Author Archives: alexis

Sesame Street Live! Make Your Magic : Review

 

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This past weekend I took my little guy to see Sesame Street Live! Make Your Magic at the Eagle Bank arena in Fairfax. Teddy is a huge fan of Elmo and he loved the show. It is geared towards children ages 1-6 and includes multiple acts and engaging visuals to keep children’s attention. The performance had great music and the kids loved to sing along and dance in front of their seats or in the aisles.

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The show begins when magician extraordinaire Justin visits Sesame Street to put on a magic show. Elmo wants to be a part of the show. But there’s one problem…Elmo doesn’t know how to do magic!  Through Justin’s encouragement to practice, work hard and never give up, Elmo embarks on an extraordinary journey.  He learns that it’s okay to make mistakes and that magic can be found anywhere when you believe in yourself and the power of what’s yet to be.

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The performance includes all the favorite Sesame Street characters including Oscar the Grouch, Cookie Monster, Elmo, Abby Cadabby, Grover, and Big Bird. It is an inspirational introduction to live theater for little ones and families to enjoy.

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The show was about 90 minutes with a 15 minute intermission. If you have small children, Sesame Street Live! Make Your Magic is a Must!

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British Swim School – Teddy Earns His Blue Cap!

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My little fish are still going strong with their water survival classes at British Swim School. This past month was especially exciting as we had a major accomplishment with Teddy – he graduated from the Tadpole level! It was so rewarding to see his progression each week and then complete all the goals. He earned his blue cap and is now in the Swimboree level:

Beginner Water Survival: 3 Months to 36 Months with Parent
(4 Children Max, Parent-assisted class)

Building on our Tadpole skills, little ones begin their water survival skills through a structured program of songs, games and fun. Your instructor will work one-on-one with you and your child.  Students must meet Tadpole goals in order to enroll in Swimboree.

The Swimboree class is a lot different than the Tadpole class. In the Tadpole class, the focus is much more on water acclimation with whole class engagement, songs, and play. Most of the time the student is with the parent except for practicing a couple skills with the instructor. Swimboree on the other hand is more focused on the one-on-one interaction of the instructor and student. The instructor takes turns working directly with each child in the class on all the skills. While she is working with other students the parent practices the skills with their child. Since the maximum class size is 4, there is still a lot of time working directly with the instructor.

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These are the 5 Goals of Swimboree:

Assisted back floating (or independent)

Teddy is doing great with his assisted back float. The instructors make it fun and sing a song while practicing. He has learned to relax and knows that he has to stay in the position until the song is over. Occasionally he will get squirmy or impatient but for the most part he does really well. I have been able to get him to do the float with his head completely off my shoulders and resting in my hands. He also loves to practice his back float in the bathtub at home. It is really cute!

Assisted submerged Torpedo rollover (or independent rollover)

This is a new skill that wasn’t part of the Tadpole class and the hardest skill in the Swimboree level. The child is submerged and then rolled over into a back float while still under water. The first time the instructor did this with Teddy he came up looking a bit surprised but didn’t even cry, so that was great! It is still pretty new to him as we have only had three Swimboree classes so far.

Full submersion sitting or standing

At the Swimboree level, the children  are given the chance to either sit and fall into the water, or stand and jump into the water. Teddy is happy doing either and thinks it is fun! And he doesn’t cry after the submersion, so that is a big win!

Able to separate from the parent

Teddy got a new instructor when he moved into the Swimboree class and he had no problem transitioning. He immediately took to Ms. Alyssa after she let him dump his cup of water on her head. He thought this was hilarious and had so much fun with her! We did have to do a make up class this past week and had a different instructor. There were a couple times when Teddy was whining and reaching his arms out for me but he still did pretty good with the separation.

Independent in the swim ring

Teddy mastered this in the Tadpole class. He had come a long way, since first practicing using the swim ring – he hated it and would cling to me. But then each week he got more and more comfortable. Now he takes off when he’s in it and gets around by himself really well.

I’m so happy with how Teddy is doing in the Swimboree class! I have no doubt he’s going to continue to make great progress. We are looking forward to the outdoor pools opening later this month and that will give me more opportunities to practice his skills with him outside of our regular class time.

