This blog post was generously sponsored by Champions for Kids and the Motherhood. All opinions are my own.

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A couple weeks ago, I held my first Champions for Kids SIMPLE Giving Snack Drive to benefit Jeremiah’s Place at the Bloomfield Saturday Market. As I was collecting snacks that day, I met a lot of people–a local farmer, an allergist from Children’s, an elderly lady who bizarrely grabbed a piece of my pizza right off my plate and ate it. In the sea of faces that fill my memory of that day, one particular individual stands out: a young mom with two little kids. Like me, she was short, perky, excited to be there. Our similarities didn’t end there.

“I worked for 10 years,” she told me, “But I just recently decided to leave my career and stay at home with my kids.”

She then leaned across the table, lowered her voice, and confessed, “I love being with my children, but there’s a piece of me that still wants to do something else, too. Something that benefits families besides my own.”

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First snack donations

“Something like what you’re doing here,” she said and motioned to the healthy snack drive around us.

Her words hit me like a thunderclap. Two years ago, I stood in the same metaphorical place. Happy to be with my kids, but feeling the slightest stirrings of discontent and “What next?” All I knew: I wanted to help families in Pittsburgh.

So…I started the Pittsburgh Mommy Blog and nurtured it like a third child. In the process, I’ve learned a lot. The most important lesson rang loud and clear at the Bloomfield Saturday Market that weekend:

 I am not alone!

It’s humbling. This city is full of people and organizations that share my dream of helping families. The woman who drove all the way from Greensburg to drop off snacks for the kids at JP. Genevieve of the AP Collection, one of the city’s most talented artists, who volunteered to do free face-painting for kids. The Volunteer Princess who sat in the beating sun and entertained children all morning for free. The retired preschool teacher and the medical student who both committed to volunteering at JP. All those people who brought snacks. And that mom.

Me and LouAnn Ross, Executive Director of Jeremiah's Place
Me and LouAnn Ross, Executive Director of Jeremiah’s Place

And it’s not just individuals. Champions for Kids has a beautiful mission–to inspire people to hold SIMPLE Service Projects, where they collect items that are needed by families in their communities. The Bloomfield Saturday Market brings families together to celebrate community and healthy lifestyles. And, of course, Jeremiah’s Place, a safe haven for Pittsburgh families that guarantees us all: “You Are Not Alone” in a time of crisis. This city is full of people and organizations that I’m proud to call partners. We truly ARE becoming the most livable city for families.

To the mom that I met at the Bloomfield Saturday Market that day: I gave you my business card. Please email me. I want to help you to help others. Whether it’s organizing your own SIMPLE Service Project, starting a blog, or something completely different, I want you to know–you are not alone.

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Healthy snacks, safely delivered to Jeremiah’s Place, the city’s first crisis nursery

And to anybody else who reads this post and wants to join me in my efforts to help Pittsburgh families, please email me at pittsburghmommyblog@gmail.com so we can brainstorm ideas.

After that weekend at the Bloomfield Saturday Market, I’m convinced that my blog has come full circle. It has evolved into exactly what I always hoped it could be–a way to genuinely impact and better the lives of local families. Thank you, Pittsburgh, for helping my dream come true!

© Copyright 2014 Nadine Champsi, All rights Reserved. Written For: The Pittsburgh Mommy Blog
Nadine Champsi

Nadine Champsi

I am a doctor turned write-at-home-mom who runs the Pittsburgh Mommy Blog and is editor of Kidsburgh. I have two wonderful young children and am happily married. My interests include cooking, green-living, gardening, being in the outdoors, listening to great music, checking out the city's cool art, coming up with creative things to do with my kids, and having as many adventures as I can!
Nadine Champsi

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