Cirque du Soleil AMALUNA Review

  This review is by Father Geek for The Mama Report.     When I was young, I visited the circus. It was a visual feast for my young eyes. Lions, tigers, clowns, and stunts that were as breathtaking as they were impossible to fathom. But that was when I was a child, and I now view the world through the eyes of a skeptic. Being older and - depending on your point of view - wiser, a traditional circus does not excite. I've seen tigers, I've seen bears, and as far as clowns and three rings go, I could do without both. That is why I was both surprised and enthralled with how much … [Read more...]

I’m a Verizon Mom! Conquering my New Galaxy Tablet #VZWVoices #Mom

“Disclosure: I am participating in the Verizon Moms Voices program and have been provided with a wireless device and six months of service in exchange for my honest opinions about the product.” I know what you are thinking. Did she really get a new Galaxy Tablet with service? Give me a break! First of all~ yes, I did. Second of all~ I do realize I'm incredibly privileged. Thirdly~ HELP! Confession: I've been a user of the other popular tablet device.  I'm sure you know which one I'm referring to. This is my first foray into the android world.  I've been hearing amazing things about … [Read more...]

Mount Rushmore National Memorial, South Dakota

Visiting the four heads (as we like to call it) is a must see for our family when visiting the Rapid City area.  There are so many other tempting cheesy things to do in the area, but at this point Mt. Rushmore remains at the top of our list.  These images carved into the mountain are amazing, the hike is fun, and now we have a few visits under our belt making it an official tradition.  Every time we visit this area we confirm that we ought to make this a destination within itself, rather than just a passing one night.  Luckily the trip is only a day drive, so hopefully at some point we can put … [Read more...]

Devils Tower National Monument, Wyoming

As we drove off the interstate to purposefully visit Devils Tower, I was under the impression we might be almost the only visitors to this distinctive rock on a somewhat early morning.  Um, yeah that was sooooooo not the case.  Devils Tower was busy.  Extremely busy.  Who knew?! Apparently it is a must see destination for many others as well.  And while most of us took the pleasant paved trail there were a few who garnered harnesses to actually scale the tower itself, a feat no one in my family will ever be allowed to attempt:)   One more destination on … [Read more...]

Little Bighorn Battlefield, National Monument, Montana

I had the opportunity to visit the Little Bighorn Battlefield when I was a kid and it left a strong impression upon me.   The land is undisturbed here.  Ever since my first visit I have determined this is one of the best places to witness history.  There is almost no need for re-creation.  Looking out into the distant rolling, grassy land it doesn't take much imagination to picture Native Americans riding across the plains.  This place has a distinctive feel and I highly encourage travelers to make this remote trip. Next on our cross country trip?  Devils Tower! … [Read more...]

Museum of the Rockies, Bozeman, Montana

One of our favorite stops on the trail to the West is a visit to the Museum of the Rockies.  With dinosaurs a plenty my six year old paleontologist in training is in a state of bliss.  My boys did not exhibit sophisticated, refined museum behavior.  No, instead we were the crazed, overwhelmed family running around shouting with delight at all the dinosaur bones:) And even though the dinosaurs are amazing, this museum has much more than just that.  We also had a great time at the pioneer farm (pictured below), the planetarium, and the kid's area.   Next destination … [Read more...]

Lake Crescent & Marymere Falls, Olympic National Park, Washington

Lake Crescent could be one of the bluest lakes I've ever seen.  It was amazing.  While we didn't go out on the lake, we did manage to walk out on the dock and even twenty feet from the shore the water was still crystal clear blue.  After having a lovely lunch at the Lake Crescent Lodge, we took off on a nice hike to Marymere Falls.   Next our jump to The Museum of the Rockies in Bozeman, Montana! … [Read more...]

Enjoy the Outdoors this Summer! July is National Park & Recreation Month #ParkRecLuv

I have been compensated for this post, all opinions are my own. In Minnesota it is best to make the most of the summer weather while you can.  Inevitably, the bright sunny weather isn't sure to last.  As the mom of three little boys who have a lot of energy, parks are a great way for my little guys to let off some steam. July is officially national park and recreation month, but I encourage everyone to embrace the love of the outdoors while you can.  The kids are not at school and many parents take more vacation time making it a perfect opportunity to share the experience together. Plus … [Read more...]

