Charlotte Smarty Pants

Charlotte Smarty Pants – Daily Scoop for Savvy Charlotte Moms

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December 9, 2016

Smarty Alert: Donate from your Doorstep During 2ULaundry’s Winter Warmup

You could be a part of a HUGE charity event in the QC, and all you need to do is open your front door. Our friends at 2ULaundry, a personalized laundry service that {we predict} will be your BFF in 2017, and Crisis Assistance Ministry are partnering for the first annual Winter Warmup charity event. pinterest

From December 5 through December 19, simply leave donation items right outside your front door or at a specific location across Charlotte, and 2ULaundry will pick it up – regardless of whether you’re a 2ULaundry customer or not. Their goal is to raise 10,000 pounds of clothing and winter essentials to donate to the Crisis Assistance Ministry, and we KNOW Smarty Charlotte can make a big contribution to that.

New items most needed include hats, socks, underwear, gloves, and school uniforms. Gently used items like shoes, work boots, bed linens, towels, and winter coats may be donated as well. Donors should place new and gently used items in plastic bags on their doorstep. 2ULaundry will send donors a reminder text the night before picking the items up and taking them to the Crisis Assistance Ministry. Donors can schedule a pickup online or by sending a text to (704) 766-8730 with the word “donation.” Read More →

December 8, 2016

Register now for Camp Harrison and Camp Thunderbird

I know it seems like summer just happened, but Summer 2017 will be here before you know it. Take a minute now to register the kids for overnight camps. You’ll not only get early bird pricing, but you can also use it as a stellar Christmas gift. Something to look forward to all winter long.

Camp Thunderbird and Camp Harrison, two of our Smarty team’s all-time favorite camps, are now accepting registrations. Here are details!

Camp Harrison

Camp Harrison is a special place for our family. My older kids will be in their fifth year and my littlest will start his first year this summer. Smarty Jen’s kids have been going for years, too. We pretty much LOVE it. And, it was voted Best Overnight Camp in the 2016 Smarty Awards! Read More →

New Parenting Predicament Podcast: Babysitters, Lies, And The Holidays


We’ve been teaming up with 107.9 The Link’s Matt and Ramona for the newest Parenting Predicaments podcasts. This week we talk about how we go about selecting the right babysitter and lies all parents have told their children. ***Smarty warning: DON’T listen with kids who still believe in the big man in the red suit!! Listen and join the convo, all while wrapping all those presents and running the bazillion errands!

Do you have a topic that you’d like us to cover? Email us here. We’d LOVE to hear from you!

Podcast below. Happy Listening and Happy Holidays!

December 7, 2016

Best Lights in the QC – Christmas 2016

1. Hillside Hunger Drive-Through in Myers Park – Hillside Drive coined the holiday ball craze throughout the city. Best idea ever and it’s now the biggest lights trend in the QC. Hillside families have banded together with the cutest and most creative handmade chicken wire balls hung high from the trees – a collection that would make any ‘hood jealous. They have a drop-off for canned goods for Loaves & Fishes. This photo doesn’t do it justice – the cool factor is that almost every house on the street appears to have agreed to a competition of who can hang theirs the highest. So fun! Link here for more details.

2. The Charlotte Christmas Village – New this year is the Charlotte Christmas Village in Romare Beardon park. One of my FAVE parks in Charlotte has been transformed into an European-inspired Christmas Market featuring Christmas, European and local merchandise and arts & crafts. Open daily (except Mondays), and the best part? Admission is FREE (oh, and there’s strudel).

3. The South Charlotte Santa on Sherwood Forest Drive off Colony Road. This is one of the most impressive streets in all of Charlotte. They hand out over 10,000 candy canes each season and collect donations for St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital.

Read More →

November 26, 2016

Smarty Mom: Lindsay James


Smarties, we are so excited to introduce you to this week’s Smarty mom AND ultra mompreneur, Lindsay James! Lindsay is the owner and co-creator of the InfinityBelt™ and the NEW BootBand. If you haven’t heard of either until now, you’re in for a treat. Lindsay’s brillz ideas are making moms everywhere bulge free…have I got your attention now?!

