Chapter Leaders


Local Mom Groups - Meet with MomsRobin Gorman Newman, NYC & Long Island Chapter
Michelle Caplan, Fairfield County, CT/Westchester, NY Chapter
Jean Marie Keenan-Johnston, Bucks County, PA Chapter
Chris Thompson, Los Angeles, CA Chapter
Amy Wall Lerman, Northern New Jersey Chapter
Genny Jones, Kent, United Kingdom Chapter
Carolyne Blaschek McNabney, Toronto Chapter
Michelene Irving, Greenville, SC Chapter
Heather Boser – Raleigh, NC Chapter
Wendy McCallister – Antelope Valley, CA Chapter
Nicole Harper – Huntsville, AL Chapter
Lisa Spahr – St. Louis, MO Chapter
Ruth Delossantos – Fredericksburg, Va Chapter
Renee Divine — Minneapolis, MN Chapter
Lisa Naidoo – San Diego, CA Area Chapter
Rebecca Foster — New South Wales, Australia Chapter
Meng Fong — Singapore Chapter


Robin Gorman NewmanNYC & Long Island Chapter

Founder, MotherhoodLater.com

Robin became a mom at age 42, and it changed her life in ways she couldn’t have imagined. When her son was less than a year old and in a mommy ‘n me program, she noted she felt different than younger moms. She had more life experience, and yearned to connect with peers where age was an asset not an issue. Looking around for mom groups to meet her needs, she found nothing, and hence, Motherhood Later…Than Sooner (MLTS) was born. She has since made lifelong friends through the organization, as have other later mom members and chapter heads.

A work at home mom, Robin is also Associate Producer of Motherhood Out Loud that had a successful Off Broadway run at Primary Stages in NYC and is touring. As a Love Coach and author, How to Meet a Mensch in NY and How to Marry a Mensch (being adapted for the stage), she has made appearances at shows including Dinner with Friends and I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change. She’s been seen on CNN and The Today Show and has spoken at Canyon Ranch and Mohonk Mountain House. She is a member of The American Society of Journalists and Authors and has a background in public relations and a Masters in Marketing. She is also founder of the Independent Business Women’s Circle, a social networking group for enterprising women based in NY. Her work may be found at www.lovecoach.com.

Robin is the founder of MotherhoodLater.com and runs the New York City & Long Island chapter of Motherhood Later…Join it at Meetup.com: New York City/Long Island


Michelle CaplanFairfield County, CT/Westchester, NY Chapter

I didn’t plan to become a first time mom after 35. And I didn’t plan not to be a mom for the first time after 35. I met my husband when I was in college at 19, and we married when we were just 24. Having a family was something I always wanted, but we put off starting in anticipation of a time in the future when our lives would be more settled. My husband was in medical training, and I was refining my skills as a holistic therapist, writer and editor and developing/running two businesses. Years slipped by quickly without our sitting down to say now is the time.

An unexpected medical condition arose, in our thirties, which complicated our ability to get pregnant. We also suffered several losses. But, I never doubted that we’d ultimately welcome a child into our lives. Our son, Sasha, was born when I was 40, and I have never been happier, more fulfilled or energized. I still edit and evaluate manuscripts; coach women on their motherhood journeys, and write the blog Woman Seeking Mother chronicling my mother quest. I am also hoping for a second child.

I believe that we all bring unique experience to motherhood, whether it comes sooner or later. I look forward to fostering and growing the Westchester, NY chapter of Motherhood Later, to promote socialization, support and community.


