Straight & To The Point


Straight & To The Point

Chad Bookidis, Cofounder – Parent

February 14, 2019

I have stared at a blank page for a good long while now. Apparently writing self-congratulatory announcements is not my forte.

I do know that the perfectly and unimpeachably correct way to say that word is “fort.” No ay. But I digress

“HappiFamli was just recently accepted into the Capital Factory Accelerator.”

When my Cofounder Rebecca Cole and I came together, our shared vision was simple: to solve the working parent’s dilemma. HappiFamli is the realization of that vision.

For those of you who haven’t heard us talk about HappiFamli, it’s an online services marketplace that helps parents learn about, find, and get help with the entire continuum of care for kids from birth to high school. The platform combines adjacent industries and puts them together as a locally relevant search engine platform so families save time and money and businesses can improve outcomes and grow.

For us, being newly minted members of the Capital Factory Accelerator means that we’ll have access to, and the support of some of Austin’s top investors and business minds. We’re confident that the growth we will experience will benefit our customers the most.

For businesses working with us, that means more opportunity for you to reach a bigger, curated audience, increasing lead generation and generating higher conversion rates. Conversions means higher revenues (business growth).

For parents using the site, it means new levels of access and knowledge. It means less time until we can offer you the tools that will change the way you find and source the help you need.

Needless to say, everyone at HappiFamli is excited to strap ourselves to this crazy rocket on behalf of you!

How To Be an Askable Parent


How To Be An Askable Parent

KRISTA ANDERSON-HILL, Senior Parenting Correspondent 

February 11, 2019

As a parent you are your child’s first and most important teacher.  All parents want to be the go to person for their children, tweens and teens.

From the where do babies come from question,  to the important topic of teen drug use, we want our children to talk to us, ask us questions and be open to our guidance.  We want to be askable parents. Being an “askable parent” means that your child sees you as approachable, safe and open to questions and conversations about the little things and big things.  Here are four powerful strategies to becoming an askable parent.

1.) Listen more speak less
It is helpful think of communication with our children as a two way street. Ask open ended questions:  What you do think about that? How did that make you feel? How would you have responded to that situation? Shoot for engaging conversations that asks the why’s and fosters their own thinking process. By listening to our children, we are communicating that they are worthy of attention. Listening creates connection; children see their parent as being in their corner and a base they can return to when they need support. And, when children feel listened to, they are more likely, in return, to listen to their parent and have trust and interest in what their parent says.

2.) Talk in the in-betweens
Most good conversations we have with our children happen when we are walking to school, cooking together, playing a sport together and often at bedtime.  These times make connecting and talking with our children easier because we are not looking directly at each other, we are in parallel position. Children and especially teens open up in the middle of doing other things, the in-bewteens. These times foster ease, safety and can tone down high charge topics.

3.) Embrace your child’s conversational style
Just like there are different learning styles, there are different conversational styles. Our children have a natural conversational style that works best for them. One child might be a morning talker, the other, opens up during a nighttime tuck in.  One child likes fast paced, back and forth conversation with lots of questions, the other, needs to talk at a slower pace, with lots of time for reflection. One of the keys to being askable is to embrace your child’s natural conversational style and rhythm.  Build in 15 minute windows of connection around the time that naturally works for your child and embrace their personal style.

4.) Practice Empathy
When a child feels hurt, disappointed, anxious or angry, they need and want their parent.  But as parents, sometimes we want to be quick fixers and we tell our hurt child to not feel the way they do. We say, “don’t be disappointed, its okay” or “don’t be mad, you will get another chance”. Although these comments steam from wanting to ease the pain of our children, they do the opposite; children can feel ashamed for how they feel, the hurt get bigger and they learn that opening up about how they feel makes them feel worse. A more positive and productive response is empathy. Empathy validates and honors feelings.  Empathy sounds like” That is a big worry. Can you tell me about it?” or “You are upset. I would be too. What would make you feel better?. Empathy helps a child feel understood, valued and open to problem solving. Over time, empathetic responses build solid parent/child connection and the child’s belief, that the parent is safe and trustworthy.

Think of listening more and speaking less, talking in the in-betweens, embracing your child’s conversational style and practicing empathy as some of the foundational ingredients to being an askable parent. They build the foundation to having meaningful and successful parent child talks about the day to day and the more challenging, BIG talks, about topics like bullying, sex, drugs and suicide.  The great thing about these strategies is that it is never too early or late to start using them, the more you use the strategies the more natural it feels and any effort to be an askable parent strengthens the connection you have with your child.

Summer Camps: Magical and Meaningful Experiences For Kids


Summer Camps:

Magical & Meaningful Experiences For Kids

KRISTA ANDERSON-HILL, Senior Summer Camp Correspondent 

February 7, 2019

Camp is an opportunity to gain exposure to new activities, friends and role models, all in a safe and nurturing environment. From science to art and nature to sports, there is a camp out there for every kid’s needs, interests and abilities. The benefits of camp are many and allow kids to make lifelong memories and build a great foundation for the new school year ahead.


Camp allows kids to try new things and master skills. Kids can tackle a new activity that pushes them outside of their comfort zone or show off a natural gift or ability. Camps are structured to provide kids with multiple opportunities to shine and hear compliments and affirmations about how special they are as a person and what makes them unique. Kids often leave camp with a feelings of pride and self reliance.

Unplug and Build New Friendships

Camp can be a space where kids unplug from technology, engage beyond the screen, slow down and make important face to face connections. Regardless of the theme of the camp, much of camp is focused on building social skills and giving kids a sense of belonging. At camp kids learn and strengthen the building blocks of friendship: how to play, work, relate, get along and celebrate others. Friendships and social connections are just as important to kids success as learning to read and write.

The Need for Play

Camp gives kids the play time their bodies and brains need over the summer break to supercharge learning and encourage creativity, imagination and passion. Play involves trying new things, hands on experiences, movement and connecting with others. When kids play they experience joy, relieve stress and open their minds to learning.

Easing Summer Slide

The typical 10 week summer break often results in kids losing some of the academic skills they learned during the school year; this is what educators refer to as the “Summer Slide”. Summer camps take learning outside of the traditional classroom and help kids stretch their creative and cognitive muscles. Camp engages kids in different types of learning and uses different parts of their brain, all helping to ease Summer Slide and build a strong foundation for the upcoming school year.

Counselors and Mentors

Kids who attend camp are exposed to carefully trained staff whose sole purpose is to mentor and support kids through challenging moments and achievements. Camp counselors are skilled at helping kids identify their strengths and feel valued and accepted. When many kids reflect on their camp experience they say the best thing about camp were the counselors.

It is clear that summer camps can give kids advantages in school and in life. But at the cost of $100 to over $1,000 per week, can most families afford summer camp? Yes!! HappiCampr’s Free/Scholarship Guide is your resource for identifying free camps and camps that provide scholarships and need based financial aid. Summer camp can be an experience for ALL of Austin’s kids.