Monday, September 28, 2009

Kaleidoscope Children's Performance Series

At Ida Lee Recreation Center in Leesburg, the Town offers a children's performance series with shows just about each month.  It is usually toward the end of the month, during the week, and from 10-11.  Clearly, they are targeting preschoolers - but there is no real "age limit". My daughter (now 6) has made it to a few shows with us, but mostly I use this for a special event with my preschooler. 

Shows vary each month.  My son and I have seen children's musical groups and dancers, puppeteers and today there was a live animal encounter with Wildlife Ambassadors. Wildlife Ambassasdors was formerly known as Animal Ambassadors, but has changed it's name and is now a non-profit organization bringing animal shows to groups like libraries, schools and scout groups.

At today's show, we were introduced to:

Mowgli:  An African Grey Parrot.  These birds are found in the rainforest, far away... or in pet shops and zoos close by.  We're told he talks, but it is more like a whisper, so only a few people heard him - and that wasn't me.  In addition to talking, he apparently mimics all kinds of sounds, including cell phones.  We learned that their claws are very strong, the speaker showed us that he can easily hang upside down from her fingers (or a tree branch in the wild).  These birds use their claws like we use our hands - to hold things and even to bring their food to their beaks.

Diego: Diego is a Chinchilla.  Chincillas are in the rat family... but they sure are cute, and their fur is highly desirable - it's among the softest fur in the animal kingdom.  We learned chincillas act just like Tigger... and Tiggers like to bounce!  In fact, bouncing is the first line of defense of a chinchilla - because they can bounce so high and so fast, it makes it hard for their predators to catch them.  (I am secretly wondering if this is the kind of animal that labs were supposed to hunt, because they sure bounce a lot, too.)

Kelly:  Kelly is a Fennec Fox, found in the North African dessert.  Her fur is the color of sand, making it hard to find her in the wild.  They are actually quite small and very pretty, but at least this one was a very timid animal - it was hard to keep the children quiet so she wouldn't tremble.

Ms. Tiggy:  She's a Hedgehog.   I had no idea just how cute those little things were!  They have a prickly coat to fend off enemies.

Gus:  I think it was Gus that we met.. he's a Oppossum (with a silent "o" - who ever heard of a silent "o"?) Oppossums are noctoral animals and do live in our area.  One might even live in your yard or down the street.  They might be found the night before trash pick up rumaging for food in your trash cans.  If you catch them, at first they will hiss at you and show their teeth..... but if you don't run, they will become very frightened and play "possum"... roll over, close their eyes, open their mouths, their tongues will hang out and they will play dead - very convincingly. This animal is a marsupial, and at birth was only the size of a bee.  Full grown, they are bigger than most cats.

The children enjoyed seeing the animals close up, although they were not allowed to touch the animals - probably because of the age of the children and the restrictions of Ida Lee.  There were other donated items for the children to touch - an Ostrich egg, deer pelt, antler, and a horn, all these were donations to the organization and provide opportunities for children to touch without any risk.  It was a great show!


Next month's show is October 27th, and will feature "Monster Madness" by Bob Brown Puppets.  Too bad we're going to miss it... it looks like we have to go to Disney World that day.  I know, don't you feel bad for us?  :-)   But, if you're going to be in or around Leesburg, I encourage you to check out this show.  It should be really fun. 

The cost is $6 if you buy tickets in advance, $8 at the door.... and you pay only for the children, one chaperone is permitted for free with each child.  Not a bad deal.  Enjoy!

Hysterical update:  Tonight, I took my kids to my dad's for dinner.  My dad is a great hunter.  In his basement are many trophies.  I showed them to my son, Devon (3 yrs old) who was modestly impressed - he'd seen them before.  But, just as we started to walk up the stairs, Devon pointed to the old piano in the corner and started getting very excited "Look, Mommy!  Look!"... I couldn't figure out why he was excited.  "It's a flat animal just like at the puppet show today!"  He was referring to an albino deer pelt draped over the piano... and comparing it to the deer pelt seen at the show today - look in the photo above on the right side of the table. 

