CharlottesvilleFamily December 2014

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volume 15 issue 12 PUBLISHERS

Just Between Us… Sometimes the best gifts of all are simple and unexpected. When I was little, my Mom got a rocking chair for Christmas and it came in a huge box. I think she probably liked the rocker although I can’t honestly recall what it looked like. The box, however, is one of my favorite memories. Big enough for three little girls, we transformed that magical box with crayons and scissors. It had a door, windows and even a little faux flower garden around the exterior. The best time of all in our clubhouse was the night we slept there. Almost. Dad had to come stay with us and sometime in the late evening we were all tucked into our beds, too tired to protest further that we weren’t scared at all to sleep in the family room. Now that I’m a mom too, I can appreciate my parents probably enjoyed that big box as much as we did - we were happily entertained for weeks. We read in there, played with our dolls, made up secret

december 2014 Robin Johnson Bethke Jennifer Bryerton

CREATIVE DIRECTOR Robin Johnson Bethke EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Jennifer Bryerton TECHNICAL DIRECTOR Peter D. Bethke EDITOR Jennifer Conrad Seidel EDITORIAL ASSISTANT Jennifer Slate GRAPHIC DESIGN Erin Q. Hughes Barbara Tompkins SALES MANAGER David Valcich ADVERTISING SALES Karrie Bos, Lindsay Lopez, Susan Powell, Brandi Washburn CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Kelly Casey, Beth Cheuk, Kim Connolly, Rick Epstein, Jody Hobbs Hesler, Linda Kobert, Blair Lonergan, Laura Merricks, Krissy Millar, Sue Mondeau, Lynn Pribus, Deborah Prum, Brooks Wellmon ADMINISTRATIVE MANAGER Amy Duprey DISTRIBUTION Ray Whitson

codes and had all sorts of unstructured creative fun. As I enter the holiday season this year I’m dreaming of the perfect holiday table, seeing The Nutcracker, family dinners, drives to admire the twinkling Christmas lights, and joyful presents - and feeling very thankful that I get to share it all with our children.

CharlottesvilleFamily™ Magazine and™ are published jointly by Ivy Publications, LLC. CharlottesvilleFamily. com™ is published weekly online at www.CharlottesvilleFamily. com, the weekly Newsletter is distributed via email, and the Magazine is published in print format 12 times per year along with a™ Directory. The views and opinions expressed by the writers and advertisers do not necessarily represent those of CharlottesvilleFamily magazine, its officers, staff or contributors. The information presented here is for informational purposes only and although every effort has been made to present accurate information, we do not in any way accept responsibility for the accuracy of or consequences from the use of this information or for the businesses and organizations presented herein. We urge all parents to confirm any information given herein and consult with your doctor or an appropriate professional concerning any information of question. All images not credited are property of and provided by Thinkstock by Gettyimages. No portion of this publication may be reproduced in part or in whole without the express written consent of the publisher. Copyright ©2014. All rights reserved.

Wishing you a very happy holiday season,

We welcome reader comments, submissions and the support of advertisers! Please direct all correspondence to Ivy Publications, LLC 4282 Ivy Road, Charlottesville, Virginia 22903 voice 434.984.4713 fax 434.984.4813 We reserve the right to refuse or edit any materials submitted to us that we deem inappropriate for our audience. Include a SASE with any submission to be returned. We do not accept responsibility for unsolicited materials.


December 2014

Jen Fariello

2004 Community Award Winner


Contents OUR TOWN


News 8

The Buzz Around Town 10 Does your child get a flu shot? Snapshot 12 Mindy Goodall

Healthy Family 32 Health Is One of the Greatest Gifts of All

Bravo! 15

Toy Lift: Patty Dombrowe

Our Schools 16

New Mom 34 And Baby Makes Three

December Activities and Events for Families

Daytrip Fun! 22

Christmas at Mount Vernon

CharlottesvilleFamily Favorite Winners 2014 46

Editor’s Pick! I love the “keep what you love, pass on what you don’t” approach to decorating for the holidays in this month’s Home & Garden column on page 42.

Holidays from the Heart 62 Crafts to Make the Season Bright Both a Sensei and a Dad 70 Bringing Martial Arts Wisdom

into Parenting

Food and Fun with Charlottesville’s PB&J Fund 76 Nutrition and Knowledge with


Fun and Services

Dear Santa 58 A Follow-Up Letter

Out & About Calendar 20

INSPIRATION Your Winning Picks for Family-Friendly

Pop In and Catch a Performance at a City School


Cool Stuff 28 Great Toys, Gadgets, Books and More

a Side of Confidence

Family Tree 36 Creating Traditions


Tips & Trends 40 Fabulous Finds and Fun

Buy Local Shopping Guide 30 Support the Community

Home & Garden 42 Dressing It All Up

Give the Gift of Camp 86 Residential Camp Is a Gift That

Lasts a Lifetime

UNTIL NEXT TIME Hanukkah Isn’t Christmas 78 Trust Me

So Love This! It’s always nice to get into the spirit of the season by getting messy with the little ones! For great kid friendly holiday crafts see “Holidays from the Heart” on page 62. — Erin, designer



{our town community}

­the local buzz

Ivy Publications Presents Toy Lift December 5

A Christmas Carol December 9

The Nutcracker Suite December 13 & 14 December 20 & 21

Millie Carson

Waldorf School Holiday Bazaar December 6

The Great Russian Nutcracker December 7

Find more details on page 20!

Brian Moriarty


Play Ball! The Carson Raymond Foundation is helping lots of kids in our community swing for the fences. Dedicated to honoring the life of Steven “Carson” Raymond, who in his nine years delighted in playing sports with his school friends and teammates, the

Peabody School Expansion

foundation seeks to provide elementary-aged children of all backgrounds with opportunities to participate in neighborhood sports programs. The recent Carson’s Cavalier Camp invited 50

The Peabody School celebrated the new 14,500-square-foot

kids from Venable Elementary and the Boys and Girls Club of

Batten Building with a ribbon-cutting ceremony in October.

Central Virginia to practice ball skills with UVA baseball players

In addition to housing middle school classrooms, the building

at Davenport Field. This fall, the foundation co-sponsored a

contains a state-of-the-art science lab, a new gymnasium

Wiffle Ball tournament with UVA’s Athletes for Hope student

and a performance space for drama and fine arts programs.

organization on Grounds. The foundation also provides

The building is named in honor of Dorothy Batten, a long-

equipment and clinics for kindergarten students in local schools,

time Peabody parent, volunteer and board member. The

renovates baseball fields and connects deserving kids to baseball

opening of the new space also means that lower grades

and athletic activities. This fall, clinics at 10 county schools

can expand their footprint in the original building. Now in

reached about 700 kindergarteners, and a field was renovated at

its 20th year, Peabody School serves 200 students in pre-K

Venable Elementary in the city with help from the UVA team. For

through 8th grade.

more information, visit

Kid Reporter Talia Marshall, a student at Buford Middle School, was recently named one of 32 kid reporters for the Scholastic News Kids Press Corps. These young journalists, ages 1014, report on “news for kids, by kids” with coverage of current events, breaking news, entertainment and sports on the local and national stage. Their stories appear on Scholastic News Online and in classroom magazines read by more than 25 million students in classrooms nationwide.


December 2014

{our town voices} The


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I feel any prevention I can give my children I know we should get flu shots, but I have is a good thing! so many other things on my to-do list that I Heather R., Afton haven’t gotten around to it. Jennifer S., mom of two teens I think an informed approach to immunizations is the best approach, and flu shots are shown to be effective. We haven’t yet, but my son will get one. I Ashley M. usually don’t get one and don’t get the flu, but now that I’ve written that, I probably will! Our kids had the flu one year during Susan, mom of a 10-year-old Christmas. The kids slept for four days, only in Ruckersville waking up to eat and briefly open presents. If you can prevent something miserable (and sometimes dangerous), why not get vaccinated? Jenny, mom in C’Vegas

2009, 2010, 2011 2012 & 2013

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{our town community} Riding to Victory

Thank you for voting for us! Comprehensive care from infancy to young adulthood

Laurie Mitchell

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Molly Mitchell, a 16-year-old

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student at Monticello High School, and Royal Bordeaux (affectionately known as “Baron� and stabled at Sheridan Stables in Kents Store) were recently named champions at the Southern Regional 4-H Competition in Raleigh, NC. They came in first place in the Hunter Under Saddle riding division out of 150 riders and horses from 12 states. A member of the Goochland chapter of 4-H, Mitchell has been riding horses and participating in 4-H activities since she was 9 years old. She won the Virginia 4-H Horse and Pony Show State Championships in Lexington, VA, this year as well as last year.

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To qualify for the horse and pony competitions, riders must complete a project book, perform community service, attend meetings and participate in a variety of 4-H events.


{our town community}

SNAPSHOT written & photographed by Laura Merricks

Mindy Goodall When Mindy Goodall went on a ride-along with a local officer called to a residential break-in, she realized “police rush toward the situations the rest of us are running away from.” This confirmed her decision to accept the position as executive director of the Charlottesville Police Foundation (CPF). Because housing costs in the city are high and 90 percent of the force’s budget is eaten up by salaries and vehicle costs,

duty as soon as they get off the bus at 2:30, I get up early and exercise

the CPF, a nonprofit founded in 2004 by local citizens, provides the police

before the kids wake up so I can give myself something as well. We also

department with “advanced training, new technologies and equipment,

try to not overschedule our kids; each child is able to pick one activity

housing assistance, structured community outreach and other support,”

per season.

according to Goodall. Goodall was hired by CPF in 2009 to support the very active but

If you had a 25-hour day, what would you do with that

over-extended board. She then stepped into the part-time executive

extra hour?

director position in 2011 after years of holding other volunteer positions

It’s a tie. I would sleep for one more hour or have one more hour to

in the community. A mom of three, Goodall has served at her children’s

spend with friends.

school and helped found the local chapter of Mainly Music in 2007, where she still volunteers on occasion. Goodall lives in Albemarle County with her husband, Dan, and her three children — Grant, Molly and Fisher.

What did your parents do that you try to incorporate into your parenting? We sat down to a family dinner. As our kids have gotten older, we aren’t able to do this every day, but we strive to sit down and have dinner

What’s your favorite time of the day or week with

together most days of the week. We play a little “high/low” game where

your children?

we ask what was the best and worst part of our kids’ days. My parents

I love the time I have with them after school. We try to play card or

were also good at celebrating life. So we try not to let special occasions

board games together most days. And I now I kind of know how to

slip by without celebrating them. It can be as simple as going to Crozet

throw a football spiral!

Pizza for dinner on the last day of school.

What routine or habit helps you keep on top of family and work obligations? My goal is to get all my work done while my kids are at school so when they come home I am available to be with them. And, because I’m on


December 2014

Laura is a Charlottesville photographer and local mom of three teenagers who counts her hours volunteering as some of the best spent in her week.

New Spring Creek office

Zion Crossroads opening January 2015!!

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{our town community} Swim Teacher Bill Byers Retires City pools favorite Bill Byers has retired after teaching swimming, training lifeguards and managing the city’s aquatic facilities for 39 years with Charlottesville Parks and Recreation

Dave McNair

and Charlottesville City Schools. Thousands of children learned to swim from Byers over the years, many through his 30 years as an aquatics teacher at Walker Elementary School. He was also a staple at Washington Park pool during the summer months working with lifeguards as pool manager. No longer a full-time employee, Byers will continue to teach some swim lessons.

Grants for Book Baskets Book Baskets, a nonprofit organization committed to making gifts of new and used books to children in our community, has been awarded three grants to support at-risk children in our area. A total of $15,000 from the Charlottesville Area Community Foundation, Bama Works and the Dollar General Literacy Foundation will go toward programs with the Children’s Health Improvement Program, the Southwood Back-to-School Festival, the Action in Reading program at Mallside Apartments, ReadyKids Play Partners and Book Buddies, a reading intervention program for first and second graders in Charlottesville elementary schools. Last year volunteers distributed over 20,000 books. To learn more about Book Baskets, go to


December 2014

Birthday Coat Drive Middle schooler Ashton Ryan celebrated his 14th birthday with a special wish — that every child have a coat this winter. For the third year in a row, that wish has turned into a day-long coat drive event that included bounce houses from Bounce-n-Play, firefighters, face-painting and live music. Ryan got the idea after seeing a classmate without a coat on a cold day at school. Contact to volunteer or connect a child with a coat.

{our town volunteers}

Bravo! nolly

by Kim Con

Making Christmas Wishes Come True

Although Toy Lift — a local effort to collect brand-new toys and gifts for children through eighth grade who are identified by their school as needing assistance — takes place the first Friday in December each year, Dombrowe puts in time year-round to make sure the organization, which provided Christmas gifts for 3,500 children in Albemarle, Buckingham, Charlottesville, Fluvanna, Greene and Nelson last year, has enough volunteers to pull off a whirlwind weekend of toy collection and distribution. (CharlottesvilleFamily is a proud sponsor of Toy Lift for over 15 years!) Last year she organized 650 volunteers at various sites. While the volunteers at the drop-off locations are the most visible, another team works at donated warehouse space receiving and sorting the toys. Teachers and counselors from five local school systems come to the warehouse to “shop” for the children who have signed up through their schools to receive toys. “We are the largest toy store in America for three days,” Dombrowe says, and each child receives the gift that was at the top of his or her list.

United Way-Thomas Jefferson Area

“It is a team effort. We’re like a well-oiled machine,” says Patty Dombrowe, Toy Lift’s volunteer coordinator and a volunteer herself.

Learn about volunteering for Toy Lift as an individual or group, visit Monetary donations for the group to purchase gifts are also welcome.

Dombrowe welcomes individuals and groups as volunteers. Help is needed on Thursday to set up, and then on Friday, Saturday and Sunday at the drop-off locations and at the warehouse. “There isn’t anyone out there who can’t give two hours of their day,” says Dombrowe, and even children as young as 8 can help with adult supervision at the warehouse. Dombrowe’s reason for her involvement is simple: “When I wake up on Christmas morning, I think of all the kids getting the special gifts they wanted.”

Kim is the Vice President of Marketing & Communications at the United WayThomas Jefferson Area.


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Meet one of ours at

Free Union Country School

All tall: trees for climbing, towers for building, stacks of books for reading

Our s l o o h c S h by Bet



Pop In and Catch a Performance

Cheri Bowling

{our town community}

Soft spot for the small and tender (bugs, kids)

Charlottesville City Schools are known for their strong emphasis on the arts,

Might want to be Batman

It’s also a fun way for prospective families to sneak a peek at a new school

and winter is a perfect time for local arts lovers to see a student performance. long before an open house or the first day of classes.

Preschool - Fifth Grade 434-978-1700

Preschool parents can take their child to visit the elementary school where the child will attend kindergarten. All six elementary schools will host winter concerts on weeknights in December. Check the CCS calendar at for dates and times. Families of elementary students have even more choices, since Walker Upper Elementary and Buford Middle School offer band, chorus and orchestra concerts this month. Expect to be surprised by the quality of these young musicians, who often win awards competing against older students. Again, check the CCS web site for dates and times. And the whole family might enjoy the world-traveled CHS Orchestra, which has been featured in national media. It will perform at 8pm on December 3 in the Martin Luther King Performing Arts Center, adjacent to the high school. CHS has been named a Blue Ribbon School nine times for combined excellence in band, choir and orchestra. In fact, last month an impressive 24 CHS students earned spots in the All-District Choir. To hear all three groups performing together, don’t miss the CHS Symphony Choir concert on February 4. Other performing arts include Stage Left, a theatre troupe of Walker and

Take the

Charlottesville Welcome Book Digital Edition

On-the-Go! (No app necessary.) 16

December 2014

Buford students. Even the youngest audiences will enjoy their staging of The Wizard of Oz, scheduled for January 15 at 6:30pm at the Buford Auditorium. And award-winning Theatre CHS will perform Hairspray this spring from March 27 to 29. In addition to being a great way for area families to introduce their young children to the performing arts, visiting local schools for performances is an enjoyable way for City families to get a glimpse of their future school community — and it may give a child a vision for the day when he or she will trade a seat in the audience for a spot on the stage.

Beth serves as Community Relations Liaison for Charlottesville City Schools

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Now Open

Announcements Amtrak and James River Transportation have launched

Impeccable Pig, Texas-based women’s

a new bus service that connects passengers traveling

clothing boutique, 321 E. Main St., 202-4595,

to and from Richmond to two long-distance trains at


Thai Cuisine & Noodle House, traditional Thai cuisine, noodles and pho, 2005 Commonwealth Dr., 974-1326,

James Madison’s Montpelier has received a $10 million

grant for restoration work of the slave quarters and kitchen and refurbishment of the mansion.

Tin Whistle Irish Pub, Irish restaurant and bar with live

Martha Jefferson Hospital is pleased to announce that

music, 609 E. Market St., 202-8387,

Jonathan Davis has been named as its new president.

Wine Loves Chocolate, wine bar and tasting room,

U.S. News Media Group and Best Lawyers ranked

508 E. Main St., 227-4212,

MichieHamlett as the Metropolitan Tier 1 “Best Law Firm” in

Yearbook Taco Bar, Charlottesville branch of Richmond’s

Charlottesville for commercial litigation, family law, trusts

Don’t Look Back Mexican restaurant, 223 W. Main St.,

and estates litigation, personal injury litigation (plaintiffs),


real estate law and trusts and estates law.


The Virginia Tourism Corporation (VTC) formally named

Pasture Q, formerly Pasture, rebranded as a BBQ restaurant with new Southern-style menu, Shops at Stonefield, 973-

Tom Tom Founders Festival as the recipient of a $50,000 VTC Marketing Leverage Grant.

2270, South Street Brewery, after renovations this summer

Submit Biz Bits to

and under new ownership, 106 W. South St., 293-6550,

opening this December in the old Carmike Theatre 1005 Gardens Boulevard, Charlottesville 22901

• wall-to-wall trampolines all ages welcome

• 36 open trampolines,

Dodgeball court, Jump-Dunk hoops, Giant Foam Pit & more

• Birthday

parties & group rates

For updates and information, like us at 18

December 2014

Thank You For Supporting the 2014 Season!

