Meet Our Indianapolis Moms: Janelle McDonald


Hey there, mamas!  I’m Janelle McDonald, and I wear a wide variety of hats in this crazy life that I’m living these days. I am a 6th-grade teacher by day (I love middle schoolers!), a mama to two precious kiddos (who are ten months and a day apart, Irish twins!), a wife, dog mom, former coach and maybe even a circus wrangler if you’ve ever been to my house, among other things. I thrive on chaos, love chocolate, and would live in sweatpants and hoodies if I could. I love listening to all types of music, driving with the windows down, and a fountain Coke Zero is my kryptonite.

I grew up in Gig Harbor, a small little fishing town about 45 minutes south of Seattle in the Pacific Northwest. I earned my Bachelor’s in Elementary Education and taught for a year before I decided to pack up and move clear across the country to Indianapolis–by myself! One of my dear friends, who I met in college, lived here, and I desperately needed a change of scenery. So on one cold January day, I left Washington with two suitcases and my sister who came to help me get moved in. My car and a container full of my stuff arrived several weeks later, and I intended to stay for a few years and head back home. As you can see, my plan went right out the window, and here I am (still), 15 years later.  

Photo by More Joy Photography

My husband Ryan and I were married in July 2014 and a few months later, discovered we were pregnant. However, shortly after finding out, we miscarried and were utterly devastated. Over the next year, we would go on to have two more miscarriages, which eventually was labeled “unexplained infertility.”  After multiple visits to specialists and doctors, and several different “game plans,” we ended up getting pregnant on our own with our son and in October 2017, our rainbow baby Brice came into this world. Much to our surprise, just a short ten weeks later, we discovered we were pregnant…again. So in August 2018, we welcomed our daughter Blake and began the journey of parenthood with two babies under 1. Life with our two crazies has been far from easy, but we are learning to embrace all of the phases as they come, knowing that as soon as we move out of one, the next one comes with a whole new set of challenges.  

I’ve been writing for Indianapolis Moms for just over two years now, and it has been a wonderful outlet as I navigate the trials and tribulations of motherhood.  I love being part of such an uplifting and talented group of moms and have rediscovered my love of writing in the meantime. We currently live on the southside of Indianapolis (Greenwood, to be more specific). In our free time, you can catch us playing outside, attending local festivals, listening to live music and eating delicious food (mostly take out right now–taking two toddlers out to eat is a nightmare!) I am looking forward to walking alongside all you fabulous mamas as we trudge through this wild and crazy adventure of motherhood!

Photo by More Joy Photography