that’s how we met, but she just straightened me out on this, 25 years later. Same time, yes, but different hospitals. Same breast-feeling support group, sponsored by my hospital, if you want to split hairs. And a bunch of us in that support group started meeting at each other’s houses once a week for playgroup, which turned into Christmas parties and Valentines parties and husbands becoming friends and monthly movies and drinks.

There were something like 15 of us mothers in the beginning, and, as each family moved or each mom went back to work, the group narrowed to four regulars, then just Susan and me, plus of course the kids: Susan’s oldest, Cara, and Finn.

Although Susan and my wishes of Finn and Cara still being this freaking close didn’t come true, Susan and I still are this close, thanks to us competing in online Scrabble non-stop.

And, last night, amazingly, we got together with another playgroup mom, Ellen, who was driving through. Because of her Google Maps snafu (been there, cussed at that), we got to hang out for only an hour, but that was enough time to hear about her kids and critique her AirBnB listings. Good friends are handy, even after years apart.

Having just an hour to exchange two decades of info was tricky. For instance, what I remembered about the last time I saw Ellen was that I didn’t sleep at all on our special weekend together, and I decided right then to finally take meds. Fun memory, huh. Susan remembers that she agreed to try crawfish for the first time, and then was horrified by how much they look like cockroaches. We don’t remember stuff about our children or each other, just sleeping pills and cockroaches. These are the brains of mothers.

Ellen, it was GREAT seeing you! Send us the pro AirBnB pictures, ha! (Susan I’ll post more next time, because you know I have chicken pictures.)

Worst Campground Spot

Where we are is a campground off Lake Allatoona near Atlanta, and it’s not the worst campsite we’ve ever been in but it’s pretty damned close. Several factors played into us actually having chosen this site, but the bottom line is this:

That building—an arm’s length from our bedroom—would the campground bathroom.

What’s ironic is that it was our last campsite where we really could have used close proximity to the bathroom—we had to pull out of that site mid-visit to dump the tanks. Here we can just walk three steps to avoid using our tanks, but, get this further irony, our site has a sewer hookup! It actually has everything someone who hates camping in the wild might want.

Ah well, kind of like playgroup: we’re not here for what it looks like. We’re here for eating and drinking and laughing with friends. Mission accomplished last night, thanks to Susan’s skillful hosting and Ellen braving the unknown and making the trip. Long live playgroup!

5 thoughts to “25 Years of Playgroup”

  1. I love the photos of you all when you were younger and now. You all look beautiful. I would say even better now. (Probably because you no longer have young children) 🤣💕

    1. That’s pretty insightful, “even better now”—so funny! Our children will always be our children, but they are no longer physically attached to us.