10/22/15

Review: Disney on Ice 100 Years of Magic

We went out to the Patriot Eagle Bank Center Arena last night to check out Disney on Ice 100 Years of Magic Presented by Stonyfield YoKids.

We had so much fun :)

The show features several of your favorite Disney stories, and, amazingly, after all that time you've probably spent watching Nemo on repeat with your toddler, they can tell the stories in 4-5 minutes! It's incredible :)

You'll see:
Mickey and Minnie (also Donald and Goofy)
Pinocchio
Princesses and Princes! (Snow White, Ariel, Cinderella, Jasmine, Mulan, Anna and Elsa, Belle, Rapunzel)
Nemo (complete with a Giant Turtle!)
Mulan
Aladdin and the Genie
Frozen
The Lion King
And more :)

As a former skater, I really appreciate the level of difficulty these skaters are performing, although I always have to chuckle that the kids don't seem to be impressed by anything less than a backflip as far as actual skating goes.  They do however LOSE THEIR MINDS when their favorite characters come out.  I really appreciate that Disney does a great job of packing in the princesses for those who like them (me) and also fitting in a number of "not girly" characters for those who prefer their hero/ines with a little less frill (my daughter).

Standouts for me were Mulan, the Blue Fairy, and the pairs skaters who played Simba and Nala.  Everyone is so incredibly talented, though, so it's hard to pick a favorite! The show does have special effects that include some firework/pyrotechnic elements, so be prepared for that if you have a little one who is sensitive.

Also, EVERYBODY is going to sing along at the top of their lungs, especially to "Let it Go", so you may as well just join right on in and enjoy it.

Eagle Bank Arena does have lots of dining options priced as you would except a venue of this type to be, including Chick Fil A, Piasano's Pizza, and some in-house brands offering burgers, chicken tenders, pretzels, etc.  There are MANY opportunities to purchase merchandise, as well, including snow cone commemorative cups, hats on top of cotton candy, glow items, shirts, and more.  There are also a few stands offering pictures with characters for an additional fee, if you are so inclined.

The show runs 2 hours and 15 minutes with one intermission.  I took two 7 year olds who both seemed enthralled the entire time, although certainly happy for that bathroom break.  We did see a few families with very young toddlers who couldn't make it the whole way, although I think that was more a function of it being past their bed time than anything else.  If you're planning to take a very young child, I'd opt for the matinee times on Saturday or Sunday, rather than the evening shows the other nights.

We hope that you enjoy 100 Years of Magic as much as we did! 

100 Years of Magic plays Eagle Bank Arena in Fairfax through Sunday, October 25th with tickets starting at just $20!



Disclosure: I was provided with tickets to perform my review, however my reviews are always my fair, honest opinion about my experience. 

10/21/15

Giveaway: Peter Rabbit Tales at HPAC

This week's giveaway is for a family four pack of tickets to the Hylton Family Series presentation of Peter Rabbit Tales taking place November 1st at 2pm or 4pm.  To enter, find the matching image of Peter Rabbit Tales on our Facebook fan page and leave a message identifying whether you like Flopsy, Mopsy, Cotton Tail, or Peter the best :) Good luck! 


Peter Rabbit™ Tales

Based on The Orginial Peter Rabbit Books® by Beatrix Potter

  • November 1, 2015 at 2:00 pm
  • November 1, 2015 at 4:00 pm
Merchant Hall
The magical and marvelous world of Beatrix Potter comes alive at the Hylton Center when Peter Rabbit and his cousin, Benjamin Bunny, go on one final escapade in Mr. McGregor’s garden. All of Potter’s popular characters are along for the ride, from Squirrel Nutkin to Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle, and Jemima Puddleduck to Thomasina Tittlemouse. With this delightful performance, Peter Rabbit and friends celebrate the 150th anniversary of the birth of this beloved British children’s author. The adventures and misadventures of these cherished characters have enchanted young readers for well over a century, when the precocious young rabbit first hopped out of the pages of a storybook and into children’s hearts. The Enchantment Theatre Company brings this captivating performance for children filled with fantastic masks, whimsical puppets, gorgeous scenery, and original music.

As always, when you enter one of our giveaways you agree to be bound by our giveaway rules

10/20/15

Guest Post- Chuy's Prince William!

Thank you to Liz D. for checking this out for me! 

My husband and I got the opportunity to check out the new Chuy's location for the RedFish Fest.  Aside from the oh-so-rare chance to be outside of the house, together, without kids, we just plain had a great time and some great food.


