Read the official rules here.
Read the official rules here.
Written by Feather + Flip for Building Blocks.
Paris is a magical city that captures both parents and children at any age. Whether you’re visiting the iconic sites or just taking a stroll through the city, here are our tips for your family trip to Paris.
WHAT TO PACK
Their favorite backpack. Universal truth: kids love backpacks. Maybe it’s the cute design, maybe it’s feeling like a grown-up and having a space to carry their special items. Either way, a special new pack (ideally stocked with some snacks and toys for the airplane) is the perfect treat for a kid about to embark on a long flight.
Those must-have dining essentials. Don’t forget that traveling in Paris means you will likely be dining out quite a bit. Make sure to bring along the essentials like a bib or a clip-on baby seat packed into your diaper bag — they will surely save many a meal.
A few tiny toys. Most hotel rooms don’t come with toys, so bring something small that won’t weigh down the luggage but will provide a little in-room entertainment during jet-lagged mornings. The wooden Super Hero Set is easy to clean and great to tote around the city for post-meal playtime in the park while mom and dad relax for a minute.
A lightweight jacket. Even a summer day in Paris can turn chilly if the clouds roll in, plus museums and restaurants can be cold. Bring a lightweight jacket that folds up and won’t need a lot of space.
A kid-friendly camera and/or waterproof case. It might sound crazy to give a kid a camera, but choose an unbreakable (and waterproof!) digital camera so your little ones can document their trip while you keep your phone safe in your pocket. It’s great entertainment while waiting in museum lines or for lunch, and the resulting pics show the city through your child’s eyes.
Snack time storage. Airplane food is pretty terrible these days, so be sure to bring a bento box with a few favorite snacks. Although these are technically for kids, they’re also great to pack one with more adult eats so everyone can have something edible on the flight.
WHAT TO DO
Favorite Parks and Playgrounds
Parents will be pleased to find small parks and playgrounds almost anywhere (there’s even one within the Notre Dame grounds). Here are a few bigger ones we hit on every visit:
Place des Vosges: this gorgeous square in the Marais is the city’s oldest, has a great playground and is surrounded by hip cafes and shops. Plan an afternoon (at least!) in our favorite Parisian neighborhood. Also nearby is the Square Leopold Achille, another wonderful park to check out.
Jardin des Tuileries: next to the Louvre, this gorgeous park has a fountain where children can launch mini-sailboats, a summer fair with carnival rides, trampolines for bouncing out post-museum jitters, and the Roue de Paris, a supersized ferris wheel with views across the city
Jardin des Plantes: Paris’ botanical garden is next to the Natural History Museum, and there’s also a small zoo to visit. Don’t miss the Labyrinth, a garden maze created in the 18th-century that’s still a hit with kids.
Rainy Day Play: Done with museums but rain killing the park vibe? Head to the department store Le Bon Marché, which has a bookstore with a fantastic kids’ section. The stuffed animals at Deyrolle, the famed taxidermy shop, is a Parisian oddity kids will adore as well.
It’s impossible to pick the best—families could fill weeks touring Paris’ amazing museums—but these are a few to hit on a first trip:
Louvre: The Louvre can be overwhelming, but done right, it’s a magical experience for families. We’ve discovered some fantastic guides that lead children on an art-inspired scavenger hunt through the museum (Paris Muse, we love you!).
Musée Picasso: reopened recently after a massive renovation, this museum houses the world’s largest collection of the painter’s work, yet it’s still small enough that antsy kids can enjoy without running out of patience. Tip: just around the corner is a great pizza spot, Pink Flamingo.
Centre Pompidou: this famed contemporary gallery has the colorful art that captures a kids’ imagination as well as fantastic children’s programming, from workshops designed for toddlers to studio events aimed specifically at teens.
We’d need a novel to name all the best Parisian eats, but these are a few near the main sights you’ll visit with kids:
La Favorite: classic café in the Marais, great brunch or casual dinner after an afternoon of museums and exploring.
Les Cocottes: casual chic comfort food near the Eiffel Tower.
Angelina: famous pastries and hot chocolate near the Louvre; grab some treats and eat them across the street in the Tuileries
Le Castiglione: smack in the middle of Rue St.-Honore shopping, clubby, cool and with people watching and amazing cheese burgers.
Berthillon: ice cream on the Île de la Cité, a sweet treat after a visit to the Conciergerie or Notre-Dame.
Museum Eats: Paris’ museums have great food as well as fantastic art. The Pompidou, the Palais de Tokyo, the Petit Palais, the Musee Rodin and the Quai Branly all house cool cafeterias worth a visit even if you weren’t popping into the exhibits first (but more fun if you do).
Bringing your dream nursery together isn’t as easy as it may sound. Even though I knew exactly what I wanted to do with my peach and gold nursery, there were still a few unexpected things I learned in the process. Here are the top five pieces of advice that truly put the finishing touches on my baby girl’s space.
1. Choose your paint color last. Once you have chosen your bedding and some other decor choose a color from there. Have it color matched and go two to three shades lighter if need be. For my nursery, I pulled a turquoise from one of the pillow fabrics and went two shades lighter.
2. Upgrade your lighting. There is nothing like switching out existing light fixtures to instantly make any room feel custom. I fell in love with the Pagoda Chandelier and it ended up setting my direction for the rest of the room.
3. Choose meaningful art. I stuck with artwork made by local artists (and I’m lucky enough to call them friends) in addition to special pieces painted by big sister Delaney. For about $20 worth of canvases, acrylic paint and various sized brushes, big sis got a special activity to make her feel part of the process and the nursery gained one-of-a-kind artwork!
