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Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Review of Guy Fieri's Smokehouse, Fourth Street Live in Louisville, KY

 photo 20160912_185221_zpsbdr7btij.jpg
Taking smoked meat to the extreme, Guy Fieri’s Smokehouse doesn’t disappoint – in food, fun and atmosphere! We were fortunate enough to attend the media opening of Guy Fieri’s Smokehouse, with Guy himself in attendance, educating us on the fine aspects of his passion for food, as well as his affection for Louisville!

Located directly in the center of Fourth Street Live, the restaurant has a large patio seating area and boosts a huge fire pit upon entrance. The inside is adored in typical Fieri décor – a chrome eagle on one wall, and a flame mural and flame patterns all over, symbolic maybe of his famous style of shirts he’s often seen wearing. There is plenty of seating, with room for large parties, and a very large bar adjacent to the outdoor patio.

The menu screams Fieri, with ample choices of smoked meats, and that will also provide you that at-home feeling with some bourbon-flared dishes. Like Guy himself said in his interview prior to our dining experience, "It's not what you'd expect to find in your everyday average BBQ joint.” To start off, I suggest either the Trash Can Nachos, which are literally served from a can, or the Pit Smoked Wings, smoked pork shank covered in a bourbon brown sugar BBQ sauce!

For an entrée, you can’t go wrong with any of the signature sandwich choices, which range from the Motley Que (pit smoked pulled pork with a bourbon brown sugar BBQ sauce and crispy onions on a pretzel bun) to a non-typical grilled cheese, the Triple Crown Grilled Cheese, which consists of pimento, smoked gouda, and cheddar cheese, along with six cheese mac n cheese, all stacked between buttered garlic toast! There are a variety of burgers to choose from, including The Smokehouse – a beef patty, pit smoked pulled pork, BBQ brisket, bourbon brown sugar BBQ sauce, donkey sauce, smoked gouda, onions, pickles and garlic-buttered brioche. For larger plated entrees, there is a brisket meatloaf, bourbon pork chops, salmon, smoked brisket, ribs, fried chicken, rib eye, and the Big Bite BBQ Platter!!!

Although there is no actual kids' menu (*one is currently in the works), Guy himself told us that orders could easily be customized per a little one’s needs – such as a basic cheeseburger or a grilled cheese – just to ask your server upon ordering. Prices range from $11-$16 for the sandwich/fry options, and $17-$35 for the larger entrees with sides.

We expect Guy Fieri’s Smokehouse will continue to be a smokin’ hot spot in Louisville!

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434 S. 4th Street – Fourth Street Live
Louisville, KY 40202


Restaurant Hours of Operation:
Sunday-Thursday 11am - 10pm
Friday & Saturday 11am - 11pm

**Bar is open late**

Happy Hour Specials from 5-7pm

By Guest Contributors: Karen & Kelly

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Week in Preview October 24th-27th

Sponsored by:
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It's fall y'all, enjoy the crisp air and have some family fun!

Here are my picks for the week!

Live it:Enjoy a Halloween Party at the Iroquois Library with Mr. Moustache and his Magic Show on Thursday, October 27th! Show starts at 6:30pm. Find out more here!

Eat it: Wednesday, October 26th is National Pumpkin Day and Krispy Kreme is celebrating by making Pumpkin Spice Original Glazed doughnuts! This is one day only so check here for participating locations!

Move it: The historic fire tower at Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest will be open 11-4 until November 6 on Tuesdays, Thursdays, (and Saturdays, & Sundays). See you at the top for a beautiful view of the fall colors!

Learn it: Head over to the Kentucky Science Center on Tuesday, October 25th at 8:30am for their play date! Exclusively for visitors ages 0-4 and their adult caregivers, Playdates take the big kids out of the equation, letting little ones freely investigate, build, experience, and share. Learn more here!

By Guest Contributor:


Thursday, October 20, 2016

Picks for things to do this weekend around Louisville: October 21,22,23

Sponsored by:
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Click here for our FALL FESTIVALS list!!
Click here for our HALLOWEEN EVENTS list!!

