Monthly Archives: August 2015

SEPTEMBER FAMILY EVENTS IN BROOKLYN!

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written by Jen #supermom

As summer comes to a close, our children return to school and we ease back into our “normal” routine, it’s time to think about fun family events for September.   This months events include book and kite festivals, the infamous Atlantic Antic street fair and different live music events to get your groove on!

* Hip Tot Family Day: Groove to the Tunes of the Trummytones (Lefrak at Lakeside, Prospect Park): On September 13th from 11am-2pm, come groove to the unique ska, zydeco and reggae sounds of The Trummytones.   Includes live musical performances, craft activities, giveaways and more!  For children up to 8 YO and their parents.  Free! http://lakesidebrooklyn.com/events/hip-tot-family-day-groove-to-the-tunes-of-the-trummytones/

* Warmth Presents Sunday Sessions (Redwood Studios, Gowanus):  On September 13th and 27th from 2-9pm, Sunday Sessions promises to be the perfect way to wind up the weekend.  Park your stroller, grab some grub and get your dance moves on!  With a festival-like environment, Sunday Sessions will have food and drink available for purchase and kid-friendly activities like bubbles, balloons and sidewalk chalk.  http://achildgrows.com/thecalendar/warmth-presents-sunday-sessions-at-redwood-studios-gowanus-2/2015-09-13/

* Kite Festival (Harbor View Lawn at Brooklyn Bridge Park):  On Saturday September 19th from 11am-3pm, come bring your favorite kite and watch it soar!!!  Kites will be available for purchase as well.  http://www.brooklynbridgepark.org/events/kite-festival

* Brooklyn Book Festival (MetroTech Commons, Downtown Brooklyn):  From 10am-4pm on Saturday, September 19th, as part of the 10th Anniversary of the Brooklyn Book Festival there will be a Children’s Day!    Come enjoy authors and illustrators in readings, performances and workshops as they present new and beloved children’s books.  Will feature costume characters, puppetry, music performances and a children’s marketplace of booksellers.  Ages 2-11.  http://www.brooklynbookfestival.org/2015/childrens-day

* Suzi Shelton Backyard Show at Norman & Jules Backyard (158 7th Ave, Park Slope):   Come celebrate back to school  at Norman & Jules backyard playspace with award-winning and local favorite, Suzi Shelton, as she returns to her favorite toy shop to perform a series of solo shows from her latest release “Smile in My Heart”.  From 11am-12pm on Sunday, September 20th, it is ideal for families with children 0-7 YO. $20 per child, adults are free.  http://achildgrows.com/thecalendar/suzi-shelton-backyard-show-at-norman-jules-backyard-park-slope/2015-09-20/

* Chile Pepper Festival (Brooklyn Botanical Gardens):  From 11am-6pm on Saturday, September 26th come enjoy one of the longest running festivals of its kind.  Features a full day of fiery live music, dance performances from international musicians,  unique culinary creations showcasing chile peppers, fire breathers, and of course the gardens.  Advanced tickets can be purchased online ($20 for adults, Children under 12 & Members are free):  http://www.bbg.org/visit/event/chile_pepper_festival_2015

* Dance with MMDG (Mark Morris Dance Center @ BAM):  Starting September 26th through December 5th, come learn excerpts from Mark Morris Dance Group’s The Hard Nut in this class, set to live piano accompaniment.  Open to all ages, families of all backgrounds and levels. Tickets are free but must RSVP:  http://www.bam.org/classes/2015/mark-morris-dance-group-all-ages

* The 41st Annual Atlantic Antic Festival (Atlantic Avenue from Hicks St to 4th Ave):  The largest street festival in NYC, this festival on Sunday, September 27th from 12-6pm will showcase food from around the world, musical performances, shopping from local and international vendors AND an entire block dedicated to kid-friendly activities: pony rides, storytelling and face painting!  In my opinion, hands down the best street fair in Brooklyn. http://atlanticave.org/atlantic-antic/about-the-antic/

* Tildon Krautz (Central Brooklyn Library, Dweck Center): On Saturday, October 3rd from 1pm-2pm listen to live sounds of Tildon Krautz, a songwriting string band that embodies the playful universe of an award-winning children’s book illustrator.  For all ages.  http://www.bklynlibrary.org/calendar/events-youth-families-til-central-library-dweck-cen-100315.

