Its time for our Fall Finds 2016 list and you know what I’ve noticed? All around our neighborhood the leaves on the trees have only now [reluctantly] begun their seasonal costume change. I honestly don’t understand their hesitation. I personally wholeheartedly embraced the boots and sweater weather weeks ago. And I needed exactly zero prodding to do so! Likewise, my cubs have been talking up Halloween costumes and leaf piles for quite some time before that as well. Our towering hardwood sentinels however…not so much. What’s their problem? I imagine it may have something to do with a reluctance to let go of yet another summer and its accompanying lazy beach days, road trips, barbecues, water park visits, and camping trips. I kinda get it.

But I’m ready to move on!

Our fall traditions and list of activities will carry on in earnest with or without their enthusiasm! We’ve got plenty on that bucket list too, including festivals, hay rides, pumpkin picking, apple picking, baking, and even building a haunted gingerbread house together. There’s just no time to look back and every reason to look forward. Forward to the smell of nutmeg and cinnamon in the kitchen, to long walks in crisp weather, to the start of the holiday entertaining circuit, and to warm and cozy everything. So, with that being said, those are just the sorts of things we made sure to include in our Fall Finds 2016 lineup. They’re items that will help you get out and enjoy that crisp weather, document those unforgettable memories, and even entertain at home for littles and bigs alike. The best part? This season’s list gives an extra special nod to all things vintage, to styles and elements whose appeal is as beautiful as they are timeless. Happy fall, friends!


Land of Nod Storybook Sleeping Bag

As a rule, forts, movie nights, sleeping bags, and hot chocolate all go hand-in-hand. A warm and cozy sleepover just wouldn't be, well, warm and cozy without any one of these universal elements. This beautiful Land of Nod sleeping bag is an ode to just that sort of childhood fun. Beautifully illustrated and with an adorable appliqué and embroidered design, it adds just the right amount of whimsy and charm to those adventurous get togethers. Made with 100% cotton, little ones will drift off to sleep snug and warm, with visions of woodland creatures dancing in their heads!

Crosley Vinyl Record Player

Blame it on the phenomenonal Netflix breakout hit Stranger Things, but we've found ourselves completely taken by all things vintage of late. We apparently aren't alone in this allure either, as artists including Miles Davis, Adele, Lorde, and Taylor Swift have revitalized yet another oldie but goodie- the vinyl record! With the unique sound and appeal of a bygone era and chock-full of memories, records have their own place in history- one that I am happy to revisit just in time for family gatherings and holiday festivities. This Crosley vinyl record player is the perfect blend of old and new in a compact size. So grab your old records, surprise your family with a few of their old favorites, or get some new ones, because LP is certainly ready for another day in the sun!

Bodum Chambord Copper French Press

There are those that argue in favor of your standard drip coffee machine, those that make a case for stovetop espresso makers, and then those that swear by the 'ol French coffee press. Well I'd just like to interject here with an argument in favor of...copper. Yes, copper, like the sort used in this French press by Bodum. Insofar as kitchenware is concerned, it's just about as classic and timeless as you could get, immediately conjuring up images of old country kitchens and time-honored family recipes. Its aesthetic appeal, combined with the pull of yesteryear are reason enough to give it a home at your family table. But only if, of course, the exceptional richness of a pressed cup of coffee just happens to be your thing!

Adidas Gazelle Sneaker

Another revival on this season's list, the Gazelle sneaker by Adidas is an homage to one of the brand's iconic styles from back in 1991. As dependable as they are timeless, these sneakers will see you through more than their share of orchards, hay rides, and pumpkin patches. Versatile as well, they look just as good dressed up for an evening out with friends and come in quite a few colors to match your personality and style.

Brass Inlay Cheese Board

Sometimes the most unlikely pairings make for the most beautiful combinations. Think leather and lace, or prosciutto and cantaloupe, or marble and brass. Wait, what? Yep. The beauty of this last collaboration is undeniable from the very first glance. The clean lines, the creamy pale marble, the touch of inlaid brass that is just the right color for this time of year in particular. This lovely piece is worthy of a place at any holiday table. Use it for cheese spreads, yes, but also for bread assortments, charcuteries, hors d'oeuvres, or even mini pastries. The possibilities are truly endless!

