Readers Recommend: Developmental Pediatricians

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Published: 03/23/2014
We had a reader ask for recommendations for developmental pediatricians near or in Prince William County.  Our Moms never fail to have an answer!!  Developmental Pediatricians specialize in a wide variety of behavioral, cognitive, and physical difficulties, including but not limited to ADHD, Autism, Tourette's, Cerebral Palsy, and more.

*All Pediatric in Lake Ridge, Dr. Farber is supposed to be a developmental pediatrician (x4 comments and x4 likes)
 
*Children's in Fairfax (x4)
 
*Kluge Center at UVA (Charlottesville) 
 
*We love the entire pediatrics department at Georgetown and think they are worth the drive!
 
*For military moms at Ft. Belvoir- Dr. Shropshire. You have to love any doc that gives you his cell phone to call in between appointments for concerns, med refills, etc. A coworker raves about Dr. Bachelor also at Belvoir. We had seen 3 (others kept getting deployed) before Dr. Shropshire.
 
Have a doctor recommendation to add? Leave a comment, and be sure to include a link or contact email/phone number! 

Guest Post: Santa at Fair Oaks Mall

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Published: 11/26/2013
My post about the Santa at Potomac Mills sure got you guys fired up.  I love hearing your opinions, though! I asked for additional pictures/details from other malls and events that people said were better, and Samantha from Happily a Housewife (also a PWC Resident!) shared her experiences at Fair Oaks Mall this year.  Thanks Samantha!! 


Thanksgiving is here, and with that December and the holiday season are right around the corner.  I don't know about you, but in our house, my kids are already making their list for Santa. 
We are lucky to live in an area with so many malls and "Santa" events.  But it can get a bit overwhelming deciding where to take your little ones, where has the best atmosphere, shortest wait, helpful staff.
Our choice is Fair Oaks Mall.  Although not in PWC, it is very close, and has an amazing display.

When you enter the ice palace, it is magical.  You enter into a giant snow globe, complete with snow falling!


I was at the mall for an event recently, and actually got to take a few minutes to speak with a staff member.  Here are some tips she shared with me....

1.  Weekdays are going to be the least crowded.  However, avoid Monday afternoons.  (Fairfax County Schools have shortened days on Mondays)
2.  Black Friday morning is surprisingly slow, as many adults are out shopping, or avoiding the malls altogether. 
3.  At Fair Oaks while they do want to keep the line moving, they really want each child to get their time, special moment with Santa.
4.  There is no fast pass line.  At some malls you can pay more to get in a separate faster moving line.  This however makes the regular line run even slower. 


In addition to photos with Santa, you can also get a photo taken with The Princess as well.  It really is a great experience that children of all ages will love!

While at Fair Oaks Mall, if your children are younger, be sure to check out the BRAND NEW Michael and Son Play Area. 


My favorite feature is the heat activated paint splotch.  When placing your hand on the soft mat, the heat from your body actually changes the color of the mat!







 


Hi I am Samantha.  My husband, 3 kids, and I have lived in PWC for 5 years.  Check out My Blog, to see more.  I also want to thank Andrea from Real Housewives of Northern Virginia for hosting a great event at Fair Oaks Mall.
Note from Kristina: Thanks so much to Samantha for the post, and also, be sure to check out Real Housewives' additional pictures from her annual Sensory-Friendly Santa event at Fair Oaks. 


Northern Virginia Players Presents: Dr. Doolittle Junior

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Published: 10/29/2013


Northern Virginia Players is thrilled to announce their next musical, Doctor Dolittle, Jr.  The classic tale of kindness to animals comes to life in the stage adaption of the original Doctor Dolittle! Animal kindnesses will trot, crawl and fly its way onto the stage and into your hearts in DOCTOR DOLITTLE JR. With a cast of 54, all of the characters we've come to love through the stories of Hugh Lofting and the magical movie musical are given new life in the JUST released stage version.  The musical tells the classic tale of a wacky but kind Doctor who can talk to animals. The show takes the audience on a journey from the small English village of Puddleby-in-the-Marsh to the far corners of the world in search for the Great Pink Sea Snail--the oldest and wisest of the creatures on earth.
 
Northern Virginia Players has been thrilling audiences with their musicals since their inception.  Outstanding action, music, sets, and costumes will bring this loved musical to life and is sure to continue in their tradition of thrilling audiences of all ages.  Show dates:  November 8, 9, 15, and 16 at 7:30.  Matinee shows November 9 and 16 at 1:30.  For more information and to purchase tickets, please visit their website at NVPlayers.com or call  703-866-3546.  Group rates are available.  Call for group information.  Please stop by their FB page for pictures of previous productions:  NVPlayers
In keeping with our commitment to community service, Northern Virginia Players will be accepting monetary donations to benefit America’s Vet Dogs.  Their mission is “to help those who have served our country honorably live with dignity and independence.”  Collections will take place at all 6 shows.  Join us in helping our veterans talk to the animals. http://www.vetdogs.org/
Don’t miss this one!

Featured Organization Friday: Mainly Music Fundraiser to Support SIDS Education

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Published: 10/11/2013
In honor of a lost child, a local mom is hosting a special fundraiser to help fund SIDS educational services.  Join the Mainly Music Fundraiser on November 8, 2013 for a fun family show, dinner, and desert, $20 per family.

Business Review: Monkey Joe's

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Published: 08/06/2013
Not actually in PWC, Monkey Joe's Dulles Location would be a good fit for our Manassas-side mommas.  I had guest writer attend their grand opening celebration for me to check it out.  You should prepare yourselves for what you're about to see, because her kids are stinkin' adorable.  So. Very. Cute.

Monkey Joe's has your indoor bounce-house stuff, slides, obstacle courses, etc. 


That is one happy kid.  Love it! 

 Monkey Joe's also has some arcade-style games available for the kids to play when they're not bouncing around. 
Our Writer-Mom liked that 
*everything was in one room, which allowed for easy visibility of your kids
*there were tables and chairs so moms could have coffee/sit and chat with a friend 
*the arcade in the front was nice
*the staff was friendly and helpful, so parents didn't have to be all over the inflatables with their kids
*they had smaller inflatables specifically for smaller kids so they won't get run over (she's had this problem at Kids N Motion)
*there was a cute toddler zone, although her kids were too big

Open Bounce is $9.99, which is on the pricey side for a bounce house, but it sounds like the kiddos from our guest writer had a great time. The facility also offers parties, too.  

