Raising three savvy Ladies NYC lifestyle blog
As a parent living in the bustling metropolis of New York City, you know the challenges of raising children in such a fast-paced environment. The pressures of work and life can make it difficult to navigate the many opportunities and pitfalls facing your kids today. While you want your daughters to grow into independent, cultured women, you also strive to protect their innocence as long as possible. Finding the right balance is no easy feat.
This lifestyle blog provides insights and advice for raising savvy, sophisticated young ladies in the big city. From the best family-friendly art exhibits and theater for kids to etiquette lessons, style advice, and conversations about social issues, you’ll find a range of topics to help cultivate your girls into citizens of the world without losing sight of what really matters – your family. The goal is to encourage curiosity in your daughters through new experiences in one of the world’s greatest cultural centers. Join us as we explore the adventures of raising three savvy ladies in the city that never sleeps.
Living in NYC With Three Daughters: Our Story
Living in New York City with three young daughters has been an adventure, to say the least. When my husband and I decided to move from Ohio to Manhattan six years ago, we knew life would be different, but we had no idea just how much.
Adjusting to the Fast Pace
The energy and bustle of the city was an adjustment. Everything moves faster here, from walking down the sidewalk to buying a cup of coffee. The girls had to get used to the crowds, the sirens, and the general feeling of constant motion. We gave them time to acclimate, starting with short trips and working our way up to longer outings. Now they relish the excitement of the city that never sleeps.
The Benefits of City Life
Of course, living in NYC has significant benefits, especially for children. There are world-class museums, culture, dining, and entertainment options around every corner. Our daughters have grown up with an appreciation of art, history, and diversity that would be hard to achieve elsewhere. They’ve also become independent and street-smart, navigating the subway and busy streets with confidence.
While raising kids in the city has required patience and flexibility, we wouldn’t trade this experience for anything. New York City has become our home, and we feel fortunate to share all it has to offer with our three savvy city girls. They may have been born in the Midwest, but they are quintessential New Yorkers now. This bustling metropolis has shaped them in ways we never could have imagined, and for that, we will always be grateful.
The Best Kid-Friendly Restaurants in NYC
New York City is a mecca for families with children, offering an array of kid-friendly restaurants to suit every taste and budget.
This whimsical restaurant on the Upper East Side is ideal for a fun family brunch or dinner. Kids will delight in the whimsical decor and massive menu featuring burgers, pizza, pasta, and the famous frozen hot chocolate.
Carmine’s Italian Restaurant
For a classic family-style Italian meal, head to Carmines. Share enormous plates of pasta, fried calamari, meatballs, and pizza in a lively space. They offer a special children’s menu and coloring sheets to keep the little ones entertained.
Ellen’s Stardust Diner
At this retro 1950s-themed diner, the waitstaff breaks out in song and dance numbers while serving up classic American fare like burgers, fries, shakes, and sundaes. Kids will love the entertainment and energy while parents appreciate the budget-friendly menu.
Chuck E. Cheese’s
You can’t go wrong with a trip to Chuck E. Cheese’s, the iconic family fun center filled with arcade games, rides, and entertainment. While the kids play, parents can grab a beer or glass of wine and enjoy pizza, wings, salads, and more. Most locations are open every day of the week.
New York City offers a plethora of kid-friendly restaurants to please every member of the family. With a little exploring, you’re sure to find new favorites to enjoy for years to come. Savoring delicious food together is one of the joys of raising children in this magical city.
Top 10 NYC Activities for Families With Girls
New York City is a magical place for children, especially little girls with big dreams and imagination. For families with girls, here are the top 10 activities in NYC:
See a Broadway show.
Introduce your girls to the wonder of live theater. Kid-friendly options include The Lion King, Aladdin, Frozen, and Matilda. These visually stunning shows with beloved characters are sure to delight.
Visit the American Girl Store.
This iconic store is a little girl’s dream come true. Take your doll-loving daughter to pick out a new friend, enjoy a doll hair salon experience, and dine in the store’s café.
Explore the Central Park Zoo and Carousel.