ALLSAINTS Mens Zellern Cardigan

Yes yes, we already know that fall is nothing if not the official "sweater weather." But where does that leave our friend The Cardigan? Is there any room in that institution for this versatile old favorite as well? There is in my book! There is something to be said about this trusty layering piece like this ribbed cotton number by All Saints. Cardigans give you options. They give you the ability to only halfway commit to warmer layers and the flexibility to quickly take them off if an over-zealous thermostat setting deems it necessary. So the answer is yes. The subdued and casual cardigan is just as worthy of a seat at the fall fashion table as its more famous cousin.

Lo & Sons Smartphone Wristlet

Simple yet elegant are the words to describe this saffiano leather smartphone wristlet by Lo & Sons. Without any trouble at all it accomplishes the monumental task of elegantly blending function and style minus any of the usual bulk, making it easily adaptable for both everyday use or evenings out on the town. The strap easily attaches to Lo & Sons' Seville tote if you are interested in additional space, eliminating the need to ever have to undertake the dreaded "purse swap."

Lomo'Instant Sanremo Camera

This, friends, is not your parents' Polaroid. The Lomo'Instant Sanremo camera is a retro twist on the standard variety instant cameras on the market today but with all the trappings of modern photographic technology. Its got a built-in auto flash, offers two manual shooting modes that allow you the opportunity to experiment with your shooting style, and is compatible with a variety of attachments to more closely align with the style you are going for. Use it to document some of this season's fun and candid moments with family and friends and relive the good old days of instantly huddling together to see the resulting images appear right before your eyes!

Anthropologie Albeit Lip Balm

The Albeit line of cosmetics by Anthropologie is meant to invoke the glamour and romance of the 1920s and 1930s, and with products like this little gem, they're well underway to accomplishing that goal. The compact lip balm contains ingredients like argan and marula oils and aloe, and is available in three classic and beautiful colors. It may be just the thing you need to add that pop of color when that summer glow begins to fade and the drier air sets in for a long stay.

The Mama Bears Fall Finds 2016 Sur la Table Cookie Cutters

Sur la Table Cookie Cutters with Design Impression

The weather starting to cool outside is all the reason I need to get my baking on! Yes, we can all make round chocolate chip cookies or cut out rectangular bars from flattened slabs of shortbread cookie dough, but every so often you've got to scratch that itch to try your hand at something a little more...creative. So with regards to these adorable owl and mama/baby fox cookie cutters from Sur la Table- challenge accepted! Maybe use caramel for natural color? Maybe coconut flakes for a white snowy owl? Or maybe those foxes are really little raccoons instead! You really can go anywhere with these, even using them as jello, cheese or fruit cut-outs as well!

Autumn fun for Long Island familiesPinThis



It’s time to break out the sweaters. Part time, of course, until the temperature decides to fail you during the daytime too. Then, inevitably, the sandals will all disappear, the bathing suits will be taken out of regular rotation one by one, pumpkins will begin appearing on every house’s doorsteps, and eventually even the sprinklers will get a long hiatus. Autumn has made her gradual entrance as always. There is simply no rushing her. She knows she will never be hurried.


Autumn fun for Long Island familiesPinThis


This last point is, of course, due to the fact that rushing is optional when you hold such a lofty and indisputable position among the very best the seasons have to offer. Fall’s near-universal adoration is all but assured year after year as her crowning glories can never be usurped or even imitated. Not even close. Apple picking and fall festivals? Yes. Fall classes at Benner’s Farm and the autumn play area at Pantaleons Farms? Why yes and yes! Also, pumpkin carving, cozy boots and sweaters, hot apple cider, hats, scarves, the smell of firewood burning in the air, and that’s just naming a few.

I take comfort in knowing that I am not alone in this [near obsession]. A scroll through memory lane in iPhoto recently led me to realize that I’ve cultivated the same adoration of all things autumn in my cubs too! That same love that made me binge watch Hocus Pocus and listen to The Monster Mash on repeat as a kid is now percolating through their veins as well. So, in an effort to help foster this same level of fervor among other little Long Islanders, I’ve rounded up some of the choicest options for fall fun around this wonderful island of ours. Some invite you to stay and play, others to just drop by for a quick visit, but all are worth their salt as far as autumn fun for Long Island families is concerned!


