Barista Kids Ice Skating Guide

BY  |  Tuesday, Dec 04, 2012 12:00pm  |  COMMENTS (2)

When I asked my friend (that would be Georgette) if she liked to ice skate, she said, “I suck. I tried with my daughter when she was 4, and it was torture.”

To Georgette and anyone else who feels that way, I beg you to ice skate again. I am the worst kind of skater because I think I’m great, and I’m terrible. I was really into roller skating in the ’80s, so this is my modern outlet. And it’s complete with loads of bangs and crashes to humble myself in front of my kids. My children can barely stand up on their rented thin blades, but they love to ice skate with me at Clary Anderson in Montclair. We go to the crazy open skate on Saturdays, and we glide as we sing along to Bon Jovi, Bruce Springsteen and Ke$ha songs. We hold hands; we fall down; we laugh; we repeat. Some of my best bonding time with my 7-year-old daughters and 5-year-old son has been on the ice. Every time we go, someone cries and someone learns to keep trying. We always wind up at the grimy concession stand where we drink hot chocolate and eat churros.

Maybe you already love ice skating, but if you don’t, go back. Ice skating is one of the greatest winter experiences for families. You don’t want to miss the hockey-player smell, the crowd (you’ll know everybody there) and the Zamboni.

And please note: If your child is 5 and under or has never skated, arrive early and rent the walker (they always run out of them). This is just what it sounds like: A red walker that glides on ice that allows even the most uncoordinated kid to rock it out. The walker is the secret to true ice skating happiness for anyone who goes with a beginner.

Where do you like to ice skate? There are tons of places to go locally and beyond. Click below for our ice skating guide that includes arenas, public skate times and costs.

See you on the ice!

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Verona Girls Soccer Team (U10) Win First Game of Season

BY  |  Monday, Sep 10, 2012 3:30pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

Congratulations to the Verona Girls Soccer Team (U10) who won their first game against Tenafly  7-0 on Sunday!

Comfort Zone Camp Announces 3rd Annual New Jersey Grief Relief 5K

BY  |  Sunday, Sep 09, 2012 12:00pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

Comfort Zone Camp announces its 3rd Annual New Jersey Grief Relief 5K, to be held September 29  at Brookdale Park in Bloomfield, New Jersey. Comfort Zone is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that teaches children how to grieve, heal and grow in healthy ways after the loss of a parent, sibling or primary caregiver.

Founded in 1998 in Richmond, VA, Comfort Zone Camp offers free grief resources, resilience training and ongoing support to children who have suffered the loss of a parent, sibling or primary caregiver. Comfort Zone programs are designed to focus on the strengths of each individual child, and to empower children to grieve, heal and grow in healthy ways. Comfort Zone also owns and operates, an online grief and bereavement resource for all who need grief support, and a secure online network on which approved members may create communities and lend/receive support from their peers 24/7.

You can make a difference in the life of a child by participating in the 3rd Annual New Jersey Grief Relief 5k to benefit Comfort Zone Camp.

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Why (Most) Men NEED Fantasy Football

BY  |  Saturday, Sep 08, 2012 11:30am  |  COMMENTS (5)

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. You know that old Staples commercial with the dad dancing through the aisle as he shops for school supplies with his kids who are miserable because summer is ending and school is starting? Well that’s how this dad feels about football season. More specifically, fantasy football season.

I’m willing to bet most men feel this way about fantasy football. At the risk of sounding cliche, a majority of women I know – my wife included – have no idea why this is so important to us. So let me explain…

First off, there’s the gambling. Men like to gamble. Not only does fantasy football provide an outlet, it is socially acceptable. (And perfectly legal.) So we’re not degenerate gamblers, spending all night in a casino feeding our debit cards into the ATM because we feel a hot streak is coming. Speaking of legality, according to a recent ruling by a federal court in New York, poker is a game of skill and thus not considered “gambling,” I am willing to apply the same reasoning to fantasy football. Sure, plenty of luck is involved. But there is also skill and strategy. Most important, money is on the line. And the only thing sweeter than hoisting that championship trophy in December is one of your buddies handing over a fad wad of cash to help ease the burden of the Christmas bills. Yes. There is a championship trophy. Any respectable league has one. Ours looks like this:

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The Special Connection: Fun Things To Do Before School Starts from the Founder of WeeZee World

BY  |  Thursday, Aug 23, 2012 2:30pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

School will start so very soon. The time goes fast, but as any parent whose kid is out of camp can attest: The days are long. If you’re up for a road trip, a new 16,000-foot play center, WeeZee World, recently opened in Chappaqua, New York. The founder, psychiatric nurse Louise ‘Weezee’ Weadock created a fun zone in her house years ago when her daughter Shannon was diagnosed with Sensory Integration Disorder. (See Weezee at left.) It was such a success–for Shannon and the kids in their neighborhood–that Weadock decided to create a fun space where all kids exercise their senses. WeeZee World also focuses on children’s health and fitness.

