Freedom Egg-Stravaganza 2015!!

Permalink to Freedom%20Egg-Stravaganza%202015%21%21%20
Published: 03/02/2015





Giveaway: Pushcart Players: Alice in Wonderland at the Hylton Center

Permalink to Giveaway%3A%20Pushcart%20Players%3A%20Alice%20in%20Wonderland%20at%20the%20Hylton%20Center
Published: 02/18/2015
Next week at the Hylton, don't miss Alice in Wonderland!! 



Pushcart Players: Alice in Wonderland
February 28, 2015 at 11 am and 2 pm
Lewis Carroll’s zany and fantastical tale comes to life when this Emmy-nominated troupe returns to the Hylton Center with Alice in Wonderland. Filled with pure nonsense and madcap characters that everyone knows and loves – from the White Rabbit and the Mad Hatter to the Cheshire Cat and the Queen of Hearts – this intriguing tale about a curious and imaginative young girl has enchanted readers for many generations. Pushcart Players now brings young Alice’s adventure to the stage in this delightful adaptation, complemented by whimsical music, vibrant costumes, and spectacular scenic elements. “A polished and knowing theater company and a felicitous event for children.” (The New York Times)
Tickets: $15 Adults, $5 Children



Want to win tickets? Use the Rafflecopter Below! Winner will be announced on SUNDAY! 
a Rafflecopter giveaway



Reminder/Disclaimers: PwcMoms giveaways are sponsored and provided by the institution named.  PwcMoms facilitates the giveaways, but is not responsible for prizes or facilities. Please refer to our giveaway rules for full details.  If you enter, you agree to be bound by these terms and conditions.

Guest Post: Snow Days Can be ‘Grow’ Days

Permalink to Guest%20Post%3A%20Snow%20Days%20Can%20be%20%E2%80%98Grow%E2%80%99%20Days
Published: 01/23/2015
Snow Days Can be ‘Grow’ Days
By Eugenia Cole and Robin Banford-Geisler
Winter Break is officially over, but the winter season will likely provide a few more mini-breaks before spring arrives.  Last year, Prince William County Public Schools lost 13 days to snow--almost 3 weeks of instruction time. Although snow days can provide a welcomed break from the normal routine for parents, students, and teachers, they can also provide boundless opportunities for intentional conversation and learning at home.  
A good example of the impact even trivial communication moments have on little listeners is a conversation Mrs. Cole recently had with a kindergarten student. The young lady informed Mrs. Cole that she would soon be attending “Reading Workshop” (an after-school reading enrichment program) on Mondays, instead of her normal Thursday time.  Mrs. Cole hadn’t heard anything from the parents regarding the change, but, based on her experience with the student and her family, Mrs. Cole knew this information was something that the girl’s parents had communicated with her and the young student remembered. 
While that example of a young student’s attention to and retention of information shared in conversation may seem minute, it goes to show how responsible and responsive our younger learners can be when provided the opportunity. Often times, questions asked to kindergartners regarding real-life matters are met with shrugs and “I don’t know.” This response is not because our children are too simple or young to be aware, but simply because parents don’t often communicate with them regarding what they consider to be irrelevant topics for children. 
The difference between students who are included in higher-level discussion at home and those who are not becomes evident in classroom discussion and learning time, where a distinction emerges between which students are having things explained to them and which ones are simply having things done for them.  The simple act of regular and intentional dialogue with a kindergartner can permit high-level return in the classroom. While, understandably, parent work schedules contribute to a lack of time for intentional communication, snow days can provide a convenient opportunity to have purposeful family interaction time.
While even kindergartners are as tempted to attach themselves to their electronics as we prove to be, days off from school, prompted by winter weather, can be full of personal interaction & conversational learning for our students. These mini-breaks are a wonderful opportunity to intentionally focus on strengthening your young child’s communication skills by including them in every-day discussion. Use the together-time to help your learner build towards a successful second half of the year and beyond!  
As teachers of a younger audience, we package our learning objectives into fun and interactive lessons in order to engage kindergartners. While electronics and technology may rule our day, there is still opportunity to be creative in how you engage your kindergartner on snow days.  The right kind of game can help him/her strengthen foundational skills, such as following directions, pre-reading (making a guess about topic based on pictures, clues, etc) and working together. Below is an explanation of three great offline, or non-electronic, activities that can help your kindergartner build a solid learning foundation for 2015.
  • Indoor Games:
Brain Games are an example of activities that can help exercise and develop memory. Additionally, parentfurther.com has a list of information processing activities that are worth considering, including the 30 Second Spotlight game, in which participants pick a family related topic, take turns, and talk about the topic for 30 seconds of uninterrupted time.  This game is a great one for your student because it aims to help your kindergartner strengthen his/her listening and responding skills.
If you are already using games as a learning tool, be encouraged that your efforts are foundational. Continue to establish such routine interactions with your kindergartner during snow days and add additional games to work on new skills. 

