Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Needham Ice Skating Options

Written by Lollie Weeks

Thermometers are being tested this week, “How low can you go?” and most pantries are stocked with cocoa and marshmallows -- ice skating season is in full swing.
A backyard ice rink is the ultimate in skating convenience – lace up and walk out your back door – but for many families the lack of a flat yard space makes that dream impossible.
Heck, even if you have a rink in your backyard, wintery cabin fever sometimes necessitates a field trip; a change of scenery is always nice.

Right here in Needham we have several outdoor skating options –

  • §  Horsford Pond – Central Avenue, across from RTS, at entrance to Town Forest.
  • §  Farley Pond -- South Street, 3/10 mile from Chestnut Street intersection, on right.
  • §  Reservoir -- off Dedham Avenue, behind the Department of Public Works.
  • §  Walker-Gordon Pond -- Charles River Street, 2/10 mile from Central Avenue, on right.
  • §  Rosemary Lake -- Rosemary Street
  • §  Sportsmen’s Pond -- Great Plain Avenue, between Central Avenue and Marked Tree Road, behind the brick building.

Horsford & Reservoir also offer lighting Friday thru Sunday and holiday evenings.

Before you head out, be sure to check the Town’s Skating& Sledding page for current ice depths, skating conditions & safety tips. When available, new information is updated after 3 p.m. The town also offers a recorded information line -- (781) 444-7212, press 6.

If you’re looking to get out of town, but not too far a drive --
Boston Common Frog Pond – “at the heart of Boston Common, one of America’s oldest and most treasured public parks”, offers public skating hours daily and skate rentals.
Jim Kirrane Ice Skating Rink – located at the top of the hill in Larz Anderson Park in Brookline, offers public skating sessions Thursdays thru Sunday and skate rentals.
When the mercury dips too low and wind chills make it feel downright arctic, there are plenty of nearby indoor skating options as well –
Babson Skate Center – on Great Plain Avenue in Wellesley offers public skating sessions Tuesday & Thursday mornings and Sunday afternoons, and skate rentals are available.
Jim Roche Community Ice Arena – on VFW Parkway in West Roxbury offers public skating sessions daily and skate rentals.

For a list of other rinks around the state, click here.

So what are you waiting for? Grab your hat & mittens and lace up those skates for a fun & affordable family afternoon on the ice.
Do you have a family favorite skating rink or pond that isn’t listed here? Please do share it in a comment below!

Lollie Weeks blogs about life in suburbia, her culinary adventures, Pinterest obsession, doughnut addiction and being a parent with ADD at The FortuitousHousewife. Her company, Weeks Web Marketing, helps small businesses navigate the ever-changing landscape of social media & internet-based marketing. She lives in Needham with her husband, two boys and a not-so-bright, but oh-so-sweet Border Collie.

photo credit: Thomas Hawk via photopin cc

Monday, January 21, 2013

YO GABBA GABBA! LIVE! GET THE SILLIES OUT! Tour in Boston for 2 Performances

Yo Gabba Gabba is coming to Boston! Catch the show this Saturday for some fun and laughs. The performance is at the Orpheum theater which isn't as overwhelming as some of the other shows in town. Enjoy!

The sillies are crazy little creatures that live inside of us and need to be shaken out! DJ Lance Rock and everyone’s favorite cast of colorful characters are calling all fans in Cincinnati to get ready to jump, shake and shimmy them out at the new live tour Yo Gabba Gabba! LIVE!: Get the Sillies Out!Yo Gabba Gabba! LIVE!: Get The Sillies Out! tour will visit more than 50 cities across the U.S. in 2013.  Yo Gabba Gabba! LIVE! is touring in support of their first national beverage launch, a new line of toys, a new line of kids sportswear and a DVD/ CD collectors' edition.
Yo Gabba Gabba! LIVE!: Get the Sillies Out! will have two performances at the Orpheum Theatre in Boston on Saturday, Jan. 26th (2pm and 5pm). CLICK HERE for ticket information for the showsTickets start at $23.50VIP Party packages are available as well which include a ticket in the first 15 Rows, a pass to "Get the Sillies Out" in the private VIP room featuring a super fun party with the Gabba Gang (costumed characters) and more. Children under 1 year old do not require a paid ticket to sit on a parent's lap.
For a complete list of tour dates, cities and show times, and a preview of the show, visit www.yogabbagabbalive.com 
Yo Gabba Gabba! is an award-winning, live-action television series and live stage show whose unconventional formula has created a triple stacked fan base, making it one of the most popular entertainment properties among preschoolers, parents and indie music lovers alike. The television show, now in its fourth season, airs several times a day on Nick Jr.
Yo Gabba Gabba! LIVE!: Get the Sillies Out! marks the third tour for the successful Yo Gabba Gabba! LIVE!concert series. The first tour, Yo Gabba Gabba! LIVE!: There’s a Party in My City!, launched with a float in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and a performance at the White House in 2010.  Yo Gabba Gabba! LIVE! 2010 tour played to sold out venues in 60 cities. Yo Gabba Gabba! LIVE!: It’s Time to Dance! enjoyed repeat success in 2011, energizing audiences across North America at over 120 shows.

