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Mile High Mamas’ Popular Denver Spring Consignment Sale Schedule 2014

It’s finally here! Twice a year, Mile High Mamas does a round-up detailing Colorado’s popular children’s consignment sales. Thousands of shoppers find bargains on kids’ clothing for newborn-preteen, toys, strollers, furniture, baby equipment, books, shoes, maternity items and more…all at 50-90% below retail.

And for the seventh season in a row, Tracey Gifford–a mom of two boys and owner of the  Just Between Friends sale in Denver–has compiled this year’s schedule. As a word of thanks, I’d like to offer a little shout-out to Tracey’s sale March 20-23, 2014, which is the largest kids’ gear and clothing resale event in Metro Denver. Mention Mile High Mamas and get in FREE!

Be sure to also check out the following fabulous sales:

*March 1
Supertwins of the Rocky Mountains (STORM)
Saturday, 9 a.m.-12 p.m.
Where: The Manning School, Golden

*March 8
Mothers of Multiples Society Sale
Saturday 9 a.m.-2 p.m., $1 admission
Where: Douglas County Events Center

*March 14-16
Just Between Friends of Aurora
Friday 9 a.m.-6:30 p.m. $2 admission; Saturday: 9 a.m.-5 p.m. $2 admission
Sunday: 9 a.m.-4 p.m. (Half-price sale)
Where: Arapahoe County Fairgrounds, Aurora

*March 16-17
Your Kids Closet sy The Wildlife Experience
Sunday 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; Monday 9 a.m.-2 p.m. (half-price select tagged items)
Your $1 admission (ages 3 and up) includes free admission to the museum.

*March 18-22
Rhea Lana-Southeast Denver
Tuesday-Wednesday 9 a.m.-8 p.m.; Thursday 9 a.m.-3 p.m.; Friday 9 a.m.-8 p,m. Saturday 9 a.m.-5 p.m. (half-price sale)
Where: Smokey Hill Town Center, Centennial

justbetweenfriends*March 20-23
Just Between Friends of Denver
Thursday 10 a.m.-7 p.m., Friday 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Saturday: 9 a.m.-3 p.m. (25% off sale)
Sunday 9 a.m.-3 p.m. (Half-price sale)
$4 admission Thursday, $2 admission Friday, free weekend admission; Parking is FREE for all shoppers
Where: National Western Complex, Denver

*April 5
Darling Doubles
8 a.m.-12 p.m.; 12 p.m.-1 p.m. (half-price sale)
$2 admission
Where: Adams County Fairgrounds, Brighton

*April 5
MOPS Annual Sale
Saturday 8 a.m.-12 p.m., $2 admission; 12:30-2 p.m. (half-price sale)
Where: Cherry Hills Community Church, Highlands Ranch

*April 9-13
Just Between Friends of Arvada
Wednesday-Friday 9 a.m.-7 p.m.; Saturday 9 a.m.-7 p.m. and Sunday 9 a.m.-2 p.m. (half-price sale)
$2 admission
Where: Flatiron Crossing, Broomfield

*April 10-13
Just Between Friends of Douglas County
Thursday-Friday 9 a.m.–7 p.m.; Saturday 9 a.m.–3 p.m., Sunday 9 a.m.-3 p.m. (Half-price sale),
$2 admission all days
Where: Douglas County Fairgrounds, Castle Rock

*April 25-26
Haute Tots
Friday 9 a.m.-6 p.m. ; Saturday 8 a.m.-12 p.m., 1 p.m.-5 p.m. (half-price sale) $1 admission
Where: Arvada United Methodist Church, Arvada

*May 1-3
St. Phillip Early Learning Center
Thursday 9:30 a.m.-7 p.m.; Friday 9:30 a.m.-2 p.m.; Saturday 8 a.m.-12 p.m.
$1 admission all days
Where: St. Philip Lutheran Church, Littleton

*May 2-3
New to You
Times: Friday 8a-4p; Saturday 8a-12p ( half price sale)
$2 admission
Where: Christ Lutheran Church, Highlands Ranch

*May 7-12
Just Between Friends of Longmont
Times: Wed-Sat 9 a.m.-7 p.m.; Sunday 9 a.m.-7 p.m. and Monday 9 a.m.-2 p.m. (half-price sale)
Where: Boulder County Fairgrounds, Longmont

*May 29-June 1
Just Between Friends of Broomfield/Brighton
Thursday11:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m., $2 admission; Friday 9:30 a.m.-6:30 p.m.;
Saturday 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. $2 admission; Sunday 9 a.m.-6:30 p.m. (half-price sale)
$2 admission
Where: Adams County Fairgrounds, Brighton

Have we missed your favorite sale? Be sure to leave the information in the comments below.

