Tag Archives: family

Meet New York Sleep Coach

It’s time to learn how to sleep train your little ones, and give parents everywhere a life with more sleep.

We had the opportunity to talk with Kylee Sallak, founder of New York Sleep Coach, and the creator of Happy Parents, Happy Child method of sleep training. Read below to find out more about her and the impressive work done by New York Sleep Coach.

Q: What experiences or motivational factors helped lead you to create New York Sleep Coach?

Creating NYSC was a culmination of 16 years of helping families and one big recent ‘ah-ha’ moment with a close friend who wasn’t able to convince her 14 month old to nap. While I have many years of sleep training behind me, it wasn’t solidified that I could create something this acutely helpful until I saw my sleep-deprived friend feeling hopeless with her toddler’s sleep. It was enormously motivating to realize that I can be of service to parents in such a short and transformative period of time. At my core, I am a nurturer and have always found myself needing to care for others. NYSC has given me the privilege to nurture parents, so they can be at their best to nurture their kids.

Q: What are the benefits of hiring a sleep coach for a child?

The primary reason parents choose to work with me is because they have tried on their own and always end up caving in at some early stage of the process out of fear, being too sleepy to keep with it, or a combination of both. Parents report that working with me helped them feel confident in their decision to sleep train and supported during the periods they would have otherwise caved in. I make sure that parents who work with me are getting accurate facts about sleep, support, encouragement and walk away feeling empowered with tools to uphold their decision to sleep train.

A lack of restorative sleep negatively affects your child’s mood, their gross and fine motor development, their appetite, short and long-term cognitive development, and their ability to handle frustration. Fewer tantrums and cheery moods are the outwardly and immediately noticeable perks for your little ones. If your child is sleeping soundly all night, and napping well during the day, you also have the opportunity to be getting quality rest. Uninterrupted time spent with your partner, both in and out of the bedroom, waking up more refreshed, having more patience when are you with your little one(s), and being more productive during your awake hours. These are the notable perks for the parents. And while it may not seem so obvious right now, there is a significant domino effect and implications of not sleep training your child that extends beyond toddler and preschool years into primary school and beyond.

Q: We like your approach on common sense sleep training, can you share a few tips for new parents?

I am happy to share the most commonly missed practices, which are also the most immediately impactful practices you can start using today. So many parents I speak to are doing only 1 or 2 of these tips, and some parents aren’t utilizing any of them. This is usually because they either hadn’t gotten around to trying, or because they didn’t believe these would work for their baby or young child. Either way, I would recommend giving these a try even if you are skeptical. These are going to make a noticeable difference if done consistently. And if you get stuck along the way and feel you need more support, I am here to help parents just like you get over this bump in the road!

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Written by our Marketing & Social Media Coordinator, Taylor Bell

Meet Veestro – Healthy Eating Made Easy

Are you looking to eat healthier in 2017? Well, you are in luck, because we are introducing one of our new favorite food delivery services – Veestro.

One of our Bell Family sitters, Rebecca Wong, recently took a job with Veestro as their Marketing Manager. Below, she tells us how Veestro works, how it’s different from like-brands, and why it’s great for both sitters and families everywhere!

Q: What is Veestro and how does it work?

Veestro is a gourmet food company that delivers plant-based, chef-prepared meals directly to our customer’s doors in all 50 states. No need to stand in a store line. All meals are ordered online. There are a variety of meals for everyone, ranging from Thai noodles to quesadillas to cheesecake. Everything is made fresh then delivered frozen for extra convenience. Veestro isn’t just for vegans and vegetarians. It’s for anyone who loves food and likes to eat healthy. Veestro is gaining momentum in the media, with recent features in InStyle, GLAMOUR, Men’s Fitness, and PopSugar, as well as TV features on ABC, FOX, The Doctors, and NBC’s Harry with Harry Connick Jr.

Q: With you being a sitter yourself, why would you recommend Veestro to our other sitters? What sets it apart from like-brands?

As a sitter, Veestro makes it convenient to eat on the run, and even bring meals to appointments. You just heat and eat. Each meal is perfectly portioned and cost an average of $10. There are plenty of meal programs that make clean eating simple, and there are tons of gluten-free options. All ingredients are organic, dairy-free, cholesterol-free, preservative-free, and non-GMO. If you handle kids with allergies, this is your safest bet food-wise.

Q: Why is Veestro a great idea for families?

Veestro is perfect for families because it cuts out the prep work, and fulfills all the nutritional needs of both growing kids and adults. There are endless benefits to eating more plants, and this is a brilliant way to get kids to enjoy veggies. They especially love the pizzas and “chicken” nuggets. There are several meals that come family-sized to share, and the more you buy, the lower the costs. A family can order 12 meals for just $99, with free shipping.

