Today honestly started out as one of ‘those’ days, mainly because Brady is on a three-week strike to boycott sleep. So when he woke up at 5am, and I heard rain pitter-pattering against the window, I wondered to myself, “How am I going to survive an exhausting day while being stuck inside with a hyper, sleep-deprived toddler?”
Actually, I wondered that out loud. And when Nate didn’t stir, I may have pushed him awake and posed the same question to him. Misery loves company… but so does an over-tired mama who has a major case of cabin fever.
So Nate came up with THE best idea ever. Let’s take off and have an adventure! Actually, he suggested a day-trip to Yankee Candle Village in Deerfield, MA; but same difference. :)
I’ve been visiting Yankee Candle since I was a little girl, although it has really grown a lot since then. And before you think, “Hmmm, I’m all set. I’m not really that into candles,” please let me assure you that it’s way more than candles. It’s an experience!
Sooooo, please let me be your tour-guide for this little trip, so that I can show you! :)
When you first walk in, there’s a General Store area filled with kitchen gadgets, maple syrup, gift items, spice packets, specialty pasta, dishes, and – well – everything interesting that you might find in a quaint country store. It’s my favorite part of the entire Village, I’m fairly certain. :) (And Brady is obsessed with the train that drives around the edge of the ceiling, so it just might be his favorite part too).
Next up is the Black Forest. Don’t worry, it’s not as scary as it sounds, and I promise that you won’t get lost. It’s a valley sprinkled with miniature villages that you can either purchase… or watch with glee.
The trees get much taller towards the end of the valley, and – if you’re lucky and pass through at the right time – you might even see some snow.
Once you’ve safely passed through the beautiful, snowy forest, you’ll find yourself in a little town in Switzerland. There’s the tallest of Christmas trees in the center, sprinkled with beautiful Christmas ornaments for sail. And the little shops on either side are filled with festive ornaments, delicate lace, figurines, and Christmas decor.
At the end of the village, is a regal castle, complete with water-filled moat, gargoyles, and tall nutcrackers.
Passing through the castle leads you into Santa’s workshop! Santa wasn’t in today, but there were still plenty of toys to discover and play with.
And the workshop is followed by a giant candy store that even has a boat you can climb into!
Once you’ve passed through the toy store, there’s a cafe, fudge shop, popcorn counter, and various shops that sell paintings, home decor, etc. There’s also a Ben and Jerry’s icecream shop. Just when I was thinking the day couldn’t get any better, we found out that it was Free Scoop day!! What, what, what?!? Free icecream?
Yes, best day ever!!
The area just past Ben and Jerry’s is filled with home and garden decor, as well as purses, jewelry, pampering items for the bath, lotions, and pretty trinkets. I love this section too, not gonna lie. ;)
Oh, yeah, and don’t forget! There are lots and LOTS of candles to pick from too! :) Obviously!!
To top off the day, we had lunch at Panera Bread! Eating out is usually really stressful, because Brady is high-energy and refuses to sit still. ;) But apparently his macaroni and cheese was SO good that he found the strength to sit still and let his mama enjoy her food.
This is his focused face! ;) He was REALLY intent on eating every bite.
I ordered my favorite BBQ chicken salad option, and it was sooooo good!
Thank you, Panera, for having such awesome food that I was actually able to enjoy a meal out! And thank you, Yankee Candle, for another wonderful experience!
SUCH a great day spent with my family!! And the sunshine came out for the drive home. :)