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Showing posts from 2014

Paddle Boating at Lake Anne in Reston, VA

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Paddle boating on Lake Anne during the summer was a great way to cool down and enjoy the outdoors. The Lake Anne area in Reston not only had paddle boating they had an outdoor market, live bands, kids splash area, and plenty of food to enjoy!
 It made for a wonderful Saturday out with the little SCS family! Buying tickets at the bookstore was quick and easy (Reston Used Book Shop). There was no line in either the bookstore or the paddle boating area. The staff was friendly and attentive to the needs of our little sojourner. They even had life vests for children.
Sam loved sitting between Dad and Mom and enjoyed the giant fountain in the middle of the lake. She was able to spot fishes and turtles along the way.

Driving to the area was easy. Only 25 min drive from Fairfax. Street parking was easy to find right outside the lake area. 

SCS Fast Facts:
- No stroller storage during boating.
- Toddler sized life vests available.
- Restrooms in the local stores.
- No swimming in the lake.
- $6 for 1 …

Apple Picking at Marker Miller Orchard in VA

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Apple Picking!  The all American fall activity!  Welcome to America little Sam!
We traveled to the Marker Miller Orchard to take Sam apple picking for her first year back in the U.S. The weather was awful, rained the whole time, but we still enjoyed ourselves and Sam is already asking to go back next year! The Orchard is about an hour and a half from Fairfax, VA. I have to admit VA is amazing. 30 min and we're in D.C. with museums and all the lure of a big city. Drive an hour the other way and we're surrounded by fresh air, farms, and apple orchards! 

The orchard was wonderful. There were so many varieties of apples (make sure to check their website before leaving to ensure favorites are in season). Several of the trees had very low branches making it really easy for Sam to pick the apples by herself. 
The farmers market was also stocked with local produce, pumpkins, fresh cider, and local honey! 

The kids had plenty to do with the giant playground next to the farmer's market, l…

Joe's Crab Shack in Fairfax, VA

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After story time at the Fairfax Barnes & Nobles some friends and I headed over to Joe's Crab Shack. (Thanks for taking us E!) A place to get lobster and Sam can run around like the crazy preschooler she is! YES! WIN! 
The store manager was even kind enough to come out and talk over how each dish is prepared for the concerns the group had with food allergies. He was super patient and knew about everything on the menu. I was impressed! The indoor playground had padded flooring and had only one exit, making it easy to keep track of coming and goings. The restaurant was fully stocked with high chairs, baby hammocks, and booster seats. 
Going on a weekday made getting the two long tables next to the play area easy. I took SCS Dad back on a Saturday night and the place was overflowing with customers and seats were a little harder to get but the staff was great and made sure we were still in eye sight of the play area. The food was delicious and my San Diego husband has high expectatio…

U.S. National Arboretum in D.C.

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The SCS family decided to escape VA and head over to D.C. for the day. We wanted to get out before the weather became cold enough for coats. We went to explore the 446 acres of the U.S. National Arboretum. It is a division of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, green space and more, on the outskirts of the city. It is also home to the Capitals original columns, the perk of going for Daddy SCS and myself!  Sam's favorite part was the children's garden and exploration area. We were only able to explore a small section of the Arboretum, but were smitten with the area and can't wait until the spring so we can head back with the family bikes. Sam was able to explore the corn growing in the garden as well as wild flowers and local plants. 
The children's garden wasn't at it's peak, due to the season, but we could tell in the summer it is the place to be!  The sunflowers towered over Sam's head while the tickle plants collapsed around her fingers.  The children's …

Free Home Depot Kid's Workshop

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SCS Dad and I recently took Sam to the free building workshop at The Home Depot.  I have fond memories of these little workshops from when I was young so I couldn't wait to share them with Sam. I have to admit the aprons have gotten cheaper but the projects have gotten more exciting since I was a kid. We got there exactly at 9 and waited in line for opening. With preregistration the staff prepared well and everyone seemed to have supplies and plenty of space to work. Sam built her Wizard of Oz bird house with much excitement! She couldn't wait to get home and show Grandpa her handy work! It was well worth the early morning wake up call! Now she gets excited to put on her apron and take trips to Home Depot with us! Win!



Helpful Links:
The Home Depot Kid's Workshop

SCS Fast Facts:
- Preregister on-line.
- Public restrooms with baby changing areas.
- Space for strollers.


Preparing Kids for a Move to D.C!

Outdoor Movies at Cinema Del Ray, VA 2014

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Every summer when SCS Dad and I lived in Manhattan the city would host free movies in the parks. We remember NYC summers with so much joy! Thankfully D.C. hosts free outdoor summer movies as well! We were able to share our summer fun with Sam this year at the Cinema Del Ray in Alexandria VA! When we saw her favorite movie Frozen was scheduled, we loaded up the car and headed out. We got there early and ate at Los Tios Grill at their amazing outdoor seating area and delicious food! Then we headed over to the park with our picnic blankets, snacks, and sweatshirts. 
We got there nice and early so street parking was not hard to find. Neither was a nice spot close to the screen to lay out our blanket. There was a great playground right behind the park. 
Before the film started the kids danced and played in the open space. Everyone seemed to be enjoyed the fresh air and great weather. 
When the sun started to go down the park got packed! There were many people there with chairs, thankfully we …

Space Day at the Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum in D.C. 2014

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What an amazing way to start our D.C. adventure!

In early May the National Air & Space Museum in D.C hosts a hands-on, FREE, fun filled day in celebration of Space Day! Even the planetarium was free that day!


Parking was predictable in the city but with patients and Parking Panda and Park Mobile it went smoothly. We set out to be one of the first people in and navigating all the hands-on activities with less people was much easier!



Sam was able to enjoy dressing up as an Astronaut! (Okay, mom, dad, and even grandpa got in on the fun!) We even built a space shuttle!


Try astronaut training!


Build a comet!



Make a space suit badge!



Enjoy a space themed story time!


Build a Craft space shuttle!



Check out the Sesame Street Planetarium production.



.... all that for free and we still got to check out the regular exhibit and gift shop.





D.C. is already wearing out Sam! We love it! Until next time.... hold on to your sippy cups!

Keep an eye out for the next Space Day and so much more on the Smithsonia…