Christmas gifts from Geneva

Christmas gifts from Geneva

It’s time to think about the gifts. With kids room overflowing with toys, what can we get them? In this article you’ll see propositions of locally made gifts that make sense.

The list will focus on gifts that last, that bring value, and those that are not material products but experiences that will stay in memory as something awesome.

This Christmas list includes presents mostly for children, but you will also find ideas to please other members of your family!

It is the perfect time to support local enterpreneurs and local businesses. So why not?

CREATIVITY

Think Out Of The Box
a creative subscription

Join the adventure of creating something new every 2 months. You’ll receive all the necessary materials to create a masterpiece. The projects are always adapted to the season. You’ll all have fun discovering new surprises of good quality. The advantage is that these sets won’t have to create a lot of CO2 to get to your place, as everything is made locally. This is the gift that will last, that will occupy hands and spark creativity.

Check it out: thinkoutthebox.ch

RECRECREA
creative kits upcycling style

This is a highly eco gift idea. All Recrecrea does is creating from clean industrial waste that would otherwise end up at the recycling center. And all Bobine & Green does is pure beaty! Togeher they created these creativity sets that will please all tastes and that are as zero-waste as possible.

The range of possibilities is endless: color, glue and cut different materials to combine together to start or continue the DIY adventure at home. Kids receive the materials and create whatever they want or follow some instructions/inspirations. There 6 themes to choose from: Unicorn, Dinosaur,  Mouse, Princess, Jungle, Llama.

Check it out here: recrecrea.ch.

Funky Frames
Frames that live

Funky frames is a great concepts of framed illustrations that are not onnly pretty and fun but also – always go out of the frame. There is always one element that will peek outside in a silly way. You can get one frame and change the illustrations as child grows or changes passions. Why do I love it? Because it shows that coloring within the lines is not a rule, shows to think out of the box, to not be afraid of using ideas that do not fit in the current world.

Check them out here: funkyframes.com.

GOOD READ

KALEIO

How about a gift in a form of great read that comes to the mailbox every two months? Kaleio is a Swiss magazine for girls (and the rest of the world). Fascinating articles about every posisble field. Political science, biology, personal stories, emotions. You can read more about Kaleio here on Parentville. Every child (8+) will find something interesting to read in Kaleio. New issue comes out every two months. We love it here, I hope you will too.

More info: kaleiomag.ch.

Petite Salamandre & Salamandre Junior

Salamandre is a local nature magazine for adults. There is also Petite Salamandre for 4-7-year-olds and Salamandre junior for 8+. Salamandre magazines for kids come out once every two months (plus additional two special issues per year). It’s all about nature in a very children-friendly way. They will learn a lot, but the authors also offer ideas for activities, meals recipes, stories, challenges, and more. Their website is also incredibly rich in information and activities. Be sure to check it out.

Tichéri a les cheveux crépus
by Licia Chery

Tichéri a les cheveux crépus – An important and incredibly good book for all children, but maybe especially for those who are native English speakers and go to French speaking school. This book will not only help them to understand feelings of a little black girl, but also learn what words are racist in French. Despite the subject, the book is very light and not overwhelming. You can look it up here.
Big success at Parentville HQ. Licia Chery is a  singer, RTS presenter with a wonderful personality, you  may know her from RTS. She has recently also published a book, « Noir en Couleur », a strong biographical story that evokes the history of his African ancestors and their slavery. Check it out here.

BTW I prepared a round up of BLM resources in the past, you can see it here.

Your Adventures at Cern: Play the Hero Among Particles and a Particular Dinosaur!
by Letizia Diamante

A very new book by Geneva-based Letizia Diamante about Geneva-based Cern! Created for kids. It’s a great book that presents the scientific world to children in a very fun and interactive way. The book is filled with facts, mysteries, games, and quizes. Great gift to spark curiosity! It is available on Amazon.

EXPERIENCES

COLOR TA VIE
Lausanne

A marvelous place for people of all ages, for families, kids, adults alone. The place is located in Lausanne and I assure you – it is worth the journey. So, what is it? It’s a big room, that you enter wearing protective clothes. Then it’s you against the canvas on the wall. You have many dofferent tools to your disposal: by jumping, dancing, splashing and giggling you will create a unique masterpiece. You can see how we had fun there here.

More information here.

SENSAS
Geneva, 7+

An unforgettable type of fun! Sensas is all about challenging all our senses – in dark rooms, in a special pool, and… nope. I will not spoil all the surprises. It’s a great place to organize a birthday party or to have lots of laughter as a family. We tried it and we will surely go back!

Check it out here: Geneva.sesnas.top

 

SOMETHIING NEW

Your child dreams of trying new sport? Ice skating? Horse riding? Wall climbing? Why not turning it into a Christmas gift? Or making a family adventure of it? Maybe your child loves swimming and would enjoy a pass to Vitam Parc?

Or maybe they are dreaming of learning to play an instrument? Thinking about constructing a robot? Everything is possible. Most places offer discovery classes, trial courses, and private one-on-one experiences.

You can start searching here.

REALFLY
SION, 5+

How about the first indoor skydiving simulator in Switzerland? It’s in Sion and it is a big thrill! It is a wind tunnel that allows to experience flying. I guarantee it will be an unforgettable experience, and one that you may be tempted to repeat regurarly.

Find out more here: realfly.ch.

ALAIA BAY
SION

How about surfing in Swiss Alps? It is possible in Sion over at Alaia Bay – the biggest artificial waves in Europe. Children must be at least 120 cm tall to try it out. Oh, have I mentioned it is also possible in winter? I repeat: a beach experience in winter in the Alps. Do you think your child would like that?

You can find out more here: alaiabay.ch.

Hameau du Pere Noel – not only in winter

Hameau du Pere Noel – not only in winter

A very honest review with surprising tips, not so great pics, and vocabulary too poor to truly present how unique is the Hameau du Père Noel.

