Fun Places to Shop

Cuckoo Clocks and other Great Souvenirs from Germany’s Black Forest
Cuckoo Clocks and other Great Souvenirs from Germany’s Black Forest

Cuckoo Clocks and other Great Souvenirs from Germany’s Black Forest

Germany’s Black Forest region has long been renowned for talented wood carvers. These are the people, starting as far back as 1600, who began carving the intricate patterns that are now so cherished in authentic German cuckoo clocks. Cuckoo clocks…

Authentic German Christmas Markets in the U.S.
Authentic German Christmas Markets in the U.S.

Authentic German Christmas Markets in the U.S.

Germany is famous for Christmas markets, a tradition that dates to the 1600s in Nuremberg. Held in town squares beginning the Friday after the first Advent Sunday, the markets usually include timber structures decorated with holly bows and fragrant evergreen.…

Authentic Travel Experience at the Old Mill Square in Pigeon Forge Tenn.
Authentic Travel Experience at the Old Mill Square in Pigeon Forge Tenn.

Authentic Travel Experience at the Old Mill Square in Pigeon Forge Tenn.

My favorite part of Pigeon Forge, Tennessee is a creaky old building called the Old Mill and an adjacent restaurant by the same name. Along with a pottery shop and iron forge, it makes up the Old Mill Square. While…

Bay St. Louis – a Cool Discovery on the Mississippi Gulf Coast
Bay St. Louis – a Cool Discovery on the Mississippi Gulf Coast

Bay St. Louis – a Cool Discovery on the Mississippi Gulf Coast

Bay St. Louis Mississippi is a cool little Gulf Coast community with a funky, laid-back beach vibe that automatically makes you cooler simply for being there. We fell in love with it — colorful buildings and independent shops and restaurants.…

ChiChi Dolls From Curaçao – Adorable Southern Caribbean Island Souvenirs
ChiChi Dolls From Curaçao – Adorable Southern Caribbean Island Souvenirs

ChiChi Dolls From Curaçao – Adorable Southern Caribbean Island Souvenirs

One of my favorite souvenirs from all of our travels is a Chichi Doll from Curaçao. In the Papiamento language spoken on the southern Caribbean island of Curaçao, the word “chichi” refers to a respected elder sister or female relative…

Iowa Artist Isabel Bloom Creates Concrete Figurines and Hugs
Iowa Artist Isabel Bloom Creates Concrete Figurines and Hugs

Iowa Artist Isabel Bloom Creates Concrete Figurines and Hugs

My mother-in-law is a fan of the artist Isabel Bloom and as a result, we have several of her cheerful concrete sculptures around our home. But I didn’t fully appreciate her work until I had the opportunity to tour the…

Berlin Germany’s Ampelmänn Makes a Great Souvenir
Berlin Germany’s Ampelmänn Makes a Great Souvenir

Berlin Germany’s Ampelmänn Makes a Great Souvenir

Berlin’s Ampelmänn is simple a crossing guard, an electronic figure who appears in most of the street lights indicating when it is safe to walk. When it’s not, Ampelmänn turns red and extends his arms. When it’s OK to walk, Ampelmänn…

A Heart-Warming Tour of the Bemidji Woolen Mills in Northern Minnesota
A Heart-Warming Tour of the Bemidji Woolen Mills in Northern Minnesota

A Heart-Warming Tour of the Bemidji Woolen Mills in Northern Minnesota

If I were ever to take a job far from my current field in a community and state far from where I currently live, it would be at the Bemidji Woolen Mills in Bemidji Minnesota.  Located in northern Minnesota where…

Portland Oregon – PDX – Airport Shopping Doesn’t Get Any Better Than This
Portland Oregon – PDX – Airport Shopping Doesn’t Get Any Better Than This

Portland Oregon – PDX – Airport Shopping Doesn’t Get Any Better Than This

Shopping in airports is something I don’t get. Besides a meal on layovers, the most I’ve ever purchased at an airport is a bottle of water or candy bar, and yes, toothpaste after TSA has confiscated my lethal tube of…