A Family Outing: Port Discovery Children’s Museum

A few Saturdays ago, we visited the Port Discovery Children’s Museum in Baltimore for the first time. It’s not the cheapest place to visit. Besides the entrance fee, you have to pay for parking.

Ticket prices vary. As of September 2016, general admission costs $14.95 for ages 2 and up, but they have specials. For example, military personnel receive $2 off general admission for themselves and up to 4 guests. Also, if you have an IKEA Family Card, you can get 50% off one general admission ticket.

If you park in the Harbor Park Garage, which is next to the museum, ask the staff in the museum to give you a discount card to reduce your parking price to $15. I did check on Parking Panda the day before, and I found cheaper garages, but they were a further walk to the museum. Drivers in Baltimore (actually, pretty much anywhere in Maryland) do not stop for pedestrians, even when they’re in crosswalks and even though it’s the law, so I did not want to walk any further with Little J than I had to!

We started on the top floor of the museum and worked our way down. The Wonders of Water play area (closed Tuesdays for maintenance) and Tiny’s Diner were probably Little J’s favorite places to play.

Port Discovery
Little J and Big J building a plumbing system at the Wonders of Water play area. The museum has Crocs (cleaned daily) for people to borrow for this exhibit if they want. They had rain jackets for the kids too.
Port Discovery
Tiny’s Diner has play food, pots, pans, and trays for kids to play with.

Port Discovery
The play food looks realistic!

I felt like the museum did a good job of catering to kids of almost all ages, from crawling infants to upper elementary ages. There were some areas that may appeal to middle school students (like the indoor soccer “stadium”), but I think they’d be a bit old for most of the exhibits.

Port Discovery
In the Adventure Expeditions, you can wander around in 1920’s Egypt, decipher hieroglyphics and more.

The museum also has a quiet room called The Oasis. I think this is a great place for kids who are overwhelmed by all of the busyness in the museum. There’s even a nursing room inside of The Oasis!

Port Discovery
The Oasis has quiet toys, lots of books and places to sit and relax.
Port Discovery
There’s a Nursing Station in The Oasis too! You have to duck down a little to get into it. There are windows between the room and the rest of The Oasis, so moms can nurse their little ones and still keep an eye on older kids.

The pictures in this post were on my iPhone, but once I eventually get picture off my Nikon, I’ll put up another post with more photos. That post will include photos of Tot Trails, which is the more infant-friendly area, and BGE Studio Workshop, the craft area.

Something I really liked about the museum, they don’t let adults in unless the adult is accompanying a child. Also, the adults will have the same wristband code as the child or children. Before you can walk out of the facility with a child, security will match the child’s wrist band with yours.

We spent a few hours there, and Little J still wasn’t able to do everything, so I think it’s feasible to spend an entire day. They don’t sell food there, but they do have a sitting area where you can eat food you brought with you. You can also leave the museum to eat at one of the numerous restaurants within walking distance, and you’ll be allowed back into the museum with your wrist band.

Bottom line- our whole family had fun, and we’d do it again!

What fun places did you visit this summer?

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A move, travel, wedding, and back to work I go

First, why is the quality of everyone’s iPhone photos so much better than mine?? Is it because my phone is old, or am I doing something wrong with the settings??

You’ve probably noticed my blog posts over the last two months have been sparse. Our lives have been in upheaval -for good reasons- but it means I haven’t had a lot of time for blogging.

First, Hubby came home from training after eight months away. We immediately moved from the Hampton Roads, Virginia area up to the DC/Baltimore area. We stayed with family or friends for about six weeks, while we were waiting to get into our new home. We’re renting a beautiful little house from friends of mine, but they weren’t able to get into their new home as quickly as expected. So they were waiting to get into their new place, and we were waiting to get into their old!

Last week we finally moved in, but left just a couple of days later for my brother’s wedding near Detroit. It was a beautiful wedding! My new sister-in-law is from India, and although the wedding was Christian and western, it still had some gorgeous Indian touches, like the bridesmaids in lehengas and the food at the reception.

The photo below is of me, my two sisters-in-law, and my niece. My sister-in-law on the far left (Cheryl) is wearing a sari; my new sister-in-law (Naomi) is wearing a lehenga; and I’m wearing a lehenga as well.

A sari (or saree) is usually about 6 yards of fabric. You wear a petticoat and a blouse, and then wrap the sari around you, over and over, and then pin it in a decorative way. I’m impressed with how my sister-in-law Cheryl was able to wrap hers!

My new sister-in-law, Naomi, and I are both wearing a lehenga. We took the easy way out, hahah. A lehenga is a skirt, and the choli is the blouse. Then we took dupattas (shawls) and wrapped them around ourselves. My dupatta was very long and ornate, so I spread mine out and pinned it in the front, so people could see how beautiful it is.