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Written by our Marketing & Social Media Coordinator, Taylor Bell

A Bell Girl Christmas Tree

Growing up, putting up the family Christmas tree was always such a spectacle. My mom has always been into interior design, so when you add that fascination to her love of celebrating the holidays, you end up with one jaw dropping Christmas tree. A Christmas tree that would have the heads of Martha Stewart and Nate Berkus turning.

Given that my mom is such a fan of the holidays, it’s only natural that some of the fandom gets passed down to myself and four older sisters. That’s usually how it works, right?

My sisters and I live in various places across the US. My oldest sister Lindsay lives in New York City, Courtney in Ohio, Jamie and I in Washington, DC, and Katie in Indiana. Now that we no longer live under the same roof, each year we put up our own Christmas tree. Our trees usually vary in size, type, and decorations, but I’m sure my sisters and I can agree that they all have one thing in common – we put them up thinking about all of the years we decorated the tree together as a family in small town Ohio.

This year we are sharing our Christmas trees with you and wishing all of our readers a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Lindsay’s tree

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Courtney’s tree

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Jamie’s tree

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Katie’s tree

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Taylor’s tree

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Written by our Marketing & Social Media Coordinator, Taylor Bell

Cookies for Kids’ Cancer Event

A family fun day is right around the corner for all of those around New York City! On Saturday, December 3rd, it’s time to give back and help raise awareness for childhood cancer.

In 2007, the parents of a young boy who was diagnosed with cancer helped to launch Cookies for Kids’s Cancer by baking a total of 96,000 cookies with the help of 250 volunteers. Cookies for Kids’ Cancer now stands tall as a nonprofit committed to raising funds for research to develop new, improved treatments for pediatric cancer (the #1 disease killer of children in the US).

On Saturday, December 3rd, you can help support this wonderful organization at their next event! Meet amazing pastry chefs and munch on delicious treats, or make holiday gifts with food magazine experts for everyone on your shopping list (even Fido!), while mingling with friends. There will be a lot of fun activities for all family members and it’ll be a sweet way to kick off the holiday season!

The location of the event is at The Metropolitan Pavilion, 123 West 18th Street, 2nd floor (Between 6th & 7th Ave)

Additional information and ticket information can be found here.

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Written by our Marketing & Social Media Coordinator, Taylor Bell!

Kidz Central Station’s Plaza Hotel Event

Take in the sights of the Plaza Hotel during Kidz Central Station’s event this Veteran’s Day (November 11), from 5-7:30pm.

Make it a family early evening on the town and enjoy activities including face painting, a magician show, dj glow stick dance party, photo booth, and much more!

In honor of Veteran’s Day a portion of proceeds will be donated to the Bob Woodruff Foundation to help disabled veterans.

Don’t miss out! Join Kidz Central Station and their partners for this amazing fall event! To register, click here.

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Written by our Marketing & Social Media Coordinator, Taylor Bell

Celebrate the World Series Like This!

It’s Game 6 of the World Series tonight, and whether you’re a Cleveland Indians or Chicago Cubs fan, we all know the best way to cheer on your team is through the food.

Here are some fun things to try out if you are the lucky party host!

1. For the cheese lovers.
2. For the pizza lovers.
3. For the peanut lovers.
4. For the people at the party trying to be healthy.
5. For the people at the party trying to be unhealthy.

Happy game watching, everyone!

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Written by our Marketing & Social Media Coordinator, Taylor Bell

Ghouls, Ghosts, and Goblins, OH MY!

On the hunt for a perfect Halloween costume this year? Fear no more because we’ve done our research so you don’t have to!

Take a look at what category best fits you and then suit up for a fun night of trick-or-treating!

1. For the gamer
2. For the movie-buff
3. For the traditionalist
4. For the family outing
5. For the DIY-er
6. For the emoji-obsessed
7. For the youngster
8. For the tween
9. For the too old to be trick-or-treater
10. For the pup

Happy Haunting!

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Written by our Marketing & Social Media Coordinator, Taylor Bell

Time for a Staycation

Being cooped up in your apartment can leave you stir crazy, especially if you spend daytime there during the week (looking at you moms and dads at home with kids). One night when I couldn’t sleep, I did some research on staycation spots near NYC, and here is what I found.

1. Upstate New York
This Inn seems perfect once it gets a bit cooler, think fire place, hot beverage or red vino, and maybe some hiking in the good ole outdoors. The rates seem really reasonable too, around $160 a night.

2. Long Island
For food.
For wine.
For stay.

3. North Fork
This place seems the place to be in October, as I can’t find a hotel or bed & breakfast available for under $700 a night. It may be worth waiting till off season.

