A Virtual Convention

2020 continues to be a year like no other. It is the 40th anniversary of the founding of the Florida Organization of Mothers of Twins Clubs, and a cruise had been the planned celebration. Instead, the fluff was cut from the convention, and only a series of three meetings was left.

The General Session that is typically held the third Saturday of the month was supposed to move up a day this year but was placed back in its traditional spot once the details of a non-cruise weekend were ironed out. The meeting that is typically held the Friday of convention weekend was held the Saturday prior, and the one typically the Sunday of convention was held the following Saturday.

All three meetings had good participation, though many are already crossing fingers for next year’s re-do cruise.

Space Coast celebrates having a member in an elected position again this year, as Sandra Losavio returns as Treasurer. Additionally, Amy Bredemeyer will be serving her fourth term appointed as Newsletter Reporter.

FOMOTC will be led this year by the indefatigable Terri Gillis, member of both Greater Orlando Mothers of Twins & Triplets and Flamingo Mothers of Multiples. She previously served as President 1983-1985, and has continuously served the organization in a variety of roles, most recently (and concurrently) as Executive Secretary.

The next FOMOTC meeting will be held virtually in January – all members of a club registered with the organization are invited to attend, please contact your State Representative for more information, and be sure to read your quarterly Sunshine Twinformation!

National News

Unfortunately, there is nothing to report from the 2020 Multiples of America convention, as it was unable to take place this year due to the pandemic. However, voting did take place to conduct the business of the organization, so this month that information will be shared in its place.

Multiples-of-America-jpg-logo

The board seats were uncontested this year, though that might see a sharp change next year, as the structure of the board will be shifting. A bylaw passed that will condense the board of directors beginning in 2021-20222 into fewer seats and adjust the duties into different subsets. Additionally, Space Coast is excited to be represented on this year’s board of directors: our Membership VP, Amy Bredemeyer, will serve as Multiples of America’s Research VP this term!

The budget also passed, though the bylaw that would have changed that budget did not: a long-overdue amendment for a dues increase was defeated.

On an exciting note, there is no wait until Halloween this year to learn where the next national convention will be held: San Antonio, the city where the 2020 convention had been planned, will host the organization’s 2021 convention instead. Be sure to watch the website for more updates throughout the year.

2019-2020 in Review

While COVID-19 stopped a lot of the club’s planned activities over the past five months, it was still a great year!

The 2018-2019 board left the 2019-2020 one in good hands with a full summer of playdates already scheduled, and the 2019-2020 crew one-upped them by adding a Beyond Brevard playdate each month to focus on visiting new areas with the support of other mothers of multiples. Local hits included parks like Westwind, Suntree Rotary, Spyglass, Fred Lee, Gleason, and North Solerno (where holiday crafts were a bonus!). Indoor locations such as Morgan’s Place, YuJump, Rain or Shine, Urban Air, and the Wickham Community Center worked for all different ages and abilities. New (and somewhat distant) places included the Orlando Science Center, District Kids in Oviedo, Fort Christmas, Children’s Museum of the Treasure Coast, and even Walt Disney World’s All-Star Movies Resort. Toss in a good measure of the Enchanted Forest Sanctuary and the Brevard Zoo and it was really a bountiful year before the pandemic pushed playdates to the likes of Virtual Show-and-Tell!  

Moms’ Days/Nights Out had something to offer everyone this past year, from the nature lover to the artsy mom to those who just want to relax. There was a Sea Turtle Walk, coordinated visits to both Personalized Peach and Get Fired Up, playing Friends Trivia at Intracoastal Brewery, visiting EPCOT for the Food & Wine Festival for the second year in a row, dinner and drinks at 4th Street Fillin’ Station, and even Twisted Rooster’s final Drag Brunch! After things went virtual and plans to hit an Escape Room (among other ideas) fell through, members met online for Scattergories, Pictionary, and some chill happy hours as well.

Five Family Events were all hits this year, and the club has started taking its “standards” up a notch. The Back-to-School Party last August was at a pool, the annual trip to Partin Ranch included a sponsored tent for a shaded lunch, and the Holiday Picnic featured a visit from Santa & Mrs. Claus! The club also did a Boo at Zoo meetup near Halloween, and again rented a movie theater to see the latest family-friendly film: Frozen 2. 

2019-11-23 10.11.40group pic Dec 2019 party

Special Events took an especially hard hit due to the widespread spring cancellations, but the term kicked off with couples’ ax-throwing before the focus shifted to hosting the 39th Annual Convention for Florida Organization of Mothers of Twins Clubs (FOMOTC). It was an extremely successful weekend of “Magical Dreams in 2019” in Cocoa Beach. The club also held its second annual sock exchange holiday party in December with a great crowd, and this year’s February Parents’ Night Out event was at Hell ‘n Blazes.

