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With a bustling family of 9, I can say that it is rare that we can get everyone all together in the same place without some of the older ones running here and there or one of the young ones being sick and requiring someone to be home with them.
Even more rare is being able to find family activities that appeal to everyone in the family.
From a frugal standpoint, it can also be a challenge to find things to do that don’t cost a small fortune.
From a homeschooling mom standpoint, I also prefer that the things we do have at least some kind of educational value involved.
With this in mind, I am going to be sharing some family activities that are within a five hour drive of me to welcome in spring and summer while also sharing a few staycation options for the summer as well. I know I’ve got plenty of readers who are Michigan natives along with me, which means you guys will hit the jackpot here in the next couple of months when it comes to some ideas for family fun this spring and summer.
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This past weekend we went to an amazing place that I am so excited to tell you about because it met ALL of the above criteria.
We visited Greenfield Village, which is affiliated with the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan.
Oh my. It was so much more than I could have imagined it to be. I think we could go there for two weeks straight and still be learning and seeing new things every day! Can I just say how awesome it is that no one in my family wanted to leave at the end of the day?! With two teens and one tween, this is saying a lot!
Greenfield Village is an outdoor museum of sorts where you feel like you’ve been transported back in time. I LOVE history, and I was in heaven. I sat in the same courthouse as Abraham Lincoln once practiced law in. I was in the house where the Wright Brothers spent some of their childhood years. I learned so much about Thomas Edison, witnessed the Firestone family eating Sunday dinner in their farmhouse, and learned about why tin was so widely used from the mid 1800s though the early 1900s, learned about glass making, and saw some amazing pottery as well. In fact, my 13 year old son even got to operate a printing press!
What brings this whole experience to life is the staff. They are everywhere, and they are there to teach you about everything you are seeing and experiencing. You aren’t just walking through the Firestone farmhouse, you are learning about why they only use their parlor once a year, how they grow their own food, and the ins and outs of how chores work.
There are horse and carriage rides, rides in a Model T, and who can forget about Thomas!
We went this past weekend when the Thomas the Train exhibit was there, and with three little boys, they were over the moon excited! Not only can you ride on Thomas and take pictures with Sir Topham Hat, there are also all kinds of fun activities and outdoor games that kids of all ages can do.
I so wish we could have spent a few more days there but with a baby due in 13 days, one day away from home was all I could squeak out of my doctor!
The grounds are beautiful, clean, and have plenty of benches available for 9 month pregnant women 🙂
There are plenty of bathrooms and opportunities to grab something to eat, and all of these places are clean, too, which is something that I find particularly important.
If you are looking for an amazing place to take the whole family that will entertain, inspire, and captivate everyone’s attention, Greenfield Village in Dearborn (near Detroit) is an excellent choice.
You can find out everything about Greenfield Village and everything that the Henry Ford Museum has to offer by visiting their website.
*Out visit was sponsored by The Henry Ford/Greenfield Village