Hurricane Ridge, Olympic National Park, Washington

After leaving La Push next on our agenda was Port Angeles.  I was a little hesitant to take the twisty drive up to Hurricane Ridge, but my fears of falling over the side of a mountain where worth it once we reached our destination.  With views of Canada and the surrounding mountain tops we literally plowed through the snow along the trail.  I think my kids didn't realize that it is not natural to have snow in July, but being this high up in the mountains even with temperatures in 70's there was still a hefty dose of snow. Next on our trip, Lake Cascade and Marymere … [Read more...]

Sol Duc Falls, Olympic National Park, Washington

Can you tell we are a hiking loving bunch? All my vacation posts seem to revolve around hiking.  But there are so many awesome hikes available in the area we have had a great time seeing all the natural wonders.  Our last day in the La Push area brought about a trip to the Sol Duc Falls.  These easy hike led us to a spectacular view.  I actually enjoy walking among the trees more than seeing the falls themselves.  The trees in this area are humongous.  It is easy to feel like a minion among giants. Happy hikers! Killing time waiting for the other hikers.  My six year old … [Read more...]

Rialto Beach, Olympic National Park, Washington

Our next adventure while staying at La Push was a visit to Rialto Beach to see the tide pools.  A long walk along the beach rewarded us with close-up views of spectacular sea life.  My boys loved it.  I had the feeling they could have spent hours looking at all the different starfish, crabs, and sea anemones.  This is certainly something these Minnesota boys can't see on a regular basis.   Next on our adventure, Sol Duc Falls. … [Read more...]

Hoh Rain Forest, Olympic National Park, Washington

One of our day trips while staying at La Push was the Hoh Rain Forest.  I've never seen so much moss!  Actually it was my first official visit to a rain forest.  It was amazing to see this unique environment.  Perhaps the most exciting event was our discovery of a banana slug.  This disgusting creature has the unique ability to render one's tongue numb when it is licked.  Yes, my husband licked a banana slug.  I'm so proud (can you detect my sarcasm?).  I can't say that he didn't seize the moment, that's for sure! What a great example he is setting for my nephew who is peering upon the … [Read more...]

La Push Beach, Washington- Quileute Oceanside Resort

Our ultimate destination was La Push, Washington specifically at the Quileute Oceanside Resort.  Our cabin (with a multitude of family) was literally a few steps from the beach.  The rock formations along the coast were amazing.  Our kids had a wonderful time walking the beach, playing in the sand, and rock hunting.  There were amazing drifted trees that had crashed upon the beach.  These trees are giants at over two stores tall. Who knew!? But apparently (as you can see from the giant bites on my son's head) mosquitoes love the beach … [Read more...]

List of Best Restaurants in U.S., U.K., & Canada

As promised here is the complete list of the best restaurants available in the U.S., U.K., and Canada.  Consider this an insiders list of the best local places to nosh.  I've gathered together with my fellow members of Social Fabric to bring you this awesome list.  As you might remember I covered my local Rochester, Minnesota restaurants.  My locale isn't exactly a popular destination, so I'm guessing you will all find this list much more beneficial:) Happy travels everyone! Eastern US Tampa, Florida - I Run for Wine Annapolis, Maryland - Maryland Momma's Rambles Framingham, … [Read more...]

Theodore Roosevelt National Park, North Dakota- Painted Canyon

As you have probably all noticed, we are currently on vacation.  My family has trekked across the country from good ol'Minnesota all the way to the Pacific Ocean in Washington state.  We didn't have a chance to see much on our journey out west as we were meeting family on a particular date.  Instead we plan on see much more on our return journey.  But our one and only sightseeing opportunity on the way was to the Theodore Roosevelt National Park in North Dakota.  The Painted Canyon is an easy rest stop along the way and the view is well worth it. The Badlands of North Dakota are well … [Read more...]