Best 5 Things to Do at Legoland, Florida

I received complimentary tickets in exchange for this post, all opinions are my own.  A couple of weeks ago our family made the quintessential spring break visit to Florida. Our agenda included theme parks, sun, palm trees, outdoor swimming pools- all the things that Minnesota doesn't have in April. High on my boys priority list of places to visit was Legoland, Florida. Like any boy mom I feel as though Legos have taken over my home at any given moment. It's not surprising that a theme park dedicated to this toy would be a must-see.  Based upon our experience I've … [Read more...]

Minnesota Winter Adventures with Ice Castles

I received complimentary tickets to the Ice Castle, however all opinions are my own. It's the brutal part of winter here in Minnesota. February means cold, brittle, icy, and frozen to those of us that live in this area. This is just the reality of our environment. But living in Minnesota has certain advantages, because for the second year in a row my family has braved the cold for a winter adventure-- Ice Castles.  I don't entirely understand how they craft this monstrous creation. Obviously, it's a lot of water mixed with a lot of cold weather. There is sort of a sweet … [Read more...]

Best Places to Eat in the Wisconsin Dells

I received compensation for the creation of this post, all opinions are my own. Our family made two trips to the Wisconsin Dells area this summer. It’s such a fun family destination and is an easy trip from the Minneapolis area. Even though we have visited this location a number of times there are still new and exciting places to explore. We have yet to attend the Tommy Barlett show, but it’s high on my list of must-sees for our next trip. With regards to eating-out we have some definite family favorites in the area, but in our recent trips we’ve also explored new places. It’s that mix … [Read more...]

A Family-Friendly Adventure with Wizard Quest in the Wisconsin Dells

I have received compensation for this post, all opinions are my own.  Solve the puzzle to free the wizards. Ultimately this is the heart of Wizard Quest. Of course included in this experience are secret rooms, clues, mystery, a ball pit, and magical worlds. Why didn’t they have something like this when I was a kid? My boys have no idea how lucky they are to experience such an amazing family-friendly place. Wizard Quest is family fun at it’s best. Using your brain instead of your brawn, every science and book-loving family is inclined to enjoy Wizard Quest. Last year we … [Read more...]

Rides, Slides, Spills, & Thrills: Noah’s Ark Waterpark

I received compensation for this post, all opinions are my own. My two older son's have summer birthdays and will turn eleven and eight respectively.  I occurred to me the other day that my time with them is starting to essentially countdown. Yes, I have lots of years left with them at home. Yes, counting down can be somewhat dramatic. But to a mom sometimes each birthday can be a year closer to them moving out. It's important during these years to have experiences and memories that will last a lifetime. For my boys Noah's Ark is a destination that incites cheers and … [Read more...]

A World Full of Play at the MN Children’s Museum & a Giveaway

This post was created as a part of my ambassadorship with the Minnesota Children's Museum.  My children live to play. One of my five-year-old son’s favorite pastimes is to fight imaginary bad guys. They could be robots. They could be monsters. I have a hard time determining exactly “who” these guys are all the time. But what I do know is that he considers it an awful day if he doesn’t have the opportunity to play this imaginary game. At the heart of the MN Children’s Museum is a commitment to encouraging play. It seems so simple, right? Children love to play. But in today’s … [Read more...]

Behold the Mysterious at Ripley’s Believe It or Not in the Wisconsin Dells

I have been compensated for this content, all opinions are my own. Ripley's is the stuff of little boys’ dreams. Full of mystery, amazing artifacts, historical items, and even just plain gross things, I’ve never been to a place quite like this. Ripley’s claims to have everything odd, weird, and unbelievable, this is certainly true. Last summer we visited the Ripley’s Believe It or Not site in the Wisconsin Dells for the first time. It was so much fun. I can’t deny I was as dazzled as the kids. I had never been to a place like this before. The museum is divided into different galleries … [Read more...]

