Edgemont Montessori School Holiday Sing

BY  |  Tuesday, Dec 31, 2013 11:00am  |  COMMENTS (0)

Edgemont Montessori School

Edgemont Montessori School celebrated the Season with their annual Holiday Sing on December 20. Mrs. Koebel lead the students in a wonderful fuse of Christmas, Hanukkah and Kwanzaa songs and dance. There was the Orff Ensemble, African Drumming as well as the 2nd and 3rd grader singing a Christmas song in Italian. A true celebration for all!

Weekend Getaway: Philadelphia’s Fantastic Museum Mile

BY  |  Tuesday, Dec 31, 2013 8:00am  |  COMMENTS (3)


Looking for an easy weekend getaway, but tired of the same old “drive” destinations near New Jersey? Consider following in my family’s footsteps, and get a fresh new take on an old destination. In our case, we hit up Philadelphia, but with a twist: We skipped our usual historic downtown tour and focused instead on the cultural side of the city. Can you spend a weekend in Philly without seeing the Liberty Bell and still have a good time? Yes! (But no need to skip the cheesesteaks….)

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Barista Kids Poll: Are You Letting the Kids Stay Up Until Midnight on New Year’s Eve?

BY  |  Monday, Dec 30, 2013 12:00pm  |  COMMENTS (6)

New Year's EveMy oldest daughter turns 10 on New Year’s Day. Since double digits are a big deal, she is begging to stay up until midnight on New Year’s Eve. However, she has always been the type of kid who is a wild-eyed crazy person when she doesn’t get enough sleep. She also has a birthday party the next day at 1 pm, and I doubt her friends want to be around a sleep-deprived tween.

So we compromised and said that she, and her little sister,  had to go to bed at the regular time, but that we would wake them up before midnight so they could watch the ball drop with us. She agreed.

What’s the rule in your home for your tweens and under? Take our poll:

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Ready, Set, Parent: A Realistic, Friendly Parenting Guide

BY  |  Monday, Dec 30, 2013 10:00am  |  COMMENTS (3)

Ready, Set, Parent“Sometimes just knowing that parenting isn’t always easy or perfect helps.”

That line, taken from the conclusion of Ready, Set, Parent, a helpful guide written by parenting Ph.D.s Dr. Elizabeth M. Vantre and Dr. Samantha L. Dawson, underscores the healthy attitude this parenting book shares. With a caring but firm tone, this book helps parents find their own style and stick to it with realistic and recognizable examples throughout.

The parenting advice found in Ready, Set, Parent isn’t particularly new, but it’s refreshing in that it acknowledges differences in children’s temperaments, family priorities, and the inevitable disappointments – as well as joys – along the parenting path. There is a bit of snark, perhaps influenced by on-line furor, but overall the tone is one of an understanding, slightly more together friend.

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Barista Kids New Year’s Round-Up 2013

BY  |  Monday, Dec 30, 2013 8:00am  |  COMMENTS (0)

New Year’s Round-Up

2014 arrives at midnight tomorrow, so here’s a round-up of our favorite New Year’s posts, including things to do, resolutions and fun crafts!

Our Favorite Parenting Tweets This Week

BY  |  Sunday, Dec 29, 2013 4:00pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

parenting tweetOur favorite parenting tweets from this past week, many from local moms and dads:





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What’s For (After) Dinner?: Ginger Snaps

BY  |  Sunday, Dec 29, 2013 11:54am  |  COMMENTS (0)

Ginger Snaps

I hereby declare that it is still Cookie Season™ until I take down my Christmas tree. And because I’m not one of those throw-it-out-the-minute-Christmas-Day-is-done types, that won’t be until January 6th (Twelfth Night has a name for reason, people…) In the meantime, Cookie Season™ is still in full swing.

So regardless of whether it still feels a lot like Christmas in your corner of Baristaville, if you need a plate of cookies to take to an open house or New Year’s party, here is a simple recipe that features a really quick assembly and a superfast bake. And at about five minutes to mix together and 15-20 minutes to cook, when I say simple, I mean simple.

The great thing about Ginger Snaps (or ginger nuts, ginger thins or gingerbread cookies depending on your personal provenance) is that they have a sharp enough taste to cut through the coldest of winter days that’s also sweet enough to pair with a cup of coffee or hot chocolate. Or glass of dry sherry, depending on the occasion…

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Kwanzaa Fun at Montclair Pop-Up Today

BY  |  Saturday, Dec 28, 2013 10:45am  |  COMMENTS (1)


Yahaya Kamate and the Kamate Drummers will be performing music from the Ivory Coast, Guinea, and West Africa to help celebrate Kwanzaa today at Montclair Pop-up on Walnut Street.

Yahaya is a former member of the National Ballet of the Ivory Coast. He currently is a dance teacher at Alvin Ailey and at various New Jersey and New York schools where he teaches both West African drumming as well as dance. His energy is infectious and he will have everyone on their feet.

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Razzberry Swirl Frozen Yogurt Hosting Benefit For Montclair Chapter #53 PBA Today

BY  |  Saturday, Dec 28, 2013 8:00am  |  COMMENTS (0)

Razzberry Swirl Frozen Yogurt

It will be a beautiful day today—sunny and 46°! So we can’t think of a better reason to enjoy some frozen yogurt at Razzberry Swirl Frozen Yogurt in Montclair. Actually, there is a better reason to visit Razzberry, aka RAZZ, today, the locally owned  family business is hosting a benefit for the Montclair Local Chapter #53 of the Policemen’s Benevolent Association PBA.

RAZZ will will give 50% of every sale to the PBA. The event will take place all day today, Saturday, December 28 beginning at 1 pm. There will be face painting, balloons, photos, prizes, and music too! Prize drawings will be held every hour from 1 – 5, with an iPad mini Sweepstakes to enter.

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OpEd: All Our Children Matter

BY  |  Friday, Dec 27, 2013 7:30pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

Zainee Hailey, 13 years old.

RIP: Zainee Hailey, 13 years old.

They are tears of frustration and anger, not helplessness and sadness. I’ve stopped having those kinds of tears when it comes to gun violence.

This past week, there were too many horrific incidents fueled by a combination of who knows what. We can speculate that the holidays bring stress and drink and family and despair and shattered expectations. Or we can shrug and wring our hands at the state of the world (while hoping it doesn’t get any closer than our television sets). But the fact is, the USA is awash in firearms — both legally and illegally obtained. And they are devastating our cities even while they shock and awe our suburbs with relatively isolated incidents of negligence and violence.

But in the furor and dizzying haze of American gun violence, there is sometimes a story that pulls me harshly and sadistically back to those Monday morning classroom head counts — after hearing that an as yet unnamed teenager in some Brooklyn neighborhood had been shot. And this December 25th brought one of those types of stories.

It’s simple: teenagers should be able to take out the trash without being shot and killed. Teenagers should be able to hang out on stoops without ducking bullets. Teenagers should be able to live freely without tensing up when they hear heavy footsteps on their block. Teenagers, no matter where they live, can be annoying and eye-rolling and frustrating and goofy — just like we all were — and they should all be able to mature in peace.

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