Introducing Biagirl (“be-a-girl”)!

Written by Dhana Cruickshank, Partner, Biagirl Media Inc.

I started getting this little feeling in my gut when I would hear my 6 year old daughter and her friends say certain things… it was this little tightening sensation… one that I know well – a warning sign that things are changing; that she’s changing.  That little feeling in my gut was FEAR.  It was fear of some of the things I was overhearing at the playground, on the soccer field, at dance class…

  • “…that puffy jacket makes me look fat”

I think to myself…What?? You must be kidding me!! It’s a warm winter jacket and there is nothing on this planet that could make you look fat, you little 40 pounder! You need to realize that how you look isn’t always what’s most important!!!

  • “…I only wear black now Mommy because it makes me look thin and I don’t like wide legged pants!”

Wow…Girls please understand that being thin isn’t what’s important in this life; you are beautiful in any shape or size. I need you to understand that your body is going to change in the next 20 years and I don’t want you to freak out, it’s important to be healthy…you are only 6 years old!!!

  • “…Mommy, why do you straighten your hair?”

Oh no… here we go! The correct answer is because my hair is frizzy when it’s down and I don’t like how it looks.  So yes, I am conforming to what society tells me is beautiful and I do change my hair each and every day to fit into the mould of beauty… sigh

The answer I really say is… “I’m playing the game, putting on my game face before I go to the office”

  • “… Mommy why do you wear makeup?”

Wow… The correct answer would be that I just wear a little to cover a few blemishes…? But really, I wear it because I feel more beautiful made up and I don’t like going outside without my makeup on? sigh

The answer I really say… “I’m playing the game, putting on my game face before I go out” (for the record, this is partly true, but it does make me question myself and my actions, but more importantly it reminds me of how ACUTELY aware our girls are of EVERYTHING we are doing!!!)

These quotes are from girls who are no older than 7!!! I started to really worry about how I was going to deal with all these questions, all the things I started seeing – let alone all the things that my daughters will start seeing and hearing through their friends and the media!!!

My mind quickly went to – well if I am having these fears, I bet I am not alone.  I prefer to deal with these issues together with other women… if I am not alone and there are other moms out there worrying about their daughters’ questions, maybe I could do something to help…

I then started thinking about one of the Women’s Business Forums I attended.  It was a wonderful way to spend a day – learning with and from other women. The Keynote addresses brought us all together and then we would break out into tracks that were more relevant for us individually and then we would network in the marketplace

I thought of how great it would be to do something like this with my girls. It would be wonderful quality time together, learning, laughing and playing (you have to include the element of play for anything with kids!!).  I envisioned a day-long format of women with their girls spending time together learning about how to deal with all the “big” topics like bullying, self esteem, healthy eating, sex, etc. and the “fun” topics like fashion, skin care, dance, etc. all in a collaborative, fun forum. I mean this would be quality time versus the time I spend with my girls now – doing homework, speed eating, taxiing and the occasional chat!

Thus blossomed the idea…but I knew I would need help.  I work full time, have two little girls and a husband that travels extensively. I went through who I thought would have complementary skills to my passion, energy, and business skills.  I quickly came to the perfect partner – enter my partner and friend, Kelly Eng.  Kelly is a perfect complement to me: she has a financial background, unbelievable knowledge, a passion for detail and as the mother of three young girls, she was having the same concerns about how to stay connected with her daughters.  Kelly was in right away.

We began to meet every Thursday night for sushi (Aug 2009 – present!); we talked, we brainstormed, we built a business plan. Kelly attended small business seminars and found a great branding consultant (Angela Bains, Creative Design). After more brainstorming, we came up with our brand statement: Biagirl – Learn, Laugh, Play Together!

Once we had our name and our brand statement we were off to the races… albeit at a slow trot!

We consulted with several successful and brilliant business women including: Pixie Riddle, Angela Bains, Sandra Stevenson, Lisa Cohen. We thank these women tremendously because they each gave us valuable feedback.  The consensus was to start with a few smaller pilot workshops…

Introducing the Biagirl Launch Parties! The focus of the Launch Party concept is to hold shorter workshops with an emphasis on fun and quality time.

Now here we are…hoping to get a few successful Launch Parties under our belt, learn from you about what topics you would like to see in a full day forum and then execute a full day event.

We want to hear from you – the success of Biagirl will hinge on you and women like you. Tell us what you think. What do you want to learn, what do you want to do with your girls? What would make a full day forum worthwhile for you? We want to reach multiple communities with our Biagirl workshops and forums, so contact us and join the Biagirl community! And if you like what you are hearing—spread the word!!  http://www.biagirl.com

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