Click here to learn more about our FREE #LoveLouFamFun Scavenger Hunt! Now through October 31!

Friday:  Chick-fil-A in Middletown is hosting a Stuffed Animal Sleepover. No, you don't actually sleep over but the stuffed animal does.  You and your child go for dinner on Friday night....wear PJs, there's activities and storytime..... and breakfast on Saturday to pick up the stuffed animal.  Event details here.

Saturday: Head to Goshen to the gorgeous Hermitage Farm for their fall festival from 9 a.m.- 4 p.m.  Any donation to Fund for the Arts gets you in!  It's a lovely setting and they will have a petting zoo, face painting and more.  And, you can watch the equestrian competitions. 

Sunday: Have you been to the Jack-O-Lantern Spectacular at Iroquois park? The artists mix it up every year to make an amazing display of carved pumpkins. It's fun to go when it's getting dark so you can really see them glow and, it's slightly cheaper to go on Sunday -Thursday so if the weekend is best for you, Sunday it is! Proceeds benefit the Louisville Metro Parks Foundation.


Psssssst: Tune into the latest episode of Fortyish - Dan & I chat about the dumbest thing we have ever done.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Review of 1st Saturday Show with Squallis Puppeteers in Louisville, KY

 photo 0903161333_zpsraynf683.jpgLast month, I took my five-year-old son to the 1st Saturday Show with Squallis Puppeteers. It was our first time going and we were so impressed and had such a fabulous time. He really loves theater arts and puppetry, so it was a perfect mother/son outing for us!

 photo 0903161251_zpspfsbrd2m.jpgThe show only lasts about 30 minutes, so it is a perfect amount of time for younger ones. They design their 1st Saturday shows with younger children in mind and they are suitable for ages 3 to 7 . The show we attended was called "Moose Gets Ready." My son and I both liked the message behind the puppet show, which was about incorporating getting ready for kindergarten into learning new skills and teaching each other the ABCs and 123s. Teamwork and enhancing your social skills were also highlighted. Before the show, the ladies at the ticket table asked my son to come back and tell them what his favorite character was from the show, and he couldn't wait to go back and tell them afterwards that it was the Wise Old Tree. He loved how the tree came to life and talked and was really mesmerized by it!

The people who work with Squallis Puppeteers make their puppets and sets all by hand, so they are very creative and elaborately detailed. We especially enjoyed the stage set up and the puppets that appeared throughout the story, including Moose, Beaver, Caterpillar, Owl, and Butterfly. My son said his favorite was the Wise Old Tree. The shows are musical performances and include a lot of audience participation as well.

The shows are $5 per person, and you can also sign up to attend a puppet-making workshop that happens immediately following the show. The workshop is also about 30 minutes in length and costs $5 as well. 1st Saturday Shows withSquallis Puppeteers are located in the Highlands Community Center at 1228 E. Breckinridge Street. It’s a great venue!

 photo 0903161337_zpsdktfjfi3.jpgMore information from the Facebook event page:

"First Saturdays- Puppet Show and Workshop Series
The Series is hosted at the Highlands Community Campus (HCC) located at the corner of Barrett Ave and E. Breckinridge St. We invite the public in to our gym-atorium to participate with our unique puppet performances and workshops for families. This is an opportunity to share live performance with the kids you love, watch their imaginations grow, and collaborate with them on their own puppet projects. Stick around after the show to see what you can make together with “make it and take it” puppet workshops. Shows and workshops each run approximately 30 minutes. Come check it all out!"

"Mission Statement: Squallis Puppeteers uses the art of puppetry to free imaginations, create fantastic characters, and tell the stories that are important to our communities."

