Travel Tuesday’s – Instagram obsessed!


There is an Instagram account that I’m totally obsessed with called Beautiful Destinations. I look at the feed and consistently pick places to go. Some days I feel like I want to take the kids to Bali and other days I’m trying to figure out how I can escape to Bora Bora for 5 days sans the minis.

In my mind I have endless income, a nanny, and a bikini body that rivals my 16 year old track season body. Since 97% of that is not the case, I have some work to do so I can get jet setting!

I am attaching some images so that you too can create your fantasy self, with your fantasy bank account so I won’t be by myself in fantasy land. If you do by chance have an account that allows you to travel freely, a nanny, and a Serena Williams-esque bikini body then I’m going to need you to keep that to yourself😡

   

    
    

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Travel Tuesday – Going to Kenya!

30 Elephants!
30 Elephants!

30 Elephants is a company that takes children under the age 17 on life changing, glob trotting trips.  The creator of the company Tashi Harrow sums up the company:

“We take groups of children no larger than 10 at a time to various cities and countries around the world. We explore the language, customs, foods, clothing, and people of these countries, as well as national landmarks. We only take 10 children at a time because it is a small enough group to give each child the proper amount of attention and answer any and all questions they may have. We group the trips with similar ages so there will not be 8 -9 yr olds on trips with 16-18 yr olds that way the activities can be structured around the particular group that is going. This will not be a random vacation for children, but an educational and inspirational journey. These kids learn that the word “different” is not a bad word.
Click to help Zemi get to Kenya through go fund me!
Click to help Zemi get to Kenya through go fund me!

We here at Thirty Elephants Ltd. find that this program provides an amazing opportunity for the youth of today. If you think about how upon graduating from high school at the age of 16 or 17 you are expected to then go on to a university and pick out subject that you want to be involved in for the remainder of your life. I am not sure about you but I don’t know many 16 yr olds capable of picking out what they want to do for the day let alone for the next 15 years of their life.”

The 30 Elephants kids in a school in Kenya
The 30 Elephants kids in a school in Kenya

The really great thing is that it is freeeeeeeeeeeeee for the kids!  The children fundraise each year for every trip, and this year they are going to Kenya!  Last year they went to Kenya and they helped to build a school, learn the ways of the Maasai people, and enjoy the animals!

30 Elephants has taken children to Japan, Malaysia, and this is their second trip to Kenya.  One of the sponsors who happens to be my youngest sister, is doing a fundraiser for her portion of the trip.  So we would like to help her out.  Here is her fundraising link: www.gofundme.com/30elephantchaperon

Now let’s learn a bit about Kenya!

Airfare: From Atlanta to Nairobi it is $952.73 round trip on a few different airlines such as Delta and KLM.  I did a 90 day advance fare.

Transportation:  To get around in Kenya you take a Lorry

The Lorry! I thought you would need a picture as most of us don't have a clue what a Lorry is
The Lorry! I thought you would need a picture as most of us don’t have a clue what a Lorry is

Currency: In Kenya the Shilling rules although in some rural villages goats and cows still get the job done.

Wilderbeast!
Wilderbeast!

Language: Most of the people in Kenya speak Swahili, some of the elders in the villages still speak tribal languages such as Maa

Hotel: There are several to choose from depending on the type of experience you want to have.  The 30 Elephants crew chooses to stay in tents in the Maasai Mara in South Narok with the Maasai people.  This enables them to take in the full experience of being present to absorb all that Kenya has to teach them.

Outside of the fairmont
Outside of the Fairmont

If you want to go an option is the Fairmont Mara hotel. It runs about $900 a night USD but on orbitz right now it is going for $263:-)

Fairmont rooms
Fairmont rooms

Travel Tuesdays – Disneyworld edition

Star Wars Weekend at Disney's Hollywood Studios
Star Wars Weekend at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Our family just got back from Disney world and boy was it a lot!!! As a Disney World first timer, there was a lot to take in.  We had a blast and certainly look forward to going back.  Armed with what I know now, the next trip will be a bit more cohesive.

Saratoga Springs Resort and Spa
Saratoga Springs Resort and Spa

We stayed at the Disney Vacation club resort Saratoga Springs and Spa.  This hotel was an excellent choice for families.  It has a kitchenette and two pools that serve the yummiest virgin pina coladas.  That is pretty much all I need for comfort!  The kids can swim and I can have a tasty drink that makes me look cool too.  The rooms were spacious enough, my only issue would be the bed.  For a family of four we got a Queen bed and a pull out couch bed.  That meant the kid and his dad were on the couch and the baby and I were in the bed.  A king bed or two double beds would have been awesome.  We weren’t actually in the room that much so it wasn’t a deal breaker, nor a point of complaint. The Saratoga Springs resort is the closest resort to Disney, that made for very short trips to and from Downtown Disney.  For those who can, I would strongly suggest looking into the Disney vacation club.  I don’t know that we have ever been treated so well at a hotel or resort from customer service to the amenities.  These folks were awesome!

After our day in Downtown Disney
After our day in Downtown Disney

The Details:

Airfare: roundtrip ticket on Southwest from Atlanta to Orlando will run you about $120.00 per person.

Transportation: you don’t need transportation because the resorts have shuttles to and from downtown Disney and the theme parks

Currency: The mighty dollar

Language: English is the main language but there are many other languages spoken in the Magic Kingdom and at a few of the different hotels.  The Animal Kingdom resort had 9 different languages represented that I saw on the one day I was there.