Again, let me assure you the show was a LIVE animal show, not a puppet show... but he doesn't really know what a puppet is, and he thinks every show we see there is a puppet show since that is what the first one was.
Ya gotta love kids!  Wanna read more funny things my kids have said over the years?  Check out:

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Monday, September 21, 2009

Shopping for a Cause!

As we all know, it is serious back to school time.  It seems to be consuming my life, and if you have kids in school, it's probably been your focus... too. 

I was sent home a list of web sites where I can register my various store loyalty cards so that any school benefits are sent to my children's schools.  But, you do NOT need to have school aged kids to participate.

If you have preschool children, I suggest that you sign up for the schools that your children WILL attend.  If you do not have children, perhaps you'll choose to register to support schools that your nieces and nephews or grandchildren, or your friends' children attend.  And, if all else fails, sign up to support the schools that your neighborhood kids attend.  When neighborhood schools have more tools and resources, they are better schools - and if your home feeds to that school, it increases the demand for housing in your community.  In other words, it can help increase the value of your own home.

So, take a few minutes and register to support a school - any school.  All schools need our help and this costs you nothing but a few minutes.  And, besides... next time you start to feel guilty because you spent a little too much, at least now you know you did it for a good cause!

Here's the list, if you have more to add, please chime in:  Merchants include Safeway, Pavillions, Vonls, Genuarti's, PW Markets, Adams. Link any debit or credit cards for additional school earnings (VISA, MC, AmEx, Discover, Carrs, Graegars, Office Max).  Also, you can print "Coupons for Kids" from the web site and your participating school receives an extra 5cents for every redeemed coupon.

Register your Giant Bonus Card This is quick and easy, and you can ask your support be divided by up to 3 schools (great when you have kids in more than one school).

Register your Target RED Card The designated school receives 1% of your purchases.

Register your Harris Teeter Card A portion of your Harris Teeter brand purchases is donated to the PTA.

Register your Food Lion (or Bloom) Loyalty Card  This site is temporarily down due to maintenance, but says it will be operational mid September, so I assume that means any day now.

Please note, for your reference I have provided the following back to school information in my blog:

For more information about schools and other local insights, click FOLLOW on the right to stay tuned to this blog... and visit my web site at

Saturday, September 12, 2009

H1N1 - It's in Loudoun. Party Anyone?

10/13/09 IMPORTANT UPDATE:  Yes, this is a funny little post, and has some good information.  BUT, more information is now available - and getting the latest and greatest updates is important - PLEASE, refer to my more recent post and the update at the bottom.  It might be the tidbit of knowledge that saves your life:  .


Yep.  I am sure that's what I've had all week.  No, I didn't have testing... the cdc doesn't really recommend it.  It's been a long time since I had a flu that did more than inconvenience me.  This one put me in bed for a few days.

In case you're wondering, here's what I now know:
- It doesn't really matter "which" flu it is.  It's all contagious, it all makes you feel terrible.
- Symptoms are fever, sore throat, cough, sneeze, running or stopped up nose, achy-all-over feeling, fatique.  Some people get tummy problems, not all.  It seems pretty much like any flu we're used to getting.
- For most people you don't need medicine and you don't need to go to the doctors'.  You need to stay home.  Treat your symptoms like you would normally - cold medicine, fever and pain medicine, vitamin C, fluids and rest.
- Don't panic.  It sucks, but it is not the end of the world.

