February 19, 2017

Family Holiday Traditions

There is something magical when a baby is experiencing the holiday season for the first time.  When a baby celebrates their First Thanksgiving, First Christmas, First New Year’s Eve, etc., it’s not only a celebration for them, but also for the entire family.  Having a baby be part of the season’s festivities brings a lot of joy and laughter.  Watching a baby’s eyes light up and looking upon their wondrous smiling curiosity as they see the twinkling lights from a Christmas tree is a very precious moment.  Everything seems to be truly brighter and happier with a baby and the overwhelming feeling of warmth and love expands throughout the holidays.

baby's first christmas

The holiday season provide many memorable moments for a family to enjoy together like seeing Christmas lights, visiting Santa, playing in the snow, making holiday cookies and watching holiday movies.  When babies are walking around and on the move, you want them to be able to touch, feel, hug and embrace all the holiday moments.

As a mom, I  want my baby to freely move so he can interact with all the holiday happenings right along with his older siblings.  Babies need to feel comfortable to move and play and its why I trust Huggies Little Movers Diapers. All my children have used Huggies diapers and it’s important to me, especially during the holidays, that my baby can feel secure and protected to explore his surroundings.  Huggies Little Movers Diapers have double grip strips that help keep the diaper securely on his bottom. As part of the recent Huggies Parents Council event, I learned that Huggies works with actual clothing design experts to ensure each diaper is shaped to comfortably fit baby. Plus, they have a leak lock system that provides 12 hours of protection to help prevent leaks.  As a mom, I really appreciate the kind of care, consideration and work that goes into creating a Huggies Little Movers Diaper.  It makes me feel confident to take the baby everywhere we want to enjoy the holiday season together as a family.

Having moved to Florida a few years ago, my children don’t really understand blustery winter weather like I did during my childhood in New York.  The twins were toddlers when we moved from the Washington D.C. metro area. but they were able to experience their first snowfall before we left.  They were so amazed at the light sprinkle of white falling from the sky.  I loved seeing them run and trying to catch the snow on their faces.

Living in a warmer climate means we must be intentional about our holiday moments for my family.  It can be very easy to forget it’s the holiday time when people are walking in shorts and heading to the beach. 🙂 With having my (elderly) parents living up the street, I want my children to spend as much time with them so they can have long lasting memories of their time with them.  Remember in the holiday classic film, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, Clark W. Griswold (Chevy Chase) kept wanting to create a traditional “old-fashioned” Christmas for his family?  Our family tries to create many of those holiday traditions during the winter, despite the sunny warm temperatures we have now.  Some of our favorite family holiday activities are to ride Christmas trains, visit Santa villages, bake cookies and make traditional Latin American holiday food.

Whatever your family traditions are for the holiday season, be sure to take time out to simply enjoy the experience together!

Huggies® believes deeply in the Power of Hugs. The simple, loving act is proven to support babies’ emotional and physiological well-being. Huggies® diapers and wipes are inspired by a parent’s hug, – to nurture baby with care, cradle baby in comfort and surround baby in protection. Learn more at Huggies.com. #HuggiesCouncil

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Sprinkles {Savor the Newest Yummy Treats at Disney Springs}

Sprinkles—now open at the new town center of Disney Springs (use to be Downtown Disney).

sprinkles-disney-springs

It is considered one of the first cupcake bakeries,  established in 2005, in Beverly Hills, CA.  Sprinkles offers an array of seasonal, vegan, gluten-free and sugar-free cupcake, cookie and ice-cream selections. You definitely can find a delicious treat for whatever your sweet tooth craves.  It offers a loyalty program just by signing up via email where you attain different levels of membership—vanilla, dark chocolate and red velvet. These membership levels can you a free cupcake on your birthday to skipping straight to the front of the line at any of their locations.

sprinkles-cupcakes

Our family, Disney lovers to say the least, had to give this new bakery a try.  We heard the lines were long and most times wrapped around a few times as people couldn’t wait to get their hands on these delectable treats.

(Insider Tip: One of the best time to visit is between 2:30 p.m.-3:30 p.m.)

We didn’t have to wait in line at all, we literally walked right up to the counter. The cast members warmly greets you with a huge smile and willing to answer any questions.  Not sure what flavor of ice cream to get—not to worry—they offer free sampling flavors.  They even offer suggestions of what flavor compliments your cupcake of choice and will offer tips on how to save money as you try not to grab one of everything!

 

After placing our order, just slide on down to the pick-up area where you can watch the bakers in action frosting each cupcake meticulously by hand.

One of the coolest thing for the girls was purchasing a cupcake from an ATM.  That’s right, an ATM.  You just make your selection from a drop down menu, swipe your card and out pops out a cupcake completely boxed and ready-to-go for any of you that want to get your sweet fix on the run!

There is ample amount of seating on the umbrella-covered patio which offers great shade from the heat of the day.  We grabbed a seat and were ready for the taste test. From the ATM, the girls purchased a Red-velvet cupcake that was absolutely delicious—my favorite for sure. It was super moist and the frosting was the right amount of a dollop that it didn’t take away from the cake itself.  At the counter, we ordered a banana cupcake with strawberry ice cream.

This was definitely a tasty treat that was both yummy and cooled us off a bit as we explored the brand new town center!

Visit Sprinkles.com for information.

Enjoy!

LEGOLAND Florida: A Must-Experience Destination for All Families

At the beginning of the school year, I challenged my 2nd grader to get all A’s for the entire year. I told him that if he were to do that, he could pick anywhere to go and I would take him there in the summer. Well Jude didn’t disappoint, he put his nose to the grind stone and did the work to get straight A’s! At the end of the school year I asked him where he wanted to go and he exclaimed, LEGOLAND Florida!!! So LEGOLAND it was!

LEGOLAND Florida

This was our family’s 1st time there and we had a blast! It really surprised me how much there were things to do, even for my 2 year old daughter. Usually theme parks have a couple of things for the “little guys,” but LEGOLAND takes the prize for having fun things for both age groups. I was very pleased!

Near the park entrance, they knew that it would be helpful to have a cool mist before we started our day.

1 legoland

The first ride we got on was the “Island in the Sky.”  The ‘Island in the Sky’ is a 150- foot rotating platform that gives you a 360° view of LEGOLAND.

The next stop was the “Duplo Train.” This was part of Duplo Valley, a land filled with activities and rides, specifically for “toddlers.” Avalyn had lots to do in here. But the big boys enjoyed themselves as well. There was also the Duple Tractor ride and play areas. It was so nice to cool off in the Duplo Splash Pad.

The next land we visited was the “Lego Kingdoms.” What a cool place! The ride that we went on was “The Dragon.” This is a roller coaster that starts with really neat lego creations and then you go on a fast adventure with lots of twists and turns. Definitely a must ride!

Another cool ride was “Merlin’s Challenge.” This is a mysterious wooden train powered by Merlin’s magic! Even my 2 year old enjoyed this one!!

The Land of Adventure was so neat! There was so much to see. The big guys went on the “Lost Kingdom Adventure.” They helped the adventurers battle LEGO mummies and skeletons to find the hidden treasure! What fun!!!

Land of Adventure

While the ride wasn’t too fast for my toddler they were fighting mummies and skeletons, so Mommy and Avalyn went to “Pharaoh’s Revenge. This outdoor attraction lets children and parents fire soft foam balls at enemies and explore the maze of the Pharaoh’s kingdom.

Pharaoh’s Revenge

We couldn’t leave this land without getting on the “Coastersaurus!” This wooden coaster curves and dips in and around a prehistoric jungle of animated and life-sized LEGO brick dinosaurs. Its amazing what they do with LEGOS!

Our next stop was “Miniland USA.” My favorite part of the day. What creativity these Lego designers have! Phenomenal!!! Miniland USA contains over 32 million Lego bricks and amazing scenes from coast to coast all the way to a galaxy far, far away! A must stop on your visit at LEGOLAND!

Star Wars at Miniland


We loved “Heartlake City!” This is the newest land based on the popular LEGO Friends line of toys. Avalyn loved all the girly lego creations.  A popular ride is “Mia’s Riding Adventure.” You get to pick your horse and saddle up for a ride on the exciting disc coaster! So much fun! And it helped to feel the cool breeze on a very hot day!