DESIGNER’S BRAIN

Just 10 mins drive from the Swiss-French boarder of Bardonnex, lies the village of Santa, his siblings, and the elves. Each house is decorated with a jaw dropping attention to detail. Imagining what was happening in the brains of people who designed this village is an activity I can never avoid while visiting. It’s just so unbelievably fairy-taily.

SANTA’S HOUSE

Santa’s house let’s us have a glimpse into his private and professional life. What does he eat? How does he store letters and plans his journey? What is he doing in France – shouldn’t he be busy in Lapland now? All these, and more, questions will be answered by Santa himself, or one of his siblings. A tricky thing is, Santa is fast asleep from December 1st till the 24th… (you can hear him snore). The elves on the other hand are very busy, but also very shy. You can hear them, almost see them, but they are quick…

SANTA’S SISTER – STORYTELLER

His sister, Mere Noel, has a very cosy house. Downstairs, she keeps a selection of dresses, but also tells stories in a very snug room – a delight! You can also visit upstairs where she sleeps and probably works.

SIBLINGS RIVARLY

His brother, Père Fouetard, is a mean and angry fellow. Probably jealous of his brother’s fame (siblings rivalry big time). To be honest it must suck to have a brother everybody loves and be given a different role just because he was born in a different year. Of course, we don’t really know the whole story, but let’s show him some compassion. He is the one most eager to chat with everyone… and it is never a jolly conversation. His house is funny though, so pretend you’re brave and go in.

Hameau du Père Noel is also the garden with a giant Christmas tree, elves garden, Santa’s sledge with its runway (!!!), and letterboxes. There is also a buvette with crepes and beverages, as well as a gift shop with everything you may need for Christmas.

ENTER NIGHT

There is also Marchand de Sable – Sandman. He is the one responsible for a goodnight sleep and beautiful dreams. But in the Hameau du Pere Noel he is not sprinkling magical sand into visitors’ eyes. He is the collector of dummies (aka pacifiers). He is the guardian of dummies, and has created a magical place whee children can part with their dummy when they are ready and hang it on one of the many christmas trees. For each dummy, he will buy a dinner for a child in a Third World country. At the end he presents dummies of celebrities: Harry Potter, Batman, the Invisible Man, Mickey Mouse, and more! I wonder how many you can guess.

ANIMALS

At the end take a quick walk down the road to find where Santa hid his animals. His reindeers are kept in a real secret location but here you can see and pet rabbits, deers, ponies, sheep, goats, and calves! Additional entry ticket is needed to visit this venue (it is not an official part of the Hameau). Few more details about it here.

PRACTICAL TIPS

For obvious reasons, Hameau du Père Noel is cray crowded on December’s Wednesdays and Weekends. My advise is to go there in early November or in January (no crowds, Santa not asleep). It is also a fab trip in summer (personally tested by yours truly). Of course, the most fun happens during Noel – check the program on their website. The staff assured me that on the 24th we can even see Santa take off – anybody wants to check it for me please?

You will be asked to leave the pram by the entry. The venue is big but not big enough to welcome everyone with a pram. Hameau is 100% wheelchair adapted. Address: Le Hameau du Père Noël 75 rue des alouettes 74350 Saint-Blaise Offical website: Hameau du Pere Noel.  
Christmas season 2021 in Geneva for families

Christmas season 2021 in Geneva for families

Ho Ho Ho! There are so many Christmas events this year, so much wonderfulness, it seems that we will be rewarded for the dryness of the previous year. Christmas 2021 here we come!

Without any further ado,

Let’s do it!

MAIN EVENTS

NOEL AU JARDIN
November 18 – December 26

Geneva’s own Christmas market moves this year from Bastion to Jardin Anglais. Christmas by the lake sounds indeed marvelous! It’s an absolute not-to-miss: lots of food, including the famous Fondue Chalet, activities for kids in the yourts, shows, concerts, and local artisanals. In short: eat, have fun, and get Christmas gifts locally!

More info: here.

HAMEAU DU PERE NOEL
& GRAND PARC DE NOEL

Hameau du Pere Noel is an incredible place. It’s a village in nearby France (a really short drive) in which Santa lives with all his family. The decorations are mindblowing and the whole setup feels as real as it can be. You can read all about it here. This year’s particularity: Santa will be tehre the whole time (usually he is asleep in December). But that is not all! The neighboring Grand Parc d’Andilly was transformed into the Grand Parc de Noel! You can get one ticket to visit both places on the same day (a shuttle bus will take you from to the other) or decide to visit just one. Both places have shops by the exit, with all you may need for a magical Christmas.

For Hameau du Pere Noel click here.
For the Grand Parc de Noel it’s here.

MONTREUX NOEL
November 19 – December 24

The most famous Christmas market in the region is back (no Covid pass needed for the outdoors activities). It’s big, beautiful, by the lake. Lots of stalls with food and possible Christmas gifts. But the special feautures are what makes it amazing:

  • La Maison du Pere Noel – a short train ride up the mountain to the Rochers-de-Naye (at 2042 m) will take you to Santa’s house. An opportunity to meet Santa, talk to him, and even get a small surprise, and woohoo – a certificate of meeting Santa! More info here.
  • Light On Ice (till January 6) – the most spectacular and magical ice rink in the region! See it for yourself here.
  • Flying Santa – the traditional treat! See Santa’s sledge fly above Lake Geneva in Montreux. I’m not joking – chek it out.
  • Christmas activities at Chateau Chillon – all info here.

ICE SKATING

Ice skating is back after 2 years! For the best ice quality head to Vernets or Vergers. For the charm – Bastions or Carouge. For fun – any ice rink in the canton will do. Each municipality, and many neighborhoods will have their own ice rinks. On each rink gloves are obligatory, on each you can rent skates. Some will offer classes or fun activities for kids. And most will have a buvette with something sweet/hot to reward the skating efforts. Enjoy!

SANTA’S CHIMNEY – bricolage workshop (6-10 yo)
December 11, Chateau de Prangins

An unforgettable Saturday at the Château, spiced with history, original creations and a tasty Christmas snack!
Program includes a visit of the castle, a creative workshop, and a snack. The price is 25 CHF per child, reservations are required. More info here.

