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Our Visit To Willowwood Arboretum

Again, I wrote this a few years ago. Since then we have gone back on many occasions to Willowwood Arboretum. It is a great spot for a quiet walk, and a bit of a meditative time. It never disappoints. The most recent time was the summer of 2019, it is as lush, green and peaceful as ever. We even managed to find a new hidden nook that we’ve never seen before. Here are a few photos:

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Recently, I have been noticing that our day trip, adventure going dynamic has changed around here.  With my older one going on to becoming a full fledged teenager, and my husband’s job not having days off like he used to, our family trips have been very rare.  During the school year it’s not noticeable: we are busy, and go on many day trips and adventures with our friends.  This is not the school year, it is the middle of summer, and many of our friends are away for the time being. 

This month I sharply felt the lack of adventurous trekking spirit in our lives.  Therefore, I have declared that one day during the weekend should be dedicated to exploring different places together.  Usually, that means that during the week we have to brainstorm and come up with a plan.  It has to be a place that won’t be crowded, and three times out of four it has to be free or inexpensive. 

Without a plan, our day often plops with people complaining about the choice options.  I took on the role of a day trip dictator and came up with a list.  From that list I pick off places to go to.  Sometimes it can be as simple as going hiking in our local forest, or a park with a nice walk around the lake.  Other times it’s a bit more complicated, with a trip to a garden or movies, or beach and a picnic.  It’s more about time together then entertainment, and so far we have had really good few trips, where we got to walk together and enjoy each others’ company.

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Our Visit to Sandy Hook Lighthouse

We go to Sandy Hook often, and several times we have done the tour of the light house. In fact, we have been there since our visit in 2017, and it is still as lovely, and educational as ever. 

(2017) At first we had a class with a homeschool group to the Marsh and Ocean Environments Program (it is a full day program, and if you want more information, you can click HERE.)  The program was all day.  First we met in Fort Hancock, by the area next to the Lighthouse. The kids listened to a short lecture before heading to the beach to explore. During the lecture we met this amazing Killdeer mama bird:

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Our Visit To Bowman Hill Wildflower Preserve

Bucks County, PA

May 2018

This has been a long time coming!! I’d drive by that place a few times a month, and would always wonder what is there.  Finally we made it!  This time it was just my little one, my husband and I.  The big kid was off on his own adventure.

Our Visit To Bowman Hill Wildflower Preserve

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Our Visit To Double Trouble State Park

Lacey and Berkeley Townships

July 2014

This is one place that we went to last summer that I keep meaning to mention, and finally got to it.  I wanted to make sure that I put it here before the hot days of summer because it is a wonderful place to go and cool off in the summer time.

It is quite a distance from where we live, the drive was easy enough: just take Gardens State Parkway, and the park is very close to the exit, but it was a long drive.  My kids and I went there to meet some friends and spend a few hours by the creek, cooling off.

Free Places To Visit Historic Landmarks Museums

Our Visit To Thomas Edison Center At Menlo Park

In 2015 we had a chance to visit The Thomas Edison Center at Menlo Park.  Personally, I am more of a Tesla sort of girl, but I never miss an opportunity for a hands on history lesson for my kids.  When a friend organized a group tour of the Center we jumped on board.

Our Visit To Thomas Edison Center At Menlo Park Edison Memorial Tower in Edison NJ
Our Visit To Thomas Edison Center At Menlo Park Edison Memorial Tower in Edison NJ

Thomas Edison Center at Menlo Park is located in Edison.  They do have regular museum hours: Thursdays – Saturdays 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM.  You could also schedule a group tour in advance during other times.  Which is what we did.  The general admission to the museum is free, but there is a suggested $5.00 donation per person.  The tour lasts about 1 hour, maybe a just little bit longer.

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Our Visit To Princeton University and Art Museum

Princeton, NJ

Frequent Visitors

One of my kids has an activity close to Princeton that lasts half  day.  It is way too far for me to be able to come home, so usually my seven year old and I have a few hours to kill in Princeton.  It is wonderful.  I have wanted to explore Princeton for years now, but never had the chance.   I am very glad I have this opportunity now.

Our Visit To Princeton University and Princeton Art Museum

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Our Visit To Big Brook Fossil Site

Marlboro, NJ

Summer 2017

Big Brook is quite an interesting place to visit.  It is not a place that I would ever know about without a few awesome people that told me about it.  I know I took some time to write about it, but better late then never, and hopefully useful for this summer. Here is the story: Big Brook is a stream that runs through Monmouth County, NJ.  The specific location we went to is in Marlboro NJ, but there are other spots.  It is a great spot for a hike, but wait, there is more!

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Our Visit To Howell Living History Farm

Lambertville, NJ

June 2012

Howell Living History Farm is always a wonderful place to visit.  Located in Lambertville NJ, it is fairly easy to get to (just make sure you use their address from their website: 70 Wooden’s Lane, Lambertville, New Jersey instead of the mailing address that sometimes comes up when you search for them online!).

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Our Visit To Watchung Reservation

Mountainside, NJ

At least every month for the last 15 years!

Trailside Nature Center and Watchung Reservation is a wonderful place to visit with your family! However it has seen some changes in the past few years. The old dam has been rebuild into a brand new dam. Lake Surprise does go up and down in water levels through the season. Sometimes it resembles a muddy pond, sometimes a beautiful full lake.  The trails are still wonderful, and the forest is still magical. The playground is always fun, and the museum is still fantastic. 

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Our Visit To Mercer Museum

Doylestown, PA

November 2016

This spring the kids and I took a trip to the Mercer Museum in Doylestown, PA. For my two boys a fun museum is a difficult thing to find. They love The Museum of Natural History, but are somewhat warm to art museums, no matter how much I like them. The Mercer Museum really hit the spot for them. We came not knowing what to expect and found it to be a fascinating place with so much to explore.