To get out of the heat, we went to the Wells Fargo 4D Theater.  4-D movies are shown throughout the day at LEGOLAND‘s largest indoor theater, with seats for more than 700 guests! I love that!! So many times, you go to a theme park and you have to wait a long time to get inside an “A/C” place, but with 700 seats, you are going to find a seat! The movie they played was “The LEGO® Movie™ 4D : A New Adventure,” complete with 3-D glasses and adventure. After each 4-D movie, meet some of your favorite LEGO characters outside the theater! This was a beautiful theater, even had the red carpet!

LEGO Movie 4D A New Adventure

It started raining during our trip but no worries, we went straight to Imagination Zone. This is filled with amazing hands-on Lego activities! Next to the outdoor Kid Power Towers attraction, guests will discover a cool indoor space filled with colorful furnishings, floor-to-ceiling graphics, several awesomely themed “zones” and thousands of LEGO bricks awaiting assembly into whatever you can imagine! This gave us parents a time to sit down and enjoy the A/C while the kids enjoyed played and played!

One of the neatest areas there was the “Water Zone” in this hide away the room is decked out in underwater colors with full on coral reefs made out of LEGOS! There are a number of touch screen computers where the kids (and let’s face it some adults) could pick from three tropical LEGO fish to digitally build. Once assembled you get to color your fish uniquely and then click finish. Once you do the fish swims away from you and is picked up on the wall by a special projector that then shows your one of a kind fish swimming in a digital reef with all the other creations.

Jude really liked the “Flight Zone.” Kids can build flying contraptions to the limits of their imagination then put them to the ultimate test by racing their crazy creations against other kids’ designs on suspended ziplines. If you can build it, you can fly it! After the first try, Jude saw how it flew and revamped his design and it went flying really fast! Even adults have fun creating their designs!

The Technic Tot Spot was a spot that we played a long time! Lots of smiles and laughter! We even got to meet Nya and Kai in person!

At the end of our trip we visited Cypress Gardens. The beautiful and historic botanical gardens have been restored to pristine condition! Still standing sentinel in the garden is the vast Banyan tree that was planted as a seedling in 1939.

Cypress Gardens

On our way out of the park we had to stop at the Grand Carousel. This double-decker carousel is the centerpiece of Fun Town. Children can choose their favorite horse. Such fun!

Grand Carousel

There are so much that I like about LEGOLAND Florida.  On most rides, we only waited about 5-15 minutes! The short wait time is amazing for such a popular theme park and especially for visiting in the summer.

Another perk, they have set up Lego play stations for the kids to play while the parents wait! Wow, what a great idea!!! You don’t have to wait in the line while your child asks how much longer. You can tell this theme park is very well thought out and kid friendly.  We highly recommend families, with children of all ages, visit LEGOLAND Florida!

For more information visit, LEGOLAND.com/florida

Facebook: facebook.com/LEGOLANDFlorida

Twitter: @LEGOLANDFlorida

Instagram: instagram.com/legolandflorida

#AwesomeAwaits
#BuiltForKids

Everything is Awesome at LEGOLAND Florida!

Disclosure: As a regular contributor, I received complimentary tickets in order to facilitate a media review.
All thoughts and opinions stated here are clearly my own.

5 Reasons You Should Attend MommyCon in Orlando (+ 2 Conference Tickets Giveaway)

Hello fellow Mommies! When I became a Mom, I naturally fell into attachment parenting. I’ve always followed my instincts and read A LOT, taking whatever advise I find agreeable and pertinent to my family. I have found an amazing support system of like-minded mommies online and in my own town which is such a blessing. When my friend Emy told me about MommyCon many months ago,  I checked out their website to get a feel for it and see what the event was exactly. I found out that MommyCon is a nationwide convention for parents (including expectant parents) that is dedicated to natural and organic parenting methods. Yes, Yes Yes!

MMCN CB Logo

For anyone sitting on the fence about MommyCon, or for those of you who don’t know much about it, here are the top five reasons why I think you should join me at MommyCon at the Caribe Royale Convention Center on Saturday, September 3rd, 2016.

1. It takes a village to raise a child!

I am so excited to meet all of the parents, speakers, and educators that have rallied together for this event. There is nothing better than being surrounded by supportive people while getting your questions answered and learning about the things YOU want to know. This years speakers include Angel Laketa Moore, decorated actress and YouTube sensation, who will share stories about her journey as a mother of three boys, including twins.  MommyCon sponsor and founder/CEO of Cotton Babies, Jennifer Labit, who is returning to discuss the importance of cloth diapering.  Also, one of my personal favorites, outspoken breastfeeding advocate, Jessica Martin-Weber of The Leaky Boob! Jessica is a mom of six and is dedicated to helping mothers find the strength and courage to breastfeed in an unsupportive society. She will provide a raw and emotional look into nourishing babies, toddlers, and mothers. How exciting!

2. It’s a FUN afternoon for the family — that doesn’t involve excessive amounts of sweating in the Florida heat!

I love spending my days with PJ! Unfortunately, there are just some places that aren’t designed with toddlers in mind and so I find them more stressful than fun. MommyCon is set up with our families in mind! There are nursing stations,  kiddie play areas and plenty of refreshments. You can also bring your own food and drinks, which I love and will personally be taking advantage of. Workshops include an expanded selection of babywearing specific seminars such as Babywearing 101, Wrapping 101, Toddlerwearing (presented by Beco Baby Carriers), and How to Ring Sling, educational symposiums on environmentally friendly menstruation products and potty training, plus sleep consultations.

3. Giveaways and freebies galore!

giveaways at mommycon

If you’re like me, you know how valuable freebies can actually be! Sometimes I need an extra nudge or special reason to try a new product. It’s hard to spend money on something you aren’t sure will be LOVE. So to all of the little trinkets that are sure to creep into my life at MommyCon and make me wonder how I ever did without, I say bring it on! Contests too? Sign me up!

4. You get to try out products! 

cloth diapers at mommycon

MommyCon Orlando will feature a product showcase hall of 80 exhibitors! I’m personally on the hunt for a toddler carrier now that Payton is outgrowing her standard Tula. Will I get extender pieces? A toddler Tula? A Kinderpack? Will I start wrapping? Being able to try out products and talk to the experts is one of the many valuable resources available at MommyCon!

5. Shopping! Shopping! Shopping!

There will be vendors on site that love and genuinely care about us and the well-being of our families, giving us attention and making us feel special as we browse around. If you love shopping where your kiddo is free to explore and the products are tailored to you, MommyCon is the place to be!

Event Details for MommyCon Orlando

Date / Time: Saturday, September 3rd, 2016 9:30 AM to 5.30PM

Venue: Caribe Royale Convention Center
8101 World Center Dr Orlando, FL 32821

Tickets: $20-$100 thru MommyCon.com 

I am a member of the MommyCon 2016 street team which gives me access to a $5 off coupon code to share with you! This code (STSM16) can be used in conjunction with the $2 discount that they are currently offering on their website when you share the event on your Facebook page during checkout.

MommyCon Orlando

Thanks to MommyCon, I’m delighted to share that we are giving away 2 conference tickets to MommyCon Orlando  here on Mami of Multiples! Two winners will be chosen at random. No purchase necessary.  You can enter the giveaway more than once using the Rafflecopter entry form below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Learn more by visiting www.mommy-con.com

Facebook: facebook.com/mommyconusa

Twitter: @MommyConUSA

Looking Forward To Seeing You There!

National Back-to-School Sales Tax Holidays

Back-to-school season is already quickly approaching with many schools starting the new school year in August and others after Labor Day in September.  As parents can relate, school supplies can get costly for families especially when having various school aged children.

back to school

To ease the annual financial burden of buying your kids new clothing, school supplies, electronics and dorm gear, many states temporarily suspend levies on non-commercial purchases of specific items. The sales tax holidays usually fall in late summer and last anywhere from a weekend to a full week.

back-to-school

See the following list below of 17 states that have upcoming sales tax holidays and what’s exempted:

Alabama Aug. 5-7. Clothing $100 or less per article, excluding accessories (such as jewelry and handbags) and protective or recreational equipment (dance shoes, cleats, band instruments and such); single purchases ($750 or less) of computers, computer software and school computer supplies; school and art supplies ($50 or less per item); and books, $30 or less per item.

Arkansas Aug. 6-7. Clothing and footwear less than $100 per item; clothing accessories and equipment less than $50 per item; and school supplies, art supplies and instructional materials (including textbooks, maps and globes).

Connecticut Aug. 21-27. Clothing and footwear less than $100 per item (excludes most accessories, protective wear and athletic gear).

Florida Aug. 5-7. Clothing, footwear, wallets and bags with a sales price of $60 or less per item; school supplies with a sales price of $15 or less per item.

