Our Favorite Breweries Along Seneca Lake, New York

So I shared with you all the amazing wineries we hit up, during our vacation at Seneca Lake, but I left out all the breweries we loved! I wanted to save all those for today’s blog post!

The wineries and breweries we visited during our trip were all so spectacular. The sips and eats were delicious and just look at that view!

I don’t hate it!

Not a bad place to set up shop and run a business. At least not in the summer – winter might be another story, but you’d have enough wine + beer, so it would be fine right?!

Ok – back to our trip!

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First up we hit up Two Goats Brewery – it was actually less than 2 miles from where we were staying and it came highly recommended. Again, look at that view.

Charles and I shared some beers that we wanted to try and enjoyed the scenery. This place we knew ahead of time was on the smaller side so we left the littles at home and enjoyed the quiet.

The boys would have gone nuts over the bar trick the bartenders do that gets the $1 bills stuck on the ceiling. They told me they have a big party when the ceiling gets too full, pull it all down and donate it to a local charity – cool, right?

The other cool thing about Two Goats is they only have one thing on the menu.

Beef on Weck. 

I’m pretty sure you should stop whatever it is you are doing right now and go there to eat this sandwich.

It will change your life! You can thank me later.

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Next up on our tour was a brewery on the opposite side of Seneca Lake – Climbing Bines – which is a craft ale brewery and hop farm! They are actually one of New York State’s first Farm breweries, which is pretty cool!

Climbing Bines grows their own hops and barley, right on sight! Which was really cool to see, fun to take pictures of and the boys loved racing down the lanes – something for everyone!

//  Tropical Print Dress under $20

Charles and I enjoyed a little tasting of the brews while the boys raced up and down the lanes. It was a nice way for them to get their energy out and entertain each other while we enjoyed the views!

Climbing Bines had a bunch of beers on tap and a great space outside and inside for people to relax and enjoy themselves.

Brooks got comfortable under the bar – whatever works!

Everyone who does a tasting at Climbing Bines also gets a little tasting glass as a souvenir – with is really cute!

 

A super family friendly spot that is different from all the rest – if you are in the Seneca Lake area, add this to your list! The hops farm is super cool!

 

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Back to our side of Seneca Lake – a favorite restaurant + brewery we hit up twice during our vacation – Grist Iron Brewery.

This place is gorgeous, massive, seems brand new and the beers + food is EXCELLENT.

Tons of space for the kids to roam around and be safe, games outside to play, live music and a great selection of beers to try – I tested a few and they were all very delicious!

And again, a pretty sick view!

Because of proximity, solid food + drinks and space for the kids, we hit up Grist Iron twice and loved it each time.

 

How crazy is this bathroom sign? Had to share!

 

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Next up on our travels – Lucky Hare Brewing!

// top  /  earrings  / sunglasses / denim 

 

This place is really different because the family that owns it turned their farm house into the brewery + bar! It’s defiantly on the smaller side, but it has a unique vibe and because it legit was a home, its super home-y! Ha!

Charles liked these beers a TON!

 

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This time we made our way to a whole different Finger Lake – Keuka – to stop at Abandon Brewing Co. 

 

Charles was dying to try this place out all week, but it was a little bit of a drive from Seneca – we weren’t sure if we were going to make it happen with the kids, but we totally did and it was worth it because {we think!} it was some of the best beers up there!

 

This place was in a old barn, so on the smaller side, but a really cool vibe. Graham found a game and entertained himself for a while, looking oh so cute in the corner. The concentration and determination with this kid is insane!

 

Oh look – Lake Keuka!

 

In summary – some of our favorite beers of the trip {and we tried A LOT} of beers!

 

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Next up – Wagner Brewing Co. which is also Wagner Vineyards – so if you like wine and your husband likes beer {or vice versa!} this is the place for you. This place is HUGE! Massive! So I’m assuming it does well – between the brewery, vineyards and a separate restaurant by the same owners – it seems like it!