  • Learning With Snow
Snow is fun to play with, but can also be fun to learn with.  Sledding, snow-ball fights, and snow man/fort building are all fun activities during snow days.  Author Jean Warren shares on preschoolexpress.com that snow, as a learning material, presents the opportunity for children to work on Thinking skills, Coordination Skills, Art Skills, Math Skills, Music Skills, Language Skills, Science Skills and Concept Skills. With a little intentionality, you can turn those and other activities into unique learning opportunities.
One example of a specific, fun snow activity that Jean Warren recommends is “Rolling and Throwing,” as explained below. 
ROLLING AND THROWING
Children naturally love to roll snow into large balls and throw smaller snowballs.  Encourage rolling and throwing.  Both of these activities help your child develop their coordination skills.  Instead of throwing balls at people, help your child set up a row of plastic bottles to knock over or a tire to throw through.
You can learn more about this activity at http://www.preschoolexpress.com/learning-station09/learning-with-snow-december.shtml.  Although this article is geared towards preschoolers, these activities can be beneficial for your kindergartner as well!

  • Experimenting
The third important opportunity we highly encourage you to take advantage of is providing times for experimenting. One of those things very obvious in the classroom is the difference between students who are not allowed to experiment, for parental fear of inaccuracy, and those who are challenged to develop independence and find a way to do things on their own.  
A practical example of how student experimenting provides advancements in independent thinking comes from a summer camp situation. During those days filled with heat, we like to offer the students a treat of ice cream in little cups that usually have wooden spoons attached for convenient scooping.  However, one time, the wooden spoons were not included with the ice cream cups.  We had kindergartners begin to cry because they could not figure out how to eat the ice cream without the little spoons.  This presented an opportunity for the kindergartners to problem solve and use reasoning skills to figure out how to eat the ice cream without the relied-upon spoon.  We began to experiment with the students to figure out (non-messy) ways to eat the ice cream, like taking the time to lick the ice cream, squeezing the cup to get the ice cream out, or folding up the lid to make it into a spoon in order to scoop the ice cream out. While exercises in experimenting open doors to less than perfect results, they establish skills in solving problems, encouraging creativity, and rewarding diligence. 
Take time during the snow days to experiment and create opportunities for your young student to practice problem solving and reasoning skills. Intentionally create scenarios in which normal tools are not available to accomplish a task and guide your child toward figuring out how to overcome the challenge faced.  
All of the above-mentioned opportunities, and others like them, can not only create new, important life-skills for your young student, but they can also serve the double benefit of building their self-esteem and sense of security.  Engaging your kindergartner in any of these simple, offline activities will allow your student to more fully and effectively engage in the classroom, more prepared to learn and grow during the second half of the school year.  

If you have any questions related to Kindergarten please send an email to Bcitizen@christchapel.org 

CCA’s next Open House is January 24th from 1pm-3pm.

Authors:
Robin Banford-Geisler 
BS/Early Childhood & Elementary Education; Masters/ Reading Literacy, George Mason University
Kindergarten Teacher
Elementary School
Eugenia Cole 
BS/ Christian Elementary Education, Virginia Baptist College
Kindergarten Teacher
Elementary School
Christ Chapel Academy is dedicated to unleashing the leadership potential within each student. Academically rigorous programs, a vibrant Christ-centered community, and a unique multicultural learning environment make CCA a great option for parents who want a smaller school but don’t want to sacrifice big opportunities for their student(s). 
Christ Chapel Academy was voted as the “Best Private School” in Prince William County in 2014, by Prince William Today readers. 

Learn more about Christ Chapel Academy at christchapelacademy.org

Review: Peace of Pottery

Permalink to Review%3A%20Peace%20of%20Pottery
Published: 01/19/2015

 I love this kid.  He's awesome.  He's funny and smart and he does hilarious voices and impersonations.  He's the first person to comfort someone who feels left out or scared, and he's just an all around great person.  He's also the middle kid, so that makes getting alone time all the more special to him.  We had some time on Saturday to hang out, just the two of us.  I decided that we'd grab lunch and visit Peace of Pottery- which is located at 9838 Libera Ave in Manassas just across from the car wash.
 If you've never been to a paint your own pottery establishment, this one works pretty much the same way all of them do.  When you come in there are a large variety of plain white pottery pieces for you to choose from.  Little statues of animals, plates, bowls, tea pots, big small, inbetween.  Each piece has a different price, so be sure to set a budget before you go in.  Peace of Pottery also charges a $6 studio fee on top of the price of the pottery (some studios include this fee in the price of the piece, others charge it separately- either way you're paying it).
 There are plenty of tables, you can sit and enjoy a quiet afternoon or you can host a party (scout troop, large family, etc). Logan and I each picked a mug.  Mine had polka dots and Logan opted for a mug with a "mouth" for cookies. The first step is to wash your piece of pottery and then you pick out glaze colors.  To get an even, non-streaky finish, the owner recommended three coats of glaze, which takes a little bit of time, but getting on base colors is pretty mindless work and we had a lot of fun chatting while we worked.
I didn't get a picture of my finished mug, but I thought that Logan's minion mug turned out really cute.  He's planning to make some banana cookies to eat with his tea when we get it back on Saturday (firing turnaround is about a week).

Peace of Pottery is a lovely, inviting space.  It's not a cheap afternoon- we spent $45.92 for two mugs, so it was perfect for a one-on-one day, but isn't something I'd just do on the spur of the moment with all three kids (which would have put me closer to $100 assuming they'd all picked mugs and not something bigger).  Pottery parties, on the other hand, start at $19 per person, so if you have a large group of kids you'd like to take, that could be a great way to keep your costs a little lower.