For 2016, the yearly savings event in Florida has been changed from 10 days into
3 days, running Aug. 5-7. Florida shoppers will not have to pay taxes on clothing items of $60 or less, down from $100 per item last year.

Exemptions on certain school supplies of $15 or less is unchanged. However, computer and related accessories — more than 40 items — have been removed from the list. In 2015, the first $750 in taxes were exempt on those items, from laptops to flash drives.

Among tax-free items: Clothing, shoes, backpacks, purses, lunchboxes and notebooks. Taxable items include football pads, briefcases and printer paper.

Georgia July 30-31. Clothing and footwear with a sale price of $100 or less per item; computers, components and software with a sale price of $1,000 or less per item; and school supplies with a sale price of $20 or less per item.

Iowa Aug. 5-6. Clothing and footwear less than $100 per item (excluding most accessories and sporting gear).

Louisiana Aug. 5-6. There’s a partial break on the state sales tax charged on most purchases during the 2016 sales tax holiday. The first $2,500 of a purchased item will be taxed at 3% rather than the full 5% state sales tax.

Maryland Aug. 14-20. Clothing, footwear and some accessories, $100 or less per item.

Mississippi July 29-30. Clothing and footwear (excluding most accessories), $100 or less per item.

Missouri Aug. 5-7. Clothing $100 or less per item (excluding accessories); school supplies, $50 or less per item; computer software, $350 or less per item; computers and computer peripheral devices, $1,500 or less; and graphing calculators, $150 or less per item.

New Mexico Aug. 5-7. Clothing and footwear items, less than $100 per item (excluding most accessories, and athletic or protective clothing or footwear); school supplies, less than $30 per item; computers, e-readers that have computing functions, and tablets, $1,000 or less per item; certain computer-related items, $500 or less per item; book bags, backpacks, maps and globes, less than $100 per item; and handheld calculators, less than $200 per item.

Ohio Aug. 5-7. Clothing priced at $75 or less per item; school supplies and instructional materials priced at $20 or less per item.

Oklahoma Aug. 5-7. Clothing and footwear, less than $100 per item (excluding most accessories, and athletic or protective gear).

South Carolina Aug. 5-7. Clothing and certain accessories; footwear; school supplies; computers, printers and printer supplies and computer software; and certain bed and bath items.

Tennessee July 29-31. Clothing, $100 or less per item (excludes clothing accessories or equipment); school and art supplies, $100 or less per item; computers, $1,500 or less per item.

Texas Aug. 5-7. Clothing and footwear, less than $100 per item (excluding accessories, athletic or protective clothing, and rentals of clothing or footwear); backpacks under $100 used by elementary and secondary students; most school supplies, less than $100 per item.

Virginia Aug. 5-7. Clothing and footwear, $100 or less per item (excludes most accessories, and protective or sporting equipment); school supplies, $20 or less per item.

For more back-to-school content on Mami of Multiples, visit http://bit.ly/mombts

Happy Shopping!

10 Easy Healthy and Fun Summer Activities

Summertime! We are in the midst of summer nationwide and of course a heatwave living in Florida.  My daughter and I love being outside.  She enjoys taking steps on the grass and crawling all over me when we are siting outside.  As a mom, its my job to stay healthy for my daughter and I like to keep my legs healthy and clean with the eco-friendly Sapien Women Shave Gel because it protects skin while shaving.

Protect sensitive #skin this #summer with the eco-friendly Sapien Women Shave Gel @suryabrasil Click To Tweet

sitting on the grass with mommy

Sapien Women Shave Gel is a natural and vegan product made with exotic organic Amazonian ingredients like Cupuaçu butter, Pracaxi oil, Macadamia oil and Vitamin E to prevent drying and protect sensitive skin.   Organic Aloe Vera juice and vegetable glycerin promote intense hydration.

Sapien Women Shave Gel

The Shave Gel contains a natural tropical scent of coconut and mango. Zero GMO’s, free from BHT, EDTA, Parabens, Sulfates, Phthalates and Synthetic Fragrance.  The Sapien Women Shave Gel is available at Whole Foods, Sprouts and online via suryabrasilproducts.com.

Check Out 10 Easy Healthy and Fun #Summer Activities to Do With Your #Family This Summer Click To Tweet

After using the eco-friendly Sapien Women Shave Gel, it’s time to start the summer fun.  My family and I are always looking for ways to participate in healthy and fun summer activities.  The following are some simple healthy and fun activities that you can do with your family this summer:

beach day

mowing with baby

Get box and have a diaper derby race with your #baby! #summerfun #diaperderby #parenting Click To Tweet

 

outdoor concert with kids

Looking for other summer ideas? Check out our summer guide available: HERE

10 Easy Healthy and Fun Summer Activities

5 Reasons to Celebrate and Experience Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort and Spa

The beach.  The phrase alone brings to mind the picture of calming waves, swimming in the ocean, building sandcastles, laughing in the sun with friends and family. When you think about spending quality family time, one of the best places to create memorable experiences is at America’s Best Beach.  Clearwater Beach in Florida was named America’s Best Beach because of the powder-white sands, calm waters, fun dining and family-friendly entertainment—all conveniently located along the beach coastline.  Our oldest son recently graduated high school and we celebrated this momentous occasion together as a family at the Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort and Spa.

The following are 5 reasons to celebrate and create family memories at Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort and Spa:

1. Location, Location, Location

When traveling to America’s Beast Beach, you want to be able to stay at a beachside hotel or resort. With a family of 6, comfort, convenience and spacious accommodations are always high on our list when choosing vacations and places to spend time together as a family. The Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort and Spa is a must-experience top rated selection and its adjacent to Clearwater Beach with beach access located within the hotel. The resort is directly on the path of BeachWalk—Clearwater’s new half mile active pathway for shopping, dining, and entertainment along the beach and in front of the resort.

@HyattClearwater is a must-experience top rated resort in Clearwater! Beach access within hotel. Click To Tweet

From the moment you enter the beautiful lobby filled with oceanic décor and check-in with a glass of champagne, you immediately feel like you are on vacation.

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The resort has wonderful oversized condo-style rooms and suites with fully equipped kitchens, offering views of the beautiful Gulf of Mexico in their over 250 guestrooms.  We stayed in an ample 1 bedroom 2 queen suite which featured a double bathroom, full-size kitchen with granite countertops, living room area, 2 queen sized beds, a queen sized sleeper sofa and walk-around balconies that overlook the beach.

From being able to easily prepare food for a picnic on the beach in the large kitchen to no waiting in line to use the restroom with double bathrooms available, it is a perfect lodging option to accommodate the needs of traveling with family, children or for celebratory gatherings.

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@HyattClearwater offers full kitchens, double bathrooms & condo suites - perfect for families. Click To Tweet

If you are looking to create a large scale celebratory event, the Hyatt Regency Clearwater has 32,500 square feet of indoor and outdoor meeting, wedding and event space.

 

2. Beachside Family Fun Activities

Even with numerous activities along the coastline, the main attraction at Clearwater Beach is still its near-perfect beach. (USA Today readers voted Clearwater Beach “Best Beach Town in Florida” in 2013). Beautiful white sand, clear and shallow water make this beach an ideal playground for families.

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Families can choose to spend a relaxing or experiencing an adventurous day at Clearwater Beach.  Within walking distance of the Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort are vendors and attractions for sailing, deep-sea fishing, boating, wave runners, parasailing, kayaking, snorkeling, scuba diving, catamaran rides, dolphin-watch eco-tours, bike rentals, sunset dinner cruises; golf, tennis and shopping.  Some favorites for families to experience together are the Sea Screamer (Thrill Boat Ride), Little Toot Dolphin Adventures; Tampa Bay Aviation Helicopter Tours; Deep Sea Fishing; Parasail City.  Use Wheel Fun Rentals (located at the ground level of the Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort) or Fun Ride Rentals to rent a Segway, bicycles, scoot coupe (like mini coupe cars) or a surrey bike (where the entire family can ride together).  With 35 miles of uninterrupted coastline, don’t miss the opportunity to go boating in the Gulf of Mexico. If you’re traveling with little ones, rent a pontoon boat or charter a family-friendly fishing trip. For a once-in-a-lifetime experience, try your hand at JetLev—where you literally hover over the Gulf waters powered by a JetLev Flyer pack.

Blue Top portable beach tents and beach chairs at Clearwater Beach

If you want to relax, rent one of “blue top” portable beach tents and beach chairs (which can be rented directly from the Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort for the day) and enjoy swimming, collecting seashells and fun in the sun.

