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Top Ten Tuesday: Places To Get Coffee In Fredericksburg



If you're anything like us, the day doesn't begin until you've had your coffee! It's the jet fuel we need to jump start our morning, or get us through the afternoon slump. If you're looking for a place to grab a cup on your way to work, meet up with friends, power up before shopping, or just looking for a place to knock out some work, we've got just the thing! Here's our list of favorite places to grab coffee in Fredericksburg.

Please note: These are in NO particular order. We love them all too much to possibly choose favorites.


Top Ten Places To Get Coffee In Fredericksburg


1)2530 Espresso- Is located Downtown right across from the VRE. With a welcoming atmosphere, free wifi, fantastic pastries, and a small toy bin for the littles, this place makes for a perfect meet-up spot, place to hunker down and work, or pit stop on your way to pick up the train. 2530 Espresso is constantly furthering their education on coffee and strives to always improve their brew and brew skills.

2)Hyperion Espresso- Is right in the heart of Downtown, Fredericksburg, on the corner of Princess Anne St. and William Street. Their outdoor patio makes for some of the best people watching in the city! We highly recommend meeting a good friend for one of their many coffee options ( maybe with a cookie), sitting outside, and soaking up all that Fredericksburg has to offer. If you’d rather knock out a few projects with a cuppa, they also have wifi.

3)Keystone Coffee and AutoSpa-  Need to get your car washed or detailed? Why not do so over a delicious latte and artisan sandwich? No time for a carwash? They have a drive through as well! It’s like they’re thought of everything! The best part? They’ve located right next to Carl’s. It’s like a win-win-win, guys.

4)Blackstone Coffee- This a great little coffee shop to hit up before taking your little ones to The Children’s Museum! Located in The Eagle Village, next to Home Team Grille, it’s also a great little oasis for Mary Washington University students and facility! Their coffee beans are sourced from Central and South America, Indonesia, and Africa, and are ground fresh at the shop. Stop by for a cuppa fresh ground deliciousness!

5) CLOSED Griffin Bookshop And Coffee Bar- A hidden gem of a coffee bar right in the middle of the city! I mean, is there a better pairing than coffee and books? Come on in, grab a steaming cup of joe, and get lost in all the literature that Griffin Books offers.

6)  Carme Espresso- Is a great place for small groups to meet and people to work or study! They have a sunroom that can be reserved for small groups (9 or less) and free, unlimited wifi. While you may initially go for the great coffee, you will definitely return for their delicious selections of homemade pastries, sandwiches, vegan and vegetarian items, and variety of gluten and wheat free options. They really do have something for everyone! Carme Espresso is located in The Hilltop Plaza, on Courthouse Rd., Spotsylvania.

7) Eileen's Bakery And Cafe  From-scratch. Artisan. Pastries. Everyone needs a little treat now and then, and a pain chocolat with your fresh coffee is totally an indulgence worth having! We highly recommend sitting in their courtyard on a nice day, and unwinding with a book. This is also a great place to grab a small brunch and chit chat.

8) & 9) If you are looking for a plate of eggs and toast with your morning brew, Amy’s Café (open for breakfast only on weekends) and The 2400 Diner are two places to totally need to check out. These restaurants are well known for their old school comfort food and friendly, unhurried staff. These are perfect spots to bring the kids (though, The 2400 Diner tends to have a wait due to it’s smaller size and legendary food), eat a casual brunch, or enjoy a lazy weekend morning.

10) Foode- If you ask people where to go in The ‘Burg for brunch, just about every local will say, “Foode.” The mimosas are amazing, the chicken and waffles can’t be beat, and the egg sandwiches are well worth waiting in line for.  HOWEVER,  that’s not why they are on this list. They are here because their after-dinner coffee is TO DIE FOR. It’s big, sexy, and worth popping in for, for no other reason. Hyperion may have supplied the joe, but Foode totally took it to another level with vanilla icecream, caramel, whipped cream, and crunchy salt!


Of course, the best things in life can be found right at home. Try some of the amazing latte recipes we’ve pinned onto our "Sweets and Treats" Pinterest board! Let us know which one’s your favorite.



