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Your Good Life Guide to the Hudson Valley. It's Fun Here!
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Sesame Street Live

By Marc Woody
Children laughing, clapping and singing alongside their favorite television characters was the scene at the Mid-Hudson Civic Center this morning.  The ss2all-new Sesame Street Live is back in town with a two act, Broadway-style production of “Make a New Friend” that has our smallest admirers looking up and wiggling in their seats to the colorful Abby Cadabby, Cookie Monster, Big Bird, Oscar The Grouch, Bert and Ernie, Telly and…yes, of course…Elmo!  Grover and his alter ego, Super Grover, however, take the lead to welcome his good friend from India, Chamki, for a fun-filled day on Sesame Street.  A cultural extravaganza, equally delightful and enlightening, ensues.
The multitude of musical numbers, from Count von Count’s rock star performance of “ss3Count Me In,” to “ABC Hip Hop,” “Elmo Slide” and Bert’s upbeat parody, “Moves Like Bert,” all make for one very cool playlist for your preschooler.  For those interested, it was a technically sound stage production, too, with soft lighting transitioning, age appropriate volumes (nothing blaring) and some awe-inspiring, attention-getting special effects that even had parents chuckling.
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Sharing, caring, engaged learning and being a good friend and neighbor, the hallmarks of Sesame Street, were demonstrated throughout with song and dance.  With the show being so interactive, those seated moderately close to the performance got great value and benefit.  But, truly, with the life-sized characters and raised stage, there really is not a bad seat in the house.  2 1/2 year old Tyler (pictured) was greeted by 3 year old girl monster, Zoe, while checking out the live action.  His mother, Agata Suero of Middletown, called the show, “Great,” and said, “We both had a blast!”  For fans from any generation of Elmo and his lovable, eclectic group of friends on Sesame Street, “Make a New Friend” is a must see now through Sunday in Poughkeepsie.

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Family Traditions for the 2014 Christmas Season!

traditionsChristmas Traditions bring the whole family together!
By Christmas.com

If ever there is a time to embrace some good ol’ family traditions, it is definitely during the Christmas season. There are many Christmas traditions embraced by my family that bring a sense of comfort and community as we celebrate the holidays. Several of them are worthy of being shared, and may indeed be common in your Christmas celebrations.

Holiday Elf on the Shelf
One of the most prominent holiday trends during the past few seasons has been the Elf on the Shelf. Our family was a little late coming on board with this one, but has now incorporated it into our traditions. During the Christmas season, our little elf gets into all kinds of mischief and keeps an eye on things for Santa. It is tremendous fun, and I can’t believe our little elf didn’t come to our shelf sooner! We have happily embraced our elf as one of our new Christmas traditions.

Christmas Chocolates and Baking
Another wonderful Christmas tradition in our family is all the baking and candy-making. It begins the day after Thanksgiving, if I can hold myself off that long! This decadent family tradition includes a half dozen different kinds of fudge, bourbon balls, truffles, cookies, pies, and any other kind of treat you can bring to mind!

The First Gift on Christmas Eve
Of all the Christmas traditions in our family, the family tradition of opening a singular gift on Christmas Eve dates back many generations. Traditionally, the family member who is the first to declare, “Christmas Eve gift!” gets to open a gift prematurely. You’d think it would always be a kid, but not necessarily…and all IS fair in love, war, and Christmas!

Our family traditions speak volumes about the importance of family, and may never be more evident than during the Christmas season. It will be interesting to see what new Christmas traditions are implemented as my own children leave the nest and have families of their own. Some tried and true traditions will be passed along, I’m sure, along with a few of the latest holiday trends sprinkled in.

How does your family celebrate the holidays and what are the traditions that you embrace? I’ll bet we all have a few holiday traditions in common and I would imagine every family has some special traditions of their own that are unique! That’s the beauty of celebrating the holidays with family.

~Merry Christmas and remember to embrace your family traditions whatever they may be!~