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I'm Terri and I love to travel with my kids. We have a goal of visiting all 50 states. Learn more...

Utah – Canyonlands National Park

Gorgeous Canyonlands

I had wanted to go to Utah for a very long time. The pictures I had seen were amazing. Technically, we could have crossed Utah off our list just by going to the Four Corners Monument, but that wasn’t good enough for me. I wanted to see the amazing rock formations I had seen in pictures, so after Four Corners, we headed to Canyonlands National Park. Even the drive to the park was fascinating. If you use my itinerary from my ebook, you’ll follow this route too. Here’s a little of what you see along the way.

Gorgeous, isn’t it?

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Kentucky – Cecil L. Gorley Naturalist Trail

Hints of fall color on Cecil Gorley Trail

Located at the geographic center of Kentucky is the small city of Lebanon, nicknamed the Heart of Kentucky. My kids and I traveled to this cute town recently for a weekend. We explored the annual Marion County Country Ham Days festival on the first day of our visit. The next day provided an opportunity to explore the natural beauty of the area. We headed to nearby Fagan Branch Lake.

The lake is actually a reservoir that was constructed in 1992 by the Lebanon Water Works, primarily as a source of water for the community, but it has also become […]

Colorado – Great Sand Dunes National Park

Great Sand Dunes National Park

Many of my friends who have seen my pictures of Great Sand Dunes National Park have the same reaction: “Really?! That’s in Colorado?! Where?”

It’s in south central Colorado. We stopped at Great Sand Dunes for a few hours on our way from Colorado Springs to Mesa Verde National Park. Combined with several hours of driving on both ends, that adds up to a full day. Before you head to the park, plan to stop at the Great Sand Dunes Oasis or in the town of Alamosa where you can rent a sand sled and a sandboard from Kristi […]

Alaska – Anchorage Lightspeed Planet Walk

Anchorage Light Speed Planet Walk - Earth

We’ve all seen models of our solar system before, but I had not seen anything like the Lightspeed Planet Walk until we visited Anchorage, Alaska. Not only was the model made to scale, but the scale was selected such that a leisurely walking pace matches that of the speed of light. That means that it takes a person about eight minutes to walk from the model of the sun to the model of the Earth, just like it takes about eight minutes for light to travel from the real sun to Earth.

The place to start is the corner […]

South Dakota – Wind Cave National Park

Wind Cave National Park Sign

I love South Dakota’s Black Hills region for all of its natural beauty, and not only is there gorgeous scenery above ground; there’s even more to be discovered below ground. As with most national parks, the place to start is the visitor center.

One word of caution: the park’s website warns you not to trust your GPS to find the visitor center. The website has a map and directions. I am one of those people who tends to trust my GPS too much, and it has gotten me into trouble more than once, so I wanted to point that […]

Michigan – Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore

Sleeping Bear Dunes - view from Lake Michigan Overlook

We visited 101 attractions last summer (literally!) and I can honestly say that Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore ranks way up there as one of my kids’ favorites.

It was about a 40-minute drive from the Bayshore Resort in Traverse City to Sleeping Bear Dunes, where we spent the day. Our first stop was the Dune Climb.

The Dune Climb was undoubtedly the favorite part for my older two kids. Before you start the climb, you should consider how long you might want to hike the dunes. From the parking lot, you can see only the first hill, […]

Hawaii – The Big Island with Kids

Hawaii beach

Hawaii is one of our most vacation-friendly states, and it makes a great break for families as much as honeymooners or couples. There’s plenty to keep the kids entertained and you don’t even have to leave the Big Island – meaning fewer flights and more vacation time! This post about Hawaii was provided and sponsored by Lebara.

 

Aside from the obvious adventures, like playing on the beach, here are some activities to try out when the kids have tired of the sun and sea:

 

Hiking

For active families, volcanic, mountainous Hawaii is a dream. On the Big […]

Washington – Mount St. Helens

3D Model at Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument

I was in fourth grade when Mount St. Helens erupted on May 18, 1980. I can’t say that I remember where I was when I heard the news, but I do remember the news coverage after the eruption. Eight years later, after I graduated from high school, I had the opportunity to visit Mount St. Helens with my aunt and cousin, who was living in Portland, Oregon, at the time. Even after eight years, the damage seemed fresh and I remember seeing mountainsides that looked like piles of toothpicks. So when we planned to visit Mount St. Helens with our […]

Oregon – Crater Lake National Park

View from Garfield Peak at Crater Lake National Park

Our family loves the national parks. Ever since I’d first seen the blue waters of Crater Lake in photographs, I’ve wanted to visit. But before I talk about the park, I have an announcement: Our trip to Oregon was significant because it marked my husband’s 50th state! He is the first in our family to achieve this. (I’m next with 47 states so far.)

We are grateful to Travel Oregon and its partners, including Southern Oregon, for hosting our trip. They made our arrangements and negotiated discounted rates or complimentary admission for parts of our trip. Now, on to […]

California – Muir Woods National Monument

Looking up at a redwood at Muir Woods

Muir Woods National Monument is home to a section of ancient coastal redwoods north of San Francisco and was named after conservationist John Muir.

Located just 16 miles north of San Francisco, it is a convenient spot to see coastal redwoods on a trip to San Francisco.

California’s coastal redwoods are the world’s tallest living things. The tallest one in Muir Woods is over 252 feet. The world’s tallest is in Redwood National Park, in the far north of California, and measures 379.1 feet. Redwoods live up to 2000 years and have a diameter up to 22 feet. […]