Category Archives: kids

Don’t Just Sit There, Go to Taste of Tribeca!

If you are going to do ANYTHING ANYTHING this Saturday the 13th, its to go to Taste of Tribeca!  This downtown culinary festival was founded in 1994 by the parents of children in Tribeca’s two public elementary schools, PS 150 and PS 234 (O’s school!!!).  This festival brings together Tribeca’s best restaurants in an amazing delicious experience!  

TribecaBest_01

Picture courtesy of http://www.tasteoftribeca.com

A ticket ($40 in advance) or $45 day of the event gets your 6 delicious tastes from some of downtown’s finest chefs. Just a taste of who will be there: Bouley, City Hall, Chanterelle, Marc Forgione (my latest obsession).

Picture courtesy of www.tasteoftribeca.org

Picture courtesy of http://www.tasteoftribeca.org

Seriously Go! Run! Eat! 100% the money donated will be to raise money for Tribeca’s public elementary schools!

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It’s 8 a.m. Do You Know Where to Eat Breakfast?

You’ve been there before:  it’s Saturday and it’s 8 a.m., you’ve been up since 6:30, the kids have eaten the last frozen waffle, and the kids are already itching to get out. Where do you go at this god-awful hour?  Luckily for us in the Diaper District (fka the Financial District), we’ve got a ton of places to go that are great for the whole family.  Here’s the round-up:

1.  Jack’s Stir Brew on Front Street:  Their coffee, latte’s, apple cider are delicious and everything is organic, fair trade, shade grown – all the right buzzwords.  I don’t know how they do it but they also perfectly toast bagel and give you the right amount of cream cheese.  The only thing is that it’s a bit tough with a stroller because there are stairs.  But its worth it.  We go almost every weekend with the girls.  

Jack's Stir Brew Front Street.  Photo courtesy of Aracia Project

Jack's Stir Brew Front Street. Photo courtesy of Aracia Project

 2.  Financier on Cedar Street:  They serve Illy coffee, there’s outdoor seating, enough room for the kids to run around, and a fountain to distract them…and there’s a ramp for strollers.  What more can you ask for??

Illy Coffee at Financier.  Photo courtesy of Arancia Project

Illy Coffee at Financier. Photo courtesy of Arancia Project

3. Dunkin’ Donuts: OK, I know its not a place where you could actually sit, but face it, the kids love it. Once it starts getting warm, you pack the kids in the stroller, get a nice tall iced coffee, a toasted bagel with cream cheese (it’s not so bad, the bagels have actually gotten better) and you can get 4 muchkins for a dollar. Tell the kids its their treat for drinking all their milk at breakfast. And seriously, a Dunkin D is at almost every corner so it’s just easy.

Dunkin Donuts on Fulton.  Photo courtesy of Laser Burners  (flickr)

Dunkin Donuts on Fulton. Photo courtesy of Laser Burners (flickr)

4. Le Pain Quotidien: Ok, if you want to go totally out, head over to W. Broadway and Warren. The coffee is delicious (you get your own little pot of coffee), and the yummy soft boiled eggs bring me back to childhood when my mom made them for me every weekend morning. It’s super-family-friendly and there are good food options for kids. The only thing is that my husband left kind of hungry, and we were $50 down by 9:30 that morning.

Soft Boiled Eggs at Le Pain Quotidien.  Photo Courtesy of ajshrimpkins (flickr)

Soft Boiled Eggs at Le Pain Quotidien. Photo Courtesy of ajshrimpkins (flickr)

And after breakfast, you can work off all that you ate at one of the nearby playgrounds.  By then of course, you’ll have to figure out what to do for lunch.

Things that Make My Life Easier Awards

I would just like to thank those below who have clearly made my life easier:

1. Century 21:  I live down the block from Century 21 and for quick gifts, the best deals on housewares and kids shoes, you can’t beat it. Anytime O has a birthday party, I know that Century will have something that her friends would like: From Disney, Hannah Montana, High School Musical to Melissa and Doug – they’ve got it all at great prices. If for some reason, I have a spare moment, I always do a drive-by of the shoe department, especially the downstairs European section where you can get great finds from Chloe, Marc Jacobs to LAMB.

Century 21

Century 21

2. Max Delivery For those late nights when you just realize, “I just ran out of O’s frozen pancakes” or “S has a fever and we have no Infant’s Motrin” or if you’re the only parent home and can’t get outside – Max Delivery always…delivers. Anything you order gets to your door in under an hour.