Bathroom selfie! I wish I had a better photo of this, but my dupatta (shawl) drapes over one shoulder, then I loop it near my feet and tuck the end into my lehenga (skirt).
Here’s another shot of the dupatta draped over my shoulder, nearly to the floor, and then up and tucked into my skirt. I was twirling in this photo, and my facial expression is ridiculous, so I cropped it out, hahah.

And of course I have to share a photo of Little J from the wedding. Doesn’t he look debonair?

Now that we’re back home, it’s time to finish unpacking. I’m also going back to work. That’s right! This stay-at-home-mom is about to be come a working mom. I start in just over a week. Later today I’m going to make a grocery store run, cook like crazy these next couple of days, and stock up on freezer meals. Other than my Army Reserve training, this will be the first time I’ve worked since I had my son. I have no idea what to expect! My mother in law has graciously agreed to come stay with us for a couple or few weeks to watch Little J, until we’ve found a good daycare. BTW, any suggestions on what to look for in a daycare? This is new territory for me!

One perk of working again: buying a new wardrobe. More on that later…

And that’s it for now! I have a couple of review posts, that I hope to get up this weekend. I also want to share with you my experiences with the Garmin Vivofit, so keep an eye out for that. Although I’m going back to work, I still plan to blog.

What are you up to? Are your kids back in school already or starting next week?
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Giveaway: Tiny Love 3-in-1 Rocker Napper, 8/15-29 (US only)

Are you expecting in 2014? Did you just have your little bundle of joy? Know someone who’s pregnant or trying to conceive? Then this event is for you! Alex of Mommy’s Obsessions is expecting her second son this October and has created an event that is perfect for expectant mothers. Mommy’s Little Miracle is a Pregnancy, Newborn/Early Infancy, and Postpartum event that will be featuring everything from maternity clothing to newborn essentials, to postpartum products you must have. We highly recommend that you bookmark the open giveaway page by clicking on the image below then adding it to your bookmarks bar. Over the next three weeks you will have the chance to enter to win some amazing prizes from items for YOU and things for your little one!

Today Mommy’s Little Miracle is featuring a wonderful baby gear product that is perfect for your newborn or infant- the Tiny Love 3-in-1 Rocker Napper!

About Tiny Love

(As from their website) 

“Tiny Love® is a multiple award-winning global toy and baby products’ company that was founded in 1991 by Shoshi and Isaac Oren. The couple branched into the field of developmental toys with the aim of creating products that would support baby’s development from birth through 24 months and offer smart solutions to parents’ changing needs. Today, Tiny Love’s products are available to babies and parents in more than 50 countries worldwide.”

Photo Credits: Tiny Love
From Alex at Mommy’s Obsessions:

When it comes to things like bouncers, swings, rockers, and nappers, there are an abundance of brands and options available to parents. So how do you choose? For me, convenience, affordability, and design are three important aspects that I look for, and it of course needs to be something that will easily soothe my newborn or infant. For Little Boy I knew that I wanted to get him a napper this time around- something that wasn’t full of bells and whistles with an overkill of stimulants – I just wanted something that would be simple for him to relax in, nap in, and be safe in. 

When I discovered the 3-in-1 Rocker Napper by Tiny Love, I was immediately intrigued. From first look I loved it’s modern and sleek design, and the fact that it had three seating positions was an added bonus! Whether Little Boy is awake or napping, he would be comfortable and I could accommodate his positioning accordingly. One of my favorite aspects of the Rocker Napper’s design though is that it includes a simple yet detachable mobile for entertainment if you so choose to include it on your Rocker Napper. It plays music and lights up, but has an on/off switch and volume control so you can really choose whether or not you want to use it with your child. The Rocker Napper of course has a rocking feature (you rock it yourself, it is not automatic) so if your child is a bit fussy you can calm them in whatever seating position they are in. The Tiny Love 3-in-1 Rocker Napper truly is an incredible baby product!


To Purchase: Visit Tiny Love and pick up a 3-in-1 Rocker Napper one of four fun colors for $99.99!

To Win: Mommy’s Obsessions and Tiny Love want to give one lucky winner a 3-in-1 Rocker Napper of their own! *Color based on availability* 


The Giveaway will close late on the evening of August 29th. The winner will be chosen at random through  Giveaway Tools. The winner will be announced both on Giveaway Tools form as well as notified by email and announced on Mommy’s Obsessions Facebook. Winner must respond within 48 hours of receiving their winner’s email otherwise they will forfeit their prize and a new winner will be chosen. The winner will have their prize sent to them by Tiny Love. Mommy’s Obsessions and other participating bloggers are not responsible for prize shipment. Must be 18 years and older. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Google are in no way affiliated with this giveaway. No Purchase Necessary. Void where prohibited by law. US Only. For any questions contact Mommy’s Obsessions. Mommys Obsessions did receive compensation or product in exchange for the promotion of this event. This blog did not receive compensation for the promotion of this event. 


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