Entries Tagged as 'kids places'

Home Sweet (New) Home

20.07.16

Downtown York PA living @ohbotherblog

We’ve moved! Yes, again. 

As you may know, I’m pretty involved in the revitalization of our Downtown. I work for our economic development organization, I own a business downtown, I’ve joined the board of a local charter school. Everything in our lives was converging upon Downtown… so we decided to put ourselves there too.

So, we bought this charming old house, built in 1912. The house was actually purchased last year, but we allowed the current tenants to hang out for a bit. So, come this summer, they moved out and the renovation began.

One full month of work: paint, floors, lighting, bathrooms. We’re so happy with the results–it’s amazing what just a little facelift can do.

Living Room: Before & After

Downtown York PA living @ohbotherblog

Dining Area: Before & After

Downtown York PA living @ohbotherblog

Kitchen: Before & After (the kitchen had been updated not too long ago, so luckily we didn’t have too much work to do here).

Downtown York PA living @ohbotherblog

Upstairs Hallway: Before & After

Downtown York PA living @ohbotherblog

Playroom: Before & After

Downtown York PA living @ohbotherblog

Kids’ Room: Before & After

Downtown York PA living @ohbotherblog

Kids’ Bathroom: Before & After

Downtown York PA living @ohbotherblog

Master Suite: Before & After

Downtown York PA living @ohbotherblog

Here are some of my most favorite rooms:

The Kids’ Playroom! 
The second floor of the house has three rooms all dedicated to the kids. Because they’re sharing a room (for now), we have room for a playroom and family room that’s all theirs. 

Downtown York PA living @ohbotherblog Downtown York PA living @ohbotherblog Downtown York PA living @ohbotherblog

The Kids’ Bedroom!

Downtown York PA living @ohbotherblog

The Kitchen!
We added the faux-tin backsplash and light fixtures as an easy pick-me-up. The little figurines on the cabinets are old liquor decanters painted by my Great Grandma.

Downtown York PA living @ohbotherblog

We even had time for a little DIY project in the few weeks since we’ve moved in. Funny story: I felt like the protruding wall in the living room was just begging for a faux fireplace mantel. A friend pointed out that there’s most likely an actual fireplace behind the wall–sure enough, there’s a chimney there! I’m not really into doing any more demo right now, so this faux fireplace will have to do in the meantime:

Faux Mantel Project @ohbotherblog

Downtown York PA living @ohbotherblog

We have a friend painting a chalkboard hearth for us to go inside–I can’t wait to post the final results!

We absolutely love living Downtown. We take a walk every night, we visit playgrounds, ride our bikes on the Rail Trail, walk to Downtown shops and restaurants, flag down the ice cream truck, check out local historical buildings, play Pokemon-Go and talk to our neighbors. I’ll share more as we continue to settle in!

Downtown York PA living @ohbotherblog

LEGO KidsFest

09.04.16

We took the kiddos (one six-year-old, two three-year-olds and a two-year-old) to the sold-out LEGO KidsFest last night at the Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg.
LEGO KidsFest @ohbotherblog

I saw the event advertised earlier in January and my desire to go was solidified after I watched the LEGO documentary Beyond the Brick: a LEGO BrickumentaryHoldy has been showing interest in LEGOs after playing with them at her dad’s house so I thought it would make a fun outing.

Despite the event being sold out for all three days, it wasn’t quite the madhouse you might expect. There were a ton of activities to do that were appropriate for all ages and skill levels, from straight-up coloring, to DUPLO blocks to advanced builds and competitions. Everything was nicely spread out so you didn’t feel like you were on top of each other. AND everyone attending, volunteering and working the event was super nice, so it was a great experience.

LEGO KidsFest @ohbotherblog

The kids loved building and displaying their own LEGO creations.

LEGO KidsFest @ohbotherblog

There were tons of LEGO characters to pose with, from Disney to Star Wars and super heroes.

LEGO KidsFest @ohbotherblog 

We actually had to stop the kids from building a few times so we could move onto the next thing. LEGOS are amazing, man.

