Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Modern Moms are Finalists for Loudoun County Chamber of Commerce Small Business Awards

Ashburn, VA, September 29, 2008 – I Am Modern Magazine for Moms, world’s first and only social media based publication, website and social club has been selected as a finalist for the Best Product of the Year in the Loudoun County VA Chamber of Commerce's 2008 Small Business of the Year Awards. Hulya Aksu, founder of the unique publication platform and organization, has been selected as a Finalist for the Entrepreneur of the Year category.

I Am Modern Mom Magazine and Social Media Club

I Am Modern Magazine is breaking new ground in the publishing industry by leveraging the latest trends in online social media and Web 2.0 initiatives. I Am Modern Magazine is one of very few hyperlocal information, style and entertainment publications available to women and moms in the Northern Virginia (NOVA), DC metro area that relies exclusively on reader and consumer-generated content and supplemented by social media contributions.

"Social Media" refers to the Internet tools and practices that revolve around collaborating, communicating and sharing information on the web, and the communities or sites that evolve to both foster this and repackage it as news. Engaging in the social media communities online is a very important part of a businesse's online Internet Marketing strategy - read more about DC metro and Northern Virginia Internet Marketing and Social Media at KME Internet Marketing.

I Am Modern Magazine is published in a Fairfax edition and Loudoun edition. Popular features include Northern Virginia private school reviews, Loudoun and Fairfax restaurant reviews (by Moms and Dads), and DC metro area Salon and Spa reviews.

“Moms are the primary decision-makers in their homes. They also tend to be avid magazine readers. Over 70% of moms turn to the Internet or magazines on a regular basis for information and entertainment, and most also want to remain actively connected to their offline communities and families. We are the only coordinated publication platform that caters to this profile, to these connected women and moms - in print, online and via monthly social club events. What could be better?” adds Hulya Aksu.

I Am Modern Magazine delivers to this highly-valued demographic while remaining environmentally responsible and locally active in women-centric philanthropic efforts. Through their omni-media approach, I Am Modern Magazine offers businesses and advertisers a unique, modern and very effective avenue to an engaged, responsive family consumer audience – DC metro and Northern Virginia women and moms. Advertisers have the options of appearing in print or online as part of their Washington DC and Northern Virginia Internet marketing and social media strategy.

Modern Mom Media Corporation is the publisher of I Am Modern Magazine for Moms and the owner of www.IAmModern.com. I Am Modern Magazine for Moms is an upscale lifestyle magazine that features a revolutionary approach to coordinated print and Internet publication featuring 100% reader generated local content with a high-quality national look and feel. I Am Modern Magazine is printed quarterly and strategically caters directly to mothers and women in the valuable DC metro and Northern Virginia market. The web site, www.IAmModern.com, is rapidly evolving with hundreds of new members joining weekly, and provides a dynamic social media portal for local mothers in Northern Virginia. Modern Mom Media Corporation is privately held and headquartered in Ashburn, VA. To advertise visit Modern Mom Magazine at http://www.iammodern.com/advertise-to-moms-the-power-of-the-purse.html

For interview requests, please contact Murat Aksu at 703.728.9009 or email at info@iammodern.com .

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Monday, September 29, 2008

Bethesda MD New, Custom Homes Available Right Now

(Quick note from one of our supporters, just across the river - yes, that's right, the kids have to go to college after all!)

Ingrid Myers Northern Virginia and Maryland Real Estate offers some incredible value, space and location in a highly sought-after area of Bethesda in Montgomery County, MD.

5909 Melvern, Bethesda MD, Montgomery County New Home

5912 Somoma, Bethesda MD, Montgomery County New Home

Brand New Custom Seven Bedroom Home in the Wyngate Neighborhood of Bethesda, Maryland - Montgomery County
5909 Melvern Dr., Bethesda, MD

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Sunday, September 28, 2008

Signs of a Maturing Community? - Tiny Toy Micro Teacup Purse Babies

Bed buddies, purse babies, teacups, tiny toys, micro rats, yipping hamsters, laprats, drop-kicks...however you label them, they're swarming. Here in Dulles South.

At Starbuck's, on the sidewalks, in cars - it's hard to get a quick jog up without fear of a "yipyipyip" "hey, get off my pookie!".

