South Sound Weekend Kids’ Calendar: Family Fun And Things To Do March 13th-15th!

Want something great to do with the kids in Tacoma this weekend?

Boy, have I got you covered! Don’t worry-I have plenty of family fun for the rest of the South Sound too. Gig Harbor area readers don’t want to miss Puget Sounds Fun Day. One note-there aren’t a lot of St.Patrick’s Day happenings around here. While I think you’ll find plenty of other ideas to keep you busy, if you’re determined to have fun with the wearing ‘o the green, you might want to check the list from our Seattle based friends at Parent Map! 

Family Fun Day Flyer


Play all day with our friends at Wiggleworks at the South Hill Mall!

It’s always kids’ night out at Pump It Up on Fridays. Call for details and to hold your spot.

Free Pony Ride Friday with regular admission at Jozee Rooz Indoor Petting Zoo


All Over

Kids’ Club at Michael’s Stores  It’s tissue paper flower mkaing today. 2.00 per child/ sessions start on the half hour from 10AM-11:30  For ages 3 and up

South King County

Touch tanks at HCC Mast at Redondo  Free and open to the public every Saturday from 10-2

Tacoma/Greater Pierce County

Read With A Princess-The girls from the Daffodil Festival will be out at area libraries to read stories again. Free, drop-in event-bring your camera; the princesses will be happy to pose with your little ones. You can get one of the first of this year’s official posters! 11AM University Place, Gig Harbor, Sumner, Tillicum, Eatonville, Summit, Steilacoom, Fife, Buckley, Downtown Puyallup  or 1PM Parkland/Spanaway, Edgewood/Milton, Key Center, Orting, South Hill, Bonney Lake, Graham, Dupont, Lakewood

Mega Multiples Sale from Tacoma Parents of Multiples  Great chance to score BIG bargains on gently used clothing and gear! Don’t miss it! I have a post with more about this sale here.

Build a Bear And Fun With The Daffodil Princesses at the Tacoma Mall  Join daffodil princesses to make crowns, hear stories, and do crafts. You can also help put the love into a Build A Bear to donate to the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department on behalf of Charlie’s Dinosaur. The event is free-you are encouraged to purchase a bear to stuff with love and donate. 4-6PM

 Lego Mindstorms at the University Place Library   Drop in and learn how to program a simple robot. 2-3pM for ages 8 and up  You could go get a latte and a cookie with your younger kiddos with our friends at Frog n Kiwi!

Pippi Longstocking at Tacoma Musical Playhouse  Ongoing show times

Block Play at the Buckley Library 1-2:30  Drop in and build time for young children

The Parrot Lady visits our friends at Jozee Rooz Indoor Petting Zoo in Spanaway  Regular admission for the first 30 minutes, which is an educational talk. Extra fee if you want to meet and get pics with parrots! More info. here! 

 Pi Day at the Pierce College Science Dome/planetarium 12-4 free celebration of math and science with free planetarium shows (you do need to reserve a spot for those), and a variety of free, hands-on activities led by students.  The Tacoma Astronomical Society will present the solar system in the evening after the official Pi events, and host a star party, weather permitting

Father/Daughter dance in Lakewood


LMNOP Kids’ Consignment Sale  Big kids’ consignment sale event at the armory. Also Sunday!

 Irish Dance Performance at the Tumwater Regional Library  Free  10:30

Visit the new South Sound Estuarium  10AM-3PM

Visit the LOTT Wet Science Center  Free and open to the public every weekend It’s one of their semi-regular tours of the wastewater treatment plant today. Participants must be 10 and up and wearing closed toe shoes. Slideshow followed by the tour at 1PM.  There should be activities at the center for younger children.

Gig Harbor/Kitsap

Puget Sounds Like Fun Day  A full day of fun celebrating the Puget Sound from 10-2 at the Key Peninsula Civic Center  Workshop on clean boating, hands-on science demonstrations, kids’ crafts, and more.  I have a post with more about this event here.

Read With A Princess-The girls from the Daffodil Festival will be out at area libraries to read stories again. Free, drop-in event-bring your camera; the princesses will be happy to pose with your little ones. You can get one of the first of this year’s official posters! 11AM Gig Harbor library or 1PM Key Center


St. Paddy’s Day Festival at the Harbor History Museum in Gig Harbor  7K Race or 2 Mile Fun Run/Walk followed by music, food, vendor booths, and other fun. You can register day of, but you won’t get a t-shirt.