Jean Marie

Jean Marie Keenan-JohnstonBucks County, PA Chapter

At age 36, mine was the life found in dreams! I met my husband, a teacher and former Army man, on Match.com. Anxious for children, we were elated to learn we were expecting shortly after our wedding. I had found my dream job as a teacher, and my two siblings, a brother and sister, were also expecting! In one year, my parents welcomed four grandbabies, and we were all thrilled! Our own little family of furbabies (two cats) grew when we brought home Mackenzie, an adorable Bichon pup who stole our hearts (another dream I was waiting to make happen in adulthood). Life was following a perfect path until a curve ball hit…

I was diagnosed with severe fibromyalgia when my baby was eight months old. I lost my dream job when I was permanently disabled from work only months into my pregnancy. Other health problems followed that limited what I could do with my children as well as my hobbies and interests. One blessing came to us despite all this; our daughter Jessie, who is now 3 years old. My oldest daughter, Kerrianne (now almost 5) had a sibling after almost two years of worry that it wouldn’t happen. Then, I was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer just before my 40th birthday. However, after a year of treatment to include chemotherapy, a double mastectomy, radiation, and continuing Tamoxifen, I’m happy to report that I’m enjoying life in remission! Today, as I celebrate each day as a cancer survivor, I live life looking for the positive and support others raising children despite chronic pain and cancer through my Facebook page and blog. Princesses, Playdates and Parents In Pain seeks to support chronic pain patients and their caregivers and provide information they may find useful in their daily lives as parents.

I’m excited to serve as the Chapter Head for the Bucks County, PA Chapter of Motherhood Later! My entire family has been blessed to have moms’ groups be an important part of our lives. The support we’ve received as well as the wonderful social events we’ve attended have helped us maintain a fun life filled with friends, despite the limitations imposed by my health. I’m grateful to have the opportunity to pay it forward and share that with moms who join the Bucks County Chapter!


Chris ThompsonLos Angeles, CA Chapter

Many are surprised to learn that our first child was conceived through IVF after 25 years of marriage. While some perceive it as late, Sarah is our miracle girl and the sunshine of our lives.  We also have two identical twin boys, Ryland and Dylan, born December 22, 2009.  My husband and I always wanted three children, and while it seemed it was not in the cards for us, funny how things sometimes work out.  Although life is crazy, we have the family I’ve always dreamed of.

I feel very fortunate to be a SAHM. I’ve seen my children’s every first. I never thought I’d be one of those moms who gets all mushy over the little things, but every milestone has been an incredible experience. Before Sarah, I had a working life, I owned my own business for many years. I had a Gourmet, Coffee and Gift store, as well as a Concierge service that catered to the Entertainment Industry for 14 years. I sold in 2003 to focus on becoming pregnant.

Having a group like Motherhood Later is so important to me. I need to have a connection with women like myself, who know the joys and tribulations of being an older mommy; who share the same ideas of raising children; who may have the answers if I don’t or are there just to chat. It’s great to have a support system and the opportunity to socialize.


Amy Evans NJ

Amy Wall LermanNorthern New Jersey Chapter

Amy Wall Lerman gave birth to her son Evan Peter when she was 42 years old. With a 20 year career in television news behind her, she didn’t think a child would be in the cards for her. After two rounds of failed IVF attempts, Amy was ready to throw in the towel, but her optimistic husband insisted that “third time’s a charm” and it turns out, he was right. Evan was born in November 2007 and is the joy of their lives.

In addition to her work in television, Amy is the author of several instruction books including, “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Family Games” and the “Complete Idiot’s Guide to Critical Reading.” She has also published her poetry in Patchwork, an online literary journal.  She is executive editor of Baby Bloomer, the monthly ezine for MotherhoodLater.com.


Genny, Kent, UK

Genny JonesKent, United Kingdom Chapter

My full name is Genevieve, but most people call me Genny.

I got married at the aged of 37, and it was a shock to many of my friends, as they used to call me the original single girl. I spent my life before marriage on my career, traveling and having fun. I met my then husband at the age of 36, and within six months we got engaged ,and six months later got marriage. I am now 48 years old, divorced and have two boys aged 8 and 10.

I work full time as a bookkeeping home tutor, and run my part time confidence building training company. Additionally, I have set up two charities “Lone Parents Can” and “Confident Children”, with the aim of making a difference in people’s life. I also contribute articles to various websites.

