Category Archives: Play

One World Observatory Holiday Experience From 1776 Feet

One World Observatory Holiday Experience From 1776 Feet

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(Sponsored Post)

Festive ‘Winter ONEderland’ a Family Friendly Experience Features Snowy Sky Pod Journey, Interactive Displays and Visits with Santa.  Returning for its second year, the family-friendly experience will be one of the many must-see seasonal attractions at the new World Trade Center throughThe experience will run continuously through the holiday season, ending on January 7.

“Winter ONEderland: A Holiday Experience Above It All” will include:

  • One World of Wonders – A multi-media experience where guests join Winter ONEderland mascot Ollie the Owl as he takes flight, journeying past the wonders of the world – both ancient and modern;
  • Glacier Cave:  Guests will wander through a magical underground winter grotto ornamented with crystals and icicles;
  • Snowy SkyPod Journey – Visitors will delight in the thrill of snowfall while riding above New York City’s sparkling skyline in the fastest elevators in the Western Hemisphere;
  • Giant Snow Globe – Visitors can marvel at a giant snow globe showcasing New York City’s famous skyline, and enjoy the ultimate social media selfie moment;
  • Santa’s Sleigh – Parents can reserve a time for kids to visit with Santa and ride with him in his sleigh over New York’s roof tops.  Professional photographers will capture this once in a lifetime moment!

Westchester’s Winter Wonderland

Westchester’s Winter Wonderland

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If you’re looking for a fun family day in Westchester, check out the Winter Wonderland at Kensico Dam Plaza in Valhalla.   In it’s fifth year, they have added lots of new things for this season.    I’m guilty of always thinking the only holiday fun is in the city;  but promised myself I would check this one out this year.   Great job on this event, Westchester County!   

Here’s what you can expect at the Winter Wonderland:

The Winter Wonderland Holiday Circus

Join us each night under the big top. Winter Wonderland Holiday Circus is great fun for all ages.

Show times are:

  • Weekdays and Sundays – 5:30 p.m., 6:30 p.m., and 7:30 p.m.
  • Fridays and Saturdays – 5:30 p.m., 6:30 p.m., 7:30 p.m., 8:30 p.m.


Magic Shows

The dining tent is home to the new magic show that everyone can enjoy while warming up and eating food from the food trucks. Schedule: 5:45 p.m., 6:45 p.m., 7:45 p.m.

FUNderland Village

Our new FUNderland Village features 10 rides and four games and a new train ride that circles the light show. You can hop on the Winter Hay Ride as it takes you up close to the base of the Kensico Dam. Your admission price covers unlimited rides.

The Santa Experience

One of our most popular features is the Santa Experience where children and their families have the opportunity to meet Santa himself and take their own photos! The Santa Experience gives children the chance to share their wish list while making a lasting memory of a lifetime. Expect to see surprise guests too!

Outdoor Ice Rink

Your admission price includes unlimited skating (with skates included) on our spectacular outdoor ice rink. Skate against the backdrop of beautiful Kensico Dam Plaza and twinkling lights all around. Lace up and enjoy one of Westchester’s only outdoor ice skating rinks.

Musical Light Show

Bigger and brighter LED lights magically light up illuminate the night, choreographed to favorite holiday music. Walk or take a train ride around the triangle to get the full experience!

Family New Year’s Eve Party

Join the celebration on Monday, December 31. The gates open at 5 p.m. Pyrotechnic show and ball drop starts at 7 p.m.

Your pay-one-price admission of $20 includes unlimited visits with Santa, skating, Holiday Circus, FUNderland Village, our spectacular light show and more.  Buy dinner or a snack, a warm beverage at a selection of food trucks and vendors, and warm up in the Holiday Spirits warming tent.  Parking is free.

Guest Blogger:  Peach Stylist Danielle Dachik

Guest Blogger: Peach Stylist Danielle Dachik

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I’m thrilled to be a guest blogger for Emma Westchester this month.   I’m an elementary school teacher and a Peach stylist– and I want to share this amazing brand with Westchester Women. 

“Trust yourself!”      

“Go for it!”     

“You can do it!”

These are a few of the sayings I use daily with my students.

My name is Danielle Dachik.  After teaching for more than 20 years, my goal with the children I work with is this: be sure they feel confident being themselves, taking risks, and knowing their worth.

Children at a young age have so much enthusiasm and confidence when they are a part of a nurturing and uplifting environment. I am sure adults aren’t much different. Twenty years of teaching has proven to me that we all thrive in a positive and supportive environment. It is this idea as a teacher that inspired me to become a Peach stylist!  

Peach is a company dedicated to helping women thrive and elevate their lives every day. Whether going to the gym or work, lounging, or going out for a night of fun, our clothing can take you through it all! We are a company looking to lift each other up! That culture of positivity is contagious!



I couldn’t resist being a part of this company that seeks to empower women with clothing that looks and feels amazing. Our designs are truly meant for every woman.

There are several ways to participate in our Peach mission!

