I love batik. Or I should say, I love the way batik looks, and I love the idea of making batik, but actual batik is really hard, meticulous and, frankly, kind of tedious to do. I've been looking for a simpler way to make batik and recently shared these batik-style card designs. I think they turned out great, but they are only paper simulations of batik.
But I finally found an easy batik method. Do you know Design Mom? Blogger Gabrielle Blair is one of those people who makes you wonder, "How does she do it?" She is somehow managing to raise six children, run her super website and make everything seem beautiful, graceful and balanced. Luckily for us, she has just wrapped all that beauty and wisdom into her new book, Design Mom: How to Live with Kids: A Room-by-Room Guide.
What I love about this book is that it isn't just about home design. The lovely Gabby shares many of her family's traditions and ways they make living with kids work. These are my favorite parts of the book, and that's right where I found my easy batik technique.
I've adapted Gabrielle's method a bit to make it even simpler so that a little kid can do it. You can literally use this technique on any piece of cotton fabric; we did T-shirts and tote bags.
So, your kids are longing for swimsuits, sprinklers and slides. Make their dreams come true, whether the weather is cooperating or not. Load up the iPod, the towels and the kids and take a short road trip to Sahara Sam’s Oasis in West Berlin, N.J. This (mostly) indoor water park is less than two hours from New York City and the 286,000 gallons of water keep 11 rides and tons of kids wet and wildly entertained, rain or shine!
We traveled with four parents, three boys and three girls ranging from 2 to 8 years old, so believe me, the place was well-tested. The kids were awed into silence (SILENCE, I SAY ) as we stepped through the door. But after those two seconds, they immediately got busy.
Looking for creative ways to celebrate Father’s Day this year? There are tons of family-friendly activities happening all over the state, but we’ve narrowed it down to our top ten picks. There’s something to suit every type of father, so whether he's a sports fiend, outdoorsy, a train fanatic or just wants to relax with a glass of wine, we’ve got him covered. Happy Father’s Day to all of NJ’s wonderful dads! For more ways to have fun with fathers throughout the month, check out our Event Calendar and our roundup of family festivals.
Summer is almost here, and festivals are kicking into high gear. There’s something to delight everyone this month, whether your family loves history, food, nature or a good, old-fashioned carnival. Highlights include the Privateers & Pirates Festival at Tuckerton Seaport, Chatham’s Fishawack Festival and the Strawberry Harvest Festival at Alstede Farms. You can’t go wrong with any of these awesome outings. So grab the family, slap on some sunscreen and start your season of fun at one (or more!) of these 15 fabulous fests. Check out our Event Calendar for even more wonderful family happenings this month.
With all of our modern technology and conveniences, today's kids (and grown-ups!) have a hard time imagining what life was like in the U.S. in the 18th and 19th centuries. Luckily, NJ kids don't have to learn about life long ago just from books—they can experience it firsthand at one of the state's many historic villages.
From working farms to blacksmith shops, general stores to cottages, these villages offer plenty to see for day-tripping families. Whether you are looking for an authentic old-school outing or an afternoon of quaint shopping, we've got you covered. This spring, unplug the family and step back in time at one of these historic New Jersey villages that are fun for kids and adults alike.
If locally-grown food and warm-weather day trips are things your family enjoys, grab the little ones and take them strawberry picking! It’s an outdoor adventure with a sweet reward—what kid doesn’t love red, ripe strawberries? New Jersey may be known for its tomatoes and blueberries, but we’ve also got some great places to pick your own strawberries once the season starts in late May. Looking for more outdoor fun in NJ? Check out our roundups of May festivals and 25 things to do this spring with kids.
If you’ve got a little one under the age of four, you know that toddlers and preschoolers are an energetic, curious and spirited bunch! After a long winter cooped up indoors, it’s time to get our wee ones out of the house for some fun and learning. Lace up your sneakers, pack some snacks and get ready to make great family memories by trying one (or more!) of these awesome outdoor activities in New Jersey. For more seasonal fun, don't forget to check out our list of 25 Things We Can't Wait to Do with Kids This Spring in NJ.
When you want to do something incredibly wonderful, outrageously over-the-top, and totally unique for the special child in your life, you have a plethora of options in New Jersey. While some of the experiences listed below may seem a wee bit extravagant, just remember—you're only a kid once! So if you're wondering where to host an out-of-this-world kids' party or playdate in NJ, look no further than this roundup of amazing Garden State attractions.
Even though summer is halfway over you still have plenty of time to frolic in a cool water theme park before school starts. While there are no full-fledged water theme parks in NYC (yet), you don't have to go too far to find some awesome ones. We've rounded up 12 of our favorites for kids in the tri-state area, mostly in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, and all less than a two-hour drive from midtown Manhattan. No two are alike: Each one offers different experiences and thrills.
Before you hop in the car, make sure to check the water parks' official websites to confirm hours and check prices (sometimes you'll even find online-only ticket specials). Also, if you plan to visit a particular park more than once during the summer, consider buying seasonal passes as that may be more economical. For more refreshing fun, be sure to check our Water Fun Guide, where you'll also find a roundup of indoor water parks that are open year-round.
When it comes to Mother's Day, there's no one-size-fits-all approach to giving presents. Some moms prefer a massage at the spa ("I need some alone time!"), while others want to go out for a big family brunch ("I don’t want to cook!"). But if there's one thing we mamas are all suckers for, it's a handmade gift from our kiddos. Don't worry if you're not the artsy type who can whip up something awesome at home on your own. Check out these places in NJ where kids can get creative, have fun and give mom a truly one-of-a-kind gift come Mother's Day morning.
Welcome to Mommy Poppins New Jersey! The free online resource for parents and kids where you’ll get the scoop on what’s fun, unique, outdoorsy, indoorsy, artsy, bouncy, sassy and splashy in the Garden State. Come play with us, won’t you?