Charlotte Smarty Pants

Charlotte Smarty Pants – Daily Scoop for Savvy Charlotte Moms

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April 13, 2017

Smarty Movie Review: ‘Gifted’

Rating: PG-13giftedmovieimage
Official Website:
Official Hashtag: #GiftedMovie
Directed by: Marc Webb
Written by: Tom Flynn
Produced by: Karen Lunder, Andy Cohen
Cast: Chris Evans, Mckenna Grace, Lindsay Duncan, Jenny Slate and Octavia Spencer

Movie Synopsis: Frank Adler (Chris Evans) is a single man raising a child prodigy – his spirited young niece Mary (Mckenna Grace) – in a coastal town in Florida. Frank’s plans for a normal school life for Mary are foiled when the seven-year-old’s mathematical abilities come to the attention of Frank’s formidable mother Evelyn (Lindsay Duncan) whose plans for her granddaughter threaten to separate Frank and Mary. Octavia Spencer plays Roberta, Frank and Mary’s landlady and best friend.
Jenny Slate is Mary’s teacher, Bonnie, a young woman whose concern for her student develops into a connection with her uncle as well.

Smarty Review: Thumbs Up! I really enjoyed this movie. I found it to be a very touching story. From start to finish, I was invested in the characters. I am not sure I would take my husband to see it, but, it is a great movie to see with my girlfriends.

I definitely will be buying the soundtrack to this movie!

April 6, 2017

Hop to it and get those Easter baskets ready for someBUNNY special!

As far as Easter Baskets go, I am sort of old school. A couple of things and you are good to go. The hard part is trying to figure out what those things are. Smarties, I am here to help. I have created the ULTIMATE SMARTY LIST OF EASTER BASKET IDEAS.

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Easter! I can remember as a little girl getting all dressed up to attend church with my grandfather. I remember every detail of my outfit: Little pink cape, little pink shift dress, white gloves, patent leather mary janes with white knee socks, and an Easter Bonnet. That was one of my favorite days. It is forever implanted in memory. From that moment on, Easter became my favorite holiday of the year.

I am hoping this is my year to establish some traditions with my twin 4 year old boys. In years past, we have always been traveling over the Easter holiday. I want to deck them out in seersucker suits with saddle shoes and watch them hunt for Easter eggs. I just know that in a blink of an eye they will say “No, Mom. I am not wearing that.” So my advice to you, do it why they are young. Get your kiddos all dressed up and snap those perfect pics! There is nothing cuter than your little one wearing bunny ears all dressed up.

The Yummy Stuff

Best place to find candy: Candy Girl Confections: 2910 Selwyn Ave
IMG_6130 Read More →

April 4, 2017

Smarty FLASH Giveaway: Family 4 Pack to Children’s Theatre of Charlotte’s ‘Bud, Not Buddy’

Bud, Not Buddy media photo
It was a novel performance!

Children’s Theatre of Charlotte has once again AH-MAZED me with another performance. I can’t believe that I almost missed this one! Somehow our family schedule cleared up and we could go. I swear every kid my twins know was born in March and early April- Sheesh, it’s been a busy month. Honestly, I think it was divine intervention. Hands down, this is my FAVORITE performance of the season. The cast brought this story to life in a way I haven’t seen before. Let’s face it, we all know that the book is better in most cases than the movie/play. In this case, you not only have an excellent novel —you have a novel performance!

The stage design was brilliant. It was very minimal. Forcing the audience to focus entirely on the characters and the story. It was captivating!