A couple of things I thought were interesting:
- In most cases, people over 60 are considered high risk for complications from the flu.  For some reason, that's not so with this one. It seems that people over 60 have an antibody to help fight against this flu strain.  Did a similar virus circulate 60 years ago? It seems the only logical conclusion.
- My friend said dogs can get this flu.  I didn't learn that from any reputable news source - but my friend tends not to circulate silly rumors; and dogs can get lots of our illnesses.  So, if you're one of those "my dogs are my children" people (like my best friend), your dogs are at risk - keep them out of your bed for a few days.
- Apparently, there are people out there that are intentionally getting the flu.  They are organizing Swine Flu parties, and going to visit some one who is sick with it and trying to get the flu themselves.  Their hope is that they'll get "a little" sick now, rather than deathly ill later.  I am just wondering how people know that they'll get "a little sick" rather than "deathly ill" now?  The CDC agrees with me and recommends against this.... but I am a sarcastic person so I posted on Facebook that I was having a Swine Flu party.  Look, when you're sick, you have to get your jollies where you can.

In case you're old like me... there's a new rule, do you know it?  We no longer cough into our hands... you're supposed to cough into your sleeve.  There's supposedly a hit video you can buy if you want, but that's all it's gonna tell you:
Okay... but, I want to say something important - so keep reading.  In February or March of 1992 there was a flu going around - it was a bad one.  I managed to catch it.  I remember watching on TV where the ERs were flooded and the news cast was saying that because it was viral there was nothing they could do, so stay home.  And, I hate hospitals, so I stayed home.  It was a stomach flu.  I got so bad that my stomach was swollen from vomitting and I couldn't lay on my stomach because it hurt, and I couldn't lay on my back because the weight of my stomach was so heavy against my lungs that I couldn't breath.  My 2 year old son was keeping me alive with Dixie Cups of water, because I couldn't get out of bed.  If I tried to get out of bed or even sit up, I passed out.  And, I lived alone with my 2 year old son, so that was not OK.  Eventually I had my mom come get my son, I thought I would die and he would be there alone with me.  I truly went 3 days without getting out of bed.  Three days.... not even to go to the bathroom, and no I was not wetting my bed - I was that dehydrated.  My mother begged me to go to the ER, I refused and refused.  Eventually she convinced me.  She said "so you're going to die and leave me to tell this little boy that his mother didn't even try to stay alive for him?".  I went. Guilt wins every time.  But, Mom had to dress me, and carry me to the car.  I was really bad off. 
As it turns out there IS stuff they can do for the flu.  (Wish someone on TV had said that, I'd have been there sooner.) For me, it was that they could put me on an IV so I didn't die of dehydration.  The doctors actually thought I should have already been dead at that point.  They also have anti-viral medication... I don't know if they had it then, but they have it now.  They won't give it to everyone, but if you get sick enough, you can get some.

I share this story so that you learn, there's a balance.  Yes, give yourself a few days.  Use grandma's remedies and try to heal yourself.  For most people it will work.  But,  when you start thinking that you're going to die, you probably are - so go to the hospital.  There is no good reason to suffer like that.  My son almost lost his mommy.  As much as you hate hospitals, or as much as I do, there's a time for them.  Ask for help when you need it.

So, the points of my post are this:
- Don't panic about this flu.  Most of us will be just fine, and the news media just likes using buzz words.... pay no attention to them.  Besides, as I pointed out, listening to the news nearly cost me my life once, so now I take everything they say with a grain of salt.
- An Ounce of Prevention is Worth a Pound of Cure (ever hear that?) - it means wash your hands, take vitamin C and try to stay in overall good health.  IF you get the flu, you're more likely to get through it just fine if you're otherwise in good health.
- If you're likely to get complications, get the shot when it's available.  If there are limited supplies, let those at the highest risk get the shot.  It's the right thing to do.
- If you get the flu, use grandma's remedies, and you'll likely be fine (cinnamon toast, chicken noodle soup, orange juice, cold cloth on your head while the rest of you is buried in layers of blankets, and have someone rub your back - that always helps).
- Don't let the dog sleep in your bed, or eat your leftovers.  There's no reason to have a sick dog if you can avoid it.
- Watch for complications and use common sense.  When you're sick enough, you may not really be able to judge for yourself just how sick you are.  Rely on others to help you judge.  If you live alone, make sure someone is checking on you. 
- Do go to the hospital if you need to.

