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Valerie Kellogg is the editor of Newsday's Kids section. She lives in Huntington and is the mother of an 8-year-old boy, Harrison, who loves science, "Star Trek" and anything having to do with space.
Joyful is the word that came to mind when visiting Bounce! Trampoline Sports, the latest Long Island indoor play venue for kids.
I recently took my 10-year-old and two friends to test drive the 50,000-square-foot Syosset facility, a former kitchen-sink warehouse. The place is so big that the lines went fast, which was a relief for all of us on that busy, drizzly Sunday afternoon.
The...Read more »
There was some debate about my son’s school’s book fair this year — if a child’s family forgets to send him in with money, even after weeks’ worth of electronic and paper reminders, should he go home without a book?
One such child in my son’s class would have if it hadn’t been for the resourcefulness of his friends.
That day, I sent in $5 and change with my son, who informed me a few...Read more »
With my son turning 10 this week comes the realization that I am now the parent of a tween, which is described as dramatic a period of growth as the teen years as well as the time between conception and birth.
It's also a challenging time -- for both of us. As I watch my son and his friends bust out of their clothes, I feel I am outgrowing mine. At one moment I could be mothering a baby, a...Read more »
As we enter the darker days of the year, one book may come in handy — “The Wild Weather Book” (Frances Lincoln, $14.95) by environmental educators Fiona Danks and Jo Schofield.
The subtitle of the 2013 book describes why parents might want to add it to their parenting library: “Loads of Things to Do Outdoors in Rain, Wind and Snow.”
There are 72 “projects,” from making an umbrella den...Read more »
I cannot tell you how many women I know refuse to participate in the PTA. Forget about attending a monthly meeting; they won’t make cupcakes, not even from the readymade mix that comes in a box.
“No way,” my friends and acquaintances say in my hometown and elsewhere. “The PTA’s not for me.” They’ve said worse, too, but we won’t go there.
I’ve heard such sentiments not only from lawyers,...Read more »
Did you know that a pig was once tried for murder? Or that one man’s head is so strong that he can use it to balance a 363-pound quad bike? Or that Norway recognizes the videogame Dance Dance Revolution as an official sport?
Neither did I, nor my son, until some new releases from National Geographic Kids arrived on my desk.
We couldn’t put down the four colorful books, all aimed at children...Read more »
For my 9-year-old son, our pet lizard’s been as important a member of our household as a dog or cat, both of which allergies prevent us from getting. Roughie, a bearded dragon, may as well be Harrison’s brother, my son, my husband’s son and my mother’s other grandchild.
For Halloween, Roughie won a costume contest at the pet store, taking first place in the reptile round. Harrison and I teamed...Read more »
If you watch “Doctor Who,” you’ll know the Ood — the aliens with flaps of skin on their faces that look like fleshy noodles. They revolt me. My 9-year-old finds this fact endlessly amusing.
Then one morning over a diner breakfast as he imitated various characters from the British sci-fi show, he asked what I would do if an Ood suddenly appeared before me.
“I’d turn my back,” I said,...Read more »
If you’ve seen any of the “Star Wars” pop-up books over the years, you’re familiar with the work of artist Matthew Reinhart. He’s now outdone himself with “Transformers: The Ultimate Pop-Up Universe” (Little, Brown, $37).
Just out, the book delves into the Transformer world of alien robots but here they leap off the pages. My 9-year-old especially enjoyed pulling a tab to transform a bulbous...Read more »
I’m a bad mama.
That’s what I thought as I entered my neighborhood theater for a certain matinee with my 9-year-old son in tow. Thankfully, the place was empty. I was embarrassed enough without mothers in town seeing me there.
“I feel guilty about this,” I told the clerks behind the cash register, “but I’d like two tickets to ‘Bad Grandpa.’”
That’s “Bad Grandpa” as in the latest...Read more »