Fall Classes at Ark Row Center for Enrichment in Tiburon

August 26, 2012

Ark Row Center for Enrichment classesThis fall Tiburon's Ark Row Center for Enrichment Fun offers a wide range of fun and exciting classes for both kids and parents. Ark Row Center provides a warm, cozy, and nurturing environment for little ones, and specializes in providing quality children's programming where every child is considered unique. Ark Row Center's Mommy and Me classes, like their Mommy & Me Music and Movement, offer age-appropriate activities and experiences designed to enrich every child's development.

For two-year-olds who are not quite ready for preschool, but are ready for more opportunities for learning and social time, the center offers Twos Together. Twos Together is a "pre-preschool" that includes plenty of arts and crafts, music, stories and songs, learning materials, as well as outdoor time. The children are gently transitioned into being able to stay by themselves, giving moms a little new-found free time! Children do not need to be potty trained for Twos Together.

Openings this Fall at Marinwood Preschool

August 24, 2012

Marinwood preschoolStill looking for a fantastic preschool experience for your child? Marinwood Preschool, a highly regarded local school offering classes for children ages 2 to 4, still has a few openings for this fall.

In Marinwood's Parent-Toddler Class for 2- and 3-year-olds, parents and toddlers will meet new friends, create art, and enjoy music, storytime, and outdoor adventures. Marinwood Morning School is for 4-year-olds, and prepares children for kindergarten in a play-based, half-day program.

Marinwood classes are lower in tuition costs than most other early childhood programs in Marin County. Classes are held at Marinwood Community Center, 775 Miller Creek Road in San Rafael.

Join Studio 4 Art’s Fifth Birthday Party with a Free Art Day!

August 22, 2012

Free art day to celebrate Studio 4 Art's fifth birthdayNovato's Studio 4 Art celebrates its fifth birthday with its annual free art day from 10 am to 1 pm this Saturday, August 25. Come be part of the birthday festivities and create your own original piece of art! Studio 4 Art is located in downtown Novato at 1133 Grant Avenue.

Reserve your spot for the free art day through Studio 4 Art’s Facebook page—state the number of people in your group when reserving your time slot of 10 am, 11 am, or noon. You can choose to create in clay, painting, or illustration.

Studio 4 Art continues to grow and bring new programs to Novato and the surrounding areas of Marin and Sonoma. Last year the studio announced the opening of its second art workspace on the property called the Annex and it has been bustling with activity from workshops, to camps, to birthday parties, and student art shows. Also this past year, programs expanded to include the very popular teen-only art camp and portfolio building class, giving the middle and high school set an opportunity to work with peers in a focused manner to learn and hone in specific art interests and skills.

Education Meets Childcare with JumpStart! Nanny and Tutor Placement

August 22, 2012

Lauren and Leslie MuellerMarin Mommies interviewed Lauren Mueller of JumpStart!, the Marin-based nanny and tutor network, to find out more about their approach to childcare and education. Lauren is a Marin County native with over 15 years of experience in childcare and academics. JumpStart! understands the values and priorities associated with finding an exceptional caregiver or educator.

Having grown up with a nanny, Lauren personally understands the importance of finding the right childcare provider. Partnering with her Marin mom, Leslie, both bring to JumpStart! in-depth, first-hand knowledge of the requisite qualities needed to cultivate an environment which fosters both children’s well-being as well as parents’ satisfaction. Extensive screening is the backbone in the selection of dedicated individuals who are an across-the-board match with JumpStart’s mission and ideals.

Please tell us a little about you and your business. How did you get started?

My passion is kids. As a young girl, I used to plead with my parents to have another child so that I could be a “big sister”. Though that never occurred, I at first looked to babysitting as a way to nurture, educate, and play with children. Beginning at age 12, I have

"Dive-in" Dinner and Movie at the Rolling Hills Club

August 21, 2012

Dive In Dinner and a Movie at Rolling Hills ClubJust because school begins this week for many in Marin doesn't mean there aren't plenty of fun summer activities to still enjoy. This Saturday, August 25 from 6 to 9:30 pm, take in an outdoor screening of Pixar's classic Finding Nemo and a family dinner at Novato's Rolling Hills Club at their first ever "Dive In" Dinner and Movie.