And, when all else fails - plan a Swine Flu Party!!!
For more information, visit
For information on Loudoun's plans for a pandemic (because we are prepared), for plans for dealing with this in school, and other information, visit the LoCo Health Department site:
LoCo Health Dept is offering a meeting for the public on 9/23 at 7pm in Ashburn - and details are available on the above web site... in case you don't think a real estate agent has the best health information available (Note: I am a real estate agent.  I am not a doctor, although I do play Dr. Mom at home.  I am just trying to share my experiences with you - I take no liability if you rely on this and die.  Got it?).
Flu Shots:
The vaccination for the H1N1 (Swine flu) is not yet available.  But, getting any flu sucks.  So, if you're interested in protecting yourself against our regular flu bugs, get yourself a shot... Where?
*  Yes, you can get a flu shot at your doctor's office.  It might be covered by your health insurance, so check.
*  Most local health departments are also offering them....although I don't see that on LoCo's web site.  Hmm....
*  Shots are available for about $25 at just about all major pharmacies - CVS, Walgreens, Rite Aid.  Check out their web sites, call or just stop in and ask.
*  An urgent care center is offering Drive Thru Flu Clinics where they'll give you the shot and you don't have to get out of your car.  Seems a little strange to me, but there are 2 dates, the cost is still $25 and they're doing it in Ashburn and Leesburg... check it out:  Also I picked up a coupon for $5 off at their Urgent Care, so sneak in (in advance) and pick one up at the front desk if you're thinking about trying this out.
Hope something in here was helpful.  I will try to make my next post on something a bit more fun.  My last ones (about Obama and the school speech, and 9/11, and now this - the flu)... well, they're kinda downers; but that's how life is sometimes.  There's lots of good stuff, too. So, I will try to write about that next. 

Stay tuned.... and stay healthy.... until next time....

Found this article  by NY Times - watch the video (they won't let me imbed it, darn it):

Friday, September 11, 2009

So Damn Sorry

It's 9-11.... need I say more?
I'll never forget that day.  You won't either. 
For me, the panic really didn't set in until late in the day - after the Pentagon was attacked.  Is that because it's close to home?  Probably not.  I think it is because my dad always told me there'd never be another war on American soil.  The Trade Centers?  That was Terrorism - we always had that.  But, WAR is what we had when they hit the Pentagon.  War is what we've had ever since.....
Today it is rainy and grey.  Just like I think it should be on every September 11th, from now until forever. 
You know what I think I will always remember most? 
Days after... I was fighting constant migraines from all the stress and crying.  This night was no different.  My husband was simply angry.  He yelled at me every time I cried.  He wanted to re-enlist in the military but he was too old.  He wanted to fight.  So,  the boys (then in 7th and 9th grade) tiptoed around him so as to not become the target of his anger.  The whole thing was making me sick.  The skies were so quiet - it was eerie. 
This one night, I had gone to bed.  I managed to find a stupid sit-com on TV, and I started to fall asleep.  My husband came to bed. Thinking I was asleep, he changed the channel.  It was another one of those shows... you know the ones.... "Here's a picture of my dad.  We haven't seen him since the morning of the 11th.  He was on the 16th floor of the North Tower. If you've seen him, please call us at 555-1212." and then they'd move to the next person, and the next person, and the next person.  The line never ended. 
I kept my eyes closed, I tried to think of anything else... I couldn't... I couldn't block out their voices, their tears, their sorrow and their pain...
I sat up in bed, and screamed bloody murder at my husband.... "I can't take it anymore!  I can't.  I am sorry they lost their mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, children, their best friends.  I am sorry.  I am so DAMN sorry.  And, there is not a thing I can do about it!" 
And then I collapsed into sobs, heaving sobs.  The kind that don't stop.  The kind where you can't breath and the snot and tears all run together and you can't even tell the difference anymore.  I cried all night.  This time my husband didn't yell at me.  This time, he cried, too.
I'll never forget that.  Not for as long as I live. 
Still, I am so damn sorry.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Hide Your Eyes, Kids! Cover Your Ears! Obama Wants To Talk To You!