3. Diapers.com Costco’s wipes and a jumbo pack of diapers delivered to your door within 3 days. Enough said.

4. Whole Foods TriBeCa’s Delivery Service I know that the food is fresh, organic and well-edited. I don’t have to think when I walk into a Whole Foods. I can go and pick out a huge cart-full of product, take what I need for today’s lunch home with me, and the rest will get delivered to me within 4 hours.

 

Whole Foods Tribeca

Whole Foods Tribeca

 

 

5. HRPMamas.com If there is a mom out there who ISN’T a member of HRP Mamas, sign up now! HRP Mamas is a Yahoo group of over 1000 downtown moms who use the listserve for tips, questions, and as a sounding board. Topics span everything from CIO, the best family vacations to what one does for one’s nanny’s birthday. They even have playgroups set up for every age group. I’ve found some wonderful mamas out there through HRP Mamas. I don’t know what I would do without it!

 

HRP Mamas

HRP Mamas

 

6. Barnes and Noble / Bed, Bath & Beyond / Whole Foods The fact that all three are within one block just takes one-stop-shopping to the next level!

I am sure there are more, but those are the top things that make living downtown easy!

Summer Camp II – The City or The Country??

In hemming and hawing and figuring out which camp to do, I had just found out that Downtown Day Camp now has a waiting list! We have narrowed it down to two camps: New Country Day and Downtown Day Camp, keeping my fingers crossed that they’ll still let campers in. Only in New York City would a camp have a waiting list!

The reason that we’ve narrowed it down to those two, and decided to let Little Red go off the list is because of the time and money cost factors.  The Hubby and I both work full-time, and for some reason, camps here in new york city think that we are all Europeans and take the month of august off so we can spend it at our beach house.  Well, I’m neither European nor have a beach house.  Most camps end in July which leaves the working parents left high and dry.  Plus, we’d like to stay downtown-ish and it needs to be reasonably priced.  The other factors that need to come into play are:  my daughter needs to have friends at the camp, for me, there needs to be air conditioned facilities (the summers in nyc are brutal!!), and there needs to be swimming facilities (she MUST learn how to swim!)

Little Red goes from the end of june through the end of july and runs about $2940.  It still leaves me with the month of august with nothing for my 5 3/4 year old.  The indoor facilities are air conditioned and they have access to a ton of playgrounds and go swimming at the 14th street y’s heated pool.  They get there via an air conditioned bus.

New Country Day is actually in “the country”.  ok, its in staten island, but there are trees, and a lake and most of the activities take place outdoors on the grass. New Country Day has a “full summer” session which goes from the end of june through august 21st which is perfect for us.  For the full summer?  It’s $3700 for a non Y member.  The only bad thing is its good thing:  it’s in “the country”.  

All activities take place outside.  _13_thumb2  _18_thumb1 What if its brutally hot?  What will O do?  What about water?  She’s not much of a swimmer, but they do go swimming twice a day, which will hopefully get her swimming, but NO air conditioning at all?  the hubby feels that this will be good for her:  to get her out in nature and doing things that she wouldn’t normally do, like make a teepee out of twigs and make s’mores over a fireplace.  I’m torn.  

Downtown Day Camp is in the city.  And its near our apartment.  It, too, has a full summer session for $3745.  Again, very competitive with the others.  The good thing about it is its downfall:  it is too familiar (we think) for O.  Is familiarity a good thing or a bad thing for an almost-6 year old? Or should we get her out experiencing new environments?  It does have air conditioning, they have access to a pool, and its near our apartment.  And another thing it has: a waiting list.  

only in new york, folks.

….to be continued!

Summer Camp?!?

It’s March, and for those who don’t have children, now is usually the time to get those summer houses in the Hamptons or Jersey Shore all buttoned up and paid for: making sure you get the right people in the house, and figuring out what weekends you are signed up for.

For those of us with kids, it’s not about Amagansett, East Hampton or Spring Lake.  Its whether or not we should be doing Downtown Day Camp, New Country Day Camp or Little Red.  I have got to get going on this, figuring out the pros and cons, cost analysis, and the bigger question:  WHO of her friends will be going to which camp – which in the mind of a 5 3/4 year old – is the biggest factor.   It’s a big commitment, and one that I just can’t do in the next 10 minutes.  Bigger project, which means I’ll probably have to save it for Sunday night at 8:15 p.m….when the girls are in bed.   More to come on what I’m thinking!