Tagged in family

December 6, 2018

6 Places to Visit in Middleton

There are many terrific places to travel to in Wisconsin, including Middleton. Today I’m sharing the places you must visit in this charming city from a delicious Greek restaurant to a high-end children’s store. If you missed my two previous posts about Madison’s neighboring town, you can read them here: “Mini Family Vacation to Middleton, WI” and  “Where to Stay and Dine in Middleton, WI“.

Tradition Market

Right in the heart of Middleton, there’s the most lovely children’s store I’ve ever been to. It’s called Tradition Market. This store is beautifully decorated with mobiles hanging from the ceiling, a wooden playhouse, and mid to high-end clothing. Our kids had fun playing with wooden trucks and inside the playhouse while I shopped for gifts.  

National Mustard Museum

Right near Tradition Market, there’s a famous National Mustard Museum. You can taste over 5,000 varieties of mustard, in this fun, family-friendly museum. If you are a mustard and sauce enthusiast, this place is for you! For anyone looking to spice up their travels, this is also a fun spot to stop in, as it’s free of charge!



Free House Pub

If you are looking to get a drink in Middleton, look no further than the Free House Pub. This cozy pub has a good atmosphere and a great drink menu. Whether you want a quick drink or dinner, this spot has both. If you prefer to stop in for a drink before grabbing dinner elsewhere, it’s within walking distance of Villa Dolce, which we really enjoyed.

Fontaine Home

Shop handpicked home decor and holiday items at Fontaine Home. Located at Hubbard Avenue, this store is a must see if you want to find unique gifts for the holidays. I was mesmerized by the beautiful Christmas decor and other festive home and bath items that they had in store.


Greenway Station

Go to the Greenway Station shopping center for fashion, home goods, and delicious food. This open mall was only 3 minutes away from our hotel, and where we had great Greek food at Freska.

Middleton Historic Museum

Built over 150 years ago, the Middleton Historic Museum is a great place to learn about the history of Middleton and the Rowley family. They lived in that house for 120 years, before their home became the museum. The museum is also located in the heart of Middleton so you won’t miss it.

Hope you guys enjoyed reading this series of posts about Middleton, WI!



November 29, 2018

Where to Stay and Dine in Middleton

Two weeks ago, thanks to Wisconsin Travel Best Bets, we went for the first time to Middleton, Wisconsin. We fell in love with the town neighboring Madison and are already planning on going back for another weekend getaway. You can read about our experience there in my previous post. Check out my guide below about where to stay and dine in Middleton, WI if you’re planning on going there.

Where to Stay in Middleton, WI

The Residence Inn by Marriott of West Middleton

We stayed in an oversized suite with a fully-equipped kitchen at The Residence Inn. Our room was spacious and perfect for our family of 4. The hotel has a 24-hour gym, an indoor pool and a hot tub. The breakfast had a variety of foods and the staff was very hospitable. The hotel was only 5 minutes from downtown Middleton and in a commercial area with a great outdoor mall, Greenway Station.

Courtyard Madison West/Middleton

Located in the same area as the Residence Inn, the Courtyard Madison is another great hotel option. This new hotel offers a pool area, spacious suites, and complimentary high-speed internet.

Hilton Garden Inn West/Middleton

Only 7 miles from downtown Madison and the State Capitol, Hilton Garden Inn is another great option if you need a place to stay. Also located next to the Residence Inn, this hotel has a swimming pool, a fitness center, and complimentary WiFi. You can order room service from Johnny’s Italian Steakhouse, located next to the hotel.

Where to Dine in Middleton, WI

Pizza Brutta

On our first night in Middleton, we went out to eat at Pizza Brutta, a favorite pizza restaurant amongst the locals. It was an easy choice since the reviews were amazing and everybody in our family loves pizza. Their thin crust, fire-baked pizzas were delicious and super flavourful. We not only loved their pizza but the people working there were very friendly. One of the pizza makers gave Rapha pizza dough to play with. That kept him entertained all throughout dinner. Win!


Bloom Bindery

Bloom Bindery is the most charming cookie bakery, bookstore, and coffee shop. We fell in love with this coffee shop’s desire to do good in their community. For every cookie purchased, Bloom Bindery gives a percentage of its profits to support literacy in the local community. Let me tell you, their whoopie pie cookie sandwich was out of this world! We enjoyed our time there and so did the kids. They played with play dough while my husband and I enjoyed our coffee. I ended up purchasing a Thanksgiving children’s book right on time for the Holiday.


Sofra Family Bistro

Sofra offers authentic Albanian-American cuisine and serves fresh breakfast, lunch, and dinner. We had a great lunch at Sofra. My husband had a salmon salad, the children had grilled cheese, and I had their eggs for breakfast with a side of Albanian sausage. 

