Saratogamamawinter2014

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A Saratoga TODAY Publication

seek

learn

find play

Winter 2014/2015

2015 Kid Picks

Winners




W elcome I took a personal challenge this holiday season starting with Thanksgiving to keep a ‘gratitude journal.’ The idea is simple: each day, I jot down a couple things that I am thankful for. A few of my friends are doing the same thing and we are all finding ourselves better poised to appreciate all that is beautiful and wonderful in our daily lives. This is especially important during the holidays when we can get ourselves caught up chasing all the wrong things. Writing something positive stops my negative thoughts in their tracks. For example…. What I’m thinking: “Ugh, the kids overslept again!!!” What I’m thankful for: Planting early morning kisses on sweet little sleeping faces. What I’m thinking: “Winter is even more annoying with a long driveway. Plow, shovel, plow, shovel, plow….” What I’m thankful for: Our long driveway; on which our children learned to ride bikes, play chalk and run obstacle courses. What I’m thinking: “He’s late again. Dinner is cold, the kids are going nuts, I need a break.” What I’m thankful for: My husband who works long hours to provide for our family.

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Owner/Publisher Chad Beatty Editor-in-Chief Colleen Pierre General Manager Robin Mitchell Managing Editor Jennifer Bloomingdale

I challenge you to try this technique for a couple weeks and see how it works for you! Speaking of positives, we had such a tremendous response again this year in our second annual Kid Picks Awards! We are honoring our winners in this magazine, starting on page 20. Winter fashion for kids and adults can be a challenge so we’ve got some great ideas on how to ‘dress for less’ on page 36 and how to choose great layering pieces for winter on page 48. Have a little one getting prepped for preschool? Check out the area options in our preschool guide on page 32. I wish you and your family the absolute best this holiday and winter season! I’m sure I’ll see you out and about at First Night, Chowderfest, Frost Faire and many more fabulous Saratoga County events.

~Colleen

Our Cover

This photo was shot last winter at Ellms Family Farm in Charlton by Dania Bagyi from Kidography by Dania. Little Dylan was 11 months old and seems to genuinely enjoy the frigid (24 degree) weather! We couldn’t resist featuring this little cutie on our winter cover because he so perfectly captures the spirit of winter. Check out more of Dania’s work and some advice for your next family photo session on page 17. 4 | SaratogaMama | Winter 2014

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Editorial Assistant Jan Snedaker Creative Director Jessica Kane Advertising Chris Bushee, Jim Daley Cindy Durfey Graphic Design Colleen Sweeney Jessica Kane Photography Keira Lemonis Thinkstock.com Published by Saratoga TODAY Newspaper Five Case Street, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866 tel: (518) 581-2480 SaratogaTODAYNewspaper.com SaratogaMama is brought to you by Saratoga TODAY Newspaper, Saratoga Publishing, LLC. Saratoga Publishing shall make every effort to avoid errors and omissions but disclaims any responsibility should they occur. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means without prior written consent of the publisher. Copyright © 2014, Saratoga TODAY Newspaper saratogaTODAYnewspaper.com


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Table of Contents 20

43 17 59 49 40 Seek 10 36 62

Holiday Edition Wish List Winter Fashion: Look For Less Northshire's Winter Book Picks

Find 17 Advice From Family Photographers 20 2015 Kid Picks Winners 32 Saratoga County Preschool Guide 6 | SaratogaMama | Winter 2014

Learn 49 56 59

Don't Be Greenwashed! Organizing Your Home For The New Year Not Your Ordinary Cooking Class

Play 40 64 67

Snow Day Survival Guide Six Minutes to Warm Up this Winter! Kids Puzzles and Games

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Our Contributors.. Jennifer Bloomingdale

Jennifer Bloomingdale is a former teacher, and is currently managing editor at SaratogaMama and teaching professional development eCourses through Powerful Learning Practice. She lives outside of Saratoga with her husband and two sons.

Jodie Fitz

Jodie Fitz is the creator and personality of the Price Chopper Kids Cooking Club and currently travels in a six-state region cooking with children to encourage taste testing fun through a hands-on cooking experience. She is a wife, mother of three and currently authors several monthly columns. You can always find what she’s up to in her kitchen at jodiefitz.com.

Dr. Leslie J. Botta, D.C.

Dr. Botta is a proud mom who strives to keep her family and anyone else that comes her way as healthy as she can. In her life journey she has owned multiple chiropractic practices and was the Deputy Director of the office on Complementary and Alternative Medicine at the NYS Dept of Health. Currently she is practicing at The Joint, a chiropractic practice in Clifton Park.

Jessica Kane

Jessica is a graphic designer and photographer from Saratoga Springs. She has a true passion for all things “creative.” Jessica enjoys nature walks with her dog Ari, crafting, wine tasting and spending time with friends and family.

Jenna Burger

Jenna Burger is a local interior designer, blogger, bargain hunter, and avid DIYer. She shares daily inspiration and DIY projects on her blog, SAS Interiors, and strives to inspire and empower others through simple-to-implement decorating tricks and tips. She delivers smart, stylish, and sophisticated design solutions. Visit Jenna at sasinteriors.net

Robin Morgan

Robin Morgan is a holistic health coach, gluten free specialist, non-toxic educator and business mentor who helps women create soul-satisfying businesses that directly affect the well-being of their families and those around them. Robin is the author of Gluten Free Road Food, and contributes to various publications including SaratogaMama Magazine and Southern Saratoga Magazine. Visit her at anewnutrition.com


Jan Snedaker

Jan Snedaker received a communication degree from Ithaca College and after switching gears for a while to become a special education teacher, she is following her passion; returning to her roots as a freelance writer and the creative director at SaratogaMama. Jan resides in Clifton Park with her husband and two adorable children.

S.K. Parker Ward

Sarah, the girl with four names, is owner of Kathleen Palmer Media. A vintage-wearing, coffee-loving wordsmith, you’ll usually find her dual screening to catch up on the latest trends in art and technology, or on the go in Saratoga with her husband and two young daughters.


Wish List Holiday Edition By Jan Snedaker, Colleen P ierre & J ennifer B loomingdale

Fo r a

terr if ic te acher

Have the kids paint their teacher something special at Arts & Glass in Clifton Park. You can select from a wide range of projects including mugs, magnets, decorative plates, ornaments, boxes or figurines. It will be extra sentimental because the kids made it, but the mess will stay out of your house!

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Fo r

yo

b est ur ie ’ s new baby

F o r THE

BUDDING MUSICIAN

Head over to Saratoga’s newest baby store, Lex & Cleo in the Saratoga Marketplace. Lex & Cleo carries beautiful clothing, blankets, toys, and heirloom-quality gifts for that special babe on your list. Best friends deserve the best!

Give the gift of music, of course! We started piano lessons at the brand new Yamaha School at the Hellert School in Clifton Park and love it there! The Yamaha program offers group lessons for kids starting at age four. Robby loves the fun curriculum and course material and even enjoys practicing at home, a major bonus!

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Fo r a

If skiing or snowboarding is their thing, lift tickets to West Mountain would be a very cool and well-received gift. The mountain is super family-friendly and great for all ages and abilities. Throw in a pair of ski or snowboard socks and you’ve got the perfect present.

SP O RT Y teen

F o r yo u r

FOODIE FRIEND

Fo r A

B EAUT PR O D Y U CT JUN K IE

Morning Glamour Satin Pillowcases eliminates bedhead frizz and sleeping wrinkles. These silky, satin pillowcases come in an array of pretty colors and are available at Bella Rouge Cosmetics and Skincare Boutique in Clifton Park Center.

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Gift her a class at Healthy Living Market’s Learning Center. Your friend will get to do what she loves most while being among others who share her passion. The Learning Center at Healthy Living Market offers a full range of hands-on classes for adults and kids, too! Check their schedule online: healthylivingmarket.com/saratoga

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Fo r THE

ACTIV E DUD E

GTS Clothing combines great-fitting clothes that are fashionable and functional to take him from the gym to the golf course or for just relaxing with a good book. Oh, and take a peek at the women’s apparel too while you’re there! gtsclothing.com or visit their Saraotga store at 75 Woodlawn Ave.

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Fo r Y OUR

OW N MAM A

Plan a date to take your mom to Saratoga Paint and Sip Studio. Pick a print you know she’d love and book two seats! You’ll have a blast painting while sipping wine, and your finished artwork will serve as a reminder of your fun night out.

F o r THE

B oo k WO R M Northshire Bookstore in Saratoga is THE place to shop for any book-lover on your list. Check out some of their favorite kids books for winter on page 62. Whoever you’re shopping for, the friendly staff would be happy to help out and make a recommendation. If you’re still at a loss, a gift card works too!

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Fo r y o ur

Impressions of Saratoga is the best place to get your Saratoga items. We especially like their collection of Dark Horse mugs and assorted glasswear. While you're there, don’t forget to pick up the uniquely Saratoga ‘Peppermint Pig.’ The holidays wouldn’t be the same without it!

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out-o f state inlaws

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w e N a t r a t S n o i t i d a r T d r a Holiday C aditional r T n o N g n i e by B ker

By Jan Sneda

Once upon a time holiday greeting cards meant donning festive sweaters and dresses and forcing a smile, posed in front of a Christmas tree or other simulated holiday setting inside a portrait studio. Fortunately ‘times are a changin’ and holiday cards are becoming an opportunity to share a cherished moment that tells a story or shows a tender moment of affection. More families are choosing pictures not taken specifically for the holiday card but instead finding a photograph that encompasses the true holiday spirit; a moment of genuine love and happiness. I have embraced this new non-traditional holiday card trend and treasure the memories they have created.

spontaneous moment, my little girl kissed her brother on the cheek and they both burst out laughing. I am so grateful Amanda was there to capture this moment between my children. It defines them perfectly; my free spirited daughter and my sweet, kindhearted boy caught in a moment of pure love and silliness. To the right is the picture we used for last year’s holiday card. This was taken at the racetrack in Saratoga. My family was there for the day, it was hot and my kids were being less than enjoyable. Grandpa bought them a sweet, sugary slushy to share and as we were walking back to our seats they began fighting over who would hold the drink. I turned my back to catch my breath and calm my fury. When I turned around there they were, quietly enjoying their delicious liquid sugar, looking completely adorable. I captured this moment on my phone and knew it would be our perfect holiday card. Many moments of frustration and throwing my hands in the air only to catch my breath and see the true beauty of my children, and realize the craziness is balanced by these little moments of peace and love.

