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Mobu Kids

Mobu Kids
442A South Washington Street
Falls Church, Virginia 22046
www.mobukids.com
 

I was thrilled to find out about another option for indoor play in the area when the owner of Mobu Kids contacted me. Mobu Kids offers classes including art, dance, music & movemet, and yoga. Their classes are geared mostly towards younger children ages 6months to 5 years old but the dance classes accommodate children up to age 8. I took both my girls to the Music & Movement class and they absolutely loved it! The instructor was upbeat, engaging, and worked really well with the children. The class incorporated singing, dancing, instruments, a parachute, and bubbles. I’m always looking for classes that I can take both of my girls to and this is definitely one that is fun for a range of different ages.

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Mobu Kids also offers lots of open play time where you can just drop in and enjoy their fun play space. Before and after our Music & Movement class my girls played in the play space and it was difficult to get them to leave when it was time. They had a blast. There are several different play structures the children can climb on and slide down and there are soft blocks to build different structures. There is also a climbing wall and lots of balls to play with.  I’m positive we will be back a few times this winter to play.

Mobu_MaeMobu_C&MMobu_blocksMobu_playspace

The entire facility is very bright and clean, even the bathrooms. There is also free coffee so parents can pretend to have as much energy as their children!

Mobu Kids also offers birthday parties on Saturdays and Sundays. The parties include 30 minutes of unstructured play in the play studio, 30 minutes of teacher led activities, and 30 minutes of refreshments in the party room.

Mobu_partyroom

So if you haven’t yet been to Mobu Kids, I definitely recommend you take your children for a fun time. They also offer a free introductory class to new families!



Alice in Wonderland – Encore Stage & Studio

Encore Stage & Studio
125 S Old Glebe Rd
Arlington, VA 22204
www.encorestageva.org

We attended our third Encore Stage & Studio show on Sunday and like the previous two performances, we were thoroughly entertained. But before the performance of Alice in Wonderland began, we first attended the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party. This was a special event held only before the final performance.

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To enter the party, we had to go through the rabbit hole, just like how the story begins. This was such a cute idea and Clara got a kick out of crawling through the tunnel.

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Then we had the chance to meet Alice along with other characters and join them at the table for tea.

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The hat making station was Clara’s favorite part. There were various types of hats to decorate with stickers, feathers, jewels, pom-poms, and ribbon.

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There was a curious version of croquet being played by the children, with flamingo mallets and hedgehogs as the balls. We also enjoyed tea treats and drinks appropriately labeled “Eat Me” and “Drink Me”. The tea party was a really fun event and got us in the spirit of wonder before the show started.

We took our seats in the theater and before the show started I read the storyline to Clara:

When curious Alice falls down, down, down the rabbit hole, she discovers the magical world of Wonderland where cats can talk and cards play croquet. But, Alice is sure to miss her birthday party if she can’t convince the Queen of Hearts to let her go! With the help of the Cheshire Cat, the Mad Hatter, and a whole cast of wacky companions, Alice must unleash the full power of her imagination to find her way home.

The stage was transformed into a bright and fanciful wonderland with cut-outs of flowers, stuffed toadstools, and a house of cards.

http://www.encorestageva.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/DSC_0092.jpgcourtesy of Encore by Larry McClemons

The cast included over thirty young actors and there was so much talent in this group! You can tell they have a passion for acting. My daughter especially loves watching other children perform. She has really enjoyed the act-it-out classes at her preschool and watching Encore’s performances is inspiring her to want to perform on stage.

AliceinWonderland2(1)courtesy of Encore by Larry McClemons
AliceinWonderland6(1)courtesy of Encore by Larry McClemons

Encore’s performance of Alice in Wonderland has come to an end but I highly recommend attending one of their upcoming shows; you will not be disappointed! Up next is Shrek, showing July 17-26.

Good to Know:

•Ticket prices: $12 adults ($15 for Shrek), $10 children, students, seniors, and military ($12 for Shrek).
•The shows last approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes with a 15 minute intermission.
•Concessions can be purchased and enjoyed in the lobby before the show and during intermission.
•There is free and ample parking at the Thomas Jefferson Community Theatre, where all Encore productions are located.
•Encore offers a birthday party package.
•Encore also offers a variety of classes and camps.



Meadowlark Botanical Gardens

Meadowlark Botanical Gardens
9750 Meadowlark Gardens Court
Vienna, Virginia 22182
 

My girls have been so excited to spend time playing outdoors this spring, especially after the winter we had. They absolutely love looking at (and picking) flowers. So, last week on an exceptionally beautiful day we headed out to Vienna, Virginia to explore Meadowlark Botanical Gardens.

Inside the visitors center are a few tanks with turtles and fish, so we stopped to look at those first.

MBGatrium

After paying the entrance fee, we headed outside to explore the gardens. At first, Clara and Mae were disappointed when I told them they couldn’t pick any of the flowers but they got over it quickly. There was so much else for them to look at and do here. And we did find a few wildflowers growing by the lake that I let them pick. That seemed to keep them satisfied with their flower picking desires!

We stopped to admire the fairy garden right outside of the Visitors Center. Then I told Clara that there was a children’s garden area, so of course that was the spot she wanted to check out next. We took the path down to the whimsical area next to the Gardiner lake.

My girls were immediately drawn to the deck area that had a little wooden chairs and a table with tea cups. Such a perfect spot for a lakeside tea party!

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There is a second tea garden area with another cute table and chairs. The children’s garden also has “touch and smell” areas for the children to explore.

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My girls loved watching the geese in the lake and spotting all the turtles – lots and lots of turtles! Clara had fun counting them all.

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From the children’s garden, Clara spotted these totem poles out in an open field and ran over to them. Mae tried to follow as quickly as she could! It looked like these were put there just for them – big sister and little sister totems!

MBGtotems

We continued around the path and enjoyed the cherry blossom trees along Lake Caroline. We walked out onto the gazebo and the girls loved looking at the Koi fish.

MBGlake

By this point, we had been at the gardens for close to two hours and Mae (who hadn’t yet napped) was on the verge of a meltdown. So we skipped the Korean Bell Garden and a lot of other areas. We started to walk back towards the visitors center but stopped briefly at this garden full of golden daffodils. It was too pretty to not enjoy.

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There is so much more to explore at Meadowlark! We will definitely return to see everything we missed during our first visit. I imagine that it’s a different experience with each different season.

Good to Know:

•Admission: free under age 6, $2.50 age 7-17, $5.00 age 18-54, $2.50 age 55 and older
•Free parking
•Bring a stroller for little ones. It is a lot of walking, so even if they don’t want to sit in the stroller at first, they might want it towards the end of your visit. There is a paved pathway throughout.
•There is a gift shop in the visitors center where they have drinks, snacks, and small toys available to purchase.