Cheap and fun things to do with your kids this summer break!

Still have a few weeks until the kids go back to school?

summer

Yay to not having to wake up extra early in the morning to get the kiddo to school. And yay to not having to wash uniforms and yay to not having to beg them to go to bed by 9pm. But what about when you wake up at 9am and the kiddo is hungry and cereal won’t cut it? Oh what about it’s 11am and you hear “It’s boring mom!” The questions open like a flood gate. Can Justin come over? Can we go to Great America? I know you made a huge breakfast, but now I’m hungry and I want lunch but no PB&J today we had that for lunch yesterday? Sigh.

Well I totally understand what you are going through here are some fun and cheap things to do with the kiddos this summer!

McDonald’s Playland
Yes, for many reasons. If you have more than one child going out to eat is pretty expensive and sometimes just isn’t in the budget even having one child it gets pricey going out to eat so of course McDonald’s has a dollar menu as well as reasonable prices kids meals. Plus they have a little healthier alternatives now. The kids get sliced apples with their meals as well as the option to have milk instead of soda.

The Beach
Oh yes the infamous beach. If you are a city girl like myself you only visit the beach in the summer maybe quickly In the spring but most likely the kiddos only get to go in the summer so don’t rob them of their sand filled buckets and pop bottle experience 😉 the beach is free some places here in Chicago make you pay to park, but you can always take CTA if that’s an issue. Visit Dollar Tree or any dollar store and grab sand buckets, water guns, kites, a few snacks and enjoy a family day at the beach. The children will remember the beauty of that day and your pockets shouldn’t be too empty.

The Zoo
I know I need to walk around the Zoo a few times a week to shed some pounds, but also it’s a great place to take the kiddos. Animals, petting zoo, sometimes even group activities and musical performances. Check out your local Zoo website and you will be amazed of the activities they have planned for your little ones this summer and all through out the year.

Library
Here in Chicago our public Libraries teamed up and launched a reading program to keep the kiddos reading during the summer and as a reward they can earn prizes. I entered Dereon and he has been trying to keep a book in his hands once a day at least. If you aren’t in Chicago try your local library and see if they have any reading programs or activiies during the day.

Park District
Summer camp is one of Dereon’s favorite summer activity and it’s very helpful for me. During the day he can goes to his sports camp at the local park. They teach him the basic basketball, football, soccer, and baseball moves and rules. They take weekly field trips and they also talk about nutrion and offer swimming classes. The fee is reasonable and covers everything including lunch! Also the kid has made new friends and got an awesome sun tan=)

Bowling Alley
Take a field trip to the bowling alley. Catch dirt low prices during the week and keep practicing until strike is your middle name. Oh and make sure you and the kids take funny photos with the vintage chic bowling shoes.

Skating Rink
Oh you have extra smooth moves? Showcase them on the shiny skating rink. Your kid would love to see you fly gracefully or fall on your face as a cool summer day activity. The chances of finding free or cheap lessons and helpful skating tips are easy around the summer months just make sure you call ahead and double check that there is no huge group trips planned the day you attend.

The summer isnt over yet. Lets keep our children busy and active!

KId and Man free vacation? Top 5 budget friendly Girl’s Night out ideas for moms

Just made it back last night from an all girl trip to Miami. Our stay was Wednesday morning til Sunday night. We had a blast! Tried lots of new things, had cocktails, went clubbing and did all kinds of sight seeing. It was. Incredible. I left the kiddo and the Hubz at home. They both had camp and work so they were busy, but I first felt guilty when I boarded the plane. I would be over 1,000 miles away from the both of them. Having fun without them. Was I wrong?

No! Every woman/mom deserves a break. Some time to themselves to unwind and relax. We give so much daily. I was reminded en route to Miami that nothing good can come from an empty person and I embraced my trip. I relished the fact I could be off mommy mode for a while. Have a few drinks, dance a little and get up to do it all over again. I didn’t have to set the alarm (other than for our planned tours) I didn’t have to wait until my son was sleep to have a drink. I didn’t need to request a kiddie menu, didnt have to listen to whatever sporting event was going on the TV and lastly I didn’t have to do anything unless I wanted to. Which is very uncommon if you are a wife, mom, or a caring woman period.

Don’t get me wrong I missed my husband and son tremendously when we landed I was so excited to hug and kiss them and to hear all about their adventures while I was gone. I couldn’t wait to hear how they missed me and how they realized I was the glue that kept our family together and organized (I didn’t hear that but a girl can dream right?) I wanted to be in MY bed again and I wanted to take a break from my vacation since I was partied out. I love being a mom and a wife. I love my son and husband more than I love myself, but every now and a then a sister needs to get back to the center. I think my 5 day break made us all appreciate the love and unity in our home.

This trip taught me a very important lesson…All girls vacations are great! Woman need to treat themselves every once in a while. It’s OK to take a break. Being a mom, a wife, or a woman in general is a full time job and we never totally stop for a breather which causes us to have melt downs. Here are some cool, cheap, and fun things to do with your girls if going on a vacation may not be in the budget for you right now:

1. Do a staycation! call your girls up and book a hotel in your city. Since you won’t need airfare try to book a 4 or 5 star hotel that way you could feel a little fancy. The goal is to experience new and different things and to unwind. While in the big city or the resort in your local area go sightsee, visit places the tourist go and find out about your city or town. You would be amazed about how much history you uncover.

2. Toy party!! That’s right get the girls together and book an adult toy rep for a Friday night girls night “X-rated” style. Have appetizers, cocktails, games and prizes. Remind the ladies no men allowed. This choice is loads of fun and not so much cash needed.

