Savings Nation Workshop Info and Giveaway

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Published: 05/17/2012

BeltwayBargainMom (aka, Laura Harders) is probably my favorite person in the world.  Calm, sweet, and just an all-around awesome Christian woman, she seems to juggle a career, children, homeschooling, and her website with ease that I can only wish I'll one day possess.  Kind and even-tempered, when there's the person I always go to for counsel when I have "blogger drama".  (Blogger drama? Why yes, readers, I am that big of a dork.)

If I had to pick a teacher to walk me through something that can be, admittedly, a little complicated when you first look at it, I'd pick Laura.  And, lucky you (!!), she's going to be teaching her first Savings Nation Workshop in Burke, Virginia on May 21st!!  In partnership with, Laura will be giving you the tools, information, and organizational strategies that will help you save up to 50% off your grocery bills!

(PS- I know it's election season and you have people left and right telling you that either the economy is improving or that once you oust the old guy it's going to improve.  Honey, it doesn't matter, 50% off your groceries in an up OR down economy is 50% left in your account you can use on getting that pedicure at the end of a crazy week with your children.  Focus on the pedicure.  Even if you only coupon on your cleaning supplies, that's a few extra Starbucks runs without guilt!!)

Want to go? Registration is just $5!!

What: Savings Nation – Grocery Savings Workshop in Burke, VA  (sing up using this link!)
Date: Monday, May 21st, 2012 
Time: 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Location: Burke Community Church (classroom #118), 9900 Old Keene Mill Rd, Burke, VA 22015
In this 2-hour workshop you’ll learn:
  • Realistic Couponing
  • Strategic Grocery Shopping
  • Meal Planning Made Simple
  • Online Tools to Simplify Your Savings
From BeltwayBargainMom's description: This is a fun and interactive class that is great for beginning couponers as well as a place for seasoned bargain hunters to congregate and share tips. You’ll receive a workbook to take home, as well as coupons, and get the chance to connect with like-minded savers.
If you'd like to go, BeltwayBargainMom has provided me with 2 tickets, so leave a comment by 11:59pm tomorrow (Thursday, May 17th) to go! generously provided me tickets to allow two readers to attend her workshop free of charge.  I was not compensated for writing this post, or for hosting a giveaway.  Winner assumes all liability, and all that.  Winners are not required to take me out for coffee with their savings, but I'm not saying I'd stop them, either :) 

Meet Micaela!!

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Published: 04/24/2012
Micaela Williamson, aka SuperNovaMommy is a member of my friends the "MamaMafia", easily the coolest online friends I have :)  She's been such a tremendous friend and supporter and I can't say enough how glad I am that I met her!!

On her site, Micaela frequently interviews people, so I decided to flip the tables on her and interview her so you'd know who was running the site while I'm away!!

1) What toy buys you the most time to get something done? 

Definitely the train table!  It was a group gift.  My parents bought the table, my in-laws got the tracks and some trains, and my husband and I bought the drawers.  (Because nothing says "Happy Birthday" to your child more than getting him some drawers.)  We have had it for over three years, and both my kids still use it.  It depends on the day.  Sometimes it is a lego station, Radiator Springs, or just covered with their junk, but they love that train table!  

2) Where's your favorite place in NOVA? 

Frying Pan Park Farm, hands down!  I consider myself to be their official stalker and receive email updates when baby animals are born.  My toddler and I attend "Little Hands on the Farm" classes there, and I love all the special events Frying Pan has too.  I have gotten to know some of the staff members, and they are amazing, friendly people. 

3)Have a good embarrassing kid story?

When my son (then 3) shouted in Target.  "Mommy!  You must be SO EXCITED!  They have BRAS HERE!"  About four old ladies turned around and looked at me with disgust.  

4)Adorable awwwww moment kid story to make up for the embarrassing one?

When my oldest helped me empty the dishwasher and clean up the kitchen and said "I am always going to clean up for my wife when I'm a daddy."  Awww!  Now, go teach that to your father!

4) What makes you crazy enough to run supernovamommy? 

Um, why are there two question 4s?  I am still trying to figure this out, but I keep going because of the fun local people and businesses that I am connecting with.  

(confidential to Micaela, I'll get you for noticing my two 4's one day!!) ;) 

5) Your top 3 parenting advice picks 

"This too will pass."  One day your kid WILL sleep through the night and use the potty.  I promise!