The beers were good at this spot, but the view was better!

 

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Another spot worth mentioning that we hit up after a hike one day is Rooster Fish Brewing Co. This place is cool because its actually in downtown Watkins Glen – has a nice little bar/restaurant area with good food, and I really enjoyed the beers here too! Definitely a good place to stop at if you are down in the Watkins Glen area!

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And finally, the first place we stopped at when we arrived in Watkins Glen on our first day was the Village Marina – which is a restaurant right on the lake. It had outdoor games for the kids, great views of the boats and the lake, outside seats and some really great New York local beer options, which is why I wanted to add this to the list! A nice local spot to check out!

Wow! This was a LONG post and totally wore me out writing it!

I think I need a beer!

Cheers to all the fun + delicious brewery options in Seneca Lake!

Have you been to any of the breweries + wineries in the area? I’d love to hear your favorite!

Happy 11th Birthday Jackson!

Today Jackson is 11 years old!

I couldn’t let today go by without giving him a little shout out and love on the blog. After all, this little blog started 10+ years ago all because of this little dog!

He, along with my love for the Wizard of Oz, was my inspiration for it all!

It’s hard not to look back at when I first got Jackson, because its sort of also the beginning of EVERYTHING. I got Jackson right after I graduated college. It was a new chapter, fresh start, everything that going off into the world after school is meant to be.

And obviously I needed a little sidekick with me.

Jackson has been with me through it all – countless jobs, a number of apartments and our first home, training for and running three marathons, getting engaged, wedding planning, all the amazing trips we’ve been on {including our honeymoon}, both pregnancies, the birth of Brooks and then Graham – Jackson has been here the whole time.

It’s crazy to think about! While my blog has evolved with me over the years, Jackson has been sitting right by my side the whole time. And although he doesn’t get the amount of screen time on the blog he did before Brooks and Graham came along, he’s still the same calm, sweet, little dog too we all know and love.

 

And on his 11th birthday, I had to give him a shout out on this little blog too – 11 years strong! We love you Jackson!

Should Jackson make more of a regular appearance on the blog? Let me know if you want to see more of him and I can definitely make it happen!

Hiking The Orange Trail – Wissahickon Valley Creek

It’s no secret that apparently I’ve picked up the hiking bug lately. Probably not the best term to use when talking about hiking and bugs and being outside in general, but you know what I mean. I have been LOVING this new little hobby. I’ve been finding myself researching trails, downloading apps and planning more and more time outdoors with my family.

It’s sort of awesome.

Last weekend we hiked the Orange Trail that is part of the Wissahickon Valley Creek area – it’s something I used to run all.the.time back in the day when I was marathon training, but I never did the actual trails. I’m thinking that Saturday family hikes might need to be a new thing!

The boys are loving being outside, having space to run around and explore and I am loving seeing new parts of Philadelphia and Pennsylvania in general that we have lived so close to for years and never been to! It’s crazy how exploring nearby can give you a whole new viewpoint of where you live.

Half of the trail was rocky and rugged, which I wore Graham on my back and the second half was along Forbidden drive which was perfect because it is a large, multi-use trail that is very popular and had lots of space and room for the boys to run!

I can’t wait to come back and do this trail again in the Fall when the leaves are changing – it will be so pretty! I have been doing more research of it since our recent visit and the park is SO BIG! There are so many pretty spots I want to come back and explore!

We didn’t do the entire orange trail because its almost 7.5 miles long, but we did about half of it and took one of the bridges across the creek to circle back along Forbidden Drive. We started and ended at Rittenhouse Town – and it was nice to have the option to cross over the creek for a way back should we have needed it with the kids. I’m seeing that around 4 miles is the perfect time for the kids to be outside before getting overtired, but again – it all depends on how tough the trail actually is.

I see lots more hiking in our future – planning our next outing for this weekend as we speak!

