The idea for kidHavengot started shortly after we moved to Connecticut and needed to simply fill our days. Having relocated after nearly a decade in the Midwest, our move to the East coast was big. Exciting, but big. With no friends and no relatives close by, we were starting from scratch…with a toddler, no less.
In the beginning, we mostly went from playground to playground looking…hoping for new friends. But once Fall turned to Winter, my evenings were dedicated to googling any term I could think of to help me find indoor kid-friendly activities in the area. In time, we started to make friends (phew!) and began to have a nice list of activities to keep us fulfilled. Well, it’s no secret that I like lists. And my list of kid-things-to-do ranks as one of my most cherished.
The real spark for kidHaven came when we were making a quick trip to a nearby city. The night before, I was…um…googling any term I could think of to help us find kid-friendly activities in the area. I came across kidoinfo.com, an incredible site that was a clearinghouse of kid-related information specific to Providence, RI. Within minutes – voila! – our trip was planned.
Well, it was after that trip that I started to have website-envy. I WANTED A WEBSITE LIKE THAT FOR WHERE I LIVE, GOSH DARN IT! I’d say that’s when the idea began to brew. Plus, my list of kid-activities was growing and I found myself sharing my “exciting new discoveries” with anyone that would listen – at the playground, at the library, wherever. It’s one way I connect with other moms and dads, but it also often results in really interesting conversations beyond the superficial playground topics.
kidHaven for me is a personal record of the many lists I rely upon as a parent of an extraordinary toddler and new baby. With a traveler’s perspective, kidHaven will be filled with thoughts about places not just in New Haven, but all around Connecticut. I was born a traveler and it’s just the way I go about things. And everything else, well, you can count on that being a great big mix of ideas I’ve accumulated as a mother, a teacher, a traveler, and a crafter with an endless list of projects.
So, welcome to kidHaven. It’s my hope that these ever-growing lists of ideas you find here on kidHaven inspires your own journey with kids!
I appreciate every ounce of your support and encouragement. Many, many thanks. ~kim
“I love your website. What a fountain of information!” ~Irena, Bethany, CT
“Thank you for all of the valuable information and we look forward to your posts filled with delightful humor and inspiration.” ~Laura, Milford, CT
“I love it!! So creative and innovative. I wish I had kids in Connecticut!” ~Zoe, Morgantown, NC
She’s The Mother of kidHaven as featured in the New Haven Register
kidHaven – the answer to those long days at home as blogged about by Motherland in the New Haven Advocate
Just Outside of kidHaven, Parents Will Find greenHaven as featured in the New Haven Register
Green Mama: greenHaven
greenHaven’s own “Green Mama” is a local parent doing the best she can to raise her toddler with sustainability in mind. She first got involved with green efforts while working at a local university and found that she really enjoys learning and sharing green knowledge, especially time and money-saving tricks! She looks forward to hearing tips and ideas, from readers.
Mira Debs: schoolHaven
Mira is chasing after her preschooler, baby and is a Yale Sociology PhD student. She got the idea for schoolHaven after using the Berkeley Parents Network website, and felt that New Haven should have its own version, particularly to help new arrivals. Education has long been a passion: she taught high school History and English for five years at Acton-Boxborough Regional High School and the MATCH Charter Public High School in Boston and trained as a teacher in the village schools of Eynsham and Brackley in England.
schoolHaven organizing committee:
Kenna Barrett, Kimberly Garley-Erb, Eliza Halsey, Elisabeth Kennedy, Marc Levinson, Michelle Morgan, Andy Quintman, Diane Purvin
Yelp! School Parents Dish as published by the New Haven Independent
Hamden Woman Launches Website That’s a Haven for Resources about Schools as published by the New Haven Register
Jess: Weekend Highlights & Community Calendar
Christina Cioci: Crafts
Christina is the head teacher and social media coordinator at The Painted Pomegranate, an experiential learning center in Woodbridge, CT. She graduated from Southern Connecticut State University in 2010 and soon after began her freelance career as a writer. Crafting and art are a couple of her passions that join together her love of children and creativity. As an eco-minded person, Christina hopes to show others the ease of “going green” through her work as a teacher and a writer
Beth Clay: Books
Beth is the Marketing Director at Just the Right Book, matching books and readers daily. After studying South American literature at UConn, she got an MBA and worked in Brand Management for many years while raising her three kids. She’s also been a Girl Scout leader and Destination Imagination coach.