We definitely had a fun time and enjoyed the laid back, peaceful atmosphere.  I'd definitely recommend Peace of Pottery for a fun afternoon or a great venue for a party if you've got a kid with a little artistic flair!


Disclaimer: We just went to Peace of Pottery.  Nobody invited us or asked for a review.  All opinions are our own.

Guest Post: BumbleABC

Permalink to Guest%20Post%3A%20BumbleABC
Published: 01/18/2015
Thanks to Katrina for sharing about BumbleABC with us! If you'd like to guest post, just shoot me an email! 



BumbleABC is a wonderful little place inside of Engineering for Kids located in Lake Ridge, Virginia. Bumble ABC offers workshops, classes, and programs for infants – 6 year olds. They also offer field trips and birthday parties.

BumbleABC was founded and created by two local moms,  Lisa Dillard and Dori Roberts. How cool is that?!

We went and checked out their Open Play for the first time the other day. Im not sure what I was expecting going in, I mean I knew it would be good, but this place is so awesome. My kids are still talking about it days later!

When you first walk into the building there is a waiting area and a customer service desk! Off to the side is a little spot for coffee, tea, and water.

So once you get your kiddos name tags and get all squared away with the awesome people at the desk, you can go into the play area.

OHHHHhhhhh the play area! There are HUGE foam blocks for building, a Lego wall, an area with magnaforms, potato heads, etc., a wind tunnel, a car track, a room for infants (a ROOM for INFANTS yall!), and oh so much more.

The kids had so much fun. They painted, they ran, they jumped, they used their little noggins, and got all that built up energy out!

The things that stuck out to me the most were how KIND and ACCEPTING the employees were of all the children, and the layout. I love that I can see my children pretty much wherever they went.

Quote from the 2 year old “I loved crawling through the tunnel!”

You can check out there upcoming Open Plays ( and other programs) HERE. (Link for that is http://bumbleabc.com/registration/)

Hope you enjoy them as much as we did!
 
 
Katrina is a Stay At Home Mom to three, one girl and two boys, and wife to her high school sweetheart. She is passionate about her faith, family, natural living, the outdoors, and all things creative. If you liked this post you can find more at Sunflowers On The Hill, where she blogs about life as a SAHM, her faith, and as well as everything in between. You can also follow her on Facebook and Pinterest.


Guest Post: Suriving Disney World With Young Children

Permalink to Guest%20Post%3A%20Suriving%20Disney%20World%20With%20Young%20Children
Published: 01/06/2015

Surviving Disney World with Young Children

When are we going to Disney?  As soon as your child asks you that question, you start asking yourself different questions. How stressful will it be? What age is the right age? What’s it really like to be there with young kids?
The thought of taking young children to Disney can be overwhelming. You have visions of a perfect magical experience, but you can also see overtired, over stimulated, tantrum throwing kids. The age group most parents seem concerned with are preschoolers.  The good news is that with a little planning and the right perspective, you can have that magical trip you dreamed about.

Should I wait until my kids will remember?

I often hear people say that they want to wait to do Disney World until their kids are old enough to remember the trip.  Disney for some is a once in a lifetime vacation and you want to feel you’re getting your money’s worth.  However, there is magic in taking young kids that can’t be replicated later. For a preschooler, that really is Cinderella just waiting for a hug and Mickey Mouse really has come out just to see them today.  The magic of Disney is never lost on a young child.




How does Disney help young families?

·      The rides and attractions are well suited for little ones and families. The majority of rides in the parks can be experienced by the entire family together.  With most of the height requirements set at 40" (and a few at 44"-48"), the average 7-8 year old can ride nearly all of the rides.  Many 3-4 year olds can even ride some of the “thrill rides”.
·      Child swap is available at all rides with a height restriction. This allows families with a child that is too small to ride without waiting in a long line twice.
·      FastPass+ allows you to come back to a ride later and wait in a much shorter line. These passes, along with a good touring strategy, can minimize time spent waiting in line.
·      From young kids to teenagers to parents and grandparents, the entire family can have a magical time together.
·      Baby care centers are available in all parks, providing a quiet, air conditioned place to take a break, feed, or change a baby or small child.
·      Each park has several play areas designed for younger children.
·      Live Shows showcasing their favorite Disney Characters are a big hit.  Disney Junior Live on Stage is a can’t miss attraction in Disney’s Hollywood Studios. These shows offer guests an air conditioned venue to get off their feet.
·      Long park hours and convenient transportation to onsite resorts make it easy to take a mid-day break back at the resort for naps or dips in the pool.
·      Full immersion of Disney entertainment, including all your kids favorite characters. There's nothing better than your daughter meeting her favorite princess or your son challenging Darth Vader to a light saber duel.



What are the Challenges?

As much as we all want everything to be “happily ever after,” there can be some challenges in a trip to Disney with young kids. One of the most important tips I can give is to manage your expectations. Remember, you won't see and do everything, and that’s OK. Pay attention to your kids' cues, and if they're not enjoying themselves anymore, take a break. It’s more important to enjoy the things you do than to try to force everyone to do everything.

