Marin Mommies presents another guest article by Marin Mom and writer Gabrielle Cullen.
Marin County will roll out the red carpet for the 35th Mill Valley Film Festival from October 4–14, 2012, and what better way to get a little glamour than to enjoy the fest as a fam? Introduce the little ones to films they’ll never normally see on the big screen, have a rocking good time at a Bollywood party and watch your budding Pixar illustrator work magic at an animation workshop. Here’s an inside guide to what may be one of the most unique kids events all year.
Don’t be Late: The Children’s FilmFest runs the length of the entire festival, from October 4–14 in and around Marin County. Locations for the kids film festival include the Christopher B. Smith Film Center, 142 Throckmorton Theatre, Intel Computer Clubhouse and others. Check out the website for more info.
Our family loves to explore Mt. Tamalpais. Usually, we pack a picnic for lunch during our hikes, but on our last visit we decided to take the kids to the Mountain Home Inn, one of the few restaurants up on the mountain. It was a gorgeous, clear day, and we knew the views from the restaurant's deck would be amazing.
The Mountain Home Inn has been a fixture on Mt. Tam for a century, and it's a great place to stop for breakfast, lunch, or dinner before or after your Mt. Tam adventure. Of course we opted to sit outside on the deck, taking in the spectacular views of Marin County and relaxing in the shade of the patio umbrellas. Our friendly and attentive server brought us a bottle of water infused with mint as we perused the menu.
The Mountain home inn offers a variety of dishes, from bratwurst on a bun with house-made potato chips (a nod to the inn's beginnings as a Swiss/German roadhouse) and burgers to fresh pastas and a vegetable frittata. There's also a children's menu, which is offered up with crayons for coloring, that includes favorites like chicken fingers and fries, kids' pasta with butter and parmesan, french toast, and more.
Marin Mommies presents a guest article by Karen LeFurgy, Ring Mountain Day School parent and Vice Chair of the school's Board of Trustees.
As a mother who enjoys reading Marin Mommies on a regular basis, I wanted to share with other local moms a positive story about a group of engaged and active parents at Ring Mountain Day School. I’m very proud of our story and particularly eager to share it with other parents who may be searching for a top quality school that embodies what a true school community is all about.
All three of my children are attending or have attended Ring Mountain and I serve as Vice Chair on the Board of Trustees. For those who are unfamiliar with us, we are an independent K–8 school in Mill Valley with an enrollment of just under 100 students. At Ring Mountain, we try to be a little different than other schools by offering small class sizes of 8–15 students so that our faculty can apply an individualized, integrated approach and teach a core curriculum that emphasizes problem solving in real-life situations, promoting comprehensive
While Muir Woods National Monument is one of the San Francisco Bay Area's most visited tourist attractions, it also holds a lot of appeal for locals willing to brave the potential crowds. Popular with Marin residents and visitors alike for over 100 years, this spectacular stand of old growth coast redwoods offers some amazing views and a chance to see the wonders of nature up close. Muir Woods was declared a National Monument by President Theodore Roosevelt in 1908, and it's been a great spot for a fun and educational family outing ever since.
For locals, a visit here is still well worth the time, but you do have to keep in mind that it's one of the region's top tourist destinations. Parking at Muir Woods is limited, so get there as early as you can—it opens at 8 am most days so it'll be ready and waiting for you.
Also, try to go during the week if you can and avoid the weekend crowds. Needless to say, the summer months are also busier than other times of the year. While it's still an amazing place regardless of how many people are there, it's even more special when it's quiet and uncrowded. Even though the parking lot was full on our last visit, once we got into the park itself the crowds thinned out and it didn't seem nearly as busy as we had expected.
Speak to Me, Marin's premiere series of intelligent, inspiring speaking events for women, presents "A Long Bright Future," a discussion with Laura Carstensen, Ph. D., director of the Stanford Center on Longevity, professor of psychology and public policy, and author of A Long Bright Future: Happiness, Health, and Financial Security in an Age of Increased Longevity, on Tuesday, May 15, 2012, from 6:30–9:30 pm.
As an individual, a society and a nation, what are we to do about the additional 20 or 30 years we are expected to live? What do we really know today about life expectancy, and what should we be doing differently as a result? One of the world’s leading authorities on longevity and aging will address this uniquely 21st-century question. Dr. Laura Carstensen will help us re-envision a long life informed by the latest scientific and sociological research. Find out how you can make better decisions today about your lifestyle, family, career, finances and social infrastructure, so you can look forward to many healthy, fulfilling and financially stable years ahead.
Remember how exciting it was to get new shoes when you were little? That "new shoes" smell, the mysterious foot-measuring device, slanted mirrors, getting to run around the shop to test out a pair, and the pride you felt when you got to wear your brand new pair out and about for the first time ever.
Busy beez, a new shoe boutique just for kids in downtown Mill Valley is creating a lot of "buzz" with its competitively priced, high quality, and durable shoes for kids. They also know that putting kids in proper shoes is vital for their comfort and growth. And if you thought cute, stylish shoes were usually cheap and short-lived, think again—busy beez stocks shoes that are both high-quality and stylish.
With all the summer camp choices available out there, things can get a bit confusing when it comes to finding one for your children. If you need a little help with making your summer camp decision, don’t miss the Strawberry Recreation District Summer Camp Night on Thursday, March 1 from 5–7:30 pm.
Over 70 different camps from the Bay Area and beyond will attend, offering parents and campers an evening to explore, research and choose the perfect camp for this summer 2012. Meet special guest Susan Gal, local author of Into the Outdoors. There will also be a REI seminar on what to pack for camp, youth contests, and giveaways. This free event includes door prizes, a jump house, food vendors, and more. All ages are welcome (all children must be accompanied by an adult).
Stop by check out this summer’s offerings. For more info, please call (415) 383-6494 or visit their website. The Strawberry Recreation District is located at 118 East Strawberry Drive in Mill Valley.
Speak to Me, Marin's premiere series of intelligent, inspiring speaking events for women, presents "How New Media Will Transform Society, Politics and our Future," a discussion with provocative social media and technology maven Deanna Zandt on Tuesday, March 6, 2012, from 6:30–9:30 pm. Zandt is a media technologist and author of Share This!: How You Will Change the World with Social Networking.
As social media becomes increasingly present in our lives, a major cultural shift is underway. Through the power of relationships, sharing experiences, and organizing online, previously marginalized voices are pouring into and shaping public conversations like never before. With the explosion of social media, women's voices are now being heard, and the next generation is growing up in a world where social media brings unexpected freedom and opportunity, as well as potential peril. Deanna Zandt will discuss the power and challenges that this technological revolution brings to our lives, and will explore how the web is changing the course of society, business and politics, and will suggest ways you can best leverage its power for yourself, your family and your community.
Speak to Me, Marin's premiere series of intelligent, inspiring speaking events for women, presents "Passion and Impact: Inspiring Women Changing Our World," a panel discussion with four extraordinary women on Tuesday, January 24, 2012, from 6:30–9:30 pm. Speakers for this event will be Christine Bronstein, founder of A Band of Wives; Deborah Santana, author, philanthropist, activist for peace and social justice, and founder of Do A Little Foundation; Jennifer Pahlka, founder and executive director of Code for America; and Sheryl O'Loughlin, executive director of the Stanford Center for Entrepreneurial Studies.
There are so many wonderful ways to have a positive influence on the world—the real art is figuring out how to maximize your talents and focus on what you care about most. These four amazing women have each discovered their own unique approaches to changing the world in big and little ways. In this panel discussion, they will share their stories and inspiration, and will discuss ways we can each make our own impactful choices.