Tag Archives: Giveaway

HBD, KFDC! (And a Giveaway to Celebrate!)

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KidFriendly DC just turned 7! On February 24, to be exact. And like many milestones and anniversaries, it’s prompted some reflection. As you’ve likely noticed, I don’t often get too personal here; KFDC is meant to inform and inspire fun, enriching experiences. But after seven years, I figured why not share a little more about myself, offer more insight into where this all comes from? So, as I ring in another year and reflect on it all, I thought I’d share some random musings and tidbits — 7 of them for 7 years — on this whole blogging journey. If you’re not interested, no worries, but don’t miss the big GIVEAWAY below.

And, of course, I have to say a heartfelt THANK YOU for reading. It’s still kind of amazing to me that so many of you follow my blog, and I sincerely appreciate that you do.

Okay, onto the 7…

1. Being a “Blogger” is interesting. (I actually recently changed my LinkedIn title to Publisher, as there’s much more to all of this than sitting at a computer and churning out blog posts.) Sometimes it feels like the perception is that this is a fun, little hobby, but it’s actually my full time job. Sure, it’s one I created for myself, but who says it takes a traditional profession to have a real career? I actually like that it’s unconventional and new — I get to define it as I go along, and it’s full of possibilities. Which I really dig.

2. This wasn’t exactly a fluke. My professional background pre-KFDC was in publishing and media; I have experience in print, online, and television as a writer, editor, and photo editor. I’ve worked for an environmental publication, an adventure travel website, the Discovery Channel, and freelanced for even more, mostly travel related. It was always my long term goal to somehow bring it all together and create something on my own that would also give back in some way. And while I didn’t start KFDC as that particular thing — I was caring for a baby and 3-year-old at the time, and couldn’t flesh out my thoughts enough to have a clear vision — it kind of has become that thing.

3. For a very long time, I thought KFDC was going to implode. There was a weird technical issue that had to do with the compatibility of an old version of my blog theme and a new version of WordPress, and none of the techie experts could guarantee that I wouldn’t ruin everything when I updated. So, I just put it off forever and worried that it would all go kaput in the meantime. One day, I woke up and logged on to find that it had automatically updated overnight. And it was fine. Better, even. That was a huge relief. It could have been a completely different, disastrous story.

4. I don’t just write a blog; I read them, too! Even better, a few of the writers have become my friends. Some local favorites: No Monsters in My Bed, Not-So-SAHM, But I Do Have a Law Degree, Popville, Eater DC, The Hill is Home.

5. I have a love/hate relationship with social media. There’s no denying what an amazing marketing tool it is — I probably owe most of KFDC’s following to it. And I love how easily it connects so many of us. But sometimes it feels like there’s pressure to keep up with everything, and there is so much out there to keep up with. This blog is the heart of what I do, and I like to focus my attention here. That said, Facebook is my main social media channel, I kind of do Twitter, and I’m starting to get better at the Instagram if you want to follow along! 🙂

6. If I had to name my top three favorite experiences in the DC area, they would be: 1) Ren Fest (duh!) 2) Fossil Hunting 3) Adventure Park at Sandy Springs. That said, there are SO MANY places and activities that I (and my kids) love… the National Arboretum, Great Falls, all of the museums, Dumbarton Oaks, Adventure Theatre, Arena Stage, Watkins Regional Park, day trips to Baltimore, Nats games… Really, the fact that I have a whole website dedicated to all the great things to do in DC says it all.

7. I really, truly love what I do. And despite what it might seem, it’s not all just getting out and doing fun stuff with my kids. We do have loads of fun and get to do some pretty awesome things, but I also spend more time on back end and “business” work than adventuring. In the end, though, it’s all incredibly satisfying and, like I said, I love it. That’s important in doing something like this (or any job, for that matter). When you care about something so much, you want to make it the best it can be. KFDC might not get deeply personal, but it’s still a reflection of me and two little people I love most in this world. So, I care a ton. I really hope that translates on the reader end, too.

There you go, seven random musings. Now go try to win the giveaway.

