Best Places to Eat in Austin with Kids

I won’t lie. My favorite thing about Austin is the food. We live in Fort Worth (about three hours North), and we love to visit Austin just so we can eat a bunch of delicious food and be fat and sassy. No joke. It’s that awesome. I’m getting hungry just thinking about it. So today I wanted to share with you a few of my top picks of kid-friendly places to eat close to MommyCon! I’ve included links, addresses and I’ll even tell you how far it is from the Austin Convention Center. All of my picks are less than two miles from the Convention Center, but there are many, many more family-friendly restaurants to check out in Austin if you don’t mind driving a bit. Explore and enjoy!

Voodoo Doughnut (.5 mi)
212 E. 6th St.
Best Places to Eat in Austin with Kids: Voodoo Doughnut | sharonisamom.comHave you heard of Voodoo Donuts yet? This place has some serious hype. With crazy, fun varieties like bacon maple, Captain Crunch and Mexican hot chocolate. They also have several vegan options as well. And don’t forget their infamous voodoo doll donut, filled with raspberry jelly and a pretzel stake! Keep in mind if you go, they are cash only. So worth it though. This would be a great place to grab breakfast before MommyCon or the perfect place to fuel-up before heading back home.

Whole Foods (flagship) (1.4 mi)
525 N. Lamar Blvd.
Whole Foods has a delicious café menu, and you can enjoy your meal Al Fresco on their rooftop patio. They also have live music Saturdays and Sundays 11-1 and Fridays 6-8 p.m. Perfect timing to sample some local music that Austin is famous for! Oh, and they have a nice little playscape for the kiddos to enjoy. #momwin

Casa de Luz (1.8 mi)
1701 Toomey Rd.
Casa de Luz is a 100 percent organic, plant-based, gluten-free restaurant. I know many moms will love this option if you or your kids are vegan, vegetarian or have dairy, egg or wheat allergies. It’s nice to know there are restaurants where you can order anything off the menu, instead of only having only an option or two to pick from. But you don’t have to have a special diet to love the healthy and delicious menu items at Casa de Luz- herbivores and omnivores alike rejoice in their whole-foods-based soups, salads and entrees. They also have a playground the kids can play on all day Saturday and Sunday and after 6 during the week. Healthy food + playtime = SCORE!

Blue Cat Café (.6 mi)
95 Navasota St.
This is a great place to relax, play and grab a bite to eat with your little animal lovers. My 13-month-old boy LOVES our cats. He crawls around the house, throwing balls for them, trying to play with them. So I know he’ll love his first visit to the cat café. And I’ll confess. I really love kittehs myself. I am no stranger to cat cafés. When I heard of the concept, I was thinking, “WHAT!! I NEED THIS LIKERIGHTNOW.” Blue Cat Café is a wonderful place filled with adoptable kitties, and they have lots of tasty comfort food options like the Big Meowth Melt and Blue Ribbon BrisCat. They just combined puns with Pokemon. SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY, right?? Bring the kids to pet and play with the cats while you fill your tummies with delicious vegan food. Yup, you read that right. Another dairy-free, egg-free and meat-free option- rejoice!

Best Places to Eat in Austin with Kids: Shady Grove | sharonisamom.com

Shady Grove (1.6 mi)
1624 Barton Springs Rd.
Shady Grove has a very low-key, chill vibe, perfect for all the crunchy moms to unwind after all the excitement at MommyCon. While this restaurant doesn’t have a playscape, it does have ample outdoor space with shade from pecan trees for the littles to play. Their kids menu has all the favorites like corndogs, PB&J, grilled cheese and more. And for the adults, everyone goes nuts for their tortilla-fried queso catfish. Plus they’ve got a nice selection of adult beverages to keep you cool in the Texas heat. Speaking of adult beverages…

Max’s Wine Dive (.4 mi)
207 San Jacinto Blvd.
Mom’s night out! Those three little words are music to my ears… I figured some of you might enjoy a little MNO option thrown in here that’s close to the Convention Center. Get the kids and husband tucked in, and sneak away to Max’s Wine Dive for some “no-no juice” while you catch up with your friends from MommyCon. If you want to bring the kids though, it is family-friendly: they have highchairs, plenty of seating and even some mac and cheese on the menu for the little ones. I’ll drink to that!

I hope you enjoy these places as much as I do! Bring your appetites with you to Austin, y’all! Can’t wait to see you next week for all the fun at MommyCon!

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Family-Friendly Fun in Austin

With MommyCon Austin fast approaching, you’re probably trying to shape together your plans for the weekend. Whether you’re looking for somewhere to take a dip, go for a family hike, or beat the heat with indoor fun, there is plenty of family-friendly fun in Austin! Here are a few ideas to add to your itinerary:

 

Deep Eddy Pool
401 Deep Eddy Drive, Austin TX 78703
Do your kids love to swim? They’ll LOVE the Deep Eddy Pool! And it just so happens that the Deep Eddy Splash Party Movie Night is at 8 p.m. on Saturday June 25! Enjoy watching Star Wars: The Force Awakens from the pool or pack a picnic and watch the movie from the hill. What a perfect way to relax after all the fun at MommyCon!

Family Fun in Austin | sharonisamom.com

Zilker Park
2100 Barton Springs Road, Austin TX 78746
There is something for everyone at Zilker Park! Let the kids run around the playground, take them for a stroll around the Botanical Garden, or check out the Austin Nature & Science Center. If you need to cool off, bring your swimsuits and sunscreen and stop by the Barton Springs Pool! The pool is fed from underground springs and is a popular spot for summer fun in Austin.

