Our Top 5 things to Remember about Character meet-n-greets at Disney World!

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Who says princesses are for girls? My little guys LOVED meeting the princesses and all of the characters during our last Disney Vacation. And, we learned a little bit along the way about how to make the most out of the character interactions.

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Meeting Princess Tiana

Characters at Disney are such a part of the atmosphere and magic that before you get there it’s hard not to envision your kids (or yourself) running up to Mickey and becoming best friends! What you don’t picture are the hundreds of other people also running up to Mickey or the sheer number of things to do at Disney World other than meet characters.

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Having completed trip #3 (and already booked trip #4) we are getting into the sweet spot of understanding how to navigate the world of Disney. Here we present our Top 5 tips to help your family have great character interactions: Continue reading

Fifty years of Disney Fun Ahead

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Well, we did it!

After lots of questions, a lot of back and forth, we did it… became DVC members.

Yikes!

After we signed all the contracts, visited the notary, crossed the last T and dotted the last I, my husband asked me why I wasn’t more excited? What was wrong? Isn’t this what I wanted? The immediate answer was Yes!  Of course I’m excited, but it was that kind of excitement you feel on a huge roller coaster for the first time- equal parts excitement, anticipation, and fear. I mean, fifty years of vacation points is a HUGE commitment (not to mention the money that we are forking out for said points). But, I got the welcome tote bag in the mail, so we must be official!

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Highlights with littles from… CHICAGO!

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Our top 3 Favorite things from our latest expedition!

A few years back as part of our desire to see the nation and explore, we committed to taking our boys to all 30 Major League Ballparks before they graduate from high school. This summer we just tackled 2 more stadiums (#4 and #5 for us), however we didn’t start out with baseball.

Leg 1 of our trip was a drive from Pennsylvania to Chicago to visit with friends before heading to Milwaukee. We packed in a lot of fun over a few days and were lucky to have some great tour guides. If you are headed to Chicago it’s definitely a place easy to navigate with kids. So without further ado- here are our top three recommendations:

#3: Millennium Park lawn– in the summer Millennium park hosts a slew of free music concerts on the lawn. Our friends are Chi-town natives, so they were well prepared, but it would be easy for anyone to take advantage of this. Pack a picnic blanket and grab take-out from any of the neighboring restaurants. Obviously we had Chipotle because our 1st born dragon LOVES Chipotle, but you get the idea. If you are traveling sans kids- this is an even better idea because it’s actually relaxing! The other upside of having dinner on the lawn here with kids is that if your littles are tired after a long day of walking and won’t have good behavior at a restaurant, they can let loose a little on the lawn. Continue reading

Cincinnati in a Whirlwind

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img_2350After driving from Harrisburg to Chicago, then Chicago to Milwaukee, leg three of this summer’s Bruce’s Ballpark Touring took a detour in Indiana with a flat tire and a dead battery at 11:30 PM… but that is a story for another article.

Since we had already planned to watch our Phillies in Milwaukee, clearly Cincinnati was the next destination. What???

My hubby usually questions me when I come up with these hair-brained schemes- because (despite how close it can look on a tiny map) Milwaukee and Cincinnati are at minimum 6 hours apart. And… it wasn’t really on our way home. But, we are adventurers, so we set out! Continue reading

The downfall of Disney discounts…

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… lessons we are learning.

We are fresh off our Ballpark Touring and now gearing up for Disney World in October. We started planning this trip more than 9 months ago, reading more experienced blogs, watching videos on YouTube and continually checking the official website for updates. However, we are learning that all of the preparations capable from a mere mortal (and I do a LOT) still do not guarantee you a discount… even when they are released. (My blood pressure is rising even as I write this.) Continue reading

Display your FUN

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If there is one joy I want to instill in our boys it is the love of travel and so this year for my birthday, the hubby bought me a customized travel map!

We found a bunch of different options, but settled on this one from map your travels. It’s currently hanging on our wall as a fun reminder of all of our trips AND… my little guys are becoming more proficient in geography. Bonus!

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Tampa Bay Rays

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IMG_3231We sometimes play a little game of, “If you could describe _____ in one word, what would it be?” Well, much like the word for the old Braves stadium in Atlanta was “dirty” the word for the Rays stadium would be “quiet.”

I’m not sure if it was because of its dome design (instead of open-air, like our home team of the Phillies), or if it’s because it was relatively dead in terms of attendance when we went, or, -maybe the least likely- the population of older people in Florida doesn’t yell as much, but the stadium was decidedly quiet. I found myself conscious of how loud my kids were being, something that I usually don’t think of at a ball game. That was the lowlight of this ballpark, with everything else ranking higher.

Moving on… Continue reading