  • Let me help you find the perfect piece or two to try our Peach products as one of our valued customers.
  • Host a trunk show to bring our products to your friends. Shopping at home and together is such a fun experience. Free shopping credits are always a fun benefit for our hostesses!
  • There is also a huge opportunity in joining this company as a stylist. We want to share our wonderful products and find women who believe in our culture of positivity. Get paid to wear and share our clothing and mission.  Our discounts and commissions for stylists are exceptional!

Are you ready to live your best life? Join us in our mission.  Whether participating as a customer, a party hostess, or a stylist, women benefit from the contagious culture of positivity!

Please don’t hesitate to reach out and let me help you in whatever way you want!

Westchester Ninja Warriors

Westchester Ninja Warriors

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This week, we are lucky to have a guest blogger.  His name is Noel Reyes and after talking with him I realized there’s no way I could write this one up on my own.  He’s an accomplished American Ninja Warrior and he’s brought “Westchester Ninja Warriors” to our kids!   We are so lucky to have him and his program here in Westchester.    Here’s what Noel has to say…

“I could do that!”

These are very often the words of a soon to be “Ninja”. Just as often, these words are followed by “How do they do that?” or “That’s not as easy as it looks on TV.”

Now you’re hooked. I myself fell victim to the ninja addiction nearly 8 years ago. My name is Noel Reyes. I’m a 34-year-old FDNY firefighter from Brooklyn NY.  I’m also a husband, a father of 4 and since 2012 an American Ninja Warrior.  I have been fortunate enough to compete on seasons 4, 5, 6, and 7 of American Ninja Warrior. I have a season 6 city finals finisher’s badge and a trip to the Las Vegas Finals on my resume. I also competed on season 2 of Team Ninja Warrior where I was wildly successful winning my first 5 races against some of the top names in the sport.

Now I am trying to bring the sport that I love to the people of Westchester. I was lucky enough to team up with The Westchester Gym in Elmsford, NY to design and build “The Ninja Room”. I am happy to be able to provide a fun and unique environment for children and adults alike to explore their physical talents in a new way. With replica obstacles from the hit television show and some original designs as well, ninja hopefuls of all ages can come and train to become their strongest selves ever. For those with just a curiosity to try the obstacles for fun or those with the hopes of one day competing on national television, The Westchester Gym is the perfect place to hone your skills. We provide classes for all ages and skill levels with the curriculum designed and taught by myself with the help of fellow competitors that I have recruited to assist with coaching.

We also provide a fun new atmosphere for birthday parties as well as corporate events and team building seminars. With ninja gyms and leagues popping up across the country the goal is to create an unbeatable force of ninjas to take on teams from other gyms in local competitions. All of this will be done with the intention to prepare our ninjas through hard work and lessons in technique and obstacle fitness to one day compete on, what we call in the ninja community, “THE SHOW.”

Who will join me in jumping, swinging and climbing on the journey to conquer Mount Midoriyama?Links to myself on the Team Ninja Warrior:

Gym links:
Instagram: @westchesterninjawarriors
Facebook: @Westchester ninja warriors

One of my favorite sales of the year:  The Pedigree Ski Shop Annual Tent Sale

One of my favorite sales of the year: The Pedigree Ski Shop Annual Tent Sale

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Labor Day is the unofficial end to our summer as Korben’s school is back in session.  There is no “back to school” clothes shopping or a mad rush around town attempting to select school supplies from Target, Staples or any other store when you have a preteen boy.  As long as Korben has sports shorts, t-shirts and a few tennis shoes that fit him he’s perfectly content.  The wonderful Value Drug Store in our town knew exactly what my son needed for middle school (didn’t even need to have a supplies list); we simply called told them what grade and they pulled everything together.

The first real shopping of the season for our family is not for school but rather for skiing at one of our FAVORITE sales of the year…The Pedigree Ski & Tent Sale.

We are an avid ski family.  Frank has been skiing since he was eight and worked as a ski instructor in Europe during his teenage years.  I was a beginner Snow Boarder when I first dated Frank, but converted to skiing within a few years.

It was never a question of IF Korben would ski but a matter of WHEN.  I won’t lie, I was nervous putting our son on skis at age three – but Frank was ecstatic.

One of the best aspects of moving from Manhattan to Westchester was stumbling upon the gem of a store called Pedigree Ski Shop in White Plains.  Pedigree has everything that a beginner to expert skier or boarder would want.  Pedigree employees are all very knowledgeable about their sport; be it tennis in the summer or skiing in the winter.  I have overheard conversations, that prove to me that they staff their store with dedicated sports enthusiasts.  The annual tent sale (this year from October 4-8th) in White Plains is where one can score some amazing bargains for the entire family and should not be missed!

About Pedigree Ski Shop:  If anyone were to ask what has been the secret to the long lasting success of Pedigree Ski Shop, the answer would be “a family mentality”.   In 1962, Pedigree Ski Shop was born out of the dreams and inspirations of John Fuerst and his wife, Jay, to turn their beloved sport of skiing into a profession. Now, more than 50 years later, their five children have continued to raise this store into what has become the best shop carrying skis, snowboards, tennis gear, swim gear, and skateboards. In fact, Pedigree has become so successful that it has grown into 4 equally outstanding stores.  

