By: Jennifer Murray

7 Tips and Tricks for Visiting Cedar Point

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I’ve been neglecting this space because we’ve been CRAY busy in the month of May: Brad’s Trip to Idaho, Baseball Games, Soccer Games, End of School Madness, a Trip to Cedar Point, My Dad’s 80th Birthday, My Dad’s Knee Replacement Surgery. WHEW!  My apologies!

This is our 3rd time to return to Cedar Point and just when we thought it couldn’t get better it does each and every time! The older our boys get the more they are able to enjoy and the more we get to do all together as a family.  Everyone was 48″ this year (Yay, Henry!) so very little was off limits – and these boys LOVE speed and coasters! However, they still enjoyed some time at Camp and Planet Snoopy, so it’s the perfect age!

We’ve learned several tips and tricks over our last 3 visits and you know we love passing those on to YOU!  So here you go!

>>> 7 Tips and Tricks for Visiting Cedar Point

1. Download the Cedar Point App Before You Go. You can study the park map, check out the rides and height requirements, and have lots of planning tools at your fingertips. Once you are inside the park it has a Friend Finder tool that is great to find members in your group if you decide to divide and conquer.

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2. If Possible Stay On Cedar Point Property. Not only is it super convenient and a huge time-saver, you get free parking, shuttle service and EARLY ENTRY!  We had 4 roller coasters ridden before the park even opened!  We stayed at the newly renovated Hotel Breakers. Couldn’t ask for more – on-site dining choices, right on the beach, fabulous accommodations, and close enough to walk right into the Resort Entrance (less traffic). We were more than impressed with their attention to details and upscale yet family-friendly feel. Did I mention they have a Starbucks?

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3. If You Have Little Ones or Not-So-Brave Ones Who Aren’t Up to Coasting, Take Advantage of the Parent Swap Program. Here’s how it works: one parent waits in line to a coaster or other height-restricted ride. After riding, they give their Parent Swap pass to the ride operator, and the other parent/guardian, who’s been taking care of the little ones, can walk up the exit to get right on the ride. You can get a slip for authorization at Guest Services.

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4. Pack a Refillable Water Bottle. Any restaurant or food vendor will fill it up for no charge.

5. Just Because You Are at an Amusement Park, Doesn’t Mean You Have to Settle for Amusement Park Food. Cedar Point offers better food selection over any other venue!  Lots of chains that we were familiar with like Panda Express, Chick-fil-A, Johnny Rockets, Famous Daves, etc and other Cedar Point originals. But if you’d rather devour a coney dog and funnel cake fries before you hit the Tilt-A-Whirl, by all means (just don’t sit next to me)!

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6.  Take a Breather at Beach. Cedar Point is located right on Lake Eerie and it is gorgeous. The beach is great and it’s a nice little getaway from the hustle and noise of the park.

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 7. Don’t Waste Your Money Anywhere Else. If you are looking for roller coasters, tons of kiddie rides, and an overall unmatched experience, the thrill is at the Roller Coaster Capital of the World!  The boys are already begging to go back and we’ve barely been home a week! 

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A special thank you to Cedar Point for hosting our family as part of #BloggingatCP event! 6 grateful hearts for the opportunity and hospitality!

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By: Jennifer Murray

5 Things That Saved My Sanity This Week

This week I’ve had the privileged title of “Fort Holder-Downer”, while Brad is across the country. It comes with responsibilities of transporter, homework overseer, meal provider, house manager, conflict revolutionist, and a 4,127 other roles.

And YES, I do these every single day, I just usually have back-up. 

I have the best teammate I could ask for, so it’s HARD when he’s gone. It’s good in lots of ways too for all of us. It stretches us and forces us to step up, and our appreciation grows for one another, but I’m not going to lie and tell you it’s no big deal.

I know that I have it made. And every single time I “single mom” it for a few days, I spend time praying for single mom friends. Y’all are the champions, because this load was made for more than one.

You know the wives that the husband goes away and she like remodels the basement, harvests kale, and finishes the kids scrapbooks from birth to age 17 while he’s gone for like 2 minutes? So not me.

I’ll just be thankful at the end of the week that all limbs are intact and there was no vomit involved. That’s when I pat myself on the back for a job well done.

I will say that this has been my best “Fort-Holder-Downer” run so far. Perhaps it’s because the boys are in school and that takes some of the load off – but Hello, homework x4 is no cakewalk. Perhaps it’s because I’m finally finding my stride as a mama. Perhaps it’s because the boys are older and able to help out more. Or more than anything it’s probably God’s grace just carrying me through as I’m learning to depend on Him more.

But I also gave myself some grace too…I gave myself a break, because we all need those sometimes, right?

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Here are 5 Things That Helped Save My Sanity This Week:

1. Simple Meals

No pizza or fast food was consumed, but I did go easy on meals since I was *just* cooking for five, and we had commitments every evening right after dinner. Chicken Tacos, Pulled Pork Sandwiches, Smoothies, and Soft Pretzels were on the menu and no one complained that I didn’t spend enough time prepping their dinner.  Note to self – do this more! 