"Be consistent."  If you said we're leaving the park if you throw sand one more time, and your kid throws sand, then leave the park.

"If you feel frustrated, change the scenery."  We live in an area with so many fun things for kids to do.  Just get out and have fun!

6) Shoes or jewelry?


Cooking with Bloggers at Alice and Louise Cooking School

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Published: 03/28/2012
Being a blogger is not fun when your space bar isn't working.  Being a blogger IS fun when you get to hang out with other bloggers at Alice and Louise, however! 

Last week, I was able to go check out Alice and Louise with a group of Northern Virginia Bloggers for a fun networking event put together by Andrea from Real Housewives of Northern Virginia.  Alice and Louise, in addition to doing catering, also hosts cooking classes for everyone from children through adults, and will do corporate events or private parties.  (Interested in doing one? Email me! If we can get a group of 8 together I'll book it!) They can work around your price range and interests, and, bonus, you can BYOM (bring your own Merlot).  

 Mother Earth Meals was also on hand to share some great cooking inspired by battling cancer and increasing your health using food.  Simply Desserts was also there with some delicious cheesecake tips.  By the way, did you know that it's Lent? Everything smelled delicious and got gobbled up, but I just watched.  Le sigh. (Okay, really I've been trying to pinpoint a few tummy issues and keep giving up different things to try to figure it out, but Lent is a much faster explanation)
 Group shot!  These ladies are a lot of fun! They didn't even make fun of the fact that I brought my own beverage (it was lemonade made with stevia) in a Patriots cup.  Rocking :)
Pictured (In No Particular Order):
Paper Placemats
Mom Machine
Caffeine and a Prayer
Creekside Learning
Real Housewives of Northern Virginia
Beltway Bargain Mom

Giveaway: Our Life Memories Premium Subscription

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Published: 03/24/2012

My friend DeLise, who is a member of the MamaMafia, is amazing.  The woman has a degree from Standford, for goodness' sake!  She's also a homeschooler, an amazing momma, and the owner of

From DeLise:
Our Life Memories gives families the inside scoop on activities in DC, Maryland, and Virginia. Through their "real reviews" and customized Kid-Tineraries, families visiting or residing in the DC Metro Area rely on this resource to know what to expect before they embark on an adventure with their loved ones. 

Real Reviews: Help families choose amongst many available activities in the DC Metro area.

Customized itineraries: For busy caregivers who want to create treasured childhood experiences but do not have the time to sift through all of the available options, these "Kid-Tineraries" are customized to the child(s) interests and personality.

DeLise has been running for 1 year!  In celebration of her blog-aversary, she's very generously offering two of you a Premium Subscription to her website!  

Premium Subscibers receive exclusive reviews with the inside scoop on children's activities in the area.  This includes Weekly reviews directly to your inbox weekly (52/year), exclusive access to ALL password protected reviews on the Our Life Memories Website, and subscriber-only giveaways.  

Click the name to see a sample of one of DeLise's reviews for Splashdown Waterpark in Prince William County.  

If you don't win, subscriptions are a deal at $12/year.  To enter, please leave a comment wishing DeLise a Happy Anniversary, and for a second entry, tell her what you like about her website!  

Thanks, DeLise, for the great giveaway, and for being a rockstar member of the MamaMafia.  

Giveaway: Dunkin Donuts- Thanks to and DD!

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Published: 01/23/2012

Laura Harders is a fellow Prince William County mom and blogger at where she shares her frugal finds, grocery store & restaurant deals, and family-friendly events in the DC-metro area.  You can find her over at her website, or on Facebook.  This week she's giving away 8 ticket books on her website for coffee and a donut each week for a year at the new Dunkin Donuts/Baskin Robbins, and she's kindly shared 2 with me just for readers!!  For those of you that didn't meet her at Gymboree, she's also incredibly kind and great to talk to! Be sure to check her site out!

I don't know if I've mentioned this before, but I did some time in Massachusetts.  (Not like prison, but it was so cold it FELT like it!) While I was there, I developed a deeply-rooted appreciated for Coffee Regula, which is some combination of 2 creams, 3 sugars, and a little spoonful of something addictive.  

Seriously, in the great white north, there will be traffic backups on Route 9 because the drive-thru at the Dunkin Donuts extends back onto the highway.  You think the Woodbridge Chick Fil A has a crazy drive-thru line? You haven't seen Massachussets-ens trying to get their coffee.