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Mae is also doing great as a Starfish! She loves the class and is often so excited to go that she has her bathing suit and coverup on two hours in advance, lol! (She does have great swim style – see below :)) But she is still being her stubborn self and refuses to try a submersion. I know that in time it will come and I’m just so happy that she enjoys the class because we’ve come a long way with overcoming her swim lesson fears. Her regular instructor has been absent so she has had a lot of different substitute teachers. I think it will help her once there is a permanent replacement. All of the instructors have been fantastic; Mae is just the type of kid who really has to trust and feel comfortable with the instructor/coach. She is completing all of the other goals at the Starfish level including her assisted back float, so we will keep working on getting her to try the submersion.

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I am thrilled to share an enrollment special for $20.19 off your first month of group lessons with code #CapMom19.  There are 10 different pools in the area where classes are held, so it’s easy to find a convenient location. Information for the Central Maryland British Swim Schools can be found here.

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Sesame Street Live! Coming to Fairfax May 4-5

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Sesame Street Live! Make Your Magic is a brand new show coming to Fairfax May 4-5 with 4 performances at Eagle Bank Arena. I’m looking forward to taking my little guy who is obsessed with Elmo! Click below to print out a fun coloring sheet featuring favorite Sesame Street pals!

Sesame Street Live! Coloring Sheet

Tickets for Sesame Street Live! Make Your Magic start at $20. All seats are reserved, and tickets are available at the EagleBank Arena, by calling 800-745-3000 or on line www.ticketmaster.com .  For group rates and information, reach out to 202-661-5061. Stay current on the latest developments through social media:

Facebook:  www.facebook.com/SesameStreetLive
Twitter: @SesameStLive # SesameStreetLive
YouTube: www.youtube.com/SesameSteetLive
Instagram: @SesameStreetLive



GIVEAWAY! STOMP at The National Theatre

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 GIVEAWAY!!! I have a pair of tickets for the opening night performance on Tuesday, April 23rd at 7:30pm at The National Theatre to give away! Enter to win by simply leaving a comment on this blog post. I will randomly draw and notify a winner on Tuesday, April 16th. Good luck! 

STOMP is explosive, provocative, sophisticated, utterly unique and appeals to audiences of all ages. The eight-member troupe uses everything but conventional percussion instruments – matchboxes, wooden poles, brooms, garbage cans, Zippo lighters, hubcaps – to fill the stage with magnificent rhythms. The return of the percussive hit also brings some new surprises, with some sections of the show now updated and restructured, utilizing props like tractor tire inner tubes and paint cans. As USA Today says, “STOMP finds beautiful noises in the strangest places.” STOMP. See what all the noise is about.

Run time: Approximately 95 minutes with no intermission. Children under the age of four are not permitted to attend the show.

STOMP
Tuesday, April 23 – 28
The National Theatre
https://thenationaldc.org/events/category/series/stomp-19/
Sizzle Reel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6v6oj9Bqb4s

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Making Waves at British Swim School

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It has been 2 months since I enrolled Teddy in swim classes at British Swim School and I am thrilled to see such great progress already. My daughter Mae started about a month and a half ago and is also doing very well! It is so rewarding for both the kids and I to see their efforts paying off and I am excited to see their next steps here at British Swim School!

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Teddy is 18 months now and is in the first level, the Tadpole class:

Water Acclimation: 3 Months to 36 Months with Parent
(6 Children Max, Parent-assisted class)

A water acclimation class for infants and toddlers to introduce them to the water for the first time, reducing their fear and the potential of tears. We’ll introduce an assisted back float and submersion in this level. You should expect a lot of songs and splashing in this class while your infant freely and independently explores the water environment.

5 Goals of Tadpole:

  1. Water acclimation
  2. No tears/no fear
  3. Assisted back float with ears in
  4. Full gentle submersion
  5. Comfortable in the swim ring

Teddy cried during parts of his first few classes and the instructors assured me it was completely normal and that eventually he would get used to it. And he did! Our lesson this Sunday was his best yet. He would typically cling to me and whine during his assisted back float but he has stopped! He knows what to expect now and was super relaxed doing his back float! He also completed 3 submersions without tears and was even okay with me letting go of him while he was in the swim ring. Pretty amazing since he always clung to me like a baby koala before. It is easy to get discouraged when your child is scared or crying but it is so important to not give up! I see how the British Swim School program works and how the results will come!

Mae is 5 years old and in the Starfish class:

Water Acclimation: 3+ Years
(4 Children Max)

Geared towards gentle water exploration and developing the child’s awareness to the aquatic environment while introducing the water survival exercises used in later classes. The total aim is to build confidence and self-esteem as well as develop awareness, and the ability to respond to new challenges while giving your child independence to explore the aquatic environment.

