The Ultimate guide to Cedar Point & Cedar Point Shores with Kids

6:59 PM
This post is brought to you by Cedar Point. We want to thank them for having us, & for this opportunity. All opinions in this post are of my own.

I could be in the minority but when a discussion of going to Cedar Point as a family had come up previously, my mind immediately went to 'no'. I just think when I think of CP I think, of older kids, like teens & adults. Not young kids. & after talking with some of my mom friends they had the same thought. But I came to find out I was wrong. Very wrong.

Yes, there is obviously alot of large roller coasters to ride that younger children can't do, & you probably wouldn't want them to do anyway. But there is so much you can do WITH young children too!

Things to know before you go:

- Tickets: tickets can be purchased on line prior to your visit on the Cedar Point website or at the gate when you arrive for your day of fun

-Discounts: be sure to check the website and social media for deals and discounts. If you live in the area, look for discounts at local retail establishments for admission discounts – it just might be worth running in to a local grocery store for the admission savings.

-Hotels: there are lots of options fro accommodations in the area surrounding Cedar Point. If you’re looking to stay closer to the action, there are options right on Cedar Point’s property for you to choose. Staying at a Cedar Point resort can give you special benefits such as discount admission or early park admission so it might be worth the additional cost if you’re an early riser.

- Parking : Parking is fairly easy. It's pricey at $20. But if you are already paying the $20, I would spend the extra to get preferred parking to be closer to the park. It won't seem worth it til you are leaving for the day then you will wish you had! ha!
- What’s Allowed: be sure to review the frequently asked questions so you’re aware of what’s allowed in the picnic area and in the actual park itself. This would have come into handy for me that I would have found out about a new policy the week we went about cell phone & recording on rides &  in the lines. If you saw my IG stories of this, you will get it & how embarrassed I was! Ha!
 - Getting around: CP isn't Disney huge, but quite large. CP has maps everywhere but I really suggest downloading the app!  It has maps with real time, GPS on where you are. It also has showtimes of the day, ride wait times, food  & has a friend finder ability! 

Okay-- lets get to our trip!

When we started off our trip, it didn't start very well. It was side way raining HARD. We were soaked. Luckily, by the time I was done talking with guest services about our time there it had pretty much stopped! We wanted to start from back of the park to front. & it just so happened that, that is where Camp Snoopy was which is where the girls wanted to go right away!

A few things that Camp Snoopy has that Planet Snoopy doesn't is a few small coasters. They are small, but to you little ones they seem as big as the "big kid" coaster. My girls just loved that they got their pictures taken on them! Somehow my girls talked them into letting them ride twice in a row, making the short & sweet ride extra fun!

Another part of Camp Snoopy that makes it fun, is Camp Snoopy Theater! You get to meet some of the Peanuts gang! They have fun games & a dance party you can do with the character as well!

Outside of Camp Snoopy & Planet Snoopy, Kensley's options was were more limited. Things like bumper cars, the scrambler ect were all in her height range.

There was still plenty to do outside of rides! 

Including food! There is tons of places to eat at Cedar Point. I was so happy with selections. There is plenty of normal theme park food but also chains. Like Annie Annes pretzels, Johnny Rockets & YALL there was a CHIK FIL A! SOLD! There is something for any pickers in your family. There is something for everyone.

There are also tons of shows around the park. We enjoyed them so much! You have to make sure you look at the showtimes, & make time to go see some! 

Shows include:
-Fire & Ice {this one is on the beach!}
-Lights, Camera, Action {this was our favorite! We wanted to see it twice!}
-Vertical Impact {amazing, you have to make sure you make this one! Its a mix of acrobatics & BMX & all sorts of fun stuff. If it's a hot day, make sure to get in the "splash zone"}

Beyond the thrill of the park, Cedar Point also has a water park {additional admission required} We LOVED this waterpark. There was SO much to do it was unreal! By the time we were leaving, we were walking out & found a entire different splash area we missed! It really brought out Brandon & I's kid side going down the slide with the girls! SO much family fun! We did a race down one slide as a family. They let us all four go only together & at the same time. We did that so many times. Spoiler Alert, Brandon won every time! LOL

& the fun doesn't end at the end of the day when the sun goes down! Make sure you check out Cedar Point Nights! {Now - August 19th} There is a tastebud tour, live entertainment, a silent disco {yall you get headphones to jam out to music yourself SO COOL} everything glows up in the "Glow Zone" &  there is fireworks!!

via  Cedar Point Blog
via Cedar Point

via Cedar Point
& that was our trip! As you can see, there really is something for the entire family at Cedar Point. From sun up til sun down!  It is the perfect summer, midwest get away! You can go one day, but I really suggest doing at least a 2 day get away to make sure you do the water park too!

