The Parenting Emporium has been a go to spot for PARENTS for almost two years now. Even before Maricel and Beng decided to revamp their growing business that catered to mindful mothers all over the metro, they knew that sharing was caring. Even more than the usual, they know that sharing is caring and GOLDEN when the products and services we love are Proudly Pinoy.
You see, every product that they felt was a good fit for their ever evolving motherhood was also shared through their experiences, and what they, then called Medela House. As Medela House evolved into The Parenting Emporium, they knew that the would continue to share what they learn with other parents.
Learning events at The Parenting Emporium have five areas in which they focus on:
- All Natural Healing
Within this teaching framework, there is also the premise that anything these mommas come across, AND share from our Filipino friends (or in this case French), is good for parenting or pregnancy.
This is why when Beng and Maricel invited me to learn more about Plush and Play and Karabella, I did my best to take the ride out to New Manila so I could learn more about locally made products.
Unfortunately, Gelli was a little under the weather, so I was unable to bring her to this fun launch, but I was happy to bring along Miguel and of course, Nino.
Plush and Play is the brain child of Fabien Courteille. His partners, Erika Ng Wong, Ainee Idanan, Lanie Montepio, Howard Lorenzo, and Coco Castro Cruz are all on board with the premise that all children deserve the right to play. With Fabien’s inspiration, and his focus on Filipino Families through Gawad Kalinga, they put together a plush toy business that was the answer to the decline of employment opportunities in the Bulacan area.
Fabien noticed that the wives of the farmers associated with the GK Enchanted Farm all had a common skill. They could sew, and they could sew well. By organizing the ladies into teams, he gave them the opportunity to see their designs come to life in the form of hypoallergenic FILIPINO made plush toys. Guiding these teams of women, he has led this social enterprise by empowering mothers to provide for their families, while becoming the first Filipino toy sold in Toy Kingdom.
However, this socially responsible toy company has bigger aspirations. Because they would like to continue to provide opportunities to other women, they are doing their part in keeping Filipino families of Bulacan in tact. It is their goal to become the biggest and BEST TOY MANUFACTURER in the country.
I think they are off to a really great start:
Plush and Play
- Protects children by using only hypoallergenic material tested by Intertek. There are no small choking hazards nor plastic parts that can be swallowed by small children.
- Loves the Philippines. By naming their stuffed toys after Filipino icons they promote Filipino values and the very best of our culture.
- Uplifts the lives of others by empowering community partners with convenient working conditions and nurturing their leadership skills.
- Shares the GK way by creating plushies that are hand stitched by the mothers (who are the backbone to every family) spreading love and caring.
- Honors locally made products. Loving local products and producing #Proudly FilipinoPlushToys in Gawad Kalinga Communities is a great way to inspire others.
I was equally excited to meet Fabien’s partner Erika. I learned through our conversation that these two, together with their ice cream partners, Timms Choy, and Jesse Divinagarcia, took their idea of social enterprise a step further than the toys that have already become quite popular.
They decided to make carabao ice cream with locally source carabao milk and all natural ingredients.
All the milk comes from the GK farmers that have partnered with this socially responsible all natural ice cream maker and of course, the end goal would be to have this affordable artisanal ice cream available nationwide.
All local and All natural flavors include:
- Tablea Chocolate
- Peanut Butter
- Leche Flan
- Salted Egg Caramel
Of course, I wanted to try ALL the flavors. But as you know from my FIT test I am intolerant to dairy. I can have carabao milk in moderation, so I WAS sure to try a few scoops. The kid in me went straight for Peanut Butter, simply because I grew up having PB & J sandwiches almost every day. But this was a calculated choice, because I knew Nino would enjoy Salted Egg Caramel. Miguel chose Leche Flan, so by having a little taste of these three flavors, I can say that my favorite (and it’s actually the most popular flavor as well) was Salted Egg Caramel.
For now, you can have an ice cream party (I’m thinking about this for Gelli’s upcoming birthday) by contacting them on Facebook, Instagram, or through their email,
Actually, Fabien was even saying that they offer the same type of personalized service for their plush toys as well. They can customize a plushy for your own mascot for your business. They can come up with an original design to your size and specs. AND they can even put together an activity for your children’s party as well.
You know what I like even more? These toys are so super affordable that they start at retail prices of just Php99.00.
You can’t beat that with a bat.
THE PARENTING EMPORIUM
No. 29, 1st Street
New Manila, Quezon City
02 725-3723 / 02 738-6272 / 0917-5614366