My simple message to other mums is that success in life can only be achieved by getting rid of negative beliefs, and replacing them with positive visions and aspirations. Take control of your life, and make a difference. Pursue one positive action each day, and your dreams will indeed come true.


Carolyne Blaschek McNabneyToronto Chapter

I am a bit of a cheat, I was actually a young mother, having my first child at age 20, and for over 20 years, I thought that this was “it”  for me. I was a single mom, and, although I had family supports, boyfriends, and a busy social life I was busy also working full time as well as 2-3 part time jobs  just to make ends meet. I was stressed out, feeling guilty that I was not home enough, but feeling I had no options.  I then decided to do something about my perceived rut, and I started with a life overhaul. I continued to work so I could pay my mortgage, but began attending College, and then University, ultimately settling into a career in Social Work that I considered my dream job. I was a good mother, but by no means a calm mother, and my daughter was and still is a source of love and support in my life. Once I finally felt that I had achieved my career goals, setting us up for some degree of financial stability I moved on to phase two- find a suitable mate, one that I would love and trust and move forward in life with. This actually took a lot longer than I initially thought it would. There are so many frogs…and not so easy to do when I was already in my mid/late 30′s.  Eventually I looked online, and when all seemed bleak, I found the man of my dreams. We went on out first blind date, which lasted hours and from then on we became inseparable. We married two years later, and then *BAM* had our baby, for me, at age 41. I found motherhood this time around so much more challenging, yet rewarding in so many ways. I now have the life experience and patience to deal with parenting, but I can give myself permission to just enjoy the time spent with my little one. I look forward to the times ahead and that it enriches my life on a daily basis! The downside is the tiredness, coupled with being back to work, daycare illnesses, the stress of keeping the house quiet enough for the little one to sleep…but I wouldn’t change a thing. The love and joy of being a parent, seeing the look of excitement from my little one experiencing things for the first time, makes it all  worthwhile!

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Michelene Irving

Michelene IrvingGreenville, SC Chapter

I’m 41 and have always been a “traditional” woman. I wanted to wait until I got married to have children. So I waited….and waited….and waited. The right man didn’t come along until I was 37. Amazingly enough, he was a high school sweetheart. We reconnected, I moved to Greenville and 2 years late,r we had our beautiful son, Rhys.

I graduated from culinary school in NYC specializing in Pastry Arts. In my spare time (what’s that?) I love to bake, and my son loves to eat. I work part-time and occasionally I get to sleep. I’m so happy I waited to be a “mom of advanced age”. He was totally worth the wait and is the most amazing little boy ever!

 

 


Heather Boser – Raleigh, NC Chapter

My husband and I met in 1996 and have been married since 1999. We have the kind of easy going marriage – best friends. You know, the kind that when we first met, we thought we knew each other in some other life. We were very happy, just the two of us … living in South Florida. Add a cute little dog in 2003. Careers were moving along. Life was status quo.

About six years into our marriage, we decided to start a family, and life took us on an unexpected and wild journey of ups and downs. Over the next five years, we experienced such heart-wrenching losses that we thought after each one, we’d not try again. It was just too much. And, as much hurt and pain that brought to our hearts, it also brought us closer than we even thought possible. There is something to be said about getting to “the belly of the whale” with someone you love and somehow finding your way through. My life lesson takeaways? Keep searching for the light, take one step at a time, trust the journey, life really is good.

We decided to move from South Florida to Raleigh, NC for a fresh start. Even though life tossed some more challenges when we got here, things eventually fell into place. We bought a house and were overjoyed when we found out we were expecting.

Because of our history, we were heavily monitored the entire pregnancy. At age 40, we had our beautiful, healthy baby. When our doctor announced, “It’s a girl!!!” I could hardly see her though all my tears of joy.  She is a precious gift and has changed our outlook on life.. We can’t even put into words the love we feel for this little girl (as I’m sure you all understand).

Seeking a social group with moms my own age,. I was pleased to find Motherhood Later. I look forward to meeting other local 35+ moms, heading up the Raleigh, NC chapter.

