Willow View Apple Pumpkin Farm Abbotsford

Location: 288 McCallum Rd, Abbotsford, BC V2S 8A2

With the wet season here already, an apple orchard might not be the best destination for you and your toddler. But here it is, our trip to Willow View Apple Farm in Abbotsford a few weeks ago before the rainy season set in. We’ve done farm trips before and our children love it, especially now that they are getting older and enjoying the excitement a farm can bring, a new playground, open place to wander, under close parent observation of course and hayrides or simply cart rides or wheelbarrows. This time it was a cart.

This farm offers a hayride to give you a tour of the place, it helps you identify where that exact type of apple you are looking for are. Farms are fairly large places, it takes a while to wander around and find something in particular if you are looking for that, or just enjoy the walk. If your toddler doesn’t really want to walk, you either hold her or carry her in a cart. The hayride was quick and a bit bumpy, but for sure fun.

So first and foremost, I would say they have a good apple variety and if you are an apple lover, this is a good place to go. If you’re simply in for the photos and outdoor time at a farm, this is a good place too. We’ve seen a lot of people photo shooting, which we tried too, but with kids is not always easy to take a good picture, especially a family one.

They have two generous children playgrounds, to keep the toddlers and older children busy for a while. We got there around 2 pm and I found it crowded; like any other place, if you go there earlier, it won’t be that busy.

Washrooms and parking available onsite of course. We did enjoy some tasty popcorn that they have for sale, $2.5 if I recall well. And since this is a u-pick farm, you pay for what you pick.

A nice experience overall, for the entire family, which I highly recommend.

That is all for now!

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Sorina

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My son just loved this toy, took it very seriously and didn’t want to let go 🙂

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This is the entrance for the petty zoo, make sure to wash hand on your way out!

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Trying out an old tractor on the property

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The hayride!

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Lovely colour!

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Sharing the ride with friends!

Jungle gym Port Moody

Program: Jungle Gym

Location: Port Moody Rec Centre 300 Ioco Road, Port Moody

Cost: $2.5/child drop-in in fee

When:

 Tuesday 12:00pm-4:30pm
 Wednesday  12:00pm-3:00pm
 Friday  10:30-2:00pm
 Sunday  9:00am-11:30am

Parking available: yes

And another one! Although not a big fun of books yet, now and then I take Astrid and Jamie to the local libraries to check out some books. And this time we had some books we needed to return to the Port Moody library, so while being in the area, we decided to see what’s up at the Port Moody Rec Centre. And guess what? We found out there was a drop-in from 12- 4:30 pm, Jungle Gym.

They have a big, well-lit gym, very clean, ready to be conquered by 0 to 5 year olds. We were there for 30 minutes only, we got there around closing time, and it was pretty empty, but Astrid had a great time, while Jamie took a nap in the stroller.

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Nap time!

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Lots of space to run around

My daughter, she likes cars, and she tried almost every vehicle she could find, sometimes waiting for mommy to push her around, which of course I did.

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the pink

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the yellow

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the black

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and the blue 😀

We’ll head there more often, 30 minutes weren’t enough this time, toddlers seems to have huge sources of energy, I don’t know what to say about the parents though.

On our way out, we saw these beautiful cherry blossoms right in front of the Town Hall.

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I hope you enjoyed this post and like always, happy playing!

If you have any comments, please feel free to add them. If you like this post and would like to be notified by email about similar articles, don’t forget to subscribe.

Also, share your experience if you happen to visit this location!

Sorina

Tobogganing at Mt Seymour

Activity: Tobogganing

Location: 1700 Mount Seymour Road, North Vancouver, BC V7G 1L3

Parking: available, special lot assigned

Cost: children 3 years and under are free when accompanied by a paying adult. One free child per adult. Inflatables or custom-made sliding devices are not permitted.

Per person $15

Sliding mat $10

Snow and sun equals lots of fun. This year we decided to try some tobogganing at Mt Seymour. It was an unexpected decision on a Saturday morning in March, but it was a great one. Lots of sun, great road conditions and awesome sliding areas, all ready for us. We got there around 10:30 and to our surprise, it wasn’t very crowded, just a few other cars in the parking lot. This time of year, you are supposed to have winter tires, so make sure you have that all set- the road were clear this time, hardly any snow left on the way, but lots of snow on the slopes.