The newest DC-area Dunkin’ Donuts & Baskin Robbins store is located right here in Prince William County, 9685 Liberia Avenue, Suite 101 in Manassas, and the store just finished off its grand opening promotions, which included free medium coffees, free scoop nights, $3 for 6 donuts, plus free coffee & donut coupons for a year for the first 100 customers that came in on Tues. Jan. 10th & Wed. Jan. 18th.

Even though the grand opening promotions are now over, we have a special giveaway for 2 lucky readers. Coupons for 1 free coffee & donut each week for the 2012 year! The coupons are only valid at the new Dunkin' Donuts store on Liberia Ave.  My husband's new route to work goes right past this store, and while he's never caught the coffee bug, he's planning to make lots of friends at his new job using that addictive Dunkin Donuts brew!! 

To Win:

1) Leave a comment on this post
2) Additional entry for liking on Facebook and DC Dunkin’ Donuts on Facebook and leave a comment that you did. 

Twitter banned me for adding follows too quickly, so while I'm appealing that, I refuse to offer a twitter win, but you can enter via twitter for one of the 8 BeltwayBargainMom is giving away :) 

Disclosure: Dunkin' Donuts of Greater Washington DC and the management team at the new Dunkin' Donuts store provided PWCMoms with giveaway items for readers, in addition to coupons for my family.  All opinions expressed, however, are my own.

For extra chances to win free coffee & donut each week for 2012, be sure to enter Beltway Bargain Mom's giveaway here: 

Guest Review: Jammin Java

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Published: 08/17/2011
By DeLise Bernard
Check out DeLise's Blog and Site: Our Life Memories
August 15, 2011


I always heard wonderful things about Jammin Java but the idea of driving to Vienna from Maryland always deterred me.  A friend mentioned that The Great Zucchini would be performing as part of their Tot Rock Series, and, knowing that he would keep my toddler laughing, was enough motivation to get me in the car!

We arrived just in time to buy our tickets ($5 for everyone age 1 and older), a great cup of coffee (Caramel Macchiato for me) and find our seats.  There were folding chairs facing the stage and a large open space in front of the chairs for the children to sit “criss cross applesauce.”  A sweet mommy asked if RJ wanted to sit next to her 3-year-old son so he sat with his new friend on the front row and I grabbed a spot with our infant and the friend who invited us.

All of the children loved the show.  The Great Zucchini kept them entertained and laughing with remarkable skill.  RJ had a opportunity to join him on stage and participate in the fun and was sad when the show ended.  But, luckily, the fun at Jammin Java had just begun!

Our tummies were starting to talk to us so we checked to see if they had a kiddie menu!  YES!  PB and J, Turkey and Cheese, Chicken Fingers, and Hot Dogs...all great options that came with applesauce and a drink.  We made our choice and found a table to eat with our friends.  But, what happens when you try to sit down with 3 children to eat in a wide open space?  They’d much rather run around!  And, run they did.  I wondered if the team at Jammin Java would mind but, they didn’t!  Whew!  I guess with a kids’ concert every day of the week, they are used to the jumping and playing that is customary at this age.  Oh, how I appreciated that!  So, mommy finished off the sandwich, my infant scarfed down the applesauce and we enjoyed watching the children play freely. 

Soon, they noticed the video games at the front of the Cafe.  YAY, more Jammin Java fun!  I thought I could get away with telling RJ that he was “playing” them without giving him coins.  But, clearly, I was mistaken.  So, many quarters later, he became a pro at Donkey Kong and Centipede while mommy just became broke. 

Two and a half hours after our arrival, it was hard to pull the kids out of Jammin Java.  If your children love the freedom to play and laugh and you love not feeling the pressure to keep active children seated and quiet, Jammin Java is the place for you!   Their Tot Rock series takes place very weekday at 10:30am and, if you go, you may see us there! 

Jammin’ Java 227 Maple Ave E Vienna, VA 22180 Phone: 703.255.1566

Tot Rock Series (weekdays at 10:30am)
Wednesdays:  ROCKNOCEROS
Thursdays: OH SUSANNAH
Fridays:  BANJO MAN
Milla's Playland A Play Gym Designed for Parents and Children Aged 10 Months to 4 1/2 Years...