Charlotte Smarty Pants

Charlotte Smarty Pants – Daily Scoop for Savvy Charlotte Moms

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April 20, 2014

Smart Alert: Volunteers needed for upcoming Girls on the Run event!

Happy Easter, Smarties!! If you and the fam have been wanting to get in some community service time (perhaps in the spirit of the Easter season!), here is the PERFECT opportunity. Girls on the Run of Charlotte is seeking 5k volunteers for their upcoming event on Saturday, May 3, 2014 at Blythe Elementary School. We absolutely love what Girls on the Run does for our lil’ Smarties all over Charlotte and the country, and we know this will be a rewarding experience for you and your family.GOTR 2

The Girls on the Run’s mission is to inspire girls to be joyful, healthy and confident using a fun, experience-based curriculum which creatively integrates running. They host two culminating 5k experiences at the end of each 10-week season (fall & spring) to celebrate all that the GOTR Girls have achieved alongside their peers, coaches and family. If you’ve never been to a GOTR race, you’re in for a treat. They are SO fun and full of spirit, athleticism, and determination.

Girls on the Run of Charlotte is in significant need of 5k Volunteers to register online and help make this experience possible (did we mention this is HUGE for these girls who have been training all Spring?!). To register to volunteer, please visit their volunteer registration web site.  A few fun opportunities include face painting, happy hair, parking marshal, course monitor, water stops, mile beads, merchandise sales, and more!

Race Details:
WHEN: Saturday, May 3, 2014
WHERE: Blythe Elementary School – 12202 Hambright Road, Huntersville, NC 28078
CHECK-IN: Volunteers arrive at 6:00 AM for set-up – check-in at the Volunteer Check-in Tent to receive:
- Coffee
- Volunteer t-shirt (sizes are first-come first-serve)
- Volunteer badge including emergency contact info
- Welcome and set-up instructions
- Parking Volunteers: flags, vests, cones, walkie-talkies, etc.
WEAR:  Comfortable clothes, sneakers, rain jacket (just in case), check the weather in advance
BRING: Nothing but a positive attitude and willingness to share it with others!
5K WEBPAGE: All race information including Directions & Parking can be found at
7:00 AM: 5k participants will begin to arrive
9:00 AM: 5k begins

By supporting GOTR, you are inspiring girls to be joyful, healthy and confident. Pretty cool for just a few hours on a Saturday morning, right?!

For questions, please contact Alex Sypher, Volunteer Coordinator, at or 704-837-0088. See you there!


Sunday Smarty Share from SHARE Charlotte: Meet Alexander Youth Network

Alexander Youth Network

By Kimberly Paulk, Senior Connector at, a free, easy and local website that makes it easy to learn about and engage with our local nonprofits

“No man stands so tall as when he stoops to help a child.”
― attributed to Abraham Lincoln

People of all ages can experience mental illness, but you might be surprised how frequently it can affect children. The U.S. Surgeon General estimates that 1 in 5 children suffer from a mental health disturbance. Here in North Carolina, 10% of those kids are estimated to have a severe emotional disturbance.

So who steps in to help? Here in Charlotte, Alexander Youth Network is one of the primary resources for families and children ages 5 to 18 struggling with serious emotional and behavioral problems. They do this through a variety of treatment programs that are combined into a Service Array – a series of programs that work together from start to finish. Read More →

April 19, 2014

Smarty Mom: Mary Bowman

IMG_20140414_00141116When you get married, you never know what kind of family you will inherit.  My husband has four sisters and I gotta say that I hit the in-law lottery with these gals.  If you hear me say anything funny, then it’s probably because I copied it from my hip sister-in-law, Mary Bowman.  She always has her finger on the pulse of NOW and the sayings and language to go with. I lifted some of my favorite phrases from her.
I first met Mary waaaaaaay back in 1997 and when I say love at first sight, I mean it.  We were fast friends.  I wasn’t even dating her brother (my husband) at the time however I knew we would be tight for life.
Over the last 17 years, we’ve laughed (a lot) and we’ve cried a lot (because we were laughing so hard).  There is truly no one who is more fun to be around than Mary Bowman.  No one.  It’s a guaranteed good time.
Smarty Charlotte, I’m bursting with joy to introduce you to my SIL, Mary!  
Engaged to: Jeremy Elliott (we refer to them jointly as “Maremy”)
Mom to: Gabriel (7 years old)
Occupation: Digital Account Manager, Baker & Taylor (leading distributor of books, videos, and music products to libraries, institutions and retailers)
‘Hood: Oakhurst
Hometown: Rochester, NY

1.You are the youngest of 5 children. Any comments about birth order and growing up as the baby of your family? Wow! Comin’ in HOT with these questions!  I suppose one would assume my answer would be about the hand-me-downs or the extra teasing I got growing up. But, honestly I think I was the luckiest to be born last. I got to be a front row spectator to 4 other childhoods, coming of age years but most importantly their adult lives. I have learned so much from watching, listening and relating to them. Although, it can be extremely frustrating having so many opinions on how I “should” be doing things I accredit almost all the things that make up my personality (that I am proud of) to them all.  I try to take the best of my siblings and strive to be THAT person.  They have been incredible “life teachers”. Read More →

Smarty Top 5 Pinterest Pins of the Week

Happy Easter, Smarties! Hope you enjoy the weekend with your family!!! Enjoy our Top 5!CSP-115.PintrestPicksC(1)

1. We’re obsessed with this bench…actually this entire room.

2. Beautiful natural-band watch

3. What a pretty balance of light and dark!

4. Because we all need just one pair of pink sparkly shoes…they might as well be running shoes.

5. Here’s a cute growth chart for your little ones.

There you have it! To stay up to date on the latest Smarty news and tips, follow us on Pinterest, Twitter (@charlottesmarty), Instagram (@charlottesmartypants) and Facebook.

