Introducing children to a great hiking trail, museum, or landmark is always fun; that is until someone suddenly—and it's always suddenly—gets hungry. We've found that the best strategy for a smooth outing en famille is to pair an activity with a quick meal and easy dessert. Avoid frantic last-minute smartphone searches and map out these pizza and ice cream parlors, which are conveniently close to some of our favorite day-trip sites and also just happen to serve up some of the best slices and scoops in the area.
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August marks the beginning of the Back-to-School blitz, which I try to tune out as much as possible, because really, summer is my jam, and because this year, I'm returning to work full time. But if you're ready to go there, there are some amazing parent-toddler classes, from music to art to yoga, on offer throughout the city and suburbs, many of which will be enrolling shortly.
I went back to work full-time this year after several years of working part-time as a high school teacher, and I spent the first few months feeling pretty inadequate at basically everything. By November, I started to feel a little more on top of things, just in time for cold, cough and stomach bug season. Here are some tips and ideas I wish I'd had back in August. (Note: I consider being a stay-at-home mom of young children full time work, so many of these tips are applicable whether you work in or outside of the home.) You might also want to check out the Poppins Parents profile on recent-blogging-award winner, yogi-extraordinaire Kristin Quinn for some inspiration (!) and tips on juggling work and family.
I can't say enough good things about my neighborhood. Roslindale Village (and it really is a bit like a village) includes the square and its surrounding neighborhoods, and it is diverse, sociable, walkable, and fun. I feel more at home here than I ever did in the suburbs.
The fact that Roslindale is situated between Jamaica Plain and West Roxbury means that you've probably driven through it on your way somewhere else. Here are twenty reasons to stop and hang out for a while.
If you frequent Jamaica Plain, you already know about the many awesome places to make music with your kids. But you might not know that Jamaica Plain is also home to one of the most unique and critically acclaimed up-and-coming chamber music groups in the country, the conductor-less string orchestra, A Far Cry. This group -- they call themselves Criers -- invites a new generation of young people to embrace classical music by making their concerts participatory, varied, and inexpensive. And they have afternoon recitals, perfect for the younger, post-nap set.
Breakfast and brunch are the meals we tend to eat out most often; toddlers are early risers, so by 10 or so, we're ready for (second) breakfast, and kids really, really like breakfast food. I enjoy whipping up muffins or pancakes, but I will gladly pay for the privilege of getting someone else to make them for me while I happily sip a mimosa or bloody Mary. It may only be 9am, and I may have a weekend's worth of stuff to fit into one day, but hey! If you're looking for fancy brunches to celebrate a birthday or special event, check out Tara's piece from last spring, but here are a few of our family's favorite casual neighborhood spots around town.
I'm going back to work full-time this month, which is terrifying, but I'm determined not to give up our family dinner time together; it's time we all need to reconnect, unwind, and besides, it's pretty hilarious when our two-year-old wants to clink glasses and say 'cheers'. I have written about time saving meal swaps before, but what about the nights when it's just you, a toddler or two, and dinner that's not yet made, assembled, or otherwise prepared? Here are some easy ways to transform that hour before dinner from meltdown city into happy land (ok, most of the time).
It's hot in Boston, and we're hopeful that our Cape trip in August will be sunny and warm, and just a tad cooler. But we're bringing a few rainy day toys with us, just in case, packed alongside coolers and camp chairs, sunscreen and bug spray. Maybe we won't need them, but one thing I've learned from traveling with a two year old is that it's better to be prepared, for sunny days and not-so-sunny ones. Here are six great indoor activities around the Cape to help you weather the storm, or at least buy you some time until it stops raining.