NYC Editor / Writer
Sonia is a veteran editor and writer for Mommy Poppins. She loves exploring greater New York with her husband and their three kids and is always on the looking out for innovative, educational and fun things to do with them. She is thrilled to have this platform to share what she finds with Mommy Poppins readers.
You can also follow Sonia on Google+.
Latest posts by Sonia
My kids, like so many others, are obsessed with animals. My son in particular has been campaigning hard for a puppy, but so far, we’ve remained an animal-free household. Of course there's only so long I can put him off. That's why I was thrilled to find out that there are lots of animal care classes for kids, so he can get his cute critter fix, and I can keep my sofa free of fur and scratches.
Taking an animal care class is a lot more hands-on than visiting a petting zoo. Children find out how much work goes into looking after them and what a big responsibility they are. They also learn respect and compassion for all creatures. So next time your child asks for a four-legged pal, consider signing them up for one of these animal care classes for kids instead (hey at least you'll find out if they're ready to clean up poop).
[UPDATED: December 1, 2012]
For the final post of our month-long focus on the Upper East Side, we're sharing our favorite practical shops for new parents and babies in the neighborhood. Take a stroll on one of the nabe's main avenues like Madison or Lexington and you'll pass a ton of fancy boutiques selling chichi wears for little ones (that they'll grow out in, oh, about a week). So instead of listing all of those swanky spots that have expensive outfits and not much else, we decided to focus on stores that offer necessities for new parents and babies. These five spots sell everything from nursing supplies to nursery furniture, baby slings to baby toys. Plus most offer special classes and events especially for new parents.
My daughter turns five next month and so far she hasn't asked me to buy her a pony (good thing too as it's definitely not in our budget). However, she and my other two kids are constantly asking to go horseback riding. Although you might think that you need to leave New York City to hop on a horse, you don't. There are a number of stables in NYC that offer lessons and rides for aspiring cowboys and cowgirls.
Sadly, Claremont Riding Academy, the last remaining horse stable in Manhattan, closed in 2007 so there's no longer horseback riding in Central Park. However, there are stables in the other four boroughs that allow families to make like it's the Wild West.
So far during our month-long focus on Riverdale and the surrounding areas, we’ve rounded up the top things to do and the best places to eat with kids in the northwest Bronx. For our final Riverdale post, we're looking at great places to play and learn in the neighborhood, from old favorites like Wave Hill and Uptown Sports Complex, to a brand-new play space that opens next week.
Our month-long focus on Riverdale and the surrounding neighborhoods continues with a look at family-friendly restaurants in the area. While Riverdale is not exactly known as a foodie hot spot (unless you love pubs), there are some great places to eat with kids in tow. From Jewish deli staples like matzoh ball soup and stuffed cabbage to perfectly prepared burgers to the best carrot cake in New York City, here are our top spots for families to eat in Riverdale.
It's not news that New York City is a very bike-friendly town. But you may not have heard about NYC's newest cycling spot, Pier 54, which is specifically aimed at people who want to practice riding a bike. Located at 13th Street in Hudson River Park, this learn-to-bike zone is great for families with kids who aren't yet completely comfortable on two (or three or four) wheels. Plus this June, Bike New York will be offerings free bike lessons at Pier 54 for children and adults.
Once your kid's mastered biking, NYC has many wonderful, safe, car-free routes for families to bike together. Last year we shared our favorite places to bike in Manhattan. Today we're sharing our top cycling spots for families in the five boroughs and beyond.
The Bronx has a rich and vibrant arts scene that, sadly, doesn't always get the attention it deserves. As a proud Bronx resident, I'm all about inspiring New Yorkers from other parts of the city to visit my home borough. So today I'm going to tell you about one of my family's favorite Bronx art spaces: The Point Community Development Corporation.
Located in the Hunts Point section of the South Bronx, The Point is a multifaceted center that's been instrumental in revitalizing the neighborhood through youth empowerment and arts education. In fact, a lot of the reason that Hunts Point is now considered a cultural and artistic hub is because of the organization's amazing work. While the center offers classes, camps and workshops that require a long-term commitment, The Point also sponsors many wonderful drop-in family programs, events and performances that are open to the public, many of which are FREE.
[UPDATED: December 1, 2012]
We continue our month-long focus on Harlem with a look at shopping with kids in the neighborhood. The main thoroughfares like 125th and 145th Streets are filled with popular chains like Children's Place, H&M and Old Navy. But, as befits the vibrant and diverse area, you can also find more eclectic stores on the side streets and avenues.
Although independent Harlem shops aren't taking off quite like the restaurant scene, there are still several gems, each with a unique story and history. Here are our top kid-friendly stores for families to hit in Harlem.