SEE YOU NEXT YEAR! THANKS FOR CharlottesvilleFamily VOTING US Favorite Award Winner BEST VENUE! 2014

For information on season box seats and sponsorships, call (434) 245-4910.


{our town calendar}


About December 2014

HOLIDAY EVENTS Visit with Santa

Now-December 20, Saturdays 12-4pm at The Market at Grelen Visit Santa and his sleigh while you pick out your Christmas greenery. 540-672-5462

Santa Photos and Visit

Now-December 24 at Fashion Square Visit with Santa for a holiday photo op. Reserve a spot with “Caring Santa” on Dec. 7. Pet photos with Santa are Dec. 14. 973-9332,

Celebration of Holiday Lights

Now-January 1, 5-11pm at Gypsy Hill Park, Staunton Drive through the 214-acre park aglow with charming scenes, most handmade by local businesses.

GardenFest of Lights

An Old-Fashioned Christmas

For more holiday festivals, events and fun, visit our online calendar at

A Candlelight Christmas

December 5-6 & 12-13, 4-8pm at Montpelier Tour the mansion by candlelight and enjoy Santa’s workshop, children’s crafts, holiday music and light refreshment. 540-672-2728,

14th Annual Christmas Fair

December 6, 10am-2pm at Scottsville Community Center Free fire truck rides, visit with Santa til 1pm, shop holiday vendors and enjoy local food. 566-4219,

Now-January 12, 5-10pm (closed Dec. 24-25) at Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden Enjoy more than half a million lights throughout the garden. 804-262-9887

Santa Visit

Annual Lighting of the Lawn

Holiday Brunch

December 4, 7pm at UVA Lawn Join community members on the UVA Lawn for illumination of this historic spot, music and other festivities in celebration of the winter holidays.

December 6, 11am-5pm at Early Mountain Vineyards A great opportunity for holiday photos with Santa. 540-948-9005,

December 6 & 13, 11am-2pm at The Market at Grelen Music, lights, greenery, brunch and Santa too. Reservations required. 540-672-5462

December 7, 12-5pm at Maymont Estate Horse-drawn carriage rides, mansion tours, festive music, a roaring bonfire and activities. 804-358-7166,

Gingerbread Express

December 12-13 & December 19-20 at the Virginia Discovery Museum This popular bus tour takes you to the best citywide holiday light displays and back. Purchase tickets in advance for 6, 7 or 8pm. 295-9073,

Santa Pancake Breakfast

December 14, 9am, 9:20am, 1pm & 1:20pm at Virginia Discovery Museum Register today to reserve your spot for this yummy breakfast. Meet with Santa too. 977-1025,

Santa Visits the Christmas Tree Farm

December 14, 1-4pm at Bees and Trees Tree Farm Cut your own tree, enjoy hot drinks, shop for holiday decor and take a photo with Santa. 540-423-9020,

Holiday Lantern Tours

December 18-23, 6-8pm at Frontier Culture Museum Tour the museum by lantern light and see the holiday traditions of the past. 540-332-7850

Noon Year’s Eve

December 31, 10am-1pm at Science Museum of Virginia Ring in the New Year with a ball drop (2,015 bouncy balls), enjoy a juice toast, make your own noisemaker and much more. 804-864-1400,

First Night Virginia

December 31, 3pm-12am on Downtown Mall Celebrate the new year with performers, creation station and fun zone for kids. See website for full event schedule. 975-8269

HOLIDAY CONCERTS Charlottesville High School Orchestra Winter Concert

Holiday Fun 20

December 2014

GardenFest of Lights Now-January 12, 5-10pm at Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens See this page.

December 3, 7:30pm at MLK Performing Arts Center 979-3278,

Continued on page 24

Register Online at or call (434) 970-3260

From ribboned shoes to goggles... We have plenty of affordable activities for your family this winter season.

Charlottesville Parks & Recreation invites you to discover our selection of over 200 classes and programs for kids, adults and seniors! Classes include dance, yoga, gymnastics, martial arts, aquatics, golf, art, outdoor adventure, therapeutic recreation and much, much more... Creating Lifetime Experiences...

{our town calendar}

DAYTRIPFun! Christmas with George Washington George Washington’s Mount Vernon Estate, a two-hour drive from Charlottesville, is located about 15 miles south of Washington, D.C., along the scenic Potomac River. The historic estate is great to visit any time of year, but it’s especially wonderful during the holiday season. This estate includes George and Martha Washington’s home — the colonial-era mansion Mount Vernon — as well as several outbuildings, beautiful gardens, a working distillery, farm animals, the Washington family tomb and a recently added museum Mount Vernon

and education center. During regular museum hours (9am-4pm), children can pick up a free Adventure Map and solve puzzles to win a prize. The Hands-on-History part of the education center offers guests ages 3 to 8 a variety of programming, including story time and seasonal crafts. From now through January 6, the estate is celebrating the holidays with special activities and themed decorations, including 12 Christmas trees. The rarely open third floor of the mansion becomes part of the tour during the season so guests can learn more about how the Washingtons celebrated Christmas. Historical chocolate-making demonstrations are offered on the grounds, and bring your cameras for photo ops with a special guest, Aladdin the Christmas camel. That’s right ­— in 1787, George Washington paid 18 shillings to bring a camel to Mount Vernon for his guests to enjoy during their holiday visit. A live camel visits every year to commemorate the occasion. Admission is $17 for adults, $8 ages 6-11, and free for ages 5 and under.

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Saturday, Dec. 6 Sneak Preview Shopping Event

Friday,Dec. 5 6–9pm

Gift making for Children & Adults 2014

Jump-rope making | Leather stamping | Secret garden Puppet show | Candle dipping | Raffle Local artisans with handmade gifts for the Holidays


*Complimentary park-and-ride shuttle service from the Charlottesville Catholic School

120 Waldorf School Road [across from Pen Park] activity tickets are available for pre-sale at

+ check out the Charlottesville Holiday Bazaar Event on Facebook!


December 2014

On weekends in December, Mount Vernon also offers candlelight tours of the mansion from 5-8pm. Join “Mrs. Washington” as she

Be sure to sign up for the Presidents

hosts evenings that include dancing, period music and characters

Passport — a partnership of

from the Washingtons’ world, guiding visitors through the first two floors of the home. At the final stop of the tour, the kitchen, guests

Monticello, Montpelier and Mount

can learn about holiday cooking, see a reproduction of Martha

Vernon — for discounts to hotels,

Washington’s Great Cake and take home a copy of the recipe.

restaurants, historic sites, museum

Following the tour, guests are invited to stroll candlelit walkways, join in fireside caroling and enjoy hot cider and ginger cookies.

shops, wineries and more at

Timed tickets, on sale in advance, are $22 for adults and $15 for

children 11 and under. The biggest event of the season, though, is Christmas Illuminations on Saturday, December 20, 5:30-9pm. For the first time, the estate will open for a special festive evening of holidaythemed fireworks and programs. Local choirs and musicians will perform 18th-century tunes, costumed dancers will lead 18thcentury dances in the greenhouse, the blacksmith shop will be open, and there will be a re-enactment of soldiers from the 1st Virginia Regiment at their winter encampment. “General and Lady Washington” will be greeting guests, the mansion will be open, and the evening will wrap up with a fireworks show over the Potomac River, choreographed to holiday music. Mount Vernon

Helpful tips: Buy tickets in advance when possible. Strollers will be handy around the grounds but must be parked outside during the house tour. A food court is available during regular hours. Find more information at

Casual Cafe Event Rental Fairy Gardens Flowers & Plants Gardening Gifts Group Talks & Tours Workshops & more... Wreath Workshops December 2 & 10 Santa Visits Saturdays, 12 - 4 Nov. 29 - Dec. 20 Holiday Brunch Dec. 6 and Dec. 13 See our Website for Details & Registration

A Farm Market & Garden Shop See Website & Facebook for Details! S o m e r s e t . V i r g i n i a


Tuesday - Sunday; 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.


{our town calendar} Virginia Glee Club’s Christmas Concert

December 5 & 13, 8-9:30pm at Old Cabell Hall (Dec. 5) & First Presbyterian Church (Dec. 13)

Christmas with the Consort & Youth Chorale



December 6, 4:30pm & 7:30pm at First Presbyterian Church 244-8444,

Family Holiday Concert

December 6 & 7 8pm Saturday & 3:30pm Sunday at UVA’s Old Cabell Hall 924-3376,



Messiah Sing-In

December 9, 8pm at UVA’s Old Cabell Hall 924-3376,

Municipal Band Holiday Concert

December 14, 3:30-5pm at MLK Performing Arts Center 295-9850,


Star in the Opera!

December 3, 4pm at Gordon Avenue Library Ash Lawn Opera’s teaching artist takes you behind the scenes of “Amahl and the Night Visitors.” For grades 2 and up. Registration required. 296-5544,

Toddler Time

December 5, 9:15-10am at Monticello Enjoy an introduction to the world of Thomas Jefferson through story time, crafts and special activities. For children age 18 months-3 years with adult. 984-9880,



Harry Potter Yule Ball

December 5, 5:30-8:30pm at Crozet Library Enjoy a magical winter celebration and showing of the fourth movie. Costumes of all wizarding types are encouraged. Registration required. For grades 6-12. 823-4050,

Bend and Stretch

December 10, 10:30am at Central Library Escape the holiday madness and get all the kinks out with games, music and imaginative play. For ages 2-6. Registration required. 979-7151,

LEGO Mania

December 11, 4pm at Central Library La-La for LEGOs? Come to JMRL’s construction zone. All you need to bring is your creativity and building skills for your next great creation. No registration required. For ages 5 & up. 979-7151,

The “Nutcracker Suite” Meet & Greet 215 East Main Street Charlottesville, VA 22902


December 2014

December 11 & 15, 4pm Meet professional dancers from the Charlottesville Ballet and learn dances from

“The Nutcracker Suite.” Please arrive early. For boys & girls. Northside Branch (Dec 11) and Central Branch (Dec 15). Registration required. 979-7151,

Let There Be Light

December 12, 6-9pm at Piedmont Virginia Community College Enjoy an evening of light-centered artwork illuminating the outdoors as the longest night of the year approaches. Dress for the weather. 961-5362,

Fourteenth Annual Book Swap Party

December 13, 2pm at Crozet Library Bring books to swap, plus games and lots of book loving fun! Registration is required. 823-4050,

Life-Size Candyland Game

December 13 & 22, 2-4pm Celebrate the start of winter vacation with a life-size game of Candyland! The whole family can be part of this sweet event. Northside Branch (Dec 13) and Central Branch (Dec 22). 979-7151,

Baby Romp

December 15, 10:30am at Central Library Sensory and interactive play for your little one, plus grown-up conversation for you. For ages 2 & under and their caregivers. 979-7151,

Winter Wonderland Dance Party

December 27, 10:30am at Northside Library Drop in for 45 minutes of stories, songs and activities your whole family will enjoy. No registration required. For children of all ages with an accompanying adult. 973-7893,

SPORTS & OUTDOORS Roller Skating

Now-May, Saturdays, 6-9pm at Greenwood Community Center Rent skates for a nominal fee and enjoy a spin under the disco ball. 296-5844,

Monticello Holiday Classic 5k & Deck the Halls Kids Dash

December 6, 7-9am at Monticello This family-oriented 5k begins at the East Walk of Monticello. Kids 12 and under can enjoy a quarter-mile loop around the West Lawn. 984-9877,

Santa Fun Run & Walk

December 7, 11am on Downtown Mall This 1-mile course starts and finishes on the downtown mall and is family and petfriendly. Santa costume for adults and elf ears for the kids included with registration. Proceeds benefit the Arc of the Piedmont.

Freedom 5k

December 13, 9am at Old Trail Village, Crozet Proceeds go to Folds of Honor Foundation and Blue Star Families of Central Virginia. 962-2752,

Baby Boot Camp Christmas Class & Party With Santa!

December 17, 9:20am at Church of the Incarnation Special Christmas-themed class, complete with the “12 Days of Fitness.” 953-6888

The Nutcracker Suite The Historic State Theatre of Culpeper


Saturday, December 13 3pm & 7pm Sunday, December 14 4pm

New Year’s Day 5k

January 1, 11am in Free Union The race is a fairly flat, out and back 3.1-mile course. Proceeds will benefit the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Virginia.

The V. Earl Dickinson Building at PVCC


Saturday, December 20 11am & 3:30pm Sunday, December 21 2pm & 5pm


Plus Class with Clara Children’s Events for Boys & Girls Before Select Performances!

Blow Your Own Ornament

Now-December 21, Thursdays-Sundays, 10am-4pm, Fridays 10am-7pm at Sunspots Studios Help the glass blower create a one-of-a-kind, keepsake ornament blown by you. Ages 5+. 540-885-0678,

Photo by Stephanie Yonce

Purchase Tickets at 434.227.7592 or

2014-­‐15 Corporate Sponsors

Holiday Open House

December 6, 10:30am-3:30pm at McGuffey Art Center Enjoy creating and working with artists on a variety of holiday craft projects. 295-7973

Gingerbread House Family Workshop

December 6-7 & 13-14, 2-4pm at Monticello Work together to craft a hand-made addition to your home’s holiday decor. Recommended for families with children ages 7+. 984-9822

Gingerbread Workshops

December 7 & 14, 1-3pm at The Boar’s Head Spend an afternoon with Santa and Mrs. Claus building your own edible masterpiece. 972-2231,

Dazzling December Drop-In Craft Time December 8, 10-11am at Central Library Drop in the Children’s Room to create captivating cards and wondrous wrapping paper. 979-7151,

s y a d i l H o at the m u e s u M

December 10, 3-5pm at Gordon Avenue Library Stop in and decorate gingerbread friends. One to eat and one to keep! 296-5544,

December 10, 4:30pm at Crozet Library Stitch up a little something that is presentworthy. Ages 9-14. Registration required. 823-4050,

Sant a Panc a Brea ke kfa DEC. st 14

nt Orname nza a g Extrava 0 2 . C E D

Make It and Take It: Sweet Friends

Sew Fun!

ay Holid s e Hous 3 1 . C E D

Famrdily le il v s e t t lo r a Ch orite Awa Fav Winner 2014

524 E. Main St. | East End of the Downtown Mall

Call (434) 977-1025 or visit to learn more or register.


{our town calendar} Holiday Houses

December 13, 10:30am & 2pm at Virginia Discovery Museum Create a candy-coated winter wonderland with an assortment of goodies. For children ages 4+ with an adult. Registration required. 977-1025,

Snowy Days and Crafty Ways

It Only Takes

is proud to support Toy Lift!


to make a difference this holiday season!

2014 TOY LIFT Friday, December 5, 2014 | 975-TOYS |

December 18, 10:30am at Gordon Ave Library Snuggle in for winter-wonderful stories and crafts. For ages 2+. Registration required. 296-5544,

Gingerbread House Workshop

December 18, 4pm at Northside Library Decorate a gingerbread house nice enough to make Hansel and Gretel jealous. Registration required. For ages 5+. 973-7893,

Ornament Extravaganza

December 20, 10:30am at Virginia Discovery Museum Enjoy ornament-making, cookies, hot cocoa and storytime. Registration required. 977-1025,

Holiday Cookie Decorating Workshop December 21, 2-3pm at Crozet Mudhouse Includes a tray of cookies and decorations. 823-2240

Let It Snow! Craft Time

December 29, 2pm at Gordon Ave. Library Learn to make beautiful paper snowflakes. Make some for home and some for the library. For grades K and up. Registration required. 296-5544,

STAGE & SCREEN Little Women

November 21-December 14 at Four County Players The story of the March sisters, Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy, along with their beloved Marmee. 540-832-5355,


December 5, 7pm at The Paramount Theater Will Ferrell stars in this holiday favorite. 979-1333,

A Christmas Carol

Engaging in the Arts on Grounds and in our Community Open Tuesday – Sunday, 12–5 pm


December 2014

December 5-27 at The Blackfriars Playhouse The traditional holiday classic brought to life onstage. Children 3+ are welcome but parental discretion advised. 540-851-1733

´ Les Miserables

December 5-January 10 at Live Arts Victor Hugo’s epic story of love, redemption, sacrifice, revenge and a nation in the grip of revolution brought to life by Central Virginia’s finest voices. 977-4177

The Best Christmas Pageant Ever

December 6, 12-14, 7pm; December 7 & 13, 3pm at Burnley Moran Auditorium Based on the hilarious and heartwarming book by Barbara Robinson, the Christmas story is retold in a way you will never forget.

Moscow Ballet Presents: The Great Russian Nutcracker

December 7, 12pm, 4pm & 8pm at The Paramount Theater Celebrate the beloved Christmas tradition with the whole family as 40 world-class Russian artists bring this charming classic to life. CharlottesvilleFamily is a proud sponsor. 979-1333,

A Christmas Carol

December 9, 7:30pm at The Paramount Theater Live performance of Charles Dickens’ classic. CharlottesvilleFamily is a proud sponsor. 979-1333,

Amahl and the Night Visitors

December 13, 4:30pm and 7pm at The Paramount Theater This hour-long inspirational holiday story in English has made opera accessible and enchanted families for over 60 years. 979-1333,

The Nutcracker Suite

baked by local artists, farmers and bakers. 970-3371,

Alternative Gift Fair

December 4, 12-7pm at The Paramount Theater Get holiday presents for loved ones that keep on giving. Donate to one or more of Charlottesville’s non-profits. 979-1333

Toy Lift

December 5, 7am-8pm at Fashion Square Bring an unwrapped new toy or make an online donation to help make a local child’s holiday bright. CharlottesvilleFamily is a proud sponsor. 975-8697,

Annual Holiday Bazaar

December 6, 10am-4pm at Charlottesville Waldorf School Shop local artisan and handmade gifts for the holidays. Activities include jump-rope making, leather stamping, candle-dipping and much more. Sneak preview for adults 6-9pm on Friday, Dec. 5. CharlottesvilleFamily is a proud sponsor. 973-4946,

Anderson’s Seafood Pop-Up Shop

December 19-24 & 31, 10am-6pm at 1215 Seminole Trail Pre-order your holiday seafood and meats including soups, salmon, shrimp, oysters, crab and turkey. 990-9176,

December 13 & 14 and December 20 & 21 at Historic State Theater, Culpeper and PVCC Join Clara on her magical journey to the Land of Sweets and enjoy the beautiful music of Tchaikovsky’s score. Class with Clara children’s event before some performances. CharlottesvilleFamily is a proud sponsor. 227-7592,


It’s a Wonderful Life

Albemarle County School Board Mtg

December 14, 7pm & December 21, 2pm at The Paramount Theater Watch Jimmy Stewart’s holiday classic on the big screen. 979-1333,

Morning at the Movies: The Snowman December 30, 10:30am at Central Library Based on the favorite winter book by Raymond Briggs. 979-7151,

SHOPPING & SHARING Be a Santa to a Senior

Now-December 16 with Home Instead Senior Care Spread holiday cheer to lonely or financially challenged seniors. Find more details at website.

