5 of the Best Things About Ohio

These are 5 things we love about the great state of Ohio!

Thank you to Bob Evans for partnering with us on this post!

My husband, my kids and I were all born in Ohio! While my husband and I have lived in other cities and states, we both eventually moved back to Ohio and have come to love this state for all the great things it has to offer! Here are 5 of the best things about Ohio:

1. Lake Erie Has A Lot to Offer Ohioans

Boy on Lake Erie beach

I grew up in Northeast Ohio and took Lake Erie for granted for most of my life. But after having kids, my husband and I started searching for vacation spots that didn’t require flying or a long drive in the car. We were still craving being at the beach and by water, so we started to explore Lake Erie. We have vacationed at Lake Erie for the past three years now and we have made many treasured memories with our young kids. In just a 2 hour drive from Columbus you can enjoy beaches, lighthouses, boat rides, water skiing, fishing and fresh fish to eat!

2. In Ohio You Can Experience a Variety of Landscapes

Waterfall at Hayden Falls, Dublin, Ohio

If you’re not from Ohio, the variety in landscape within this great state might just surprise you! From the hills of Hocking Hills and Southern Ohio to the rolling cornfields of Amish Country to the beaches of Lake Erie to the skyscrapers of the major cities, no matter what your scene is, you can find it in Ohio. It doesn’t take too long to get from one view to the next! You can easily spend your summer weekends road tripping through Ohio and experience a wide variety of scenery!

3. Ohio is the Birthplace of So Many Amazing Restaurants

Buckeye Hotcakes at Bob Evans Restaurants

We enjoy and take full advantage of so many local restaurants! The Ohio food scene is growing and with Ohio’s agriculture, we are able to enjoy so many local, seasonal ingredients. Living in Columbus we also enjoy being a “test market” for new products before much of the rest of the country! While there are tons of local food options, it can be easy to forget that many large restaurant chains also had their start in Ohio!

Bob Evans himself started his own restaurant in Rio Grande, Ohio nearly 65 years ago! Bob Evans was a generous man who was fiercely proud of his home state of Ohio! In celebration of Ohio, Bob Evans Restaurants has added Bob Evans Buckeye Hotcakes to the menu for a limited time and is calling all Buckeyes to share their state pride on social media by posting a picture or video of whatever it is that makes them proud to be an Ohioan, using the hashtag: #TheOhioWay. Make sure to hop over to my Instagram page where I am hosting a giveaway! You could have a chance to win a $25 Bob Evans gift card!

4. Ohio Has a Vibrant Capital City

downtown skyline, Columbus, Ohio

If you already follow my blog then it’s no secret that we love Columbus! Columbus is the Midwest’s hidden gem, offering all of the amazing things about a large city, without a lot of the stressors of urban living. I lived in one of the top 5 largest cities in the US for 4 years and when I moved to Columbus I traded away the frustrations of parking, traffic jams, high crime and high costs of living while still enjoying all the benefits of a big city: theater, museums, job opportunities, a vibrant food scene and so much more! When it comes to things for kids and families to do, there is really no end in sight!

5. In Ohio You Experience All Four Seasons

fall trees at Inniswood Metro Park, Columbus, Ohio

I can’t believe I’m about to say this because I am not a huge fan of Winter: but what is it that makes Spring in Ohio so sweet? The fact that we survived the preceding Winter! And when it comes down to it, I am actually happy that we get to experience all four seasons in Ohio. As much as I like warmer weather and sunshine, I do love the beauty of fall, my kids love playing in the snow and I have been attempting to try to embrace each season and enjoy the rhythm that the changing seasons naturally builds into our lives.

We are proud to be Ohioans and these are just 5 of the things that make this state GREAT! What do you love about Ohio? Make sure to share your Ohio pride on social media using #TheOhioWay!

