Hi! I’m Karli McNeill (she/her) and I am excited and nervous to join the Detroit Mom team to serve YOU and all moms living in southeast Michigan. I’m here to share my experiences as a food-allergy mom, multiple mental health diagnoses mom, and fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants mom. My mind is a constant stream of thoughts–putting the puzzle pieces of each day together, managing emotions of every living being in my house, and having epiphanies about work projects, all while my favorite song of the day plays underneath.
I care deeply about my friends and family, but sometimes struggle to return a text or phone call to them. I’m a postpartum anxiety and depression survivor, have ADHD superpowers, and have a well-managed panic disorder. I love taking in information from every source I can and using it wherever it is useful. I hope you’ll feel connected to my stories, not because you may have shared my same experiences, but because you can relate to the feelings, emotions, and trains of thought that chugga-chugga through my head and onto your screen.
What Keeps Me . . . Me!
When I’m not chasing down a kid or working my day job as an engineer, I relax with a hot bath and a good book on my kindle (shoutout to Farmington Public Library and the Libby app!). On evenings where I am still on good terms with my own brain, you can find me playing a board game with my husband or having a porch drink with our neighbors.
Baking is a long time hobby of mine. I love baking delicious treats for the family (including adjusting for any allergens!). Christmas Cookiepalooza is something I do with my mom every year, a tradition for her since before I was born!
I am passionate about mental health and will be the first person to listen to my friends vent about whatever issue is causing extra stress or anxiety. It truly fills my cup to help others solve those issues. I try my hardest to spend time with my friends and fruzzins (cousins who are friends). Sometimes it’s a girls night off and sometimes it’s just parenting chaos under the same roof. My friends keep me grounded and looking at my true north–I don’t know where I would be without them.
My husband Trevor and I met in 2008 at my cousin’s 21st birthday party. From the moment we met, I just knew there was something special between us. We’ve gone to countless Michigan football games (still have season tickets!), Cedar Point trips, and have spent many hours driving in the car for whatever adventure we are pursuing. It’s been an amazing 14 year relationship with him, and we will celebrate our seventh wedding anniversary in May 2023! We try to take two kid-free long weekends a year. And, at the top of our bucket list is seeing a baseball game at every MLB stadium.
We have two amazing sons, Malcolm (4.5) and Mayer (almost 3). They are energetic, full of imagination and rowdiness, and wake up entirely too early. They are named after my dad and my husband’s dad, who both passed away from lung cancer in 2016. Our sons’ personalities match their namesakes to a tee. So much so, that it is eerie and comforting at the same time. Mayer has eight food allergies–some life-threatening–and I have seen signs of my own neuro-diversities in Malcolm. I’m sure you’ll hear about it in my posts as time goes on!
We are getting into the chapter of life that is run by kids’ activities and a detailed calendar. It’s intimidating but exciting. We love going to Carpenter Lake Nature Preserve right near our home and playing in the backyard. But most weeknights, a good Disney show is what we all need to wind down together. Our dog Moony (a corgi/dachshund/sheltie mix) provides tons of snuggles and rounds out our crew.
I grew up in Saginaw, where much of my family still lives. I have three older siblings and nine nieces and nephews, many of whom can be found at my house on any given weekend. My grandma lived with my parents and I through middle school and high school, and my upbringing is solidly rooted in the Mexican culture and strong Latina women that surrounded me with my mom, grandma, and tías.
The privileges and lifestyle I have now are not lost on me. I know it was built off the hard work and perseverance of those before me. I am doing my best to raise my children to be empathetic and strong, who aren’t afraid to speak up against the wrongs that they see. This includes leading by example, and teaching them to see things that affect people who don’t look like them. Diversity, equity, and inclusion are foundational to how I make decisions in my life.
I have loved living in Farmington Hills the past six years. Downtown Farmington gives us the local food and farmers market scene that we loved from our Ann Arbor college days, the parks and playgrounds in the area are perfect for our kids, and it’s just a short drive to downtown Detroit. We love seeing concerts at St. Andrew’s Hall and visiting the Michigan Science Center. I thoroughly enjoy a good drink and friendly conversation at The Brakeman. I am so excited to be a writer for Detroit Mom and look forward to what unfolds!