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Archive for September, 2011

And the Winner is…..

It’s Wednesday! ( and my was it beautiful) Just came in from playing football!

Only  Thursday stands between us and Consign My Closet! (Get excited this year there is TWO floors of merchandise! )

Thank you all for the wonderful responses, we wish everyone could win!

And the winners are:

Jennifer Caron

Erin Baffuto

Woo hoo! Congrats!  Please email holly@mothersandcompany.com for details!

If you didn’t win don’t worry! Consign My Closet goes all weekend long:

2011 Fall/Winter Sale • Toddler to Teen • St. Anargyroi Church • 9 Cashman Street, Marlborough, MA
September 30th – Oct 2nd
Friday VIP Sale 10-12,
Open to the Public 12-8
Saturday 9-5
Sunday 9-1 (many items 50% off)
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It’s that magical time of year again. Cooler weather. Cider. Apples. Apple Crisp. Cider donuts! Ok, I am making myself hungry…

It’s also the time to start pulling out the fall/winter clothes, oh what’s that you say? Little Shawn is in need of a new fall wardobe since the growth spurt? Susie needs some winter boots? Looking for a new stroller for walks at the park? We have just the thing for you!

Consign My Closet – Fall/Winter Event 
Friday-Sunday, September 30th – October 2nd
St. Anargyroi Church Hall, 9 Central St., Marlborough, MA 01752

Shopping hours
Friday 10 am – 12 pm Exclusive VIP Pre-Sale Event for Consignors and Volunteers
Friday 12 pm – 8 pm Open to the public
Saturday 9 am – 5 pm
Sunday 9 am – 1 pm (many items 50% off)

Consign My Closet is one of the area’s hottest event for gently used kids clothes and gear. Recyling at it’s best!  The events takes place twice a year and features everything from toddler to teen! Think fashionable name brand items – clothing, toys, gear and sporting goods : Gap, Abercrombie, Mini Boden, Gymboree, Hanna Andersson, Hollister, Ralph Lauren, Chicco, Playskool, Graco, Peg Perego, Pottery Barn and more.

If you aren’t in need of anything you can always consign too! Check out their information about consigning. It’s easy and helps clear out the closets. Print out some tags, hang your clothes and drop them off during drop off hours. At the end of the sale you can opt to pick the items up or have them donated. You receive a payment via check within two weeks of the end of the event. Pretty easy!

Heading out to the presale event early Friday morning has become a bit of a MoCo Staff tradition. How would you like to join us ? Consign My Closet has been generous enough to give us TWO presale tickets for some lucky MoCo Mamas! ( Last year we only had one ticket and over 30 people entered!- trust us, it’s that good.)

To enter our little giveaway  please tell us, what would you look for at the presale?

Leave your comment below (on the blog, not facebook ) and we will select a winner NEXT Wednesday by 5PM. Please only enter if you can attend Friday morning at 10AM to give everyone a chance!)

Want an extra chance to win? RE-POST this Blog post on facebook and let us know that you did.

Good luck!!!!

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Next week we start art classes for little ones (and their grown-ups!) with Aimee Ledwell of Red Shoe Arts.  You’ll love her energy, her style and how she engages your little one (and you) in creativity.  Learn more about Aimee and consider taking her class!

What is your background, before you were a mom?

I was, and still am, a teacher.  I have a Bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts from Massachusetts College of Art, and a Master’s in Art Education from Tufts/School of the Museum of Fine Arts.  I taught in public and private school art programs for 10 years before I had my son, and I’ve worked with all ages, from toddlers right on up to adults.  My mom will tell you I started teaching when I was 12 years old.  I used to bring this arts and crafts book called “Sticks and Stones and Ice Cream Cones” with me to babysitting.  I still have that book, too!

What brought you to art?

A roundabout route, actually.  I’ve always loved art, and took a bunch of courses in high school, but I thought I wanted to be a marine biologist from the time I was 9 years old.  I had been inspired by a book about Eugenie Clark, “Shark Lady,” and I wanted to work as an interpreter at the tide pool exhibit at the New England Aquarium.  I didn’t change my mind until I took a college-level physics class (eek!).  I realized in college that I was more interested in the alternative learning experience provided by the aquarium, and that my strength was as a teacher, not as a scientist.  At the same time I had always loved to create things, so I transferred to art school, and then went to grad school to learn to teach art to others.  The art classroom is definitely a place for alternative learning experiences!

When you’re working with parents and kids, what do you find helps them connect with their inner creativity?

Don’t be afraid to get messy.  Put on your jeans and a t-shirt and dig right in.  Art is very forgiving, and if it doesn’t look how you expected, well that’s just fine!  People often tell me “I can’t draw a straight line!” or similar clichés.  Drawing is a learned skill that takes lots of practice, just like learning to read.  Lots of great artists can’t draw!  There are so many other art areas where you can find strength: maybe you are good at building things, or shaping with clay, or at choosing colors for a room, or at taking a photograph.  This is just one reason why I do a lot of abstract art with my students, because taking away the need to have it look “real” frees us up to simply have fun with the materials.

Some parents aren’t sure why an art class would be beneficial to a child..what do you say to that?

In addition to improving fine motor skills, pattern recognition, and observational skills and more, art teaches us in ways that other subjects can’t: to express ourselves, to solve unique problems and think in less predictable ways.  Art has no right answers, only the answers that you decide are right for your purposes.  Art is never “messed up” because you can always change your mind about what you want it to be.  We live in a world that increasingly needs original thinkers, where jobs are quickly being consumed by computers, robots, and a global workforce.  Our children need to keep coming up with new ideas, and what else builds imagination like the arts do?

