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    Review: Miley Cyrus, Breakout

    Tue Jul 22

    If your tween hasn’t alerted you with her incessant begging to go to the Virgin Megastore, Miley Cyrus released her first album, Breakout, today. We know what you’re thinking: After the Camp Rock craze, you can’t possibly endure another teeny-bopper ditty about unrequited love. Although Breakout isn't completely devoid of those sappy sentiments, the songs are not all that bad. Several are even–dare we say it—enjoyable. The 16-year-old may not rival Christina Aguilera’s vocal range, but then she's not trying to. She's just belting her heart out and having a great time doing it. On "Wake Up America", Cyrus sings a whole song about going green and working as a community to make the earth a better place for future generations. But don't think the album is just a compilation of junior-activist anthems; the track is followed up by much lighter fare about typical teenage tribulations, like crushes and growing up. You may not rank the album alongside your all-time favorites,...

    Kids become authors at tikatok.com

    Tue Jul 22

    With the summer's scorching temps and pesky thunderstorms in full swing, you may not be eager to venture outside with your babe. Luckily, tikatok.com offers one solution to your indoor inertia. Created by two mothers, the innovative website lets little ones make their very own customized and personalized picture books. Interactive story templates, or "StorySparks" help kids begin the writing process; completed books are available in hard- or softback copy. Users can also read books by kids from all over the country, share their own creations and collaborate with other mini authors within the Tikatok community. Some of the tomes are hilarious and some are poignant, but each one is sweetly unique. To get literary with your little one, visit tikatok.com.

    Child burned at NYC playground spurs lawsuit

    Mon Jul 21

    Be forewarned: This disturbing story made even the TV-News junkies among us cringe: The mother of an 18-month-old boy who sustained second- and third-degree burns when he ran barefoot on an Upper East Side playground last summer is suing the city. According to Metro, Anne Casson's lawsuit mirrors two others asking the city for $750,000 to $1 million in damages. Casson's son, Will, spent four days in the hospital after stepping on a black rubber safety mat at Carl Schurz Park; at least ten similar cases have occurred throughout NYC in the past year. A Parks Department spokesperson told Metro that the city posts warning signs about hot surfaces on playgrounds--though no sign was present at Carl Schurz. "We encourage all patrons to use common sense," said the spokesperson. I'm sorry, but common sense really only goes so far--the community watchdog group NYC Park Advocates took the mat's temperature on Friday: 166.9 degrees F! Even if Will had been wearing shoes at the time, what if he...

    Miley Cyrus's NYC concert

    Fri Jul 18

    Did any of you watch Miley Cyrus's live Bryant Park performance this morning on Good Morning America? Is it me, or was it a little cruel for ABC to air the concert at 8:55 when your kids are already out the door and on their way to camp? In any event, I thought Miley did a pretty good job, though I have to say I'm still a little dumbfounded by her appeal. She can shake her head and jump up and down like there's no tomorrow,  but ultimately, her voice seems to have a pretty small range—and sounds almost identical to Cindy Lauper's. What did you think of Miley this morning? We're dying to know what the camp-out scene was like last night, so be sure to comment below if you were there. Also, if you didn't catch her this morning, she'll be performing again on the Today show on Friday, July 25.

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