Preschoolers

Preschool Admissions Tips from Experts, Schools, and Moms Who've Been There

Finding the right preschool is a challenge for many NYC parents. Of course you want to provide your kids with the best early education experience possible, but there’s also cost and location to consider—and available spots can be in short supply at the most popular preschools. Plus, the sheer number of programs and educational philosophies (are you a Montessori family, or is your two year-old more of a Reggio-Emilia kinda toddler?) can be overwhelming.

Like a lot of other things in this city, finding a great preschool calls for a bit of advance planning and research. But with a few helpful tips, you can navigate the preschool admissions obstacle course. To demystify the process of getting into preschool in NYC, we reached out to admissions consultants, preschool directors, and parents who’ve been there, toured that. What we discovered is that there are as many different and "great" preschools as there are perfectly wonderful children. The right preschool situation is out there for your family!

Dough Life's Edible Cookie Dough Is Catnip for Kids

There's nothing quite like taking a giant bite out of a roll of cookie dough. It's delicious, but not something you'd like to see you child doing. At least not until now.

While eating traditional raw cookie dough comes with health risks, including salmonella, Dough Life's cookie dough is completely edible. Kids, and cookie dough-loving adults, can comfortably indulge in what once was a guilty pleasure. Read on and see how the cookie dough craze has come to Long Island.

If your kids have a big sweet tooth, check out these decadent dessert spots or old-fashioned ice cream parlors on Long Island as well.

Children's Museum of the Arts: A Must-Visit Creative Hub for Kids

Slime in the carpet. Glitter on the walls. Paint on a brand new couch. These are just a few of the art-projects-gone-wild I've cleaned up over the years. And though I know the value in all this messy fun and creativity, sometimes I just don't want to deal with stocking the supplies, guiding the activities, and cleaning it all up. Enter the Children's Museum of the Arts. For my money (and sanity!) nothing beats a trip to this creative hub. Dubbed by my arts-loving daughters as their favorite NYC museum, it's an arts education powerhouse that doubles as an indoor playspace, making it a must-visit for NYC guests and tried-and-true boredom buster for city parents.

Easy Last-Minute Halloween Costumes for Kids

Maybe your daughter changed her mind about her Halloween costume for the bazillionth time. Or maybe your son got an invite to a last-minute Halloween party. Or maybe you're just a proud member of the Procrastination Club. Whatever your case may be, we’ve found the easiest Halloween costumes for kids that even a non-crafty mom or dad can pull together on the fly.

Most of the costumes on our list don't call for an arm's-length list of crafting supplies or Halloween props: Headbands, pom-poms, markers, solid t-shirts, and a glue gun can go a long way with a little imagination. In fact, these DIY kids' costumes are so easy, you might just have time to whip up a few frighteningly tasty Halloween treats, too.

7 Best Train Ride Day Trips To Take from Los Angeles

One of the best parts about living in Los Angeles is getting out of Los Angeles. With an unending supply of beaches, mountains, deserts, and historic highways just a short distance away from the city, there’s always an excuse for a day trip. But what are the options if you’re looking to leave cars out of the equation and travel by train to your favorite SoCal destination? Here are a few of the best spots Angelenos can get to by rail and still be home by bedtime.

Massapequa With Kids: Beaches, Parks, and Plenty More

Massapequa is massive. 

From its northernmost boundary at the Southern State Parkway (technically North Massapequa) to the waters of South Oyster Bay, this community within the Town of Oyster Bay extends through the village of Massapequa Park to the Suffolk County border at Amityville.

Residents boast of Massapequa's award-winning public schools. But also included is a bustling downtown along Park Boulevard and a thriving beach community on the South Shore, making Massapequa a jewel in Nassau County. Read on to see what makes this area attractive to families.

Best Places to Trick-or-Treat on Halloween with NYC Kids

One of my favorite childhood memories from growing up in NYC was Halloween in Greenwich Village. Back then, the Village Halloween Parade was just a couple hundred artists and others who marched through the neighborhood. Afterward, we would trick-or-treat up and down the brownstone blocks. Everyone was friendly, and we would come home with our shopping bags completely filled. It was magical.

Although the parade and Greenwich Village have changed a lot since then, your kids can still enjoy that kind of thrilling trick-or-treat experience in many New York City neighborhoods. Which neighborhood is the best for Halloween trick-or-treating depends on who you ask. New Yorkers love to bicker over the best coffee shops, the best (and worst) train lines, and yes, the best places to take their kids on Halloween. We also love to find that secret gem.

So we asked our astute readers and collected recommendations from our parent-driven NYC staff over many, many years to bring you a list of our favorite trick-or-treating spots so you'll know where to bring your kids this October 31.

Join one of the local Halloween parades and then go trick-or-treating throughout the community with local families. Or hit one of the neighborhoods or streets listed below: We have a slew of spots to try in all five boroughs. For more seasonal fun, check out our jam-packed Halloween Guide, showcasing FREE events, haunted houses, pumpkin patches, and more.

7 Reasons Kids Love Longwood Gardens in Chester County

Longwood Gardens is a special Chester County destination for children and grown-ups alike. Every season it has something exciting to offer. In the fall, it’s tough to beat its array of colorful foliage, and kids enjoy the pumpkins and harvest activities. Winter brings a wonderland of festive lights and holiday displays.

Once spring and summer roll around, Longwood Gardens transforms into an oasis filled with incredible blooms, shady pathways, and outdoor events and musical performances in the Open Air Theatre. Visitors don’t have to be horticultural experts to appreciate everything Longwood has to offer. Here are seven reasons why kids (and adults!) can’t get enough of Longwood, no matter the weather.

Thanksgiving Dinner Out, Fairfield County Restaurants

If you find yourself sans extended family this Thanksgiving in Fairfield County, maybe you're miserable, maybe you're counting your blessings. Either way, you've no doubt realized that cooking a feast for a family of four seems somewhat ludicrous. Perhaps going to a restaurant seems even more ludicrous, but hear us out... Some of the best chefs in the state are keeping their doors open, and are probably already prepping for the pumpkin soup, butternut squash ravioli, pecan nut tarts, and eggnog creme brulees they have planned -- not to mention a perfect slice of turkey and NO MESS to clean up. We've also listed restaurants open on Thanksgiving in Hartford County  and Litchfield County.

Restaurants Serving Thanksgiving Dinner around Hartford, CT

The thought of having to prepare a huge Thanksgiving meal for my family gives me nightmares worse than forgetting to turn in my senior thesis. I prefer to leave it to the professionals and enjoy family, friends, and football rather than shopping, cooking, and cleaning up. For a traditional feast with all the trimmings minus the stress, check out our list of restaurants open on Thanksgiving in the Hartford area. Reservations are strongly recommended for all of the restaurants. Check out our posts about Thanksgiving Dinner Out in Fairfield County and Restaurants open on Thanksgiving Day in Litchfield County too. 

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