Meet Claire! | New Canaan & Darien Moms

Where are you from originally?
I’m originally from McLean, Virginia which is just outside Washington, D.C. I don’t have a southern accent though!
How long have you lived in New Canaan? How many kids and their age(s)?
We moved to New Canaan just over 3 years ago. Before New Canaan, we lived in New York City for about 10 years. My husband, Alex, and I have two daughters – Sadie (5 years) and Gemma (16 months). I honestly don’t understand how people have the stamina to chase more than 2 children! We sleep very well at night!
Favorite things to do with your kids in general or in town? 
Sadie and Gemma are in such different stages of life, the activities they enjoy vary pretty significantly. With Sadie, our perfect date is to spend a few hours at Art & Soul on Main Street followed by a chocolate chip-coconut-banana muffin at Rosie’s.
Gemma is called the “Mayor of New Canaan” in our family. Her favorite routine is to head to town, pick up an Ultimate Warrior from Green & Tonic, and stroll up Elm. She loves to walk into J.McLaughlin and disassemble the neat arrangement of water bottles by the dressing rooms or cruise over to Elm Street Books and make stacks of board books in the kids section. The store owners in this town are very patient with us, thankfully!
What’s your favorite restaurant in town for a family date? A night out with friends? Why?
For a family date, we love weekend brunch at Baldanza. Either Alex or I will take a walk with the kids up Elm while we wait for our food. Their bacon, egg and cheese on a brioche bun cannot be beat! I also love the newly opened Pine Street Concessions for the family because everyone can find something they like—a salad for my husband, pork buns for me, and pizza for the kiddos.
For a night out with friends, I like Uncorked. The vibe there is casual yet fun, and the food is delicious. If you haven’t tried the hamachi nachos or the double cheeseburger, you’re missing out!
What is your favorite kid-friendly recipe?
I’m not one of those (very patient) moms who is willing to cook several meals every night. So, I am always on the hunt for meals that are well balanced, have a flavor profile that suits both adults and kids, and are easy to prepare.
One of my go-to recipes is beef nachos. I simply layer whole wheat chips, shredded cheese, ground beef (cooked ahead with low-sodium taco seasoning), beans, corn and whatever other veggies I have in the fridge. It’s a crowd pleaser! Especially when you top it off with jalapenos, sour cream and salsa.
I’ve got some picky eaters in my house (husband included), and the other meal we all can agree on (even the baby) is SUSHI from Fish Fjord. We always pick up a bunch of rolls for dinner on “Sushi Tuesday”. We never skip a week; I have zero doubt we’re their best customers!
What is your local go-to store for children’s clothes? Shoes? Furniture? Yourself?
We’re actually big supporters of Rockets of Awesome, an online seasonal clothing delivery system for kids. (Think Stitch Fix for kids. RoA was started by a good friend from college – everyone should try it!)
Locally, CrewCuts is a favorite (since I used to work at the corporate office at J.Crew) as is Groove. For furniture, I love Country Design and Summer House. I also get a lot of great one-of-a-kind pieces from Etsy.
What are your favorite events in New Canaan?
The Newcomers Fall Family Party is one of our favorites, and it’s coming up! Currently in my 4th and final year of Newcomers (and now serving as the President), I am continually amazed by the care and dedication Newcomers board- and committee-members show in planning community events. Newcomers helped me get settled into town 3 years ago, and it’s through Newcomers I met so many wonderful friends. It feels right to give back as a volunteer and help others achieve that same experience as a new resident.
Some of your favorite things? meditation, tennis, and Game of Thrones
About 6 months ago, Alex and I started to learn about and practice Transcendental Meditation after having started guided meditating using the Headspace app. TM initially sounded like a bunch of crunchy nonsense, but it has completely transformed my state of mind (even when not meditating) for the better.
When I’m not chasing our kids around, I love to play tennis. I play at the New Canaan Racquet Club and at Woodway Country Club. I can think of nothing worse than running on a treadmill at a gym, so tennis is my go-to form of exercise these days. And chasing babies up and down staircases.
We are completely obsessed with Game of Thrones. I’m the nerd who reads the countless blogs after the episode airs. In the future world of having “time”, I’d love to read all the books.
Pet Peeves?
Moms who take themselves too seriously and can’t show occasional self-deprecation. I don’t trust anyone who gives the impression that they’ve got it all under control!
Anything else you want to add? Feel free to include a business venture, involvement in local organizations, etc.
As the president of The Newcomers Club of New Canaan this year, I worked closely with the outgoing president (Laura Catherwood) and some other committee members to relaunch the Newcomers website! It’s been an enormous undertaking to totally rewrite and redesign the site, but we felt that members deserved a more streamlined experience.
We hope that the new site will be a helpful resource for existing Club members and serve to attract new members as well. To get access to all the resources we offer, sign up for events and learn about ways to get involved, you can become a member by clicking here. Whether you’re new to town or not, we hope everyone takes a minute to check out the site!

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