Charlotte Smarty Pants

Charlotte Smarty Pants – Daily Scoop for Savvy Charlotte Moms

You'll need JavaScript enabled to use this site effectively.

You're using an old verion of Internet Explorer. Our site is better viewed in virtually anything except IE8 or below.

October 22, 2014

Smarty Scoop for Weekend Events: October 24-26

Discovery Place

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

Brookhaven Family Fun

Mark your calendar for October 24 & 25 because this is one 5K that you don’t want to miss. The Brookhaven 5k for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy is in it’s 7th year and has been a local favorite since it’s inception. Friday night is packed with family fun including a family-friendly movie under the stars, courtesy of Kids R Kids of Matthews. Hungry Howie’s pizza will be available for purchase, free popcorn from Primrose School at Austin Village and an incredible silent auction featuring Yankees tickets, sports memorabilia and a weekend stay at Charleston Place. You can even top off your evening with some delicious frozen yogurt from our Silver Sponsor – TCBY. Click here to learn more!

FRIDAY, October 24

Southeast Psych Super Conference    
Southeast Psych Southpark Office
6060 Piedmont Row Drive S., Suite 120, Charlotte, NC
October 24, 9:00am – 3:00pm, Adults/parents, Free
Summary: We are excited to announce our THIRD Super Conference with special guest Michelle Icard! This is a day to come learn, connect, and grow through 20 FREE presentations given by our very own experts. The conference will be held at our SouthPark location on Friday October 24th.  There will be twenty hour long presentations collectively covering topics such as parenting, anxiety, healthy eating, school concerns, and more.

Movies On the Green/Trick ‘r Treat Event
Promenade on Providence
Providence Road and Ballantyne Pkwy, Charlotte, NC
October 24, 7:00pm – 10:00pm, All ages, Free
Summary: Join us for Trick ‘r Treating and Monsters University at Promenade! Be sure to drop by Portrait Innovations in costume for your FREE professional portrait!

Read More →

October 21, 2014

Smarty Alert: Pre-order your Madame Alexander 18″ Frozen Dolls NOW for the holidays!

It’s time to start thinking about your Santa list and if you have a little girl to buy for, chances are the Madame Alexander Frozen dolls will be top of her list!

Our Smarty friends at Toys & Co are on the ball as always when it comes to all the hot toys for the holidays. Toys & Co will have Madame Alexander’s Elsa and Anna 18″ dolls arriving in early December. How cute are these?!

Madame Alexander Elsa

Madame Alexander Anna

Read More →

Smarty Alert: Carolina Flipz hosts big Halloween celebration

Carolina Flipz Logo

Our friends over at Carolina Flipz are hosting a big Halloween celebration THIS Saturday, October 25 from 6 pm to 10 pm. Members AND non members can play, flip, and show off their Halloween costumes. There will be a pizza dinner, games, prizes, a bounce house and tons of friends. The best part? Kids ages 4-17 are welcome to attend, which means mom and dad can get a date night. Best Halloween party ever!Carolina Flipz Girls

If you haven’t been to Carolina Flipz yet, this might be the perfect time to check out the facility. The equipment is fantastic, the coaches are so knowledgeable and nice, and it’s SO clean. Your kids will love it – promise!

Event Details

Carolina Flipz Halloween Celebration
October 25, 2014 from 6pm – 10pm
Children Ages 4-17
Price Members $25 Non-Members $35
Pizza, Fruit, and a drink are provided.
(Kids with allergies are required to bring their own meal or eat prior to arrival.)
Coaches are available throughout to instruct and spot the child if needed.
Carolina Flipz
11812 Carolina Place Parkway
Pineville, NC 28134

The Gift That Keeps on Giving

Have you noticed that children’s fingernails and toenails grow faster than anything else? Like faster than ivy, bamboo, and kudzu? Combined? I just don’t know how it’s possible – my kids don’t even eat that healthy, but no matter what, I look down at one of my kid’s fingernails and notice they need to be cut. Again. How does a diet of PopTarts, Lucky Charms, peanut butter sandwiches, tacos, and spaghetti make finger nails grow SO fast? I’m baffled.

Is it the four-kid thing? Forty toes and forty fingers that need attention? No, it can’t be. I hear my friends with less kids complain and my friends with more kids not mention a word. I can’t use the four-kids excuse this time.clippers

Maybe it’s the finagling and negotiating that goes along with these manis and pedis? According to my kids, I inflict serious torture when performing this most basic grooming task. They say I cut “too deep” (must be heredity – I remember screaming the same thing to my mom when I was little – I am sure this will be used as a metaphor in their future therapy sessions), and they coil at the sight of nail clippers. I can guarantee you my boys will NOT be metro-sexuals with regular manicure appointments – mention the word “nails” and they start arguing better than the best Charlotte attorneys (which is shocking considering they come from a long line of salesmen). It makes the process snarly and dirty – kinda like their big toenails.

