Protect Like a Mother -Weekend Art Exhibit with Lysol

 

Protect Like A Mother

Something happens to us humans when we become parents. There is a fierce protective Instinct that triggers anytime we sense something amiss. There have been many times that I have found a surge of energy, strength and anger that races through my body in order to save my child from harm. That instinct kicks in and you step it up to PROTECT LIKE A MOTHER!

Protect Like A Mother

Protect Like A Mother

The protective instinct is a universal truth of motherhood – in the animal kingdom and in our own. Different species demonstrate amazing feats to protect their young…including human mothers.

Protect Like A Mother

Lysol, the cleaning brand, has an amazing exhibit in Brooklyn today and tomorrow ONLY, that is all about this very theme. It’s called PROTECT LIKE A MOTHER and it’s a stunning visual installation under the Brooklyn Bridge that shows images and sculptures of mama animals caring for their young.

Protect Like A MotherI’m working with Lysol to celebrate a mother’s natural protective instinct, honoring that a mother’s first priority is always the safety of her children – whether she is a bear, a monkey, or a person!

An important way that human moms protect their families is by preventing the spread of harmful germs in the home. With two dragons and a giant beast, our home is all too familiar to germs. Now the weather is warm, the kids are always in and out of the house, snacking with their unwashed hands. With the weather being so crazy here in New York, lately, we have had our fair shares of coughs, colds, ear infections and other sickies! Our LYSOL products have been working overtime for sure!

No one protects loved ones quite like mom and no one protects families like Lysol, a leader in germ kill for 100+ years, which offers products that kill 99.9% of germs to help moms protect their kids from passing germs and getting sick. 


I hope you swing by Brooklyn Bridge Plaza, for a special Lysol exhibit celebrating the greatest guardians of all: mothers. The exhibit will give a look at the most incredible and fierce moms on the planet! The exhibit is open Saturday, May 20 and Sunday May 21. For more information visit  Lysol.com/ProtectLikeaMother.

This post is sponsored by Lysol. All images and ideas are my own. Thanks for stopping by and learning a bit about our sponsors here at New York Mom! 

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New York Mom EATS: Barnes and Noble Concept Store

Last week our friends at Barnes and Noble invited me over to check out their new concept store right here in Westchester County. There are only a handful of these stores in the country and only one in New York.


What a treat! This Barnes and Noble store offers a full sit down restaurant, and a bar that serves local wine and beer. Of course their coffee game is right on point!

We met the chef who took us through a play by play of each course complete with his favorite tips for the food. His secret to that amazing hummus… more tahini.


The space is gorgeous with a massive outdoor patio complete with fire pit and bocce ball courts. I love being able to park myself in the comfy cafe and get some work done! The new concept store is bringing a sense of community back to the bookstore. I love bookstores, large and small. This concept store is targeting all ages and demos, families, singles, seniors, students, networking events… all of it. Hope to see you there sometime!

Barnes And Noble WESTCHESTER  is  located at 680 Post Road, Eastchester, NY.

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Celebrating This Perfectly Messy Life with Bounty

 

Life with kids is messy… and Bounty is here to help clean up those little messes.

Life is messy and life with kids is messier. Remember those early days when the little dragons were sweet cherubs sent from the gods up above to enrich your life in ways you could never imagine. Remember how you looked at them and their sweet faces, thinking “you are the best thing ever”. Their gross spit ups or diaper blowouts… disgusting as they were can be described as a cute mess to non kid having friends. When flinging spaghetti across the room was a picture perfect moment, well those moments still happen just not as cute the third, fourth, millionth time….

We only celebrate the first messes. And while parenting is messy… would we ever have it any other way? Not me. I’m perfectly happy with my perfectly messy life.

I’m working with Bounty to talk about the little messes of life. With Bounty Paper Towels, parents can enjoy these moments while the Quicker Picker Upper does the work.

bounty-messy-firsts

I spent an evening with Mother and Author Kristin Cavalleri and chatted toddler messes. She shared a few of her tips.

Tips for Avoiding Messy Mealtime Madness.