Shawna’s Favorite Hair Salons…Full-Service to Simple Blow Outs

Shawna’s Favorite Hair Salons…Full-Service to Simple Blow Outs

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Surviving Summer!  Time to put away the blow-dryer, let my hair dry naturally and live with a pony-tail for work or a high messy bun for the next few months…for those that know me well, I live with a high messy bun year long  🙂 .

If going minimalist and au naturale is not for you, these are my current favorite hair salons from full-service to simple blow outs that you should check.

Momotara Hair & Beauty Salon :  Designed with a mid-century modem theme, the salon is still has a fresh and open feel.  The service and hospitality are very Japanese.  Tea and coffee are offered immediately upon checking in.  Though there are many different services offered, the salon is always very quiet almost peacefully zen.  The thoughtful attention to detail makes this place special…small eye pads placed across your eyes so you don’t get sprayed with water when having a shampoo, hot towels placed behind your neck during the wash and rinse, and small plastic ear covers are provided during the color treatment so there is never any misplaced color.

Located:  2 Spencer Place, 2nd Floor – Scarsdale (914-472-5897) Hours of Operation are Tue – Sat 9AM – 6PM; Sun 8:30AM – 6PM.

Hair By Alex Jackson:  You may pay a little more, however it’s well worth it for the convenience.  Alex Jackson works from her home and if you need a last minute touch-up on Sunday evening before a business meeting on Monday; or want the privacy of bringing you son or daughter while sitting for a 90-minute color treatment than book an appointment with Alex Jackson is worth it.  During a snow-storm when most salons were closed, I was able to make an appointment for a cut and color with very little notice.  I brought along Korben and he comfortably watched a movie on his iPhone while Alex worked her magic – giving me a deep conditioning treatment, color and cut.

Located in White Plains – Alex is a “By Appointment Only” #914-310-6940

Plush Blow:  One of the first places I went to for a quick blow out when I moved to Westchester and now they have four locations (Rye, Scarsdale, White Plains & Yonkers).  A simple no frills blow-out starts at $40 with a special Treat Yourself Tuesday blow-outs are $30.

Dry Bar:  Their philosophy is simple…”Focus on one thing and be the best at it” and they certainly have the write formula with 100+ locations across the country. The White Plains location is the only one in Westchester and opened last year.  What I love most are their hours (7AM – 8PM Mon-Wed and 7AM – 9PM Thur-Sat) of operation and products that never make my hair feel heavy but yet the blow outs and styles tend to last longer than most places.

Westchester Woman Wednesday:  Meet Shannon, Lori & Christine

Westchester Woman Wednesday: Meet Shannon, Lori & Christine

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I’m thrilled to share this month’s choice for Westchester Woman Wednesday.   In fact, I should say “women” because it’s a trio of talent that has taken The Dance Gallery in Tuckahoe to a new level.   The Dance Gallery had been previously owned by Stephanie Urbina (since 2012) and it was pretty much a one woman show.  In 2018, Shannon DiNota stepped in as the new owner of The Dance Gallery and helping her with the transition are Lori Mortensen and Christine Magliari.  Each one has their own skill set that they bring to the table, but the commonality is their shared vision for the studio.

Besides already having been instructors at The Dance Gallery, they were also parents (one an aunt) of dancers at the studio.  It was a natural move for the three of them to come together and build upon the things that were already great about where they worked and chose to have their daughters (and nieces) dance.  Each brings a different experience;  Shannon is a lifelong dancer who has studied, performed and taught in cities across the US and London. Lori has a music and theater background and is the business manager for the studio. She brings along her communications background and experience. The office manager is Christine, who wears many hats.  She’s an actress, a pilates & yoga instructor, stylist and musical theater instructor.   All three women have ties to the Tuckahoe/Bronxville/Eastchester community and are truly an asset to the young dancers at The Dance Gallery.

Their mission is to offer quality dance instruction by experienced professionals who possess a passion for teaching students of all ages in a disciplined and nurturing environment. The Dance Gallery teaches dance as an art form, emphasizing fundamental technique and diversity of styles including classical ballet, jazz, tap, modern, musical theater and hip-hop.  Since the takeover in early 2018, new programs such as Irish Dance, Bollywood (Indian dance) and Adult Tap Dance classes have been added.

What I love personally is their gentle, yet serious approach. It’s age appropriate and allows girls a safe and comfortable dance environment. It’s a mixture of traditional and “new” which was evident in the June recital.  Some classic ballet pieces, some modern selections and my favorite, the “Annie Fusion” where the younger girls performed Annie’s “It’s a Hard Knock Life” the traditional way (imagine buckets and rags) followed by the older girls who performed the modern version of the same song, with choreography and outfits that were a little more mature.  Everyone gets what they need and everyone leaves happy.