Autumn fun for Long Island familiesPinThis


Fall Family Festival Weekend at Planting Fields Arboretum
October 8th and 9th

Enjoy a family-friendly day on the beautiful grounds of the arboretum featuring a Halloween trick-or-treat and costume parade, live musical entertainmet, jumbo garden games, pumpkins for sale, pony rides, potato sack races, watercolor demonstrations, a bounce house, food and beer tastings, and much more!

Fall Family Freshwater Fishing Festival in Hempstead Lake State Park
October 15th

This annual fishing festival includes fall activities for good measure! The event features a casting for pumpkins contest in addition to fly fishing instruction, demonstrations, and outdoor exhibits. Children can also enjoy pumpkin decorating, an exotic animal show, face painting, and a magic show.

Village Day Fall Festival at Sands Point Preserve
October 16th

Enjoy the grounds of this lovely estate for the day to enjoy plenty of outdoor fall activities including a petting zoo, hayrides around the beautiful Great Lawn to take in the surrounding fall foliage, pony rides overlooking the beautiful Long Island sound, pumpkin painting, artisanal foods and vendors, honey from the Guggenheim Estate’s very own hives, a variety of refreshments, and entertainment from students of Bach to Rock throughout the day.


Autumn fun for Long Island familiesPinThis


33rd Annual Oyster Festival in Oyster Bay
October 15th and 16th

This iconic annual event is held rain or shine in the quaint village of Oyster Bay. Naturally, the festival features plenty of fresh seafood delicacies prepared fresh in dozens of different interpretations by professional and volunteer chefs alike. Other highlights include the annual oyster shucking and eating contest, pirate shows, artisans, midway rides, and live music, all with the backdrop of tall ships on the water.

Rise of the Jack O’Lanterns at the Old Westbury Gardens
through October

Definitely among the more unique events of the fall season, the Rise consists of a walk along a well-lit 1/3 mile scenic trail, set to a musical score created just for the event, as you make your way through the gardens to see the more than 5,000 hand-carved jack o’lanterns on display around you. New and exciting creations await you every year, but in years past we’ve seen recreations of popular television and movie stars, sports teams, animals, and city skylines. A live carving station allows you to watch the artists work their magic up close.

Halloween Boat Burning at The Long Island Maritime Museum
October 28th

This annual tradition in the idyllic town of Sayville is based loosely on the Norse tradition of a funeral pyre, one in which you will see only the fire department setting ablaze to a large donated wooden ship instead of vikings! This event also holds a raffle where one lucky winner wins a one of a kind handcrafted boat by LI Maritime Museum volunteers, light refreshments, live entertainment for the families and halloween costumes are encouraged!


Autumn fun for Long Island familiesPinThis


Bats, Barnacles & Broomsticks at Long Island Aquarium
October 29th

The aquarium joins in on the Halloween fun with an adorable penguin costume parade, games and crafts, haunted house, trick or treating, raffles, giveaways, author reading and signing, and so much more! Who doesn’t love a trip to the aquarium? Don’t forget to dress up your little ones in costume, they will get half off admission with a paying adult!

Great Jack ‘o Lantern Sail at Belmont Lake State Park
October 29th

Pumpkins sailing around a lake is one event you don’t want to miss. The first 50 carved pumpkins from patrons will be set up with candles inside, and set to float around bringing halloween fun to the state park. More fun is to be had at the petting zoo, games, crafts, trick or treat stations, and visiting the “spooky den” is a must!

Owl Prowl 5K at Scully Estate in Islip 
October 30th

Set on the beautiful grounds of Scully Estate, the whole family can get dressed up in costumes and run/walk this 5K race the day before Halloween! We ran it last year, and fell in love with all the family fun that was had! There is even a Monster Mash Dash for the little ones! After the race, stay and enjoy the Spooky Soiree of children’s activities in and throughout the estate.


Autumn fun for Long Island familiesPinThis