Big Talent Comes to the Dallas Arboretum on September 17 (Disney, American Idol, and The Voice, Oh My!)


A sneak peak of the Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden at the Dallas Arboretum.

This is your chance to win big with your kids/tweens. Take them to see the dreamy Disney star Sterling Knight, as well as Dallas born and bred finalists and top contestants from American Idol and The Voice. (Full disclosure: One of them just so happens to be my best friend–Stephanie Crews). The musical stars will perform at the Dallas Arboretum on September 17 from 7:00 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. in celebration of the opening of the Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden. It’s sure to be a night filled with great music, gorgeous views, and good old fashioned family fun.

If you’ve been to any of the Thursday night concerts at the Arboretum, then you know the drill. It will be at the usual concert stage and lawn, so bring your picnic baskets and blankets. For the food truck fanatics (and those of you who already make enough sack lunches each morning and need a break), there will be a taste for every palate. Klyde Warren Park regulars The Butcher’s Son, Gandolfo’s, and What’s Da Scoop will be offering their specialties for purchase.

Tickets are $18 for members and $30 for non-members. Teen Zone tickets (where they can get up-front access) are $40, but if you really want to impress your little one, table sponsors receive premium seating and an invitation to meet and greet with Sterling Knight and all of the other artists in the Camp House from 6:00 p.m. to 6:45 p.m.. Tables seat eight and go for $500.

Don’t miss out on this exciting opportunity. See you there! For more sneak peak pictures of the Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden, check out this post!

Meet Pinkalicious at Neiman Marcus NorthPark

I had the pleasure of taking my girlies and two of their buddies to see Pinkalicious at the Dallas Children’s Theater a couple of weeks ago, and they had an utter and complete blast. There were all sorts of fun happenings surrounding the show — crafts before curtain call, cupcakes during intermission — but the highlight, by far, for the girls was getting to meet the actress that played Pinkalicious after the show.

There were some tears, a bit of hyperventilating…we were a fainting spell away from a full-on Beatles moment friends.

Well tomorrow your little can have her very own Pinkalicious “up close and personal” encounter at Neiman Marcus NorthPark. The pink loving pixie will be signing books and telling stories tomorrow from 5-7 p.m. in the Children’s World department on Level Two. There will also be treats and crafts for the kiddos to enjoy.

Just be sure to reply to 214-363-8311, ext. 2239 or via email to if you’d like to attend.

Have fun!


Into The Weekend: A Killer Consignment Sale, Fort Worth Fest, and Autumn at The Arboretum

We’ve got a bit of a good news/bad news scenario in terms of weather this weekend. Good news first — it’s going to be (significantly) cooler. The bad? An awfully big chance of rain tomorrow. Rain, in and of itself, is not a bad thing, but given 1/3 of my weekend agenda involves being outside, it does put a bit of a cramp in things. (While I tend to think it builds fortitude to let my kiddos frolic in the rain, I just don’t particularly want to do it with them.)

But I’m forging ahead with the plans, as you know what they say about Texas weather (well I’m not actually sure exactly what they say, but I’m pretty sure it’s something about “changing”), so here goes:

Three Sisters Consignment Sale — This represents the indoor portion of the weekend. The (huge) annual sale at Highland Oaks Church of Christ is happening today from 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. and tomorrow from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., and it’s good friends. It’s chock full of gently used clothing (newborn to size 16), shoes, toys, children’s furniture, maternity items, and baby equipment (strollers, high chairs, car seats, swings, etc)…You get the idea.

Ok, now we’re heading outside, ready?

Forth Worth Fest — Chris Mosley did a stellar overview of this two day music festival on Front Row today, so I’ll point you to that for the deep dive. But I will say that outdoor live music + kids (in my opinion) is pretty much always a good thing. Pack a picnic and make the trek west for the early shows. The line-up is stellar, but we’re targeting Air Review, Telegraph Canyon, and Soul Track Mind.

Autumn at The Arboretum — There’s also the celebration-o-all things fall at the arboretum featuring the kid pleasing 50,000 + pumpkins and gourds. The littles can run wild in the hay bale maze while you tuck into a glass of wine and some cheese. It’s a win/win.

Happy weekend!

It’s Time for Patio Sessions!

(Our collective girlies taking in one of last year’s Patio Sessions.)

Patio Sessions at the AT&T PAC kicks-off tonight, and, I have to say, I’m pretty jazzed. We took the girlies last year for the Destry/Orbans show, and it could not have been a more blissful evening.

The sessions happen every Thursday evening through May 31st, and it is a perfect, perfect event for kiddos… “Why”, you ask? Well let me break it down for you…

  1. It starts at 5:30, and ends at 7:30 (i.e. it’s short and early).
  2. It’s outside with lot of places for the littles to run and play and splash around (the splashing is the deal sealer for my crew).
  3. You can bring your own food and drinks…thus easily satisfying all your family member’s various food needs. + Who doesn’t love a picnic??!
  4. Your kids can dance around like wild people and nobody will bat an eye.
  5. And for you, they sell wine and beer…and this season’s lineup of bands is fantastic!