The above picture was used for our holiday card two years ago. Photographer, Amanda Vitti had stopped over to take some practice shots and my children were being silly and making funny faces. In a completely 16 | SaratogaMama | Winter 2014

These photographs have become my tradition for our holiday cards. Certain people still believe holiday cards should be more "Christmassy”; they should be wearing nicer clothes, it should be in the winter and there

should be a tree in the background. I understand for some that is still the traditional way a holiday card should look, but for many, holiday cards are becoming a way to share spontaneous moments of love with family and friends. These are the memories that will bring happy tears to our eyes in the years to come. Embrace this new tradition by being non-traditional and you will be left with a collection of holiday cards that truly capture the love within your family. saratogaTODAYnewspaper.com


Making the most of your next

Family Photo Session By Jan Snedaker

“...do not be afraid to try something different like a more urban setting or a city as your backdrop.”

Photo by Amanda Vitti

Advice from local professional photographers, Dania Bagyi (Kidography), Amanda Vitti, and Keira Lemonis

In the fall and early winter when upstate New York scenery is at its finest and the holidays are near, many families turn to professional photographers in hopes of creating a beautiful memory to be hung on the wall, placed in a special photo album, and most likely used to create a holiday card. Make the most of your next family photo session with these helpful tips and suggestions from local photographers who want you to love the way your family looks through their eyes.

Location: For many photographers the location families choose help give them an idea of the family’s personality and allows SaratogaMama.com

them to plan for the shoot accordingly. While most photographers are happy to offer suggestions Dania feels, “The client should have the final say about location. It’s been my experience that photographing children in a more relaxed setting better allows me to capture the true essence of their personality.” Keira agrees, “I think there is something really nice about choosing a location that has personal meaning, such as a family property or a favorite family hangout.” A family’s own backyard or a frequently visited park or walking trail would be a familiar place for children where they are most likely to be themselves. Winter 2014 | SaratogaMama | 17


Amanda suggests, “Choose a spot that represents the type of photographs you want. While fields and parks are most commonly chosen, do not be afraid to try something different like a more urban setting or a city as your backdrop.” Amanda, Dania, and Keira all prefer shooting outdoors or in a beautiful indoor environment that allows for plenty of natural light which is the most flattering in photographs.

The Outfit: Photographers understand everyone has their own style but encourage clients to dress special for a photo session. Dania feels, “Clothing and outfit coordination is an important aspect of any session. I offer everything from helpful tips to sourcing specific outfits and putting together clothing proposals for the entire family.”

Photo by Keira Lemonis

Amanda agrees with clothing being an important aspect of the session but does not want it to cause any stress either. She says, “I always say to pick two coordinating colors and roll with it. You can also mix patterns with solids to create a fun look that still matches.”

The Shoot: It is important to speak with your photographer ahead of time and know exactly what to expect from your photo session. Ask questions about how long the session will last, will we be given time to change outfits, how many pictures should we expect to receive from the session, and how long will it take to receive the pictures. Knowing this information prior to the shoot will ensure there are no expectations that went unmet. This will also allow photographers to offer suggestions for the day of the shoot to help everyone be at their best when the camera captures them. Keira tells her clients to, “… bring snacks to keep their little ones happy during the duration of the shoot”. She also lets them know they should expect the shoot to last one to one and half 18 | SaratogaMama | Winter 2014

Photo by Keira Lemonis

hours depending on the number of locations and outfit changes. The family should expect between 55 and 75 images from their session. She also encourages her clients to be flexible if there is unexpected weather, “I want my family sessions to be enjoyable, as well as produce beautiful images and that may mean having to reschedule due to rain.”

Final words of advice from all the photographers include the word, ‘relax’. saratogaTODAYnewspaper.com


Dania suggests, “Finding the right photographer for your family is the most important thing. Choose a photographer who has a style that matches your own personality.” She encourages families to have fun and be themselves. "My favorite images are those in which families are engrossed in one another, it’s as if I’m not even there.” Amanda encourages interaction, “Play, laugh and be silly. Forget the photographer is there. The best photos I have taken are the ones where the clients had no idea I was shooting them. You want these photos to represent you and your family, so try and sit back and pretend it’s just another day.” Keira loves getting to know her clients prior to their session. “It allows me to get a feel for their personal style, what their aesthetic is and what their expectations are for our time together. I encourage clients to share ideas with me and some of their favorite imagery, but in the end they need to be able to trust me so they are relaxed the day of the shoot. The more natural you feel during a session, the more authentic your finished images will be.”

Kidography by Dania

For booking information, check out the websites of these local photographers:

amandavitti.com keiralemonisphotography.com kidographybydania.com

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Introducing the

2015 SaratogaMama Kid Picks!

You gave us your opinion on the best options for families in Saratoga County including childcare, preschools, restaurants, shops, attractions and more! The businesses that received the most votes are awarded a 2015 Kid Picks stamp of approval. On the following pages you’ll get a glimpse of each business and learn more about what makes it special or unique.

Favorite Childcare Facility, Preschool and Private School

21

Favorite Indoor Recreation and Birthday Party Spot

22

Favorite Dance and Sports Programs

23

Favorite Breakfast/Brunch, Lunch/Dinner and Dessert Spot

25

Favorite Place for a Moms Night Out and Fitness

26

Editor’s Picks

29

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• 2015 Kid Picks • Favorite Preschool Saratoga Independent School The Saratoga Independent School is proud to be honored with a 2015 SaratogaMama Kid Picks award for best Preschool and best Private School! At the Saratoga Independent School, located on Lake Avenue in Saratoga Springs, we offer a challenging multiage curriculum to students in Pre-K through 6th grade. Our mission is to empower our students to become confident learners who are capable of critical thinking, problem solving and teamwork. Our school strives to build a sense of community and due to our low student to teacher ratio, our students and teachers build strong connections. The Saratoga Independent School also offers before and aftercare programs, full day options for Pre-K students, and summer camp and after school enrichment classes that are open to the public. To learn more, visit www.siskids.org or call (518) 583-0841.

Malta Montessori The Malta Montessori School is proud to win best Private School and Best Preschool by SaratogaMama Kids Picks for the second year in a row! The Malta Montessori environment is bright, nurturing, and inviting. Fascinating learning materials fill the shelves. This carefully prepared environment enables children to explore, discover and engage in their own choices of work. The teachers design and adapt the environment to the children, modifying the materials to fit their needs. Malta Montessori School holds classes for students from Toddlers through 6th grade and is committed to providing a quality education in the Montessori tradition. With a community of parents, teachers and students, we will instill a love of learning, sense of wonder, respect for others and the environment; while at the same time encourage imagination and independence.

Favorite Childcare Facility Maple Leaf Childcare Center Since 1988, Maple Leaf Childcare has been family-owned and operated, giving children aged six weeks through twelve years the foundation they need to become lifelong learners. Maple Leaf’s core values are safety, family, nature, discovery and play. Linda and John, owners of Maple Leaf, began in Guilderland and expanded to Malta (two locations), Glenville and Rotterdam. They play an active role in the day-to-day operation of each childcare center. Linda shares her passion for early childhood education with her daughter Katie who works at their newest location on Route 9 in Malta. MLCC employs over 150 staff and cares for more than 600 children.

Learning to Know We are so honored to have been chosen a SaratogaMama Kid Pick two years in a row! Thank you to all who voted and to our wonderful staff! We take pride in focusing on both quality care along with an enhanced learning atmosphere. We feel each child is unique and we enjoy establishing lessons that will allow each child to learn within a secure, comfortable and nurturing environment. Learning To Know is a full-service educational facility, licensed by New York State offering infant through kindergarten wrap care, at two convenient locations. Please call us to tour one of our beautiful facilities, Clifton Park (518) 371-3722 or Saratoga (518) 226-0222. www.learningtoknow.net

Favorite Private School Malta Montessori

Malta Montessori is proud to be honored with a 2015 Kid Picks Award for Favorite Preschool and Favorite Private School! See their full description above.

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Saratoga Independent School The Saratoga Independent School is proud to be honored with a 2015 Kid Picks Award for Favorite Preschool and Favorite Private School! See their full description above.

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• 2015 Kid Picks • Favorite Indoor Recreation Spot TreePaad

Children’s Museum at Saratoga

TreePaad Fun Center is a familyowned, family run business, where we understand the concept of family fun! Join us at Malta’s premiere Family Fun and Entertainment Spot, featuring age-appropriate games, rides, prizes that children of all ages from toddlers to big kids will appreciate. A place with great food for the family including freshly baked pizzas and snacks. TreePaad is a great place to take the kids for everyday fun or for special occasions such as birthdays, play groups and school fundraising events.

The Children’s Museum at Saratoga is dedicated to creating an interactive environment for children that inspires curiosity, sparks imagination, and nurtures discovery. With two floors of imaginary play exhibits, children can explore and discover through hands-on activities. Schedule a fun and exciting birthday party, book a school outreach program, or stop by the museum and enjoy one of our many special or weekly programs! From our Busy Bees: Baby & Toddler Program to our Making Connections: Autism Program, the museum is proud to be a resource to the community for children and caretakers throughout the Saratoga County, the Capital Region, and beyond.

Favorite Birthday Party Spot Children’s Museum at Saratoga The Children’s Museum at Saratoga is proud to be honored with a 2015 Kid Picks Award for Favorite Indoor Recreation Spot and Favorite Birthday Party Spot. See their full description above.

Saratoga Paint and Sip Studio All you need to bring is YOURSELF! At Saratoga Paint and Sip Studio, a local artist will instruct you step by step through an original piece of art. You get to take home your one-ofa-kind painting—and hopefully a new found talent! Whether its girls night out, date night, or a fun outing with your little one, we paint, sip, and party with you! Kids are welcome to our public classes and we host a monthly kids only Pint Sized Picasso Night for your little artists! We're also available for birthday parties and private events. Check out SaratogaPaintandSip.com for our calendar, info on private parties, and to register for classes!