 LEGO KidsFest @ohbotherblog

And of course, there was a HUGE LEGO pile in the middle of the arena for kids to (literally) dive in. Some kids were even making LEGO angels (of course, Holdy was one of them).

LEGO KidsFest @ohbotherblog 

 

#latergram Lego Pit at #legokidsfest

A video posted by oh bother (@ohbotherblog) on

Some tips if you go:

  • Check out this “Plan Your Day at LEGO KidsFest” link.
  • Parking is in the North Lot, as well as the offsite Elmerton Ave. lot and is $10 (cash).
  • The entrance to LEGO KidsFest is on Cameron Street, so it’s a bit of a walk. Though you can exit the event into the North Lot when you’ve finished.
  • There is a coat rack at the entrance.
  • There is a “Lost Parents Zone” to the right once you enter the event. You can fill out a card with your contact info and put it in your kid’s pocket, just in case.
  •  There is a “Dad Changing Area” near the DUPLO section so dads can get in on the diaper action too.
  • Rather than waiting in the super long lines at the concession window, grab a pizza from the smaller pizza table set up near the bathrooms. The line is shorter and the pizza is better.
  • Get a Farm Show milkshake!
  • If the line is too long to purchase anything in the retail store, talk to one of the employees and they’ll give you a “free shipping” card so you can order online.
  • Exit through the North Lot exit to be closer to your car (don’t forget to go back and get your coat if you checked it).

I have to confess that we actually own zero LEGOs because GB has only recently exited the put-every-thing-in-his-mouth phase. This morning I did just order a LEGO Starter Kit from Amazon ($7 cheaper than at the show)!

dutch wonderful birthday

17.07.15

For my birthday last week, I took Holdy and some friends to Dutch Wonderland in Lancaster, PA. As we hit the road, Holdy promised me she’d be “good all day.”

Pro-tip: You can get discount Dutch Wonderland tickets at Weis Markets discount Dutch Wonderland tickets for $34.00 each.

A trip to Dutch Wonderland @ohbotherblog

One of the best parts about Dutch Wonderland is that Holden is tall enough to ride almost every ride, sometimes even without an adult.

A trip to Dutch Wonderland @ohbotherblog A trip to Dutch Wonderland @ohbotherblog A trip to Dutch Wonderland @ohbotherblog A trip to Dutch Wonderland @ohbotherblogA trip to Dutch Wonderland @ohbotherblog

Another great park? The dragon mascot’s name is Duke!

A trip to Dutch Wonderland @ohbotherblog A trip to Dutch Wonderland @ohbotherblog

And there’s a great, big giant pretzel! I’m pretty sure I have a photo of me posing with this pretzel when I was Holden’s age.

The giant pretzel at Dutch Wonderland @ohbotherblog

AND I got to enjoy a delicious Dole Whip.

Dole Whip at Dutch Wonderland @ohbotherblog

It was a damn near perfect day.

A trip to Dutch Wonderland @ohbotherblog

A trip to Dutch Wonderland @ohbotherblog

Happy Birthday to me!

a trip to the hands-on house in Lancaster, PA

30.05.15

We took a trip to the Hands-on House Children’s Museum in Lancaster, PA recently. I had taken Holden to the Please Touch Museum in Philadelphia when she was about 18 months old and we had a lot of fun, so I was psyched to find a kids’ play museum so close to home.

I was told in advance that there would be age-appropriate activities that could scale for a one-year-old and an almost-three-year-old, so we gave it a shot.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

The Hands-on House boasts several indoor interactive exhibits. First is “My Backyard,” which resembles a woodland wonderland.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

The Fun Farm.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

The Corner Grocery Store.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

Mostly Make-Believe, the dress-up section, complete with pirate ship!

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

Marty’s Machine Shop, filled with all sorts of whozeewhats and thingamajigs.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

And the fantastic Play Garden.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

It’s easy to see how Hands-on House is great for all age levels, even little crawlers like GB. We were able to find activities to entertain both of them in each exhibit. He was a bit skeptical at first:

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

But soon he was climbing and exploring away in My Backyard.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog 

We had a ton of fun over in The Farm area. Holden especially loved picking corn.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

So cool — the ears were velcroed to the wall!