Did you hear all the uproar about Obama wanting to give a “back to school” speech to the children of the US? There was even more uproar here in our county (Loudoun) about our superintendent’s decision not to feature this speech at our schools. Then later, there was controversy because the superintendent made a last minute reversal of this decision, sorta. He said it was up to the teachers – the teachers who already had their day planned.
Apparently, all this attention caused Obama to rethink his plan, too. I understand he re-wrote his speech after hearing the criticisms. I hope it was not just the criticisms from Loudoun County, but here in the county seat the roar was deafening and I couldn’t tell if anyone else was whining or if it was just us LoCo’s.
I have to be honest here… my family is fighting an attack of what might be H1N1, and so I haven’t been paying that much attention. Plus, I didn’t care really. If the kids watched it in school, or if they didn’t, I would discuss it with them at home. If they hadn’t seen it, and I liked it, I could show it to them at home. If they hadn’t seen it, and I DIDN'T like it, I could show it to them at home. Yes, that’s what I meant.
You see, I think my kids should make educated decisions and not be sent to the mushroom school (where they’d be kept in the dark and fed… ah, er, poop). Whether my kids are 3 or 22 (I have 4 kids and this is their actual age range), I want them exposed to different ideas. As a parent, I do not believe it is my job to protect my children from hearing, seeing or experiencing the world… but to ENCOURAGE it. And, to give them the defenses they need to survive no matter what the world throws at them.
The most valuable of those defenses is education and my values. Let them hear what others say. If I disagree with it, I will explain why. Young kids will adopt my sentiments, older ones will consider my point, the educated ones might challenge me. Perfect. Those are the kids I want – independent thinkers with educated decisions. People that can listen to the point of views of others, consider it, and then challenge it…. Respectfully, not fearfully.
I hear so many political comments based in fear and hate. Come on guys, this is America. We can do better than that. Let’s have educated discussions… and this starts with listening, EVEN to our President.
In any case, now that it’s all said and done, I ask you… did you hear the speech? Did you watch it? What did you think?
I thought Obama’s speech was a nice attempt. He lectured my kids, and put it on You Tube so that next time I think this stuff needs to be said, I can email that clip to my kids. They won’t hit play…but they weren’t going to listen to me anyway, and now I can save my breath. There was no political agenda in the speech, not that I heard. He wanted them to work hard. He tried to inspire. In my opinion, he fell short of inspiring… but again, it was a nice attempt. It takes a village to raise a child… and this time I felt like Obama was on my side.
On a larger scale, I think we should make this a tradition. Since schools all start back each year at different times, and the first day of school is very overwhelming for all, I really think that the speech could be better timed. But, once a year, I’d like for our President (no matter who it is) to go to a high school and give a speech (with no political agenda) intended to inspire our youth. Maybe during education week? Maybe at the end of the summer, just before school starts back for the year?
And maybe the speech should be watched with parents at home, and then re-aired in school. Instead of “what did you do for your summer vacation” the first paper could be “how I am the future of the country, of the world”, or “did the President’s speech inspire you?”; or "if you were President, what speech would you deliver to the kids of America?".

What do you think? Your comments are encouraged!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Back To School

Today is the first day of school here in Loudoun County.  I logged onto Facebook this morning to share my bus stop photos, and to see those of my friends.  I read comments from parents whose children are off at a boarding school or college, parents of kids yet to enter school... and of course, the sorrowful, hopeful, proud parents posting and sharing their photos from bus stops all over Northern Virginia.

Sniff, sniff....