CIRQUE DE NOEL
November 27 – January 9, Plainpalais

Acrobatics, clowns, magic tricks all in Christmas atmosphere. Attention: the show includes animals performing tricks. You can check more information on their website.

Coupe de Noel
December 18-19, Jardin Anglais

Swimming in the winter waters of Lake Geneva anyone? Even if not, it’s a great event to watch. Christmas Cup brings together more than 3,000 swimmers – 500 in competition and 2,500 in fancy costumes! Check out the details here.

OTHER CHRISTMAS MARKETS

CHRISTMAS IN CAROUGE

Like many municipalities in the canton, Carouge will celebrating the holiday season. How? In two ways. First of all there’s the Christmas Market from the 10th till the 12th of December. The second traditional celebration is called « Carouge Magique » and it is a wonderland: luminous art installations in the charming streets of this special city may surprise you (birds on the fountains, carps above your head).

Marché de Noël at Rudolf Steiner School
November 24, Confignon

In most Steiner schools around the world, the Christmas market is a traditional time of celebration. It is the fruit of many months of work on the part of families, teachers and friends of the school. On the program this year: a concert, raffle, and around thirty stands with the handmade and artisanal creations.

CHRISTMAS MARKET BY KIDS FOR KIDS
December 8th, Bastions

The traditional Christmas market held by the pupils of the primary schools of the City of Geneva returns to the Bastions. Under the heated Escalade tent, by selling games and toys they learn the value of things, but most importantly to give a new life to old toys. Happiness is not about having the latest gadgets. More info here.

Herstreet little Xmas market
4-5 December, Eaux-Vives

Herstreet is organizing a local makers’ market, which will show their offer for Christmas decorations and gifts. For children, a special Santa’s grotto awaits – with Santa of course (social distancing between Santa and the kids as we don’t want to get him sick for Christmas). An animator will also host groups of kids to create Christmas ornaments (during that time parents can calmly enjoy the market). You can read more details about this event here.

Noel a Lancy
December 1-5, Lancy

Christmas market in Lancy will be filled with interesting stalls, activities concerts, shows and beautiful illuminations. You can consult the full program on this webiste.

NOEL A LA FERME
November 13 – December 18, Ferme de Bude

Every Saturday, from November 13th to December 18th, two partner stalss will settle in the farm’s yard. An opportunity  to enjoy local products and share the passion of taste. You can see the full schedule here.

L’éco-marché de Bubble Ethic
December 4-5; Saint-Gervais

Close to the train station, the new premises of Voisins de Saint-Gervais and their coworking cafe, host an eco-market in honor of local and sustainable creation. The cherry on top? Brunch! Check it out.

SHOWS

CHRISTMAS CAROL
November 27 – December 19; Simply Theater, Versoix

Simply Theatre bring Charles Dickens’ festive tale back to Geneva following their smash-hit 2017 run, in an enchanting stage adaptation full of joy, song, and magic – the perfect festive treat for all the family!

For more information and tickets press here.

CINDERELLA by GAOS
November 26 – December 5, Nyon

Gaos is the Geneva Musical Theater society. They prepare 3 shows each season, along with other ponctual events. Now is the time for their winter production – Cinderella, Alan P. Frayn’s traditional pantomime. It’s a show for all ages, though because of its lenght probably best with kids older than 4 (but decide yourself, of course).

You can find out more and book your ticktes here.

CONTES DE NOEL
December 1 & 8; Plan-les-Ouates

This seasonal storytelling event is a part of the exhibition at La julienne « Ho Ho Ho! From Saint Nicolas to Santa Claus » (from November 26 to December 23). You can register for free up to 2 hours before the performance. Then on site within the limit of the remaining places. Children must respect the minimum age (minimum 5 yo) and be accompanied by an adult. Covid certificate compulsory for 16 years old and over.

OTHERS

ESCALADE

Not at all Christmas related but the most important celebration in Geneva happens in December. You can find out all what it’s about in my article here. As for this year’s Escalade events we’ll have the traditional parade. The rest of the program will be available here soon.

ICE SKATING

The most christmasy urban sport there is! And there are plenty of rinks in the canton. Almost every neighborhood and every municipality provides a rink. For good ice quality check Vernets and Vergers (Meyrin). For charm go to Bastions or Carouge. For fun try eny rink closest to you. All ice skating places provide skates for rent. Gloves are always obligatory. All places have an accompanying buvette with hot drinks and simple snacks. Some of them (like Vernets) have accompanying restaurants with good menu and fondue!

November 2021 events in Geneva for families

November 2021 events in Geneva for families

We survived Halloween, now is the time to brace ourselves for November. Why? We now have one month to Thanksgiving, Escalade, and just a few weeks till Christmas! Days are short and time flies faster, hence the bracing need. Luckily, it’s also the month of Automnales (yes, it’s back!), start of light shows, fondue with friends.

Of course, there is more! Indoors and outdoors – the fun awaits.

Ready? Let’s do it!

MATHS ET BRILLANT – SOUND & LIGHT SHOW
till 21 November, Bastions

Colloque Wright is back and with it its famous mapping on the facade of UNIGE in Parc des Bastions. It’s worth withstanding the cold, I assure you. It’s a beautiful show that evokes the beauty of mathematics. The piantings and animations will guide us through the different civilizations that have shaped mathematics. But even if you’re nit into maths, go and see this show – it’s beautiful! It will be screened every day at 18h, 19h, 20h30. You can read all about it here.

La chasse aux vilains à Genève
till 28 November, Old Town Geneva

Villans hide in the monuments and streets of the ancient medieval city. Can you find them? This independent treasure hunt is suitable for families. This treasure hunt takes you on a mysterious quest filled with puzzles and challenges. Thanks to your playbook and its many clues, you will go in search of the villainous characters hidden in Old Town. Book it here.

Scientific Show at Cern (6+)
Till December 1, Meyrin

Break a rubber tube with a hammer? Levitate a magnet? Come and watch some scientific experiments! Some of them will look like magic tricks. Show done in a simple and playful way. Different properties of matter and magnetism will be disccused during the show. It’s free, Covid pass for all 16+ is required, reservations obligatory. Check it all here.

