My Giggle Place was founded with the idea of creating a place for kids and parents to come together and learn from each other, connecting fellow parents and their children in a warm and supportive play space. Kids slalom down the chutes of plastic slides and sink into the soft, brightly colored orbs at the ball pit, all the while giving parents time to share advice on diapers or time-out philosophies. Children explore their creative impulses through puppet shows and karaoke at the Giggle Theatre or put their personal touch on frames at the craft center. The play space also offers an infant area, a building zone, a gym, and a library where toddlers can brush up on Dr. Seuss. Visitors also develop discipline and self-defense skills through My Giggle Place's tae kwon do program, with classes offered throughout the week.
Whether someone wants a custom T-shirt, calendar, or iPhone case, Zazzle helps them get it. The online site helps customers express their personalities through original creations. Customers first select a template, such as a blank mug or even a skateboard, and then add their own designs. They can then choose to upload photos to items; for example, invitations to a child's 9th birthday party can sport pictures of that child's 8th birthday wish not coming true. Zazzle is also a hub where artists can sell their designs for customers to use on blank templates.
Though they’re surrounded by ocean and sandy beaches, the kids at Seascape Kids Fun never get wet. That’s because the seaside sights are actually murals, all part of the indoor playground's oceanic theme. Designed for kids 1–14, the three-story facility includes an Aquarium Play Room, where youngsters explore a play structure that circles a range for launching foam balls.
Island- and ocean-themed parties include time in both Seascape playrooms. Face painting and pizza feasts can also enliven parties, while donuts treat guests during morning pajama parties. While their kids scamper about, guardians can relax by surfing complementary Wi-Fi or pretend-read Finnegan's Wake in public.
Cynthia Harvey has been designing fashion-forward ensembles since she was a kid. “At 9 years old I literally and figuratively looked up to my aunt, a professional model who made most of her clothes. She encouraged me to use the scraps of fabric to make my Barbie doll clothes and eventually my own clothes," says Harvey. Her interest in current trends led Cynthia to the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in LA, where she studied and eventually ascended to the post of professor. Though she's spent her time doling out fashion tips to the likes of George Clooney, Jennifer Lopez, and Janet Jackson, it was her time as an educator that inspired Cynthia to cofound The Sewing Studio. She aimed to counteract a decline in local arts programs, due largely to the great popsicle-stick and glitter fire of 1996. She explains, “I wanted to offer fashion sewing classes that are fun and affordable, with an emphasis on looks inspired by current fashion designers."
Her classes, which cater to the novice seamstress and advanced sewing student alike, achieve that aim. Led by Cynthia and other experienced teachers, the sessions range from introductory classes where pupils of all ages learn basics and stitch together totes or dresses to fashion design and sewing programs. Camps, workshops, and other learning sessions culminate in handcrafted apparel and accessories that students can take home and incorporate into regular wardrobe rotations.
Beginnings Baby Store preps soon-to-be parents for stork deliveries with snuggle-worthy swaddlings, baby-sized bedding, and informational parenting classes. Clients can acclimate future acrobats to new heights with the elevated assistance of Phil and Ted’s Me Too hook-on high chair ($49.99) or get a head start on clown-college applications with the primate-taming experience afforded by the Tiny Love Gymini Monkey Island ($64). Lighting nurseries with the glow of a starry night sky, such as the constellation projections of the Cloud B Twilight Turtle Nitelight ($29.95), sends baby calmly to sleep and reduces the risk of boogeymen infestations by 70%. Cotton onesies ($17–$19) protect limbs from pea-purée fallout while keeping tots nattily attired.