Have a relaxing day at the beach or enjoy the exciting beachside activities near @HyattClearwater. Click To Tweet

 

3. Poolside & Spa Relaxation

Nothing is better after a hot day to take a cool dip into the pool. The Hyatt Regency Clearwater offers not only refreshing pools but panoramic and breathtaking views of the Gulf of Mexico.  On the 8th floor, overlooking Clearwater Beach, are the resort’s enclosed children’s pool (with kiddie toys and seating area) and a larger pool that houses chaise lounge chairs and air-conditioned pool cabanas.

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One of the best features of these luxurious poolside cabanas are that they’re private poolside indoor cabanas. No need to sweat outside because each of the climate controlled cabanas are equipped with Wi-Fi, a 42-inch flat-screen television, wet bar area, comfortable furniture, private patio area with curtain enclosures and personal restroom.

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Each poolside cabana has a personal attendant to cater to all poolside needs including ordering cocktails and light food directly to the cabana from the poolside bar, Swim Bar & Grill.  When traveling with children or a large group, we highly recommend reserving a poolside cabana.  It gave us much needed relief from the hot Florida sun and it was a delightful amenity to spend time relaxing by the pool together in a private and comfortable environment.

@HyattClearwater Private indoor poolside cabanas provide cooling relief and comfort. #mustsee Click To Tweet

Needing more ways to relax? Go to the 16th floor, with your beverage of choice, and see aerial views of the Gulf of Mexico or relax in the spa pool with therapeutic water jet system on the Sky Terrace.

Get a massage at the Sandava Spa, a full service spa including private treatment spa suites, manicures, pedicures, facials, professional massage services, and spa wedding packages.  If you are looking for a work out, visit the complimentary 24-hour Hyatt Regency Clearwater’s StayFit Gym or jog alongside the sandy beach.

 

4. By the Shore Dining

If you are at the beach, you want to eat near the water and enjoy the picturesque views. With sparkling beach views on the wrap-around patio, SHOR American Seafood Grill Restaurant, at the Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach is a top choice for breakfast, lunch or dinner.  Helping to fuel a sunshine filled day, breakfast selections, created in an open kitchen, include made-to-order eggs and omelets, pancakes, waffles, cereal, fresh fruit, pastries and more.  Regional seafood dishes, steaks and American cuisine are always on the menu for lunch or dinner. Seating inside or out on the patio is available to enjoy appetizers, seasonal main courses, sandwiches, salads and tasty sweets.  If you are looking to celebrate a special occasion, consider the private dining option at SHOR hosting up to 16 people with sweeping views of the Gulf of Mexico.

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Other fun and casual beach atmosphere dining staples at Clearwater Beach, with live music and dancing, offering fresh-from-the-Gulf seafood at reasonable prices are Frenchy’s and Crabby Bill’s.  (See more top-rated restaurants in Clearwater on TripAdvisor and some of the best beach bars.)

 

5. Unique Entertainment

There are truly limitless things to do, see and there’s something for every interest, age, and curiosity to check out in Clearwater Beach. The beach and Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort is near many attractions and family-friendly destinations.  Steps away from the resort is the world famous Sunset 60 Pier.

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The daily festival on Clearwater Beach operates 365 days a year from two hours before until two hours after sunset, weather permitting. The nightly sunset celebration features artisans, crafters, street performers and large playground. Grab a blanket or lawn chair and check out the free sunset cinema outdoor movie theater at Pier 60. Popcorn and concessions available on-site and movies begin at dusk.  For uniquely entertaining experiences, check out Kai Lani Catamaran, see beautiful sunsets, gaze at dolphins, or simply bask in the water’s cool breeze on a 50-foot boat. Captain Memo’s Pirate Cruise, the original pirate cruise lets you enjoy reggae island & steel band music.  Have fun in pirate antics of treasure hunts, face painting, water gun games, stories and dancing.  Sea Life Safari – Island Explorer, get up close and personal with dolphins, sea birds and the vast array of marine life native to the area.  Watch as the boat pulls up a net teeming with life and various sea critters, before releasing them back to the bay.  Clearwater Marine Aquarium, meet the stars of the Dolphin Tale movies – Hope and Winter –  alongside other aquatic creatures.  Don’t forget to check out the interactive Winter’s Dolphin Tale Adventure to experience what a hurricane feels like and scenes from the movie.  Learn how to surf indoors with a flowrider indoor surfing wave machine at SurfStyle.

Looking to have a date night while the children are safe and having fun? Check out Camp Hyatt.  Camp Hyatt, at the Hyatt Regency Clearwater Resort, is a program designed for children aged 3 – 12 years old.  Activities range from arts and crafts, board games, kinect tournaments, shell combing, swimming, walks to the playground, and more. Prices include lunch, snacks, dinner, full day or half day camps.

 

*Transportation Tip*

Whether you are flying or driving to the Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort or visiting Clearwater Beach, consider the needs of your family, including seating, luggage and gifts/souvenirs you will be taking back home with you after shopping.  Think about renting a car at the airport or even if you are driving to Clearwater.

Thanks to Toyota Latino, we had a very comfortable experience with the expansive 2016 Toyota USA Highlander LE Plus. The midsize crossover SUV seats 8, has plenty of legroom (even with a carseat, luggage, stroller and 6 people), has great gas mileage and is a very smooth ride.

Check out the 2016 @Toyota USA Highlander LE Plus. Seats 8 & is a very smooth ride. @ToyotaLatino Click To Tweet

For more information, visit the Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort and Spa website at clearwaterbeach.regency.hyatt.com.
Facebook: facebook.com/HyattRegencyClearwater
Twitter: @HyattClearwater
Instagram: instagram.com/hyattregencyclearwater

 

Have fun in the sun celebrating with your family this summer at the
Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort and Spa!

Celebrating Graduation with Family at the Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort & Spa

Graduation season seems to be all around us during the months of May and June.  From kindergarten to high school and college graduations, exciting and new changes are underway for the graduates about to embark on their next phase of education or life.  In my family, there were 4 high school graduations this year from my parents’ 15 grandchildren (and from my 11 nieces and nephews). Mami of Multiples has been blessed to experience its own graduation when my oldest son, Joseph, graduated high school this past May.

joseph graduation banner

Its been an a joyous and even an emotional time for my family, especially for me as his mother.  He  was the child that made me become a mother.  He was the child that has been with me my entire adult life.  He was the child that traveled with me on business trips to family-friendly destinations like Walt Disney World as a working outside the home mother.  He was raised alongside my parents so he is many ways not only their grandson but also like their son.  He was (and still is) my sweet nature, funny (especially his dance moves) and responsible boy.  Before the twins (and baby Joshua) were born, he was my only child for 10 years.  It seems like life was preparing him for the role of being a big brother.  Even as a only child, he has always been loving, caring, patient and protective with any child.  He is truly an excellent big brother.  He was my entire world for a long time and still my world revolves around him (along with his 3 younger brothers).  He is truly a blessing to all of us in his family and we are so thankful to be able to celebrate his academic and personal achievements.

Logo - Teal (Transparent Background)

Our family will be celebrating Joseph’s graduation at the Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort and Spa.

 

Clearwater Beach was named America’s Best Beach by TripAdvisor and steps away from the powder-white sands of Clearwater Beach, the beautiful Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort brings world-class style and amenities to the west coast of Florida.

With a family of 6, comfort, convenience and spacious accommodations are always among the top of our list when choosing vacations and places to spend time together as a family.

The Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach has wonderful oversized condo-style rooms and suites with fully equipped kitchens, offering views of the beautiful Gulf of Mexico in their over 250 guestrooms.  In addition to the gorgeous beach and fine dining, the resort offers many recreational facilities that will create for many memorable family celebratory moments like the following:

• Adjacent to Clearwater Beach with beachside towel, chaise lounge, umbrella,

and beach-to-go food and beverage service

• Complimentary 24-hour Hyatt StayFit gym

• Pool; 20 air-conditioned pool cabanas with flat-screen television and wet bars

• Camp Hyatt® and a children’s pool that is covered with a secure gated enclosure

• Relaxing spa pool with therapeutic water jet system

• Sandava Spa —full service including private treatment spa suites, manicures,

pedicures, facials, professional massage services, and spa wedding packages

• Walk to sailing, deep-sea fishing, boating, wave runners, parasailing, kayaking,

snorkeling, scuba diving, catamaran rides, dolphin-watch eco-tours, bike

rentals, sunset dinner cruises, Miniature Golf & Beach Gameland; golf,

tennis and shopping nearby

• BeachWalk—Clearwater’s new half mile active pathway for shopping, dining,

and entertainment along the beach and in front of the resort

 

1-Exterior from Gulf of Mexico (Brightened)

 

Starting on Father’s Day through Wednesday, we will be sharing pictures and live video of our family experience at the Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort and Spa.  Follow along using the hashtag .