It’s foolproof I tell you. Go. You’ll be happy that you did.

into the weekend

I think it’s safe to say that most of us grew up hearing the story of Charlotte’s Web. I’m sure my dad read it to us at least four times, and each time we were a rapt audience. To see E.B. White’s classic tale played out in live-action, schlep the fam over to Casa Mañana where the story is staged from Feb 10-26. (For free tickets this Friday, check out this giveaway over here.) (image courtesy FrontRow)

For all you fashion savvy who like good things on the cheap, you’re in luck. F.I.G’s  Finale Sale is this weekend. Grab a ticket to score designer duds for a fraction of the retail price. (image courtesy pink memo)

And on Sunday, absorb some culture at the Amon Carter in Fort Worth for Family Funday. Make art with the kiddos and explore the galleries. Be sure to check out the newest show, Romance Maker: Watercolors of Charles M. Russell, which is sure to delight any wannabe cowboys in your bunch.

into the weekend

We’re still reveling in Christmas warmth and cheer around here, playing with new toys, reading new books and watching movies at odd hours of every day. But there is a bit of the old cabin fever starting to rear its head, so we’re aiming to get out and about these last few days of the year.

In order to shake off a creeping (albeit lovely) sort of laziness, we’re planning on getting out for a nature walk today, most likely on Turtle Creek. We love those huge old trees that canopy the walk-ways there, surrounded by all the beautiful homes decked out for the season. It’s always totally transportive to walk there. {image via}

For a jolt that’s high octane and sure to curb the post-Christmas blahs, the Dallas Children’s Theater is presenting the Lone Star Circus, a fantabulous explosion of colorful energy. Yeah, when I was a kid I pretty much thought I’d grow up and be in a circus like this someday, so maybe we’re really going for me…?

To ring in the New Year, we’re getting cozy with friends and family — making homemade pizza, Italian cream cake and cocktails. We’ll be toasting this old year with gratitude for all its gifts and blessings, with hopes for new ones in the year to come. Cheers to all of you!

into the weekend

So tomorrow is officially the last day of school for the kiddos before Christmas break, and may I just say that I have one school-exhausted little girl on my hands… (A semester of Singapore math = lots of spent energy.) After I scoop her up tomorrow, she and I are headed out on a Mom and daughter date at Bolsa Mercado, the newest brainchild of the guys that started Bolsa and Smoke. Bolsa Mercado is fantastic — fresh coffee, sandwiches, bread, juice, wine and dry goods as well. It’s the place we were always looking for, and we are so glad it’s here. (The Mercado’s pastrami and cabbage sandwich is pretty much the greatest thing to grace my tastebuds in a long time, in case you were wondering.)

Bolsa Mercado / Davis Street, Oak Cliff 75208 {images by Lauren Drewes Daniels via}

And it’s the weekend that grandma rolls into town, and grandma loves herself some  Neiman’s. So we’ll be getting dressed up and heading to the downtown store to ogle the windows, sip hot cocoa in the coffeeshop beneath the escaltor, and watch other kids get their picture taken with Santa (ain’t no way I’m braving that line, friends… ain’t no way).

Neiman Marcus / 1618 Main Street Dallas / holiday hours

{still from the 1963 film A Child’s Christmas in Wales, narrated by the poet}

And I was thrilled to see that the Undermain Theater  will do a reading of Dylan Thomas’ A Child’s Christmas in Wales at DMA Sunday at 2 pm in the Horchow Auditorium. My better-half is quite the Dylan Thomas buff, so we’re pretty excited to hear the poem read by the talented Undermain actors.

Sunday/18 December / 2 pm / Dallas Museum of Art / 1717 North Harwood

into the weekend

{image via Bike Friendly Oak Cliff}

The weeks leading up to Christmas, full of preparations and cozy-making, are our favorite time of year. Though gift-buying can be hectic and frazzling, the perks of the season by way of wonderment and magicalness (not a word, mind you) are endless. One of our yearly Christmastime traditions is a walk through Jinglebells on Bishop, the annual handmade craft fair and festival in the Bishop Arts District. There is always a plethora of great gifts by local artisans and delicious food, music and general merriment.

Bishop Arts District / 419 N. Bishop 75208 / Dec. 1-  6-9 pm, Dec. 3 noon-9

Festivals abound this weekend it would seem — so be sure to catch the Performing Arts Center’s 2nd annual Tree Lighting Festival on Friday in front of the Winspear Opear House. There will be carriage rides, crafts for the kids, hot chocolate and cookies and local holiday music, all leading up to the grand finale of lighting the big beautiful tree on Flora Street.  

