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A Taste of Japan: Matcha Tea

Posted on 3/31/15 12:18 PM by Jackie Dilworth
Follow our Virtual Vacation series all year long at!
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Welcome to Japan! Your March Getaway...

Posted on 3/17/15 1:45 PM by Jackie Dilworth
Spring is almost here, and there's only one thing on all of our minds: when will the Cherry Blossoms bloom?! For this month's Virtual Vacation, take a much-needed mental break by traveling to the origin of these trees gifted to us 103 years ago: Japan!
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Kindness Despite Adversity: Janet's Story

Posted on 3/13/15 12:52 PM by Jackie Dilworth
Wearing a black parka and black scarf around her head to keep warm on a cold February day--possibly the coldest of the year--Janet stands behind the front desk of the Silver Spring YMCA. Every time the double doors open, wind gusts fill the building. Members enter the warmth of the lobby, and, for a brief moment, the world of Janet. She's recovering from a stomach bug... Her voice rasps, but she remains cheerful. “Enjoy your workout,” she says, smiling to members as they pass. 
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How to Make a Fancy Handbag Minus the Sew & Stitch

Posted on 3/27/14 3:13 PM by Tracey Mitchell
Barbara has been with the Y for 12 years, getting her start working in Atlanta. She is one of our go-to people for all things crafty, artsy and enriching for our youth. As Program Director of Education and Special Events Specialist, Barbara is passionate about the Y’s mission in Youth Development. Enjoy her insights here on the blog monthly – and get ready for some FUN! It’s National Craft Month and we’re always saving for something. Next time you or your daughter get the urge to shop, why not make your own! With our step-by-step instructions below, you can make your own handbag without any stitching or sewing. That’s right! All you need is a few supplies and a little gusto to make a bag to fit your personality. Leave the store behind, and put a twist on your next lunch bag, grocery tote or catch-all sack.
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Y Staff Share Why

Posted on 3/24/14 3:46 PM by Tracey Mitchell
YMCAs have a history of serving their communities in resourceful and innovative ways. For over 160 years, Y staff never claimed to have the wisdom that would provide all the answers, but they have the passion and perseverance to make a difference. We recently asked YMCA of Metropolitan Washington staff to share what the Y means to them and their community. Here are some of our favorites! #MissionMonday
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Kitchen DIY – Simple Caesar & Ranch Dressings

Posted on 3/21/14 1:43 PM by Tracey Mitchell
I spend a great deal of time cooking with seniors for the Y’s Fit & Well Program. It’s one of the highlights of my week! What I like best is that I do most of the learning – these seasoned homemakers tend to know a thing or two about the kitchen. When looking at the generation gap, there is an obvious nutrition lesson. I believe it’s the reason for our health crisis today: seniors (and those who grew up cooking without microwaves or processed foods) are comfortable in the kitchen, familiar with a wide variety of foods, and tend to be healthier. By preparing our own foods instead of buying them is the greatest nutrition lesson of all. Not only does it cut costs, it also cuts your levels of sodium, fat, unnatural ingredients and preservatives. Just take a peek at the number of ingredients in a bottle of salad dressing! This week, for National Nutrition Month, here are recipes for two popular salad dressings. A good dressing makes all the difference in the world – it can transform your salad into something you enjoy. I hope this inspires you, like the seniors do for me!
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Chicken Soup to Warm Your Soul

Posted on 3/21/14 9:03 AM by Tracey Mitchell
Turns out mom was right: Chicken soup will solve your cold remedies! Science has shown that a combination of chicken, veggies, and a hot mineral broth are just the right aid for the common cold. While we can certainly grab a can at the store, I recommend making it from scratch to cut back on money AND sodium. Making chicken soup is pretty simple, and can be tailored to however you like it. I like soups that are more broth-y when I’m sick, but you can bulk it up with veggies, chicken or whatever your heart desires. Here’s a tip: roast an entire chicken and use the carcass to make your broth. Not only will you have lunch for the week, but you now have broth stored up.
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Grab Your Papoose for this Cultural DIY Activity

Posted on 3/20/14 8:49 AM by Tracey Mitchell
Every Wednesday, the YMCA takes over Two Rivers Public Charter School with fun activities like Zumba kids, obstacle courses (PHD), Lego workshops and art projects. Last week, middle schoolers learned about Native Americans’ connection to nature by making their own wall-hanging birds! Barbara Rogers, Education Program Director, shares the details to help you tap into creative expression in your own wigwam. Here’s to a hands-on National Crafts Month! Materials you will need:
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The No. 1 Reason You Should Eat Healthier

Posted on 3/14/14 12:44 PM by Tracey Mitchell
The nutrients in the foods you eat help your body function properly, fight disease, manage stress and help you feel your best. March is National Nutrition Month! What practices work for you? Here are a few of my favorites!
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Posted on 3/14/14 7:29 AM by Tracey Mitchell
One of the newest fitness crazes has taken the Y by storm: Aerial Yoga! Look no further if you’re interested in taking this class for a test swing – at YMCA Anthony Bowen, Aerial Yoga is offered weekly. Here is a glimpse at the class, its benefits and tips in getting started from our Regional Group Exercise Director, Angela Meyer. What is Aerial Yoga?
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