Catherine Parker, National Parks TravelingMom

Catherine Parker, National Parks TravelingMom

Catherine Parker has a passion for travel with only two states left in her quest of seeing all 50. As a former flight attendant with one of the largest airlines, there isn't a major North American airport that she hasn't landed in 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 is 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, two cats, a dog and six backyard chickens.


How to Make Memories with Your Kids in Oregon Caves

  The Pacific Northwest offers families wild and rugged landscapes with evergreen mountain vistas and windswept coasts. Yet it’s the landscape under the mountains that sparkles for the National Parks TravelingMom. Just south of Crater Lake National Park, a Mom SUV climbs a winding mountain road through a dense fir forest to the marble halls of Oregon Caves National Monument to take a cave tour with her kids. My boys, 9 and 13, want to explore another underground landscape so I circled Oregon Caves National Monument on the map laying on my dash. Even though caves aren’t my first...

Read More

Go Out of this World in Huntsville Alabama

  Channel your inner astronaut with a trip to Huntsville, Alabama, to discover deep space with NASA. Kids aren’t the only ones commanding a mission. You can sign the entire family up for Space Camp too. Standing in the shadow of the Saturn V, the largest rocket ever launched, the National Parks TravelingMom marveled at the newest space race, the mission to Mars. At the epicenter of NASA’s testing and development, quietly stands Huntsville, Alabama, as it did over 50 years ago when the mission was to the moon. As the mom of a fearless kid, I’m always looking for...

Read More

The Ultimate Guide to Junior Ranger Badges

  The National Park Service loves kids as much as it loves animals. With special programming at over 200 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...

Read More

23 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 a couple of TravelingDads hit the park to itemize all the fun for preschoolers. Teaser Alert, Hollywood Studios packs in the fun with lots of shows and meet and greets with their favorite characters. Disney Hollywood Studios with Preschoolers We all know that 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. For the unknowing, Disney...

Read More

4 of the Best Resorts for Your Family at Walt Disney World

The TravelingMoms just unpacked their suitcases from another whirlwind trip to Walt Disney World. With a camera and cell phone in each hand, the moms sprinted across the parks looking for the new while enjoying the time-tested. Between potty breaks and snack stops, over 50 writers covered the parks so your family can have the best vacation ever. The first stop, finding which resort is the best at Walt Disney World for your family, no matter the budget. Which Resort is the Best at Walt Disney World Which Walt Disney resort do I recommend? Picking the right resort depends...

Read More

The Ultimate Fun Guide to Sulphur Oklahoma

Just a few hours north of the Dallas/Ft. Worth Metroplex, the National Parks TravelingMom discovered a rugged mountaintop vista overlooking a pristine lake teeming with activity. At her feet, a restored downtown beckoned with refined dining, a luxurious spa and bathhouse. After a day of hiking and exploring, a secluded mountain resort had her family reconnecting as they rambled across the 1,700-acre property. Read on as she and her family discover all the things to do in Sulphur, Oklahoma. Road trippers along the Interstate 35 corridor detour to explore a quiet corner of South Central Oklahoma. During a recent...

Read More

4 Lake Tahoe Ski Resorts to Smash this Spring

Spring brings showers and flowers to most of the U.S. – except for the Sierra Nevada mountains. There, the spring packs plenty of snow for an extended ski season at Lake Tahoe. With a crazy amount of snow this year, the kiddos can ski and board until the fireworks pop overhead. Our National Parks TravelingMom shares her favorites for families and even finds some deals. Spring Skiing at Lake Tahoe with kids With over 58 feet of snow in some places, Lake Tahoe will have snow until summer. Most resorts extended their seasons with even more chances for the...

Read More

Cannonball in a Natural Pool at Chickasaw

The National Parks TravelingMom takes road trips across the continent exploring parks. However, a former national park in a neighboring state escaped her to-do list. A recent road trip to South Central Oklahoma had her kids splashing in a natural pool, watching the sun fall below the Arbuckle Mountains and tracking down bison in Chickasaw National Recreation Area. A few hours north of the Dallas/Ft. Worth metroplex, I found the Chickasaw National Recreation Area. The area is filled with natural pools and scenic mountain vistas. With a recreational lake open for boating, historic structures built by the Civilian Conservation...

Read More

Mom’s Gone Crazy and Fell Asleep in the Walmart Parking Lot

Boondocking? Once just a secret among the caravaners and hippy kids camping on the cheap, boondocking has gone mainstream. Now grandma and grandpa use it as necessary part of long-term RVing to cut costs. Boondocking means free camping. Originally done only out in the boondocks, it now is popping up in suburban parking lots across the U.S. The National Parks TravelingMom boondocked in a Walmart parking lot last summer. Here she passes some hard-learned tips. How does a middle-aged mom of three end up sleeping in a van down by the river? (Really an SUV in a Walmart parking lot.) Blame...

Read More

Discover a Mountain Retreat in Central Oklahoma

Hiking before a cup of coffee might frighten some people, but National Parks TravelingMom recommends it to energize your day. The Chickasaw Retreat and Conference Center features a mile-long trail right outside its door for guests to explore some of the 1,750 acres of wilderness in the Arbuckle Mountains of South Central Oklahoma, a couple hours north of Dallas/Ft. Worth. Why visit Sulphur, Oklahoma? Located steps away from the Chickasaw National Recreation Area, I discovered the Chickasaw Retreat and Conference Center set on a high point in the Arbuckle Mountains. Formerly the Platt National Park, it features a secluded...

Read More

Twitter Parties

Instagram Photos #TMOM