For the last few years, Jersey Kids has participated in Passports with Purpose, a fundraiser organized by travel bloggers to use our connections to do something impactful in the world.
This year the project is to raise funds to build three schools for kids, and three adult literacy programs in Mali, Africa, through buildOn. Learn more about the organization and the Mali project here. See how they choose and vet projects and organizations here.
Continue reading Passports with Purpose – Donate and Get Prizes
I have to admit, I did not actually eat at Rice to Riches. It wasn’t open yet (too early in the day), and we were on our way to Scott’s Pizza Tours, which meets nearby. But the Rice to Riches company signage was so funny and the concept so awesome, I have to believe it would be great. So if you’ve eaten there, please give us the scoop.
I‘m not a big rice pudding fan (I also don’t hate it), but I’m dying to try this place, which has been around since 2002. Check out some of their flavors: Sex, Drugs and Rocky Road, I’ll Take Eggnog for $200, Alex; Fluent in French Toast…I like a place with humor. You can get a bit of background about Rice to Riches, the concept development and its quirky founder in this New York Times story. Continue reading Treat of the Day: Rice to Riches
If you haven’t been to Chelsea Market, you’re missing out. It’s one place we bring almost all visitors who want to see New York City. But that’s a whole other post.
One section of Chelsea Market has a an open area with a bunch of small vendors, mostly selling food. The Doughnuttery was new from our previous visit, and we ordered a few of their little doughnuts.
Their schtick is that they make them fresh and you choose what kind of sugar you want on them. you can see the sugars on the shelf above (and the menu is below). Continue reading Treat of the Day: Doughnuttery
Today is the 50th anniversary of John F. Kennedy’s assassination. I thought I’d commemorate the date with a look at his legacy, or at least his library. I visited the JFK Presidential Library and Museum last summer on my Boston trip (you can see more Boston posts here).
The library opened in 1979, in Boston’s Dorchester neighborhood. If it’s not on the University of Massachusetts Boston campus, it’s in the same area, and the bus takes you through the campus to get there. Originally it was supposed to be on the Harvard campus, but for a variety of reasons (including Cambridge residents not wanting in there!) they changed the location. The library was in planning from when JFK was president. At that time there were only 4 other presidential libraries. Continue reading Review: JFK Library in Boston with Kids
French Toast cupcake – a winner!
We spent last Saturday in Princeton, picking up the race packet for the Princeton half-marathon for the next day No, I wasn’t running, hubby was. But we wanted to spend the gorgeous sunny day, bursting with fall leaf goodness, walking around the Princeton campus and downtown. Look for a post on that coming soon.
We’re always on the lookout for treats – to hold over the kids’ heads if they are good during the day. I spotted the House of Cupcakes after leaving the parking garage on Spring Street, near Witherspoon. I hadn’t done my research. I didn’t know that the House of Cupcakes won the 2011 Cupcake Wars competition on the Food Network (well, I didn’t know until I read their sign in the window). Continue reading Treat of the Day: House of Cupcakes
Having visited the Grounds for Sculpture recently, I was keen to get outside and see some more when my parents visited me. My mother is involved in the art world, and when I told her Storm King wasn’t too far away, she was eager to go. And we’re so glad we did. Storm King is one of the premier sculpture gardens in the world. Set on 500+ acres, the 100 or so large scale sculptures have plenty of space for themselves.
Iliad by Alexander Liberman (1974-76). This piece is similar to another Liberman we had on my college campus. We affectionately called it “Dueling Tampons.’
Wear good walking shoes, because you’re going to do a lot of walking. And it’s hilly. Storm King recommends spending 4-6 hours on a visit, if you have the time, and that you won’t see everything. Our goal was to see everything. We thought we did, but later saw pictures on the guides of sculptures we somehow missed during the day. We were there about four hours, and our legs were tired by the end! (see the end notes for other ways to see Storm King, like on the tram or on bikes).
Maya Lin, who designed the famous Vietnam Memorial in Washington D.C., designed this Storm King Wavefield (2009), which is on 11 acres. You can walk on it.
If you’ve ever studied art history or art in general, you’ll recognize some of the artist names here: Alexander Calder, Maya Lin, David Smith, Nam June Paik, Mark Di Suervo, Richard Serra, Roy Lichtenstein, Sol Lewitt, Barbara Hepworth, Louise Nevelson, Henry Moore, Claes Oldenburg and more. They have works from all the heavyweight sculptors, focusing on monumental sculptures from the 1960s on. Continue reading Review: Storm King Art Center
When my parents were coming in town, we wanted to find a Broadway show that they would like (my parents don’t always like the same theater), along with my 10 and 12 year old kids. It was a tough thing to find something that would appeal to everyone. Fortunately for us, Big Fish the musical was beginning its previews, and we went to its second show not knowing virtually anything about it aside from the synopsis we read online (we hadn’t seen the Tim Burton movie). The show officially opens October 5.
The plot: The Broadway musical stars Norbert Leo Butz as Edward Bloom (who I last saw in Catch Me if You Can), a father whose big stories border on fantasy and frustrate his son, a realist who wants to understand who his father is. Bobby Steggert stars as his adult son Will Bloom, and Kate Baldwin stars as Edward’s wife Sandra. The show focuses on Edward, and bounces back and forth between his aging self (dying of cancer), and his life leading up to it. He was a big-man-on-campus (or rather a big fish in a small pond – to go with the Big Fish title) growing up in small town Alabama. Everything he did was grand, though not always successful. He made a life for himself, befriending giants, hunting witches, working for the circus, luring fish from the rivers, and living larger than life. Continue reading Review: Big Fish on Broadway – appropriate for kids?
I learned to downhill ski in Arizona. Yes, there’s snow in Arizona – it’s up north. I learned at Snowbowl in Flagstaff (of Route 66 fame) – with my family. We still have a lot of laughs over those early skiing days. We took a family lesson, and my father tried to correct us kids, showing us what to do, even though we had an instructor there. Let me add that my father was also a beginner, with no more experience than us.
We soon switched to separate lessons. And we finally learned how to get three of us off the lift without falling into a pile.
After college I moved to California and was fortunate to have Lake Tahoe relatively close, spending many a ski weekend with coworkers and friends, and eventually my husband – at the various mountains there.
First day of skiing!
The kids took their first ski lessons at Bear Valley, in California. My son was so wiped out he fell asleep during snack time and they didn’t dare wake him for his second lesson. That one day of skiing taught us something important. If you’re going to learn to ski, you should immerse yourself for a few days to do it. And then keep it up. Continue reading Teach your kids to ski!
9/11 – remembering. Photo courtesy of KConnors.
One of the hidden gems of Boston are the Boston Harbor Islands. If you have an extra day (or half day) on your trip, consider going. There are 34 islands in all, 24 with archeological activity on them. Not shockingly, Native Americans used these islands before we settlers did, for hunting, farming and other activities. You can visit 12 of the islands. This is part of our Boston series.
Even their recent history is interesting. The country’s oldest lighthouse was first built here in 1716, though the British burned it down in 1776 and rebuilt in 1783. That makes our own Sandy Hook lighthouse (built in 1764) the oldest working lighthouse in the United States. You can tour the lighthouse on Little Brewster Island on a different boat tour, along with two other lighthouses.
The popular Spectacle Island is only a 15 minute boat ride from Boston’s Long Harbor. On the way, Continue reading Review: Boston Harbor Islands – Spectacle and George