From my family to yours, I wish you a very Merry Christmas and look forward to celebrating each month of a happy new year in 2019!!
Each month I choose a local nonprofit to support. This month the SWFL Charity Spotlight is The Children's Network of Southwest Florida, which is committed to working with our community to protect children and preserve families.
The Children’s Network of Southwest Florida, LLC, was created in April 2003 as the Lead Agency for child welfare services in Circuit 20. It is the private, nonprofit lead agency that administers the child welfare system in Lee, Collier, Charlotte, Hendry and Glades Counties. Our mission is to work with the community to protect children and preserve families. Children’s Network is responsible for over 2,400 abused and neglected children, and delivers a comprehensive local system of care through subcontracts with more than 50 social service agencies. The agency also serves approximately 125 at-risk community children each month in our Diversion Program.
The Children’s Network of Southwest Florida reflects important principles:
We collected donations for their OPERATION SANTA program at the Holiday Sip & Shop Social this month! But here is how you can continue to help:
This month's Girl's Night Out Fort SWFL event was such a fun night full of cocktails and holiday shopping! Over 100 women came out to socialize, shop and enjoy the cooler weather! The first 50 ladies got a precious reusable Swag Bag full of goodies sponsored by Forema Boutique! And everyone had the opportunity to support some wonderful local women businesses. Our featured Photographer, Dayna Hurson, of Day Lily Visuals captured the night perfectly.
Save the date for the next Girl's Night Out SWFL event, January 29th at Society!
Did you know I write a column for the Lee Family News magazine? My column is typically on or around page 7 each month, so be sure to pick one up at the first of the month because it is filled with events, ideas and tips for things to do with your kids.
This month I talked about my favorite things to do with my kids in Southwest Florida to get into the holiday spirit:
Visit Santa’s Wonderland at Bass Pro Shops in FOrt Myers
In addition to the free photos with Santa kids can enjoy free crafts, games and test out some of the neat toys sold in the store. This is a fun way to spend a few hours and get you in the holiday spirit! I recommend going on a weekday to avoid heavy lines. Visit basspro.com more all the details.
Ride the Holiday Express Train at night around Lakes Park
This fifteen minute train ride on a 1/8 scale miniature train is exceptionally fun during this time of year as you ride through the lit tunnel and holiday decor. This year the holiday express is running Dec 14- 30th. Visit rrmsf.org for exact times and cost.
Watch a Holiday Show at Broadway Palm
My kids are a big fan of the Broadway Palm Children’s Theatre and their holiday performances never disappoint. Get dressed up and head to the show! This year it is Elf, The Musical and The Nutcracker. Get tickets at broadwaypalm.com
Visit Lights in the Gardens at Naples Botanical Gardens
Thousands of lights illuminate the Garden in a unique experience with a night of music and food. Tickets are required from naplesgarden.org
Unforgettable fun at home
From cookie decorating, gingerbread house building, to ornament crafts and an indoor ‘snowball” fight there are so many ways you can get kids engaged and entertained with holiday activities at home. Use this month as a memorable way to end the year with fun moments that will be remembered for years ahead!
Hi, I am Mandy!
I am obsessed with traveling, could eat tacos everyday, can sip wine or shoot whiskey, trying new restaurants gets me excited and my children fill the days with joy, laughter and challenges!