Check out Monkey Joe's Dulles on Facebook, too, for more pictures of their new place! 

Disclosure: Our writer attended for free at the Grand Opening, but all opinions are her own. 

Language Stars Open House

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Published: 08/03/2013
I didn't start a foreign language until 8th grade, and it's one of my greatest regrets.  While I had the opportunity to take years of French and participate in an exchange, I always wished that I'd started sooner, and at this point, while I understand French, I haven't spoken it in so long I'm not sure I could if I had to. At my high school, they also offered Russian my senior year, which I took both there and in college, as well, and enjoyed very much, but I can't claim to remember much beyond the alphabet and basic conversation.

Oh, and Cheburashka.  How could you forget him?
He's so cute!!

In our area, especially, you find loads of bilingual kids.  I think that it gives children such an advantage to start languages early, and, of course, if you have a parent in the home who speaks two languages it makes things really easy.  For those of us without that advantage, we have to look elsewhere if we want to snag our kids some quality language instruction.
Language Stars offers French, Spanish, Mandarin, Italian and German language instruction for children ages one and up, and has been voted "Best Language Instruction" in the DC Area for the last three years.  Their school year programs begin on September 3rd, so now is the time to look into classes.  While they don't have a Prince William County location, they do have a nearby Fairfax Center, and you can check out the classes, and the drive, during their open house program, which runs from August 5-25, 2013.  You can sign up online to try a free class, and if you register during the open house period, you'll save $100 off your tuition.  


Disclosure: This is a sponsored post from Language Stars.  All opinions are my own, especially those about the cuteness level of Russian Cartoon Characters. 

Break the Record and Moo with Chick-fil-A

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Published: 06/12/2013
Some of you may be new here, and not know about the fact that while I am not actually important at all, I'm a VIP to Chick-fil-A because I'm a huge "Raving Fan" of the Woodbridge location. (I have to be honest, I may have cheated on Woodbridge a little while I was getting treatment at Duke.  Soup was kind to my very upset tummy and there was a CFA right by our hotel....I felt guilty about it, though.)

Join the Northern Virginia Chick-fil-A Restaurants as they try to break the World Record for people dressed as cows!  Join them at the FIELD HOUSE (I know the image says Patriot Center, but it's incorrect) at George Mason University on Tuesday, July 2, 2013 at 10am.

People, it's on a Tuesday. Now, let's talk about why this is genius.  Here's what we're going to do, and be "we" I mean PwcGrammy because I don't do crowds yet.

Step 1: Eat a smoothie.  July is too hot for cooked breakfast.
Step 2: Drive to University Mall Theaters.  Buy $2 Tuesday Tickets for afternoon show.
Step 3: Drive (approximately 2 minutes) to GMU's Field House.
Step 4: Eat Mor Chickin.  Get in record book. 
Step 5: Go see cheap movie.  In cow costume.  Cross your fingers it's barnyard themed.
Step 6: Revel in what an awesome mom/grammy/dad/caregiver you are
Step 7: Cross your fingers that kids will nap on the drive home and you can sing along with the radio as loud as you want without being mocked.  (Maybe that's just me, though)

For the World Record, you'll want to come dressed in a one or two piece cow suit with a headpiece or decorated hood.  Many local CFA Restaurants will have haz-mat style suits available while supplies last for customers to decorate.  Also legal would be a black or white sweat suit (with hood) that you add spots to.  Shoes should be "cow appropriate" in black or white.  Also note that this event will benefit the Capital Area Food Bank, and participants are encouraged to bring canned goods to the event. 

Sunset Celebration at Mount Vernon

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Published: 05/23/2013

This weekend, Mount Vernon will have their Sunset Celebration.  If you haven't yet been to Mount Vernon, it's a quick drive from the Lake Ridge/Woodbridge side of the county, and worth the drive from the West End.  The property is beautiful and historic, and if you have scouts, be sure to look up the badge requirements! Here are the details for a beautiful weekend:



Historic Mount Vernon invites visitors to sip wine while watching the sunset on George Washington’s home! Sunset Celebration at Mount Vernon, an event over Memorial Day weekend (May 25 – 26), offers a rare opportunity to visit Mount Vernon after the daytime crowds have departed. Visitors may take evening tours of the Mansion, relax and enjoy wine and desserts available for purchase on the lawn overlooking the Potomac River.  Delight in 18th-century music, dancing, games, and wagon rides. Stroll the lantern-lit grounds from 6:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. and immerse yourself in the 18th century as the sun sets on the plantation with costumed residents like the charming Lady Washington. This family-friendly event celebrates the beginning of summer on the plantation.
Tickets are $18, adults; $12, children ages 6-11; and free for five and under. This event requires a separate ticket from daytime admission. Annual passes are not valid for this event. All activities, with the exception of food and wine, are included with admission to this event. Tickets may be purchased online in advance at MountVernon.org or at the Ford Orientation Center ticket window until 8:00 p.m. the evening of the event. Guests must be prepared to show identification to purchase wine.  
Tickets can be purchased here: http://bit.ly/126pxez

THE FRESH BEAT BAND COMING THIS FALL!

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Published: 04/16/2013

Tickets on sale Saturday, April 20 at 10:00am!


THE FRESH BEAT BAND
November 27 • 6:30pm
PATRIOT CENTER

(4500 Patriot Circle Fairfax, VA – George Mason University)



 The Fresh Beat BandNickelodeon’s preschool music group and stars of the hit TV series of the same name, are giving fans one more chance to see them live as they hit the road again for 60 performances on their nationwide concert tour.  The live concert comes to Fairfax, VA on November 27, 2013.  The wildly popular The Fresh Beat Band Live in Concert Tour will resume on Nov. 12, 2013 in San Antonio, TX.  The band will travel to theaters in new markets and revisit places including New York City’s Theater at Madison Square Garden and Los Angeles’ Nokia Theater L.A. Live.  In 2012, more than 400,000 fans saw the concert making it one of the year’s most successful music tours. 




ON SALE: Presale for CITI® Card Members Starts Tuesday, April 16th at 10 AM; Tickets Go on Sale to General Public Saturday, April 20 at 10:00 AM at LiveNation.com, all Ticketmaster outlets, the Patriot Center box office (M-Th 10a-7p, F-Sat 10a-5:30p), or charge by phone (800) 745-3000.





PRICES: $49.50, $39.50 (Reserved)
All dates, acts and ticket prices subject to change without notice. Ticket prices subject to applicable fees.