  • Stop Playing Fetch – don’t pick up everything as kids throw them on the floor, clean up at the end of the meal with Bounty Paper Towels.
  • Practice Patience with Utensils – try sticky foods that will be easier to be scooped up by utensils – Oatmeal and yogurt are two faves.
  • Peace of Mind Placemats – Clean up will be so much easier with makeshift placemats made from bounty paper towels
  • Set a Good Example – Eat Healthy and exhibit positive eating habits for the kids.
  • Avoid High Chair Messes – Place a paper towel in your child lap this way all the run away food gets caught in the bounty paper towel and it’s a simple clean up when done eating.
  • Have Them Help You – encourage kids to help clean up so they learn to tidy up early on!

This post is sponsored by Bounty. Thanks for stopping by and checking out The New York Mom and learning a bit more about the sponsors.

 

 

 

 

 

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Improving Your Home with Angie’s List

#AngieHeartsHome

As any new homeowner will tell you… the list of “projects’ around the house is never ending. Since moving to our new house, 6 months ago, up here in the suburbs of New York City, Matt and I have a running list of things we need to work on around the property. Everything from our kitchen remodel, basement wall paint, sprucing up of the laundry area, a veggie garden and even a new façade for the front of the house sits on this list patiently awaiting to get done.

Moving to a new community and not knowing anyone, we have been depending on recommendations from local parenting groups and neighbors. Our lawn person was a recommendation and has worked out really nicely, our oil company was a recommendation, babysitter, preschools, doctors and even the all-important drycleaner was recommended by a neighbor.

While these are everyday needs and things have worked out well for us, something like the kitchen remodel requires some background info and much more insight.

#AngieHeartsHome

This is where Angie’s List comes in. I recently attended an event hosted by Angie’s List in NYC and sat down with Angie… yes THE Angie of Angie’s List and in between chatting about food and tweens… I got the scoop on what Angie’s List is up to these days.

First of all – Angie’s List is now FREE to join!

Angie’s List is a list of recommendations for pretty much everything! For example – our kitchen remodel.  I can choose a contractor off Angie’s List – I get reviews and details on the type of the work this person does, how efficient, helpful and quality of their work. I choose the contractor that fits my needs. But wait… there’s more, with the new Silver and Gold Angie’s List membership tiers, I will be GUARANTEED a job well done. So if something goes wrong… Angie’s List will fix it for me. Can you believe that!  It’s pretty amazing when you think about the intensity of a kitchen remodel – floors, cabinets, electric, plumbing… and the work is guaranteed.

#AngieHeartsHome

Angie’s List has lots of new changes and these have all come about from customer feedback. The most exciting new addition is the membership tiers. Angie’s List has three tiers of memberships –

  • GREEN: free-of-charge access to companies in more than 700 service categories; nationwide access to more than 10 million verified consumer reviews; and monthly digital form of the company’s magazine. Benefits planned to be added to the Green membership tier this year include a project pricing guide, project scheduling and project financing.
  • SILVER: includes all green features plus fair price guarantee and service quality guarantee, exclusive discounts, chat and email customer support, a bimonthly print version of the magazine for $24.99 a year.
  • GOLD: includes all green and silver features plus complaint resolution process, customer support via phone and access to exclusive eCommerce savings for $99.99 a year. Benefits planned to be added to the Gold tier in the future include handy chat, a home emergency service line and instant hiring.

Be sure Visit angieslist.com for more information. #AngieHeartsHome

*This post is sponsored by Angie’s List. All opinions are my own* 

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An Easter Brunch Cruise Around Manhattan

Hornblower The New York Mom

We did something a bit out of the box for easter this year and it was the best thing ever! We went on a cruise around New York City. No matter what time of the year this is a great activity for kids in New York City or just a bucket list item for anyone visiting New York City.

Hornblower The New York Mom

Our family is spread out throughout the country with the main fort being in Florida where our parents and grandparents live. My sister-in-law lives in Brooklyn which can feel like a different state sometimes! Matt usually cooks a great big feast for Easter brunch and we spend the whole day flying kites and riding bikes and planting flowers. This year we didn’t have any family visit us for Easter so Matt and I decided to take an Easter brunch cruise around New York City. Let me just start by saying, this was the BEST IDEA EVER! If you have young kids, an easter cruise with Hornblower Cruises is pretty perfect.