Aside from my newfound love for hiking, I also have a newly found love for the Receptra Naturals Active Hemp pure CBD Oil in my healthy living routine. It is made from organically grown hemp in Colorado by a family owned and operated company – and it is Vegan friendly as well!

With all the traveling this summer, I was starting to feel a little run down from it all, so the opportunity to try out this  pure CBD Oil – I was excited to see how it would affect my energy and my sleep! The antioxidants that naturally occur in hemp are essential to improving blood flow to the brain and body, ultimately removing many of the toxins that jeopardize health.

This summer, I’ve been enjoying taking the oil as an added well balanced ratio of omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, not to mention, the oils are rich in naturally occurring antioxidants that help improve blood flow to the brain and body. {Everyone needs a little extra of that – amiright?} Another bonus of this oil that I was excited to learn about was people use this product to naturally boost their immune and central nervous systems. Hemp Oil is an excellent source of omega fatty acids, antioxidants, and other essential nutrients and vitamins.

Since I’ve also picked up my workout routine in terms of strength training { and less cardio – more on that in another post!} I did find that I was less sore after a killer workout from taking the oils, where I totally would have been in the past!

And I have to say – the Fresh Berry flavor is really tasty!

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Receptra Naturals. The opinions and text are all mine.

#CrazyHealthy POM Wonderful + American Ninja Warrior SWAG Bag Giveaway

It’s been a hot minute since I’ve done a giveaway on the blog, so I am excited about today’s post!  So excited in fact that I thought it would be fun to twirl around with a towel in the neighborhood.

#notnaked

If you couldn’t tell from the photo + the super cool towel, today is all about the POM – POM Wonderful 100% Pomegranate Juice !

This summer, POM Wonderful teamed up with NBC’s hit show, “American Ninja Warrior.” Their partnership was thrilling to me because I was excited to have this opportunity to work with one of my favorite juices and one of my favorite shows of the season – it’s so exciting to watch!

My friends at POM Wonderful hooked me up with the same POM Wonderful towel & POM Wonderful sweatshirt used by Ninjas and the audience during American Ninja Warrior! How cool is that?! They also sent me a BOATLOAD of POM Wonderful 100% Pomegranate Juice to enjoy! If you haven’t tried out POM Wonderful yet, you are seriously missing out.  POM Wonderful’s 100% Pomegranate Juice is a antioxidant superpower that is a good source of potassium – which I totally love.

Be honest – do I look like a badass American Ninja Warrior?!

I totally feel like one in my team sweatshirt!

#crazyhealthy

We have been out and about all summer long – on vacation, at the beach, a trip to the lake and most recently hitting up some super fun hiking trails in the Philadelphia area {after a visit to New York + 4 super fun hiking trips!} When we go I always pack snacks for the kids, and recently I’ve been loving packing up a bottle of POM Wonderful for myself – it has been the perfect little sweet treat and burst of energy I need, especially if I have to carry a little {or two!} part of the way home! Ha!

I am really loving being outside and soaking up that summer sun this month. I know it’s not going to last forever and being active outside with my kids while we can is important to me. I love showing them how to have fun as a healthy, active family – and keeping us moving and making our healthy lifestyle a priority leads us all to make the best choices we can for our bodies!

And guess what?!

One of my fabulous readers is going to be getting the same prize pack I received sent right to YOU! Sweatshirt, Towel and all.the.POM! Just enter the rafflecopter below AND leave a comment – just Tell Me Something Good! Anything goes!

Enter to win a POM Wonderful Prize Pack:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Giveaway ends Sunday, August 20th – Winner will be notified via email.

POPSUGAR Must Have turns 5!

I usually share this sort of thing for my social media accounts, but had to share on the blog this month because POPSUGAR Must Have turns 5 this month! This August box marks Lisa Sugar’s 5th year in curating her and her team of editors favorite items each and every month!

You know I LOVE some Favorite Things!

