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Our Story

Who We Are

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It’s the thing that at the end of the day, when you’ve juggled the laundry, lunch, potty training, nap, dinner, 17 Zoom Meetings and bedtime--you think back on, and go, “Well at least I got to make that campfire nightlight with Vivie today. She loved that. She’s going to love putting it in her tent that we make together tomorrow.”
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I opened Le Village Cowork to make the balance of being a working parent easier in November 2019. I was so proud to be the first ever coworking space for parents in Chicagoland. At the start of March 2020, our coworking space was thriving–our classrooms were quickly filling and our parents were finding the community and support to also be thriving. I was thriving–newly liberated from corporate American and happily witnessing my daughter growing up under my nose and able to find fulfillment with my work. 

 

And then COVID hit. And it felt like overnight everything changed. I closed the space to keep our families safe. I took Vivie home. I was still working, but now I didn’t have my community or my amazing teachers to lean on like I did at Le Village Cowork. I found myself plugging Vivie into the TV to get a moment’s peace and some actual work done. And then the guilt would creep in. So I would stop to play with her. And I wanted to play with her, I did! But watching her push balls into a box, or stack circles on a peg was honestly–really boring, at least for me. So I’d find myself creeping back to my laptop or scrolling Instagram. And then I’d feel guilty again. And as the days crept into weeks, I realized I needed to find a better solution. 

 

One morning I woke up and texted one of our teachers. I am going bonkers. I wanna do something fun with Vivie today. What did we have planned at Le Village?

 

“Ummmm…it was supposed to be Birds week I think. I am also going crazy. Lemme send you some plans!” 

 

I was so happy to have something to DO with Vivie. And she was happy to have Mama’s unadulterated attention. 

Le Village Cowork reopened in June, but I still see a need as parents make a variety of decisions to survive in this new normal. After countless conversations with these desperate parents, I realized there was a way that we could still support them even though they may have made the tough decision to remain in their homes. And that’s where Le Village Unboxed comes in. 

 

So here we are. A few months later, and we are starting a whole new venture. Le Village Unboxed is not a toy. It’s not something you plug in or plop in front of them and walk away. Not that those things are bad–they are necessary and there are so many beautiful wonderful things out there for that! But this is not that. Le Village Unboxed is a way to create moments and connections with your child. It’s an engaging way to talk to them. To teach them. And to love them uninterrupted. It’s the thing that at the end of the day, when you’ve juggled the laundry, lunch, potty training, nap, dinner, 17 Zoom Meetings and bedtime–you think back on, and go, “Well at least I got to make that campfire nightlight with Vivie today. She loved that. She’s going to love putting it in her tent that we make together tomorrow.”

 

And you can sip your wine, tea, or beer, with a guilt-free, happy heart. With Le Village Unboxed, you can find balance at home. With Le Village Unboxed, you’ve got this working from home parenting thing down.

 

Good luck out there. It is BANANAS!

 

Daniella Cornue 

Founder Le Village Cowork / Le Village Unboxed