Favorite Music Program/Instruction Music Together with Eenie Meenie Music This January, Eenie Meenie Music will be celebrating its second year anniversary in Saratoga Springs, and its second year of being selected as SaratogaMama "Kid Picks" favorite music class! Thank you so much to all the wonderful families who voted for us! Music Together® is an internationally recognized early childhood music and movement program for young children and the grownups who love them. We sing, dance, chant, use scarves, drums, bells, egg shakers, stretchy bands, sticks, and more in an experiential class that focuses on getting everyone playing and having a great time, all the while learning about music and child development. Come check out a trial class, and see how much fun you can have making music together! www.eeniemeeniemusic.com

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Kindermusik with Hostetler Music Studio Kindermusik offers music and movement classes for children ages newborn to 7 years. The program uses high-quality recordings, instruments, and award-winning literature books along with traditional nursery rhymes, fingerplays and songs to build a strong foundation of not only music education, but other areas of development, including cognitive, emotional, social, physical, and language development. Come join in the fun!

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• 2015 Kid Picks • Favorite Kids Sports Program Go Kids

Go Kids is the Capital Region’s only multi-sport and exercise program specifically designed for children ages 2-6. Go Kids’ fitness activities teach children the fundamentals of seven different sports in a social, team-based, non-competitive environment. During each class, children warm up and stretch their muscles, play an “imagination game” (fun, kid-friendly calisthenics), work on sport specific skills and end class with one of our fan favorites – the obstacle course or parachute. We’ve been lucky enough to work with nearly 1,000 children over the past two years and continue to see our family grow. We thank everyone for your support!

Amazing Athletes Since 2009, Amazing Athletes has been offering educational sport and fitness programs to children ages 2 – 8. With over 35 on-site locations we are extremely proud to serve the families in our community! Amazing Athletes introduces children to 9 different sports in a fun, educational and action-packed class! We strive to help children meet and exceed their motor development milestones at their own comfort level while emphasizing patience, teamwork, and self-confidence. By exposing children to healthy choices and active living at an early age, the link between movement and improved brain development is strengthened. Visit www.amazingathletes.com/nycapital for more information.

Favorite Dance/Gymnastics Program World Class Gymnastics World Class Gymnastics is one of the Northeast’s premier gymnastics training facilities. We pride ourselves on our fully featured programs that contain everything from high level Junior Olympic national champions to classes for your just walking toddlers. Gymnastics is a exceptionally fun way to learn body awareness, strength and flexibility. Our two facilities located in Latham and Clifton Park offer learning opportunities available no where else in the Capital District. Fully featured gym areas, with equipment specifically designed for different size and level athletes, makes sure your gymnasts is learning in the best possible environment.

Premier Dance Performing Arts Center Premier Dance Performing Arts Center is located in Clifton Park, NY where we offer instruction in a variety of different dance styles. We offer a professional ballet program for all levels as well as Tap & Jazz, Lyrical, Contemporary, Hip-Hop, Acro classes and more. We instruct ages 2 through adult and we offer a Competitive Team program as well as a non-competitive Performance Company. We work hard to make sure that all students feel as special and important as the next, regardless of ability or experience. We always welcome new students to our Premier family.

Favorite Toy/Specialty Store G.Willikers G.Willikers Distinctive Toys is a long lasting tradition in Saratoga Springs NY. Our local families and friends anxiously look for gifts on all occasions packaged in one of our signature purple bags. For 23 years the elves at G. Willikers have been providing the community with specialty toys, games, puzzle and happy faces! We want all our customers to have FUN! G.Willikers is a happy place because we take having fun with children seriously. We love being able to provide you and your child with all they need to learn and grow.

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Northshire Bookstore Northshire Bookstore is a family-owned, independent, full service bookstore. Our expert booksellers can help find the perfect gift from our wide and deep selection of books and gifts. With a whole floor devoted to children, Northshire Bookstore specializes in getting kids excited about reading and being around books. In addition, we have toys, games, puzzles, educational activities and fun stuff for all ages. Our author event series brings world-class authors to you, so please check our web site www.northshire.com – and sign up for our email newsletter. Books can change lives!

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• 2015 Kid Picks • Favorite Family Photographer

Jennifer Pondillo Photography Ashley Wilbur Photography

Amanda Vitti Photography

Jennifer Pondillo Photography is both a 2014 and 2015 Saratoga Mama Kid Picks Favorite Family Photographer winner. She specializes in maternity, newborn, child and family custom portraits serving the Clifton Park, Saratoga Springs, Albany and surrounding areas. Jennifer is a mom of 4 little girls herself, so she aims to capture who your child is in her artwork. Your child's pout, smile and giggles are all part of what makes their unique personality so special. She will capture not only the beauty of who they are but also your family's love so that you can cherish these moments forever.

Amanda Vitti Photography specializes in children, families, portraits, engagements, and weddings. "The best part about my job is capturing pure emotion between my clients, whether it's the simple giggle between mother and son or the touching heartfelt love of a fathers first look at his little girl as a beautiful bride. Taking those special, genuine seconds and collecting them as a photograph are what make my love of photography grow stronger with every session I do. "

Ashley Wilbur Photography is a boutique studio, specializing in posed and lifestyle photography. Ashley captures natural, organic photographs of happy families and beautiful babies. She excels at capturing the magic of everyday moments with a soft, classic touch. She is particularly passionate about photographing the sweet, tiny, intoxicating miracles of newborn babies. She provides newborn packages, arriving at the new parents’ house with everything necessary to capture the essence of the miracle of life. Ashley’s friendly, professional demeanor is matched by her attention to detail, striving to deliver the best possible images and photography experiences for her families and babies.

Favorite Spot for Kids Clothes Cuddle Bugs Consignment Boutique We are a local, mom-owned business specializing in children's and maternity items with locations in Saratoga and Queensbury. We offer brand name, high-quality children's and maternity clothing, accessories, toys, baby gear, and nursery furniture. Not only do we have an amazing selection of gently pre-owned items, we also offer many new items from local crafters and large manufacturers such as Charlie Banana, Amber Teething Necklaces and Melissa & Doug. We are very selective in what we accept so we can offer you the best! Discover what your friends with exceptionally well-dressed kids already know! We are currently accepting new consignors.

Favorite Boutique for Mom Violet’s of Saratoga Violet's is a lifestyle boutique located in the heart of downtown Saratoga Springs. We offer women an assortment of clothing that includes casual wear, denim, work wear and cocktail dresses as well as handbags, shoes, jewelry and gifts. We are devoted to bringing you a tightly edited selection of unique, wearable and affordable clothing and accessories by contemporary designers. The girls at Violet’s are here to help you reinvent your wardrobe, find you that perfect piece for a special event and can help with any fashion emergency. Some of the brands we carry include: BCBG Max Azria and Generation, Free People, French Connection, Muse, Paige, Hudson, 7 For All Mankind, The Frye Company, Sam Edelman, Vince Camuto and Seychelles.

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Piper Boutique Piper Boutique is a fresh and fashion forward AFFORDABLE clothing boutique where you will feel inspired to try the latest trends in apparel and accessories at amazing price points. Everything is under $100. More than just a place to buy the latest trends, Piper is a place where women of all ages can come see the newest pieces each week and get some personal one-on-one styling. At Piper, it’s all about the personal attention you receive from the stylists who are listening to your needs and helping you find the right outfit for every occasion.

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• 2015 Kid Picks • Favorite Kid-Friendly Breakfast/Brunch Iron Roost

Lakeside Farms

Since April 2012 Iron Roost has been joyfully serving up unique breakfast and lunch creations six days a week. Our concept stems simply from the desire to be different. From our name, to the space, and the menu, we’ve sparked a level a curiosity that has served us quite well. So many people have asked,”Why waffles?”. We say, “Why not?!”. Waffles are delicious, they are unique, and most importantly, they are so versatile that we were able to build an entire menu based around them. From sweet to savory, we can almost guarantee you’ll find something to satisfy your craving! Even for the dairy- and gluten-free seekers, we have something for you too!

In the heart of Ballston Lake is our famous country store - Lakeside Farms. We are well-known for our great breakfasts and superb lunches as well as being the home of the original apple cider donut. In our country store you will find a large variety of baked goods and fresh home baked pies. We carry the freshest produce and seasonal favorites through December. The Farmhouse Gift Shoppe is brimming with wonderful gifts and decorative items for everyone to enjoy. We welcome you to come in, slow down and relax at Lakeside Farms.

Kid-Friendly Lunch/Dinner Circus Cafe Thank you for voting Circus Cafe your Favorite Kid-Friendly Lunch/Dinner Restaurant! Enjoy festive American cuisine at the #1 destination for food and fun in Saratoga Springs! Circus Cafe is the home of Saratoga’s Award Winning Burger, Best Family Dining, Amazing Homemade Cotton Candy and inspired menu options. Expect supreme service and fine fare while experiencing an "over the top" fun yet sophisticated vision of the circus. The Circus Cafe menu offers something for everyone, including a great kids menu, delightful dessert menu, colorful bar menu, as well as a separate gluten-free menu. Circus Cafe is open 7 days a week for lunch, dinner, and late night dining. Call us to reserve your birthday, holiday, corporate and milestone events. Off site catering also available.

Recovery Sports Grill Looking for somewhere you can bring the family? Recovery Sports Grill is your spot. Healthy food options, $2.99 Kids Meals and game room are just a few things that add to the family friendly atmosphere. Join our Hall of Fame loyalty program to earn points every time you dine in or take out, every 100 points earns you $10 towards your next purchase. Need to fundraise? No problem, our Dine to Donate program allows you to invite all your friends and family on the night of your choice to raise money for your organization. With 8 Capital Region locations, we’re convenient and easy to find! We look forward to seeing you soon at Recovery Sports Grill!

Favorite Dessert Spot Plum Dandy Cookies & Milk Plum Dandy Cookies & Milk is a modern cookie bakery and milk bar in downtown Saratoga Springs. Cookies & Milk is locally owned and operated by the family behind Plum Dandy Frozen Yogurt & Toppings. All of their baked goods are made daily from scratch in our bakery.