For more information, visit the Hyatt Regency Clearwater Beach Resort & Spa website at clearwaterbeach.regency.hyatt.com

Facebook: facebook.com/HyattRegencyClearwater

Twitter: @HyattClearwater

Instagram: @HyattRegencyClearwater (#HyattClearwater)

Be sure to check out our post-trip recap on our LATINA Magazine column and
Mami of Multiples!

Free and Low Cost Summer Fun Activities

Looking for summer activities to do with the family? I’m always searching for summer activities and programs that are educational, affordable and fun. I check local libraries, school districts and even local chambers of commerce for summer programs. In preparing for summer activities, I consider my kids’ interests and our family’s “must-dos” for the summer.

free summer fun activities high res

From $1 movies to kids eat free places, check out a list of free or low cost summer fun activities. Click To Tweet

 

american police hall of fame museum

EDUCATIONAL

 star wars screening

ENTERTAINMENT

 Captain's Grille at Disney's Yacht Club Resort

KIDS EAT FREE

(Please call ahead to local restaurants to verify time and date of when kids can eat free since it’s subject to change)

  • Kids Eat Free In addition to the list below, kids eat free locations nationwide can be found at mykidseatfree.com and kidsmealdeals.com.


    EVERYDAY & WEEKEND KIDS EAT FREE SPECIALS

  • California Tortilla One free kid’s meal per adult meal purchased.

  • Captain D’s Two free Kid’s meals with any adult entrée purchase at regular price.

  • Chick-fil-A Kids can eat a free kids’ meal at Chik-fil-A for Family Night Promotions .

  • Cici’s Pizza: Kids 3 and under eat free from Cici’s Pizza buffet at .

  • Denny’s Kids can eat free at Denny’s from 4-10pm at participating Denny’s.

  • IHOP Kids eat free at IHOP if they are 12 and under daily. Kids can get 1 free kids’ menu item per adult meal purchased from 4-8pm .

  • Steak n Shake Kids eat FREE at Steak n Shake on weekends for every $8 spent.  Remember, offers may change or vary by location, so always call first to make sure your location is participating. Children must be 12 years old or under to participate.

     

MONDAY

  1. Arizona Pizza

    Children eat free with each adult meal purchase.

  2. Bruster’s Real Ice Cream

    Free ice cream cones for children under 40 inches tall.

  3. Brewzzi

    Children under 12 eat free with an adult purchase of $12 or more.

  4. Cinzettis

    Children under 12 eat free from 5-9 pm.

  5. Cody’s Original Roadhouse

    Two children under 10 eat free with every adult entree purchase.

  6. Cici’s Pizza

    Free food for children under 3 all day.

  7. Culvers

    Children 12 and under receive a free cup of custard with each meal.

  8. Holiday Inn

    Children eat free with every paying adult.

  9. Fuddruckers

    Children under 12 eat free from 4-9 pm with each paying adult.

  10. Garduno’s Restaurant

    Children under 12 eat free with each paying adult.

  11. Golden Corral

    Up to two Children under 10 eat free from 5-9pm.

  12. Indigo Joe’s

    Children eat free from 5- close.

  13. Islands

    Children eat free all day.

  14. KC Masterpiece

    Children under 12 eat free from 4- close.

  15. Millies Restaurant & Bakery

    Children eat for $.99 all day.

  16. Moe’s Southwest Grill

    Children eat free all day with an adult entree purchase.

  17. Macaroni Grill

    Free children’s ice cream with meal purchase.

  18. On the Border Mexican Grill

    Children receive a free sundae with meal purchase.

  19. Piccadilly

    Children under 6 eat free all day.

  20. Quaker Steak and Lube

    Children eat free from 5-10 pm with paying adult.

  21. Red Robin

    Children 10 and under can eat for free (and Tuesday in select locations) from 5-9pm

  22. Salsarita’s

    Free for children all day with an adult meal purchase.

  23. Shoney’s

    Children under 4 receive a free meal with an adult meal purchase.

  24. Sweet Tomatoes

    Children 2 and under eat free all day.

  25. Texas Road House

    Children 12 and under eat free all day (check local location for participation).

  26. TGI Fridays

    Children under three eat free all day (depending on location may also be on Tuesdays).


TUESDAY

  1. Applebees

    With each paid adult entrée, 2 children (ages 12 and under) will eat for free from 5-9 pm. (Kids eat free on Mondays at select locations so call ahead to verify).

  2. Backyard Burgers

    Children under 12 eat free after 4 pm with an adult meal purchase.

  3. Bennigans

    Children eat free all day with a paying adult.

  4. Brewzzi

    Children under 12 eat for free with an adult purchase of $12 or more.

  5. Cici’s Pizza

    Free food for children under 3 all day.

  6. Culvers

    Children 12 and under receive a free cup of custard with each meal.

  7. Holiday Inn

    Children eat free with every paying adult.

  8. Macaroni Grill

    Free children’s ice cream with meal purchase.

  9. On the Border Mexican Grill

    Children receive a free sundae with meal purchase.

  10. Captain D’s Seafood

    Up to two children per adult receive free meals all day.

  11. Cinzettis

    Children under 12 eat free from 5-9 pm.

  12. Cody’s Original Roadhouse

    Two Children under 10 receive a free meal per adult purchase.

  13. Beef O’Brady’s

    Children under 12 eat free from 4-8 pm.

  14. Black Eyed Pea

    Children under 12 eat free from 5- close with an adult entree purchase.

  15. Coco’s Resturant

    Children under 10 eat free all day with an adult entree purchase.

  16. Dennys

    2 children eat free per adult purchase from 4-10 pm.

  17. Famous Daves

    Children eat free all day, check location for participation.

  18. Fazoli’s

    Children 12 and under eat for $.99 from 5-8 pm.

  19. Friendly’s

    Children eat free all day and depending on location discounts available on adult meals.

  20. Fuddruckers

    Children eat for $0.99 eat from 4-9 pm.

  21. Gator’s Dockside

    One child per adult under 12 eats free from 6- 8:30pm.

  22. Godfather’s Pizza

    Children under 10 eat free from 11-2pm & 5-8 pm.

  23. Gold Star Chili

    Children under 10 eat free per adult purchase.

  24. Islands

    Children eat free all day.

  25. Lone Star Steakhouse

    One Child eats free per adult entree purchase.

  26. Millies Resturant & Bakery

    Children eat for $.99 each all day.

  27. Norms Restaurants

    Children eat free all day with the purchase of an adult entree, drinks are not included.

  28. Piccadilly

    Children under 6 eat free all day.

  29. Pizza Hut

    Children eat free in the evening, check for participation.

  30. Planet Sub

    Children eat free all day with a paying adult.

  31. Pluckers

    Children eat free all day.

  32. Ponderosa Steakhouse

    Children eat free from 4-close.

  33. Perkins

    Children eat free all day.

  34. Pizza Street

    Children under 9 eat free from 5-8 pm.

  35. Rockyard American Grill

    Children eat free all day with the purchase of an adult entree.

  36. Ruby’s Diner

    Children eat free from 4-close, check with your local Ruby’s for participation.

  37. Salsarita’s

    Free for children all day with an adult meal purchase.

  38. Shoney’s

    Children under 4 receive a free meal with an adult meal purchase.

  39. Sweet Tomatoes

    Children 2 and under eat free all day.

  40. Salty Iguana Mexican Restaurant

    Children under 12 eat free all day.

  41. Siblings Resturant

    Children under 10 eat free from 5-9 pm.

  42. Space Aliens

    Chidlren 10 and under receive a free pizza and 10 game tokens.

  43. Texas Roadhouse

    Children under 12 eat free all day, check with your local resturant for participation.

  44. TGI Fridays

    Children under 3 eat free all day.

  45. Tony Romas

    Children under 12 eat free all day.


    WEDNESDAY

    1. Bruster’s Real Ice Cream

      Free ice cream cones for children under 40 inches tall.

    2. Cici’s Pizza

      Free food for children under 3 all day.

    3. Culvers

      Children 12 and under receive a free cup of custard with each meal

    4. Holiday Inn

      Children eat free with every paying adult.