The Central Park Zoo houses over 130 species including snow leopards, penguins, and red pandas. After meeting the animals, take a spin on the vintage carousel.
Gaze at the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree.
During the holidays, gaze in awe at the massive Rockefeller Center Christmas tree. Go ice skating, peek in the store windows, and drink hot cocoa.
Discover the Museum of Natural History.
This world-class museum is home to a giant whale, huge dinosaur fossils, sparkling gems, and space shows in the planetarium. A perfect rainy or cold day activity.
Take a Cupcake Tour.
For little ladies with a sweet tooth, a cupcake tour is a magical experience. Options like the Magnolia Bakery Cupcake Tour and Sweet WHY Tour stop at some of the city’s most famous cupcake shops.
Explore High Tea.
An elegant high tea, with tiny sandwiches, scones, and petit fours is a delightfully grown-up experience for little girls. Popular options include Tea at the Plaza, Alice’s Tea Cup, and Lady Mendl’s Tea Salon.
Stroll Through Central Park.
Explore 843 acres of paths, ponds, playgrounds, and open spaces. Rent a boat at the Loeb Boathouse, people watch at Bethesda Fountain and see the Alice in Wonderland statue. A perfect free activity for nice weather days.
Shop at FAO Schwarz.
The iconic FAO Schwarz toy store is a child’s dream destination. Play with giant pianos, stuffed animals, and life-size Lego. Even if you don’t buy anything, the over-the-top displays are entertainment enough.
See a Show at Radio City Music Hall.
Take the kids to see the legendary Rockettes dance in the Radio City Christmas Spectacular or to an entertaining family show like Paw Patrol Live. The grandeur of Radio City Music Hall itself will leave them awestruck.
How to Dress 3 Stylish Girls on a Budget in NYC
Raising stylish children in New York City on a budget requires careful planning and thrift. Here are some tips for dressing three fashionable girls without breaking the bank:
Shop Sales and Discount Stores
Sales at major department stores like Macy’s, Nordstrom, and Bloomingdale’s often have high-quality clothing at 50-70% off retail prices. Discount retailers like TJ Maxx, Marshalls, and Century 21 are also ideal for finding designer brands at lower costs. Check sites like RetailMeNot and Coupons.com for additional savings.
Buy Versatile and Timeless Pieces
Invest in classic, versatile pieces that can be mixed and matched, rather than trendy clothing that will only last one season. Staples like solid color t-shirts, button-down shirts, skirts, dresses, and pants in basic colors can be paired with different accessories for many looks. Timeless pieces that are well-constructed will last for years.
Repurpose and Upcycle Existing Clothing
Get creative by repurposing clothing you already own. Turn t-shirts into tank tops, dye or bedazzle faded clothing, and add patches or embroidery to refresh old pieces. You can also upcycle larger sizes of adult clothing into dresses or other items for children. Check sites like Pinterest for inspiration and tutorials for repurposing and upcycling kids’ clothing.
Accessorize for Style
Accessories like scarves, jewelry, belts, hats, and patterned tights or leggings are inexpensive ways to create new outfits from existing pieces. Rotate different accessories to keep looks fresh and create the impression of a larger wardrobe. Shop for high-quality accessories on sale at the end of the season to stock up for the next year.
Set a Budget and Stick To It
Determine how much you can spend on clothing each month for your three girls and allocate amounts for each category like tops, bottoms, dresses, outerwear, shoes, and accessories. Buy out of season when possible and avoid impulse purchases. With careful budgeting, you can dress your stylish girls well without spending a fortune.
NYC Schools: Finding the Right Fit for Your Daughters
Finding the right school for your daughters in New York City can be challenging given the many options. Some key factors to consider as you evaluate schools are:
Curriculum and Learning Environment
Examine the school’s curriculum and teaching approach to find one that matches your daughters’ learning needs and educational values. Some schools focus on project-based, hands-on learning while others take a more traditional approach. Consider opportunities for mentorship, internships, and extracurricular activities that align with your daughters’ interests and goals.