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

She kept stealing corn from the grocer’s basket to feed to the pig.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

We were cracking up at the egg-laying chicken activity, no pun intended. Every now and then an egg would come shooting out, surprising both of us.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

Both kids hopped up in the driver’s seat of the tractor. Getting them to take turns was no small miracle.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

We stopped in between The Farm and The Grocery Store to deliver some mail and blast some germs.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

Here’s a great example of the scaled activities. Each exhibit has a mailbox located outside so you could actually read the address and deliver mail all throughout Hands-on House. Or, you can just move packages from the incoming bin to the outgoing bin like my kids did.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

Over in the Grocery Store, Holden went shopping for shellfish and produce.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

GB opted for the canned food aisle.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

Holden played at the check-out counter:

Hands-on House in lancaster pa

while GB opted to shoplift.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

Leggo my Eggo, indeed.

Holden’s favorite exhibit was, of course, the Make-Believe Room. 

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

My little narcissists loved the stage and the mirrors.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog IMG_8040 Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

We then headed over to the Machine Shop, making Holden clock in before we started.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

There were lots of fun things to do with widgets and obstacles, kind of like a large-scale game of “Mouse Trap.” I think my kiddos were a bit too young to fully enjoy this section, though GB did get to slobber up a wiffle ball or two.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

From the Machine Shop, we headed outside to the Play Garden, which is a) beautiful and b) chock full of age-appropriate climbing structures.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

GB enjoyed eating mulch, as per usual.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

 

There was a super fun sandbox. I was interested to see how GB would respond, having not been in sand since last year’s beach trip.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

 

Luckily, he loved it.

My favorite part was when Holden came whipping down the slide so fast, she missed her feet.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

 

I know, I know: that’s terrible, but I laughed so hard.

Hands-on House Children's Museum Lancaster PA @ohbotherblog

Overall, we had a great experience at the Hands-on House. The nature of the exhibits make it a great place to visit again and again… and it’s priced affordably enough to do so!

Daily admission is $9.50 for adults and $9.50 for children over age 2. An annual family membership for just $99/year gets you free admission, discounted guest passes, member mornings and reduced birthday party rates.

Memorial Day through Labor Day
M, T, W, Th: 10am-5pm
Friday: 10am-8pm
Saturday: 10am-5pm
Sunday: 12-5pm

www.handsonhouse.org/visit

 

Go Green in the City in Downtown York

08.04.15

Central PA parents, I know you’re itching to get your kids outside. May I humbly suggest you take them to an event I’m planning in downtown York next weekend?

Go Green in the City in downtown York PA @ohbotherblog

Go Green in the City
Saturday, April 18

10am-3pm
North Beaver Street and North Pershing Avenue in downtown York

Here’s the deal: this is a family friendly street fair that promotes eco-conscious, local living. From 10am-3pm, we’re taking over 2 blocks of downtown York with:

 Go Green in the City in downtown York PA

  • More than 60 eco-friendly vendors and artisans
  • Local farms and CSAs
  • Mobile food vendors
  • An interactive graffiti moss art project
  • Live music
  • Alpacas (!)
  • Live bees (!)
  • Adoptable dogs
  • A chainsaw artist
  • The WITF Go Green Kid Zone on N. Pershing Ave. (that’s right – I got PBS Kids to sponsor!) with:
    • A 4-H Petting Zoo
    • White Rose Credit Union mini donkeys
    • Kids’ Zumba at noon
    • Face Painting
    • Kids’ Crafts
    • Kids’ Planting Activities
    • A Kids’ DJ
    • “Touch a Truck” Republic Services Trash Truck
    • The Pennsylvania WoodMobile Interactive Classroom

 Go Green in the City in downtown York PA

It’s going to be a really, really great event to bring the kiddos to.

Check out details at www.downtownyorkpa.com/gogreen. Hope to see you there!

 Go Green in the City in downtown York PA

taking a 2-year-old to disney on ice, or how I learned to “let it go”

19.10.14

Like 95% of children in America (the world?), Holden loves Frozen (or as she calls it, “Anna”). So when Disney on Ice “Frozen” tickets became available this summer for an October show, I hesitated for maybe three minutes before I decided to grab a pair. Holden has never been to a movie or live show before, so I wasn’t sure how it would go. As you are now aware, Holden is not the easiest child to take out in public.