Dan Finkel: Music
Dan is currently pursuing a PhD in Anthropology at UConn, studying human evolution and behavior as they relate to music, religion, and social cognition. He has been an educator in a number of settings, including Outdoor Educator, Adult Educator, High School Science Instructor, and most recently Parent (which is probably more of a student role than a teacher role, to be honest). Dan has several passions: his family, science, outdoor education, and music. He is an amateur musician (bass) and a life-long fan of many types of music. Dan is looking forward to sharing this passion for music with the kidHaven community.
Amanda Levitt, ND: Ask the Doc
Amanda M. Levitt, ND has been practicing as a board certified naturopathic physician for over 10 years, applying her expertise in nutrition, herbal medicine, and other natural therapies to treat digestive problems, women’s health issues, pediatric conditions, and a wide range of general health concerns. Dr. Levitt is an owner and practicing physician at Whole Health Natural Family Medicine in Hamden, CT. Dr. Levitt has three beautiful children and a wonderfully supportive husband.
Aviva Luria: Old Mom, Young Child
Aviva Luria recently created the blog Old Mom, Young Child, which can be found at omyc.wordpress.com, a glimpse into the mind of a sometime writer who became a mom at the ripe age of 42. Aviva, who has a bachelor’s degree in philosophy and a master’s in English and creative writing, has published work in an array of places, from The San Francisco Examiner and The National Post (one of Canada’s national newspapers) to the literary journals The Mississippi Review, Kalliope, and Grain, and the magazine Canadian Living. A radio junkie, she also contributed stories to a couple of CBC radio programs. (That’s in Canada, eh?)
Having grown up on Long Island, she has lived in London; San Francisco, Berkeley, and Davis, California; Ontario, Canada; and other odd and wonderful places. She lives with her husband, a physics professor, and their son, born in 2007, who is the wonder and light of her life.
Joe Meade: Coaches Corner
Joe, a retired NYC Transit Police Officer, now co-owns Milford Pedicab. In addition, he has spent the last 20 years coaching basketball at both the high school and college levels and is the founder of the Hoopskills Basketball Clinic where he enjoys teaching young people about the values of sportsmanship, teamwork and the quality of effort. Currently, Joe coaches the boy’s basketball team at Jonathan Law High School in Milford. He is married to his beautiful wife Soledad and has 3 children, Isabela, Soledad and Joey III.
Kristen Miller: Pregnancy & Childbirth
Kristen Miller received her Masters degree in Exercise Physiology from the University of New Mexico. She is a certified exercise physiologist and personal trainer with over twelve years of experience. Kristen’s focus is on preparing women for childbirth and beyond by strengthening the muscles used during labor and teaching women how to use them correctly. Kristen is currently offering a pre-natal class at Blend for Kids in Branford, CT. She also does private and small-group in home pre and post-natal conditioning and meditation. Please check her website for more information:www.ppnatalconditioning.com
Stephanie Nash: Definitely Not Perfect, but Mostly Together Mom
Stephanie Nash is a mother of two: a brainy, hilarious nine-year-old son and a fearlessly awesome five-year-old daughter. A former English teacher, she is an editor for a small trade magazine, and a freelance marketing and PR writer/consultant. Someday, she will finish her YA fiction novel. Stephanie has a BA in Communications and English (with a minor in Theatre) from Fairfield University, plus a boatload of graduate credits that somehow do NOT equal a Master’s degree.
Stephanie, her husband and the kids share a charming and only slightly chaotic old cape with a ridiculous amount of pets. Join her as she chronicles her journey as a Definitely Not Perfect, but Mostly Together Mom.
Christa O’Brien: The Table of Promise
Christa O’Brien lives in New York City with her husband and her two very energentic little boys. She believes in real traditional foods, living without modern processed foods and cooking with kids. In addition to working full time she blogs about cooking and eating real food at The Table of Promise: One Family’s Search for a Better Meal.