Homes with Awesome Holiday Lights and Decor Around Boston

For some of us, it's a struggle to string our own little Christmas trees without losing a bulb (or our tempers). Others—including some of our Boston neighbors—are veritable pros at decking out their homes for the holidays. All over Boston and the 'burbs, there are spectacular public holiday light displays, but also families who've made a tradition of creating special sparkle on their own properties. So next time you have a free evening, pack some hot chocolate in a thermos, buckle up the kids, and take a road trip to see some of these joyful dwellings. It's sure to inspire holiday spirit (and maybe some ideas for your own abode). Note that some homes and neighborhoods might be still finalizing displays or take periodic days off...drop us a tip at boston@mommypoppins.com if you have any updates.

10 Tips for Visiting NYC From Local Parents

New York City makes a magical vacation spot for families year round. From its world-class cultural institutions to the bright lights of Broadway, towering skyscrapers, history-steeped, old cobblestone streets, and well-known landmarks, there's plenty to entertain your family whether you're here for a day, a week...or even longer.

While a vacation in the concrete jungle can be an action-packed experience, it can also be a challenge. Read on for our parent-tested tips to make your New York City family vacation one to remember.

Free Indoor Play Spots for New Jersey Kids

From malls and toy stores to libraries and bookstores, these low-key play spots will banish winter boredom—at least for a little while. The best part? They're all free! So grab a coffee and a friend, and schedule your next play date at one of these indoor gems.

For even more family fun, don't miss our guide to great indoor play spaces with fees for winter drop-in hours. If you find yourself with a full day to fill and you're up for a little adventure, plan a winter day trip. And don't miss our Events Calendar for tons of local happenings. 

The Top Residential Holiday Light Displays in the Philadelphia Area

Decorating the home for the holidays is a tradition that brings families together. Finding those houses that really outdo themselves every year is a traditional family activity to look forward to every Christmas.

While organized light displays from farms are delightful, there's something really special about checking out some awesome houses around the neighborhood. And there are quite a few neighborhoods that really go all out. The best part is, they're all free! We've got your ticket to some of the best residential light displays to check out.

No-Car Skiing Day Trips: Ski Bus Deals and Packages from NYC

Don’t let the lack of a car keep you from hitting the slopes this winter. Nearly all of the big (and small, for you first-timers) ski resorts nearby offer bus or train package deals from New York City. These packages are convenient, wallet-friendly, and often include discounted lift tickets and equipment rentals.

Even if you own a car, these deals are worth considering: After a hard day on the slopes, it's wonderful to kick back and relax while someone else battles traffic back to NYC. These destinations, in New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania, offer ski packages to get your family to the mountains.

Find more ski and snow sports fun in our Family Ski Guide, covering the tri-state area and beyond.

Restaurants Open on Christmas Day in New Jersey

Too pooped to put on Christmas this year? Not to fret! There are plenty of restaurants in New Jersey where you can pull up a chair on Christmas Day. So, once all the presents under your Christmas tree have been unwrapped and the stockings scavenged, you can lounge in your PJs, sip your coffee, and watch the kids play with their gifts and goodies without having to worry about cooking and cleaning before guests arrive.

We’ve rounded up 11 of New Jersey’s best haunts to feast on festive fare. Call ahead to secure your spots at the table, and then start mapping out the holiday light displays you can catch after dinner. You won’t have to build in extra travel time, because chances are you’ll have the roads all to yourselves. Merry Christmas!

Best Restaurants Near Rockefeller Center for Families

Some of those who visit regularly or work near Rockefeller Center admit they find the dining choices less than exciting. But whether you're there over the holidays to see the famed Rockefeller tree, ice skate, check out the holiday windows, or to enjoy one of the other fun experiences in this action-packed complex, you'll need to eat eventually, and there are some good restaurant options if you know where to look.

Here are our top picks for kid-friendly eateries near Rockefeller Center, and for more family-friendly restaurant options in NYC, check out our Restaurant Guide.

Weekend Fun for LA Kids: Boat Parades, Christmas Parades, Last of Hanukkah

It's December, and people are taking to the streets. They are marching. They have something to express, and they want to be heard. They're also floating. Or maybe motoring. Whatever they're doing, it's not drifting, because then they would end up on the beach, and you know what that means: stuck in the snow. (Tons of it)

Sure, all the Christmas parades and holiday light walks (which is of course what you knew I was talking about) may seem a tad early, but only if you don't realize we are well into December. Well in. As in this weekend, next weekend, then Holy Mother of Merriment It's Practically Christmas!!! or something like that. And the Boat Parades? That's totally our SoCal spin on 'Tis the Season.

Menorah lighting kinder have the rest of the weekend still to rack up their gifts (and nosh on gelt and latkes).  The fun is just beginning!

So get on your toes join the parade, and get in on this weekend's fun...

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