    5. Carrow’s Resturant

      One child under 10 eats free from 4- close with the purchase of an adult entree.

    6. Damon’s Grill

      One child per adult eats free.

    7. Firehouse Subs

      One child eats free per adult purchase from 4-9 pm.

    8. Garduno’s Resturant

      Children 12 and under eat free with a paying adult.

    9. Gatti Town Buffet

      One child under 10 per adult purchase eats free.

    10. Jeffrey’s Sports Grill

      One child under 12 eats free from 5-9 pm.

    11. Little Itty Bitty Burger Barn

      Two children under ten eat free from 5-8 pm with an adult meal purchase.

    12. The Locker Room

      Children under 12 eat free from 4-9 pm.

    13. Luby’s

      Children under 10 eat for $2 per child from 4:30- close.

    14. Lucille’s Bad to the Bone BBQ

      Children under 12 eat free all day.

    15. Macaroni Grill

      Free children’s ice cream with meal purchase.

    16. Millies Resturant & Bakery

      Children eat for $.99 each all day.

    17. On the Border Mexican Grill

      Children receive a free sundae with meal purchase.

    18. Perkins

      Children eat free all day.

    19. Piccadilly

      Children under 6 eat free all day.

    20. Qdoba Mexican Grill

      Children eat free all day, participation may vary.

    21. Rainforest Cafe

      Children eat for $1.99 in the evening.

    22. Salsarita’s

      Free for children all day with an adult meal purchase.

    23. Shoney’s

      Children under 4 receive a free meal with an adult meal purchase.

    24. Smokin Okies BBQ

      Children under 9 eat free with an adult meal purchase.

    25. Sweet Tomatoes

      Children 2 and under eat free all day.

    26. Zarda BBQ

      Children eat free all day.

     


THURSDAY

  1. Backyard Burgers

    Children under 12 eat free after 4pm with the purchase of an adult meal.

  2. Bruster’s Real Ice Cream

    Free ice cream cones for children under 40 inches tall.

  3. Captain D’s Seafood

    Up to two children per adult receive free meals all day.

  4. Carrow’s Resturant

    One child under 10 eats free from 4- close with the purchase of an adult entree.

  5. CB and Potts

    Children eat free all day.

  6. Cici’s Pizza

    Free food for children under 3 all day.

  7. Culvers

    Children 12 and under receive a free cup of custard with each meal.

  8. Damon’s Grill

    Children under 12 eat free all day with the purchase of an adult meal.

  9. Holiday Inn

    Children eat free with every paying adult.

  10. Macaroni Grill

    Free children’s ice cream with meal purchase.

  11. On the Border Mexican Grill

    Children receive a free sundae with meal purchase.

  12. Piccadilly

    Children under 6 eat free all day.

  13. Salsarita’s

    Free for children all day with an adult meal purchase.

  14. Shoney’s

    Children under 4 receive a free meal with an adult meal purchase.

  15. Sweet Tomatoes

    Children 2 and under eat free all day.

  16. The Locker Room

    Children under 12 eat free from 4-9 pm.


FRIDAY

  1. Bruster’s Real Ice Cream

    Free ice cream cones for children under 40 inches tall.

  2. Cici’s Pizza

    Free food for children under 3 all day.

  3. Culvers

    Children 12 and under receive a free cup of custard with each meal.

  4. Holiday Inn

    Children eat free with every paying adult.

  5. Macaroni Grill

    Free children’s ice cream with meal purchase.

  6. On the Border Mexican Grill

    Children receive a free sundae with meal purchase.

  7. Piccadilly

    Children under 6 eat free all day.

  8. Salsarita’s

    Free for children all day with an adult meal purchase.

  9. Shoney’s

    Children under 4 receive a free meal with an adult meal purchase.

  10. Sweet Tomatoes

    Children 2 and under eat free all day.


SATURDAY

  1. Bruster’s Real Ice Cream

    Free ice cream cones for children under 40 inches tall.

  2. Cici’s Pizza

    Free food for children under 3 all day.

  3. Culvers

    Children 12 and under receive a free cup of custard with each meal.

  4. Dennys

    2 children eat free per adult purchase from 4-10 pm.

  5. El Torito

    Children under 12 eat free before 3pm with a paying adult.

  6. Holiday Inn

    Children eat free with every paying adult.

  7. Macaroni Grill

    Free children’s ice cream with meal purchase.

  8. On the Border Mexican Grill

    Children receive a free sundae with meal purchase.

  9. Perkins

    Children eat free all day.

  10. Piccadilly

    Children under 6 eat free all day.

  11. Salsarita’s

    Free for children all day with an adult meal purchase.

  12. Shoney’s

    Children under 4 receive a free meal with an adult meal purchase.

  13. Sweet Tomatoes

    Children 2 and under eat free all day.

  14. Shari’s Resturant

    Children eat free from 4-9 pm.

  15. Steak n’ Shake

    One child eats free per adult entree purchase of $9.

  16. Texas Land and Cattle

    Up to two children under 12 eat free per adult meal purchase between 11-4 pm.

SUNDAY

  1. Bruster’s Real Ice Cream

    Free ice cream cones for children under 40 inches tall.

  2. Cici’s Pizza

    Free food for children under 3 all day.

  3. Culvers

    Children 12 and under receive a free cup of custard with each meal.

  4. Holiday Inn

    Children eat free with every paying adult.

  5. Macaroni Grill

    Free children’s ice cream with meal purchase.

  6. On the Border Mexican Grill

    Children receive a free sundae with meal purchase.

  7. Salsarita’s

    Free for children all day with an adult meal purchase.

  8. Shoney’s

    Children under 4 receive a free meal with an adult meal purchase.

  9. Sweet Tomatoes

    Children 2 and under eat free all day.

  10. Arriba Mexican Grill

    Children eat free with an adult meal purchase.

  11. D’Amico and Sons

    Children eat free in the evening.

  12. Dickey’s Barbeque

    Children under 12 eat free all day with a paying adult.

  13. Firehouse Subs

    Children eat free from 4-9 pm with paying adult.

  14. Garcia’s Mexican Resturant

    Children eat for $1.49 all day.

  15. Go Roma

    2 children under 12 eat free per adult purchase.

  16. Hooters

    Children eat free from 11- 11 pm.

  17. La Mesa Mexican Grill

    Children under 12 eat for $0.01 all day.

  18. Mel’s Diner

    Children eat free all day with an adult meal purchase.

  19. Planet Sub

    Children eat free all day with a paying adult.

  20. Qdoba Mexican Grill

    Children eat free all day, participation may vary.

  21. Shari’s Resturant

    Children eat free from 4-9 pm.

  22. Steak n’ Shake

    One child eats free per adult entree purchase of $9.

  23. Zebb’s Deluxe Grill and Bar

    Children under 10 eat for free all day.

  24. Tropical Smoothie Cafe

    Children eat free all day.

  25. Tumbleweed Southwest Grill

    Children under 12 eat free all day.

     

OUTDOORS

Looking for other summer ideas? Check out our summer guide available: HERE

10 Tips for a Memorable Multigenerational Walt Disney World Trip

In today’s busy world, families want to create unforgettable memories together and there is no better place to enjoy quality time than at Walt Disney World Resort.   From the beginning, of coming to Walt Disney World annually with my parents, starting at the age of 6 months old, to having my honeymoon at Walt Disney World and now raising my children next to Walt Disney World, the magic that is Disney has been an important part of our lives.

Sharing the experience of Walt Disney World not only with my husband and older children but also with my parents and my infant baby has been very special and important to our family. My parents are in their senior years and I ’am the youngest of their children. The baby marks their 15th grandchild and my 4th child. My children are fortunately being raised alongside my parents and their grandparents. These memories of time spent together are among the most cherished memories we all share as a family.

I was once again honored and thankful to be invited to this year’s Disney Social Media Moms Celebration #DisneySMMCA wonderful opportunity to be able to bring my parents, aunt (my mom’s sister and great-aunt to my children) and twin boys.  As we have often traveled with my parents and older family members, the following are tips we have learned when planning a multigenerational Walt Disney World trip:

10 tips for a multigenerational walt disney world trip

 

1.
Think About the Time of Year You Want to Visit and Packing Your Bags

Be sure to consider temperatures, especially when older family members are on a trip.  The hot Florida sun can seem punishing when outdoors for long periods of time and for those with health or outdoor restrictions.  Think if the cooler (and often less-crowded) months like January – May and October – December will be better suited for those in your family.  If summer is best for your schedule, there are many special offers for summer travel to Walt Disney World that will also help with budgeting.

american tourister luggage collection

American Tourister Collection

When packing your bags, its helpful to make a list of not only clothing and travel items needed, but also essential information.  For example, a list of medications for anyone traveling (especially seniors), doctor’s information (for any questions or concerns) and the nearest 24-hour pharmacy to your hotel (to refill any prescriptions or medications).