#mrsreads currently

1:11 PM
I meant to put together my favorite summer reads ever, and then it was like I blinked & summer was over.
Maybe next year.
I am however, going to share with you some of the books I did happened to read this summer, & that I currently love!

Who hasn't read this book at this point.
It is eye opening, & amazing. I feel that is perfect for moms. But certainly any woman could read & take something from. I had perfect Ah ha moments, & come to Jesus moments. The whole book is about Lies we tell ourselves, & how to overcome them. She a cross between a life coach & your best friend.

My girl Melissa wrote this book. WHO JUST GOT HER OWN SHOW ON TV. I love her. & I promise you will too. The thing is Melissa says everything that I have said or want to say but 10xs better hence her own book.  & I promise she says everything you want to say but don't. I laughed & cried in this book. I think if you read it, you will see why her & I are so much a like. She is hilarious in the best possible way, & she is as real as they get. This book will inspire you to do just as the title says, eat cake & be brave, & encourage you to have come courage ;)

First, if you are not following Jenny on Instagram {@jennymollen } RIP @jennyandteets2, stop what you are doing right now & do it. She will hate me for saying for this in a intro about her, but she's Jason Biggs wife. Whos lot in life is to be known for anything but being Jason Biggs wife. If you have read any Babe Walker book, she reminds me of her, but not quite as prude & a mom. This book will have you rolling I promise! Her witty impulsiveness, the way she loves in big ways & drive to prove people wrong reminds me so much of myself. Its a great funny, light/heavy read about motherhood & life! Apparently this is her second book so I went a little backwards reading this; but I already have her other book on my nightstand ready to go when school goes back.

& there you have it!
These books are page turners all 3 I read in less than a month back to back.
You wont want to put them down, unless you are putting it down to take in something that they said {see also back to my "ah ha" moments}!
What are you currently reading? I'd love to know!

Our bucket list-less summer

8:33 PM
I am normally the queen of a good summer bucket list.
We love as a family getting together & curating the perfect list of what we want to do for the summer.

We have had a lot going on, & for about year and counting I have had some medical issues we are trying to resolve. We were scared. So when it all started happening last summer after nationals, I canceled Kennedys last dance intensives & we decided to knock out our bucket list in the last few weeks we had left. It was fun but kinda stressful trying to get all things in.

This summer, I decided we would do without a summer bucket list.
Which meant, no plans.
No VBS, no ballet intensives, no camps, no reading programs.

Sure we are still doing things, that are summer bucket list worthy.
But we are focusing on other things.

Trips & water parks are so fun.

But what your kids are going to remember as they get older when they think of their childhood summer is the feeling, it is what our summer of not having a bucket list is all about.
Having a magical summer doesn't have to include trips & spending money.

So what are we doing this summer?
Letting summer be magical by itself.

We are having ice cream for dinner.
Having a second, third and maybe even fourth Popsicle when you normally limit to one.

The girls are having sleepovers in the living room. & it is "the coolest ever".

They are staying up late, & sleeping in.

We are reading books, lots of books in trees.

Making chalk drawings.

Turning on the hose & letting whatever fun happens..happen.

We are running around barefoot & possibly going a entire day without putting on a pair of shoes.

Piling pillows & blankets on the couches & floors & watching movies til everyone is passed out.

Staying outside from sun up til sun down.

Staying in our pajamas all day long.

Catching lighing bugs.

Eating smores as often as possible.

Putting on plays & performances in living room.

Making forts out of quilts, inside..outside..everywhere.

Our summer is ending, & when we sat down to dinner to night to talk about favorite parts of the summer. Not one trip was mentioned. It was the moments that were in tangible.

Don't focus on the planned magical moments.
The magic is in summer itself.
Black bottomed feet, & Popsicle stained chins.

Road Trip Essentials with Kids + Road Trip Check List

12:19 AM
Traveling with kids can be headache.
The girls are at the age that we really enjoy traveling with them.
But one of the reasons its enjoyable is planning ahead & being prepared.

Before you leave for any road trip in the car make sure your car is ready to go. I promise it will make a huge diffrence.

- Clean out your car

Empty it all out & vacuum everything out. I promise it makes a difference.

- Check air pressure & oil

Make sure the outsides are just as taken care of as the inside! Finish off any fluids  & make sure you have a battery pack or jumper cables with you! I hope you have a emergency car kit, if not I highly suggest getting one to have for everyday travel in the car not just for a road trip!

- Update your GPS or GPS apps

Waze is my favorite GPS app. I don't travel without having it on my phone!

This isn't a requirement. But it always helps ;)

- Chargers

 Grab all the chargers you will need. I love this one to plug more than one device in. Make sure you charge up all devices the night before!


I keep this little pop up trash bin in my car in all times, its perfect for road trips! When you don't need it, it collapse for easy storage!