If you are waiting until your preschooler is older to enjoy Disney, think again! Your preschooler will be enchanted just by the experience of being at Disney. From characters, parades, attractions and shows designed with them in mind, their days will be full of Disney magic.


Author Bio:


Patricia Mickus is an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner with Magical Memories Travel.  Patricia lives in Bristow, Virginia with her husband and two sons.  She believes you can have a Disney vacation of a lifetime and maximize your vacation dollar. All of her concierge planning services are FREEto her clients.   Contact Patricia at patricia@magicalmemoriestravel.com or visit her Facebook page or blog - www.MagicalMickeyTips.com for more Disney planning tips.

New Years Eve 2014

Permalink to New%20Years%20Eve%202014
Published: 12/29/2014


Prince William County doesn't have a First Night Celebration, although I did talk with our county supervisor about the process at one point.  But, there are a few family-friendly options for folks in PWC (okay, and I'll include first nights that are close by!)


Pump it Up of Manassas will be offering NYE festivities a day EARLY on December 30th with open playtime, DJ, Karaoke, Glow, Pizza, a NY Countdown and a balloon drop.  This is not drop off and last year it sold out! Times are 12-2pm and 5-7pm.  They will also have events on the 31st.





Skate N Fun Zone will host a New Years Eve Skate on December 31st with Balloon Drops at 2pm and Midnight.  You can read about our review of their NYE party here.












Pump it Up of Manassas will have a drop-off event for kids on December 31st from 5-8pm Looking for some one to watch the kids while you celebrate ringing in the New Year? Let Pump It Up take care of the kids for a few hours. They will enjoy GLOW, Karaoke, Sparkling cider and ring in the new year with our balloon drop and we'll even feed them dinner! *This is a DROP-OFF event.*

Kids N Motion will offer a NYE party with sleepover option.  It's $30 (I'm not clear on if that's per kid or for two kids, the website says "$30 per siblings") and includes pizza, a movie, donuts and milk for breakfast, and lots of bouncing.  There's a balloon drop at 10pm, and you're able to pick your children up after that or leave them for the night.

Christ Chapel will offer a 10pm New Years Eve Service

FOR FIRST NIGHT CELEBRATIONS:
Alexandria
Annapolis
Vienna
Falls Church 
Winchester



Start your New Year off right with a 5k with the Freedom Center on January 1st! 
Leesylvania State Park will offer a first day hike from 1-2:30pm.  It's a 90 minute 2 mile hike led by Jim Klakowicz.  

Upcoming at BumbleABC Lake Ridge

Permalink to Upcoming%20at%20BumbleABC%20Lake%20Ridge
Published: 12/11/2014

Bumble Science - Fascinated about Flight
Mondays- January 5th, 12th, 19th, & 26th
5:00 PM - 5:45 PM
Ages 3-6
In this four week class, little scientists learn about various methods and means of flight by using the scientific method to experiment with a wind tunnel, a straw rocket launcher, balloons, pinwheels, helicopters, airplanes and more!
Bumble Music - Circles, Spots & Dots
Mondays- January 5th, 12th, 19th, & 26th
6:15 PM - 7:00 PM
Ages 3-6
In this four week class, little bugs enhance hand-eye coordination, rhythm skills, music awareness and gross motor skills as they learn about circle shapes through fun, interactive music and movement games, they are engaged by parachute-play and they play instruments while moving, rocking, marching, tapping, clapping, singing, and dancing to the beat!
Bumble Art - Build-a-Bug
Wednesdays- January 7th, 14th, 21st, & 28th
5:00 PM - 5:45 PM
Ages 3-6
In this four week class, little artists pretend to be construction workers and enhance fine motor skills and creativity by using various building methods such as cutting, painting, gluing and more to construct a different bug each week!

Bumble Sports - Taking Aim
Wednesdays- January 7th, 14th, 21st, & 28th
6:15 PM - 7:00 PM
Ages 3-6
In this four week class, little athletes explore team-building concepts, enhance fine and gross motor skills, and practice hand-eye coordination by engaging in fun, interactive games and activities centered on basketball, golf, bowling and ping pong!
Open Play Workshops in Lake Ridge
Mondays and Wednesdays
10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Infants to age 6
This open discovery workshop encourages creativity and cognitive development as children advance in association and problem-solving abilities, while constructing with various large building blocks and other materials. Friendships and social skills will also form as children work and grow together!

Kid Ornament Ideas

Permalink to Kid%20Ornament%20Ideas
Published: 12/09/2014
Remember that time that my husband didn't set up the Christmas tree correctly and it fell over and all my ornaments broke?

(Yes that really happened)

(Okay, fine, and yes, I'm just sharing that story because so many of you agreed that they're just towels....but it happened!)

Ever since that incident, homemade Christmas ornaments are some of my favorite things to get! Luckily PwcGrammy is amazing and frequently when the kiddos hang out with her they come home with presents for me! These ideas are all very simple and would be great for your house, or as presents to send to family and friends!

 Rudolph and Frosty here are super simple.  They're just made from 1.5 inch terra cotta pots that you can buy at Michael's! You'll need ribbon, white paint, brown paint, sharpie markers (black, orange, and pink), ribbon, brown pipe cleaners, goggly eyes, and pompoms.  You can use regular glue and let it set up, or if you have older kids, you can use the hot glue gun while they supervise- but you might still burn yourself....or maybe that's just me.

