With spring just around the corner, Fair Oaks Mall is preparing for the anticipated arrival of the Easter Bunny. Beginning Friday, March 4, the Easter Bunny will greet visitors in Bunnyville presented by StoneSprings Hospital Center-- a three-dimensional town for kids to explore. Located on the lower level in Grand Court, Bunnyville features many places to visit including Hoppin’ Fresh Bakery, Hare Salon and 24 Carrot Bank. The last stop along the adventure is an opportunity tovisit with the Easter Bunny and have photos taken. Those who visit the Easter Bunny will receive a complimentary gift.
This special family-friendly holiday experience is being offered exclusively at Fair Oaks Mall from March 4 through March 26. For more information visit http://www.shopfairoaksmall.com/events.
Do You Ouli? Your mobile personal concierge has arrived! In a day and age where everything is mass-produced, mass distributed and nothing is tailor-made, the Ouli app brings a level of personalized service to the palm of your hand when and where you need it.
You tell Ouli what you want to do. You want to find a brunch spot on Sunday in Arlington? Ask Ouli. Need a place for date night? Ask Ouli. Looking for a reputable salon? You got it, ask Ouli. Ouli is a location-based app that sends you the most relevant offers, happenings and choices based on your preferences. Whether you want to eat, go out with friends, shop or find something to do around town, Ouli presents you with three personalized choices that are sure to give you the best options based on your chosen activity, time, location, history and preferences.
Whether you want to eat, go out with friends, shop or find something to do around town, Ouli presents you with three personalized choices that are sure to give you the best options based on your chosen activity, time, location, history and preferences. And, we're giving away a $100 restaurant gift card to your favorite local spot when you enter to win below!
We're live in Charlotte! On Thursday, I zipped down to North Carolina to celebrate the launch of Charlotte Housewives! Congrats to Kristen for organizing a successful event with over 200 women! You can see her full album on the Charlotte Housewives Facebook Page.
Save the date for one of our favorite events of the year -- Madame Tussaud's Easter Egg Hunt in DC!
You can take the kids for a fun and educational “eggs-ploration” through American History on Saturday, March 26th, 8:00am - 9:30am.
There are three sessions available: 8:00 AM, 8:30 AM, 9:00 AM.
So, if you're unable to attend the White House Easter Egg Roll, why not come along and meet all 44 US Presidents, and hunt for goodies along the way, at Madame Tussauds Washington, DC? Tons of eggs will be hidden throughout our Presidents Gallery. Once children have collected the empty eggs, they'll be able to trade them in for an Easter gift bag full of fun goodies (1 per child).
Tickets go quick - grab yours on the Madame Tussauds DC web site.
Admission is $25 for adults (13 and older) and free for children (12 and under). Price of admission will include FULL access to Madame Tussauds Washington, D.C., an Easter egg hunt through the Presidents Gallery, 1 gift bag per child, a meet & greet with the Easter Bunny, access to an on site petting zoo, and Easter crafts! All children must be accompanied by an adult and there is a maximum limit of 3 children for every 1 adult.
Madame Tussauds' Easter Egg Hunt Tips:
- Tickets are only available for purchase online and availability is limited.
- 150 tickets are available for each session on a first come, first served basis. Once a session is filled, tickets for that session will no longer be available for purchase.
- Children may bring their own bags, however bags will be available.
- There is a limit of 3 children for every 1 adult.
More details are available: www.madametussauds.com. See you there!
Join me tomorrow for the Emipre Today one year anniversary event at their Fairfax location. We'll be giving away a $1000 flooring makeover and Carrie Underwood tickets! From 11-1, stop by for light refreshments, product demos, goodie bags, and interior design workshops.
For more details, visit: http://www.empiretoday.com/stores/fairfaxanniversaryevent
Are you a poker player? Grab a seat at a table with me next Saturday and play for a good cause! The Chance for Life Charity event is coming up on February 27th at the Sphinx Club in DC — supporting Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation and Pediatric Cancer Research.
