Don’t read with your eyes shut!

One of my favorite things to do is visit schools and read to kids. I’m so afraid in this digital age the art of reading a good book will be lost. I love showing children how fun it can be and how much we can learn from reading. I visited Brookfield Elementary in Chantilly where I got to read to 3rd, 4th and 5th graders. I read Dr. Seuss’ “I can read with my eyes shut”. The kids loved it and in the end agreed when we close our eyes we can miss a lot of great and interesting things out there. Thanks for the invite!

Spring it on! With Sugar

The snow is melting and there’s no turning back now. What better way to say “Spring come on!” than with spring cookies. With my little helper Adora we hosted a cookie decorating workshop at Wildfire at Tysons Galleria. Highlights of the event is seeing so many friends and meeting new people.. and also benefiting Food for Others. FFO helps provide food for those who can’t afford it living in Fairfax County. I love being able to teach my daughter about giving back while she is young and so impressionable. She really had fun and felt she was doing something good. Thanks to everyone who came out!




From Our Mothers, To Our Mothers

March is Women’s History Month and the women of News4 paid tribute to some of the most important ladies in their lives. In a News4 Special “From Our Mothers, To Our Mothers” we share some of the best memories and life lessons we got from mom. The response so far has been overwhelming. Thanks to all who watched, cried and laughed with all of us. Please enjoy the show below with hilarious and heart warming moments from me, Doreen, Wendy, Veronica, Barbara, Eun and Pat.

Groundbreaker: The First Female US Army Drill Team Commander

In a the military, women have not only fought for their country but also their right to do jobs traditionally held by men. Meet the military police officer making history by taking charge of one of the most prestigious units in the Army.

First Female Drill Commander

In a the military, women have not only fought for their country but also their right to do jobs traditionally held by men. Meet the military police officer making history by taking charge of one of the most prestigious units in the Army.

Joining the Today Show #ParentingTeam

Some fun news! This morning the TODAY Show will launch it’s #ParentingTeam Community and I’m a part of it. The new digital + TV endeavor is a great place for parents to get personal and real about things that really matter. Every month TODAY will feature some of the most up-voted posts/topics.Here’s my first contribution on What I Wish I Knew Before Bringing Home Baby. Would LOVE if you could go to the link and give it a vote!

How he told his 7 year old daughter…

After a plane crashed and her mom and baby brothers were killed… Ken Gemmell had to tell his 7 year old daughter.He talks about what he had to do to make her realize what happened was real.

We Need to Persevere

On December 8, 2014 Ken Gemmell lost most of his family. It was a story that touched hearts here and across the nation. It was a story I had to report as breaking news, it was also one that broke me.
Covering the Gaithersburg plane crash for the first couple hours we were originally told by officials they didn’t believe there were any people in the homes that were hit by parts of the plane. It wasn’t until I was home later that night after my shift that the worst was confirmed. In addition to the 3 people who died on the plane there were 3 inside one of the homes.
3 year old Cole and newborn Devin died in their mother’s arms that morning. Police say Marie Gemmell was found holding her sons in an upstairs bathroom in their house which had caught fire. While everything about this story is tragic.. it was that line of information that tore right through me. As a mom of 2 young children, I cannot imagine what this mother had gone through trying to save her children.
Over the last month I have spent some time getting to know Marie’s husband Ken who was at work at the time of the crash. I can say he just may be the strongest person I know. He told me that he’s know Marie was trying to do anything she could to keep them calm.. to save them.. to make sure it wasn’t painful for them. He says she was a hero. She is.
After many weeks, messages back and forth and a long, heartfelt chat over a cup of coffee Ken agreed to let me tell their story. He now is in a new home not far from where he lost so much. It takes support and strength to go on but Ken is trying with the help of his 7 year old daughter Arabelle. Arabelle was at school at the time of the crash.. there are times even now Ken still struggles to explain to her what happened.

After spending a morning with Ken and Arabelle I hope through these stories I am able to capture not only the true love of a beautiful family but also the immeasurable strength this father has shown just months after losing so much. It is also a time to remember what Ken tells me is “just how good people can be.” The community support is still overwhelming but for the Gemmell’s  it has also been instrumental as they try to move on.

LIVE Facebook Chat! Ask Away!

All week News4 Today is hosting LIVE Facebook chats so that you can get to know us a little more and we can get to know you!

I kick things off Monday.

Tom Kierein is up Tuesday, Aaron on Wednesday, Eun on Friday and Melissa wraps up the chats on Friday! Please join me Monday at 10AM ET here on NBC4’s Facebook Page!

Only on News4: Tracking Missing Planes

It is one of the greatest mysteries in the history of commercial flight. Where is Malaysia Airlines flight 370? The plane with hundreds on board has not been found in almost a year. Recent disasters have raised concerns about the ability to find planes. Only on News4 I show you a local company creating a system that tracks flights anytime, anywhere.Right now the company is working with the FAA which launched a similar satellite tracking system for the US last year. As of now.. the FAA has not said whether it will sign up for the global surveillance service.

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