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Birthday party ideas for about ten 3 and 4-year olds?

We're having our daughter's first kids-only birthday party and we don't know how to do this. I'm looking for advice, especially for games and activities. [more inside]
posted by kitcat on Aug 15, 2014 - 23 answers

Summon us a dinner genie

I have a baby, a preschooler, a commute, and a spouse who works late. I need dinner to magically appear on the table within minutes of walking in the door. I don't know if this will involve a genie, a person, a recipe, or "one easy trick restaurants don't want you to know" like those shady sidebar ads. [more inside]
posted by telepanda on Aug 15, 2014 - 51 answers

What safety issues should I worry about with a windowless nursery?

I am converting my home office into a nursery for impending child. It's not technically a bedroom as it has no windows and is about 10x12' (very high ceilings though). I've gotten a little nervous reading some home blogs where commenters freak out saying a kid will die in an airless room (these are mostly on converted closet arrangements, e.g. here). What should I worry about? How can I best prepare/alter this room? [more inside]
posted by bluedeans on Aug 14, 2014 - 14 answers

No Kids? How did you fill that kid shaped hole?

The missus and I are working through the decision to procreate or not. She's not so interested, I kinda am. I'm looking for insight and experience from people who chose not to have children, but still care about and like to spend time with kids. Details inside. [more inside]
posted by anonymous on Aug 11, 2014 - 30 answers

Dinner conversation, what's that? Family Friendly TV suggestions.

Every night my 9 year old daughter asks to watch a movie while we eat dinner. We are big movie people, rarely ever watch commercial TV and don't have the Aussie version of cable, but we like to buy DVD TV series' or stream them. Some nights dinner is the perfect 'eat on the couch' meal, but a movie is too long if it's during the week. I am looking for some suggestions of shows we could all enjoy that are 30 minutes, or an hour. [more inside]
posted by Youremyworld on Aug 10, 2014 - 20 answers

Chasing waterfalls - kid friendly Toronto edition

Looking for a recommendation for a park or conservation area within an hour drive of Toronto. Travelling with kids who love swimming, and exploring waterfalls, but aren’t up to long or rugged hikes. Hoping to encounter waterfalls, ideally combined with the swimming area. Requirements – kid friendly swimming, some kind of washroom available, parking / drive in location. Does this place exist?
posted by walkinginsunshine on Aug 8, 2014 - 6 answers

Now get this work-work-work-work, working on my sheets

What is the best site, app, or program for kids' worksheets? Math, science, handwriting, grammar, etc. [more inside]
posted by hal_c_on on Aug 6, 2014 - 7 answers

Did my 5 y.o. tear something in his knee?

My son had two nasty playground falls within 30 minutes of each other yesterday. Since then he's complaining of pain in the space behind his knee, and walking stiff legged. Occasionally he'll put weight on the leg, and it buckles. You are not my pediatrician, but can you help tell me how worried I should be, and what questions I should ask at our appointment later today? (Please please please tell me my baby didn't tear an ACL). [more inside]
posted by synapse on Aug 6, 2014 - 10 answers

Awesome/unusual places for 4-year-old in DC?

What are some really magical and unusual places to visit/things to do with a 4-year-old for fun in DC? He's visited most of the usual museums/zoos etc. (including 826 DC) that would be good for kids. Also acceptable are magical and unusual things happening at one of the usual places :-).
posted by shivohum on Aug 5, 2014 - 15 answers

We are blending two families, and now I have two picky eaters, help?

7 and 6-year-old combining their efforts to hunger strike against everything I make. How do I make it stop!? [more inside]
posted by MMALR on Aug 5, 2014 - 114 answers

How do I deal with my adolescent son's burgeoning exercise obsession?

My almost 11 year old son has started developing what I fear is an obsession with exercise. [more inside]
posted by getyourlife on Aug 4, 2014 - 39 answers

Keeping a kid entertained during grown-up dinners?

In the next few weeks, I will need to attend a series of late-running formal dinners... with a five-year-old in tow. Please recommend your most magical, engrossing, dinner-table-friendly activity books, games, small toys, etc. for the early school-aged set, so we can keep her quietly in her seat and out of everyone's hair. [more inside]
posted by Bardolph on Aug 4, 2014 - 28 answers

Movie suggestions

Can you help us generate a list of movies for family movie nights? Netflix or from the local library both OK. [more inside]
posted by latkes on Aug 4, 2014 - 33 answers

What is the best way to find housing in the South Bay area?