Hornblower The New York Mom
The obvious… no cleaning, cooking, wrangling of children nothing… just show up, have a great time, dance, eat and take in the most incredible views. After church we headed over for our Brunch. It was a quick drive down the west side highway and on Sunday’s there is hardly any traffic.

Hornblower The New York Mom

Upon arriving we were greeted by the Easter Bunny… this was a dancing, skipping, very happy Easter Bunny. Thomas was over the moon. He could not believe that we were about to get on  big boat with THE Easter Bunny.

Our table was set with everything we needed including a chilled bottle of champagne!

Hornblower The New York Mom

Hornblower The New York Mom

The food buffet was great – with a variety of food for everyone. Meats, fish, veggies, pasta, carving station, kid friendly food. A massive dessert table with a chocolate fountain seemed to be the hit. After eating, we headed up to the top of the boat to take in the views. Stunning. If you have never been on a cruise around Manhattan you are missing out. It’s romantic, it’s beautiful and you’ll never have access to these views unless you are in the water.

Hornblower The New York Mom

 

Hornblower The New York Mom

New York CityNew York CityBut wait there is so much more… a live jazz band was playing the entire 2 hours and the floor was packed with little kids and adults dancing! And then…

and then…

Hornblower The New York Mom
The EASTER BUNNY! After the cutest easter egg hunt – on the boat – the Easter Bunny came around and said hi to all the kids and adults and danced and took pictures and had the best time.

Hornblower The New York Mom
The Hornblower stops right in front of the Statue of Liberty for about 15 minutes and the views of this and the photo opps are amazing we didn’t make it out in time because the EggHunt had just ended and the kids were busy counting the loot. Priorities ya know!

Hornblower The New York Mom

Hornblower The New York Mom

Hornblower The New York Mom

Overall, this was a great experience. We would absolutely do this again… even with family visiting. The kids loved it, Matt and I didn’t have to worry about anything and the kids both napped on our  45 minute drive back home.

The staff on the Hornblower was the sweetest and catered to the kids and played along with the Bunny. The Bunny by the way was the real deal… and we snapped the best picture for easter!

Hornblower The New York Mom

Hornblower Cruises operate all year-long and I HIGHLY recommend their cruises for visitors this summer. What an amazing way to end your trip to New York – a dinner or brunch cruise around the greatest city in the world with dancing and champs and great food. It’s such a great time! They also have private charters and all sorts of bundles. Swing by HORNBLOWER CRUISE for more.

*This post is sponsored by Hornblower Cruises. All opinions are mine, we really had a great time* 

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He Named Me Malala – A Review From a Parental Perspective #withMalala

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Lily’s 5th grade class read about Malala this year. She was inspired and would come home and tell us all about this modern-day hero. So when I was approached to be a media partner for the upcoming documentary – He Named Me Malala – airing on the NatGeo Channel on MONDAY February 29 at 8:00pm EST,   I had to jump onboard.

He Named Me Malala is a powerful documentary about Malala Yousafzai. Malala is the youngest person ever to win a Nobel Peace Prize and she has proven to be this generations, hero in a very unconventional way. Unlike the heroes we see on the big screen – you know muscles, brawn, skin-tight outfits, capes, and magical transforming power, Malala’s strength and power lie in her words.

At the age of 11, living in Pakistan, she decided to start a blog. Yes… a blog. A blog where she talked about the Taliban regime and her support for girls to be educated. She gained fans and was shot down in public 3 times on a bus and left for dead.

He Named Me Malala tells this story and has real-time accounts of what happened, what has happened since, and gives the viewer not only the full play-by-play of Malala’s powerful story but also takes us into her culture and family.

I’m not going to go into a full review of the film, because you can read all about it all over the web. However, I would like to give you a parents perspective and whether or not you should watch this film with your child.  *Note: I said WITH your child. It’s a tough one to have a kid watch alone. 