Exploring Byodo-In Temple, Kahaluu, O’ahu, Hawaii

At first glance Byodo-In Temple appears to be a magical, imaginary place. Surely nothing this beautiful and idyllic can be for real. Yet within the Valley of the Temples Memorial Park exists this otherworldly place.  Byodo-In Temple was our first destination on O'ahu and was well worth the visit. It doesn't take very long to walk around the grounds, but the beautiful colors and construction add to the allure of this tropical area.  Created in 1968 to honor Japanese immigrants in Hawaii, this temple is a smaller replica of a temple in Uji, Japan.  With … [Read more...]

Top 5 Moments in Oahu

If you follow me via Instagram you might have noticed my family recently traveled to Hawaii. It was an epic adventure to say the least. My brother-in-law and family live in Kailua a few blocks from the beach and our trip was guided by their knowledge of the area. I’ll be creating a series of posts to provide further detail on our experience. Without a doubt, Oahu was a unlike any other place I’ve visited. Hawaii is distinct and wonderful. There is much to see and do. Our eight days were jammed packed full of activities {thanks for all the planning Tracy!} to maximize our time on the … [Read more...]

Best 5 Things to See & Do in Duluth with Kids

Duluth has been an endless source of fun for my family. With lots of options for outdoors adventures we have traveled to Duluth and the North Shore many times over the years.   The beautiful, sometimes serene Lake Superior is at it's finest in the summer sun.  And while this lake isn't ideal for swimming there are lots of ways to embrace nature. Whether you are staying at one of the many popular resorts on the North Shore, a hotel along Canal Park, or camping a Jay Cooke State Park here are my top recommendations for fun, kid-friendly sites in the Duluth and North Shore … [Read more...]

Hiking with Kids in Minnesota: Lebanon Hills

 Minneapolis and the surrounding suburbs are full of great places to explore with children.  Our family just moved into the Minneapolis/St. Paul area in June of 2014 {from the Rochester, MN area}  and we've had lots of fun exploring all the local parks. Lebanon Hills Regional Park is a great place for families. We've visited this beautiful area a few times and every visit I'm stunned by it's size.  Surrounded by Eagan and Apple Valley this park is right in the middle of the south metro. You gotta love Minnesota for creating such an expansive park in the midst of the city … [Read more...]

Hiking with Kids in Minnesota: Whitetail Woods Park

Dakota County has a new park. A new huge park.  How does this happen? I can't say that I have any idea, but I'm sure it's a complicated process. My understanding is that is has taken years to make Whitetail Woods Regional Park a reality.  I didn't even realize that new parks were still being created. Most parks have been around for a minimum of twenty years, it seems. Most have been around for much, much longer. I have to cheer a little bit for good ol' Minnesota once again.  A new park within 45 minutes to downtown Minneapolis. For sure, it's a good … [Read more...]

Top 5 Family-Friendly Memberships in the Twin Cities Metro

Since moving closer to the Twin Cities metro area this summer, my boys have been reveling in all the family fun destinations the area contains.  We lived in southeast Minnesota area prior to our move, so it's not as though the Minneapolis/St. Paul was a mystery to us. But our close proximity to so many fun places is a little overwhelming.  As we started to visit various museums and attractions this summer, it quickly became apparent that it made sense to purchase a membership.  Typically in as little as two or three visits a year, the membership will have paid for itself. … [Read more...]

Understanding the Dedication Behind Bigelow Tea

I was not compensated directly for this post, however I do have a professional connection to Bigelow Tea through my employer Collective Bias.  All opinions are my own.  #AmericasTea #CollectiveBias #cbias During this season of transition to colder temperatures and changing colors, there is a quiet comfort that comes from enjoying a warm cup of tea.  My favorite way to sip Bigelow Tea is by witnessing the morning light descend upon the autumn colors that I can view outside my windows.  I need to see open spaces to clear my mind and make me feel at ease. Luckily there … [Read more...]

Summer Sparkles & Junior Adventures

This post has been created as part of my partnership with Popsicle,  all opinions are my own. Boys are busy.  When my little guys are at home there is a constant stream of movement and activity.  It's harnessing that energy into a forward moving, positive momentum that is my task.  How do I attempt to do that? With plenty of summer activities, of course!  There is no epic summer vacation this year (because of our recent move), instead we are having what I refer to as "junior adventures".   Luckily we now live in an area that has a plethora of new sights to … [Read more...]