Holiday Market

Now-December 20, Saturdays, 8am-1pm at Second and Water Streets All items are handmade, homegrown or home


Charlottesville City School Board Mtg December 4, 5pm at CHS. 245-2400,

December 11, 6:30pm at Albemarle County Office Building. 972-4055,

CORNER OF WINGFIELD & IVY FARM $259,000 Rare offering! 3 open, gently rolling parcels of between 2 and 2.5 acres are available in Ivy Farms, an established neighborhood off of Garth Road in the Meriwether-Lewis School District. A wide, corner lot and 2 deeper lots that front only on Ivy Farm Drive, with hardwood perimeters. Soil studies completed. MLS# 526197 SENSATIONAL ON NORTH FIRST

411 NORTH FIRST STREET • $1,445,000 Character-rich, light drenched circa 1885 brick home with a spot-on floor plan and welcoming flow. TOTALLY, handsomely renovated on charming, quiet North 1st. Just a 3 block walk to the Downtown Mall, past parks & other historic homes. 2010 addition includes sunroom, fabulous master bath, new powder room, basement storage. Level yard with stone walls and blue stone terrace. MLS# 525926 27 ACRES OF ROLLING LAND

OPEN HOUSES Charlottesville Performing Arts School Open House January 4, 5:30-7pm at CPAS See the facility and register for the winter/spring semester. 293-2727

Windows on Waldorf Open House

January 10, 10am-12pm at Charlottesville Waldorf School This interactive open house includes puppet shows, math circles, science experiments and more. Children are welcome and encouraged to attend. Pre-registration encouraged. 973-4946,

3521 BLEAK HOUSE ROAD • $750,000 Four bedroom, three bathroom home with separate 2 bedroom cottage that could be used as guest house or rented for additional income. Five stall barn and fenced pastures makes this property perfect for horses. Lovely updates throughout with ample storage. Cottage can be used as a guest house or rented for additional income. Sydney Tenhundfeld (434) 284-0694. MLS# 526146 4 0 1 P A R K S T R E E T • C H A R L O T T E S V I L L E , VA

434.977.4005 WWW . L O R I N GW O O D R I F F . C O M


{living well cool stuff}

For Future Globe Trotters Introduce your child to coin collecting — a lifetime hobby and a way to learn about countries and

Comfy in the Car

cultures around the world. Each 2-pound bag

Driving to see friends or family? Have a few adventures

holds about 150 coins.

planned while the kids are out on break? Grab a

$27.99 at Treasures Through Time

couple of these buckwheat-filled neck pillows to be sure everyone’s comfortable on the trip. $29.95 at Peace Frogs Travel/Outfitters

A Gift That Gives Twice Each color in the Chavez for Charity jewelry line is designated for a different cause. When you give one of the several red bracelets available, you give beauty to the recipient and make a donation to a group fighting violence against women globally. $9.99 at Whole Foods

A Bib for Your Little Sprout



This locally printed Baby Bean bib is one of several products designed by a Charlottesville couple. The material is 100% certified organic cotton, and the two-snap closure will fit your growing baby. $14.00 at

More Than a Busy Box Imagine the delight on your baby’s face as she plays with this busy box on Hape’s Wonder Walker — and when she figures out she can take it for a stroll. (For 12 months and up) $99.95 at Shenanigans

Battery-Free Fun Looking for a toy that lets your child be creative? You’ll be surprised how children of all ages (and even adults) cannot keep their hands off Bubber, a marshmallowlike modeling compound that never dries out. $12.99 at Alakazam


December 2014

Heroism Is Always in Season Treat your child and yourself to folk singer (and local resident) Ellis Paul’s children’s CD. A celebration of 13 American heroes such as Martha Graham and Jackie Robinson, it won a gold medal from the Parents’ Choice Foundation. $19.99 (book & CD) at

Use this expanded Cool St edition o uff — f f our u ll g reat C of selec tions fro harlotte sville b m to find gifts for usinesses — friends and fam ily!

Presents for Pets, Too When you settle in for some family time this winter, make it easier for the kids to cuddle with your pet. The microsuede cover on this dog bed has a handle and is machine washable, and the two-sided mattress offers firm and soft surfaces.

Incredible and Edible

$149.95 at Great Outdoor Provisions

These delightful treats made by a local “mompreneur” are wonderful to look at and to eat. Place a custom order — a family photo? a favorite sports team? — or choose from dozens of designs. Pries vary at

Better Than a Rudolph Sweater Wear this silver pin to show your holiday cheer, or use it to decorate a wrapped gift. Made of silver-covered copper, this filigree angel is handmade in Indonesia by rural artisans. $16 at Ten Thousand Villages

Topping the Tannenbaum Change things up this year by setting a thoroughbred atop your tree. Great for equestrians or any fan of the Virginia countryside. $48 at Folly Home Furnishings



guide shopping

Support the community by doing most of your holiday shopping at CHARLOTTESVILLE’S MANY LOCALLY OWNED STORES!

GIFTS FOR ALL AGES Albemarle Aquariums see ad page 17 Andrew Minton Jewelers see ad page 56 Boutique Boutique & The Shoe Next Door see ad page 48 Chaps see ad page 52 Crozet Running see ad page 57 Fashion Square see ad page 35 Great Outdoor Provision Co. see ad page 57 Lazy Daisy Ceramics & The Paintin’ Place see ad page 87 Meadowbrook Pharmacy see ad page 87 Rebecca’s Natural Food see ad page 66 Splendora’s Gelato see ad page 48 University Dive & Hobby Center see ad page 64

GIFTS FOR CHILDREN Alakazam Toys see ad page 14 Kid to Kid Charlottesville see ad page 51


December 2014

Shenanigans see ad page 31 Vintage Swings see ad page 40

POP-UP SHOPS & HOLIDAY BAZAARS Anderson Catering see ad page 31 Bees and Trees Farm see ad page 43 Charlottesville Waldorf School see ad page 22

FITNESS FOR GROWN-UPS ACAC see ad page 9 Ashtanga Yoga of Charlottesville see ad page 18 Charlottesville Parks & Rec see ad page 21 Hot Yoga see ad page 40 Massage Envy see ad page 54

PHOTOGRAPHY & ART GIFTS 3 Cats Photo see ad page 48 Albemarle Ballet Theatre see ad page 52 Charlottesville Ballet see ad page 25

Creative Framing & The Art Box see ad page 14 The Great Frame Up see ad page 74 Paramount Theater see ad page 24 nTelos Wireless Pavilion see ad page 19 Stacy’s Music see ad page 66 The Fralin Museum of Art see ad page 26

GIFTS FOR THE HOME Grand Home Furnishings see ad page 74 Grelen Nursery & The Market at Grelen see ad page 23 The Happy Cook see ad page 83 The Market at amFOG see ad page 87 Milmont Greenhouses see ad page 64 Pet Supplies Plus see ad page 33 ProLink see ad page 56

{living well cool stuff} Treat Her Like a Queen A local entrepreneur is selling a line of perfumes under the name Reina (Spanish for “queen” ) and sharing some of the proceeds with an orphanage in Bolivia. Esmeralda, shown here, has jasmine, vanilla and iris notes. $25 from

Cozy Reading When It’s Chilly Add this beanbag-like bookstand to your holiday gift list. The Book Seat adapts to any surface and is great for holding cookbooks, tablets, e-readers, magazines and, of course, books. $39.95 at Over the Moon Bookstore

Stuffable Stocking Stuffers Blue Q bags, made almost entirely

A Uke for Little Hands

from post-consumer materials, are

Do you have a tiny musician or a

great gifts for tree hugging kids.

hipster teen on your gift list? This

Various sizes and patterns are

entry-level ukulele from Kala is a great


way to bring music into their lives.

$5.99 at Rebecca’s Natural Food

$44.99 at Specialty Guitars Plus


hot toys for cool kids

Anderson’s Catering

formerly Anderson’s Seafood and Anderson’s Carriage Food House

PoP UP ShoP Sale!

December 19 - 24 & 31 | 10am - 6pm 1215 Seminole Trail Corner of 29 and Greenbrier Drive

ShenaniganS North Wing Barracks Road Open 7 days a week • (434) 295-4797

special request available

Place your order now for delicious fresh seafood, meats and our specialty items including Virginia oysters (in the jar or shell), crab legs, lobsters, wild salmon, flounder, shrimp, crabmeat, trimmed and tied tenderloins, bone in rib roast, shrimp & crab cheese balls, crab cakes, she crab soup and other specialty items.

Please pre-order aSaP! email or call 434-990-9176


{living well healthy family}

Health Is One of the Greatest Gifts of All Gift Ideas to Inspire Healthy Living Ready or not, it’s that time of year again. This year, while browsing online or off for the best deals on the latest must-have toys, look for gifts that will keep your family active, eating healthy and creating fun memories together. Two Charlottesville experts have great ideas for health-promoting gifts that kids will love. “The holidays always come at an interesting time. It’s the most challenging time for people to engage in activity. But there are lots of fun and budget-friendly ways to encourage kids of all ages to be more active,” says Susan Cluett, a nurse practitioner by Kelly Casey

and program director of the Children’s Fitness Clinic at University of Virginia Children’s Hospital. Here are a few ideas: Wrap up a jump rope, hula hoop, a good old-fashioned Frisbee or a newer flying-disc game known as KanJam, which can be played indoors or out.

Healthy Family

Small cones or other items can be used to set up an indoor obstacle course, and Just Dance for the Wii gaming system will get the whole family moving. Older kids love skateboards, and a balance bike (such as one made by Strider) is perfect for younger kids. Just don’t forget to include a safety-certified helmet. Don’t wait until spring to buy a tent or camping gear; you can even let the kids “camp” indoors sometime this winter. Or stock up on garden-themed gifts such as gloves, a small shovel, a hand rake and seeds. Swimming supplies — such as goggles and pool toys — can be fun bath toys until warmer days arrive. A fun stocking stuffer is a fitness-tracker made just for kids. Unlike ones for adults that count steps or calories, these turn activity into a game.

T’is Always the Season to Be Fit

The KidFit for ages 5–13 gives kids a daily goal of earning 100 points, which are earned by being active. Parents can customize goals and rewards, such as a trip to an amusement park. For ages 4–7, there’s the LeapBand activity tracker from by LeapFrog, which includes

Get great ideas all year long by following the UVA Children’s Fitness Clinic’s Facebook page at

challenges such as “wiggle like a worm” to earn points. “If you have a budding chef in the home, anything food-related that gets them in the kitchen is a good start,” says Angie Hasemann, pediatric weight management dietitian at UVA Children’s Hospital. Look for items such as a chef hat, an apron — possibly one your child can decorate — and kid-friendly cookbooks. To cut down on adding more “stuff” to your home, you might consider a

gift certificate for your child to enroll in a sport or fitness class of their choice, or pre-pay for admission to an age-appropriate indoor activity center like Bounce-n-Play, Jump Charlottesville (opening soon) or Rocky Top Climbing. Because the holidays are most of all about families spending time together, consider buying a gift certificate for an evening of indoor rock climbing or ice skating or an afternoon on the ski slopes. “You could even give a handmade gift certificate that entitles your child ‘to an hour to just be yourself with Mom,’” Cluett suggests. “Kids like time alone with a parent, especially when there are siblings in the house.” Kelly is a medical writer for University of Virginia Health System and UVA Children’s Hospital. For more insight on kids’ health, go to


December 2014

Come in to Pet Supplies Plus today and discover the biggest selection of natural foods anywhere. It’s the perfect way to save big while also making your pets happy and healthy from the inside out.

Natural foods are prove n to help dogs live happ ier, healthier, and longer liv es. STOCK UP TODAY.

s i h t o t n i y l l a t o t e We’r . g n i h t g n i v i l y h healt


CHARLOTTESVILLE 1240 Seminole Trail 434.979.2009

We Carry Small Animals, Birds, Reptiles, and Fish

{living well new mom} And Baby Makes Three Keeping Your Marriage Healthy After Baby Arrives The arrival of a new baby brings many unanticipated changes to parents’ lives, including substantial adjustments to their marital relationship. For first-time moms and dads, there is always a gap between expectations and reality! Mothers might experience moodiness (thanks to raging hormones), and either or both partners may feel a sense of loss. No matter how desperately a woman wanted a child, she may struggle with the loss of her identity and the sense that her physical body is no longer her own. If she is taking time off work after the baby comes, she may also grieve the loss of her career and sense of professional purpose. With constant touching and probing from the baby, even the thought of physical contact with a spouse can seem overwhelming. by Blair Lonergan

A friend of mine recently summed it up perfectly when she said, “The loss of personal time was a really hard adjustment. I felt like I didn’t have control over my body or when I could be alone to have some quiet time to do simple things that I took

New Mom

for granted before, like showering, going to the bathroom or even eating.” “The sense of loss is different but just as shaking” for men, according to Bob Taibbi, a licensed clinical social worker in Charlottesville. A dad may feel left out, frustrated by a lack of intimacy with his wife and tired of dealing with a moody, distant spouse. He might yearn for the old days and mourn the loss of his pre-baby lifestyle. So, as a couple, how can you ease the adjustment to parenthood and nurture your marriage? First, says Taibbi, realize that all of these issues “are normal challenges that come with a big transition.” He notes that the goal is to keep your relationship on the front burner and that “communication is key.” Actively check in with each other about everything from work,

“Schedule regular date nights or map out a vacation to take together.”

schedules and other family logistics to your emotions and your feelings. Additionally, Taibbi suggests that you plan regular couple time. Just 20 minutes per day to sit down and enjoy a glass of wine together after the baby is in bed will go a long way toward fostering

— Bob Taibbi, LCSW

the bond that brought you together in the first place. These rituals are important and will give you something to look forward to. And finally, figure out what both partners need personally so that you have creative outlets and downtime. For instance, have your partner watch the baby for two hours on Saturday so that you can visit with a friend,

get a manicure or do some solo shopping. By working as a team and keeping communication a priority, our marriages will fall into new, healthy rhythms — enriched by the added joy of a new family member!

Blair lives in Madison, where she keeps her three sons busy with simple activities and family-friendly recipes, which she shares on her blog at


December 2014

Creating Traditions Building Meaningful Family Experiences for the Holidays

When Martha Loach and her family moved back to Charlottesville

Even when grandparents and their grandchildren don’t live

about 10 years ago, they and her brother’s family started showing

in the same area, it’s still possible to create holiday traditions

up at their parents’ house about a week before Christmas to

that bring everyone together. In the Lewis family, for example,

decorate their tree for them.

neither set of grandparents lives locally, but they work things

“It had become overwhelming for my mom and dad,” Loach says. “We’ve just been doing it ever since.” Now, along with attending the Christmas Eve service at

either by coming to Charlottesville or by getting a visit from the Lewises.

their church and opening presents together on Christmas Day,

And while Dave Lewis is Christian, he and his wife, Lena,

trimming their grandparents’ tree has turned into a holiday

are raising their two boys according to her Jewish heritage. They

tradition that Loach’s kids have come to depend on. Part of

don’t feel comfortable mixing these two traditions, so they

what makes this fun is taking the whole family — including

don’t put up a Christmas tree. Instead, the boys enjoy lighting

grandparents and the six cousins, all girls — to a local farm

the Hanukkah candles each night of the holiday and playing

to harvest their own tree. Then everyone heads back to

dreidel with pennies on the kitchen floor. They also love to help

Grammyanne and Granddaddy’s house to deck it out with

Granddad — who reportedly makes the best latkes ever — shred

decorations and to set up crèches, most of which have been in

the potatoes in the noisy food processor to make this special

the family for generations.

Hanukkah treat.

Divorce and blended families also pose a challenge to

Still, there are often compromises families must make to

holiday traditions. Loach, who is divorced, has to juggle holiday

accommodate everyone’s holiday desires. When Dave’s parents

schedules for her girls so they can spend time with their father

visit in early December, for example, Christmas stockings stuffed

and his mother.

with gifts and treats magically appear in the Lewis’s living room

“We haven’t carried forward all of the traditions that we had when I was growing up,” Loach says, “but the girls are establishing their own traditions, nonetheless. It all works out.”


out so that each set of grandparents celebrates the holidays

December 2014

one morning. “Dave’s mom loves doing stockings,” Lena says, “so we do that because it brings her such joy.”

{living well family tree} TOGETHER TIME For more tips on creating holiday traditions in the kitchen — including Cookie Day at Grandma’s — check out food-and-leisure/holiday-recipes

“ It’s funny what happens when you become a grandparent. You start to act all goofy and do things you never thought you’d do.

— basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski

It’s terrific.”

Family Tree by Linda Kobert

In the Kitchen


What’s the best advice your mother gave you about having kids?


