Moms Talk is a new feature on Wheaton Patch that is part of a new initiative on our Patch sites to reach out to moms and families.
Wheaton Patch invites you and your circle of friends to help build a community of support for mothers and their families right here in Wheaton.
Each week in Moms Talk, our Moms Council of experts take your questions, give advice and share solutions.
Let's meet them -
Cassandra Caverly is a Maryland transplant from Michigan, the Great Lake State. Cassandra graduated from Boston University a long time ago and then after a short stint in automotive advertising she decided law school would be the next best step. She graduated from Howard University School of Law in 2005 and has been practicing in the District of Columbia ever since. Cassandra and her husband have lived in downtown Wheaton for the past few years and they are both looking forward to the pending development of the area. She is expecting her first child this summer.
Mother of one-year old Alexandra with another due in July, Leah Kocsis is an active musician in the area. She teaches piano and is the artistic director of the new Southern Montgomery County Orchestra, SoMoCo. Leah grew up in Connecticut and moved to Maryland twelve years ago. She's lived in Wheaton for six years and has been married to her Pennsylvania-born husband for seven. Besides music and mothering, Leah enjoys cooking, reading, and crafts.
Kristen Walker Painemilla
Kristen has been a Wheaton resident for the past eight years. She is married and the mother of two boys (16 months and four years). She loves exploring Wheaton and the surrounding areas with her family, especially local restaurants and farmer’s markets. In her working life, Kristen is Vice President at Conservation International and Executive Director of CI’s Indigenous & Traditional Peoples Program. In October 2010, she published the book "Indigenous Peoples and Conservation: From Rights to Resource Management." She serves on several boards including the Equator Initiative, the Bushmeat Crisis Task Force and the Chol-Chol Foundation.
Bridget Hanes is a proud new mommy of an eight-month-old boy. A native of Western Massachusetts, she has called the D.C. metro area home for almost nine years. She and her husband have lived in Wheaton for just over a year and are enjoying exploring the neighborhood and meeting people in the community. Bridget works part-time in a law firm in downtown D.C. but hopes to someday work in a position where she can use her recently-acquired MPH in maternal and child health. She loves trying new foods, overdosing on dark chocolate goodies, baking, traveling, playing tennis and all things nature.
You've probably seen Jessica around Wheaton Patch already. She's our parenting columnist, sharing stories about life as a work-at-home mom in Mom of a Million Mistakes.
Jessica also writes the popular parenting blog, A Parent in Silver Spring, serves as an editor at Nickelodeon ParentsConnect and has contributed to The Washington Post Weekend and other publications. Jessica is a mother of two and expecting a third child this spring.
A California native and U.C. Berkeley grad who came to DC in 1998 as a straight-laced U.S. Senate staffer by day, Adams Morgan bar crawler by night. She has lived in Silver Spring/Wheaton for nearly ten years.
Moms, dads, grandparents and the diverse families who make up our community will have a new resource for questions about local neighborhood schools, the best pediatricians, 24-hour pharmacies and the thousands of other issues that arise while raising children.
Moms Talk will also be the place to drop in for a talk about the latest parenting hot topic.
So grab a cup of coffee and settle in as we start the conversation today about a set of programs that are very popular with Montgomery County parents: school language immersion programs. Three languages are offered, at a combination of seven schools at elementary level and six at the middle school. A lottery determines who gets into the program in elementary school.
Do you have experience in going through the lottery or the immersion programs? Was it worth it? What's valuable about the programs? If you decided not to pursue immersion language programs, why not?