First Haircut at Pigtails and Crewcuts

This was quite the experience for R, but he needed a haircut badly. I didn't want to do it, but his bangs were hanging all in his face. I had heard that the wait time was a bear, and they don't take appointments so I was worried. We arrived early in the morning. Great news - there were two stylists and only one other child, so R was able to be helped right away. This place is perfect for kids. There are six work stations, four of which are cars, fire trucks, police cars, or planes and two are normal chairs for the bigger kids. (AKA too cool to sit in the cars, but still too scared to go to an adult salon.) 

While she worked fast and furiously on his hair, R scarfed animals cookies (or a lollipop if he'd rather, although with my kid it would end up IN his hair) and watched the DVD that was running. After the cut, R wandered over to the train track set and played while I settled the bill. He also got to pick a toy from the "Treasure Chest."

The normal price for a haircut is $17.95, but for $6 more ($23.95), you get a great little keepsake package. It's a 5 x 7 card with a picture of him in his "new do" and a lock of hair in a little baggie, with the date of the cut. She also gave me two other small baggies with hair for the two grandmothers! It's a great deal considering how much adult cuts are, and the fact that they get a snack and a picture. 

I also learned that they have a party room where kids can arrange cuts for them and their friends. There's the Princess Party and the Pirate Party. More details can be found on their website. This is a perfect spot for getting haircuts for kids. The Sprout is close by (a consignment shop for kids) and the YMCA is right next door with lots of activities and camps for kids.

Locations in Tidewater include Chesapeake at Towne Place, Newport News, and Virginia Beach at Hilltop. (We went to VB) There is also a location in Richmond. 

Prices from their website:
Kid’s Haircut: $17.95
Bang Cut: $5.95
Dad`s Cut: $18.95
Mom`s Cut: $20.95
First Haircut Package: $23.95
Shampoo: $4.95
Shampoo w/ Blow Dry: $9.90
Nail or Toe Polish: $5.95
Up-Dos: $15.95 & Up
Braids: $8.95 & Up

By the way, R didn't cry at all, but I might have a little writing this post. How is my little man SO big?!

Pembroke Mall

We stumbled onto the Pembroke Mall play area sort of accidentally. My mom and I were shopping at the mall and figured it was easier to walk through the mall than put the child and stroller back in the car to drive to the store on the other side of the mall. Boom! We discovered a play area for children.

It's perfect for a rainy day, a super hot day, or a day where you just need somewhere to play that's easy for YOU. What's nice about this play area is that the floor is cushy, so no hurt behinds.

Something to note, kids can't wear shoes inside the area, so I always make sure to have socks on R when we go. Or, I make sure I have an extra pair of socks in the diaper bag. Another important thing, unlike some kids play areas, this is NOT fenced in all the way. If you have a runner, just be aware! Position yourself accordingly.

Over the summer Pembroke also does a FREE family movie series. Every Wednesday and Saturday they have family friendly movies with FREE popcorn and water.  (In order to get in, you do have to have a kid under 12 with you!)

Every Friday they do a Food Truck Friday with FREE games, bounce houses, music, and kid activities. I love a good food truck rodeo.

Pembroke also has a kids club where the second Saturday of each month an arts and crafts activity is provided for the kids to do. Sign up here. If you still need convincing, the mall also has a reading series with a story time every Tuesday at 11 AM during the summer. These sometimes include actors, crafts, and snacks. This makes both R and me happy because I still have yet to be able to walk by Bath and Body works without coming out with a candle or lotion. Seriously though- how great are their three wick candles?

Some upcoming events and descriptions from the Pembroke website:

Saturday, September 23, 2017 from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM
Bring your family for a free day of fun and learn how to be prepared at home, in your neighborhood and at school. Join Girl Scouts and Boy Scouts for Scout Ready on Saturday, September 23 from 10am to 2pm at Pembroke Mall. Make your own first aid kit, get to know local firefighters and police officers, make crafts and meet Meteorologist Deitra Tate WAVY. More than 20 community organizations will provide exhibits and offer hands-on activities.
Saturday, October 7, 2017 at 11:00 AM to Saturday, October 28, 2017 at 2:00 PM
MALL-O-WEEN on the BOO-LVD is back!! Join us every Saturday, from 11am-2pm for our Fall Festivities, happening outside between Harygul Halloween Super Store and Bahama Breeze. Kids will enjoy FREE pony rides, petting farm, bounce house, music, interactive experiments by Mad Science, games, cotton candy and arts & crafts. Make sure to bring your appetite, because we're going to have Bahama Breeze here along with a few food trucks from Eat the Streets 757.
Saturday, October 14, 2017 from 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM
This is a special Kids Club that will take place outside during Malloween on the Boolvd, between Harygul Halloween Super Store and Old Navy. We will have a Decorate your own Cupcake station filled with all sorts of cupcake toppings, such as frosting, marshmallows, candy, pretzels, sprinkles and more! Kids will be able to select their own toppings then use their creativity to decorate their very own cupcake!
Thursday, October 26, 2017 from 7:00 AM to 7:00 PM
Beach Bags Food Drive program provides shelf-stable meals and healthy snacks to Virginia Beach City Public School students who might otherwise go hungry on weekends or during school vacations. Food donations may be dropped off at Pembroke Mall on Thursday, October 26th from 7am until 7pm. Donations will be accepted in the Kohl's parking lot behind Walgreens.
Tuesday, October 31, 2017 from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Join us on Halloween night for our Mall-Wide Trick or Treat event! From 6pm-8pm, candy will be passed out in front of participating stores. While supplies last. (Adults are not permitted to wear masks)

