Spring Break: 7 Things to do This Week in Columbus

Columbus City Schools is on Spring Break this coming week! Whether you have school aged kids or not, here are some ideas to keep you and the kiddos busy throughout the week! It might not be the beach, but there’s lots of fun to be had in CBUS! 🙂

1. Play at Easterseals of Central and Southeast Ohio

Easterseals of Central and Southeast Ohio has two things going on this month you should know about! The first is this week of Open Play during spring break! Monday through Friday (April 17-21, 2017) the play area at Easterseals will be open from 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM. Price is $5/child for ages 7 and under! Availability is subject to maximum capacity reached. (This space is also available for birthday parties!)

ALSO, thinking ahead to next week, on April 29, 2017, Easterseals will be hosting their annual fundraiser, Romancing the Grape! This is an adults only event that will offer you the opportunity to try over 100 varieties of the finest wines and sample food from some of Columbus’ finest restaurants! (Think The Guild House, The Refectory, Tucci’s, etc.) Tickets are $100 per person. The proceeds directly fund the local Easterseals programs such as their Early Intervention program for kids with special needs, which is offered at no cost to participants who qualify for the service! I’m looking forward to attending this event and supporting Easterseals of Central and Southeast Ohio! Click here for more info about the event!

2. Kids Eat Free at Your Pie

We’ve been enjoying Your Pie, a new pizza shop in Grandview lately! Think pizza Chipotle style: you customize your pizza as you go through the line and you can have as many toppings as you want at no extra charge! Or, if you’re like my husband, you just order one of the signature pizzas so you don’t have to think too hard on the spot! 😉  Your Pie recently hosted a group of us bloggers and I taste tested each of the signature pies for you (a rough job, I know) and I can attest that they are all tasty, but my favorite was the BBQ chicken! Try them out on Monday night when you get a FREE kids combo with the purchase of a full-price entree! (This deal is good every Monday night!) The kids’ combos come with a panini or pizza, gelato and drink! Yes, they have gelato. Yum!

3. Storytime at Chic-Fil-A on Sawmill

Chic-fil-A on Sawmill offers a couple of options that really cater to families (I mean, besides being a restaurant with a kid’s play area, which already puts them a few steps ahead of the rest!) Recently they launched a new story time which will happen on the first and third Mondays in April and May from 9:30 AM – 10:15 AM! (Third Monday is THIS Monday, April 17!) There will be stories, crafts and songs! They also host a Kid’s Club on the 2nd Tuesday of each month from 5:00 PM – 7:00 PM! You can check their Facebook page to keep updated on their events!

4. Special Hours at Ohio History Center Plus BOGO FREE

Take the kids to Ohio History Center for their special spring break hours. From Wednesday, March 15 to Sunday, April 23, 2017, they will be hosting special spring break themes each day:

Mondays: Mystery at the Museum
Tuesdays: Natural History
Wednesdays: Military History
Thursdays: Art & History
Fridays: Inventors

Click this link to see all the details and for a special Buy One Get One Free admission coupon!

5. Special Activities for Teens at Columbus Rec Centers

If you have older kids, from April 18-22, 2017, Columbus Recreation and Parks Department is offering special activities at Rec Centers around the city for ages 14-23! Click here to see the special events happening this week only, as well as a list of ideas of things to do around the city!

6. Buy a Happy Meal

Only during the month of April, when you purchase a Happy Meal at a McDonald’s in Central Ohio, a portion of the proceeds will be donated to Mid-Ohio Foodbank and The Ohio Association of Foodbanks! That’s an easy way to give back to fight hunger in Central Ohio! Also, this week only, on Tuesday, April 18th, McDonalds will be offering Big Macs and Quarter Pounders with Cheese at a special price to give you some relief on Tax Day! Each sandwich will be buy one, get one for $.18!

7. See the Fairy Gardens at Franklin Park Conservatory

Not only are the spring blooms at the Conservatory beautiful these days, but the Fairy Garden display is adorable! I seriously want to crawl into those little worlds and stay a while! 😉 I had a great time there with my 2 year old last week! The kid’s area has a new Farmer’s Market set up, too! The fairy gardens are on display through May 29th, so you have a little more time on this one!

These ideas not enough? You might need to check out this list: “50 Fun Things to Do in Columbus, Ohio with Kids” compiled by First Community Village of Columbus!

Have a safe and happy Spring Break!

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ICYMI: 5 on Friday: Columbus Donuts

5 on Friday: Kid-Friendly Coffee Shops

As a freelance and contract worker, my husband spends most of his days in some kind of coffee shop setting. When I told him I was putting together a list of kid-friendly coffee shops, he said, “There is such a thing?” The fact that my own husband said such a thing is proof enough this post is needed. 😉 Coffee is a big part of my life, so the kids are gonna have to come along. Here are 5 best-bets for the times when you need to bring the kids:

1. Coffee Connections of Hilliard, Hilliard

This spot has to win the most kid-friendly coffee shop, hands down! Coffee Connections of Hilliard has two buildings. In the front (on Main St.) there is a full-sized coffee shop with two floors of seating areas and in a separate building in the back there is a community room with a play area just for kids upstairs! My kids were so entertained here recently that my husband and I had a nearly uninterrupted coffee date with friends! There is a changing table and even an area for babies to play!