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Mrs. London's Mrs. London's is a bakery - cafe in the heart of Saratoga Springs. "We're convinced that no matter how good something may seem to us today, there is always room for improvement and that as long as we continue to grow and evolve, our bread and confections will improve accordingly."

Winter 2014 | SaratogaMama | 25


• 2015 Kid Picks • Favorite Place for a Moms Night Out Saratoga Paint and Sip Studio All you need to bring is YOURSELF! At Saratoga Paint and Sip Studio, a local artist will instruct you step by step through an original piece of art. You get to take home your one-of-a-kind painting—and hopefully a new found talent! Whether its girls night out, date night, or a fun outing with your little one, we paint, sip, and party with you! Kids are welcome to our public classes and we host a monthly kids only Pint Sized Picasso Night for your little artists! We're also available for birthday parties and private events. Check out SaratogaPaintandSip.com for our calendar, info on private parties, and to register for classes!

The Wine Bar The Wine Bar has grown from a 40-seat bar with light fare to a two-level establishment, with light plates, entrees, a selection of gourmet cheeses and house-made desserts. During the summer months, the patio is open - a great spot to people watch while sipping wine.

Favorite Fitness Program Saratoga Regional YMCA Thank you for voting the Saratoga Regional YMCA as your Favorite Fitness Program! The Y offers activities for the whole family with locations in Saratoga, Wilton, Malta, Greenwich, and Corinth. Facilities include top of the line cardio and weight lifting equipment, an indoor pool, field house, indoor track, gymnastics center and eight indoor tennis courts! Enjoy FREE group fitness classes, such as Zumba, cycling, bootcamps, warm yoga & more! New year, new you – sign up at the Saratoga Regional YMCA today! WWW.SRYMCA.ORG

Baby Boot Camp Baby Boot Camp offers stroller fitness classes for moms that want to get in shape. Suitable for any level of fitness or motherhood, Baby Boot Camp’s 60-minute classes will help kick start your weight loss while still allowing you to spend quality time with your baby. All class are taught and led by fully qualified and certified trainers. Visit www.BePositiveFitness.com for class locations and information.

Favorite Pediatric Dentist The Smile Lodge Pediatric Dentistry At The Smile Lodge Pediatric Dentistry, we proudly provide pediatric dental services to infants, children and teens from throughout the Capital Region. It is our mission to exceed the expectations of every parent who entrusts us to care for their child’s oral health. For unsurpassed excellence of clinical care, all of our doctors are specialty trained and licensed pediatric dentists. We work together as a team to provide an exceptional healthcare experience in a friendly, cheerful and relaxed environment. Through early intervention, education and prevention we strive to treat dental disease before it becomes dental decay.

26 | SaratogaMama | Winter 2014

Nicole Byrne Pediatric Dentistry “Dr. Nikki” and our staff provide exceptional specialized pediatric dental care for the children in our community using the most current dental technologies. Our staff is specially trained to foster trust and confidence in each child to help ensure pediatric dental care is a positive experience for all!

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• 2015 Kid Picks • Favorite Pediatric Practice Community Care Pediatrics Community Care Physicians is a physician-owned, physician-run multispecialty medical group with more than 180 doctors and other clinicians practicing out of 35 offices throughout the New York Capital District. True to its name, Community Care Physicians is an organization dedicated to ensuring that physicians oversee and manage all aspects of patient care. Over the past 20 years Community Care has grown because both doctors and patients recognize the special value created when the physician is free to focus on the practice of medicine.

CapitalCare Pediatrics When choosing health care for your family, trust our caring professionals. CapitalCare offers primary care services in Family Practice, Pediatrics and Internal Medicine throughout the Capital District. CapitalCare welcomes new patients and participates with most major health insurance carriers.

Favorite Specialty Practice Schuyler Creek Chiropractic Center Schuyler Creek Chiropractic Center is a family oriented holistic healthcare center located in Stillwater, NY. Drs. Brady and Kelli Patenaude have been in practice for seven years and are always anxious to share their knowledge of chiropractic.

Favorite OB/GYN

Myrtle Street Obstetrics & Gynecology

Women’s Care in Obstetrics and Gynecology

The mission of Myrtle Street Obstetrics & Gynecology, P.C. is to provide quality obstetrical and gynecologic care to women of all ages, from puberty through menopause. Our pledge is to treat women with respect, to take their health concerns seriously and to recognize that each individual is unique. Our goal is to provide this care in a timely fashion, with the utmost confidentiality within a safe and clean environment.

Women’s Care in OB/GYN has been serving the needs of women for over 60 years. Women's Care offers comprehensive care, including gynecological care, obstetrical care, screening and diagnostic services. To provide you the best care possible, we strive to provide the latest advances in gynecology and obstetrical medicine and to tailor care to meet the individual needs of our patients.

SaratogaMama.com

Winter 2014 | SaratogaMama | 27


• 2015 Kid Picks • Favorite Playground Shenantaha Creek Park, Malta

Gavin Park, Wilton

Favorite Park, Trail or Nature Preserve Saratoga Spa State Park, Saratoga

28 | SaratogaMama | Winter 2014

Congress Park, Saratoga

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• 2015 KID Picks •

2015 Editor's Picks

Favorite Specialty Grocer

Favorite Family Auto Dealer

Healthy Living Market and Cafe located in the Wilton Mall specializes in natural, organic and local products. We adore Healthy Living Market because in addition to buying our healthy pantry staples, produce, meats, and bath and body care items, we can shop easily with the kids entertaining them with a delicious and healthy muffin, scone, smoothie or other delicious prepared-food item. Did we mention they have an amazing beer and wine selection too? Conveniently located in Wilton Mall, it’s impossible to walk by Healthy Living Market and not stop in for something!

Mangino Auto Dealer has a reputation of being the key foundation to sales and service at Mangino Buick and Mangino Chevrolet, "Sales and service, the Mangino Family way" is the basis for every car or truck that leaves our dealership. Reputation is what sets us apart as a family-run business. Whether it's a New Buick or Chevrolet, Previously Owned vehicle or a vehicle in for service; the Mangino name goes with every vehicle.

Favorite New Business

Favorite Winter Recreation Spot We love West Mountain because it is safe, family-friendly and close to home. It’s big on winter fun with skiing, snowboarding and tubing, but not overwhelming. A perfect place for even the youngest skiers to get started on the slopes!

SaratogaMama.com

Big Balls, The Adventure Zorbing is the Capital Region's newest and most exciting fun family recreational activity. Big Balls, The Adventure was started as a project between founder Nick Scialdone and his son Nick Jr. Their main goal for the company is create a fun and exciting recreational activity for families that will help people get in better shape, relax and de-stress and enjoy time together. Big Balls, The Adventure is located in the Soul Arts Center in the Price Chopper Plaza on Route 50 in Saratoga.

Winter 2014 | SaratogaMama | 29


30 | SaratogaMama | Winter 2014

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Winter 2014 | SaratogaMama | 31


Saratoga County

Preschool Directory * Denotes schools represented at the Saratoga Springs Preschool Fair

ABC Nursery School

Saratoga EOC Head Start & Early Head Start

(518) 373-8ABC • TheABCNurserySchool.com 13 Old Route 146, Clifton Park, NY 12065

(518) 583-2584 • SaratogaEOC.org Saratoga Springs, NY 12866

Academy Nursery School (518) 664-7440 • helpinghands.org 4 Fairchild Square, Clifton Park, NY 12065

Apple-A-Day Nursery School * (518) 260-1821 • Visit us on Facebook 45 Washington St., Saratoga Springs NY, 12866 OPEN HOUSE: Wednesday, December 17th 9:30 – Noon

Apple Blossom Bunch * (518) 527-3105 • appleblossombunch.com 320 Broadway, Saratoga Springs NY, 12866

Locations throughout Saratoga County

G.L.O.B.E. Chinese Immersion Pre-School * (518) 290-0454 • globalkindergarten.org 112 Spring St. suite 105, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866

Katrina Trask Nursery School * (518) 584-8968 • ktnurseryschool.org 24 Circular St., Saratoga Springs, NY 12866 OPEN HOUSE: Wednesday, February 4th, 9 – 11

Learning to Know

The Beagle School *

learningtoknow.net 1536 Crescent Rd., Clifton Park - (518) 371-3722 60 Weibel Ave., Saratoga Springs - (518) 226-0222

(518) 587-7507 • beagleschool.com 115 Regent St., Saratoga Springs, NY 12866

Little Angels Nursery School

OPEN HOUSE: 115 Regent Street 3 & 4 year old programs: Monday, January 12th 10:30-12:30. 107 Circular Street 2 year old program: Tuesday, January 13th 10:00-11:30. We will be attending the Preschool Fair on the 24th and on those days both locations will be open from 10-1.

Burnt Hills United Methodist Christian (518) 399-6133 • bhpreschool.com 816 Route 50, Burnt Hills, NY 12027

Church Mouse Nursery School (518) 885-8362 • churchmousepreschool.com 202 Milton Ave., Ballston Spa, NY 12020 OPEN HOUSE: Saturday, February 7th, 10 – 12 p.m.

