The Gift that Keeps on Giving

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We are so lucky to live close to Pittsburgh that has a bunch of different activities and places for families to visit on the weekend.

The city hosts wonderful history, art, science and children’s museums, which provide families the opportunity to have places to explore over the weekend.

Since we try to go out and do something every Saturday as our “Adventure Saturday” the cost can really add up if you try to pay out of pocket each time you go.

Luckily, many of these places offer the opportunity to purchase memberships.

For example, the Carnegie Museum system (which encompasses the Natural History Museum, Art Museum, Andy Warhol Museum and the Carnegie Science Center) if our family of two adults and one child wanted to visit the Natural History and Art museums it is $19.95 per adult and $11.95 for our daughter. That would be a total (without tax) $51.85. This can really add up if you like to go frequently.

However, if you go with a family membership, which is two adults, four children and a caregiver it is $150 for unlimited visits for the entire year. This membership also covers the Andy Warhol and Carnegie Science Center.

The same is for the Pittsburgh Children’s Museum. One visit for the three of us is $46, but a year long membership is $135 for the same family.

As an added bonus, this membership (and the one at the Carnegie Museum system) can also be used at other participating ASTC centers across the country.

One of the best things is these memberships can be given as gifts.

When Christmas time rolls around, we like to ask for these memberships as family gifts. This way we have a whole year of experiences to look forward to.

It is great because if we just want to stop by the Carnegie Museum of Natural History to see the dinosaurs, we can just pop in, say hi to T-Rex and then leave. We don’t have to worry about cramming in so much stuff so that we get the most bang for our buck.

This past weekend, we went to the Carnegie Science Center and just visited the Exploration Station Jr., an area that is geared toward Preschoolers with a water table, playground area, ball factory, big blue building blocks and more.

We just popped in and played there for about two hours and left. We didn’t feel the need to try and do too much, which is great with a preschooler who can become overwhelmed if you try to do too much in one day.

Here is just a brief video to give you a look of the Exploration Station Jr. area of the Carnegie Science Center.

What do you and your family like to do on the weekends? Leave your comment below.


Heinz Happens

This past weekend we had the opportunity to take in another retro/vintage fair. This time it was hosted by the Heinz History Center. 


During the event admission was reduced and we decided to take advantage and explore all the museum had to offer. 

The museum is tailored to the history of southwestern Pennsylvania including area sports, businesses, the part the area played in country wide events and more. 

There is even an area dedicated to Pittsburgh’s most famous neighbor Fred Rogers and his neighborhood. 


The day was made even sweeter because I found this wonderful Samsonite train case for $12.


We had a wonderful weekend and might check out future Neighborhood Flea events this summer. 

Do you have any events that you are looking forward to this summer? Leave your comments below. 


Safety First

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Photo courtesy of ibtimes.com

It really is a commentary on the state of the world when metal detectors are needed to get into the “Happiest Place on Earth.”

But, the fact of the matter is that I feel better knowing they are there and they are keeping my family safe. I am so thankful for the security guards that work hard each day to keep everyone safe and I am sure having to deal with their own share of people trying to give them flack because they snuck in a selfi-stick and got caught.

In order to make the security process a little easier Disney has been rolling out some changes that were announced earlier this week.

According to several sources, including the Disney fan website, Inside the Magic, that these new measures will include new security checks at the Transportation and Ticket Center. This means and those who enter the Magic Kingdom through ferry or monorail will be able to skip the bag check and metal detectors at the gate.

Also, those who are staying at one of the resorts on the monorail loop (Grand Floridian, Poly and Contemporary) will be checked at the resort monorail stations and will be able to enter without going through the security check point at the gate,

Those guests arriving on buses at this time will still use the current security setup.

These changes are scheduled to take place April 3.

 


Fishy Fun

Because of my job I am off on Fridays so Lily and I get to spend time together through the day.

After we have a little snuggle time and breakfast I try to work in a little learning activity.

This past week since it was Read Across America week and Dr. Seuss was honored, we did an activity from the wonderful website Totschooling.

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This pack was great. It had math and verbal components, plus it included colorful goldfish crackers.

The math sheets included sequencing, numbered fish to count to 20 and counting out goldfish.

The verbal included putting the fish in the corresponding colored bowls and finding the color word on a sheet of paper.

Lily seemed to really love the math components where she could cover up the numbers.

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She loves to sort things and put them in groups so doing the goldfish bowls by color was right up her alley.

While this does have a Dr. Seuss tie-in it can be used any time.

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If you are looking for any type of preschool or totschool activity for your little one I can’t recommend totschooling.com enough. The activities are cute and really engaging with the kids.

Do you have any favorite learning activities that you like to use with your little one? Leave them in the comments below.