Tag Archives: kids

Blast from the Past

There really are windmills in The Netherlands.

There really are windmills in The Netherlands.

The whole third section of our book is devoted to reinforcing the memories of a trip well taken and exploring the cultural diversity offered in your own hometown.  But what I neglected to include in those chapters is the memory boost offered by electronic blasts from the past.  Every couple of months I get an e-mail message from Nederlands Openluchtmuseum.  Even before I open it, it brings me a little smile.

Making paper at the Openluchtmuseum.

Making paper at the Openluchtmuseum.

Back in 2007, when the kids were seven and four, we took the whole family to The Netherlands for a scientific conference.  On an off day we took a train and a bus to a museum that was supposed to be fun for kids while documenting the everyday cultural heritage of the region.  We had a great afternoon walking through the period buildings of the “Open Air Museum” and interacting with people in period costumes doing traditional labor like milling grain or smithing. Read more »

Vienna ist fur Kinder

Vienna ist für kinder!  Vienna, Austria boasts castles, boat rides, music history, gorgeous Hapsburg-yellow buildings, and fantastic parks.  We lived in the 19th district of Vienna for six months with two young kids and we fell in love. Many activities and museums are designed specifically für kinder (for children) and others are just naturally fun für kinder. Here are a few of our favorite hidden family hotspots. Read more »

Seattle Scavenger Hunt

Planning a visit to Seattle?  Or do you live in Seattle and want to enjoy a downtown day with your kids?  Our awesome photo scavenger hunt will keep your kids walking, happy, and engaged!  Actually adults like it too.  It’s just plain fun and helps anyone enjoy the details of our fabulous city.

The area covered by our scavenger hunt is the downtown core.  Walk on 1st Avenue between Pike’s Place and Pioneer Square.  As a round trip, you will want to come back along 3rd with short detours to see the library and the opera hall.  End up at Westlake Center and take the monorail to Seattle Center.  You’ll capture all the pictures within this route.  You can get off at Seattle Center (no photos there – makes for a long day) or buy a round trip ticket in advance and just enjoy the ride. Read more »

Family Skiing at Snoqualmie Pass

From the top of Chair 1 at Alpental.

Snoqualmie pass is the major east/west migration route through the Cascade mountain range from Seattle.  It is also the home of The Summit at Snoqualmie, an amalgam of four ski areas that each have a unique and distinctive vibe despite being commonly-owned.  There is Summit West, a perfect place for families to learn to ski.  Summit Central has the terrain park and is popular for night skiing.  Summit East (a.k.a. Hyak) is my family’s low-key favorite.  And finally there is Alpental, which has the steeper terrain and backcountry access that expert skiers love.  I’ve been skiing at Snoqualmie pass for over 20 years and have had a season pass there for the last decade.  I won’t tell you where my secret stashes of snow are located, but here are a few other things that I have learned:

Read more »

Cheap Thrills for Kids – London Ski Lift

Linking North and South London, the Emirates Cable Car is a perfect family travel accessory.  It likely won’t be the main event of your day, but like any good travel accessory, it can add zip for very little cost. Just a 5-minute ride across the Thames River and only about $6.50 for an adult and $3.50 for a child.  The cable car boards like a ski lift in that you walk on while the car is moving slowly (in Read more »

Postcard from Ancient Egypt

Happy National Archaeology Day!  Last year, Congress designated October 22 as National Archaeology Day and we’re celebrating with a trip to Ancient Egypt.

We started preparing for the tip back in August at the King Tut exhibit (in Seattle until January 6th).  The audio guide was well worth the extra few dollars.  In addition to information about the artifacts, the audio guide offered information about Ancient Egypt and the archaeologists who uncovered the tombs. The kid’s favorite artifacts included a box etched with cat drawings and the golden mask. We demo’d the final versions of the museum scavenger hunts for our book and I was happy to discover that they worked well.  At the gift shop, the kids had their names written in hieroglyphics for $1 – always a crowd pleaser.

Read more »

Education in the Air: What your kids can learn by looking out

Pictures of Earth from space are always impressive.  We gain perspective, learn geology, see our own hometown in a new way, and maybe even pick up a little geography.  On your next plane flight, why not spend more time looking out the window with your kids?

What you see will depend on both when and where you are.  If you get a cloudy day, too bad.  There’s not too much you can do about that.  But on clear days and nights, you can see the world from your Read more »

Travel in Your Own City

What is so fun about waking up in a foreign city with a guidebook, a wide open day ahead, lots to see, time for an ice cream, and a few select adventures on the agenda?  It’s hard to put your finger on it but, it’s fun and educational and family-bonding, and even relaxing … all in one.  Why not do it at home?  Dig out the guidebook you keep for guests (or invest in an up-to-date guidebook) pick a part of the city you rarely visit (maybe a spot with a cultural theme?), identify something interesting or odd or toursity to do there, pick a museum you’ve never visited on the other side of town, and scan the restaurant reviews for something quintessential but not too spendy (and where Read more »