This is their 11th year hosting the event, which includes a 400-person poker tournament (Texas Hold'Em Poker Tournament with a $10,000 grand prize seat at the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas!), wine and chef’s tasting with Chef Mike Isabella and Jen Carroll, and 90s-themed after party.
The money that is raised at this event for Alex's Lemonade Stand Foundation funds cutting-edge medical research as well as nursing grants to improve the quality of life and care of children with cancer.
Event details: Saturday, February 27, 2016 at Sphinx Club at Franklin Square - 1315 K St NW Washington, DC.
For ticket information, please visit: http://chanceforlife.net/tickets/. You can also join the Facebook event and see who else is going!
Last weekend, we were invited to the grand opening of Cooper's Hawk Winery and Restaurant in Ashburn. You may not have yet heard of Cooper's Hawk as it is new to the region -- but my parents are actually wine club members and we frequent the Richmond location quite a bit. I was super excited to find out that they were finally making their mark close to home!
Their new location is in Belmont Chase Drive - and just a few minutes down route 7 from One Loudoun. The restaurant is open daily at 11am and has both indoor and outdoor seating - and a tasting room!
Cooper's Hawk boasts a modern, casual dining experience with warm service and a menu developed with its own handcrafted wines in mind. The menu features unique dishes with bin numbers listed next to each item on the menu - making it easy to select a perfect wine to pair with your dinner.
If you head in for happy hour, or are looking for a smaller plate to enjoy, my favorite menu item is the Mexican Drunken Shrimp (pictured below).
More details: Cooper's Hawk Winery and Restaurant is now open at 19870 Belmont Chase Drive, in Ashburn. The 10,985-square-foot restaurant will offer seating with occupancy for more than 300 guests, as well as a large private event room. The restaurant and tasting room will open daily at 11 a.m., and are open until 9:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, until 10:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and close at 9 p.m. on Sunday. Reservations are recommended. The bar will have extended hours, closing at 11:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, midnight on Friday and Saturday, and 11 p.m. on Sunday. For more information, visit www.coopershawkwinery.com.
Do your kids love movies? How about Disney movies? How about getting to see the newest Disney movie before it's released to the public? I'm super lucky to have an opportunity to share FREE advanced screening of Disney’s newest animated film ZOOTOPIA at AMC Tysons Corner on Thursday, February 18th at 7:00 PM. Officer Judy Hopps (voice of Ginnifer Goodwin), the very first bunny on Zootopia’s police force, jumps at the opportunity to crack her first case—even if it means partnering with fast-talking, scam-artist fox Nick Wilde (voice of Jason Bateman) to solve the mystery.
Please click the link below and reserve your seats if you're able to attend. Only 2 tickets per family. Visit www.seeitfirst.net and enter code 192169 to download and print tickets.
The screening is set for Thursday, February 18th - 7:00 PM at AMC Tysons Corner, 850e Tysons Corner Center, McLean, VA.
Please note that these advanced screenings are often slightly overbooked, so please arrive early to reserve your seat! See you there!
Last night was opening night for Disney on Ice at the Verizon Center. I was hosting an event, so I personally could not attend. Instead, I sent my good friend Deanne from Classic Portraits downtown to check it out. She said her two little girls had the best time! Disney on Ice is always one of my family's favorite shows -- so I know they had a blast! The show is running at the Verizon Center through Feb 15. It'd make for a great Valentine's Day family date night! Check out the photos below or you can find the full album on our Facebook page!
For more details, show times, and ticket prices, you can visit www.disneyonice.com.
Valentine's Day is on Sunday night this year, so my dreams of a luxe date night out on the town are probably going to be thrown out the window. We have busy work schedules on Monday morning and I have to get my first grader off to school early, so a family date night at home looks like a good plan to me!
