My friends over at Kid Trips made this great list of things to do to this summer for kids - but hey, adults need ideas too! Check it out - I think I can knock out more than half of them :)
This is the smile of a child who just spent $10 on sugar.
In all honesty, I had not set my expectations very high for Mother's Day this year. We have had SO much going on in the past month with B having his tonsils out, complications of the surgery, and the semester of grad school coming to a close.
In order to not set myself up for an emotional roller coaster, I have learned (it took me about 6 years to figure this out) that sometimes it is better to have no expectations at all and be completely thrilled than to have expectations set high and be let down. This crazy method of thinking worked in my favor yesterday as my lovebunnie surpised me with a day out in DC!
We landed the best seats at Nationals Park - on the second deck but right over the first base line. B brought money from his piggy bank to buy the world's most expensive cotton candy - and I was pleased to find a Blue Moon in my hand :)
After the game, we went to Guapo's in Shirlington for a light dinner and pitcher of Sangria on the patio. My girlfriend, Anita, lives right around the corner in Fairlington and swung by to hang out with us in the beautiful breeze.
I am so so so lucky & thankful. BEST. DAY. EVER.
Saturday, April 27th 2013 at The Workhouse Arts Center
9601 Ox Road, Lorton Virginia, 22079
Featuring FREE Family Activities:
8-12 Occoquan Regional Park River Clean Up and tree planting (meet at Administrative Buildings at Occoquan Regional Park
9 am Busses begin to make shuttle runs
10 am Event opens at Workhouse Arts
10 am Tree Pruning Workshop (meet at Workhouse Parking Lot)
10:05 am Ribbon Cutting Farmers Market
10:30-11:15 Reptiles Alive
11 am Root Washing Workshop (meet at Workhouse Parking Lot)
11:15-12:00 Billy B Sings Songs about the Environment
12:15-1:15 Main Stage w/ Tree City USA, Friends of Trees Awards, Proclamation
1:30-2:15 Recycling Pirates
1:30-2:30 Tree Planting Demonstration (Workhouse Parking Lot)
2:30-3:15—Billy B Sings Songs about the Environment
3:15-4pm Reptiles Alive
4:00 End of Event; See you next year
Events and Edu-tainment at Workhouse Arts Center:
Rock Climbing Wall, Inflatable Obstacle Course, Face Painting, Balloon Art, Backyard Barnyard, Pony Rides, Food, Vendors, Farmers Market, Environmental Education and Games, Organizational Exhibits, Workhouse Arts Demonstrations, Environmental Passport Game for Kids (first 200), Mascots-Chicken, Bee, Beaver and Frog
Events and Edu-tainment at Occoquan Regional Park (take the shuttle bus for free!) 12:15-4 pm
Kayak and Bicycle rentals, Frisbee frenzy hosted by American University Ultimate Frisbee Club, Kite flying festival hosted by Sky Jewels Kite Company, Information Area hosted by Occoquan Watertrail League(OWL), Children’s Nature Display hosted by NVRPA, Turning Point Suffragist Memorial Display, Mayor Earnie Porta Historical Paddle, Family Fishing Event hosted by OWL, Tree Identification Hike
For more information, visit www.springfestfairfax.org.
Join the Book Hill neighborhood of Georgetown as the shops celebrate the annual Georgetown French Market!
Superb shopping complimented by the scent of fresh coffee and the sounds of strolling musicians immerse the Book Hill neighborhood of Georgetown every spring with the 10th annual Georgetown French Market coming up at the end of April. The 2013 Georgetown French Market will be held Friday, April 19 and Saturday, April 20 from 10am to 5pm.
This event takes place along upper Wisconsin Avenue, NW, between P Street and Reservoir Road, and features over 35 Georgetown boutiques, antique shops, restaurants and galleries offering savings up to 75% off designer goods, art and antique home furnishings. Whimsical mimes, strolling musicians, arts & crafts with Alliance Francais and live art demo by Art Soiree will offer fun and entertainment for the whole family. Click here for a full list of participating stores and their fabulous offers.
Head out for this year's Arlington Earth Week Community Fair featuring the Green Living Expo on Sunday, April 21, 2013, noon-4:30 p.m. at George Mason University's Arlington Campus.