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Giveaway: To celebrate 7 years of KidFriendly DC, you have a chance to win a CertifiKID voucher for one of the following: A 2-night Chincoteague Island, VA Escape (the deal valid March 31 – May 4, 2017), 4 Tickets to Erth’s Dinosaur Live at Strathmore, or 5 Tickets for the Bunny Hop Train Ride on the Maryland Scenic Railroad. (Be sure to read all details on all of them!) To enter, simply leave a comment below telling me your favorite place or activity that you learned about from KFDC. This giveaway will run through March 5, 2017, then a winner will be drawn at random and notified shortly thereafter. Good luck!


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Filed under DC, Giveaway

My Gym Bethesda & My Gym Potomac: Open House & Giveaway!

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Are you looking for a class to add some active fun in your child’s schedule this spring? My Gym Potomac and My Gym Bethesda are gearing up for a new season of programs for ages 3 months to 10 years. Not only are they hosting an event for families to check them out, the children’s play and fitness centers are also giving away a session — that’s eight weeks of enrollment — to one lucky KFDC reader for their child to enjoy!

You can get a preview of My Gym Potomac and My Gym Bethesda’s offerings for kids at a free Open House on February 24 from 4-7pm. It’s a great opportunity to meet our teachers and sample the programs — there are Mommy and Me movement and music classes for babies and preschoolers, and tumbling, sports, and parkour classes for older children. The evening will include games and activities, plus discounts on registration!

My Gym Bethesda is located at 5110 Ridgefield Road and My Gym Potomac is located at 11325 Seven Locks Road.

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Giveaway: Want a chance to win eight weeks of enrollment for one child in a class at My Gym Potomac or My Gym Bethesda (value of $279)? Simply leave a comment below telling me what activity you’ve enjoyed most this winter so far. Get an extra chance to win by entering on the KidFriendly DC Facebook page, too! The prize includes Lifetime Membership and Unlimited practice and play (free play) during the enrollment period. The winner must start classes by April 31, 2017. Classes are consecutive and pending space available. Contest is open to non-members of My Gym only. This giveaway will run through February 28, 2017, then a winner will be drawn at random and notified shortly thereafter. Good luck!


Disclosure: This post is sponsored by My Gym Bethesda and My Gym Potomac, however, I only promote places, programs, and events that I genuinely believe in and think will appeal to KFDC readers.

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Filed under All ages, Babies, Class, Free, Giveaway, Gradeschoolers, Indoor Play, Maryland, Play, Preschoolers, Sponsored Post, Toddlers, Weekdays, Weekend, Winter

Giveaway! Celebrate Valentine’s Day Family-Style with Whole Foods Market

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Who says Valentine’s Day has to be a couples-only holiday? Not me! Celebrating with the people — big and little — I love most is what makes it special in my book. In fact, I never really made much of the day until I had kids and thought it would be sweet to mark the occasion with them. Along with enjoying Valentine’s-inspired activities around the area, we usually exchange homemade cards and enjoy some treats.

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This year, however, we had an early family celebration with the help of Whole Foods Market and some great offers they have for the holiday. Rib-eye steaks and lobster tails are on sale along with beautiful flowers, bubbly, chocolates, and lots of other Whole Foods items to make for a festive — and delicious — feast.

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Our family-style “Valentine’s Day” dinner included the surf & turf, a nice bottle of De ChancenyCremant de Loire Brut for Levi and me (sparkling water for the kids), a pepperoni pizza with the topping shaped like a heart, and a salad to get our veggies. We all savored some of everything, and had plenty of leftovers to enjoy later, too.

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We ended the meal on a sweet note — Lake Champlain chocolates in cute heart shaped boxes that made nice little gifts for Owen and Sasha. And a gorgeous bouquet of roses is a present for all of us that we can continue to enjoy beyond our lovely, little celebration.

Ready to get your Valentine’s Day celebration started? Go to SHOP.WFM.COM to do some pre-shopping!

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Giveaway: Want to try some of these Whole Foods Market specials – on them? You have a chance to win a $50 Whole Foods Gift Card! Enter on the KidFriendly DC Facebook Page – simply like the post and leave a comment. The giveaway will run through February 14, then a winner will be drawn at random and notified shortly thereafter. Good luck!


Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Whole Foods Market, however, I only promote places programs, and services that I genuinely believe in and think will appeal to KFDC readers.


