Do Good

A Mother’s Day to Remember

Choosing Mother’s Day gifts has always been one of my favorite things to do, and except for the year I bought my mom a super ugly porcelain (!) flower pin from a church bazaar, I think I’ve nailed it. Luckily for my mom, my gift giving skills have improved, as has my access to shops. And as a Mom, I appreciate and love the simplest of things on Mother’s Day like hand-picked violets, a card, and maybe food I don’t cook myself, for at least one meal, anyway.

So, Mother’s Day is tomorrow, people! Forgot? Don’t worry. My friends and I at Go Local Boston have you covered.

First, head to either Medfield or Weston to one of the locations of Brothers Marketplace, my top go-to place for the freshest, most gorgeous flowers and yummy treats. They always have beautiful floral arrangements if you’re in the grab and go mode (me, always).

Since ideally Mother’s Day means nobody cooks, and trying to eat out can be stressful when you have young ones, put together a yummy cheese board with some fresh fruit, crackers or bread and some sparkling wine and cider. Grab a quiche – yummy, or some of the wonderful prepared food. You will be a star.

Gifts? got you covered, there, too.  Greentail Table in Newton is a great place for creative gifts for mom, from cool water bottles to sweet dish towels and gorgeous tableware. You can easily pull together a thoughtful and beautiful gift. Owner Linda de Valpine has a fantastic eye and everything in this store is gorgeous. Really, buy me absolutely anything from here.

Local love continues with beautiful cards, gift tags and stickers from Elizabeth at Bottle Branch. And as an extra bonus? You’ll learn something about plants because she’s also a botanist. And she and a friend co-wrote the super great site Manners for Mothers which I loved.


Even more local love local to Barbara at the Newton fave Sense and Humor – a great website with completely fun gifts for any time of year – my favorites for Mother’s Day? Add some tea and honey and a some cookies or a tea bread and you are good to go.

 

Don’t skimp on dessert – Mom has a sweet tooth, too! Praline in Belmont has the most delicious tarts and I should know, I sampled them all to ensure this is true – you are welcome.

Photos and fun from my cohorts at Go Local Boston:

KimWorld

A little bit about a lot of things

Leah’s Life: Pearls and Oysters

What do I want? I’m super low maintenance – well, I think I am anyway,  I don’t want a big brunch out or expensive gifts, a handmade card and some time with my family is the perfect gift. Okay, and that not cooking thing.

Feeling Art-y?

For Mother’s Day –  the outdoor market at SOWA is closed tomorrow, but the studios at SOWA Artists Guild are open. Maybe I’ll drag everybody to the Isabella Stewart Gardner or MFA. Or the newly renovated Boston Public Library.

 

 

 

Traveling with Fios

Over April break, our family traveled together, and with two teens in tow, you know we had our tech at the ready. Unsure of the available in flight and potentially long airport layover entertainment options, we all downloaded books and movies to our devices at the same time one day. Luckily, we have Verizon FIOS and it was a snap because of Verizon’s super fast download speed.

And we all had favorite apps – Verizon Fios Mobile, Hoopla (a free service offered by your public library that lets you borrow video, music and audio books), and HBO Go (accessed through our Verizon Fios account).

So books and movies were downloaded, devices and batteries charged, secured in our carry-ons, and we were on our way. As usual, I packed a variety of travel friendly snacks and we were off and running.

My youngest daughter even brought an adorable heart shaped headphone splitter so she and her sister could watch their favorite shows together which came in handy.

What did we watch? La La Land, Lion, Hidden Figures, Good Will Hunting, and several episodes of Friends. Books? I caught up on The Alchemist and, for something lighter, The World’s Best Life Hacks.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Everyone had their favorite diversions and we all shared our favorite picks with each other. Family trips are great opportunities for a shared experience – and even a long layover can be a chance for bonding with your shared earbuds and some snacks Mom packed.

 

Disclosure: I am working with a Verizon Fios team of bloggers to help get the word out about Fios coming to Boston. While I am being compensated for sharing, all opinions are, as always, my own. And yes, yes I do, watch a lot of tv. No judgement.

 

April Break in NYC

Sometimes a few days out of your routine is all you need. We love to zip to NYC – so close, so much to do! Whether you’re into Broadway shows (check out A View from the Mezzanine for great tips), are taking college tours, (NYU, Barnard, Fordhan, Pace, Cooper-Union, FIT, Columbia or any listed here), or if museums are your reason to travel to the city, then you are in luck. Aside from our favorites, the MOMA, the Met, the Guggenheim, and the Cooper Hewitt, if you’re traveling with little ones then check out the Math Museum, Lego Exhibit, and another family fave, The Central Park Zoo. We all love walking the High Line, exploring neighborhoods, finding great food, and exploring the many parks.

We have driven to the City, taken the bus, the train and plane. What is our top choice? Well, LimoLiner has a new sweet deal called Spring in the City. And there’s a buy one get one deal for less deal which helps make the decision even easier, and some sweet amenities. Like what?

