Packing list for traveling with babies and toddlers

Packing Checklist for travel with Babies

The other day my son calculated that he spent more than a year of his life – of 11,5 years so far –traveling. He flew overseas 20 times, flew within the North America half a dozen times. I flew with 2 kids, a toddler and a baby, alone when my daughter was 6 months old and my son was 3. Countless road trips, camps, and mini getaways later packing … [Read more...]

Family Travel: Lake Geneva Canopy Tours

Lake Geneva Canopy Tours

Lake Geneva is one of the popular getaway destinations around Chicagoland area. Especially in the fall, foliage around Lake Geneva is amazing. This year, we decided to take a different route and try ziplining through the beautiful fall foliage. Despite the fact that we visited canopy tours at the beginning of November, the weather was gorgeous and … [Read more...]

Chicago with kids: North Branch trail

North Branch Trail

Chicago is one of the bike-friendliest cities in the US. Chicago has many city and forest preserve bike trails to accommodate both pro and recreational bikers. One of our favorite trails in the city is the North Branch trail. North Branch Trail is a Class I bicycle trail that extends 21 miles from Forest Glen Woods in Chicago until Chicago … [Read more...]

Camping Packing Checklist (Printable)


Camping season has started quite early for us. We had a great weekend camping, hiking and just resting at the camp. We prepared our camping packing checklist in advance and marked everything checked as we loaded the car. Then at the camp, we realized we forgot some few important items such as pillows and speakers, which we added to our … [Read more...]

Chicago Family Bucket List – Summer 2016


It's been 3 months already since I posted our Chicago Family Bucket List – Spring 2016. We've marked many of them checked ✔even though we haven't completed them all. Now the summer is here and finally school is out - today-, we can focus on our summer bucket list. There are so many things kids want to do as well as I want to do with kids. At the … [Read more...]

Family Travel: Exploratorium, San Francisco

Exploratorium San Francisco

One of the highlights, if not the most favorite spot of our San Francisco trip was our visit to Exploratorium. When we were planning our itinerary, we knew on our last day it was going to be rainy. Exploratorium was the perfect indoor destination for kids, while rest of our family enjoyed their downtime after a busy and exhausting week in and … [Read more...]

Chicago Family Bucket List – Spring 2016


Every month, I try to plan for our family activities in advance and put them on my calendar with the help of Chicago Parent magazine. I also create a seasonal bucket list at the beginning of every season, with seasonal activities, festival and special exhibits going on in Chicago Museums. I usually do this with kids. We make a poster board of our … [Read more...]

Chicago with kids: Lincoln Park Conservatory


Lincoln Park Conservatory is one of the two beautiful greenhouses that Chicago Park District offers to visitors for free in Chicago. It is right by Lincoln Park Zoo. There is a big garden in front of the conservatory, between the conservatory and Lincoln Park Zoo entrance. You can run around or just lie down on the grass to enjoy a great weather. … [Read more...]

Family Travel: Negril, Jamaica


We visited Negril, Jamaica this past Spring Break in April. Jamaica is a beautiful tropical island in the Caribbean. This trip has exceeded my every expectation about the sea, sights, food and people of the Island. And everyone stayed healthy for the whole vacation. Miracle, right?Transportation: We flew direct from Chicago to Montego Bay. My view … [Read more...]

Adler Planetarium Astro Overnights


We attended Adler Planetarium's Astro Overnights for kids, the first week of November. Even though we visit Adler at least once every year, neither I nor the children have visited Adler after dark. It was an evening well spent. Everyone including adults had great time and learned stuff that we didn't know. The weather was very mild that evening. … [Read more...]

Tips to avoid jet lag with children


We have been traveling between Chicago and Istanbul with children every summer for the last nine years, six of which were with two children. I listed the method that help me and my children avoid jetlag traveling +8 hrs in time zones and back. I am very confident that these tips work, because we courageously book our return tickets to the day … [Read more...]

Traveling with Children – Aruba


We visited Aruba during Spring Break '14. In summary, we all loved it. White sand beaches, turquoise sea, the resort we stayed at, sighseeting around the island, restaurants, food, everything. Only two things slightly scarred our experience were the relateively high prices and return trip. American citizens do not need visa to travel to Aruba for … [Read more...]

Geocaching: A Modern Day, Global Treasure Hunt


Happy Earth Day! Last year, during summer, our local public library held a small workshop on geocaching. I’d heard about it from few parents but didn’t have time to research myself. We learned what geocaching is, downloaded the app and searched and found our very first cache during the workshop. It sounded really fun, mostly for kids but … [Read more...]

Fun activity ideas for long rides and flights


We've completed yet another successful long flight to Aruba and back. I am quite experience in entertaining children in long flights and road trips, as you can read in this post titled, Preparing for long flights and trips with babies and young children. Good news is it gets easier, as attention span of children grows by age. Parents or caregiver … [Read more...]

Winter Learning Challenge by Chicago Public Library

Winter Learning Challenge

Winter break is here! Winter Learning Challenge is another great program for the kids over the break by Chicago Public Library. Since last summer these programs also involve LEARNing and CREATEing in addition to READing. The theme this winter is "learning  more about nature in your neighborhood this winter". We did great winter activities from … [Read more...]

Rome with Children: Day 4 – Walking around the city


On our final day, we went back to Villa Borghese as we had promised to our children. We rented the go kart and bicycle until they got tired of them. We walked around the Pincio a little bit. This is a steam clock. For more things to do in Villa Borghese read this post. The pine trees in Rome were extraordinary. We walked down from Pincio (Pincian … [Read more...]