Travel Safety Tips

It’s important to be prepared while traveling with your family. Travel safety tips helps you to stay calm, stress less, and enjoy vacation time with your family!

How To Travel With Kids

One of the best tips I’ve received over the years is to travel with an open mind. You may have an idea on how the trip will go, but know that circumstances can change or you may need to re-think certain aspects of your trip once you arrived. Remember that the most important thing is to have fun and make memories!

Travel Safety Tips For Family Vacation

Going on your first plane ride or big road trip with kids can be nerve wrecking, but it shouldn’t be.

Prepare your family ahead of time with this simple list:

  • Have a way to keep your kids with you at all times. We choose to bring a light stroller with us. This was an easy way to keep up with the kids and not let them chance walking off! Some of my friends choose to have an armband leash that attaches from child to parent. With older kids, just have a daily conversation of what is expected of them.
  • Keep hand sanitizer and wipes for when you have lay overs or pit stops. You can wipe down tables, chairs and create a safe place for your kids to play and relax.
  • Keep an emergency kit on your carry on or traveling purse. Band-aids, children’s medicine, alcohol wipes are great for your kits. I buy mine at the local Dollar Tree.
  • Check with the airports you will be traveling through to learn protocols, layouts, restaurants, etc. If you know this ahead of time, you will not be stressing about where to go once you land, etc.
  • Have 24 Hours worth of supplies packed on your carry on. In the off chance you get separated from your luggage, you can comfortably take care of your family overnight until your luggage is secured.
  • If your children have travel anxiety or motion sickness, talk to your doctor about options to make their travel experience easier.
  • Consider packing travel Lysol cans to spray your hotel once you have arrived.
  • Try to have emergency numbers written down where everyone in the family can access them. I keep emergency tags on our luggage. You may also want to keep them in your wallet, purse, etc.

More Tip For Traveling With Kids

If you are looking for more safety travel and tips for family vacations, check out this post on Traveling With Kids.

Travel Safety

La Jolla Cove A Slice of Paradise

When people think of paradise, images of floating islands or mysterious foreign countries come to mind, but for me it’s none other than La Jolla Cove. It’s one of my favorite places on earth!

Why La Jolla Cove?

From the rugged beauty and endless amount of free entertainment, you simply can’t go wrong! It’s perfect for couples, families or even solo getaways!

Where to Stay

There are dozens of hotels and inns where you can stay, but my personal favorite was the La Jolla Cove Inn & Suites. It’s a quaint hotel with a stone throw’s distance from the ocean! We spend such little time in our hotel room once there that upgrading to an upscale hotel just wasn’t in the books for us. Figure out what your personal preference is and go from there. BTW, this isn’t a paid review! I really love this place.

What To Do

My first tip would be grab a cup of coffee from one of the local spots and walk along the coast starting in front of the cove. There are multiple stops where you can rest or walk down to the water. Always double check the local event calendar because it seems that festivals are always going on! They also offer unique shopping, art galleries, outdoor dining and so much more.

Closing Thoughts on La Jolla Cove

Another tip, La Jolla is just minutes away from San Diego. There are tons of things to do there as well. You may find my post on San Diego helpful, too!

La Jolla

Packing List and Tips For Disneyland

I remember googling tips for Disneyland last fall as we headed out for our first every trip. I wanted our trip to go smoothly. We spent an entire day at the park (over 9 hours!) and I have to say it went without a hitch!

Today, I’m sharing a list of items to pack for your Disneyland trip to help your family day go as smoothly as possible.

My Top Tips For Disneyland

Before we get to the list, though, I’m going to share my top two tips…drumroll…

#1 Wear comfortable shoes!! Seriously, this cannot be stated enough. Personally, tennis shoes were the only option for me.

#2 Bring a “busy” toy for the kids to play with during long lines. Think mini doodle boards, silly putty, etc. Just anything that is easy to keep on your person and will entertain the kids!!

Dineyland Packing List Tips

  • Hand Sanitizer
  • Sunblock
  • Snacks
  • Water Bottles
  • Cash
  • Small Toys (see tip #2!!)
  • Backpack that can easily be tied to your stroller
  • Stroller (life saver even if your kids are out of the toddler stage)
  • Lollipops (another life saver idea for long lines)
  • Wet Wipes
  • Bandaids/First Aid Kits

More Tips For Disneyland

If you want more tips on how to see Disneyland in a day and navigating Disneyland with a toddler, check out this post!

