Your NYC Neighbor – is a way of introducing New Yorkers to a rich community of savvy parents. New York is a diverse City bustling with all kinds of families and personalities. We also love to grab tips and recommendations from moms and dads in certain neighborhoods and throughout the 5 Boroughs, and especially people who have created a product, service or site that helps new parents or appeals to children. Meet Michelle from Juniors Fresh.
Tell us a bit about yourself.
Originally I’m from a small farm town in Western Illinois. My mom was a professional baker and loved to cook. One of my favorite memories is helping make her famous chicken soup with homemade noodles. I had the important task of rolling the dough, cutting them into 1/2 inch segments and carefully unrolling each one of them to be included in her made-from-scratch broth. All the while we were either listening to gospel or Motown – whatever it was, there was dancing involved. She was a single mom, so looking back I always marvel at how she was able to set aside the time to make us a meal I knew was full of love, while finding a way to get us involved in the kitchen.
My family rarely had the opportunity to travel, but I’ve always had a gypsy heart. So when I had the chance, I left the cornfields and train tracks of my hometown and headed for the sunshine and beaches of Florida. Then I moved to the city and the excitement of DC where I learned about the service industry. And, more importantly, met my future husband, Hunter (an Upper West Sider – what!). We took an opportunity to explore the wild West and lived in Scottsdale AZ for three years. After that, I moved to NYC while Hunter attended business school upstate at Cornell. We been here ever since 2004 – I can’t believe it’s been 10 years!
Tell us about your biz.
This is an amazing story really, because we began as one of two fresh baby food delivery services in Manhattan.
Our approach was affordable fresh food for your baby using locally sourced and organic ingredients. This philosophy really resonated with parents all over Manhattan because they begged us to design a menu beyond the purees and textures we were preparing weekly for their children.
We collaborated with award winning Chef Elisabeth Weinberg (and Chopped! champion) and came up with our independent eaters and toddlers lines. Parents began sending our meals to preschool with their children. Other parents took notice and next thing you know teachers and administrators are calling us to do their school lunch programs! Today, Junior’s Fresh is the only company in the US focused on providing healthy food for happy kids in the 0 – 5 years old set.
We’re also the only boutique pre-k meal provider in NYC. For everything we do we offer a personalized service with high attention to detail and quality. We want every child to be happy and for their parents lives to be made easier. All this growth just by listening to what our market needed the most.
There are two plan for babies: pure 4-months + ($32:95) and texture 9-months + ($32:95)
Why do you love living and working in NYC?
It’s always easy to get into something in NYC, especially with the children. Hunter and I are as busy as most parents in the City, so we don’t always have the time to plan out the boy’s days and weekends. It’s expensive living in the City! So being able to walk a couple blocks south to Washington Square Park and see an amazing pianist who has somehow managed to tote a grand piano to the park, visit a playground, let the boys chase huge bubbles and watch different artists at work – all for free – is what city living is all about. Then the next day we can head north to Madison Square Park and have a completely different experience.
What advice would you give (brand new) City parents?
There are tons of online resources to help you find worthwhile activities for kids from newborns on up to grade school. The parks and libraries in particular offer a lot of free story hours, crafts and music activities that let you get out of the house no matter the weather. Find a local community center that best suits your family for interaction on all levels. I found it difficult and a little lonely being an NYC parent at first. But once I found my niche, everything was so much easier.
Tell us about any new developments giveaways specials or upcoming events.
The most special giveaway we’re doing right now is for the Baby Does NYC community. Just use the code bdnyc14 when you place your order at juniorsfresh.com and you’ll get 30% off your first Junior Bundle! Join the party and Get Fresh with Junior!
Join our FREE members list and get 30% off this service.