I’m Alison.

Entrepreneur. Humanitarian. Mother. Adventurer.

A brief timeline

1994-1999:  NBC News, producer at Dateline

1999-2001:  Princeton University, received Master’s in Public Affairs

2001-2007:  UNICEF, created the global office on sports and play

2007-2020:  Apple Seeds, co-founded the #1 child development play space in NYC

2013-now:  Songs for Seeds, co-founded a national kids’ music franchise

2017-now:  Press Play, launched my coaching business for individuals, groups, and companies undergoing change

I've been through a lot of personal and professional changes

and it wasn’t always easy. One thing I learned is that new may be scary, but it isn’t always bad. In fact, with the right energy, change is most often positive.

I’ve learned that playfulness and adventure build the resilience we need to move through transitions, however scary or painful.

Studies show that “lifequakes” happen about every 18 months. Sometimes the change is forced upon us. Other times we need to make it happen.

This is how it happened for me.

I loved my work at NBC news, but after producing a story about women in Afghanistan, I wanted to work with refugees. Unsure of how to make the switch to international development, I decided to pursue a graduate degree in policy from Princeton and try to figure it all out. I landed my dream job at UNICEF, and created the global office on sports and play. It merged my three greatest passions: children, sports, and international travel.

Then I gave birth to my twin girls, and my priorities shifted again. During my maternity leave, I was torn by the idea of leaving my kids at home and going back to work. So I took a leave of absence from the U.N., a nice long pause to think about what to do.

It was in that “pause” that I met my friend Allison in an elevator on the way to our kids’ music class. Cramped with our twin baby strollers, we both felt stuck between wanting to work and wanting to be present as a mom. We talked about the need for safe, clean, and  fun spaces for children newborn to 5-years-old in NYC.

With our husbands, and within 9 months, we created Apple Seeds, a 15,000 square foot play space in the heart of Manhattan with locations in NYC and abroad. Very soon after, we franchised our kids’ music program, Songs for Seeds.

It sounds easy when I look back, but it was pretty freakin hard to build. We had to keep moving forward through the good and the bad, stay positive, and adapt to the changes.

I took on another change when I turned 40, but this one was a little less obvious. I had spent my 30s working and parenting and forgot to prioritize what I loved…like exercise, reading, and traveling. At the time, I had no idea that these are what I now call my Play Languages.

I was facing another crossroads.

To get away from the daily grind, I took on a week-long yoga challenge. That meant full days without my kids and work. I felt guilty taking time off of work, and for missing school drop offs, family dinners, and more.

Taking that time for myself sounds so simple, but it was really hard to do, a feeling many women experience.

When I came home after the challenge, I had a “lightbulb moment.” Not only had my kids been okay all week, they genuinely seemed happy just seeing me happy. My twins even asked when I was going to go away for yoga again!  All that worry and guilt for nothing.

I realized that PLAY was missing in my life. And as I would learn later, play is definitely not frivolous and should never be an afterthought. My choice to play did not come at the expense of my work and parenting. On the contrary, it strengthened them.

I just needed to discover my “Play Languages.” The “Mover” in me began to  take on athletic challenges and climb mountains. My inner “Explorer” began to travel again and go on what I call mystery trips (I’ll tell you more about my mystery trips…just ask!)

I discovered that we all have our own Play Languages

and the trick is to define what you're doing when you're in flow and losing track of time, and when you feel most present and energized. And then do more of that.

I help people move through big and small transitions with lightness and play.

It starts with knowing which of the 5 Play Languages you speak: Mover, Thinker, Creator, Connector, Explorer. Then it's about getting clear on what you need and want.

I will help you take action.

Ways to work with me

Group Programs

Craving more out of life? Struggling as a parent? Join small groups of like-minded individuals in my live, interactive self-discovery courses.

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1:1 Support

Get your specific energy levels analyzed, or get personalized attention from me to take actionable steps towards your goals.

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Downloadable Tools

Work at your own pace and find tools to get unstuck, feel (much) more energy, and tips on what play means for you.

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“The opposite of play isn’t work, it’s depression.”

Dr. Stuart Brown