I’ve been working with POPSUGAR for a while now and each time I receive a Must Have Box, it just keeps getting better and better! It’s an amazing surprise – full of fun, thoughtful, stylish and useful items – I look forward to it arriving at my door each month.

For August, the inspiration was: Celebrations, Gratitude, Loyalty, Smile + Friendship – all great keywords for celebrating 5 years.

This box included some goodies from: Pastel, First and Beauty, DogEared, Meri Meri, Fringe Studio, Goodie Girl Cookies and ShopTiques!

Be sure to check out all the amazing giveaways POPSUGAR Must Have will be hosting during the month of August! Anyone who is a current subscriber or if you SIGN UP in August qualify to win from these giveaways!

The discount code PARTY (expires 8/31) will take $10 off your FIRST Must Have Box!

A Day at Dutch Wonderland – Lancaster, PA

Last week the boys and I took a day trip to one of my favorite places – Dutch Wonderland!

But before I share with you all the fun we had that day, I wanted to put it right up on the top of my post, if you are planning to go this Summer, Fall or Holiday season – use code AndherlittledogtooSBlog17 for discounted tickets.

Seriously, this place isn’t too far from Philly and it is AMAZING for the littles. We went last year when Brooks was 2.5 and he had a blast – this year at 3.5 he was tearing it up, loving ALL the rides and having the best time!

Graham at almost 2 years old had a ton of fun going on rides with Brooks – the rides are very much geared towards young kids, at the entrance to the park, you measure up to see which gemstone category you are tall enough for to go on the rides. This year Brooks is Emerald and Graham is Amethyst.

I’m going to get to all the fun with the rides in a minute, but first I wanted to share with you MY FAVORITE part of Dutch Wonderland – the High Dive shows!

 

This is our second season coming to Dutch Wonderland and much like our visit last year, I was BLOWN AWAY by the amazing high dive show. There are two to choose from – Adventures of the Frog Prince and A Dragon’s Tale. This year and last year we sat for both shows and LOVED THEM.

The boys were in absolute AWE for the shows. And for a 3.5 year old and almost 2 year old to sit completely engaged in the show {twice!} you KNOW its good.

The high dive shows here are something that I think completely set Dutch Wonderland apart from any other amusement park because the shows are so much fun and unlike anything I’ve seen. I had so much fun watching the divers and you can totally tell the divers are having a blast too.

 

How much fun would it be to have this as your summer job?

 

 

The highlight of both shows is when the a diver goes up to the tallest spot to jump, which is 70 feet up in the air! I asked and the pool is only 9 feet deep, so its crazy they jump so far – but it was so amazing to watch.

 

Seriously – I could watch these shows over and over all day – they do an incredible job! If you go to Dutch Wonderland, MAKE SURE you see the high diving shows!

Aside from my love for the high diving shows, I also really enjoy the waterpark at Dutch Wonderland. It’s not huge, but it’s a ton of fun for young kids to run around, get wet, stay cool and burn off that summer energy!

I dressed my boys in their matching highlighter yellow swimsuits and it was the best thing ever because I could easily spot them in the crowds! The brighter the better folks!

There are different areas for little and bigger kids. There are even some water slides you go down in tubes, which we didn’t go on, maybe next year – but the boys had a epic time in the afternoon in this part of Dutch Wonderland.

We actually hit up the waterpark after Graham took a nap in the stroller so everyone was able to get lots of energy out before the car ride home and it worked out really well, as you can see, they really enjoyed themselves.

And aside from the amazing shows and Duke’s Lagoon water play area – there are over 35 rides for the kids to enjoy! Brooks loved them all { I think we got to go on almost all of them – ha!}

Again, I dressed the boys in matching pink polos so they would be easy to spot, and look cute for photos – duh.

My favorite ride to watch the boys go on was the Wonder Whip – this thing is hilarious! Check out this video – ha!

 

And if your child isn’t into going on the rides solo, there are TONS of ones that the parents can come along for the ride as well.

