Posts Tagged ‘special needs social group’

Calling All Special Needs Parents Who Need A Night Out

September 19, 2013 Leave a comment

Is the actual name of this new social group in NYC.  The first get together looks like it will be on Friday, October 4th. Joining is free and only requires that you join first.

Swimming Meetup Postponed Plus Some Helpful Tips About Highbridge Pool

Due to the crazy weather today James’s last tennis class was rescheduled for tomorrow. You, of course, are more than welcome to swim at Highbridge Pool as originally planned, but if you’d like to meet up we are aiming to be there this Friday at 11:00AM instead.

For those of you who have not experienced the zealous security at Highbridge Pool (located at W. 172nd and Amsterdam), here is some information I wish I had had the first time around:

You must have a combination lock, a swim diaper for any toddlers, and no pens, markers, snacks or drinks other than water in your bag. There is a 100% chance that your bag will be searched. You may bring yourself and a towel, and some sunscreen into the actual pool area. That’s it. You can wear a white t-shirt over your suit if you are inclined, but no other colors. You must proceed from security to the changing area to the locker to the showers, in that order and no other.

It may seem crazy the first (half dozen) times you go through the motions, but hey, admission’s free and the pools here are beautiful, not-too-crowded, safe and clean – probably in part because the security is so thorough. As an added perk for me, once we explained to security that James was disabled and could not get through these trials in the men’s locker room by himself, they allowed him to accompany me (bypassing the women’s changing area) and wait in a chair with a security guard while I got the babies ready. And, there is no other pool I know of that has such an enormous 1-2ft deep pool (Olympic+ sized) so that I can safely manage all of my kids alone (there is also an enormous 4 to 10 ft deep pool for more proficient swimmers).

I hope to see some of you in the next few days – there are a lot of fun meetups coming up between now and Monday (see Upcoming Events)! If you’re going swimming tomorrow, have fun (and bring a lock)!

Meetup reminders for this weekend: July 13-15

We’ll be at the Central Park Brass concert tomorrow at 11am and plan to stay and play/picnic for a while afterward. Weather permitting we’re still planning on the NYBG on Sunday as well (see the Upcoming Events tabs for a full list of July’s get-togethers). If you plan to come try to email me a couple hours before the start of any given event for details including where to meet.


A Look At The Week Ahead – July 8, 2012

Despite the intense heat, it was nice to see new and familiar faces last Friday at the playground, and the kids certainly had fun in the sand and sprinklers! It should be a little cooler over the next few days so here’s hoping for more friends to join us again:

July 13, 11:00AM at Mariner’s 84th Street Playground – Central Park Brass interactive concert and playground time, picnic lunch to follow.

July 15, 12:00-4:30PM at New York Botanical Gardens: Dig! Plant! Grow! Join us for a picnic lunch at the gardens followed by hands-on family gardening in the Ruth Rea Howell Family garden at 2:00PM.

In addition to the scheduled social events, James will be starting adaptive swim and tennis lessons this week. I believe there are still limited spots open for both programs – email me or click the links for more info.

Also keep an eye out for a bunch of new posts this week – the Monday Minute, weekly Top Ten, travel reviews near and far (watch for special tropical discounts), and stories about everything from graduations to playground meltdowns.

Tween/Teen Social Lounge on Sundays!

October 30, 2011 Leave a comment

I stumbled across a flyer for “Tween/Teen Lounge – a place to hang out and chat with others” last week and didn’t initially give it much thought. It didn’t scream “special needs friendly” and advertised snacks and activities like watching a movie or playing Wii. All things my son James loves, but he still can’t get by on his own in a group of typically developing pre-teens. What I missed is that The Center for Special Needs at JCC is sponsoring the monthly social hangout and that it is in fact geared towards tweens and teens with special needs.

It gets better. The social lounge is a drop-off program every second Sunday of the month, from 2:30-4:30. I know, drop-off is such a teasing word. Such luxury to be able to escape for a little while, yet in the special needs world drop-off (and luxury) can seem impossible. Look, I’m nervous about drop-off too, but don’t let that scare you away. There will be staff members and volunteers present to help facilitate social interaction and monitor things, and parents also fill out a form prior to coming so that staff has a sense of each child and what to look out for.

The social lounge is only $25, which would be a pretty typical amount of money to hand to James were he going off for a bite to eat and a movie with his friends. You can stay at the JCC ( large lobby/cafe) to wait or here’s an idea, go grab a bite with your peers in the neighborhood.

Because of the anticipated popularity, pre-registration is highly encouraged. Space is also limited in order to accommodate for special needs. You can call or email Melissa Lader at 646-505-5729 or – she has always been incredibly responsive and helpful every time (and there have been many) I’ve contacted her with a question.

