Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Spotlight on Mom -- Venessa Banks of Kidable Adventures

Like most businesses and inventions, Kidable Adventures was created out of a need.  Venessa Banks, mother to an active little boy was on the hunt for fun creative activities that her hands-on child could do that were not only fun, but educational as well.  Not finding what she was looking for, she decided to create adventures boxes for kids, to meet the needs of her growing child, as well as other parents and grandparents out there.  And, with that Kidable Adventures and the Little Thinker Box was born.

I was like Venessa and have been looking for creative activities to do with my girls.  But, even though I am a stay-at home mom, I don't have the extra free time to put together kits like Venessa offers, let alone run to the craft store or other store buying supplies needed for a given activity.  

This past Christmas, my mom's meet up group participated in a busy kits swap, where we each had to create fun activities for the 5 other families, as well as one for ourselves. The kits would include all the supplies needed, instructions,etc., all placed in a resealable gallon size bag.  Then, we got together and exchanged the busy kits, so that during the winter break and holidays, the kids would have fun activities to do, while not burdening the parents with having to come up with fun activities to keep little ones busy and entertained.  My girls loved these kits, and I made a point to look for them in the new year.  But, of the kits I found, none really kept their attention, or helped them with developmental learning, which I was hoping for.

I didn't give up my search, and was glad I didn't because this is when I stumbled across Venessa's Kidable Adventures website and fell in love with her monthly subscription box for kids.  

Here is a video that Venessa has shared on her Kidable Adventures YouTube Channel that explains more about her Little Thinker Box and reason for starting her business...

After reaching out to Venessa, she graciously sent along a sample adventure box for me to share with the girls, as well as took time out of her busy schedule to complete my Spotlight Mom questions.

I couldn't wait to receive the Little Thinker Box and share it with the girls.  And, when it arrived, both the girls and I had a blast completing the different activities included in the activity box. 

Here is a quick YouTube video that gives you glimpse into a Little Think Box monthly subscription box.  This video showcases activities and items found in the March Rainbows themed box...

If you follow Kidable Adventures YouTube Channel, you will be able to find out what is in each month's Little Thinker Box.

Stay tuned on Friday, when I will share more about the Little Thinker Box I was sent for the girls to enjoy, as well as share a money saving promo code only for Inspired by Savannah.

In the meantime, please enjoy my Spotlight on Mom interview with Venessa Banks, creator of Kidable Adventures. :-)

Name: Venessa Banks
Company Name/Product/Service: Kidable Adventures; Products: Little Thinker Box and Kidables
Company Location: Athens, GA
Company Websitewww.kidableadventures.com
Age of Company6 months on May 1
Favorite Inspirational Quotes: I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
Favorite Book: Right People, Right Place, Right Plan

Tell us a little bit about yourself.  How many children do you have?  What are their ages? Your hobbies? Etc. 

I am married to the best man in the world, and we have one son. He is seven years old.
I work three jobs. I have a full-time job with the area convention and visitors bureau. I am the event planner for a regional kids expo, and I am CEO/Founder of Kidable Adventures. I am working on getting rid of that full-time job, but I know from experience, it is a good thing to have when you are trying to get a business going.

Briefly explain your business.  How did it come about?
Growing up, I loved school and loved learning. I did not want to miss a day of school. There was something about learning that excited me. Now, as a mom, I want my child to have that same excitement.

My son is an active little boy who responds better to hands-on creative ways of learning. Therefore, I am always looking for creative ways to keep him excited about learning, but sometimes a lack of time can hinder the best intentions. One day, after spending hours researching activities online, I wondered how many moms were experiencing the same struggle ̶̶ finding time to gather activities for their kids that were not just fun but educational, too. I knew I could not be the only mom experiencing this dilemma, so I decided to create Kidable Adventures.

Kidable Adventures creates hands-on educational products for kids that help them learn through creative play. We do all the work, so mom (or dad) won’t have to. Our mission is to create excitement about learning.

What is a typical work day like? 

I have a full-time job, too, so it is crazy. Really crazy! Often, you will find me up at 3:30 a.m. working on Kidable Adventures stuff. Sometimes I am up that late, working through the night, or sometimes I wake up that early to get an early start. It just depends on what’s going on.

What has been a struggle while starting up your company? 

Time and money!!! Being completely debt free is a big goal of my family, so I wanted to start the company and keep the company debt free, so that required me to wait a little longer to launch. I had to save a little at a time, until I had what I needed to launch. It was so hard being patient and waiting on the funds. When I originally decided to do this, there were not as many kid related subscription boxes as there are now. It was really hard watching all the others start, while I waited to accumulate the necessary funds. Also, working a full-time job makes start-up more complicated, time wise, but this allows me to put money made by the business back into the business until things get going good.

What did you do in your past work life? 

I worked at Walmart for over seven years. It was my first job. After college, I worked for the local government as a Management Analyst, conducting performance audits.

What have been some of your major successes? 

Developing and launching a regional magazine, women’s expo, kid’s expo, and Kidable Adventures.

What have been some of your major challenges? 

Finding time to do everything and managing that time well.

On those impossible days, what motivates you to keep going? 

The possibility of being able to do my business full-time!

What is your balancing secret in managing a business and family?

I have an awesome husband that helps a lot.  

What is next for your business? 

This year we are working on getting our name out there. There are still so many people that have not heard about us. Also, we will be adding more themes to our Kidable line.

Do you have any advice for other mom entrepreneurs that are starting out and struggling, or are on the fence about starting a business? 

For those on the fence about starting: pray about it, research it, and if it makes sense, just do it. The first step is always the hardest. For those who are doing it and struggling, you need to decide if it is a bad apple. If it is, you have to let it go. If not, keep fighting and don’t give up.

1 comment :

  1. My goodness this looks like such a fun thing for the kids.
    heather hgtempaddy@hotmail.com