About Admin

Pompette the New Name in Hard Sparkling Water

If you are already a seltzer drinker or just looking for a low calorie, low sugar, natural hard beverage POMPETTE is the drink for you! I am personally a big fan of seltzer. I love the flavors without the sweet taste of soda while still getting the fizz and bubble. POMPETTE offers that with an extra kick.

POMPEII hard sparkling waterThis isn’t the hard water that you worry about in your pipes. POMPETTE blends imported alcohol and natural flavors to create a unique line of hard sparkling water. Refreshing, light, and bubbly POMPETTE has tasty flavors that elevate your drinking experience. Options like Cucumber Lime, Lemon Mint, Rosé Hibiscus and Clementine Berry are delicious alone or amazing when garnished with some fresh fruit.

POMPETTE is naturally gluten-free, has 50 calories with two grams of sugar or less per eight ounce serving, and contains 5% alcohol by volume. As an addition to any dinner party or gathering hard seltzer is a great option for your guests. The company is committed to health, wellness, and providing quality drinks to help you stay committed to the same.

Another feature I enjoyed is the resealable 750ml glass bottle – for those of us that are having a hard time visualizing, the same as your average bottle of wine. When I served it at a recent dinner I had the opportunity to set out my wine glasses without having individual bottles all over the table.  It added one more drink choice while keeping the table classy.

If you have been searching for something new to bring to the table for yourself or when entertaining give hard sparkling water a try! Currently, POMPETTE can be purchased at select retailers across California, Florida, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, with additional distribution planned throughout 2020. To learn more visit their website Letspompette.com or follow them on social media, InstagramTwitter and Facebook.

 

 

 

Flamingo Gardens Fort Lauderdale FL

Bird Watching Up Close and Personal at the Flamingo Gardens Botanical Gardens and Everglades Wildlife Sanctuary

Flamingo Gardens Bird Preserve Fort Lauderdale Florida

Anyone that has ever been attracted to bird watching and communing with nature needs to add the Flamingo Gardens in Fort Lauderdale Florida to their list of travel destinations.

Flamingo Gardens bird preserve large white birdThe gardens are in part a small zoo or sanctuary for animals that can’t live in the wild, while giving visitors a peek into the magic of the Everglades. With interesting local wildlife and the usual exhibits you might expect comes the unexpected surprise of real immersion.

There are owls you can view through the wire of their habitats, educational shows, and a tram ride to offer a look behind the scenes, but Flamingo Gardens Botanical Gardens and Everglades Wildlife Sanctuary has something that really stands out. An open habitat aviary that is home to a variety of indigenous fowl.

Seeing a pelican and some of the other large species is a little like coming face to face with a dinosaur. The smaller birds fly from tree to tree overhead while their larger cousins paddle in the water or waddle on land. Walking within a few feet of these magical creatures is a captivating way to understand why birds fascinate so many of us. My family has owned a few birds over the years so this was not my first time getting to study them up close, but the shear volume and variety was amazing. You will definitely be clicking away with your camera!

Birds nests at the Flamingo Gardens  BOTANICAL GARDENS & EVERGLADES WILDLIFE SANCTUARYBetween that level of interaction, the natural beauty of the trees and plants, you could not pick a more lovely place to spend the afternoon. If you want to get a real feel for the Everglades after this up close look at the wildlife that lives there you simply drive a few miles up the road and into the Everglades National Forest. Flamingo Gardens offers the opportunity to view all this wildlife up close right next-door  to National Forest where you see the grander and full scope of the environment these animals come from.

 

When planning a trip to Fort Lauderdale this is a top choice for destinations. Really getting a feel for local wildlife brings the whole experience to another level beyond just viewing animals at any of the zoos around the country. Their mission as a wildlife and botanical sanctuary is something we can support. Educating visitors about endangered plant and wildlife species in the Everglades and Southern Florida while enjoying a day out in nature is a winning combo.