Road Trip to Fiesta Ware

From the picture you can see that R may not have been totally thrilled with plates at Fiesta Ware, but he did like the hat and guitar in the photobooth at Fiesta Ware. While visiting family in Pennsylvania this summer we took a day trip over to Newell, West Virginia to score some deals on dishes.
Don't let the horror movie-esque exterior fool you, it's worth it. Both R and I have been here twice. The first time there were bins all along the parking lot outside that were marked as seconds for a dollar. This means that they might have some tiny flaw, but from what we saw they were in awesome condition. This was in addition to the seconds room in the back of the store with even more items.

The second time we went, the bins were not outside, which we were bummed about, but we still had plenty to look through in the seconds room. The front room holds items that are in perfect condition, but not discounted. I did fall in love with several Halloween plates, but couldn't convince myself to buy them and haul them all the way home.

The factory does offer tours, but children are not allowed, and they only run them on Tuesday and Fridays. You may also want to take a rag or cloth because the dishes in the seconds room can be dusty, and you'll be digging through piles and in boxes to find what you want. Another cool thing to check out is the dump where cracked plates, mistakes, and misprinted colors find their way. It's like an explosion of color. My family found the $.50 old school toll bridge that you have to cross both charming and terrifying. Be aware though, there is very little else to do in Newell. There are only a handful of places to eat and nowhere that I saw for kids to run around outside of the Fiesta property. R may not have been super amused, but he did like being fawned over by all of the ladies. If you find yourself in Pittsburg, it's about a 45 minute drive, and if you're a Fiesta fan it's worth it. Be on the lookout for the tent sales and special events here!

1-2-3 Play with Me

This morning we attended 1-2-3 Play with Me at the Pretlow Library in Ocean View. I've been looking for more social things for big R to do. This was the second session of classes, which will run from now through the month of November. I've written about the Ocean View library before and how much we love it, so we were excited to try one more thing there. We arrived a few minutes early, but were welcomed in. There were toys EVERYWHERE. There was a section for infants, a musical section, gross motor skills with cars and things to ride on, puzzles, books, a kitchen... everything.

In talking with the woman running the show, I learned that it is typical for these sessions to run every Saturday for three months on, and three months off. Some of the other libraries will do these classes on and off also to change things up.
R got tired and we headed out a little early, but I was told that at 11:30 they sing a few clean up songs to help put the room back together, and sit in a circle to sing a goodbye song. I did miss the typical songs and circle time that I was used to this summer from other classes, but I understand the need to mix things up. It's hard going back to school (work); I feel like I miss everything!

If you're looking for something easy to do on a Saturday morning, consider checking this out. Best part? R got to hang with some other kids and build his social skills.
I snagged these five tips to encourage clean-up:
01. Give advanced warning
02. Play eye spy (Can you find the bears and put them in this bucket?!)
03. Put away the old before starting the new
04. How fast can you clean up?
05. Show them how it's done

For a list of upcoming events at this library, click here. I'm really excited about the Disney Breakfast and the Dreidel Hunt in December.

And a pic of R and me, just for good measure! His hair is insane, I have got to get it cut but I can't stand to do it!

Barnes and Noble Story Time

I had heard from others that Barnes and Noble had a good story time session, but I hadn't been too lucky the one time I went. To be fair, the girl said that she was filling in, so I wasn't expecting too much. This time was totally different- much better! 
The story time starts with a selection of songs and movements. This includes things like Wheels on the Bus, Itsy Bitsy Spider.. etc. Then the instructor reads a book to the children. This time it was Llama Llama Red Pajama, by Anna Dewdney. After reading, she asked the kids if they wanted to meet the Llama. She then went into the back of the store and came out with a 6' tall llama character. Most of the children were very excited to run up, touch him, and get their picture taken. One little girl ran screaming from the area. Little R just stood there and stared at him. When my mom tried to get R to take a picture, he cried too. Sad! But that's okay, we will try next time.