My husband has a job in Campbell, CA, and we've been looking at Craigslist and Zillow and Realtor.com for places to live. We've already had an attempted scam via CL and I don't want to waste time with other useless sites. Any recommendations? [more inside]
posted by lysdexic on Aug 3, 2014 - 9 answers

Soundtrack for a spunky 1 year old.

My baby girl's birthday is this week and I am hunting the perfect song to back a slideshow of photos of her first year. I do not want anything overtly sappy. My kiddo is known for being adventurous and fun so I want to find her a song that is suiting to her personality. Help please! :) [more inside]
posted by mittenbex on Aug 2, 2014 - 25 answers

What do you think--folding bikes for kids?

I should start by saying I'm a big fan of folding bikes and have been using one to commute to work for the last 8 years.(Brompton SL-2) We have two girls who can now both ride bikes, and are living overseas in the UAE. We can buy bikes where we live but the prices are higher and the selection's a bit limited. I'm thinking of buying a pair of Dahon Boardwalk single speed coaster break folders and bringing them back when we return next week. Has anyone tried folding bikes for kids? I've had our older daughter ride my Brompton--she does fine on it. My sense is they would not be as excited about them initially as opposed to something more kid-like, but that over time it would just come to be seen as what it is--a bicycle we can bring anywhere. I'm wondering if others in the MeFi community have tried folding bikes with kids--have they worked size wise? Lasted over the years? Or languished in a corner of the garage?
posted by teddyb109 on Aug 2, 2014 - 8 answers

community orgs for arts and technology?

Which organisations, companies, community groups, etc support and encourage embracing both arts/humanities AND STEM (especially technology)? [more inside]
posted by divabat on Aug 1, 2014 - 12 answers

Your parents divorced? Tell me about it.

I want to leave my husband and need to understand the potential impact to my daughters, aged 10 and 11. Please tell me what your parents' divorce was like, and the different ways in which it affected you. [more inside]
posted by puppet du sock on Jul 31, 2014 - 47 answers

Kids flying from the US to the UK with an adult who isn't their parent

What precautions, if any, need to be taken in this situation? [more inside]
posted by terretu on Jul 25, 2014 - 12 answers

screaming kids on the street too noisy, any code in NYC?

Recently there is this family brings their super noisy kids(about 5-6) to run and scream on the street infront of my apartment everyday from 6pm-10pm. The street is in a quite neighborhood, there are families, but I never hear or saw a single kids making such noise outside of there home on the street. One day I went down and talked to the parent and kids, that they shouldn't make noise like this, but they didn't listen and was quite rude, both the parent and the unruling kids. I really can't take this, it's extremly noisy, the screaming can't be stopped by closing my windows and putting on earplugs, not to mention it's hot summer that I need a little bit of breeze and peace in the evening at home. What Can I do? this is in NYC, is there any code for noisy street kids? thanks!
posted by pack2themoon on Jul 23, 2014 - 23 answers

Broadway for kids

We'll be in New York in early August for a few days. What shows would be good for a six-year-old girl? [more inside]
posted by Dansaman on Jul 21, 2014 - 12 answers

Good town to visit in Spain in the summer with young kids?

What's a good town or smallish city in Spain to visit in the summer with kids (ages 2 and 5) in tow? We're looking at 3 weeks in late July/August, and would prefer a walkable place that's on a train line (or are they all?) so we wouldn't have to rent a car to explore locally or beyond. [more inside]
posted by gottabefunky on Jul 19, 2014 - 8 answers

Advice for American family going to the Algarve in August?

Mr. TEA, preschooler TEA, and I are going from our home in the U.S. to the Algarve next month to visit family for a few weeks. This will be the first trip out of the U.S. for our preschooler, and the first trip back in a long while for us adults. What advice can you give us about how to help our preschooler prepare for the trip? About what to do as a family while we're there? About traveling with kids in the Algarve?
posted by TEA on Jul 18, 2014 - 5 answers

Restaurant protocol on smuggling food in for kids

Are restaurants okay with people smuggling in their own food for little kids? Do they see a difference between a zippy cup/handful of goldfish crackers and a full-on meal? [more inside]
posted by JoannaC on Jul 9, 2014 - 28 answers

TV viewing recs - teenage kid visiting his middle-aged relatives

Our 17 year old cousin is coming to visit. He comes from a sheltered environment, not allowed to watch TV at home, and they don't have wifi. We'd like to enjoy some really good TV together. I'm looking for good quality shows that are sophisticated and fun, with minimal romantic/sexual content. On the kid's last visit, he really enjoyed the Firefly and Justified series. [more inside]
posted by valannc on Jul 7, 2014 - 62 answers

Would you buy a cottage on a cliff? Would I?