The cast brought their A-game! Devin Clark (Bud) stole the show. His expressions said it all. He was Bud! You immediately fell in love with this character. From the start, you were routing for him. Read More →

March 31, 2017

Smarty Movie Review: The Boss Baby

The Boss Baby
Director: Tom McGrath
Written By: Michael McCullers (based on the award winning picture book by Marla Frazee)
Cast: Alec Baldwin, Steve Buscemi, Jimmy Kimmel, Lisa Kudrow, Miles Bakshi, Tobey Maguire
97 minutes
​PG R​ating

Movie Plot Overview

DreamWorks Animation and the director of Madagascar invite you to meet a most unusual baby. He wears a suit, speaks with the voice of Alec Baldwin, and stars in the animated comedy, Dreamworks’ The Bossy Baby. The Boss Baby is a hilariously universal story about how a new baby’s arrival impacts a family, told from the point of view of a delightfully unreliable narrator, a wildly imaginative 7 year old named Tim. With a sly, heart filled message about the importance of family, Dreamworks’ The Boss Baby is an authentic and broadly appealing original comedy for all ages. Boss Baby

Smarty Thoughts

My crew loved, loved, loved it! Alec Baldwin is superb! If you were a fan of 30 rock, you will totally get it! Imagine Jack Donaghy as a baby. HIL-AR-IOUS! I had several LAUGH OUT LOUD moments. In my mind, I am still laughing. My kids, who have no idea who Alec Baldwin is, loved it, too. They were mesmerized by all the action packed scenes. So much so, that a week later they are still talking about pirates, the cool talking alarm clock and learning to ride a bike without training wheels. Oh yeah, and they want me to teach them how to write a memo just like Boss Baby talked about in the movie. Read More →

March 22, 2017

Smarty Giveaway: Sweetness Squared Cookie Decorating Box

**This giveaway is closed. We have a winner!**

We’ve got a SWEET giveaway for you this week, Smarties, just in time for Easter. Sweetness Squared

Meet Sarah, owner and baker at Sweetness Squared. She’s a stay at home mom to three kiddos. In August 2013 she and her husband were blessed with sweetness squared! Twins!! They went from being a small family of two and doubled into an active family of four. While she stays at home, she is pursuing one of her passions…baking. Cakes, cupcakes, cake pops, cookies – she custom makes it all from scratch in her home.

And guess what, we’ve got a box of amazing, homemade cookies with your name written ALL over it (and go ahead, put your name on them before serving them to your mother-in-law at Easter brunch – we won’t say a THING! ;-)).

Smarty Giveaway: One box of Sweetness Squared cookies

One luck Smarty wins a Sweetness Squared Cookie Decorating Box (value at $12.00 per box). The box will include one dozen cookie with 2 buttercream icings (all made from scratch). Winner can choose from 4 different cookie shapes: flowers, butterflies, bunnies or Easter eggs. Read More →

February 18, 2017

Smarty Mom: Jennifer Taylor

Jennifer Taylor is a perfect example of the proverb, “Good things come in small packages.”

What can I say about “Miss Jenny.” The truth is, what can’t I say about Miss Jenny… she is the heart and soul of St. John’s Preschool. She is there to greet you in the morning and bid you farewell in the afternoon. She is never without a tremendous smile. What I love most – she puts your children first! In the carpool line, my twins pray that she is the one that is going to open their door. They LOOOOOOOOOVE her! Her kindness, grace and warmth is felt throughout the entire school. I feel so incredibly blessed to have her in my children’s lives. It is the most amazing feeling to be able to drop off your children and know they are safe and loved.

Let’s get to know a little bit more about this week’s Smarty Mom Jennifer Taylor. image5

Smarty Mom: Jennifer Taylor

Name: Jennifer Taylor
Married to: Jeff
Number of years married: 25
Number of Children & Ages: 19 and 22
Neighborhood: Olde Providence
Career: Preschool Director

Are you a Charlotte native?

If not, where did you move from?
Jackson, Michigan

What is your favorite date night place to go?
The Lodge Read More →

February 7, 2017

Children’s Theatre of Charlotte’s ‘Junie B. Jones’ Stole the Show! (And psst! There’s a giveaway here!)

june b 4
***Giveaway is closed! We have a winner!***

Save the date, Smarties. Junie B. is in town with Children’s Theatre of Charlotte’s latest production and your kiddoes will LOOOOOOOOVE this performance. Yes, the Junie B. Jones series can be controversial with parents. She’s sassy. The grammar/language is not perfect…. Some people interpret her as being rude and disrespectful. It is written in the point of view of a kindergartner. Junie B.’s character celebrates everything about being 6 years old! She doesn’t mean to be disrespectful. She is just an active 6-year old little girl questioning life as it is being thrown at her. So, I beg you, if you are one of those parents that are on the fence about going to see this play – GIVE IT A CHANCE! YOU WILL NOT REGRET IT!! Okay with that said, here is my review… Read More →

