Summer Adventures | Brooklyn Bridge Park

The Summer Adventures series focuses on affordable summer fun for families in Westchester and the lower Hudson Valley. It’s all about exploring our own backyard and is the perfect resource for planning a killer staycation or finding something awesome to do this weekend.

summer adventures | Brooklyn Bridge Park

This weekend we packed the girls up to head down to Brooklyn Heights to visit my brother-in-law and his girlfriend. They live within walking distance from Brooklyn Bridge Park and, let me tell you, we fell absolutely in love with the area. Samantha is still insisting that we need a summer home there. If a summer home in Brooklyn was the sort of thing we could afford, we would completely agree with her.

It’s not surprising that we love the area. We’re big fans of waterfront parks and Brooklyn Bridge Park is a tough one to beat. It’s huge and full of gorgeous gardens and greenery, lots of spaces for fun (like playgrounds and splash parks, volleyball courts, soccer fields and more), and absolutely unbeatable views of Manhattan.

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Summer Adventures | Perkins Memorial Drive

The Summer Adventures series focuses on affordable summer fun for families in Westchester and the lower Hudson Valley. It’s all about exploring our own backyard and is the perfect resource for planning a killer staycation or finding something awesome to do this weekend.

summer adventures | Perkins Drive at Bear Mountain

We decided to keep our Hudson River loving going this week. We took a trip over the Bear Mountain Bridge to Rockland county and Perkins Memorial Drive. Part of Bear Mountain State Park, the top of Perkins Memorial Drive and the tower that stands there offer completely breathtaking panoramic views.

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Summer Adventures | Walkway Over the Hudson

The Summer Adventures series focuses on affordable summer fun for families in Westchester and the lower Hudson Valley. It’s all about exploring our own backyard and is the perfect resource for planning a killer staycation or finding something awesome to do this weekend.

summer adventures | Walkway Over the Hudson

Our latest adventure took us to Poughkeepsie and the incredible Walkway Over the Hudson. If you live in the Hudson Valley and have never checked it out, you absolutely have to put it on your adventure list.

The Walkway Over the Hudson is a 1.28 mile linear park that stands 212 feet above the Hudson River. It’s the world’s longest elevated pedestrian bridge. It’s pretty awesome and with entrances in Poughkeepsie and Highland, it’s convenient no matter which side of the river you live on.

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Summer Adventures | Hiking at Croton Gorge Park

The Summer Adventures series focuses on affordable summer fun for families in Westchester and the lower Hudson Valley. It’s all about exploring our own backyard and is the perfect resource for planning a killer staycation or finding something awesome to do this weekend.

summer adventures | Hiking at Croton Gorge Park

 

Last weekend I woke up and the girls were hungry for an adventure. It wasn’t too hot and it wasn’t supposed to rain until later in the day, so it seemed like the perfect day to try out a hike at Croton Gorge Park. I’ve shied away from hikes with the girls in the past because they can be divas. That’s actually an understatement. They’re just about always divas. But a post on Wee Westchester convinced me that the trails at Croton Gorge Park would be a great place to start.

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Summer Adventures | Fruit Picking at Fishkill Farms

The Summer Adventures series focuses on affordable summer fun for families in Westchester and the lower Hudson Valley. It’s all about exploring our own backyard and is the perfect resource for planning a killer staycation or finding something awesome to do this weekend.

summer adventures | Fruit picking at Fishkill Farms

 

Last weekend my sister and I brought our (not-so-little) babies to the Strawberry Jammin’ Festival at Fishkill Farms. We’ve been huge fans of this sustainable, eco-friendly fruit and veggie farm since we went apple picking there last fall. It’s sprawling and beautiful and has a great farm store—plus they have a grill that serves up hot dogs, hamburgers, and a house Jamaican jerk chicken.

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Liberty Science Center

Local Love | Liberty Science CenterIt’s no secret that we love science in our house (I mean, who doesn’t love exploring why and how things work?!), so when Liberty Science Center invited us down to check out their Science, Sabers, and Star Wars weekend we were all “Oh, heck yes!”

My husband had to work at the last minute (which was a major bummer because he’s a huge Star Wars geek), so the girls and I made the trek down to New Jersey ourselves, happily listening to Harry Potter the whole way. It was brutally cold but totally worth it!

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LEGOLAND Discovery Center Westchester

red carpet premiere at LEGOLAND Discovery Center Westchester for The LEGO Movie 4D A New AdventureAfter being cooped up for a couple of weeks with a nasty case of mono, Samantha was so ready to go back to school once her fever went away last week. Unluckily for her, that happened to coincide with some snow and a school cancellation. She was livid. At me, at mother nature, at her immune system, at pretty much anything she could think of.

Luckily for her (or, more accurately, my sanity), the snow cleared in time for us to head down to Ridge Hill to catch the premiere of the brand new LEGO 4D Movie at LEGOLAND Discovery Center Westchester. Ellie and I had visited back in November when we got to meet a couple of the Rockettes, but Samantha had never been there before. This visit definitely won her over—and did wonders for her mood.

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Time to Kiln

indoor activities for kids in Westchester: Time to Kiln studioI was mindlessly scrolling Facebook the other day (as one does when one is avoiding being productive), when I came across a local mom group post about Time to Kiln, a paint-your-own pottery place in northern Westchester.

Since the girls and I have never checked it out before and we were looking down the business end of a cold, gray, three-day January weekend, what better time to try it? I texted some friends, set up a surprise play date, and off we went.

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Fishkill Farms

Local Love | Fishkill Farms

When summer starts winding down and my dread of a fall that will quickly turn to winter kicks up a notch or so, the one thing that always draws me out of my negative spiral is going apple picking with the girls. It’s so simple, but it works every time.

Apples make me think of fall spices and baking and boots and cozy blankets. I’m ok with all of those things, which makes me realize that I’m ok with fall. The air is crisper, which means I can layer on a scarf and playground trips are less brutal and sweaty.

Yes, we eat apples year-round. But something about the act of going out and picking apples flips a switch in my overworked brain. While I watch the girls run through the rows of trees and take tastes of apples or even complain about the taste of a particular apple, I know everything is ok. I just need to relax.

A couple of weeks ago, we tried out an orchard we’ve never been to. My sister has been wanting to go to Fishkill Farms because they don’t use synthetic pesticides or fertilizers. With a little more digging, I learned that they’re all about sustainability, which got me even more excited to check them out.

Also, the place is freaking beautiful.

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InstaAddict | Hudson Valley Edition

Guys, I need to tell you a secret: I am an Instagram addict. I’m a screen-scrolling zombie come bedtime (which might be the reason I have such a difficult time sleeping, but that’s a whole post in itself). My eyelids may droop, but my thumb keeps scrolling and double tapping until I just. can’t. even.

Is this the most productive use of my time? Uh, no. Most definitely not. But sometimes I try to trick my brain into thinking it’s OK by saying, “Hey brain. I’m actually conducting really important research here by checking out some local accounts to find some cool things to do. For the girls.” Because my brain is highly susceptible to mom guilt.

In case you’re interested in a really pretty time suck—I mean, highly productive research project for the good of your children—I put together a list of some of my favorite Hudson Valley Instagrammers. These guys regularly post gorgeous shots of things to do and see and eat and buy in our pretty stinking beautiful NYC suburbs.

Hudson Valley Instagrammers | Hudson Valley Compass

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