THE DANCE GALLERY is located at The Main Street Depot, 25 Main Street, 2nd Floor, Tuckahoe, NY 10707​​

Phone: (914) 255-4092

Email: ​  

Fall 2018 Class Schedule can be found here.

DGNY bracelets made by Beads by Meg… @beadzbymeg on IG or
L to R- Lori, Shannon and Christine at The Dance Gallery Recital, June 2018.













Links to all Bios can be found here.

Glamping in NYC

Glamping in NYC

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Last weekend, my husband and I visited the brand new Collective Retreats site on Governors Island,  Collective Retreats is known best for their glamorous camping concept.  The company seeks out to find locations where there are no other lodging options available. Governors Island was the perfect place as it’s the only patch of land in NYC without a living space!   I was surprised at how much there was to do on the island.  It’s an amazing day trip for those that believe they’ve covered every square inch of NYC.

Collective Governors Island, one of the higher-end glamping experiences in the area, offers private bathrooms as big as a Manhattan apartment, custom-made furniture, 1,500-thread-count sheets, housekeeping and three meals a day.

Besides loving the island, we loved the experience.   However, it was certainly NOT like being on a camping trip, which suits me fine.  Sure it was quiet, relaxing and peaceful.  But not a bit remote. No worries of even a squirrel running past the tent while you sleep.   If you’re looking for the camping experience, this is certainly not going to give you that feel.  In the evening, when the island is closed and the last ferry has left, it’s nice and quiet.  By morning, you quickly realize…. you’re still in NYC with helicopters buzzing overhead and the Staten Island Ferry passing by.  Constantly.

Meals were better than OK.   A limited menu, but again it was only open for less than 2 weeks.  Breakfast was a continental breakfast and there were choices for dinner; a BBQ box complete with tools and picnic items, or a choice of two menus. Service was somewhat non-existent.  We checked in at the ferry terminal, got our bracelets and tent number and once we arrived on site, we did not encounter staff or fellow guests, other than at the dining tent.  The communication preference seems to be via text, but we did not have a need to utilize that during our stay.  Tents were beautifully furnished with all high end bedding and bath items.   Journey tents are smaller and have a shared bathroom trailer, while Summit tents are larger and have private bathrooms and showers.

Before visiting Governors Island, I checked with fifi+hop for their review.  I’m not going to attempt to write about the island based on my few hours exploring, but I will share some pics of things I enjoyed below!   This article is worth a read, especially if you intend to visit the island with kids.

I also loved this New York Times article on the Children’s Junkyard Playground.   Worth a read.

Visit Collective Retreats online here:

Collective Governors Island 

Our photo gallery:

Kids Cooking Co. Winter Classes

Kids Cooking Co. Winter Classes

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The Kids Cooking Co. was founded on the belief that when we teach our children the fundamentals of cooking and give them the time and space to prepare a meal from whole ingredients, we are gifting them something special.  In this fast-paced world we live in, all too often meal time is an after-thought resulting in prepackaged and processed foods on the run.  The Kids Cooking Co. aims to help instill in our young people, a life-long love of learning about what and how they eat.  And we do this in a fun and exciting atmosphere.

The Kids Cooking Co. serves the lower Westchester County NY area offering classes for our school aged children at our Bronxville location.  These classes take place in a commercial kitchen.  For our younger clients, the Kids Cooking co. will come to your preschool and extend the day with cooking enrichment.



Santa, Shopping & More

Santa, Shopping & More

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Every so often, I post a bunch of links from other bloggers that I think you might enjoy.  These all pertain to the holidays so figured now would be a great time to share some great info from those who want to do all the research for us. (Lots of hyperlinks below….click where it’s underlined!)


The first share of this week is an incredible roundup of Santa Experiences in the area.  I have taken my kids to a few over the years, usually the easiest is the Santa at The Westchester Mall.  I have the photo of that same green chair year after year.   I loved Baby Got Chat’s summary of the good, the bad and the ugly– or as she called it the Naughty or Nice Santa’s.   I don’t know how she got all of this info on the Santa’s but this is some good scoop! 


If you’re gearing up for Black Friday the online way, I recommend following MyPurseStrings Twitter posts on best deals, some of which are available right now!   I don’t know how she scours the site for the best deals, but when she posts, I know it’s the lowest it’s going to be.    She will share them on her Twitter page but her site is worth following too.  Her posts are about apps, technology and suburbia.   Oh, she just got a really cute dog too, if you’re interested in reading that!


LOVE fifi + hop for family travel stories.   Shawna and I worked with her recently on a post about a ski vacation to Whistler and this week she posted about Christmas in New York.   She’s Westchester based and a great resource for family travel, day trips, staycations and more!