Wildlife preserve at Flamingo Gardens Fort Lauderdale Florida red eyed bird and Everglades sign

To find out more or plan a visit to Flamingo Gardens Botanical Gardens and Everglades Wildlife Sanctuary visit their website Flamingogardens.org or follow them on Social Media – TwitterFacebookInstagram

Rhode Island Bound

rhode island

When planning your trip to Rhode Island you might not be thinking of horseback riding on the beach, but you should be. C and L Stables located in Goddard Memorial State Park and offer access to 18 miles of trails or beach rides along the East Greenwich Bay. Riders of all levels are welcome and the stables has even been awarded the North American Horseman Association “SAFETY AWARD” ten years in a row.

rhode island museum

If history is more your style visit the Cloud Hill Victorian House Museum. An authentic example of Victoriana and Rhode Island architecture designed by William Walker & Sons the house was originally a wedding gift and has remained in the family since then. One of these family members is Anne “Nancy” Allen Holst, whose history you can learn more about. She is an inspiration for her work fighting fire and became the world’s first female fire chief.

The Museum is staffed entirely by volunteers and is open for scheduled exhibits. Be sure to look at their site when planning a visit. This is your opportunity to take a look into the past with family items and furniture dating back to the 1870’s. Outside the grounds have a variety of trees and shrubs that have led to it being called the West Bay arboretum. Kids will also enjoy checking out the mid-1800s gypsy wagon and the fire truck used by the Cedar Hill Volunteer Fire Company. Their headquarters was located in a white shed on the property.

rhode island hotel

For your stay in Rhode Island check out (or rather into) Hotel Dolce Villa. Right on Federal hill and located in the “Little Italy” neighborhood in Providence, the hotel offers easy access to many local attractions. Within a mile of Waterplace Park & Riverwalk, Providence Performing Arts Center, and seven colleges and universities like Brown University and the Rhode Island School of Design. Centrally located Hotel Dolce Villa is a great base for your visit.

rhode island restaurant

There’s More to NY than NYC

New York’s Finger Lakes region is a beautiful destination filled with history, adventure, and the great outdoors. Hikers, historians, artists, and literary buffs alike can find numerous attractions to draw them to the area. From Mark Twain’s time spent writing in Elmira, to the Corning Museum of Glass, and the natural splendor of forests and lakes, this is a truly inspirational trip.

NY State vacation

Mark Twain Country

One of America’s greatest writers, Mark Twain, was a regular visitor to Elmira NY. He summered there for over 20 years, his words flowing as he looked out over the countryside, penning such works as Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn. Now tourists can have their own adventures in the very same surroundings.

You can visit the octagonal study where Twain wrote, which he called “the loveliest study you ever saw.” USA Today list it as the “number one literary attraction in America”. Now located at Elmira College, tours of the study are offered. Or perhaps a trip to Woodlawn Cemetery to see the author’s final resting place. Don’t be surprised to see a cigar or two, a common offering to the memory of the great Mark Twain.

In July and August the hour long Trolley into Twain Country Tour is available. Starting at the Chemung Valley History Museum the narrated tour hits multiple historic stops in Elmira touching on Twain, Civil War Sites, the restored Powers Theater, and Dunn Field, “home of the Elmira Pioneers baseball team”.

Tanglewood Nature Center even features a Mark Twain trail. Quotes from the author are posted along the trail. His voice still resonates surrounded by the very places he too visited. Twain’s appreciation of the natural world is reflected in all of his work, and though he traveled all over the world this is the countryside he returned to time and time again.

Younger visitors may find the Children’s Trail more up their alley. This path includes some obstacle courses while following “a disassembled nature-themed book along the way.” The Nature Center is home to more than 40 species of live animals most notably their birds of prey. They have ongoing education programs and events for kids and families.

gliders

Soaring Above Harris Hill

Searching for a loftier view? Try a trip above the tree tops. Soaring is a familiar word, but what does it mean when you are entering the “Soaring Capital of America”? An opportunity to take to the skies in a glider, high above the terrain that inspired some of America’s greatest literary works.