Treasure hunt: « A la recherche de Mère Royaume », 6+
3 November – 5 December, Bastions

This animated treasure hunt takes you on a mysterious quest, filled with puzzles and challenges. Thanks to your game booklet and its many clues, you will go in search of Mère Royaume. Any clues you find will earn you points that turn into treats and other surprises at the end of the race. Special secrets about the history of Escalade await! More info here.

Treasure Hunt: « Le puzzle mystérieux », 6+
November 6 & 28, Musée Barbier-Mueller

A new quest at the Barbier-Mueller Museum that will invite young adventurers to be curious and inventive! Children are invited to go on an adventure to Southeast Asia to piece together clues that will allow them to solve a strange puzzle while marveling at the mysterious objects of Ðông Sơn culture! To book click here.

Balade animée « Les secrets de Genève »; 6+
November 10 & 28 Old Town

This lively walk invites curious children aged 6 to 12 to discover the well-hidden treasures of the old town of Geneva while having fun. No more guided tours where your child keeps pulling you on the sleeve to leave. Here, everything is designed so that children discover the history of Geneva while having fun!

La Nuit du Conte
November 12; all canton

This year, the  Nuit du conte will take place on November 12. The theme chosen for 2021 is: « Our planet – our house ». Schools, libraries, bookstores, youth centers, community centers and other institutions are once again invited to participate and share the experience of storytelling and reading. This year, MEG is joining the event with a wonderful program, but be sure to check this link for all events in the canton.

AUTOMNALES
12-21 November, Palexpo

It’s a huge yearly event in Palexpo (well, it used to be yearly BC). It’s several expos/fair in one place at the same time. What can families expect? Brick Live, Expo Juniors, Salon Bebe et Moi, Cats Exhibition, Dogs Exhibition, Cook’n’Show, Salon du Velo (bikes), and much much more! There also many worksops and conferences. It’s a good place to start Christmas gifts hunt. More info: here.

Le Festival des Petits Bouts
13-14 November, Plainpalais

It will be the 4th edition of the festival designed for children as young as 1! On the menu: magician, opera for kids, relaxation workshops, and more!  Check it out and book here.

NOEL AU JARDIN
18 Novembre – 26 Decembre

Christmas starts in November. This holiday season will finally resemble the one from the BC era (I’ll let you decode BC on your own). Once placed in the Parc des bastions, Geneva’s own Christma market moves to the gorgeous Jardin Anglais. Lots of activities for kids, restaurants, shops, mulled wine, fondue chalet, and above all Jardin Anglaid in Christmasy look! You can find all info and book your tables here.

FESTIVAL FILMAR
19-28 November

Filmar is the biggest film festival devoted tothe latino-american culture in Switzerland. There is a separate program for children: they can discover movies, series, and short films either with family or within parascolaire activities. At the same time and throughout the year, FILMAR School presents school screenings adapted to all levels and to many disciplines. Find out more here.

TOTEM BLACK LIGHT PARTY
27 November, Meyrin

Totem Escalade is bringing the blacklight party to its new premises in Meyrin! It will be an afternoon and evening in the dark, climbing under the UV light, fab decorations, and entertainment for children (for adults too, of course – till 4 am in the morning). Theme & dress code: Back To The Jungle. The best costume will wina subscription to Totem. The whole program and reservations here.

OTHER OPTIONS

ICE RINKS

They are back after last year’s closure. Two main ones are at Vernets and Vergers. You can rent the skates and have fun. They also offer courses, classes, and have on-site restaurants. Sounds like a nice day out, right? Be sure to check your commune’s rinks.

THEATRES

Lots of shows this season! A particurarly rich program at AmStramGram (including shows that require no knowledge of French!). Also, Simply Theater is back with their wonderfullness. You can also check Theatre des Marionnettes de Geneve which presents shows even for the youngest spectators. Theatre du Loup is also busy with a show for 6+.  There are many more shows for all ages all over Geneva, you can check these theatres here.

MUSEUMS

The Natural History Museum has a brand new exhibition: « Tout Contre la Terre », that talks about the climate change from an emotional angle.

Musee d’Ethnographie also launched a climate-change related exhibition: « Environmental Injustice Indigenous Peoples’ Alternatives ».

MAH, on the other hand, tackles fashion in an interesting way: « Pour la Galerie ».

Musee du Leman, which is in itself a great place for an outing, has a new exhibition all about the swans.

Last but not list, World Press Photo 2021 will be in Chateau de Prangins from November 11th.

This article’s photo credits: Laurent Egli.

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Autumn family recipes by Oksana – Nutrition Right

Autumn family recipes by Oksana – Nutrition Right

Oksana from Nutrition Right is back on Parentville with her lovely recipes. Her idea is to provide you with easy, healthy and yummy recipes to prepare with kids. Enjoy!

To help you ensure your kids eat healthy products and avoid getting sick, I am sharing two tasty and simple recipes. Involving your child in cooking may help boost their enthusiasm for eating it afterwards. If however, you wish to keep the ingredients a secret, then feel free to cook by yourself and serve them a surprise dish, which hopefully they’ll like.

As caring parents, we try to help them stay healthy by getting them to eat as many fruits and veggies as they can. We often have to be creative in ways of serving fruits and vegetables, especially when dealing with picky eaters.

So, how can we get our kids to eat more of these healthy products? Often “hiding” their least favourite or unknown vegetable amongst others work very well. At other times, a different way of preparing & serving fruits or vegetables does the trick.

Baked Broccoli Battonnets

We often, unknowingly, overcook the green vegetables like spinach, broccoli, kale. It happens especially during boiling.  As a result, lots of vitamins get lost, including the cold-busting Vitamin C. This recipe only requires blanching broccoli and  baking it in the oven. Blanching, over cooking or steaming are the best cooking methods to ensure the vegetables retain all vitamins.

Preparation & Cooking time 35 mins.
Prep Time: 15 minutes.

Ingredients

2 cups of fresh broccoli, chopped into medium sizes pieces;
1 egg;
1/3 cup hard cheese like cheddar or Gruyere, grated;
½ small onion, diced;
1/3 homemade breadcrumbs;
Salt and pepper.

Method

Step 1 (child) : Wash the broccoli under cold water.

Step 2 (adult) : Cut the broccoli into medium sizes pieces. Blanche the broccoli in boiling water for 1 minute. Drain well and cool (cooling by rinsing with cold water is fine).

Step 3 (adult) Dice the onion. Grate the cheese.

Step 4 (child & adult): Using leftover bread, blend it in mixer until it resembles breadcrumbs. Any type of bread works well.

Step 5 (child & adult): Take a big bowl and crumble the broccoli into small pieces using the fingers. Add breadcrumbs, egg, broccoli, cheese to the bowl & mix well until the mixture is a little bit sticky. If it is not sticky at all, add 1 egg yolk.

Step 6 (adult): Preheat the over too 400 °F /200 °C.

Step 7 (child & adult): Scoop about 1.5 tablespoons and form an elongated shape, like a fish finger. Put the ready made batonnets them onto a baking sheets.

Step 8 (adult): cook in the oven for about 20 mins , turning half way. Once ready, serve as a side dish for a main course.

orange smoothie nutrition right

Orange smoothie

This recipe has only three ingredients: orange juice, yogurt, and honey. It may sound like a strange combination but you’ll be pleasantly surprised how good it tastes. The smoothie can be an afternoon snack or accompany the breakfast.

Orange juice is packed with Vitamin C, which helps to strengthen the immune system. The live bacteria in probiotic yogurt are essential for healthy gut which impacts the absorption of nutrients and boosts the immune system.
A little bit of honey gives a yummi sweet taste. What’s more, honey has an antibacterial quality which fights gems and bad bacteria in digestive tract.

Ingredients

Serves 1
½ cup fresh unsweetened orange juice;
½ cup of bio probiotic yogurt;
1tsp runny bio honey.

Method

Mix thoroughly all the ingredients and drink once ready. Avoid making it in advance as it doesn’t taste as good.

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Recrecrea camps of fun

Recrecrea camps of fun

A beautiful, and visibly filled with lots of positive energy lady, Dany, gathers kids around to welcome them at the camp. « My job is going through all kinds of bins », she says to explain her job. Some kids laugh, some are baffled. Mommy said to never get stuff out of the bin. But when she goes deeper into the details they quickly grasp the concept and are wowed by what we can do with things that were destined to the « decheterie ».

About RécréCréa

Danny started association called RécréCréa several years ago. Clearly, Dany and other members don’t dive into single bin in the canton. The goal of this association is to recover materials, so-called « clean » waste from companies and individuals to give them a second life through creativity and play. Their depot resembles Ali Baba’s cave. Whatever material you may need for your creative project, it must be there.

Recrecrea offers activities for families, kids, camps, but also workshops for adults, and company workshops. Recrecrea has a wonderful way of educating through fun and play.

CAMPS

Oh the camps! Kids paradise! On most weeks of school vacations and for several weeks every summer, RécréCréa offers camps. Each week has a different theme, and some may be organized in a collaboartion with another organization.

Children spend days laughing a lot, creating, playing games, chilling, and running outside. Dany is some kind of a magical child whisperer, she magically makes the group work together and brings so much positive energy they will be fueled for weeks! And not only Dany, she chooses her associates wisely, so whoever is taking care of the kids during those weeks, knows how to gain their trust and create a friendly relationship. Children feel happy and safe.

The only risk of signing your kids up for this camp, is that they will want another week, and another, and to be back next year. At least, this is Parentville’s personal experience.

It is such a wonderful place!

Creativity in comes in many forms during these camp weeks. Be ready to welcome at home vehicules with CD wheels, or big cardboard ice cream shops, or wooden houses for figurines. Sky is the limit, and I assure that your kid will surprise you. In Recrecrea everything is possible.

 

FREEDOM

Freadom is the feature that comes first to my mind when I describe camps at Recrecrea. Freedom not only to create whatever kids want, and not only the freedom to choose materials. It’s freedom in general.

Nobody is forced to do anything. There’s lots of free time and at the same time lots to do for those who don’t need free time. No child is left alone, but they are free to do what they want, and free to be themselves. It must have something to do with Dany’s big heart and empathy.

Maybe, explaining freedom at Recrecra on an example, will work better?

PERSONAL

In the summer of 2020, Dany was incredibly kind to offer a camp to Z and her friend. Having a child who does not like camps, I hesitated, but we gave it a go. It was the best decision I made in a long time. Girls had amazing fun. It was always hard to get them to leave, and each day they were coming back with cool DIY projects.

We now have two wooden houses with some fancy decorations, paintings on wooden boards, a proper wallet made out of a chips packaging, self-made face masks and a big cardboard house (I think it’s a house).

Whenever I came, I heard laughter and joy. One time the kids filled a small kiddy swimming pool with torn paper bits and spent hours playing with it, throwing it around, making paper battles.

Some kids where doing wooden houses, while others were painting, or playing outside. This is freedom.

On the last day they almost cried, so… they stayed another week. At the end of the last week, Dany was asking children what she could do better for the next year. The main answer was: let us sleep here!

 

PRACTICAL INFO

Recrecrea’s online:
recrecrea.ch; @recrecrea on IG, @recrecrea on FB

Camps are for children between ages 4 and 10.

Meals are included in the price.

You can enroll for a week or per day, or half day. Everything is possible.

 

Halloween 2021 in Geneva – for kids and families

Halloween 2021 in Geneva – for kids and families

Boo! It’s Halloween season and I bet you’re up for some spookingly fun time. Well, as every year, I put together a list of some of the events happening on the occasion of Halloween in Geneva.

Ready? Let’s do it!

Swiss Vapeur Parc
October 14th – 30th; Le Bouveret; all ages

If you haven’t yet visited the Swiss Vapeur Parc now is the time! If you already have, you  may enjoy the new Halloween-y look of the place. Some mildly scary characters, pumpkins, and spider nets will make the train journies even more exciting. To get your tickets click here.

Fete de la Courge by Schilliger Garden Center
October 23rd; Plan-Les-Ouates & Gland

Pumpkin Festival is back again at Schilliger with some fun activities for all ages. Children can learn how to hollow and cut the pumpkin and take their creation back home. There will be a pumpkin contest – the heaviest and the most original will win – a good opportunity to see variety of pumpkins and squash. Last but not least there will be an Autumn Fair in Gland and Matran – with local artisans and squash-based snacks! More info here.

Pumpkin curving with L’Atelier Mandala
October 24th, 27th, 29th, 30th; Viry

A fun parent-child activity for this time of year. Halloween in Geneva would not been Halloween without a pumpkin curving fun. You can do it at home of ourse, but why not try doing it at an artistic workshop. Check it out here.

Chateau d’Aigle
October 29th-30th

It’s a bit of a drive from Geneva but their Halloween events look promising! Evening light shows on 29th and 30th, and then on Saturday a day of activities, magic, and discoveries for all ages! A good excuse to visit the castle. Click here to know more.

Kids Halloween by Spell Languages
October 30th; Plainapalais area; for all ages

Spell Languages will never stop to surprise us all with their brilliant ideas! For this year’s Halloween they partenerd up with Haydee Barron Academie de Dane, AmaKids, Neo Academie, and Emys to organize a party filled with mysterious games, creepy activities, trick or treating, and more! To make the party work better for everyone there different timings for different age groups. Here’s the link to the detailed info and an enrollementt form.

PARC AVENTURE
October 30th and 31st; 3+; Evaux

The most adventourous parc in Geneva will be decorated with dreadful elements the whole week of October holidays. On the weekend of 30th October you’re invited to come with your costume to enjoy the scary trails in a new way. They also prepared some surprises. Reservations are highly recommended. You can see how it works by clicking here.

Halloween Family Party by Yatooland
October 30th; Les Acacias; 3+

Yatooland prepared a family party with a spooky maze, photo competition, disco, contests and more! You can book your tickets already and secure a spot in the place that kids adore and parents dread. If you’re brave enough, check the details here.

Halloween Party by Kids Club Coppet
October 30; ages 2-9; Coppet

A yearly tradition has been kept up by Kids Club in Coppet. A Halloween Party with games, arts activities and treats for kids ages 2-9. Not far from Geneva, in Coppet. You can find the details here.

Halloween au Chateau
October 31st, Prangins, all ages

Isn’t in a marvelous idea to celebrate Halloween at the old castle? Chateau de Prangins is beautiful and old enough to host old-time ghosts. This year, ghosts will not disturb children, instead the castle’s team prepared storytime and candy! You’re more than welcome to come wearing a costume. Check it out here.

Halloween Family Part at Fort Ecluse
October 30th, France

Fort Ecluse (over in France) closes its doors in autumn. You will have to either wait for the spring to visit this great place in a stunning landscape or go for their Halloween Party! The description promises a really scary evening, it ought to be superb! You can read all about it on their website.

REALTED ARTICLES:

October camps – potato holidays 2021

October camps – potato holidays 2021

Say what? What holidays? The school has just started!

Potato holidays are a surprise to many. It depends on where you’re from. The argument behind having the October holidays is in the past, and it is a simple one. In October, kids had to help harvest potatoes (and another veg that needed harvesting). Nowadays, the October holidays are a pleasure for many families (travelling to warmer parts of the planet) and a nuisance to many other parents.

Anyway, you’re here because you’re looking for childcare during the last week of October. You’ll find propositions of various kinds, including an option for kids as young as 2.

Ready? Let’s do it.

The content of this article IS NOT sponsored. The list is not exhaustive. It’s what I found and put together to help you.

GYMBOREE GENEVA
3+, Grand-Saconnex

Halloween-themed camps for 3-6 year olds. You can enroll for the full week, half days, or day by day. Up to you. More info here.

Herstreet
2-3 yo, Eaux-Vives

A camp of half days for little munchking aged 2 & 3. Located comfortably in the center of Eaux Vives at Herstreet. More info here.

TOTUP
2-3 & 3-6 yo; Lancy

TotUp is a nursery, a school, and a family sports-center. It’s one of the best places for camps for little kids. The staff knows how to take care of them, and the facility is filled with entertainment. Read more here.

CAMPZONE
3+, various locations

Various camps in various locations. From horseriding to computers. You can find out more here.

Academie de l’Opera
3-5 & 6-12 yo, Eaux-Vives

Here’s a week of theater, singing, joking, and trying something new! Great camps at Academie de l’Opere (details here).

ECOLINT
3+, Nations & Chene Bougeries

Various camps on rive gauche & rive droite: many differents sposrts, and opportunities to discover new passions. Check tjem out here.

Kock On Wood
8+, Nations

A woodworking camps in ap rofessional woodoworking atelier. Great atmosphere in a fun setting. Details are available here.

RECRECREA & PETITS BRICOLOS
4-12 yo, Plan-les-Ouates

A full on creative camp in Plan-les-Ouates. Upcycling, recycling, lots of silly fun, woodworking, and good food. Check it out here.

Spell Languages
4-10 yo, Plainpalais

Whether your kids want/need to start a new language, get better at a language they learn at school, or if they simply wantto have fun, Spell Languages in Plainpalais area is the best choice. All info here.

Espace Colibri
4-10 yo, Carouge

A journey around the world with relaxing activities: theatre and body expressions. Read more here.

HB Dance Academy
3-9 yo, Eaux-Vives

How about a week of Halloween themed camp? The Dance Academy of Haydee Barron prepared a special Halloween camp with activities from13h30 till 17h00. It will be all about having fun and moving a lot (eg outdoor games, olympics, arts, master chef, treasure hunt and more!). You can find out more about it here.

IT STEP
4-13 yo, Nations

Computers, lego, robotics – all in one at IT Step Academy. For all the details click here.

Spy Kids Academy (Les Enfants Terribles)
4-8 yo, Petit-Saconnex

A great camp for all those kids passionate about solving puzzles, mysteries, spying. During the camp kids’ patience, sense of observation, organiztional and planning skills will be put up to the test. It sounds fun! More info here.

KIDS UP
4+, Meyrin

Circus gymnastics for kids in Meyrin (half days for 1P-2P. Full days as of 3P). You can check the details here.

Planet Climbing
5-8 yo, Lancy

A climbing camp with yoga, games and a guarantee of fun. Planet Climbing is the most warm and friendly place to start the climbing adventure. Check it out here.

Future Kids
5-14 yo; Institut Florimont

Robotics, naimaions, video games creation and more awaits children at Future Kids. Here’s their website.

Au Fil du Sens
5-10 yo; Charmille

Five days to discover and identify emotions and learn how to handle them through yoga, relaxation. Cooperation and creative activities are also in the menu. Kids will also experience the soothing effect of the sound bath and vibratory instruments. Here’s the link.

XLABS
Servette

Scientific paradise created by XLabs. Super cool experiments! In other words, it’s like spending a week in Hogwarts. Check it out by clicking here.

Bubbles Club
4+, Eaux-Vives

Hallowen-y sporty camps in eaux Vives. You can find out more here.

TOTEM
4+, Meyrin

Climbing and multi sports camps in the new spacious climbing placa aka Totem Meyrin. You can read more about Totem’s camps here.

CPV
Various locations

Lots and lots of differenct camps for all ages at camps.ch

Bull d’Aire
4-8 yo, Petit-Saconnex

It’s all about the music in Bull d’Aire, also during the October holidays. Dancing, playing instruments, singing. Check out the details here.

Family events in Geneva – October 2021

Family events in Geneva – October 2021

Summer is officially over but family-friendly events in Geneva are not. Grab your coat and let’s go (umbrella can become handy, too). You’ll see that the menu is wide enough to please everyone every weekend and beyond. Halloween-themed events included. And one brand new this season: covid pass for 16+.

Ready? Let’s do it!

ANIMATOU
28 Septemebr – 9 October

It’s back! Animatou is the International Festival of Animated films in Geneva. Check the program and book tickets fast. It is a great opportunity to see the best films. They will make you laugh, make you feel, make you think. Screenings in several locations in Geneva, and on October 4th in Satigny. ANd before you ask. Most movies screened at the festival are for older public, but you will definitelty find films for children as well.

Practical info: animatou.com

Fete de la Science
9 October, Chateau Voltaire (France)

This fun and exciting event takes place every year in the beautiful Chateau Voltaire in Ferney-Voltaire just across the boarder. Don’t miss it – it’s a great opportunity to visit the castle and its wonderful gardens. Oh, and of course great opportunity to learn more about the scince, or even perform some experiments. I couldn’t find the detailed program of this year’s edition but at it is cool every year, I assume it will be fab this year as well.

Practical tip: it’s in France, so Covid pass for 12+ and masks for 6+. More info about the event here.

Explore Geneve
13-23 October

This one is new. A festival that will make you explore Geneva and its possible future. It looks fun, with over 30 events planned in the most emblematic places. Some of these events are fun for families, but three were designed specifically for kids: micro-zoo & treasure hunt in Parc Beaulieu (and 5 other places),  sustainable cooking in Petit Saconnex, a walk by the Rhone filled with discoveries. I invite you to check this festival, plan the events as it really loks exciting (maybe because geocaching is involves!).

More info: here.

Printemps Carougois
till 10 October

If there is any municipality that could move spring to autumn, it is Carouge. Most events of this festival happened in the very beginning of the month but there is one that can interest you on a rainy day till the rest of the month (and beyond).

It is the new exhibition in the freshly renewed Musee de Carouge – « Apparition » (it presents works of Albertine, Geneva’s cartoonist). It’s colorful, meaningful, and a good excuse to visit Carouge in October.

Find out more here.

Autumn Petit Black Movie
October 3-24; Various places

Before the Black Movie Festival (and Petit Black Movie) kick in January, the organizers prepared monthly screenings in different parts of the city. Each month has a different theme of short films screened during each session. In October the subject is: « The unloved ». Four stories about little beasts that inhabit the attics or underground, of which we don’t know much other than that we should be wary of them. These four stories show with humour and tenderness the universe of these unloved creatures that were given a bad reputation by legends or simple prejudices.

Places limited. Book online. All info here: blackmovie.ch

La Fête de la courge
23 October; Gland & Plan les Ouates

Pumpkin Festival is back again at Schilliger with some fun activities for all ages. Children can learn how to hollow and cut the pumpkin and take their creation back home. There will be a pumpkin contest – the heaviest and the most original will win – a good opportunity to see variety of pumpkins and squash. Last but not least there will be an Autumn Fair in Gland and Matran – with local artisans and squash-based snacks! More info here.

Halloween at Parc Aventure
30-31 October

Once again, the Halloween nightime climbing in Parc Aventure has been cancelled BUT! The Parc will be decorated throughout the whole month of October. For the two last days of the month, come in your Halloween costume and accrobranche like never before. Some surprises await! Reservations needed. More about it here.

Halloween Party at Kids Club
30 October, Coppet

The Kids Club is organizing a Halloween Party with spooky decor, scary games, and horrifying snacks! The party is designed for children aged 2-9, bookings are required. You can find out all the details here.

HALLOWEEN IN THE CASTLE
October 31, Prangins

How about some spooky stories and candy in the castle? Chateau de Prangins is organizing a kids friendly event with tales, storytelling, decorations, and candy! Costumes are of course welcome! Check it out here.

EXHIBITIONS

Colder weather and rainy days are perfect for museums and exhibitions! So let’s look what is happening in the exhibition spaces.

 

MEG
Environmental Injustice Indigenous Peoples’ Alternatives
till August 22

A fascinating exhibitions that looks into the indigenous peoples’ lives during climate crisis. It was prepared in a close collaboration with the representatives of various indigenous peoples, which gives it more depth and shows insights like never before. It talks about how the changing climate affects them, how bad decisions affect them, and what solutions they find. Many activities (including ones for children) accompany this important and insightful exhibition. Oh! It’s fully bilingual Eng-Fr. More info here.

NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM
Tout contre la Terre
From October 14

A new etemporary exhibition will be launchedat the Natural History Museum. This on will tackle climate change and the erosion of biodiversity from an emotional angle. What is the impact of our emotions regarding the environmental crisis. Elaborated with Dominique Bourg (psychologue), Tobias Brosch (psychologist), and Cristina Soriano (linguist). The scenography with a low environmental impact, brings together naturalistic collections, various visuals, testimonies, and… emotions.

Fully bilingual, paid entry. More info here.

GLOBAL HAPPINESS
till October 17 (last chance)

Quartier Libre du SIG is known for hosting immersive, interactive (in a good way) exhibitions. Global Happiness is one of the best ever presented in that space. It tackles important issues, makes visitors actively reflect on their own lives and the lives of others. It is a perfect exhibition to visit with kids.

Free entry, bilingual, open on Mondays (!!!). More details here.

LES BERGES DE VESSY
Immersions
till October 31

Visualy mesmerizing, super interesting, and spread around several buildings. This is a great exhibition for both good weather, and a rainy day. When it’s not raining walking between the buildings of Berges de Vessy will help kids decompress before each part, and afterwards you can (must) go for a walk around the berges. On a rainy day, the exhibition will be a great outing as well – lots to see and discover. More information here.

Musee du Leman
Le lac du Cygne

This year, the Musee du Leman will tell us all about the swans (cyygnes). Have there always been swans in the lake? Are they as pristine as they look? Why are they so beloved by humans? And why Lac Leman is a perfect place for them to live? This museum never cease to surprise, so surely this exhibition will unravel many fascinating san facts! Don’t forget to visit the permanent exhibition while you’re there – it is one of themost kids-friendly museums in the region.

All the details are here on their website.

Le Muzoo
Acacias

The museum of the Theatre du Loup is open on Sundays during Autumn and Spring. Inside, you’ll find a fascinating collection of all-things-theatre-du-loup. The items gathered in this unique Ali Baba’s cave, date back to 1978, when the theatre wss created. There are masks in all sizes, a giant spider, posters, costumes, three-dimensional characters and more. Check it out!

Vermeer: Le reflet d’un songe

If you haven’t heard about Jardin des Nations, it’s about time! This fun space won’t stay with us forever, just for a few years. It’s a farm, a food truck place, a place to chill, relax, meet, buy veggies, but also… a place to enjoy a fascinating, wonderfully prepared 360 degrees show – « Le reflet d’un songe » (eng. |A reflection of a dream »), based on the paintings of Johannes Vermeer. You can book tickets online or at the venue. All the details are here.

THEATERS

AM STRAM GRAM
Eaux Vives

This month the AmStramGram theatre has three shows and one evenings of support to the CSP. Nothing for the smallest spectators this month, but be sure to check the program for following months and book your tickets. In October there are three shows for 8+ and one for 12+. You can consult the program here.

THEATRE TOPPFER
Heidi, October 17

You may have read the book, seen the film but have you ever seen the Heidi show at the Topffer theater? Now is your chance. It is the best known Swiss children’s book about a little Swiss girl and her love for the mountains. The healing properties of the Swiss Alps go a bit beyond their legends but the story is otherwise sweet. Reservations required. You can find out all the details here.

Theatre des Marionnettes de Geneve

TMG offers shows for all ages this month: « Dans les jupes de ma mere » for 2+, « Le roi des nuages » for 7+, and « Hen » for 16+. There are also other events apart from the shows. The program this year is rich and filled with amazigness. You can consult it here.

The three best Swiss magazines for kids

The three best Swiss magazines for kids

In the times of online news and online everything, do you still like to snuggle under a warm blanket holding an excellent magazine? How about passing this pleasure down to your kids? There are indeed, Swiss magazines for kids.

If they are French-speakers or even better French-readers, I have made a list with three recommendations—something for every taste. And if you know more local kids magazines, let me know! Let’s make a list bigger.

Ready? Here we go! The three best Swiss magazines for kids!

KALEIO
For 8+

Kaleio is close to my heart as it was brought to Switzerland from Poland, where my cousin’s friend and her team launched a magazine for girls. Yes, Kaleio is designed with girls in mind, but boys are welcome to read it too, as it is about everything. You’ll find science, social subjcets, comics, stories, nature, emotions. Everything! It’s empowering, horizon broadening, and fun! The magazine comes out once every two months. One copy costs 19 CHF and a one year subscription is 99 CHF.

Find out more about Kaleio here.

CAMPUS JUNIOR
FOR 8+

Campus Junior is the scientific magazine of the University of Geneva for 8-12 year olds. Inside you’ll finds games, reports, information, mysteries. Each issue is about something different. It can be about human body, animals, plants. One of the past issues explained the current pandemic in a very kid-friendly manner.
You’ll also be pleased to hear that Campus Junior is free. If you choose to read ito nline, it’s 100& free, and if you’d prefer a printed copy, only the postage costs need to be covered.
Ready to explore? Find out more about Campus Junior here.

SALAMANDRE
For 4+

Salamandre is a local nature magazine for adults. There is also Petite Salamandre for 4-7 year olds, and Salamandre junior for 8+. Salamandre magazines for kids come out once every two months regurarly and have also 2 special issues per year, which gives a total of eight per year. It’s all about nature in a very children-friendly way. They will learn a lot, but the authors also offer ideas for activities, meals recipes, stories, challenges, and more. Their website is also incredibly rich in information and activities. Be sure to check it out.

Magazines are great for occupying kids during trips, in restauarants or wherever it is that they have to wait and get bored. If they have a hobby there surely exist a magaizne that will make them happy and help them explore the ir hobby further. If you are unsure, head over to your local librarie, rent several different magazines and check at home which one your kid prefers. And the… how about a agazine subscription as a next birthday or christmas gift?