I’m not sure if it is the flashbacks from my childhood or the fact that my kids will be rid of their video game temptations, but back-to-school time gives me warm fuzzies way down deep. New backpacks, new pencil cases, new shoes, new educational ways to keep my kids’ brains from atrophying from prolonged exposure of “The Regular Show”– yay for back-to-school time!
This year, I was once again invited by Westfield Brandon to do some back-to-school shopping on Florida’s tax-free weekend. (Cue happy dance!) And, let me tell you, I had a serious must-get a list: shoes, backpacks, clothes, socks (HOW do they manage to wear so many holes in socks?), and jackets all needed to be bought.
I am going to be real with you, however. Sure, this is a sponsored post, but there are legit reasons why I love shopping at Westfield Town Centers. Here they are:
Westfield Town Centers put families first. I was impressed by that fact last year and I continue to be this year, too. We went in the Family Playhouse space three times over the course of the day. There is a quiet atmosphere, comfortable couches, a TV, a kitchen area, private nursing areas and a family bathroom. Shopping is exhausting and over-stimulating, especially on a tax-free weekend. We needed to power down in there, it had to happen and this was the perfect spot.
Westfield also has a bunch of play areas for younger kids. And who can forget the AMAZING carousel in the middle of the Center, and even the bungee fun being offered, too. You can shop, play, shop, play, eat, shop, play. I don’t think my boys could have lasted as long without that general activity pattern.
Westfield also offers programming for families on a regular basis. Check out what’s happening here.
Westfield Town Centers give you options and sales. I am always amazed by how many stores there are at Westfield Brandon. That place goes on and on and on. And then we were pleasantly surprised by certain stores. For instance, our first stop was at The Children’s Place because I needed to buy a gift. Hold on, there were clothes big enough for my 7 and 10 year old! I didn’t know that! We wound up buying my 10 year old the COZIEST zip-up hoodie with this fuzzy lining that will be perfect for winters here and trips north. It was, by far, his favorite purchase of the day (even if he was too cool to pose for it so here’s my seven year old holding the bag).
Westfield Town Centers have fun. While we were there, they were offering fun contests, games and make-overs. I saw lots of people involved and trying them out. The staff there were fun and welcoming and nice to kids when their $5 bill wouldn’t go into the token-making machine. (Thanks for the exchange for a crisper one!) Even the security guard tried to make my husband his new buddy while he poured over the map.
Westfield Town Centers offer you more than a food court. I have no beef with a food court, sometimes a quick stop has to happen. But I love how their restaurants are slightly separated from the Center and set in a pretty, landscaped area. It’s a nice reprieve and it is right there on site. We inhaled our food at Red Robin and got right back to it.
Westfield Town Centers give away shopping sprees! Westfield Brandon is currently offering families a chance to win a $1,000 back-to-school shopping spree! Hello, can you imagine how much that could help a family out? Be sure to enter here!
So, sure, our day utterly exhausted us (yes, the crowds were something to behold, as expected) and after five hours of hard-core shopping, I thought I broke my family.
But we really had a great time. My seven year adores his new Ninjago hoodie and Perry the Platypus shoes. My ten year old will be rocking an awesome backpack sure to withstand the rigors of fifth grade and really nice sneakers that won’t disintegrate on week one. There’s something to be said for “having fun” while you go back-to-school shopping, and we did.
Disclosure: I am working directly with Westfield. I am being compensated as an independent blogger. All opinions expressed in this content are mine.