Weadock would love for you to visit the center, but if you can’t make it, here are her tips for piquing your child’s senses at home. She says her ideas below will help kids’ minds stay sharp while getting them ready to go back to school:

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Yoga FIT Yoga Postponed Until Next Saturday

BY  |  Saturday, Aug 18, 2012 8:04am  |  COMMENTS (0)

This just in from Garden State Yoga:

Due to weather, the event YOGA.FIT.YOGA is postponed until next Saturday. The ground is too wet today and lightening is forecast. So come next week for a fun, free family class.

Families with kids ages 9 and up
20 minutes of yoga, 20 minutes of training, and 20 more minutes of yoga with some cool-down rest
When: Saturday, 8-25
Where: Brookdale Park, near playground
When: 9 a.m.-10:15 a.m.
Cost: Free

Kids “Dashing” at The 4 Miler at Garret Mountain to Support St. Joseph’s Children’s Hospital

BY  |  Tuesday, Aug 14, 2012 9:30am  |  COMMENTS (0)

Even the smallest steps can help make a difference for the young patients at St. Joseph’s Children’s Hospital. Kids ages 2 to 11 are invited to participate in races and other fun activities during “The 4 Miler at Garret Mountain” fund-raising event on Saturday, September 8, at Garret Mountain Reservation in Woodland Park. Proceeds from the event, sponsored by the Sax Macy Fromm (SMF) Foundation, will help to support child life services at the hospital’s Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Department.

Kids’ dashes, with sprint distances ranging from 25 to 200 yards, will begin at 10:15 am, and all participating children will receive finishing ribbons. The entry fee for kids is $8. Adults can participate in a 4-mile run at 9 a.m. or a 1.5-mile trail walk at 9:10 a.m. The pre-registration fee for adults is $22 before Sept. 3 and $25 thereafter.

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Girls on The Run Has Added Another Fall Session in Montclair

BY  |  Monday, Aug 06, 2012 11:00am  |  COMMENTS (0)

After Girls on The Run opened up its Fall Session Registration on August 1, the two spots quickly filled up. Don’t fret if you couldn’t get your girl signed up. They’ve added another session that will take place in Edgemont Park on Tuesdays from 4 pm – 5:15 pm and Saturday from 9:30 am – 10:45 am.

You can register online here, but act quick!

Girls on The Run Fall Registration is Up and Running

BY  |  Monday, Jul 23, 2012 9:00am  |  COMMENTS (0)

Girls on the Run NJ will begin accepting  registration for its Fall semester on August 1.

The 10-week program for girls in grades 3 – 5, begins in September and combines a national curriculum focused on building self-esteem and improving emotional and physical health with training for a 5K race. It’s offered in the following Baristaville towns: Montclair, Millburn and Maplewood.  GOTR also offers a Girls on Track program for girls in 6th – 8th grade.

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First Bike Ride: ‘It Was Worth It’

BY  |  Thursday, Jul 19, 2012 11:00am  |  COMMENTS (0)

My neighbor did something I’ve been afraid to do. She took her 5-year-old and my two 6-year-olds on their first bike ride last weekend–without training wheels. They wore their helmets. They stayed on quiet streets. They crashed a lot.

I have been too nervous and busy to go on this important expedition. I was tied up on Saturday, and she offered to take them. I thought there was no time like the present, and they should just go for it while they had the chance. I love and trust this mom friend, and she always inspires me to push past my comfort zone. Because of her, I try new things.

Off they went. See the video of their first bike ride below. The girls called themselves the Bike Huggers, and they got hurt. One of my daughters face-planted and earned the nickname Skid; my other girl is now called A-Cat. Their little friend is The Goose. At the end of their ride, the mom asked the kids a question that will serve them well for the rest of their lives.

“Was it worth it?” she inquired.

They answered, “Yes!”

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