The seven board meetings took on some extra personality, as they were held at Pizza Gallery, Bold Cup, 4th Street Fillin’ Station, and an all-day planning session at Droplit.

The General Meetings this year ranged from a widely-advertised Open House to Trivia Night, Halloween Craft Night, and crowd favorites Potluck & Games and Wine & Chocolate.

Due to COVID-19 killing the spring, only one educational event was held this year, but with a topic like Estate Planning, those who attended took copious notes!

In addition to events, the club successfully raised almost $300 for their Welcome Baskets initiative, held a No-Bake Bake Sale as their FOMOTC philanthropy project, and boasted a Virtual Spirit Week surrounding the club’s Founder’s Day in May. The club also launched monthly Lift-Off meetings as an opportunity for members to get encouragement and support one another in a safe environment. Additionally, for a second year, members contributed to a social media campaign as part of Multiple Birth Awareness Month. There were also four drive-by birthday parades organized for the families celebrating birthdays in May and June. Lastly, it revived its monthly newsletter, Challenger, last August in an effort to better connect with members not frequently on social media.

It’s been quite the year, and although so many great ideas from the 2019-2020 board were unable to come to fruition, the 2020-2021 board is dedicated to creating a fun and inclusive term ahead!

Recognition & Installation 2020

Due to the pandemic, Space Coast Mothers of Multiples hosted its annual Recognition & Installation Ceremony online this year. Everyone attending felt the difference, but was positive and it was still nice to remember the year we just completed while looking forward to the future.

SCMOM Recognition Installation Program 2020 v2

The evening began with recalling the major events from the past year, including two family picnics, a trip to Partin Ranch, a movie theater rental, hosting the state convention, and a plethora of playdates and Moms’ Nights Out. The club then moved on to recognizing some of the members responsible for making all of that possible, the Light in Shining Armor and the Thanks-a-Latte recipients. Afterward, the 1-year, 5-year, and 20-year members were acknowledged before the outgoing President was presented with a gift of gratitude.

The officers were then installed, and the 2020-2021 positions will be held by President Amy Baehl,  1st Vice President Amy Bredemeyer, 2nd Vice President Carrie Howell, Secretary Elizabeth Tynes, and Treasurer Holli Parker.

SCMOM 2020-2021 Board

President Baehl then declared her appointments for the remainder of the Executive Committee: Monet Payne (Chair of Library), Holli Parker (Chair of Stork & Sunshine), Mallory Berteotti (Chair of Playdates), Arayna Klenke (Chair of Social Media and Education & Programming), Amanda English (Chair of Ways and Means), and Amy Bredemeyer (FOMOTC Representative, MOA Representative, & Chair of Website and Archives). She also co-appointed Mallory Berteotti and Jennifer Rodriguez as Co-Chairs of Publicity, and Carrie Howell and Amy Bredemeyer Co-Chairs of Party Planning. Arayna Klenke will serve as Advisor. For an explanation of these roles and other ways you can serve the club, please visit this page.

SCMOM 2020 Installation Video Call B

While the board is transitioning, the club is still taking renewals for the 2020-2021 membership year, so please get your annual form and dues in! Contact the Treasurer or 1st VP with any questions.

SCMOM Spirit Week

The club was unable to celebrate its 37th birthday with a playground party as they had hoped, but they still drummed up a jubilant feel for the occasion by hosting a Spirit Week for its members online. For six days, families were encouraged to participate in themed days by posting photos, tagging fellow club members, and voting for favorites! Winners of each competition received a small gift card, and it was a fun change to the monotony that can envelop getting dressed these days.

Pictured below are the winners for Best Birthday Cake for the Club, Best Dressed as if Attending a Club Meeting in 1983, Best Take on Dressing as the Club Logo, Best Twinning Outfits, Best Pajamas, and Best Fancy Outfit.

Congratulations to the winners and to the club on 37 years!

Spring at Home

It’s a different feel these days as all socializing is done without being physically near one another. Still, the club is carrying on with some activities!

A virtual playdate of Show-and-Tell proved to be about as well-attended as most other playdates, and the kids involved enjoyed sharing about their favorite things. The club also had a successful Disney-themed video chat (instead of spending the day at Disney Springs), and will be trying game nights next month. Scattergories has been selected to appeal to the wordsmiths and Pictionary will be played for the creative MOMs.

If you have found fun ways to socialize online during this time, please share what you’re doing!

 

Fun on the Town

Last year the club did mini-golf for a couples’ night out, which had been a change from the paint nights in years prior. This year, a more relaxed evening was planned, with dinner at local brewery Hell ‘n Blazes and dessert at Here’s the Scoop. The weather in downtown Melbourne cooperated to help make the night enjoyable and fun.

