About brendaandrew

I am super excited to be the new Program Director for the Newmarket/Aurora area. With roots in the area and as a mom myself of two young boys, I know the challenges that Moms have in needing good information to help with raising baby, wanting to get out of the house and have time to bond not just with your baby but with other moms who are going through similar challenges and life experiences as you. I had wanted to be part of Mommy Connections for a few years before I joined. For some reason, I went back to a full time marketing corporate type job after my first child, because I thought it was the right and responsible thing to do, and didn't really enjoy it because it took me away from spending time with my son. Before my son, the corporate marketing gig was great, but I found upon returning to work, my priorities had changed, as it does for most Moms. WIth the job market in my field of work being really difficult after my second son was born, I was finding it hard to find full time work again. I made it my goal to find something that was going to work for me and my family and knew that I had to be resourceful. I ended up doing some marketing freelancing and consulting and then revisited the idea of becoming a Mommy Connections Director. I felt that at this particular time in my life it is the perfect solution for me to use my marketing and event expertise, do what I love, and also have the flexibility to be there for my kids. A match made in heaven. So here I am. And I couldn't be happier. I look forward to meeting all you Moms in the area. If you're anything like me - the more information and support I can get when it comes to raising my kids - the better.

Places to spot Santa in York Region

It’s the most wonderful time of the year!  It’s always exciting to check out the holiday events in and around our community and hopefully get a glimpse or interaction with Santa himself before his trek back to the North Pole!

We’ve compiled a few places where you’re likely to run into the jolly old guy if you’re looking for some fun with your little ones in the next few weeks!

Always a great spot to sight Santa.  He’s a busy guy in the coming weeks.  We’ve only listed a few of our favourite parades, but there are more in smaller communities in York Region! You can find them all here

Our Favourites:
Saturday Nov 16th:  Newmarket Santa Claus Parade  11:00 am Main St
Saturday Nov 16th: Richmond Hill Santa Claus Parade  6 pm  Leslie St – starting at William F. Bell Parkway
Saturday Nov 23rd: Markham Santa Claus Parade: 11:00 am  Hwy 48/Main St Markham
Saturday Nov 23rd:  Aurora Santa Under the Stars Parade:  6 pm  Yonge St (Aurora Main St)
Friday, December 6 @ 6:00 pm: Annual Unionville Olde Tyme Christmas & Candlelight Parade Historic Unionville Main St


SANTA TRAIN:  Tickets are required – Starts Saturday Nov 23rd.  Get your ticket here
All Aboard with Santa! We have received news from the North Pole that Santa will be joining us on the York Durham Heritage Railway.  This decorated, heated and very popular heritage train ride is a great family holiday experience. On-board entertainment keeps everyone occupied while waiting for Santa’s arrival. Have your wish list ready to share with him when he visits children big and small at their seats. Why not create a new family tradition and lasting memories? Book early to avoid disappointment; this popular feature trip sells out quickly. The Heritage Train is wheelchair accessible in Uxbridge and allows for full wheelchair accessibility to the train.




Saturday and Sunday dates in December available!
Join us for breakfast with Santa!

All tickets are $20 and include your choice of 3 meals as well as juice or coffee. All children under 12 receive a small gift/loot bag. All tickets are non-refundable and non-transferable to other dates.  

We are also giving participants the option to donate $5 to Markham Stouffville Hospital Foundation with their tickets in the spirit of community and giving during the holiday season.Reserve your spot!



Enjoy crafts, activities and treats for the entire family. Go on a horse-drawn wagon ride, and meet Santa in his cabin!
Starts November 29th through to December 21st – Tickets are required and can be booked for timeslots from 5:00 pm to 9:00 pm
View tickets page for pricing and availability.
Or you can call 416-667-6295

And of course you can always find Santa at a mall near you!

Our favourites in York Region are the Santa’ville Upper Canada Mall and Santa at Hillcrest and the Santa’s Tiny Big Town at Vaughan Mills

Check out Vaughan Mills special event!  Santa’s Arrival at Bass Pro Shops – Sat Nov 16th at 5:00 pm!  Bring the whole family to see the magical unveiling of Santa’s Wonderland in Bass Pro Shops!