Travel Exchange: Why Whistler Resort Makes for the Ultimate Ski Vacation


Last but not least….and there are many.  Shopping Events, live and in person, supporting local vendors and independent sales consultants.  I don’t have them ALL but I will share yours if you give me a shout.   The few I know off right now are:

Athleta Scarsdale– Black Friday, 11/24

Junior League of Central Westchester, Scarsdale, Friday 11/17

Moms of Pleasantville Holiday Boutique 12/4

Moms of White Plains Holiday Boutique, 11/30 at La Bocca 6:30-10:30

Westchester Reform Temple, Scarsdale, 12/4

Westchester Woman Wednesday:  Meet CC Benitez

Westchester Woman Wednesday: Meet CC Benitez

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Each month, we feature a Westchester Woman for our “Westchester Woman Wednesday” series.   This month, we’ve decided to feature CC Benitez, who is relatively new-to-Westchester mom.   CC is originally from Oregon (she and Shawna connected instantly) and believe it or not, we found each other by way of Twitter.   CC lived in Brooklyn for a time and recently moved to the suburbs, just over the city line to Yonkers with her husband and son, the way many city dwellers do.   The goal was space, schools and ultimately a new business!   Not the typical path for most of us, but CC decided to take her fashion and retail background, along with her Brooklyn sensibilities and open Lil Chameleon in Tuckahoe.

I find more and more, that women are not working in the fields they started out in.   So many of us “Westchester Moms” have gone to school for something, worked at it for a time and then veered off in another direction.   Sometimes it’s an entirely new career path (the lawyer turned yoga instructor) and sometimes it’s using the same skill set just in a different way.   CC decided to create the “mommy haven” that every mom wants and needs, that many of us did not have when we were new moms.   Lil Chameleon is exactly what she dreamed up: a play space for kids to take classes to learn and grow, a cafe for moms to hang out and meet other moms over a cup of coffee and a healthy mom and child snack and a resale boutique where moms can buy, sell and trade outgrown clothing items and toys.   It’s a 3 for 1, one stop shop and it’s not like anything else nearby.

People ask me: Is it a consignment store?  Not really.  Is it a jump-around play place?  No.  Is it a drop off?  Nope.  Really, it’s an experience and you won’t truly get it until you check it out for yourself.   It’s a place where moms can meet up with other moms while their kids play.  It’s a shop that takes things off your hands, gives you cash on site or store credit for future purchases.   It’s a place where your child can take a toddler yoga class or Intro to Spanish class, while you catch up on your email and make some new mom friends.  It’s clean and beautifully decorated and takes the stress out of hosting a playdate at home.   (I think of those embarrassing times when my son refused to share with a child we’d invited over our house.)   Everyone’s on neutral territory, you’re not locking up the dog or feeling like you have to prepare delicious and healthy snacks that your guests will enjoy.   I honestly would have loved Lil Chameleon when my kids were younger.  A place to eat, shop and play…. my three favorite things.

CC is a woman who recognized a need and made it happen.  She spent months researching and planning, settling on Tuckahoe as her desired location.  Since construction in the summer and her grand opening this fall, CC has learned a lot about Tuckahoe and the surrounding areas, including Eastchester, Bronxville & Scarsdale.   The locals are stopping in and supporting her store (yay!)  The moms have great taste and are savvy spenders (absolutely!)  The surrounding businesses offer city life in the suburbs, with great dining, shops and now a place just for moms (and dads) to buy, sell, trade, relax and play.


Lil Chameleon is located at 29 Elm Street in Tuckahoe.

You can find CC in the store pretty much any day and anytime or follow her happenings on the Facebook page:

Visit Lil Chameleon online, view class schedules and more:

World Kindness Day

World Kindness Day

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Today, on World Kindness Day, reveals the results from a timely new poll on bullying, which finds that bullying is still a massive issue in school and that most of it is happening online in the form of cyberbullying. 

  • 68 percent of the 716 people surveyed between the ages of 13 and 24 said that they’ve had cyberbullying problems at their school, and more than half of those polled said that they themselves have been cyberbullied. It also revealed that 62 percent of those polled have considered transferring schools because of a bully.


  • Cyberbullying doesn’t only happen in the comments section on Instagram. More than 20 percent said that someone has stolen their password or cell phone and pretended to be them online as a means of humiliation. Those polled also said that appearance and weight are the top issues that drive the bullying they experience and witness.


  • With the presence of bullying in the classroom and online, teens today truly appreciate the power of kindness. When asked what characteristic is most valued in their peers, 90 percent said kindness (followed by 50 percent of those who value humor). Popularity was the lowest valued trait in peers.

You can read more about the survey results here:


The survey also revealed that many young people actually don’t know what bullying is or what it entails, so features a new piece breaking down the definition of bullying and cyberbulling, and how to stop a bully:

Westchester Woman Wednesday:  Meet Julianne Steiner

Westchester Woman Wednesday: Meet Julianne Steiner

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Our February choice for “Westchester Woman Wednesday” is Julianne Steiner.  I first met Julianne about 4 years ago when I bought a Groupon for a facial.  I never had a real aesthetician, that I saw regularly.  I would go to Tranquility Spa every 3-4 months or squeeze in a facial when I was away on vacation.  I remember talking with her at my first appointment about having an aesthetician, the way you would have a hairdresser.  I sort of put facials and skin care in the same category as nail care, where it didn’t matter who gave you a mani/pedi one month to the next.  I started to treat skin care the way I do hair care, and started to see the value of going to the same person for my skin over the years.


