Our Annual Party Directory

The May 2015 Party Directory is Filled with Fun!

May is a month full that is perfect for parties but we know you'll be celebrating all year round. No matter what you're celebrating, no matter what your budget, there's a party so you. Check our party directory whenever you're planning a get-together. It's just been updated so you'll find lots of new ideas as well as old favorites that always guarantee a great party. Have fun! [... whole story]


B'More Healthy -May 2015

Is Artificial Turf Safe?

By Joyce Heid

As our children return home from their athletic contests this spring, many of them are bringing clumps of dirt and grass along with them. Others are tracking in a slightly different kind of debris, however: little pieces of crumb rubber infill from artificial turf fields.

“The kids call them ‘turf turds,’ and I can tell you they get everywhere,” says Pasadena mother Rene Kraft, whose 15-year-old daughter, Makenzie, has played lacrosse almost since she could walk. “My floor usually has a decent amount of them on it at any given moment.” [... whole story]

Family Matters - May 2015

When Bad Things Happen

by Molly Koch Brown

Do you talk to your children about the evil events that occur in the world?

I was 14 years old when I heard of a brutal act committed against a single individual during World War II. Now, 73 years later, I still shudder at the image that report implanted in my memory. In fact, any image of human or animal desecration lingers long in my head. I know only too well that the horrors of that war stole my childhood from me.

A wise parent knows and takes into account each of his or her child’s particular sensitivities and temperament before disclosing potentially damaging or disturbing information.

Do you worry that talk of dark matters will shatter your child’s happy childhood? [... whole story]

Game On! - May 2015

The Joys of Letting Kids ‘Horse Around’

By Patrick Gutierrez

In May, the sports world turns its collective eyes to horse racing. And while the Kentucky Derby kicks off the race for the Triple Crown on the first Saturday of the month, Baltimore takes center stage two weeks later for the Preakness Stakes, the crown’s “second jewel.”

For many of us in the Baltimore area, however, as soon as the calendar turns to June we tend to forget all about equestrian pursuits—which is unfortunate because here in Maryland there are plenty of opportunities to experience the joys of riding a horse, especially for children. [... whole story]

Last But Not Least - May 2015

The Perils of the Pickup

By Lisa Robinson

I have to admit that, sometimes, picking up my daughter from school is a task I dread.

I know some of you are with me on this. We leave our jobs, or our work at home, in a rush to get our children, wondering who the person—or people—will be who get in the car.

Will it be the loving, happy child? The annoyed child? The quiet child?

To tell the truth, it’s always the happy child who gets in my car.

“What’s good?” the child, my 16-year-old daughter, Grace, asks me.

“How was your day?” I ask in response.

She starts to tell me. I make a comment. And, in a split second, it’s off to a place where I don’t want to go. And I had been so happy to see her. But in no time it can all go to hell. [... whole story]

Your Special Child - May 2015

Making Your Child’s Birthday Extra Special

By Amy Landsman

Whether your birthday boy or girl has a special need—or one or more of the kids on the guest list for his or her party has one—a little extra planning can go a long way.

Owings Mills magician Tim Hall urges parents to involve their child who has a special need with the party planning to get input on what he or she really wants and to keep everything within his or her comfort zone. Talking with your child in advance about what the party will be like and the behavior that will be expected can help ease some of his or her anxiety, he adds. Hall, an entertainer for 20-plus years who estimates he’s performed at more than 5,000 birthday parties, also recommends keeping the guest list short and capping the party at two hours or less. [... whole story]