Downtown Denver during the holidays: one of my favorite things

My daughter Hadley and I recently had what felt like a” New York Moment” in Denver. We’re suburbanites and venture downtown every couple of months but usually for an express purpose–not to just wander and explore. We walked for miles, only slowing down to eat, shop and savor the many, many Colorado moments. A few of our favorites included:

Christkindl Market

Visit the 13th annual Denver Christkindl Market in the heart of downtown Denver on the 16th Street Mall. Once upon a time, I served an 18-month-long LDS mission in Switzerland and this quaint German Christmas market’s music, food, holiday lights and old-world vendors made me relive the fairy tale. Hadley and I bought handmade Christmas decorations, drank cinnamon-spiced hot chocolate, devoured cinnamon-sugar pretzels as big as our heads from Styria Bakery and sampled gebrannte mandeln (roasted almonds) that had been perfected in a copper kettle important from Germany. We vowed to make a return trip to try maronen (roasted chestnuts), weiner schnitzel and for the line-up of events. Before we left, Hadley bought a horse from one of the glass artisans, proclaiming “This will help me remember this fun day,” a minor miracle for a kid who isn’t exactly the sentimental type.

Skate Southwest Rink at Skyline Park

Back-to-school shopping: Here’s what to buy now and what can wait

We’re just easing into August, but back-to-school shopping season is in full gear. So take this pop quiz to see if you are in the know.

Do you:

a. Stock up on summer clearance-sale staples;

b. Equip your kids with the latest sneakers;

c. Spend more this year over last; or

d. All of the above?

If you went with “d,” head to the front of the class: You get a gold star.

Marshal Cohen, chief industry analyst for consumer market research firm NPD Group, says now that the Millennial generation is in the parent zone, moms and dads are becoming more and more comfortable making online purchases. But, it’s the kids, too, who are more engaged in the shopping process this year — and parents are letting them have a greater influence on what goes in the cart.

Also, Cohen says, although back-to-school shopping is starting later this year, spending is up a bit, especially online.

How Colorado moms save on back-to-school clothes

There’s nothing simple about back-to-school shopping; between the materials fees and clothing demands, budgets can be pushed to the limit. Denver-area moms have these tips.

Virtual yard-sale groups. Johnstown mom Christine Miles purchases a couple of new outfits for her kids at the beginning of the school year but generally tries to shop year-round at garage sales and thrift stores.

“I have recently joined some virtual yard-sale groups on Facebook, and I love them! It’s faster than going to a bunch of different sales and by joining or starting a group in your area, it’s really easy to buy and sell. I quickly sold my car because I responded to someone saying they were looking for one.”

Clothing allowance. Now that Lisa Cutter’s kids are 12 and 13, she gives them

Click here to Read On

Also, be sure to read about Amber’s funny fashion show debut on 9News last year (and yes, vomit was involved).


How can I encourage moderation with gifts during the holidays?

Dear Mama Drama:

My daughter is three and is starting to understand that the holiday season means presents. I have seen my older nieces and nephews become obnoxious and greedy at family gatherings, throwing tantrums when they don’t get exactly what they want.

I’d like to prevent my daughter from being so obsessed. What ideas do you have?

~Moderate Mama

(photo credit)

Dear Moderate:

Mama Drama: Public Meltdown Madness

Dear Mama Drama:

I have nearly decided I cannot take my kids out in public anymore. Every time I do, they have terrible meltdowns and we all end up miserable.

(photo credit)

They are two and four and will either fight, throw tantrums, or run around like crazy when we go to a store or restaurant. I am so embarrassed by their behavior and feel people will think I’m a bad parent. I don’t want to embarrass them by disciplining them in public, so things tend to get really out of control. By the time we get home I am ready to explode.

~Exploding Mama

Dear Exploding Mama:

Taking small children out to run errands or for a meal can be a challenge and I am sure you are not the only mom to feel her only recourse is to be home bound with her kids. It is critical to teach your children to behave in public in order for them to be successful in life.

The first key to successful outings is to have compliant behavior at home. Take a look at how things are going there and work to acknowledge when your children cooperate, share, and follow directions right away. You can carry those examples with you then as you prepare for an outing.