Julianne is a Westchester native, now raising a family here in Westchester.  She’s lived all over, from Hartsdale to Pleasantville to Eastchester.  She briefly lived in Stamford, CT and in the Country Club section of the Bronx.  What’s remained constant is that she’s been in business for 13 years in the Heathcote Section of Scarsdale in what locals call “The Five Corners.”    She’s located on the 2nd floor of the Wilgrin Building on Palmer Avenue, opposite Balducci’s.   Julianne offers everything from skin care to laser hair removal to make up application for special occasions.

Julianne Steiner



Julianne and her sister Jessica Steiner (a licensed massage therapist, in the same location) have offered a special deal, “better than a Groupon” for Emma Westchester readers.   Julianne and Jessica are offering the following services/packages for first time customers.  Simply mention Emma Westchester when booking your first appointment.

  • One 45 min micro facial, regularly priced at $175 is being offered for $70.
  • Two 45 min micro facials, regularly priced at $350 are being offered at $145.
  • Three 45 min micro facials, regularly priced at $525 are being offered at $170.
  • One 60 min massage, regularly priced at $140 is being offered at $100.

These prices do not require a coupon purchase and do not have to be used by a certain time.  You can contact Jessica to arrange massage appointments by calling 914-924-7744.   You can contact Julianne to schedule skin care appointments by calling (or texting, yes texting!) 914-874-4453.  

Shawna and I met Julianne for lunch last week at one of our favorite spots, the Metro Deli in Scarsdale.  We asked her about our three favorite topics: eating, shopping and playing in Westchester, as we plan to ask all of our featured Westchester Women.   Shocking to me, Julianne loves eating at Korean BBQ in Yonkers (link to NYTimes article) I think it’s called Korea Gardens (link to restaurant) and The Cookery in Dobbs Ferry.  She likes kimchi pancakes (need to google image that one) and seasonal food items and considers herself a foodie.


Not surprising is that she’s a Sephora junkie, always looking into the newest makeup and skin care products.  Her go to outfit is a maxi dress in the summer and she usually shops for clothing in department stores like Lord and Taylor, Nordstrom and Bloomingdales.  I had to ask what her favorite skin care products are, in case anyone wanted secret tips. She swears by MD Solar Science products because it’s truly a doctor-approved skin care/sunscreen and safe for your skin. She loves Dermaware because they are corrective products and her product of choice is Jurlique. Get this…the only line she has continued to sell in her 13 years.  She loves them because they are organic products.


On the topic of “playing,” Julianne admits that her family and her work are what she needs the most.  I would have taken that as her answer, but Shawna pressed and asked her for something outside of home, work and family.  To complete the interview, without skipping the third piece of it, Julianne enjoys the outdoors, hiking, going to wine tastings, dining out, visiting the city and going to comedy clubs.  Between running a business and a household, I think she forgot for a short time, what her outside interests were!

Julianne and her sister Jessica are BFF sisters. They work together all week long and choose to spend their time together on weekends. After moving out of their family home, they were roommates for some time.
Julianne and her husband Adam, with their 3 girls, Danielle (12), Sarah (10) and Ally (18 months)















Westchester Woman Wednesday:  Meet Hannah Fastov

Westchester Woman Wednesday: Meet Hannah Fastov

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I’m a little early this month!  It usually takes me until closer to the end of the month to get my act together and get the Westchester Woman Wednesday post up, but for October I wanted it live before this woman’s one year work-anniversary.

Hannah Fastov is the designer, creator and founder of Dash Dash Dot Dash Dash Dash (it’s Morse Code!) or simply shortened for the sake of her URL:

Yes- Only ONE year ago Hannah launched this project.  Her goal was to design, create and manufacture a bag that would change the way women lived, in more ways than one.  This bag would do the job of many bags. The Infinity Bag is named for it’s infinite possibilities.  It’s an all-in-one bag that holds everything from gym clothes, a change of shoes, a laptop, lunch, a water bottle and more.  With many compartments and pouches, there’s a spot for everything– even a yoga mat!  The bag is functional, yet fashionable, with stylish tassels and straps (more on that below).  There’s also a Weekender (a larger Infinity bag) and a Backpack.

This little crossbody bag is a bag inside a bag. Easily snaps in and out.


Early in 2017 Hannah began selling her bags at trunk shows and in small boutiques across the country. Before hitting the one year mark on October 15th, she’s already in contract with Nordstrom!   A pretty impressive achievement for a woman who has been in business for less than one year.