Texas State Capitol
1100 Congress Ave, Austin TX 78701
First time in Austin? A visit to the Texas State Capitol is a must! They offer free 30-minute guided tours throughout the day, with new tours starting every 20-30 minutes. This is a great option for history-lovers or anyone with older kids. If you don’t have time for a guided tour, take a self-guided tour and explore the beautiful building that dates back to the late 1800s. Be sure to check out the kid-friendly interactive exhibits at the Texas Capitol Visitor Center (located on the southeast corner of the grounds)- there’s something for everyone to love there, with lots of fun to be had!

The Thinkery
1830 Simond Ave, Austin TX 78723
Families and science play side-by-side at the Thinkery Children’s Museum. Saturday and Sunday, kids 4-7 and 8 and up can create their own art robots in the Space 8 Maker Labs. If you’re still in town Monday, bring the little ones in for Baby Bloomers (9 a.m. to noon): arts and crafts, singing, storytime and more- perfect for kids 3 & under! Check out their calendar for more fun events.

Mayfield Nature Preserve
3505 W. 35th St, Austin TX 78703
Care to take the kids on an adventure? The Mayfield Nature Preserve is a great spot for a family hike and picnic. The hike is about a mile, is mostly shaded and easy for beginners and young children. There is a creek that runs through the preserve and one side of the preserve is bordered by Lake Austin. Peacocks roam freely on the grounds- what a fun sight for the kiddos! From here, you can also climb to the top of Mount Bonnell (the highest point in the city) to get a great view of Austin- photo op!

Family Fun in Austin: Mural Tour | sharonisamom.comMurals of Austin, Texas
Because you can’t leave Austin without taking some great selfies in front of these famous murals… Jeremiah the Innocent, “i love you so much,” Butter Half and more- this list has them, tells you where to find them and even where to park. Score!

There is so much fun family-friendly things to do while you’re in Austin, this is only the tip of the iceberg! You may also want to check out the Austin Zoo, Mt. Playmore, and there are tons of pools and splash pads to beat the heat as well. Squeeze in all the fun you can, and enjoy your time in Austin! See you at MommyCon!

MommyCon Austin Lineup: Get Excited!

MommyCon is only a few weeks away! Haven’t heard of MommyCon before? Check out my previous post all about this awesome, natural-parenting convention here. MommyCon Austin will be on June 25th (VIP sessions on the 24th), but make sure to check out the other cities MommyCon is coming to in 2016 to find one that’s closest to you. Breastfeeding, babywearing, birth, cloth diapering and more: if any of those make you do a little happy dance on the inside when you read them, you’d love MommyCon! Find out more on their website at mommy-con.com, and use code SHARONISAMOM16 to save $5 on your general admission ticket.

MommyCon Austin 2016 schedule | sharonisamom.com

On to the juicy details! The official schedule for MommyCon Austin is out, and I’ve been debating which sessions I want to go to. This was a tough one! There were so many great options, and I love the variety in topics being covered at this year’s conference. You can check out the full schedule above to plan out your day, but I wanted to go ahead and share with you a few that I’m really excited about! Without further ado…

MommyCon Austin 2016 schedule | sharonisamom.comWrapping 101 with MOBY and Tekhni Wovens: OK, I’ll admit. I am not a babywearing expert. In fact, it takes me approximately eight minutes to spell Tekhni and double-check three times that I spelled it right. I’m alright at babywearing, but I’m not one of those super-talented babywearing gurus who innately know how to wrap and tie all the carriers a million different ways. That being said, that’s one reason I want to go to this session! I feel like it’s an area I could use a little help in to gain some babywearing skills and confidence. I use my Sakura Bloom ring sling and the Ergo Performance buckle carrier on a regular basis. But I’ve never tried a woven wrap. I figured I needed to add that to my repertoire to level up to a babywearing ninja (because why not?). I heard a lot of moms on the Facebook discussion page were excited about the Tekhni VIP session, so I hopped on the bandwagon and signed up for that one too. Plus you get to take home your very own Tekhni woven wrap at the VIP session, so that makes it worth the price, easy!

What Love Tastes Like with The Leaky Boob: this lady is my hero. I didn’t even have to read the description. Saw “The Leaky Boob” and knew immediately that I wanted to add this one to my list! She is like the rainbow unicorn of the breastfeeding world. Check her out on Instagram, Facebook and all that jazz. You won’t regret it! Also check out her Feed the Baby VIP session on Friday the 24th.

Cloth Diapering 101 with Jenn Labit presented by Cotton Babies: We use cloth diapers and love it! When I was pregnant I had read about the many benefits of using cloth (saving money, good for the environment, less problems with diaper rash, an average earlier potty training age, etc). Anyway, despite the fact that we’ve been using cloth diapers for about a year, I still feel there’s some good info I could take home from this session. Looking forward to learning more about cloth diapers!

Why Body Positive Images for Mothers is Paramount by Moby Wrap: I could go on and on about this one. Coming to terms with and loving your new post-baby body can be hard. As vain as it sounds, that was one of my main concerns before we started this journey. I worked hard to get my body to where it was pre-pregnancy, and I was sad to think that it would never be the same. I’m sure many moms can relate to the sense of your body not feeling like your own body anymore. It’s different. But different doesn’t have to mean bad. I think we could all benefit from giving ourselves a little forgiveness when it comes to our bodies after baby. The female body is an incredible thing. Growing and giving birth to a baby is nothing short of amazing. Let’s focus more on that feat and celebrating each and stop looking at ourselves under a harsh microscope and worrying how we measure up to our former selves or to others.

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg, friends! There are so many great sessions to choose from, mamas! Next on the blog I’ll share some of my top picks for places to eat and family-friendly fun to check out while you’re in Austin for MommyCon!