I'm hoping to get some thoughts from the green about the possibility of getting a cottage located on a cliff. The question is about fears, rational risk assessment, and Ontario Geology. [more inside]
posted by PersonPerson on Jul 6, 2014 - 12 answers

How can we help our young daughter with her wiping issues?

Our daughter is 6. Since potty training 4 years ago, she hasn't been wiping herself well after going to the bathroom. We though the problem would resolve itself (and sometimes wipe her butt ourselves if she goes at home) but it's not, and what used to cause skin irritation is now causing vaginal infections. [more inside]
posted by qi on Jul 2, 2014 - 48 answers

Help me find something as good as Zita the Spacegirl for my kids?

I have been reading Zita the Spacegirl to my kids (7 & 5, boy and girl) very night. For those who haven't read it, it is a terrific graphic novel for kids full of adventure and strange creatures, with a great message. What else would you reccomend, as we approach the end of this great series? Specifically thinking of a modern, adventure-filled (but not overly mature) graphic novel or series. Science fiction or fantasy would be ideal.
posted by blahblahblah on Jul 1, 2014 - 23 answers

How can I get my six-year-old to stop licking his lips?

How can I get my six-year-old to stop licking his lips, which results in a chapped ring around his mouth? [more inside]
posted by DakotaPaul on Jun 27, 2014 - 30 answers

Kid vs Cats

We have two adorable cats and an even more adorable 4-year-old son who we've just confirmed is allergic to cats. What now? [more inside]
posted by logic vs love on Jun 25, 2014 - 51 answers

2 Hours + 7 Girls + 11 Years Old + 0 Money = Galveston Island Beach?

What is the best beach in Galveston to take a bunch of eleven-year-olds for a couple of hours? [more inside]
posted by Dojie on Jun 19, 2014 - 6 answers

How do I get my 6 year old son to sleep in his own bed?

My son has been sleeping in my bed since he was a tiny infant. He's nearly six now. So how can I gently and kindly get him to sleep in his own bed, in his own room? A few more pertinent details follow below. [more inside]
posted by pleasant_confusion on Jun 18, 2014 - 20 answers

Library books (and e-books) vs. physical copies of books for children

What are the pros and cons of buying physical books vs. relying primarily on library books from the point of view of exposing one's future children to a wide variety of books? [more inside]
posted by peacheater on Jun 17, 2014 - 18 answers

Telling our son about the split - when?

My husband and I have decided to seperate. [more inside]
posted by jen14221 on Jun 16, 2014 - 28 answers

Worried mom of 10-year-old son with inferiority complex

10-year-old that struggles with many things who, for a few years now, has, when feeling sad/depressed, talked about how no one likes him, he's not good at anything, has no special qualities, isn't smart... etc. Looking for ways to help him. [more inside]
posted by youdontmakefriendswithsalad on Jun 15, 2014 - 51 answers

Keep my baby from getting sick from the airplane

We traveled a couple of weeks ago, and my 7 month old got a respiratory virus and got very sick. Sent from pediatrician's office to ER to PICU sick. Based on timing, Occam's Razor says she caught it on the plane. We will be flying again in a few weeks. I would like practical tips for things we can do on the plane to minimize the risk of her getting sick again. [more inside]
posted by telepanda on Jun 13, 2014 - 11 answers

From Massachusetts to Mount Desert Island, This Land Belongs to You & Me

Thoughts on our New England itinerary? Drive Pittsburgh to Boston then up to Salem, Gloucester, Rockport, Portsmouth (I saw the great thread on the kid trips centered around Portsmouth), Portland, Acadia National Park and back bypassing Boston on the return. [more inside]
posted by RoadScholar on Jun 8, 2014 - 13 answers

Looking for hand drawn animated shorts, suitable for children

I've been sorting through youtube trying to find some animated shorts to show a group of kids, turns out there is a lot of flotsam! I'd appreciate any links. [more inside]
posted by srs airbag on Jun 3, 2014 - 13 answers

Stockholm with little kids

We will be spending four days in Stockholm in the middle of June, with two boys, three and six years old. We've got the standard order guidebook suggestions (Vasa Museum, Skansen, etc.) of things to do, but I'd really love some suggestions of fun things for kids, or even just playgrounds for them to run around when they have had enough of Vikings and whatnot. They tend to be very excited about all modes of transportation, so trams, ferries, etc are a bonus. We will be staying near Ostermalm.
posted by ambrosia on Jun 2, 2014 - 11 answers

Best Bonding Agent for cardboard to Plastic liter bottles?