Paint your pot brown for Rudolph or white for Frosty.  Then, just let your child decorate! We added antlers and a red nose for our reindeer and ear muffs for frosty.  Use ribbon to make a loop to hang your ornament. If you're using regular glue or craft glue, be sure to allow enough time to fully dry before hanging.  Hot glue will basically dry instantly.
 Okay, so this guy is not so cute when you're looking at him like this....but....
HE HAS A LIGHT UP NOSE!! These are just tea lights wrapped with a ribbon scarf and decorated with sharpies.  I found the tiny tiny top hats on Amazon.  They're actually totally cute :) You could draw circles for coal or even regular facial features.  Be sure that when you buy your tea lights they already have the batteries in them.  You can find REALLY cheap packages of them, but then you have to buy and install all the tiny batteries, so just save yourself the hassle and buy them with batteries inside :)

Enjoy!

Meet Lisa Dillard and Bumble ABC

Permalink to Meet%20Lisa%20Dillard%20and%20Bumble%20ABC
Published: 12/01/2014
Lisa Dillard is a local mom and founder of Bumble ABC


Bumble ABC was born out of the idea that it would be great if there were something else in the Woodbridge area for little ones.  I found myself driving further and further out to find things to do with my two year old son.  The idea was originally born out of that,” said Dillard.
 
Bumble ABC enjoys a partnership with Engineering for Kids, utilizing their space during EFK’s down time.  They use existing classrooms and add more “little kid” options including playmats, tunnels, and tents, and swap the regular Legos out for Duplos.
With the learning center that Engineering for Kids just opened, there was some open calendar space during the day, so we’re using the down time in their space until we can open our own space.
 
“Each week open play has a theme,” explained Dillard. “We change the dress up clothes, craft, and toys to engage the children.  It’s not necessarily structured, but directed play.”
Bumble ABC holds open plays on Monday and Wednesday from 10am-12pm.  Open play is $10 per child, infants are $5 or free with a paid sibling. Bumble ABC also offers discounts to mommy groups and private groups, with a maximum of 20 kids.  They also offer mobile classes for preschools as well as birthday parties.  Classes are currently available in Science, Music & Movement, Sports and Art (ages 3-6).  They plan to offer Baby & Me Classes and Music & Movement classes (ages 0-3) soon.
 
For more information about Bumble ABC, visit them on Facebook or their Website


Disclosure: Bumble ABC is an advertiser with PwcMoms, but all opinions are our own. 

Giveaway: Berenstain Bears LIVE! in Family Matters: The Musical @The Hylton Center

Permalink to Giveaway%3A%20Berenstain%20Bears%20LIVE%21%20in%20Family%20Matters%3A%20The%20Musical%20%40The%20Hylton%20Center
Published: 11/12/2014
Next week at the Hylton, don't miss the Berenstain Bears!!! 



Berenstain Bears LIVE! in Family Matters: The Musical
November 22, 2014 at 11 am and 2 pm
Come on down to Bear Country for this enchanting adaptation of Stan and Jan Berenstain’s beloved children’s series. Fresh from its sold-out off-Broadway run this heartwarming musical based on three of the Berenstain Bears most popular books. Brother Bear’s grades are slipping, Sister Bear still has a few things to learn about making new friends, and Papa Bear can’t stop eating junk food – but thankfully, they – and we – can always depend on Mama Bear and her loving patience to set things right. Filled with original songs, fun dancing, and important life lessons, this humorous and heartfelt theatrical experience gives parents the opportunity to share these treasured tales they enjoyed as children with their own young cubs! “Like honey for little kids!” (Mommy Poppins)
Tickets: $15 Adults, $5 Children



Want to win tickets? Use the Rafflecopter Below! Winner will be announced on SUNDAY! 
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Reminder/Disclaimers: PwcMoms giveaways are sponsored and provided by the institution named.  PwcMoms facilitates the giveaways, but is not responsible for prizes or facilities. Please refer to our giveaway rules for full details.  If you enter, you agree to be bound by these terms and conditions.

Featured Organization Friday: Artisphere

Permalink to Featured%20Organization%20Friday%3A%20Artisphere
Published: 10/31/2014

Artisphere in Arlington connects artists and patrons to an eclectic mix of fresh, thought-provoking arts programming. We’re your spot for insight into the creative process and to engage in artistic
adventures—from contemporary visual art, live music and theatre to new media, film and dance. 
Come explore, experience and engage—collide with art.

You can check out Artisphere are their free family fun day this weekend! 
Calling all families…spend an artful day at Artisphere’s free family day on November 2nd from noon until 3 p.m. This fun-filled event is centered around a dance party for kids, designed by the team from Baby Loves Disco. Have a frighteningly fun time with your favorite Looney Toons characters as we screen some of their spookiest episodes including A Haunting We Will Go, Bewitched Bunny and more! Rounding out the event will be a mix of art activities, including an art “make and take” project. 

Halloween costumes welcome, but not required! For the kid in everyone!

FREE!

Giveaway: Girls on the Run 5K

Permalink to Giveaway%3A%20Girls%20on%20the%20Run%205K
Published: 10/30/2014
Girls on the Run of Northern Virginia has an upcoming PWC Race! (Plus their colors are fantastic!)