I plan to bring James to this starting in December. If you’re thinking about sending your son/daughter to the social lounge but are on the fence for one reason or another,  I can at least promise you that they will have a peer to talk to (see Monday Minute series if you don’t believe me). James is one of the friendliest, unassuming, open children I know (and I wouldn’t say that about all of my children) so your child is assured of at least one friend if they come!

Frozen Between My “To Do” List and A Hard Place

August 16, 2011 1 comment

I’ve started a good half dozen posts lately, and am disappointed not to have any of them finished. She’s crazy busy, of course she doesn’t have time to write, you might be thinking. But you would only be partially right. As you know by now, I often write in the wee hours, when things are generally more calm around here (even a sleeping baby in the lap is a step up).

But there has been a lot of good TV on Netflix lately, and things to buy online for our big trip next week, and some crazy long packing lists to make, and bugs to kill, plane seats to pick, appointments to make before we go, school lists to fulfill, thank you cards to send, emails to reply to, bugs to kill, bills to pay, and even some catching up to do with Ryan when he is home before midnight. And, bugs to kill.

Okay, I’ve mostly been watching Netflix (while silently scanning the room for any bugs). And now you have learned a little secret about me – when the precarious balance between busy and overwhelmed is crossed, I tend to do absolutely nothing. It’s all there in a big fat list, I’m not hiding from it. I actually have about 15 windows on my computer open right now, and occasionally in between paragraphs open one up and browse rental car rates or make a bid on Priceline or research the most bang for my credit card points (it looks like cash or statement credit is the way to go).

Eventually, if I have too many windows and programs open on my computer, it tends to freeze up and requires a reboot. And there you have it. I’m not hiding from my responsibilities, I’m not avoiding, I’m simply frozen! Unfortunately, a lot of the stuff on my formidable-and-growing to do list should be complete before my own personal reboot, aka Rejuvenating Trip To Jamaica.

So my current plan is to return from Jamaica refreshed (and sober) and ready for the school year, more stay-at-hom-motherhood, and definitely some higher quality blogging (though I still plan to try for a few more low-to-medium quality posts before I leave). In the meantime, I hope to see more of you at the events this week (see August calendar post). If I haven’t said it yet, I have sincerely enjoyed meeting new people and getting to know familiar faces better this summer, and feel excited and motivated as I think about all of my plans for The Foorce this Fall!

And now if you’ll excuse me, I have an episode of Law and Order I really need to finish before I hit the sack…

Meetups This Week – Come Play Outside Before Summer Is Over!

August 11: Higbridge Pool, 11:00am Located at 173rd and Amsterdam, easily accessible by the A, C, or 1 trains and many buses. We will be there from 11:00-12:30. Security is kind of a pain but the pool is generally pretty empty at this time – last week we had the whole place to ourselves for the first 30 minutes! Bring a suit, towel, lock and swim diaper for little ones. Admission is free! And remember, no food, gum or pens allowed inside the pool 🙂

August 12 – Central Park Brass at Robert Bendheim Playgrounda “playground for all children.” Interactive concert starts at 11:00am, we’ll stay for a picnic, playground and sprinklers afterward.

August 14 – Bronx Zoo, 11:00-4:00pm Click here for a review of the Lego Safari exhibit going on now! My kids are super excited for this meetup. If you want to come later in the day and meet up, just send me an email and I will give you my cell # so that you can find us!

Hope to see/meet you at one or more of these events!

Event Reminder and Details – BounceU Brooklyn Cosmic Bounce on Saturday, August 6th!

You need to call and reserve a spot for this event if you plan to attend because space is limited! It sounds like there are two big areas with obstacle courses, dodgeball, basketball, slides, etc. I called and explained that we were bringing a special needs child and was assured that there would be appropriate activities for him. I was also told that anyone under 2 is free and anyone over 18 is free. We plan to go bounce, then stop for lunch afterward. Hope you can join us! Book online or by phone, info is below:

Time:  10:50 AM – 12:05 PM

Date: August 6, 2011

Place: BounceU Brooklyn


Come join us for a Cosmic Bounce!

With one hour and fifteen minutes of bouncing around in the bounce rooms with the cosmic lights, you are bound to have fun! 

Space is LIMITED!  Prepayment is Required to secure a reservation as  

  our slots book up very fast!  Socks and signed waiver are required to play.

Click to purchase your Ticket Now!

347-450-JUMP (5867)
 Free Parking in Basement   
* Cosmic/Open Bounce Hours are subject to change, prepayment is REQUIRED to secure a reservation and is non-refundable.

Adults are FREE with paying child.  Walk-ins will not be accepted if an event is full.
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