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Farmland in Ohio


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Top 10 Things to do with Kids in Columbus, Ohio

ICYMI: Top 10 Things to do with Kids in Columbus, Ohio




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Columbus Ohio

What Should We Do This Weekend? March 23-25, 2018

20 Family Friendly Events happening in Columbus, Ohio this weekend!

1. Aladdin Shrine Circus at Ohio Expo Center – Bricker & Celeste Buildings

When: Friday-Sunday, March 23-25, 2018
Time: Several performances throughout the weekend.
Location: 717 E. 17th Ave., Columbus, OH 43211
Phone: 614-475-2609

Aladdin Shrine Circus features incredible circus acts such as acrobats, motorcycles, trapeze artists and more. The events also features concessions and an indoor carnival with rides!

2. Pancake/Waffle Breakfast at Hilltop YMCA

When: Saturday, March 24, 2018
Time: 9:00 AM – 10:30 AM
Location: 2879 Valleyview Dr, Columbus, OH 43204
Phone: 614-276-8224

This event includes a pancake or waffle breakfast and an egg hunt!

3. Cheryl’s 2018 Easter Egg-stravaganza at Cheryl’s Cookies and Brownies

When: Saturday, March 24, 2018
Time: 9:00 AM – 1:30 PM
Location: 646 McCorkle Blvd., Westerville, OH 43082
Phone: 614-901-0046

This free event includes an Easter Egg Hunt, visit with the Easter Bunny, raffles and games for the kids, the opportunity to make your own Easter baskets, and in-store specials! The Egg Hunt will be divided by age (bring your own basket)! Click the link for times for all of the events. Also, until April 1, 2018, you can get a dozen free cookies with the purchase of one dozen or more! Mention this post or show this flyer on your phone!

4. PBJ & Jazz Family Concert – New Basics Brass Band at Lincoln Theatre

When: Saturday, March 24, 2018
Time: 10:00 AM and 11:30 AM
Location: 769 E. Long St. Lincoln Ballroom, Columbus, OH 43203
Phone: 614-294-5200

These kid-friendly jazz concerts help introduce jazz to the next generation! Concerts are $5 per person and kids receive a PB&J sandwich, juice and a cookie!

5. Old Hilliard Bunny Hop in Old Hilliard

When: Saturday, March 24, 2018
Time: 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Location: Main Street, Old Hilliard

Local businesses will pass out candy, offer activities and entertainment during this free event! Pick up a scavenger hunt card at one of the 3 welcome booths and complete the hunt for a chance to win a prize! There will be photo opps and an pop up art activity at Max and Erma’s. The Easter Bunny and Carrot will be walking around to meet and greet!

6. PJ’s, Doughnuts & Saturday Morning Cartoons at Drexel Theatre

When: Saturday, March 24, 2018
Time: 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM
Location: 2254 E. Main St., Columbus, OH 43209
Phone: 614-231-1050

Watch kid-friendly Saturday Morning Cartoons From Around the World in your PJ’s! This event is part of the Columbus International Film & Animation Festival and is included in your festival pass or tickets are available for $3/person. Children 12 and under are free! The Tupelo Doughnuts truck will be on site and coffee and hot cocoa will be available at the concession!

7. Community Scavenger Hunt at Grove City UMC

When: Saturday, March 24, 2018
Time: 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM
Location: 2684 Columbus St., Grove City, OH 43123
Phone: 614-875-5612

Pick up your first clue at the Purple Door Church and collect all the pieces of the scavenger hunt throughout the community. (You will need a car.) Return with all the clues to the church to pick up a goodie bag and participate in activities such as crafts, cookies, a photo booth, the Easter story and more!

8. Cookie Decorating at The Burlap Sunflower

When: Saturday, March 24, 2018
Time: 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM
Location: 3840 Lattimer St., Hilliard, OH 43026
Phone: 614-989-1638

Decorate your own spring-themed cookies with fondant and edible markers! The cost is 6 cookies for $12 or 12 cookies for $20.00. First come-first served unless you prepay. Contact info@sophisticakeit.com to prepay! The Easter Bunny will be in the store afterwards from 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM. All ages are welcome.

9. Easter Egg Hunt at Huber Park

When: Saturday, March 24, 2018
Time:  11:30 AM – 11:35 AM
Location: 1600 Davidson Dr., Reynoldsburg, OH 43068

This free Easter Egg Hunt is open to children ages 10 and under! It will begin promptly at 11:30!