Children’s Academy of Malta (518) 289-5485 • childrensacademyny.com 2381 Route 9 Building 5, Mechanicville, NY 12118

The Early Childhood Center at Skidmore College *

(518) 885-5583 • littleangelsns.com 22 West High Street, Ballston Spa, NY 12020

Malta Montessori School * (518) 633-1971 • maltamontessori.com 100 Saratoga Village Blvd. Suite 34 A, Malta, NY 12020

Newmeadow * (518) 899-9235 • newmeadow.org 100 Saratoga Village Blvd. Suite 35, Malta, NY 12020

North Country Academy * (518) 746-7133 • northcountryacademy.com 7 Care Lane, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866

The Sara Marie School (518) 280-3982 • thesaramarieschool.org 942 Route 146, Clifton Park, NY 12065

OPEN HOUSE: Sunday, January 11, 2015 1-3pm

(518) 580-5473 • skidmore.edu/ecc 815 North Broadway, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866 32 | SaratogaMama | Winter 2014

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Saratoga Abundant Life Pre-School *

St. Mary’s School

(518) 885-5456 • salchurch.org/preschool 2325 Route 50 South, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866

(518) 885-7300 • smsbspa.org 40 Thompson Street, Ballston Spa, NY 12020

Saratoga Hansel & Gretel

St. Paul’s Lutheran Christian Childhood Center *

(518) 584-0934 66 Seward St., Saratoga Springs, NY 12866

(518) 584-0904 ext. 3 • spelcss.com 149 Lake Ave., Saratoga Springs, NY 12866

Saratoga Independent School *

Storybook Academy *

(518) 583-0841 • siskids.org 459 Lake Avenue, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866

(518) 587-0707 • storybookacademy.net 421 Geyser Rd., Ballston Spa, NY 12020

Saratoga Regional YMCA *

Sunrise Children Learning Center

srymca.org 290 West Avenue, Saratoga Springs (518) 583-9622, ext. 114 100 Saratoga Blvd, Malta - (518) 583-4342 Open House: Saratoga Springs Branch:

(518) 373-1280 • sunrisechildren.com 200 Technology Park, Clifton Park, NY 12065

Wednesday, January 28, 2015; 7:00-8:00 pm

Shooting Stars Childcare (518) 371-2306 • shootingstarschildcareinc.com 609 Route 146 A, Suite 104, Clifton Park, NY 12065

Small Wonders Christian Pre-School *

Time 2 Learn Pre-School * (518) 225-0294 • (518) 363-0058 231 Lake Ave., Saratoga Springs, NY 12866 Held in the Parish Center of St. Clements Church

Teddy Bear Day Care Center (518) 584-2273 • teddybeardaycarecenter.net 4 Mountain Ledge Drive, Wilton, NY 12831

(518) 584-3720 ext. 114 • smallwondersps.org 175 5th Ave., Saratoga Springs, NY 12866

Tiny Tots Early Learning Center

Call today for a personal tour

(518) 371-2034 • tinytotsearlylearningcenter.com 1536 Crescent Rd., Clifton Park, NY 12065

Smart Early

The Waldorf School of Saratoga Springs *

(518) 290-7607 • smartearly.com 39 Old Route 146, Clifton Park, NY 12065

Spa Christian Pre-School * (518) 885-0508 • spachristian.com 206 Greenfield Ave., Ballston Spa, NY 12020

OPEN HOUSE: Saturday, February 7, 10am - 12pm. DISCOVERY DAY: Wednesday, February 25, 9am-11am. WELCOME THURSDAYS! From 8am-2pm.

St. Clements Catholic School * (518) 584-7350 • stclementsschool.org 231 Lake Ave., Saratoga Springs, NY 12866 Call today to schedule your personal tour.

St. George School (518) 371-6351 • stgeorgeschoolcp.org 912 Route 146, Clifton Park, NY 12065

SaratogaMama.com

(518) 584-7643 ext. 16 • waldorfsaratoga.org 122 Regent St., Saratoga Springs, NY 12866

Open House: Saturday, January 24, 2015 All School Open House from 10:00-1:00 pm. All locations will be open touring.

6th Annual Saratoga Springs Preschool Fair January 24, 2015 10 a.m. – noon This is a wonderful opportunity to explore area preschools with over a dozen preschools represented! For more information please contact Anne Maguire at the Waldorf School at (518) 584-7643 ext.16 or The Children’s Room at the Saratoga Springs Public Library at (518) 584-7860 press 3. www.sspl.org This program will take place at the Saratoga Springs Public Library in the H. Dutcher Community Room. Winter 2014 | SaratogaMama | 33


34 | SaratogaMama | Winter 2014

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Help Us Find.. SaratogaMama

16

SIXTEEN under

Saratoga County’s Rising Stars

SaratogaMama is looking to honor 16 ‘rising stars’ in Saratoga County. Do you know a child who is going above and beyond for their community or school? Excelling in the arts, sports or music? Overcoming an obstacle? Or going out of their way to make our world a better place?

Nominate them today by visiting SaratogaMama.com/16Under16

Winners will be profiled in the spring edition of SaratogaMama Magazine! SaratogaMama.com

Winter 2014 | SaratogaMama | 35


: s le y t S r e t in W t s e Warm Dress for Less!

O’Neill

$90 Sorel

$150 nia Patago

Total: $390 36 | SaratogaMama | Winter 2014

d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d

$150

$50 H&M

$40 H&M

$56 Kamik

Total: $146 saratogaTODAYnewspaper.com


º

Don’t let winter apparel send you on a spending freeze! There are lots of look-a-likes that cost a fraction of the price of their designer counterparts. If your budget allows, splurging on a couple key pieces or specialty items that will be worn for two seasons or more is not a bad idea. For basics, skip the splurge and get the look for less!

Mini Bode

n

$50

Crewcuts

$140 Pazitos

Total: $244 SaratogaMama.com

d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d

$54

$24 H&M

$14

The Childre n’s Place

$35

JCPenney

Total: $73 Winter 2014 | SaratogaMama | 37


Crewcuts

$42

Hanna Andersson

$116

Timberland

Total: $208 38 | SaratogaMama | Winter 2014

d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d

$50

$12

Carter’s

$16 y

Old Nav

$45

Skechers

Total: $73 saratogaTODAYnewspaper.com


Diese

$38

Crewcuts

$93

Stella McCartney

$147 UGG

Total: $494 SaratogaMama.com

d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d d

$216l

$40 H&M

$14

Crazy 8

$38

Mini Bode

n

$30 H&M

Total: $122 Winter 2014 | SaratogaMama | 39


Snow Day Fun Survival & Easy Indoor and Outdoor Ideas! By Jennifer Bloomingdale, Photos provided

As we get ready for the snow and cold weather, there will be plenty of opportunities for playing both inside and out, but what do you do when the excitement of a snow day turns into boredom? Here are a few ideas for some family fun that are sure to keep your kids busy.

Go Ice Skating...Inside Clear off a large section of carpet, wrap everyones feet with wax paper, and encourage them to slide their feet as if they’re skating.

Object Hide & Seek Pick a small object to hide somewhere in the house or room. Give your kids clues as they search or play hot-cold.

40 | SaratogaMama | Winter 2014

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Make the most of Masking Tape

Use masking tape to create a variety of activities for kids. • Create roads and a town for cars or figures. • Make shapes on the floor and play games. Kids can jump from shape to shape, toss bean bags, and sort objects. • Create a hopscotch board • Make a bullseye. Kids can throw bean bags or roll balls to see who can hit the center mark!

Play Games

• Think back to when you were kid, what were your favorite games? Monopoly, marbles, checkers or chess! Try some out with your kids. • Encourage kids to make up their own games, then have them teach you the rules. • Purchase a new board game the next time you’re at the store and stash it away for a snow day.

Bring the Outside In

Too cold to play in the snow? Grab a bowl and bring some snow inside! • Put the snow on cookie trays and encourage kids to create mini snowmen or other designs. • Give them bowls, spoons, measuring cups and other utensils to create and play in the snow. SaratogaMama.com

Winter 2014 | SaratogaMama | 41


Snow Paint

Mix food coloring and water in a spray or squirt bottle to create paint for the snow. • Kids can use paint brushes to create their own masterpieces. • Build a snowman and then decorate him with the paint.

Sand Toys Ice Cube Scavenger Hunt

Dig out the summer sand toys for the snow and see what designs your kids can come up with.

Create some colorful ice cubes by mixing food coloring and water. Once they are frozen, take them outside and hide them in the snow. Give kids clues to help them as they search.

Obstacle Course

Use some of the ideas below to create your own unique course: • Have kids make a certain amount of snowballs, snow angels, or snowmen. • Use snow paint to create a path they have to follow. • Use piles of snow to create hurdles that kids have to jump over. • If you have a hill, include sledding in your course. • Have them pull a teammate in a sled. 42 | SaratogaMama | Winter 2014

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Winter Favorites

Kid-Friendly Cooking with Jodie Fitz

Warm up with a few of our most-loved winter recipes! By Jodie Fitz, photos provided

Banana Baked Donut Holes 1 1/4 cups flour

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1 banana

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

3/4 cups sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt Non-stick cooking spray

1/4 cup water 1/4 cup butter, softened 3 eggs 1 tablespoon molasses

The cake pop mold is no longer just for desserts. We modified our banana bread recipe to made our own baked version of a munchkin (donut hole). It’s a perfect make-ahead ‘grab and go’ snack on the run!

You can eat them plain, or try one of these variations: 1. Place the donut holes into a brown paper bag, sprinkle with confectioners sugar shake and serve. 2. Cut them in half and serve them with a slice of banana and peanut butter or peanut butter and jelly. Whatever way you like these, you can’t go wrong! SaratogaMama.com

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Coat a cake pop pan with non-stick cooking spray on both sides of the circular pan and coat each side with flour. In a bowl, mix the banana, sugar, water, eggs, butter, molasses and vanilla extract together with an electric mixer. Add in all the dry ingredients and beat well. Fill one half of the cake pop pan with the mixture. Add on the second half of the pan as directed when making cake pops, and bake for 25 minutes. Let the banana bread molds cool for at least 10 to 15 minutes before removing the top tray of the pan. Remove the banana bread molds completely and let them cool the rest of the way. Winter 2014 | SaratogaMama | 43


Moon Rock Soup 1 pound ground turkey

32 oz. chicken broth

1 cup parmesan cheese, finely grated

32 oz. water

8 oz. pasta rings 8 oz. star shaped pastina 1 1/2 cups finely chopped carrots 10 oz. frozen chopped spinach (thawed)

4 eggs 1 1/2 teaspoons salt 3/4 teaspoons onion powder 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder 1/2 teaspoon ground thyme 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Directions:

Make mini meatballs by combining the ground turkey, finely grated parmesan cheese and 1/2 cup of onion together. Mix the ingredients thoroughly and shape them into meatballs no larger than one inch. Pour the chicken broth and water into a large pan. As you make the moon rock meatballs add them to the chicken broth. After you have added all of the moon rock meatballs, bring the broth to a boil and let them simmer on high in the broth for 30 minutes.

Our Moon Rock Soup is a twist on an old favorite, Italian Wedding Soup. It is certain to warm everyone up during the cold winter months!