Your child is his or her own person. Embrace who they are without trying to force them to be who you want them to be. — Lena Lewis, mother of two boys, Charlottesville

Lifestyle blogger Cheryl Najafi has teamed up with her mom to reinvent classic everyday recipes in the new book “Mother Daughter Dishes: Reinventing Loved Classics.” Inspired by her mama’s down-home cooking, this cookbook features family recipes updated to for our modern lifestyle. $19.76 at


Smart Solutions for Seniors & Families When it comes to financing your home, finding an expert is important. If you or your parents are 62 or older you can qualify for a reverse mortgage with American Nationwide Mortgage. John O’Connor, the Reverse Mortgage Doctor, specializes in this product and is considered an expert in the field. “With my experience in helping literally hundreds of people obtain a reverse mortgage, I felt it was important to concentrate on our core business and not get sidetracked by offering additional types of products. That way, I could make this my area of expertise providing clients an exceptional level of service from start to finish.” In fact, O’Connor originally helped his parents find the correct reverse mortgage 15 years ago even before he started in this industry.

“At first, I was skeptical about the product, but after doing my due diligence, I found that the reverse mortgage is a viable product for seniors who want to keep up with expenses, pay off debts and increase their quality of life.” Reverse mortgages are a federally insured loan that allows seniors to convert the equity in their homes into cash. All proceeds are tax free & do not affect Medicare or Social Security. Credit scores are not looked at and income verification is not necessary, he adds. Additionally, no payments are due on a reverse mortgage as long as the owner is still living in the home and the borrower remains on the deed. “The reverse mortgage will be paid back after the home is sold whether that is in the homeowner’s lifetime or upon their heirs settling the estate,” O’Connor adds. John O’Connor offers no-obligation meetings with clients - either in their homes or his office in Crozet. He takes great pride in treating his prospective clientele with the same care & diligence that he provided his own parents 15 years ago.

NMLS ID# 372644, MLO# 8039VA, Virginia State Corporation Commission MC-2457

Contact John with questions or to set up an appointment at 434-249-4080 5690 Three Notched Road Crozet


{living well family tree} Holiday Dreaming The Moscow Ballet’s acclaimed “Great Russian Nutcracker” comes to the Paramount Theater for three performances on Sunday, December 7. This holiday favorite features young local dance students performing in roles of party children, mice, snowflakes, angels and more. Tickets start at $29.50.



“Memories for my Grandchild” gives Grandma a way to share her life with a grandchild. This keepsake book provides space to record important dates, collect photos and memorabilia and recall important stories, such as “A Few Things I Learned about Love and Marriage.” $22.50 at O’Suzannah

with family and friends Share your holiday celebrations you create and send through Steller, an app that lets photos and text. little story albums with video, Free, iPhone

Linda is a local freelance writer, writing teacher and the mother of two very active boys.

December 21st is Look on the Bright Side Day!

Thank You Charlottesville for voting us a winner in the Best Physical Therapy category!

You don’t need to separate your recyclables with...

Physical Therapy & Wellness Center

Getting you back to life, work, and play Charlottesville 434.984.0303

Crozet 434.823.7628

You deserve to hear every moment of life

Military & senior discounts Locally owned and family operated. Serving Albemarle County for over 40 years! Albemarle County 38

December 2014

Hearing Healthcare of Virginia has served the Shenandoah Valley, Central Virginia and their surrounding communities for more than ten years, offering a full range of diagnostic and preventative hearing healthcare professional services, including: • hearing aid screening • hearing aids sales • evaluations • rehabilitative and preventative counseling Locations Charlottesville 434.245.1115 Covington 540.968.2852 Culpeper 540.825.1805 Fishersville 540.943.0007 Harrisonburg 540.421.7736 Lexington 540.460.8809

Free Hearing Screening & Free Product Demonstration! H EARING H EALTHCARE • 866.341.4327 (HEAR)

of Virginia

Care Advantage

embrace the possibility

For your Home Health Care Needs

Whether it’s purchasing your first home or refinancing for a new kitchen, debt consolidation to make a fresh start, or to pay for a college education, Hal Johnson continues to help his neighbors finance their dreams. “Hal was responsive to our situation and went above and beyond professional expectations to guide us through the steps to refinance our house. I highly recommend Hal and hope that I can do business with him again.” - Rob S.

Call me today! Hal Johnson

Senior Loan Officer NMLS# 233808 cell ph

703.507.1572 800.333.3004 x3751 x3441

apply at

3510 Remson Court, Suite 201, Charlottesville, VA 22901 Embrace Home Loans, Inc. NMLS ID#2184 ( is licensed in DC, MD, VA.

Ensuring your Independence Wherever, Whenever or Whatever the need may be...

Need help at home? Worried about mom or dad living alone?

Tailor-made Personal Care Services: • • • • • • • •

Available 24/7 Disease Specific Program Bathing/Dressing Meal Preparation Housekeeping/Laundry Medication Reminders Transportation/Errands Companionship And More!

• Licensed, Bonded, Insured and Background Screened • Locally Owned and Operated in Charlottesville Since 1997 • RNs, LPNs, CNAs, and PCAs

Don’t Do it Alone!

(434) 973-2000

Follow us:


{living well tips & trends}

Christmas Culture

THE SECRET PLACE Irish author Tana French writes crime mysteries that read like literary fiction. Her newest is set at a posh girls’ school, where the investigation into the murder of a 16-year-old has gone cold. When a new clue reopens the case, an eager young detective tries to solve it.


$27.95 at the UVA Bookstore


According to a Pew survey, 90 percent of Americans celebrate Christmas, but only half see it as a religious holiday. Those surveyed most look forward to being with family and exchanging gifts but dread the commercialization and materialism of the holidays.

TRENDS by Brooks Wellmon

Throw the Best Bash

Take the stress out of holiday entertaining with these laid-back tips. 1. Invite: Whether you plan to host a party of 10 or 100, include people from different areas of your life, such as work, school or book group for an interesting mix. 2. Shop: Look for items that require minimal time in the kitchen, so you can be with your guests as much as possible.

3. Prep: Focus on one special dish and beverage, and let friends fill in the gaps by bringing their own bottle or appetizer to share. 4. Relax: Your guests care less about a perfectly decorated house than being together.

Give the gift of health this holiday season! Gift Certificates are available through our website and at our studio front desk

New to our studio? Have not been in 6 months or longer? $20 for an unlimited week and $70 for an unlimited month!

216 West Water Street n 434.220.1415


December 2014


Plaid Fad What is this winter’s must-have accessory? Elizabeth Steel, owner of Darling, a consignment boutique just off the Downtown Mall, says she can’t get enough of big, cozy plaid scarves. You can throw one over jeans and a t-shirt with short boots for day, or dress it up with a skirt and glitzy top for date night. The possibilities are endless — and warm!

“Blessed is the season which engages the whole world in a conspiracy of love.” — Hamilton Wright Mabie

YOU GOT THIS To bring some more peace to the season, use an app to keep track of wish lists, what

Local Love

you’ve already purchased and your budget.

If you’re looking for a locally made, all-natural gift for teachers,

It will even archinve this year’s list for next

friends and family, you won’t do better than Broken Elm Apothecary

year’s reference. Try Christmas Gift List

& Mercantile’s Himalayan Pink Salt Soap. This beautiful bar, crafted

for Android or Santa’s Bag for iPhone —

from the purest form of salt available, cleanses, detoxifies and

both are free.

nourishes your skin while killing bacteria and neutralizing odor. $6.00 at Brooks lives in Charlottesville with her husband, their three children and her movie addiction.

Stop Hiding Those Nails...

Come See the Experts in Fighting Fungus The Central Virginia Foot & Ankle Laser Center features NovoNail Nail Restoration treatments, focusing on cosmetically restoring your natural, fungusfree nails with our laser-based procedures. Your feet deserve the best- we intend to provide that! Experience the results, treat yourself to healthy nails.

Knowledgable- our staff educates clients on ways to not only treat your nails effectively, but to keep them healthy and fungus free

Painless- our laser-based treatments are painless, quick, and easy… this is our mantra and we work relentlessly to uphold it!

Proven- We have treated over 8,000 toes so far, increasing that number daily. We’ve seen the results over and over. Visit to see some of our success stories!

Check out our new online store!

Schedule your consultation now! 434.207.2220 |


DECORATIONS THAT DON’T COST A CENT Christmas tree lots are a treasure trove of free greenery that you can use to fill up your favorite containers. Add an oversize ornament, ribbon or lights to complete the look.

Dressing It All Up Ah, the holidays — the time where I simultaneously celebrate the

after the holidays. Rooms will look less cluttered as you add seasonal

birth of Jesus and try and figure out how to give my home a charming,

decorative items.

vintage, rustic vibe with a dusting of glitter and the faint scent of

Decorating the weekend after Thanksgiving maximizes your

France. I am not above rigging up boutique-like vignettes, which are

time to enjoy what you create and reduces stress as other activities

sometimes dangerous and shoddily put together. Even when they

and commitments ramp up.

betray me and fall down, I stubbornly give them a second chance.

If, like me, you have grand ideas on a limited budget, earmark

dinosaurs and a run-away Christmas train, my handmade tree skirt

$20.00 for after-Christmas decor sales. You’ll be surprised how

is never on straight. My manger is missing the full cast of characters,

quickly you amass decorations in the theme that you want.

and my second child is free jumping from the dining room table.

Pare down unused ornaments and decor at the start of the

I’m not sure where to put the tree this year — perhaps in a witness

season. Use them to embellish packages or baked goods you’re giving

protection program?

as gifts. Donate the ones that you keep storing year after year but

Nevertheless, I feel compelled to create beauty, and the holidays are such an opportune time to do just that. Here are a few tips on making things shiny and bright in your home, too. Stash some of your larger regular decor pieces in the tubs that usually hold your holiday decorations, and put them in storage until


Choose a theme and stick with it.

But let’s face it: I have kids and that means between the kids, cats,

December 2014

never use. Decide where you want to focus your efforts on and say no to the rest. If the tree skirt is giving you trouble, try a tree stand in a galvanized tub or basket instead.

{living well home & garden} What Katie Ate Let this cookbook by food photographer Katie Quinn Davis enhance your holiday entertaining. As you leaf through its decadent pages, it will give you visions of sugar plums dancing in your head and equip you to whip up some deliciousness for your loved ones this holiday


season and months to come.

$40.00 at Roxie Daisy



“Clark, Audrey’s frozen from the waist down.” “That’s all part of the experience, honey.” — Ellen & Clark Griswold, “Christmas Vacation”

Garden by Sue Mondeau

Felt Mistletoe Wreath This beautiful felted green wreath from

Not sure what bottle to serve or give? Just

Uncommon Goods is the perfect addition to your

snap a photo of a label, and the Delectable

holiday decor. Hang a pair or one alone to enjoy

app pulls up reviews. Use the app’s journal to keep track of your favorites. Free for iPhone

this unfading ring of greenery all through the winter. Made in Nepal.

$58.00 at

Experience an old-fashioned Christmas! Use our brand new saws to cut your own tree, and enjoy a complimentary cup of hot cider while browsing for decorations, gifts and crafts in our festive Christmas Shop. Roast marshmallows for S’mores or sip hot chocolate by our amazing stone fire pit and have your picture taken in a fully restored Albany Cutter sleigh. Bring the kids for an experience they will never forget!

• Canaans • Freshly-cut Frasers • Norway Spruce • Scotch Pine • Leyland Cypress • White Pines • Fresh wreaths/garland made on the spot • Offering free shaking, bailing and twine for loading on your car

Santa and Mrs. Claus will be making an appearance on December 14, 1–4pm!

9am-5pm Wed.-Sun. beginning November 27 - December 23.

18028 Carrico Mills Road, Elkwood 540-423-9020


{living well home & garden} FARM-TO-TABLE RECIPE OF THE MONTH




4 eggs, beaten

The minute the weather turns cool, I can’t wait to make this recipe. It is easy to make

¼ cup bourbon

and so good you may not want to share with your guests.

1 teaspoon vanilla

1. Preheat oven to 325°F.

¼ teaspoon salt

2. Combine eggs, bourbon, vanilla, and salt. Set aside.

1 cup of white sugar

3. Combine sugar, light corn syrup, and butter in a saucepan over medium heat until sugar dissolves. Then slowly pour into the egg mixture. Stir in pecans and chocolate

1 cup of light corn syrup

chips. Pour into pie shell.

½ cup butter

4. Bake for 50 to 55 minutes. Serve warm.

1 cup chopped pecans 6 oz semisweet chocolate chips Premade 9-inch pie shell

Sue is the sole proprietor of Oopsy Daisy wedding and event florals when she is not chasing two adventurous boys and doing crossword puzzles at the gym.

Your Choice for Favorite RealtoR®

Denise Ramey

Thanks for voting me a Favorite again in 2014!

Here’s what my clients have to say about our service: “Denise is without a doubt, the best Realtor we have ever dealt with. Professional to perfection, intelligent & interested in the well-being of her clients. We cannot say enough and will use or recommend her at every opportunity!” — Mike and Denise, Sellers in Bentivar and Buyers in Avon Park, August 2014 434.960.4333 | Greg Leffler LTCP FSS, Agent 503 Faulconer Drive, 350 Old Ivy Way, Suite 200, Charlottesville, Virginia 22903

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Wishing you a Wishing Wishing Wishing tangle-free you ayouyou a a holiday. tangle-free tangle-free tangle-free

Bus: 434-296-1010 Bus: 434-296-1010 Bus: 434-296-1010

This holiday season, give your out-of-town guests the ‘in-town’ experience!




Greg Leffler LTCP FSS, Agent 503 Faulconer Drive, Suite 1A Charlottesville,Greg VALeffler 22903 LTCP FSS, Agent 503 Faulconer Drive, Suite 1A Bus: 434-296-1010 Charlottesville, VA 22903 Bus: 434-296-1010

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Greg Leffler LTCP FSS, Agent 503 Faulconer Drive, Suite 1A Charlottesville, VA 22903 Bus: 434-296-1010

Wishing you a tangle-free holiday. ®

May all your days be merry and bright.

A safe and joyous season to 0901020.1 State Farm, Home Office, Bloomington, IL everyone. Like a good neig 0901020.1 0901020.1 StateOffice, Farm, State Home Farm, Office, Home Office, Bloomington, IL StateILFarm is there.® State Farm, Home Bloomington, ILBloomington,

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Charlottesville, Virginia’s leading farm, estate and residential brokers invite you to preview a sample of our 2014 current offerings. . .

SHADWELL MOUTAIN ESTATES -Very private, yet extremely convenient location. Wonderful brick Colonial, with post and beam interior, over 4,200 finished sq.ft., 4 BR, 3.5 BA, on 8.7 acres, only 10 minutes from town. $749,500. Steve McLean (434) 981-1863 MLS#517904

SWEEPING MOUNTAIN VIEWS - Extraordinary architect designed, European style, stone & stucco residence, 21 park-like acres in Blandemar Estates. 4BR/4.5BA HoME boasts a magnificent great room that opens onto an elevated walk out terrace w/ panoramic views. Priced well below the cost to reproduce it. $1,595,000. Tim Michel (434) 9601124 or Jim Faulconer (434) 981-0076. MLS#512258.

EDNAM - Beautifully maintained residence in the highly sought after community of Ednam. Living room with fireplace; dining room; kitchen with adjacent tv/sunroom; first floor master; two upstairs bedrooms and two car garage. $725,000 Steve McLean (434)981-1863 MLS#520466

IVY - Home near Murray Elementary in excellent condition. Open kitchen/great room w/fireplace, sunken living room, formal dining room, 3-4 bedrooms, rec room, hardwood floors, garage, decks & beautiful landscaping. $549,000. Betsy Swett, (434) 249-2922. MLS#519787.

MCGUFFEY HILL – First floor condo within seconds of the Downtown Mall. Privately situated this light filled unit has large LR w/ FP, open kitchen w/ adjoining sunroom, DR, 2 large BR w/ adjoining baths. $599,000. Charlotte Dammann (434) 9811250. MLS#518916

HEART OF FREE UNION - 5,500+ sq.ft. Home situated on 5+ ac. in Free Union. Bright open floor plan & full walk-out basement. Beautiful setting w/in 15 min. of Charlottesville. $795,000. Steve McLean (434) 981-1863. MLS #518256

OFF GARTH ROAD - Impeccably maintained mostly 1-level 3 BR home privately situated on 2.76 ac. only 3 miles from C’ville, Blue Ridge view & beautiful pastoral view of adjoining horse farm. Great details in residence, formal & informal. $799,000. Jim Faulconer (434) 981-0076. MLS#519027

QUAKER RUN FARM - Magnificent Blue Ridge views, superb location near National Park, trout streams, miles of trails. Expertly restored, enlarged, and appointed 3BR, 3BA farmhouse. Large barn renovated for entertainment: kitchen, bath, exercise space, many uses, 6 stall stable, incredible setting w/ panoramic views of mountains. $979,000 Jim Faulconer (434) 981-0076. MLS#513585

HISTORIC CARRSBROOK - Built circa 1794, is one of Albemarle County’s most distinguished 18th century homes w/SW mtn & Rivanna River views 4.5 acres, pool, guest house just north of Charlottesville. On Virginia Landmarks Register & National Register of Historic Places. $995,000 . Call Steve McLean (434) 981-1863 MLS#516850.

