Tag Archives: summer

Health & Safety – What are Ticks?

When the weather is nice, we spend more time outdoors with the children. Playing in the back yard, at the playground or walking on nature trails are great ways to get fresh air and exercise.

kids in woods

What are ticks? – Ticks are small mites that attach themselves to skin and suck blood. Click HERE to see examples of ticks.

Where are ticks commonly found? – Ticks are normally found in areas with trees, bushes or tall grass. This includes back yards, parks, nature areas and most places you would be spending time with the children outdoors in the nice weather.

What needs to be done? – When you return home from areas where ticks might live, carefully check the children (their skin and scalp) for ticks.

Most ticks do not carry diseases, and most tick bites do not cause serious health problems. But it is important to remove a tick as soon as you find it. Removing the tick completely may help you avoid diseases such as Lyme Disease that the tick may pass on during feeding, or a skin infection where it bit you.

Click HERE for Instructions on Removing a tick from WebMD.com.

Outdoor Movies in DC Area

17724871620_62f5c46ae0_zIf you are looking to enjoy a movie outdoors this summer, there are lots of local options to consider.

DC Outdoor Films website offers a very comprehensive list which includes locations in DC, Maryland and Virginia.


Here are a few popular ones:

Golden Cinema Series
Golden Triange BID offers outdoor movies Friday nights through July.

Movies on the Potomac
National Harbor offers movies on Sunday nights through September 27.

Screen on the Green 
Outdoor movies on the National Mall in DC

Drive-In Movie 
Don’t forget about Bengie’s Drive-in Movie Theater in the Baltimore area. It’s a good hour drive from most of our cluster, but well worth it for the experience if you’ve never been to a drive-in movie. Check out my blog post about Bengie’s Drive-in.



Create Your Own "Summer Bucket List"

The term “bucket list” was popularized in the 2007 Jack Nicholson/Morgan Freeman movie. The idea is to make a list of things you want to do before you “kick the bucket” (which is an idiom referring to death.) Even though that sounds kind of morbid, the idea has taken off as something much more positive and people create bucket lists to log the things they want to do at some point in their life.

With that said, a Summer Bucket list is a list of things to do before this summer ends.

Click here to print your own summer bucket list

Click here to print your own summer bucket list

Get lots of ideas to put on your list on our APIA Summer Fun Pinterest Board.

Free & $1 Summer Movies

When the kids are out of school for the summer, one place to cool off is at the movie theater. Below are three theaters in different parts of our cluster area that are offering $1 or free kid’s movies each week of the summer.

Tips to maximize your free movie enjoyment:

  • Movie admission is $1, but bring additional money for popcorn and/or drinks, if desired.
  • I suggest you arrive at least 15 minutes early to get a good place to sit.  Some of the movies can be very popular and fill up.
  • Have all the kids make a bathroom stop before going into the movie.
  • Do your homework and google the movie that’s playing in advance to make sure it will be a good one for your child/ren.
  • As with any outing, ask your host parents before taking the child/ren to the movies.
  • If you take the kids to the movie in Silver Spring, check out the fountain in Silver Plaza afterwards. Bring a towel and a dry change of clothes for the kids.  It’s hard to resist splashing in the fountain.

After the movie, do activities related to the movie:

  • Ask the children what were their favorite parts of the movie.
  • Find crafts related to the movie to complete with them.
  • Let the children act out parts of the movies.  Use household items as props and dress up in costumes to make it more fun.


15200 Major Lansdale Blvd, Bowie, MD, 301-262-9133

Doors open at 9:30 am, Movie starts at 10 am

6/10-6/11   Hotel Transylvania (PG), The Smurfs 2 (PG)

6/17-6/18   Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 (PG), The Pirates: Band of Misfits (PG)

6/24-6/25   Arthur Christmas (PG), Despicable Me 2 (PG)

7/1-7/2       Lego Movie (PG), Free Birds (PG)

7/8-7/9       Adventures of Tin Tin (PG), Rise of the Guardians (PG)

7/15-7/16   Kung Fu Panda 2 (PG), Madagascar 3 (PG)

7/22-7/23   The Croods (PG), Epic (PG)

7/29-7/30   Turbo (PG), Walking with Dinosaurs (PG)

8/5-8/6       Mr. Peabody & Sherman (PG), Rio 2 (PG)


900 Ellsworth Drive, Silver Spring MD, 301-565-8884

Doors open at 9:30 am, Movie starts at 10 am

6/17-6/18   Hotel Transylvania (PG), The Smurfs 2 (PG)

6/24-6/25   Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 (PG), The Pirates: Band of Misfits (PG)

7/1-7/2       Arthur Christmas (PG), Despicable Me 2 (PG)

7/8-7/9       Lego Movie (PG), Free Birds (PG)

7/15-7/16   Adventures of Tin Tin (PG), Rise of the Guardians (PG)

7/22-7/23   Kung Fu Panda 2 (PG), Madagascar 3 (PG)

7/29-7/30   The Croods (PG), Epic (PG)

8/5-8/6       Turbo (PG), Walking with Dinosaurs (PG)

8/12-8/13   Mr. Peabody & Sherman (PG), Rio 2 (PG)

Annapolis Harbour 9 (FREE)

2474 Solomons Island Rd, Annapolis, MD, 410-224-1145

Doors open at 9 am, Movie starts at 10 am

6/24-6/25   The Croods (PG)

7/1-7/2       Epic (PG)

7/8-7/9       Walking with Dinosaurs (PG)

7/15-7/16   Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs (PG)

7/22-7/23   Ice Age 4: Continental Drift (PG)

7/29-7/30 Alvin & the Chipmucks: The Squeakquel (PG)

8/5-8/6       Alvin & the Chipmucks: Chip Wrecked (PG)

8/12-8/13   Mr. Peabody & Sherman (PG)

8/18-8/20   Rio 2 (PG)

Drive-In Movies

Have you ever been to a drive-in movie? Drive-in movies are outdoor theaters where the movie is projected on a large screen and you watch from your car. There were once over 4,000 drive-in theaters in the U.S., now only a few hundred remain.

One of those still operating is right here in Maryland, in the Baltimore area.  Bengies Drive-In has been in business since 1956.  It is about an hour drive from most parts of our cluster, but since they are the only one left in the entire state of Maryland, that doesn’t sound so far.


Click here to visit the website

I have been taking my kids to drive-in movies at Bengie’s for the past few years and we love it.

The drive-in is only open Spring-Fall.

Drive-In Movie Tips for First Timers:

  1. You pay one price whether you stay for 1, 2 or all 3 movies. *Cash only for admission*
  2. You may stay in your car or bring chairs to sit in in front of your parking space.
  3. If you go in the summer and plan to sit outside, bring insect repellent spray or bug bracelets.
  4. If you go in the fall when the weather is cool, bring blankets.
  5. You cannot bring in outside food or drinks, unless you purchase an outside food permit. I recommend you buy your snacks there. They have some interesting options that you don’t see at a regular movie concession stand and that’s part of the full experience.
  6. Before you go, read the information on their website about headlights. You need to know how to disable your headlights when you are inside the movie.
  7. You also need to figure out how to turn your vehicle to the “accessory setting” with your key. This will allow you to listen to the movie without draining your battery. VERY IMPORTANT
  8. There is a note on their website about how to enter their address with GPS.  There address is listed as “Middle River”not Baltimore on GPS.

If you give it a try, let me know how you like it!