Here are some local places that carry – – . – – – bags!   (Dash Dash Dot Dash Dash Dash, which means GO)

New York

LUV2BFIT, Rye Brook

Great Stuff, Scarsdale

Great Stuff, Rye

Great Stuff, Chappaqua

Pedigree Ski Shop, White Plains


Pedigree Ski Shop, Stamford

Great Stuff, Greenwich

Great Stuff, Westport



“This name was months in the making and feel it truly speaks to who we are; we are the bags that let you –.— GO! All of our handbags, and any future products we create, will enable you to carry your stuff, neatly and organized, so you can focus on living.

Morse code is the universal language. That is exactly what our products are, universal. No matter where life takes you: navigating your early years out of college, becoming a mother, dealing with long commutes, retiring and taking to the jet set life, we got you covered.

Dash Dash Dot Dash Dash Dash is long. So as our friends, please call us by our nickname, Go Dash Dot.”


Lastly, on the topic of changing the lives of women, it’s not just the modern American woman that Hannah has in mind.  She has partnered with artisans in Bhutan and Kyrgyzstan to make additional straps and tassels for her bags.  Locally, she’s partnering with My Sisters’ Place donating half of the proceeds to help struggling women here at home.  15% of ALL SALES WILL GO TO MY SISTERS’ PLACE DURING THE MONTH OF OCTOBER

Hannah Fastov is a Scarsdale native, living and working in NYC.  You can follow her on these social media platforms:

Instagram: @go_dashdot

Facebook: @godashdot



LEGO Americana Roadshow in Staten Island: 10/7-10/22

LEGO Americana Roadshow in Staten Island: 10/7-10/22

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The Staten Island Mall in New Springville will host THE LEGO® Americana Roadshow, a highly visual, educational and free traveling installation of larger than life LEGO replicas of some of our nation’s most beloved landmarks.  Ten one-of-a-kind, large scale models of American Landmarks made completely out of LEGO bricks by LEGO Master Builders – including the U.S. Capitol Building, White House, Washington Monument, Jefferson Memorial, Lincoln Memorial, Statue of Liberty, Independence Hall, and Old North Church – take over Staten Island Mall and entertain customers with stunning visuals and fun facts.

 Staten Island Mall, 2655 Richmond Ave, Staten Island, NY, 10314

 Saturday, October 7 through Sunday, October 22

 Exhibition Hours: Monday-Saturday 10:00am-9:00pm & Sunday 11:00pm-6:00pm



LEGO Brick Play Area: Children of all ages can build whatever their imaginations dream up

LEGO Building Activity: Attendees can build their own LEGO Americana Roadshow inspired model and take it home with them (10/14 and 10/15 only). This stop will feature the Liberty Bell as the take away

LEGO Scavenger Hunt: Attendees can collect a special LEGO prize after completing the LEGO Americana Roadshow scavenger hunt.

Photo Credits: taken at the Glendale Galleria, Saturday, Feb. 7, 2015, in Glendale, Calif. (Bret Hartman/AP Images for LEGO)

Lil Chameleon OPENS on 10/4!

Lil Chameleon OPENS on 10/4!

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(Sponsored Post)

Announcing Lil Chameleon’s Opening Date & Live Online Class Registration

Lil Chameleon is proud to announce it is opening its doors Wednesday, October 4, 2017 from 9:30 am-6:30pm.  

Where else can you buy carefully selected, nearly-new, high quality brands for a fraction of the price?  Where else are you able to buy, sell and trade your own child’s best outgrown stuff and earn 30% cash or 50% in store credit?  With the best immediate payout around, you’ll quickly see the value shopping at Lil Chameleon.

Why not enjoy a class while out running errands, too?  With online class registration now open, an expectant mother can enjoy the benefits of pre-natal yoga or bond with other moms in a Doula-Yogi guided Stretch & Circle Time. Your kids can explore unique art forms and expand their creative horizons.

Lil Chameleon offers a wide variety of learning opportunities for the entire family.   Maybe you want to learn how to decoupage like Marie Antoinette or explore the world’s reptiles and mammals with Critter Caravan.  Young children are introduced to Spanish through music, and you can express the exciting, overwhelming, powerful feelings that come with new motherhood while taking Art in the Midst of the Storm lead by a licensed art therapist.  

Classes at Lil Chameleon are designed to help mothers (and partners) relax and reflect.  They allow kids to get creative juices flowing, find hidden strengths through art or grow physically through toddler yoga adventures.

Find more information about all Lil Chameleon offers, how the buy, sell, trade process works and register for all available classes here.  Read more about the talented and diverse instructors here.


Join Lil Chameleon’s mailing list to stay up to date with the latest announcements and exclusive registration deals.  And visit Lil Chameleon starting Wednesday, October 4 as they proudly open their doors to the public!



Lil Chameleon

29 Elm Street

Tuckahoe, NY 10707




Westchester Woman Wednesday:  Meet Tracy Merolle

Westchester Woman Wednesday: Meet Tracy Merolle

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You are going to love September’s Westchester Woman Wednesday.   Her name is Tracy Merolle and she’s the founder of this amazing Facebook Group:  Westchester County Rocks   Tracy started this page earlier this year for one reason:  to promote kindness among people in Westchester County. 