AMMONETT MOUNTAIN - Circa 1878 4BR farmhouse on 3 acres, home remodeled and enlarged, retaining old Virginia charm. Land is a mix of woods and pastures, bold creek, near Walnut Creek Park, excellent recreational property. $795,000. Jim Faulconer (434) 981-0076. MLS#519305

OLD GARTH ROAD -Wonderful, lightfilled contemporary perched on over 6 acres offering complete tranquility & privacy, 2 min. to City limits & Farmington Country Club. $889,500 Steve McLean (434)9811863 MLS#520140

503 Faulconer Drive - Suite 5, Charlottesville, VA 22903 PH: (434) 295-1131 WWW.MCLEANFAULCONER.COM

I C N N G U . O .. N N A or Family-Friendly Fun and Servi f s k c i P g ces innin Your W

Family Fun

2. American Shakespeare Center 3. Four County Players

FAMILY DAY TRIP (WITHIN A 3-HOUR DRIVE) 1. Washington, D.C. 2. Colonial Williamsburg 3. Virginia Beach

CITY PARK/PLAYGROUND 1. Greenleaf Park (pg 21) 2. Pen Park (pg 21) 3. McGuffey Park (pg 21)

THEME PARK 1. Busch Gardens 2. Kings Dominion 3. Great Wolf Lodge Water Park

FESTIVAL 1. Crozet Arts & Crafts Festival 2. Dogwood Festival 3. Carter Mountain Apple Festival

COUNTY PARK/PLAYGROUND 1. Mint Springs Park 2. Darden Towe Park 3. Claudius Crozet Park

UVA SPORTS TEAM 1. Basketball 2. Baseball 3. Football

HIKE 1. Humpback Rock 2. Sugar Hollow 3. Crabtree Falls

PICK-YOUR-OWN FARM (WITHIN 1-HOUR DRIVE) 1. Chiles Peach Orchard 2. Carter Mountain Orchard 3. Critzer Family Farm

ZOO 1. National Zoo 2. Virginia Safari Park 3. Metro Richmond Zoo

HISTORIC ATTRACTION (WITHIN A 1-HOUR DRIVE) 1. Monticello 2. Frontier Culture Museum 3. UVA Rotunda


2. John Paul Jones Arena 3. The Jefferson Theater (pg 19)

PRIVATE POOL 1. ACAC Adventure Central (pg 9) 2. Fry’s Spring Beach Club 3. Farmington Country Club

KID’S MUSEUM 1. Virginia Discovery Museum (pg 25) 2. Amazement Square 3. Children’s Museum of Richmond

PUBLIC POOL 1. Smith Aquatic & Fitness Center (pg 21) 2. Crozet PARC YMCA Pool 3. Onesty Family Aquatic Center (pg 21)

LOCAL RESORT 1. Wintergreen Resort 2. The Boar’s Head 3. Massanutten Resort

RAINY DAY OUTING 1. Bounce-n-Play 2. Movies 3. Jefferson-Madison Regional Library

MOVIE THEATER 1. Regal Stonefield Stadium 14 & IMAX 2. The Paramount Theater (pg 24) 3. Zeus Digital Theater, Waynesboro

STUDIOS FOR CRAFTING 1. Lazy Daisy Ceramics (pg 87) 2. Wine & Design 3. The Glass Palette

MUSIC VENUE 1. nTelos Wireless Pavilion (pg 19)


December 2014

Parties & Portraits LOCAL CAKE BAKERY 1. Chandler’s Bakery 2. Albemarle Baking Company 3. Sweethaus PARTY ENTERTAINMENT 1. Bounce-n-Play 2. Expressions Face Painting 3. Wes Iseli Magician PARTY LOCATION 1. Bounce-n-Play 2. The Little Gym (pg 80) 3. ACAC (pg 9) PARTY SUPPLIES 1. The Party Starts Here 2. Rock Paper Scissors 3. Caspari PARTY THEME 1. Lego

{inspiration family favorites} Recess isn’t the only time our students play. “The fifth grade strings program is a cornerstone of our curriculum. Playing in an orchestra fosters the development of a creative and critical mind in an authentic, collaborative, and joyful setting.” Debbie Lyle Director of Instrumental Music

St. Anne’s-Belfield School Everyday exceptional.

GRADES PS-12, 5- AND 7-DAY BOARDING IN GRADES 9-12 2 1 3 2 I V Y R O A D | ( 4 3 4 ) 2 9 6 - 5 1 0 6 | W W W. S T A B . O R G

Voted #1 Dental Office 2014!

Dr. James Willis • Dr. Emery Taylor • Dr. Brian Podbesek

Thank you for your vote!

• Comfortable amenties: Ultraleather chairs, Smart TVs, Coffee bar, Wi-fi, play area and kid-friendly stations





• Gentle professional care


• Before school & evening appointments

YEARS 434-823-4080

Insurance Accepted!

5690 Three Notch’d Road, Suite 100, Crozet


{inspiration family favorites} The Women’s Legal Group

2. Pool 3. Movie Themes

Law from a Woman’s Point of View

PHOTOGRAPHER 1. 3 Cats Photo (pg 48) 2. Jen Fariello Photography 3. Robert Radifera Photography

Shopping LOCAL BABY BOUTIQUE 1. Whimsies 2. Petit Bebe Family law • Personal injury • workers’ comP • Disability • criminal tucker GriFFin barnes P.c. charlottesville 434.973.7474 | lake monticello 434.589.3636 |


NATIONAL BABY CLOTHING STORE 1. Baby Gap 2. Target 3. Babies “R” Us BIKE SHOP 1. Blue Ridge Cyclery 2. Performance Bicycle Shop 3. Bike Factory of Charlottesville LOCAL BOOKSTORE FOR KIDS’ TITLES 1. Shenanigans (pg 31) 2. Over The Moon Bookstore 3. New Dominion Bookshop NATIONAL BOOKSTORE FOR KIDS’ TITLES 1. Barnes & Noble 2. Amazon 3. Family Christian Stores

Thank you for voting!

Authentic Italian Gelato and Sorbet LaVazza Espresso & Coffee Italian Hot Chocolate • Pastries • Wi-Fi

On the Downtown Mall 317 East Main St, Charlottesville 434-296-8555 •

Beth Seliga 303-709-7290 Family, Babies Children & Senior Portraits Weddings & Celebrations

Thank you so much, Charlottesville!

LOCAL CHILDREN’S CLOTHING STORE 1. Whimsies 2. Petit Bebe NATIONAL CHILDREN’S CLOTHING STORE 1. Gap Kids 2. Target 3. Gymboree LOCAL CUSTOM FRAME SHOP 1. The Great Frame Up (pg 74) 2. Creative Framing & The Art Box (pg 14) 3. Freeman-Victorius Frame Shop & Gallery FARMERS MARKET LOCATION 1. Charlottesville City Market 2. Crozet Farmers Market 3. Forest Lakes Farmers Market LOCAL GROCERY STORE 1. Foods of All Nations 2. Feast 3. Crozet Great Value NATIONAL GROCERY STORE 1. Whole Foods Market 2. Harris Teeter 3. Trader Joe’s HOBBY SHOP 1. Studio Art Shop 2. University Dive & Hobby Center (pg 64) 3. The End Game Center JEWELRY BOUTIQUE 1. Keller & George 2. Andrew Minton Jewelers (pg 56) 3. Penelope

411 east main street

413 east main street

CharlottesvilleFamily Thank you for voting for us! Favorite Award Winner 2014


December 2014 | 434-293-8400

LOCAL KITCHEN GEAR & SUPPLIES STORE 1. The Happy Cook (pg 83) 2. Creme de la Crème NATIONAL KITCHEN GEAR & SUPPLIES STORE 1. Bed, Bath & Beyond

Charlottesville Catholic School

Faith Knowledge Community

Educating the mind Nurturing the soul Now accepting applications for 2015-16 school year

Thank you for voting us #1!

• Pre-School • Private Elementary School • Private Middle School

Serving Pre-Kindergarten – 8th Grade 434.964.0400 | |

Season’s Greetings and thank you for your support! As an Ameriprise Private Wealth Advisory Practice, we have the qualifications and experience to help navigate your complex financial needs. Whether it’s investment management, tax strategies or legacy planning, we can work with you to grow and preserve what you’ve worked so hard to achieve. HANCOCK FINANCIAL GROUP A private wealth advisory practice of Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc. 941 Glenwood Station Lane, Ste 203 • Charlottesville, VA 22901• 434.220.4671 •• CA Insurance #0F50530 Ameriprise Financial cannot guarantee future financial results. Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc. Member FINRA and SIPC. © 2014 Ameriprise Financial, Inc. All rights reserved. (7/14)

Hancock Financial Group A private wealth advisory practice of Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc.


{inspiration family favorites} Family. Friends. Community. 2009, 2010 2011, 2012 2013, 2014

Thank you for voting us #1 Insurance Agency 6 years in a row!

Gary Albert CPCU CLU ChFC, Agent Charlottesville, VA 22901 Bus: 434-296-1222

We’re all in this together. State Farm® has a long tradition of being there. That's one reason why I'm proud to support Charlottesville Families. Get to a better State . ®

LOCAL PET SUPPLIES STORE 1. Pet Food Discounters 2. Sammy Snacks 3. Natural Pet Essentials NATIONAL PET SUPPLIES STORE 1. PetSmart 2. Pet Supplies Plus (pg 33) 3. Petco PLACE TO BUY GREEN 1. Whole Foods 2. Rebecca’s Natural Food (pg 66) 3. Integral Yoga PLACE TO BUY JEANS 1. Jean Theory 2. Old Navy 3. Gap

NATIONAL RESALE/CONSIGNMENT SHOP FOR KIDS 1. Kid to Kid Consignment (pg 51) 2. Plato’s Closet

State Farm, Bloomington, IL

Everyone Deserves a

Slice of the




Free Kindness with Every Order! December 2014

MUSIC STORE 1. Plan 9 Music 2. Stacy’s Music (pg 66) 3. Sidetracks Music

LOCAL RESALE/CONSIGNMENT SHOP FOR KIDS 1. Here Wee Grow Again 2. Lollipop Shop



2. Williams-Sonoma 3. World Market

RESALE/CONSIGNMENT FOR WOMEN 1. Natalie Dressed 2. Divine Consign 3. Vintage Vixen LOCAL SPORTING GOODS 1. Ragged Mountain Running Shop 2. Crozet Running Shop (pg 57) 3. Downtown Athletic NATIONAL SPORTING GOODS 1. Dick’s Sporting Goods 2. Blue Ridge Mountain Sports 3. Play It Again Sports LOCAL TOY SHOP 1. Shenanigans (pg 31) 2. Alakazam Toys (pg 14) 3. The Funky Monkey at Bounce-n-Play NATIONAL TOY SHOP 1. Toys “R” Us 2. Target LOCAL WOMEN’S CLOTHING SHOP 1. BitterSweet 2. Eloise 3. Boutique Boutique (pg 48) NATIONAL WOMEN’S CLOTHING SHOP 1. Anthropologie 2. Belk 3. Kohl’s NATIONAL MATERNITY CLOTHING STORE 1. Motherhood Maternity 2. Target 3. Old Navy

Health & Wellness

2. Family Medicine of Albemarle 3. Albemarle Square Family Healthcare

2. Dr. Stephen Park, UVA Health System 3. Dr. Elizabeth Chance, Martha Jefferson

ALTERNATIVE CARE PROVIDER 1. ChinaMed 2. Downtown Family Healthcare 3. Connections Achievement & Therapy Center

HOSPITAL FOR MATERNITY CARE 1. Martha Jefferson Hospital 2. UVA Health System 3. Augusta Health

VETERINARIAN 1. Georgetown Veterinary Hospital 2. Airport Animal Clinic 3. Monticello Animal Hospital

CHIROPRACTOR 1. Cox Chiropractic Clinic 2. Prax Family Chiropractic 3. Scott Wagner Chiropractic

OBSTETRICS & GYNECOLOGY 1. Jefferson Ob/Gyn 2. Dr. Edward Wolanski 3. University Physicians for Women at Northridge


COUNSELING SERVICE 1. New City Counseling 2. Virginia Center for Family Relations (pg 74) 3. Riverbend Counseling

OPTOMETRIST 1. Crozet Eye Care 2. Primary Eyecare 3. Drs. Record & Record (pg 66)

DENTIST, FAMILY PRACTICE 1. Crozet Family Dental (pg 47) 2. Drs. Rice & Associates (pg 69) 3. Drs. Clarke & Farmer

ORTHODONTIST 1. Charlottesville Orthodontics (pg 13) 2. Hamer & Hamer Orthodontics (pg 2) 3. Suzanne Dennis Orthodontics

DENTIST, PEDIATRIC SPECIALTY 1. Charlottesville Pediatric Dentistry (pg 73) 2. Children’s Dentistry with a Mother’s Touch (pg 66) 3. Piedmont Pediatric Dentistry (pg 52)

PEDIATRICIAN 1. Pediatric Associates of Charlottesville (pg 11) 2. Piedmont Pediatrics (pg 79) 3. Northridge Pediatrics

DERMATOLOGIST 1. Charlottesville Dermatology (pg 39) 2. Albemarle Dermatology Associates 3. Family Dermatology of Albemarle FAMILY MEDICINE PRACTICE 1. Downtown Family Healthcare

PHYSICAL THERAPY 1. ACAC (pg 9) 2. Pantops Physical Therapy 3. PT Plus (pg 38) PLASTIC SURGEON 1. Dr. Victoria Vastine, Martha Jefferson


NANNY/SITTER SERVICE 1. ASAP Sitters (pg 56) 2. Monticello Nannies (pg 87) 3. Hoositting DAYCARE (FULL-TIME) 1. Bright Beginnings (pg 53) 2. ABC Preschool 3. Nature’s Bloom Childcare EDUCATIONAL CONSULTANT/TUTORING PROGRAM/LEARNING PROGRAM 1. Georgetown Learning Center (pg 66) 2. Wahoo Tutors 3. Clayborne Education EDUCATIONAL RECREATION 1. Bricks 4 Kidz (pg 85) 2. Virginia Discovery Museum (pg 25) 3. Speak Language Center LIBRARY BRANCH 1. Crozet Library 2. Northside Library 3. Central Library PRESCHOOL 1. Charlottesville Catholic School (pg 49)



1885 Seminole Trail in Charlottesville

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{inspiration family favorites} 2. Bright Beginnings Preschool (pg 53) 3. Peabody School (pg 55) PRIVATE SCHOOL, ELEMENTARY 1. Charlottesville Catholic School (pg 49) 2. Peabody School (pg 55) 3. St. Anne’s-Belfield School (pg 47) PRIVATE SCHOOL, MIDDLE SCHOOL 1. Charlottesville Catholic School (pg 49) 2. Peabody School (pg 55) 3. St. Anne’s-Belfield School (pg 47) PRIVATE SCHOOL, HIGH SCHOOL 1. St. Anne’s-Belfield School (pg 47) 2. Covenant School (pg 60) 3. Tandem Friends School SPEECH-LANGUAGE PROGRAM 1. Crozet Speech & Learning Center 2. TALK/Erika Robinson (pg 87) 3. Sheila C. Johnson Center for Human Services UVA Curry School TEACHER 1. Kim Basile-Wood, Peabody School (pg 55) 2. Sue Sims, Bright Beginnings Crozet (pg 53) 3. Rose Ciccarone, Charlottesville Catholic School (pg 49)

Dining Out LOCAL BREAKFAST SPOT 1. Bodo’s Bagels 2. Tip Top Restaurant 3. Bluegrass Grill & Bakery

NATIONAL BREAKFAST SPOT 1. International House of Pancakes 2. Panera Bread 3. Waffle House LOCAL COFFEE SHOP 1. Mudhouse 2. C’ville Coffee 3. Shenandoah Joe NATIONAL COFFEE SHOP 1. Starbucks 2. Dunkin’ Donuts 3. Panera Bread LOCAL DATE NIGHT RESTAURANT 1. Mas Tapas 2. The Local 3. Duner’s NATIONAL DATE NIGHT RESTAURANT 1. Bonefish Grill 2. Outback Steakhouse 3. The Melting Pot LOCAL FROZEN DESSERT PLACE 1. Splendora’s Gelato (pg 48) 2. Chaps Ice Cream (pg 52) 3. Kirt’s Homemade Ice Cream NATIONAL FROZEN DESSERT PLACE 1. Sweet Frog 2. Ben & Jerry’s 3. Bloop LOCAL FAMILY RESTAURANT 1. Tip Top Restaurant

Thank Thank you you for for voting voting

LOCAL HAMBURGER RESTAURANT 1. Citizen Burger Bar 2. Riverside Lunch 3. Martin’s Grill NATIONAL HAMBURGER RESTAURANT 1. Five Guys 2. Zinburger Wine & Burger Bar 3. Red Robin INTERNATIONAL FOOD: CHINESE 1. Peter Chang’s China Grill 2. Taste of China 3. The Red Lantern INTERNATIONAL FOOD: INDIAN 1. Milan Indian Cuisine 2. Maharaja 3. Royal Indian Restaurant

Barrett W. R. Peters, DDS, MSD Pediatric Dentist

Thank you! 240 Hydraulic Ridge Road, Suite 203 T 434 973 4344 Visit our website for info on our Waynesboro location

December 2014

NATIONAL FAST FOOD 1. Chick-fil-A 2. Chipotle Mexican Grill 3. Wendy’s

Of all theice cream joints in Charlottesville, she walks into mine!

Charlottesville Location


LOCAL FAST FOOD 1. Bodo’s Bagels 2. Sticks Kebob Shop 3. Riverside Lunch

Charlottesville’s Historic Downtown Mall 223 East Main Street •

as as your your favorite favorite dance dance school school Favorite Award Winner 2014

NATIONAL FAMILY RESTAURANT 1. Outback Steakhouse 2. Applebee’s 3. Ruby Tuesday


Albemarle Ballet Theatre CharlottesvilleFamily

2. Timberwood Grill 3. Fardowners

Eat in or take out


CharlottesvilleFamily Favorite Award Winner 2014

Homemade Premium Ice Cream, Donuts and Full Grill Service Our ice cream is more than a dessert, It’s a gourmet delight

Thank you!

CharlottesvilleFamily Favorite Award Winner 2014

Thank you Charlottesville Family Magazine readers — and our over 65,000 members — for giving us your vote! VISIT OUR WEBSITE FOR A COMPLETE LIST OF BRANCH AND ATM LOCATIONS.

join today! Membership is open to those who live, work, or own a business located in Charlottesville, Albemarle, Fluvanna, Greene, Louisa, Madison, Nelson or Orange.

Open to the Community 434-964-2001 this credit union is federally insured by the national credit union administration.

Part of the Community

Charlottesville’s Early Childhood Leader since 1984

Thank you for voting us #1 Day Care!