We didn’t go prepared, I have to admit, no gear, no sled, no winter equipment, our kids have their winter gear at hand, but my was hidden somewhere in the house, so I picked whatever I had available that would fit the occasion. Fortunately, the sun made all the difference and it was pretty warm outside.

Because we didn’t have any sled with us, we had to buy a sliding mat, the green one you see in the picture; I have to say it is not the best option, especially for an adult and a toddler but it did the job and we enjoyed 45 min of sliding as much as we good.

There are multiple sliding slopes, with a great view. Mount Seymour’s Toboggan Park is perfect for kids of all ages, but if you have a toddler then this is the place to go. You can also do tubing, but there is a height restriction so you would need to check that before going. Astrid wouldn’t fit this year, maybe next year.

My daughter didn’t see a lot of snow until now and I discovered she didn’t really enjoy walking in the snow, it might have been a bit difficult too, lots of layers can make it hard to walk, so I had to carry her pretty much everywhere. And yes, we went down and then up, with her in my arms. Good workout!

She loved it and I am sure she will enjoy it next time we go, probably we’ll purchase a real sled that will make this experience even more exciting and include Jamie as well. This time he enjoyed the sun from the baby carrier.

More on the program, check here for their website.

That is all until next time! I hope you enjoyed this post!

If you have any comments, please feel free to add them. If you like this post and would like to be notified by email about similar articles, don’t forget to subscribe.

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Sorina

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Before the action

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Incredible scenery

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Our challenge for the day

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And after, a bit tired

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Breathtaking view

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Matching tuques

Workout anyone?

Happy New Year!

Probably a hot topic around the holiday season and definitely one bullet point on the New Year’s Eve resolution list: working out, weight loss, staying fit, getting in shape or whatever you want to call it.

One of the challenges I faced as a new mom was finding time and opportunities to workout and get back in shape. I am sure a lot of moms would agree. Especially when you don’t have a grandma at home to help and maybe take the baby to daycare, chances are you don’t get to workout that much, at least in the beginning.

I wanted to get back in shape, workout, get back to my normal weight and have a healthy    lifestyle. So without further due, I started thinking about options.

First I started running close to home at Riverview forest, but soon realized I started too early and running wasn’t the best option at the time. It was too demanding. The baby was only 2 months old. So I chose working out at home whenever possible, that would have been when my daughter was sleeping during the day or in the evening after putting her to bed for the night. We were and still are very lucky that my daughter started sleeping through the night when she was very very little.

After a while, I wanted to connect with other moms and one of the way I did that was by registering to Mom&Baby workout classed thru Fit4Two, that was available in Tricities area. Basically, groups of moms were meeting with a trainer, outside when the weather permitted or indoors at Poirier Rec Centre or City Centre Aquatic Centre   when it was raining for fitness or bootcamp for mom and baby. There is a variety of both prenatal and postnatal classes to choose from that they offer. Just check their website.

You can bring your baby and work out together, which for me at least, prooved to be a very efficient method of networking, working out and spending time with my daughter. Of course, if you need to stop and feed your baby, you can do it at any time.

The program was especially designed and adjusted for new mothers. I highly recommend it if you are a new mom and want to exercise!

Now with two children it got a little bit more challenging and I am still working on finding options. If you have any ideas, let me know. Whatever worked the first time, doesn’t work anymore.

I hope you enjoyed this post and like always, happy working out!

If you have any comments, please feel free to add them. If you like this post and would like to be notified by email about similar articles, don’t forget to subscribe.

Also, share your experiences! What workout options did you choose?

Sorina

Bright Nights Christmas Train in Stanley Park

Program: Bright Nights Christmas Train in Stanley Park

Location: Stanley Park, Vancouver

Cost: for the train please click here, to view the displays at the Train Plaza by donation ($5.00 suggested)

When: November 30, 2017 to Saturday, January 6, 2018; closed on Monday, December 25 for Christmas.

Parking available: yes

Stanley Park is one of the greatest attractions in Vancouver and during the winter season it becomes even more appealing due to the Christmas decorations they put up. During the holiday season, the Bright Nights Christmas Train and Stanley Park Train Plaza sparkle with three million twinkling lights. That is a lot of lights I should say and they are all there until January 6th if you want to go and see them.