The fair will feature eco-friendly exhibits showcasing ways to live a more green lifestyle, including energy conservation, sustainable food and eco-friendly transportation and more! Plus Mason's programs will include several exciting features such as:
•the Operation Rain Barrel Competition and Silent Auction
•the Arlington Green Patriot Award
•Food, fun and a visit from our green and fuzzy "Gunston"!
The fair will be held on the plaza in front of Mason's eco-friendly building, Founders Hall with additional space inside our state-of-the-art Multipurpose Room. The event will be FREE to attend, open to the entire Arlington community and a great way to celebrate Earth Day 2013.
Pre-Register for the Green Living Expo at the Earth Week Community Fair Today!
Pre-registration is strongly encouraged to expedite the check-in process. Pre-register today and receive a free raffle ticket and a giveaway at the registration desk.
Is there anything better than celebrating your parents' 30th wedding anniversary? How about celebrating it with roulette, exotic cuisine, and dragon fire in your martini glass? That's what I call a celebration!
My brother, parents, and I hit up Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races on Friday for a night out on the town. Only 50ish miles away, the drive was not too bad on a typically-horrendous Friday rush hour. I kinda-sorta wasn't feeling so lucky. My brother, on the other hand, is eternally lucky. He wins, and he wins often. He spent the entire car ride psyching me up and trying to get the luck flowing through my veins.
I was a rookie at roulette. My brother's enthusiasm worked... for a short while. Before I knew it, he was up $700 and I was still placing $15 bets just trying to break even. In my non-casino life, I live by the motto "go big or go home" - so I figured "why change now?" and I started playing like a high roller and betting $100 chips. That worked three times until I was wiped out - completely. I'm not sure if he felt sorry for me (or just because he loves me so much), but my sweet sweet father then let me play with his chips - which I also promptly lost to the house. And I hadn't even started drinking yet... Meanwhile, my mom was playing a PENNY slot machine and somehow managed to turn $5 into $75.
We decided it was time to eat and headed over to 9 Dragons - the space is newly renovated and boasts an updated menu of authentic Hong Kong-style cuisine and a selection of fresh sushi. The decor of the restaurant was so beautiful with deep reds and dark woods. Honestly, and I don't mean this in a bad way, it didn't even feel like we were in West Virginia.
If you go to check out 9 Dragons - you'd probably be set ordering from their specialty cocktails (I suggest the Drunken Dragon) and sushi menu. Since we were out celebrating a special occasion, we went ALL out. The service, presentation, and quality was extraordinary. I recommend the Wonton Soup, Hot Mama (spciy tuna, jalepeno) roll, and... well, everything else.
Our waitress, Li Ling, took excellent care of us. Although 9 Dragons didn't offer dessert, we mentioned my parents' 30th and she said she'd get us a special surprise. Her surprise came in the form of a jumbo slice of fresh cheesecake made at The Final Cut Steakhouse. She literally walked across the casino to another restaurant to get us the best dessert in the building! Totally blew my expectations - and kinda made me forget that I had just lost $250 on the tables down the hall!
Win or lose, it was a fantastic night out with the family! Happy anniversary, Mom & Dad!
*Special thanks to 9 Dragons for inviting us in to taste the menu!
note: I am on the judging panel for this event - so thought I'd share! Hope to see you there!
Girls and boys 12 and under are invited to don their most original, most humorous or best international-theme home-made Easter bonnet creation and walk in the Fair Oaks Children's Easter Bonnet Parade contest on Saturday, March 23 from 10 am to 11:30 am.
Judges will award three grand prizes: most original home-made Easter bonnet creation; most humorous home-made Easter bonnet creation; and, best international-theme home-made Easter bonnet creation. Each winner will receive a $100 Fair Oaks Mall American Express® Gift Card.
The Fair Oaks Children's Easter Bonnet Contest will be held in the Grand Court of Fair Oaks Mall, adjacent to the spring gardens with the Fair Oaks Easter Bunny. Girls and boys 12 years of age and under, along with a parent or legal guardian, must first register with a photo release on Saturday, March 23 any time between 10 am and 11 am prior to joining the parade and contest. Winners will be announced at 12 noon on Saturday, March 23, with winners’ photos displayed through March 30 at the Fair Oaks Customer Service Center.
A continental breakfast will be served for all Fair Oaks Children’s Easter Bonnet Parade contest entrants, and each entrant will receive a special Fair Oaks Privilege Card discount for photos with the Easter Bunny in his spring gardens.
