Exploring Delaware with Your Kids

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Just 40 minutes from downtown Columbus, a trip to Delaware includes a unique dinosaur park, cupcakes and a great children’s bookstore!

Here’s a fun day trip idea we stumbled onto a few weeks ago! I say stumbled because though I planned to go to the park and splash pad, the rest of the day was somewhat unplanned. Delaware is a 40-ish minute trip from downtown Columbus and has a super cute downtown area.

First of all, the park. As far as parks and playgrounds go, this one is awesome! I love that there is a playground (a REALLY nice one) so close to the splash pad. It’s the whole package in case your kids get tired of one or the other quickly. The playground area is covered in artificial turf – so no mud or mulch to deal with!

There is a dinosaur theme with large dinosaur prints in the sidewalk, a dinosaur slide and dinosaurs to run through at the splash pad.

There are some water tables on the edge of the playground – my kids really wanted something to play with inside them (which we didn’t have). So if your kids aren’t into being splashed, but still like to play in water, bring some plastic animals or cars to play with in the water!

Another nice thing about the splash pad is that there is a covered area for sitting. Throughout the park there were two large pavilions with picnic tables for shade and eating. There is also a snack shack.

If you followed me last summer, you might remember that my kids were not big fans of splash pads! 🙂 So I’ll tell you, I didn’t even pack swim suits – just an extra change of clothes! haha. Well, this year they proved to be a little bit braver than last so we needed those clothes! {See Five on Friday: Splash Pads here!}

After the Spray and Play, we headed downtown with no particular destination in mind.

We found a couple of bakeries and coffee shops and ended up choosing Fresh Start Cafe and Bakery. There were lots of yummy treats and Crimson Cup coffee. The boys chose cupcakes because they always do and I heard no complaints! 😉


We walked around downtown a bit and ended up at Fundamentals: Children’s Books, Toys and Games, which is a fun store for kids books and art and teacher supplies! (Fundamentals is now Beanbag Books.)


This summer, Fundamentals will be hosting a Where’s the Penguin hunt around downtown Delaware, based on the book Where’s the Penguin by Sophie Schrey! Beginning July 1, kids can search for the penguin at at least 20 participating businesses and prizes will be given away!  The Find the Penguin Grand Finale Party will take place at Fundamentals on August 4, 2017 from 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM, during the First Friday events in downtown Delaware.

The store also hosts a story time that includes stories, music, dancing, and crafts at 10:30 AM! The next one is July 26th!

Another event they have coming up is the Summer Reading Road Trip on on Sunday, July 16th from 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM which includes giveaways, costume character, author signings, crafts and activities!

I’m looking forward to returning to downtown Delaware! Does anyone have a Delaware favorite to recommend?

Know Before You Go:

Spray and Play at Veterans Park
1121 S. Houk Rd, Delaware, OH 43015

Fresh Start Cafe and Bakery
24 North Sandusky Street
Delaware, Ohio, OH 43015
(740) 990-0388
Monday: Closed
Tuesday-Thursday 7:00 AM – 7:00 PM
Friday-Saturday 7:00 AM – 9:00 PM
Sunday 7:00 AM – 2:00 PM

Fundamentals: Children’s Books, Toys and Games (Now Beanbag Books)
25 W Winter St
Delaware, Ohio, OH 43015
(740) 363-0290
Monday-Saturday: 10:00 AM – 5:30 PM
Sunday: Closed


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ICYMI: 6 Ways to Enjoy Columbus Commons this Summer

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Exploring Downtown Powell with Kids

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You already know this: my kids hate splash pads! This was my last ditch effort of the summer, I swear! And now with the outbreak of that really long “C” word going around, I do solemnly swear to stop torturing them! I met up with some other mom friends from my MOPS group at the Powell Splash Pad a few weeks ago and it was definitely still a no-go for my kids. The picture below shows you exactly how close they got to the spraying water. 😉



From a mom’s perspective, however, I liked this one. There is a playground in the same area, so kids can go back and forth between the splash pad and the playground easily. Near the splash pad is a covered pavilion with picnic tables and a large grassy lawn, so there is a ton of space for picnicking or laying out your beach towels (though shade is a bit hard to come by).


5/25/18 Edited to ad: Unfortunately the Cruz Candy shop is no longer open.

After we hung out with our friends at the splash pad, we took a walk around the block to Cruz Candy. It’s a cute little shop with all kinds of fun treats! You can fill a bucket full or buy it by the piece.



My kids can spot a vehicle anywhere!



I let my kids pick out a few pieces each and then we headed outside where the game Candy Land was sitting out on the picnic table!


In the space upstairs, above Cruz Candy, Wonder Creative does art classes for kids and they have created a wishing tree outside the store.  Jaden wished that his stuffed puppy was real and we hung his wish on the tree!



We (I) spent a lot of time reading the wishes on the tree. There were hundreds of them! It was at the same time, hilarious, inspiring and heart breaking. I wanted to share some of the wishes with you here:







One thing you should know about me is that I have a really hard time lying. Even to my kids about silly little kid things. I’m totally dreading the conversation about the tooth fairy! I can be very literal with them but I’m working on trying not to be a kill joy! So when Jaden asked me, “will my wish really come true?” I felt sad because, no, sorry buddy, you are not getting a puppy! But how could I crush his little heart? Even though my brain screamed, “no!” my mouth is learning to say, “what do you think?” in those moments! Sometimes it also works to just say, “I don’t know!” cause even if you DO know, it’s not worth crushing their spirit over something they’ll forget about in a day or two.


