Stellar Neller's Passport
 

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Member since:
28 January 2012

Icon_superoo_orangeSuperoo '12, '13, '14, '16

Icon_pictureBeen to 170 Attractions
Icon_star170 Reviews
Icon_star165 First to Review
Icon_camera2265 Photos
Icon_thumbsup115 Helpful Votes
Compliments
About Me & My Family

My verb is "to document." I have fabulous friends...my girl friends have kept me sane and laughing. I was a reckless traveller through my 20's but I sure had fun. I haven't left the country since I got married 10 years ago but I'm working on it. I have a 7 year old daughter who I've promised to take to Paris when she turns 16 and we talk about it all the time. My son is 4 and I havent decided where to take him when he turns 16. My husband has the best dry wit and we are a military family.
Our Family's Travel Personality
adventurous, curious, relaxed, energetic, spontaneous, easy_going, artsy, social_butterfly
We Just Got Back From
The Oregon Coast
Our Favorite Vacation Spot
Kailua, Hawaii
A Place We'd Love To Visit
Israel
Favorite Vacation Memory
Hiking as a family up Diamond Head two years ago is one of my many favorite memories. I had my 2 1/2 year old on my back, my 5 1/2 year old doing it on her own in her ruby slippers and my non-hiking husband along with us. When we reached the top, we overlooked Waikiki and shared a moment of excitement and pride that we all did it together.
Worst Travel Moment With My Kids:
When my daughter was 4, we spent a week on the Panhandle coast of Florida at a white sand beach. One afternoon as we were exploring, my daughter thought she was picking up a beautiful blue ribbon but instead was stung by the tail of a man of war. We had her soak her hand in warm salt water and there were a few tears, but she was a trooper and today she loves to tell everyone that she was stung by a jelly fish.
Websites I Like:
sortacrunchy pinterest soulemama sfgirlbybay

Reviews & Photos

170 Reviews


March 29 2015
1 family found this helpful
Four Peaks Brewing Company | kids travel, kids activities
Four Peaks Brewing Company
1340 East 8th Street,
Tempe,
Arizona 85281
"Our Return-To"
This is my husband's "must-do" whenever he is in town for Spring Training. I think at first he was a little leery to bring the kids (especially after driving by one night and there was a line out the door and down the street). But we decided on an afternoon (too late for most people's breakfast and too early for lunch), and enjoyed ourselves thoroughly. We were lucky enough to have the place to ourselves (except for the bar-I think that place is ALWAYS filled!). We chose inside since it was so hot outside, but next time I would take the patio. Its a cool outdoor space and good people watching. Inside is like a warehouse, so we had the wall open to the outside, but I kept wondering what was going on outside.

The food was great. The kid's menu had a good selection and they gave my kid's gigantic Sprites (which they are not soda drinkers so I think it made them a little loopy). I had the "beer bread" which was like a tortilla/falafel type bread and it was delish. It was crammed with veggies and I found it ironic that my first taste of vegetables on our trip was at a bar.

The beer is great here. For the longest time, they couldn't export their "Kiltlifter" beer to California, so my husband would stock up each trip and run the border back to CA with a trunk of ale.The food server was knowledgeable about her beers and was willing to give me samples when I was unsure of what to order.

Bottomline, this IS a must-do in Tempe. Just to keep it kid-friendly, I'd suggest doing this in the daytime and maybe skip it at night.
 
 
March 29 2015
1 family found this helpful
Rustler's Rooste Restaurant | kids travel, kids activities
Rustler's Rooste Restaurant
8383 South 48th Street,
Phoenix,
Arizona 85044
"About as kid-friendly as it gets"
I would say Rustler's Rooste is about as kid-friendly as a restaurant gets. With a live steer greeting you at the door, a slide to take instead of the stairs, and video games close enough for adults to see where their kids are, but far away enough not to hear the noise, this was a good stop for us during our time in Tempe.

As stated in other reviews, the rolls and salad to start is a nice plus. The kid's menu orders are HUGE. My daughter had an entire dinner plate of mac n' cheese! I ended up not even ordering an entree (not being a beef eater there wasn't a whole lot for me), but ended up rolling out of the restaurant anyway stuffed to the gills by just eating off the other 3 family member's plates. And don't even get me started on the beer! I ordered a "large" draft thinking it was a pint and it came our in a mason jar so big that I had to hold it with BOTH hands.

The view was lovely and we got there in time to watch the sunset. And after my kids finished, it was nice to be able to send them off to the games and enjoy a little alone time with the husband.

We were not offered the cotton candy like some other reviewers have stated but I know my kids would have been thrilled. It was hard enough trying to get them to leave when they were continuously going up and down the slide. The live band was a nice touch as well.

Rustlers Rooste is the kind of restaurant I would have taken my folks when they'd come to visit me at college. I'd get a lot of food (that they would pay for), some lively fun, and a little show-off to where they were sending me. This restaurant has all that.
 
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March 29 2015
3 families found this helpful
DoubleTree by Hilton Phoenix-Tempe | kids travel, kids activities
DoubleTree by Hilton Phoenix-Tempe
2100 S. Priest Dr. ,
Tempe, Arizona
"Great Place for Spring Training"
Double Tree by Hilton Phoenix/Tempe

My family and I traveled this recently to Tempe, AZ to see the Angel’s Spring Training. We needed to have a place to stay that was centrally located to the fields, not too far from the good eateries of this college town, and definitely with a pool to let the kids cool down after a full day of baseball. The DoubleTree by Hilton Phoinex-Tempe filled all of our needs and then some.