Is it because it’s MY job? My husband and I are surprisingly good at being a team. We divvy up most tasks with the kids and the house. Except nails. And air filters. (My job. His job.) He has never touched one fingernail or toenail that needs attention. I’m OK with that – except for the fact that I am clipping nails ALL THE TIME, which is way more than the number of times an air filter needs to be changed. Oh, and I’m the bad guy. Again.

Perhaps it’s because it’s getting worse, not better. Baby toes are amazing. You can kiss them – with your lips – and love every single second. I think God gives moms that gift until age six. Then, it’s starts to get a little precarious. Take, for example, a nine-year-old boy’s toes. Waaaaay different story than baby brother’s. It’s really not that cute. When do boys start to clip their own toenails? (Please say nine!). He’s wearing a cup to baseball for goodness sake; shouldn’t he be able to clip his own toenails??! Oh, and I’m calling Nike’s bluff – those Elite socks allow NO air circulation, and I am slightly disturbed by the amount of dirt and sweat that accumulates on one child. Every five minutes. Which is about how often I am clipping nails around here. Read More →

From One Breast Cancer Survivor: Early Detection Saves Lives

By Smarty Guest Blogger, Michelle Rogers, owner of  Miller Street Dance Academy

As we move into Breast Cancer Awareness Month it brings about many emotions for me. As many of you know, I am now a 7-year survivor of this dreaded disease. I was diagnosed and cured in the month of October in 2007. At the time my daughter, Natalie, was only 8 years old, and I knew nothing mattered more than making really good decisions that would help to ensure a great outcome.early detection

After spending the month of September at numerous appointments and biopsies, I was worried. The horrible call came on October 9th. My first reaction was to leave town, take care of it and then return to business as usual. Since that was not a realistic option, I decided to use this as a chance to preach early detection and make the Miller Street world aware of how important that is. I found the first cancer site myself – there were 4 total when everything was said and done.

As I prepared for my bi-lateral mastectomy (removal of both breasts), I had to keep all these little people who look up to me from being afraid and making everything as positive as possible.

It worked!! On October 30th I was cancer free. I have never been so excited, and I knew then how it must feel to win the lottery! As I had prayed for that great news, I promised that if God would grant me this prayer I would shout early detection from every roof top in order to help as many people as possible -and that is exactly what I have done. Read More →

October 20, 2014

Smarty Alert: Camp Highlander Social on Tue 10/28!

Mark your calendars, Smarties! It’s time to get cozy with our friends at Camp Highlander, one of our favorite resident camps located just outside of Asheville! Camp Highlander is hosting a fun social that you and your kiddos will want to attend:

Camp Highlander Invite Read More →

Little Otter Swim School talks about the importance of year round swimming

We sat down and chatted with our friends at Little Otter Swim School recently and talked about all things year-round swimming. Come over, sit down, relax and eavesdrop on our convo. :-)

Why is year round swimming important for preschool-age kids?

Swimming is a critical skill that must be taught at an early age and is similar to life lessons such as wearing a seatbelt, looking both ways before crossing and not talking to strangers. Swimming can be the difference between life and death. But unlike those critical life lessons, swimming also provides an outlet for fun, socialization, athleticism and competition. It is a way for families to bond and for kids to make friends.Little Otter 1

When signing a child up for swim lessons, it is normal to think that maybe a few lessons will be sufficient. But just as you wouldn’t expect your three year old to play more than “chopsticks” on the piano, you can’t expect in four lessons he will know how to do backstroke. Parents, like children, need to be patient and understand that it is often the repetition and relaxed, playful atmosphere that produces the best results, rather than a strict learning environment. Year round swimming reinforces what is learned and produces the best results in teaching a child to swim quickly. It allows a child opportunity and encourages repetition that will ensure that they have this critical life skill.

At what age should you begin swim lessons and/or year round swim?

The National Institutes of Health recently released a study that supports the positive impact learn to swim lessons can have on young children and drowning prevention. It states, “Providing very young children with swimming lessons appears to have a protective effect against drowning and does not increase children’s risk of drowning.” Contrary to long held beliefs, introducing your infant to swimming lessons at even 6 months, does not encourage them to be overly bold and unsafe around water. The study concludes: Participating in formal swimming lessons was associated with an 88% reduction in the risk of drowning in children between the ages of 1 to 4. (Arch Pediatric Med. 2009; 163(3):203-210)

We start our Otter Baby program at age 6 months. This is what feels comfortable for our instructors and curriculum. The real answer is… you know when it’s best to start. Because the Otter Baby program requires an adult, it is really more important to have Mom and Dad on board for the weekly visit, the changing room, getting wet, singing “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” 5 million times… than baby. What works for you will work for baby. Most parents tell us this is a wonderful time with their children and some tell us it is the half hour they get to relax and tune into their baby. Try us when you’re ready.

