Author - Elisa Drake

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Elisa and her husband Kevin live in Albany Park  with their two daughters and their border collie.  Elisa has been a member of NPN since 2006 and on the board of directors since 2010.   She is freelance writer and stay-at-home mom. A book Elisa wrote called "Day Trips from Chicago" was recently published and another, the "Insiders' Guide to Chicago," is scheduled for publication in October.

Spring Break Ideas that Won't Break the Budget

For some spring break means sandy beaches, fruity drinks, and flip-flops.  But for many parents, it’s often a matter of “School’s out; what can we do to prevent meltdowns, breakdowns and general chaos?” If your budget is like mine (i.e. on the verge of extinction), a pricey flight is out of the question. A short car ride to a change of scenery is perfectly doable!  And that’s what I have planned.

When I mentioned to my daughters that I was thinking of taking them to a hotel with an ind...

Posted on March 28, 2012 at 6:00 AM by Elisa Drake

Last Minute Getaways with Holiday Spirit!

When the weather outside is frightful, it’s time for a change of scenery. But you don’t have to go very far to feel a world away.

Worth the Drive

At the Grand Geneva in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, less than two hours from the city, decking the halls means months of planning to create the annual, spectacular “Christmas in the Country” celebration—and it’s a total charm-fest. Trees and tinsel galore fill every floor of the Playboy Club-turned-resort and spa, while a display of animated l...

Posted on December 19, 2011 at 1:11 PM by Elisa Drake

Are you on board with CPS Track E?

When you think of early August, you picture kids still savoring the carefree days of summer, right? Well, not this time for my child.

Kindergarten for my daughter started a little earlier than planned. We had expected Haley to attend the school she went to for preschool, but when principal discretion was taken away to do that, so were our expectations. After the first school lottery left us high and dry, we tried again. The second resulted in a few, but none that lifted my spirits. Whe...

Posted on September 06, 2011 at 8:00 AM by Elisa Drake

My Neighborhood - Family Fun in Albany Park

NPN connects families in neighborhoods across Chicago.  Get inspired to check out a new part of the city or discover something fabulous just around the corner.  This stop:  Albany Park with Elisa - All aboard!  And then explore our other NPN Neighborhoods

When my husband and I moved to Albany Park, I was eight months pregnant with my first daughter. We had to get out of our dark, rundown apartment in East Rogers Park. We spent several months looking at condos in our price range all ove...

Posted on August 09, 2011 at 1:00 PM by Elisa Drake

Cruise Out of Town - Family Style

Fuel up and hit the road on one of these quick family-friendly road trips! BONUS #1: NPN Parent Perk - get the book for just $8 (ltd. availability) - Email to order. BONUS #2: RSVP for an adventure story time with Elisa at Kookaburra on 7/18 (space is ltd.).

GURNEE AREA, ILLINOIS

Stop Here:

Lambs Farm. Pygmy goats (and more) sidle up for rubs and kisses. Mini golf, kiddie train, old-fashioned carousel and cow bounce house too.

Six Flags Great America. Haven’t been in awhile...

Posted on July 14, 2011 at 9:36 PM by Elisa Drake