Catherine Parker, National Parks TravelingMom

Catherine Parker, National Parks TravelingMom

Catherine Parker has a passion for travel with only one state left in her quest of seeing all 50. As a former flight attendant, she's landed in nearly every major North American airport at least once. Since clipping her professional wings after 9/11, she combines her love of the open road with visiting national parks, historic sites and cultural icons. She's a freelance writer and journalist based out of Central Texas, dividing her time between writing and restoring a 95-year-old house. She shares her life with her three kids, her husband, yardful ofcats, a dog and three backyard chickens.

The Ultimate Guide to Junior Ranger Badges

The National Park Service loves kids as much as it loves animals. With special programming at over 250 park sites across the country, kids grab the attention of Park Rangers with their infectious curiosity. Park Rangers across the country take a few minutes and discover their park through the eyes of a child while looking over Junior Ranger booklets. TravelingMom’s National Parks Mom outlines the National Park Junior Rangers program and even offers a few badges to earn from home. When my kids walk into a national park visitor center covered in shiny little badges, people notice. The park...

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7 Reasons Schlitterbahn is the Best Waterpark in Texas for Teens

  Teens need thrills and freedom to explore during summer vacation so head to the World’s Best Waterpark, located in between Austin and San Antonio in Central Texas. Find two separate water parks to explore, each with its own personality, and a tram to connect them. Families traveling on the cheap can pack their own cooler of snacks. And then pick up a boogie board for some wave action or hop on an alligator and float a river. Read on for National Parks TravelingMom’s 7 Reasons Schlitterbahn is the best water park in Texas for Teens. Traveling with a...

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The Best Things to do in Hollywood Studios with Preschoolers

Looking for family fun with preschoolers at Walt Disney World’s Hollywood Studios? On a recent trip to Orlando, a pack of veteran TravelingMoms and TravelingDads hit the park to itemize all the fun for preschoolers. With the recent opening of Toy Story Land, Hollywood Studios is a must for preschoolers. Exploring this cheery and bright new land is fun, and perfect for preschoolers. Disney Hollywood Studios with Preschoolers We all know movies are magical, and of course, who does magic better than Disney? That’s why Disney Hollywood Studios is where entertainment magically comes alive and enthralls the entire family....

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9 Things to do in Southern Oklahoma with Kids

Southern Oklahoma offers mountains to explore, a national park site to hike, a wildlife refuge to tour and even chocolate to sample. On a recent trip to Southern Oklahoma, National Parks TravelingMom explored the area between Lawton and Sulphur, Oklahoma. Read on for things to do in Southern Oklahoma with kids. Head to Oklahoma for family fun with lots of outdoor recreational opportunities. Then learn some history about the Chickasaw Nation, the code talkers of WWII and how the cowboys drove cattle from Texas. Read on for things to do in Southern Oklahoma with kids. 9 Things to do...

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9 Places to Tame a Teen in Oklahoma City

When traveling with a teen, stock your itinerary with lots of activity, from thrills to chills. The Oklahoma City downtown area offers lots of activities for teens and their families to tackle. Hit the streets of Bricktown and see how many mural selfies you can take, then learn to whitewater raft before watching the sun set at the ballgame. Don’t forget to feed your teen regularly so National Parks TravelingMom suggests Oklahoma steaks for the meat eaters. Read on for the best things to do in Oklahoma City with teens. Keep the teens happy by keeping them moving. Walk...

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7 Junior Ranger Badges to Earn on Your Alaskan Cruise

  An Alaskan cruise gives families the opportunity to discover the rugged landscape of the Inside Passage from the comfort of a cruise ship. Seeing calving glaciers, breaching whales and soaring eagles offers bucket list to-dos for families during summer vacation. Our National Parks TravelingMom shares how to earn Junior Rangers badges on an Alaskan cruise. How to Earn Junior Rangers Badges on an Alaskan Cruise Several popular ports-of-call offer families opportunities to earn National Park Service Junior Ranger badges. And many of the park sites are free to enter. Here’s seven National Park Service sites that offer Junior...

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The Family Guide to Yellowstone National Park’s Yellowstone Lake

  The family voted, and you’re headed Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming for the next family vacation. With activities galore and a park bigger than Rhode Island, families will rave about this trip for years. But let’s be honest, some moms don’t do nature. Don’t despair. The kids can hike around a supervolcano and find more geysers than Iceland. Dad can spot loads of  animals with a chance at fishing. And the National Parks TravelingMom offers a solution for the luxe mom, where to find luxury in Yellowstone National Park at Lake Yellowstone Hotel. Take a Family Vacation to...

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9 Best Things to do with Kids at the Bay of Fundy, New Brunswick

Get the kids jumping up and down learning about tides and marine life on the seafloor. Load them up and head for New Brunswick in the Canadian Maritimes to see the place that boasts the highest tides in the world. As a mainstay from kids’ educational programming, your kids probably know more about it than mom does. Same thing happened to the National Parks TravelingMom. Read on for her 9 best things to do with kids at the Bay of Fundy National Park. Make learning about oceanography cool as kids see the water level rise and fall 50 feet...

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The Ultimate Bucket List for Wadi Rum Desert in Jordan

Take the kids to explore a legendary Jordan desert, the Wadi Rum, an UNESCO World Heritage Site. See the Seven Pillars of Wisdom as you pass camel caravans. Experience the epic landscape featured in the movie Lawrence of Arabia as your family drives up and down giant sand dunes. Read on for the National Parks TravelingMom’s top 9 things to do with kids in the Wadi Rum Desert. Exploring the Wadi Rum Desert with Kids It took me years to appreciate the pure beauty of the desert. Spending too much time thinking death awaited if I lost my way....

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The Ultimate Family Guide to Yellowstone National Park

The National Parks TravelingMom plays favorites. She loves one park more than the rest. Twenty years ago she packed up a pick-up with hand-me-down camping gear to explore Yellowstone with a boyfriend. The gear got dumped, but the boyfriend survived the most poorly planned road trip ever. Her love for Yellowstone prevails and she now shares it as a family of five, including that old boyfriend with the bad gear. Read on for her top tips and the ultimate family guide to Yellowstone National Park, including a tip for best tour company. In a park bigger than the state...

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