You can visit the National Soaring Museum to learn about these motorless planes or head over to Harris Hill Soaring Corporation in Elmira NY for a ride in the passenger seat. Weather can be an issue with gliding, but on a clear day there are no prettier view for your silent 15-20 minute flight across the sky.

For those of us happier to hug the ground Harris Hill Amusement Park offers some family fun and thrills at a lower altitude. A carousel, go-karts, and games right by the museum combines learning and play time in one stop. If mini-golf is your game than this is the place, or the driving range where you can see how far your golf balls soar.

waterfalls

Visiting Watkins Glen

Watkins Glen State Park is famous for its beauty and perfect for a day trip or as a camping stop. The Gorge Trail is nature at its most amazing and unexpected. Over a two mile stretch the glen’s stream forms 19 waterfalls as it descends 400 feet. The path goes over, under, and around the waterfalls or “rim trails overlook the gorge”. A suspension bridge 85ft. above the creek offers a birds eye view or you can go down and feel the water on your face while standing behind two waterfalls at Cavern Cascade. Swimming pools, fishing, hiking, and biking make the State Park ideal for anyone of any age that enjoys nature.

If you take the Gorge Trail be prepared for a workout. Over 800 stone steps await you as you hike. Also remember to bring lots of drinking water, you’ll get thirsty staring at the stream as you make your way through the gorge.

family vacation

Must See Museums

The Corning Museum of Glass is more than a gallery of glass art. It is dedicated to the history of glass, and home to historical glass pieces an amazing “35 centuries of glass art”. From the Romans and the origins of glass blowing to modern day innovations there is more to learn than you could ever have imagined and always more to see amongst the huge collection. If you want to feel the heat there are  demonstrations of glass blowing (Hot Glass Demo), or the Flameworking Demo where glass rods are shaped. Optical Fiber and Glassbreaking Demos are also offered so you can watch them make it or break it depending on your mood.

“Make Your Own Glass” Classes are offered at the Museum for all ages, which seriously fun and offer a sense of accomplishment when finished, and we highly recommend trying. You can make items such as flowers, ornaments, and other objects that will also serve as a unique souvenir of your time in NY State.

glass rabbit

The Rockwell Museum located in Corning NY, is the only Smithsonian affiliate in Upstate New York. The name comes from collectors Bob and Hertha Rockwell who gifted their art and artifacts to start the museum. Their goal to “make art accessible to kids” reads loud and clear. Visit the Family Exploration Studio to draw on a light board or take part in the Art Hunt by matching partial images to the full artwork throughout the galleries. To add to it’s draw, kids and teens visit free.

NY museums

The Glenn H. Curtiss Museum is dedicated to the local and international legend who became the “fastest man on earth” when he raced a motorcycle at 136.4 MPH. He went on to be a pioneer in early flight being awarded the very first pilot’s license ever issued. The first to take off and land on water, Glen Curtiss pushed the limits of flight and plane design. The museum houses motorcycles, planes, boats, antique tools, and a Restoration Shop where you can see volunteers working on historic aircraft.

From museums, to wildly beautiful natural scenery, to high flying adventures and more, NY has it all. Visit the Finger Lakes to make memories that will last a lifetime (and take some of the most “Instagram Worthy” photos you will ever post).

new york vacation

The Hermitage Club of Southern Vermont

The Hermitage Club at Haystack Mountain is a premiere destination for any New England visitor or local. Southern Vermont is easily accessible, just two hours from Boston and four hours from NYC, and puts you right in the center of the East Coast’s only private ski resort. Members enjoy year round entertainment surrounded by the natural beauty of the mountains.

family ski trip

Spa, dining, and luxury accommodations are a fixture at the Hermitage Club while providing a safe environment for outdoor and indoor activities on the 1,400 acre resort complete with private mountain. Ski slopes, bike and hiking trails offer access to the beautiful scenery. Seasonal programs, with age specific focuses and even day care for the little ones are available so that parents and older siblings can hit the slopes or trek the mountainside make this a perfect option for all family members.

