Long Island Parent Talk

Get the inside scoop on all things kids and parenting on Long Island.

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Beth Whitehouse

Beth Whitehouse is Newsday's parenting writer covering everything parents think about, talk about and do on Long Island. Her blended family includes Teen Son, Teen Stepdaughter and Hubby, whom she married in 2009, as well as cat Milo and guinea pig Wallace.

Outdoor adventure books for kids

The "Treasure Hunter's Handbook" by Liza Gardner Walsh

(Credit: Down East Books)

With school back in session, kids may be especially eager to get outside and play on September weekends as a break. These new books will help them explore and have fun.

The "Treasure Hunter's Handbook" (Down East Books, $16.95) by Liza Gardner Walsh offers suggestions for activities, including geocaching, using a metal detector, panning for gold and hunting for everyday treasures.

The...

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Enter the Stony Brook LEGO contest with your family

Last year's winner of the Lego Building Contest

(Credit: Stony Brook Village)

Spend some quality family time creating a Lego masterpiece for the 2nd Annual LEGO Building Contest and Exhibit at Stony Brook Village Center. Contestants must submit an entry form by Friday to secure a spot, but teams have until Sept. 26 to drop off their creations.

The entry fee is $20. The exhibit runs from Sept. 27 through Oct. 26 at  Ward Melville Heritage Organization’s Educational...

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New stress-reducing books for kids and parents

"Sitting Still Like a Frog" by Eline Snel

(Credit: Shambhala Publications)

With school starting up again this week, kids and parents may need some strategies to minimize the coming stress.

"Sitting Still Like a Frog: Mindfulness Exercises for Kids (and Their Parents)" (Shambhala Publications, $17.95) by Eline Snel is a book and instructional companion CD geared to ages 5 to 12 that is an introduction to meditation and how it can help children be calm and focused.

"Stress...

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Enter essay contest, win school visit from LI Ducks' QuackerJack

QuackerJack will visit four Long Island schools.

(Credit: LI Ducks)

Would your kids like to have QuackerJack, the mascot of the Long Island Ducks baseball team, visit their elementary or middle school? Sign them up for TD Bank’s “Take a Duck to Class” essay contest. Whoever writes the best essay will win a day with QuackerJack.

The essay topic is “Who is a hero in your community and why” and the essay should be 250 words.

To enter, download and print...

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Author launches newest 'Jules' children's book Sunday in Port Washington

"Starring Jules (Third Grade Debut)" is the fourth

(Credit: handout)

Port Washington children’s book author Beth Ain is launching the newest chapter book in her Starring Jules series, “Starring Jules (The Third Grade Debut),” at 3:30 p.m. Sunday at The Dolphin Bookshop, 299 Main St., Port Washington.(TheDolphinBookshop.com, 516-767-2650).

The series was named in the "Best New Series" category of Parents Magazine's 10 Best Books of 2013. The first book, "Starring...

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Watch the making of 'Frozen' Tuesday on ABC

Disney's musical "Frozen" is a girl-powered tale that

(Credit: Disney)

Josh Gad, the voice of Olaf in the Disney movie “Frozen,” hosts a new ABC special from 8 to 9 Tuesday, Sept. 2, on the making of the animated hit. During “The Story of Frozen: Making a Disney Animated Classic,” viewers will hear from Gad, Kristen Bell (voice of Anna), Idina Menzel (voice of Elsa), and the "Frozen" filmmaking team.

Viewers will see the Norwegian villages and landscapes that...

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