Pfitzner (Potomac Nationals) Stadium
Woodbridge, VA
Saturday November 22, 2014
8:30am Race Start 



Runners of All Ages and Abilities are Welcome
5K shirts for all registered participants. 
Medals for all race finishers.


Come run, walk, skip, or roll across the finish line with us and support 2,000 girls in Northern Virginia as they achieve their goal to complete a 5K.  It's all about setting a personal goal and doing our best to achieve it! 


Want to join the fun? Enter to win Free race entry for you and your running buddy, plus a swag bag of Girls on the Run branded merchandise! Can't wait to win? Register online HERE. 


a Rafflecopter giveaway



As always, our giveaways are provided by the sponsor and governed by our giveaway rules, which you agree to by virtue of entering to win. 

FREE Family Events at Freedom!

Permalink to FREE%20Family%20Events%20at%20Freedom%21%20
Published: 10/18/2014

Giveaway: John Tartaglia: Imagine Ocean @The Hylton Center

Permalink to Giveaway%3A%20John%20Tartaglia%3A%20Imagine%20Ocean%20%40The%20Hylton%20Center
Published: 10/15/2014
Next week at the Hylton, don't miss ImaginOcean!! 



John Tartaglia: ImaginOcean 
October 26, 2014 at 2 pm and 4 pm
Tony Award nominee John Tartaglia takes young audiences on a magical under-the-sea adventure in this one-of-a-kind live glow-in-the-dark musical! Fishy friends Tank, Bubbles, and Dorsel discover a treasure map, thus beginning their remarkable journey of underwater discovery. Jam-packed with music ranging from swing to R&B to big band, this charming story appeals to audiences of all ages and is a blast from the first big splash to the last wave goodbye! Celebrated puppeteer, actor, and singer John Tartaglia got his start working on Sesame Streetas a teenager, and later starred in Broadway’s Avenue Q, Shrek the Musical, and Beauty and the Beast, and created and performed in Disney’s television hit Johnny and the Sprites. “A whimsical trip to the depths of the sea.” (Back Stage)
Tickets: $15 Adults, $5 Children




Want to win tickets? Use the Rafflecopter Below! Winner will be announced on SUNDAY! 
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Reminder/Disclaimers: PwcMoms giveaways are sponsored and provided by the institution named.  PwcMoms facilitates the giveaways, but is not responsible for prizes or facilities. Please refer to our giveaway rules for full details.  If you enter, you agree to be bound by these terms and conditions.

September Reader Meetup: Edgemoor Art Studio

Permalink to September%20Reader%20Meetup%3A%20Edgemoor%20Art%20Studio
Published: 09/12/2014
Ruth Johnsen, fabulous owner of Edgemoor Art Studio is hosting our September Reader Meetup! We'll be giving away spots to 20 children whose moms are fans of Edgemoor on Facebook (you'll enter using the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post)

In addition to being my favorite art studio, Edgemoor was the winner of the 2013 Kathleen K Seedfeldt Award for Arts Excellence.  The studio offers classes for preschoolers (phonics and art) through high school as well as hosting special events, amazing birthday parties, and group events for scouts etc. 


For our September Reader Meetup, Mrs. Johnsen will host ages 3-6 on Thursday, September 25th from 10:30am-Noon.  Children will participate in a fall-themed art morning including stories, apples, pumpkins and more!! This is NOT a drop-off event, so parents will need to plan to stay.  

Hope to see you there! Good luck! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway


This reader meet up is sponsored by Edgemoor Art Studio.  Winners assume all risk and liability and are responsible for their children while at the event.

Seed Stomp Volunteers Wanted!

Permalink to Seed%20Stomp%20Volunteers%20Wanted%21%20
Published: 09/12/2014
Join Leesylvania State Park on October 4th from 11am-1pm at the Lee's Woods Trailhead to help establish a field of wildflowers while having fun at the same time! Questions, call 703-583-6904 or email genevieve.white@dcr.virginia.gov

Touch a Truck (and a Giveaway!!)

Permalink to Touch%20a%20Truck%20%28and%20a%20Giveaway%21%21%29%20
Published: 09/10/2014

Discovery Junction children's museum is hosting a Touch a Truck on Sunday, September 21 from 10am-2pm at NOVA Manassas! Admission is $5/child, the first 100 children will get a free diecast vehicle, and there will be vehicles, kid-friendly activities, food, demos, and more! Join the fun!

Want to win a family four pack? We'll pick two winners!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Prize provided by Discovery Junction.  By entering you agree to be bound by our Giveaway Rules.

Guest Post: How Do I Get My Child to Eat Healthy?

Permalink to Guest%20Post%3A%20How%20Do%20I%20Get%20My%20Child%20to%20Eat%20Healthy%3F%20
Published: 09/02/2014
Earlier this summer, I asked you for your fitness/health/nutrition related questions for Max Muscle Owner Corry Matthews to respond to.  Here's the first one- it's actually a few questions in one! Thanks, Corry! 

Your nutrition is the key to your child’s.

What’s the single best way to change your child’s dietary habits – look at what you (as the parent) eat!  With school starting parents always ask “How do I get my child to eat a healthy breakfast?”  and “How do I ensure they are eating the right stuff for lunch and/or dinner?”

