Revamped Garden State Plaza Play Space Takes Kids Down the Shore

It’s hard to believe I started my Christmas shopping early this year, with a 9-month-old baby boy at home gobbling up all of our bananas and mama’s free time (in the best way possible). But in a twist of fate, I found myself at the Garden State Plaza in Paramus this past Saturday. After a full morning of shopping, I wolfed down some Wetzel’s Pretzel bites and wound up introducing my little guy to his first social indoor play space experience at GSP's totally revamped Westfield Family PlaySpace.

Sippy Cups Cafe: A New Play Space with Snacktime

A play space where parents can grab a cup of joe— and drink it while it's still hot—with the kiddies exploring in plain sight? That's the setup at Sippy Cups Cafe in Seaford, a play space plus cafe for adults with children ages 6 and younger.

Looking for more inside fun this season? Check out our guide to Long Island's top indoor play spaces. If you have a younger child, you might want to see our list of the best indoor play spaces for LI toddlers. Enjoy.

25 Things To Do in Palm Springs with Kids

No matter the season, you can always count on Palm Springs and the surrounding Coachella Valley for balmy weather and lots of fun in the sun. In fact, this glamorous resort area, only a two-hour drive from Los Angeles, is blessed with an average of 350 days of sunshine each year and is the ideal playground for countless family activities. Here are a few ideas on how to make the most of a vacation in the desert.

Free Things to Do Indoors in Houston With Kids

Whether you're a stay at home mom just trying to find something to do during the day or a working mom wanting to spice things up on the weekend - but without spending a bunch of cash - this post is for you. Especially when the weather isn't exactly welcoming, inside activities are the way to go.

These businesses and playscapes around Houston are always free and remember to check our calendar because it is always packed with free things to do every day. For more ideas, check out our Indoor Fun Guide for Houston Families.

Now, read on for X free places to play and spend time with the kids around Houston.

Weekend Fun for LA Kids: Winter Festivals, Hanukkah Fun, Boat Parades

It's a bit hard to know what to tell you about this weekend.

On the one hand, the most wonderful time of the year is settling into the region. Santa sightings and reindeer rompstwinkling lights and festive music are planned in every corner of the Southland this weekend. On the other hand, there is no one untouched by the fires; many families have had kids home for much of the week, and still others have had to flee their homes. Our hearts are with the families in the path of fire, and with the fire fighters working round the clock to keep us all safe.

We hope that the events listed below, many of which have been planned all year, will be able to go forward, and everyone will get to enjoy some holiday cheer. Currently these events are proceeding as planned; we will update our event calendar if we get new information, but we also recommend checking with the venues on the day, since conditions can change rapidly.

Winter festivals this weekend feature ice skating at Pershing Square and sledding at Burton Chace Park. Some celebrate Hanukkah, while others prep little ones for Christmas, offering breakfast or dinner with Santa.

But nothing screams holidays for Angelenos more than a boat parade. Boats at Huntington Harbor, Marina del Rey, Dana Wharf, Marine Emporium Landing, King Harbor, and Naples Island are strung with lights and set to glide along the waterways for all to see. On the other hand, if trains are your preferred method of transportation, check out Griffith Park and Southern Railroad's Holiday Light Festival Train RideIrvine Park Railroad Christmas Train, or the Orange Empire Train to Santa's Workshop.

Still looking for more ideas on how to spend this December weekend? Read on for our top picks.

2017 Houston Bestie Guide

Houston families, we asked you to tell us your favorite businesses around the city, and you've been heard. Our inaugural Houston Besties sought to find the best family businesses and resources in categories that range from best restaurants, parties, activities, and more. With all the great family fun experiences and resources around Houston, it was hard to choose just 24, but you were up to the task. Each winner was selected from a competitive crop of 10 nominees in each category.

Before we announce our winners, we'd like to thank our Bestie Sponsors, including Sublime Travel and Sweet Pecks Photography. And congratulations to the lucky voters who were picked at random to enjoy some amazing prizes!

The votes are finally in, and we couldn't be more excited about our winners. We've grouped them into three winning categories: Parenting Resources, Enrichment Programs, and Family Fun. 

Without further ado, here is your guide to the best of family-friendly Houston, the 2017 Houston Besties!

Best Parenting Resources Winners |  Best Family Fun Winners | Best Enrichment Programs Winners 

Weekend Fun for Houston Kids: Jingle on the Boardwalk, Gingerbread Build-Off, Dec 9-10

Our weather may be alternating between being unseasonably warm and the more seasonably appropriate cooler temps, but our city is unwavering in its holiday spirit. This weekend is full of all sorts of holiday festivities you don't want to miss, such as La Marque's Magical Winter Lights, which promises to be a truly enchanting experience. 

Still need to put up the Christmas tree? Why not cut down your own at one of these five Houston-area Tree Farms? You can find all sorts of holiday happenings like this in our Guide to Holiday and Christmas Events for Houston Families

For those interested in getting outdoors and taking advantage of Houston's balmy winter temperatures, Bay Area Park may be just what you're looking for to shake up your normal park routine. 

We also have an event calendar that is full of all the best events happening throughout Houston and the surrounding areas, as well as a list of 26 FREE Christmas and holiday events that are nearby, our ever popular December GoList, and our free weekly newsletter

Have an event worth sharing? Submit your event to our calendar, and we'll make sure it reaches all of our loyal readers.

Now, onward to this weekend's events!

Weekend Fun for Boston Kids: Dreidels, Revels, and Rudolph; Dec 9-10

Can you hear the sleigh bells? Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer: The Musical arrives in Boston next week, and to get ready, Legoland Boston is hosting a Bricktacular event in honor of Rudolph all weekend. And though December can be consumed with all things Christmas, sometimes we forget that there are all kinds of things to celebrate this month. With Hanukkah starting on Tuesday, start celebrating the Festival of Lights on Sunday with a dreidel making workshop, a cantata, and even a Hanukkah-themed S.T.E.A.M. fair.


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