Free transportation
Free transportation

Hotel: Check out the Disney Vacation Club if you will be going often. With Orbitz, hotels.com or the likes you can check several different hotels at once.

To Do:

The theme parks!!!!!!!  There are several options to choose from as far as packaging.  I definitely recommend getting a park hopper pass if you are going to be around more than one day.

Downtown Disney.  To get in is free but you will definitely spend money shopping and eating.

Outlet malls.  There are two.  You will once again be spending money:)  They are the Vineland and Premium Outlets.

after the pool party at the Animal Kingdom
after the pool party at the Animal Kingdom

Going to Disney is a super fun experience but if you are not properly prepared it can be a stressful one.  In the three days we were there we never made it to the magic Kingdom, we had a mix up with our Star Wars Jedi training camp and none of the kids got to participate, we never made it to Epcot, our magic bands were messed up, and we got caught in a thunderstorm.  If it was not for the sheer magic of Disney, the excellent customer service at every single Disney owned place we went to, and my kids being young enough to just go with the flow this trip could have been disastrous.  My advice to anyone going is be flexible, try to plan out your days as best as you can (that does not mean have an itinerary), and just enjoy being there!

Disney World
Disney World

Travel Tuesdays – Free things to do in Atlanta edition!

Welcome to Atlanta!
Welcome to Atlanta!

Whether you are visiting Atlanta or you live here, when you have kids FREE is always better!  Ashley over at www.mommyweek.com put this wonderful list together that should be on everyone’s refrigerator!

Massive list of Free Things to Do in Atlanta This Summer:

I know for most Atlanta area children, this is the final week of school. Parents are getting their summer calendars planned out and looking for low cost things to do. I’m always looking for fun for the kids to have for FREE. That’s why I decided to share this list! Summer fun with children doesn’t have to break your pockets!

Here we go!

MOVIES

  • Movies in Central Park at Atlantic Station. Every Thursday at sundown. More info here: atlanticstation.com/events
  • Mall of Georgia Movies Under the Stars runs from 5/23/2015 to 7/25/2015 http://bit.ly/1Fp5RTT
  • Ride In Theater by Dynacraft at Piedmont Park Promenade May 30, 2015. Registration Requiredhttp://bit.ly/1Lnc58X
  • Movies at Newton Park for Alpharetta & Johns Creek one Saturday out of the month http://bit.ly/1AfW9Er
  • B at the Movies sponsored by B98.5 at various parks around the city on Saturday nights. Movies and details here: http://bit.ly/1c5VKso
  • Town Brookhaven Movies on the Town every Thursday evening from 5/28/2015 to 7/30/2015 (no movie on July 4th) Details here: http://bit.ly/1AfWQxF
  • Candler Park Movie Night runs through September. Movies & details here: http://bit.ly/1PXzAWQ
  • Georgia Movies in the Park presented by Northside Hospital. Playing in Alpharetta, Cumming, Canton, Woodstock, & Dawsonville. on.fb.me/1GqAMBc
  • Clayton County Movies Under the Stars. For full details and park listings head here: http://bit.ly/1HupDOz
  • Flicks on Bricks in the city of Duluth every 1st & 3rd Friday of the month: http://bit.ly/1Ln1ESP
  • Hapeville Movie Night Under the Stars. Info & details here: http://bit.ly/1egLgIF
  • Milton, GA Flicks & Food Trucks. Movies & Times here: http://bit.ly/1Amvu8E
  • Snellville Popcorn in the Park. Movies & details here: http://bit.ly/1dlI66j

FESTIVALS

SUMMER READING

SPRAYGROUNDS & SPLASH PADS 

EVENTS 

  • City of Atlanta Play Mobile – Recreation on Wheels. Various parks around the city each week. (See details below)

Massive List of Free Things to Do in Atlanta this Summer

  • 2015 Open House Good Neighbor Day Air Show at Dekalb-Peachtree Airport May 30th, 2015 www.pdkairshow.com/
  • Arabia Mountain Adventures Kickoff – Games, prizes, & free bike rentals. June 6th, 2015 http://bit.ly/1R54yid
  • Georgia State Astronomy at Hard Labor Creek State Park – Observatory Open House http://bit.ly/1JBvWC5
  • National Trails Day Events – June 6, 2015 http://bit.ly/1Bd7AYo
  • The Fox Theatre Rock the Block Party, Sunday June 7th, 2015 from 12pm-6pm

 

MUSEUMS 

 

Travel Tuesdays – Ice castles edition

Here is another place that is beautiful to look at but not necessarily the temperature of a vacation place for me.  Doesn’t mean I can’t share!

Ice castles in Midway, Utah
Ice castles in Midway, Utah

ice castle

To get to the ice castles a flight from Chicago to Salt Lake City, Utah will run you about 4347.00 in December.

You will then need to drive 48 minutes from Salt Lake City, to Midway.

Ice castles at night
Ice castles at night

The hotels range from $99.00 a night to $869 a night for the luxurious Stein Erikson Lodge on orbitz.com

The currency is good ol US!

apparently this is a popular wedding photo spot.
apparently this is a popular wedding photo spot.

Travel Tuesday. Cool movie theater editions!

I absolutely LOVE a great movie!  What I love more than a great movie is a great movie theater!  I picked out three that I would love to go visit:)

Electric Cinema in London England.

movie 1

Cinema London style
Cinema London style

Beanie movie theater, Malaysia.

movie 4

bean bag cinema
bean bag cinema

Olympia mall, Athens Greece.

i hope all these sheets are washed on the HOT cycle!
i hope all these sheets are washed on the HOT cycle!