GOLD—Daycare SILVER—Preschool SILVER—Teacher BRONZE—Baby/Toddler Program

Mill Creek • 979-8585

Forest Lakes • 973-8414

Crozet • 823-7129


{inspiration family favorites} INTERNATIONAL FOOD: ITALIAN/ MEDITERRANEAN 1. Bella’s 2. Tavola 3. Vivace INTERNATIONAL FOOD: SOUTH OF THE BORDER 1. Guadalajara 2. Plaza Azteca 3. Continental Divide INTERNATIONAL FOOD: TAPAS 1. Mas Tapas 2. Bang 3. Parallel 38 INTERNATIONAL FOOD: THAI 1. Thai ‘99 2. Bangkok ‘99 3. Tara Thai


LOCAL KIDS’ MENU 1. Eppie’s 2. Fardowners 3. Timberwood Grill NATIONAL KIDS’ MENU 1. Burton’s Grill 2. Red Robin 3. Applebee’s LOCAL PIZZA OWNED 1. Christian’s Pizza 2. Crozet Pizza 3. Sal’s Pizza

Charlottesville Family Magazine’s Favorite Realtors

NATIONAL PIZZA 1. Papa John’s Pizza 2. Domino’s Pizza (pg 50) 3. Mellow Mushroom SALAD BAR 1. Ruby Tuesday 2. Jason’s Deli 3. Whole Foods Market LOCAL SANDWICH PLACE 1. The Market at Bellair 2. Littlejohn’s New York Deli 3. Bodo’s Bagels

Thank You for Voting for Us Again in 2014!

NATIONAL SANDWICH PLACE 1. Panera Bread 2. Jimmy John’s 3. Subway

Charlottesville Area’s Top Producing Brother-Sister Real Estate Team

Kids’ Activities BABY/TODDLER PROGRAM 1. The Little Gym (pg 80) 2. Charlottesville Parks & Recreation (pg 21) 3. Bright Beginnings Preschool (pg 53) DANCE SCHOOL 1. Charlottesville Ballet Academy (pg 25) 2. Wilson School of Dance 3. Albemarle Ballet Theatre (pg 52)

Charlottesville Natives Marjorie Adam (At age 10)

Jacques Gates (At age 7)

Contact the Marjorie Adam Team to BUY or SELL your home! 434.326.1881 • NEST REALTY


December 2014

126 Garrett Street Suite D Charlottesville, VA 22902

GOLF PROGRAM 1. Old Trail Golf 2. Wintergreen Resort 3. Birdwood Golf Course GYMNASTICS PROGRAM 1. Classics Gymnastics (pg 83) 2. The Little Gym (pg 80) 3. Friendship Gymnastics

HORSEBACK RIDING LESSONS 1. Camp Friendship 2. The Barracks Farm 3. Carriage Hill Farm MARTIAL ARTS 1. ATA Leadership Martial Arts 2. Laughing Dragon Kung Fu 3. 7 Tigers Taekwondo & Hapikido MUSIC TEACHER/SCHOOL 1. Stacy’s Music (pg 66) 2. Music Education Center 3. Blue Ridge Music Together (pg 69)

Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.

SUMMER DAY CAMP 1. Triple C Camp 2. Living Earth School 3. ACAC (pg 9) SUMMER RESIDENTIAL CAMP 1. Living Earth School 2. Camp Friendship 3. Triple C Camp SWIM PROGRAM 1. ACAC (pg 9) 2. Crozet Gators 3. Charlottesville Parks & Recreation (pg 21) TEAM SPORTS PROGRAM 1. SOCA (pg 74) 2. Charlottesville Parks & Recreation (pg 21) 3. Piedmont Family YMCA TENNIS LESSONS 1. ACAC (pg 9) 2. Matilda Blue Tennis 3. QuickStart Tennis

Serving academically advanced students, Pre-Kindergarten-8th grade.

Celebrating 20 years • 1994-2014 We are now accepting applications for the 2015-16 academic year. We welcome you to visit our campus and experience Peabody!

THEATRE PROGRAM 1. Live Arts 2. Four County Players 3. Black Box Players

Fitness & Beauty BEAUTY SALON 1. Moxie Hair & Body Lounge 2. Hair Cuttery 3. Bristles EXERCISE CLASS: MOMMY & ME 1. ACAC (pg 9) 2. Baby Boot Camp 3. Bend Yoga EXERCISE CLASS: WOMEN 1. ACAC (pg 9) 2. ATA Leadership Martial Arts 3. Anytime Fitness FAMILY HEALTH CLUB/GYM 1. ACAC (pg 9) 2. Anytime Fitness 3. Boar’s Head Sports Club KIDS’ HAIR CUTS 1. Snip-Its 2. Hair Cuttery 3. Moxie Hair & Body Lounge MANICURE/PEDICURE 1. Salon de Nails 2. Perfection Nails 3. Holly’s Nails

Favorite Preschool Favorite Teacher

Favorite Private School (Elementary) Favorite Private School (Middle)

Please contact our Director of Admissions, Katie Murrah, to schedule a visit. 1232 Stoney Ridge Road ChaRlotteSville, viRginia 22902 (434) 296-6901



{inspiration family favorites} MIND/BODY CLASSES 1. ACAC (pg 9) 2. Opal Yoga 3. Bend Yoga PLACE FOR A MASSAGE 1. Boar’s Head Inn Spa 2. ACAC Spa (pg 9) 3. Massage Envy (pg 54) SPA 1. Boar’s Head Inn Spa 2. ACAC Spa (pg 9) 3. The Spa at Wintergreen

Home & Garden BUILDER/REMODELER 1. Southern Development 2. Craig Builders 3. Peak Builders CONCIERGE SERVICE 1. Cville Concierge 2. C&D Concierge Service

• Home Theater Design and Installation • Home Automation and Remote Management • Security Systems and Surveillance with 24hr Monitoring

Thank you for choosing us! • 434.984.2524

DECORATOR 1. Alicia Arnold 2. Embellish Interiors 3. MSS Designs ELECTRICIAN 1. Robertson Electric (pg 10) 2. Maupin Electric 3. Fitch Services FURNISHINGS 1. Grand Home Furnishings (pg 74) 2. The Artful Lodger 3. Circa GARDEN CENTER 1. Snow’s Garden Center 2. Ivy Nursery 3. Lowe’s Home Improvement HANDYMAN 1. Advantage Handyman 2. Charlottesville Handyman 3. Metropolitan Home Services HEATING & AIR 1. Albemarle Heating & Air 2. Robertson Electric (pg 10) 3. Mack Morris Heating & Air HOME ACCESSORY SHOP 1. HomeGoods 2. Pier 1 Imports 3. Pottery Barn | 434-979-7672

HOME ELECTRONICS 1. Crutchfield 2. Best Buy 3. ProLink (pg 56)

Thank you! Your source for outstanding, prescreened, and reliable babysitters—whenever you need one. Proudly serving the Charlottesville area since 2012. We’ll find a great babysitter for you ASAP!

434.879.7481 • 56

December 2014

HOUSE CLEANING SERVICE 1. Merry Maids 2. Busy Brooms 3. Molly Maids LANDSCAPING SERVICE 1. Snow’s Garden Center 2. D&D Lawn Care 3. Meriweather Mowing LAUNDRY SERVICES 1. Natural Earth Laundry 2. Preston Suds 3. The Stork Diaper Service (pg 87)

ORGANIZING SERVICE 1. Simply Organized 2. One Organized Nest 3. Landis PAINTER 1. Sun Painting 2. Greg’s Painting 3. Perry G’s Painting PEST CONTROL 1. Intrastate Pest Control 2. Holistic Pest Solutions 3. Dodson Pest Control


run better. walk better. live better.

PLUMBING 1. Robertson Electric (pg 10) 2. Roto-Rooter 3. Fitch Services ROOFING 1. Roof Top Services 2. Martin’s Roofing 3. Blue Ridge Roofing WINDOW CLEANING 1. Cavalier Window Cleaning (pg 87) 2. Albemarle Window Cleaning 3. Window Masters

Services AUTO DEALERSHIP 1. Brown Automotive 2. CarMax 3. Jim Price Auto BANK/CREDIT UNION 1. UVA Community Credit Union (pg 53) 2. Wells Fargo 3. Bank of America

Thank you for voting for us! | 434-205-4452 | | @CrozetRunning Located on the first floor of the Crozet Library building

CAR REPAIR SHOP 1. Airport Road Auto Center (pg 15) 2. Brown Automotive 3. University Tire & Auto Center FAMILY LAWYER 1. Tucker Griffin Barnes (pg 48) 2. MartinWren 3. Boyle, Bain, Reback & Slayton FINANCIAL CONSULTANT 1. Ameriprise Financial Services (pg 49) 2. Barrett-Johnson & Associates, Ameriprise Financial Services 3. Northwestern Mutual INSURANCE AGENT 1. Gary Albert, State Farm (pg 50) 2. Greg Leffler, State Farm (pg 44) 3. Beth Towe, Towe Insurance (pg 64) MORTGAGE BROKER 1. Suntrust Mortgage 2. Movement Mortgage 3. Mahone Mortgage REAL ESTATE FIRM 1. Nest Realty Group (pg 54) 2. Roy Wheeler Realty Company (pg 3) 3. Real Estate III REAL ESTATE AGENT 1. Denise Ramey, Roy Wheeler (pg 44) 2. Marjorie Adam, Nest (pg 54) 3. Bob Hughes, Nest

Equipping Life & Adventure

Barracks Rd

1125 Emmet St N



Dear Santa A Follow Up Letter

By Deborah M. Prum

“ Each Christmas morning, ever the optimist, I’d peer out my bedroom window expecting to see a horse tethered to the doorknob of my father’s little upholstery shop in the back.” 58

December 2014

{inspiration personal essay}

Dear Santa, As you probably remember, back when I was 7 years old girl, all I wanted for Christmas was a live horse and a real gun. In fact, I pestered you for a horse and gun for a few years in a row. My intentions were noble. I envisioned myself patrolling our neighborhood, on the lookout for bad guys. I didn’t intend to actually shoot the bad guys, only brandish my firearm, telling them, “Stop picking on the little guys. Be good or else.” And Santa, you may recall that we did have some actual bad-ish guys in our neighborhood — two gangs similar to the Sharks and Jets in “West Side Story” — but our gangs called themselves the Earls and the Lords. Rather goofy names, come to think of it. They sounded like British royalty, instead of petty criminals, which they were. I’m guessing those bad guys routinely wound up at the top of your Naughty List. To be honest, the Earls and the Lords focused on bothering other adults, not us. So the bad boys I was after were the ones on the playground who knocked us off of our bikes, stole our lunches and gave killer wedgies. But back to the horse I so desperately wanted. You’re probably wondering where I planned to keep the animal, since I lived in a brick apartment building in a gritty factory town. Asphalt covered the parking lot behind our tenement and a concrete sidewalk spanned the front. Neither place offered much in the way of grazing potential for that live horse. I suppose the creature could have nibbled on the postage stamp–sized square of grass by the front stoop, but that “hardly would have filled his eye tooth,” as my Italian relatives like to say. And how about that gun? How likely was it that my parents would allow me to ride around the neighborhood pointing a gun at people? Not very. My parents came from a long line of pacifists. Moreover, they were not the kind of crazy people who would ever consider arming a small child. Did I let all those facts stop me from requesting a gun and horse each year? Nope. Each Christmas morning, ever the optimist, I’d peer out my bedroom window expecting to see a horse tethered to the doorknob of my father’s little upholstery shop in the back. I’d even devised a plan for where to house it: in a moldy, tarpapercovered alley we called the “Tunnel of Love” that ran between the tenement garages. I pictured it as a cozy stall for my horse, except for the occasional rain that poured through the roof and the snow that drifted in during a winter storm. The tunnel also doubled as a clubhouse for a few neighborhood kids and me. We liked to think of ourselves as a gang, more or less. My fellow club members, the children of Ukrainian immigrants, wore shorts, long white socks and brown sandals. A fashion equivalent of the kiss of death, sandals worn with socks provided reason enough for those bad boys to chase our little gang home on a routine basis. Back to the Tunnel of Love — we collected dues, placed them in a glass jar with a twist-off clown head and hid them in the tunnel. We’d accumulated about three dollars in change, a small fortune at the time, if you consider the pay rate for jobs: five cents for picking up trash around the apartments each Saturday morning and no cents at all for taking care of my myriad younger cousins. I figured we’d use the clown-jar money to buy hay for my horse. I don’t remember if I promised free rides to anyone who pitched in, but it seems likely that I would have. So, you see, I had all my bases covered. But you, Santa, in your infinite wisdom — and I am not being sarcastic here — never delivered the live horse and the real gun. Instead, each Christmas morning, I’d head to the kitchen and find one of my father’s white tube socks filled with onions and small change. Every year, with no exception. To be fair, plenty of other presents sat under the tree in the living room, which soon made me forget about the lack of a live horse. When I was about 10, I gave up on you, Santa. Forgive me, but I realized the implausibility of your being able to fit down the stovepipe of our gas range, the method by which my parents claimed you entered our apartment. So I concentrated on intensely lobbying my folks. That year, a medium-sized rectangular box with my name on it arrived under the tree before Christmas. Could it be a small gun? Dare I hope? I half-convinced myself that the lobbying had worked. Not exactly. Turned out, my grandfather had given me a Rainbow children’s Bible, the one with the picture of Jesus on the cover. Jesus is peacefully sitting on a rock, teaching a large group of children who also look quite peaceful (and a little Swedish — fair skin, blond hair, blue eyes). So my gift was a Bible, not the gun for which I’d pined. Even at the tender age of 10, the irony was not lost on me. The next year, I didn’t ask you for a live horse and real gun. Instead, I requested a microscope. I would forsake trying to improve the world by force and instead create a better world through science.


{inspiration personal essay} Miracle of miracles, I did receive an electric microscope that very Christmas. I also woke up to that dang tube sock stuffed with onions and small change. Don’t worry. I’m not blaming you for that sock, Santa. To this day, my dad possesses a quirky and often inscrutable sense of humor. That January, I set out to change the world, one microscope slide after another. I examined insect wings, leaves, salt and the skin of a blueberry. I especially remember the blueberry — a brilliant kaleidoscope of pink, blue and purple. Unfortunately, I soon became bored with specimens from the plant and animal world. I branched into Human Research,

Three Decades. Two Campuses.

One Covenant.

At The Covenant School, we strive to live true to our motto Academic Excellence Under the Sovereignty of God. With rigorous academics, weekly chapels, and sportsmanship on and off our athletic fields, we continue to pursue that mission. See why over 560 students chose The Covenant School this year. Schedule a tour today.

Call 434.220.7330

my little sister being the closest guinea pig. For some reason, she suffered from one bloody nose after another that winter. You could look at her cross-eyed and, bingo, she’d spring a leak. At some point, the doctor cauterized her nose, an unpleasant but effective procedure. The nosebleeds stopped. Utterly consumed by Scientific Curiosity, I gave no thought to the fact my dear little sister had just had her fragile nosed repaired. I was dying to see what blood looked like under the microscope. In the past, she had always been a reliable source. So one day, I walked up to her, gave her nose a little pop — really just a little pop — and then positioned my slide under the inevitable slow drip. I don’t remember the consequences of my research misstep, but I’m assuming my folks made the microscope disappear for a good long

©Tod Cohen


WINDOWS ON WALDORF Please join us for this interactive Open House with presentations for the whole family. Our teachers will offer a glimpse of the Waldorf curriculum through movement, art, observation, and experience. All family members are welcome and encouraged to attend. Saturday, January 10 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Reserve your spot by visiting or call (434) 973-4946

So here’s some more irony. Even though I was a completely impractical child, I gave birth to a son who put the “P” in practical. Santa, as you well know, you didn’t receive many Christmas Eve letters from this son of mine, and the missives you did get were direct and to the point. One read exactly like this:

“Dear Santa, I would like waxed paper, wire and a Santa hat. Thank you.” Believe me, we were as puzzled as you must have been. But the request was much more reasonable than a live horse and real gun. So that boy received his heart’s desire


December 2014

on Christmas morning. In his other memorable Christmas letter, this child announced that as an adult he intended to travel the world in an RV filled with small dogs. He’d live exclusively on clementines and meatloaf. Moreover, he planned to brush only one tooth, just to see what really would happen to the other teeth if he never brushed them. My son didn’t bother to ask for any presents; instead, he’d sent you a declaration of intent with his name printed at the bottom.

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I suppose my childhood Christmas

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letters were also a declaration of intent,


not well thought out, but possibly well Thank you for allowing us the joy of caring for you and your family.

meaning. Ultimately, I wanted to make the world a safer place, make all those bad boys behave. In retrospect, that was hypocritical of me, since I was not an angel girl myself and often behaved exactly like those bad boys. I didn’t fool you, Santa. You know who’s been naughty or nice. In fact, I’m sure you consider the Microscope Incident as a case in point. I’ll bet it landed me at the top of your Naughty List.

David W. Brown, M.D., Annika M. Abrahamson, M.D., Genevieve H. Barron, FNP-C, H. August Sanusi, M.D.

434.973.4040 | 535 Westfield Rd., Suite 200, Charlottesville

As disappointed as I was to receive the Rainbow Bible, I’ll concede that the “Love your enemies” style of relating to people advocated in the book of Matthew is probably a better way to deal with people than my “Hands up! Behave or else!” method of crowd control. However, the cover on that Rainbow Bible still gives me pause. Why would all those pale Swedish kids be sitting around Jesus right in the middle of the burning hot desert? They’re definitely not wearing straw hats and likely did not apply sunscreen. It just doesn’t make sense. Regardless, at a time where there’s not much of either, here’s to peace on earth and goodwill toward men. Happy holidays, Santa! Lots of love and I really mean it.

