Monday, July 11, 2011

New to the area? How to get out there & meet people

Moving is nothing new to our family. We have moved twelve times in eleven years. A little excessive yes but after this move we will be out of the moving game for a long long time. Can I hear an amen! One of the things I had trouble with when we would move was getting to know a new area and the people. I am shy and getting out there hasn't always been my strongest suit. Over the years it has lessened but it can still be difficult especially when going to a place you've never been before or if you do not know anyone. 
Here are some things that I have found to help.
  • Look online. There are so many resources out there and I know that sometimes it can be overwhelming so my suggestion is to keep it simple. Figure out what you are looking for and keep to just that. If you are a parent there are tons of mom, mom & baby, dad & family groups.
  • Check out your local library. Most libraries offer reading time for children. This is a great way to educate your child while opening up the possibilities of them making friends.
  • Check out the local mall. A lot of malls have programs for children, toddler to school age, that involve crafts and weekly activities. Shopping and kids activities, it's a win win.
  • Walk around your neighborhood. The best way to get to know your neighbors is to get out there. Put the youngins in the stroller and/or on their bikes and walk around the block. During school season the weekends are a great time to do this.
  • Each city should have a city website online. And if you can't find one through searching try looking on Facebook. Peek around on it and find their monthly newsletter for local activities you and/or your kids might be interested in.
These are some things that have worked for me. But I knew there must be some more out there so I asked a few of my fellow blogging friends if they had any suggestions. Here's what they came up with.
  • Michele from The Bona Fida Life suggested going to the park. You will also meet people when your children are in extra curricular activities (like soccer, baseball etc.
  • Amy from Freaky Perfect suggests joining a gym. Make sure you go to some of the group classes. That's always worked for me.
  • Rajean from Rajean Blomquist said simply, it takes time. In my experience social media, most esp. twitter, helped me find people with like interests in my town. Great resources for all things local and now with tweet-ups, I've made some really great friends & business associates. Also, volunteer. I volunteered to serve on my daughter's high school athletic booster club board and met many people, some are now friends, in our community.
  • Jennifer from Mommy B Knows Best suggest along the same lines as searching online. Some great sites are and the mommies network, for bigger areas they have them.
  • Fadra from All Things Fadra is proof that social media is in fact a wonderful thing. Her response to my question "I agree with social media. If we EVER sell our house, we're moving to the DC/Baltimore area and I already feel like I have so many built-in friends".
  • Teresa of Society of Socialpreneurs suggests joining the PTA and women's bible study group at church. 
  • Kelly from The Centsible Life suggested to look into Moms groups, parenting groups, any kind of group that has a shared interest you will usually find people to connect with.
  • Julie from Just Precious suggests is an international organization of local support groups. Moms Offering Moms Support. If it weren't for that organization, I never would have gotten through my first 3 years as a mom. Also, I think it was said above, but getting involved with your school parent teacher organization, your place of worship or even your local hospital's volunteer group will offer you lots of opportunities to get out and meet people
I would like thank all the wonderful ladies above for their input. I hope these tips are as helpful for you as they have been for me. If you have any suggestions that have helped you when you have moved I would love to hear them.