Great Wolf Lodge New England for the Holidays

Last weekend my family and I were asked to attend a Howliday sneak peek at Great Wolf Lodge New England!   We got to experience Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas all in one sitting!

First we started with Howl-o-ween. The kids decorated treat bags and got some candy from the witch. During the month of October kids will get in their costumes and participate in Spooktacular family activities such as the Trick-or-Treat Trail or Monster Bash Dance Party. It’ll be a howling good time! (Get it? Wolf. Howl?)

We had a Thanksgiving feast fit for KINGS I tell you. Every bit of it was delicious (between my husband and I we tried most of it ;-). And as a bonus it was all nut free!

Then they made it SNOW! Inside. The kids thought it was so cool. It was part of what will be called  Snowland – From snow showers and twinkling lights in the Grand Lobby to gingerbread houses and enormous snowflakes. We had hot chocolate with handmade marshmallows, and the kids decorated Holiday cookies and basically got all hopped up on sugar. There was also a storytime and then a dance party. I suppose to account for the different levels of sugar intake ;-)


Dollops of Diane’s kids. Mine would not stand still for a second here.

That was all just our blogger preview of the holidays! Everything else at Great Wolf Lodge was equally as awesome.

The Dunkin Donuts and a bar for adults -that’s the way to begin and end the day ;-) The buffet breakfast for everyone. And of course, of course the WATER PARK and everything in between our room and the water!

There are shops, a salon, arcades, indoor mini golf, a ropes course and so much more. Be sure to look them up on Facebook for deals!


We had so much fun and would definitely go back! Among the water parks around these parts it’s most certainly the leader of the pack (sorry I couldn’t help myself.)


This post (and my sharing on social media) was inspired by my participation in a program by Great WOlf Lodge. I have been given aComplimentary stay at the resort. Image used with permission. All opinions are my own.

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Wordless Wednesday – Week 9 of summer in pics


Wiley Lake in Eastham, MA.


The boys.


Those faces.


I think I can. I think I can.


Sunset in Eastham.


Little feet.


Floating girl.





Big sister helping to learn to the pedal bike!


Boogie Boardin’!






BP Boulangerie. The cappuccino on the cape! Oh and the bread. And the croissant. I think I just fainted.


Waiting on me to get my cap and bread at the Boulangerie.


The Digging Crew.


Carpe Diem – Sorry.


Scooter and a yellow house.


Gelato in Ptown.




Until next year Cape Cod.

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ViolaCay and the fam go to Storyland!

I think the fall would be a perfect time to visit Storyland in Glen NH. The crowds are down, the prices are down, but the fun is still there!

The kids LOVE Splash Battle and the Raft Ride, but really, I could do without the soaking wet kids. In the fall I would have a built in – it’s a little chilly to do that today babies -excuse :-)

Not to mention the White Mountains in the fall – gorgeous.

This year we went to Storyland at the very end of August before school started. We stayed at the Residence Inn in North Conway. We had so much space for our family of 5 and a kitchen! Breakfast was yummy too, and included. Highly recommend.

Next year though, maybe the fall for us.

Go take a look, there’s still time to plan a fall trip. Have fun! We did…

There should be a cute video here, if not please refresh your browser. There it is, like magic ;-)


ps – Storyland has a new more user friendly, pretty to look at, website (well done web team!).

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Lock the front door

I just closed and locked my front door for the evening. Seems normal enough.

I turned and looked back at my kids, thankfully so oblivious to the panic I feel. There is a terrorist roaming around my area of the world. I am not so naive to think that there aren’t more or that they haven’t been there before. But now, I KNOW IT. I know he’s out there somewhere despite our local and national law enforcement’s best efforts.

My city is on lockdown. We’ve been asked to stay indoors. My city isn’t even the one where they are actively looking for this scourge on humanity. It’s a town over. My friend lives there, with her lovely boys. I am sure that her door has been locked all day. I am sure she has been nervously peering out her windows wondering if evil would visit her house in his attempt to flee authorities.

