Heading home? Discover 5 things you should do when you get home

You know what they say, all good things must come to an end and sadly, that even applies to your traveling adventures. Spending time exploring new countries, experimenting with new cuisine, meeting interesting people and making a ton of memories makes heading home pretty difficult. But, this is no time to feel sorry for yourself: there’s lots of work to be done! 

Read on for 5 things you should when you get home from traveling.

Preserve your travel memories 

When you step into your home for the first time in months, the very idea that a day ago you were on the other side of the world can feel ludicrous. You might feel a little downtrodden, already reminiscing your life on the road but preserving your travel memories will certainly help you through this difficult time. Consider having your travel photographs printed out or even printed onto canvas – discover hello canvas for the latest in printing options – hang them up on your walls, on your fridge, and anywhere else you can think of! Don’t let all those travel memories and incredible moments be left trapped inside your digital devices or lost within the depths of social media, get them printed and you can decorate your home with them!

Check your bank statements 

The last thing you want is to be funding someone else’s fun abroad… so, when you get home go through your card transactions and highlight anything that looks a little suspicious or you don’t recognize. You may have had your card duplicated – someone may still be using it right now! There are ways you can avoid having your card stolen abroad, so bear these in mind next time you travel. But for now, check your statements and get in touch with your bank if you need to.


Sure, you haven’t been confined to your usual 9-5 schedule for some time, but that doesn’t mean that you’re not drained and in need of a little R&R. Travelling is tiring and often chaotic, not to mention the lack of sleep, poor diet and stress that comes with it. Now that you’re home, enjoy a good night’s sleep, refresh your diet with plenty of fruits and veggies, drink more water, and maybe even hit the gym if you’re feeling a little stagnant. Your body and mind will thank you. 

Do something new

When we travel, we get used to the privilege of trying new and exciting things every day. So, when we come home to what we class as “normal”, it’s natural to feel unmotivated and deflated. In order to kickstart your motivation and keep your fire for new and exciting things burning, try something new. You can still continue to push yourself out of your comfort zone now you’re back home. Try a new class, learn a new skill or head out and meet new people!

Plan your next trip

Once you have a taste for travel, it’s difficult to let go! So, start looking into your net big adventure. Even if you don’t have the funds right now, you can still plan ahead and have something to look forward to.

Astronaut Training Experience® (ATX) at Kennedy Space Center

Your Child’s Dream of Space Travel is HERE!

We have all imagined what it might be like to go into space, to land on Mars, to be an astronaut. Now at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex in Florida you and your family can live it.

Learning about science and space is important, but experiencing the trials and actively participating in simulations of life on another planet gives education a whole new perspective. There are two parts to the new program, the Astronaut Training Experience (ATX) and Mars Base 1. These are both are pretty much all day events, though there are shorter options available should you prefer. Keep that in mind because you will want to give yourself plenty of time for each, and time to explore the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex.

space center

Astronaut Training Experience® (ATX)

The virtual reality Walk-on-Mars, Land-and-Drive-on-Mars full-motion simulator, Launch Mission and Spacewalk Training are all part of the ATX. This experience is hands on and high tech. If you or your children already love science and have a fascination with space, this will bring that passion to life. Prepare for your mission to Mars by training like a real NASA astronaut headed to space. Once you have been through ATX, Kennedy Space Center has taken it one step further with Mars Base 1. Ever wanted to take a space walk? How about a zero-gravity experience, where you fix space equipment like a real astronaut would? You and your team are strapped into special seats just like the real thing and you are handed tools to maintain the equipment you need to function day to day in space, using NASA techniques to solve problems. Navigate Mars terrain to deliver needed goods in your own space rover- be careful, it can get very bumpy. Don’t worry, you receive training so your skills are up to par before you are sent on these harrowing missions.

You can do any of these as “mini missions” if you don’t have time to do them all at once in a 5 hour spurt. Each stage takes about 30-45 minutes.

Keep in mind that this program takes about 5 hours and does not include admission to the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex

Mars Training Camp

Mars Base 1

What could be cooler than a day actually spent on Mars? Not and hour or a walk through display, but a real day working and surviving on the planets surface doing real science? If like me your answer is that nothing could be cooler than this, then there is no other place to be. Become a “rookie astronaut” participating in simulations and scientific research to grow and analyze crops in the Mars Botany Lab, or use robots to accomplish tasks. Yes, you actually take part in these activities, and grow real food that is really used and consumed.