We have been to the Chuy's in Springfield, so came in just a bit biased on the side of "YAY!  They're coming to our area!"  And we weren't disappointed.  This new Chuy's is taking the place of Macaroni Grill at the corner of Prince William Parkway and Telegraph Road.  The weather last night was gorgeous, which was wonderful because the building renovation isn't finished yet, so we were out in the parking lot -- a party tent, music, and tables completed the fun vibe. 
The staff was very friendly (which is something that Chuy's takes pride in) and we got to meet management as well.  While we were standing around enjoying our nachos, no less than three different staff members stopped by to make sure we were having fun, to see if we needed anything, and just to thank us for being there.  Many of the staff members had their kids there, too.  (I almost felt guilty for not bringing our boys.  Almost.)

Their food is fresh and delicious.  The margaritas are made with fresh lime juice -- and yes, I definitely tried one of those.  A few guys were mashing up avocados for fresh guacamole (mmmmmmm.... fresh guacamole....), and for grins I asked them to estimate how many avocados the restaurant goes through in a week.  After a few mental calculations (this many cases per day, that many avocados per case...), the answer was a shocking "probably about 5,000."  Five. Thousand. Avocados.  A week.  It's being made constantly in their kitchens in a really big bowl so that YOUR guacamole will be as fresh as MY guacamole was last night.
Finally, Chuy's believes in partnering with the community, and the have formed a charity partnership with our own local Youth for Tomorrow.  We heard from YFT's CEO about their work within the greater Prince William County area, which was enlightening and encouraging.  They're doing good work right here in our area, and Chuy's is helping.  Win-win.
Unfortunately, it looks like all of you guys are going to have to wait until December or January to enjoy a Chuy's right down the road.  In the meantime, there's one in Springfield, and another in Fairfax, if you want to get your Tex-Mex on before then.  Oh, and you can "like" them on Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/ChuysNorthernVA?fref=ts

10/14/15

Welcome Abrakadoodle and a Giveaway!


Ah, Woodbridge, you lucky people! You guys get the best options in extra curricular and co curricular activities!! Jealous!

Luckily, Abrakadoodle is a mobile company, and they can also come to you! They do school enrichment programs, birthday parties, corporate events, one time events, scouts, summer camps, face painting, and more! 
Serving Woodbridge, Lake Ridge, Dale City and Manassas, is the newest branch of Abrakadoodle, offering art education for children of all ages! Their first set of classes will run 6 weeks beginning October 19th. Classes will include various mediums of art.  
Twoosy Doodlers and Mini Doodlers can register online at http://www.abrakadoodle.com/va-prince-william-county-register/
Right now, Abrakadoodle is offering a special introductory offer!! Take 6 weeks of remarkable art education for only $75! (That's like getting a class for free!) Classes are held at  13000 Sport and Health Dr, Woodbridge, VA 22192. 

Bonus! Abrakadoodle is giving one lucky PwcMoms reader a FREE SESSION OF ART LESSONS!! Check out the rafflecopter below to enter to win a spot in either the Twoosy Doodlers or Mini Doodlers class! 
a Rafflecopter giveaway
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As always, entering means that you agree to our giveaway rules! Prizes provided by Abrakadoodle PWC, PwcMoms is not responsible for classes or content.

10/6/15

Dinner...

I know that dinner tends to stress everyone out on weeknights.  Sometimes the day doesn't go like you planned it and you end up getting something not so healthy and not so tasty.  Sometimes, you're just done at the end of the day and cereal sounds really healthy.  Throw a banana on it- that's like, 3 food groups.  

We had one of those days yesterday.  I left my house at 9:15am to drop the kids off with my dad who was going to supervise their lessons while I went to the oncologist in Georgetown.  Off I drove, arriving around 10:50, which was good because the cancer center is under construction so I had to wind my way through the other buildings to enter.  I waited in the waiting room until 12:15, then I waited in a clinic room until 1:50.  Then I saw the doctor for about 5 minutes.  She waved her magic wand over me and told me to come again in a year, and then I drove back to my parents, got my kids, drove home, got a bunch of papers for my other job (yes, I have a "real job" in addition to this hot mess and homeschooling), drove back to Woodbridge, dropped them off, and finally got home for the day around 7pm. In the middle of this I texted my husband that I was just going to order pizza.  He is vehemently anti-pizza and said he'd be in charge of heating up something from the fridge. 

