All good things must come to an end, and we recently had to say goodbye to our well-loved Magic Beans Fairfield management team, Lauren and Kyle Mellino. But they’re leaving your favorite local toy and baby gear store in good hands: here’s an intro to Stephanie Giustino, the newest member of the Magic Beans family!
Q: Tell me a bit about what you do at Magic Beans Fairfield.
I am brand new to the Magic Beans family, but I’m already loving assisting shoppers with their selections! The weekends mainly consist of birthday party shopping, so the focus is helping our Magic Beans customers select the perfect gift. I’m also enjoying the opportunity to offer mommy advice to new and expectant mothers on topics such as potty training, newborn sleeping, and toy, stroller, and car seat selections.
It is also important to me to keep the store looking fresh and beautiful so we can truly give our customers the best experience every time they enter our store!
Q: Tell me how you got started at Magic Beans.
I have worked in women’s retail for many years, and decided it was time for a change. Being a mom of two young girls, I thought Magic Beans would be the perfect home for me, and the next step not only professionally but as a mom as well. My kids are extremely excited since my first few days at Magic Beans, I came home with new toys for them! Now every night when I come home I am greeted with “what did you get us today?”
Q: Describe your training process. What was your favorite part of learning about baby gear and toys?
Learning about the toys is pretty simple, since my own house is covered with many of the products that we carry. My daughters are 2 and 5, so I am rediscovering a lot of the baby toys. They bring back great memories of when my children were babies, and it’s great to be able to share those experiences with our customers!
The gear was a very intimidating at first, but Magic Beans has an awesome support system from [Magic Beans co-owner] Eli to the team I have in store and all the other store managers with Magic Beans, so someone is always available to answer questions. I have also had the pleasure of meeting with reps from our vendors as well, and the product training which they are able to deliver is incredible.
Q: What do you think makes Magic Beans Fairfield extra-special?
Our location in down town Fairfield is amazing. The downtown area is beautiful, filled with amazing restaurants, and a wide variety of shops. With the book store across the street and Pinkberry next door, I think we are the perfect afternoon destination for parents looking to treat their children. We also have a play area in the back of our store, so kids can play and parents can shop worry free.
We also have an amazing team! We all share the same vision of delivering the most amazing experience to our customers.
Q: Let’s get a bit into some autobiographical details: where did you grow up? Are you from Fairfield? If not, how did you wind up here?
I grew up in Fairfield, lived in California for four years, and recently made my way back to the east coast. I grew up shopping the downtown area with my mother and sister and lived at the Fairfield beaches over the summer time.
Q: What are your hobbies outside of work?
My hobbies outside of work include being a mom! When I am not working I am with my children, ages 2 and 5, who keep me extremely busy. I volunteer in my older daughter’s class room as much as possible, as it is very important for her to see that her education is important to me. And I try to spend as much time outside as possible – my daughters and I turn into complete beach bums over the summer!
Q: Do you have any special babies or kids among your family or friends who inspire you at your work?
My daughters, of course! Madysen is 5 years old, heading into first grade, and Natalie is turning 3 in August.
Q: Let’s talk about your favorite products: what’s your favorite stroller at Magic Beans Fairfield?
I love the UPPAbaby strollers and wish there had been a store in the area to guide me in my stroller selections when I was expecting! I remember registering for my baby shower during my first pregnancy, and being completely overwhelmed with the amount of “stuff” I would need. I registered at a big box store, and couldn’t even find someone to help me take a stroller off a shelf so that I could look at it.
I wish I’d known about UPPAbaby: they really do design their products with new parents in mind and making their lives easier. Their products are easy to use, and while I was learning about the different features of their strollers, I kept smiling and saying “wow, that’s smart.”
Q: What other baby gear do you always recommend to new and expectant parents?
I love the one handed fold on the Baby Jogger City Mini!
Q: What are your go-to toys to recommend for customers shopping for birthday presents?
I don’t really have a go-to toy. I think the selection has to be specific to the special child the customer is shopping for. We have an amazing selection here, something for everyone. Everyone here at Magic Beans Fairfield will take the time to ask questions about who the customer is shopping for, to make sure their gift will be a hit.
Q: What toy at our stores would you have been begging for as a little kid?
My childhood was a long time ago, but I definitely had an extensive My Little Pony collection, and my daughters are also crazy about My Little Ponies!
Q: What’s your favorite thing about Magic Beans Fairfield?
I love the dedication that Magic Beans has to their customers! Not only will we go the extra mile to make our customers happy, but we’re here to educate you and help you transition into becoming a parent. Magic Beans offers the opportunity to become part of a family made up of a dedicated team to support you in the overwhelming world of parenthood.
We are here to make our customers’ lives easier, whether that means introducing you to the world of strollers (which few people have much familiarity with before they have a baby on the way), or educating you on car seat safety, or just being open on Saturday morning to grab a last-minute gift for a birthday party! We’ll help you pick it out, and we’ll wrap it for free.
Whether you’re diving into your first baby registry, looking for the perfect stroller, or trying to pick the right birthday present for a very special kid, Stephanie and her team are here to help – come visit them at Magic Beans Fairfield today!