Welcome to West Philly Mama. I'm Sandra and I live in West Philly with my true love (jb), son (Leo) and pug (Talula). jb and I are a queer couple who had our son with the help of a known donor. We are committed to teaching Leo about the things that are important to us including treating others kindly, embracing our culture and heritage, and caring for our earth and community. We try our best to model joy and gratitude. Of course we also don't hide our outrage at injustice (hence the longstanding former name of this blog: Pleasantly Furious). Our family is a mix of traditional and unconventional. We are the average American family - with a couple of twists - striving to reclaim family values.
Life Before Leo
jb and I met in college, fell in love, and had nearly ten years together before Leo came along. We both come from tight-knit families with several siblings, are very family oriented and looked forward to growing our own family together. Before that became a reality we lived in DC and Pittsburgh, PA, owned a vegetarian cafe/coffeeshop, and worked at various non-profit organizations. I worked as a doula for a bit over a year before Leo was born which was such a blessing because of the knowledge and support I drew from my doula peers and experiences.
Left Of Center
I currently stay home with my son, but before the stay-at-home mom gig I was a professional activist. I worked for organizations including The Human Rights Campaign (HRC), The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), and the American Federation of Labor - Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) as well as several political campaigns. jb also worked/works in "the movement" and we both care deeply about social and economic justice. So naturally we are doing our best to raise Leo to be a thoughtful and compassionate person - and that includes being aware of the inequity and corruption in the world and working to make it better. I'm proud to be a progressive and know we are on the right side of history. More here.
We ended up in West Philly by accident. We had to move to Philadelphia for jb's job and had no knowledge of the area so were looking for apartments blindly. We lucked out finding ourselves here in West Philly and are discovering new wonderful things about the neighborhood daily.
I identify as queer, Latina and as a feminist. I think this is important to state because it affects my writing perspective as well as my parenting choices. From the discrimination we (thankfully, rarely) face to teaching Leo Spanish to the ways we approach gender - my parenting is intertwined with my identity.
A lot of my parenting choices are in line with the Attachment Parenting style (cloth diapering, babywearing, not crying it out, breastfeeding, co-sleeping...) but there are plenty of ways my approach differs from a strict AP style as well. More here.
Skills (Or Lack Thereof)
I love to cook, take pictures, crack jokes and craft. I'm not particularly good at any of these things - still I take pride in my progress and like to share my projects and tips for those equally as clueless. I'll never claim to be a chef, photographer, comedienne or seamstress and hope no one holds me to those standards ;)