About Live Nation Entertainment:
Live Nation Entertainment is the world’s leading live entertainment and ecommerce company, comprised of four market leaders: Ticketmaster.com, Live Nation Concerts, Artist Nation and Live Nation Network. Ticketmaster.com is the global event ticketing leader and one of the world’s top five ecommerce sites, with a database of over 119 million fans who visit our sites. Live Nation Concerts produces over 22,000 shows annually for more than 2,300 artists globally. Artist Nation is the world’s top artist management company, representing over 200 artists. These businesses power Live Nation Network, the leading provider of entertainment marketing solutions, enabling nearly 800 advertisers to tap into the 250 million consumers Live Nation delivers annually through its live event and digital platforms. For additional information, visit www.livenation.com/investors.


Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum Presents the 2013 “Heritage Family Day” Series

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Published: 02/08/2013

Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum Presents
the 2013 “Heritage Family Day” Series

As part of the Smithsonian’s Heritage and History education initiative, the National Air and Space Museum presents a “Heritage Family Day” series celebrating ethnic and cultural diversity. The series coincides with national observances, focusing specifically on the contributions that diverse communities have made to aviation and space exploration. These activity-filled days, which take place at the National Mall building and the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Va., offer parents and children the opportunity to meet role models—ranging from World War II veterans to astronomers. Support for the “Heritage Family Day” series is provided by Northrop Grumman Corporation.
“The museum’s dual mission, in history and science, come together in the ‘Heritage Family Day’ series,” said Maureen Kerr, education chair at the National Air and Space Museum. “The programs feature inspiring role models who have helped make history by their achievements in aviation and spaceflight.”
 “Northrop Grumman is proud to sponsor the ‘Heritage Family Day’ series for the eighth consecutive year at the National Air and Space Museum,” said Sandra Evers-Manly, vice president, Corporate Responsibility, Northrop Grumman Corporation. “We are excited to support this series because it recognizes the unsung heroes of STEM and is an incredible benefit to the community’s schools and families.”
The 2013 series begins Feb. 9 at the museum’s National Mall building with “African American Pioneers in Aviation Day,” where visitors will have the chance to meet members of the Tuskegee Airmen, African Americans who fought during WWII, and be inspired by their determination and perseverance. On Feb. 23, the second “African American Pioneers in Aviation Day” will be held at the Udvar-Hazy Center.
On March 23, “Kites of Asia Day,” visitors to the National Mall building will experience the beauty of kites by celebrating the first aviation-related objects collected by the Smithsonian—two Chinese kites. There will be indoor kite flying, and experts will explain how kites influenced the development of aviation and the science behind kite flying. Visitors can decorate and build their own kites.
Also March 23, the “Women in Aviation and Space Day” will take place at the Udvar-Hazy Center. Visitors will learn about the accomplishments of women in aviation, science and aerospace. Families can enjoy guest speakers, hands-on activities, a theatrical presentation and more.
“Explore the Universe Day” will take place at the National Mall building June 1. Astronomy will serve as a common theme for visitors to learn how different people and cultures view and talk about the sky. The museum’s Public Observatory will be open for daytime sky-watching, weather permitting.
There will be two “Heritage Family Days” in September: “A Century of Women in Aerospace” at the National Mall building Sept. 14 and “Hispanic Heritage Day: Innovators in Air and Space” in partnership with the Smithsonian Latino Center Sept. 21 at the Udvar-Hazy Center.
The last “Heritage Family Day” of the 2013 series will be Oct. 5 at the National Mall building and will also celebrate Hispanic Heritage in partnership with the Smithsonian’s Latino Center. There will be bilingual programming and visitors will have the chance to meet Hispanic scientists and engineers. 
For more information about the museum’s “Heritage Family Day” series, visit: http://www.airandspace.si.edu/events/heritagedays.cfm.
The National Air and Space Museum building on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., is located at Sixth Street and Independence Avenue S.W. The museum’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center is located in Chantilly, Va., near Washington Dulles International Airport. Both facilities are open daily from 10 a.m. until 5:30 p.m. (closed Dec. 25). Admission is free, but there is a $15 fee for parking at the Udvar-Hazy Center.
 
# # #

Upcoming: Reel Abilities Film Festival

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Published: 02/01/2013

Pioneering Film Festival Opens in Greater Washington Area
ReelAbilities Disabilities Film Festival, February 7-14, 2013
ReelAbilities Film Festival is the largest festival in the country dedicated to promoting awareness and appreciation of the lives, stories and artistic expressions of people with different disabilities. The festival is coming to the DC and Northern Virginia area from February 7-14, 2013 and is sponsored by the Jewish Community Center of Northern Virginia (JCCNV). 
Nine films will be screened throughout the festival – features, documentaries, and shorts that present stories incorporating a variety of disabilities including autism, Down syndrome, cerebral palsy, deafness, and others.  Check out the schedule below:
Thursday, February 7
Mary & Max at Angelika Film Center - 7:45 pm
Saturday, February 9
Ocean Heaven at Angelika Film Center - 3:00 pm
Finding Nemo at DC Public Library - 11:00 am
Sunday, February 10
Anything You Can Do and Finding Nemo at Cinema Arts Theatre - 10:15 am
Me, Too at Angelika Film Center - 2:00 pm
Ocean Heaven at Floris United Methodist Church - 6:30 pm
Monday, February 11
Shooting Beauty at Cinema Arts Theatre - 7:30 pm
Tuesday, February 12
Silent Games at George Mason University - 7:00 pm
Mary & Max at Jewish Community Center of Greater Washington - 7:00 pm
War Eagle at Bethlehem Lutheran Church - 7:00 pm
Wednesday, February 13
Shooting Beauty at Northern Virginia Community College - Manassas Campus - 5:30 pm
Aphasia at Jewish Community Center of Northern Virginia - 5:30 pm
Thursday, February 14
Musical Chairs at Angelika Film Center - 7:30 pm

Visit the ReelAbilities DC website to learn more about the featured films and festival events.

Fairfax Symphony Orchestra Student Passport January 2013

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Published: 01/09/2013
Happy New Year!  The Fairfax Symphony invites students and families to kick off 2013 with a variety of events surrounding our concert this month, on Saturday, January 19th.

All students ages 6-18 are eligible to join the Student Passport Club!

All of the following events are at GMU’s Center for the Artsunless otherwise noted.  Parking is free in Lot K, with hourly or event fees charged in the Mason Pond Parking Deck.