As adults we know what to expect from the grocery store or restaurant, but children often don’t understand how it all works. They may feel bored, confused, overstimulated by lights, visuals, and sounds, or be unsure of when they will ever get to leave. Any of these feelings can lead to acting out behavior.

Be clear about expectations: Clear with yourself about how much time your kids can realistically handle in a store; how hungry they are and if you need to get them something to eat immediately instead of waiting five more minutes when you know the big meltdown will hit; how bored they’ll be on this outing and what you can bring or do to keep them occupied; and how you can support them in being successful. Sometimes when things get crazy we feel like our kids are out to get us. Really, they are just communicating – not in a positive, pro-social manner, but effectively nonetheless – and what they need is better tools to handle the situation.

Be clear with your kids about what you are going to do – i.e., first the bank, then the grocery store to get 10 things, then to the park to play; how you expect them to behave – very clear here with specifics, i.e., sit in the cart at all times, food stays on the table or in your mouth, etc ; what will happen if they are successful – go the park, play playdoh while mom puts groceries away, etc.,

When you don’t discipline your kids in public, it sets them up for failure. They need you to set appropriate boundaries and stick to them. Treat them respectfully, but be firm. Maintain your authority to keep them safe. Let them know that wild behavior is not acceptable in those settings. Discipline doesn’t equal being mean, it is about teaching your kids to behavior appropriately in various settings.

Be realistic. If your kids have meltdowns or struggle to follow directions at home, there are going to be a few of those situations away from home as well. When they happen, acknowledge that is one down, let it go, and keep focusing on the positive.

Start small with short outings to one place. Go at a time of day when your kids are well rested and have eaten recently. Bring books, drawing pad, magnadoodles, and other small items for them to entertain themselves. You can even make special errand or restaurant backpacks with things they only play with on those type of outings. Throughout the trip tell them what they are doing well, i.e., “Thanks for keeping your hands in the cart. Thanks for sharing the book with your brother. I’m noticing you are using a lovely inside voice.” Specific, genuine praise will teach and reinforce the behavior you want to see more of.

What tricks do you seasoned Mamas have to share?

Motherhood is an amazing journey that can have its share of Mama Drama. The Mama Drama column runs on Fridays with everyday mothering questions from readers and answers providing strategies to tackle these daily challenges. Send your questions and challenges to [email protected], and your Mama Drama could be in next week’s column! Lisa is also available for private consultations. All emails and identifying information will remain confidential.

Mile High Mamas’ Ultimate Colorado Shopping Guide for the Holidays

The 2010 Ultimate Colorado Shopping Guide

Here’s my roundup of holiday shopping goodies! I scoured the state to find all Colorado-based gifts, perfect for the eco-friendly and green footprint movement we embody. There were so many fantastic choices this year, it was hard to choose only a handful, but I think I brought you the best and most clever gifts I could find. There’s something on this list for every aged child, from newborn to teen to college coed. I didn’t forget mom either—there are quite a few items I found that I didn’t have to share with Hank the Tank this year! Enjoy!

Belle Baby Carriers
Thank Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt for making babies attached to the front of mom and dad hip! However, Colorado has always been ahead of the trend and we even have our own company based out of Boulder that makes unique baby carriers in a variety of appealing patterns. We choose Belle Baby’s Organic Jubilee ($109.95) that comes in black and white. I tore through the package when it arrived and couldn’t wait to get Hank in it. Whoops, it’s for babies 8-30 pounds . . . and the Tank hit 30 pounds at 10 months. I called in the reinforcements, Melissa and her 6-month-old son Gray. She loved it! Melissa was surprised by the ease of adjustment of the straps and the soft material, unlike some carriers. She also liked the head support that comes with each carrier and the ability for it to allow children to face both forward and backward. As she said, “We’re now ready to hit the Zoo lights, Gray will be able see them!” (

Clementine Art
Hank couldn’t even get his hands on this gift package before I was playing with the goodies. Wow, this stuff is amazing!

New Denver-area grocer offers the best of both worlds with warehouse/supermarket hybrid

Part warehouse grocery, part conventional supermarket. That’s what customers will experience at SmartCo Foods, a new chain that opened the first of its five Denver-area stores Tuesday.

SmartCo is pitching an all-things-to-all-shoppers approach that analysts say could prove popular — if the chain can establish its identity in Colorado’s competitive grocery industry.

Parent company Smart & Final of City of Commerce, Calif., acquired five metro-Denver sites formerly occupied by Albertsons. In addition to the newly opened store at 1442 S. Parker Road, outlets in Denver, Centennial, Littleton and Longmont will launch in July and August.