AT&T Performing Arts Center / 2403 Flora Street, Dallas / Dec. 2, 5-9 (tree lighting 7 pm)

 If you’re hungry for more holiday merriment, Old Downtown Carrollton is also hosting a Christmas extravaganza this weekend that sounds full of all things quitessentially jolly –  a Christmas tree lighting festival Friday night – with carolers, cocoa and nighttime shopping on the square — sounds perfect for ringing in the season. Head back to the square Saturday for a kids winter wonderland, train rides, carriage rides, artisans, and delicious food. Celebrate the season’s spirit of giving and bring an unwrapped toy to donate to Toys for Tots.

Christmas on the Square / Main Street, Carrollton / Dec. 2, 5-9; Dec. 3, 10-5

into the weekend

I don’t know about you, but the time change has wreaked all sorts of havoc on our household. So I’m dreaming of a lazy weekend full of couch potato-ness and family naps (in some altered state of existence where family naps actually happen). But if we do muster enough energy for a Saturday outing, a trip to the Opera House to see Madeline’s Christmas is at the tippy top of our list. Not only is my four year old mildly obsessed with Madeline, but seeing the DCT performance at the Winspear sounds like a pretty good way to usher in that holiday spirit (hard to believe its time).

Winspear Opera House /  2403 Flora Street  Dallas / 214. 880.0202

Another good reason to get out is to support Art Conspiracy 7, an annual event that brings local bands and artists together to raise money for a good cause. This year’s proceeds go to  Musical Angels, a local non-profit that provides music lessons for hospitalized children. Datahowler, The Hope Trust and J. Charles and the Trainrobbers will take the stage and original artwork by 150 artists will be auctioned off — yeah, we might have to make it out for that one too.

ArtCon7 / 511 West Commerce in Dallas / 7 p.m.

Meandering around East Dallas to peek inside some of the stunning homes on tour for the Lakewood Home Festival is on the list of possibilities for Sunday. I’ve long admired this vine-covered 1927 tudor perched along Tokalon and am quite curious to see how the inside measures up to its beautiful exterior.

Funny how easy it is for a lazy weekend to turn into a host of plans…


into the weekend

There is such a beautiful Fall crispness in the air, isn’t there? It encourages lots of outdoor time in nature gathering autumnal treasures like acorns, colorful leaves and seedheads, until little noses and cheeks get rosy in the cold. It feels good – mood-shifting and elevating — to dig out jackets and boots and head out on some invigorating Fall excursion.

To that end, we suggest making the short jaunt south of the city to the Trinity River Audubon Center. With its beautiful main building (made almost entirely from recycled materials) to the brambley trails and view of the Trinity River, the Audubon Center is absolutely one of the most beautiful spots in Dallas, one of our favorite this-is-why-we-live-here places. Without fail, a walk through the woods looking for birds, marveling at the beehives, and collecting natural artifacts leaves us all feeling reconnected to those often neglected, essential wonderment parts of ourselves.  Get there, and leave feeling more whole.

 Triniy River Audubon Center / 6500 S. Loop 12 Dallas 75217 / Adults $6, kids 2 and under free, kids 3+ $3

After you get your fill of Nature, head over to Dallas Heritage Village for an Old Time Music Jam in the village print shop. I know we have quite a few very serious music-buff dads out there, so I wager this little activity might strike the fancy of those of you that, say… make your own instruments, have racks of instruments in hallways or keep instruments in tabernacle-like cases, one day dreaming of washing your hands of civilization for life on the road as a traveling family band where you’ll recount the full histories of Appalacian music-roots between sets like some PBS program. If you’re that kind of person, get haulin’ to this event. {Old music man image via here, which is quite the resource for old time music lovers.}

Dallas Heritage Village / 1515 South Harwood, Dallas / Adult $9, kids 4-12 $5


And of course we hope to see you Saturday for our Mark Bradford DIY at the DMA and Bows and Arrows! We’ve been cutting paper scraps, filling old tomato cans with paint brushes and pilfering paint samples from home improvement stores all week… so we hope your ready to get your mimic-art-making ON!

Last, but certainly not least, join us in bidding adeiu to Dallas’ most wonderful, game-changing, brick-and-mortar kids’ boutique, our very own Christine Visneau’s Little Bean. Christine and her family close the shop this weekend after two years of raising the bar on Dallas retail by proving that imagination and quality always triumph over excess and homogeny. We’ll sorely miss Christine’s beautiful little outpost there on Junius, where handmade clothes hung alonside some of the best and brightest in books and toys, but we’re a better city because it was there, and we’re all so very grateful. We all look forward to what’s next from one of our city’s most talented women!

Little Bean / 5308 Junius

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