BTW- if you haven't checked out this video of Luda rapping this book, get on it. I love it so much! haha

After all the children had a chance to have their picture taken, Llama was taken back again, and the children made an age-appropriate craft. (Littler ones will need some help!) To close out the session, I was impressed when each child received a 1.5 oz bag of Goldfish. Jessica, the story teller, told me they get a different snack each week. The MacArthur Center location has a story time every Tuesday and Wednesday at 10:00 a.m. The songs and story take about 20 minutes, then kids move on to the craft. 

Upcoming MacArthur Center Character Visits: 
September 9, 12, 13, & 16 - Llama Llama
October 10, 11, & 14 - How Do Dinos (a dinosaur)
October 28, 31, and November 1, 4 - Dragons Love Tacos (a dragon)
November 11, 14, 15 & 18 - Splat the Cat (a cat)

Other Locations:
Barnes and Noble Town Center: Wednesdays at 10:00, Saturdays at 11:00. 
Barnes and Noble Greenbrier- Saturday 11:00
Barnes and Noble Lynnhaven Mall- Tuesdays during the summer, no set dates otherwise, check their Facebook.

 -Don't be late. They start promptly at 10:00. The mall opens at 10:00, but they had the gate open for us when we got there.
-Don't be afraid to get the book ahead of time and start reading with your child! Build the excitement! 
-Don't forget! Most malls have a play area. This would be awesome to hit up after the event.
-If you don't see your location, check Facebook for your specific store! 

If you end up checking out another location, let us know! We would love to explore elsewhere. Happy reading! 


Norfolk Public Library is AWESOME. We have spent the summer at several libraries and we have already decided that our goal next summer is to visit an event at every library branch. One of the classes that we went to weekly was Babygarten at the Little Creek Branch.

It's advertised as "a fun, rhythmic program for infants that develops phonological awareness, increases eye-hand coordination and encourages body awareness." That's a fancy way for saying that they sing songs, read a book, complete a craft, and have toy time. I like this class because the expectations are perfect for their age. If they don't want to pay attention, and instead they walk around the room, that's fine. The crafts are things that they can actually do. Think in-the-bag finger painting, making sensory bags, creating sponge toys for the bath... so on. I also like that every child gets to hold his/her own cardboard book rather than just looking at a book someone is holding. This class is free if you live in Norfolk. If not, don't worry! You can still purchase a Norfolk Public Library card for a minimal fee. As R gets older, we will transition to some of the other NPL classes. Their website has an endless selection of activities from which to choose. We are especially looking forward to their Halloween and Hanukkah activities coming up this fall/winter.

Click here to find out more details.


Tuesday: Mary D. Pretlow Anchor Branch
Wednesday: Lafayette Branch, Little Creek Branch, Mary D. Pretlow Anchor Branch, Slover
Library, Janaf
Thursday: Park Place Branch
Friday: Slover Library
Saturday: Slover Library

Check the times here.

ODU Football With Our Mini Monarch

Last night we went to the Old Dominion University football game. ODU sports events are a family event for us. I attended them with my parents and grandparents as a child, and now Raleigh attends them with his. My aunts and uncles and close family friends also come, so it's a full on family affair. My favorite part, of course, is the tailgating!

Tailgating starts 4 hours before the game. We usually bring something to grill, sides, and drinks. If you go to a game, be sure to walk around and look at everything. The band and cheerleaders parade around the lawn, there are events happening outside of Webb Center, people throwing corn hole bags, Big Blue walking around, and all around fun times. We love running into people that we know everywhere.

Some things to know about ODU:

  1. Tickets are required for children over the age of three.
  2. There is a Big Blue's Kids Club for Monarch fans 13 and under. The cost is $20.00, but the first 100 people to register every year are FREE! Some of the benefits include a Big Blue beach towel, a Piggy Bank, a birthday card, a free game ticket, access to the fan tunnel and a meet and greet. Find out more info here.
  3. You can take in your stroller! OH MAN, I wish that I had known this last year! Guest services is located inside and will allow you to check your stroller. This is great because walks from the car can be long. It also means that if your little one gets fussy, you can pop them in the stroller and head for a walk.
  4. There are grassy patches inside where kids can run around to get a break from sitting in the stands. 
  5. ODU kids gear can be found both at the Dominion Bookstore and at Target as well as the bookstore. We have not seen a cute ODU toddler hat yet though. Whose gonna get on this?! 
  6. Be on the lookout for the dance cam where kids can show off their moves and win a free pizza! 
  7. Check either your ticket or the website before you go; it will tell you what color to wear. Fans either wear white, baby blue, navy, black, or my favorite- section specific times where they stripe the stadium. 
  8. THE MOST IMPORTANT! They shoot off a cannon when the team runs out both at the start of the game and at half time. I know it is coming and every time I still jump 10 feet. If your kiddo is noise sensitive, be aware! You may want to take them out until after it goes off. They also shoot fireworks off when the team runs out of the tunnel. 