Why is this? Why are so many Loudoun Moms adopting a 3rd round of dependents, in these fluffymicro packages? Some may point to a maturing bedroom community, where the kids are now in school, the original family dogs have retired "to the farm", and the 9-2 empty-nesters are looking for something to dress, to talk to, to entertain...

Where "the new granite" of last year may have portended some degree of economic recovery, this year's micro poodle/rat terrier adoption wave just doesn't make sense. On the one hand, a new dog (small as it is) brings along lots of mess (from both ends), noise, vet bills, fleas, house destruction, wardrobe stress (!) and altogether more trouble and expense than one would think practical to assume in this economic context. On the other hand, perhaps the solace, love, companionship and just plain bitesize furriness is what's needed to get through the day.

Either way, watch your step, and watch where you sit.


Saturday, September 27, 2008

Dulles South Loudoun Hospital - Rt. 50

Just found this site concerning "The Next Loudoun Hospital", overviewing why the next Southern Loudoun Hospital (Dulles South) area needs to be on Rt. 50.

At issue is the ongoing battle between HCA's intention for a Broadlands area hospital (Broadlands Regional Medical Center, BRMC), and INOVA's intention for a Rt. 50/Dulles South hospital. Some good story background here.

There exists significant opposition by Broadlands residents to the prospect of a hospital in their backyard, as demonstrated by this Stop BRMC site. There's also significant support, at this BRMC support site.

Having lived and conducted business here in the Dulles South region (South Riding) for over 10 years, and traveled extensively to Fairfax or Fair Oaks hospitals and emergency rooms, it's entirely obvious and rational to us that the next significant medical center be built in the Rt. 50/Dulles South corridor, supplementing the recently added Dulles South Urgent Care Centers.

Driving to Broadlands for hospital services, emergency or not, doesn't make sense for any resident along the Rt. 50 corridor - if the option is to actually have a facility on Rt. 50.

The next BRMC/Broadlands Planning Commission Hearing will be on October 15, 2008, 6 PM, at:

Eagle Ridge Middle School
42901 Waxpool Road
Ashburn, Virginia 20148

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Thursday, September 25, 2008

Southern Maryland Wine Festival

Looking for a great wine festival outside of Northern Virginia, but without the long drive? Be sure to check out the upcoming PAX River area Sotterley Wine Fest, in Hollywood, St. Mary's County Southern Maryland - Solomons Island Hotel Hilton Garden Inn is one of our favorite sponsors!


Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Loudoun Math Survey - Incomprehensible

We recently took a look through the Loudoun Parent's Math Survey.

This extremely detailed, mind-bending and educational jargon-laden survey is extremely hard to understand, replete with seeming contradictions or nonsensical statements, and truly can only be completed by Loudoun parents with at least a college education and utter mastery of the English language.

No wonder the curriculum and outcome never seems to reflect parental input. Suggestion to LCPS - rewrite this survey, so "No Parents Will be Left Behind".

Here's some of our favorites - you're not asked to evaluate whether these items are actually occuring, but whether they're important at all.

"The mathematics curriculum content and materials afford students the opportunity to develop conceptual understanding in the areas of Number and Number Sense/ Computation and Estimation, Geometry/Measurement, Probability/Statistics, and Algebraic Thinking (Patterns and Functions)."

..um, this is what math is, right? so it's important, right? And students should be able to afford it?

"The mathematics curriculum provides opportunities for application of knowledge and skills across subject areas."

..um, so if math skills aren't applied to subject areas, what are they applied to? The refrigerator?

"Teachers possess an understanding of grade-level math concepts identified in the curriculum"

..um, that sounds important, that the Teachers should understand what they're teaching - right?

"Lessons are provided until students demonstrate mastery of mathematics concepts."

...does this mean lessons just keep going all weekend, all summer, to infinity and beyond? (although mathematically impossible)

"Scoring guides for classroom assessments with clearly defined criteria are used (i.e., rubrics)."

...so, teachers will use a rubix cube to score tests?

Update 9/25 - according to an LCPS email:

Loudoun County Public Schools' Math Survey has been extended until Wednesday, October 1. A glossary of terms has been added to the survey on the LCPS Web page, www.loudoun.k12.va.us, to help complete the survey more easily. (The very short glossary is actually not on the main page, it's here).


