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Weird Stuff is Fun

I haven’t lived in Kentucky very long, so when a copy of the latest in the series of “Weird” states books was offered to me, I was more than happy to accept. Weird Kentucky is a travel guide to “local legends and best kept secrets” by Jeffrey Scott Holland.

It’s a beautiful hard bound book loaded with huge clear photos of all sorts of good weird stuff that we love. It’s divided into topical sections rather than by city, so it is a bit different from most travel type books in that sense.

Naturally, being a Road Trip Mom, my favorite section was the road-side oddities. I have already had the pleasure of visiting one of them recently — Dinosaur World, which was weirdly wonderful to say the least. (I’ll have photos from our adventure there posted on my website soon). After reading this book, there is lots more that I am ready to go see for myself, and when the Bible putt-putt golf course opens for the summer here in my own town, I will be ready and waiting to putt through Noah’s Ark and right into the New Testament. My only disappointment is that there are a few items described in the book that no longer exist (and so we can’t go visit them), and not everything is open to the public either. But it’s good to know that these oddities exist (or existed as the case may be).

My kids love this book too, and it will be going in the car with us on our next few trips through Kentucky until we are familiar with everything weird we can find in our newly adopted state. I definitely recommend Weird Kentucky, and would recommend the “weird” book for your own state. There may be strange and wonderful things awaiting you, but you don’t even know it yet.

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May 6, 2008   1 Comment

Car Seat on Airplanes?

Should you bring your carseat on board the plane when traveling with your child?

Most airlines don’t require it, but your child is always safer when restrained properly. There is a great new product I came across recently that is MUCH easier than dragging a car seat through airports and on board the plane. It’s called a CARES (“child aviation restraint system”). It is the first and only FAA approved harness type child safety device.

It fits in your purse or diaper bag and keeps your child safe and secure aboard the plane. It’s a perfect solution for the car seat dilemma when flying with small children (who are big enough to no longer need a rear-facing infant seat).

So, my current recommendation is to use a CARES restraint on board the plane and check the carseat through to your destination (you’ll need that for the car when you get there). When checking your carseat with your luggage, ask that they put it into one of the huge thick plastic bags that are available at the airport (usually no charge). Without it, your carseat will be returned to you scratched up or smelling like jet fuel.

Without having to drag the carseat through security anymore, you’ll have one more hand available to take care of your child, and one less item to knock innocent people on the head as you make your way to your seat aboard the plane. :-)

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February 21, 2008   2 Comments

Speak to Me, Silvia! (GPS Nav Systems)

I love my Dodge Grand Caravan. It’s silver. So we named her Silvia. She speaks to us via the built in navigational system when we are on the road.

Silvia: “Exit freeway in 1 mile”

Mom: “Thanks Silvia!!”

Kids: “Who are you talking to, Mommy?”

No more missed exits due to excessive Car-i-oke singing or intense License Plate hunting. Sylvia tells me where to go and when to go there. She also tells me the answer to a popular question, “How much longer?!”

If you aren’t lucky enough to have a navigational system built into your vehicle, you can still get a portable GPS navigational device. These have become hugely popular recently. Tip: Makes a great gift for dads (guys love gadgets) and then you can “borrow” it whenever you like.

It tells you where to go, and if you go the wrong way, it just re-calculates some new directions for you to get you back on track. Just think, it solves the problem many husbands seem to have regarding not wanting to stop and ask for directions. You can even change the voice on some of them. My friend Devra has the Garmin Nuvi 350 Pocket Vehicle GPS Navigator. She calls it “Lee”. He speaks to her with an Australian accent.
Last summer Lee and Sylvia got to meet at the beach. How sweet. (Oh great, now I think I hear the soundtrack to Grease playing in the background). I only wish that Silvia could help me navigate through my teenager’s bedroom….

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November 5, 2007   1 Comment