FSO Open Rehearsal – including a Q&A session with Maestro Christopher Zimmerman
·      Time:10:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
·      Cost:  Free Admission
·      Reservations:  Please e-mail the FSO Office to reserve your space.

Flute Master Class – presented by our concert soloist, Christina Jennings
For flute students and flute enthusiasts – observe performances by flute students of all ages and receive educational guidance from flutist, Christina Jennings!
·      Time:3:00 – 5:00 p.m.
·      Location:  DeLaski Building, GMU Fairfax Campus
·      Cost:  Free Admission
·      RSVP:  Please e-mail the FSO Office to reserve your space.

FSO Concert– featuring flutist Christina Jennings
·      Time:Concert at 8:00 p.m. | Pre-concert lecture at 7:00 p.m.
·      Cost:  Student Tickets only $5 – Adult Tickets begin at $25
·      Tickets:  Available beginning at 6:00 p.m. on January 19th.  Students must be present when purchasing their tickets.

Calling all 7th-12th grade string players in the Northern Virginia area!  The Fairfax Symphony is currently accepting applications for its 2013 Dorothy Farnham Feuer Memorial String Competition to take place in February and March.  More information and application forms available here.

12 Days of Giveaways: Tickets to "Little Mermaid Jr."

Permalink to 12%20Days%20of%20Giveaways%3A%20Tickets%20to%20%22Little%20Mermaid%20Jr.%22
Published: 12/18/2012
The Northern Virginia Players are near and dear to my heart because we have three homeschool friends on the cast!! It's so cool when you know someone in a show, let alone three!!
Photo Credit: Kate Wittig
This year, the NVPlayers are offering "Little Mermaid Jr.", which is a great way to thrill your Little Mermaid fans!  Showtimes are:
Friday, January 11 @7:30pm
Saturday, January 12 @1:30pm

Saturday, January 12 @7:30pm
Friday, January 18 @7:30pm
Saturday, January 19 @1:30pm

Saturday, January 19 @7:30pm

All shows will be performed at the Family Worship Center, 7719 Fullerton Road, Springfield VA 22153.  This is a fairly quick drive from the Woodbridge side of Prince William County.


In addition to great songs like "Part of Your World" and "Under the Sea", the Northern Virginia Players will continue their tradition of using a portion of the ticket sales to help others.  This year's donated portion will benefit Super Storm Sandy victims.  Ticket are $12 and may be paid online or using cash or check at the door.  There are not reserved seats.

Want to win your tickets? Northern Virginia Players is generously offering a lucky winner a family four pack of tickets to see the show!! Enter using the rafflecopter below.


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Paradise Springs Winery

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Published: 11/29/2012
I am not really a wine person.  It is atypical for me to have an "adult beverage" and if I do have wine, it has to be white, sweet, and with lots of ice.

Yes, ice. Because I'm classy, people.  I even know that the new term is "Cardbordeaux" and not "Wine in a bag in a box".

And only one glass, because after that, I get giggly.

However, I do love the idea of wine.  I'm always impressed by people who know lots about wine, that know the vintages and can identify whether a particular variety was aged in oak or steel, those who can tell the difference between the 1949 and 1950 blend of a particular beverage. I especially like the idea of vineyards.  Sitting around with friends enjoying a snack and a glass of wine by the fire with live indie music in the background sounds pretty amazing right?

That's because it is!!

We headed out this past Sunday with another couple for a double date to Paradise Springs Winery in Clifton, VA, which was absolutely lovely.  If you're following Apple Maps, which we were, don't let them fool you into turning on the last left- just keep going straight, you can't miss it. Google users, you'll be just fine.

The vineyard itself is on a plot of land that's been handed down in a family since the time of Lord Fairfax and George Washington, which is really neat!  There's an historic cabin on site, as well as the main tasting room, which is also gorgeous.  Tastings at Paradise Springs include samples from their entire line for $10.  You can add a souvenir etched glass for $2 more.  Private tastings for groups are $15 per person, and happen in a dedicated location with your own "wine educator".  They also host special events, which you can check out on their website.

Our group opted to take part in the "Paradise Springs Experience" which is $25 and includes a tour of the cabin, production areas, barrel room, and a tasting.  Our wine educator/guide was Richard, who was absolutely delightful.  He was very knowledgable not only about wine, but art and history as well, and we very much enjoyed our tour with him.

Children are allowed to join you at the winery, per the website, but let's be nice to ourselves and everyone else and snag a sitter, shall we? Nobody wants to ignore their vino and conversation so that they can run after the munchkins.  Children are not permitted on the "Paradise Springs Experience" tour, though.

On our tour, Richard talked us through all of the Paradise Springs wines.  I learned that a more yellow color on a white wine indicates oak barrels were used (score! I'm educated now!), and was able to clearly tell the difference between a 2010 and a 2011!

Are you amazed by my new levels of awesome? I know, I am, too.

After our tour, we enjoyed some snacks that we brought with us.  Food is available on-site, as well, but patrons are welcome to bring their own, if they prefer.  Only Paradise Springs Wines are allowed, of course, and they also have non-alcoholic drinks available for purchase.

I think the only thing that we did wrong on this visit was underestimate the time we would spend.  I told Grandma that we'd be back for the kids around 4:00.  We left at 1:30, and we rolled back up to her house at 6.  Our tour took about an hour and a half, and we all had a great time just sitting and chatting in the beautiful and relaxed environment.  There was a fire going on the outdoor patio, as well as indoor seating, and we just really had a fantastic time.  They even had the football game on, which meant that my friend and I could gossip uninhibited by eye rolls from our respective husbands.
It was a lovely, relaxing afternoon!

Paradise Springs Winery
*Great for an adults-only afternoon/evening
*Open daily
*Tastings for only $10!
*Leave yourself lots of time!
*Bring food or buy it there
*Bring your ID
* Plan to buy a bottle of your favorite wine to take home!

Downside:
*If you're holding your empty glass AND a camera phone, don't turn the camera phone or you'll get red wine on your shirt and your friends will make fun of you mercilessly.  Or, maybe that's just my friends.

Plan Ahead:
*Someone's gotta drive home, so be sure that you plan accordingly by bringing a designated driver.  If you need to, call a cab.  Clifton Roads are windy and have lots of deer, so don't risk it.


Disclaimer: Don't be an idiot and drink and drive.  That's just not cool.  Also, I was not compensated in any way for this review, in fact, they didn't even know I was there.  We had a great time, though, and think you would, too. If you think you have a problem with alcohol, please get help. I've never written about anything alcohol-related before, I don't think, so if I'm over-disclaimering, I apologize.