The remaining shows for this year are: http://squallispuppeteers.com/saturday-show-2-organic/

November 5, 10am and 1pm, "Food Fight: Rematch!"
December 3, 10am, "Tricky Fox"
December 3, 1pm, "Bigfoot's Big Holiday"

Find Squallis Puppetters on Facebook or contact them via phone or email

By guest contributor: Erin

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Review of 502 Café in Louisville, KY

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Long before the 502 Café had a brick and mortar location at University of Louisville’s campus it was my family’s favorite food truck. “The Barbecue Man” as we affectionately referred to him had a food truck of the same name that would frequent The Flea Off Market. The first time we stopped by he was parked out in front of the Clifton Food Mart. The smell of the smoke coming off the smoker was too much to pass up.

 photo 20160603_184532_zpsaewy7dta.jpgWe got pulled pork sandwiches and truffle oil mac and cheese for the kids and brisket sandwiches with bourbon bacon jam for the adults. We were hooked. I mean come on, bourbon bacon jam. Over the years we tried ribs, A.B.T.s, smoked corn on the cob, and just about anything else you can think of on a smoker.

Then “The Barbecue Man,” otherwise known as Chris Williams, partnered with Anthony Happel to open a physical location, which opened June 6. It’s located on 4th Street next to Gray’s Bookstore in the same space as the pizza place where I used to hang out in college. Le sigh.

The menu has many of the staples we came to love from the food truck such as the A.B.T.s and the brisket sandwich with bourbon bacon jam. But there are new menu items like Totchos- nachos made with tater tots- The Louisville Lip – a massive sandwich piled high with smoked meats named for Muhammad Ali- and the barbecue Hot Brown.

 photo 20160603_184943_zps10em8zfz.jpgI tried the barbecue Hot Brown and it was phenomenal. On top of a base of Texas Toast resides smoked turkey, fried green tomatoes, smoked pork belly, house-made beer cheese, and house-made barbecue sauce. There’s nothing about this barbecue version of a Louisville standard to complain about. The combination was perfectly executed.

My husband had a plate of all the smoked meats so he could try it all, and he loved all of it. My youngest got a pulled pork sandwich and my oldest got chicken tenders, which were hand breaded. We shared a basket of Totchoes, which lasted less than 90 seconds. The kids happily ate their food without complaining, which is a ringing endorsement for most kids.

Though this location for the 502 Café is mostly geared toward the college crowd, it would be a great place to stop by for dinner after a game or after a visit to The Speed Art Museum.

By Guest Contributor: Maggie

Monday, October 17, 2016

Get Psyched for a free family event!

This is a sponsored post

Have you ever wondered why you remember some things really well but completely forget others? Or why it’s hard to do more than one thing at the same time? Here’s your chance to find out!

 photo getpsyched_zpsitud9yhz.jpgStudents at the University of Louisville are hosting a FREE event for children ages 6-12 and their parents. Children will get to participate in hands-on demonstrations and activities. Through these fun activities, everyone will learn how to help their brain work more effectively.

Children will receive prizes, including a t-shirt and snacks will be provided.

Get Psyched is on Saturday November 12th, 2016. There are two session times available: 10AM-12PM or 1 PM-3 PM. It is a completely free event, but space is limited and reservations are required. For more information or to register, go to http://getpsychedlouisville.org

This event is being sponsored by the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences and the Delphi Center at the University of Louisville.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Week in Preview October 17th-20th

Sponsored by:
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Painting, apples, and Legos make for a great time!

Here are my picks for the week!

Live it: Why wait for the weekend? Visit on Wednesdays at Whet Your Palette and receive
any 12x24 for 1/2 off! (Does not apply on smaller canvas sizes.)

Eat it: Head to Gustavo's Mexican Grill on Monday for $2.99 kid's meals!

Move it: Check out a local farm and go apple picking. When you get home make some homemade applesauce with those that you picked. Click here for some ideas of where to go!

Learn it:At the Middletown Library on Thursday it is time for Learning with Legos! Starting at 6:30pm, Legos and art combine as we make a Lego drawbot. Check out the website for more information!

By Guest Contributor:


Thursday, October 13, 2016

Picks for things to do this weekend around Louisville: October 13,14,15

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Click here for our FALL FESTIVALS list!!
Click here for our HALLOWEEN EVENTS list!!

Click here to learn more about our FREE #LoveLouFamFun Scavenger Hunt! Now through October 31!