Debby Deborah is a Charlottesville author who writes fiction for adults and

Laying foundations for a lifetime of global citizenship Limited openings Enrolling now for 2014-15. for 2015-16. Call today! Call today!

appear in print. Find out more at

Part- and full-time programs with flexible Extra Care Previous exposure to French or Spanish is not required

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young adults. Her humorous essays air on NPR-member stations and

with language immersion programs in French and Spanish for ages 2-6

For enrollment information email: call: (434) 984-2174 or visit us online

830 Monticello Avenue in Downtown Charlottesville


{inspiration family fun}

Holidays from the Heart Crafts to Make the Season Bright Written and photographed by Krissy Millar

As the holidays draw near and excitement builds, children look for ways to be involved with the preparations. Direct their energy to these crafts, which you’ll enjoy both now and in years to come. Doing a craft together is an opportunity to share quality time in the midst of all the season’s busyness, and the things you create will become one of your family’s treasured decorations for years to come. I’m excited to share these five crafts, which I designed so there’s something for everybody. I’ve kept in mind the reality of the season, which is packed with activities and errands. When you’re out shopping, you can pick up the few materials needed at your local craft store; but if one more parking lot will bring you to tears, you can also order most of these online. Plus, many of these crafts can be easily adapted to make them more personal for your home, for your child or for the dear one who will receive it as a gift. I’ve also included some tips for your kids to make this all go smoothly. So prep your space to minimize mess and stress, put some favorite holiday music on and make some crafts — and memories. Remember to embrace the imperfections. We had to add a heart to the handprint wreath to cover an accidental paint smudge. I’m still smiling at it. After all, one day, sooner than I want to accept, those handprints are going to be twice this size.


December 2014

Handprint Wreath Chair Cover Every Christmas, I do one handprint craft with my children to capture a sense of their size and age for that year. I think this one might be one my favorite so far. It is very simple but still individualized, it combines the adorable (tiny hands) and the sophisticated (chair covers) and children of all ages can participate — even babies. I let each of my two daughters make her own, monogrammed with their first initial, and these will hang on their chairs during the Christmas season. If you want each wreath to have handprints from multiple children, consider giving each child a different shade of green and using the first letter of your surname for the monogram. This craft could also be done with cousins for fabulous grandparent gifts or with classmates as a gift for the teacher. Because dining chairs vary in width, be sure your pillowcase is large enough to slide over your chair. If it isn’t, cut open the long sides, hem the cut edges with iron-on hemming tape and drape the finished cover over the back of the chair before tying the ribbon. STEPS 1. Prep your surface with newspaper or a

spread fingers facing outward. (You may

drop cloth to cover your workspace. Use

want to demonstrate this or have your

masking tape to secure the pillowcase on

child practice before starting with paint.)

top of it. Slide a thin piece of cardboard

Repeat, leaving space for handprints in

or poster board inside the pillowcase to

another shade. Repeat until wreath is

prevent paint from seeping through.


2. Tape a paper plate upside down on the

4. Paint the child’s pointer finger with red

center of your pre-washed pillowcase.

paint and add “berries” to the wreath.

Make sure to allow one hand length plus

Create a cluster of berries in some of the

2 inches from the top of the pillowcase. This plate designates the center of the wreath and guides hand placement.

Kid Tip: If you want to get prints from your child’s left and right hands, minimize the “oops” factor by doing prints with just one hand before washing and then repeating with the other hand.

white gaps. Allow to dry well. 5. Remove the paper plate from the center of the wreath. With the flat-edge

3. Allowing each paint color its own plate,

paintbrush and gold paint, monogram

mix paints with fabric medium — 2 parts

an initial in the center. The initial can be

paint to 1 part fabric medium. (Follow

done lightly in pencil first, if you prefer

package instructions for colorfastness.)

or if the child is painting the letter.

Using a foam paintbrush, cover the child’s

6. Once dry, slip pillowcase over the back

palm and fingers with green paint. Place

of a dining chair and tie a red ribbon

hand on the pillowcase carefully, with

around it.

palm just next to the paper plate and


Materials Newspaper or a drop cloth Masking tape illowcase, standard size, pre-washed and P ironed (1 per chair) Thin piece of cardboard or poster board (for inside the pillowcase) Paper plates (1 for each per paint color plus 1 per pillowcase) Acrylic craft paint (I used red, gold and two shades of green) F abric medium (a liquid, usually found near craft paints) Foam paintbrush (1 for each color of paint) 1 flat-edge paintbrush (for the monogram) Red grosgrain ribbon (1 yard per pillowcase)


{inspiration family fun} Gold Dipped Cursive Chenille Ornaments This craft highlights words we often associate with the Christmas story — joy, peace, hope and love. As you make them and as you see them each day in your home, they’ll remind your family of the timeless values too often obscured by the rush and materialism of the season. If your children enjoy this craft, have them spell out names of friends and family to use as tags on wrapped gifts. STEPS 1. Manipulate stems into the cursive-styled words joy, peace, hope and love. For the first letter, begin about 1½ inches in, reserving the unused part for the hanger. Fold, bend, twist and connect one stem to the next as needed. For the last letter, again keep at least 1½ inches unused for the hanger. Shorter stems bend more easily; overlapping and twisted stems are more sturdy.


2. Connect the stems at each end of the finished word with an additional one or two stems (trim length if needed) to create a hook for the ornament, as shown. 3. Before painting, be sure you have a place to hang painted ornaments while they dry. Using a foam paintbrush, press paint into the bottom third of the letters, front and back. Hang to dry. For more sparkle, add glitter spray after the paint is dry.

Forming words proved a little frustrating for my children, so they created individual letters for monogram initials while I formed the cursive words. They loved painting the words and letters, with a little guidance from me. Materials 5-30 chenille stems or pipe cleaners (I used 2 white) Acrylic paint (I used gold) Foam paintbrush Glitter spray (optional) Ribbon (optional)

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December 2014

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Ribbon Star of David

I grew up a short drive from my Jewish grandmother, who celebrated the eight days of Hanukkah. She always cheerfully and tastefully decorated her home for the holiday and often had chocolate gold coins for


me and my brothers. She was pretty fastidious and not inclined to do many crafts, so I think she would have appreciated this one for its simplicity (no messy glitter) and its versatility — it can be displayed on other Jewish holidays throughout the year. Display proudly on a bookshelf, set on a tabletop with an easel or in a picture frame. STEPS

To make it easy for your child, use a thin-tipped marker to make small dots showing where to place each tack, or place the tacks yourself and allow your child to weave the ribbon.

1. Using your foam brush, paint five stripes on the corkboard, each just a little wider than 1 inch. Start with the top and bottom stripes, then place a stripe in the middle and follow with the last two stripes between the ones you already have. For more precise lines, use masking


or painters tape. (I freehanded mine, but here are measurements to use if you prefer: top blue line is 1½ in., bottom blue line is 1¾ in., other seven lines are 1¼ in.) Allow paint to dry. 2. Begin tack placement, as shown in the photo. Instead of pushing the tacks all the way in,

2 x 12-inch corkboard (usually sold in a 1 package of four)

leave ¼-inch space between the tack head and the corkboard. (I found that each segment of

1-inch foam paintbrush

the star was about 2½ inches long.)

Blue acrylic craft paint (for stripes)

3. Using one tack, pin the end of the ribbon at the top of the star. Wrap the ribbon around the tack and, moving counterclockwise, go to the next tack. Continue as if you’re completing a

12 thumb tacks, silver

dot-to-dot for the perimeter of the star, moving from one tack to the next until you’ve gone

ne 60-inch piece of ribbon, which (I O used ½-inch-wide polyester ribbon)

all the way around. When you return to the top tack, go around again to the six inside points of the star. If you prefer, you can carefully lift each tack to pin, instead of wrap, the ribbon. 4. When you’ve completed the star, trim or pin any extra ribbon.


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December 2014

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Bleached Sparkly Pinecones Sometimes I see something in a store and think, “I wonder if I could do that.” That is how I found the inspiration for this craft — and if I can make it with my kids, so can you! If you live near some pines, you can go for a walk and collect some pinecones. But if, like me, that isn’t the case, just pick up a pack from the store’s holiday decorating section. If the ones you buy have been doused in cinnamon scent, clean them with a coarse bristle brush beforehand you start this craft. While the actual crafty stage doesn’t take long, the initial bleach process — which should be done without the kids or should be done under careful supervision — involves a 24-hour soak and up to 4 hours of drying time, so plan accordingly. Finished pinecones, which you can display all winter, look stunning stacked in a glass vase or strung up in a window. My girls asked if we could do this craft again, so we’ll be making more to wrap in cellophane gift bags and give away this year.

KID T IP Let them see how the pinecones open and close. Did you know you can actually predict weather with pinecones? Materials Chlorine bleach



1. In a large container, create a solution

spread pinecones out on a baking sheet

of 1 part bleach to 1½ parts water.

and dry further on a low rack in a 225°

Submerge pinecones in the solution,

oven for 2 to 3 hours, checking every

placing a plate or bowl on top of them

30 minutes. They are done when they

to keep them down if needed, and

have opened completely. Remove and

leave for 24 hours. (Be sure this is not in a

let cool.

ontainer to submerge pinecones in (and C a plate or bowl to keep them submerged) 10 to 12 pinecones Tongs or dish gloves Rag or old towel

place that children can reach.) The soaked

3. Cover working surface with newspaper.

pinecones will close up and, when

Lightly brush or spray a pinecone with

Baking sheet

ready, show blond tips and a blond base.

adhesive. Set





2. With tongs or dish gloves, remove

sprinkle a pinch of glass glitter all over

pinecones from the bleach solution and

the pinecone, turning it as you go. Each

place on a folded rag or old towel to dry.

pinecone will take 3 to 5 pinches of

(I used a folded dishtowel that needed

glitter. For added depth and texture, add

to be bleached anyway.) Dispose of your

1 to 2 pinches of Epsom salt. Allow up to

bleach solution carefully and safely.

an hour to dry.

lue and small paintbrush (not foam) G or spray adhesive Glass glitter Epsom salt (optional)

After one hour of open-air drying,


If you have energetic crafters or you’re looking for a way to spread the joy of the season, call a local nursing home to see whether you can donate some decorations!

Upcycled Candy Cane Garland

This trim is cute and festive, and it gives your kids a fun, artistic outlet. This is easy to prep for, and you may even have all the supplies — such as empty cereal and cracker boxes from your recycling stash — on hand. Hang the completed garland in an entryway, over a bed, on the mantel, along the stairway or even at the top of a wide bathroom mirror and bring some holiday cheer. Hand out candy canes to eat or stir in hot chocolate while your family admires the new decor.



1. If you’re not comfortable drawing candy cane shapes freehand, make this quick and simple template. Using a word-processing program such as Microsoft Word or Google Docs, type the letter J in a sans serif font (I used Helvetica), style it with boldface, and make it as large as your box will allow. With reduced margins in the document, I printed out one J in 1000-point type for cereal boxes (large) and

omputer and printer (for the candy cane C template, optional) Scissors

one in 750-point type for snack boxes (medium). Cut out the letter to create your

E mpty cereal boxes, cracker or snack boxes (each box yields 2 candy canes)


Pen or marker

2. Open empty boxes so that they lay flat. Place the template down on the inside panel of a box and trace around it. Cut out the candy cane shape from the box. 3. With a foam brush, paint one side of the candy cane with tempera paint and allow paint to dry. Repeat with the other side. 4. Once both sides are completely dry, use washi tape (I used metallic but white would work, too) to add stripes to both sides of the candy cane. Starting at the bottom, wrap the tape around and upward.

Foam paintbrushes (1 for each paint color) Tempera paint in several colors Hole punch S tring or embroidery floss (the length of your garland)

5. Punch a hole at the top of the each candy cane and string together.

Krissy has come to peace with the fact that, although she tries, she will never have it all together, especially while mothering and homeschooling two girls, being a wife and running a business. She is the owner of KM Photography and her recent work can be seen at


December 2014

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Mo u nt a int o p Mo nt esso ri.o r g


Both a Sensei and a Dad

Bringing Martial Arts Wisdom into Parenting By Lynn Pribus Photos by Robin Johnson Bethke

“I’ve been studying judo my whole life,” declares Gene Shin, Ph.D. known as Sensei to his students. “My parents met through judo,” he says. “My mother, Sandy, was practicing actively until the eighth month of being pregnant with me. In fact, while still pregnant, she slipped, but did a rolling fall with no injury. I was literally taking falls before I was born!” he laughs. Both Sandy and his father, Sensei Kyung Sun Shin, an internationally renowned teacher and authority of judo, were his teachers. Even before Shin was walking, his parents played with him in a way to enhance later judo skills. Because of his stature in the Judo community, his father resisted promoting his son to a black belt because he was wary that others would assume favoritism played a part in his decision. It was only after 11 years, and with other instructors advocating for the promotion because he began to defeat black belts in competition, that his father offered to promote him. It came with the caveat that he must take first place at the Junior Olympics. He did, and he received his first promotion to brown belt, as promised, but it took another three years before he would earn his black belt. Winning several national competitions in judo, Shin trained at the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs and with the Korean Olympic team in Seoul before retiring from competition in 1987. An accomplished wrestler as well throughout high school and at the University of Chicago, Shin was also a two time NCAA All-American in wrestling and was inducted into the University of Chicago Hall of Fame in 2009. While at college, he met fellow student Katy Mullin and they married. In 1996, the family moved to Charlottesville where he earned a M.Ed. and a Ph.D. in education from UVA. Having taught judo continuously since 1989 and practiced his entire life, Shin is now a 5th degree black belt and proud father of five. “Sensei,” as the students refer to him, is the Japanese word for a teacher or accomplished person, and is the traditional address of respect in judo. He opened the Ssal Shin Jo dojo in 2006 where you’ll find him, wife Katy, and the kids every week.


December 2014

{inspiration parenting}

A Way of Life and of Parenting The Shins have five children. The two oldest sons, Kai, 21, and Noah, 18, are both in college. His 3rd son, Asa is a tenth-grader, and the two youngest daughters, Liora and Elanor, are respectively in sixth- and secondgrade. “I’m continuing the tradition of my parents — helping my own children learn the discipline,” Shin says. “All my children have trained in judo, and the older ones have helped teach in the dojo.” He explains that judo means “the gentle way,” implying both the path and the way one moves on the path. A “dojo” is both a place where martial arts are practiced and, collectively, the people involved in that place. The name of his dojo comes from an incident from his youth when he was, as he admits, arrogant and boasting. “Ssal Shin Jo translates from Korean as ‘rice principle,’” he says. “My father related a parable about rice: When rice is young and green, it grows straight up, but when it is ripe, it becomes heavy and bows down.” He chose the Ssal Shin Jo name to honor this parable’s lesson of humility. Judo, he says, is important beyond the dojo in how he relates to his children. He says each child gets different things from judo, whether or not they are interested in competition. “I try to be very conscious that I’m balancing their concerns. That’s important for me as a parent.” He says he is always thinking about how he interacts with his children (as well as students at his dojo) according to their individual natures. “When you’re trying to pass on judo, there is a desire to be consistent with the content, but I also remember it is a living discipline.” He adds that judo principles are reflected in his way of parenting. “I compare everything to judo,” he confesses. “If one of my children is complaining about doing a whole page of math when they already understand the concept, I tell them it’s just like judo. I say, ‘You have to practice a throw 1,000 times, so this practice in math will help you really, really know that concept.’” Another important concept in judo is represented by the Japanese words “tori” (pronounced TORE-ee) and “uke” (pronounced OO-kay). Tori is the partner who is doing the throw and uke is the partner taking the fall. “You need both,” Shin explains, “and you go back and forth. These are not just roles in judo, but habits of mind. It teaches us to be active and also be mindful of what is going on with the people you are with.” And, with each class he often pauses to impart that mindful thinking to the students.


{inspiration parenting} Choosing a Martial Arts Studio

Life Skills for Today’s Children Here are some pointers on finding a martial arts studio where parents and children will feel challenged and comfortable.

“There are unbelievable pressures on kids these days,” Shin laments, “especially those who are college bound. It produces little opportunity to develop a sense of self or to reflect on ‘who do I want to be.’” He observes students facing pressure to take AP classes, to participate in team sports and high school clubs and to do volunteer work that will shine on college applications. “It’s not unusual for children

Decide which martial arts discipline appeals to you.

to be participating in multiple activities simultaneously.” Shin points out that while

Ask people you know about their experiences.

judo is something you do because you want to. He stops with a rueful chuckle. “Well,

team sports like soccer, baseball and football can have an important place in a young person’s life — helping them develop coordination, cooperation and teamwork — my children were expected to do it, but they could choose how — for example, how competitive they want to be.”

Check references.

Being a father of five who enjoys children, Shin is a natural teacher. In many classes, he teaches all ages together, encouraging the younger ones to learn from

Visit several studios when classes are in session.

the older ones and vise versa. Keeping classes upbeat and fun for the youngest students, he allows the “kids to be kids” without being overly strict, and when respect or reverence is called for, the kids respond willingly.

Interview the instructor who would be guiding you or your child.

“The main difference between a team sport like soccer and an individual sport like judo,” says Shin, “is that with judo, in the end, you are alone. Many, many people may have helped you, but you are the one making the journey, and you alone shoulder

Ask questions like these: What am I seeking for my child in martial arts? Do the studio hours fit our family’s schedule? Is the studio orderly and clean?

the results.” While some people might suspect studying martial arts would foster a tendency to be violent or aggressive, studies show it actually lessens violence because of a student’s self-discipline. Studies also reveal that martial arts practice is beneficial for young people by increasing their respect for themselves and others, their sense of responsibility and their ability to learn from mistakes. Schoolwork also benefits from more ability to focus and pay attention. The focus of SSJ judo, Shin explains, is to emphasize the study of basic principles and skills that nourish long-term development of judo knowledge. “It’s great fun to go out and win tournaments,” he says, “but what I really want is for the 8-year-old

Do the instructors engage the class in a way that is respectful?

child who begins lessons today to learn judo in a way that he or she can practice with

Do the students seem enthusiastic?

to “push” it. “I try not to put that on them,” he says. “My father wanted me to go to

grandchildren 50 years from now.” He admits this is what he wants for his own children, but says he is careful not the Olympics — that was his dream for me and I came close — but what I eventually learned was, it was his dream, not something I wanted for myself.”


