Articles by Jill Kowalski

The Votes Are In: 10 BEST Indoor Playgrounds and Play Spaces

Thank you to all our readers who voted to help create our second annual list of best indoor playgrounds! You would not believe how much has changed in a year. New places have been added and others have left, but the top 3 remain the same. If you would like even more indoor play places to choose from, check out…


Review: Christmas Around the World and Holidays of Light Exhibits at MSI

Now through January 5, 2020 the Museum of Science and Industry is showcasing their Christmas Around the World and Holidays of Light exhibits. We always love visiting the Museum of Science and Industry and the extra bonus of seeing beautiful Christmas lights, celebrating the season, and learning about world traditions makes it special. Being indoors while enjoying all of it…


Quick Trip: Milwaukee Zoo + Jelly Belly Factory Tour

If you are looking to take your kids on an easy and cheap getaway, Milwaukee, Wisconsin just may be for you! While searching for destinations to take our car-unfriendly kiddos, we needed a drive under 3 hours with cheap activities and plenty to do for kids. We decided on Milwaukee when I discovered that their county zoo had just opened…



Celebrate Mom at These 2019 Mother’s Day Brunches and Events

Mothers Day brunches and other special events are being held in some really fun locations that will give you the chance to celebrate moms (or grandmas, or mommies-to-be, or dog-moms). If you’re a mom, forward this list to your partner or kids… and if you’re here for inspiration to celebrate the mom in your life, you’re in the right place!…


Where to Donate School Supplies and School Supply Drives

The start of a new school year brings a lot of nerves, but especially to those children who don’t have all the proper school supplies to start the year off right. School supply drives and school supply donation sites are plentiful all over the suburbs. If your budget allows, grab some extra school supplies while out shopping for your child…


10 Unique Experiences for Teens in the Chicagoland Area

Looking for a unique experiences for teens? Whether your want to join in on the fun as a parent or send your teenager off with friends, there are great options all over the Chicagoland area of experiences that any teen would enjoy. Use these ideas as jumping off points for gifts, bonding time, birthday parties, or social outings for a…


Big Run Wolf Ranch in Lockport

Big Run Wolf Ranch in Lockport is a non-profit facility that offers a wonderful opportunity to educate your children about North American wildlife. They are open to the general public on scheduled open house days, which occur 1–2 times per month. Passionate owners and volunteers run the ranch and provide many opportunities to learn. I have been visiting the ranch…


Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center in Willow Springs

The Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center has a rich history that dates back to 1886. At this nature center, you will not only have the opportunity to engage in its historical pride, but you will also be able to enjoy the newer visitor center that teaches and engages children and families about nature conservation. Visiting the Little Red Schoolhouse and walking…


25 Rainy Day Activities in the Southwest Suburbs

Rain, rain go away! Come again another day! It’s raining, it’s pouring, staying inside is getting boring! Rainy days offer just another challenge in the life of a parent. Cabin fever can set in fast and before you know, it the kids are bouncing off the walls and complaining that they are bored. With a little help from this list of…


Hidden Oaks Nature Center in Bolingbrook

The Hidden Oaks Nature Center in Bolingbrook is a great spot for kids to learn about nature, indoors and out. There is a lot to explore here during the summer months, but don’t discount its value during the colder months. Hidden Oaks Nature Center 419 Trout Farm Road Bolingbrook, IL (630) 739-2600 Hours: Monday–Saturday 9 am – 5 pm; Sunday…


Library Story Times in the Southwest Suburbs

The library is a great place to take your little one to get out of the house and jump start their imaginations. Almost all libraries offer story times for babies and toddlers. Furthermore, most of the local libraries offer puzzles, small tables for activities, and building blocks. Others have iPads, small theatre set-ups and more. Story times can vary by…