Once we've all gotten past the nostalgia of remembering our own school days, and particularly first day jitters, we'll need to get organized.
To help you get into the swing of things, below is the student calendar for students in Loudoun, and links to the calendars for Fairfax County and Prince William County, too.
In case you failed to send lunch money this morning, Loudoun (and several other jurisdictions), allow you to set up an account with Cafe Prepay and use a credit card to pay for lunches.  I pay through Christmas break now - in case you are wondering, that's 69 school days here in Loudoun.  For elementary school, that's $169.05 and you're paid through the year (there's also a $3 administrative fee).                                   

Also, remember to sign up now (while you're thinking about it)  for alerts for school closing.  Technology makes this much easier than when I raised my first two kids.  In Loudoun, you need to sign up for Loudoun Alerts. You can sign up ONLY for school related closings or take advantage of all the other alert types they offer.   In other counties, you can register for alerts at Schools Out (, Loudoun seems to have opted out of this system this year.  Through both systems, you can get emails and texts telling you of emergencies, weather related closings or other significant events at your child's school(s).  Don't let your child be the ONE that doesn't get picked up!

Last, but not least, get your pens and pencils ready for filling out those forms tonight.  It's the biggest parent homework night of the year!

A word of caution - beginning in 6th grade, I stopped bringing home my emergency cards and such for my parents to fill out.  That is so I could give the answers I wanted them to have.  That way, I didn't risk them calling my parents when I got in trouble and I never worried that my handwriting on the "please let Vicky leave early today" notes would match up with that on the signature cards.  So, just in case your kid is that smart, beware.... some thing's up.  Every parent signs those cards on the first day of every school year - don't believe your kid if they say anything different.  (Gosh, thinking back, it's a good thing that there never was an emergency with me, huh?  My parents would never have known.) 
Aren't you glad I was not your child? 

Check out these links to local school calendars for the areas I work on a regular basis:
For more information on the Northern Virginia area, visit my web site:

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Something's Fishy Around Here

The National Aquarium at the Baltimore Inner Harbor is about an hour from Loudoun County - an hour and half from Leesburg (where I live).  It's a fabulous place for kids and adults alike, and makes a great day trip!

My kids (3 and 6) had never seen real sharks (although we all watched the Discovery Channel's shows on Shark Week, with great fascination).  So, on Monday we just got in the car and went of on a adventure.  They were so amazed at the Inner Harbor - the art, the fountains, the navy ships, the high rises, the treats and goodies being sold everywhere - that it was hard to actually get them in the door to see the aquariam.  But, I eventually did. 
They had a total blast looking at the fish and seeing the sharks.  Thanks to the movie Nemo, they could (sort of) recognize a few of the fish, and they got very excited when we saw clown fish and stingrays. Seahorses and turtles were also quite popular.

The aquarium offers a "4 D" movie.  I've been to many, and usually like them OK, but I have to admit that in this one, the special effects were a little overdone (my opinion).  You found yourself focusing on the effects rather than the movie.  I don't even know what the movie was about.  Small children will be scared by these affects, and certainly by the sudden gasps of the audience members.   If you're with school aged  kids, you might want to go ahead and pay for the movie.  It infuses a little blood pumping action in the middle of your tour, and perks them right up as they are getting a little run down touring the tanks.
The aquarium now has a really awesome "Jellies" exhibit.  Jellie fish are beautiful, and let's face it, there's really no better place for them than in a tank where they can't sting me!

Without a doubt, however, the highlight of the day was the dolphin show!  (I have imbedded a video at the end of this blog post of part of the show.  Please forgive the amateur videography, but enjoy the show!)  Rachael now wants to be a dolphin trainer when she grows up. 