What’s one thing that you can share about yourself that’s more unique and not related to motherhood, art or your past professional life…what’s your passion/guilty pleasure/favorite hobby or pasttime?

This summer I took up running for the first time.  I’m running my first 5k in a few weeks, and I’m very excited.  I want to be a good example for my son in many ways, and fitness is a huge part of that.  Eventually I’d like to do a sprint triathlon or something similar, but I still have a long way to go!

If you had more time, is there another job or activity you’d love to do?

I want to grow up to be a jazz singer.  I love to sing, and one of these days I’ll take voice lessons.  For now, lullabies for CJ and singing along with my iPod will have to do.

Register now for classes with Aimee…her Paper, Paint and Play classes start on Wednesday, September 21!

An interactive and fun art class for kids aged 1.5 – 6 years old called Paper, Paint and Play.  Aimee will guide you and your child through 2-3 different art stations each week where kids will be creative using many different types of arts and crafts supplies. Make collages, create water color masterpieces, paint with tempera paint and more. We’ll be inspired by nature in colors and themes. We’ll also enjoy reading books and sing songs about each art theme! Come and get creative!  This 10-week class series costs $145 (10% less for members). Siblings attend for 15% less than the first child.

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Since I have the pleasure of choosing all of the instructors at Mothers & Company, I thought I’d let you in on why they are so great (and why you should consider taking a class with them).  I know they are creative, energetic, dedicated and talented, but do you?  Here’s our inaugural Momma Interview with Laura Motta, the instructor for the upcoming Sweet Beginnings Dance classes at Mothers & Company.  Interested or just think she/the class sounds cool, please repost this via Facebook or Twitter or email to friends who have kids. Thanks for reading!

•••

What is your background, before you were a mom?
While attending Worcester State College, I was a member of the Dance Company.  Not only did I fall more in love with dance, but I found my passion for teaching.  After graduating college, I opened a dance studio where I could expand my love of teaching to children as well.  I was the owner of A Step Up Dance Studio for 6 years up until a few months ago.  My son was born in September 2010 and my priorities shifted where I wanted to spend more of my time and energy with him.  I decided to step down as owner/director to an instructor which has been wonderful because I am still able to teach my students who I have watched grow over the years!  I am so happy to join forces with Mothers & Company because I am able to continue my love and passion with all of you!

What brought you to dance?
I look at dance as a great escape.  Whenever I am feeling wound up, at my edge or ready to lose it (which I am sure as parents, we have all been there), dance is my place to release that tension and stress from everyday life.
I grew up doing gymnastics.   There we had to take dance classes as part of our training.  I always loved going up to the dance room to practice. That is what kept me dancing into college and into opening my studio.

When you’re working with kids, what do you find helps them follow along in a dance class and connect with their bodies in a new way?
When teaching, I have found that music is a key factor for holding kids attention.   I really try to incorporate different songs with fun beats to draw the kids into their movements.  I also like to repeat a few songs throughout the session to help improve their music recognition. The best is when I get a song request from a little one!
Children tend to get bored easily at this age so the class is continually changing with new dances/activities.  Props are a great way for kids to connect with their bodies.  For example, scarves work wonderfully as an extension of their hands and are a perfect way to show smooth vs. sharp movements.

Some parents are nervous to come to a dance class WITH their child…what do you say to that?
Don’t be nervous! This class is a great way to do something FUN with your baby (yes…we can still call our 4 year olds our babies too!)! Also, the class is really geared towards the kids so don’t feel like you’re going to need a sweatband and water bottle to make it through.  There will movement but nothing extreme.  One thing I am very aware of is the fact that all kids are different! Some kids need/want their Mom or Dad holding their hand throughout the class while others are ready to venture away and explore a bit more. Both situations are O.K.! There may be portions of the class where I will ask the parents to sit to the side but parents will always be welcome to stay with their child if that is what the child needs.  This class is not designed to make the parents uncomfortable – it is designed to make your children comfortable.  It will also be an excellent way to witness how your child interacts with others in a structured setting.

What’s one thing that you can share about yourself that’s more unique and not related to motherhood, dance or your past professional life…what’s your passion/guilty pleasure/favorite hobby or pasttime?
I love to SWIM! If I could swim all day, I definitely would.  When I was younger, we would go on family vacations and I would stay in the pool for 6 hours at a time.  And when watching The Little Mermaid, I never understood why she wanted to be human when she got to swim all day, every day! Ha!

If you had more time, is there another job or activity you’d love to do?
Now that you have me thinking about swimming, something I would really love to learn to do is surf!
Any additional thoughts/comments about Sweet Beginnings Dance?
A lot of dance studios require you to sign up for an entire dance season (9-10 months) and that can be a big commitment for your little one! This 6-week session is a perfect way to help your child figure out if dance is what they are interested in doing long-term.  You’ll also be able to take home some new and fun ideas to use in your daily routines!

I really look forward to dancing with you. It’s always fun to try something new!

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Laura’s classes start Wednesday, September 14.  There are two classes available (both six-week sessions):

9:15 – 10:00 am for 2-4 year-olds

10:15 – 11:00 am for 12-24 month-olds

Click here to register!  Sign up today!

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