Charlotte Smarty Pants

Charlotte Smarty Pants – Daily Scoop for Savvy Charlotte Moms

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December 8, 2017

Smarty Movie Review: Lady Bird

Lady Bird
Directed by: Greta Gerwig
Run time: 1 hour 34 minutes
Rated: R

Going to the movies is often a means of escape. You leave your typical life behind and travel to another country or even another universe and nothing has to be realistic. Animals can talk or gravity doesn’t exist or magic is alive and people can fly. There is an inciting incident that sets the hero on a certain path with a story arc that builds to a climactic ending and it all falls into place. That’s a classic movie experience.MV5BMjg1NDY0NDYzMV5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwNzIwMTEwNDI@._V1_UX182_CR0,0,182,268_AL_

Sometimes though a movie comes along that just invites you to live in someone’s life for a little while. That’s what happens in Lady Bird, where first-time director Greta Gerwig presents you with a year in the life of Christine “Lady Bird” McPherson (Saoirse Ronan). In this fascinating semi-autobiographical story, we get to be voyeurs in the tumultuous senior year of Christine, who calls herself Lady Bird. It’s 2003 and Lady Bird lives in Sacramento on the wrong side of the tracks with her mom Marion (Laurie Metcalf), out of work father Larry (Tracy Letts), older brother Miguel (Jordan Rodrigues) and his girlfriend. Lady Bird attends a Catholic school to spare her from the less than stellar neighborhood school. While the artistic Lady Bird aspires to attend a fancy liberal east coast school, her finances and grades don’t quite match up to that lofty goal. This leads to a long simmering feud between mother and daughter.

Eager to make her mark in her senior year, Lady Bird and best friend Julie (the adorable Beanie Feldstein) successfully try out for the school play and embrace their theatrical sides. Lady Bird falls for fellow actor Danny (Lucas Hedges) and the pair begin a sweet all-encompassing romance that perfectly captures that feeling of first love. Of course the romance doesn’t last, and soon Lady Bird decides to win over the hipster outsider Kyle (Timothee Chalamet). To do this, she must befriend the popular girl, pretend she’s rich, and ditch her best friend. As you can imagine this plan also doesn’t go well for Lady Bird. Her trials and tribulations continue as she heads toward graduation and makes her big decision about where to attend college. Again, this story isn’t told in a traditional way, but we definitely see the development of Lady Bird’s character in her senior year. Read More →

December 7, 2017

When and How Should I talk to My Child About Sex?

By Smarty Guest Blogger Laura N Sinai, MD, Signature Pediatrics

The ‘50s model of sitting your teenaged son or daughter down at the kitchen table for the one and only big sex talk is behind us. And that’s a good thing, because sex is a topic that will and should come up for you and your children from toddlerhood until the day they move out. Of course, your approach will change as your children grow, but don’t fool yourself into thinking it’s a topic that can or should be delayed.



Sex education really begins with knowing what part is what. Bath time with a toddler is a great opportunity to teach the accurate names for all body parts. Along with a name, throw in a little information about what each body part does such as noses are for sniffing. The bath is also a great time to discuss the importance of privacy – another key element of sex education. This is easiest to explain by teaching that private parts are the parts covered by a bathing suit. Privacy means two things. First, that these areas are kept covered except when you are in private. And second, no one is allowed to touch a person’s private areas except: 1) parents when helping with a problem/bathing 2) doctors when parents are present and 3) the child himself.

Little children have plenty of simple questions about sex. Keep in mind that at this age they don’t even know they’re asking about sex. Preschoolers may ask how babies get into and out of a mommy’s “tummy”. They are usually curious about why boys have a penis and girls have a vagina. At this age, the answers should be factual and short. A brief “the baby comes out of the vagina or a doctor takes the baby out” is usually sufficient. Similarly, a brief explanation of procreation is all that is needed: “Mommies have eggs (just like chickens, only smaller!) and Daddies have sperm that when mixed together grow into a baby”. Most preschoolers will move on to the next subject quickly. If you can’t come up with a simple answer to a surprise question, start by asking them what they think the answer is while formulating your own.

One of the most important aspects of these early conversations is teaching your child that his/her questions will be respected and answered truthfully. Setting this expectation will hopefully lead to his/her ability to ask you the hard questions as they get older. A helpful preschool appropriate book is “What’s in There?: All About Before You Were Born”. Read More →

Fitness Friday: All I want for Christmas is…

thanksHow many times have your parents, in-laws, kids, significant other, bestie, SANTA, etc. asked you what you want for Christmas?

We mommas are always better at giving gifts than receiving.

So, sometimes we just have no response when someone asks “What do you want for Christmas?” because we’ve been so crazy busy shopping for everyone else!

And you know if you answer with something like “Oh, anything!” then you’re gonna get “anything” like the latest As-Seen-On-TV product. Don’t let that happen to you.

The next time someone asks, tell them “I’d love a gift card to Carolina Barre & Core!”

There is no greater gift than health and wellness. You could use the gift card for cool workout duds or classes – your choice!