Pre-cook the pasta as directed on the package, drain the water and set aside. Add the spinach, carrots, two tablespoons of onion, salt, onion powder, garlic powder, ground thyme and pepper to the soup, stir and simmer until the carrots and onions are tender. Scramble the eggs in a separate bowl and add to the soup. Cook for 10 minutes. Add the pasta to your colorful galaxy mix and serve hot!

44 | SaratogaMama | Winter 2014

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Homemade Hot Cocoa with a Twist 1 cup low fat milk 2 squares unsweetened baking chocolate 2 - 3 tablespoons confectioners sugar 1 tablespoon peanut butter Directions:

Heat the milk in a small saucepan to a lukewarm temperature. Add in the unsweetened baking chocolate and stir until it melts. Whisk in the confectioners sugar. Add in the peanut

Looking to warm up after sleigh riding and playing in the snow? Try this yummy homemade cocoa!

SaratogaMama.com

butter and stir until it’s fully melted in. Serve warm.

Winter 2014 | SaratogaMama | 45


The Art of Being …and other lessons I still haven’t learned. By S.K. Parker Ward

“You are a human being, Sarah – not a human doing.” I laughed when she said this, equal parts delighted and confused. I was in the second trimester of expecting my first darling and my midwife was airing concerns over my relentless inability to slow my pace of life. I had just confessed that I was enrolled in graduate school and would begin less than a week after my due date. “I understand,” she sighed, “I was the same way. You remind me so much of myself. But you must learn just to be.” 46 | SaratogaMama | Winter 2014

These sentiments she expressed had rolled off the tongue of so many before her. I had spent years listening to others insist that there is some truth in the timeless adage of stopping to smell the roses. Yet despite – or perhaps in spite of - the multitude and frequency of such claims, there is so obviously a part of me that apparently doubts their honesty. I instead find myself charging onward with exuberant speed always in search of something more.

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Now, to be clear, it’s not the material things that I’m stock piling. No, that would seem almost an enviable scenario were I simply to have a luxury shoe fetish or an adoration for precious stones. Rather it’s the intangibles that are so wildly and obtrusively compelling - more information, more adventure, more excitement, more challenge. At first glance, these invisible things probably seem harmless. After all, whose mother hasn’t imparted in them that variety is the spice of life? Perhaps you’re even shaking your head or furrowing your brow in confusion by this point in my revelation. But it’s actually quite straightforward, dear reader – this is not simply variety for me. The chase has become a consistently false necessity.

So, when did I stop being?

And more importantly, why?

Not to make this a big cliffhanger of an article, but I still haven’t the answer to either question. However, I can tell you I’m ardently searching, thoughtfully trying to find that balance between all those promised joys of being and the overzealous need to be doing. Because there’s a part in all of us, even the most time-crunched, adventure seekers who know it’s true: five minutes spent watching your darlings sleep is not wasted time. An hour spent reading a book is not unproductive. A day lost in a forest is still just as soulfully meaningful.

Put another way, for me, being is uncomfortable.

But I am a forever student – a secret nerd who spends far too much time traveling down rabbit holes of information, geeking out over anything and everything I didn’t know yesterday. So, naturally, I’m not one to be easily overwhelmed by the amount of things I still don’t know. And thus after a recent discussion with a good friend, I found myself soul searching, blindly running my hand back over the timeline of my life, half expecting to actually feel the point at which things shifted out of balance and I first confused “doing” with “being.” And, without doubt, there was a shift. I mean, I’m quite certain that as a little blond haired, blue eyed <gasp!> tomboy, I wasn’t all that concerned with how extensively booked my calendar was. And when it came to consuming information to stay ahead of the curve, Alice in Wonderland and Nancy Drew were pretty much my go-to sources. And heaven knows that the aimless wandering that took place in the forest behind my parents house was just about as much mind blowing adventure as one could take. SaratogaMama.com

So here’s to learning something new. Here’s to a holiday – and future – with an understanding that the chase toward more is only part of the fun, only half the balance. The here and now, the peace and quiet, the slow and steady can offer just as much fulfillment.

Here’s to accepting that

being truly matters too. Cheers!

Winter 2014 | SaratogaMama | 47


Three digital hotspots for some slow-down wisdom: MarkManson.net (Favorite article: F$*% Yes or No) Quick, witty reads that are tinged with just the right amount of brutal honesty, Manson offers a healthy dose of realism when it comes to getting things, or rather life, done right.

48 | SaratogaMama | Winter 2014

OnBeing.org (Favorite article: The Disease of Being Busy – Omid Safi) This award-winning, radio-based blog offers loads of inspiration and advice on navigating today’s complex relationships.

ElephantJournal.com (Favorite article: 32 Truths Every Adult Should Know – Kate Bartolotta) From funny to sincere to sizzling, The Elephant covers the full spectrum of genres with content that all centers on getting your head clear and your heart happy.

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Don’t be

Greenwashed

By Robin Morgan

In response to the public’s environmental awareness and growing concern for family health, many companies are offering “greener” products to catch the attention of the eco-conscious customer. On the surface, this would be a welcomed step in the right direction, but unfortunately, many of these claims and suggestions of safe and natural products are simply untrue. Sadly, there is almost no regulation when it comes to labeling our personal and home care products.

bought was likely more expensive than just grabbing the .99 cent petro-chem-filled yellow bottle and you’re really not better off at all. The point is, without a clever eye on ingredients, you may be paying more for what in the end is still a toxic and unhealthy product.

This misleading practice, known as “greenwashing”, involves using words like “organic,” “natural,” “botanical” and “pure” to describe a product. Combined with clever packaging - like green bottles, bamboo leaves or cute bees this all-too-common branding game is meant to lull us into a false sense of safety. The truth is that green bottle covered with suggestive flora can contain any of the more than 1,300 chemicals that are actually banned in other countries. Add to this the fact that what you just

There are currently more than 80,000 ingredients that are used in the personal care industry and most of them have not been sufficiently tested for safety. This is of great concern since topical application can often be a more efficient gateway to the bloodstream (think about estrogen and nicotine patches) than consuming food or drink that can be filtered by our liver. Many of these chemicals are known environmental triggers linked to cancer, Alzheimer’s, birth defects, ADHD and hormonal imbalances. These are high stakes for duplicitous marketing!

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Did you Know? • Europe bans 1,371 toxic chemicals from their personal care products and the US bans only 11? • The FDA does not regulate the personal care products industry and hopes that cosmetic companies will do their due diligence and issue safe products? • “Safe,” “Organic” and “Natural” does not mean your products do not contain toxic chemicals as well?

Organic Natural Botanical Pure

• Many personal and home care products contain known carcinogenic ingredients, neurotoxins, endocrine disruptors and known allergens? When it comes to choosing genuinely safe products, it really is all about the ingredients. Be wary of labels touting no parabens, dyes, or fragrance. You still must turn that bottle over and read what the product does include. The good news is that products that are truly “green” and proud of their ingredients will list them on the label.

Be a Label Detective: Just like the food industry, many companies highlight a few natural ingredients hoping that consumers won’t bother to

check for toxic ingredients that may exist even higher up on the ingredient label. If “green tea extract” is the last ingredient on the label preceded by 10 multi-syllabic ingredients you can’t even pronounce, that’s a sign to put it back on the shelf. Don’t worry, the extra steps are worth it and you will be able to make a vote with your dollars by supporting the smaller manufacturers who carefully select every ingredient. Smart and savvy mama’s are in a great position to shop smarter and no longer support companies who are trying to mislead us with clever marketing and overpriced products.

Start by making more educated choices, control what you can and always challenge the ingredients. If we keep buying it, they will keep making it. What should we avoid and why: Companies like the Environmental Working Group, The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics and health warriors like Ava Anderson are helping sort through the myriad ingredients that we need to steer clear of.

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Here’s a helpful list of 17 harmful chemicals that are commonly found in even the “natural” products. Clip and save Ava Anderson’s helpful “Ingredients To Avoid List”

FRAGRANCE is a supposed “trade secret” which allows product manufacturers to legally hide dangerous chemicals. PARABENS are known endocrine disruptors. These preservatives can cause many allergic reactions and skin rashes and studies have also linked them to breast cancer. TRICLOSAN is found in many “anti bacterial” products. It’s registered with the government as a pesticide, and is a known endocrine disruptor. OXYBENZONE and OCTINOXATE are the “active ingredients” in chemical sunscreen. These UV ray filters that are also known endocrine disruptors. PETROLATUM & PETROLEUM INGREDIENTS are endocrine disruptors and carcinogens. PEG’s (polyethylene glycol) are petroleum byproducts. During manufacturing process carcinogenic contamination is created 1,4 dioxane - which is a known human carcinogen, with liver and kidney effects. SODIUM LAURYL SULFATE (SLS) and sodium laureth sulfate (SLES) are detergents that create suds or foam. Both are considered carcinogens and SLES is sometimes contaminated with 1,4-dioxane. INGREDIENTS THAT END IN “-eth” like ceteareth, triceteareth, etc. carry the contamination concern for 1,4 dioxane. NANOPARTICLES can cross the cell barrier and drive into organs, including the brain in humans. In Europe, manufacturers must list nanoparticles on the label, not in US.

RETINYL PALMITATE in the presence of sunlight enhances skin cancer lesions by 21%. This is according to a recently released FDA report. FORMALDEHYDE RELEASERS - DIAZOLIDINYL UREA, DMDM, HYDANTOIN, QUATERNIUM are found in most personal care products. Formaldehyde can cause allergic reactions, dermatitis, joint pains and headaches, cancer and immune dysfunction. SYNTHETIC COLOR/DYES are made from coal tar, which is a mixture of many chemicals, derived from petroleum and is recognized as a human carcinogen. Look out for ingredients like FD&C Blue 1, Green 3, Yellow 5 & 6, Red 33. GLYCOL (propylene, butylenes, etc) are synthetic petrochemicals that have been known to cause allergic and toxic reactions, and have been linked to cancer, developmental/reproductive issues, neurotoxicity and endocrine disruption. MINERAL OIL is a petroleum ingredient that coats the skin like plastic wrap. Mineral oil disrupts the natural immune barrier and inhibits its ability to breathe and absorb natural moisture leaving skin unable to release toxins. TALC belongs to the same family as asbestos. Talc is dangerous to inhale and has been linked to ovarian cancer. SILOXANES, cyclomethicone and ingredients ending in “siloxane” (e.g., cyclopentasiloxane) are toxic, persistent, and have the potential to bio-accumulate.