Recipe spotlight: Pappardelle with Prosciutto, Cream Sauce and Peas

Written by Joy Errico Seusing

My husband and I love pasta so I am always looking for new ways to mix it up. Sometimes I get sick of a tomato-based sauce and want something creamier. This recipe is the result of some trial and error, but I love the end product. Warning- it’s very filling!

Pappardelle with Prosciutto, Cream Sauce and Peas
Makes four (big) servings.
1 lb. pappardelle pasta
2 tablespoons butter
1 large onion, diced small
6 ounces prosciutto, torn into bite sized pieces
1 ¼ heavy cream
4 ounces goat cheese
8 ounces peas (you can use frozen if you don’t have fresh, just defrost them first)
¼-1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
2 tbsp. salt (add more to taste)
1 tbsp. pepper (add more to taste)

Boil water for the pasta and cook according to the directions. In a separate sauté pan, add the butter and melt on medium heat. Once melted, turn up the heat and add prosciutto pieces. Cook for seven minutes. 

Add the diced onion and saute for five minutes. Add goat cheese, peas, heavy cream, salt and pepper. Turn the heat up to medium high heat until boiling. Once boiling, turn the heat down to low and cook for another five to seven minutes until it thickens. 

Be sure to stir frequently so the sauce doesn’t burn on the bottom of the pan. Drain the pasta and put in the sauté pan with the other ingredients and mix well. Add the parmesan cheese and more salt and pepper to taste. Enjoy! 

About the Author
Joy Errico Seusing lives in Needham with her husband and two young children. She is the Vice President for External Relations at Jumpstart, a national early education organization headquartered in Boston. In addition to being a happily busy working mom, Joy loves traveling to new places, reading on her Kindle, interior design, power yoga, and of course, cooking!  Joy is a monthly contributor for the Parent Talk blog so be sure to check back for new recipe ideas each month.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Big Wishes Success

As you may be aware, Parent Talk participated in the Big Wishes program through the Home for Little Wanderers this holiday season. Thanks to the generous gifts from many members, we were able to grant all 35 of the Rose family's wishes as well as provide some extra toys and goodies. In addition, we were able to help an additional 25 children have a brighter holiday. 

Here are a few pictures of the gifts donated and the Toy Room where all the items were collected, sorted and distributed to various organizations that work under the Home for Little Wanderers. 

It was an incredible show of love and holiday spirit and we are so proud of Parent Talk. A big thank you to Betsy Miller and Ann Brown for organizing! If you have any interest in helping with this project next year, please let us know at communityrelations@parenttalk.info.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Save the Date! Parent Talk sponsors Greene's Field Go Greene Party!

Parent Talk has become the sole sponsor of the Greene’s Field Go Greene St. Patrick’s Day to be held on Saturday, March 16th from 7 to 11 pm in Powers Hall at Needham Town Hall.  The party will feature a Taste of Needham from local restaurants, a silent auction, prizes, dancing ... and it wouldn’t be St. Patrick’s Day without green beer!  Save the date for this “not to be missed” St. Patrick’s Day Party!  Parent Talk advance tickets are on sale now at www.greenesfield.org

Tickets: $50 before 3/1.  $60 beginning 3/1

Parent Talk's annual Casino Night event will return in 2014!

photo credit: ★ jox via photopin cc

Monday, January 14, 2013

Happy New Year 2013 – Parent Talk’s 20th Anniversary year!

