This beauty, Reed (2 1/2-years-old), comes to us all the way from a rainy day in The Big Apple. We are told by those “in the know” that she is one of the most stylish girlies in NYC – look out Suri! We can’t wait to see much more of her in the future. Congratulations to Reed on being our Le Top Darling of the Day!
Archive for the ‘New York’ Category
Posted in Baby Clothes, Baby Names, Children, Children's Clothes, Fashion Design, Just for Fun, Le Top, Le Top Online Boutique, le•top, le•top Daily Darling, le•top Design, le·top Darling of the Day, New York, Photos, tagged daily darlings, fashionista, Girl's names, le top blog, le top darling of the day, letop, New York City, Reed, stylish child on June 30, 2011 | 1 Comment »
Posted in Activities for Children, Baby Clothes, Children, Children's Clothes, Just for Fun, Le Top, Le Top Online Boutique, le•top, le•top Design, le•top Tips, New York, San Diego, Summer, tagged absolute humidity, humid air, le top blog, learning project for kids, letop, relative humidity, water in the air, what is humidity? on June 23, 2011 | Leave a Comment »
Here in New York it is SO HUMID – I tried to explain this to my niece and was having trouble. I know that New York City isn’t the only place it gets humid. I used to live in San Diego and it would be humid there or even in parts of the mid-west. Here is a mini explanation to tell your little one.
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Posted in Baby Clothes, Boys Clothes, Childhood, Children, Children's Clothes, Community, Donations, Girls' Dresses, Just for Fun, Le Top, Le Top Online Boutique, le•top, le•top Design, New York, Parenting, Volunteers, tagged AIDS organization, donate time, Donations, give to charity, giving to charity, help elders, help neighbors, help others, le top blog, letop, natural disaster relief, teaching children to give on April 28, 2011 | Leave a Comment »
I am moving in a few weeks and have been going through my clothing, gadgets, shoes, and more. While researching charities to donate my unneeded items to here in New York, it made me think that I am so fortunate that my mother and father taught me the importance of not just throw away things. Instead proactively go through your home a few times a year and give things to charity and those in need. I decided that I am going to donate to a local AIDS organization for families who have members with AIDS and that struggle.
Charity and the spirit of giving have been elevated to a new level in the past few years, following natural disasters like the earthquake in Japan, the war in Iraq, and terrorist attacks around the globe. Your child doesn’t have to be a Carnegie, a Ford, or a Rockefeller, to become a philanthropist.
Many parents are using the destruction delivered by these catastrophes as an opportunity to help children learn about charity and the importance of reaching out to others in their time of need.
You can make a family donation – big or small – and involve your child by allowing them to pick out the charity, write the check and even prepare the envelope to mail it. It is important to allow your children to witness turning pain and grief/loss into a time of extending love and compassion to those they don’t even know, whether it be in the United States or around the world.
Here is how your family can help.
1. Donate clothes like me!
Periodically go through your closets rooting out clothes you haven’t worn in a while, which can be given to the Salvation Army or Goodwill for distribution to the needy. I always say if you haven’t worn it in 6-9 months…someone more deserving needs those clothes. Encourage your children to do the same. Allow them to select which clothes or toys they wish to donate. The value of this activity is diminished greatly if you go through their closets for them without their presence. For maximum benefit, get your children involved in choosing the appropriate items. Take your children with you when you drop the items off at the charitable destination.
2. Help neighbors.
Regularly engage in a service-oriented project. Rake the leaves of an elderly couple. Bake cookies for a serviceman or servicewoman. If you have leftovers from when you go out to dinner, give them to a homeless person and teach your children that you just gave them a good meal.
3. Make birthdays charitable.
Set up birthday parties as a time for giving to others. At your child’s first school-age birthday party, ask guests to bring a gift of a book (new or used) to be donated to a local charity. Talk to your son about the books he has and about children who have no books. Explain that one way to celebrate a birthday would be to give to those who have less. Involve the birthday boy in the decision of whether or not to give the books to a woman’s shelter, a doctor’s office, or some other appropriate organization. When you deliver the books with your son, record it on camera, and revisit that movie (or those pictures) on future birthdays.