I’m not going to lie, I am totally bummed that summer is almost over.   I love the heat, I love an excuse to eat ice cream often,  I love watching my almost 3 year old laugh and splash in the water, I love flip-flops, I love the smell of suntan lotion and our trips to the beach!  BUT…what I seem to forget every year is that Brooklyn is a pretty special and beautiful place to be in the Fall, and these fun events are just another reason not to dread the cooler weather that is around the corner.

HEALTHY LUNCH IDEAS FOR TODDLERS & PRESCHOOLERS

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written by Jen #supermom

Sending your toddler or pre-schooler out for the day and need to pack a lunch?  So over making PB&J sandwiches?  I am personally going through this now, as my 3 year old is at daycare 4 half days a week, and I need to provide lunch.  I cannot bear to give her the favorite (PB&J of course) more than once, MAYBE twice a week.  That being said, she’s also a bit of a picky eater and I’m always looking for new healthy options that she will actually consume.

As this seems to be a popular topic among many moms in this situation, I thought I’d share some of the ideas I’ve received from friends near and far:

* Wraps (vs sandwiches) – cheese and/or deli meats or avocado and hummus.  Cut wrap into pinwheels for fun!

* Another more exciting version of your typical sandwich – cut it with cookie cutters!  (After all, presentation of the food is quite a bit deal to the little ones)….and eat the remains for your snack (isn’t that we always end up doing anyway)?!

* Whole Wheat or Brown Rice Pasta in a thermos with turkey meatballs or veggies

* Tomato soup and a grilled cheese

* Hummus or Guac with Veggies and Pita to dip

* Black beans and rice

* Quesadilla with beans and spinach, or cheese and avocado!

* Rolled slices of turkey, rolled sliced cheese and whole wheat crackers

* Yogurt and berries with a half sandwich

* Whole wheat bagel with cream cheese

* Use leftover roasted chicken and add mayo, sweet cranberries and crunchy celery to make a yummy wrap or sandwich

* Falafel patty in a pita with lettuce, tomato and plain yogurt

* Veggie burger with pita & dip of choice

Sides:

* Corn, peas, chickpeas…fun small round things!

* Frozen yogurt squeezers (will be thawed out but still cold by time lunch comes around)

* Chopped up veggies: cucumbers, carrots, tomatoes, peppers

* String cheese

* Hard boiled egg

* Fruit salad

* Grapes

Here is some helpful advice in regards to planning for the week’s lunches:

  1. Stock up on non-perishables:  Almonds/cashews, raisins, whole wheat crackers, beans, bread sticks, granola, rice cakes
  2. Make certain things ahead of time (on Sunday perhaps): Hard boil eggs, falafel patties or sandwiches the night before.  Roast a whole chicken so you have it to cut up for sandwiches!
  3. Have a  variety of proteins, carbs and fresh fruit on hand.  I always shop for Sunday night delivery so we are loaded up and ready for the week ahead.

So far I’ve had many days when I pick her up and almost the entire lunch has not been touched, other days it’s been entirely gobbled up.  I think this is completely unavoidable, no matter what is offered!  It just depends on her mood, and I am never exactly sure what she’s in the mood for. Or perhaps it has more to do with what is going on around her at the time (she is so easily distracted)!  Anyway, I hope this list of suggestions will at least empower you to try new things…and who knows, perhaps your child will fill find a new favorite and you’ll come home with more empty lunch boxes!

AUGUST FAMILY EVENTS IN BROOKLYN!

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written by Jen #supermom

Although so many of us Brooklynites decide to leave town during these hot summer days, there is lots to see and do this August with our families.    What I personally love about being in the city during the summer is that it can sometimes feel like we have it all to ourselves…the playgrounds are much less crowded, early mornings at Prospect Park are so peaceful and hushed…and you might not have to wait for a table at your favorite restaurant!   Here are some of the fun happenings in our neighborhood over the next month:

* Adoptapalooza (Bartel-Pritchard Square, Prospect Park):  If your family is looking to adopt a new furry companion, on August 1st from 11am-5pm there will be over 150 cats and dogs from rescue organizations at this adoption fair.  You’ll be able to purchase a dog license and take home free pet food samples, free photos from the fair’s photo booth, ID tags and more.  http://www.animalalliancenyc.org/events/featured/adoptapalooza/index2015PP.htm