So, for families traveling Mon. – Thurs, April 10 – 20, 2017 

 

Family-friendly amenities  including free Wifi and  on-board movies to keep kids entertained. This is key – table seating with enough room to spread out those coloring books, toys and iPads.

Free meals, snacks & first-class service. Yes, it is possible. The on-board attendant serves a (pre-selected) meal option, complimentary drinks, snacks and glass of wine on trips after 6pm

Easy boarding – just arrive 10 minutes before departure; No baggage fees or security checkpoints

Central pick-up & drop-off locations – LimoLiner passengers board and arrive in the heart of their destination (no airport taxi or Uber needed) in Midtown Manhattan, Boston’s Back Bay and Framingham, MA

Passengers are able to select their seats (reclining, leather seats) in advance at no additional cost, allowing families to sit together, or not :-)

 

So check out Limoliner, relax and get to NYC without the hassle of driving in the city.

 

 

 

 

 

Disclaimer: I was not compensated for this post but have received a complimentary media ride. All opinions are, as always, my own.

 

Ready for Easter?

In my family growing up,  Easter was a big deal. My mom made our Easter outfits (I know, pretty incredible), dresses in sprigged cotton and matching lining in the pastel wool coats. Yes, she made us coats. And new shoes and frilly ankle socks for me and my sisters, my brother got a new suit or new shirt and tie.  I particularly remember our footwear, especially the one year that white patent go go boots (to be clear, only we called them that), replaced the usual patent leather Mary Janes. Oh, we were mod.  I wish I could find a photo to show you the awesomeness.

There were Easter services, an excruciatingly painful time away from our candy, and we had awesome candy. Always an Easter egg hunt with plastic eggs filled with candy, and peeps, because there must always be peeps, and a solid chocolate bunny. Bunnies were special, and if your bunny was touched, you knew it and if it was defiled, you could tell by the teeth marks left behind. Or was that just us? It took years of hurled accusations to realize that the cleanly cut off tail was certainly the handiwork of our father, who would stoop to steal a bit of Easter candy but never in such a base manner as to actually gnaw on the bunny, and he always used a sharp knife. We should have known.

When I had children of my own, the week before Easter we dyed eggs (always fun and messy), and Easter morning had an Easter egg hunt (my favorite thing), and I made up pretty baskets and stayed true to solid bunnies. And just in case you think this is picture perfect, it’s not. Here’s how it usually goes around here, the night before Easter, I dig out the plastic eggs from last year to fill with the candy I have managed not to eat, and I go to the present cabinet for the few non-edible gifts I stashed there over the past few weeks. Seat of my pants, people, seat of my pants.

My blogger/friend/cohort team that makes up @GoLocalBoston, all approach holiday preparation with a purpose – some of us are just better planners. And for Easter, with a quiet (okay, not quiet), certain, and thoughtful focus, we curated gorgeous gift baskets. Why do we do this? For you, dear reader.

In general, we got together because we all like to support local businesses, and we like each other, and we all really like sweets. So this was definitely not a bad gig. Most of my work involved unwrapping candy, arranging hard to wrangle lollipops, and bolting down most of the Cadbury mini-eggs (sorry, Debbie). As we took pictures of the beautiful items from local companies, we called out orders to each other, laughed, sampled candy, and talked about the work at hand, other business, food and families. What a fantastic group of women to work with, and as we are all slightly opinionated and not afraid to share our thoughts, some people might need a lie down after a session with us. We are funny, too. Just ask any of us.

So for this project, we started off with baskets in the following themes: Nautical, Spring, Sports, and Farm. If that’s not your style, simply grab your favorite from each, and mix and match.

Want to round out the baskets with non-food items? Ideas abound and some of our favorites include:

Sidewalk chalk, jump ropes, bouncy balls, a frisbee or two, stuffed animals, art supplies, markers, pens, or colored pencils with sketch pads or journals, picture books, twinkle lights, phone cords, portable phone chargers, a cute new case, ear phones, a tea cup or coffee mug and fill with small treats, or add a small flowering plant. Since there is no shortage of cute baskets, pails and other containers, just go to local drug store or market to find the just right sized basket.

 

Easter basket treats are not just for the kids any more – I’d love to bring one of these as a hostess gift or use as Easter brunch centerpieces or even make small baskets as party favors.

Want to learn more about these local lovelies who helped us fill these baskets? Check out Leah’s Life, A Little Bit About A Lot of Things, and Kim World.

Featured brands include:

A Dozen Eggs

Bisousweet

E Frances

eh chocolatier

Cardullo’s

Formaggio

Gray Mist

Harbor Sweets

la Burdick

Magic Beans

Pao de Brasil

Phillips Candy House

Pure Sugar Candy

Royce chocolates

Seacoast sweets

Spindler Confections

Wilson Farm

#Easter Capability Mom

Amd P.S. I steal their candy, too. Only I know better than to cut the tail off.

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