Tag Archives: family

Unaccompanied Minors — Children Traveling Alone

Children traveling alone. // (c) Swiss Air
Children traveling alone. // (c) Swiss Air

It’s summertime and that means that kids and families are traveling — and sometimes not all at the same time. Which always brings up the topic of children traveling alone. There’s been a lot of press on children traveling alone. CNBC reported on a story about the re-seating of male passengers on two Australian airlines, and a story by AP told of an airline losing an young girl traveling as an unaccompanied minor. So, with these stories in mind, would you let your child travel alone?

Zooga: It’s Yoga for Kids

Kids' yoga  // (c) 2013 Janeen Christoff
Kids’ yoga // (c) 2013 Janeen Christoff

I love finding cute new things for my kids to do in Los Angeles – especially when it’s a fun, healthy activity such as yoga. When invited to experience Zooga, a yoga studio just for kids, I jumped at the chance. Zooga is a play on words. Since many of the names for yoga poses are derived from animals that are at the zoo – Zooga is something that children can relate to.

Zooga’s corner location on Overland in Culver City, Calif., is easy to spot with an orange sign and a cute elephant logo. My kids saw it from the car before I did and there was a chorus of “are we going there” coming from the backseat before I could even find parking. (Conveniently, there is parking in the back of the building.)

The one-room studio is a large space, perfect for a kids’ yoga class. The room is bathed in a comforting orange light and a handpainted mural of a small lion, a tree and a baby elephant lines one wall. Kids have toys to play with while they wait for their class to start and the studio and waiting area are divided by a half wall so that parents can keep an eye on young ones – or just watch as the magic unfolds – during class.

My older daughter does yoga classes in school, so I knew that she was excited to show off her down dog and tree pose. I didn’t know how my younger one would take to yoga, but five minutes in, I had no doubts. Both girls followed along with the teacher as they mimicked animals with sounds, expressions and poses.

“Teachers at the studio use imagination, adventure, play, props and music in every class,” said Antonia King, founder and owner.

The teacher followed along with a book to keep the younger ones entertained. They sang songs and did more poses. As a mom, I thought that they would possibly get bored after about a half hour but, after the full hour had passed, I think they could have gone on even longer.

As we walked out of the studio, they asked if they were coming back tomorrow…sadly, no, I told them. But I will definitely be bringing them back soon.

Zooga Yoga
www.zoogayoga.com

Zooga is dediated to yoga for babies, kids and teens, but also offers adult classes as well as a variety of specialty classes including Sing and Sign for babies, ballet classes and family classes. The studio also offers family drop off nights as well as birthday parties and holiday camps.

Summer Baking: My favorite chocolate cookie recipe

Favorite chocolate cookie recipe // (c) 2013 Janeen Christoff
Favorite chocolate cookie recipe // (c) 2013 Janeen Christoff

One of my goals this summer was to spend time in the kitchen with my kids. And, the one recipe that we have perfected over the last couple of months is Williams-Sonoma Oatmeal Chocolate Cookies. Not only are the cookies delicious, but the recipe is really flexible. If you add a little too much brown sugar, no biggie. Kids added too many chocolate chips – still tasty. Don’t like walnuts, just leave ’em out. We have had a lot of fun baking these cookies all summer long and they always seem to turn out just right.

We usually leave out the walnuts but the recipe is really flexible, so you can add in or take out whatever you don’t want. We’ve also done it without chocolate chips and it tastes great.

For the recipe, click here: Williams-Sonoma Oatmeal Chocolate Cookies

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Spending The Day at Disneyland

Our day at Disneyland in photos. Another fabulous time.

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One more Disney Day

We are here at Disneyland for the One More Disney Day Leap Year celebration. The park is open for the next 24 hours, from 6 am today until 6 am tomorrow, March 1. I can’t wait to see what’s happening at 1 am tonight and wonder how long the girls will last. Twenty-four hours of Disneyland, here we come!