Max Ventilla of AltSchool is Taking Tech–and More–to the Classroom

by Lela Nargi What makes a career tech guy chomp at the bit to open his own elementary school? The “disheartening” experience of applying for preschool on behalf of his own daughter. “It’s insane,” says Max Ventilla, founder of AltSchool, a four-location network of independent micro-schools in San Francisco, the first of which he opened in September […]

Corinne Cannon of the DC Diaper Bank is Making a Difference from the Botton Up

By Dawn Van Osdell Corinne Cannon, an expert on the effects of care on infant brain development, is more skilled in handling babies than most people. But back in 2009, awake in the dead of night with her inconsolable, colicky first child, Jack, she felt as helpless and alone as every other mother in that […]

Meet Andrew Alford, Jeffrey Norberg, & Kate, Wicker Park, Chicago

by Lela Nargi When hotel designer Andrew Alford got an offer to pack up shop in hometown San Francisco and become chief creative officer for boutique chain Graduate Hotels, based in Chicago, he knew it would be a big transition (not least of all because of the weather). “It was definitely a change for our family,” says […]

Stephanie Morales & The Mother Nurture Center Offer a Respite Along the Parenting Path

By Dawn Van Osdell Stephanie Morales can peek out her living room window and get a good look at the old wood-shingled courthouse building on the South Bay’s Redondo Beach Pier. Inside its blue doors lies the Mother Nurture Center, which Morales founded in June 2014. The center is her dream come true. If you live […]

Are You Afraid? A Message to Daughters, From a Daughter

By Eliza Reynolds Are you afraid? I know that I am sometimes. There are moments when I have been so afraid of life beginning —like becoming-a-grown-up beginning—because then I might discover that I’m a failure, or a total disappointment, or maybe (whispers an especially dark part of my brain) never truly, fully lovable, except by my […]

Meet the Music-Loving Solares Family, Bucktown, Chicago

Photographed by Thomas M. Kubik | © 2015 TK Photography | www.tkphotographychicago.com

By Lela Nargi Jessica Solares and her husband, Luis, don’t just teach music in Chicago’s creative epicenter; they live music, too. Parents to 3-1/2-year-old Lucia, who attends preschool at Bucktown Academy, near the Solares’ Bucktown Music studio, the two met at Elmhurst College, where they both studied Music Business —a major Jessica describes as “odd” and also uninspiring when […]

Colette Linton-Meyer’s Cobble Hill Ballet is the Happiest Ballet School in Brooklyn

by Lela Nargi There are some obvious differences between the rural Midlands of England, where Colette Linton-Meyer grew up, and brownstone Brooklyn, NY, where she and her family now make their home. Cows, for starters. Cowsheds, for another—including the converted cowshed in which, at age 3, she was introduced to dance by a beloved teacher […]

Meet Belinda Garza, Matt Hartwig & Graciela, Petworth, Washington, DC

By Christina Bruce The last “first” time that Belinda Garza and Matt Hartwig met, they were at an engagement party, seated at opposite ends of a large table. Noticing a tall and handsome stranger, Belinda elbowed her friend and whispered, “Who’s that?” She also noticed how much fun the guests on his side of the […]