Again, keep in mind that this program takes about 5 hours and does not include admission to the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex

There is so much to do and learn that goes beyond what we imagine. Having the real life science and innovation at your finger tips melds what we learn in books with what we actually put our hands on. Both the Astronaut Training Experience® (ATX) and Mars Base 1 offer the magic of space travel without leaving the ground. Plan your visit, first stop Florida, final destination the Red Planet, Mars.

astronaut camp

You will really want to save some time to visit Kennedy Space Center as well, it’s quite an experience on it’s own. At least a full day, more if you want to see and take part in everything the attraction has to offer. There are endless museums, theaters, an IMAX, shows, hands on demonstrations, items belonging to astronauts, satellites and ships that have been in space, and of course, there are opportunities to meet astronauts themselves. And of course, there is an app for that. Should you want, the Kennedy Space Center Official Guide App is available for free in both the App Store and Google Play. Fun.

See all the Details on the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex’s website – Kennedyspacecenter.com or on Social Media – Twitter FacebookInstagram

Best VTech Baby Toys To Keep Your Baby Entertained

All of my go to toys are from vtech. VTech offers a wide variety of educational toys that will keep babies and kids of all ages entertained for hours. If you took a look into any one of my kids toy boxes you are bound to see more than one vtech toy. This post is a sponsored post, but all opinions, stories, and my experience are all personal and true (like always)!


Light & Spin Tug-A-Bug:

Pull the ring on the Light & Spin Tug-a-Bug™ to see a colorful light show inside the spinning shell. Press the friendly caterpillar button to hear it sing a song, play music and say playful phrases. The easy-grasp ring attracts your little one’s attention with three rattling beads. Use the link to attach the cute snail to strollers, car seats and diaper bags for fun on-the-go. With two friendly bug voices, colorful lights and a spinning shell, your little one will love playing with their smiley snail friend!

Lil’ Critters Singin’ Monkey Rattle:

Your little one will go bananas for the Lil’ Critters Singin’ Monkey Rattle™! Press its light-up tummy to hear playful songs, music, encouraging phrases and silly sounds. Shake the monkey to hear monkey sounds and fun phrases or see the tummy light up. Twist the bananas, slide the rings or spin the rolling ball to help develop fine motor skills. The easy-grasp handle is perfectly sized for little hands to give it a shake or for mom to grab when running out the door for playtime on the go. Your little one will love to monkey around with their new friend!

Play & Move Puppy Tunes:

Press the Play & Move Puppy Tunes™ music button and start grooving! This adorable dancing puppy rocks, sings and plays the guitar. Explore the drum, piano and saxophone buttons while listening to 30 melodies in classical, jazz and pop music styles. Then, press the music button to hear three songs. Two colorful lights flash with the music, attracting your baby’s attention. Grab this music player and never miss a chance to dance!

GearBuddies Lion & Mouse:

Go for a friendly spin with the GearZooz™ GearBuddies Lion & Mouse™. Connect the Smart Gear™ mouse and turn the handle to watch the gears spin! Placing the mouse on the lion’s back triggers fun phrases and stories. Turn the handle gear to hear a melody, then turn the handle faster and faster to speed up the melody! Press the light-up button to hear fun stories, or roll the lion to hear playful sing-along songs. Then, mix and match with other GearZooz™ playsets (sold separately) for more gear-rific fun!

My Thoughts:

These toys are perfect to have on hand. They are fun, educational, and little enough that they travel easy. I have a bag that I keep in my van for toys for Lee Lee and you can find all of these toys in that bag. It gets drug out at football games, baseball games, and when we are driving down the highway and he has had enough of being in the van. They are prefect for little hands and little minds. There bright colors, lights, and sounds keep little ones mind going and engaged. The handles and buttons are easy for little fingers to hold on to and push. In one way or other all of these toys work on some kind of fine or gross motor skill and concentrate on some kind of educational concept. If your family is constantly on the go or if you are looking for fun little toys to have on hand these are perfect for you!