* Animation for Kids (Peter Jay Sharp Building, BAM Rose Cinema): At 2pm on August 1st,  BAM Cinema will be playing a collection of the year’s best family-friendly animated shorts, gathered from both festivals and the major studios.  Total run time is 65 minutes and tickets are $14 ($7 for members).  Recommended for ages 4-8. http://www.bam.org/film/2015/animation-for-kids

* Sesame Slam:  A Retrospective on Sesame Street Animations (Peter Jay Sharp Building, BAM Rose Cinema): Come enjoy Sesame classics along with cartoons from the iconic program on August 2nd at 2pm.   65 minute run time, tickets are $14 ($7 for members).  Ages 1-5.  For more detail, please check out:http://www.bam.org/film/2015/sesame-slam

* Pattern Wizardry Exhibit (Brooklyn Children’s Museum):  A hands-on object-based exhibit, this event is designed to encourage children’s curiosity about their world through patterns.  They can play with special wands to play rhythmic beats, walk inside a 360 degree mirror, and more!  This exhibit runs through September 6th.  All ages.  http://www.brooklynkids.org/exhibits

* Figure 8 Playdate (Lefrak @ Lakeside, Prospect Park): Skate with your favorite storybook character and enjoy a meet & greet, story time, arts and crafts, breakfast and a favorite episode of the character’s show.  August 2nd, 10am-12pm is Curious George; and on August 16th from 10am-12pm will be Where the Wild Things Are! http://lakesidebrooklyn.com/activities/lakeside-kids/

* KIDtivity Wednesday (Lefrak @ Lakeside, Prospect Park): Every Wednesday through August 25th, there is a full day of 3 separate activities for our little ones. Starting at 11am kids can partake in a 60 minute fitness party, where they will enjoy kid-friendly circuit stations, games and stretches as they help increase muscle coordination and most importantly, have fun (ages 2-5). At 1pm they can enjoy puppet shows, dancing and bubble time with Puppetsburg (ages 0-4).  Creative Kitchen is at 4pm, where they can make recipes and kitchen crafts, enjoy fun food stories and sing songs (ages 2-5).  Tickets for all are FREE but make sure to reserve in advance: http://lakesidebrooklyn.com/lakeside-events/event-calendar/

* Shira & Friends Concert (Albee Square Fulton Street & Bond Street, Fulton Mall): Combining original tunes and kids classics, Shira & Friends will be performing a mix of singalong, danceable, smile-inducing music for both little and big ones to enjoy.  August 6th from 10-11am, FREE! http://downtownbrooklyn.com/events/family-community/bk-block-party-shira-friends

* Dirty Socks Funtime Band (Brooklyn Bridge Park, Pier 6): On Sunday August 9th from 11am-1pm, come enjoy the fun and groovy, SUPER high energy Dirty Socks Funtime Band perform.  Performance is followed by activities from the Private Picassos at 12pm and an outdoor pop-up reading room from the Uni Project.  Free. http://www.brooklynbridgepark.org/event-series/pier-kids-1

* 25th Annual Coney Island Sand Sculpting Contest (Coney Island Beach & Boardwalk, West 10th-12th Streets):  On August 15th from 11am-4pm, check out this annual sculpting contest and festival, where all are eligible to compete (kids and adults) to win prizes in multiple categories.  There will be live entertainment on the boardwalk, face painting, clowns and live music!  Entrants can sign up on-site.  Free!  http://www.wearebcs.org/bcs/news_events/coneyislandsandsculpting/

* 239th Anniversary of the Battle for Brooklyn (Greenwood Cemetery):  For the older kids who are interested in learning a bit about our local history, the week ofAugust 22nd-30th celebrates the first battle of the American Revolution.  The annual commemoration at Green-Wood Cemetery on Sunday, August 30th from 10am-2pmis a day filled with fun events for kids and families.  Features reenactments, trolley tours, horse rides, cannon fire, live period music, old-school games and a soldier-filled parade.  Free but does require registration in advance:  http://www.green-wood.com/event/commemoration-of-the-battle-of-brooklyn/

Hope you all enjoy this last month of summer, whether local or somewhere else, and that you are able to get out and take advantage of these unique events in our neighborhood.  Reminds us once again how lucky we are to live here!