3, 2, 1 Brass Off! With Mini Maestros at the University of Puget Sound   Special shows from the Tacoma Symphony Orchestra introduce classical music to young children. Go early for the instrument petting zoo!

I’ll be adding a few more Sunday events later today-do check back! Know something great I missed? Let me know!

If you’re new here-welcome! I have a list just like this one every Friday morning, and tons of ideas every day in between. I hope you’ll take some time to explore the site and consider becoming a regular here.

We also have two giveaways coming up, and they’re our biggest EVER. Plus, we’re putting the finishing touches on this year’s guide to Easter Egg Hunts and Easter events. You won’t want to miss any of it. Come join us on Facebook, Follow me on Twitter, or Pinterest, or (My fav) get the daily email.

Spring Classes At Youth Acting Studio

Looking for kids’ acting classes near Lacey, Dupont or the greater JBLM area? Reader favorite, Youth Acting Studio, is now enrolling for their new spring classes!

We love all our sponsors, but I especially enjoy sharing Melissa’s classes because every time I do, I hear more raves from readers who just love them.


Melissa offers acting classes for children of all ages, and she’s added new offerings so you’re sure to find something great for your aspiring star or little diva!

As always, the atmosphere is positive and supportive and emphasizes teamwork, creativity, and confidence building (no stage mama drama here)! Melissa skillfully guides students through a process that begins with theater games and leads to writing, designing, and acting. Each child gets an opportunity to shine while making friends and having a ton of FUN! It’s definitely so much more than just putting on a play.

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There are classes for kids as young as 5 and as old as 17, and there is something for every level of actor from, “Theater Playground,” for 7-9 year olds to, “Theater Lab,” for tweens and teens!   You can check out all the class offerings right here.

Melissa keeps all her classes small to allow for personal instruction, and they do fill quickly. If you’d like a spot for your young actor or actress don’t wait! You can sign up online for DuPont classes (No, you don’t have to live in DuPont), and you can register online for Lacey classes through their parks and recreation department (non-residents welcome).  Oh, and I think you’ll find the tuition very affordable, especially if you’ve priced other children’s drama programs.

Full class descriptions including dates and times and quick links to register are right here! You’ll also see a contact form if you have more questions for Melissa!

You’ll also want to like Youth Acting Studio on Facebook. Melissa adds lots of fun updates there, and it’s the best way to keep up on the latest Youth Acting Studio happenings.


‘This is a sponsored post, and I would be Delighted if you mentioned Sounds Fun Mom when you chat with Melissa!


RESCUE Yourself! My Five Best Ways To Be A Less Stressed Mom!

Like every mom I know, I am always juggling different roles in my life-trying to be a good mom, a good wife, a good business owner, and so on.

Sometimes, I feel like I’m just flopping in every direction!

Right now, for example, my house is a mess, and I’m trying to decide if we’ve already ordered pizza one too many times this week (And, yeah, I know it’s only Wednesday…). Just keeping it real, dear readers!

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If you’re taking care of children, you have to find ways to manage your stresses, whether they’re little or big ones.

Here are the 5 ways I’ve found to be a less stressed mom!   I hope you find them helpful, and I’d love to hear what you do, too!

  1.  Talk It Out!  Sometimes I talk to my husband or a friend about what is stressing me out. Sometimes I just talk  out loud to myself.  I know that sounds odd, but hearing my current worries  out loud helps me recognize whether I’m blowing things out of proportion, or maybe I truly need to just take something off my plate.
  2.  Outsource! The BEST thing I’ve done in ages has been getting my fabulous pal, Keri, to help with this little site. If you’ve noticed the spiffier graphics around here, they’re all her doing. Maybe you can have someone help fold laundry, or get a neighborhood teenager to walk the dog or watch the kids while you prep freezer meals.
  3.  Say, “No.” I know this is easier said than done, but if you are stressed out because you have volunteered for too many things, you need to step back. Someone WILL step up and take your place. If you’ve never actually enjoyed the school carnival because you’re always running it, I’m talking to you!
  4.  Exercise and Sleep. I will tell you straight up that I’m being a huge hypocrite here, because while I’m pretty good at getting sleep, I do a terrible job of getting to the gym. When I do, though? I feel a million times better. As far as sleep goes, there is a reason sleep deprivation is a form of torture, people. Only getting a few hours of sleep a night does terrible things to your mental and physical health. I promise you know someone who will come hold the baby while you nap.
  5.  Which brings us to ……get help! I am a big believe in finding a support system, whether it’s a mom’s group, a book club, your doctor, or just some trusted pals. Oh, and if you find yourself surrounded by women who seem to have figured out how to do it all perfectly? Find a new group-like STAT.