Woodward Copper at Copper Mountain

For Those Looking to Take Adventure to the Next Level

Snowboarding Woodward Copper LogoCopper Mountain Resort in Colorado, just over an hour from Denver, is already known for great skiing and snowboarding and now they have even more to offer. They are home to one of the Woodward centers that specializes in pushing the limits of what you thought you were capable of. Woodward Copper is a year-round skiing and snowboarding facility with an nearly 20,000 ft indoor space for physical activity. All levels of experience are welcome, and by the time you are done even just with the introduction you will have tried things you might not believe.

Woodward Copper at Copper Mountain ColoradoYou maybe familiar with Woodward as a company, they offer classes and camps in action sports (skateboarding, bikes, parkour), gymnastics and cheer, snow (skiing, snowboarding), and the digital arts. There are locations across the US and one in particular for those embracing winter sports, Woodward Copper and the Woodward Barn at Copper Mountain.

With classes and camps both outside on the mountain and inside at their training facility Woodward Copper has options for all adventure lovers. It starts with their introduction at the Barn. When you enter the building the first startling thing you might notice is all the bodies ten feet up in the air either flying off ramps with skateboards into foam pits or bouncing on Olympic-grade trampolines. Scooter riders cruise around while kids and grownups of all ages take part in supervised activities. My first thought was, huh, I am going to be doing some of that…

Woodward Activity Center at Copper Mountain ColoradoI came in with a little bit of experience rolling around, but mostly a yoga practitioner, where your feet don’t leave the ground much, and this is definitely a place where people fly. By the end of the night we were bouncing off the trampolines into the foam pit. If you bring your ski or snowboard boots experiencing their indoor training to work up to jumps and tricks is also on the list for the Intro session. From there the sky is the limit and just how brave you want to be.

Their teachers are great and super encouraging. The goal of all their work is progression, but not in a pushy or pressured way. The atmosphere is very cool and relaxed which I definitely enjoyed. The Woodward Barn is a great opportunity to spend some energy burning time indoors if the weather is super cold and you don’t want to spend the whole day on the slopes, or take one of the Woodward classes outdoors and get into the on snow application of the skills you learned at the Barn.

Skiing Copper Mountain with WoodwardKids will love the experience and can go solo or you can make this a family activity and all get involved.  They have private lessons in snowboard, ski, skate, scooter, BMX, mountain bike, trampoline and tumbling if you have an area or skill you would like to improve on. In the end, don’t be intimidated, just get yourself out to Woodward Copper the next time you are visiting Copper Mountain Resort for some safe fun that will push you to the next level.

PS. Wear tight socks… Mine kept getting sucked off in the foam pit and I was not the only one fishing for loose footwear. Read Have Sippy Will Travel’s full feature on Copper Mountain HERE.

Find out more on the Woodward site – Campwoodward.com or at the Copper Mountain site – Coppercolorado.com

See more on Social Media – TwitterInstagramFacebook


White Mountain Snowmobile Tours Colorado

Sail over the Snow in this Mountain Adventure!

If you love speed and beautiful sights White Mountain Snowmobile Tours is a perfect activity for your next visit to Colorado. Whether you are a rider, a driver, or the tour you choose this is an experience not to be missed when visiting the Leadville area. It maybe a noisier way to get up in the mountains than its skiing/snowboarding counterpart, but also one of the funnest!

Snowmobiling at White Mountain Snowmobile Tours ColoradoWhite Mountain Snowmobile Tours is a year round operation that offers a variety of their namesake snowmobile tours as well as zip lining (which is the year round part). You can go for the Family Prospector Tour which is a laid back 2 hour ride perfect for couples looking to ride double or those with kids. There is even a break for kids up to 70lbs to ride their own mini snowmobile, which they will LOVE.

The next step up is the Performance Tour, taking you higher into the mountain and for solo riders only. You want to push your limits and are already an experienced rider you can graduate the the Extreme Tour and really tear across the countryside. Any level of experience is welcome and there are options for everyone of all ages.

View during the White Mountain Snowmobile Tours near Leadville ColoradoI confess I preferred being a passenger though I gave driving a go. When I got lapped for the third time on the makeshift test track I called it a day and hopped on the back for a more relaxing trip. I wanted to look around not concentrate on driving! Meanwhile my companion was all about faster and further so me stepping back worked out well. Just call me Miss Daisy.