I decided to reach out and ask my many questions about this project.   How did she come up with this idea?  What inspired her?   Were there any incredible success stories?   Here’s what Tracy had to say about kindness rocks:

“Since election season began last year, I noticed a huge shift in our society.  Suddenly it seemed more acceptable to be unkind to others.  It was really bothering me.  I wondered how our children were going to be affected, long term by all the negativity around them, and what, if anything, could I do to make a difference.    During spring break we traveled down to Florida to visit with my parents who are snow birds.  While we were there my Mom shared with me a “Kindness Movement” that she had heard of.  There was a group in her county who were painting rocks and hiding them all around.  They called themselves Volusia County Rocks and they had over 5k members!  Of course we joined and my Mom encouraged me to see if there was such a thing going on back home in Westchester.  I created the Facebook page back in April and the rest is history!  We have had such a positive response in every community!  From local libraries to girl scout troops, to nursery schools, all joining in with the fun!  

I think the goal I had in starting Westchester County Rocks has come to fruition.  The main objective was to do my small part in changing the world.  I believe what you put out comes back to you.  I also believe that we are all a drop in a very large ocean.  Each one of us makes an impact and a difference.  If one rock that myself or someone else paints happens to change the course of someone who finds its day, then it worked!  I hope that this is showing children and adults that small acts of kindness add up and that people will pay it forward!  Hopefully, the movement will grow beyond measure and create  hope and kindness among all humans.  

I have personally gained hope for a better future just by starting this page!  I see the kind comments people leave on strangers posts.  I see friendships strengthen around a table of painters.  I see that there is such a thing as a ripple effect.  Here is an example from a post I read.  A man and women lost their newborn child and were waiting for the coronor to release the body.  The morning that they had received notice, the man was just getting done working the overnight shift at his job.  Obviously feeling great grief, he clocked out and happened upon a rock that was painted with a red cardinal and a line that said, “hello from heaven.”  He brought it home to his wife and they both embraced and cried, knowing it was a message from their little baby up in heaven.  He posted that to the Volusia County Rocks page.  When I read it, again it solidified the purpose of these groups.  There are lots of other serendipitous stories just like these.  It’s what its all about! “

The photos above are from her page, ones that she’s created or that have been shared to her group.   The messages are all positive and have a meaning.  Some are just there to put a smile on someone’s face.   Kids can recognize characters or logos that are familiar to them.  They’re placed under a park bench, in a playground or on the walkway to the library for another person to enjoy finding.  I am planning to do this myself with my sixth grade Girl Scout troop and I plan to share them to the Westchester County Rocks FB page!    Thanks for starting this Tracy!

Tracy Merolle is a Westchester native, currently residing in Harrison with her husband Tom and their three children, Dylan, Julia and Tyler.  She works as an aesthetician, makeup artist and microblader.    Outside of work and rock painting, she enjoys spending time with her family, usually hiking and scouring beaches in the area looking for sea glass.  


Northeast Etsy Artists in Katonah- Oct 7th

Northeast Etsy Artists in Katonah- Oct 7th

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Shop for exceptional quality handcrafted wares from the local artists, makers and designers of the Northeast Etsy Artists Association. Fourteen artists from the group will be on hand selling our unique handmade creations including beaded, gemstone and metalwork jewelry, fabric accessories including pouches, handbags, purses, travel wallets, custom hand-painted ornaments, colorful fused glass serving ware, original paintings, note cards and art prints, bath, skincare and body products, cozy knitwear and unique yarns, fair-trade vegan scarves, blankets and travel accessories and much more! A wonderful shopping experience for the entire family! Shop local, shop handmade!

Artists include:
Robin Larido, Denise Topkis, Carmen Scerra, Nicole Scerra, Dalia Renberg, Linda Awando, Phyllis Tarlow, Vanessa Black, Jeferson Echeverria, Robyn Warne, Jacquiline Awando, Najm Duran, Judy Secon and Abe Rosenthal

Visit us on the web at
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For more info please contact us at

Spins Hudson Aerial Rope Course

Spins Hudson Aerial Rope Course

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No school for the next few days, what to do?  How about heading up to Peekskill and visiting SPINS HUDSON a 40,000 sq. ft. new entertainment complex located at Charles Point Marina.  Not everything is open at Spins Hudson as they are still in Phase-2 of their development, however the aerial ropes course is open and we decided to check it out.

First impression – we were underwhelmed.  We could see an outdoor ropes course where we parked by the marina, but it didn’t seem very impressive.  After checking-in and signing the necessary waivers we proceeded to the aerial ropes course.  Korben and Frank received an overview of the course and training on how to use the clamps by the instructors and off they went.  WOW!  So glad that we didn’t turn around and go back home.  Once again, teaching me not to judge basted on first impressions.

Frank and Korben had so much fun that they ended up using every minute of their 90-minute session.  There are four levels with over 70 elements, which meant there were sections that were challenging for Frank but also doable for Korben.