Each store will employ about 110 part- and full-time workers. Store officials said they’ve received more than 4,000 job applications.

Smart & Final has built a reputation in California and other Western states primarily as a warehouse discounter that caters to food-service customers who buy in bulk. SmartCo stores will add a conventional supermarket element with regular-size items, fresh produce, bakeries, meat departments and delis.

Shoppers can buy a 12-ounce package of Kraft American cheese singles for

Mama Drama: Grocery Grabbers and Independent Eights

Dear Mama Drama:

Every time we go to the grocery store my two-year-old daughter climbs all over the cart. She stands up and grabs at things and has nearly fallen out several times. I have talked with her over and over, bribed her with treats, and threatened to leave the store, but nothing has worked. What else can I do?

~At my wits end!

Dear Wits End:

The first thing to do is buckle your daughter into the cart every time she is in one. She may fuss and whine, but this should be a non-negotiable point.

Next, give her something to do while she is in the cart. Sitting for long, seemingly endless trips to the store can be very frustrating for a child. Let her hold the shopping list and help you cross off items. Give her a drawing pad or magnet drawing toy and have her make her own list. Bring a small bag of board books she can read.

Try to keep shopping trips brief. Create a list of ten items and have her help you count them down. As you go through the store to find your items, enlist her help. “I’m looking for something blue (show her what blue is if she doesn’t know). Do you see it?” “We need bananas. Do you know where they are?” Stick to the ten items on the list for that trip, so she knows when the shopping is done.

Having an incentive at the end of the shopping trip is okay, but make sure the treat is an interactive activity most of the time. Tell your daughter, “We’re going to the store to get ten items. If you stay safe in the cart, we will play at the park when we’re done.” Be sure to describe what safe in the cart specifically means, i.e., strap stays buckled, bottom is on the seat, hands stay in the cart, etc.

Throughout the shopping trip frequently notice when she is being safe, “You are keeping your hands in the cart. Thank you.” If she is struggling, restate your expectations and her incentive, “If you want to go to the park, your bottom must stay on the seat.” When you reach the check out line (with all the tempting candies), remind her of her incentive and the expected behaviors, “You have been so safe in the cart. Keep your hands in the cart and stay on your bottom and we can go to the park.”

Finally, before you threaten to leave the store, be sure you are prepared to do so. Empty threats will only reinforce the unwanted behavior. If your daughter is not being safe in the cart, restate your expectations of what she is to do (see above). If she continues to be unsafe, park the cart and leave. Do this calmly, saying, “Uh-oh, you aren’t being safe in the cart so we have to leave. It’s so sad we won’t be able to go to the park today.” Expect a fit, but don’t react. You can empathize with her by saying, “I know. It’s so sad.” Then hold her hand or pick her up and walk out the door.

Dear Mama Drama:

My eight-year-old son is very rude to me in front of his friends. He says he wants me to volunteer in his classroom, but won’t acknowledge me when I am there. He wants me to walk behind him in the hallway and snaps at me when he does talk to me at school. At home he is all hugs and kisses.

~Confused Mama

Dear Confused Mama:

Your son is at the age where he is beginning to see himself as separate from you and seek more independence. Eight to nine is a typical stage for boys to begin this process. It is important to guide your son through this phase and set limits about his behavior.

Have a direct conversation about this issue with you son. Tell him you have noticed that at home he is kind and loving, but at school he is rude and distant. Let him know that all boys go through a phase of seeking independence and creating an identity separate from their mothers. Emphasize that this is a typical part of growing up. Be clear with him, however, there is no need for this to be done in a rude or disrespectful manner.

Discuss ways in which he would like to be more independent and make a plan to support him with this. Then, discuss how you expect him to treat you at school and other public places. Let him know that the manner in which he treats you will teach his peers how he wants them to treat you. Also, tell him that when he acts disrespectfully, he does not look cool, he looks rude.

While girls tend to like face-to-face conversations, this often makes boys uncomfortable. When you talk with your son, sit side by side with him or have the conversation while out on a walk or riding in the car. This will feel less threatening for him.

Motherhood is an amazing journey that can have its share of Mama Drama. The Mama Drama column runs on Fridays with everyday mothering questions from readers and answers providing strategies to tackle these daily challenges. Send your questions and challenges to [email protected], and your Mama Drama could be in next week’s column! All emails and identifying information will remain confidential.