Lily is 11. She’s in 5th grade. She has read the book and knows the story. She had lots of questions about the shooting and grasping the concept that girls are denied educational rights over boys. She had questions while reading the book and we answered them the best we could.

The film. The film is different. It’s visual and there are a lot of images that are tough to take in for young kids. The content is serious with visuals of the blood on the bus, her face after being shot, and imagery of local life in poverty ridden areas of Pakistan.

There are a few moments of emotional relief like the beautiful relationship she has with her father who, contradictory to the stereotype of Pakistani men, supports and fuels Malala’s women’s right’s movement, and another moment when Malala is caught looking at pictures of David Beckham online. I mean… who can blame her right. But overall, this film is intense. Especially for kids who have not been exposed to any context or real life experience similar to the Pakistani terrain, culture, and imagery in this context and storyline.

He Named Me Malala is a PG-13 film. And this is an appropriate rating. If your child is watching PG-13 movies already, then you should watch this because this film with its ( very few) graphic visuals and true change-makers- story that’s happening right now. At least this film has a better message than other PG-13 flicks where zombies are eating people or snakes have invading a plane or even 6 o’clock the news.

Malala_Social_V5-Rev

This said, it is an important documentary that should be watched by kids in Middle and High School. The mature content will resonate and may even work as a call to action for some kids.

He Named Me Malala is an important documentary and PARENTS… you …WE… should watch it. To know the truth and to know what’s happening and to know that our children will be inspired by this strong change-maker.

What does the name MALALA mean? We learn from the film that – Malala’s father – who is a significant part of inspiring his daughter to fight for what she believes in,  named his first born -fueled with power from the beginning. Malala is named after the Pastun Joan of Arc of sorts –  Malalai of Maiwand,  who fought and gave her own life while she  encouraged Afghan soldiers to stand up against British colonialists.

He Named Me Malala will be shown commercial free on the NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC channel on Monday February 29 at 8:00pm ET/7:00pm CT.

Another way to support this amazing story and cause is to tweet #withMalala! Between now and 3/10 and 21st Century Fox will donate $1 to the Malala Fund for every tweet tagged #withMalala. It’s never been easier to support the Fund and girls’ education globally. Tell all your friends to get on board too!

Please tweet this message —>  @thenewyorkmom & I are standing #withMalala Please RT this message to have @21CF donate $1 to @Malalafund 4 supporting girls right to edu! 

*Thanks for swinging by and supporting this powerful story!  You guys are awesome!*

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Exit 4 – A Gourmet Food Hall in the Heart of the NYC Suburbs

Be still my food loving heart! A one stop gourmet food hall for all my hangry cravings!

Earlier this month, Exit 4 Food Hall opened in the town next door and they invited me to come over for a sampling for Media Night. I’m not going to beat around the bush… it’s good. really good, so good in fact that if you are heading up north from Manhattan it is TOTALLY worth the stop. They made it easy for you to remember… EXIT 4 off Interstate 684.

So what’s a food hall. Well if you are in Brooklyn or Manhattan then you know exactly what these are. It’s one restaurant that has several different food style selections almost like a food court but elevated without the free chicken bourbon samples.It’s not fast food and no chain restaurants it’s gourmet sit down dinner food in a very communal seating situation. You can expect prices to be anywhere from the teens to $25 for an entree.

Exit 4 has 9 stations that include everything from the freshest raw oysters to home-made pastas, sandwiches, bahn-mi, chicken and ribs, cheese and meat platters, sushi, wood fire pizza and more.  A bar serves wine, beer and other cocktails. This is the new wave of eating that has taken over the Brooklyn and Manhattan food scene and now it’s right here… in my back yard!  As a family of four, one of use has to always compromise when we go out to dinner. In comes the concept of a food hall to fit all our needs. Thomas can have his mac and cheese to his heart’s content, Matt can have some oysters and sashimi, my pick is the squid ink pasta and Lily can have her lobster roll.