A man and his brother blew up the finish line of the Boston Marathon on Monday. It’s why I went quiet here after saying I was back from my self imposed quiet last week. I have posts about potty training, chick peas, and bowling set to go. But I can’t get my head around what has happened to my hometown, my state. I have lived in Massachusetts for my whole life except for prolonged travelling stints. I have always come home.

Home has been in  Holliston, Amherst, Watertown, Stockbridge, Belmont, Boston & Newton. Someone bombed my home. They killed my neighbors, hurt my friends, and sacred the hell out of all of us.

My friend was running the marathon. The first bomb went off literally as they put the medal around her neck. It was a frantic and breath holding 10minutes before we knew what happened to her and her family.

Every single person I know has a story about Monday, and how it touched them or someone they love.

I don’t have more to say about it right now. I’m just a little sad and a little scared is all. I hope you all are doing well.


Aaron Bouvier Design #Boston

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To Disney World or not to Disney World?

We’ve been thinking about going to Disney World since N was born. Of course that seems impractical, going to Disney with a newborn. So we waited. Then we had another baby two years later, and another two years after that. So we waited.

So now there are three kids ages 6,4,& 2. We think that this might be a great time to start planning for Disney. Or is it?

I’m pretty cheap thrifty. The thought of paying that much for a vacation has me twitching. Will they even remember it? Should we wait until they’re older? Does that even matter? Should we stay on Disney property? Can that even BE cost effctive? Or should we think about staying off property?

So many questions. And from what I’ve found from the first few days of searching is that there are just as many answers. Different answers to the same question. Sigh.

I am a person that has traveled around the world following the sun. I didn’t plan much more than that. The thought of over planning something like this goes against my nature. But it seems that this kind of thing, unplanned, would outright waste money. That, completely goes against my nature.

Yesterday I spent much of the day online trying to figure it all out. Originally I thought surprising them for their birthdays would be awesome. But then I read somewhere else that end of January is cheaper. Since I have to take them out of school anyway, cheaper seems better. Plane fares are also slightly cheaper in January. Is that because it’s cold there? Cold in Florida? It happens right?

Also I’d be willing to ditch the whole thing all together. My kids don’t HAVE to go to Disney. Plenty of kids don’t. We could use that money for loads of other stuff. Seems, well unseemly. But I waaaaaanaaaaaa go. So there’s that.

I saw lots of tweets and post and status updates from friends on the Disney Moms panel at the opening of the New Fantasyland. Now THAT would be a good way to go – as press. Or does anyone know of any contests running right now where I could WIN a trip. That would be easiest I think ;-)

So here are the places I’ll be looking in the next few days to get my act together

The Moms Panel, natch. My bloggy friends know their stuff.

Mouse Savers

All Ears

And of course Disney World.

Ok so I KNOW you all have tips. Lay em on me, I’m all ears. Heh.

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Santa at Magic Beans

For the past few years we’ve been going to Magic Beans to get our picture with Santa. The reason we keep going back is twofold.

1. Santa
He has a real beard and is super nice and welcoming. He asks questions and listens and doesn’t throw Mom and Dad under the bus with sure we’ll get you that RC ride on Hummer for Christmas. He’s awesome.


2. Magic Beans
I love Magic Beans and the people who run it. I consider them friends of mine. But even if they weren’t I would still go. They have got this visit with Santa thing down to a science. You reserve a time online at one of their stores. On the day of your visit, you check in with the girl with the iPad give her your cell number and she texts you when Santa is ready to visit. Easy Peasy.
The first couple of years were rocky, for some, as they ironed out the system to meet the demand. But this year we walked in, checked in, did a little browsing, sat on Santa’s lap, and were back home for dinner in no time.


This year I forgot my  *big* camera so these are my phone pics. But never fear because Magic Beans had someone there taking pictures; Sheri, the owner, because she’s that hands on. So hopefully she got a shot of the three of them that’s not blurry. No matter though.

Because these, these are pretty great.


Some tips for getting a great Santa picture: (#1 on my list and yours should be remember your camera ;-)

From Spilling the Beans Santa Baby, 10 Tips for a “Nice” Santa Experience

From Mamamia Dear parents: 12 Things a Santa Elf wants you to know.

From Parenting Tips for Surviving Santa 

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