Last month, Target had a sale on a dress-up-Anna costume and doll, so I bought it, excitedly envisioning surprising Holden with the dress, perfectly braiding her hair and taking my eternally grateful, happy little two-year-old to her first live performance of her favorite story.

Things did not exactly go as planned.

Holden's first trip to Disney on Ice @ohbotherblog

She refused to wear the dress, insisting it was “too tight,” even though it was clearly too big. I ended up settling for a Frozen t-shirt. She was clearly hating life. Inside, my heart broke a little. 

Holden's first trip to Disney on Ice @ohbotherblog

Nevertheless, we embarked on our Holdy-Mommy date, first stopping for lunch.

Holden's first trip to Disney on Ice @ohbotherblog

Don’t judge me: it’s like the only restaurant that’s acceptable to take a child of her “spirit.” She behaved. She ate. She was excited. Things were looking up. 

And then:

Holden's first trip to Disney on Ice @ohbotherblog

Luckily, the tears only lasted for the first quarter of the 40-minute drive.

Holden's first trip to Disney on Ice @ohbotherblog

When we got to the arena, Holden–possibly still groggy from her nap–was super excited.

When we got to our seats, she seemed mesmerized.

Holden's first trip to Disney on Ice @ohbotherblog

She pointed out all the “Holdys”–little girls who actually wore their princess dresses. She laughed and pointed at the stage. She, of course, had to have a $26 light-up thing.

 

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  But as the lights went down, something was amiss. Holden's first trip to Disney on Ice @ohbotherblog She seemed a little tentative. A little unsure. Holden's first trip to Disney on Ice @ohbotherblog Then, by the time Anna and Hans sang their duet, she was downright miserable. Holden's first trip to Disney on Ice @ohbotherblog She turned to me and said, “Holdy done now,” which has sort of become my safe word for “shit’s about to hit the fan.” So we hightailed it out of the arena and took a little break. Holden's first trip to Disney on Ice @ohbotherblog I gave her the option of going back in or going home, and enticed her with promises of “Elsa’s Song” and Olaf, which were delivered after we settled back in.

 

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Holden's first trip to Disney on Ice @ohbotherblog

 

Holden sat in my lap with her arms around my neck for the entire second half, but she seemed to love it.

She was even cool during the scary snow monster part.

Holden's first trip to Disney on Ice @ohbotherblog

By the end, she was clapping and dancing with the crowd.

Holden's first trip to Disney on Ice @ohbotherblog

 

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So, all in all, not a total disaster.

The parking lot on the way out, however…

Holden's first trip to Disney on Ice @ohbotherblog

But, let’s be honest, I’d do it all again for this kid.

Holden's first trip to Disney on Ice @ohbotherblog

Holden's first trip to Disney on Ice @ohbotherblog

a trip to the please touch museum

23.11.13

Please Touch Museum in Philadelphia @ohbotherblog

One of my best friends lives outside Philadelphia, so when we found an amazing Living Social deal for the Please Touch Museum, located in the Fairmount Park section of Philly, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to get together with the kids.

The Please Touch Museum is basically two floors of super-interactive play environments that are educational and fun. There’s a play version of Philadelphia, complete with a SEPTA bus; a ShopRite grocery store that was an absolute zoo; a Wonderland replica (as in, “Alice in”); a musical rainforest; a water pond and a gorgeous carousel… among many other exhibits. There are even toddler-specific areas.

Holden basically went nuts. It was a great day.

Holden at the Please Touch Museum @ohbotherblog Holden at the Please Touch Museum @ohbotherblog Holden at the Please Touch Museum @ohbotherblog

Admission to the Please Touch Museum is $16 for an adult or child; children under one year are free. Keep your eye out for great deals: the Living Social deal was $9 for admission and included a carousel ticket.

Target is sponsoring “First Wednesdays” at the Please Touch Museum, which feature two extra hours of play and $2 Admission every First Wednesday of the month 4 to 7pm. That’s a heckuva deal.

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