Ice Block Treasure Hunt: An Easy and Cool Way to Entertain Kids on a Hot Summer Day

BY  |  Monday, Jul 21, 2014 12:00pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

Ice Block Treasure Hunt

Any kid age two and over will enjoy poking around in a block of ice that is filled with tiny toys and going on an Ice Block Treasure Hunt! It’s a great activity on a hot summer day.

For my son, I just froze some of the toys he already owned (sequins, beads, little plastic guys), but you could make this project really exciting and freeze some not-yet-seen items.

All you need to do is take a plastic container fill it about 3/4 full with water and throw in the toys. If your child is doing this with you, my cousin Patsy pointed-out you could play “sink or float” while you do it.

Then pop the whole container of water and toys into the freezer and enjoy listening to your toddler ask “is it ready yet?” for the next several hours.

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Moms Form a League of Their Own in Millburn

BY  |  Monday, Jul 21, 2014 10:00am  |  COMMENTS (0)

credit Tatyana Ali/Pine Terrace Photography

This summer, there are many Millburn/Short Hills moms spending time at the town baseball fields. They aren’t there to cheer on their children though. Instead, they are taking the field themselves, competing in the newly formed Women’s Softball League.

Jemela Zamore and Pamela Rubin, both Short Hills moms, are the women who put the league together. Zamore explains, “We were at a friend’s birthday celebration and I was just thinking how awesome everyone at the table was. We are all from different backgrounds and yet here we were, together to celebrate.  It just popped out of my mouth, ‘Hey Pam, you know what our town needs, a softball team!’”

Rubin wholeheartedly agreed and immediately called the town’s Head of Recreation. He said that they had tried in the past and it never really caught on. Since both Rubin and Zamore already knew several women that were interested, they were able to convince the town to give it another go.

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Up, Up and Away… The New Jersey Festival of Ballooning Takes Flight This Weekend

BY  |  Monday, Jul 21, 2014 8:00am  |  COMMENTS (0)

New Jersey Festival of Ballooning

The 32nd annual Quick Chek New Jersey Festival of Ballooning is the largest summertime hot air balloon and music festival in North America. Upwards of 165,000 people are expected at the three day event, which will run from July 25 – July 27, and your family will love it!

Named one of the Top 100 Events in North America for 2013, the Festival features 39 hours of family entertainment and attractions with multiple events occurring at the same time throughout the Festival grounds.

Key attractions are the twice a day mass ascensions of more than 100 sport and special shaped hot air balloons from around the world taking place on the Balloon Launch Field, live concerts on the Main Stage, new amusement rides, and non stop fun at the Family entertainment.

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Our Favorite Parenting Tweets This Week

BY  |  Sunday, Jul 20, 2014 5:00pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

Parenting Tweets Our favorite parenting tweets from this past week, many from local moms and dads:






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What’s for Dinner?: Chard and Garlic Scape Tart

BY  |  Sunday, Jul 20, 2014 8:00am  |  COMMENTS (0)

Chard and Scape Tart

I love picking up my CSA veggie box: my two-weekly bounty of just-picked produce. However, the last two deliveries have been abundant in both chard and garlic scapes and as much as I love all things green, both of these seasonal anomalies can be a bit challenging. Kale is still the rockstar vegetable in our house so like an old Spandau Ballet record, the chard tends to get overlooked and forgotten about.

Chard and Scape TartAs for garlic scapes, well, their novelty soon wears off. I was so excited the first time they made an appearance in my veggie box I eagerly made some scape pesto, which was good, but not great. There is a reason that pesto is traditionally made with basil – it has an amazing flavor with which garlic scapes just cannot compete, so now, I just use them as a green onion substitute.

Until now…

This Chard and Garlic Scape Tart combined with some robust cheddar and Parmesan cheese takes these two vegetables to a whole new level.

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Broadway Legend Sondra Lee Visits Gas Lamp Academy of Performing Arts

BY  |  Saturday, Jul 19, 2014 8:00am  |  COMMENTS (0)

Sondra Lee


The young cast of Gas Lamp Academy of Performing Arts‘s Peter Pan, had a special experience when Broadway and television actress, Sondra Lee, made a special trip to Glen Ridge to have a talkback with the kids this week. Sondra Lee originated the role of Tiger Lilly in the 1954 Broadway production of Peter Pan as well as the 1955, 1956 and 1960 television broadcasts of Peter Pan working along side the incomparable Mary Martin.

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Get Loose and Get Together!: The Best of Dan Zanes CD and Release Party

BY  |  Friday, Jul 18, 2014 12:00pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

The Best of Dan Zanes

On July 22, celebrating 15 years of producing “handmade all-ages social music,” GRAMMY award winner Dan Zanes will release his first greatest hits collection. “Get Loose and Get Together!” is a collection for the fans that have been following Zanes since the beginning  and for those who are new to the party.

Zanes has been referred to as the “crown prince of contemporary kid’s music” by People magazine. He is known for his diverse range of collaborations which have created one of modern day America’s quirkier folk experiences in which sea shanties, North American and West Indian folk music, and play party songs, blend with the sounds of early rock-and-roll and soulful originals to create a music that is loved by all ages.

Featuring fan favorites from over the years, this new CD is a perfect family soundtrack for this summer’s kitchen dance parties, backyard sing a longs and road trips. You can pre-order “Get Loose and Get Together: The Best of Dan Zanes” on iTunes

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Weekend Highlights: Your Guide to Family Fun

BY  |  Friday, Jul 18, 2014 10:00am  |  COMMENTS (0)

sushi class

It’s the weekend and the weather is perfect, so get out and have some family fun!

Don’t forget about the Camplified Summer Family Music Festival, the Essex County Butterfly Tent Safari, and the 12th Annual Ice Cream Tasting Festival!

To make sure you’re always in the know when it comes to family events, parenting resources and discussion, sign up for our newsletter, which offers a great recap of our best stories, event information, guides and exclusive giveaways. And make sure to “like” us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and check out our  Pinterest page. We post a lot of important information over there, so you don’t want to miss out.

You can check our Calendar for all events this weekend, but here are this weekend’s highlights:

Learn how to be “Sushi Masters” at Kings Cooking Studios’ class for kids and a parent in Short Hills. (Saturday, July 19)

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The Human Needs Food Pantry in Montclair Collecting School Supplies

BY  |  Friday, Jul 18, 2014 8:00am  |  COMMENTS (0)

School SuppliesSorry to break it to you, but summer will be over before you know it and kids will be back in school, which means it’s time to start thinking of school supplies. 

When you’re out shopping, think about picking up a few extras for local kids in need.

The Human Needs Food Pantry of Montclair is currently collecting new school supplies for children in the Essex county area, such as notebooks, pens, calculators, crayons, backpacks, etc,  —anything children need to begin the new school year. 

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Parenting Photo of the Week

BY  |  Thursday, Jul 17, 2014 12:00pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

Parenting Photo of the Week

This week’s Parenting Photo of the Week is of adorable Charlotte Bautis, age 22 months, and her Old English Bulldog Winnie, age 5. The duo were cooling off in their Glen Ridge backyard.

Want your photo featured in our Parenting Photo of the Week series? 

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