December 2012 Fairfax Symphony Kids' Passport Program

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Published: 11/28/2012
The Fairfax Symphony Orchestra invites students and families to attend its next concert on Saturday, December 8th, at George Mason University’s Center for the Arts in Fairfax, VA, at 8:00 p.m. This performance features pianist, James Dick, and works by Rossini and Tchaikovsky. All students will be invited to join the Student Passport Club!
Fairfax Symphony Concert Information:
· Date: Saturday, December 8, 2012 at 8:00 p.m.
· Location: George Mason University’s Center for the Arts, Fairfax
· Cost: Student Tickets only $5; Adult Tickets begin at $25
· Tickets: Available beginning at 6:00 p.m. on December 8th at the “Student Ticket Window.” Students must be present when purchasing their tickets the night of the concert.
· Parking: Free in Lot K; event parking fee in garage
· Personal passportto be stamped at each event
· Special program notesand activity sheets for each concert
· Free gifts
· Invitation to a special reception with an opportunity to meet FSO musicians and play many different instruments
· JOIN IN ADVANCEOR AT THE CONCERT ITSELF!
Mischief in Music Corner:
If you attended the last FSO concert in November, bring back your program with the Scavenger Hunt questions completed for an extra stamp! Those who missed this performance are welcome to participate too. Simply bring your answers to the following questions about the composer featured on this performance:
1. How old was Rossini when his first opera premiered?
2. What instrument did Rossini play with his father’s musical group?
3. At what age did Tchaikovsky begin playing the piano?

Cox Farms 2012

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Published: 10/04/2012
Today we had the chance to go and visit Cox Farms on their Preview Weekend.  We've been visiting Cox Farms since my son was 11 months old.
He's almost 9 now. 

To say that we're Cox Farms aficionados would be an understatement.  However, that doesn't mean that my kids don't have a great time when we go.  I'm sure that one day they're going to be too cool for the pumpkin patch (which is okay, because Cox Farms also has a scary counterpart to their family-friendly daytime offerings), but I hope that day stays away a little longer.  
Plenty of picnic tables for lunch.  Pack your own or buy at the farm.
Mainly because I'm a big pansy and don't want to go in the Cornightmare.  I have nightmares about the wolf in Neverending Story to this day and I watched that movie when I was 10.  If they start wanting to do that, I'm pulling for a great youth pastor that does trips to scary things, because I'm not going. 
This fun slide includes potato sacks for extra speed.
Cox Farms made some changes this year, though! The hayride has a few new additions, and the route has changed.  There's now a spookier barn-drive through and a town setup.  PS- the Cox Farms Farmer no longer pulls you out of the mud! But don't worry- you'll still get stuck!  I also believe the space ship looked new and improved!
Slides are super fun, but be prepared to wait your turn.
Additionally, Cox Farms has their new "Bunnyville" area where their bunnies are housed, a mechanical bull, new BBQ food items, and a "mine" where you can pan for gems or fossils for an additional fee.  My kids also noticed a "Farm Work" area for the first time (which cracked me up!) and all three of them were literally happy for 30 minutes playing in the cascading corn kernels and pumping up well water.
"milk" a cow, scoop corn feed, and pump water at the "farm chores" area
Still popular with my kids were the corn maze, the animals, and the slides.  Still unpopular with my kids were the intermittent heat, the lines, and the bees buzzing like crazy around the trash cans, apples, and cider station.

Cox Farms admission is by day of the week.  Weekend Prime tickets are $17 per person over the age of 2.  Weekend tickets are $14 per person over the age of two, and weekday admission is $9 per person over the age of 2.  Join the Cox Farms Mailing list to receive discounts and coupons in your email, or you can purchase a Value Card for 7 Weekday afternoon admissions for $45 instead of $63.  You can use all 7 at once, or you can use it on multiple visits.  If you're able to take a half day from work, this can be a great savings! Admission includes 1 free apple and 1 free mini pumpkin. The new mine feature is extra.  We bought one large $8 bag of gems and shared it among three children quite successfully.

Cox Farms is a fun day for the entire family.  Younger children will enjoy hayrides, petting animals, and running around.  Older children will enjoy large slides, the corn maze, and the animal facts. Downsides are the waiting, which isn't terrible, but can be if your child is getting whiney, allergy concerns (hay, feathers, bees) are abundant because it is, after all, a farm, so bring Allegra or Benadryl if your child can be sensitive, and finally, that my arch-nemesis the porta potty is your only bathroom option.  They're reasonably clean for porta potties, and they do have lots of hand sanitizer all over the farm, though.

We enjoy our yearly trips to Cox Farms.  We'd love to hear about your experience in the comments section below! Do you have tips or tricks? Share with us!

Kid Care Cafe

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Published: 09/10/2012

So here's a neat idea! A new business, Kid Care Cafe, will actually bring group childcare to your home or event.  It's a flat $15 per child at the event, and I can totally see doing this for my next big game night or BBQ so that the parents can enjoy their time with grownups, but not have to worry about having their children with someone they don't know off-site.  Weddings, business parties, galas, charity events, I could see this being a really useful service! 
From their website:
Instead of staying home from an event because you don't have childcare, why not bring the kids along too? We understand this tough choice that parents often make - miss out on being social with your friends OR find a sitter and go out! We want you and your friends to go out (or stay in) while we tend to the kids. We want your kids to have fun, make new friends, and be safe. We'll make sure that happens. 
 I haven't had a chance to meet the owner yet, but she's having a special kick-off event Saturday, September 15th from 3-5pm at the NZone in Chantilly (14550 Lee Road, Chantilly VA) with free food, games, raffles, prizes, face painting and music.  I think this is definitely one to check out if you're constantly in need of childcare! I'd love to hear your thoughts and feedback if you use them, too!


As a reminder, PwcMoms.com does not endorse any childcare provider.  Parents should meet with any potential babysitters, daycare providers, preschools, etc. and use their best judgement and personal discretion before leaving their children with anyone.

Lego Brick Fair Review

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Published: 08/09/2012
We were able to attend the 2012 Brick Fair at the Dulles Expo Center thanks to some comp tickets from Washington Family Magazine.  (The same fine folks that sponsored our giveaway to the same event).  I know a lot of you were wondering about the event, so here's my breakdown.