Here is the same question phrased a little differently “How do I get my children to stop eating junk”, “How do I get my kids to eat vegetables?”

In today’s society eating “balanced” can be really hard with commuting, long hours and after school activities.  The truth is – it starts and ends with the parents!  You are your child’s primary role model and your children look to you for what to eat.  Think about your breakfast today…did you have one?  Was it coffee?  What did your children see you eat before you tackled the day?  How about you dinner last night – did you eat all your vegetables?  Did you make sure everyone had a serving?
Setting goals as a family is key to getting everyone to eat better!  Here are a few simple tips that will help…

  • ·      Eat within 30 minutes of waking up
  • ·      Get at least 3 solid meals per day – start of the day, mid-day and end of the day
  • ·      Add a protein to every carbohydrate (yep, even breakfast & snacks)
  • ·      Think COLOR for every meal – what veggies or fruits can you add into your meal?  Remember, moms and dads you have to eat it too!
  • ·      Don’t drink your calories – this goes for everyone in the family – only exception should be milk for those under 2 or underweight

Small meal ideas:
  • ·      Half a whole-wheat bagel with almond butter or tahini
  • ·      Yogurt shake made with vanilla yogurt, banana and orange juice
  • ·      Hard-boiled egg sliced with whole grain toast or bowl of low sugar ceral
  • ·      Small bran muffin (homemade or one you trust to be wholesome) with nut or seed butter
  • ·      Almond butter on cinnamon-raisin toast
  • ·      Half a turkey sandwich in pita bread with sliced tomato and sprouts
  • ·      Small bowl of low-fat granola topped with half a banana and a dollop of yogurt
  • ·      Open-faced broiled low-fat cheese on whole-wheat
  • ·      Breakfast food can be served anytime of the day AND, you don’t have to serve breakfast foods at breakfast

This post is brought to you by Corry Matthews, owner of Max Muscle Sports Nutrition in Manassas and Springfield.  Corry is a mother of 2, author, and certified nutrition expert with a speciality in pregnancy-related nutrition. You can reach her at: 
                                                               Corry Matthews 703-772-7113


Getting Ready for Kindergarten

Permalink to Getting%20Ready%20for%20Kindergarten%20
Published: 08/27/2014
Our friends at Christ Chapel Academy have some tips for all of you getting ready to send off a Kindergartner!


Robin Banford-Geisler and Genia Cole have worked together teaching kindergarten classes at CCA for the past five years.  Last school year, they were chosen co-teachers of the year at the annual teacher recognition luncheon held on June 12th.  Each teacher is an amazing teacher in her own right, sharing her passion for education, and love for learning with her students.  They both understand that the early years of school are foundational to helping students to become confident life-long learners.  Each of them models Christ to their students, supporting self-discipline and positive character development. Working together, however, they have been able to challenge their young students to discover and develop their unique gifts and talents. 

In the video, Robin and Genia share tips that can help you get your new kindergartner off to a great start!




Feel free to share any additional tips that you have learned that can be helpful to other parents reading this blog. 


Credentials:
Robin Banford-Geisler BS/Early Childhood & Elementary Education; Masters/ Reading Literacy, George Mason University
Kindergarten Teacher
Elementary School

Eugenia Cole BS/ Christian Elementary Education, Virginia Baptist College
Kindergarten Teacher
Elementary School


Christ Chapel Academy is dedicated to unleashing the leadership potential within each student.  Academically rigorous programs, a vibrant christ-centered community, and a unique multicultural learning environmentmake CCA a great option for parents who want a smaller school but don’t want to sacrifice big opportunities for their student(s).  \

Christ Chapel Academy was voted as the “Best Private School” in Prince William County in 2014, by Prince William Today readers. 

Learn more about Christ Chapel Academy at christchapelacademy.org

Giveaway: Kids N Motion

Permalink to Giveaway%3A%20Kids%20N%20Motion
Published: 07/30/2014
Ah, Kids N Motion.  We have spent some serious birthday party time there!! My oldest son used to have the "if you want to invite one person you must invite the class" mandate, which meant everyone was not going to fit into our townhouse- but they'd definitely fit (and need a nap) after Kids N Motion.  My daughter actually decided to have her birthday party there this year, which was fantastic because it was the week before Silver Sparkles and I didn't have to do a thing except send an evite and pick up the cake.

In addition to birthday parties that will fit your entire class, Kids N Motion also offers open play, parents night out, a preschool program, and a drop-in Summer Fitness Program, which is fantastic if you need a morning off-duty but don't want to pay for a week of camp, or if you have an appointment to get to.

As a bonus for those of you with allergies, Kids N Motion is a peanut-free facility.  I know that is a concern for many of you on the page!  They also do school fundraisers.

For today's giveaway, Kids N Motion is offering a $50 gift card good for Parents Night, Open Plays, Parties, Preschool and Camps (anything they offer).  Enter using the Rafflecopter below. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway



Disclosure: By entering you are agreeing to all of our giveaway rules.  Gift Card is provided by KNM and any issues/liability/play-related difficulties should be directed to them upon claiming your prize. PwcMoms is further not responsible if your kids fall asleep in the car after open play and then wake up when you get to your house and won't go back to sleep and do the "I'm so cranky" thing all afternoon.  We've all been there, but it's not my bad. Good luck, have fun.