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Filed under All ages, Annual, DC, Eats, Giveaway, Holidays, Maryland, Product Review, Shop, Sponsored Post, Virginia

Giveaway! Whole Foods Market Will Help Make You Super Bowl Party Champion

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You know what my favorite thing is about the Super Bowl? Super Bowl parties! Yes, I’m what you might call a casual football fan — I’ll watch if I’m someplace where the game is on, but I don’t go out of my way for it. The Super Bowl, however, is an exception. Of course, that it’s the championship game ups my interest. But the hoopla that comes along with it (i.e. par-tay), is what really makes it exciting for me. And a big part of that is the party fare. Because game food — I’m talking wings, nachos, chili, chips & dip — is always good, and I will always indulge on game day.

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So, this year I had a chance to practice my Super Bowl party dishes before the big game, thanks to Whole Foods Market. Using their 365 products and foods made in-house, I prepared a “mock” Super Bowl celebration for our family. It might sound like a big undertaking, but it was actually quite easy. Whole Foods Market’s made-in-house foods are always fresh and tasty, so a lot of the prep involved just heating up or pouring into bowls.

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The wings were already cooked, so I just put them in the oven for 10 minutes to get them to eating temp. Tortilla chips with salsa and guacamole just needed some transferring to bowls, easy peasy. The nachos took a little more time, but putting chips, beans, and cheese into a dish and popping it in the oven was simple. And topping it with 365 Cantina Style salsa instead of homemade pico de gallo saved some work, too.

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I decided to include a couple of healthier options, salad and shrimp, to balance out the heavier dishes — and because I know some folks like to keep it light, even at a party. I also picked up some Whole Foods 365 lemonades because we all enjoy them (FYI: They make good mixers for adult drinks…you’re welcome).

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We may not have had competition, but I’d call our Super Bowl Party dinner from Whole Foods Market a big win! It was convenient to shop for, super easy to prepare, and everyone loved it. Even better, your family can win a $100 Whole Foods Market gift card to shop for all you need to throw a Super Bowl Party of your own – enter now on the KidFriendly DC Facebook page! Get an extra chance to win by entering below, too!

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Giveaway: For a chance to win a $100 Whole Foods Market gift card, simply leave a comment below telling me your favorite Super Bowl Party dish. (This is an extra entry — you must also enter on the KidFriendly DC Facebook page.) This giveaway will run through Sunday, February 5, then a winner will be drawn at random and notified shortly thereafter. Good luck!

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Whole Foods Market, however, I only promote places programs, and services that I genuinely believe in and think will appeal to KFDC readers.

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Filed under Eats, Giveaway, Product Review, Shop, Sponsored Post, Sports, Winter

Jump for Joy with this Sport Bounce Giveaway!

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Hooray for active play! Sport Bounce, the indoor play space full of giant inflatables and more kiddie fun, is giving away FIVE free open bounce passes PLUS a $25 Starbucks gift card to THREE lucky KidFriendlyDC readers (total value $75 each)!

Voted “Best Place to Have a Birthday Party” by Loudoun and Fairfax parents, Sport Bounce is an area favorite party place for kids 2-10. Sport Bounce is not open to the public during parties, so your time on the inflatables is just for your group! You’ll have access to your very own party room the entire time. Sport Bounce’s exclusive “Big Red Chair Photo” and massive jumping pillow are just a couple of the reasons many families book their parties here year after year. Go here to see what’s included and get more info on making your child’s next party a truly memorable celebration.

Sport Bounce is located at 44710 Cape Court, Suite #116 in Ashburn, VA. Open Bounce admission is $10/ages 2 and up, $6/8-23 months. Children must be 18 months to use any of the inflatables.

For more about Sport Bounce, see this post about a KFDC experience there.

Giveaway: For a chance to win one of the 5-Packs + Starbucks Gift Card Packages, simply leave a comment telling me your favorite Starbucks beverage. To be eligible, you must like KidFriendly DC on Facebook and subscribe to the KFDC blog (see sign-up near the top left). The giveaway will run through next Thursday, April 21, then three winners will be drawn at random and notified shortly thereafter. Good luck!


Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Sport Bounce of Loudoun, however, I only promote programs, products, and services that I truly believe in and/or think would appeal to KFDC readers.


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Filed under Birthday Parties, Free, Gradeschoolers, Indoor Play, Preschoolers, Sponsored Post, Toddlers, Virginia, Weekdays, Weekend