family travel

There are multiple lodging options for visitors to meet any preference. The Vermont House is located in downtown Wilmington Vermont offering the historical experience of an 1850’s colonial inn or the Inn at Sawmill Farm where you can spend your night in the renovated Carriage House. The Brook Bound Inn is near the Hermitage Clubhouse and offers a variety of rooms and even full house rentals for larger groups. Pools for swimming, a golf course, tennis and basketball courts are just the beginning of the features.

covered road

Restaurants, bars, and other tasty stops are sprinkled across the six inns during winter operating days, as well as on the very side and top of the mountain. The Hermitage Inn features French inspired meals with a Vermont twist. Savor farm to table dining at the White House, which offers American favorites, or you can enjoy the taste of Italy at Ristorante Piacenza. Check scheduled hours (as well as seasonal hours of operation) as they vary for the different locations, like the Clubhouse and Mid-Mountain Cabin. They are tied to the ski operating schedule which you can also find online.

ski lodge

Skiers can use one of six ski lifts and have a choice of 45 trails across 194 skiable acres. Lessons for newbies and those who want to up their skills are available or if you want to pass on the downhill portion strap on your skis and enjoy the cross country variety. Interested in trying motorized sports? Snowmobiling, as well as classic winter fun such as tubing and ice-skating are some more winter activities you can experience at the Hermitage Club.

ski vermont

After your time exploring and dining, consider relaxing with a spa treatment or drink. Joining a fitness class will keep you moving, or you can take a rest and enjoy the artists taking part in the Heritage Club Concert Series. Whether you are searching for a break from a hectic schedule or to re-energize yourself, The Heritage Club gives members the ability to customize their experience and enjoy the best of Vermont.

snowtubing vermont

UPDATE- The resort has recently been shut down, but there are a lot of other resorts to choose from in Vermont.

Travels in and around Sacramento, California

California tourists know big city names like Sacramento, but a visit to Northern California offers more than one opportunity to enjoy the area. A great place for a classic road trip, Camino, Coloma, Columbia, Jamestown, Placerville, Sonora, and  Tuolumne County are full of attractions just around the next bend in the road.

Sacramento

Sacramento is one of California’s largest cities and full of family friendly attractions. Museums dedicated to such topics as transportation, art, and history can all be found here along with shops, restaurants, and “Old Sacramento, a registered national landmark and state historic park”. With the diverse offerings there is something that will appeal to every family member.

visit california

Trains, cars, or both? Sacramento is home to the California State Railroad Museum and California Auto Museum. Transportation and the area’s history are closely tied as the city was part of the transcontinental railroad and Pony Express. The Railroad Museum not only displays restored locomotives and train cars, they also feature “40 one-of-a kind exhibits”. Here you can learn about railroad history from 1850 to the trains we ride today. A mile down the road the Auto Museum is full of examples of more modern four wheeled transport. The collection features cars from the ‘50s, ‘60s and ‘70s, originals and restorations.

california railroad

Art? The Crocker Art Museum is a perfect stop. Opening in 1885 the museum is a part of history too, the “first public art museum in the Western United States”.  Enjoy more than the art when visiting, there are also live events, tours, and classes for kids, adults, or the whole family. When planning your trip be sure to check out their Events Calendar on the site.

History? Old Town Sacramento Historic District is a living piece of the past. Shops once supplied miners in search of gold, now those historic buildings house shops and eateries that appeal to new visitors in the area. The Sacramento History Museum is there to expand your local knowledge or if you want to go back before the city was founded try the California State Indian Museum.

travel in california

California Gold Rush

Gold brought the original settlers to the region and now you can learn about the history and recapture the experience at Marshall Gold Discovery State Historic Park in Coloma Ca. James Marshall triggered the “largest migration in history” when he discovered gold in 1848. With a museum, gold panning, candle and rope making you can spend the afternoon living history.