ALUMINUM and metals are bio-accumulative, meaning they store in your fat cells and are very hard to get rid of. Many deodorants contain aluminum as an active ingredient. DIETHANOLOMINE (DEA) and COCAMIDE DEA, LAURAMIDE DEA react with other ingredients to become the extremely carcinogenic nitrosodiethanolamine. Beware of other ethanolamines like triethanolamine(TEA) and monoethamolamine (MEA).

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Winter Fashion: Layer on the Warmth By Jan Snedaker, photos provided

The one thing predictable about winter in upstate New York is that it is always unpredictable, which makes cold weather fashion a bit tricky to navigate. On any given day, the forecast may call for rain, sleet, ice or snow and temperatures can vary from 20 below zero to 40 above! Women are often left searching endlessly for the right outfit, and more importantly, the right outerwear. In order to stay warm during frigid temperatures women threw fashion into the snow and walked around looking like giant marshmallows. Designers even embraced this essential look by naming winter jackets ‘puffy coats’ and ‘puffers’ in an attempt to make this look sound more appealing. Fortunately over the years new materials and styles have evolved allowing for thinner versions of ‘puffy jackets’ and thanks to the newest trend, the puffy vest, layering has become a stylish way to wear outerwear and still stay warm. While the ‘puffy’ name may have stuck, the puffy look no longer has to be a part of your winter wardrobe. Try layering the sleek new silhouette of a wool coat over a fitted denim jacket for a pulled together look perfect for work or play. A warm wool cardigan worn over a silk long sleeve shirt with a thin but warm ‘puffy’ jacket will keep you comfortable all day long. For a chic, bohemian look try wearing a vegan leather jacket with a faux fur jacket, or puffer vest with faux fur hood, over the top. Whatever look you choose, tie it all together with a cozy infinity scarf, hat, and gloves and not only will you be ready for whatever Mother Nature sends our way, you will look effortlessly fabulous all winter long!

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Basketweave Wool Toggle Coat Lands’ End

Crystal and Pearl Fingerless Gloves Lola Accessory Boutique 454 Broadway, Saratoga Springs

Jamberry Nail Wraps in Let it Snow and Sugar & Spice Jamberry.com

Maximum Heat U-neck Tee Gap

Ilia Multi-Use Stick in Cheek to Cheek Bella Rouge Cosmetics and Skincare Boutique Clifton Park Center

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Plaid Blanket Scarf Lola Accessory Boutique 454 Broadway Saratoga Springs

Puffer Vest with Faux Fur Hood Gap

EMU Boots Saratoga Saddlery 460 Broadway Saratoga Springs

Perfect Layering Pieces

Beaded Knit Headwrap

Spoken Boutique 27 Church St, Saratoga Springs

Miss Scarlett Boutique 19 Phila Street, Saratoga Springs

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Fleece Lined Leggings Miss Scarlett Boutique 19 Phila Street Saratoga Springs

Faux-Shearling Vest Banana Republic

Vegan Leather Jacket Lucia Boutique 454 Broadway, Saratoga Springs

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Organize Your Home for the New Year By Jenna Burger

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Photo by Jenna Burger saratogaTODAYnewspaper.com


January can be a dreary month after the holiday high, but as we wind down from the Christmas craze and start to transition our home back to the everyday, the New Year brings a fresh start to clear the mind, clean the house, and create a more organized home. While the snow is piling up outside, put that overabundance of extra energy and efforts into purging and organizing inside. Rather than accumulating more stuff in the home, here are six steps to take charge of your space to achieve a more organized 2015.

Jenna Burger of SAS Interiors

1. Make a List Go room to room around your home and make a list of what is working and what isn’t. Look in the closets, peek under the beds, and open the drawers. Create a page for each room and write down a plan of action for what you want to organize and what you need to lose (ie: organize sock drawer, purge papers/magazines, donate unused toys, etc). A list will keep you focused and stay on track. When a task is complete, cross it off. Once all the tasks on your list are finished, the best part is reflecting on what you accomplished. It will also keep you motivated to do more!

2. Get Moving Once your plan of action is in place, it’s time to get moving. Choose a room to start with and let your list guide you. Most likely, your whole house won’t be fully organized in a day – it’s simply not possible. Instead of stressing and overwhelming yourself, set a time limit or a specific goal to work towards. Once it’s reached, be done. Then the next day, do the same. This will help avoid burn-out and will keep you motivated to continue. Organizing and taking control of the stuff in your home can be exhausting, so mentally prepare yourself for the job.

º

You’ll be amazed at how much better every room in your home looks once you get rid of the useless items.

3. Purge, Toss, Donate When going room by room, start by sorting through the items you no longer need, use, and/or want. Set up three boxes or bags to purge, toss, and/or donate. This will make the process faster and more efficient. While going through the items, it is helpful to use the 3-for-1 rule. For every new item you bring into the home (think about all those Christmas presents - shirts, books, toys, etc.), say goodbye to three things. Keep in mind, if something hasn’t been touched or used in 6-12 months, you probably don’t need it. If you don’t use it, lose it.

4. Organize Once you’ve removed your unused items, it’s time to organize. Baskets, bins, trays, and other storage caddies are a great way to organize items you want to keep. Make a point to have a spot or a place for everything. This is especially key to keep the clutter in check with kids toys, books, games, and art supplies.

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5. Go Vertical Maximize your storage capabilities by using more wall space. Bookshelves are great for going vertical to get things off the ground, thus creating more floor area. In closets, add shelving as high as possible for extra storage of blankets or non-everyday items. Add hooks in the entry for additional coat/bookbag storage. Hang additional shelving in the basement and/or garage for more space to put large bins.

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Choose furniture that can serve double duty to save on space.

6. Commit Getting organized is one thing, but staying organized is truly a commitment. Once you’re organized, take the extra 10 minutes each day to tidy up and monthly to go through each room to purge any unused items or papers. Expect that there will be minor setbacks throughout the year, but remaining positive will help keep you motivated to stay organized.

Photo by Jenna Burger/ Styling by Donna Talley. Originally published in Fall 2014 Storage Magazine www.bhg.com

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The simpler we live, the saner we are! Rid your lives of the clutter and unused things to achieve a more meaningful, organized home.

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Not Your Ordinary Cooking Class By Jan Snedaker, Photos Provided

ines b m o c h lt o Hea ainment t r e Spring Int t n e d ing, an in d , n io t ening. a v e le educ b a r emo into one m

W

hen Danielle Maslowsky and Anouk Booneman met they became instant friends. Both women are passionate about living a healthy lifestyle, love to cook real food, and are eager to share their knowledge and experience with others. Anouk is a graduate of The Culinary Institute of America and a certified yoga instructor. Danielle is a certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist and Running Coach. They share the belief that the key to good health is eating a nutritious diet made up of mostly fruits and vegetables and eating as much 'clean' food as possible. It did not take long for the two friends to turn

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their mutual interests and expertise into a business venture and ‘Spring Into Health with Danielle and Anouk’ was born. Spring Into Health is not your ordinary cooking class. For starters, the classes take place inside Anouk’s beautiful, 1700’s historic farm house. Upon entering the dream chef’s kitchen, remodeled to accommodate up to ten students at a time, you are welcomed by Anouk and Danielle as if you are an old friend visiting rather than a participant in their workshop. Winter 2014 | SaratogaMama | 59


Anouk and Danielle begin each class with a half hour of informational, interactive conversation about good nutrition. Danielle says, “Our goal is to have people leave with a better understanding of healthy living and to make better informed decisions when choosing food. We also want people to feel more comfortable in the kitchen so they will begin cooking more real food at home”. Often a professional within the food and health industry will lead the discussion portion of the workshop. Another unique component of their classes are that all the recipes are gluten free, vegetarian, and they use mostly locally sourced, seasonal fruits, vegetables, legumes, and grains. Once the cooking begins, the group separates into different work stations where each participant creates one of the recipes on the menu. Danielle and Anouk circulate throughout offering help and advice as needed. When the food is ready, everyone adjourns to the dining room to enjoy their culinary creations. As each dish is passed around the ‘cook’ explains the recipe and shares her opinion on the ease of the cooking process.

Æ “

Our goal is to have people leave with a better understanding of healthy living and to make better informed decisions when choosing food...

In November the theme focused on creating healthy and delicious side dishes for Thanksgiving. Using ingredients like pumpkin puree, Brussels sprouts, sweet potatoes, and green beans we whipped up mouth watering, healthy options to offer our families during holiday gatherings or regular week night dinners. Spring Into Health with Anouk and Danielle hold monthly cooking 60 | SaratogaMama | Winter 2014

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classes with a new theme each month. To learn more, visit their Facebook page “Spring Into Health with Anouk and Danielle”. **In the November workshop, we learned about the differences between USDA Certified Organic foods vs. natural foods as well as how to be smarter when it comes to reading labels. Want to know the key words to look for when choosing eggs or meat at the grocery store? Check out our post at SaratogaMama.com/ Spring-Into-Health

Pumpkin No Bake Energy Bites Ingredients: • 8 oz. (about 1 pakced cup) chopped dates • 1/4 cup honey • 1/4 cup pumpkin puree • 1 tablespoon chia seeds or flax seeds • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg • pinch of salt • 1 cup old-fashioned oats (dry, not cooked) • 1 cup toasted coconut flakes • 1 cup toasted pepitas (pumpkin seeds) Combine the dates, honey, pumpkin puree, chia (or flax) seeds, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and salt in a food processor, and pulse until smooth and combined. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl, and stir in the oats, coconut flakes and pepitas until evenly combined. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Once the mixture is cool (and easier to work with), use a spoon or cookie scoop to shape it into your desired size of energy balls. ** Store covered in the refrigerator for up to two weeks

SaratogaMama.com

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WARM UP with a good book

Book Recommendations from Northshire Bookstore

Claude on the Slopes, by Alex T. Smith This early chapter book follows Claude, a dapper dog, on his downhill ski adventures in the Snowy Mountains. His best friend is a sock - and he is fun! The art, in a retro red-and-black palette, is stylistically reminiscent of the Mad Men 60s; Claude wears a red beret and a Fair Isle sweater, and looks like he would be right at home in the French Alps in an early James Bond film. Funny and charming, and with a distinctly European savoir faire, Claude is the perfect companion for a good second grade reader or for reading aloud. Let’s hit the slopes!

