Paige Dunn is building her own village of moms

There’s that saying, “It takes a village to raise a child,” and as Paige Dunn found out, having a village around you is just as important for the mom. Dunn, who had worked as an actress before having her son Hayden in August 2009, lives with her husband Reagan — who is a King County councilman who represents the Ninth District which includes Covington and Maple Valley — just outside of Maple Valley these days.

  • BY Wire Service
  • Sunday, April 10, 2011 2:43pm
  • Life
Paige Dunn and her son

Paige Dunn and her son

There’s that saying, “It takes a village to raise a child,” and as Paige Dunn found out, having a village around you is just as important for the mom.

Dunn, who had worked as an actress before having her son Hayden in August 2009, lives with her husband Reagan — who is a King County councilman who represents the Ninth District which includes Covington and Maple Valley — just outside of Maple Valley these days.

After her son came along, Dunn shifted from acting and philanthropic work to stay at home mom mode, which as any mother knows is a full time gig.

“After having Hayden, I started feeling a little bit isolated,” she said. “I realized I needed to bring in some of my pre-baby passions.”

At first, she started a separate profile on Facebook called Mom Around Town, which eventually spawned its own website.

What she loves about acting, Dunn explained, is the storytelling.

“This gave me the opportunity to tell stories about what was happening with Hayden,” she said. “It also gave me the opportunity to learn from more seasoned moms. And as Hayden got older, it gave me the opportunity to share what I had learned. It is kind of my creative outlet.”

And in a way, it has become something of a digital village of moms, a place where she can talk about all the things you would want to see in a motherhood textbook were anyone to take up such a daunting project.

As she began her project on Facebook, Dunn noted, other moms seemed to embrace it readily.

“Pretty quickly people started chiming in ... their thoughts about this or that,” she said. “I was posting stuff really grasping for answers. It’s a great way to just connect with other women.”

The site is divided up into a number of sections including “Bringing Sexy Back.” The idea is to help new moms not lose themselves entirely in their new baby and to offer ways to restore a little bit of balance.

“You’re so focused on taking care of your baby that taking care of you is not in the cards,” Dunn said. “I remember when I got home, I looked at myself and wondered, ‘Who is this monster?’ I wondered, ‘What can I do to look a little more pulled together without taking up too much time?’”

There are tips on beauty and exercise in the Bringing Sexy Back area as well as information on products she likes.

In the Favorite Things section, Dunn talks products she likes for kids and parents, while in the Home and Garden section she offers information about cooking, cleaning, among other things such as articles on Full Circle Farms and homemade popcorn or even how to make your own laundry detergent.

“Then I have Family Celebrations with tips for birthday parties or things to do around Christmas time,” she said. “I also have a Mini Mom Adventure section... on little fun things to do with your kids. It’s so easy to get in the rhythm. You’ve got to break out of that mold so it doesn’t feel like Groundhog Day.”

This project has helped Dunn find balance. It’s important for her to be a mom but also still be true to what she loved before her son was born.

“This is one of my big things right now,” Dunn said. “I feel like being a stay at home mom right now is challenging. Moms who stay at home kind of whisper under their breath because they’re embarrassed. It’s a balancing act. I don’t know the right answer. I feel like everybody has to figure out the right answer for them.”

In some ways, her site has been a substitute for girl time, something she described as crucial for moms, “for your own sanity, you have to get away and have some time with other women.”

She is also exploring options for acting projects and has some possibilities in the future after going on an audition recently.

“Just going there for that audition lit a fire in me that I had tried to suffocate a little bit,” she said. “It was this ache that was kind of in me that just never went away. I went and just having the adventure of going there and the possibility of getting the job, it was exciting to me.”

If she does get an acting job, Dunn added, “I will cross that bridge when I come to it.”

For now she is working on promoting Mom Around Town as she works to expand viewership and whatever opportunities go along with that.

“My ideas of where I want it to go has changed as time has gone on,” she said. “I’m kind of living in the moment with it right now. Each week I pick something to write about and it gives me something to dream about and write about it. I just look forward to doing that.”

Check out Dunn's site at https://www.momaroundtown.com/.


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