10. Make a Magic Mirror with Snow White! at Barnes and Noble Pickerington Ohio

When: Saturday, March 24, 2018
Time: 11:30 AM – 1:00 PM
Location: 1738 Hill Road N., Pickerington, OH 43147
Phone: 614-751-0927

Snow White will be at this event to help all the princesses make their own magic mirror! There will be an opportunity for a meet and greet and pictures with the princess!

11. Easter Egg Hunt at North Free Will Baptist Church

When: Saturday, March 24, 2018
Time: 12:00 PM – 2:00 PM
Location: 3596 Brandon St., Columbus, OH 43224
Phone: 614-471-7700

This Easter Egg Hunt starts promptly at 12:00 PM! There will be 10k eggs and the hunt area will be separated by age! This event includes a free lunch and other activities!

12. Muppet Babies Play Date at The Mall at Tuttle Crossing

When: Saturday, March 24, 2018
Time: 12:00 PM – 2:00 PM
Location: Lower Level JC Penney Court, 5043 Tuttle Crossing Blvd., Dublin, OH 43016
Phone: 614-798-3023

This Disney Junior Play Date event includes a color BINGO game, craft projects and surprises! (There are no character appearances as this event.)

13. Hop Into Spring Festival at The Mall at Tuttle Crossing

When: Saturday, March 24, 2018
Time: 12:00 PM – 2:00 PM
Location: Lower Level, 5043 Tuttle Crossing Blvd., Dublin, OH 43016
Phone: 614-798-3023

This free Spring Festival includes activities for all ages including the Great Dean-O, face painting, goodies and giveaways and more! Registration in the lower level JCPenney Court near the play area.

14. HOMAGE Opening Day at HOMAGE Columbus Locations

When: Saturday, March 24, 2018
Time: 12:05 PM – 8:00 PM
Location: HOMAGE Short North: 783 N High St., Columbus, OH 43215
HOMAGE Easton, 4032 Easton Station Rd., Columbus, OH 43219

HOMAGE is celebrating Opening Day of baseball with free food, beer and giveaways! FREE La Rosa’s Pizza (12-2 PM), Melt Bar and Grilled (2-4 PM), Skyline Chili (4-6 PM) and Rhinegeist beer (12-6 PM). Also take advantage of 15% off their new MLB gear!

15. Helicopter Marshmallow Drop at Cruiser Park

When: Saturday, March 24, 2018
Time: 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM; Registration is from 12:15 PM – 12:45 PM
Location: 4677 Bixby Rd., Groveport, OH 43125
Phone: 614-836-1000

Bring your own basket for this alternative Easter Hunt! A helicopter will drop thousands of marshmallows for kids to collect and exchange for a goody bag! There will be an appearance by the Easter Bunny as well! This event is for kids 12 and under!

 16. ProMusica Chamber Orchestra Concert at CML, Reynoldsburg Branch

When: Saturday March 24, 2018
Time: 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Location: 1402 Brice Rd., Reynoldsburg, OH 43068
Phone: 614-645-2275

All ages are welcome to explore music from a different time period during this free family concert by the ProMusica Chamber Orchestra!

 17. Cheer on the Jackets & support the Columbus RMH! at Nationwide Arena

When: Saturday, March 24, 2018
Time: 7:00 PM – 10:00 PM
Location: 200 W. Nationwide Blvd., Columbus, OH 43215

Buy your tickets through the link in the Facebook event listed and a portion of your ticket proceeds will support Ronald McDonald House! The first 100 attendees also receive a special RMHC/CBJ puck!

18. Kids Cook the Meal: Waffles, Bacon & Berry Compote at 1400 Food Lab

When: Sunday, March 25, 2018
Time: 11:30 AM – 12:30 PM
Location: 1400 Dublin Rd., Columbus, OH 43215
Phone: 614-315-0987

Food for Thought Kitchen hosts this class where kids of all ages can learn how to make waffles from scratch, cook bacon and make a berry compote! There will be tasks available for all skill levels! Parents are welcome to participate! Register online!