I spraypainted some 2 liter bottles to make kids' rocket jet packs. I am wanting to bond a piece of cardboard onto the back (later with elastic loops for arm loops) that will do it very quickly* as this will be during an activity with 40 kids. [more inside]
posted by snap_dragon on May 31, 2014 - 17 answers

Is it safe to let kids put their original videos on YouTube?

Trying to think/work through my conflicted feelings on this. My awesome and creative kids (8 and 11) are getting into making videos, and of course they want to put them on YouTube. They're all excited about being able to check back and see how many views they've got - my daughter wants to do reviews of YA books, my son wants to do a video blog where he reviews sodas and candy and fun stuff like that. But I just don't know if I feel safe uploading them. [more inside]
posted by jbickers on May 29, 2014 - 25 answers

He wants me to work. I want to make babies and joy. Can it blend?

My husband just told me that having an ambitious, driven wife is really important to him. I have worked like a dog all my life and now that my baby clock is ticking, I was looking forward to stopping and having children and focusing on a household. Is there any way to make us both happy? [more inside]
posted by sockmeamadeus on May 29, 2014 - 71 answers

What to do and see between central Pennsylvania and New Orleans

I'm taking my two daughters to see my family and we're driving, from central Pennsylvania to New Orleans. Here's the basic route. Where should we eat? What should we detour to see? It'll be a two or three day drive. Help us plan it.
posted by Toekneesan on May 24, 2014 - 18 answers

Books for tweens set in New York City

Some friends are coming to visit NYC and I'd like to get their kids some fiction set in the city. [more inside]
posted by The Elusive Architeuthis on May 24, 2014 - 19 answers

Ideas for Shelf-Stable Healthy Snack Ideas for After-School Program ?

I need suggestions for shelf-stable, healthy snacks for a one day a week after-school tutoring program I help run at the school I work at. [more inside]
posted by momochan on May 24, 2014 - 14 answers

books for boys

I'm slowly building up a library of amazing books for my three sons. What books do I need to make sure to include? Are there boy equivalents to Anne Shirley, Sara Crewe, Meg Murry, Matilada, et al? [more inside]
posted by logic vs love on May 23, 2014 - 41 answers

Help me fly alone with two small kids: airport gate pass edition

In the near future, I will be flying alone several times with a 3.5 year old and a 7 month old. Lucky me. On at least some occasions, I will have someone bringing us to the airport or meeting us on the other end. I hear it's theoretically possible for that person to obtain a gate pass, and help us get to the plane (or meet us when we get off). We'll be fine ON the plane, but having help in the airport would be a real sanity saver. I know that gate passes are not handed out like candy and generally require cause. Does this constitute cause? What are your experiences with requesting / obtaining / being refused gate passes? Does it help to call ahead? Who would you call? Bonus points if you can speak specifically to Chicago O'Hare, Atlanta Hartsfield, or Panama City, FL.
posted by telepanda on May 23, 2014 - 20 answers

Best way to create an outdoor play area for kids until we move?

We are moving out of our little rental house in about 6 months but until then our kids desperately need a play area. The best options are either the concrete patio or the wooden deck. It shouldn't rain much here in the next 6 months, but there will be plenty of falling leaves. Any ideas for how to convert either of these spaces into usable play areas? The patio would need some sort of kid-fencing, whereas the deck would just need that plastic side netting. But the floors of either would require something - but what? Astroturf? Those interlocking foam mats? Some third thing I don't know about? Ideally the solution is economical enough to make sense for six months (or it's something we can keep when we move), and it doesn't destroy our rental.
posted by Anonymousness on May 20, 2014 - 5 answers

Children or no children

I want kids, but my husband doesn't know if he ever will. [more inside]
posted by anonymous on May 19, 2014 - 56 answers

The mail must go through!

Do you know of any children's books featuring mail? As in, a penpal or mailing letters. Specifically for an eight year old girl but I'm open to all suggestions! [more inside]
posted by cessair on May 17, 2014 - 20 answers

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