The Magical Forest Wonderland

I would like to share a little beauty from my corner of the world with everyone that I experienced this weekend. My family and I went to our local Botanical Gardens. This name does not do it justice. It is indeed botanical and a garden but if I was given the honor of naming it, I would have called it The Magical Forest Wonderland or something equally as fascinating as it really is!

This was the perfect place for kids. They could run, explore and not have to worry about breaking anything. The only minor incident that occurred was when our 5 year old Bency stepped into the koi pond. I told him he could stand on the edge and look in and apparently he heard, “step into the pond and become one with the koi.” He was slightly disturbed with his wet socks and shoes and a bit flabbergasted that I didn’t have an extra set on me but he soon got over it and began running and playing in all the beautiful glory!

The kids were disappointed to leave on Saturday so with Sunday being Grandparent’s Day I invited my Mom who has never been there to join us in one more day of nature’s beautiful splendor all encapsulated in one wonderful place!

Enjoy and have a wonderful and beautiful week!

Iris, Bency and Cesar excited to start their adventure!

Having fun running around


morning dew on the ground cover





The kids climbing a huge hill

The kids getting water from the rain barrels to water the animal topiaries

Bency water the bunny topiary

The dragonfly bridge

Cesar and Dad

Bency disgruntled with his wet shoes and socks after going into the pond

Iris on butterfly bench

The kids love the stars on the walking path

Beautiful garden art everywhere

Mr. McGregor’s garden from The Tales of Peter Rabbit

A huge maze for the kids!

a beautiful view from the tower in the children’s garden

The rainbow garden


Iris posing in the stone structure


The kids crossing a stream

The kids having so much fun running around

This is the bathroom!


another beautiful view from a different tower

The roof of one of the towers

The fairy garden

The kids waiting for the fairies to move

Nature’s artwork

Grandma spending the day with me and the kids

A door knocker on the English cottage











I’m Not Sure My Kids and I Would Survive

On Friday, I decided a “fun” outing was in order as the beginning of school is only a week away. I decided upon Heritage Hill which is a living museum situated just down the road from us in Green Bay, WI. It is 50 acres of land that contains several buildings and houses from the 1800’s. Most of them are original buildings that have just been moved to this spot and restored.

As extra bonuses, it was a “free” week for kids and I roped my mom into coming along to help me keep the kids from breaking any valuable antiques and from losing anyone (eh….I mean just to come along for fun)!!

I thought this would be a great opportunity to give the kids some Wisconsin history lessons and make them appreciate the luxuries of the 21st century!

We started out in the Belgium farmhouse and explained to them about the lack of electricity, the fact you had to pump your own water and then boil it for your bath, bring in your firewood to heat the house and about the lack of bathrooms.

The Belgium House

Grandma, Bency and Iris walking around the farmhouse

Sheep outside the farm house

The stove in the farm house

Cesar wearing his puppy ears in his umbrella stroller in the farm house

A cupboard in the farm house

Cesar in the farm house being happy as can be

Iris pretending to churn butter. Iris has a blue dress under this green princess dress. She was playing dress up before we left and asked if she could just leave it on!

We left the farm house and I felt good about the attentiveness of the children, the quality of their questions proving they were indeed listening and the fact no one had touched or managed to break any of the irreplaceable 1800’s heirlooms!

Our next stop was the olden day cheese factory. This one we were not allowed to walk inside only peer through the open door into the replicated set up of the building. My mom was busy explaining to the kids the process of making cheese when I noticed my five year old; Bency, had wandered off and was busy examining a water drainage pipe. Really awesome!!!

The old cheese factory

The next few stops on the tour proved to lose Bency more as he asked to wait outside while we poked around the hospital and officers’ quarters. He clearly did not care the soldiers and the people who needed medical care in the 1800’s were made to lay on cots with mattresses made of hay or the fact that the pharmacist’s office stocked chocolate to help with constipation!

One of the buildings Bency didn’t want to linger in

We set off and walked farther down the path on our way to the fur traders section. Bency stopped to check out a drainage grate in the middle of the road and was mesmerized by it! Really awesome!!

Bency mesmerized with the drainage grate

The kids enjoyed the fur trader’s station because a man there in period clothing had them guess what each of the pelts was. Of course, Bency guesses zebra for the muskrat because he had no idea what it was and he uses any chance he can get to the say the word “zebra” because he loves them!

By this time the kids were getting hungry, thirsty and their legs were tired! We were clear across the other side of the park!! Really awesome!!

We continued walking with me making promises of a nice lunch and drinks when we got home. I let my almost 2 year old, Cesar, out of his stroller and gave the older kids turns in the umbrella stroller. Grandma didn’t whine but I’m sure if I could have fit her in the umbrella stroller she wouldn’t have minded a lift either. This park is built on a huge hill!

Our last stop was at the church. This is actually where my husband Alex and I were married in 2004. It is a great memory and whenever we have come here I’ve taken pictures of the kids in front of the church. Today Bency and Cesar weren’t so cooperative…actually not cooperative all!!

The kids in front of the church where my husband and I got married!

Now Cesar is mesmerized with a different drainage grate….we clearly need to go on a tour of drainage grates for our next outing!

We finally made it back to the van. Bency made a request, “Mom, please don’t ever bring me here again.” REALLY AWESOME!!!

As much as I love the pioneer days and sometimes romance the idea of being catapulted back and living a simpler life; I sure was happy to have that van to get us home so quick so I could whip out that bread and peanut butter I bought at the store and make my kids a nice lunch and put them on their soft comfortable mattresses for a nice nap!

One of the vegetable gardens in the park

Beautiful rose hips on the rose bushes all over the park

Iris and Bency standing in the place where the first court house in Green Bay once stood

Standing on a wooden bridge looking into the creek

Bency is obsessed with the crucifixion lately and is positive that this is the location and cross that Jesus was crucified on