*Santa arrives at 5pm! ?
*FREE hot chocolate starting at 5:30pm! ☕
*FREE craft! Decorate a Santa stocking 6-8pm ?
*FREE photo with Santa 6-8pm until Bass Passes run out ?
*Magical tree lighting ?Santa will be giving away a $25 gift card to one lucky winner every half hour from 5:30-7:30pm!Learn more: https://www.basspro.com/shop/en/santas-wonderland

Christmas at the Museum

And don’t forget about Mommy Connections York Region North!

We have a Christmas at the Museum event on Dec 9th at Stouffville Museum from 10 to 12:30 for parents and little ones where you will get an opportunity to chat with Santa!  Ideal for age 1 to 4.
Storytime, Crafts, Snacks, Museum Tour, Prizes, Lootbags and a Visit from Santa himself!
$15.00 per child/Adults free and babies under 1 free

Markham Fair 175th year of fun!

This weekend is the 175th year for the Markham Fair and it all starts today!  From Oct 3rd to 6th, there will be all kinds of good old fashioned fun at the Markham Fairgrounds with a schedule packed full of entertainment, a Midway of rides, all kinds of food, farm animals, entertainers, demolition derby, monster trucks and more!

Our blogger Lindsay Bantis has been visiting Markham Fair as a family tradition since her youth and has lots of great memories of her years there!  Read her blog post to get in the spirit and help us kick off the celebrations of this weekend’s festivities!

For more information on the daily schedule, to buy tickets,and what to expect at the fair this year, visit www.markhamfair.ca



STEM Camp – a great option for kids this summer

This Summer, STEM Camp provides learning experiences through fun and engaging
programming that encourages campers to explore their sense of wonder. They have
been running camps in our community for 7 years, and have impacted the lives of over
20,000 youth across Ontario.
Children aged 5 to 13 are introduced to hands-on STEM activities that promote
discovery, reward curiosity, and leave children amazed at what they can do!
STEM is based on 4 areas: Science, Technology, Engineering and Math, but it is more
than that. STEM is a way to inspire and encourage critical thinking skills. It is the
process of figuring out solutions to problems. It can be a simple (or complex) paper
Minecraft, Star Wars, Transformers & Superheroes are all coming back by popular
demand this Summer. It will be an amazing journey with loads of fun and learning.
Our fans can save 10% off all STEM Camps with the promo code : STEMmom
Register online at www.stemcamp.ca or call them at 519-475-6600.

Celebrate Canada Day in strawberry style!

Written by: Lindsay Bantis, Mommy Connections Blogger and founder of www.StellaEvvAfter.com

York Region families, this one’s for you!

One of the cutest small towns in York Region is about to have the largest Strawberry Festival in all of Ontario! Every year, for over 30 years Whitchurch-Stouffville has played host to tens of thousands of visitors, as people from all over Ontario flood the streets, sidewalks and parks to celebrate the annual Whitchurch-Stouffville Strawberry Festival- also, the largest FREE admission festival in York Region.

Did you know that York Region is surrounded by some of the provinces most bountiful farmlands and they produce some of the world’s finest strawberries. Here is a quick list of my favorites berry patches, each of them is located in the town of Whitchurch-Stouffville or just minutes away.

Ok, back to the Strawberry Festival. This annual festival is run by a small but mighty group of local volunteers that work tirelessly, year round to put on this FREE (yes you heard it – FREE entrance and parking) event each year. CLICK HERE to see this years full schedule of Festival Events.

From Pancake Breakfasts and one of a kind artisans,to this years newest event, The Totally Toddler Show, Strawberry Festival has entertainment for all members of your family. Each year the festival seeks private sponsorship to put together a funfilled FREE kids zone – where your child (with some help) can build a free bird house, watch the latest children entertainer, interact with clowns, take part in competitions or simply slide down one of the inflatables provided by the festival. This kid zone is truly an amazing must attend event at the festival.