Merry Fit-mas, Smarty Charlotte!

cbclogoCarolina Barre & Core
2901 Selwyn Avenue, Charlotte, NC 28209 Phone: 980.207.1046

Carolina Barre & CoreLafayette Village Raleigh
8480 Honeycutt Rd, Suite 102, Raleigh, NC 27615 Phone: 919.200.4241

Follow Carolina Barre & Core:
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Smarty Birthday Party: Discovery Place Nature

By new Smarty blogger Stephanie Wallace

Since becoming a mother the days just seem to fly by. Before I know it we have gone from anticipating the ball drop on New Years to hanging Christmas lights in December and I often wonder where the year went. Throughout the year we celebrate many things but one of my favorite things to celebrate are the birthdays of loved ones. My children’s birthdays are especially important because it gives me the chance to reflect on how much they have developed over the past year and reminisce on the moment they came into the world and I became their mother. What better way to celebrate such an important life moment than with a party?!image2

This year my kind, charismatic, animal loving daughter tuned four years old. For the past three years we have celebrated with a birthday party that included friends, balloons, candle filled cakes and lots of stress. Like any party you want everything to be perfect but now that I have three little ones it has become increasingly harder to plan perfect parties. To be honest it’s hard for me to plan breakfast most days let alone a special event! So this year I decided to call in reinforcements to execute a fabulous fourth birthday celebration! Read More →

December 6, 2017

Smarty Podcast: A chat with Julie Tassy and Ella B. Candles


Welcome back to the Charlotte Smarty Pants podcast series, which is powered by Charlotte Star Room, Charlotte’s premier boutique music development and corporate video production studio + the best Pop Star birthday parties in the QC, AND professional voice lessons in a studio.

Today we’re talking to Ella B. Candles creator Julie Tassy. Julie is one of our favorite local mompreneurs – you’ll see just why we love her in this podcast! You can always purchase Ella B candles in our favorite stores all across Charlotte. Visit to find your closest retailer.

Want more Smarty podcasts? Click here and share, share, share!

Read More →

Smarty Scoop On Weekend Events: December 8-10


Jamie Masters School of Dance presents Happy Holidays
CPCC Halton Theater
Parking garage: 1225 E. 4th Street, Charlotte, NC
December 9, 11:00am & 3:00pm, All ages, $12-$25
Summary: Happy Holidays is an original dance production that delights and captures the hearts of audiences of all ages. Set to your favorite holiday music and featuring classical ballet, tap, jazz, and modern dance, Happy Holidays offers family-friendly holiday entertainment.

Win a family (4) pack to Clara’s Trip: A Cirque And Dance Nutcracker Story
Booth Playhouse
130 N. Tryon Street, Charlotte, NC
December 8 – 10, See website for schedule, All ages, $20-$45
Summary: Clara LeBlanc trips at a holiday party and is whisked off to the hospital to learn that her ankle is broken. That night her friends and get-well-gifts swirl in her dreams. You will be spellbound by the beauty, grace and artistry of the CC&C dancers. It is a magical experience from start to finish. Read More →

December 5, 2017

Presenting Our 10th Birthday Smarty Favorite Things Holiday Giveaway!


Fa la la la la, la la la la! It’s our FAVORITE time of the year, Smarties, and we couldn’t be more excited to present our best giveaway ever, in honor of a decade of pink & green bliss! That’s right, it’s CSP’s 10th birthday – yay, us!! Our Smarty elves had the best time shopping for all things “Smarty” to give to our favorite readers on the planet! We’ve got something for everyone here – fashion, jewelry, art, jewelry, bags & primping – all of our absolute faves! Some are from right here in the QC and some are national – and ALL have been chosen for a reason. We’ll have 16 winners – we hope one of them is Y-O-U!

Here’s to the next decade of Smarty Pants! Merry EVERYTHING, Smarties! XOXO

The Buttercup Charlotte Featuring:
MADE in the Deep South

~Jen P

Made in the Deep South Brooch

Our Smarty friends at the Buttercup had a changing of the guards recently and are now 2nd generation Charlotte family-owned, and we couldn’t be more excited and proud of them! The Buttercup is a Charlotte icon tucked right in the heart of Myers Park and is hands down the best spot to shop for gifts this holiday season – from candles, to jewelry, to art, and stationery, now offering in-house monogramming – you’ll find something for everyone on your holiday list!

The Buttercup did a very special collab for us with a new line they carry, MADE in the Deep South. These could possibly be the most uniquely fabulous pieces of jewelry I have ever seen, and the Buttercup is the only shop in the QC who carries them! Smarty Alert: Mark your calendars for next week, the Buttercup will be hosting a MADE in the Deep South trunk show December 14-17 – so you can shop and make sure your hubby knows what you really want under the tree this year – wink, wink!

On MADE in the Deep South:

MADE in the Deep South jewelry line was created with the idea of making “one-of-a-kind” pieces for women that strive to express their own personal style. We start with vintage and antique pieces that are collected all over the world, some dating back to the 1800s. The vintage pieces are then deconstructed, mixed with other pieces and other materials to create “new,” stand-out jewelry. Every MADE piece is unique and varies in style depending upon the piece itself, and the era it came from. They all have their own history and story to tell. Each MADE piece is adorned with a “story card” that provides its very own biography.