4004 Main St., Hilliard, OH 43026

2, Grandview Grind, Grandview Heights

Grandview Grind has a large seating area and, in the back, there is a couch with a book shelf full of books, games and crayons! I was there recently with my two year old and he even found an Elmo book! There is a large drink menu and treats for sale as well.

1423 A Grandview Ave., Columbus, OH 43212

3. Bottoms Up Coffee Co-Op, Franklinton

Bottoms Up is a new coffee shop/co-working space in Franklinton. I have been known to stop by this coffee shop with two kids when we’re on our way to somewhere else just to get the Canary Island (an espresso drink made with condensed milk!). You don’t just “stop by” coffee shops with kids, getting them in and out of car seats just for fun, unless the reward is worth it! Also, they have a cute little table where kids can color and great food options!

1069 W.Broad St., Columbus, OH 43222

4. The Bexley Coffee Shop, Bexley

Bexley Coffee Shop is another safe bet for taking the kids! The coffee shop is a pretty good size and there are yummy treats like the chocolate chip coffee cake (pictured above). My 2 year old said, “this is the best chocolate chip cake in the whole galaxy!” so that must be saying something! I like their fun selection of local handmade items and during the summer they have a story time for kids hosted by Bexley Public Library!

492 N. Cassady Ave., Columbus, OH 43209

5. Espresso 22, Powell

If you’re wandering around downtown Powell and you need a pick-me-up, stop in at Espresso 22! They serve One Line Coffee and every day they have a fresh selection of Der Dutchman donuts!  There is a good amount of seating here and it’s very open. These are two things I associate with being kid-friendly! Last time I was there they had a Nutella Latte on the menu. Just sayin’

22 Liberty St., Powell, OH 43065

What coffee shops have you braved with the kids in tow?

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ICYMI: Countdown to Spring: 20 Days to Celebrate in Columbus

Countdown to Spring: 20 Days to Celebrate in Columbus

We’re in the final stretch until Spring! Winter is the hardest season for me to get through. I thought if we could try to find something to celebrate every day until Spring, it might make this last month go a little bit faster! If you need an excuse for a treat or to try something different, there’s a “National Day” for that! Check them out:

March 1National Peanut Butter Lover’s Day – have a gourmet PB&J or PB&J Milk Shake at Krema Nut Company

March 2Read Across America Day – attend the Dr. Seuss Birthday Party at Westerville Public Library

March 3National Day of Unplugging – take a break from technology and play at one of these free indoor play areas!

March 4National Pound Cake Day – enjoy a delectable pound cake at Laughlin’s Bakery.

March 5National Cheese Doodle Day – the inventor of the cheese doodle eventually sold his company to Borden who later relocated to Columbus (and has since closed). In his honor, eat a bag of cheese puffs!

March 6National Frozen Food Day – take it easy tonight and make a frozen pizza for dinner! Try Outsiders Pizza, a new frozen pizza brand that launched here in Columbus in December!

March 7National Pancake Day – On Tuesday, March 7th from 7:00 AM – 7:00 PM (some locations offering extended hours until 10:00 PM) you can celebrate National Pancake Day® at IHOP® and get a FREE short stack of Original Buttermilk Pancakes!

March 8National Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Day – get some inspiration and encouragement from local blogger, Sally at Real Mom Nutrition!

March 9National Meatball Day – add a meatball to your pasta for $2 on Warehouse Wednesday at Spaghetti Warehouse!

March 10National Pack Your Lunch Day – order your kids’  lunches from Eat Pakd, available for delivery here in Columbus, and you’ll never have to chop, slice or portion out again!

March 11National Johnny Appleseed Day – read the book A is for Appleseed, published by the Johnny Appleseed Museum, which is in Urbana, OH. Plan a visit when the museum is open on Tuesdays and Fridays! (Johnny Appleseed Day is also celebrated on Sept. 26, so take your pick! 😉 )

March 12National Girl Scout Day – celebrate by buying a box of Girl Scout Cookies – which are only available through March 26th! According to the Girl Scout website, it looks like you can buy them today at the Brewery District Kroger!

March 13National Napping Day – it’s the day after daylight savings, this one needs no explanation!

March 14National Learn about Butterflies Day – visit the Blooms and Butterflies Exhibit at Franklin Park Conservatory!

March 15National Kick Butts Day – this day is organized by the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids. Here is a list of activities you can do to raise awareness about the effects of tobacco with your kids.

March 16National Artichoke Hearts Day – in my “research” for this post, I ran across this article about how to prepare artichokes 3 ways from Columbus Food Adventures!  And I didn’t think I was going to find anything related to Columbus for this one! 😉

March 17National Corned Beef and Cabbage Day – take a trip to German Village for a huge sandwich at Katzinger’s Delicatessen or check out their new(ish) location in North Market!

March 18National Sloppy Joe Day – make these Loaded Slow Cooker Sloppy Joes from Columbus blogger, Courtney at NeighborFood!

March 19National Chocolate Caramel Day – try the salted caramels at Winan’s Fine Chocolates!

March 20Spring Begins! We made it!! Whoo hoo!!  😉

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ICYMI: 10 Life Hacks for Columbus Parents