The annual Strawberry Festival also attracts one-of-a-kind artisans, craft vendors and foodies from across Ontario, all to take advantage of the crowds that line the streets looking for a unique gift, good bargain or delicious treat. Having attended the festival since I was ‘knee high to a grasshopper’ I can assure you, you will not be disappointed in the selections, bring your cash!

In my opinion, the best kept secret of this small town festival is that every year it is scheduled to include July the 1st, Canada Day, which means FIREWORKS! Whitchurch-Stouffville is blessed to have their very own local resident, Marie, whose company, Pyro-Mario Fireworks, puts on a vibrant display of colours that light up the skies of Whitchurch-Stouffville every long weekend. I promise, you will not be disappointed, this firework display rivals those of Downtown Toronto – and no traffic!

Check out the schedule of events, there is something for everyone.

If you attend, drop us a line, let us all know what you think


The Best Years of Our Lives

Written by: Lindsay Bantis, Blogger

Here is a short and sweet reminder for all of us navigating the parenting world.

When we were on vacation this winter we met this wonderful couple. Their boys were full grown one was going into law enforcement and the other a firefighter. They enjoyed watching us with the girls and even got in some play time. I remember at one point or another both of them had said to Angelo and I “they are only this young for a short time, enjoy it, these will be the best years of your lives” . . . I remember laughing and rolling my eyes.

In that moment it was hard to see it, but the other night I stood in the kitchen cooking dinner, watching my husband chase Stella and Evva around the island trying to soak up all those giggles before bedtime that I realized it’s true.

Sometimes amongst the sleepless nights (Evva still gets up multiple times at night) and the endless piles of laundry, and the cooking of dinners- we forget that these are the moments that we need to enjoy and savour. The laundry and the dishes can wait until we read a book or sing a song together, these are the moments in 30 years we will look back and cherish.  So chase them around the island one more time, sing “row row your boat” (don’t forget the verse with the crocodile) and just soak it up Mama’s because it doesn’t last forever.

Sleep, Sweet Sleep – Tips from a Sleep Expert!

*Sponsored Post

Sleep is definitely a luxury when it comes to being a new mom and whenever you can get it, you should try to take advantage!

One key to YOU getting a little bit of much needed shut eye, is encouraging your baby to have a healthy relationship with sleep.  The key is to make the bedtime routine an enjoyable experience for you and your little one, but how do we put it into practice?
Emma Dickey-Hendrie, a local Certified Sleep Sense consultant, has given us a few helpful tips you can use right now, no matter what the age, to get your baby to sleep better!  Contact Emma at emmasleepconsults@gmail.com


Oh this needs some serious Kondo’ing! How I have sparked joy this winter.

I don’t know about you but getting back into the swing of things after the holiday season has been extremely challenging. I tried to enjoy some time off but having the kids home and so many things going on over the Christmas break, it was nice to just have some downtime on the days where we had nothing planned.  But then when it was time to get crackin’ and back into work mode, it was so hard to do.  I realized that I have no problem just doing nothing when given the chance!

The last couple weeks though with the onset of the new year’s resolutions I never keep, I was trying to keep my house a bit more organized, which started with putting away and finding a home for the toys from the Christmas aftermath, and purging my sons things.   In this exercise of attempting to clean and organize, I discovered the new viral craze, the Marie Kondo “Tidy Up” phenomenon, which for me and many, has become a bit of an obsession.   

I know I’m likely really late to the game on this as let’s face it, most days I feel like an ostrich with my head in the sand.  But I’m sure many of you have seen the show or at least heard of KonMari, a lifestyle brand inspiring people to choose joy and complete their tidying adventures, founded by a cute little Japanese lady named Marie Kondo. (which I’m sure is only her English name).  She is kind of like a robotic like Japanese Martha Stewart but for de-cluttering, not cooking and decorating.   This lady is fascinating yet somewhat irritating all at the same time because it boggles my mind how anyone can be this “perfect” and teach something so simple that has now become this massive worldwide sensation!  Her method basically teaches that you should be tidying by category, not room by room.  So start with clothes, then books, papers, kimono (household miscellaneous items like bathroom, kitchen, office), then lastly sentimental items.  The idea is to keep only the things that speak to the heart, take the items that don’t spark joy, thank for their service and let them go.    Simple as that – sounds simple right? I had to try it for myself as I wasn’t convinced.