19. Ice Cream with Sam’s Fans and The Shazzbots at Amelita Mirolo Barn

When: Sunday, March 25, 2018
Time: 12:00 PM – 2:00 PM
Location: 4395 Carriage Hill Ln., Upper Arlington, OH 43220

Sam’s Fans is a non-profit organization that supports music & art therapy for seriously ill children. Sam’s Fans was created in memory of Samantha Jane McCarthy who died from Fanconi Anemia in 2009. Celebrate Sam’s birthday month with an ice cream party with Velvet Ice Cream, pizza from Donatos Pizza and music by The Shazzbots! There will also be activities and crafts, goodies for parents and kids and more! Your ticket price supports Sam’s Fans and the Ohio University Scholarship Fund for students in the Music Therapy program. Purchase tickets online!

20. Lunch and Egg Hunt with Bunny at Gahanna/John E. Bickley YMCA

When: Sunday, March 25, 2018
Time: 1:00 PM – 2:30 PM
Location: 555 YMCA Pl, Gahanna, OH 43230
Phone: 614-416-9622

This event includes lunch, crafts, bounce house, Easter Egg Hunt and a visit with the Easter Bunny! $5/person. Register online or at the front desk!

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ICYMI:  3 Places I Love to Take My Kids in Columbus: Kelli Blinn

 *Please be aware,  information is gathered from multiple community sources.  Times, dates and locations are subject to change. There may be a fee to participate in a featured activity.  Please call ahead or check links to confirm activities.  Enjoy what you do today!*











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3 Places I Love to Take My Kids in Columbus: Kelli Blinn

Each month I will be featuring a local parent who will tell us about three places they love to take their kids in Columbus! Thanks to Kelli for sharing 3 of her favorites with us this month!

Columbus is a wonderful to city to live in for many reasons, but it’s particularly great for life with small children! I’ve made it my personal challenge to try and find  as many activities as possible that are free (or relatively inexpensive)! I’m fortunate that my two children are very easy to please so nearly anything I suggest, they’re happy with.

1. The Garden of Constants

When my daughter was 3 years old and my son was old enough to sit up well on his own, I started taking them to The Garden of Constants on OSU’s campus. Each year we go there and take their pictures next to the number that represents their age. I like that this has become an annual tradition for us and it’s fun to look back at the pictures over the years to see how they’ve changed. This will only last until they’re nine, but I’m cherishing the memories made while we have the opportunity.

2. Scioto Greenway

I’m a sucker for a good sunset and since it opened, the Scioto Greenway has been one of my favorite spots to take in the last rays of summer sun. It is less than a ten minute drive from our house and it has been a great place to walk and talk with my husband while our kids ride their bikes or run around ahead of us. We enjoy many of the metro parks and playgrounds that Columbus has to offer too, but sometimes, just a long stretch of green space along the water is just as good as anything.

3. YMCA Pools

Living in Westgate, we’re fortunate to have a few different YMCA locations to choose from within a 20 minute drive. A common thing we do in the summer is to pack snacks (or even a meal, sometimes) and head to the pool for several hours. We’ll often meet friends there and make a whole event out of it. Our favorite YMCA pool is located at the Hilliard branch. It’s big, has a good amount of grass for sprawling out blankets, there are lounge chairs and picnic tables to use and the baby pool is a good size – with shade! This isn’t a free activity, of course, but we are sure to make good use of our membership which makes it very cost effective for our family.

Kelli is a Childbirth Educator, Postpartum and Infant Care Doula as well as a Lactation Counselor. Not sure what some of those titles mean? Head to her website to find out more! She is passionate about helping women from pre-conception into the child-raising days seeks to bring compassion, encouragement, wisdom and help to women throughout that time frame.
She is married to her best friend Matt and they have a daughter, Zachari and a son, Jonathan. When she’s not working, she can usually be found at one of Columbus’ many excellent coffee shops, restaurants or breweries. She’s also often spotted at Franklin Park Conservatory, Broadway shows, or Target. She’s addicted to the library and often checks out so many books at one time that she has to hobble out of the building! She enjoys making cards, writing letters to keep the USPS in business, cooking, wine, and has a deep love for music – especially when she can see one of her favorite artists live.


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ICYMI:  6 Columbus Area Parks for Toddlers


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