Student Support Resources
Look at the counseling and guidance programs available to support students. Schools that foster social-emotional development and help students explore college and career options may be a good fit. Ask about support for students with learning differences or other needs.
Safety and Wellness
Evaluate the school’s approach to student health, safety, and wellness. Look for schools with anti-bullying programs, counseling services, and a track record of responding well in emergencies. Ask about security procedures, student supervision, and the overall school culture.
Diversity and Inclusion
Examine the diversity of the student body and staff. Schools that actively promote inclusion, cultural awareness and celebrate diversity may open your daughters’ minds and create a supportive community. Look for clubs, events, and learning opportunities centered around diversity, equity, and inclusion.
Admissions and Affordability
Investigate the school’s admissions process and costs. Public schools are free, while private schools charge tuition. Some schools offer scholarships and financial aid. Apply to a mix of schools at different price points that you can afford.
With the many schooling alternatives in NYC, taking the time to find schools aligned with your priorities will help ensure the best environment for your daughters’ growth and success. Do thorough research, visit schools you’re interested in, and ask questions to find the right place where your daughters will thrive.
Making Friends as a Parent in NYC: How to Connect
Making new friends as a parent in a big city like New York can be challenging. Between juggling work schedules, children’s activities, and household responsibilities, finding time to connect with other parents may seem daunting. However, establishing a network of fellow parents provides invaluable support and advice. With some effort and strategy, you can build new friendships.
Look for opportunities to engage with other parents at your children’s school or activities. Strike up a conversation, introduce yourself, and exchange contact information. Arrange a playdate for the children or meet for coffee to continue getting to know each other. Join parent organizations at the school to stay involved, volunteer your time, and interact with a wider range of families.
Use online platforms and social media to connect with local parents. Many schools and communities have Facebook groups and Listservs where parents can post questions, share advice, announce events, and get to know one another. Introduce yourself to the group, comment on posts, and suggest meeting in person. The relationships you build virtually can translate to real-world friendships.
Seek out local parenting groups in your neighborhood. Many areas have clubs, playgroups, and support organizations catering to families. Join some groups that match your parenting values and interests. Attend meetings and events to find other like-minded parents. Exchange information, offer to set up playdates with children, and work on building friendships over time through regular interaction.
Making parent friends requires putting in the effort, but the rewards of having a network of support and camaraderie with fellow parents are well worth it. Look for opportunities to engage with others, build connections both online and in person, join local groups, and invest in nurturing new relationships. With an open and friendly approach, you’ll soon find yourself developing meaningful friendships with other NYC parents.
Traveling With 3 Kids: Our Best NYC Staycation Tips
With three little ones in tow, planning a getaway from NYC can seem daunting. However, a staycation in a city that never sleeps can be a perfect solution. Here are some of our tried-and-true tips for exploring New York with kids:
Choose a kid-friendly hotel
Opt for a hotel that caters to families, like the Lotte New York Palace Hotel, which offers large suites, cribs, playpens, kids’ menus, and activity packs for children. The amenities will make your stay much more enjoyable and relaxing.
Mix up your modes of transportation
Subways and taxis are convenient, but for a fun outing, take a ride on the Staten Island Ferry, a double-decker bus tour, or rent bikes for a spin through Central Park. The novelty will thrill your little ones.
Schedule downtime each day
While the energy of the city is intoxicating, kids can get overstimulated quickly. Make sure to schedule in time for naps, early dinners, baths, and unwinding in your room. Some of our favorite downtime activities include pizza and a movie in the hotel, games of I Spy during cab rides, and dessert in bed.
Choose attractions wisely
NYC is filled with world-class museums, shows, and other attractions, but for little kids, keep visits short and interactive. Some of our top recommendations include the Children’s Museum of Manhattan, the Central Park Zoo, Broadway musicals like The Lion King and Aladdin, and the High Line Park. Save the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Empire State Building for when they’re older.
With some planning and the right mindset, NYC can be an amazing place for a family staycation. Focus on slowing down, going with the flow, and making memories together in the city you call home. Savoring all the little moments will make the getaway as rejuvenating as an exotic vacation. Enjoy your NYC adventures!