For additional things to do in North Fork check out Conde Nast Traveler.

And for future trips around the city check out Timeout New York!

Classic Kids Photo Shoot

When my baby was born I wanted the hospital photos to be perfect. I knew by the second day of recovery a photographer would come by and snap mommy and daddy with their new bundle. I came prepared with my make-up, hair supplies, and a cute new dress. But it soon turned out as you would expect… it’s difficult for a mom (aka me) to look good after having major abdominal surgery. Then there’s the baby who just wants to sleep and be cuddled - no flashes please.

Nearing the second month, I was feeling like myself again and was approached by a boutique photography company that’s in all the same cities as my company (UWS, UES, Greenwich CT, Chicago, and Los Angeles).

Meet Classic Kids. Their motto is about the family experience, curated, helpful, and guiding to the best memories possible. They pride themselves on nurturing and making their customer feel comfortable to unveil their most relaxed, easy smile.

Bedside manner is so important when it comes to family. They make you feel loved and important during your shoot. They bring you a freshly made latte to make you feel at home, while they prep for the photos. Our photographer, Ashley, was fantastic with my son as was her assistant (a former nanny of course).The shoot was about 90 minutes. They provided us with a sentimental slide show to review all the shots about a week after the shoot. It was perfect to forward to the family to enjoy from out of state.

Classic Kids is a class act. If you have any questions about my experience let me know, or feel free to contact them directly to get your shoot scheduled.

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Written by our Founder & CEO, Lindsay Bell

Dinner Is Served – Vol. 4

Happy Summer everyone! I don’t know about you, but I’ve been desperately waiting for some nice weather! With nice weather comes nice, fresh produce. I frequently hit up the local Farmers Market as well as my Dad’s garden; can’t get much better than that! I’ve been preparing meals lately that are colorful, healthy, and full of nutrients. I think I’m finally getting my husband on board with these “healthy meals”. Now I just have to work on my kids.

This month I’m going to highlight two tasty salads I found that can easily be matched with a grilled piece of chicken, fish, or steak. They’re sooo good and both make decent sized portions that you will be able to enjoy the next day. Happy eating!

Black Bean & Corn Salad with Chipotle Vinaigrette 

For the Salad:
2 ears fresh corn
1 cup chopped red onion
1 (14.5 oz) can black beans
1 red bell pepper, diced (about 1 cup)
1/2 cup loosely packed fresh chopped cilantro (plus a bit more for garnish, if desired)
1 avocado

For the Dressing:
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice, from 1-2 limes
2 tablespoons honey
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 large garlic clove, roughly chopped
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
3/4 teaspoon cumin
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (2 peppers, not 2 cans; use smaller peppers and if they are all large, use only 11/2)

Instructions
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the corn, cover, and turn the heat down to low. Simmer for 10 minutes. Remove the corn from the water and let cool. Meanwhile, place the chopped red onions in a small bowl and cover with water. Let sit about ten minutes, then drain completely in a sieve and set aside.

Place the beans in a sieve; run under cold water to rinse well. Let drain completely and set aside.

Holding the cooled corn upright in a large bowl, cut the kernels off the cob in strips. Add the beans, red onion, red bell pepper and cilantro.

Make the dressing by combining all of the ingredients in a blender or mini food processor; process until smooth. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss well. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or, preferably, overnight.

Right before serving, slice the avocado in half. Remove the pit; using a butter knife, cut a grid in each half. Holding the avocado halves over the salad, use a spoon to scoop out the diced flesh. Toss the salad gently, then taste and adjust seasoning if necessary (I usually add a squeeze of fresh lime to freshen it up). Garnish with a bit of fresh chopped cilantro if desired. Serve cold.

Edamame Salad

Ingredients:
1 bag frozen edamame
1 cup dried cranberries
1 cup green beans, cut to about 1½ inches
1, 4 ounce container feta cheese
juice from half a lemon
2 tablespoons olive oil
⅛ teaspoon black pepper

Instructions
Cook the edamame according to package direction (I cooked mine in microwave with a little water). Let them cool completely. Place them in the refrigerator to speed up the cooling process.

In a large bowl add water with ice – you will need this for the green beans. Blanch the green beans in boiling water for 1 minute and 30 seconds. Drain green beans and immediately add them to the ice water. This is called shocking and stops the cooking process and also keeps the green beans bright green! Remove them from the ice water after a few minutes and pat them dry.

Add the edamame, green beans, and the rest of the ingredients to a large bowl. Gently toss together and enjoy.

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Written by Bell Family’s, Courtney Bell Garvey