Latest & Greatest News, November 2014

Happy Birthday, Timber!

Today, we celebrate the 12th birthday of our fur baby, Timber ❀

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It’s honestly hard to believe we have shared so many smiles, laughter & love with this awesome little guy. We are definitely looking forward to several more years to come of the same! To see a brief account of his story with us, you can check out his page on the blog HERE.

This picture below is from several years ago. His hair is much longer than what we keep it now, but he still LOVES to play outside like that on any given day. He is an avid chaser of lizards & squirrels πŸ™‚

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Although, he spent 9 years as an only child, Β he has been the best big brotherΒ  we could ask for. These two really love one another….cutest.thing.ever!

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And, he is one dog that is NOT afraid to get comfy. Hahaha! Most nights, you find him asleep on the couch like this before any of us have even sat down yet πŸ˜‰

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We love you so much Timber!! Our “boo boo man” xoxo ~~ Happy Birthday, little dude!!

~H

Latest & Greatest News, November 2014

Recent Happenings

Remember me? It’s definitely been awhile….this momma was sick these last few weeks & honestly, the thought of sitting at the computer (for anything other than what I had to do for work) was just not appealing.

In the meantime, life moved on, as it always does, right?!?! LOL…I just tried to keep up. Thankfully, I had Mr Murphy there to help and lucky for him, he didn’t get it. Liam got a touch of it, but I’m happy to report that we’re all feeling much better now.

So, here’s what we’ve been up to the last few weeks….

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Halloween was so much fun! Liam was ALL about it! He was allowed to dress up for school, but yes, I was afraid his costume would get messed up soooooo he wore a back-up {go ahead & laugh….it’s ok}. He had a great time sporting his ‘Sheriff Woody’ costume all morning. We even saw from the cameras that he kept his hat on! — way to go, dude! πŸ™‚

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Halloween night, we went over to our friend’s, the Bengels, and hung out for dinner {delish homemade pizza!} and then the kiddos trick-or-treated together. The ‘Hulk’ made his appearance for this main event!

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Getting ready to hit the neighborhood! Liam walked the entire trip. Such a little trooper! He loved goingΒ up to the doors & saying, ‘trick-or-treat’ …he’s still talking about it, a few weeks later πŸ™‚

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The next night, we headed back out to gather with our friends for a 2nd Annual S more’s Roast. It was the 1st cool night of the season, so it worked out perfectly! The adults attempted a roasted marshmallow Kahlua shot….pretty tasty, I must say.

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The kiddos had a blast roasting marshmallows & making s more’s out back once it got dark.

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Last weekend, we headed downtown for the Touch-A-Truck event. This is a community event where the kiddos can explore various big trucks, construction vehicles, and public safety equipment. Liam LOVED it!

Here he is checking out a steam roller.

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There were a few mini monster trucks there. He thought they were the coolest things ever.

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We even got to squeeze him into the driver seat of one. Such a big, little man πŸ˜‰

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Fire Truck!

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Saturday evening, we headed over to Mimi, Papa D & Aunt Heather’s to celebrate baby cousin, Sierra’s very 1st birthday ❀

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Happy Birthday, sweet girl!

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On Sunday, I got a little creative while daddy was watching football & made this turkey with Liam. I asked him for 5 things he was thankful for to write on each feather….He said: mommy, daddy, timber, rainbows, & letters ❀

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It’s hard to believe that Thanksgiving will be here next week, but we’re definitely excited & looking forward to it.

Until next time, friends! πŸ™‚

~H

August 2014, Latest & Greatest News

Liam’s 3rd Birthday Party {part 2}

If you missed yesterday’s post with the 1st part of our birthday party fun, you can catch up here.

The kids really had a ball at My Gym with the staff and all the train themed activities that were intermingled with their free-play time during the 2 hour fiesta. Stephen & I honestly didn’t have to worry about anything. It was perfect!

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Bubbles — Bubbles — Bubbles Everywhere!!

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It’s a “train wash” πŸ™‚ …this was so cute! The kids could ride through the bumpers to “wash” their “train” with the bubbles….lol. Gotta love that. Very creative!

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This is a few action shots of another creative activity. Just before this, all the children were sitting in a circle on the carpet, and Ms. McKenzie told them that one of the train’s, Diesel, came by and made a big mess. Ms. Kendall then scattered all these bean bags , balls, and pom poms across the gym while they had their eyes closed. The kids were then asked to help clean up the “train yard” by putting each type of item together in it’s own bin (e.g., all the bean bags in one bin, all the balls in another, etc.).

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They all did so good and enjoyed helping to clean up. Again, really cute! ….even the smaller kiddos liked to join in πŸ™‚

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So happy to have cousin, Sierra, to celebrate with us ❀ ….although impossible to get these two to look at the camera together πŸ˜‰

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Taking a spin with our friend, Brandon, on the “birthday train”

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Way to go, Kenadie! Great balancing!

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I caught this little gymnast hanging from the uneven bars like this several times. Ha! Perhaps he is trying to tell us something?

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The ball pit was a huge hit with all the kids!

Below, Crosby was getting a kick out of his big sister Kenley playing around.