Want more? Hangtown’s Gold Bug Park & Mine combines education and nature. Whether you take advantage of the hiking trails or investigate the two hard rock mines in the park, there are plenty of opportunities to learn about history and enjoy the Placerville countryside. Gold was becoming harder to find by 1852, this is what made mining become more popular. The only gold mines still owned by the state of California, you can take a tour into these two hard rock mines (either guided or self guided) 362 feet into Gold Bug Mine, as well as visit the black blacksmith shop, stamp mill, museum, and more.

gold mine

Looking for a full immersion into the Gold Rush? Columbia State Historic Park is the perfect answer. Costumed tour guides lead you through the preserved Mother Lode town, once the second largest city in California. Now home to an authentic stagecoach, locally made sarsaparilla soda (which is delightful and should be tried), a blacksmith’s forge, and saloon. “Columbia is a real town”, full time residents live the 1850’s lifestyle, practice the trades of the time, and you can join them to eat, drink, sleep, and be a part of living history.  Shops keep regular business hours, but the town never closes. No driving through though, cars are not allowed here. Visitors are hoofing it, by foot or horse back because this is the real deal historical experience. You can even stay overnight in guest houses and hotels, right on Main Street. This was an amazing experience, and one that you and your family will treasure.

jr ranger

Visit Apple Hill

The ranches and farms that make up Apple Hill is a top destination for food and fun. For every season, year round, they welcome visitors. From apples to berries, from pumpkins to pine trees for the holidays, Apple Hill tops the list of outdoor activities. Over 50 ranches and farms are part of Apple Hill. You can find details on the Apple Hill site. Here are the ones we visited.

travel california

Rainbow Orchard, which serves their specialty, “Hot Apple Cider Donuts”, is known for their Bake Shop and produce. A 3rd generation family farm they grow apples, pears, peaches, nectarines, and blueberries. Their farmers market is open in the fall, “Labor Day weekend and daily from September 10 through Thanksgiving weekend.” If you are looking for blueberry picking the season runs from early/mid June through mid/late July, and they are open Friday through Sunday.

trip to California

Harris Tree Farm has been operating in the community for over 150 years and 7 generations since 1857. Open all year from 9:30-4:30 this is the spot for fruits and vegetables, fresh flowers, or picking a pumpkin or Christmas tree depending on the season.  If you get hungry a visit to Irene’s Kitchen will hook you up with pies, turnovers, jams, and butters. Their motto, “We believe in operating a sustainable farm and forest. By using local sustainably produced products you support a healthier economy, environment and community which benefits us all.” stands out.

apple picking

Abel’s Apple Acres combines beautiful views, hot BBQ, homemade fudge, candies, and of course apples. Best of all they are dog friendly, so if you are looking for a place for the whole family, two legged or four, this is it. Pony rides, the pumpkin patch, and a walk through maze add to the time spent enjoying all the edible goodies.  They are open to visitors “Labor Day Weekend to 3PM Christmas Eve”.  

 

 

Le Blanc Spa Resort, Los Cabos Mexico

A Luxury Adults Only Getaway to Mexico

resorts in mexico

When you are looking to vacation without the hassle, to just enjoy yourself in the deluxe accommodations, to indulge on your next trip, you need look no further than Le Blanc All-Inclusive Spa and Resort. Located in popular Los Cabos on the west coast of Mexico, Le Blanc offers everything you are seeking and more.

adult only mexico

This is Le Blanc’s second location, the first being their top rated Cancun resort from Palace Resorts, recognized by AAA as a Five Diamond Awarded brand. With this new location on the opposite coast they have raised the bar. Fine dining, ocean front views, spa and fitness facilities are all added on to the pure natural beauty of the Baja Peninsula.

couples only getaway

Taste enthusiasts will love the variety of foods available during your stay. Le Blanc offers gourmet delicacies with curated menus by world-renowned pastry chef, Antonio Bachour. If you too enjoy baked goods, they are a top choice for me and hard to resist, what could be better than a selection of dishes from a chef who shares that passion.

adults only getaway

If you are all about the water bring plenty of swimwear. The Pacific is just footsteps away for visitors that want to catch some waves, or you can relax in one of the four pools. Maybe an evening under the stars enjoyed from a hot tub? All this talk of water making you thirsty? Float on over to one of the swim-up bars for some internal hydration.