Children's Museum of Richmond Fredericksburg Location

Permalink to Children%27s%20Museum%20of%20Richmond%20Fredericksburg%20Location
Published: 07/21/2014

Playskool Playdate

Permalink to Playskool%20Playdate
Published: 07/12/2014
Note: Local Mom Debbi attended the same high school as me, and was kind enough to attend the Playskool Playdate at Top of the Town in Arlington for me since my kids are a little too old! She has three children, ages 4, 2.5, and 6 months. Here she shares a little about the toys and experience.  You can find more of Debbi's writing on her blog or follow her on Instagram.

Instead of lounging around the house on this rainy morning, we got to test out new toys at the Playskool Playdate in Arlington, VA.  I knew the girls would enjoy themselves but baby Matthew (6m) seemed to have the most fun. 
There was tons to do for the infant / toddler age group.  A variety of Elmo toys were available and they were all approved by Matthew – the big eyes and squishy hands and feet were a hit.  Cailin (age 2) also enjoyed the Sesame Street Talking ABC Elmo.  Elmo’s guitar was a fun prop for the girls and Matthew was happy to use it as a teether.  The Shapes ‘n Colors Turtle was bright and loud and Matthew could operate it on his own (always a plus).  His favorite toy seemed to be the Stack n Spin Monkey Gears. 
The toys were all available on a foam ABC mat which was inviting but as soon as kids began to pull apart the letters, choking hazards were everywhere.  This was a smaller version of the ABC foam mat often seen in play areas. 

Many older toys were re-presented in new ways:
- Glow worms (Matthew snuggled one in the stroller as I reminisced about my old green glow worm …from times of yore)
- Mr Potato Heads- with super hero capes and transformer pieces (Mixable Mashable Heroes)
- Ele-fun ball poppers – looked similar to the original, minus the flimsy trunk that always collapsed
Charlotte (4) and Cailin (2.5) were enthralled with the balloon maker, the face painter, and the fried macaroni and cheese balls.  Many of the preschool aged toys were targeted towards boys: Transformers, Spiderman (figurines and cars), and Marvel Super Heroes.  My girls stopped to give these toys a quick look but moved on quickly.  They were hoping for something representing Elsa and Anna (what preschool girl isn’t?). 
Juice boxes and hot dogs proved to be a success at lunch but the toddler chairs and tables were shaky at best.  I think they’re made to disassemble for storage which has its perks… but it wouldn’t be long before one of my squirmy kids would be crying on the floor. 

We had a very fun morning and are very excited about the swag we got to bring home!  Thanks for sharing the opportunity with us Kristina!

Engineering for Kids STEM Discovery Center Grand Opening!

Permalink to Engineering%20for%20Kids%20STEM%20Discovery%20Center%20Grand%20Opening%21
Published: 06/10/2014
We've worked with Engineering for Kids before on some of their awesome STEM programs for children, and now they're going to have their own STEM Discovery Center! Join them this Saturday, June 14th from 9am-1pm, with a ribbon cutting at 10am, to tour the new space and enter some great giveaways! This is also a fantastic time to register for camps, classes, and parties!! For more information visit engineeringforkids.com


Join Engineering For Kids as we celebrate the grand opening of our brand new S.T.E.M. Discovery Center in Lakeridge, VA. All parents and children are invited to join us along side Congressman Rob Wittman and other local officials to cut the ceremonial ribbon and check out all the new activities we have to offer. 

Children will be able to participate in a variety of hands on activities at different stations in the center. Parents will be able to socialize and learn more about our new program offerings.

Date: Saturday, June 14th
Time: 9:00am - 1:00pm (ribbon cutting at 10:00am)
Location: 1243 Dillingham Square. Lakeridge, VA 22192


Disclosure: This post is brought to you by Engineering for Kids. 

Reader Meetup: April 16, 2014

Permalink to Reader%20Meetup%3A%20April%2016%2C%202014
Published: 04/10/2014
Hey friends! The Little Gym of Gainesville has kindly offered to host us for our next Reader Meetup! We'll be making a simple spring craft (it's going to be bunnies/eggs, so if that is going to bug you feel free to bring your own craft), and then we'll have some play time in the gym space!

Plan on playing from 1pm-2pm.

This family-friendly meetup will be geared towards ages 3-6, although younger siblings are welcome.  Older siblings will want to schedule a playdate elsewhere so no little ones are getting trampled. Thanks!

If you'd like to get involved in our meetups to showcase your business, shoot me an email! If you'd like to bring snack for this meetup (a great way to show off your business!) or you'd like to drop off some swag for our participants, also email me :)

I can take 25 children, not counting non-mobile infants.  PLEASE DO NOT TAKE SPOTS if you're not going to come.

Thanks :)

I'll pull winners one at a time on Friday afternoon, so you'll need to email me back by Friday at 10pm to save your space so I can fill all the spots.

Good luck :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Can't come on the 16th? Check out The Little Gym's Summer Camps!

daytime playtime - a fun place to Learn.... a great place to Grow A Play Gym Designed for Parents and Children Aged 10 Months to 4 1/2 Years... Elite Maid Squad