3. Waterpark fun! Find your local indoor waterpark and a have a field trip Splash Style! Girls like water too. Enjoy the daring slides, fun wave pool, and the funnel cakes. It all about having fun and letting loose you can enjoy splashing around without having to have to keep checking and watching your child(ren).

4. Sleep over!! Redbox or Netflix. Pizza or Chinese. With a few cartons of ice cream oh and don’t forget the popcorn! Make a few pallets in the front room and watch all the romantic movies your heart can take. Play truth or dare or “I’ve never” and watch the room get live.

5. Class is in session! Sign all the girls up for a class like flirty girl Pole Dance, Line Dance, Belly Dance or even swimming. Doing something all as a group makes it so much fun and also healthy for your crew’s body and soul!

Our Adventure: The 2013 Taste of Chicago |The Humana Experience

Last Wednesday me and my little family ventured to the 2013 Taste of Chicago. And we had a blast! Our first stop was the Humana Experience booth. Dereon was treated like an “adult” registered in and encouraged to try the fitness challenges. Once he received his pedometer he kept tracking his number of steps the whole day. We tried food off the Humana Passport Healthy guide and all I can keep thinking about is those tacos from Carbon grill. I got my passport stamped and had an tasty taco! Last but not least we were able to take a family picture in the photobooth as a keepsake. It was a very nice touch and a overall great experience they were right calling their area the Humana Experience because it truly was one. Check out some of our pictures.

 

And congrats to our Giveaway Winner Raijean Stroud that won 24 Food Tickets to this year’s Taste!

This was a sponsored post, but my thoughts were my own.

What to do when visiting the Taste of Chicago 2013 ? Check out Humana Healthier Choices *GIVEAWAY*

Visiting the Taste of Chicago this year? Check out Humana Healthier Choices!

I am a true Chicagoan. I was born and raised in Chicago and one of my favorite Chicago perks is attending the Taste! That has been a family tradition that I carry out to this day. I am a true foodie and there is always so much good food to chose from. Now that I have become a little more aware of what I eat and the portions size, I cringed a little when I heard that the Taste was in full effect. I knew I had to attend (I couldn’t break my tradition), but I didn’t want to be tempted with all the rich, fried, but tasty foods. Since I am a week away from a beach vacation every pound I lose or gain counts I had to be wise about my visit to The Taste. The heavens heard me and I did the happy dance. I found out that Humana had a Healthier choice option program this year at the 2013 Taste of Chicago. So not only could I go and enjoy all the action that The Taste offer I could also enjoy some tasty treats and eats, but know they are healthier choices and will keep me on the road of healthy eating.

Not only are they offering Healthier Choices, but also giving away awesome prizes just for sampling the Healthier choices items or completing an activity at the Humana Well Being Experience located on Congress Parkway. All you have to do is get your Humana Healthier Choices Passport Guide stamped, once you have all six stamps you turn in your passport at the Humana Booth to be entered in the giveaway. The prize drawing will be live Sunday July 14th at 3:30 PM at the The Biondi Boomer Bash with WLS-FM Host Dick Biondi. You will need your Humana Healthier Choices Passport (which can be downloaded online or picked p at your locale Dominick’s grocery store or at the Humana Booth) to help you locate all the fun activities, as well as show you all the tasty, but healthy food options you have to chose from and locations of the 20 restaurants booths that will be serving up healthier choices this year!

Talking about tasty healthier choices let me give you an example of some of the great options you will be able to try:

All of the snack/appetizers are under 320 calories

Sweet potato chips -BJ’s Market and Bakery

Celtic Corn on the Cob – O’Brien’s Restaurant

Watermelon Lemonade – Wishbone

All Main Course/Entrees are under 500 Calories

Grilled Steak Taco – Carbon Live Fire Mexican Grill

Taste Portion Ham and Cheese Crepe – Flip Crepes

Pulled Chicken Sandwich – Robinson No 1 Ribs

All Desserts are 320 or less calories

Fruitti Di Bosco (mix berry sorbet) – Caffe Gelato

Taste Portion Dark Chocolate Covered Strawberry – Kilwins Chocolates

Italian Ice: Cherry, Lemon or Orange – Tutto Italiano

This is just a small sample of the many poption you can chose. There are 20 Chicagoland restaurants that are participating with the Humana Healthier Choices program and 35 dishes you can try out. Just look for the green apple!

Humana isn’t playing about being healthy and active this year with the Well-Being Tour. The Humana Well-Being Tour is traveling across the country to provide people with a fresh perspective on healthy living and making its stop at Taste of Chicago from 11am to 7pm on July 10th-13th on Congress Parkway at the Humana Experience. Stop by for free Biometric Screenings, fuel up at the Hydration station, join the Walkit program for a free pedometer, take pictures at the Fit for fun photo booth, and visit their healthy food kiosk. Plus much more!

I love the new and improved healthier options available at the Taste and me and the kiddo will be there tomorrow to enjoy the festivities.

Want to try some of those healthier options too? Well one of my lucky readers will be able to win 24 tickets to be used at the 2013 Taste of Chicago. The giveaway ends 7pm (Central time) Wednesday July 10th! The winner must be able to pick up tickets in person Thursday July 11th 11am to 3pm at the Humana Experience booth! Want to win? Comment on this post with one reason why you enjoy going to the Taste and if you have never been tell me why not!

This post was a compensated post, but all the thoughts and views were mine.  Humana Healthier Choices information and the Taste tickets have been provided by Humana