July 22nd, 2013

Fun Things to Do in Cecil County This Summer

Little Girl Blowing Dandelion SeedsAh, summer.  The season for enjoying nature, barbequing, spending time with family and friends, and hearing the dreaded three words… “Mom I’m bored.”  The further we get into summer, the more my kids are looking for something to do and looking at me to suggest it.  My usual ideas like clean your room, unload the dishwasher, and vacuum the living room only generate exaggerated eye-rolling, or blank stares followed by, “I’m hungry–what do we have to eat?”  Luckily, there are lots of fun things to do with your kids in Cecil County this summer, most of which are free or very cheap.  Here’s my top ten list:

1.  Take a hike on the Blue Trail to Turkey Point Lighthouse at Elk Neck State Park.

2.  Travel back in time with a visit to historic Mount Harmon Plantation.

3.  Attend the 60th Annual Cecil County Fair July 19-27 and make sure to stop by the Cecil County Public Library’s booth!

4.  Visit the animals at the Plumpton Park Zoo.

5.  Explore the historic Main Streets of one of Cecil County’s great towns. See the canal and bridge in Chesapeake City, admire the granite cliffs in Port Deposit, or window-shop the boutiques in North East.

6.  Drop by Hart’s Peach Festival for music, puppets, and peach goodies at Hart’s Amphitheater in North East on Saturday, August 10 from noon-4 pm.

7.  Wander the trails, walk the covered bridge and play in the creek at Fair Hill.

8.  Cruise to the Cecil County Dragway.

9.  Pick your own fruits for a healthy, delicious summer treat. Click here for a list of the many wonderful orchards and markets in our county.

10.  Don’t forget to sign up for summer reading! People often think it’s too late, but that’s not true.  Any reading your kids (or you) have done since June 1st counts, so sign up today. You have until August 3rd to turn in your reading logs and kids, teens and adults can win awesome prizes. The library also has a variety of entertaining (and free!) summer events for all ages. Click here to search the library’s calendar.

What are your best ideas for summer fun in Cecil County?

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February 1st, 2011

Savvy Shopping Tips

One of my absolute least favorite things to do is comparison shop – just the thought gives me a headache.  I’d much rather grab the goods that attract me.  If they’re packaged prettily or placed at eye level, I’ll probably choose them.  Although it saves me time in the grocery store aisles, the grab-and-go method of shopping doesn’t always agree with my budget as a recent grocery bill forced me to realize.  In need of ideas for stretching my food dollars, I turned to the library’s collection where I found a wealth of information on shopping smart.  See below for a list of some of the budget-friendly books in CCPL’s collection.

What are your best tips for saving at the grocery store?

Looking to save money on food costs?  Check out the following resources:

- Budget Dinners! 100 Recipes your Family Will Love
- The Coupon Mom’s Guide to Cutting Your Grocery Bills in Half by Stephanie Nelson
- Cut Your Grocery Bill in Half with America’s Cheapest Family by Steve Economides
- Family Feasts for $75 a Week by Mary Ostyn
- Living Rich for Less by Ellie Kay
- Savvy Shopper’s Cookbook:  Hundreds of Simple Strategies for Smart Spending and Inspiring Mealtime Ideas
- Shop Smart, Save More: Learn the Grocery Store Game and Save Hundreds of Dollars a Month by Teri Gault