The American Express® Gift Card may be used at U.S. merchants that accept American Express Cards. No ATM cash withdrawal. Some limitations apply, including restriction on use of the Gift Card at cruise lines or for recurring billing. See Cardholder Agreement for complete details. Card cannot be redeemed for cash, except where required by law. The American Express Gift Card is issued by American Express Prepaid Card Management Corporation.
I was honored to be invited by The Ritz-Carlton, Tysons Corner to host a Blogger Night Out Event for local social media influencers and their +1s. It was great to connect with old friends and meet and see new faces too! In the world of social media, you can never know too many people!
Iman, the marketing director, graciously invited us into Entyse Bar and Lounge for a spectacular night of networking, laughter, and of course, food and beverage. I have to admit that Vincent, the wine director, had us all feeling quite fine with his luscious assortment of vinos (my new favorite is the White Haven Sauvignon Blanc - try it, you won't be disappointed!).
The Ritz-Carlton, Tysons Corner is not just a swanky hotel for out of town guests - they offer so much more! For example: there are classes for kids in the kitchen, manicure and martini events for women, and sushi nights every Thursday!
Check out the pics below of the night out - Special thanks to The Ritz-Carlton for hosting!
If you're a social media influencer and you'd like to be invited to an event hosted by Real Housewives of Northern Virginia, please email email@example.com with your contact info so that we can connect! *sponsored content provided by The Ritz-Carlton, Tysons Corner.
I often find myself in a dilemma: I'm hungry and I don't feel like cooking... but I don't want to go out to eat because Lord knows how many calories are coming out of a restaurant's serving window. A few months ago, I solved that problem by finding one of my new favorite spots to nosh: Zoes Kitchen. The food is healthy and delicious - literally just an extension of my own kitchen. It's easy and guilt-free eating out when you know there is no fryer or microwave in the kitchen!
Yesterday, I had the opportunity to host a tasting event at the new Zoes Kitchen In Reston. Zoes Kitchen is a Mediterranean-inspired fast food restaurant with signature dishes that the whole family can enjoy. Along with local bloggers, foodies, and friends - we tried just about everything on the menu!
Jason, the GM, brought out a selection of the most popular menu items: grilled chicken, steak, and shrimp kabobs, salads, chicken rollups, hummus, and even gluten-free options. Zoes Kitchen touts the freshness and quality of their food - and the product delivered on that promise (all the way down to the warm, fresh chocolate chip cookies!).
We are always looking for laid back (aka kid-friendly) restaurants with outdoor seating, so we'll definitely head back when the weather is nicer to enjoy the patio. Check out the pics below of yesterday's tasting event... (my stomach is growling just looking at these!)
Thanks to everyone who came out to the event! If you missed it, you can follow the tweets & pics: #ZoesKitchenReston.
About Zoës Kitchen: Founded in 1995, Zoës Kitchen is a fast-casual restaurant that creates homemade Mediterranean-inspired food designed to help you celebrate life with family and friends through providing authentic, better-for-you recipes that are hand-prepared daily with wholesome, close-to-the-garden ingredients and a side of Southern hospitality. Zoës Kitchen is dedicated to delivering delicious, fresh and convenient in-store and takeout meal solutions that allow families to get out of the kitchen and enjoy more time together. All Zoës Kitchen recipes are made using good, honest ingredients that are chemical-free, as well as fresh, never frozen poultry. Vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free dishes are also available. Zoës Kitchen has 75 locations in 12 states across the U.S.
For more information, please visit www.zoeskitchen.com, www.facebook.com/ZoesKitchen or twitter.com/ZoesKitchen.
The DC area’s hottest fashion show and high-end bargain trunk sale returns to Crystal City this February! Next year’s event will be the biggest and best we’ve had so far. Crystal Couture already brings over 40 of the metropolitan area’s most stylish boutiques and designers all under one roof, and we’re expecting even more this year because of its new location. We have moved Couture to an office building which has more space to house a bigger runway and more boutiques. This one-stop shopping experience lets guests browse discounted offerings on the rack AND on the runway as models showcase offerings of the participating boutiques. Shoppers will also enjoy sips from the bar, free make-up and hair makeovers, chats with fashion consultants, music from DJ Neekola, and experience a one-of-a-kind ambiance. Crystal Couture 2013 will take place from February 5th to February 9th, 2013 in the 251 18th Street office building. Already excited for Crystal Couture? Tell us that you are coming.