I have two young sons and a hubby who definitely are not neat people and it challenged me to see if this KonMari method would work for our household and be sustainable over time.  I started with my own drawers and closets, and the linen closet which have always been like opening a Pillsbury croissant can ready to explode.  I must say that this KonMari method has got under my skin in a good way and I have done several areas of my home already.  In fact, now I have incorporated the term Marie Kondo into my vocab on a daily basis and it is my new favourite verb.   I find myself saying things like, “Oh, I need to Marie Kondo that” or “This cupboard needs some serious Kondo’ing”.    Who knew I had so many pairs of socks and underwear that I never ever have worn, forgot I had, or never will wear for one reason or another.  I think I got rid of at least 50 pairs and still have a whole drawer full that I wear! It’s seriously surprising how much stuff I have accumulated and up until now it never really bothered me.  I guess I have Marie Kondo to thank for this newfound realization!

Using the idea of holding an item and deciding whether it “sparks joy” is kind of weird to me and at first was very tedious but once you get going, it’s very easy to determine which items you really love, ones that spark joy, and which ones are not really worth keeping around.  Of course there is the “what’s useful” that comes into play as well, and those get kept IF they’ve been used within the last few months, otherwise it’s pitched. 

Using this simple method allowed me to get rid of 3 huge garbage bags (so far) of stuff I don’t use, don’t need, don’t like or is too old and worn out to keep.  It’s very liberating!   I’ll be moving on to my pantry and kitchen cupboards soon which will be quite the project.    Since winter hibernation has set in, if you’re going a little stir crazy and want to start clearing your home, mind and spirit, I recommend you give it a go and see how you enjoy the process!  Let me know what you think by leaving me a comment.  I’d love to hear how your Konmari’ing is going!

Check out the website for everything KonMari,  believe me – you will be opening up a whole new world! Everything from her Netflix shows, books, videos and more can be found there.  Be prepared to have your mind BLOWN!!!!   IT. WILL. HAPPEN.   (At least it did for me!)  Have fun ladies and you’re welcome !









Five Tips To Help While You’re In Newborn “Survival Mode”

If you are a mom with a newborn child, there is a strong possibility you’re reading this article at an odd time of day or night! You look at the clock and realize everyone else in your home is fast asleep, but you’re wide awake at 3am with baby. “Newborn life” can be one of joy, sleep deprivation and learning to sometimes accept things for what they are at that moment.

Although adjusting to your new lifestyle may feel like an eternity – you are not alone! Melissa Sawatzky, the Community Marketing Manager for Kids & Company in Alberta shares a glimpse into her world as a mom adjusting to life with a newborn child:

Mode: Newborn Survival

We didn’t know we were getting a daughter. Yet in the last ten minutes before she arrived, my husband grabbed my hand and said, “You know we’re having a girl, right?” Not sure how he knew, but he was right and suddenly our two little boys had a tiny sister.

We’re old and experienced enough to know how lucky we are to have three healthy children. But having kids is hard, and each newborn – first, second or third – brings challenges.

Here are the things I try to do when I’m in newborn survival mode.

  1. Limit (or welcome) visitors. Especially with my first newborn, I was surprised at how tired I was, how distraught I was in my new role as a mother, and how strong my desire to simply ‘be’ with my son was. That time, the good and the bad, does pass – so don’t feel obligated to host people at the hospital or to throw a meet-the-baby function or even to say yes when people ask to pop by. Alternatively, if you’re craving company, go for it! Enlist your partner or someone in your family who can help gate-keep and manage invites. When you have the right balance, your baby and you will be grateful.