5 Goals of Starfish:

  1. Water acclimation
  2. No fear, no tears
  3. Supported back float
  4. Full submersion
  5. Independence in the swim ring

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Mae is my kid who loves the pool but has always had a big fear of going under the water. I have tried several different swim schools in the area over the past few years and we never found a great fit for her. There were many lessons that she painfully cried through. I had a private instructor come to our backyard pool last summer to give her lessons thinking she would be more comfortable at home. She did do much better but was still very stubborn and wouldn’t go underwater for the private instructor either. Feedback from other swim coaches was to try group lessons again because it helps to see other children doing the skills along side them. After I started classes with Teddy at British Swim School, I felt that the program and instructors would also work for Mae. She is doing great and looks forward to her lesson each week, asking me “how many days until my swim class?”. This is a huge improvement since she would always dread swim lessons at other places and cry even before we arrived at the pool.

Mae has completed all the goals of Starfish except for the full submersion. She is comfortable putting her face in the water for a brief second but is still very stubborn about going under. I know she can do it but she just doesn’t want to! I have no doubt she will gain her confidence as we continue lessons and when she is good and ready she will go for it! Until then we will just keep practicing and keep her enjoying the water until she will take that next step!

British Swim School is the best option (in my opinion!) for young children beginning to learn water safety skills. We have really had a fantastic experience and I’m happy to extend an enrollment special for $20.19 off your first month of group lessons with code #CapMom19.  There are 10 different pools in the area where classes are held, so it’s easy to find a convenient location. Information for the Central Maryland British Swim Schools can be found here.



GIVEAWAY! Sesame Street Live show coming to Fairfax!

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GIVEAWAY!!! I have a family 4-pack of tickets to give away to one lucky reader for the Saturday, May 4th 2:30pm performance. To enter, simply leave a comment on this blog post. A winner will be randomly drawn and notified on Monday, April 8th. Good luck!

Sesame Street Live! Make Your Magic. 

The Latest Sesame Street Live! Production is Coming to Your Neighborhood…And It’s Magical

Fairfax, VA –Everyone’s invited on an amazing journey with Elmo to discover the “power of yet” in Sesame Street Live! Make Your Magic. Building on a successful tour with Feld Entertainment’s inaugural Sesame Street Live! show last season in partnership with the non-profit educational organization Sesame Workshop, this production features favorite Sesame Street pals Elmo, Abby Cadabby, Big Bird and more in a brand-new, magical adventure live on stage. Sesame Street Live! Make Your Magic visits EagleBank Arena on Saturday, May 4 at 10:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. and Sunday, May 5 at 10:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m.

Elmo is inspired to learn a magic trick when he meets magician extraordinaire Justin, who has come to Sesame Street to perform a magic show. But there’s one problem…Elmo doesn’t know how to do magic!  Through Justin’s encouragement to practice, work hard and never give up, Elmo embarks on an extraordinary journey.  He learns that it’s okay to make mistakes and that magic can be found anywhere when you believe in yourself and the power of what’s yet to be. Cookie Monster and Gonger uncover the science and fun of baking while Abby Cadabby experiences the transformative abilities of caterpillars. Big Bird learns about the magnifying magic of shadow puppetry while Rosita orchestrates a rhythmic beat using everyday objects around her. And artist Grover mixes up the pigment power of the three primary colors. With high-energy dance numbers and a soundtrack that’s sure to get everyone out of their seats, Sesame Street Live! Make Your Magic is an inspirational introduction to live theater and the art of illusion that the entire family will enjoy.

Tickets for Sesame Street Live! Make Your Magic start at $20. All seats are reserved, and tickets are available at the EagleBank Arena, by calling 800-745-3000 or on line www.ticketmaster.com .  For group rates and information, reach out to 202-661-5061.Stay current on the latest developments through social media:

Facebook:  www.facebook.com/SesameStreetLive
Twitter: @SesameStLive # SesameStreetLive
YouTube: www.youtube.com/SesameSteetLive
Instagram: @SesameStreetLive



GIVEAWAY! A Bronx Tale at The National Theatre

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GIVEAWAY! I have 2 tickets up for grabs to opening night Tuesday, March 26th 7:30pm at  The National Theatre in DC. Comment on this post to be entered. A winner will be drawn and notified on Sunday, March 24th. Good luck!