SCMOM Feb 2020 Parents Night

It’s always nice to get out with your spouse, but being around other couples who also have multiples is extra special.

February 2020 Member Breakdown

February 1st starts the second half of the membership year for Space Coast Mothers of Multiples, so it’s high time for a fresh look at the club’s demographics.

Starting with types of multiples, the club has similar numbers of boy/boy, girl/girl, and boy/girl twins. There are three triplet moms currently, with two having two girls and a boy, and one having three boys. No current members have quads or higher.

Feb 2020 chart 3

Next up: age of multiples. While many clubs across the country have their highest numbers in expecting, newborn, and infant mothers of multiples, Space Coast’s membership includes more than a third of members having 2- and 3-year-olds, and a healthy balance across the age groups.

Feb 2020 chart 1

Where is the Space Coast, you might ask? It’s Brevard County, Florida, which is 72 miles north to south and encompasses barrier islands as well. As there are no established groups for mothers of multiples in the county south of Brevard, two members live in Indian River County, and there are also several long-time members who have moved out of the area but maintain their membership and active status in the club. Looking at the chart from last year to this year, there has been a shift from the most members living in Palm Bay to Melbourne housing the majority. Satellite Beach has also grown as well. In the numbers below, “other” represents the following locations, where two or fewer members each reside: Cape Canaveral, Cocoa, Cocoa Beach, Indialantic, Indian Harbor Beach, Malabar, Port St. John, Titusville, Vero Beach, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia.

Feb 2020 chart 2

The club’s 37th birthday is less than three months away, and their longest-active member has belonged for 27 of those years. Six more boast 15+ years in Space Coast MOM, and with the addition of recognizing Milestone Members at the annual Installation Banquet last year, here’s hoping that many more will continue to remain in the organization in years to come.

Feb 2020 chart 4

Lastly, a quick look at how many members have children in addition to their multiples. At present, there are no members with more than one set of multiples. It was an equal split between those with only twins or triplets, and those with more children, though most with more had them first!

Feb 2020 chart 5

As seen above, many different types of members make up Space Coast Mothers of Multiples. If you’ve wondered about the group in the past or are discovering it now for the first time, please reach out – more information is available and your emails will be answered promptly.

Who Runs This Club?

While the FAQ page briefly mentions that there are five elected positions and numerous appointed chair positions, some more information about who is doing what might be helpful to know! Please note that the below is an overview and not all-encompassing. If you are interested in serving as leadership in Space Coast Mothers of Multiples, please reach out to any of the current board members!

The five elected positions on the Executive Board are:
President (oversees everything and is a ex-officio member of all committees)
1st Vice President (handles membership requests and renewals)
2nd Vice President (conducts surveys, orders t-shirts and badges, maintains membership packet)
Secretary (manages minutes, bylaws, and attendance)
Treasurer (receives and disburses funds as needed)

There are also appointed chairs in a variety of areas:
Education & Programs (coordinates guest speakers and informative topic meetings)
Playdates (plans meet-ups, varying location, time of day, day of week, cost)
Library (manages our physical library and shares electronic resources)
Social Media (promotes club events online, encourages weekly engagement)
Website & Archives (maintain this website, member Drive, public Facebook page)
Sunshine (coordinate food & drinks, writes thank-you notes and holiday cards, manages meal trains)
Ways & Means (coordinates fundraising)
Publicity (delivers materials around town, writes press releases)
Party Planning (oversees details for major family activities and holiday party – usually co-chaired)
Stork (matches mentors and mentees)
MOA Rep (liaison with national organization)
FOMOTC Rep (liaison with state organization)

The Advisor is the most recent past president and also serves on the Executive Committee.

Each Spring, a Nominating Committee is formed. This group gauges interest in the various positions and talks to members about taking on leadership roles. At the May General Meeting, the slate of officers is presented, and is voted on at the June General Meeting. There is an Installation Ceremony, and new officers typically begin the first week of July. The President appoints the chairs, usually based on the recommendations of the Nominating Committee and the new board, with the new membership year beginning August 1st.

 

2019 Holiday Picnic & Party

For this year’s family holiday picnic, Space Coast Mothers of Multiples really brought it to the next level. The venue selected offered a large playground with structures for different ages, a pavilion housing a dozen picnic tables, and nearby restrooms.  

The spread was plentiful and delicious, and the craft options pleased from toddlers through pre-teens. It was a great time and well attended!

While the weather was not the most agreeable, the Santa and Mrs. Claus couldn’t have been better!

group pic Dec 2019 party

The following week was the club’s second annual Sock Exchange Party. In addition to swapping holiday cookies, the members also stuff a pair of socks with small items and then draw numbers akin to White Elephant to choose their prizes. The goodies included a wide array of treats, from gift cards and liquor to candy and games. It was a relaxing time before the busyness of the holidays set in!