Lindsay tells me that the InfinityBelt™ is designed specifically with women in mind. The smooth and sleek InfinityBelt™ does everything your regular belt is designed to do, but better. The clasp is flat and undetectable…no bulging, no bulk. No more worries about the belt buckle sticking out from underneath a form-fitting shirt. No more holes in fragile cotton t-shirts (those darn Anthropoligie shirts are the worst!). No more heaves or “crack-osis” (as my dad calls it). navyinfinitybeltmodel

The Bootband is the same idea – wear tall boots without the bulk and bulge. No more baggy knees or pirate pants.

I’ll let Lindsay explain more of how the InfinityBelt and Bootband came to be, but first here’s some important info. Lindsay is extending a 15% discount off the total order of the InfinityBelt or new BootBand including free shipping for Smarty readers. Go to their website to shop. Code is CSP15.

Enjoy getting to know Lindsay and happy shopping! Read More →

November 21, 2016

Smarty Alert: Meet rising pop star Kristina Lachaga at ivivva on Black Friday

Head straight to ivivva this Black Friday for two FUN events including a chance to meet rising pop star Kristina Lachaga! Kristina will be in Charlotte to perform her new single, R.S.V.P., on a float in the Queen City’s 70th Thanksgiving Day Parade in Uptown on Turkey Day, and she’s sticking around to meet up with fans at the ivivva showroom on November 25.

ivivva has two fun events planned for girls on Black Friday. Kristina will be at both cheering the girls on, meeting them, signing autographs and taking pictures with them. She’ll also have some “R.S.V.P.” giveaways! Read More →

November 18, 2016

One-on-one with Let Me Run high school coaches

The Let Me Run 5k is THIS weekend, and we thought it was the perfect opportunity to interview a couple of the volunteer high school coaches. Brice Mayeux, David Kloiber, Andrew Dautel are three high schoolers helping the head coaches of Let Me Run at St. Gabriel School. Big thanks to them for answering our questions (over EMAIL – not text – that’s big for high school boys ;-)) and an even BIGGER thanks for being great role models for all the Let Me Run participants. Go get ’em this weekend, boys!

From left to right: Executive Director of LMR Paul Martino, Jack Broadnax, Rob Dumser, David Kloiber, Paul Gennett, Thompson Klingman, Brice Mayeux, advisor Mike Smith

From left to right: Executive Director of LMR Paul Martino, Jack Broadnax, Rob Dumser, David Kloiber, Paul Gennett, Thompson Klingman, Brice Mayeux, advisor Mike Smith

Brice Mayeux

What got you interested in coaching LMR?
I got interested in coaching Let Me Run when I was looking for service hours. At first it was a chore, but then I ended up really liking it and coming back for another season.

What’s been the highlight of coaching?
The highlight of coaching Let Me Run is getting to see all of the boys get faster, grow in maturity, and grow as a team.

What’s been the most challenging?
The most challenging part of coaching Let Me Run is probably managing all of the kids. They are in the stage in life where they all bounce off the walls and don’t listen. It is challenging to get them to listen.

How has coaching Let Me Run enabled you to see your own coaches in a different light?
By coaching Let Me Run I now understand how hard it was for my coaches whenever we misbehaved, or did not pay attention. I also respect them more for giving their time to be with us Read More →

November 10, 2016

Smarty Alert: Register now for the rescheduled Hopebuilders 5k

One the best races in town, the Hopebuilders 5k, which benefits the Levine Children’s Hospital, was postponed due to Hurricane Matthew, BUT that means there’s still time to register and run. It’ll now take place on November 19 – same time (8 am) and same place (Carolinas Medical Center).hopebuilders-2016-save-the-date_website_revised-date2-330x220

