Meet Allie! - Stamford Moms

How many kids do you each have and what are their ages?
I have a 4- year-old son and a 9-month-old daughter.

What are your favorite family activities in Stamford?
I know I’m not the first to mention Stamford Nature Center but it really is such a gem. We go there all the time and never tire of it, plus there’s always an event or program going on to give us a new reason to visit. Bartlett Arboretum and Newman Mills Park are our favorites for family hikes. I love taking my son to Honey Joe’s, and West Beach is our go-to for off-season beach days or evening pizza picnics by the water.

What do you like about living in this area?
Without a doubt, I love the mix of city and suburban life and the incredible sense of community. When my husband and I moved here with our son from Brooklyn we were so worried that we’d miss city-living: the coffee shops, restaurants, events & entertainment, but to be honest, we have access to all of that here and so much more. I love that we can still enjoy those things, but we can also raise our family on a quiet cul de sac and be at the beach or in nature within 15 mins. However, it’s really the people that I’ve met here, the friendships and the community of moms who help and support each other that makes me never want to leave.

Tell us about Scribble Dabble Creative Studio.
Scribble Dabble Creative Studio is a pop-up art & creative play studio for kids ages 2+.

I deeply believe in the practice of art & creativity and how valuable it is for children (and adults too, if I’m being honest). When I reflect on my 30+ years as an art student, I can see that the greatest value I got out of those countless classes, instructors, mediums, and a costly degree has nothing to do with art or the career path it led me on. It’s the lessons I learned and skills I honed from regularly engaging in creativity: flexibility, resilience, creative problem-solving, experimentation, the ability to look at things from different perspectives, celebration of uniqueness…I could go on and on. Not to mention investing time into anything creative has always brought me joy, it’s something that I get lost in and makes me feel authentically me.

It’s this reflection & understanding that guides my way of facilitating and it’s what I hope to share with others.

How did you come up with the idea?

The idea has sort of been growing in the back of my mind for a long time but a series of life events and conversations had to happen for me to finally take the first step.

It started with a mom friend who casually mentioned that she always loved art as a kid but was never good at it so she gave it up. I’ve heard some version of this so many times and it makes me die a little inside because there is literally no way to be bad at art and what a tragedy that my friend has been missing out on something that she loves.

Then I caught up with a family member over coffee who lamented about how his kids struggle to keep themselves entertained at home and how they’re bored if they’re not in a scheduled activity.

I realized that too many people give up on art because they come to believe they’re not “good” at it in some traditional sense, and that there may be kids who could really benefit from a space where they’re challenged to use their imaginations and exercise their creative muscles more regularly. It wasn’t until that point that I acknowledged that what I love, and what I love sharing with my own child, could in fact be valuable to share with others.

Where can families find your classes?
You can find all upcoming classes at Drop-in classes are currently released at the start of each month and announced on Facebook and Instagram (@scribbledabblestudio).

What are your favorite activities to keep your kids busy at home?
Sensory bins and recycled materials (e.g., paper towel roll rockets, diaper box turned robot costume) seem to be the 4-year-old favorites right now. We’re at the point where my son has a lot of his own ideas and likes having more control, so he often will dictate what materials he wants/needs from the art closet.

Watercolor paints are still my go-to for those, “I just need 20 minutes to do ____” moments. If you have a white crayon, white paper and a set of Crayola watercolors, you have everything you need for a fun (and educational) activity that you can use over and over.

How do you juggle work and mommyhood?
I’m laughing as I answer this because me 2 years ago would be giving a totally different answer. My answer today is pretty simple – I ask for help and I accept it when it’s offered.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve gotten from another mom?
When you try to do everything yourself, try to figure it all out and juggle alone, you’re essentially putting yourself in solitary confinement. Basically, the worst punishment that could be placed on any human, we do as women and mothers to ourselves all the time. “Stop doing that” was the advice.

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