Despite the rain and snow we had today, we left Coquitlam and Tricities behind and we on the Bright Nights Christmas Train in Stanley Park with some friends and we liked it very much. My daughter enjoyed it a lot, she was absorbed by all the lights, and for some reason she kept looking only on the left side. Maybe next year she will check the ones on the right as well.

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We got there pretty early, and took the 10:30-11:00 am ride, and luckily all lights were lit and we were able to enjoy them as it was a bit cloudy outside. I assume they are lit all day long, but when it’s sunny, they’re not very bright. The ride was about 10-15 min, long enough when it’s cold and slow enough to take decent pictures. We were accompanied by Christmas music all through the ride.

It was pretty quiet up to a point when parents with small children started coming. Even after that it wasn;t very crowded. This time slot works well when you have an early bedtime I guess. It is fun to see the lights at night, but we put the kids to bed early so it becomes a bit challenging to get there late afternoon or evening.

If you choose not to get on the train, you can view the displays only. More available before Christmas I assume, the lights were lit but for example Santa workshop was closed for obvious reasons. Getting ready for next year, right?

There are also food trucks, not all of them were open, but if wanted to grab a coffee, you could do that. So bottom line, a good experience, my daughter was excited, my son took a  nap, maybe next year.

That is all for now.

I hope you enjoyed this post and happy holidays!

If you have any comments, please feel free to add them. If you like this post and would like to be notified by email about similar articles, don’t forget to subscribe.

Also, share your experience if you happen to visit this location!

Sorina

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Lost and found section 😀

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Baby signing class – Place des Arts Coquitlam

Program: Baby signing

Location: 1120 Brunette Avenue Coquitlam, British Columbia V3K 1G2

Cost: around $ 100.

Parking: yes

If you are interested in checking out different programs for your children before they can talk, baby signing could be one of them. Yes, exactly, they teach babies how to sign words like milk and more, which are very useful when your baby cannot talk yet.

The program is available for babies aged 1 – 18 months. And this is a short description they offer for 2017/2018 session.

Parents and babies will learn sign language through music and movement in this fun and supportive class. Signing stimulates intellectual development, provides a strong foundation for early literacy and boosts spoken vocabulary. Babies use signs months before they speak (for example, waving bye-bye) and signing enables them to communicate more e ectively from a younger age. Teacher: Nicole Walker

21379 • TU • Jan 16 – Mar 6 • 10:00 – 10:45 AM • $97

Here is their website for more information on their available programs.

We went to this one and it was very very interesting and productive, it was a while back and definitely a good experience. Although it says signing, it is not necessarily for babies who can’t hear, everyone in our class was able to hear.

The instructor is very engaging, social, funny, there is a lot of singing and movement. I do remember some of the sign we learned but I can’t really say I used a lot of them with my daughter. But for all you out there that are interested it is worth a try.

I didn’t really take pictures unfortunately…

I hope you enjoyed this post!

If you have any comments, please feel free to add them. If you like this post and would like to be notified by email about similar articles, don’t forget to subscribe.

Also, share your experience if you happen to visit this location!

Sorina

Tri City Family Place in Port Coquitlam

Program: Tri City Family Place drop-in

Location: 2062 Manning Avenue Port Coquitlam, BC V3B 1L6

Cost: donation

When: Wednesday – Saturday 9:00-13:00 am

Parking available: yes

Tri City Family Place in Port Coquitlam is yet another parent participation drop-in you can check out with your little one. With a family-oriented feel when you walk in, this drop in is an indoor playground, offering several interesting options, varying from drawing to building blocks, a little slide, play dough and lots and lots of toys to choose from for children 0-5 years old.

Washrooms are available and so is parking. Not a very spacious playroom inside, but enough to keep your little one busy on a rainy day for sure. Take off your shoes and you’re ready to play. Some snack is provided, and the offer is based on donation, just like the cost of the actual drop-in.

Also, moms can enjoy a good chat and a good coffee while they’re there and what can be better now that the rainy season is coming. Last time we went, there weren’t a lot of kids, so not very crowded, which was nice. Apparently the season has just started, which means it will get busier with time. The children varied in age and my daughter was the youngest I think.

Clean, quiet, well-lit, this place is definitely a good alternative to check out.

You can find more information on the program here.

I hope you enjoyed this post and like always, happy playing around!

You can find some pictures below.

If you have any comments, please feel free to add them. If you like this post and would like to be notified by email about similar articles, don’t forget to subscribe.