 


Wendy McCallister – Antelope Valley, CA Chapter

I have been happily married to my husband Owen for going on 27 years. We started off right away with our daughter, Lauri, born 13 months after our marriage; then a couple of years later came Scott in 1989, and we thought our family was complete. My husband retired from the air force, and we traveled and had a great life. We came back to California, and with the kids grown up, I decided to go back to school and get a degree. After graduating with a Bachelor’s in English, I started working on my teaching credentials when I found out I was pregnant at the age of 41. Jamie was born when I was 42. He is a very cherished and loved little boy. We found we have more patience than we did 20 years ago.

 

 

 

 


Nicole Harper – Huntsville, AL Chapter

My two-month-old daughter Madeline is a 12th anniversary gift for my husband and I.  I met my husband in the United Arab Emirates, where he was serving in a diplomatic position with the U.S. Army and I was an international art teacher.  Madeline is our first child together, after a tragic premature birth and death of twin boys in March of 2011.

We moved to the Huntsville, Alabama area from the Washington, D.C. area in the Fall of 2011, after a string of significant life events that included my earning a doctoral degree, completing an international research Fulbright Fellowship, accepting an academic position in Cleveland, and enduring the loss of our sons. The past five years have involved moving to six different cities in three countries. This upheaval of activity has been a very productive time, as well as chaotic. 

We plan to settle now and make Huntsville our long-term home. I am currently in the process of adjusting  to a new lifestyle,  identifying as a new mother, and finding ways to get myself and Madeline involved in all this great community has to offer.  I hope to connect with other women with similar life experience prior to motherhood and/or comparable current interests, by heading the chapter of Motherhood Later…Than Sooner in the Huntsville, Alabama area.

 


  

 Lisa Spahr – St. Louis, MO Chapter

Lisa Spahr owns Spahr Consulting, a professional development and small business coaching company, and is the author of several books. She has a master’s degree in psychology (from Liverpool England) and was previously an Investigative Scientist, a real-life “Clarice Starling” of sorts, and renowned researcher before becoming a mum. Now, she resides in St. Louis, Missouri with her husband Rob and is “mum” to Bahia (“B”) “almost 3”, and Philomina “Mimi” almost 1.5, (and Syrah Jayne, the rescued Airedale mix).

Lisa was a proud member of Motherhood Later in Pittsburgh before making the move to Missouri. She missed the connection with other mums her age and decided to start a chapter in St. Louis.

 

 

 

 

 


 

Rebecca Foster — New South Wales, Australia Chapter

Rebecca is a foster carer of two teens, Tarhlia and Tamara, and various other children too for short term placements. Having been a foster carer for five years, of children who were mostly calling her by her first name, playing a mentor role rather than a ‘Mum’ role, she made the choice at 38 years of age to become pregnant with the help of a donor. She now has a 15 month old boy, Harrison. It has been a challenge and a joy becoming a Mum of a baby late in life although still feeling quite young at heart. She is a teacher by training and her interests include theatre, writing and reading.

For interested older Mums, I’m happy to set up regular cups of coffee and tea sessions locally and playgroup type activities, among other gatherings.

Note: My photo shows Harry and I at his first theatre event – he loves theatre too!

 

 


 

Meng Fong — Singapore Chapter

 Meng became a mom at 37 and a single mom at 40. A year later, she decided to leave her high-flying corporate career to become a work at home mom.

Over the last half decade, fueled by a near obsessive nature to learn new things and not keep still; she has led many lives – realtor, forex trader, web developer.  She readily admits that she may not have been wildly successful at all ventures but she has learnt a lot more about herself and met lots of interesting people.

She started aforextradermom.com a blog about juggling forex trading and being a full time mom, and was featured as The Trader Mom on The Traders Podcast. With a strong interest in early childhood learning, she was recognized for her contribution at the Learning Support Reading Program at her son’s primary school. Last year she completed a term as a parent volunteer in IT lessons for Grade 1’s and 2’s.