Villa Dolce Italian Ristorante

On Friday night we tried getting a table at Villa Dolce, but they were completely full. The wait was too long, so we made a dinner reservation for the next day. We figured that the wait meant it was another popular restaurant amongst the locals. Villa Dolce is a quaint, cozy restaurant with amazing Italian food. I regret not eating their homemade gelato. I was too full from my mac & cheese. Next time I go there, I will try their gelato and one of their delectable looking desserts displayed in the entry of the restaurant.

Freska Mediterranean Grill

On the last day of our weekend getaway, we went to the Greenway Station outdoor mall to eat at Freska Mediterranean Grill. We were very excited to find out that the owner of the restaurant is Greek, since my mother-in-law comes from a Greek family. The food hit the spot and made for a perfect lunch. We liked the atmosphere and how quickly we got our food. We had their “plate” that was served with brown rice, pita, a choice of meat, sauce, and up to 4 toppings. That meal definitely put a smile in our faces. One day, we want to go back to this restaurant for lunch.

I hope this guide helps you on your next trip to Middleton!

You can read my “Mini Vacation to Middleton, WI” post here.


November 26, 2018

Mini Family Vacation to Middleton

Last weekend we had a mini family vacation to Middleton, Wisconsin. Middleton is a suburb of Madison and is just two hours west of Milwaukee. Thanks to Wisconsin Travel Best Bets, we had the opportunity to visit and explore this charming town.

We hit the road Friday afternoon and drove straight to our hotel, The Residence Inn by Marriott in West Middleton. Our hotel was in a commercial area next to a very nice outdoor mall (Greenway Station). Only 5 minutes from downtown Middleton, our hotel’s location made traveling with children convenient.

On our first night in Middleton, we went out to eat at Pizza Brutta, a favorite pizza restaurant amongst the locals. It was an easy choice since the reviews were amazing and everybody in our family loves pizza. Their thin crust, fire-baked pizzas were delicious and super flavourful.

After dinner, we headed back to our hotel to go swimming in the indoor pool. Needless to say, that was my oldest son’s favorite part of the trip. He went swimming every night.

The next day, we woke up early, ate a big breakfast at our hotel, and went to explore the downtown area. We had a few places in our checklist that we wanted to go, but we also left our days open for anything new that came along. Our Saturday was filled with shopping, good eats, and walking around town. We went to the Mustard Museum and had so much fun sampling all the different kinds of mustard. I didn’t know it was possible to have so many! The rest of the day we spent shopping around town and even went to West Towne Mall to take advantage of the pre-Black Friday deals.

On the last day of our mini vacation getaway, we went to the Greenway Station to eat at Freska Mediterranean Grill. We were very excited to find out that the owner of the restaurant is Greek since my mother-in-law comes from a Greek family. The food hit the spot and made for a perfect lunch.

I have to say, we didn’t know what to expect going to Middleton. We were surprised by all of the wonderful shops, restaurants, and overall hospitality. My family and I are definitely planning on going back to Middleton for the weekend or even to spend the day. We love weekend trips where we don’t have to drive too far to have a good time.

Thank you so much for reading! More posts about Middleton coming up this week. Now tell me, have you been to Middleton?


November 5, 2018

Family-Friendly Activities in Marshfield

We had the pleasure of visiting Marshfield which is located pretty much in the middle of Wisconsin. It’s about 2 hours away from Madison so it was a fun mini road trip. I have never been to Marshfield so I wasn’t sure what to expect once we arrived.

I’m a planner when it comes to planning vacations or getaways especially because I have two boys. I need to make sure they are entertained. Kids get bored easily. I definitely looked up places before we arrived. After visiting these places I highly recommend taking your kids to these places if you’re ever in the Marshfield area.

Wildwood Zoo & Park

This isn’t the average zoo that you’ll see in your town/city. We didn’t get to the animals you normally see at the zoo. Instead, we got to see quite a few wild animals. Like large meals, raptors/other birds, reptiles, small mammals and non-residential animals. We got to see the Kodiak Bears, Mountain Lion, Canada Lynx, Timber Wolves, White-tailed Deer, American Bison and Elk, Bald Eagles, Great Horned Owls, Peregrine Falcon, Red-tailed Hawks, Sandhill Cranes, Black-tailed Prairie Dogs, White Arctic Fox, and Gray Fox.

In order to see the Large Animals, you do need to drive in the park to see them. Which is cool and you can definitely see them at night since the “drive” park is open until 10. Otherwise, you can walk into the park to see the other animals. It is FREE which is nice if you’re trying to be on a budget.

Jurustic Park

This was a pretty neat little area. I was impressed by how each of these amazing designs was created by metal. The couple that owns the park actually create them and display them outside their home. You can even purchase a few of their handcrafted pieces but they are not sold online. So they will not ship them. We were so impressed and how much work goes into creating these. Another free option when traveling to Marshfield.

Governor William H. Upham House

This was another fun thing to do when we were here. We got to learn about Wisconsin’s first Governor William H. Upham and take a tour of his house. When we got there they were in the middle of decorating for Christmas which was exciting to see. We definitely learned a lot and highly recommend going here if you’re a history junky or just love to learn about history.