April 18, 2014

Top 10 Reasons to Enjoy Summer Camps at Charlotte Christian, and a CAMP GIVEAWAY too!

Charlotte Christian School Ad jan 2014 summer camp

With the long weeks of summer quickly approaching, now is the time to make plans to keep your children engaged, active, and learning, but most of all it’s a great time to plan lots of summer fun! And guess what, we have yet another Smarty Camp Giveaway – woot, woot!

Charlotte Christian School has offered a wide array of academic, athletic, and enrichment camps at an affordable price for more than 10 years. Camps are conveniently located on the school’s south Charlotte campus on Sardis Road with nearly every camp under the direction of Charlotte Christian’s own faculty. All camps are open to the public and students in all grades are welcome.

The top 10 reasons to plan some time at Charlotte Christian this summer…

1. Get moving and try a new sport – Christian offers a variety of athletic camps for all skill levels including soccer, karate, basketball, lacrosse, tennis and cheerleading. Charlotte Christian’s state championship winning coaches also host baseball and football camps for kids as young as junior kindergarten who are anxious to learn the games.

2. Stay on top of school – Academic camps are a great way to review subjects and get a jump start on the next grade level. Charlotte Christian’s faculty make learning fun with math, reading, and writing camps featuring explorations with Singapore Math, Dr. Seuss and C.S. Lewis.

3. Meet some new friends! Campers will spend a week developing new friendships and staying connected. The wide array of camps caters to a variety of interests and grade levels so there is something for everyone. Camps are open to the public so it’s a wonderful way to make a new friend!

4. Get in touch with your creative side – Aspiring artists can spend the week exploring clay and pottery or learning about the classical masters of art and practicing their techniques. Campers can also get crafty in the kitchen and eat their edible art at the week-long Cupcake Camp or Cake Pop Camp…Yum! Read More →

We have winners!

A big pink & green C-O-N-G-R-A-T-U-L-A-T-I-O-N-S goes out to the following Smarties:

Jennifer Slosson won a week at Camp Thunderbird – woot, woot!

Jennifer Slosson Fam

Amy Harrison won our FAB Easter giveaway!

Amy Harrison Fam

April 17, 2014

Smarty Giveaway: Father/Son Weekend at Camp Highlander, a $475 value!

Camp Highlander Father Son Weekend1

Smarties, we have another fun camp giveaway, this one involves dad and son! Our friends at Camp Highlander want you and your son to enjoy Father/Son Weekend on May 16-18, 2014. This is a value of $475 – pick me, pick me!

Camp Highlander is proud to partner with Dads for their annual Father-Son Weekend, coming up on May 16-18, 2014. Located in Mills River, NC, near Asheville, Camp Highlander provides a weekend of adventure, excitement and growth for Dads and their sons, ages 5-16.

The relationship between a father and a son is like no other. We all know that Dads protect and provide for their families, and teach their sons the life skills necessary to grow into honorable men. But life gets so busy, it’s sometimes hard to invest time into that vital relationship.

Camp Highlander Father Son 2

Over the course of 3 days and 2 nights, Dads and sons will love great activities like riflery, archery, canoeing, zipline and climbing, but most of all will make unforgettable memories that last a lifetime. Men and boys will sleep in bunks and enjoy the amenities of Camp Highlander’s beautiful campus. It’s rustic, but not completely roughing it.

The weekend features some camp traditions like the Wacky-Tacky Tie Contest, the Father vs. Son Bombardment tournament, a private Campfire Chat between dads and their sons and a “Manfood Feast.” Without even realizing it, Dads and sons will leave with a veritable toolbox of communication skills that will boost their relationship the whole year through.

Don’t miss this unique opportunity to share in a fun, action-packed weekend of outdoor adventure, challenging activities and hands-on learning. Camp Highlander’s Father-Son Weekend, will create bonding moments that will shape your son’s life, and strengthen that father-son relationship forever. Read More →

April 16, 2014

Q&A from Education Expert Jackie Pace of Huntington Learning Center

Huntington Logo

News from the Smarty Education Corner: We recently reached out to our Smarty Education Expert, Jackie Pace of Huntington Learning Center and asked her this question:

“My middle school child is performing average and I can’t tell what is difficult for him or what is lack of effort. Either way I see him flying under the radar and fear that he will be far behind in high school.”