Saturday, September 20, 2008

Loudoun and Fairfax Television Studio Production Tours at Trivision

Student Tours Inspire Tomorrow’s Creative Minds

TriVision Studios has a long history of working with universities and trade schools in the region with the goal of encouraging and cultivating young talent interested in working in such fields as graphic design, web development, video production, and marketing.

trivision northern virginia and dc production studios for tv and multmedia

Since its expansion into a 12,000 square feet state-of-the-art media production studio in Chantilly, Virginia (Rt. 50 across from Lafayette Plaza), TriVision Studios has emerged as a touring spot for schools around the area.


One of the schools in point is ITT Technical Institute, a leading private college system focused on technology-oriented programs of study. It operates over 100 ITT Technical Institutes in more than 30 states which predominantly provide career-focused, degree programs to approximately 54,000 students. Each semester, ITT school has brought their students to TriVision to get a “behind-the-scenes” field tour of the studio. With approximately 40 students in each group, ITT students get a detailed "insider look" at what goes into producing projects, such as television commercials, music videos, web sites, and logo designs. There is also a question and answer session where students get an opportunity to gain insight on specific topics ranging from the technical know-how of equipment and software to tips on catching a potential employer’s interest. For many of these students, it will be the first and only time they’ll get to see a real-life work environment before they graduate.

In addition to providing tours of the Chantilly facility, TriVision also offers internships to students of area schools. These internships provide valuable real life experience that help prepare the visionaries of tomorrow with a peak of what to expect once they reach the full-time work force.

northern virginia tv production studio

For more information on ITT Technical Institute please visit them at www.itt-tech.edu. For information on future internship programs with TriVision Studios, please contact a TriVision representative.

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Monday, September 15, 2008

Frank Wolfe and Pierce Homer address Dulles South Business Alliance in Loudoun County

Today's Dulles South Business Alliance meeting in Southern Loudoun County, Rt. 50 corridor, featured guest speakers Congressman Frank Wolf (US House, 10th Virginia District) and Virginia State Secretary of Transportation Pierce Homer. Attendance was light, mainly DSBA members (Dulles South business owners and landowners) and directors, at the Pleasant Valley United Methodist Church.

Most updates focused on transportation issues, with by far the most spirited comments on Wolf's part regarding the Dulles Greenway rate hikes - deeming them "unfair, based on a flawed law". His comments mostly revolved around the pressures and cost burdens levied upon Moms and Dads, driving to and from work and family/children responsibilities...this was a similar argument he made for supporting the Dulles Rail extension, which would not only give us a "2-seat ride to the Global economy" (as put by Homer), but also was the most important transportation issue in this region - that actually had a fast-closing window of opportunity for actual success and funding, given the rapidly declining picture for transportation infrastructure funding across the State.

On the score of funding for transportation issues, Homer was frankly dire - noting that while the Dulles Rail project had a "very good chance of success", most other local or regional projects are all going to be reconsidered in the next few weeks, and most information to come out of the "reconsiderations" will not be happy news for our area or elsewhere.

Wolf's other major sounding board was his "Cooper-Wolf" bill - a bi-partisan (55/45 republican/democrat) bill to broadly address the "gathering storm, an economic tsunami" of USA debt/spending issues. Additionally, he commented directly on the need for consideration of considerable attention and spending in the area of alternative energy studies (i.e. USA energy independence), along with domestic drilling opportunities. He noted that Cuba's recently granted licenses to China for offshore drilling between Cuba and Florida, where the US is currently restricted by legislation.

Some questions followed, mostly dealing with Rt. 50-specific issues - in all, an honest appraisal of the very difficult transportation infrastructure situation the state faces due to the significantly deteriorating revenue base, significantly increasing building costs, and very significantly increasing gap the US faces in maintaining global competitiveness.

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Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Allstate Loudoun Insurance Money Back for Safe Drivers

Driving safe has never been so rewarding! Customers of the Khalid Umerani Allstate Loudoun Insurance and South Riding Insurance Agency have received a total of $11,902 in Safe Driving Bonuses for driving safe and having "Your Choice Auto" services.

"In the economic times we are facing, every little bit helps." states Umerani, a resident of South Riding and Allstate Loudoun County Insurance agent - "It is a true pleasure when my customers come into my office and thank me once they have received their Safe Driving Bonus (SM) check."