She believes volunteering is great for the soul. She supports Food From The Heart – a group that is keen on avoiding food wastage through supplying food to the needy. More recently, she started volunteering as an  IT consultant at the Association of Women for Action and Research (aware.org.sg) – Singapore’s leading women’s rights group advocating against workplace discrimination and violence against women.

At 49, she is still surprised by the many twists and turns that life throws at her path. Ever the optimist, she’s excited to face all the new opportunities that are coming her way.

Being always the oldest mommy, she noticed that her child-rearing decisions and views were usually quite different from the other moms. She chanced upon motherhoodlater.com on a late night internet browsing session and jumped at the opportunity to become chapter head in Singapore. She hopes to find other mid-life moms to share experiences, support, to talk about kids and just have fun.

 


Ruth Delossantos – Fredericksburg, VA Chapter

I was told in my 20′s I’d never have children due to “unexplained infertility,” so you can imagine our surprise when our first child Megan came along in 2001 when I was 28. We tried for years afterwards to have more, but each pregnancy ended in miscarriage, and after 14 losses in 10 years, we gave up, but God knew my heart, heard my prayers and sent us another little girl in October 2012… just weeks shy of my 39th birthday. We were elated and would never in a million years guess that just a year later, I’d be expecting again! Baby girl number three is due in January, and we couldn’t be happier – or more shocked. I’ll be 40 when we bring this little one home.

I love being a stay at home, homeschool mom and can’t imagine working outside the home. Every milestone I’m there for, and although there are days when chaos rules, I wouldn’t trade it. Being an older mother is an advantage I cherish, and I’m thrilled God has planned my life the way he did, because I would have taken for granted all those things like midnight feedings, first smiles and giggles, crawling, walking, schooling, etc. if I had all my children in my 20′s. I’m more patient, and a bit wiser than I was 12 years ago when we brought our oldest daughter home, and I thank God for the opportunity to do it all over again and then again!

In my “free time”, I enjoy scrapbooking, blogging, swimming (more like floating lazily in the pool), picnics, BBQ’s, county fairs and festivals and anything that involves family. We love our church and are very active in different activities there. I’m a Jersey girl, born and raised, but have made my home here in Virginia where I think I was always meant to be, because there’s just enough country in me to fit in. I am blessed.


Renee Divine – Minneapolis, MN Chapter

Two days before her 44th birthday, Renee became a mom for the first time. She married later in life, and she and her husband were having challenges getting pregnant. They turned to Eastern medicine and, voila!, Ari came into their lives. During the first few weeks of her daughter’s life, she attended a mom’s group and felt the age gap between her and the other moms. She felt her life experience gave her a different perspective on being a first-time mom and wanted to learn and share from others riding the same wave. Renee went online and started looking for “older moms” groups and to her delight found MLTS. She was surprised there was no Twin Cities chapter and jumped on the opportunity to lead the charge. Renee is inspired by the stories of 35+ moms and dads who are parenting for the first time and wants to bring this community of parents together to share in the joy, challenges, and utter happiness of raising these little beings.

Renee has spent the majority of her professional career doing compliance advisement domestically and internationally. She recently obtained a masters degree in Marriage & Family Therapy and is a relationship and sex therapist at a group practice in Minneapolis.


LISAnaidooLisa Naidoo – San Diego, CA Area Chapter

I feel honored to be a mom to my son. After marrying later in life, we decided to wait a little. When we finally tried, we found it difficult. We ended up in multiple fertility clinics seeking treatment and IVF. When all failed after 4 years, we decided to give up and go on with our lives. After an exciting move to another state for work, we were surprised and thrilled to find ourselves pregnant after only one month! I was 42 at the time and have never taken our miracle for granted. I love watching him grow and change into his own person.

I have experience and interest in natural birth options and infertility support and am happy to share what I know. Recently, I relocated to the San Diego, CA area and am hoping that this group will allow me to connect with other women for support and friendship.