Also, share your experience if you happen to visit this location!

Sorina

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Toys toys toys

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Toys toys toys

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Gotta check your pulse once in a while.

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Conquering the slide!

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Toys toys toys

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Toys toys toys

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And toys toys toys

 

Time for Gym at Hyde Creek Rec Centre Port Coquitlam

Program: Time for Gym

Location: Hyde Creek Rec Centre

Cost: $3/each drop in fee , $5/2 children

When: Friday 9:30-11:30 am

Parking available: yes

Tricities area is full of drop-ins, this time at Hyde Creek Rec Centre in Port Coquitlam. Very similar to the Wilson Centre programs, this one is focused on movement and running around as well. They have a huge gym, specially adjusted to satisfy a toddler’s needs for running around and get those red cheeks out. The program is for children with ages between 0 and 6 years old. For more info, please click here.

Your little one will be able to choose from a number of stations, including, soccer, floor hockey, bowling and other active stations, a small ball pit, and fun ride on toys. They can check the climbing structures and slides available too.

It is a drop-in program, $3 per child, $5 if you have two, which you pay at the reception.

The location is easy to access and there is plenty of space for your stroller inside if you need to bring one, in my case Astrid walked and I brought Jamie in his car seat, he is still spending lots of time sleeping. We will use a baby carrier as of next time, but while my mom is with us, we can split tasks, one is watching Astrid, the other one Jamie. Good to have someone around, right?

There is seating area available on the side as well. You can catch your breath a while your little one keeps playing, or you and him/her can enjoy a snack.

Everything and everyone is on the move, kids are running around, a lot of action going on, so watch out for your little one, other kids may run into him/her very easily. It’s been a fun place to check out and for sure we will go there again.

That is all from here for now. Hope you enjoyed this post!

Happy playing around!

If you have any comments, please feel free to add them. If you like this post and would like to be notified by email about similar articles, don’t forget to subscribe.

Also, share your experience if you happen to visit this location!

Sorina

Tree-tots at Pinetree Community Centre in Coquitlam

Program: Tree-tots

Location: Pinetree Community Centre

Cost: $2 drop in fee

When: Tuesdays and Thursdays 9:15-11:15 am

Parking available: yes, $1.25 / hour

Tuesday the same week we headed towards a new location and this time at Pinetree Community centre. We had been there the previous year, but for a spinning class held by Fit4Two, but about that in a different post.

Pinetree Community Centre is located at 1260 Pinetree Way,

Coquitlam, BC V3B 7Z4. Tree tots is the name of the program they have available on Tuesdays and Thursdays and it is a drop-in for $2, which you pay at the reception when you walk in. The location is next to Douglas College and Pinetree Secondary School, therefore you will notice a lot of people coming and going around, everything seems pretty noisy and crowded, and very downtown let’s say. It is also next to Lafarge Lake and Town Centre park, if you feel like connecting multiple activities in the summer time. Not sure about the rainy season. Here is the link if you need to know more.

There is limited pay-parking in front, $1.25 per hour. The pay machines inside are pretty slow, so make sure to take that into account when you get there. This first time we went, the program was held in room #3, which is right on the right side when you enter the building. I assume it is there all the time. It looked to me that it wasn’t the final location, but who knows. We will go there again for sure and will find out.

Now coming back to the program, the kick-off day on Tuesday didn’t promise much when we walked in. The room is not very big, apparently they allow 20 kids + 20 adults only, and they didn’t have a lot of toys and hence options. My daughter was a bit disappointed. But shortly after, Lisa, the lady in charge, told us the program wasn’t supposed to start until 2 days later, so that explained the set up. More to follow at the next session. Since Astrid, my daughter, was the youngest, and not a lot of the toys they had there matched her age, the coordinator brought some other toys that might appeal to her, which was nice and appreciated. She introduced herself, told us about the program and helped create an engaging atmosphere while we were there.

All that considered, probably next time, more people should show up. I mentioned that the maximum capacity anticipated would be 20 kids and 20 adults. We were only 5 adults and 4 kids this time. Honestly, I don’t really see much space left after 20 + 20 in there, but again, I only went once. I couldn’t really capture the full potential of the room.

The program is all free-play, no story time or circle time if that is what you are looking for.

There is washroom available, the main play area is well lit, clean, with a space to leave your luggage and some chairs if you need one to breastfeed, like in my case, with my son.