4. Repaint, revamp, repeat. The side table and geometric mirrors were both vintage finds and a coat of paint took them from dated to divine in about three minutes flat! Bottom line: when buying vintage or thrift goods, look for shapes and details that catch your eye — colors can be changed easily.
5. Buy quality linens for baby. When it comes to the textiles that will touch my baby’s skin regularly (like bedding and towels), quality is so important. My Pottery Barn Kids towels are the softest I’ve ever found and I’ve been loyally buying them since my first was born. Plus, colors stay true through the many, many washes your linens will go through!
When I first found out I was pregnant I decided that my nursery would be centered around one creative piece of inspiration. I love the local Atlanta creative community and when I found Ashley Buzzy’s Sweet as a Peach print, I knew it had to be my starting point.
I took straight to Pinterest and started gathering inspiration for peach and gold nurseries. My goal was to create a nursery that was soothing and serene, but still felt true to my design style. When designing for little girls, I like to walk the line between sweet and eclectic. I found myself gravitating towards nursery photos that also incorporated more saturated colors like brighter corals and turquoise so I decided to mix that into my design.
To get started, I knew the Harper Dot Nursery Collection in Coral was an obvious choice. Its clean lines and playful dots ground the space nicely and allowed me to go a little bit frillier with some of the other décor pieces. For the windows, I used the Sailcloth drape and added mint and coral pom-pom trim for a fun, girly accent. To finish off the room with that eclectic vibe I like, I included the Pagoda Chandelier, handmade pillows (by my mother), and a Liddabits Design Shop banner hanging on sparkly branches in lieu of a mobile.
I wanted to include my first daughter, Delaney, in the creation of her baby sister’s room as well. She painted two masterpieces which I framed and added to the gallery wall. It was a special way to get her excited for the new arrival and also add a special touch to the room. Delaney also helped me on the octagonal side table- a thrift store find that we refinished with chalk paint and new hardware. The geometric mirrors were also thrifted and we simply spray-painted the wooden frames gold. To add some extra texture, we added the quick sequin “T”. For that project, I just wrapped some sequin trim around a papier-mâché “T” from the craft store and secured it with hot glue.
All in all, the room came together perfectly. With a foundation of great Pottery Barn Kids products, some local art and a few DIY projects with Delaney, I’m so happy with how the room turned out. Our new baby girl will be sleeping in style with her “Sweet as a Peach” nursery!
Photography: Haley Sheffield | Haley Sheffield Photography
Written by Feather + Flip for Building Blocks.
Bermuda has the soft pink sands and crystal blue lagoons of a tropical island but is an easy-to-get-to destination thanks to quick, nonstop flights. Here are a few of our favorite tips for what to pack and do while you’re visiting Bermuda with kids.
WHAT TO PACK
A comfy cover up or beach wrap. While you go back and forth from beach to hotel, a cozy cover up or beach wrap is the perfect piece to keep on hand. Our little ones even asked to wear them as pajamas one night!
Underwater exploration gear. Some of Bermuda’s historic shipwrecks are just off the the coast and close enough to the surface that even younger children can snorkel above to explore. A pair of leaky goggles can ruin the big event, so if you have a well-fitted mask of your own, bring it from home.
A kid-friendly beach tote. Use it as your carry-on for the plane or stash it in the suitcase to bring to the beach—they pack flat, weigh nothing and come in cute designs (our daughter begged for the mermaid with its matching towel, my son drags his shark bag to the park at home as well as on vacation).
A wet/dry bag. We love a last swim in the pool before heading to the airport, but no one enjoys unpacking a suitcase of soggy clothes. Bring a wet/dry bag to keep soaking swimsuits separate on your flight home.
WHAT TO DO
Best of Bermuda
1. Building pink sandcastles on the famous Horseshoe Bay Beach
2. Discovering that grilled wahoo is everyone’s favorite new fish at the Ocean Club
3. Exploring the mangroves and blue grottos in Tom Moore’s Jungle
4. Sunset dinner on the docks at the 350-year-old Waterlot Inn
5. Snorkeling historic shipwrecks that date back to the Civil War
Favorite Island Mini Guides
Stay: Le Guanahani
Eat: Santa Fe
Play: Gouverneur Beach
Stay: Caneel Bay
Eat: Rhumb Lines
Play: Trunk Bay
Eat: Straw Hat
Play: Scilly Cay
Stay: Cotton House
Play: Macaroni Beach
Stay: Fairmont Southampton
Eat: Ocean Club
Play: Horseshoe Bay Beach
This summer we’re wild about all things safari style! Your little ones will love setting out on adventures each night with a jungle-themed bedroom so here are our top 5 tips to getting this look in your home.
2. Add stylish storage solutions with a global touch. Woven baskets are great for storing toys or blankets and our Multicolor Abaca Baskets help to bring a fun pop of color.
3. Mix prints and patterns in natural materials. Geo Poufs and Handwoven Dhurries are great for adding texture and visual interest to your space, especially when they’re made of natural materials like wool and cotton.
4. Try layering your textiles. Adding multiple rugs to a space may feel overwhelming, but choosing the right patterns that are unique but still connected (by a color story or texture) help bring that eclectic look together.
5. Go for texture on the walls. Give your room a whole new feel with unexpected textures on the walls! We love the idea of using tactile wallpaper or a DIY finish to bring additional layers to the space.