Tips For Disneyland!

San Diego Budget Travel Tips

San Diego is at the top of my list when it comes to laid back travel. Everything from the San Diego airport (gorgeous views!) to the San Diego weather makes me happy. Sunshine for days, anyone?

Balboa Park: This are is such a wonderful park with something for everyone to enjoy. Architecture, museums, cafes, walking paths, gardens, and so much for. The best part is that entry into Balboa Park is free. Even some of the museums are free. You may want to double check their web site for entry times and events. I’ve heard they feature outdoor concerts and other public events on a regular basis. It’s on my bucket list to attend one!

USS Midway: If you enjoy naval history, this is a great place to learn about this historical naval aircraft carrier. Not to mention, it is just a fun place to visit! The ticket prices are vary reasonable and perfect for families. There is also a lot to see and do in this area.

Little Italy: I honestly didn’t know about this area until we happened upon it by accident. It’s a tiny Little Area by big city standards (I only have NYC to compare it too), but it is a charming area located in Downtown San Diego. Italian restaurants, coffee shops, and ice cream shops abound! There are several budget friendly cafes located here!

Of course, when you go to San Diego, you HAVE to visit their amazing beaches! There are tons of amazing locations, but my personal favorite is the shell beach in La Jolla. La Jolla is a community just 15 minutes down the road from San Diego. Their beach fronts are rugged and have incredible views. There are places to relax, picnic and simply take a long walk. And it’s all free!

You can check out my tips for traveling to California on a budget here!

5 Tips For Traveling With Kids

Traveling With Kids

Traveling with kids doesn’t have to be hard! Read on to learn five tips that will make your upcoming travel a breeze!

Create A Checklist When Traveling With Kids

This would be my number one tip for anyone! Whether you are a pen and paper or a printed list kind of person, make sure you create a traveling checklist for what to pack weeks before your departure.

A few things that should be on your list: clothing, medication, shoes, outerwear, snacks, personal care items, resort items (think swimsuits, floaties, etc.). Another area to think about regarding your kids are items that they use on a daily basis that bring them comfort. Think blankets, stuffed animals or even their special night time book. Creating a sense of home for your kids while you travel is crucial to making the trip successful.

Double Check on Traveling Documents

If you will be traveling out of the country, make sure your paperwork is in order months ahead of time. Do you all have updated passports? Is your driver license up to date? It’s also important to make copies of important documents in the event of an emergency. You can lock them in hotel safes or keep them on your person. Whichever option you feel the most comfortable with. If you are working with a Traveling Agent, you may also want to save their number to your phone and have it written down on a piece of paper. Always be prepared for worse case scenarios! That way you won’t be stressing if you need to touch base or make adjustments to your trip. It saves you time and hassle.

Prepare Your Kids For the Trip

Another simple, yet effective way to help your kids travel with ease is to prepare them for the trip ahead of time. Let them know what will be expected of them, how long it will take, and how much fun you will be having as a family. When kids are well versed and prepared for large outings, it will help them to work through any anxiety they may feel.

Pack A Special Bag

This is truly what saved our sanity during a recent family vacation. We packed special bags for each of our kids. We told them about the bags the night before, so they were eager for the long travels! Each bag contained snacks, new coloring and activity books, crayons, notebooks, games, and small toys.

Try to download shows and music for times when they are getting tired or antsy. I suggest to give them bags once you arrive at the airport. Alternatively, you could give it to your children once you start your road trip. Another tip is to bring a jacket or blanket for them to cuddle with if you will be flying or traveling by train. It can get cold inside airline cabins!

Final Thoughts On Traveling With Kids

Seriously, with all the work that goes into traveling with kids, don’t forget to have fun! If something doesn’t go according to your plan, roll with the punches. Don’t let the kids see you stressed! Take pictures, make memories, and remember they will be grown before you know it. So, soak up these precious times. They will be some of your best memories down the road!