Lower Elementary

Breadcrumbs, by Anne Ursu Upper Elementary

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This fantasy novel for fourth, fifth or sixth grade readers was inspired by Hans Christian Andersen’s Snow Queen. When fifth-grader Hazel’s best friend, Jack, suddenly begins to give her the cold shoulder, her mom tries to tell her this is not unusual for an 11-year-old boy. But Hazel knows there must be something else, and she’s right - Jack’s heart has been frozen by a mysterious woman who lives in a palace of ice. Of course it’s up to Hazel to save him - but can she? A vivid blend of reality and fantasy, breadcrumbs explores what we must leave behind, and what we can hang onto. saratogaTODAYnewspaper.com


Red Sled, by Lita Judge The cover art of this nearly wordless picture book is absolutely adorable: a little girl in a puffy white snow suit stands in the foreground of a snow-white landscape, watching a bear trudging off with her sled in the distance. Her red stocking cap is an exclamation point that invites you to open the book. Where is bear going with her red sled? How many friends can bear pile on for a moonlit ride? A spirit of joy and fun positively sparkles in this book, and despite the frosty setting of white and blue, it glows with warmth and good cheer. A picture book delight!

Preschool Teen

Stitching Snow, by R. C. Lewis Snow White meets sci-fi in this debut novel. Essie has been hiding out on a sub-zero planet, keeping her identity a secret. Her companions, seven bumbling little robots she has cobbled together out of spare parts and computer code, are inadequate protection. There is, indeed, a wicked stepmother searching the galaxy for her, and an army of revolutionaries hoping to make her their leader. Her prince charming has betrayed her trust, and her father has become a mere puppet. Will she unknowingly bite the poisoned apple? Pick this one up for your Hunger Games fan, because Essie is as tough as Katniss - maybe even tougher.

Baby/ Toddler

No Two Alike, by Keith Baker “No two snowflakes are alike, almost, almost, but not quite.” Follow two cheerful red birds as they frolic and flit through a wintry landscape in this rhyming board book that explores the concepts of “same” and “different”. The color palette features cool blues and whites with bright splashes of red to capture your toddler’s attention and imagination. From the New York Times bestselling creator of LMNO Peas.

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6Warm Up This Winter Minutes to

By Dr. Leslie J. Botta

Now that the cold weather is upon us, it’s time to gear up and head outside! Whether you’re shoveling snow, sledding, building a snowman, ice skating, or skiing, there are a few things to be aware of to help prevent an injury this winter.

Our bodies have a greater need for proper nutrition and hydration in the winter months. Our need for quality calories in the form of proteins and complex carbohydrates increase even from simple things like shivering in the cold. In the winter, our normal thirst mechanism is diminished. It’s important to increase our water intake despite not feeling thirsty. Make sure to drink ½ your body weight in ounces of water each day to avoid dehydration.

Before you embark on a winter activity, taking just 6 minutes to prepare your body can make a big difference.

2 Minutes: Begin with a simple activity like two minutes of marching or jogging in place with arm movements. This gets the blood circulating in the tissues and heats up your core.

2 Minutes: Spend another two minutes to stretch those muscles after you get the blood pumping. Avoid quick and jerking motions while stretching. Keep it even and smooth. Bend 64 | SaratogaMama | Winter 2014

forward and touch your toes, stand up and reach for the sky, lean back to a comfortable extension. Comfortably move your head forward and back, side to side and looking over each shoulder. Place your feet just wider than shoulder width and turn your toes/legs sideways. Bend your knee over your toes to stretch your calves and move the quadriceps.

2 Minutes: Spend the next two minutes to strengthen your core. Plank exercises are an excellent way to do this. They don’t take long and they are very effective. One simple plank is to hold a push-up position. If you need to bend your knees, that’s fine. Either way, make sure to keep your body straight as a “plank” and your abdomen tight. Your core muscles play a big role in keeping you upright and balanced if you happen to find a slick or icy spot while outside. If you do experience pain this winter you could benefit from Chiropractic care. The Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, Nov 2010, reported that treatment for low back pain initiated by a Doctor of Chiropractic (DC) costs up to 20% less than when started with an MD. Here in Clifton Park at ‘The Joint… the chiropractic place’, your first visit consists of a consult, exam and any necessary treatment and it only costs $19. saratogaTODAYnewspaper.com


Winter Family Events Friday, December 12

The Jungle Book Homemade Theater, 19 Roosevelt Drive, Saratoga Springs

The Jungle Book is the delightful story of Mowgli, a boy raised in the jungle by Bagheera, a wise black panther, and Baloo, a goofy bear. Shows are Dec. 12 and 19 at 7:30 p.m., Dec. 13, 14, and 21 at 1 p.m. and Dec. 20 at 1 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. $18 Adults, $12 Children (age 12 & under). For more information call (518) 587-4427. For additional show times visit www. homemadetheater.org.

Sunday, December 14

Seth and the Merry Melix Saratoga Springs Public Library, H. Dutcher Community Room, 2 - 3 p.m. Join us for a winter wonderland celebration with Seth and the Moody Melix. Complete with live music and seasonal treats, we hope to offer you and your family a joyous and merry time together as we appreciate the beauty and wonder of a new season. No registration required. Free admission. For more information call (518) 584-7860.

Saturday, December 20

The Nutcracker National Museum of Dance, 99 South Broadway, Saratoga Springs

52 dancers will perform the 2nd act, Kingdom of the Sweets in the School of the Arts Studios. Don’t miss this 1st ever production of the Holiday classic here at the National Museum of Dance! Shows are December 20 at 1 p.m. and 7 p.m. and December 21 at 1 p.m. To purchase tickets call 584-2225 ext 3001

Sunday, December 21

Holiday Celebration The Children’s Museum at Saratoga, 69 Caroline St, Saratoga Springs 1-3 p.m. Usher in the holidays with a special scavenger hunt, festive holiday crafts, caroling and other fun surprises. Free with museum admission.

SaratogaMama.com

Monday, December 29

The Puppet People Present Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol’’ Saratoga Springs Public Library H. Dutcher Community Room, Shows at 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. A Charles Dickens holiday classic, this show features beautiful handcrafted marionettes, shadow puppets, gorgeous masks, lavish costumes, vivid sets, a professional soundtrack that includes many holiday favorites, and a giant 9-foot parade puppet. This program is for ages five and older. For more information call (518) 584-7860.

Wednesday, December 31 First Night Saratoga 2015 Downtown Saratoga Springs 6 p.m -1 a.m.

Each year, thousands of revelers come to Saratoga Springs to experience a wide-ranging variety of arts and music. First Night is the most affordable, family-friendly, safe, and exciting way to celebrate this holiday. The evening of live music, dance, comedy, and other performances, annually attracts almost 20,000 celebrants. Cost is $15 for a First Night Button, kids 12 and under are free. For more information call (518) 584-4132.

Friday, January 2

Family Fun Night Round Lake Library - Malta Branch, One Bayberry Drive, Malta, 6 - 8 p.m.

Family Fun Night is being held at the Malta Community Center on Friday, Jan. 2, 2015 from 6-8 p.m. Stop in at the library for some crafts and a library scavenger hunt!

Saturday, January 24

Saratoga Area Preschool Fair Saratoga Springs Public Library H. Dutcher Community Room 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.

The Saratoga Area Preschool Fair will include more than a dozen area preschools. Information about the schools and programs will be available, as will school representatives to answer questions. Sponsored by The Waldorf School of Saratoga Springs and Saratoga Springs Public Library.

Saturday, January 24

20th Annual Frost Faire Saratoga National Historic Park, 648 Route 42, Stillwater, 11 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Snow, or no snow…come enjoy the 20th annual Frost Faire. If there’s snow, bring your snow tube or plastic sled for spectacular rides on the “Big Hill.” If there’s no snow, you can still enjoy wagon rides, winter nature trek, guided snow shoeing, winter tracking, Native American storytelling, games, plus hot chocolate and cookies by the bonfire.

Saturday, January 31

Chowderfest 2015 Participating Restaurants in Saratoga, 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. Part of Winterfest, Chowderfest is the perfect activity for a cold winter’s day. Stroll through downtown Saratoga and purchase a $1 cup (3 oz. serving) of chowder from as many participating establishments as you’d like! Some restaurants will be offering classic varieties, while some may be serving original, unique concoctions. After you’ve enjoyed sample after sample of delicious, warm chowders, vote for your favorite.

Monday, February 16 (President’s Day)

Animal Tracking Snowshoe Hike Congress Park, Downtown Saratoga Springs, 11 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Join Wilton Wildlife Preserve & Park intern and Children’s Librarian Laura Clark as they lead a family snowshoe hike in Congress Park for children ages 5-12 and their parents or caregivers. Participants will meet in the Crawshaw Story Room to receive footprint identification cards and loaner snowshoes, courtesy of Wilton Wildlife. The group will walk to Congress Park, donning snowshoes and hunt for animal tracks. Register in the Children’s Room or by calling (518) 584-7860, ext. 315.

For a com te list of evenptslean activities, visit d SaratogaMam a.com

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Word Search L S S W B Q E P J W N N J E A N Z Q I L V O G S V O T N O D F W D N O O T A W W Y M G V I E L C O D I A Y Z R D B G C C H N Z W K P D Z N Q Y A D I L O H E N N Z G W I R J G A L C R U H Y N L Z D J S

GLOVES

SNOWMAN COAT SLEDDING HOLIDAY WINTER

Winter Crossword

Across

2. When water freezes it is called...? 3. You wear these on your feet to keep them warm and dry in the snow. 5. You build this out of three large balls of snow. 7. A month in winter that starts with the letter J.

Down

1. These keep your hands warm when you play in the snow. 4. It’s white and falls from the sky. 5. You wear this around your neck to keep warm. 6. You put this on your head when you go outside.

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