Urban Baby Blog

Parenting, NYC-style

September 25, 2012
by Kevin D

Trips outside NYC: Liberty Science Center in Jersey City, NJ

Next up: The Liberty Science Center.

As a parent in NYC, one thing to remind yourself every so often is that there’s a huge world out there that seems so far away. We often reference such exotic names like: Long Island, Westchester, Connecticut, New Jersey, and that weird place called Rockland County. :)

Today’s focus is one nearby place that probably doesn’t get enough love from NYC parents – that’s the Liberty Science center.

If you have a car available, it’s just minutes away on the other side of the Hudson River through the Holland Tunnel. From our Gramercy apartment, it literally took us 15 minutes to get there mid-morning on a Saturday via car.

Once there, you’re greeted by all sorts of great attractions. A really fun kid playground technically¬†for ages 3-up, though we snuck in Jackson when he was only about 18 months (I suppose you can claim that you have an older child in there already, and you can’t leave the young one alone, right?). The coolest thing is the balls that shoot through the air to a container across the room.

And there are some amazing animals, including hissing cockroaches, turtles, snakes, and fish.

And there’s the bubble wall…

I’m very tired, and I’ll cut this short for now. I’ll follow up with some photos from our visit.


July 5, 2012
by Kevin D
1 Comment

A nice summer day @ Waterside Plaza

This gets firmly placed in the “best kept secrets” category in NYC. Located right on the East River, Waterside Plaza offers some of the most spectacular public views from Manhattan.

Admittedly, getting there is a bit of an adventure – the most straight-forward way to get there is by crossing a pedestrian bridge on E 25th St past 1st Ave over the FDR Drive, which is worth the experience in itself! This becomes a challenge in itself, because there is no ramp – lots of steps, almost like a deterrent for strollers!

(You can alternatively get there by crossing under the FDR on E 34th St then walking south, or crossing under the FDR on E 23rd St then going north)

Once you’re there, you’ll feel like you’re in another world. A vast expanse of open space, complete with tables with sun umbrellas for dining/chilling, benches for lounging, mini-gardens, several water fountains and a very excellent children’s playground, complete with water spraying fountains. Oh, and perhaps some of the best views of the East River.

But back to the children’s experience. Jackson had a blast in the kids park playing in the water. Lo and behold, it’s so inviting that mom and dad couldn’t help but underneath and through the spray.

There are two jungle gym set ups, one for the really little ones with 2 slides, plus a much bigger, extensive setup that’s meant to be used by age 5 and up. Featuring a “boat” shell, “underground” dinosaur bones, a mountain to scale, a tunnel, bridge, an walkway that alternates with bumps and dips, monkey bars, topped off by 7 slides, there’s a lot going on there. And yes, our little guy has been enjoying the latter gym setup, long before he his 2nd birthday!

You can follow the playground with a walk right by the waterside. It’s lovely.

In all, it’s definitely worth the trip.

I can imagine a fun group playdate/improptu birthday party setting where the parents pick up snacks and goodies for the little ones, then cross over to this secret world for a day worth of activities. Photos to come.


July 5, 2012
by Kevin D

Welcome to Urban Baby Blog

Thanks for visiting the site. I’ve been thinking about creating this blog for a while – my son Jackson just turned 2 this past Monday.

My wife and I are probably the quintessential NYC urban professional parents – mom and dad both have day jobs (and our own careers), have bills to pay, and employ an nanny during the week. We love our little guy and don’t classify ourselves as¬†tiger parents; at the same time, we do what we can to enrich Jackson’s life – reading to him daily, talking to him, being a part of his life, while giving him (some) private time and space to learn independently. I’d like to think it’s working quite well. :)

To be put things in perspective, we’re don’t have years of private school planned out. We’ll be pretty excited if we just make it through to the weekend! :) (Yeah, there will come a time for that – I’m still hoping we win the NYC public school lottery!)…

Ultimately, what this blog is about is finding hip/fun/cool things to do in NYC on a reasonable budget. I’ll do my best to document what I can so others can hopefully take away something from reading this!

Anyway, that about does it! First post done. Hope you enjoy the blog!