And if your little is older or more independent, there are tons of great options for him/her to go solo as well. Brooks enjoyed the mix of having me or Graham come along with him but he also loved having fun on a ride that was just his size!

He especially had love for the hopping frogs!

And he got to meet Duke the Dragon – the mascot of Dutch Wonderland. Wasn’t really sure how that was going to go, but he was totally into it!

As you can see from my WAY TOO MANY photos, we had a absolute blast. We loved it last year, loved it this year and I can’t wait to bring the boys back again soon!

If you are looking for something fun to add to your end of summer to-do list, or are starting to plan out something special for the Fall or Winter seasons, be sure to add Dutch Wonderland to your list! You will have a blast and your kids will love it too!

Hiking Watkins Glen State Park, Seneca Lake – New York

Of all the hikes we did in the Seneca Lake area of the Finger Lakes – Taughannock Falls, Robert H. Treman State Park and Buttermilk Falls – our morning in Watkins Glen was one of my favorites.

I was on Graham duty since Charles carried him through the last 3 hikes, so I was excited to have him join me on the hike {and take all.the.selfies! Ha!}

The hiking carrier we used is an older version similar to this. It was awesome – can’t say enough good things about it. We’ve used it in the city, during parades/events previously and its great to have to prop the littles up and safely out of the way, but so they can see everything going on, comfortably!

Ok – back to the hike! This one was super different than the others we had done earlier in the week because the ‘main event’ which is the waterfall is something you see right in the beginning of the hike!

You can sort of see it in the back of this photo! It’s RIGHT THERE at the start of the hike – which is different and cool. And makes it easier for people who aren’t as committed to hiking to get to see it.

This hike has lots of stairs, but some of them came along with tunnels, which the boys were fans of!

So here we are, less than a half a mile into the hike and we are at the Cavern Cascade. This waterfall is really cool because you get to walk right behind it. It was so fun!

Seriously the boys were mesmerized – and I was too, it was really neat to hike right up to the top of the waterfall and reach out to touch the falling water.

Watkins Glen State Park is the most famous of the Finger Lakes State Parks – and after our hike I can definitely see why. Within two miles, the glen’s stream descends 400 feet past 200-foot cliffs, generating 19 waterfalls along its course.

It was so stinkin’ beautiful – everywhere you looked.

As I mentioned before, there were lots of stairs on the Gorge trail, it followed the water up and down. The photo below gives you an idea of the trail – flat with a short stone barrier on the side. Brooks had a bit of freedom to roam, but Graham mostly stayed in the carrier.

More waterfalls you get to walk under! Can you imagine this place after a good rain storm?! It would be really fun to see that too! Probably would be a completely different hike!

The one good thing about having Graham along with me for the hike was he kept me fueled up with all.the.snacks. He had the best time snacking and feeding me along the way.

Also – Cheese It’s while hiking are all sorts of awesome. I highly recommend it. Especially if you can get them fed to you by a sweet little babe.

Family photo {Brooks is not standing on the edge, don’t worry}

After a few miles, Graham wanted to get out and explore a bit. Can’t blame him for that, but the one amazing thing about this hike is there are two parts – the Rim trail and the Gorge trail. We did the Gorge climbing up and at the top it ends at a little park with restrooms and concessions. There’s also a bus option that leaves regularly for people that only want to go one way.

The kids stayed with my parents at a cute little playground and myself, my brother, sister-in-law and husband walked {quickly!} back down via the Rim Trail to get the car and pick up the kids, since they were pretty done at this point. Worked out great and we got to head back a different way.

There was a little bit of back tracking on this trail, but I do have to say the only cool part about the Rim trail was going on the suspension bridge {which was mildly terrifying for me}

It was cool to be able to see everything from so far up, again this place would look so different after a nice, solid rain storm!

All in all it was a fabulous hike and if you are in the Finger Lakes area you HAVE to add this one to your list, it’s a must visit for sure!

 

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