Sample Packing List to Get Started

  • Medications and any Medical Needs for Seniors

    *List of medications and when they need to be taken
    *Contact information for primary doctor
    *Address and telephone number of nearest or 24-hour pharmacy to hotel

  • Snacks and Water (very important to remain hydrated when walking and experiencing the parks and remember to pack snacks for little ones and seniors, who may need to take some food with medications)

  • Clothes (lightweight and quick drying and jackets or sweaters for cooler areas for seniors’ comfort)

  • Shoes (comfortable shoes like sneakers for the WDW parks and sandals)

  • Hats, Sunglasses

  • Swimsuit and Cover-up

  • Toys, Stroller, Cups, Diapers, Wipes, Bibs, Small Baby Cooler (or Diaper Bag) for Baby Food and other Baby Supplies

  • Phones, Chargers, Camera, Batteries

  • Tickets (theme park and travel itinerary)

2.
Making Reservations and Where to Stay

A great place to start is visiting the Walt Disney World website to reserve a Disney Resort hotel room, purchase theme park tickets and make dining reservations.  There are so many choices to select on the website that can be categorized based on length of stay, preference of amenities, character experiences, favorite type of dining and more.  Be sure to check out the Walt Disney World Facebook Page and Twitter for exclusive content, information, savings and special offers.  (In addition, you can contact a Disney reservation specialist, who could help you purchase theme park tickets, reserve hotel rooms, make dining selections and answer your questions).

 

FastPass+

Don’t Wait with Fast Pass+
Avoid long lines on popular rides with Disney FastPass+ Service. You’ll be able to reserve time to visit some attractions, entertainment experiences and Disney character experiences before you even leave home. You can start making selections as early as 30 days before you arrive, or up to 60 days before check-in when you have a Walt Disney World Resort vacation package. Also, Disney FastPass+ Service lets you reserve spots to view select fireworks, shows and parades and lets you make select changes on the go. Best of all, it’s complimentary because it’s included in your theme park admission so make sure to reserve some can’t-miss experiences that seniors and the entire family can do together.

MagicBands

Travel Lighter and with Less Worry Using MagicBands
MagicBands are colorful, waterproof wristbands—resembling a watch or bracelet—that you can quickly and easily touch to a sensor called a touch point. Cards work in a similar fashion, but physically resemble a plastic credit card or driver’s license. Both MagicBands and cards allow you to travel lighter throughout your vacation.  Use your MagicBand to enter your Disney Resort hotel room and access Walt Disney World Parks and Disney FastPass+ attractions and shows. You can even charge food and merchandise purchases to your Disney Resort hotel room (available during your hotel stay).

Its a helpful resource to have each member of your traveling party have their own MagicBand.  For example, if a senior wants to purchase some food or needs to return to their hotel room, they can just touch their MagicBand to a sensor and not have to worry about taking out keys or money.

Link Reservations for Easy Access and Download Disney Experience App
You can connect and link your reservations by following 5 easy steps

1. Register or sign in to MyDisneyExperience.com.
2.  Link Your Reservation. Once you’re signed in to MyDisneyExperience.com, enter your Resort Confirmation number.
3. Link Your Walt Disney World Ticket or Pass.  (If you have a room and ticket package for a select Walt Disney World Resort hotel, your tickets will be included when you link your Disney Resort reservation and you can skip Step 3). To access Disney FastPass+ service, you’ll need to link a ticket or pass for each member of your travel party age three (3) or older.
4. Customize Your MagicBands.  Choose “Personalize MagicBands” to select MagicBands for your travel party. Be sure to choose your MagicBands and confirm your address at least 11 days prior to your arrival.
5. Select your FastPass+ Experiences, Make Dining Reservations and Explore My Disney Experience, Including Online Check-in at Select Disney Resort Hotels. Simply choose these options from My Disney Experience.

*Be sure to download the My Disney Experience App to manage your reservation and get up to date daily information on Walt Disney World parks.*

Toy Story Midway Mania

Toy Story Midway Mania

*Invest and purchase a Memory Maker.  When you are traveling with a multigenerational party, you are focused on trying to create memories.  By having a Memory Maker, all of the memorable Disney moments – like in front of Cinderalla Castle – and anywhere there is a Disney PhotoPass Photographers are automatically captured and scanned onto a MagicBand.  Added magic (like Tinkerbell in your hand) and videos will be added to you photos too.  You can download all of your Memory Maker pictures from the My Disney Experience website or app.  It truly is worthwhile and will capture all of your favorite iconic moments from the trip.*

Our Recommended On-Site Hotels for Multigenerational Travelers
Hotels listed below can sleep 4 + in a standard/deluxe room and/or offer suites (with kitchens) that sleep 5 or more for larger groups

Art of Animation Resort

Beach Club Resort and Villas

Polynesian Villas & Bungalows

Saratoga Springs Resort & Spa

Villas at Wilderness Lodge

See a list of Disney Deluxe Villa Resorts: HERE

3.
Take Advantage of Scooter, Wheelchair and Stroller Rentals

Even if a wheelchair, scooter or stroller isn’t needed daily, the parks are huge and can get anyone from young children to seniors easily tired.   Wheelchairs and ECV’s (electric scooters) are available for rental at all theme parks but must remain in the park.  Disney has designated specific scooter/wheelchair/ECV rental companies as approved vendors. This means these companies are the companies allowed to drop off rentals at the front desk/bell stand of a Disney resort for them to be held for guests. When a guests arrives to a hotel, their scooter/wheelchair/ECV will be waiting for them.  Guests using these approved companies will also be allowed to return their rentals to their resort’s front desk when they check out.

In addition to ECV rental locations throughout Walt Disney World Resort, several private approved companies in the local area also offer ECV rentals, as well as wheelchairs, strollers and other mobility product length-of-stay rentals.

4.
Our Recommended Multigenerational Can’t-Miss Experiences

Magic Kingdom
Buzz Lightyear’s Space Ranger Spin

Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover

Space Mountain (fast-moving)

Seven Dwarfs Mine Train (speeding cart)

The Many Adventures of Winne the Pooh

Under the Sea – Journey of The Little Mermaid

Peter Pan’s Flight

Dumbo the Flying Elephant

It’s a Small World

Splash Mountain (will get wet)

Big Thunder Mountain Railroad (a little fast for some)

Country Bear Jamboree (show)

Pirates of the Caribbean, Jungle Cruise

Magic Carpets of Aladdin

Disney Festival of Fantasy Parade

Main Street Electrical Parade

Celebrate the Magic Fireworks & Show

Epcot
Spaceship Earth

Seas with Nemo & Friends

Soarin’ (visually simulating as if you are flying)

Test Track (fast-paced racing car)

Explore Culture and Cuisine of 11 countries with World Showcase: Mexico, Norway, China, Germany, Italy, the United States, Japan, Morocco, France, United Kingdom and Canada.

IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth

Animal Kingdom
Kilimanjaro Safaris Expedition

Tree of Life

It’s Tough to be a Bug!

Festival of the Lion King (show)

Hollywood Studios

Star Wars Launch Bay (movie props and meet Star Wars characters like Chewbacca and Kylo Ren)

The Great Movie Ride

Toy Story Mania!

Star Tours – The Adventures Continue (3-D motion motion-simulated space flight)

Indiana Jones Epic Stunt Spectacular!

For the First Time in Forever: A Frozen Sing-Along Celebration

Fantasmic! (fireworks)

Star Wars: A Galactic Spectacular (opens 6/17/16 – fireworks)

 

Special Note *Disney Springs*

 

Featuring shopping, dining, and world-class entertainment, you can easily spend the entire day doing something for everyone in the family.

Amphicars: Did you ever think you could ride a car that is also a boat? Well, now you can at Disney Springs with the vintage Amphicars! It’s an amazing interactive experience by land and water. You start on land by boarding a beautiful vintage car and then the car converts into a boat entering the water and embarking on a 20-minute tour of Disney Springs. My entire family was able to experience this incomparable attraction together in two different Amphicars.