Snow Mobile at White Mountain Snowmobile Tours Leadville ColoradoYou can come bundled up in all your ski gear or they have everything you need, from boots to helmets and googles. White Mountain Snowmobile Tours is a large operation and everything runs like a smoothly oiled machine. Everyone we dealt with was awesome, our guide, Terry, in particular. He made even a nervous driver like me comfortable and since I ended the ride on his snowmobile being confident in your driver is a gift. He really made the trip with his knowledge of local landmarks and by taking us to all the best lookouts.

Even when I am posting the pictures I find it hard to believe how beautiful it is in the mountains outside Leadville and Twin Lakes. Riding the trails with crisp wind in your face and the sun shining on the white expanse of snow was magical. Get your engine revving and get on out there.

Find out more about White Mountain Snow Mobile Tours and the options they offer year round on their website: Whitemountainsnowmobiletours.com

Check out more on their Social Media – Facebook

Romantic getaway: Europe’s 8 most amorous cities

Valentine’s Day marks the time of year you can put aside everything else and focus on you and your loved one – at least if you’re lucky enough! In which case, why not really indulge you and your partner by booking a city-break overseas in one of Europe’s most romantic metropolises? But which one to choose…?


Nicknamed the ‘City of Love’, Paris is pretty much the obvious, nay essential place to kick-off a list of this ilk. Blessed with so many delightful sights – from the Eiffel Tower to the Notre Dame Cathedral, the Arc de Triomphe to the Latin Quarter and the cobbled streets of the bohemian Montmartre to all those bridges over the Seine – it may be a cliché to say Paris is the ideal city for lovers to visit, but its romanticism is absolutely unquestioned.


As far as this blogger’s concerned, Venice may just be the most romantic city in the entire world. Built on an island lying in a lagoon, it contains villas, opera houses, canals and nary a road to be seen. Much of it dates from the Renaissance, including so many of the timeless artworks to be discovered in its multitude of churches. Beautiful and utterly unique in equal measure.


Speaking of the Renaissance, you absolutely can’t overlook its birthplace as a possible Valentine’s destination. Brimming with spellbinding architecture and stunning statues, it’s also blessed with that awe-inspiring Tuscan sun, gorgeous gelato and all those utterly delicious food dishes. The one problem with the place perhaps is that it’s so beautiful you may never want to leave!


A world-renowned Iberian institution, the Catalan capital is Spain’s most popular tourist destination – and for good reason. Offering up all those magnificently shaped Gaudi structures, incredible cuisine, supreme nightlife and, for culture vultures, a fascinating history and arts scene, it’s a metropolis to absolutely explore (so best pack those comfy but great-for-walking women’s brogue shoes from Mr Shoes) while on a romantic getaway.


Waltzes, Ferris wheels, pastries, horse-drawn carriages, royal residences, opera and exquisite Imperial architecture; yes, this Central European capital that’s oozing historical resonance has it all. Easily one of the most elegant cities you could care to visit, why not take a Viennese whirl in one of those Hell Bunny skirts in the Austrian capital? Why not, indeed!

The Dutch capital’s another city blessed with the beauty that a cornucopia of canals can bring, yet – unlike one or two others on this list – it’s far from the mega metropolis; to visit Amsterdam is to take in a charmingly and very charismatically compact city. And, frankly, who couldn’t feel amorous here, with all its cafés and restaurants and bicycles and echoes of the Dutch masters?


A perennial destination for stag and hen dos it may be, but this relatively recently discovered tourist-trap of a European capital also makes for a fine Valentine’s short-break location. Why? Because, once again, the architecture is breath-taking in its old fashioned beauty, while its restaurants and café culture are topped off by its plethora of cosy bars in which you and your loved one can sample and sup from an unparalleled choice of fine beers – or a bottle or two of red, of course!

Finally, who could overlook the picture-postcard beauty of this little bit of heaven in the Aegean Ocean. In actual fact, this destination’s an entire island (one of the Cyclades) as much as it’s a city, but with its rugged landscape, whitewashed cubiform houses and, of course, that blue, blue Mediterranean water, it’s simply an irresistible locale to while away a few loved up days with your special someone.


It’s Sweeter With Honey #StoryofHoney

The National Honey Board sponsored this post and provided the opportunity to visit an apiary and bottling factory to learn more about the #StoryOfHoney. All thoughts and opinions are mine.

