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Chicago’s Biggest Book Fair Is Back July 23-26

Jul 9, 2015
The Newberry Book Fair on July 23-26, Chicago’s biggest annual used book binge, has something for every reader.

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Travel Diary

Read Eileen’s travel diary and keep up with her travels. You might just pick up some ideas for your next family vacation!

Vanilla beans and black pearl farming on Taha’a


Hioe, an American educated nurse, now runs The Vanilla Valley (email: vanillavalley@gmail.com) on the Tahitian Island of Taha’a. It was a plantation her grandfather first started, she explained, that had gotten neglected in her father’s day. “I took over eight years ago,” she says. more
Destinations, Families & Groups, Parks & Outdoors, Travel Diary, Travel Topics | comments


We are underway! Sails billowing! Big sea swells! Big sea sickness


DAY 2 — The first morning we wake up on our boat! We eat some of the food we’d provisioned ahead- awesome croissants (this is French Polynesia, after all) crispy baguettes longer than my arm, giant green grapefruit called pamplemousse, more »
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Day One of a 12-day idyll through French Polynesia


DAY ONE (June 25, 2009) — Our captain is straight out of central casting — or a Gaugin painting. He’s tall with a big smile, a long mane of sun-bleached brown hair and tattoos that tell his family story. When more »
Destinations, Getting There, Lodging, Parks & Outdoors, Travel Diary, Travel Topics | comments


A TRIP DOWN MEMORY LANE AT DISNEYLAND


The kids, three-D glasses on, are laughing at the Muppets very funny antics and all of the 3-D Special effects at the Muppet Show at Disney’s California Adventure. But these two kids aren’t four. They’re 18 -- newly minted high school graduates. Yet they are having as much fun at California Adventure and later at the iconic Disneyland (which opened in 1955) as any kid. more
Backyard Vacations, Destinations, Families & Groups, Lodging, Travel Diary | comments


A SNORKLERS AND STINGRAY-LOVERS PARADISE


DAY FOUR (June 14, 2009) — Ready to kiss a Stingray? Eight year old Timmy and 13 year old Miles Singer are game but 12 year old Max Weinberg takes a pass despite a lot of good natured ribbing — more »
Beach Vacations, Destinations, Families & Groups, Parks & Outdoors, Travel Diary, Travel Topics | comments


SKATEBOARDING WITH A CHAMPION


Douglas Cameron, the Canadian who manages the park and oversees the camp -- just in its second year -- says it’s as much for local kids as visitors. It has 64,000 square feet of ledges, boxes, v-hips, banks and stairs and half pipes, which to the uninitiated look like a lot of hills built into the cement. more
Beach Vacations, Destinations, Families & Groups, Lodging, Parks & Outdoors, Travel Diary, Travel Topics | comments


CHECKING OUT THE BEACHES AND THE RESCUED IGUANAS


DAY THREE (June 13, 2009) — Finally, a Caribbean beach that’s everything a Caribbean beach should be — quaint, with hammocks strung in the palm trees. Crystal clear water perfect for snorkeling, white sand, a first rate beach bar (known more »
Beach Vacations, Destinations, Families & Groups, Lodging, Parks & Outdoors, Travel Diary, Travel Topics, Volunteer & Service | comments


TO THE CAYMAN ISLANDS WITH TWO SKATEBOARDERS


The skate park is amazing -- all kinds of dips, jumps -- the boys got there around one and didn’t quit until it got dark just after 7 pm. (More about the camp tomorrow). more
Beach Vacations, Destinations, Families & Groups, Getting There, Parks & Outdoors, Travel Diary, Travel Topics, Volunteer & Service | comments


LAST DAY IN ARIZONA — Meet Lance, Bailey and Sonora


DAY SIX (April 4, 2009) — Lance is a Hawk, Bailey a turkey vulture and Sonora a two year-old Bald Eagle. The kids’ eyes are huge. Lance, Bailey and Sonora were all injured and nursed back to health by Liberty more »
Destinations, Families & Groups, Lodging, Parks & Outdoors, Travel Diary, Travel Topics | comments


HARD AT WORK ON VACATION AT CAMP HYATT


DAY FIVE (At the Hyatt Scottsdale) — The kids are hard at work — on vacation. They are crafting elaborate sand creations at the small sand beach that is poolside (well, at one of the nine pools) at the Hyatt more »
Destinations, Families & Groups, Lodging, Travel Diary, Travel Topics | comments





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