chucktown (part 2)

Our recent trip to Charleston was wonderful and we found so many great spots to visit as a family. Especially a family with young ones. As we already shared here there are some great things you can do as a family if you are visiting for the first time. Some of them are even free! 

We wanted to share a few more that we will be sure to visit again the next time we come back. 

Whenever we travel we love to find new toy stores that have unique hand made toys. The Magnifilous Toy Emporium immediately caught our attention from the street because of the small scale carousel in the store. Really! It's the first time we visited a toy store where there was a carousel you could ride! Well, that is if you are a small child. Our boys loved it! They giggled as it lit up and cranked out old tunes as they rode around and around on it. For $1 it was a very worthwhile investment! This store had a very hands on approach, as it should with toys. But a few cool things were a musical piano that played by itself, a real train horn you could pull to hear the whistle, a tall tower where you rolled a marble down and played a song, and a variety of quality brand toys that made you want to sit down and play with each one. Truly it was so much fun being in that store we were sad we had to leave. Before we left though one of the workers took us to the little courtyard in the back and showed the boys some giant bubbles with one of their special wands. We left knowing we'd be back for sure! 

For a sweet treat you have to stop for an icecream at Jeni's. Their icecream is made from grass grazed cow's milk (which means no hormones, and makes us happy!) and they offer amazing gourmet flavors as well as seasonal flavors. They also make their own waffle cones right there! You can smell the vanilla goodness from the street and you will not be able to stop yourself from going in! We also found out that they have one right here in our stomping grounds in Atlanta, hurray! (And since we've been back home we have already made a trip to it!)

If you have room for another sweet treat, or if you'd like a quick bite in the morning be sure to head to GlazedYou can choose from a variety of flavors here, made fresh. And by fresh I mean you can sit and watch them roll them out while you munch on the flavors of the day. We are donut people (um, who isn't?) and loved the donuts here. 

photo credit due to the talented  Amelia at Bloom and Lo

photo credit due to the talented Amelia at Bloom and Lo

We did some shopping along King St. and stopped in for lunch at  Jim-n-Nick's BBQ and loved that they had a simple and yummy menu with some options for the boys (grilled cheese, which is always a favorite in our home). We also just realized they have a location locally here in Acworth, so we will be able to visit again! Yum! 

And of course we headed out to the beach a couple times, driving over the amazing Arthur Ravenel Jr. bridge. We can't wait to visit again!

chucktown (part 1)

We recently made a quick trip to historic Charleston, SC for a little family vacation and work trip all rolled into one. Though a short trip, it was our second visit within a year. It has easily become one of our favorite coastal cities.

The old buildings, cobblestone roads, sailboats, yummy eateries, one-of-a kind stores, and short distance to the beach are all wonderful things about Charleston. But along with all that, there are so many things to do as a family. Like the park by the pier (just across the Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge) that has tables for picnicking and a great outdoor playground for the kids to burn energy. Or the waterfront park that has fountains to splash in, and a long pier with swings to watch sailboats and sunsets (a favorite place of ours). Lots of kid-friendly restaurants too, not to mention yummy candy stores like River Street Sweets where they offer free samples of their pralines! 

To say we love traveling is a bit of an understatement. There is so much to see and so much to do when you visit a new place! We wanted to share some of our favorite highlights for you, especially if you are making a trip with your own family.

There are many more places we wanted to explore but didn't have the time this go-round. So here are a few places worth going to (in our opinion). 

Because we are early risers (not really intentionally when you have two little ones that get up super early), a top criterion for breakfast was a place that opened early. Bakehouse is a cafe downtown that offers it's own home-made granola (delicious!), but it also opens at 8:00 a.m. on the weekends. We had parfaits with juice and finished our coffee down at the waterfront park. A wonderful start to the day! 

charleston {personal}

It's so different when you travel anywhere with kids. Vacation is more appropriately named "trip" as it really isn't a vacation for the parents. We loved taking our boys to see new sites, splash in the ocean, eat out and sleep in a fancy hotel, but it was a lot of work too. And that's okay. 
We made some wonderful memories and relished the coastal life during our short three day stay. We LOVE the ocean. We love the coastal way of life next to the ocean, and if it were up to us we'd have a home right by the ocean. God is good though and knows what is best for us and we feel blessed to have been able to make this short trip. It was our youngest boy's first time at the ocean and our oldest's second. To say they loved the water is an understatement. I think they could've happily spent the entire trip at the ocean (or in it for that matter).
We were able to walk around Charleston and visit some fabulous places, as well as eat some delicious food. One of our favorite things about traveling is the food. Charleston has so many great places to eat, if only we could've stayed another month to try them all! We will visit again one day for sure! A few things that were interesting about this town; it seems to be a bike town and we saw a lot of Schwinn bikes everywhere. There were so many different styles and so many different colors, it was something to see. It's a college town so there's a good mix of older retired people with young college kids. It's a town of love (we actually did see a proposal the first evening we were there—and Jonah totally called that one before it happened) as there is so much beauty there on the water. 

Finally on our last day we took time to go tour the USS Yorktown Aircraft Carrier. Let me say that if you have a three year old, this is the best place for them to visit! A great big boat plus airplanes? It's a win all around. Our boys loved it, we had a blast and we hope to make it back to the ocean sooner rather than later.