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Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Ways To Take Better Pictures With Your Phone



If you’re anything like us, more and more of our pictures are being taken by our camera phones instead of our regular cameras. They’re just so convenient (you always have your phone with you!), make sharing pictures easy, and the image quality seems to get better with each upgrade. While we’ll never part with our beautiful SLRs, the camera phone is definitely here to stay. Why not embrace it and make sure our quick clicks are creating the best pictures we can muster? Here is a list of ten ways to improve your camera phone pictures today! 

Ten Ways To Take Better Pictures With Your Phone. 

1)Clean your lens! This is the probably the number one thing people forget to do that can enhance their picture quality. Our phones are gross. They touch dozens of surfaces a day and if you have kids, are probably covered in a thin layer of goldfish dust. The surface that touches your face may boast residue from makeup, sunscreen, dead skin cells, and oil from your skin. That’s probably why pictures taken when you reverse your camera (i.e. selfies) can be a bit blurry. Wipe your phones before attempting your next selfie and see if it makes a difference!

2) Where would you like the camera to focus? Touch the screen on that point. Touching the screen will signal the camera to readjust its focal point. That way, you’re taking a picture of your kids and not what’s behind them.

3) Mind your flash. In fact, you will more than likely get better pictures without it. Natural light is best, so turn off your flash and see what happens! If you’re using an iPhone, bring up your camera. Now, look in the upper left hand side. See that little lightning bolt? That’s your flash. You turn it off and on by touching it. Easy peasy!

4) Crop for added interest or focus. If there is a lot of visual clutter in your picture, try to fill the screen with the image you want to focus on. For example, you have a great picture of your kids and their best friends at the pool, but don’t want a million strangers swimming in the background.

5) Avoid zooming in when taking a picture. This goes hand in hand with number 4. Camera phones, at present, don’t have the greatest zoom capabilities. Zoomed in images tend to come out fuzzy or pixilated. To avoid this, try simply stepping closer to your subject or see if you can crop the image afterwards.

6)Timing is everything. Know your shutter speed. Play around and really get to know your camera phone. It’s important to get a feel for how quickly the picture will take after you “click” your camera. This way you know when to signal for people to smile, when to “click” to get that picture of your friend’s face at their surprise party, and when to “click” to get a great picture your kids playing soccer (i.e fast movement).

7) Stabilize your camera. Always remember: The lower the light, the longer the shutter speed. That’s why pictures taken in a dimly lit room will often come out blurry. If you can’t adjust your lighting, try holding the phone with two hands or resting your elbow on a flat surface to help stabilize you.

8) Adjust your white balance by focusing on different sources of light. It’s not as hard as it sounds. When you bring your camera up, give it a second to adjust to the light. If your subject is a bit dark or back lit, move your phone slightly and see if it self-adjusts. If not, touching the screen where you want the camera to focus on (like in number 2) may help.

9) Put your horizon in the right place. Make sure you center your camera with the horizon before shooting the picture…or don’t! Play around with images where the horizon line is tilted and see what you get. If you want to take a picture of a storm rolling in, a sunset, or a breathtaking tree-line, try lowering the horizon to the bottom of your screen. It will really emphasize the sky!

10) When in doubt, try going black and white or adjusting with a filter. Instagram is awesome for many reasons. One of those reasons is the sheer amount of filters you can use to improve your picture quality. If you don’t have an Instagram account, try searching for camera filter apps in your phone’s app store.


Pssst! Taking pictures with your phone is also a great way to win some awesome prizes! At Fred Parent, we always have a photo contest going or one in the works. Check out our Facebook, Twitter, or website to see what we have going on, today!


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Pouches' Community Corner

On August 17, three weeks after a routine pediatrician appointment for their then 4-month-old son, Levi, Liz and Angel Colon received news that no parent ever wants to hear: Levi’s liver wasn’t processing bile correctly, and he will very likely need a liver transplant—and time is of the essence.

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Read more about baby Levi and his family's fight for a new liver.