Read more about this Loudoun Insurance news and information...


Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Virginia is for Sarah Palin

Virginia is for Palin

McCain numbers appear to be way up, driven lately by one of the most energizing and exciting Vice Presidential (or Presidential) candidates to ever visit our state - Sarah Palin (with John McCain) is visiting tomorrow, September 10th. Virginia women, Virginia families, Virginia moms (and dads!) can all find something to like, admire and connect with in this candidate and her family - Palin and Virginia are a timely match ♥.

When: September 10, 2008 8:00 AM
Where: Van Dyke Park
3705 Old Lee Highway
Fairfax, VA

From the website:

Join John McCain and Governor Sarah Palin for a Road to Victory Rally on Wednesday, September 10th. Doors open at 8am. The event begins at 10am, but come early to get a seat.

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Saturday, September 06, 2008

Loudoun Bicycle Outfitters and South Riding Triathlon

Here's a quick shout-out (and what we call in Virginia Internet Marketing "link-love") to the great folks at the Leesburg, Loudoun County Bicycle Outfitters shop, for their great work in supporting the South Riding Triathlon. (Find their link now also at Dulles South Online, Loudoun Business Links).

I brought my decrepit old wife's bike (now repurposed as high-performance triathletic gear, at least in my mind) to the bike checkup today before the big race...the very nice folks on hand from Loudoun's Bicycle Outfitters (without any skeptical "is your grandma riding this?" comments) checked it over, determined it needed a bit of "tightening" at critical joints, fixed it up, and declared it "safe and usable". Many thanks for the help, and we look forward to watching (from behind) a cavalcade of safe and well-tuned bikes in tomorrow's race.

Other advertisers of note in the race packet -

Curry's Northern Virginia Auto Service and Auto Repair

The Medical Spa at Nova (in partnership with the Nova Medical Group) - see a great review and other Northern Virginia Spa reviews at Northern Virginia's Lifestyle Magazine and Media for Modern Moms - IAmModern.com

Solace Day Spa of Chantilly/South Riding

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Math Results Spinning in Prince William

Today's WAPO article "Pr. William Pupils Still Grapple With Math Test" appears to be a masterful exercise in the "spin", by Prince William County. Essentially, the "Math Investigations" program introduced last year amidst wide derision by Parents and Teachers has failed to produce any metrics of success. Zero - and in fact partially negative - progress in improving 3rd grade math performance for yet another year.

Take note, Loudoun County Public Schools(LCPS) - as Edgar Hatrick (LCPS Superintendent) answered our question a year ago when asked about Math Investigations in Loudoun - "we are evaluating the use of Math Investigations..." Well, it seems evaluation period is over, based both on the experience of parents and children we know in Loudoun, Fairfax and Prince William, and on reports and metrics such as the WAPO article describe.

The "spin", however, is swirling faster than the center of TS Hannah today. The article quotes "many" education experts and area school officials "hailing" Investigations, while "some" parents and educators "deriding" it. Our informal surveys of online and offline response to the program have these measures reversed, with "most" parents and educators solidly in the camp of derision. Prince William school officials said "it was an accomplishment that the overall percentage of proficient and advanced students stayed flat...because new programs often result in sudden drops". (Cue pause of disbelief while your mind wraps itself around this nonsense.) Such an "accomplishment" of "no change at all" reminds me of my teenage lifeguard test - tread water and don't drown for 30 minutes, and you pass.

A spokeswoman for Pearson (publishers of the Investigations program material) said "if Investigations were not successful, why would Pearson continue publishing it year after year after year?". Simple answer - it's just business. Ask the cigarette manufacturers the same question - "if smoking actually kills you, why would we keep selling cigarettes year after year?". Because a lot of money is to be made.

Here's an interesting quote regarding Loudoun, from the Teachers.net bulletin board - " I talked to a 3rd grade teacher from a school in Loudoun who was told to be doing "full investigations" if asked. However, the teacher told me they SUPPLEMENTED 75 percent of the year and did MI only 25 percent. The admin said you do what you got to do to pass that test. They got 94 percent and they really didn't do Math Inv. but they have to pretend they did!! "

Keep supplementing, and stop pretending

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