  2. Let go of expectations as much as possible. There is nothing like babies and kids to throw off any well-laid plans. Obviously, it’s smart to learn as much as you can, talk to others and your own parents, read all the books, and think on who you want to be as a parent. But also, mentally prepare for things not going as you expected (like, at all).
  3. Wait to see if we need things. Having multiple children clues you in to this, but even if you’re on your first baby you’ll be surprised at how little you need when you start out. These are the guiding things to think about: you’ll need a safe place for baby to sleep, a way to get them around, a bit of clothing, a way to feed them, and a way to catch and deal with what comes out their bottoms. Anything beyond that might be nice, or it might be an unnecessary, expensive dust-collector.  You’ll eventually need and want more, but wait to see what your baby is like and what you feel is missing once baby comes. Bonus budget tip: once you know you need something, try second-hand. There’s loads of stuff bought in anticipation of a baby that gets used once before ending up at consignment stores.

  4. Get some sleep and get some fun. Yeah, I know that’s the kind of advice that makes you want to slap me because obviously we all want these things yet a newborn can sometimes seem like a little package of ‘you’ll-never-sleep-or-have-fun-again.’ But make a conscious effort on both these fronts for these reasons:Sleep – you will be better equipped to deal with your baby, your partner, your household, your obligations, your health, your other kids and/or your job if you have a bit of rest under your belt. And if baby is wide awake looking for a nice bouncy walk around the house from 11 PM to 4 AM (been there), nap when they do in the day without guilt or abandon. And if siblings or work or other things simply won’t allow for naps, try to get help so you can sneak in a bit of rest and charge up. When an understanding grandparent first offered to simply hold the baby while I napped, I did it and could not have been more grateful.

    Fun – (warning: melodramatic statement forthcoming). A part of me felt like my identity shifted in one single birthing moment from being a fun, engaging person capable of contributing to intelligent conversation to being a worrying, stuck-at-home, baby-talking caretaker of a tiny, helpless being who is basically designed to suck the life out of their parents on their journey to beginning their own. It is incredibly intense and, if you don’t make an effort to get yourself some fun outside of those irresistible baby smiles, it can also be all-consuming. This is feasible for us because we have loads of help from our incredibly supportive family and friends, but not everyone has that – so take whatever help you can get. Try to build other things back into your day as things settle in. For me, that means getting back into sports, staying connected with solid friends (some with and some without children) and date nights. And I try to let things like cleaning slide to make time for goofing around once in a while with our boys – because to date I have no amazing memories about my sparkling clean house but I do remember fondly things like tickle fights, impromptu dance parties and family hugs.


    Enjoy it. This too is frustrating advice in the throes of sleepless nights and cry-filled days, but it’s said wisely and honestly by those who know. Those who know the days are long but the years are short. Those who see a baby after theirs are grown and feel a tiny yearning for those fleeting years when you have youth and energy overflowing (sometimes loudly) in the house. Take time here and there to simply be present. Enjoy that sneaky bright smile your infant makes when she catches your sleep-craving eye at 2AM and explodes with joy. Enjoy the aggravating grumbles of a babe in tummy time, frustrated and uncomfortable and making you both wonder why you’re doing it as he gains strength and tenacity and patience for his life ahead. Enjoy the cry that comes through the monitor, taking you away from work or cleaning or that email you need to get out – because that cry is leading to a hug and a cuddle with a tiny being whose heart still beats in rhythm with yours.

Melissa lives in Calgary and is the Community Marketing Manager for Kids & Company in Alberta and BC. Her vision of what she would be like as a mom was shattered years ago when she discovered nothing ever goes as planned for parents, but laughter and community sees you through. You can reach her at msawatzky@kidsandcompany.com.


Halloween events for kids under 6 in York Region

Halloween is a fun time of year but, some parts about this festive day can sometimes be too scary and traumatizing for the little ones.  I know my sons were always afraid of people in scary masks and costumes or houses that looked spooky while we were out and about or during a night of trick or treating.  