RESCUE-PastillesYou might also want to try new RESCUE products. They’re all natural, non habit forming products that may help you deal with stress and anxiety or sleep better. They’re homeopathic products that were developed by a doctor and have been used by millions worldwide for generations.

I tried the RESCUE Pastilles, which are chewy lozenges with a black currant flavor.

I did feel like they had a calming effect, and they also got me to stop clenching and grinding my teeth, a SUPER unhealthy stress related habit of mine

RESCUE stress relief products are available now in the US at CVS, Walgreens, Whole Foods, Sprouts and wherever you find natural products! I found them at Walgreens in the Sleep Aid aisle.

As I said right above, I’m not a doctor (and you should use an actual doctor for medical advice), but if you like pursuing natural remedies, I think you’ll be interested in checking these out. There is a whole line of RESCUE products, and right now you can get a high value coupon to try them yourself, right here!

How about you? Do you have a lot of stress in your life these days? I’d LOVE to hear how you cope. If you have time to leave a comment, I know other readers would benefit from your best tips!

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.




Just Between Friends Olympia Spring Sale

Lacey and Olympia area readers, the huge, Just Between Friends, kids’ consignment event is coming right up March 19th-22nd! This is a great chance to score all kinds of kids’ duds and gear at bargain prices. If you need to save on clothes, toys, or equipment for your little ones (and who doesn’t???) this is a sale you won’t want to miss!

OlySP15_Web Coupon (1)

I always enjoy shopping JBF events because the merch is all clean and organized, and there is So Much to choose from. Plus, you know with kids’ consignment, you’re getting items that were likely barely used! They even check all the gear to make sure it isn’t on a recall list. You won’t get that at a garage sale!  If you know someone with a new baby on the way, make sure they know about this one! The pics below are ones I took at a different JBF event, but you’ll find similar awesomeness at this one. Jenny tells me it gets bigger every time!

Just Between Friends Sale

Organizer, Jenny, sent along the rest of the scoop for you below. Oh, and she’s also very nicely offered to let SFM readers show this pass on your phone for FREE entry. Of course, if you qualify for the special presale, you’ll want to do that. Woot! There is also a ticketed option for Prime Time Shopping if you like to get there first.

Just Between friends sale puyallup

Address: Cooper Point Marketplace – 1200 Cooper Point Rd. SW, Olympia 98502  (we will be in a vacant retail space in Cooper Point Marketplace, near the Capital Mall)


Sale Dates And Time March 19-22

  • 3/19 (Thurs)- Prime Time Shopping 4p-9p $10 online
  • 3/19 (Thurs) Presale 5p-9p for 1st time parents, military families, foster parents, and teachers  If you qualify for the peresale, be sure to sign up!  Registration is required.
  • 3/20 (Fri) 9a-7p ($2 Admission)  or show this post for FREE entry!
  • 3/21 (Sat) 9a-5p ($1 Admission)   or show this post for FREE entry!
  • 3/22 (Sun) 9a-2p 50% Off Sale (Many items half off!) (FREE Admission)

The complete schedule is also here.

If your own closets could use a good clean out, be sure to get information about consigning at the next event while you’re there! Jenny also keeps the JBF Olympia Facebook page up to date, so you may want to like that. Don’t forget to keep this post handy for your free admission to the sale.

Disclosure: Sounds Fun Mom receives promotional consideration at the JBF Olympia sale in exchange for this post. Be sure to let the folks there know you’re a reader!

Playground Report: DeCoursey Park

The boys and I finally made it to Puyallup’s newest fun place for kids, the renovated playground at DeCoursey Park.

It would be a convenient location for a playdate meet-up with Tacoma area pals, too.

What’s new? The old pea gravel is gone (Seriously-who in the world ever thought tiny grey rocks were a good idea for filling playgrounds?), and shiny, new equipment is in. There is a big-kid-worthy web, a large play structure, two spinning bucket seats, and a smaller structure for little kids.

Choir Decourssey Hike 003

My boys thought it was great, and on our visit it was swarming with kiddos-no doubt, in part because it was  a sunny, early-release day.

