When we revisit the classic experiences of childhood, sometimes they lose their rose-tinted luster, while other times they are just as good, if not better than we remembered. The ice cream truck holds up well. Lemonade stands are still pretty darn neat, too. And, as it turns out, Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus really does have a right to its boastful tagline, The Greatest Show on Earth.
Years spent at Nickelodeon prepared Roberta to launch Mommy Poppins' Los Angeles branch. She served as LA Editor for GoCityKids, National Editor for ParentsConnect, and Editor for NickMom. After two years as Mommy Poppins' LA Editor, Roberta became Editor-in-Chief at Mommy Poppins - which works out well for her son, who enjoys his role as Chief Guinea Pig for all things fun in LA and beyond.
Latest posts by Roberta
Every now and then, some enterprising person bangs his or her head against the same wall we've all encountered time and again - and comes up with a totally new and inspired solution. Meet Nanny in the Clouds. If you've ever flown alone with small children, or avoided flying because you couldn't face flying alone with small children, your head will start to buzz when you find out what this company does. You may even check your frequent flyer balance before you go to sleep tonight - because these folks have an easy, affordable way to take the stress out of traveling with toddlers. Skeptics, read on!
Quick - name a Beatle. Did you say Ringo? Bet you did! Even if you went for John, Paul, or George, chances are that the Beatle your kids know best is Ringo. There's just something about Ringo - the familiar face, the familiar voice, the familiar beat of his familiar drums - everyone loves Ringo Starr. That's why the GRAMMY Museum's newest exhibit, Ringo: Peace and Love (open through April 2014), is such a fab outing for parents, kids, and even grandparents to all enjoy together. Big smiles and hummed tunes are practically guaranteed.
It grieves me more than I can express to be collecting resources for our community similar to those our Connecticut and Boston editors have had to research all too recently. The children of Santa Monica go back to school today for two days that were scheduled mostly with end-of-year picnics and field trips, but the time will also be spent processing a senseless, violent tragedy - this time in our own community. Whether your children heard the gunfire as they hid under their desks, were on a field trip at the college, knew victims, or just heard frightening rumors, all of them have questions. I hope some of the resources below may be helpful to families processing last Friday's events.
Will Geer's Theatricum Botanicum in Topanga is home to one of LA's classic summer evening activities (earning it the #10 slot on our bucket list of 100 Things To Do with LA Kids). The outdoor theater in the wooded mountains of Topanga was founded 40 years ago by the man most Americans remember as Grandpa Walton (can you get more American than those dungaree overalls?) and is still run by his daughter, actor/director Ellen Geer. The shows that play in repertory on a summer evening are mostly Shakespeare, and the rustic, idyllic setting can convert the pickiest picnickers to fans of the bard. This summer's production of Taming of the Shrew is an excellent example.
As you may have noticed, we've been trying to get more of our Mommy Poppins families out camping, so we've been sharing some great Los Angeles area campgrounds and even offering up several places that accommodate last minute camping. Basically, if you want to sleep in a tent under the stars this weekend, we're there for you. But it's possible that some of you feel overwhelmed at the prospect; maybe you've never camped before, or maybe you just haven't yet figured out how to fit kids into that thing you used to do with the backpack and the camp stove. Either way, we can have you packed and ready for the campsite in no time!
It's a kid's dream come true: we want to hear everything your kids have to say about a movie!
In fact, we want to do more than that: we want to invite your kids to see a couple of kids' films for free and THEN tell us what they think about them. And we want to publish their very important opinions right here on this website for other kids and adults to see. In short, we want to turn your kids into film critics for the Los Angeles Children's Film Festival in Santa Monica this month.
We are recruiting our team of critics by the end of day on Thursday, April 11, so that we can invite them to their special preview screenings on Saturday, April 13, at either 10am or 11:45am.
Sometimes we want our kids to have birthday parties teeming with enriching activities and professional party entertainment from start to finish. Other times, we just want them to go outside and jump somewhere far away from the sofa. Families with sprawling back yards might be fortunate enough not to need the information below, but for the many, many LA families raising kids in smaller homes than they ever imagined they would, our wonderful city parks are our life support system; the parks that allow bounce houses can be even more so. Check out 12 great parks we love that let kids enjoy bouncers at their birthday parties.