Our lucky Smarty will win the gorgeous 1960s Brooch (featured above) from an Illinois estate!

You can find the Buttercup at:

343 Providence Rd
Charlotte, North Carolina


And MADE in the Deep South at:

instagram: @madeinthedeepsouth

logo no back

Two Bees Cashmere

~Jen P

I stumbled upon a GEM on an instagram binge I had recently while waiting in a carpool line and I just knew it had to be top of my favorite things list. Two Bees Cashmere has gorgeous sweaters, shawls, hats and more that are a must for your winter wardrobe. I’m seriously crushing on this shawl and it needs to be under my Smarty tree:


About Two Bees:

Our story began over a decade ago when the hunt for design driven, affordable cashmere left us empty handed. Since the beginning, we have strived to fill that void creating a cashmere collection for life’s everyday adventures. Two Bees Cashmere brings a tailored fit, coupled with a coastal-inspired design story that takes us through each season. We believe everyday is an adventure and that cashmere should be with you on these journeys, not left on a shelf.

Two Bees Cashmere is working tirelessly with our factory to create a specialized cashmere that washes with ease and wears well. We continue to be on the cutting edge of making cashmere an accessible luxury for today’s active lifestyle. Let our sweaters help you experience livable luxury.

Our lucky Smarty will win a Two Bees Plaid Trim Tunic, a holiday wardrobe essential that can go from carpool to cocktails.

Two Bees Holiday Tunic

You can find Two Bees Cashmere at:

instagram: @twobeescashmere
And locally at Charlotte’s in Myers Park!


Elizabeth McKay

~Jen P


I first discovered Elizabeth McKay a few years ago and absolutely fell head over heels in love with the simple feminine detail on every piece.

Whether it’s the perfectly ruffled new Elizabeth top, or the signature party dress, Elizabeth’s designs make you feel special. I have acquired a nice collection of Elizabeth McKay pieces and I kid you not, every single time I wear one, I get stopped and have to give the names of all of the Charlotte boutiques who carry her! The lines in every Elizabeth McKay piece fit as if I had them custom tailored for me – absolutely stunning! Her fabrics are luxurious and her pieces are timeless. You will want to build this collection for years to come.

Elizabeth McKay designs are full of color, bold prints and sophistication. We especially love the pants outfit, hand-picked for our Smarty winner. If these pants aren’t “Smarty Pants”, then I don’t know what is:-)

Our lucky Smarty will win the Katherine Pants and the New Elizabeth Shirt!

Elizabeth McKay Katherine Pant

New Elizabeth Shirt

You can find Elizabeth McKay at:

High end boutiques across the QC and…
Make sure you sign up for her newsletter, they are always running special discounts and you don’t want to miss out on a great Smarty deal!
pinterest: Read More →

Register your dancing diva in JMSD’s Winter Wonderland Camp!


Your little princess or prince will love a magical day to kick of the holiday season with some of their favorite dance characters at Jami Masters School of Dance Winter Wonderland Camp! You will get to enjoy the day finishing your holiday shopping or just catching your breath!

Campers will enjoy sharing a magical day as the JMSD dancers spark their imaginations with not only a dance, but also a holiday story, fun music, acrobatics and art. Sounds pretty enchanting, right? What better way to spend a December Saturday?!

Saturday, December 16th

$75.00 per camper
Ages 3-8

What to Bring?
Please bring a lunch and something to drink.

How to Enroll:
Registration link HERE.

You can find Jami Masters School of Dance:

Park Road Shopping Center / Back Court
Charlotte, NC 28209
facebook & twitter
instagram: #jmsd5678

From the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library: We love book clubs, yes we do!

CSP Book Club Post Image

Book clubs offer a great outlet for family and friends to spend time together, have deep conversations about important topics, laugh, cry and best of all to read! Whether you are part of an already established book club, would like to join one or are interested in starting a club of your own, Charlotte Mecklenburg Library is here to help!

Find your book club’s next great read at the Library

Did you know that the Library offers book club kits? Part of the Library’s mission is to provide opportunities for personal success in reading and learning to everyone. Enter book club kits.

Each kit includes 10 copies of a book for use by your book club, biographical notes on the author, sample discussion questions, read-alike lists and tips for a successful book discussion. Kits can be checked out for 6 weeks to ensure your club has plenty of time to read and discuss. There are no renewals and customers may only have one kit checked out at a time. Librarian tip: if you are part of a book club that meets monthly, have two members work in tandem to place holds for book club kits; this way, you can discuss your current book while handing out the title for next month. Read More →

December 4, 2017

Smarty Event This Week: Night at the Nutcracker


Would you like to see Charlotte Ballet’s Nutcracker before the Belk Theater doors open to the public?

Who wouldn’t?

Well here’s your chance….

For one night only, Charlotte Ballet hosts Night at the Nutcracker – a celebration of the sights and sounds of the holidays! Nutcracker comes alive as Founders Hall is transformed into The Land of Sweets featuring sweet and savory hors d’oeuvrs, seasonal cocktails, intriguing silent auction items, decadent desserts, and children’s activities in Snowflake Village. Read More →

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