See, Neil does exist, he is just normally the ones taking the pictures I guess? The season is just starting, so if you're headed to a game, let us know! 

Pretlow Library Playscape

I know that I've said before how much we love the library, but I'll say it again for the people in the back... the library is amazing. The Pretlow library in Ocean View has an entire floor for the little ones. One side is called the Playscape, which is designed just for kids 0-3 years old.

I love this area because so many places are overrun by well meaning larger kids who often forget that they were once a little kid crawling around on the floor. And the librarians are vigilant about asking older children to leave the area, especially if they are unattended by a parent.
All of the things inside the playscape are soft. There are things to crawl on, over, in, and down. There are also mirrors for kids to watch themselves, which R thinks is hilarious. He likes taking the blocks and using the velcro to stick them to the walls. 

As usual, a few heads up tips:

  1. The library doesn't open until 10:00 most days, and not until 1:00 on Sundays.
  2. They are adamant about not allowing food, drinks, or cell phones.
  3. Pick up a calendar from the front desk and be on the lookout for the Babygarten, Toddler Time, or 1-2-3 play with me classes. There are also Tiny Tot Gymboree dances on some weekends. 
  4. If you have older kids this floor is for them too! There are play kitchens, lego tables, books for all ages, and a computer station for kids. There are all kinds of baby, toddler, preschool, school aged, and teen events at the library also. 
  5. During the summer there are several places in Norfolk that offer a free lunch for children under                 the age of 18. The Pretlow Library does this from 12:00-1:00 every weekday all summer long.
  6. Slover Library has a playscape also. If this is closer to you, check it out!
  7. Be sure to check out all of the classes that they offer, here!
Perfect for a rainy or cold day, or for a break from the outdoors during the summer. We love this library and will be back many more days as the weather starts getting cold- well, if it ever does!

Some upcoming Norfolk Public Library Events:

  • Fright Club- Wednesdays in October 5:39 at Slover 
  • Bat Decorating- October 17 3:30 Pretlow 
  • Hogwarts School of Potions- October 18 4:00 Blyden
  • Halloween Bingo- October 18 4:00 Barron Black
  • Pumpkin Painting- October 21 2:00 Lafayette, 2-4 Jordan Newby, October 24 and Friday 27 Slover
  • Halloween at Slover October 24-31
  • Creature Feature-October 24 4:00-5:30
  • Candy Corn Science- October 25 4:00
  • Are you Afraid of the Dark?- October 26 6:00
  • Halloween Storytimes- October 26 10:30 Little Creek and October 30 11:00 Janaf
  • Frankel Friday- October 27 2:20 Slover
  • Monster Ball- October 27 6-10 (tweens and teens) 
  • Monster Tea Party- October 28 2:00 
  • Mystery Dinner Theater- October 30 4:00 (teens) 
  • Trick or Treat at the Library- Halloween, Lafayette, Pretlow, Jordan Newby, Barron F Black, Little Creek, Slover

Penguin's Snoballs and Bike Rides to the Park

Now that school has started for us teachers, it's harder to squeeze in as many adventures with R before bedtime. (Que the crying at summer being over and going back to work!) One thing that's great is bike rides because it's A. free and B. easy.
During the summer, we rode our bikes to Tarrallton Park, which is great. I'll post about it another time, but in short, there is both an area for little guys and another for bigger ones.  After playing and riding on the bike, we needed something special to cool off. Those hot days could only be quenched with... a snow cone. Not just any snow cone, but the cheap, perfectly soft iced, sugary Penguin's Snoball cones.
If you haven't been there yet, do yourself a favor and make it happen. I got R his own, but we should have just split one kiddie size. The kiddie is $2.00, tax included. You can get extra things like a gummy or a drizzle for an extra $.50. 

This place was so awesome that after we went there, I made my husband walk up with me again two days later because R (Read: I) wanted more. They have over 100 flavors on their board, and, if you look inside, they have even more daily specials. They also have mixes, kiddie favorites, and sugar free flavors on other boards. Most of the flavors look awesome, but I have yet to try the pickle. Maybe next time? It's an excuse for another visit.... ?