When we arrived, we were seriously nervous about The Line.  The Line looked like it was going to take us the better part of half an hour to get to the actual door to the Expo Center.  We were pleasantly surprised, however, to find that the line moved quickly and we were in the door in about nine minutes.  Once we were inside, we were definitely in awe of the fantastic Lego creations.  Children as young as nine can present their pieces at Brick Fair, with the chance to win awards.  There are also custom Lego vendors, our friends from Hallabolou were there, and there was a wicked game of Lego bingo going on when we arrived.  The ticket encouraged you to allow at least three hours to make it through, and maybe we're big losers, but we did it in 50 minutes.  Here's why.

We went with our kids who are 8, 6, and 4.  The little ones were definitely wowed by several of the displays, especially the ones that moved like the ball movers, robots, and giant roller coaster.
They were even still happy at the end of our time at the Brick Fair, but nobody complained that we were leaving, either.  They did ask if we could stop at the ice cream store on the way home.

 The kids presenting were absolutely amazing and created some awesome scenes! I was completely impressed by how some of the youngest exhibitors produced such amazing results! Each category, and there were several, had gorgeous entries.
 We especially liked the things that moved, whether they were robots, roller coasters, ball movers, or magnetized displays.
 He blinded me with science.
THIS IS ALL MADE OF LEGOS!!! This is what I could accomplish if I didn't blog and had some kind of measurable artistic skill! 

The cars were also a big hit with my kids.

So, if everything was so impressive, why didn't we take longer? The little ones enjoyed looking but were, honestly, overwhelmed by all there was to see.  You can't really touch anything, and Legos are toys to most children, so it's kind of like walking through a giant bakery with no glass over the treats.  You find yourself reminding little fingers not to touch fairly often.  Our oldest probably would have wandered around a little longer and looked at different items, but there's not really room to wander.  It's a lot more like being herded through like cattle:
Oh, hello hundreds of our closest friends!! Our children's biggest complaint was that there wasn't a ton of hands-on.  There is a small game section near the exit, but they really wanted to go and see cool things and then sit down somewhere and build with Legos.  Instead, we stood in a slow moving line that wrapped around the building and just looked.  Don't get me wrong, everything was amazing, but it was crowded and slow and not as interactive as we usually like to be.  It's kind of like a Lego museum, and you know my favorite museums are free :)

Tickets are $10 a pop, so while we enjoyed it this time, we all agreed that we probably wouldn't go back if we had to pay $50.  The kids liked it, but not enough to justify the cost.

Agree? Disagree? I'd love to hear your thoughts in the comments!

Reviews: Potomac Overlook Park

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Published: 07/31/2012
I have mommy brain.  My mommy brain syndrome (MBS) is augmented by my technology dependence syndrome (TDS, or, in my case iTDS).  Example?  We showed up for my daughter's dermatology appointment (a 45 minute drive in traffic because while I love PWC, I'm driving to the bets possible doctor our insurance will semi-pay for) only to sit for 30 minutes before the semi-rude receptionist reminded me that I cancelled this appointment when I made an earlier one for before we left for the beach.

My MBS apparently prevented me from removing that from my iCal, so when my iAlarm went off, iGotIntheCar and iDrove to the appointment.  Hence the iTDS kicker.

Being that I am also spontaneous, and had skipped swim team practice, we opted to iMap our way over to Potomac Overlook Regional Park and check out what it had to offer before doing the same thing back down i66, err, I-66, to head to a library event back down in our neck of the woods.

Potomac Overlook is located at 2845 North Marcey Road, Arlington, Virginia.  It is absolutely gorgeous for hiking, as well as having a beautiful nature center, concerts, a solar-powered outdoor stage, roving naturalists, community gardens, and canoe trips. 

We've been to Potomac Overlook once before, and we enjoyed the well-shaded hiking, especially since with water shoes on we could enjoy keeping our feet cool in the creek/river that flows through the park.  Throwback photo evidence:


Okay, so they didn't like their water shoes.  I admit, I am that horrible parent that lets my children experience the world barefoot whenever they want and my husband isn't yelling.  I don't like shoes, either, so I get it.
 In this picture my kids are 15 months, 3, and 5.  I'm wearing sporting an awesome blue Moby Wrap.  If you don't have a Moby Wrap and you have a baby or are about to have a 2nd (3rd, 4th, 5th) baby, you should stop reading this NOW and go buy one.  I'll wait. No, they're not paying me, either.
I am also that mom that lets her kid swim in the deep pool he finds.  It was warm that day.  He had an amazing time and the water was clear so that you could see straight to the bottom.  I realize this doens't mean it was clean, but it looked like it, so there.

This time, however, we never made it that far since by the time we arrived it was already 108 degrees outside.  Walking from the parking lot to the nature center, we noticed there is a fun hike with signs for each planet placed at representative distances along the path.  They include fun facts like how much a person of a certain weight (I want to say it was 100 pounds) would weigh on each planet.  On your left hand side, you'll also see the solar-powered outdoor theatre as well as an eletctric car filling station.  Trees and rocks along this main path are also labeled for your viewing pleasure. 

By the time we arrived at the nature center, my middle child informed me that he was dying, and I informed him that the nature center is air conditioned, at which point he summoned the will power to go on the three steps to the door.  It was magical.

By the way, now that my kids are 4, 6, and 8, their lives exist soley on my iphone because I'm not good enough to carry a camera, so I hope that you enjoyed the nice, clear pictures above because now we're switching back to my typical low-quality cell phone pictures.

The nature center includes a fun mix of energy saving information along with a living bee colony, live turtles, frogs and snakes, as well as some stuffed local species, skulls, and skeletons and fossils to look at.  The upper level is mostly non-living, although there is a turtle and two snakes, and the lower level is mostly snakes and frogs, along with a children's cave area, which was fun to hang around in for a few minutes even if it wasn't very large.
 The children's area included boards to make your own "cave drawings" sounds of a cave on a phone, and space to sit and read books or play with toys.  It'd be a good place to cool off and calm down on a hot day.
 There's also a lower-level educational room, which was completely devoid of people on the day we went, but looked like it must be used for field trips and scout groups.  There were some fish in the tank as well as stuffed bird and small mammal species. 
Ooooh, something stuffed.  Fun.  My kids love anything about animals, so they thought this nature center was fantastic.  It's definitely small enough that you can do it in a morning and still have time for a hike, even if you read everything in the nature center, but I enjoy that about it.

It was after this picture that my phone died.  It was sad.  So, not pictured are the community garden, Indian-themed circular garden, or the live birds of prey that are a short walk across from the nature center.  These are previously injured owls and hawks that cannot be returned to the wild due to the extent of their inuries, and you do get a very close look at them.  The owls were especially beautiful, and, as a bonus, I found a 4 foot black snake on the trail on the way up! How fantastic!