Things We Liked:

#1 Customer Service. Customer Service is number one most important here. Their motto is “We can make it right,” so I never feared that there would be things that couldn’t be changed if my satisfaction wasn’t complete. Everyone from the front desk who greeted me after a long drive to AZ with a smile and warm cookies to the housekeeping and maintenance saying “hello” when we passed by, this hotel’s customer service was warm and friendly.

#2 The Extras. As I stated, we were on the road for five hours, so it was a small but needed gesture when the front desk handed us some extra water bottles to hydrate when we arrived. The pool staff was friendly and ready to serve us poolside when we arrived to relax, which was an added bonus.

#3 Kid-friendly. When I saw the hotel was also a “conference center,” I thought my kids laughing (loudly) in the pool might annoy the accompanying business people after a long day. But the pool was full of families! An added bonus was the layout of the pool and hot tub being separated by fences; so if adults really did want to get away, they could seclude themselves in the hot tub away from the football-throwing families in the pool.

#4 Location. We were close to the freeway to get to the fields and downtown Tempe, but not so close that we heard road noise. The hotel is about a mile from the Tempe Diablo Stadium and maybe a few miles from downtown.

#5 Cleanliness. This is a big one for me, as my kids don’t ever seem bothered to lay on hotel floors, so to see that the room was cleaned well, made me not so bossy to order them to get back on the beds.

Things I Didn’t Like As Much:

#1 No lanai/patio/balcony/outside space off the room. This is a big one for me as well since my husband and kids go to bed at 8pm and that leaves me staring at the walls for another two hours before I am ready to go to sleep. When there’s a balcony, I can sit outside and read without disturbing their sleep. We had a view of the pool (the hotel u-shapes around the pool courtyard), but no walk out.

#2 Although I am thankful for the efficient A/C unit that cooled our room during the hot 90 degree days we were there, the unit itself was quite loud and would wake me up each time it turned on. But perhaps this is a usual occurrence with hotels in hot locations, and since I don’t usually vacation in the desert, perhaps this really is no big deal.

#3 Since we have left, I've seen people say that they have the "best continental breakfast," but we were never offered that and it would have mightily helped in savings by not having to eat out 3 meals a day.

#4 Although our room had a tiny fridge to house our leftovers, a microwave to warm them up later would have been ideal in the room.

The DoubleTree helped make our Spring Training stay enjoyable with its prime location to the fields and friendly staff. If this is to become a yearly, family trip, we will be returning to the DoubleTree.
 
kids travel, kids activities
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March 22 2015
0 families found this helpful
Tempe Town Lake | kids travel, kids activities
Tempe Town Lake
620 N. Mill Ave.,
Tempe,
Arizona 85281
"Tempe Boat Rentals"
While my husband and daughter were enjoying a game at spring training, my son and I snuck off to Tempe Town Lake to explore. What a pleasant surprise to find at the end of Mill Street a stretch of water with things to do bordering all along it. We arrived on a day when a St. Patrick's Day Concert was being set up for the evening, so instead of parking at Tempe Beach parking lot, we drove a little farther and parked at the Tempe Center for the Arts. We enjoyed looking around this grand building and made note of the many musical acts that were coming to the center.

We strolled down to Tempe Boat Rentals and chose a pedal boat; a perfect vessel for myself and my 7-year-old to captain. Other choices were SUP boards, pontoons, kayaks, and row boats. A life preserver was given to my son to wear, and we popped up the convenient (and very much needed) shade provider and pedaled away.

On the lake, we pedaled under several bridges and from our vantage point we could see the volleyball courts, park grounds, and other fun activities that line the lake.

Boats are available for a one hour minimum rental, are available daily, and reservations can be made on-line. A credit card and ID will be needed to rent one of the boating options. More info is available on boats4rent.com.

I was an invited guest of Tempe Boat Rentals, but I would definitely go back to enjoy a leisure afternoon on the water. The view we had from our pedal boat was a nice introduction to the town of Tempe.
 
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March 22 2015
0 families found this helpful
General Patton Memorial Museum | kids travel, kids activities
General Patton Memorial Museum
2 Chiriaco Road,
Chiriaco Summit,
California 92201
"Worth the Stop"
Blink and you'll miss it, but that would be a shame. This museum looks like a gas stop from the freeway, but those in the know, should purpose to spend some time here, learning about Patton, our military, and what combat training used to look like.
Active duty can enter for free, and children are just a $1 to gain entrance (all other adults are $5). The museum itself holds memorabilia such a war propaganda posters, uniforms from WW2, and "sweetheart pillows" that servicemen would send to their loved ones back home. They have added info on our more recent wars as well in little sections, but the majority of info and artifacts pertain to WW2.
Outside, greeting visitors as they walk in is a giant statue of Patton and his dog Willie. In the side yard are tanks, jeeps, and other training vehicles that your kids can (not climb) but get up and personal with to see the workings-on of this massive machines.
There are also a few memorabilia walls in the front of the museum, where people can purchase bricks or names on plaques that bear the name of service members from the past. A recent addition is the wall of "Defenders of Freedom." Here, for $15 a name, military, firefighters, police officers, etc. can have their names included as an honor for their service.
When my family and I were driving to AZ from CA for spring training, I planned ahead and had my husband (who is retiring from the USAF after 20 years of service), honored by surprising him with his name on the wall as we looked around at the museum. I couldn't think of a better retirement gift than that!
For military history buffs and those who just enjoy perusing times past, this museum is worth the stop.
 
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
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