Participate in fun pool games and enjoy a dinner of spaghetti and meatballs, salad, and garlic bread before you settle down to watch the movie on a giant, inflatable, 25-foot screen. The "Dive In" costs just $30 per family for club members and $35 per non-members family, so it's an inexpensive night out, as well as a great way to come see what the club is all about. The price also includes lemonade, and beer or wine for those 21 and over.

Bring your swimsuits, towels, and pool toys (you can even bring floaties and watch the movie from the pool!) as well as sleeping bags, blankets and pillows so you can get comfy on the pool deck. The movie starts at around 7:15 pm, but get there early to get a good spot, enjoy dinner, and participate in the activities.

Farm Fresh Food at Dolcini Farm Stand

August 19, 2012

Dolcini FarmstandIf you've driven the stretch of Point Reyes–Petaluma Road between Novato and Petaluma lately, you've probably seen the signs for the farm stand in the barn near the entrance to Red Hill Ranch, just north of Novato Boulevard. We decided to check it out the other day and are glad we did!

Pull into the driveway and follow the signs directing you to the farm stand. Owner Kitty Dolcini offers a wide selection of fresh seasonal produce, free-range farm eggs, and grass fed beef at her small stand in on of the ranch's old barns. Much of her produce is grown on the ranch, which leases some of its land to County Line Harvest, a leading local organic producer. Other produce—like summer fruit—comes from quality growers elsewhere in Northern California.

The Value of Vulnerability

August 17, 2012

Marin Mommies presents a guest article by Melissa Lapides, Marin mom, licensed marriage and family therapist, and parent educator.

Becoming a mother is a life-changing event for many people and usually women don’t know exactly what to expect. Many times you imagine your life as a mother based on stories you have heard from other women, media or your own relationship with your mother. You hear about the joys of motherhood, you hear about the changes in your relationships, you may even hear about how big of a transformation motherhood could be.

It is not always though that you hear the depths of how intense it is to devote yourself so deeply to another human being. Mothering is truly a deep practice of patience and compassion. Being able to nurture your children in such a way can be completely depleting at times. This is hard for most mothers to admit to one another.

Mothering is a practice of constant balancing and making sure not just the basic survival needs of the children are getting met, but also the physical, emotional and spiritual needs. Day in and day out of problem solving, nurturing and giving so much of yourself can be quite a task.

Fairfax Open Circle Arts and Sports Fall Guide 2012

August 15, 2012

FOCAS in FairfaxMarin Mommies presents a guest article by Anne Mannes, FOCAS Program Director in Fairfax. She highlights some of the classes and events happening through FOCAS this fall.

As the new program director for Fairfax Open Circle Arts and Sports (FOCAS), I am often asked what the history is behind the program and what type of classes we offer. FOCAS is a program that was developed over a decade ago by an artist-in-residence in response the need to have more recreational services in the community. Over the years it has fluctuated from offering some dance, drumming, and playgroup classes via the Town of San Anselmo’s recreation department to its current incarnation of offering its own Town of Fairfax seasonal field guide that provides birthday party rentals and a broad variety of classes for preschoolers to adults, including an increasingly popular camp for school-aged youth during the summer.

Since the MOU change with the Town of San Anselmo in 2011, FOCAS has appreciated the ability to improve local youth and family offerings, enhance utilization of our buildings and increase revenue for the Town of Fairfax. With the help of the Measure I / Youth Fund we are able to establish high quality and affordable programs for the community.

As we transition into the fall season, it is with excitement that I bring you this season’s field guide. We have some terrific classes and events for all ages. A sneak preview of the highlights below (catalogue available in mid-September):

Stock Up for Back-to-School at Mimi the Sardine, and Enter to Win a Lunch Clutch

August 15, 2012

Mimi the sardineStock up on waste-free lunch gear from Fabkins, Mimi the Sardine and Lunchbots tonight Wednesday, August 15 at Mimi the Sardine's Corte Madera Store. They'll have items up to 40% off, including organic cotton napkins, stainless steel containers, Mimi Kids items (lunchbugs, backpacks and more!), and the entire Mimi Home Spring/Summer Collection.

Enjoy wine and nibbles while you shop! It all takes place from 3–6 pm at 305 Montecito Ave A, Corte Madera.

We're also giving away a fabulous Mimi the Sardine lunch clutch to one lucky Marin Mommies reader! To enter to win, send an email with "Mimi" in the subject line to contests@marinmommies.com by 11:59 pm on Friday, August 17. We'll choose a winner at random. See our full giveway rules and terms here.

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