Izi Albanese, the owner of Exit 4 Food Hall, has successfully collected a handful of local culinary favorites to come together in one place and this is the winning recipe. The long communal tables, quiet comfy seating in the back, bar stools that are never empty for too long and the excitement of the entire place makes for a staple that needs to be rooted in any town. This place gets PACKED and loud and there is a waiting list because they don’t take reservations… especially on the weekends and I love it. No more sleepy suburbs… there is LIFE up here!

The nine food stations at Exit 4: 

Charcuterie 153

You get your cheeses, smoked goods and meat platters. And did I mention the Chocolate fountain!

X 4 on Tap

Featuring local craft beer, wines on tap, and my obsession… nitro coffee. You MUST ask for this!

Fuoco Wood-Fire Pizza

Create your own pizza or choose a gourmet combination for the table.

Dirty Roots

Myong Feiner, who has a local cult following, spins a Korean twist on everyday salads and sandwiches.Try the Grilled octopus and the Ahi Bahn Mi.

Rotiss-A-Q

Slow cooked meats, comfort food and classic sandwiches.

Inno Sushi

Chef James Jung is at the helm of this one with a signature Exit 4 Sushi roll and for those of us who crave the real deal… a Poke Bowl (sticky rice, raw fish, seaweed and other ingredients) is on this menu!

Piacci Pasta Bar

The pasta bar boasts fresh pastas, some I have never even heard of, and my favorite – Squid Ink. Choose your pasta, choose your sauce, choose your protein and it gets whipped together right in front of you.

  

Rawsome Seafood Bar

Joe from Mount Kisco Seafood is the captain of this seafood ship with fresh clams, oysters, an overstuffed lobster sandwich and seasonal soups. It’s a seafood… especially shellfish lovers treat and will not disappoint.

  

Head on over to Exit 4 Food Hall to get your foodie fix in the burbs!

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The Peanuts Movie Review and a Special Visit With Blue Sky

Good Grief Charlie Brown! … you’ve done it again!

The Peanuts Movie came out over the weekend and in true Chuck Brown style… my review is a bit late!

We saw the special media screening last week but our screening had an added bonus. The kids and I were invited to a very special event with the Blue Sky animators of the film. Really cool right!

Lily was most impressed, Thomas just wanted to eat the clay. We had a session in claymation and learned how to make Snoopy. And Lily came home and tried to recreate what she had learned. Her little artsy mind was fed!

We also met one of the animators who created Snoopy for the film and he taught us how to draw The Flying Ace! Lily even had her drawing signed by him. Tyler Carter… thanks for hangin with us!!

Thomas basically ate his way through the entire event! This was such a treat for us to get access to the Blue Sky animators. I mean.. who gets to do that!

Like most of us who have these sweet memories of Charlie Brown and his whole gang of Peanuts, I was not expecting much from The Peanuts Movie. A 3D animation film with glossy images and shiny pictures in 2015 was going to ruin my nostalgic memories of this band o characters… the simple whimsy of their daily shenanigans, the complex underlying themes of life that they offered… in our cynical era of political correctness!

The Peanuts Movie was a win for me.

It’s like seeing old friends. and introducing them to your kids and your kids love them. Thomas and Lily both just loved it with laugh-out-loud belly laughs throughout the film!

The Peanuts Movie starts out with the kids at school taking a standardized test. Yes testing! But it unfolds into an everyday story about kids, school, crushes, honestly, teamwork and these great characters that we all know in our own lives. Kids are flying kites, riding bikes and still charging .05 cents for psychiatric advice.

Our Flying Ace, Snoopy is still battling the Red Baron, with the 3D animation… now the battles are real and full of action and adventure! Charlie Brown, our loveable loser, is trying to impress the new girl in school and tries a myriad of talents to get her attention. While he executes them all very impressively, it always seems to fall apart when in front of the girl. Nothing has changed with the gang and that is refreshing.

Fans of the original cartoon versions will miss some of the grit and squiggly lines of the original series. But I think this film does Charles Schultz proud for sure.

The Peanuts Movie is rated G and has a running time of 1hour and 32 minutes.