Let your travel time be one of fun and relaxation! It will be worth it! Also, don’t miss our post on Spring Bucket List Ideas for families!

Traveling With Kids

7 Iconic Things You Must See in New York City

New York City: The most diverse and incredible city in the United States! Of course, that’s only my opinion. I think it’s one of the most amazing cities to visit. Today, I’m sharing 7 Iconic things that you must see if you should ever visit this magical travel destination!

Top of The Rock: This was one of my favorite moments while visiting the city that never sleeps. The million dollar views will leave you breathless and pining away at its vastness. It is definitely the spot for Instagram pictures!

New York City Public Library: This one blew me away. I was amazed at how gorgeous this place was! The only way to describe it is that the New York City Public Library looked like it fell out of a Harry Potter movie. Stunning!

Statue of Liberty: I realize this one goes without saying, but I have to admit when we headed out for the tour, I was afraid I would be underwhelmed. On the contrary! It was a gorgeous day when we visited, the boat ride was relaxing, the historical aspect left me in awe…and it is truly an astounding site to behold!

Central Park: The park itself was stunning during the spring time when the trees were blooming. There are spots that are fun to see that were made infamous thanks to many rom coms. My favorite way to take in everything that Central Park has to off is through a carriage tour! They offer both horse and electric carriages.

Fifth Avenue: This street is a beast all it’s own! I mean it is a travel destination! How many books and movies have been made about it? Just think about that for a second. Seriously, it’s worth a quick jaunt via Taxi or take on Fifth Avenue via walking….just don’t forget to wear your walking shoes!

Serendipity: Any fans out there of the movie? This quirky cafe has the best frozen hot chocolate. And it’s a simple nod to one of the sweetest rom coms! Definitely a place to hit up if you enjoy nostalgia like I do.

Empire State Building: The tour is fantastic, not too long and not too short. They have some great views, and you definitely get the Sleepless in Seattle vibe while visiting! P.S. Double check the weather to make sure there isn’t any heavy fog to distort views. This happens a LOT so you can plan your trip accordingly while visiting New York City.

So, tell me, is New York City on your travel map? If you are headed to NYC with kids, check out our tips for traveling with kids!

Paris Travel Tips

Tied only to New York, Paris is one of my favorite cities. This travel destination is such a gorgeous place filled to the brim with beauty and inspiration! Today, I’m sharing a few of my favorite highlights that should be on everyone’s bucket list when they visit!

Take A Train Ride: If you enjoy getting different perspectives whenever you travel, I would highly recommend taking a train ride from Paris to the countryside. It’s such a fun way to take in new sights and experiences all the while getting to mingle with tourists and locals alike!

Hire a Tour Guide: One of the absolute highlights of our trip was hiring a private tour guide. The tour started in Paris and landed on the coast near Gold Beach. We had hours of conversation with the guide that gave us insight and historical information that I would have never dreamed to ask in the first place!

Street Food: I know…it’s Paris, there’s French restaurants galore where they offer incredible cheese, bread and savory dishes. But nothing, and I mean nothing, compared to the street stands. My personal favorite was ordering the Nutella & Banana Crepes. They were out of this world amazing and nothing has come closes to it state side.

Dine at the Top: Take in sweeping views at the top of the Eiffel Tower over dinner! It was worth it and still one of my favorite memories.

Best Things to Do in Memphis

Memphis is such a fun city for all ages! Today, I’m sharing a few of my favorite things from our recent road trips. While most people wouldn’t consider Memphis a travel destination, I would challenge them on it. It is such a gorgeous city with something for everyone to enjoy!

Central Barbecue: If you roll into town with an appetite, might I suggest diving right into local flavor at Central Barbecue. They have a great menu selection, fun atmosphere, and it is very kid friendly. The BBQ was delicious and I also loved their pork rinds!

Memphis Botanic Garden: If you happen to be there in spring or early summer, a highlight for us has been the local Botanic Gardens. Not only do they feature a plethora of flowers, tree, but also art, architecture, and amazing play spaces for kids! Definitely a photo worthy spot!

Crosstown Concourse: If you are looking for an urban shopping experience, I highly recommend the Crosstown Concourse. It’s a bustling atmosphere featuring multiple food outlets, shopping, and events. We had life changing popcorn at Pop-a-roos located at the Concourse. Seriously, its bucket list worthy.