- Portable Potty

if you have little ones you know that they have to go at the most inconvenient times. & sometimes the exit that is closest doesn't have a gas station or the it isn't safe or clean to take them in. This thing has come in handy I don't know how many times with the girls on trips! I always keep it in the trunk!


-Stock up on snacks

I would like to say we pack all healthy snacks, & while most are some what. What makes a road trip, a road trip is the road trip snacks, amirite?! Everyone needs some jerky & pringles! I like to put it all in a basket for easy grabbing & keeping it all contained!

- DVD's

If you have a DVD player bring some along. I highly recommend something that is a multi feature. It so nice to have more than one movie on one disc or a series from a show. I really like stopping by Cracker Barrel & picking up movies there. The girls love Little House on the Prarie, old school Duck Tales & Chip & Dale. This road trip I got the Herbie the Love Bug series. It was a hit! If you are watching anything on iPads make sure everything is downloaded before you hit the road!

- Blankets & Loveys

Make sure you have blankets & their personal comfort item.

- Things to do

Part of things going smoothly is keeping them occupied! I try to get everything without them knowing, so everything is surprise when they get in the car.

Here are our faves:

The cookie tray is for them to use as a tray! Its great for eating & for when they are coloring it catches anything from falling! I also keep wipes, & paper towels in there!

9. Books
11. iPads

What to do in Gatlinburg Tennessee with your Family

9:45 PM
We just got back from Gatlinburg for Kennedy's dance nationals, but while we were there we did a little vacation, trying to do as much as we could as family while there.

We had so much fun, & already planning a trip back so we can do more without breaks for dancing. & get a cabin next time. We needed to be close to the convention center, so we got a hotel in town so it was within walking distance.
I was so pleasantly surprised on how much there was to do with young children. I was little nervous.

My biggest thing I didn't like for kids, & mostly Kennedy as she is allergic, was walking down the main strip was the smoking. I really feel like everyone smokes down there. It was every other person. It made it difficult, but it won't keep us from coming back again. Just will make sure I have her inhaler on me rather than back in the room!

1. The Strip

Besides the smoking, we had so much fun just walking up & down the main drag downtown. There are little alley ways that have such fun shops & places to get snacks! The girls loved looking around the candy store!
We loved this "gem mine" store, where you could sift through buckets of dirt to find gems. The girls couldn't get enough of it & thought it was the coolest!

2. Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies

I can't say enough good things about this place. Brandon & I went while I was pregnant with Kensley, I knew I couldn't wait to come back with both the girls. It is SO kid-friendly. & lots of stuff that is hands on. The girls loves the "tube" where the fishes swim all around you. & feeding & touching the stingrays! I really can't recommend this place enough!

You really can't go wrong going anywhere in the park! We really wanted to make our way up to Cades Cove, but ran out of time! On a suggestion for a friend, we went to the Chimneys Trail Head
I wish I got more photos here, but I slipped on a rock & busted my knee pretty bad. The girls swam in the water & had a absolute blast! This is great with little ones, because there really isn't much of a hike at all, you walk over a bridge & you see all the beauty! If you go during the summer months, pack swimsuits for the kids! Just watch out for slippery rocks ;)

4. Roaring Fork Motor Nature Trail

This trail is amazing. It is a one way motor trail, meaning you drive the trail. It has stop offs, what seems like every few feet to stop & walk around. Nature seriously closes in around you & the beauty of this trail is beyond words. There is two falls you can hike to. Rainbow & Grotto. We choose Grotto Falls, because it was the shortest & most easy for the girls. Turns out I needed to be more worried about myself. The trail to the falls 1.4 miles, & very much at a incline about the whole way. We were going against the clock so it didn't get dark on us. I think we would have had a much more pleasant experience if had taken time. So I suggest that. The waterfall makes it so worth it. It is the only waterfall that you can you go behind. It is so beautiful. The girls haven't stopped talking about it. We also saw 1 possibly 2 bears! We are unsure if the second was the same bear we saw the first time or a different one!

Grotto Falls

5. The Dixie Stampede

This is such a fun dinner show! My girls loves the horses & the show in general!
Just a FYI if you find it maybe a issue for you little ones, or you. This dinner show does not use any silverware. The soup you drink from a bowl & the rest with your fingers. My girls loved it. The food wasn't exactly their favorite but Brandon & I enjoyed it! We all couldn't get enough of the creamy vegetable soup! It was mouthwatering! The show is very entertaining! The girls might have enjoyed the food more if they had paid attention to eating more ha! They couldn't keep their eyes off the show! If you buy your tickets ahead, which I suggest. Make sure you stop by the ticket box to pick up your physical tickets before getting in line! We didn't know this & stood in line forever only to be told to go get our actual tickets & get back in line! What a pain! 

& there you have it!
I cant wait to add more to list! What is your favorite thing to do Gatlinburg? Let me know so I can add it to our list for our next visit!

Watch our trip video below!