December 2014

“It’s a great thing for kids to discover for themselves that you don’t need external validation.” — David Auble, a father who practices judo with his son

Shin emphasizes that competition is only one aspect of judo. “There is the much more lasting endeavor of perfecting one’s self,” he states. “The most well-known aspect of that is the attainment of one’s black belt.” Judo originated the colored belt system as a mechanism for standardizing instruction, and over the years “black belt” has become synonymous with mastery. “But, people who have earned a black belt will tell you they are far from masters,” Shin says. “In reality, being a black belt means Because of this, he wants judo to be a gift, not a burden, for his own children. “I’m not imposing my expectations. It would be wonderful if they teach their children, but that will be their choice.” Shin eagerly supports his children’s other sports interests. For instance, the boys and Liora have been avid soccer players, Elanor does gymnastics, Kai placed 3rd in the state for

that you have learned enough to choose how to continue. It is the next stage in the discipline as art, where you are expected to take the basic skills you have learned and discover new, creative ways to apply them in a lifelong discipline.”

Something for the Whole Family

wrestling as a senior in high school, and his youngest son, Asa,

The Shins are not the only ones to become involved as a family

has also taken an interest in wrestling and has drawn in Shin to

with judo. “Some kids do it on their own,” he says, “but many

help with coaching for the school team.

parents, especially dads, come in to learn with their children. It’s

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activity and each other.” He says that some of his proudest moments come from working with children and cites the example of working with a young person on the autistic spectrum and his father. “It’s been very interesting and rewarding to see this boy develop a sense of comfort with himself and other people in terms of contact and interaction.”

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wonderful to see them enjoying their

David Auble and his children are another family at the dojo. Dr Auble,

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a professor of biochemistry at UVA’s School of Medicine, has been at the dojo for five years together with his 15-yearold son Ezra, and daughter Ruby, who is now away at college. Auble was seeking

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something to do with his children in a structured setting, and he says judo fit the bill for three reasons beyond being what he terms a tremendously fun and

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challenging activity to do with your kids. “First is the physical component,” he says. “Then there’s the component of learning the techniques. It’s a long path and skill accumulates slowly over time.” The third part, he says, is the philosophy

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of judo. “Judo impacts our relationships and






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tendency these days to confront force with force, but that is very different from the philosophy of judo. It can ripple out into different parts of our lives and how we interact with other people.” Ezra says, “I think judo improves

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“The external rewards might be few and far between,” reflects Auble. “The important thing is what you find by looking inward. It’s a great thing for kids to discover for themselves that you don’t need external validation. You can get promoted to a different belt, but that’s not why you’re there.” Much of Auble’s enthusiasm can be traced to the personality and discipline of Shin. “He’s a really great teacher with a

natural teaching aura,” says Auble. “He’s kind but firm, and he has

concludes Shin. “A clear indication of this is how well you get

this incredible ability to connect with people in terms of athletic

along with other people.”

ability and experience. He commands respect, not through intimidation, but because of who he is as a person. Without a doubt, that’s why Ezra and I are in judo together.”

Lynn is a student of t’ai chi, a very slow discipline of movement and balance.

“The point of judo is training yourself to be a better person,”

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{inspiration education}


December 2014

Food and Fun with Charlottesville’s PB&J Fund

By Jody Hobbs Hesler Photos by Our Local Commons

Nutrition and Knowledge with a Side of Confidence

What’s cooking today? Spaghetti Bolognese and garlic bread. Who’s cooking? About 20 third, fourth and fifth graders from the Southwood and Cherry Avenue branches of the Girls and Boys Club. Welcome to the Creative Cooking class, held at the PB&J

volunteers working their way through a recipe. The larger

Fund’s kitchens on Market Street, right across from the

of the two kitchens has about four cooking stations; the

Central Library downtown. You can’t help but feel cheered

smaller has one more. A dry-erase board in the smaller

by the warm atmosphere and bright colors — grass-green

kitchen lists each step of the cooking plan for the day in

walls, a purple-and-white striped hallway with coat hooks

minute-by-minute increments.

for the kids’ things, two purple sofas in front of bright

Bright colors abound in the kitchens, too. Cutting

windows, hemmed in by black crisscross bookshelves full

boards and bowls, cabinets and overhead lamps, walls and

of cookbooks and four large farm-style butcher block tables

colanders — all of them are in bold shades of green, red

surrounded by white plastic bucket chairs.

and purple. The kids wear matching PB&J Fund aprons, and

The wall between the front room and kitchens is a

they’re all busy. Some sauté ground beef or onions. Others

chalkboard. The day I visited, favorite dishes with rice were

grate cheese or stir sauce. Still others chop herbs. “This

listed there. The previous cooking adventure had involved

is hard,” one boy says as he struggles to cut basil leaves.

pumpkin risotto.

“They’re rubbery.”

The kitchens are a low boil of noises — sizzling pans,

At each station, at least one adult helps facilitate the

shouts of “I’m done” and the general hubbub of a room

work. A little boy named John-Carlos tells me, proudly, “I’ve

full of elementary school kids and handful of staff and

done most of the jobs!” Margarita, his table neighbor, leans


Learn more about the PB&J Fund, including how to volunteer, at

over to another one of the young chefs. “The garlic gives flavor to

for families receiving Toy Lift donations — families who often

the butter,” she says, explaining the cloves of garlic swimming in

struggle over holiday breaks to provide the meals their children

the pan of melted butter that they were taking turns swabbing

usually get at school. Last year, relying on the help of many

onto long slabs of Italian bread.

volunteers and program partners, Holiday Giving put together

A Full Plate of Programs

471 meal bags and 1,500 spice packets, plus menu plans and

The PB&J Fund is committed to teaching kids to develop healthy attitudes about eating and to build cooking skills and culinary curiosity. It partners with an array of community service organizations that support its mission, including the Boys and Girls Club of Central Virginia, Walker Upper Elementary School, the City Schoolyard Garden at Buford Middle School, Big Brothers, Big Sisters and the Westhaven Afterschool Program. “We’re all working on the common ground [that] we want children to be well, we want families to be well, and we want to support them,” says Program Director Alicia Cost. The Creative Cooking class — just one of the PB&J Fund’s programs — meets once a week throughout the year, featuring “Explorers” and “Chef-in-Training” tracks. Another of the fund’s programs, Primo Plato, or First Plate, is a partnership with ReadyChild (formerly known as Children Youth and Family Services) that combines playtime for preschool-age children and their moms with teaching about nutrition and demonstrations of different cooking techniques and healthy snack and menu ideas. PB&J Fund’s annual Holiday Giving program provides meals


December 2014

cooking instructions. “It’s quite an undertaking,” Cost says, “and is done in basically under 24 hours.” Local businesses, such as Relay Foods, provide discounts on food for the bags and help with deliveries. Volunteers and staff will be back at this good work December 5 and 6. On the menu for this year’s meal bags: veggie jumbalaya, spiced popcorn and Italian roasted potatoes. About the spiced popcorn, PB&J Fund Chef and Culinary Educator Courtenay Evans says, “We did a taste test last week [with the kids], and the one they chose, we’ll use in the meal bags.” Voting on recipes is part of the Creative Cooking class plan. “We really believe in the trust issue,” Cost explains. “They have to get to know us. . . . Because we’ve built this trust, our message is simple. We use very sound recipes. We work our way through all the different types of foods.” “The best diet is education,” notes Executive Director Emily Wampler. “Balance, variety, moderation.” And Evans points out the importance of offering choices. “Food doesn’t fit everybody,” she says, so “we have kids vote each week. It’s really important to us that they’re so honest about the recipes. It helps shape

{inspiration education}

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{inspiration education} what we cook, and it’s great seeing food through their lenses.”

Turning Kids into Cooks Nurturing early development, socialization, and exploration. Otherwise referred to as,






kitchens in the PB&J Fund space bubble with comments of praise — “Wow! Good job!” — and the palpable excitement of 20 eager kids. As the cooking begins to yield results, a boy named Troy declares, “This looks good!” Across the room, another boy says, “I want to take a whole bag of this home!” “It was yummy,” a student named Diavian says, “and I like that it had garlic in it because I love garlic.” “This is awesome to me,” Makiaya says. “I like it because I got to make it.” Later, echoing the opinion of all the

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chefs now busily tasting the fruits of their labor, she adds, “It looks delicious because it is delicious!” Another girl, Taylor says, “I think it’s the best one we did yet . . . and we can get seconds!” Every week, the young chefs knock out a new recipe. Brazilian Black Bean Soup. Farmers Market Salsa. Baked Chicken Tenders. Zucchini Muffins with Orange Glaze. Blackberry Yogurt Cake. For Evans, one of her favorite parts of the job is “seeing [the kids’] ability and their willingness to try things they’ve never tasted before, even though it’s a big stretch.”

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She tells about an unlikely positive experience when the Creative Cooking class made kale chips. “This was maybe the first time most of them had seen kale,” she says. “And one of the kids says, ‘These are bang bang!’ It became one of the most popular things we’ve ever made.” In fact, Troy’s favorite thing about cooking is that “you get to try new things.” His classmate Kanye says, “I like to get the chance to cook stuff and

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December 2014

sample it.” And Makiaya says she loves “cooking and making the food with everybody.”

Bringing Everyone to the Table The idea for the PB&J Fund grew out of a local couple’s desire to address food insecurity needs in our area. In the

Kid-Friendly Recipes These crowd-pleasers can be prepared by children under adult supervision.





2 tablespoons olive oil

3 cups corn flakes cereal

2 medium sweet onions, medium dice

3 cups whole-wheat breadcrumbs

2 parsnips, peeled and sliced

1/3 cup brown sugar

1½ pounds local pork sausage, crumbled

3 teaspoons salt

2 tablespoons ground cumin

1½ teaspoons black pepper

1 tablespoon ground coriander

1½ teaspoons ground allspice

½ tablespoon sweet paprika

¹/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon (about 7 tablespoons total) olive oil

½ cup orange juice

2¼ pounds chicken tenders, cut into 2-inch pieces

2 32-ounce cartons chicken stock

1 cup whole-wheat flour

2 10-ounce cans diced tomatoes with green chilies

6 eggs, beaten

2 local sweet potatoes, peeled, medium dice


½ local butternut squash, peeled, medium dice ½ local delicata squash peeled, medium dice 4 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped Salt and Pepper to taste Instructions 1. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring frequently until softened, about 2 minutes. 2. Add parsnips, cook two minutes longer. 3. Add sausage, cumin, coriander and sweet paprika, breaking up sausage with wooden spoon, until browned, about 3 minutes. 4. Add orange juice and reduce until almost dry. 5. Stir in stock, tomatoes with green chilies, sweet potatoes and squash. Bring to a boil. 6. Reduce heat and simmer until sweet potato and squash are fork tender, about 20 minutes. 7. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in cilantro.

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. 2. Pour corn flakes into a gallon-size re-sealable zipper storage bag. Seal and crush flakes with your hands. 3. Pour breadcrumbs, sugar, salt, pepper and allspice into the bag with the corn flakes. 4. Drizzle about 7 tablespoons olive oil evenly over the breading, tossing and turning it to mix oil all through the breadcrumb mix and crushed-up corn flakes. 5. Pour excess oil out slowly. Place corn-flake mixture in a shallow pan. 6. Cut chicken into 2-inch pieces. 7. Meanwhile, pour flour into another shallow pan. 8. Pour beaten eggs into a shallow bowl. 9. In the following order, coat the chicken in flour, eggs and then the special crunchy breading. 10. Arrange the chicken on a nonstick baking sheet. 11. Place the chicken in the oven and cook 15 minutes or until crisp and brown all over.


{inspiration education} early 2000s, philanthropists Michael and

Obstetrics and GynecOlOGy assOciates

Ellen Geismar learned that Charlottesville City Schools’ free and reduced lunch rate exceeded 75 percent, and they wanted

Setting A Standard of Excellence in Women’s Care

to do something to change that. They contacted Wampler, who had volunteered at United Way before graduating from

Siva Thiagarajah, MD

UVA. “We






approaching food insecurity while at the

Board Certified High-Risk Obstetrician

same time approaching culinary training and nutrition and starting quite young,”

Thomas Wills, MD Michael Levit, MD Rachelle Keng, MD Peggy Willis, NP

says Wampler. The PB&J Fund was borne of their efforts in 2009. “We went to over 100 meetings on what was going on in Charlottesville in the area of food and wellness,” Wampler says. “And we began an eight-person

All obstetrical and gynecology patients

cooking class at the Boys and Girls Club in the summer. Since then, we’ve essentially


grown to a pretty impressive upwards of 115 kids a week.” Folding

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education together is crucial to the PB&J model because, as Evans says, “We have to eat, so having that fundamental knowledge creates a confidence within us. And that confidence extends into the rest of your life because you’re doing

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after year, getting taller.” Wampler jumps in with a laugh, adding, “Getting sassier.” The sass, though, is just a measure of the kids’ comfort level. “It’s good to see their ownership of the dishes in the kitchen,”

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continue. Before I left the PB&J Fund space, Cost announced to the kids, “We’re

Simple, intuitive and playful instruction

Online musical foundations for young children

making lasagna soup next week!” They all seemed pretty excited.

Jody, a local writer, taught her own two daughters a thing or two about cooking and loves it now when they take over, make a huge mess in the kitchen and

Join us at 82

December 2014

create something amazing. Visit for more about Jody’s writing.

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{resource camp guide}


This holiday season, why not consider the gift of camp? Now is the perfect time to begin exploring the variety of gift opportunities — especially for grandparents! According to the American Camp Association, this is one gift that lasts the whole year, helping your camper grow in all these ways:

SOCIAL SKILLS DEVELOPMENT Leadership Communication Participation Self-respect and Character Building

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COMMUNITY LIVING/ SERVICE SKILLS Caring Fairness Citizenship Trustworthiness

Looking for more camp resources?

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Visit the CF Online Camp Fair at

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Season’s Greetings! from

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2013 College Cup Participants 2012 ACC Champions 21 consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances 10 consecutive Sweet 16 appearances 27 consecutive years ranked in the Top 20 84

December 2014

For Questions, Please Contact Jaime Frias 775-313-4050 • jef

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We provide high quality educational enrichment classes for hands on learning. • LEGO® is a registered trademark of the LEGO® Group of companies which does not sponsor, authorize or endorse these programs. Creative Learning Corporation common shares are listed on OTCBB under the ticker symbol CLCN. © 2013 Bricks 4 Kidz

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{until next time humorous reflections}

Hanukkah Isn’t Christmas Trust Me

by Rick Epstein

“Dad, are you coming to my Christmas concert?” asked my

Hanukkah to last year’s winter concert at Wendy’s school.

10-year-old daughter Wendy.

Our next-door neighbor Debbie Cohen asked if she could

“Sure,” I said. Wendy and every other kid in her

come with us. She is a young married woman who takes

elementary school, no matter how talented, would perform

a special interest in Wendy, even to the point of wanting to

in the annual extravaganza.

hear what Wendy’s fourth-grade flute-o-phone ensemble

“Actually they don’t call it a Christmas concert,” Wendy said. “They call it the winter concert. I don’t know why.”

can do. “That’d be great,” I said, “but I have to warn you about

A compulsive explainer, I said, “They call it a winter

two things. First: the swaying. The music teacher thinks

concert so that all the people who don’t believe in Jesus

that making the children sway in unison while they sing

won’t have to be confronted with the fact that their tax

adds a charming new dimension to the performance. And

dollars are going to celebrate Christianity. If you look at it a

it does. But if you are susceptible to motion sickness, it can

certain way, all those beautiful Christmas carols are kind of

nauseate you.”

like commercials.”

“I’ll be OK,’’ she said. “What else?”

Although political correctness tends to take some of the zing out of American culture, at Christmas time no one is better suited than me to understand it. In fact, I was bred for it. When my Jewish dad married my Lutheran mom, they agreed to raise the kids Unitarian so as to disappoint both sets of in-laws equally.

“Religion,” I said. “It won’t quite be a tent revival meeting, but it’s going to be an evening of Christmas music.” “I knew that,” she laughed. “Where do you think I was raised? Tel Aviv? Bring it on!” True to her word, Debbie sat gamely through unskillful renditions of “Rudolph the Reindeer,” “O Little Town of

For many years, we even celebrated Christmas and

Bethlehem” and a leaden production of “Twelve Days of

Hanukkah side by side. But the two holidays are not equal.

Christmas” in which costumed third-graders plodded

Christmas, besides having a lot of attractive non-religious

through it like they were crossing a desert. The partridge

razzmatazz, is one of the two holiest

(in a pear tree) would appear at the end of each verse like a

days for Christians. But Hanukkah

winged milepost. After the bird gave its final flap, I checked

is not even in the top three for

to see if the applause wasn’t really the sound of parents

Jews. To put the holidays in Ford vs. Chevy terms,

To put the holidays in Ford vs. Chevy terms, if Christmas is the Cadillac Escalade, Hanukkah is definitely not the Lincoln Navigator.





Finally, Wendy’s class trooped onto the stage armed


with their little instruments. The director raised her arms


and launched them into the traditional nod to yuletide


multiculturalism — “Dreidel, Dreidel, Dreidel (I Made It Out

Hanukkah definitely





slapping each other awake.



of Clay).” Judaism has survived for thousands of years. Its


theologians and scholars have laid the foundation for the

Taurus. But because

moral code that Western civilization rests upon; from its



beliefs grew Christianity and Islam. Its people are giants of


commerce, law, medicine, communications and the arts; its

time, there’s a tendency

history is the story of perseverance and success in the face


to pump it up to make it competitive. My dad told us the Hanukkah story in which a little bit of oil burned in

of persecution and adversity. And here comes the one moment of the year when the whole community pauses to contemplate Judaism, and what is presented? A goofy tune about a toy top.

the temple for a miraculous eight days in 165 B.C. There’s

As the flute-o-phones piped, I whispered to Debbie, “The

more to the story than that, but it contains no messiah born

stirring anthem of a proud people.” She smiled grimly as if

of a virgin. Angels do not sing. No star of wonder blazes

to say, “We can survive this, too.”

overhead to publicize the event. And not a single king shows up handing out myrrh, let alone gold or frankincense. Fast-forward a couple thousand years from the first


December 2014

Contact Rick at He’s got nothing but time.

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