Ana Nicholson, Director
Ana joined Nestling House in August of 2017 opening our suite for school-age children three years and above. Since then Ana has moved into the director role, overseeing the day to day operations of the center as well as supporting the other caregivers through ongoing reflective practice sessions. As a mother of two children who attend a Waldorf school and having ten years of experience in a variety of early childhood roles, Ana brings an extensive knowledge base and experience in the Waldorf philosophy of early childhood care. In her spare time, Ana also serves the Bay View community as a lactation and breastfeeding specialist, instructor, and doula at Well Rounded Maternity center. Ana strives to imbue her work with a reverence for the wonder of childhood. She believes in facilitating a slow and gentle unfurling of a child’s abilities through exposure to new challenges and inspiring surroundings.
Jessie Woida, Caregiver
Jessie joined Nestling House in August of 2017 as a full time caregiver. Bringing the experience of raising her own son as well as over 25 years of experience working in a variety of early childhood settings, including 8 years in Waldorf inspired centers, Jessie has found great comfort in applying a child-centered approach to early care and education. Working to encourage creativity and individuality as she guides children through each daily routine, Jessie sees play as the important work of childhood and is intimately aware of its’ impact on whole child development.
Melissa King, Caregiver
Melissa joined Nestling House in January of 2018 as our first full time floating caregiver and has since moved into a lead caregiving position. As a certified children’s yoga instructor, Melissa brings her passion and talent for connecting with children through song, dance, inquisitive exploration, and storytelling. She has truly found her niche in caring for children and strives to create a nurturing and joyful environment where they learn and grow naturally.
SARA HORONITZ, CAREGIVER
Sara joined Nestling House in June 2018 as a floating caregiver supporting all of our suites. In her role, Sara enjoys building relationships with all of the Nestling House children so that she can seamlessly step in as needed throughout the day and when covering caregiver absences. She previously worked with infants and toddlers in another local center for more than 2 years where she built on her earlier experiences as a babysitter. Sara is pursuing a BA at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and has completed coursework at the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design. In her free time Sara enjoys volunteering, running, and reading.
Jessie Meyer, Caregiver
Jessie joined Nestling House in August 2018 and provides care in the green suite for school age children 3 and up attending after their Montessori day. Jessie graduated with a BS in English from Southern Connecticut State University and plans to pursue a Master’s degree in Education from University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Her over 10 years of experience as a camp counselor, lifeguard and swim instructor has inspired her view of young children as competent and unique individuals. Jessie is passionate about supporting children’s play, risk taking, and expression of curiosity within a safe and supportive environment. Jessie is also a published poet and enjoys sharing her love of poetry, reading, and writing with the children at Nestling House.
Janelle Litos, Caregiver
Janelle joined Nestling House in September 2018 as a caregiver in the yellow suite. She brings more than 10 years of experience caring for and teaching children first as a babysitter during high school, then as a nanny while attending New York University, and most recently in the toddler room in another local center. She graduated with a BA in Philosophy cum laude from New York University and has begun work toward a Masters degree. Janelle also brings the rich experience of travelling abroad and teaching English to children in China as well as a stint as a farmhand in Austria. She believes that her role as a caregiver is to lead by example while developing secure, trusting relationships with each individual child giving them the confidence to take risks and explore. By setting up a high quality environment, Janelle understands that children are well equipped to lead their own learning journey.
Samantha Helme, Caregiver
Samantha joined Nestling House in September 2018 as a caregiver in the yellow suite. Samantha is currently pursuing an Associate’s degree in Early Childhood Education at Milwaukee Area Technical College. Her experiences as a nanny and as a teacher of toddlers and preschoolers in a center care environment have fostered her passion for working with young children. Samantha strives to set up daily routines for the children in her care that naturally support their desire for independence and help them build confidence in their own abilities. She also values daily time spent outdoors knowing that children need plenty of time to be free, move their bodies, and engage with nature.
Emily Hendersen, Part-time Caregiver
Emily joined Nestling House in June of 2017 as a part-time caregiver and has taken on a flexible schedule meeting the changing needs of Nestling House ever since. She has a BS from University of Wisconsin-Madison and recently completed her Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction and Early Childhood Teacher Certification from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Through her coursework Emily has developed her understanding of how play and hands on exploration lead to learning and development in all domains. She also brings an appreciation of nature based learning and enjoys observing the discoveries that children make on a daily basis in our natural outdoor play space. Emily has remained a part of the Nestling House team as a part-time Caregiver during summer months as well as an occasional sub.
Eric Busiek, Co-Founder
Eric co-founded Nestling House along with his wife, Sarah Barton in 2016. He served as the director of the center for it’s first two years. Currently, Eric handles administrative duties as well as planning for and preparing nutritious meals from scratch. With a master's degree in Education & Human Development from George Washington University, and experience in student-centered learning and special education, Eric brings expertise in child development and a deep belief in the value of child centered, play based learning. In addition to his role as administrator and cook, Eric transports children to Nestling House from neighborhood schools.
Sarah Barton, Co-Founder
Sarah co-founded Nestling House in 2016 with her husband Eric out of the desire to bring a unique child centered care option to the Bay View neighborhood. Sarah has gained extensive experience in early childhood education as a teacher, trainer, and leader. She earned a master's degree in education with a focus on early childhood education and urban school leadership from Temple University. Sarah's lifelong passion for all things related to babies and early brain development has been one of the driving forces behind Nestling House.