Friday:  Check out "Creep Things" at Idlewild.  From 6-10 p.m. they have fun with the Halloween theme featuring a spider house, creepy bugs and more.  Our writers have really enjoyed Idlewild events!  See details and pricing here.

 photo nba at yum_zpszbqtvdsu.jpgSaturday: The NBA is coming to the KFC Yum! Center. This is your chance to take the family out to a pro game without having to drive out of town or stay in a hotel.  It's the Miami Heat vs. Minnesota Timberwolves. Some local college faves are playing in this game, you won't want to miss it.  It's at 7:30 p.m. and tickets start at just $15.

Sunday: Join us back at the KFC Yum! Center to cheer on the UofL Volleyball team as they take on UNC at 1pm.  You can get in free as part of our #LoveLouFamFun promotion- see how here.


Psssssst: Tune into the latest episode of Fortyish - Dan & I chat about horoscopes and catch up with our funny pal Robyn

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Review of Lovewell Coffeehouse in Louisville, KY

 photo IMG_0794_zps37ln6ti6.jpgWe visited Lovewell Coffehouse after a morning of Sunday flag football and had some nice, quiet family time while we were there. Lovewell is located at 5219 Mt. Washington Road, off of Preston Highway and not far from Preston Crossings 16 Movie Theater. This coffee house is different than most as it is only open from Friday-Sunday from 9am-5pm.

They didn’t have any kid’s choices listed but when we asked about what they could make we were offered strawberry and cream, vanilla bean or cotton candy frappes and hot chocolate. One of my kids picked a vanilla bean and the other chose cotton candy which they both said were ok. I had a pumpkin spice latte and my husband was boring with just a plain coffee. We also tried out a chocolate chip cookie and a strawberry yogurt parfait. The cookie was really yummy but I didn’t get to try the yogurt because my husband ate it too fast!

We stayed in the first room we came to and enjoyed it very much since it was stocked with lots of board games for us to play and with a television so my husband could keep track of the football games. After watching others come and go we discovered that there was another part of the shop we didn’t even know about that had 3 more rooms to explore. All the rooms have fun art on the walls and there are also some items for sale including jewelry and coffee mugs.

 photo IMG_0798_zpsmfx5ymun.jpgThis is a great little shop and would make for a nice stop before or after a movie. It would also make for a nice place to study or get caught up on some work. Find out more on their Facebook page!

By Guest Contributor: Kelly

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Family Getaway Vacation to Chicago, IL

 photo 20160410_140459_zpstywgfeut.jpgMy family and I took the 5 hour drive through windmill farms and toll booths to Chicago over spring break . It was cold (there was some snow), but still enjoyable!

We researched and bought the CityPass prior to arriving. With the CityPass you can visit 5 attractions at a discount. You can buy alternative discounts like the Go Card (you buy the day, and fit in as many activities as you want), but basically the more attractions to buy upfront, the better the deal. I think the CityPass is a great deal for a week trip to Chicago, but too much for a long weekend.

 photo 20160408_143458_zpsvcsjfdqc.jpgStreet parking is almost non-existent in downtown Chicago, and it is not uncommon to cost well over $20 for parking under 3 hours! Some places have early bird pricing (go to www.Parkingpanda.com to check parking options and prices). It's helpful to use Google maps for directions, and it will show you your walk, car, bus, and train alternatives.

My recommendation is the bus. At the time this was written, a one way bus ride costs $2.25 for adults, $1.10 for kids (young kids were free), but the bus does NOT give change. Have exact change or go to the local drug store for a metra card (you can buy one way, 10 rides, weekend passes, etc). There are lots of bike sharing/rental sites, Ubers, and taxi services as well. Traffic can be terrible, so walking is easiest - be careful in choosing your hotel location!

Our hotel had an indoor pool ("free" activity for the kids), but no complimentary breakfast, so we brought our breakfast foods with us to save money and time. Chicago is expensive. It was tough to find a bottle of water under $3, and meals were pricey.