This time I am adding some pictures. This is what you see when you walk in, clean, well-lit room.

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Astrid enjoying a huge truck she had found.

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Huge LEGO available. I found out they make a lot of noise when they crash.

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An IKEA type of kitchen is always a good source of inspiration. Let’s cook some veggies!

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Discovering dinosaurs

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Trucks again. You can see a painting station at the back. Painting sunflowers is for sure fun.

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What else?

That is it for now. Hope you found this article useful.

Happy playing around!

If you have any comments, please feel free to add them. If you like this post and would like to be notified by email about similar articles, don’t forget to subscribe.

Also, share your experience if you happen to visit this location!

Sorina

Peek-a-boo at Recreational Centre in Port Coquitlam

Program: Peek-a-boo and Play-mania

Location: Port Coquitlam Recreational Centre Mabbett room

Cost: $3/ each drop in fee, $5/2 children

When: Monday 10-12 am

Parking available: yes and free

Last week of unofficial summer vacation for my daughter- I say unofficial, as she is on vacation full time, not registered to any daycare program. Having had my second child just a month ago, we haven’t really been able to check the local toddler programs in Tricities, therefore now, equipped with two babies, not just one, we start to wander around and check all the community centres around and see what they have to offer.

First and foremost, I made sure I have all the recent brochures and activities guides, online or hardcopies. Good enough, we found lots of options now starting September. As of this year, apparently they don’t distribute the guides by mail anymore, they can only be found online, or if you really want a hardcopy, you will need to check with your local community centre or library. I got mine for Coquitlam from the Central Public Library by the way.

My intention here is to just give a short review of the kids friendly places we visit, add in some pictures and hopefully other moms will feel inspired in making their decisions.

The first one on my list is Port Coquitlam Recreation Centre or REC Centre. Full address is 2150 Wilson Avenue Port Coquitlam, BC  V3C 6J5. And in case you find it strange that the entire location is surrounded by a construction site, do not worry, the centre is fully functional inside and they have parking available as well. The centre is under renovation for the following 3 years it seems. Here is the link in case you want to know more about the location or whether you want to check more about the program.

The program they have available on Mondays from 10- 12 am is called Peek-a-boo and it’s located in a very large and generous location, with a lot of options for the kids, aged 1-6 years. You will find everything from open gym time with mats to run around, balls, ride in cars and wagons, drawing/ painting stations, craft area

It is a drop-in program, $3 per child, $5 if you have two. You pay at the reception, where there are also volunteers helping around, probably due to the construction going on.

The coordinator, a very nice lady, introduced herself and told us what we can do and how the program runs. Basically, free play for an hour and a half, and story time at the end. The free play time can include craft, drawing, a lot of movement if they want to, my daughter decided she wanted to try out all the kids ride in cars and bicycles they had. There were a few and separated from the rest of the activities, this way you wouldn’t disturb the others. Trying may be a bit too much for her, she is only 18-months old, mommy helped her ride them and even try one herself.

There is washroom available, the main play area is well lit, clean, with a space to leave your luggage and lots of chairs if you need one to breastfeed, like in my case, with my son.

One thing I didn’t like was that although the room was large and suitable for kids play, getting there from the main hall in the centre was a bit challenging. There are some stairs that separate the spaces and you can’t really get the stroller with you. You need to leave it outside, before you take the stairs, which for me can be a bit challenging if I were alone. This time I had my mom with me, helping me with the kids, but on my own, dragging two babies and the diaper bag, backpack in my case, would have been a bit too much.

All in all good place to bring your child if walking. I wouldn’t recommend the place for crawlers, although with a bit of creativity, you can find things to do.

Some pictures below.

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The stairs I mentioned earlier, again not very stroller friendly, unless you have some help.

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Look at me mom, I have this little car and I am going to place it on the slide. Watch this

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Perfect place to draw, hidden from everyone. Someone may copy my idea you see.

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Lots of tables and sitting area, usually here there are crafting sessions organized as well.

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The princess in the tower. The tower with a slide of course.

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Some toys are pretty cool, I decided to try some myself.

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Mommy, I think it’s nap time.

That is all from here for now. Hope you enjoyed it!

Happy playing around!

If you have any comments, please feel free to add them. If you like this post and would like to be notified by email about similar articles, don’t forget to subscribe.

Also, share your experience if you happen to visit this location!

Sorina