Hi! We are Abbie & Emily: an Elementary School Special Education Teacher Mama & an Art Therapist Mama.
We create fun and engaging sensory kits that support early emotional literacy through the power of play that can be used in homes, schools, and really anywhere due to our on-the-go container that truly is one-of-a-kind, trust us... we had to make it!
Our products bring together sensory regulation tools, social emotional learning, and self-compassion resources for the parent: things we can all agree that we absolutely need more of in OUR lives, and in the lives of all parents raising kids today.
Being a parent is hard. Being a parent in today’s world we would argue is even harder! After growing our families during the pandemic, we, like many other parents, experienced a collective increase in anxiety. It was a surreal time to raise little kids— stuck at home on lockdown, questioning every decision about who to spend time with, gasping at every cough or sniffle… Fast forward to today, and we see that unfortunately the stress and anxiety levels parents reported during the pandemic, have not subsided as much as we would would have thought in the years that have followed. Parents today report feeling more stressed and anxious than ever before, which we know based on our professional experiences in the field of counseling and teaching, directly impacts the entire family unit. We believe that we are all doing the best we can with the tools we have, AND we really need some more tools, tools we don't have to wait 6+ months long on a waiting list for services to get: enter our sensory kits.
Our sensory kits were a direct result of the tools we were finding useful to get through the ‘unprecedented times’ at home with small children. We wanted to take these tools a step further and creatively bring in social emotional learning topics. Mindfulness, Emotions, Big Feelings, Perseverance, Growth Mindset, Self-Worth and more, were all inspired by our own self-reflections in therapy during the early days of motherhood in 2020. Along with the sensory play and social emotional learning, is a dose of self-compassion, which is where our name, Present Not Perfect came to be. It has been our mantra ever since for us, and families all over the country, who have purchased our kits. We hope stumbling across our page will at the least help you to remember you don't need to be perfect to be a good parent.
We know our tools work through decades of combined experience with clients and students (Abbie an Elementary Special Education Teacher and Emily an Art Therapist/Counselor). We love to hear from kids, parents, teachers, and other adults who spend time with children, and the stories they share about how our kits have helped find moments of calm, new opportunities for creative play, or introduce SEL in a new and fun way. We are motivated by knowing that our kits can be used at their very core to help adults better connect with kids, something we know is at the foundation of wellness: connection. We believe in our kits and their play guide's ability to support resilient kids by strengthening the parent-child relationship through play and meaningful discussion around SEL.
We are so grateful our backgrounds in art therapy and special education, and our roles in raising our own tiny humans, have allowed us to bring our “superpowers” of using creativity, play, and metaphor to teach important Social Emotional Learning skills to kids and families as a preventative tool for wellness, focused on the inherent benefits of art and play.
We both currently live just outside Madison, WI with our families. Abbie and her husband raising two daughters; and Emily and her husband raising three sons. We love to swim, enjoy the outdoors, and spend time together with our families.
Present Not Perfect truly is a passion project come true for us. Thank you for supporting our small business and our dreams. We're so grateful for you.
Where we're located
Can't find our store? Check out this map for directions, we hope you stop in and visit us soon!
123 N Main St. Lake Mills, WI