Build the Best Relationships With These Fun Tools

New and local things to try together.

Here’s the Deal


In April, Chronicle Books and Ridley’s Games will release two fun, easy-to-learn card games to play with the family. To win the strategy game Top Dogs ($12), players age 6 and up must collect the most treats. Puzzle game Cleocatra ($19) challenges players age 10 and up to find the pharaoh’s cats, who have wandered into the pyramids. Once the base game has been mastered, level up to the advanced rules to unlock additional cat powers and mummy cats.

Make a Date

Toasted Cafe

Among the delights of childhood is going out for dessert, and there’s a new, family-owned café to try on Honolulu Ave. in Montrose. “Our Toast Towers are topped high with ice cream, fruit, and other toppings, inspired by the combinations of flavors we ate growing up, and presented in a way that would bring everyone to the table to share with one another,” says Toasted owner Claudine Thomassians. For kids and grown-ups with the biggest sweet tooth, the Chocoholic tower is made with chocolate ice cream, marshmallows, bananas, and Oreos. For a lighter treat, there’s Saffron & Rose with pistachios and blueberries. The café also serves soup, sandwiches, and coffee.

Better Together

Purple Twig

“Spending quality time with your child, away from the bustle of home life, strengthens the bond between the two of you,” says Purple Twig  owner Samara Caughey. The Eagle Rock art studio offers classes for all ages, including parent-child sessions for children up to 5 years old. Classes are process oriented, meaning children’s exploration of materials such as clay, glue, wood, and fabric is the point, more than a perfect finished product. At the Community Center of La Cañada Flintridge , Parent & Me ceramics classes for ages 3 to 7 focus on problem solving through learning coil, pinch, and slab techniques with their caregiver. Everyone goes home with pots and sculptures fully glazed, fired in the community center’s kiln.