Fine, I freaked out.  But the boys thought it was amazing.

This is a great local field trip, and we enjoyed both of our visits.  Check out Potomac Overlook Regional Park for your next hike or nature event!

Potomac Overlook Regional Park
Recommended for: Any age, really.  Lots of walking, but getting to/from the nature center is stroller-friendly.  There is a long hill that is not particularly handicap-accessible, I would talk to the park rangers about the possibility of being allowed to drive to the center itself if that's an issue for your.  Older children will enjoy the various themed areas and hiking.

Pros: Free! Lots of different interests addressed.  Live and stuffed animal species, lots of labeled plants and rocks with information on species.

Cons: Nature center is somewhat small, parking is removed from areas of interest.

Giveaway: Brick Fair 2012

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Published: 07/19/2012
Coming August 4th and 5th to the Dulles Expo Center in Chantilly, Virginia, it's Brick Fair! If you have a Lego Lover of any age, this is definitely one to check out!

The fair recommends you allot at least 90 minutes to see everything, but tickets are valid for all day admission.  The Brick Fair is open each day from 11am-4pm.  Parking is free. There's plenty to see, play with, and even win! Lego giveaways happen at 1pm and 3pm each day.

From the official website:

LEGO models, displays and winding trains sprawled out over 100,000 square feet.
BrickFair brings together adult fans of LEGO from across the USA (and Canada, and a few other countries) to show off their projects, great and small, and to share their passion for LEGO - the most awesome toy - ever.
LEGO fan festivals like BrickFair are great fun for the whole family!
Join in a game or two - maybe win a LEGO set.
Vendors will be offering all things LEGO, including shirts, hats, minifigures, custom-molded weapons, unique models, keychains and... really... everything you never imagined.

Thanks to the great folks at Washington Family Magazine, PwcMoms is happy to offer a family 4 pack of tickets for either day of Brick Fair 2012!! Since it REALLY bothered some of you that you had to email, you may enter 1 of 3 ways that guarantee I can get in touch with you:

1- Leave a comment on this post WITH your email address.  Yes, that means you put your email address out for the world to see

2- Email Me with "Brick Fair 2012" in the subject line

3- Tweet the following message: I want to go to @BrickFair thanks to @FamilyMagDC and @PwcMoms!

Enter however you'd like by midnight on July 27th, 2012.  A winner will be selected and notified via email or twitter and Facebook on July 28th, 2012.

Winner will be selected on July 28th.  Winners must claim their prize by July 30th or a new winner will be selected.  Prize provided by Washington Family Magazine and Brick Fair 2012.  Winner assumes all risk and liability.  PwcMoms was provided with courtesy tickets in return for this post.  

Meet Hallabolou

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Published: 07/18/2012

Hallabolou is a full service Children’s Enrichment and Event Company.  I first met their owner, Vanessa, at the Chick-Fil-A Fire and Rescue Fest.  I instantly decided that I needed to know the woman with the purple apron and approximately 75 pounds of Legos.  Bright, enthusiastic, and passionate about engaging and enriching children's lives, Vanessa instantly won me over on Hallabolou (a secret message saying hello to her children) and her work there.  Read more about them below, and be sure to check them out on Facebook and their Website, too! They offer classes, after school enrichment, camps, and more!



From the owner:
Our enrichment programs and camps are dedicated to creating an atmosphere that fosters each child’s feeling of autonomy and positive self-image.  From a young age, children are fascinated with the world around them.  Hallabolou uses this fascination to teach life skills and assist children in understanding and expressing their emotions through a creative technique known as the Five Points of Discovery. These points are Imagination, Determination, Commitment, Self-Confidence and Cooperation. Through our offerings of bRiK Programs or Learning Levels we teach STEM: Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. We enrich their experiences by also providing a Dance and Movement program, Educational Cooking for Kids, Theater and Art.


Review: Rapunzel

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Published: 05/24/2012
When I went to my first show, "Miss Electricity" at the Workhouse Arts Center's Studio 3, I thought they did a good job.  The show was cute, my kids had fun, they did a good job.


Then they did "Home".  I didn't get to see it, but those of you that went with your preschoolers raved to me about the creative tale of two kids and a box. 

 When I went to "Rapunzel" on final dress rehearsal two weeks ago, I was floored.  What was already good has improved so much.  The company is utilizing every inch of space in their intimate performance area, the lights and sounds are spot-on, I am truly impressed by how far they've come from "good" in such a short time!  (Especially since they produce these show back to back on a few week flip schedule!)


Here's the deal with Rapunzel.  The show is truly about what's right, what's wrong, and what you'd sacrifice to get what you want temporarily.  Helicopter moms, it's also talking to you ;) 


While all the characters were well-portrayed, I did have a few favorites. 


The witch, played by Kindra Cook, was by far my favorite Studio 3 character to date.  Obviously skilled with children (her own child was at the dress rehearsal), she is able to take a baby-snatching, spell-slinging witch and make her, perhaps not entirely lovable, but understandable.  I could relate to the witch! I don't want my babies out in the world getting hurt or running off with some prince, either!  (Okay, fine, and my children would probably tell you that when they cross me bad things happen, too!) 
Credit: Melanie Beys
If there was another show stopper, I would say it was  Anna Jackson and Chris Galindo, who played the two headed monster.  My children came home and duct-taped their dragon costumes together to play their character, which provided comic relief, as well as being an unlikely aid to Rapunzel as she tried to escape.  I hope to see both of these actors again at the Workhouse!!


Rapunzel, played by Ashley San, is loveable and does a sweet performance as the bubbly and naive princess, although my daughter, having seen the magical hair in Tangled, was unimpressed with her very curly VERY large wig and kept asking me if she could do Rapunzel's hair!  I know this character is probably truer to the original, but I really loved Mandy Moore's self-sufficient cast-iron wielding movie version, which I missed here.


Credit: Melanie Beus
We've seen Eben Kuhns (Prince) before, and always find him warm and believable.  I think my 4 year old is infatuated with him (sorry, Eben, if you're reading this!), although she always chickens out of a picture with him after the show.  :) 


Parents with sensory-sensitive children should note there are a few instances of flashing lights and loud noises, but they are very brief and they are followed quickly with humor.  If you're unsure, note that the theater is small enough that making it to the door shouldn't be a problem.  There are a few times when characters use the aisle to the right hand side (facing the stage), so if you have to exit, I would go via the door you came in, and pick seats accordingly. 


