Disney’s Animal Kingdom is the Perfect Park for Preschoolers

When planning a Disney World vacation, parents often focus solely on the Magic Kingdom for entertaining their preschoolers. It’s the obvious choice; Cinderella Castle greeting you from afar and plenty of recognizable characters and rides aimed squarely at their youthful audience. Epcot and Hollywood Studios fill in the extra days. Lost in the shuffle is Animal Kingdom. With only three rides for little tykes, parents overlook all the amazing shows and adventure and animals. “Isn’t it just a zoo?” Over the years I’ve come to enjoy Animal Kingdom from my daughter’s perspective. First as a toddler and now moving...

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If I Can Kayak, So Can You

Two Novembers ago in Florida I had my first-ever stand-up paddleboarding experience and spaced out while the guides were giving a group of us instructions about what to do and what not to do on the water. But everything on the Choctawhatchee Bay turned out fine that day because my guide was kind and his confidence was infectious enough that I almost knew what I was doing after only an hour. And once I returned to dry land, I had what has to be a water sport operator’s primary benchmark of success after giving someone an inaugural lesson: I...

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Omni Amelia Island Magical TDAD Video Tour

In early November I was one of “five guys just sitting around talking, drinking, eating, seeing and doing stuff,” to quote myself in the video above, which in a shade under six and a half minutes gives you an exhausting if not exhaustive walk-through of the Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort, where I was hosted for four days as part of a “man fam” trip, aka mancation. As you’ll hear if you choose to watch the video with sound, I share some useful travel information about the resort, off Florida’s Atlantic Coast and not far from Jacksonville, which you’ll...

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Portsmouth Historic Dockyards

I’m not sure how things work in your family, but when it comes to my 12 and 10 year old, three words inspire fear (of death-by-boredom) and/or hesitation. They are, in no particular order, “Museum”, “Historic”, and “Brussel Sprouts”. As was expected, when my wife and I announced to them that we were taking them to the Portsmouth Historic Dockyards, you can imagine their initial reaction. Visits to the dentist inspire more excitement than we received on that day, mainly because at least when you’re finished with the dentist, you get a toy. We tried to explain to them...

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Top Travel Destinations for 2018

What are your top travel destinations for 2018? For the last few years, our family creates a list for the upcoming year of destinations we hope to travel to over the next year. A few days ago, we created our top travel destinations for 2018. Top Travel Destinations for 2018: Costa Rica My wife and I went to Costa Rica on our honeymoon. Ever since we’ve had kids, we wanted to take them to visit this wonderfully diverse country. Two years ago, we discovered a friend owns a rental home in Costa Rica, near the coast. We found this...

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12 Reasons to Stay at a Disney World Resort

One of the first steps in planning a vacation at Walt Disney World for your family is deciding where to stay. There are several factors to think about when choosing a hotel including, budget, location, and how much time you plan to spend at the hotel. A trip to Disney World adds a few more items to the list for the more than 20 very unique resorts located within its borders, such as transportation option and amazing themes. Let’s take a look at several of the reasons I recommend staying at a Disney World resort; especially for first time...

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New! Christmas at Disney World Show: Sunset Seasons Greetings

Christmas at Disney World now includes a new show called Sunset Seasons Greetings at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.   This show, at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, replaces the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights that remained extremely popular up to it’s cancellation. Christmas at Disney World: The End of Osborne Disney World announced in 2015 that the Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights would end, that year. The final show was on January 6, 2016. Disney provided little to no explanation for cancelling the popular show. The 2016 Christmas season did not include a holiday show at Hollywood Studios. You can...

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Maximize Vacation Savings with a Disney World Annual Pass

Walt Disney World is the most popular family vacation destination in the US. It’s also an expensive undertaking. We have been the more times than I can remember and along the way I’ve found ways to cut costs without sacrificing the experience. One of the best tools for balancing the budget is the Disney World annual pass. More than just a ticket to get you into the Parks, the annual pass is a key to unlocking huge savings for every aspect of your vacation.   Annual Pass Savings Before You Even Leave Home The first question posed is typically,...

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Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade: Is It Worth It?

The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is an American tradition and a tradition in our home. Typically, on Thanksgiving morning, our family gets up at our leisure in our jammies and sit down to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. I begin cooking cinnamon and orange sweet rolls and break out the orange juice. We enjoy a nice, easy-going Thanksgiving morning watching the balloons, bands, and Broadway acts as they perform in front of Macy’s on TV. This year, that was not our “American tradition.” Back when it was still hot and sticky here in Florida, my wife won tickets...

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