Here are my tips and experiences for the sites:

Shedd Aquarium
 photo 20160408_124106_zpsywneq3jv.jpgGet there before it's open - the line builds up fast! Don't bring any big bags with you - they do bag searches and don't allow large bags in. There is a lot to see - it could be full day depending on how many shows you see (the $2 Beluga whale show was worth $2, but all of the shows can sell out by lunch time!) They have bulaga whales, dolphins, amphibians, ocean animals of all kinds, and more. You can bring in your lunch to cut costs. The sting ray touch is only in warmer months. You can buy a cheap $8 ticket for just the main floor of the aquarium which I thought was a good deal and could take 2+ hours alone.

Alder Planetarium
You schedule 2 shows, then go back and schedule more. The shows are included in the ticket price. There is a cafe inside. More of a half day attraction for us, but it depends how many shows you see.

Field Museum
 photo 20160407_145548_zps3rsez2pd.jpgNo big lines, so it was a good second half of the day attraction. Cool, life-sized T-rex skeleton on the main floor. Different floors with different themes. Our movie was included in the CityPass cost. You could pay extra for the main, temporary exhibit. My kids were good with a half day there, but if your kid was interested in everything it could be a full day.

Museum of Science and Industry
I thought it looked awesome online with lots of different areas and themes, but my kids weren't as into it. They enjoyed the planes, trains, and robots, but they weren't wowed. It's a big building, but after 5+ hours, my kids were over it.

Willis Tower
The previously known Sears Tower has long lines on good weather days. Try to be there when it opens, and don't go after sunset. After going through security (don't put your phone in your pocket!), you wind through lines with information on the wall, a short movie on the Tower's history, and then take an elevator up 103 stories in 60 seconds (there is a lot of ear popping). At the top you can go out on one of 4 glass ledges. Two are for paying costumers to have a professional picture taken floating over the city of Chicago, two are for you to take your own picture, and hope the strangers next to you don't photo bomb. Then you go back down the elevator and through two gift shops to get out.

 photo 20160409_082052_zpspa0b5t1g.jpgMillenium Park and the Cloud Gate
"The bean" as the locals call it, is awesome and free! Great place for family pictures. The park is over 24 acres right in the city, and hosts free events regularly.

Buckingham Fountain
Buckingham Fountain is in Grant Park, and is one of the largest fountains in the world. It operates from April to October with water shows and light shows. It's right by the Art Institute of Chicago which can also be included in your CityPass deal.

Oz Park
 photo 20160409_085050_zps4irhvmha.jpgOz Park is a cute, little park with typical park stuff including a wooden playground and Oz character statues. Since my daughter's class is reading Wizard of Oz, she HAD to see it. The statues were neat. It wasn't too far of a drive from the free Lincoln Park Zoo and Millenium park. On-street parking nearby.

Places to eat:

Flagship McDonald's - not super special. It has two floors. My kids thought the elevator, escalators, and meal trays rocked. The second floor had museum type windows with McDonald's through the decades with a matching table and chairs to sit at. The upstairs bakery was closed when we were there. Only drive-through, no parking.

Rainforest Cafe
Typical Rainforest. Moving, life-size animals, overpriced food and drinks, large gift shop. The food was delicious and the wait staff was really nice. No parking.

Wildberry (breakfast/lunch)
Best breakfast food in Chicago! Huge portions, delicious tasting, clean restaurant, friendly staff. Go early, the wait can get long! Right across the street from Millenium Park.

Firecakes Donuts - take out only. Delicious and fresh donuts and hot chocolate. These donuts were so good they are worth the trip to Chicago! (Right near Flagship McDonald's and Rainforest Cafe).

 photo 20160409_193835_zpsfc4bp8tc.jpg Other sites for our next trip:
 photo 20160409_192754_zpseijuobfa.jpgNavy Pier (ferris wheel and rides)
Children's Museum
Lake Michigan beach areas
Museum of History
Art Institute of Chicago
Legoland Discovery Center
River Cruises
360 Chicago
Lincoln Park Zoo
Ann Sather Restaurant
Level 257
Hard Rock Cafe
Honey Butter Fried Chicken
and many more...

By Guest Contributor: Caryn