How to Keep Your Cool as a Parent in NYC
As a parent in a bustling city like New York, keeping your patience and composure can be challenging. However, remaining calm and level-headed is essential for effective parenting. Here are some tips to help you maintain your cool while raising kids in NYC:
Choose your battles wisely. Not every infraction requires punishment or even a reprimand. Take a few deep breaths and ask yourself if the issue will matter in the long run before reacting. Let small issues slide and save your energy for when it really counts.
Stick to a routine. Establishing consistent schedules and rules provides stability for both you and your children. When things feel chaotic, a familiar routine can help everyone feel more at ease. Wake-up, mealtimes, bedtimes, and other daily activities should follow a regular pattern.
Make time for yourself. It’s easy to feel burnt out without making self-care a priority. Engage in regular exercise like walking or yoga, connect with other parents for empathy and advice, read an enjoyable book, or pursue a hobby. Taking good care of yourself will make you better equipped to care for your kids.
Model the behavior you want to see. Children often mimic their parents’ actions and emotional responses. Remain patient, courteous, and optimistic to cultivate these qualities in your kids. Respond to situations in a way you hope your children would. Be aware of your own stress levels and take a few deep breaths to stay calm when needed.
Communicate openly. Talk to your kids and understand their perspectives to build closeness and cooperation. Discuss your concerns, set clear rules and reasonable consequences, and be open to listening without judgment. Healthy communication will make challenges easier to navigate together.
With practice and persistence, keeping your cool while parenting in a bustling city can become second nature. Focus on what really matters, maintain a steady routine, take care of yourself, and communicate openly with your kids. Staying patient and positive in the face of stress will help you raise savvy, well-adjusted city kids.
FAQs for Raising Daughters in NYC: Answering Your Top Questions
Raising daughters in a bustling city like New York City comes with both opportunities and challenges. Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about raising savvy young ladies in the Big Apple.
Are NYC public schools good for my daughters?
The NYC public school system is vast and varied. Some schools are excellent, while others face more challenges. As parents, do thorough research on the schools in your neighborhood to find the right fit for your daughters’ needs and learning styles. Consider test scores, extracurricular activities, class size, and teaching philosophy. Public schools often provide opportunities for independence and diversity that private schools may lack. However, private schools also have benefits like smaller class sizes.
How can I help my daughters navigate the subway system?
Riding the subway is a rite of passage for NYC kids. To help them gain confidence, here are some tips:
•Ride with them the first few times during off-peak hours when the trains are less crowded. Show them how to read the maps, buy MetroCards, and navigate transfers.
•Set clear rules for what lines they can use, when they need a buddy, and how often to check-in. Start with just a few lines and expand from there as they get more experienced.
•Remind them to stick to well-lit cars and areas of the platforms, avoid empty trains and cars, and stay near the conductor if they feel unsafe for any reason. Trust your instincts.
•Have them carry a charged cell phone in case of emergencies. You can also consider transit apps that allow you to track their location in real-time.
•Practice good subway etiquette like offering seats to elderly/disabled passengers, keeping backpacks off seats, and keeping voices down. Set a good example through your own behavior.
•Stay actively involved even as they gain independence. Continue riding with them occasionally and keep an open conversation about any concerns. Building trust and responsibility over time is key.
The subway system provides an opportunity for independence and growth. With patience and the right precautions, your savvy ladies will be riding the rails in no time! Let me know if you have any other questions.
As you’ve seen, raising three savvy young ladies in the bustling metropolis of NYC is no small feat. With the constant challenges of big city life, it can feel overwhelming at times. However, focusing on maintaining open communication, embracing each girl’s unique personality, and taking advantage of all the cultural opportunities the city offers have been keys to finding success. Though there are struggles, the rewards of watching your little ladies grow into cultured, independent, and caring young women before your eyes make all the effort worthwhile. For any parent, whether in a sprawling city or small town, raising children to become savvy, thoughtful citizens of the world is one of life’s greatest honors and privileges. Enjoy each moment along the journey.