A BRONX TALE

Tuesday, March 26 – Sunday, March 31
The National Theatre
http://thenationaldc.org/events/category/series/a-bronx-tale-19/
Sizzle Reel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=1&v=AV-KBuNXp9k

A BRONX TALE – Broadway’s hit crowd-pleaser takes you to the stoops of the Bronx in the 1960s, where a young man is caught between the father he loves and the mob boss he’d love to be. Bursting with high, energy dance numbers and original doo-wop tunes from Alan Menken, the songwriter of Beauty and the Beast, A BRONX TALE is an unforgettable story of loyalty and family. Academy Award® winner Robert De Niro and Tony® winner Jerry Zaks direct this streetwise musical, based on Academy Award nominee Chazz Palminteri’s story, that The New York Times hailed as “A Critics’ Pick! The kind of tale that makes you laugh and cry.”

Featuring 10 alumni from the Broadway production, the cast is led by Joe Barbara as Sonny, Richard  H. Blake as Lorenzo, Joey Barreiro as Calogero, Michelle Aravena as Rosina, Brianna-Marie Bell as Jane, Antonio Beverly as Tyrone, Frankie Leoni as Young Calogero, and Shane Pry as Young Calogero Alternate.

The ensemble includes Mike Backes, Michael Barra, Sean Bell, Josh Burrage, Joey Calveri, Giovanni DiGabrielle, John Gardiner, Peter Gregus, Haley Hannah, Kirk Lydell, Ashley McManus, Chris Messina, Kyli Rae, Joseph Sammour, Paul Salvatoriello, Jason Williams, and Brittany Williams.

Run time: Approximately 2 hours and 10 minutes, including one intermission. Recommended for age 12 and up.

 



Review: Disney on Ice presents Worlds of Enchantment 2019

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Last week I celebrated Valentine’s Day at Disney on Ice presents Worlds of Enchantment with my daughters and a friend. It is such a fun way to make the holiday special for the kids. We have been going to Disney on Ice shows for several years but I love how each one features something unique. I’m not sure how much longer they will enjoy these shows, so I’m soaking it up while I can!

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Worlds of Enchantment is a 2 hour show with about a 15 minute intermission, so it’s the perfect length for little ones. Mickey, Minnie, Donald, and Goofy are the hosts and take us through four fantastic Disney stories – Toy Story, The Little Mermaid, Cars, and Frozen.

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One of the most memorable parts of the show is the Disney Pixar’s Cars story. It is really fascinating to see the cars drive around on ice with no visible drivers.

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The Toy Story performance is the longest story in the show and it is amazing! The characters come to life in giant costumes and it was fun to watch them dance and skate considering what they were wearing.

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Next on the adventure, we went under the sea with Sebastian, Flounder, and Ariel. The Little Mermaid is such a classic and although this story was short, it was no less impressive. This piece was visually stunning with the amazing props and costumes.

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The final part of the show is all dedicated to Frozen. As the music starts to play, you can feel the energy in the arena change. The little ones get wide-eyed and start singing along and it is truly magical. We love the performance and songs by Olaf in this set!

Disney on Ice presents Worlds of Enchantment is such a fun show that the whole family can enjoy! Don’t miss this one the next time it comes to the D.C. area!



Water Safety at British Swim School

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A few weeks ago I started taking Teddy to swim classes at British Swim School. Although he is only 16 months old, it is extremely important to me that he starts building his water survival skills early. We have a pool in our backyard, so for safety reasons I need all my kids to be strong swimmers. And I thought with summer only a few months away that it was a good time to have Teddy start lessons.

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In all my different mommy groups, British Swim School is always recommended by several people. I have to say, I now understand why and I’m so glad that I decided to go with them for Teddy’s lessons.

The first thing I was impressed with when we walked into the pool area at Gaithersburg Courtyard Marriott Rio was that it was so nice and clean. There are changing areas and showers right next to the pool making it very convenient to get ready for class. The temperature of the water is also perfect. I can’t stand when pools are too cold and you get out with teeth chattering. You don’t have to worry about that here as it is nice and warm, making it comfortable for everyone. I also love how the instructor and deck ambassador greet Teddy and I with such enthusiasm. It really sets a good tone for class and I can tell Teddy likes the warm welcome!

It is evident that the instructors have been trained really well. They are comfortable with small children and know exactly how to handle their fears in the water. Our class instructor, Kimmie is also great at coaching me on what to say and how to react to Teddy.

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At our very first class, Teddy cried for the first few minutes and I was worried it wasn’t going to go well. But the instructors and manager got out some toys for him and he quickly calmed down. I was impressed with how they handled it and Teddy ended up loving the class. He now gets excited when we arrive for class each week; I can’t get him dressed in his swim suit quick enough!

