One look at her flower-strewn Instagram or eponymous blog, and you’ll notice that everything looks beautiful through Kirsten Rickert’s eyes. Artist, writer and photographer, Kirsten’s love for her children & the world we live in, shines through in everything she does. We asked Kirsten to document a day out with Maya & Elle on the Upper East Side in NYC.
Originally from Australia, we moved to NYC 6 years ago. When we arrived in Manhattan we spent the first month living on the Upper East Side. I have long been a fan of Caramel Baby & Child and Australia does not have a Caramel boutique (yet!) so it was one of the ‘must go to’ places on my list. Now that we live just outside of New York, I make a point of spending the day on the Upper East Side seasonally in order to re-visit favourite spots. With the children in tow, it really helps to know where to go and what to do, and alternate inhale and exhale activities to keep them interested and inspired to walk, walk, walk. An example of an UES outing for us, on this day was, The Metropolitan Museum, followed by Lady M Confections, stopping by Caramel, then off to central Park to play at the Alice in Wonderland Sculpture.
New York can be a really intense city to visit, there is so much to see, and so much to do. Each borough is unique, and within each borough are individual pockets with distinct identities. It is really helpful to have a handful of interests and activities close to one another, so that there is an effortless flow.
Here is a list of things we like to do and see, while on the Upper East Side:
Alice in Wonderland Sculpture – Located in Central Park, it is a beautiful larger than life brass sculpture of Alice having a tea party with the Mad Hatter. Children are welcome to climb on the sculpture.
Billy Johnson Playground – An all-natural material playground in Central Park that has a tremendously fun slide!
Candle 79 - An organic vegan oasis. Delicious, creative food fresh from farm to table. An Organic wine/beer eco-bar. Elegant, Local, Seasonal, Compassionate and Green! Lunch & Dinner.
Candle Cafe – Casual dining, serving organic vegetarian food, fresh from the farm to table. Sustainable eco friendly practices with compassion for animals. Lunch & Dinner
Central Park Zoo - A small and lovely city zoo, with great conservation and environmental practices.
Conservatory Water – A beautiful ornamental pond in Central Park that has remote control model boats sailing on it in warm weather months.
Gourmet Garage – When you just feel like grabbing items and eating in the park, Gourmet Garage is the “shop like a chef” market to go to. Offering a large selection of local, organic, and specialty items, as well as anything else you may want. Prepared deli food available.
Guggenheim - An internationally renowned art museum and one of the most significant architectural icons of the 20th century. Children love to ascend and descend the internal spiral ramp of the Guggenheim.
Lady M Confections - The freshest and finest cakes and confectionary delights. Sophisticated minimalist elegance with exquisite baked sweets. This is a special occasion place, with sit down available.
Loop of Loom - Creative mind, gentle soul…Loop of the Loom is the only SAORI hand-weaving studio which introduces the award winning SAORI method for children and adults as mindfulness meditative weaving. A beautiful studio to visit that offers amazing weaving supplies and classes.
Society of Illustrators - A celebration of those that draw, a great place for the budding cartoon and comic strip artist to visit.
The Corner Bookstore - An intimate shop stocked with quality literature and staffed by friendly professional book people. They offer a thoughtful and well curated selection of children’s books.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art - An immense collection of Art and Artifacts that collectively represent the broadest spectrum of human achievement at the highest level of quality. You can easily spend days at the Met. (Insider tip, it is a ‘suggested donation’ entry fee, so pay whatever you wish). Children are free.
The New York Society Library - The first public library association in New York City. A nice place to have some quiet time in the midst a busy New York day.
Sushi of Gari – Traditional Japanese fare as well as innovative contemporary combinations. The chefs serve up delicious creations with high quality ingredients. Ample seating so a good place for families to dine.
Whitney Museum of American Art – The Whitney Biennale is on every second year, showcasing America’s top contemporary Artists. There is also a permanent collection that presents a full range of twentieth-century and contemporary American art, with a special focus on works by living artists. They offer a great free audio tour for children and our girls enjoy the headphones! Child entry into the Whitney is free.
Click on the link to download and print our Illustrated Caramel Baby & Child Upper East Side Map.