This would normally not be a huge deal, but we never figured out where to put a microwave, so warming something up involves preheating the oven, about 30-40 minutes of baking, and then service. 

We ended up with leftover homemade mac and cheese from the kids' cooking lesson on Friday and fruit.  

Typically I try to plan a little better, but this was one of those times where I didn't realize that my 5 minute checkup would take 2 hours of driving (well, that part I knew) plus 3 hours of waiting.  I had planned on being home around 1:00.  

So what's dinner look like at our house typically? I love seeing what other people make, so I thought I'd share our menu for the week.

Monday-Oncologist Appointment, Work Meeting- Leftover Mac and Cheese with peas, fruit

(Taco) Tuesday- Music, Drama, Gymnastics, Scouts- Black Bean and Quinoa Bake. This is great because I can throw it together even the night before and it just has to get warm.  I like to soak my quinoa, not just rinse it, otherwise it has a weird almost dusty flavor to it that is not appealing.  If you're going to rinse it, do it until the water runs clear.  If you're going to soak it, I recommend overnight, change the water and rinse, and then let it soak again until you're ready to prepare, rinse once more, and then cook.  

Wednesday- Blessedly event free- Grilled steak salad, baked potatoes.  Grill nights are the best because my husband likes to grill, so as long as I have everything ready to go, he'll take care of the outdoor portion.  We prefer the Alton Brown Method of Everything....so if you're still perfecting your grilling technique, I suggest you ask Alton. 

Thursday- Classes in Springfield, Hockey Try Outs, Gymnastics- Slow-Cooker Squash Lasagna.  I LOVE my slow cooker.  The minute pumpkin spice lattes come out, my crock pot makes a weekly appearance on our dinner menu.  I'll probably do green beans with this. 

Friday- Cooking Class at Our House- I'm teaching tomato sauce (last week I taught b├ęchamel, which is how we ended up with Mac and Cheese) so the kids are going to make pizza for dinner with bell peppers, red onion, mushrooms, broccoli, and tomato. And probably the pepperoni they know is in the freezer somewhere.  The leftover basic tomato sauce will get used next week for spaghetti. 

Weekends are generally for leftovers, unless we're having a party which this weekend we are not...that I know of, although frequently we somehow end up with people at our house anyway- which is a welcome event anytime.  

What are you making for dinner this week? 

10/1/15

Manassas Fall Jubilee

The Manassas Fall Jubilee is a ton of fun, and it's my pick for this weekend!! 


Along with the 100+ crafter and community booths that will be lining the streets of Historic Downtown Manassas on Saturday October 3, we will also have…:
Cornhole Tournament: registration & tournament will take place on Manassas Museum Lawn
o   Registration – 10:00am – 12:30pm
§  $10 a person or $20 a team (cash only) [maximum of 32 teams]
o   Tournament begins at 1:00pm
o   Prizes will be paid out to 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place teams (amount dependent on # of participants)

Beer & Wine Garden: located on the museum lawn; will have to purchase tickets to taste
Pumpkin Pie Baking Contest: Main Stage on Prince William Street
·       There will be a pumpkin pie baking contest on the main stage from 12:15 – 1:00pm. Contestants are encouraged to come show their special twist on pumpkin pie! Applications can be found on our website.
Pumpkin Pie Eating Contest: Main Stage on Prince William Street
·       The contest will take place from 1:15 – 2:00pm. There will be 2 waves of contestants:
o   Ages 5-17 will be required to eat half of a pumpkin pie – no hands.
o   Ages 18 & up will be required to eat a whole pumpkin pie – no hands.
§  The adult wave will have a $5 entrance fee.
o   Applications for both waves will be up on our website

Pumpkin Patch
·       Pumpkins will be available to purchase and decorate
Musical Performances on the Main Stage: located on Prince William Street
·       10:00am – 11:45am: DarcyDawn & Company
·       2:30pm – 4:14pm: Kitty & The Fat Cats

Community Stage Performances: located at the Harris Pavilion
·       10:00am – 10:45am: PWC Elite Dance Company at Ben Lomond
·       11:00am – 11:45am: Manassas Belly Dance
·       12:00pm – 12:45pm: Happy Feet Cloggers
·       1:00pm – 1:45pm: Heritage Hunt High Steppers
·       2:00pm – 2:45pm: Manassas Ballet
·       3:00pm – 3:45pm: Jessica’s Music Studio

·       4:00pm – 4:45pm: K-Force Academy