With two boys who still don’t really like the scary aspects of Halloween, we often attend the kid-friendly options in and around the area.   If you are looking for some fun family events to attend in the next week leading up to Halloween that are more tame than terror-filled , we’ve put together a list of 12 local activities we know are sure to please!

1) Princess & Superhero party – Magna Centre Newmarket
Date: Saturday, October 27, 2018
Time: 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Location: Magna Centre (800 Mulock Drive)​
Details: Come dressed as a princess or superhero for the day and enjoy a variety of games, inflatables, stage shows, tasty treats, meet your favourite characters and more!
Cost: $5 per child.  Parents, guardians and children under 1 year of age are free.
Online Tickets: Tickets can be purchased online through the snapd Newmarket website by clicking on the “Get Tix” link below. Upon your arrival, please check in with the Magna Centre Customer Service Kiosk and provide your name and confirmation email.

2) The York-Durham Heritage Railway is all ready for Halloween and wants you to join them.
Kids ages 12 and under in costume ride for only $2.
There will be entertainment, the chance to see the cool train station in Uxbridge, and goodie bags for the kids.
Trips depart both the Uxbridge station and Stouffville GO station.
October 20, 21, 27, 28; see schedule for departure locations and times
York-Durham Heritage Railway, 19 Railway St., Uxbridge
Stouffville GO Station, 6176 Main St., Whitchurch-Stouffville

$20 per adult, $2 per child in costume

3) Scaryfest 2018 – Markham Museum
Sounds scary but never fear!  This family-friendly Halloween event at Markham Museum is suitable for ages 10 and under.
There will be trick-or-treating on the 25-acre museum grounds, get your fortune told, try some superhero science, and dance at the Monster Bash.
October 26, 3–7 pm; October 27 and 28, 1–7 pm
Markham Museum, 9350 Markham Rd. Markham
$8/person, free for ages 0–24 months

4) Halloween in the Village
Come to the annual Halloween trick-or-treat at the Community Safety Village of York Region – an educational miniature village operated by the York Regional Police
They will be opening their gates to the public for a unique trick-or-treating experience among the 30 mini buildings, complete with games, playground, a haunted house, some safety tips from police officers and fire fighters and see emergency vehicles up close and personal.
October 27, 1–5 pm
Community Safety Village of York Region, Bruce’s Mill Conservation Area, 3291 Stouffville Rd., Whitchurch-Stouffville
$5 per car

5) Halloween at Brooks Farm
The final Saturday at Brooks Farms’ Fall Fun Festival is Halloween-themed, with costume parade (12:15 pm), prizes, and Halloween treats, along with all the regular fall farm fun: farm animals, train rides, corn cob blasters, pig races, fun farmyard playground, corn maze, singing chicken show, and more.
October 27, 9 am–5 pm (last entry at 4 pm)
Brooks Farms, 122 Ashworth Rd., Mount Albert
$15 per person, under age 2 free

6) Ghoul-icious
Kids can trick or treat at the historic Whitchurch-Stouffville Musem buildings, decorate a Halloween sugar cookie, and create a spooky craft at this family-friendly event for ages 3–10. Pre-registration is required: call 905-727-8954.
Whitchurch-Stouffville Museum, 14732 Woodbine Ave., Stouffville
October 28, 10–11:30 am
$10 kids, $5 adults

7) Boo at the Zoo
Saturday, October 20 – Sunday, October 21
Saturday, October 27 – Sunday October 28
Calling all costumed kiddies and celebrate the spirit of Halloween. Kids in costume (ages 12 and under).
Kids get FREE* admission when accompanied by an adult paying regular admission to the Toronto Zoo.
Bring your camera for the ever so popular Halloween Photo Opportunities throughout the grounds.