mixed drinks

Vacation just isn’t vacation without some full on relaxation, which for me means time in the spa. Most exciting to me at Le Blanc was their hydrotherapy along with the Asian and European fusion of features. Hot and cold pools, herbal steam sauna, and ice room, which I totally love when going to the Korean spa but have not come across at another resort, make this place stand out.

resorts mexico

From the amazing food, to the tranquil comfort of the rooms, and the shear beauty of Los Cabos you could not pick a better getaway than Le Blanc Spa and Resort for your next trip. Adults Only is just what you may need to relax and unwind in paradise so take advantage of all there is to offer at Le Blanc.

le blanc resorts

Find out more about the resort on their website – Leblancsparesorts.com

Nemacolin Woodlands Resort and Getaway

Nemacolin Woodlands Resort and Casino, their motto is “Expect the unexpected” and visitors should!

If you are planning a trip to Pennsylvania there is no better destination than the Nemacolin Woodlands Resort. Stay, dine, and adventure all at one location. You can’t go wrong and there are options for every family member, even the canine ones. Luxury and activity come together to offer stimulation and relaxation.

Pittsburgh resort

The first step is choosing the accommodations that work for you and your family. Nemacolin offers three rooming options, the Chateau Lafayette, Falling Rock, and their Lodge. Or if you want more they have townhouses and luxury vacation homes available. Traveling with a four legged companion? Try Nemacolin Wooflands Resort and Spa. No matter which you pick there is no wrong answer when every one is so lovely a retreat from the every day.

luxury resorts

Once you are on the grounds and your vacation has begun it is time to select between all of the possibilities Nemacolin has for its guests. Want to get some dirt on your boots? Try the Adventure Center. Hiking, bike rentals, paintball target practice, even a Jeep® Off-Road Driving Academy are some of the adventures that keep your feet on the ground. Or you can adventure up high. Fatbird SuperFlyer is over 3,000’ of dueling zip lines, or give the elevated Ropes Tour and Climbing Wall a try. Maybe keep it simple with a family round at the Fallingbrook Mini Golf Course.

Have Sippy Will Travel

Your kids can get so much more from their trip to the Nemacolin Wildlife Academy than just time in the outdoors. With a Safari Tour, on foot, or horseback, there are many ways to experience the wild life at Nemacolin. They are dedicated to giving a safe home to animals such as bison, zebra, a bengal tiger, lions, wolves and bears. There is also a nursery of more than 40 species of smaller animals like the two toed sloth, fennec foxes, rabbits and reptiles. There is always something new to learn and discover.

zoo in PA

Maybe an art class or tour is more your speed. Well there are enough options to keep you busy throughout your stay. Enjoy the Hardy Family Art Collection on display at the Nemacolin Woodlands Resort as you move around during your visit or really delve deep with the Indoor Curator’s Tour or Outdoor Sculpture Tour. Want to get your hands dirty? There are classes offered in ceramics, painting, and even stained glass. Take home a personal creation from your stay.

In the summer it’s pools and in the winter snow sports that will get you moving. Whether you are an expert skier or novice snowboarder the 6 slopes at Mystic Mountain has an option for you. Or try something really different and take a dog sled ride across the snow covered terrain. Every season has its own appeal at Nemacolin Woodlands Resort.

giant cookie

Now my favorite part of any vacation is the food. Delicious taste adventures after I have burned off calories with all the activities around the resort. With so many options at Nemacolin there was’t enough time to try them all! Looking for a Five Star dining experience? Lautrec at the Chateau Lafayette ranks amongst the top dining experiences anywhere in the country. Their Autumn restaurant specializes in farm to table meals that could not be fresher. There are also casual food options like Otis & Henry’s Bar & Grill to be enjoyed during your stay and even PJ’s Ice Cream Parlor.

No mater you culinary tastes or your appetite for adventure Nemacolin Woodlands Resort has you covered. Vacationing in Pennsylvania has been taken to a whole new level.

Learn more about Nemacolin Woodlands Resort on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.