Here’s Jackie’s expert response:

You are wise to be concerned about your middle-schooler. What you are describing is an example of watching a child slip through the cracks. Many times a child is accused of being lazy when really he is missing skills that are preventing him from succeeding.

How can you as a parent do a quick assessment of whether he is not trying because he doesn’t know what to do or whether he is lazy? The first thing to ask yourself is if he seems to be a bright young man. Is he able to answer questions quickly and appropriately? Is he attentive to details of situations around him and conversant with his friends and family? We are born with intelligence; this is not something we are taught. If you feel that he is a bright young man but not living up to his potential, you need to give him the opportunities to do so. Being “average” is not a bad thing unless your child has the potential to be better than average. We need to stay focused on allowing a child to be the best he can be. To do this, we first must determine if he could improve by working harder or if he is missing skills that are preventing him from succeeding.

If he is obviously a bright young man, you should question why his schoolwork is only mediocre. Maybe he is bored and not paying attention in class. But, more than likely, even though he is quite bright, he has not acquired the skills that would help him be successful in school. It would be wise to have an assessment done that would measure the levels of his skills to see if they are appropriate for his age and grade. If skills are missing, help him close the gaps immediately because those gaps only grow bigger each year. Read More →

Smarty Scoop on Weekend Events for April 18-20

Discovery Place

Smarty Scoop is proudly sponsored by Discovery Place, Discovery Place KIDS – Huntersville and The Charlotte Nature Museum.


April 11th through April 20th is Carowinds In Bloom, an entirely new festival of flowers, flavors and fun for 2014 and it’s included in your park addmission. So, get your Carowinds tickets today! Click here for full calendar of events.

FRIDAY, April 18

McCrorey YMCA Easter Egg Hunt
McCrorey YMCA
3801 Beatties Ford Road, Charlotte, NC (704) 416-6538
April 18, 12:00pm – 2:00pm, All ages, Free
Summary: Join us for this annual family, fun event! Please bring your own basket! For questions please contact: Ms. Gwen Morris (704) 716-6538,

Love Truck Consignment Sale
Metrolina Tradeshow Expo
7100 Statesville Road, Building B, Charlotte, NC (704) 526-9554
Summary: See listing for complete schedule, All ages, Free, Registration required
Summary: Shoppers will enjoy a great selection with great values! There will be raffle entrees available at the front entrance to win prizes! Strollers will not be allowed to protect the integrity of security for our consignors, vendors and their items and products. People invited to shop early for our Pre-Sale Event must do so without children. It is limited admission with passes for the consignors, volunteers, and vendors.

Blue Man Group
Belk Theater
130 N. Tryon Street, Charlotte, NC (704) 372-1000
See link for complete schedule, All ages, $20 and up
Summary: No verbal description of the Blue Man Group can come close to what you will experience when you see them live. It is worth every penny and something you will remember for a long time.

Teen Ping Pong Tournament
Morrison Family YMCA
9405 Bryant Farms Road , Charlotte, NC (704) 716-4650
April 18, 7:00pm – 10:30pm, All ages, $5-$7
Summary: Join your friends on third Friday of every month for an exciting ping pong tournament! Each month’s winner will receive a prize!

The Reluctant Dragon
McColl Family Theatre
300 E 7th Street, NC (704) 416-6000
April 18, 7:30pm, Ages 5+, $12+
Summary: Dragons are supposed to be scary and fire-breathing but not the star of this heart-warming comedy based on Kenneth Grahame’s classic book. The villagers blame him for their dying crops and sour milk in this charming tale, but he is a peace-loving, poetry-spouting dragon who would much prefer a cup of tea to a battle. When dragon-slayer Saint George arrives, the dragon and his young friend, Glaston, face quite a challenge, and the mismatched duo sets out to change the hearts and minds of the villagers.

Zipline & Dine
U.S. National Whitewater Center
5000 Whitewater Center Parkway, Charlotte, NC 28214 (704) 391-3900
April 18, see schedule for days and times, 18+, $75/person, Registration required
Summary: With Zipline & Dine, you can zip-line through the trees as the sun goes down before enjoying a fireside dinner with craft beer and wine. Guests will travel via a course of five different zip-lines and two roped bridges before rappelling out of the trees alongside the Catawba River. After a short hike back to basecamp, guests will be greeted with craft beer, wine and dinner around a roaring fire pit. Dinners are prepared special by our chef. Vegetarian and gluten free menus are available, please call Guest Services with any special dietary requests at 704.391.3900. Click the link above for the entire Zipline & Dine Spring and Summer calendar.

Read More →

April 15, 2014

World’s Toughest Job: #worldstoughestjob

Every once in a while, we come across a facebook trend that we feel needs to be pulled into our blog. Because, believe it or not, there are still some moms who aren’t on facebook. And even more unbelievable, some are on facebook and have forgotten to like CSP on facebook – gasp! And we all know what that means – you aren’t going to see a thing that we post on CSP’s facebook if you don’t like CSP on facebook – so ya might want to fix that:-)

So here’s to y’all, enjoy! This is advertising at it’s finest – message is spot on and each and every single one of us deserves to watch this and bask it in. ~Jen

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