In this episode of SuperPower Mommas, Evelyn Cucchiara of Toy Tamer, joins Laura Greco for a fun discussion that helps us see how we can raise confidence in our children through a sometimes overwhelming room of the home, the play room! Evelyn offers help to parents who are tired of drowning in toys. Not only does she get the mess cleaned up and organized, but she also installs a system so your kids can take over clean up. What is even more amazing is that the children love it! The end result? You’ll want to listen in as Evelyn expands on her expertise and shares how the system creates a space for children to grow in confidence, independence and executive functioning skills, skills that will reward them for the rest of their lives! So join us and learn more about this proven method and how you can begin today to implement the methods she uses.
Hello and welcome. I’m Laura Greco, and you’re listening to SuperPower Mommas, and I’m so excited to be with you today. I have a guest, and we are going to be talking about a proven method to raise confidence out of chaos for our kiddos, and I’m speaking with Evelyn Cucachero. Did I say it right, Evelyn?
No, not even close. Cucchiara.
Say it again?
Cucchiara. Oh wow. Anyway, I’ve known her for a long time and I can’t even say her last name, but she is a beautifully precise and very loving woman, who brings a great business to parents. She offers parents who are tired of drowning in their toys some order. Not only does she get the mess cleaned up and organized, but she also adds a system so that the children can take over and clean up the cleanup chore and absolutely love doing it, which is amazing. It reminds me of Mary Poppins, actually.
I have been called that before, yeah.
So it’s beautiful. Anyway, parents end up with a clean playroom, but the real benefit is that the kids are able to hone their skills in independence, confidence, and executive functioning skills that are such rewards to them and their entire life. Oh, and by the way, she’s also a parent of three sons, right?
So without further ado, let’s just welcome you. Welcome to the show and welcome everyone for being here.
Thank you, Laura. I can’t wait to talk to your people. I always love spreading the Toy Tamer word. I’m known as the Toy Tamer, so I love spreading the toy taming word.
Yes, and I can’t wait to get into some of your background so people can really understand in a full sense how you developed this skill over the years as a parent and the other things that you’ve been doing. In the meantime, though, we always start off our show with this question. So what is your mama superpower, Evelyn?
My mama superpower is the ability to see what a kid’s play space can be no matter how messy it is. I love walking into messy spaces because I can see, “Oh, we can put the reading zone over here. We can put the art zone here. We can put the creative play zone here.” Even when nobody else can see that. So that is my superpower, seeing what would be best for the kids the moment I walk into the space.
Very, very beautiful. And how has this skill actually helped you in your own parenting time period?
Well, basically I’m able to do that with any space and with life, so I’m all about systems and habits so that life is not crazy. So as you said, I’m the mom of three boys, who are now all taller than me, but when they were younger, I used to run a family daycare, so again, it was systems and habits put into place so I could see what the end should be like, and then form the habits to make it that way. So the short answer to your question is life was very calm, and peaceful, and one level, as opposed to the roller coaster I saw most families around me being a part of.
Yeah. And the fact that you were running a business as well?
Yes, I’ve always run a business, ever since my first was two years old.
Yeah. So you did it in your home?
I did. So my first entrepreneurship business was family daycare, and I did that specifically because I could not find daycare for my two year old at the time that I was comfortable with. So somehow or another, I came across family daycare, which means you have state certified daycare in your own home. At the time, you could have up to seven children including whatever you had, so I had seven kids every day. Me and seven kids from 6:30 in the morning until 6:00 at night.
I have to say, it’s perfect when you’re raising your own children because you’re not trying to do other things while you’re there. I ran a small preschool. We had art time, we had reading time, science time, the whole schedule thing, so you weren’t trying to get laundry done, and you weren’t trying to run errands, and you weren’t trying to do all that other stuff that makes you feel like you’re stretched in too many different directions. I was focused on one thing. I was focused on my child and whatever other children were there at the same time.
So it was perfect when kids were little. So you know what I’m seeing here as another one of your superpowers? Probably ties very closely into what you just told me. Is that you are amazing at focus.
Yes. But I also like to have one focus at a time so I’m not overwhelmed.
Exactly. Exactly. And that’s probably key to the word focus, is that it’s not too many things at one time, which creates really pacing your heart and your ability, and your expectation, also, of the day.
Right. Yes. If you’re already in fear of the day when you wake up because you’ve got too much crammed into it, I don’t think I could get out of bed in the morning.
Yeah, which is why you stick to this. So anyway, your journey came from being a mom, of course, and having your daycare, so what brought you into this business you’re doing now?
Well, my actual background is I have my master’s in art education and my master’s. I’m sorry, and my bachelor’s in art education and art therapy, so I always knew I wanted to be a teacher and an art therapist. So I went from graduating to being an art therapist for a couple years, and then I worked in corporate in the art world for a couple years, and that’s when I started my daycare business because of necessity. I did that for quite a few years, until I was having my third son, and I decided me and eight kids all day long with no sick days and vacation only scheduled months and months in advance really wasn’t working for me anymore, so I opened up an art studio for kids. And I originally thought I was going to do school aged kids, but in reality, it ended up being my favorite group was the two to three and four to six years olds. The little guys.
So I did that for many, many years, like 20 years, but in that business, I was the secret sauce. It was just me, because I couldn’t really clone myself with that because of the different creative projects and such I came up with and because it was also in my home, so I didn’t really want to have strangers coming in my house. So I was doing that for a long, long time, and I was getting a little bit bored of it, so I was looking around for something else to do, and people would always say, “Why is your house neat and clean and you always know what’s for dinner every night?” Because I always wrote it on a tile. And I said, “Hmm, everybody lives like this.” And they’re like, “Yeah, no.” I’m like, “Oh, really?”
So I wrote a book called 30 Days to an Organized Home, which became a best-seller, and from that, I attempted to open up a business in teaching young families better time management skills, because we all know that’s what young families are lacking, time. If you could just stretch the day to 48 hours, everything would probably be fine. But what happened with that business is that people would tell me they have no time to learn how to have more time. Now, I understand that, but we’re not helping anybody here, so that was a failed business.
Luckily, I was doing it while I was still doing my art studio, so it was nothing risked, really. But then I took a closer look and said to myself, “What can I do for these people that will not only give them more time, which is where the toy taming came from, so they don’t have to clean up their playrooms, but even better, it teaches kids skills so they can be better adults.” So I did both businesses simultaneously for about two years, and then about a year and a half ago, I closed up my art studio and I’ve been doing toy taming full-time ever since.
Very cool. I can’t wait to dive in further with you, but we have to take a quick break. But I love the journey that you just described, and I can see you in this journey being that I know you and why what you do is so effective today for parents and their homes. So before we leave, could you please give everyone your website or how they can find you and that amazing book if that’s what they want?
Yeah. It’s very simple. I am The Toy Tamer. I’m sorry, TheToyTamer.com is my website, on Facebook, and I’m The Toy Tamer, Instagram, and The Toy Tamer. My book is 30 Days to an Organized Home, and it is on Amazon.
Perfect, and thank you so much. And please, everyone stay with us. You’re listening to SuperPower Mommas, and we’re talking on this topic of a proven method to raise confidence out of chaos for your kiddos. So we’ll be right back.