Choir Decourssey Hike 005

If you have smaller kiddos, you’ll want to go earlier in the day, or be prepared to see them get a bit run over by the big ‘uns.

When you’ve had your fill of play, you can walk around the pond. It’s a short, level walk you could do with a jogging stroller, and there is a fishing platform and a little bridge. There is one small section where kids can go down and throw rocks in the water. It’s great fun to watch the ducks, but please don’t feed them. I know we all grew up doing it, but it turns out to be bad for them and bad for the water and the other creatures that live in it.

Choir Decourssey Hike 009

On our visit, we saw just a few friendly ducks paddling around. At one time, this park was home to a whole crowd of honestly quite aggressive geese, and some weird duck/geese hybrids. Deese? Gucks?  Anyway, I was happy to see only friendly feathered friends, but I still wouldn’t leave a sandwich sitting on the ground.

Choir Decourssey Hike 011

The park also has some grassy areas and picnic shelters.

This is on the small side to be a true destination playground, but I think the wow factor of the new play equipment, the little pond, and its convenient location, make this one a pretty perfect playdate option for those of you with pals in Puyallup and greater Tacoma.  If you wanted to make it into a hike, you could carefully cross the street to Clark’s Creek South and take the trail that goes past the ballfields for an exploration of that park.

If you’ve been to a great park lately, let us know about it!  Can’t get enough of playground reports? You can always find more under, “Outdoor adventures,” at the top. Just go down to the, “Playgrounds,” tab!

South Sound Weekend Kids’ Calendar: Family Fun And Things To Do March 6th-8th!


Kids’ Night Out at Pump it Up! in Tacoma  Call for your spot! Tell ‘em we sent you.

Free first Friday night at the Hands-On Children’s Museum in Olympia

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All Over

Home Depot Kids’ Club   Kids can build bookends today. Readers suggest arriving early for these popular, free workshops. You are asked to register online.

Kids’ Club at Michael’s Stores  2.00/child for 30 minute sessions between 10AM-12. It’s a personalized door hanger today.

South King County

Kent Kids’ Art Day  10.00 admission gets kiddos a full afternoon of hands on art activities led by teachers and artisans. Free for grown ups and kids 2 and under. This is a Great event for your creative kids. The boys and I have gone before and had a ton of fun.

Visit the HCC Mast Center  at Redondo   The center and its touch tanks of sea critters are free and open to the public every Saturday from 10-2

Tacoma-South Tacoma, Lakewood

South Sound Sustainability Expo  Free event for the whole family  Information on sustainable living, kids’ corner, mini farmer’s market, book and clothing swap, and more fun

Tacoma Youth Theater presents the Snow Queen  Free, live performance of the classic (before Frozen!) at the Wheelock Library 11AM

Jacobsen Jr. Concert at UPS  Annual family concert featuring trumpet, saxophone, and more, playing lively, kid friendly music  Free for kids 5 and under and 10 year olds (special anniversary deal!). 5.00 for everyone else. 3PM  This would be a good event for beginning band students. [Read more…]

The Boys In The Boat: The Pierce County Reads Book For 2015! Let’s Read!

We interrupt all things kid to suggest you do something fun for yourself!  I’m doing it, and you should, too!

What are we doing? We’re reading a book! One for grown-ups, with no pictures!

Now, I’ll be honest, I read tons. I just happen to be a fast reader, maybe from all those hours as a bookish kid, and it’s one of those things I never gave up, even in the thick of the baby years. Now, don’t feel bad if you haven’t read anything in ages-I gave up a lot of other stuff (like cooking and cleaning).

Pierce  County Reads

Anyway, I know that many of you have so many demands that this may seem like an impossibility, but I promise you that this book is an amazing, compelling tale you’ll devour. And, if you’re not already in the habit, it’s wonderful for your children to see their parents reading and enjoying books and the library.  When Henry was in his most challenging years, my monthly book club really did save my sanity!

This year’s book is The Boys In the Boat. It’s the amazing, true story of the 1936 University of Washington crew team and their quest for gold at the Berlin Olympics in 1936. It’s a story more dramatic than anything Hollywood could cook up, with gritty, working class young men pulling together against the backdrop of the Great Depression and the coming war.

I read it a while ago in a hospital room (long story), and while I was so grateful to be transported somewhere else while I read it, I’m really excited to get to reread it now. I hope you’ll join me!