January 16, 2017

Smarty FLASH Giveaway: PBS Kids’ ‘Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood Live’


I have a ggggr-ific news! The Emmy Nominated PBS Kids Series Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood Live is coming to Charlotte on Sunday, January 22

Watch your little smarty light up when he/she sees Daniel Tiger, Mom and Dad Tiger, Baby Margaret, Katerina Kittycat, Miss Elaina, Prince Wednesday, “O” the Owl and Trolley come to life. This full scale musical production by the Fred Rogers Company explores stories of friendship, sharing and helping others as the characters make a journey through the neighborhood of make-believe.

Come hop aboard! It is bound to be a “beautiful day in the neighborhood.”

Event Details

Sunday, January 22, 2017
Knight Theatre, Levine Center for the Arts
2:30 & 5:30
Tickets start at $22.00
Available for purchase through:
Ticketmaster 800.745.3000 OR
Blumenthal Performing Arts Center Box office Read More →

December 20, 2016

Smarty FLASH Giveaway: A Brilliant Sky Holiday Bundle


Quietly nestled in the corner of the Blakeney Shopping Center is one of the most charming little toys stores filled with the most amazing treasures. Do you know which one I am talking about? I know you do, it is called Brilliant Sky. And it is indeed, BRILLIANT. Immediately, as you walk through the doors you are welcomed by the friendliest staff. Smiles for miles is what I call them. How can you not be happy being surrounded by all those amazing toys? Let’s chat a minute about these toys…. the selection is fantastic. To narrow the choice to one toy is almost impossible. I have toys picked out for every special occasion up the age of 10 for my boys, mind you they are only 4 – yes, that is how awesome the toy selection is! Brilliant Sky is locally owned by two amazing women, Nancy Brislin and Susan Phillips.

Nancy Brislin has been with Brilliant Sky (Blakeney) since its doors opened in 2008. As you enter the store, she takes an interest in getting to know you. I was lucky enough to have Nancy give me a personal tour and teach me about all the different toys. I was amazed at her knowledge. I was certain she had a degree in education – nope, this just comes natural to her. She is that special (in the pink and green world we call her SMARTY!) She told me her goal is to “provide the highest level of customer service and ensure every customer has a good experience shopping at Brilliant Sky.” I have to say she has exceeded her goal. Nancy has called the Charlotte area home for the past 25 years (Charlotte is lucky to have her ☺ ) She and her husband Neal have three daughters and three very spoiled dogs. Read More →

December 10, 2016

Smarty Mom: Melissa Miller

Have you ever met someone that you instantly click with? That’s Melissa. We met a little over a year ago and I don’t think a day has gone by that we have not communicated in some form of another. At first, we were two moms new to Charlotte seeking out friends for our little ones to play with. Our friendship has developed into something so much more. She is an amazing mom, wonderful friend and so much fun to be around. Her personality is like sunshine. She brings the good in everything. I feel like I have known her my whole life. She is the sister I never had.

Smarties, after you read this interview you are going to want to be friends with her, too. I am honored to introduce my friend, this week’s Smarty Mom: Melissa Miller.

Smarty Mom: Melissa Miller

Smarty Mom Stats:
Name: Melissa Miller
Career: Special Education Teacher
Hometown: Milwaukee, WI
How many years in Charlotte: 2
Children: 2 girls, ages 4 and 5 1/2
Neighborhood: St. George Place

Melissa’s Career: Special Education Teacher
Your alma mater:Marquette University (Milw)
Undergraduate Degree. BA in psychology
Graduate Degree. MA in special education (Cardinal Stritch University, Milw)

How many years have you been teaching?
7 years

What made you decide you wanted to be a teacher?
I have wanted to be a teacher since I was a little girl. My mom has pictures of me teaching my stuffed animals when I was about 6 years old. Read More →

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