In total, we spent about 4 to 5 hours inside the aquarium, and it was easy to do. Then, we grabbed a little dinner and headed home. I'll be planning another trip back to the Inner Harbor with them soon. Perhaps we'll plan a day to go to the "Top of the World" to enjoy the view and to go out on a boat and explore the ship museums. Or, maybe we'll plan a sports day and go to a Orioles or Ravens game and the ESPN zone. Perhaps we'll just wander the water line and shop, stopping to watch the live entertainment on the street and grab a snack. There is much to do there, no matter what your tastes are. The Inner Harbor makes for a wonderful day trip with the family, with a date or even by yourself. But, bring your walking shoes and cash for parking - you'll need it.

For more information on the aquarium, visit
Watch the video of part of the dolphin show here: 

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Prince William Co School Calendar for Students

Despite the title of this blog, I do provide service beyond Loudoun's border, so I am posting school calendars for neighboring jurisdictions, as well!


For Your Convenience, below is the
for Students

September 8 School Begins

October 30/November 2 End of First Grading Period
November 2    Elementary School Closed (Teacher Workday)
November 3    All Schools Closed (Teacher Workday Elementary Conference Day)
November 11  Veterans Day Holiday
November 25  Thanksgiving Break Begins ‐ (Half Day)
November 26‐27 Thanksgiving Break

December 23 Winter Break begins with Two Hour Early Release
December 24‐31 Winter Break for Students/Teachers

January 1 New Year's Day Holiday, School Reopens Jan 4th
January 18 Martin Luther King Holiday
January 20 Elementary Parent/Teacher Conference Day 1/2 day
January 29 End of Second Grading Period

February 1 Teacher Inservice/Workday‐School Closed
February 15 President's Day Holiday

March 29‐April 5 Spring Break

April 16 End of Third Grading Period 47 days
April 19 Teacher Inservice/Workday

May 31 Memorial Day Holiday

June 18 End of Fourth Grading Period

For more information on the Northern Virginia area, please visit my web site:

Fairfax County Public School Calendar

Despite the title of this blog, I do serve areas beyond the Loudoun borders, and so I am posting school calendars for Fairfax and Prince William, as well.

For easy reference, here is the


September 8 First Day of School for Students

October 12 Holiday (Columbus Day)
October 30 End of the Grading Period

November 2-3 Student Holiday (Planning/Records/Conference Days)
November 25 Students have 2 hour Early Dismissal
November 26-27 Holiday (Thanksgiving)

December 23 Students have 2 hour Early Dismissal
December 24-25/28-31 Winter Break (Classes Resume January 4)

January 1 Holiday (New Year's Day)
January 18 Holiday (Martin Luther King Jr. Day)
January 28 End of Grading Period

February 1 Student Holiday (Staff Development Day)
February 15 Holiday (Presidents' Day)

March 29-April 2 Holiday (Spring Break)
April 9  End of Grading Period
April 12 Student Holiday (Teacher Workday)

May 28 Students have 2 hour Early Dismissal
May 31 Holiday (Memorial Day)

June 17 Graduation season begins!  (Graduations will be scheduled separately for each school)
June 22 Last Day of School for Students/End of Grading Period & Early Dismissal for students


For more information on the Northern Virginia area, please visit my web site:

Loudoun County School Calendar

For easy reference, here is the

September 8 First Day of School for Students

October 12 Holiday (Columbus Day)
October 30 End of the Grading Period

November 2-3 Student Holiday (Planning/Records/Conference Days)
November 25-27 Holiday (Thanksgiving)

December 23-25/28-31 Winter Break (Classes Resume January 4)

January 1 Holiday (New Year's Day)
January 18 Holiday (Martin Luther King Jr. Day)
January 29 End of Grading Period

February 1 Moveable Student Holiday* (Planning/Records/Conference Day)
February 15 Holiday (Presidents' Day)

March 29-April 2 Holiday (Spring Break)

April 15 End of Grading Period
April 16 Student Holiday (Planning/Records/Conference Day)

May 31 Holiday (Memorial Day)

June 18 Last Day of School for Students/End of Grading Period


where you can sign up to be

For more information on the Northern Virginia area, please visit my web site: