This week’s “guest blog” entry is by Evan F., who enjoys bonding through parent & me classes, with his 12-month old son, Asher. Here is his account of his latest experience with NYC Dads Group at Three Little Birds Music on the upper East Side…
Our recent outing at Three Little Birds Music was a lot of fun. Both my son Asher and I really enjoyed ourselves. Selfishly, I would encourage the group to plan more events at this space as I live in the neighborhood but I will also say it’s located fairly close to the 77th street subway station for those of you with easy access to the 6 train.
Here’s a brief synopsis of the event: We were greeted at the front desk and escorted to the stroller parking area where the ritual removal of the hats, gloves, coats, and shoes took place. The room we were led to was small but adequate for the eight or so dads in attendance. The walls were lined with musical instruments which apparently all get played in the various classes offered at Three Little Birds. There was also a white board on the wall which contained lyrics to most of the songs we were to sing in class…a nice touch which left us with no excuse for not singing along. The instructor, who was accompanied by a piano player, was energetic and talented, and even more impressive, remembered everyone names…a skill that would prohibit me from ever leading a class like this! The class consisted of the usual assortment of shakers, bouncing balls, and puppets, as well as a few interesting touches: a weird time machine, songs from the 20s, and a clarinet which the instructor played personally for each kid. The room was clean and so was all the equipment. Each item was collected after use and placed in a ‘cleanup box’ presumably to be cleaned before the next round of rug rats came through. All the dads seemed to enjoy the event as much as the kids and the 45 minutes seemed to fly by ending not in a bang but in a pop…bubbles that is!
After the music class, we were asked to move our strollers to another parking area just outside of their play gym entrance. After reestablishing our stuff and navigating a steep flight of stairs, we were now in a cool little gym. Despite being heavily weighted with rock walls and slides which may be better suited for 2+ year olds, Asher and I found a bunch of fun things to amuse ourselves with. We thoroughly enjoyed the feeling of being in what I can only describe as a well stocked suburban basement. There were two small rooms in the back area which offered a nice retreat to tranquility (one is a library & the other a snack area). However, the snack room had a hard tile floor and a metal garbage can (rubber anybody!?) which of course, Asher decided to slip on. A very nice employee offered my crying son an icepack which he declined in lieu of a bottle and a much needed nap.
Overall, a very positive experience which I would certainly do again. I even took a class schedule home to share with my wife.