 

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First Candle Gala with Regal Lager

This blog allows me many opportunities that I would never have access to if not for this platform. And while some perks are extravagant and come in the form of press trips or meeting some interesting people, once in the while something truly meaningful comes my way that makes me stop and think about the bigger picture.

Last friday I attended the very formal, First Candle Gala in NYC. First Candle is an amazing non-Profit organization that helps families all over the world by ensuring safe pregnancies and infant life. I really want to tell you about the great work this organization is doing because it’s so very valuable.

First Candle is an organization that works hard to educate caretakers, parents, and day care workers about proper infant care to ensure that babies are given the best possible chance to reach their first birthday and birthdays beyond.

I attended as a guest of the baby gear company – Regal Lager. It was such an honor to be part of this very important and touching evening that raised funds to further spread this important message.

I spend my professional life as a writer, commentator and expert in the parenting and baby gear areas. Attending this  important gala was very special to me as a contributor to this topic in the online space.

Allison Jacobsen, the founder of Safety Mom, was the host for the evening and shared her touching story of how she lost her baby to SIDS in 1997. Sudden Infant Death Syndrome is very real and Allison took her devastation from losing her child to be the preeminent voice of infant sleep safety.

The message of Safe-Sleep gives the public tips about making sure babies always sleep in their backs and that there are no soft, loose bedding or toys in the baby’s crib.

The gala was a buzz with media, parents, advocates, baby gear companies and supporters of First Candle.

Some of my pals from the parenting space – Elisabeth Bergoo from regal Lager, Brianne Manz from Stroller in The City,Jessica Hartshorn from Parents Magazine, Melisa Fluhr from Project Nursery, Serena Noor from Cool Mom Picks, Eric Messinger from New York Family, and a handful of NYC’s social influencers in the parenting space were all in attendance to support First Candle.

First Candle

At the end of our decadent dinner, a single cupcake with a candle was served to all the guests to symbolize baby’s first birthday. It was very touching and makes you really appreciate everything this organization and all the companies in the room were fighting for.

Please visit FIRSTCANDLE.ORG for more information.

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Skylanders Superchargers Exclusive with Momtrends

Skylanders SuperChargers Key Art.jpg.thumb.319.319.1433332136000

Calling all Skylanders fan. There is a new line that’s coming out in September – Skylander Superchargers.

Skylanders-SuperChargers_Storm-Blade-1The fab gals from Momtrends held a swank lunch last week to announce the big launch of Skylander Superchargers. Complete with a crafty DIY project, yummy grub and great chatter,  this lunch was a ton of fun while getting a first hand sneak peek of the new world of Skylanders Superchargers. I have to admit I don’t now much about Skylanders, but Lily and Matt love playing the game. The Superchargers have lots of new features and interactive updates that are sure to get the two of them… and fans of Skylanders excited.

Skylanders is introducing new game pieces – Vehicles!  Air and Water vehicles to take your game play from sea to air and everywhere in between.

Skylanders is also introducing gameplay similar to car racing – this is new for the brand. Another impressive feature is the multiple tracks of game play that are layered on top of one another throughout the game. There are over 300 toys and every single one is playable. 20 new characters are being introduced and only these new characters can be supercharged. Also… Skylanders can be played on an iPad! Did you know that!

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There are really cool graphic details in the game itself allowing kids to have high-octane action adventure in the video game. The gameplay experience is rich and story driven and includes adventures on foot and in vehicles, combat, puzzles, games and activities all in a visually stunning screen environment.

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Players can pair a SuperCharger Skylander with its signature vehicle to create a SuperCharged combination, unlocking an exclusive mod that revs up the performance of both the vehicle and character. Not only are the vehicles playable in the game, but also many feature moving parts, making them fun to play with outside of the game. Additionally, Skylanders SuperChargers supports all 300+ Skylanders toys from previous games, enabling all Skylanders characters to pilot land, sea or sky-based vehicles.

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Skylanders comes out Sept 20 right in time for the Holiday Gifting Season. So stay tuned for more updates!

* This post was sponsored by MomTrends and Skylanders. All opinions are my own. *

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