After we finished with the wishes, it was still hot and mama needed a cold snack! We walked across the street to Rita’s for water ice (well, Italian ice, but after living in Philly I can’t help but call it water ice 😉 ) . This is how it goes: both of them choose their flavor based on their favorite color. Jaden: blue. Mayson: yellow. And I pick the flavor closest to chocolate.


On our way back to the car, we went in Nicole’s for Kids on a whim. To our surprise, we found a play house and I could barely get the kids out of the store! Nicole’s has a lot of cute baby and toddler clothing, and this little play house is enough to keep your kids busy while you shop, and then some !







We all had a fun morning out in Powell. All of these places are easily within walking distance of each other and there is a large public parking lot in front of Village Green Park. We even did all of this without a stroller – that’s how close everything is! There are just a few more weeks to check out the splash pad this summer as it closes for the season on September 6, 2016. Enjoy!

Know Before You Go:

Splash Pad – in Village Green Park
47 Hall St
Powell, OH 43065
Open 9:00 AM – 9:00 PM, Memorial Day through Labor Day

The Santa Cruz Candy Company
27 South Liberty St., Powell, OH 43065
Monday-Thursday 11:00 AM – 9:00 PM
Friday – Saturday 11:00 AM –10:00 PM
Sunday 12:00 PM – 7:00 PM

Wonder Creative
27 S. Liberty St., Powell, OH 43065

Rita’s Italian Ice
50 S. Liberty St., Suite 150, Powell, OH 43065
Monday-Sunday 12:00 PM – 10:00 PM, Closes October 30, 2016 for the season

Nicole’s for Children
50 W. Olentangy St. (Powell Rd.)
Powell, OH 43065
Monday – Friday 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Saturday 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Sunday – 12:00 PM – 4:00 PM


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ICYMI: 8 Reasons to Take Your Kids to the New Albany Classic

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5 Things to do with Your Kids this Summer in Columbus PART 2

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Last month I shared with you 5 Things to do with Your Kids this Summer in Columbus and this is my second round of “things we’ve actually done”! 😉 I hope you enjoy exploring Columbus with your kids! Here are 5 more things to do together this summer:

1. Attend Commons for Kids at Columbus Commons


Columbus Commons is a great downtown park and on Fridays there are all kinds of special FREE activities for kids like bounce houses, story time, crafts, sports activities and special visitors. One of the weeks we attended there was a show by Ronald McDonald and the Columbus Zoo brought live animals to see and touch. Carrousel rides (normally $1) are free during this time and there is a parking garage right across the street if you can’t snag a meter.


Tortilla is open for lunch at the park and there is also Jeni’s ice cream on site! Commons for kids lasts from 10:00 AM – 1:00 PM. Check their schedule here for what is going on each week.

2. Make Origami Art at the Franklin Park Conservatory


The latest exhibit at the Conservatory is Origami in the Garden. On display are several works of origami art and there are related family activities going on during the exhibit. On Saturdays, kids can learn how to fold an origami crane from 11:00 AM – 2:00 PM.


In the children’s area there are tables set up with paper and instructional booklets about how to fold different things like cranes, airplanes, boats and more. Throughout the Conservatory, Japenese Garden is the theme! Outdoors, there are origami sculptures as well. During the summer, the Franklin Park Conservatory is open until 9:00 PM on Wednesdays (through August 31st). See the full listing of family activities here.

3. Try Out a New Splash Pad



So far, my kids aren’t big fans of splash pads! We’ve tried out Ballantrae Park/Bunny Fountains in Dublin, the fountains at Easton, FountainSide at Bicentennial Park, and the fountains at Polaris Mall and my kids still are unsure about getting water splashed in their faces at unpredictable times. I feel like I might be reaching the limit of how many times I should try this activity, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do it! 😉 Here’s a list of 8 Columbus Splash Pads from Columbus Moms Blog!

4. Visit a Brand New Library


I can’t go without mentioning the new Main Library! It’s a must visit this summer! Enjoy the remodeled Children’s Department and then take a walk through the outdoor reading room to Topiary Park. There are PBJ&Jazz concerts in the park on the second Saturday of each month this summer (which happens to be this weekend, July 9!). We were able to catch a little bit of the first one which took place at the Grand Opening Celebration of Main Library in June.


Main Library is not the only new library opened this year! The Parson’s Branch of Columbus Metropolitan Library (seen above) opened earlier this summer and it has a open area for story times and a Ready For Kindergarten area that has fun, educational toys. We’re also keeping an eye on the new Grove City Library, slated to open sometime late this summer or early fall! Summer is also a great time to try out a new-to-you library! Here are a few of my recommendations: Great Libraries for Reading AND Playing! Part 1 and Great Libraries for Reading AND Playing! Part 2. Make sure to join the Summer Reading Clubs available at most libraries around the Columbus area and win prizes just for reading!

5. Play on the “Little” Big Machines at COSI

Hopefully you got to see the Big Machines exhibit a few weeks ago, but if not, these “little” big machines are on display for driving and climbing for the rest of the summer! Inside the little kidspace there is a special construction area with pretend tools for lots of fun play!


COSI is open every day during the summer and until 9:00 PM on the last Friday of each month. They do close down for most of September for their yearly cleaning, so make sure you get to see this exhibit before summer ends! Mark your calendars for August 10-14, 2016 for the next outdoor exhibit at COSI, Farm Days! There are plenty of big machines at this one, too (mostly in the form of tractors)!


We’re having a lot of fun this summer and I hope you are, too! Columbus has so many things to do and places to explore! In fact, I’ve already started on a Part 3 to this post, so check back soon! 🙂


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ICYMI: 5 Things to do at Stratford Ecological Center

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