Hopebuilders is the signature family fundraising event benefiting Levine Children’s Hospital. 100% of net proceeds go to Levine Children’s Hospital, allowing the children and families in our region to receive the very best health care where they need it most — close to home. The course runs through gorg Myers Park – maybe we’ll get lucky with some of the last fall foliage. Pack up the kids and the strollers and meet us there! Here are deets! Read More →

November 8, 2016

Smarty Alert: Charlotte kids can cast ballots in nation’s largest community-based mock election

Photo credit: GenerationNation

Photo credit: GenerationNation

Today’s historic election is not just for adults. Charlotte-area students can cast their OWN Election 2016 ballots in the nation’s largest community-based mock election. GenerationNation, a nonpartisan civic education program that focuses on civic literacy and critical thinking, is hosting voting sites across town to give kids the chance to truly experience Election 2016. Forget posting your own “sticker selfie” today – let’s fill social media with kids sporting their own “I Voted” stickers. Waaaaay cuter.

Thanks to GenerationNation, K-12 students around our city have already been learning about the candidates and issues over the last few weeks. They’ve practiced voting at schools, online, or in designated polling places during early voting. And now that it’s Election Day, kids can vote at over 40 locations hosted by GenerationNation volunteers from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Student voters may visit any site (parent/guardian does not have to be registered there) and do not have to wait in line. Visit to find a location near you, access teaching materials, or vote online. Read More →

October 11, 2016

Smarty Mom Podcast: Katie Robbins

I am so thrilled to introduce you to this week’s Smarty mom, Katie Robbins, who was brave enough to be our first Smarty mom PODCAST! Yep, you heard that right. We’re branching into the world of podcasts for some of our Smarty moms and couldn’t be more thrilled that Katie agreed to be our guinea pig :-). We teamed up with our podcast peeps, Matt & Ramona from 107.9 The Link, to record this empowering interview with Katie, a breast cancer SURVIVOR, in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. katie-at-race-for-the-cure

I had heard Katie’s story over the last year from our friends at Charlotte Radiology, but when I spoke with Katie myself over the phone one morning, I was so struck by her story that I immediately called Charlotte Radiology to book my first mammogram. Although I’m not quite 40, my doc had asked me two years ago to get a baseline mammogram, and I kept putting it off – I’d make the appointment and cancel the day before because something “came up.” Listening to Katie’s story forced me to make the appointment and KEEP it. Why I kept putting it off is beyond me. It’s a quick and relatively painless appointment (waaaaaay better than a Pap smear, ladies!), and I’m happy to say my scan was clear. I’m so thankful to Katie for being the swift kick in the tail that I needed.

I hope listening to her story prompts YOU to talk to your doctor, make your mammogram appointment, or do a breast self check. Katie is a ball of fire with a story to tell. So, put on your ear buds, fold some laundry, cook dinner, or go for a run, and listen to this amazing Smarty mama in her own words. We’ve also included, in true Smarty Mom fashion, her vitals and local faves just to you can get to know her a little bit better. :-)

Smarty Mom Stats:

Married to: Jason Robbins for 21 years… but have known each other for 31! We grew up here in Charlotte together and attended Independence High School. We were Mr. & Mrs. Patriot!
Children: Julia, 16 and Abbey, 13
Years in Charlotte: We have been back in Charlotte since 2005. I grew up here, went away to school, and came back. We got married and lived in Charlotte for a couple of years before moving to Atlanta for my husband to go to seminary there.
Hometown: Charlotte (moved here when I was 5 actually on my birthday!)
Occupation: Marketing, Practice Relations, Advertising and Customer Experience, Charlotte Radiology
Alma Mater: Graduated from Independence High School in 1991 and from the Journalism School at UNC-Chapel Hill in 1995
Neighborhood: Matthews – Squirrel Lake Village

Click here to listen to Katie’s interview with us. A HUGE thanks to Matt Harris for sitting in the room with a bunch of women and leading this interview – he did an incredible job. PLEASE overshare this one. We think her story will save lives! Read More →

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