What are your thoughts about honey? Delicious, right? Did you ever wonder how your favorite flavor, gets to the grocery store? Sure you know it comes from bees, but you can’t quite figure the rest of it out, can you?

Voted 2015 Flavor of the Year by Firmenich, honey is a versatile culinary ingredient that contains one ingredient: honey. Honey is made from nectar, gathered by honey bees from flowering plants. How, you might ask? On a recent trip to the Midwest, I discovered the secret behind honey’s goodness.

The honey process begins on a bee farm run by apiarists. Apiarists are bee farmers.


Bee farms are busy places and an excellent source of education. At a buzzing farm near Sioux Falls, South Dakota bees feed on certain flowers to produce certain flavors, called, varietals. To find a varietal in your area, visit www.honeylocator.com. You’re probably most familiar with clover or orange blossom honey, as those varietals are popular. There are more than 300 varietals in the United States; enough flavor to enhance every recipe.

Whatever flower the bees feed on turns into the flavor of the honey. Some honey contains one flavor only, and some honeys contain a myriad of flavors. It’s best to have your own taste test to determine which flavors you like best. The colors may range from nearly colorless to dark brown, the flavor may vary from delectably mild to distinctively bold, and even the odor of the honey may be mildly reminiscent of a flower.

The honey bees live in hives on the farms.


They deposit the nectar from the flowers into honeycombs. These honeycombs are removed and the extraction process begins. Byproducts from these honeycombs include honey and wax, which is used for candles. The honeycomb frames from the hives are placed in a giant machine called an extractor that spins, forces the honey out, and is collected.





This honey is then poured into giant tanks and shipped to a bottling facility.


At the facility the honey is cleaned. It is strained many times to remove impurities.

clean honey

Once the honey is free from impurities, it is poured into different size containers depending on where it’s going.




If the honey is going to a be mixed into cereal or cake mixes, for example, then it is poured into giant plastic boxes or metal drums. If the honey is going to your local grocery store, then it is poured into smaller receptacles, like the ubiquitous honey bear on your local supermarket shelf. For more background about the source and to hear from beekeepers and other experts, visit: www.storyofhoney.com.

Not surprisingly, honey is one of the most versatile flavors to cook with. Did you know that honey is naturally anti-microbial, which helps to resist spoilage and extend shelf life? Dig that old honey bear from the back of your spice cabinet and reuse it: if your honey begins to crystallize, gently warm it and stir periodically until crystals dissolve. Boom! Ready for cooking. Once you’ve located your favorite honey, visit www.honey.com for recipe ideas, videos, and tips to incorporate honey into your meals. Honey can substitute for other sweeteners, added to sauces, and masks the bitterness of gluten free flours.


And let’s not forget drinks! Honey is great is hot drinks like tea (I like mine in coffee) but it can also be used in lemonades, fruit punches, iced teas, and cocktails. You’ll have to heat the honey a little bit in order to get it to mix with the other liquids first (Remember back to 9th grade science or refer to a cookbook on why honey doesn’t work well when it’s cold.). There’s nothing that honey can’t improve the taste of.

So the next time you’re at the supermarket or shopping your local farmer’s market, look for a new flavor of honey to try; you might discover your new favorite flavor. Remember; do not give honey to children until they are older than one year. Don’t forget, honey is a natural cough suppressant.

Looking for the Perfect Travel Purse?

If you give me a big purse, I will carry everything in it. I do mean everything. Snacks for the kid, tissues, lip balm, hand cleaning products…the list goes on and on.
Ladies, I am going to let you in on a little trick. The secret to looking great while on the go doesn’t require effort. It requires you to find a style that flatters you, that is comfortable, and that will enhance your  your wardrobe subtly. Who would have thought that adding a bag to your look could be a game changer?

20150502_195156I am not talking about any bag either. I am talking about a Baliboca bag. These are pretty sweet for a Mom on the go. If I am dashing off to an after school event with the kid, or having a family fun day at the Zoo. My Baliboca Neoprene Shoulder Bag is great. I stays with me, requires no hands, and best of all, it can discreetly slip under my coat or sweatshirt if I want.

Now this is huge. You don’t want to know how many times I have been the lady that could just drag a suitcase in wheels around for all of the stuff motherhood requires. The Baliboca shoulder bag is great for helping me just say no to becoming a walking vending machine.
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