4. Give back to pets.
At regular intervals, buy dog or cat food and take it to the humane society. Allow your children to spend some time with the recipients of the gift.
5. Deliver nutrition.
Build food baskets around the holidays and give to a needy family suggested by your church or school. Involve your children is selecting canned goods, fruit, and other treats to include. Decorate the gift package and deliver it together, as a family.
6. Help elders.
Do things for the elderly that they have trouble doing for themselves. Pick up sticks in your neighbor’s yard after a big windstorm. Mow the grass for Grandma. Wash Grandpa’s car. Clean their windows in the spring. Help them plant flowers.
7. Pitch in.
Get on a regular service schedule at your church or synagogue. Sign up for a time to mow the grass and trim the bushes. Take your turn ushering and allow your child to assist.
By implementing some of these ideas or others like them, you will be teaching your children that charity is not reserved only for emergencies. You will be helping them appreciate that reaching out to others in need is a way of life, rather than a moment in time when a catastrophic disaster occurs.
Posted in Activities for Children, Art, Baby Clothes, Childhood, Children, Children's Clothes, Just for Fun, Le Top, Le Top Online Boutique, le•top, New York, Winter, tagged arts and crafts, bake clay, butterfly, clay, draw, fine-motor skills, fun and easy crafts, heart, homemade magnets, paint, refrigerator magnet, rolling pin, snow day activities on February 1, 2011 | Leave a Comment »
As a child – I always remembered the fridge as the “trophy area” for my homemade pictures, photos of the family, report cards, and other fun projects that I would take home from school. In general, the kitchen is the main gathering spot for many parents and kids. It has been snowing like crazy in New York so what better than an arts and crafts activity such as clay magnets! And when your child crafts clay magnets for displaying these mementos, he or she can work on artistic skills and show off his or her school accomplishments at the same time! Clay is a great tool to work with because it encourages young children to simply manipulate and pound clay into various shapes. By using their fingers to roll tiny balls for eyes or other details, kids will also exercise their fine-motor skills.
After the shape cools, your child can bring the object to life with paint and other decorations. Give your kids the 3 primary colors of red, blue and yellow and let them mix and match to make secondary colors. Add other details such as wiggly eyes, spots, stripes and other marks or even glitter to let your kids express themselves!
- Sculpey clay or other polymer clay material
- Waxed paper
- Rolling pin or large empty soda bottle
- Felt-tipped pen
- Craft knife or kitchen knife
- Picture wire or beading wire (optional)
- Scissors or wire cutter (optional)
- Metal spatula
- Baking tray
- Artist’s brushes
- Acrylic craft or poster paint
- All-purpose sealer (optional)
- Magnetic tape (available at craft stores)
- Glue or hot-glue gun
- Knead clay into a ball. Place on waxed paper on flat work surface. Roll clay flat to about 1/4″ thickness with rolling pin or empty soda bottle. (Keep the shape small and fairly thin or the magnet won’t be strong enough to hold it to the refrigerator.)
- Ask your child to draw the outline of an animal or any other shape desired with a felt-tipped pen on the clay. Using a craft or kitchen knife, parents should carefully cut out the shape and peel away the excess clay. Gently reshape edges of the shape if they stretch when you peel away the extra. Ask your child to add details such as eyes, a nose, or stripes by rolling small balls of clay or cutting shapes and strips.
- If desired, older children may cut whiskers, manes, or tails from picture wire or beading wire with scissors or wire cutters (younger kids can paint them on). Press the wire into the clay at the appropriate place. Using a spatula or your fingers, gently lift the shape and place it on a baking tray. Bake the shape in a preheated oven following the manufacturer’s instructions on the package of clay.
- Let shape cool. Paint it using poster or acrylic craft paint and artist’s brushes. For fine details like eyes and nose, use finer brushes (small children may need help with details). If using poster paint, apply an all-purpose sealer after the paint is dry.
