The National Cherry Blossom Festival is an annual event which celebrates springtime in Washington, DC as well as the 1912 gift of the cherry blossom trees and the enduring friendship between the people of the United States and Japan. This year’s festival will be MARCH 17-APRIL 15!
The predicted peak blooming period of the cherry blossoms for this year is APRIL 8-12.
By Christine Connally, APIA Community Counselor in MD
This question comes up from time to time and with the tax deadline approaching, I thought I would post a link with a great step by step tutorial. Click on the image of a check below to go to the tutorial on About.com.
Remember: Use pen and don’t leave extra blank space where someone can make changes.
If you don’t have a checking account and need to make a payment by check, you have two other options: money order or cashier’s check (bank check.) Money orders are available for purchase at your bank, the post office or the customer service desk of some retail stores (CVS, Safeway, WalMart.) You will be charged a small fee, $1.50-$5. Money orders need to be paid for with cash (not credit cards.) You will fill out the money order similarly to a check and keep your receipt portion for your records.
If you are paying your taxes:
Make check or money order payable to “United States Treasury.”
Write this info somewhere on the check:
Your full name
Your address and phone number
Your Social Security Number
2013 Form 1040 NR-EZ
Mail your tax forms (keep copies for your records) and payment to: Internal Revenue Service
P.O. Box 1303
Charlotte, NC 28201–1303
Being an au pair is an important role in a child’s life. When you are caring for a young child up to 45 hours per week, there are lots of opportunities to help them learn language. Many host parents are eager for their children to be exposed to foreign language. If this is true of your host parents, you can try the suggestions below, in both English and your native language.
Below are a few tips to start with, for more ideas, check out Ready at Five.
Read – Read to them daily, point out pictures and ask questions. Even if they can’t answer the questions, this is still modeling conversation.
Talk – Point out objects around them, names of their body parts, explain what you are doing and places you are going. Long before babies can speak, they benefit greatly from being spoken to.
Sing – You can sing childhood classics or make up your own silly songs. If you are looking for song ideas, HERE is a great website with lists of songs, lyrics and links to YouTube videos* of the songs. Children’s music is also available at the public library and even on iTunes.
Words – As children move from toddlers to preschoolers begin to point out written language.
Writing – Toddlers and preschoolers can begin to learn pre-writing skills by drawing with crayons or doing finger paints.
*The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends no screen time for babies under 18 months of age. For children 18 months to 5 years they recommend no more than 1 hour of high quality content. You can play the songs on youtube for the audio and not necessarily show the screen to the child.
The Charitable Irish Society of Boston organized the first observance of Saint Patrick’s Day in the United States in 1737. The tradition of celebrating this day continued to grow with the influx of Irish immigrants to the United States.
St Patrick’s Day, on March 17, remembers one of Ireland’s patron saints, St Patrick. It largely celebrates Irish-American culture in the United States but many non – Irish descendants enjoy the celebrations too . Celebrations include Irish themed parties, drinks and food. Many people get into the spirit by dressing in green clothing and eating green colored food. Irish clubs and pubs often hold parties.
St Patrick’s Day is not a federal holiday in the United States. Schools, businesses and organizations are open as usual. Public transport systems run on their regular schedules. The parades may be on or around March 17, so it is a good idea to check local sources for the exact location, date and time. Many parades are held throughout the country to celebrate the holiday. New York City has become the largest Saint Patrick’s Day parade in the world, outside Ireland. Thousands participate in the parade, including bands, firefighters, military and police groups, county associations, emigrant societies, and social and cultural clubs and was watched by close to 2 million spectators lining the streets. The parade marches up 5th Avenue in Manhattan and is always led by the U.S. 69th Infantry Regiment. New York politicians – or those running for office – are always found prominently marching in the parade.
The most common St Patrick’s Day symbol is the shamrock. The shamrock is the leaf of the clover plant and a symbol of the Holy Trinity
During Daylight Saving Time, clocks are turned forward one hour, effectively moving an hour of daylight from the morning to the evening. Today, approximately 70 countries worldwide utilize Daylight Saving Time, in at least some portion of the country. The U.S. started observing it in 1918, so it celebrates it’s 100th birthday, this year.
In March, we move the clock forward one hour, losing an hour of sleep. In November, we move the clock back one hour, regaining that extra hour of sleep.
An easy way to remember it is: Spring forward, Fall back.
Before you go to bed on March 10, be sure to set the clocks forward one hour!
We wish all of our au pairs and host mothers a very happy International Women’s Day. This is a global day celebrating the economic, political and social achievements of women past, present and future. In some places like China, Russia, Vietnam and Bulgaria, International Women’s Day is a national holiday. We are proud of our au pairs as they contribute to the theme for this year which is to inspire change for women’s advancement around the world. You certainly do that! For more information go to http://www.internationalwomensday.com/