Caffeine Fix: Before you travel back home, you may want to load up on caffeine. Get your fix at the Ugly Mug coffee shop. I loved the funky vibes and wide variety of drinks to choose from.

Have you been to Memphis recently? Would love to hear your own take-aways!

One Day at Disneyland With Toddlers

If you only have one day at Disneyland and you’ve got toddlers to boot, here’s a list to help you knockout bucket list items and make your visit a breeze! Honestly, Disney thinks of everything!

My first tip, would be to pack a backpack with items that you may need with toddlers: hand sanitizer, baby wipes, first aid kit, sunblock, water bottles, snacks, toys to hold their attention (think busy toys that they can hold in their hand!). I also highly recommend bringing your own stroller as renting one cost quite a bit of dough!

Packing our own snacks came in handy when we stood in line for rides or when we were taking a break. Little bags of chews are nice because they don’t make a mess! I also took juice boxes to help save a little money during our lunch break. Also, if your kiddo gets a boo boo during your time there and you forgot a first aid kit, just ask a Disney employee for help.

When you first arrive to the park, take a minute to have your picture taken by Disney staff. This is seriously the best tip because you start the day off with a cute family picture and you don’t have to worry about capturing it later on (especially when you get hot and sweaty! Ha!). They will take a professional picture that is downloaded to a card that you can later upload and pick out which one you like. They will also take pictures for you with your own phone (read: save money! They do a great job with iphone pics).

Once your picture has been taken, and you walk through the entrance tunnel, there are generally characters ready for meet and greet. Goofy was on duty the morning we visited and it was fun to see a character right away!

If you are hungry, can I recommend the hot dogs at Refreshment Corner? It’s an adorable eccentric soda fountain complete with rag time music. I felt like I had died and gone to heaven. The hot dog was smothered with cheese…and wow, I’m hungry just typing that. Also, you can’t miss the cafe across the street to get that once in a lifetime Disney Starbucks cup! The lines can get long, but it moves quickly! There is also an outside seating area for the kiddos if you need to take five to recoup or rest!

Another perfect memory making opportunity for the kids is to head to Sleeping Beauty’s Castle first thing in the morning. The Disneyland Band has a fantastic performance and parade. Your kids will get to see tons of characters in one fell swoop and the music is so fun! Plus, I mean, you get THE CASTLE as a backdrop! You can check the schedule to see what times the performances will take place.

For attractions that youngsters will enjoy: The Carousel, Dumbo, and Walk Through of Sleeping Beauty’s Castle were total winners for my little ones. Best part is they are all located in the same area, so it’s easy to knock these out right away. And don’t miss the Christmas ornament shop located across from the carousel!

At this point, your kids may need a rest. You can head to the Tikki Torch Hut for Dole Whips and a place to sit down and rest. Or you can head back to Main Street U.S.A. to visit the theater. Inside the little theater is a place to sit and watch old Mickey Mouse Cartoons! The kids can also get up and stretch to get a few wiggles out!

Onward to meet Mickey Mouse! This was the only thing that my girls requested to do. They could not wait to meet Micky Mouse! His house is located in Toon Town. The line to meet Mickey actually wraps throughout his house, so there is a lot to see and do while you wait. They also have cartoons playing at the very end of the line before you get to see him. Be sure to have your phone ready for pictures as once you go through the doors for a meet and greet, it goes fast!

Another fun thing to do that I felt was highly underrated was riding the Disneyland Railroad train! It’s such a fun way to see more of Disneyland and yet you get to sit down and rest! You can hop on and off at any time. We actually road it all the way around before getting off just to see more of the park and the kids were thrilled….because, train.

We also took time to visit Star Wars land….just walking through it was magical. There is so much to see and do!

As you head out of the park, you should stop at Jolly Holiday Bakery that offers Mickey Mouse Cookies for the kids and fun desserts for parents….all with a fun Mary Poppins Theme. It’s the perfect exit as you make your way back to your car.

Don’t forget to stop off and pick out a souvenir too, and keep your eye on the exit for more characters for photo ops!