The show is 1 hour with an intermission at the 1/2 hour.  Tickets are $12 adults; $8 children under 12 years old.  At intermission, cupcakes from Sugar Buzz in Occoquan are available for $2.50 as well as beverages.  


Studio 3's Rapunzel
Pros: Very well done show, local, affordable tickets, intermission is well placed and the hour run time keeps a great pace for keeping children entertained


Cons:  I did not have any particular issues (besides my daughter's obsession with re-styling Rapunzel's wig), but in reading other reviews from people who went on a show day rather than dress rehearsal, I've heard that the lines at intermission and for meet the cast after the show can run rather long.  


Overall- Go see the show!  Studio 3 is doing some fantastic work, and I can't wait for their next performance, either (Winnie the Pooh).  With the limited running of each show, it's important that you get your tickets early!!  Rapunzel is here until June 30th, and we've learned quickly that with Studio 3, the tickets run out long before interest in the show does! 

Summer Movies Free/Cheap!

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Published: 05/21/2012

Free/Cheap Movies All Summer Long!
Here’s a list of free or inexpensive movies in Prince William County! 

Pillar Church and the Town of Dumfries will be hosting an outdoor viewing of the Muppets Movie on June 9th at 7pm outside town hall.  Popcorn is free and soda/water/hotdogs/chips will be for sale.  


Manassas Stadium 14 and Imax (11380 Bulloch Drive) will participate in the “Summer Movie Express” program where select G or PG Rated Movies show for just $1 on Tuesday and Wednesday mornings at 10:00am.  A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Will Rogers Institute. Traveling this summer? Find another participating Regal Cinemas/United Artist Theatres by clicking HERE 
June 19/20- Journey 2 & Kit Kittredge: American Girl
June 26/27- Dolphin Tale & Happy Feet Two
July 3/4- Legend of the Guardians: Owls of Ga’Hoole & Yogi Bear
July 10/11- Cats & Dogs: Revenge of Kitty Galore & Hugo
July 17/18- Adventures of Tin Tin & Puss In Boots
July 24/25- Kung Fu Panda 2 & Rango
July 31/August 1- Rio & Spy Kids: All the Time
August 7/8- Chimpanzee & Hoodwinked Too
August 14/15- Arthur Christmas & The Smurs
**Movies are subject to change at the theater’s discretion**





Chick Fil A Virginia Gateway in Gainesville (5015 Wellington Road) will be hosting a free movie night on June 9th.  The movie is outdoors and begins at 8:45pm.  Film selection is “A Turtle’s Tale”.  The rain date is June 16th, same time.  Bring your own blanket/chair (and if your kids are like mine, bring some bug spray!)




Chick Fil A Bristow will host several free movie nights this summer.  The planned schedule is as follows, but be sure to check their facebook for any updates.
June 1- Disney’s The Lion King
June 8- The Tooth Fairy
June 15- Alvin & The Chipmunks Chipwrecked
June 22- Up
June 29- The Princess Diaries
July 6- Fly Away Home
July 13- Disney’s Cow Belle’s
July 20- Veggie Tales
July 27- Firehouse Dog
August 3- Nickelodeon’s Barnyard
August 10- Everyone’s Hero
August 17- The Karate Kid
August 24- The Berenstain Bears
August 31- Herbie Fully Loaded 

The ever popular University Mall Theater (across from GMU in Fairfax) runs $2 Tuesday all year long! On Tuesdays, all shows, small popcorn, and small sodas are $2 each.  This may not be the “frilliest” or biggest theater you ever go to, but people, the price is right! In the summer, plan to go early to get your tickets as daycares and camps will show up and buy them out. 


Madison Crescent in Gainesville (Route 15 and Route 29) will be hosting Free Outdoor Movies through June:
May 25- Kung Fu Panda 2
June 1- Cars 2
June 8- The Muppets
June 15- The Smurfs
June 22- Hugo


Manassas will have free summer movies starting at 8pm!
All movies are free, but the location changes!
6/29- Costello Park Happy Feet 2
7/13- Signal Hill Park Dolphin Tale
7/27- Signal Hill Park Cars 2
8/17 Costello Park The Lorax



--Watch for more! Comcast usually does at least one or two outdoor movies at the Government Center and as soon as I hear I'll let you know!  Having your own movie event? I'm happy to share! Email me to get on this list for free! As with all PwcMoms.com lists, this information is current as of the date of publication.  I am not in charge of the weather and only list cancellations that I am informed of, so please use common sense if the weather is not cooperating and plan accordingly, either by calling or making alternate plans for your evening.  

Giveaway: Mount Vernon's Sunset Celebration

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Published: 05/16/2012
So...you know the saying "when it rains it pours"? Apparently this week it's raining giveaways.  (Thank goodness, because if it was raining men I'd have to put in a serious complaint to Bob Ryan.)


Anyhow


Washington Family Magazine has very generously provided us with a family four pack to the Sunset Celebration at Mount Vernon on Memorial Day Weekend!!  


What is the Sunset Celebration, you ask?  Let's ask YouTube!




Well that certainly can't be bad!! If you're going to "imbibe on the porch" it should definitely be with Martha Washington! She definitely looks like she knows how to par-tay ;)


All kidding aside, this sounds like a fantastic kid-friendly event right near Prince William County.  Mount Vernon is a short drive from my end of the county, but definitely a worthwhile trip! The grounds are beautiful, the Visitor's Center and museums are well-done!!


(Bonus- if you didn't click on the link to the official description, this is also a wine festival!) 


From the Mount Vernon Website:
Visitors may take evening tours of the Mansion, relax and enjoy wine and desserts available for purchase on the lawn overlooking the Potomac River.  Delight in 18th-century music, dancing, games, and wagon rides. Stroll the lantern-lit grounds from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. and immerse yourself in the 18th century as the sun sets on the plantation with costumed residents like the charming Lady Washington. This family-friendly event celebrates the beginning of summer on the plantation.


If you'd like to purchase tickets for this event they are now on sale and cost $18, adults; $12, children ages 6-11; and free for five and under. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Thanks to Washington Family Magazine for this awesome giveaway!

Healthy Paddles at Occoquan Regional Park

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Published: 05/05/2012
Kick off a healthy summer on May 19th 2012 from 10am-3pm at Occoquan Regional Park.  There'll be a paddle, hike, and health fair! Kid-friendly, family-oriented, sounds like a winner!