Over 50 brand names and Disney-themed shops, boutiques, and kiosks give new meaning to the phrase “shop till you drop”. The crown of the shopping experience has to be the mega World of Disney Store. It is the largest Disney character store with 12 rooms full of apparel, collectibles, toys and more.

 

5.
Customize Meal Choices and Decide Where You Want to Eat with a Disney Dining Plan

Captain's Grille at Disney's Yacht Club Resort

I always recommend that people decide where they’ll eat after figuring out where they’ll be each day.  In addition, try to schedule at least one special meal together.  From Chef Mickey’s to Cinderella’s Royal Table at Cinderella Castle, there are many dining choices to please everyone in a multigenerational group.

Dining Plans
You can truly customize your meal experience for everyone in traveling with you by using a Disney Dining Plan. Whether you are having fun going through the parks or want to be able to relax at one of the Disney’ hotels, the simplicity of the Disney Dining Plan can help when making meal selections. Disney Dining Plans are options available exclusively to guests of select Walt Disney World Resort hotels with Magic Your Way Vacation Packages. When booking your vacation, purchase one of the Magic Your Way Vacation Packages that includes a Disney Dining Plan. Disney offers various Dining Plans according to the needs of the guests.

 

All of the Disney Dining Plans can be used at Quick-Service or Table-Service restaurants. Quick-Service restaurants offer a wide variety of food from soups, sandwiches and salads to pastas, fish, chicken and meat entrées. At Quick-Service locations, guests order food and beverages at a counter or register. Advanced dining reservations are not needed because you are able to grab and go. At Table-Service restaurants, guests are escorted to their table and waited on by a server. There are a wide variety of Table-Service restaurants at the Walt Disney World Resort from family casual to character dining and dinner shows to the gourmet cuisine at the more upscale Signature Restaurants. It’s important to note that Table-Service restaurants, character dining and dinner shows book quickly and the restaurant and seating of your choice may be limited or may not be available during your visit. Reservations should be made ahead of time through the My Disney Experience app, at disneyworld.com/dine or by calling 407-WDW-DINE up to 180 days prior to your visit for the best options. Most of the restaurant locations in Disney Theme Parks, Disney Water Parks, Disney Springs and Disney Value, Moderate, Deluxe and Deluxe Villa Resort hotels accept the Disney Dining Plans.

 

The Disney Dining Plans entitlements can be used for the always popular Character Dining. It’s an incredibly unique experience for the entire family that while you are enjoying a delicious meal together, your favorite Walt Disney World character comes up to you, hugs you, and you get a chance to capture the happiness. Character Dining is one of my children’s all-time favorite moments and we all love getting to the chance to meet and embrace our favorite Disney Characters. It is truly a one-of-kind experience for all.

All of the Disney Dining Plans (expect Quick Service) offers options for in-room private dining and dinner shows, which are family-style dining with live entertainment show performances throughout the meal, themed to the Resort setting.

 

The Disney Quick-Service Dining Plan includes two (2) Quick-Service meals and one (1) snack per person, per night of your package stay for everyone in the party ages 3 and over, beginning after check-in to your Disney Resort hotel.
**The Disney Dining Plan includes one (1) Quick-Service Meal, one (1) Snack and one (1) Table-Service Meal per person, per night of your package stay for everyone in the party ages 3 and over, beginning after check-in to your Disney Resort hotel.**

The Disney Deluxe Dining Plan includes three (3) meals and two (2) snacks per person, per night of your package stay for everyone in the party ages 3 and over, beginning after check-in to your Disney Resort hotel.
**The Disney Premium Plan includes one (1) breakfast, lunch and dinner and two (2) snacks per person, per night of your package stay for everyone in the party ages 3 and over, beginning after check-in to your Disney Resort hotel.**

The Disney Platinum Plan includes one (1) breakfast, lunch and dinner and two (2) snacks per person, per night of your package stay for everyone in the party ages 3 and over, beginning after check-in to your Disney Resort hotel.
**Included with this plan is the use of recreation equipment and facilities, i.e. Walt Disney World Golf, Watersports, Horseback Trail Rides, Carriage Rides, unlimited use of Children’s Activity Centers, In-Room Child Care and more.**

 

It’s easy to use a Dining Plan while vacationing at Walt Disney World Resort because you can choose from over 100 select restaurants available. You simply present your Disney Resort ID (either a MagicBand or card) to the server or cashier at the time a meal or snack is purchased and specify the number of meals or snacks being redeemed for Disney Dining Plan Guests ages 10+ and the number of meals or snacks being redeemed for Disney Dining Plan Guests ages 3-9. Your Meal usage will be tracked electronically to your reservation or your server will provide an easy-to-read receipt that will display your remaining meal balance. You can redeem your meals in any order throughout your package stay until each person’s meal total is complete.

6.
Some of Our Favorite MultiGenerational Dining

Magic Kingdom
Be Our Guest Restaurant

Liberty Tree Tavern

The Crystal Palace

The Plaza Restaurant

 

Epcot
San Angel Inn Restaurante

Via Napoli Ristorante e Pizzería

Coral Reef Restaurant

 

Animal Kingdom
Rainforest Cafe

 

Hollywood Studios
50’s Prime Time Cafe

Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater Restaurant

Hollywood & Vine

Disney Springs
T-Rex

Bongos Cuban Café

The BOATHOUSE

Resort Dining
Chef Mickey’s
‘Ohana
Captain’s Grille

Whispering Canyon Cafe

Artist Point

7.
Remember the Importance of Naps and Taking a Break

One of the benefits of staying on-site at a Disney property, is the convenience of being able to easily return back to the hotel at anytime.  Whether by car, ferry, bus or monorail, guests are minutes from their hotel.  Grandparents may want a break to rest or children may need to stay on their regular nap schedule.  Its a good idea to keep nap/break time in mind when making FastPass+ selections or dining reservations so everyone can be able to enjoy themselves.

Use the Extra Magic Hours perk as guests of select Walt Disney World hotels to return back to the park in the evening or arrive before its upon to the public.  Each day, one of the four Walt Disney World theme parks opens one hour early or remains open up to 2 hours after regular closing time. Additionally, Disney Water Parks offer Extra Magic Hours during select times of year.

8.
Let Grandparents or Seniors in the Group Chose Their Must-Ride or Experience

Ask grandparents/seniors what they want to see, ride or experience.  Its easy with younger travelers to be racing from Space Mountain to Test Track, but prioritize key events and rides that a grandparent/senior wants to enjoy so nobody misses that one ride they wanted to visit.  At #DisneySMMC, my mother really wanted to go Hollywood Studios – not only just to see the latest Star Wars attractions – but because she really likes The Great Movie Ride and she had not been on it for a long time.  Being on one of her favorite rides with my dad, her sister, grandkids and her daughter, totally made her day and trip for her.

 

9.
Have Grandparents Spend Time Alone with Grandkids or Help with Babysitting
(if possible)

My oldest son just graduated high school and we had to submit family pictures for his memories slideshow.  Some of the most cherished memories that were flashed on the big screen, in front of his grandparents, were the times he spent having fun with them alone at Disney.  It brought tears to our eyes to see him again in those pictures as a young child with Disney characters and with his grandparents by his side.  They are truly unforgettable and priceless memories for both my son and my parents.  In addition, grandparents can help mom & dad have some probably much-needed adult time (or date night) while they are busy enjoying themselves with their grandchildren at the parks or relaxing by the pool at their hotel.

If both grandparents and parents want to go out together, consider Disney’s children’s activity centers or in-room childcare.  Our kids are big fans of “kid’s clubs” because they eat a play games, sing & dance, watch movies, make themed crafts, eat a kid-friendly meal, etc. They love the feeling of being at their own club and it gives us an opportunity to have a parents/adults’ night out.

10.
Be Flexible with Your Day

After choosing your favorite attractions using FastPass+, remember to relax.  Enjoy your day in the theme parks.  Don’t try to over-schedule every minute.  Allow for spontaneity and silliness.  Whether, you want to stop for ice cream or take time to shop for some Disney gear, be able to adapt to any unscheduled or unplanned activities or occurrences.  It will take the stress out of trying to perfectly plan your trip.

 

No matter what your plans are, remember its Walt Disney World – The Happiest Place on Earth! Enjoy the magic, imagination, fun and spend time doing what is important
creating memorable moments together!

Disclosure: As an invited guest of Disney, I was invited to the 2016 Disney Social Media Moms Celebration.  Registration, accommodations and some meals were provided by Disney, however, all opinions expressed here are my own and based on my family’s (50+ years) of personal experiences at Walt Disney World.