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In the Tadpole class (ages 3 months – 36 months)  we work on an assisted back float with ears in, full gentle submersions, and getting comfortable using the swim ring. In between practicing these skills there is playtime, making it fun for the students. The instructors bring out balls and other water toys and we also sing songs. The Tadpole class is the first of  9 levels and is a parent assisted class. The small class size is nice; there are only 2 students in our class and the maximum allowed is 6.

I have had such a great experience with British Swim School, so I decided to enroll my 5 year old daughter Mae in classes as well. She just started yesterday in the Starfish class. She has hated swim lessons in the past and cried through many but loved her class at British Swim School. She didn’t want to get out of the pool when it ended. I’m confident we finally found the right program for her and she will make great progress!

Use code CAPMOM19 for $20.19 off your first month of group lessons! 

I partnered with British Swim School on this post.  However, all opinions and thoughts are my own.


Disney On Ice Coming to DC Next Week!

image001Disney On Ice presents Worlds of Enchantment is coming to CAPITAL ONE ARENA from February 14-18, 2019. Treat your family with tickets to the show to celebrate Valentine’s Day and use offer code BLOG to save $5 per ticket!

Show Times:  

·         February 14, 2019 @ 7:30 p.m.
·         February 15, 2019 @ 10:30 a.m., 7:30 p.m.
·         February 16, 2019 @ 10:30 a.m., 2:30 p.m., 6:30 p.m.
·         February 17, 2019 @ 12:30 p.m., 4:30 p.m.
·         February 18, 2019 @ 12:30 p.m., 4:30 p.m.

To order tickets online:           www.ticketmaster.com

Here is some fun Disney trivia to play with your kids before the show:

Disney’s The Little Mermaid

  1. Ariel has a fascination with what, in “The Little Mermaid?”

  • Answer: Humans or the human world
  1. In “The Little Mermaid,” Ursula gives Ariel the ability to walk on land.  How long is this ability supposed to last?

  • Answer: Three days
  1. What is the name of Ariel’s best friend?

  • Answer: Flounder
  1. What is the device that Ariel refers to as a “dinglehopper?”

  • Answer: A fork
  1. What color was Tow Mater in “Cars” before he became rusty?

  • Answer: Baby blue
  1. What does Flo sell in Radiator Springs?

  • Answer: Gas or “the finest fuel”
  1. What type of car is Sally?

  • Answer: A blue Porsche

Disney•Pixar’s Cars 

  1. True or False: You never see humans in “Cars.”

  • Answer: True! Everything in the movie resembles something to do with cars. Even bugs resemble miniature Volkswagen Bugs.
  1. What type of tires does Lightning McQueen have?

  • Answer: Lightyear 
  1. What does Flo’s license plate say in “Cars?”

  • Answer: “Sho Grl” or  Show Girl 
  1. What is the name of Sally’s motel in “Cars?”

  • Answer: Cozy Cone 
  1. What is the road that Lightning McQueen finds himself lost on when he stumbles upon Radiator Springs?

  • Answer: Route 66 
  1. What is Ramone’s job?

  • Answer: He owns a body shop called “Ramone’s House of Body Art.”

Disney•Pixar’s Toy Story 

  1. What is Andy’s last name?

  • Answer: Davis. It is written on his high school diploma which you see when he goes to the bulletin board to look at the picture of him as a child playing with the toys. 
  1. Sid Phillips, Andy’s next-door neighbor from the original Toy Story makes a brief appearance in the third movie as what?

  • Answer: A garbage man 
  1. The calendar in Andy’s room is always set to what month?

  • Answer: August 
  1. True or False: Lots-o’-Huggin Bear appeared in the first Toy Story movie.

  • Answer: True. A very early version of Lotso appeared in the original Toy Story film on Andy’s desk. 
  1. What is the name of the daycare center the toys end up at in Toy Story 3?

  • Answer: Sunnyside 
  1. How do the toys realize that Andy is looking for them in Toy Story 3?

  • Answer: Mrs. Potato Head’s other eye is still in Andy’s room. 
  1. Who saves the toys from the incinerator in Toy Story 3?

  • Answer: the Aliens 
  1. Where does Ken ask Barbie to live with him?

  • Answer: In his Dream House 
  1. In Toy Story 3, Lotso forces the toys to stay in what room of the daycare center?

  • Answer: The Caterpillar room