Little Otter 3The best time to start lessons is when the child and the family are ready to learn. Our classes are starting constantly and we may be able to get you into a class this week. The biggest factor in children doing well in swim lesson is consistent attendance and supportive parents. Some children take longer to warm up to new experience and parents that in for the long haul are able to get past this initial reluctance. Read More →

Sky Zone

Sky Zone LogoOn Friday, some of our Smarty crew had the day off of school so we packed’em up (and some of their friends!) and spent the afternoon at Sky Zone.

Sky Zone opened on September 23rd of this year (check out our Smarty Alert) and is located in Pineville off of Centrum Parkway, which is across the road from Carolina Place Mall.  Centrum Parkway houses many retail stores such as Best Buy, TJ Maxx, Home Depot, etc.

To get to Sky Zone, you drive to the end of Centrum Parkway past the Home Depot and bam you are one step closer to entering kid paradise.  They completely overhauled the old Pet Smart located here.

skyzoneSky Zone has it all.

- For starters, they have what seems like a football field of trampolines with padded walls and many divided jump areas.

- The SkySlam court is a double basketball court on trampolines, which was a huge hit with the kids who had a blast trying their best Air-Jordan-jump-slam-dunk.

- Their Foam Pit has 10,000 pieces of foam.

- Ultimate Dodgeball is the best way to play dodgeball as you take air to avoid being hit! Read More →

October 19, 2014

Smarty Steal Alert: Erin McDermott Baby Elephant Necklace & 3-Circle Earrings 40% off!

Erin McDermott Baby elephants

As promised, we are featuring our favorite Smarty Pick from Erin McDermott’s fab jewelry collection at a Smarty of a Steal discount! Today we bring you my favorite necklace, Erin’s Baby Elephant Necklace at 40% off! To match this fab piece, we also bring you the 3-Circle earrings at 40% off as well! Thanks, Erin!

For those of you not familiar with Erin McDermott, we absolutely adore her at CSP. We love that she’s a local artist, creating masterpieces and a thriving business out of her Myers Park home. Every time I go to pick up some pieces, I see more and more fun metals and stones and I can’t wait to see what Erin creates with them.

Erin McDermott’s Baby Elephant Necklace:

Erin McDermott 3 Circles

This turquoise baby elephant is just like her big sister found HERE (that we featured over the summer), but is about half the size and still as sweet! The elephant sits on a delicate chain and has her truck up – bringing you lots of good luck!

Pair this elephant up with the 3-Circle Earrings! A simple and classic look for the fall! Read More →

SUNDAY SMARTY SHARE from SHARE Charlotte: Greater Western Carolinas Chapter of JDRF

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

“Everything that is done in the world is done by hope.” – Martin Luther

I have a friend who rocks. She is a busy on-the-go mom with two kids in multiple sports. She volunteers at her children’s school, runs her own business and is incredibly involved in leadership positions in local nonprofit organizations. And oh, by the way, she has Type 1 diabetes. SHARE Diabete

I actually didn’t know this for a long time. I just knew her as a warm, open friend with a ready smile.

But through her I’ve learned that Type 1 diabetes (T1D) is more common than I thought. Each year, more than 15,000 children and 15,000 adults—approximately 80 people per day—are diagnosed with T1D in the U.S. It’s a daily and life-long challenge for people living with it.

I’ve also learned much more about the Greater Western Carolinas Chapter of JDRF. These folks also rock. Because while T1D is a challenge, they focus more on hope. In fact JDRF is the largest charitable funder of diabetes research worldwide. They raise the majority of funds through events such as walks, galas, rides, and golf tournaments. The local chapter also runs an outreach program that provides resources, support, educational events and networking opportunities for people living with type 1 diabetes and their families.

Interested in getting involved? The appropriately-named JDRF Hope Gala is coming up on November 15th and could use a few extra hands. Check out the details below, or visit SHARE Charlotte for more information.

So yes, apparently I have a friend with Type 1 diabetes. And I’ll bet you do too.

Event Set Up – get your inner decorator in gear and decorate the ballroom, set up auction displays

Silent Auction Volunteer
– oversee items in your area and help patrons with BidPal mobile bidding

Registration Volunteer – register guests using laptops at a station located in the lobby

Tell A Friend.

Message to Friend