8) Camp Spooky
Head over to Canada’s Wonderland for the ultimate fall festival – Camp Spooky! Families and kids alike can come for a day at the park and a collection of scare-free Halloween activities including BOO-rific mazes, trick-or-treating, foam pits, and so much more!  Plus, all of your favourite rides will be open during the day, including Kidzville and Planet Snoopy Kids’ areas.  Best of all, it’s included with your Park Admission to Canada’s Wonderland!
Saturdays & Sundays, Sept 29-Oct 28th

9) Spooky Sunday – Halloween on Main Street Unionville
Little ghosts and goblins will be back on Main Street for this FREE event!
Sunday Oct 27th from 1-3 pm
Dress in costume for trick-or-treating fun! Look for the participating businesses with pumpkins in the windows!
Train rides will be available, as well as face painting, crafts and more!

10) Halloween at Upper Canada Mall
Why not get dressed up in costume and head to the mall?
Visit the Guest Experience desk on the upper level to receive your trick or treat bag and a list of participating retailers and you’re ready for your Halloween fun
Wednesday Oct 31st from 4-8 pm

11) BOO-seum fun at the Elman W. Campbell Museum Newmarket
Join us for a howling good time as we turn the museum into a boo-seum! Halloween displays, crafts and try a Halloween hunt! Suitable for ages 4-10. Meet Andrew Hind, author of Canadian Monsters and Mythical Creatures!  Andrew will be autographing copies of his book.  It sells for $16.95.
Saturday, October 27, 2018 from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m.
$3 admission/child

12) Kids Cuckoos Nest – Spooky party
This is a great indoor playground with a ton of Halloween activities planned for your little ones on two separate nights!
Appropriate for toddlers up to 10 years old
Friday Oct 26th and Saturday Oct 27th (Two dates available) from 4 to 8 pm
155 Industrial Pkwy S, Aurora
Call to order tickets for this special event at (905)727-NEST
Tickets: $16.99 plus HST per child (Adults free – one per child) – Ticket includes pizza, juice box
$1.00 with every entry will go to Autism York Region
There is an onsite cafe for snacks, smoothies, coffee and light meals

So there’s OUR top 12, but we have just picked a handful that are tried, tested, and true.  There are SO many other events across York Region to check out!   It IS possible to have a non-scary Halloween! Please let us know if there are events that you have enjoyed!  We’d love to hear of others we may need to add to our list!

Wherever you decide to go this year, remember to keep safe and have fun!




7 great Thanksgiving activities for kids!

Thanksgiving is upon us and we know that it’s a busy time for families, in particular for babies or young children who may be thrown off their regular schedules with the family visits and activities.  You also may be busy with preparing a meal or trying to spend time with family you haven’t seen in awhile and it’s hard to deal with the children when you are trying to be a host.  If you are looking for a few ideas to keep those kiddos entertained on Thanksgiving Day, we’ve got you covered!  Some might take a bit of prep a few days before but you’ll be thankful for it when the day arrives.

  1.  Let them help you set the table! They like to help and can easily do this with some instruction
  2. Prepare a craft table for them to be creative and keep entertained.  Here are some ideas for things you can do with just a few supplies.
    Fall Colouring Pages
    I’m Grateful for colouring pages
    Thanksgiving Printable Cards
    Thanksgiving Crafts
  3. Prepare some games for the kids to play at the “kids table”
  4. Dance Party – if you have a room available, put on some music and let them shake out their sillies
  5. Go for a nature walk after dinner or a trip to the nearest park.  Fresh air is good for everyone especially after a big meal.  Take an opportunity to chat and connect with family and friends in an outdoor setting.
  6. If you’re up for a bit more excitement, check out Kidapalooza Family Fall Festival at Markham Fairgrounds this weekend for a day of fun! www.kidapalooza.ca.
    Admission is $25 for children, $8 for adults.  Familiy Pass $60 (2 adults, 2 children) Focused on entertaining the kids, but there is vendor market for parents as well!
  7. When all else fails, there are some fun Thanksgiving Ipad Apps for kids if they need some quiet time or down time after a hectic day!

These few simple tips can make your Thanksgiving a bit more enjoyable and will be amazingly fun for your kiddos as well!
Have a Happy and Stress-less Thanksgiving everyone!