If you're like me, and staying in for a special Sunday night with your sweetie (or planning a family date night), I always like to try a new recipe and show off my fancy cooking skills -- because the old saying is true: the key to a man's heart is through his belly!
I reached out to my friends at Safeway for some tips on how to cook the perfect filet mignon - and they partnered me with celebrity Chef Huda Mu'min to create a five-star date night meal at home. I asked her to help me create a tasty menu that everyone would enjoy - and that wouldn't be too hard to follow, or too hard on my wallet.
So, what does Chef Huda think is the key to a man's heart? Her famous Jerk Filet Mignon paired with Bourbon Maple Sweet Potato Mash and Sautéed Garlic Kale. (photo credit: Chef Huda)
JERK FILET MIGNON WITH BOURBON MAPLE SWEET POTATO MASH
Recipe By: Chef Huda, Yields: 2 Servings
Bourbon Maple Sweet Potato Mash
2 medium sweet potatoes - peeled and cut into chunks
1 1/2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces
3 tablespoons bourbon or honey bourbon
1/4 cup pineapple juice
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
Over high heat bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Add sweet potatoes and cook 10 to 15 minutes until tender. Drain sweet potatoes and set aside. Place the same pan back on over medium heat. Add butter, sugar, maple syrup, nutmeg, pineapple juice and bourbon. Cook mixture for 2-3 minutes and stir. Add the sweet potatoes back into pan and toss. Once sweet potatoes are coated, use a smasher or food processor to smash sweet potato to your desired smoothness.
Sautéed Garlic Kale
1 pound Lacinato or Italian kale - cleaned and de-stemmed
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 tablespoon of garlic - minced
1 tablespoon water
Salt and pepper to taste
Place a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add in olive oil. Add in garlic and cook until tender. Slice kale into strips or ribbons and add to pan with water. Cover and cook for 3-5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Jerk Filet Mignon
2 Filet Mignon (6-8 ounce)
1 cup mushrooms - sliced
1-2 tablespoons Jerk seasoning
1 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoons freshly cracked pepper
3 tablespoons butter - unsalted
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
~ Preheat oven to 400℉ degrees
Start with seasoning the filets generously with jerk seasoning, salt and pepper. Place medium size pan or cast iron skillet over medium high heat. Add in 1 tablespoon of oil and butter, let butter melt. Once the pan is hot place seasoned filet in pan. Sear filets on both sides for about 2-3 minutes or until desired browning occurs. Once seared remove pan from heat and place into oven for 5-8 minutes, depending on desired temperature for filet.
Chef Huda Tip: Recommended cooking temperature for this filet is medium rare or medium. 125℉-130℉ for medium rare and 135℉ for medium. Always let meat rest away from heat for 3-5 minutes before serving.
Once filets are done remove from pan and let rest. In same pan add in 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil or butter and mushrooms and stir. Place over medium heat. Sauté mushrooms until tender. Add salt and pepper, if needed.
Now let’s make something pretty and delicious. Once all components are done. Plate as desired stacked and side by side. This dish pairs beautifully with Cabernet Sauvignon or Zinfandel.
If you're the man of the house and you're going to be cooking "for her" - don't forget to add the desserts and flowers. While you're grabbing your filet's at Safeway, swing by the floral section and pick up their $5 tulip bunch, or splurge on their "Unforgettable" bouquet of roses (and their roses come with the Safeway 5 day guarantee).
Of course, I wouldn't mind if my Valentine's Day dinner was finished with Safeway's chocolate covered gourmet long-stem strawberries! (just in case someone I know is reading this...)
Cheers + Happy Valentine's Day, Ladies!
*Thanks to Safeway for sponsoring content in this post!
Hi! my name is Andrea and I'm a not-so-average Northern Virginia blogger, mom, and transplant from the Midwest. I host Girls Night Out events, meet ups, and write about events and my adventures in the DC area. I love to travel, brunch, and drink wine with my neighbors! I'm known to live on the wild side and order Venti iced double shots at 5pm.