Pierce County Reads is one more thing to love about our community, and it’s so much more than just everybody reading the same thing (though just that is pretty cool)! There are also a whole bunch of FREE library events in conjunction with the book. You can learn about rowing, meet the author, and much more! If you have an existing book club, it would be super fun to read this one as a group and go to some events together.

You can get a copy of the book at your library or other fun spots around town. More details and the complete list of all the events are right here.   You’ll also find recommendations for related books and DVDs for the whole family, right here.

As I said, I’ll be reading it, and I’d love to hear what you think of it, too. Would you like to get together and talk about it? We could do that! Just let me know if you’d be up for it. It would be sort of like Oprah’s Book Club, on a, “Slightly,” smaller scale.

Happy Reading!

Disclosure: We are incredibly proud to have a sponsorship relationship with the Pierce County Library system.


Father/Daughter Dance In Lakewood And A Family Dance In Tacoma

If you were disappointed to miss February’s Daddy/Daughter dances, you’ll be glad to know I’ve found you a few more opportunities!

First, Lakewood is hosting a father/daughter dance on Saturday, March 14th. It’s 35.00 per, “Couple,” and 10.00 for additional children. It will cost you 10.00 and 5.00 more respectively, at the door, so get your tickets now.

The cost includes a souvenir photo and rose, as well as dancing and cookies and punch. It’s a, “Grease,” theme (the movie, that is). I love Olivia Newton John,  Sounds like a great excuse for dad or grandpa to break out that cool leather jacket!  You can get more information here. 

Metro Parks Tacoma is also hosting an upcoming event at the STAR center. This one is for families, which I like. It’s on the evening of March 21st. You’re invited to enjoy dancing and desserts with Tinkerbell. More info. on that one is here. Daddy daughter dances South SoundYou need not be a resident of either of these places to attend these events! 


Puget Sounds Like Fun Day!

I’m excited to tell you about Puget Sounds Like Fun Day (What a great name!), a free upcoming family event readers in Gig Harbor and the Key Peninsula won’t want to miss. I think it will be worth that pesky bridge toll for the rest of you, too!

Family Fun Day Flyer

Puget Sounds Like Fun Day is a free event put on by our friends at Citizens for a Healthy Bay, and it’s a celebration of boating and a healthy Puget Sound. There will be fun for the whole family, including art and educational activities for kids, hands-on science exhibits, a clean boating workshop, live music, and great food. That’s a lot of fun for free, and it’s a wonderful way to help your children learn about the importance of preserving the beautiful water that makes this area so special.

It all happens at the Key Peninsula Civic Center in Vaughn from 10AM-2PM, Saturday, March 14th ! Address and directions are below! For more information, head here to the event detail on the Citizens For A Healthy Baby website! 

Puget Sounds Like Fun Day

Saturday, March 14th from 10:00 am-2:00 pm at the Key Peninsula Civic Center

17010 S. Vaughn Road KPN, Vaughn

  • From Highway 16, take the Purdy exit (from Tacoma, go to the first light and turn left OR from Bremerton/Port Orchard, go to the third light and turn right)
  •  Follow road for 5.2 miles to the next traffic signal and turn right onto Elgin Clifton Road
  •  In 2.9 miles, turn left onto Wright Bliss Road
  •  Follow for 1.7 miles; the Civic Center will be on your left, after the stop sign.

Disclosure: We are thrilled to be recognized as the media sponsor for this great event. Please DO tell the folks there, you saw it on Sounds Fun Mom!

Get Passes For a Free Screening Of HOME From Dreamworks Playing At Southcenter

Update: Huge bummer alert. Apparently, the screening at Southcenter has been canceled. I’m not sure about the other locations. I’ve reached out to the folks who shared this event with us to try to find out more, and I’ll let you know if there is going to be a future event in its place.

Want to attend a free movie preview?

HOME screening

I’ve got codes just for you for a special screening of the new Dreamworks animated movie HOME.

It’s rated PG, and it looks super cute. I just know Henry is going to love it.

You can see the whole trailer here.

If you’d like to join us when it shows at AMC Southcenter Thursday, March 19th, you can get FREE passes. Just go here and use code! qtPSH85980 It’s a 7PM show, so take your kids with later bedtimes, or the ones who are o.k. to sleep in a little!

You will need to create an account if you’ve never done this before, but it’s super simple.

Southcenter is the closest South Sound location, but there are also free screenings at Seattle theaters. I have those below if you’d like to pass them on! Do make sure you arrive with passes in hand, and note that they are only good for the specific date and time listed for each theater.  [Read more…]