- Cut a magnetic strip to fit on the back of the shape. Check to see which side of the tape adheres more strongly to the refrigerator. Then, using glue or a hot glue gun, attach the weaker side of the magnet to the shape. Let it dry.
Posted in Activities for Children, Art, Baby Clothes, Childhood, Children, Children's Clothes, Just for Fun, Le Top, Le Top Online Boutique, le•top, New York, Winter, tagged arts and crafts, Central Park, childhood memories, collect leaves, crafting with kids, crafts for kids, le top blog, leaf impressions, leaf-rubbing, leaves, letop, New York City on November 29, 2010 | Leave a Comment »
The winter chill has arrived and the leaves are changing colors. I took a walk through Central Park in New York City (my hometown) this past weekend and admired all of the leaves and how beautiful nature can be in the ‘big city.’ I was inspired by a childhood activity that is fun for kids and great for parents as a piece of art for the coveted refrigerator door. Preserve the beauty of fall leaves with leaf-rubbing (leaf impressions) art on paper! Read more to find out how this easy (and inexpensive idea) is fun for a winter day. Next time you are out walking ith your kids, collect leaves of different shapes and sizes. When you are choosing leaves to rub, pick leaves with raised veins or texture to ensure the rubbings will come out crisp and clear.
- Rub a variety of leaves using white tissue paper and crayons or soft-lead pencils.
- Place the leaves under the paper and gently rub the impression on the tissue paper.
- Cut each leaf impression out and arrange them on a white piece of paper.
- Special step: Use a hold puncher and punch one hole in each leaf impression. Use thread or clear fishing line to tie the leaves together and string the line in a window as a decoration!
- Discard leaves in garbage
Posted in Cooking, Eating/Dining, Just for Fun, Le Top, le•top, le•top Chef Series, New York, Recipes, Restaurants, Soups, Soups, tagged Chef Daniel Humm, cold soup, cucumbers, Eleven Madison Park, garlic, James Beard Award Winner, le top blog, le top children's clothing, letop children's clothing, New York City, New York Magazine, olive oil, recipe for strawberry gazpacho, strawberries, toast, tomato juice on June 3, 2010 | Leave a Comment »
It’s summer and ripe, juicy strawberries are in season. My mom and dad are die hard fans of Chef Daniel Humm who heads up the kitchen at Eleven Madison Park restaurant in New York City. He is kinda like the James Beard of NYC for all of you foodies out there. He gave this recipe to New York Magazine and I thought I would share it with you too – kids will love it, and they can even drink this gazpacho recipe dish with a straw! Now let’s get started…
Serves 4 to 6
FOR THE TOAST:
- 2 slices country white bread
- 1 tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 clove garlic – crushed
- 1 sprig thyme
FOR THE GAZPACHO:
- 1 1/2 lbs. strawberries, plus 8 pieces for garnish
- 1 red bell pepper – seeded
- 1/2 green bell pepper – seeded
- 2 cucumbers peeled and seeded
- 1 clove garlic
- 3 oz. tomato juice
- 3 tbs. red-wine vinegar
- 2 tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
- Sea salt to taste
- Tabasco to taste
- 1 tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
- Black pepper to taste
- 4 basil leaves
FOR THE TOAST:
In a small pan over medium-low heat, toast the bread in the olive oil with the crushed garlic and thyme until golden brown. Reserve.
FOR THE GAZPACHO:
(1) Hull the strawberries by inserting a straw at the bottom of the berry and ,(2) pushing it through the cap.
(3) Dice the berries, peppers, cucumbers, and garlic, and combine with tomato juice, vinegar, and olive oil. Let marinate for 3 hours at room temperature.
(4) Combine all ingredients, including the toasted bread, in a blender, and blend until smooth.
(5) Season with salt and Tabasco (for little ones that hate spicy, omit the Tabasco).
(6) Finish with olive oil, black pepper, and basil.