2. Getting My Zzzzz’s

Usually I’m tempted to go to bed late when I’m on my own, because I CRAVE that alone + quiet time after a long day, but I did much better about getting to bed at a decent time. And usually I sleep horrible without Brad, but I used my lavender + cedarwood combo this time and slept like a baby!

3. Non-Guilty Pleasures

 I snuck in an episode of Call the Midwife, and read some light-hearted pages of this great read, and I didn’t feel guilty that every load of laundry wasn’t put away at the end of the day.

4. Getting In Some Steps and Sunshine

Every day a 1/2 hour before I left for the afternoon pick-up, I took a walk in our neighborhood. The weather has been gorgeous this week and the trees in Indiana are showing off like magic right now, so it was a great time to take it in, clear my mind, and pray.

5. Tidy Over Spotless. 

I kept things picked up and orderly, because that’s just how we function best around here. There’s a lot going and if we start getting lazy there will be no finding the the soccer cleats, homework folder, beloved stuffed animal, etc. There’s something about making the bed that starts the day off well and something about putting things in their place that ends the day well.

How about YOU? What are some ways you’re saving your sanity and giving yourself some grace? I’d love to hear about it, and learn from each other! 

 

 

 

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By: Jennifer Murray

Essential Oils for Sports Families

We are officially a 2 sport family this spring. For the first time the boys are divided – Brooks is playing soccer and LOVING it, and the other 3 are playing baseball again. Sure, it would have been more practical for them all to do the same thing, but we’ve never wanted to push them into doing a sport just because their brothers are or making them all play when it’s not something they love.

We love supporting them with their own gifts and interests. And although I loved seeing them all in one uniform last spring, I love watching them on the sideline cheering each other on as brothers.  Nobody has better brothers rooting for them than these dudes. 

Of course I have a to-go bag of our favorite essential oils with us on the sideline too. It’s our first aid kit + more for all sorts of things that might come up. Better to be prepared as a soccer and baseball mom, right? So along with the snacks, water, and all the equipment we have some  of these favorites with us as well!

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Lavender* – This is nicknamed the “Swiss Army Knife” of essential oils for a reason. It’s GREAT for all sorts of sports-related mishaps. When the boys were learning to ride their bikes this was our BFF and they requested it every time they had a crash.

{We also like using Lavender* with Lemon* and Peppermint* for seasonal discomforts that so many of us are battling right now. It’s a powerful trio to keep our noses and throats happy.} 

Peppermint* – This is a must have for keeping cool on the sidelines, which we’ll use more as the temps warm up. There was also an interesting study recently on PubMed.gov (The National Library of Medicine’s website) on the instant effects of peppermint and exercise performance. It’s great post-workout too!

Purification* – This one is a great natural bug repellant. We used it camping last year, and I plan on having it with us on the fields as well. In fact, I’ll probably make this super easy Natural Bug Repellant recipe and have it in a spray bottle for easy use!

Melaleuca* – Does the thought of shared baseball helmets gross anyone else out? I think it’s because I fear those crawly head bugs more than you can imagine. Thankful to have a natural repellant Just.In.Case.  And you better believe I gave a good wipe down to the helmet we found at Goodwill.

Stress Away* - just in case it gets a little too intense. ;) Actually, this is one of my absolute FAV scents. I love wearing it as perfume and so does Brad. As cologne that is.

Fitness – This is a new blend from the new Young Living partnership with Oola from the Infused7 Kit I got last week in my Essential Rewards order. It has been specially formulated to uplift, energize, inspire fitness goals – and has a great motivating scent. I used it before and after my workout on Saturday and look forward to using it often.

{The Infused 7 Set includes 6 other blends: Fun, Family, Field, Faith, Finance, and Friends; so I’ll probably bring a few of those along too!}

DiGize – Finally, I don’t leave home without this one EVER. Actually I have, but have learned my lesson. With 6 tummies in our family, there’s bound to be a grumbly one from time to time and this has come to our rescue more than a handful of times over the past year!

* Denotes an oil that comes in the Premium Starter Kit

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Curious to learn more about essential oils and the Premium Starter Kit? You can find out All You Need To Know About Getting Started and the awesome freebies I’m offering this month over on this post.

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I’m throwing in ONE MORE BONUS for the rest of April for my awesome readers here at 4tunate.net. When you sign up for a Premium Starter Kit, I’m throwing in a Bottle of Thieves Spray too!  This is a great one for on-the-go and travel!  Wonderful for cleaning surfaces (think porta-potty) and using in pinches for cleaning hands.

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>>>> Who’s up to bat for this awesome deal? Just send me an email at 4tunate.net {at} gmail with the Subject Line “THIEVES SPRAY” to let me know you’re new on the roster! 

How about YOU? Are your kids playing any spring sports? What do you make sure you don’t leave home without? 

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