2012 has been a wonderful first year working with all the member volunteers who make Parent Talk tick.  I just want to thank everyone who works so hard to make all the events and lectures, playspace,  play groups and, of course, the sale a success.

Most recently, Frosty’s Festival was fun again this year and I just wanted to thank Jennifer Emmett for chairing the event.  Jennifer and her family joined Parent Talk in August, and she wanted to take on a project.  She did a great job of it, too, along with her friend, Me Lisa German.  In addition to the classic activities, with marshmallow snowmen, cookie decoration and beaded ornaments, the playhouse were transformed into a gingerbread house and holiday music was playing softly in both rooms. 

There was a change in leadership of the Used Clothing, Toy and Equipment Sale in 2012. Seema Meloni and Beth McCarthy, who have led the sales for four sales over two years turned over leadership for the fall sale. Seema had worked the sale since 2007 and Beth since 2008.  For 2012, they decided to leave that lead roll to others, and I would love to say a big thank-you to Susan Orr, Joanna Noon and Nikki Amara Myers for taking that roll on.  With lots of preparation and help from Seema and Beth, Joanne, Susan and Nikki and their committee continued the tradition of bringing in more money with each successive year’s sale.  Congratulations! I’m looking forward to the Spring Sale.

Thanks to everyone who filled out the 2012-2013 membership survey!  We have a great deal of information from it so that we can make Parent Talk even better in the year to come. My next post will have more information about some of your ideas.  Did you give your contact information so that you could win a year’s membership to Parent Talk? The lucky winner is Aarti Sawant-Basak. Aarti is a relatively new member of Parent Talk, having joined in November. Congratulations, Aarti!

For the coming year, we are planning on celebrating our 20th anniversary all year long, so keep your eye on this space for special discounts and happenings in the coming year. As part of our celebration, Parent Talk is putting together an Anniversary Cookbook. We are collecting recipes through January 31st and the book will be on sale at events and on the website. Please see the website for more on how to get involved in this fun project.  Upcoming events include the I love Mondays Lecture on January 22nd and the Summer Camp Fair on January 31st, with a snow date of February 7th.

Hope to see you around Parent Talk!
Mary Celeste Brown

Thursday, January 10, 2013

I Love Mondays - New Lecture 1/22

The next Parent Talk lecture on January 22nd is targeted towards working parents, specifically Moms. Stop in to listen to the funny Michelle Cove as she talks about her book and how she eased some of her "mommy guilt."

Check out this excerpt to learn more about the book.

Pointless Pressure

I learned over the past few years that we're all sick of pointless and pressure-inducing mantras like "find the balance" and "you can have it all." Please! We are big girls who know that juggling a career and family is messy and complicated. It was freeing to hear Anne-Marie Slaughter--a professor of politics and international affairs at Princeton University, and the mother of two teenage boys--say in her Atlantic Magazine cover story "Why Women Still Can't Have it All" last July, "I'd been telling young women at my lectures that you can have it all . . . I'd been part, albeit unwittingly, of making millions of women feel that they are to blame if they cannot . . . rise up the ladder as fast as men and also have a family and an active home life."
Yes, let's stop striving to "have it all" and put our attention, as Slaughter suggests, on where it belongs: creating more flexibility in the workplace so women (and men) can attend to both their career and their family--and not get penalized in the future for making a "lateral" move professionally for the sake of the family.
We can also open up to each other about how and when we're struggling with the work-parent juggle so we know we're not alone in navigating this rocky terrain. Says Gina Robison-Billups, president of the International Association of Working Mothers, "When we share our guilt and that terrible feeling that we're not giving enough of ourselves to our kids, we realize that other moms feel the same way--it's incredibly liberating."
In fact, if you ever want to bond with another working mom, just ask her: "What was the moment when you almost lost your mind trying to balance career and family?" We all have at least one of these bad-mommy stories, and sharing these confessions is like offering one another gifts that say "Hey, we're all struggling with this, and that doesn't mean it's not worth it." Even though we choose this path, it's hard, and we're all making it up as we go.
Excerpted from "I Love Mondays: And Other Confessions from Devoted Working Moms" by Michelle Cove. Available from Seal Press, a member of the Perseus Books Group. Copyright 2012.
"I Love Mondays and Other Confessions From Devoted Working Moms" by Michelle Cove
Tuesday, January 22 at 7:00 pm
Charles River School
6 Old Meadow Road Dover

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