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Nathan & Liam plotting mischief πŸ˜‰

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Brandon!! πŸ™‚

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I ,most likely, was telling him to NOT fall in while snapping this shot πŸ˜‰

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Trampoline! This was the very 1st thing Liam ran over to once he got into My Gym. The ladies at the gym even complimented how good of a jumper he was….haha!

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Activities ended with this super fun ride on the zip line! Liam actually did not enjoy it that much, but he had just taken a little spill just before this began so I think that played a part. Poor little dude.

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What a great celebration for this little man! We could not have asked for a better time. To everyone who came out to play with us — THANK YOU!! It meant so much to us and to Liam. He really did have the best time. To others who were not able to make it there, but celebrated in spirit and/or helped out in other ways, we thank you, as well, and you know who are!!

I know I said it before on my personal Facebook page, but I want to say it again here…..thank you ALL for the sweet birthday wishes to Liam over his whole birthday weekend. We really felt the love for our little guy and his tender heart appreciated it, as well. It was awesome ❀ ❀

We could not have asked for a better 3rd birthday celebration!! So blessed.

~H

August 2014, Latest & Greatest News

Liam’s 3rd Birthday Party {part 1}

We had a fantastic time at Liam’s 3rd birthday party a few Sunday’s ago!

I have been dying to share the invites that went out but wanted to wait until after the party, for obvious reasons {note: my contact info is whited out for privacy}. I ordered these from the most wonderful little shop on Etsy,Β MaitriDsigns. The shop owner, Rhianna, was so greatΒ to work with & had excellent customer service! She was super speedy with her design and delivery. She even custom designed the cute inserts that we used for the party info that some of you all received. I highly recommend for any party needs and we will definitely use her again!

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My regular local gal for Liam’s holiday & special occasion shirts was on hiatus this summer {to spend more family time….can’t blame her for that}, so I had to seek out someone new for little man’s party shirt. I found someone via Etsy. While I was happy with this shirt, below, overall….I have to say there was absolutely no customer service. So, that was disappointing. No acknowledgement of my order….not even a business card dropped in the bag with the mailout. Bummer…but, again, super cute shirt.

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With the help of Liam’s Grammy & Papa Rock, we were able to order these yummy Thomas the Train decorated cookies to distribute as party favors. They came from Favor Bakery in Winter Haven. What a wonderful job these ladies did! They tasted as delicious as they looked ❀ ….Liam’s 1st pick was Thomas, of course πŸ™‚

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The idea for a Thomas the Train themed party really 1st came from Liam {naturally}. It sprouted from him seeing this Thomas Signature Cake on display at our Publix for the last few months. Everytime we went byΒ it while shopping, he would tell us that he wanted THAT cake for his birthday. So, once I eventually asked him what kind decorations he would like for his birthday party, he matter-of-factly told me, Thomas, and asked if he could have this cake. There was NO WAY, he was forgetting about this cake.

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When we 1st went to order the cake, the bakery told us they thought it was discontinued. Talk about a heart attack….long story short, Publix came through and did a FAB job. It really was an awesome cake….and deceptively large {very tall}. We ate cake for a week, peeps! LOL πŸ™‚

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Liam’s party was held at My GymΒ in Maitland.Β It was amazing! What a great facility for little one’s to play. As part of the birthday package, Liam & his guests received free passes to enjoy another class, and we can’t wait to bring him back! The staff that assisted with our party were so friendly and worked great with all the kids.

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I love this pic above! We literally had to snatch Liam up really quick as he was running around the gym & tell him to say ‘cheese’.

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The kids had free time to explore and play throughout the facility, but then the staff would also periodically gather them together to conduct group activities that were all train themed. It was such a fun time!!

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Liam dancing in center stage during once of the activities πŸ˜‰

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During this activity below, the kids went for a ride on the “choo-choo train”. Liam wasn’t too sure about this one, at first, as you can see him checking out Kenley & Karsten in this pic, here.

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However, then he decided they were having a great time. so he hopped on & it was all smiles! Kenadie, Thompson & Brandon also enjoyed the train πŸ™‚

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It was so nice to have Great Grandma & Uncle Kenny come to the party, as well!

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We have a lot more pics of the kiddos to share & I have decided to break those up into a 2nd part post for tomorrow, so this one isn’t as long.

However, let’s skip ahead to the CAKE …yum!

Look at that face when the girls brought it over…..is that priceless, or what?!?! {I didn’t even notice the super cute folded hands until I was looking at these pics days later…..heart.meltedΒ }

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Lighting 3 candles for the 3 year old birthday boy!!!

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Singing Happy Birthday! Again, I LOVE his face…..there is nothing better than the sheer joy you see. All the planning & prep for the day — THAT makes it ALL worth it.

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Make a wish….Blow out the candles little dude!!!

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Everyone hanging out …enjoying yummy cake & pizza!

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One of my fav pics of the day ….so hard to get everyone smiling at once but that’s okay. Wonderful memories!

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Stay tuned for Part #2 of the Birthday Party tomorrow!! πŸ™‚

~H

Note: The reviews expressed are solely my opinion & I do not receive any compensation or kickback.

July 2014, Latest & Greatest News

Liam’s 3rd Birthday Fun

Hard to believe a whole week has gone by now, since Liam’s 3rd birthday! While Stephen & I were pretty wiped out by Sunday night, we definitely had four fun-filled days of celebration with our little guy πŸ™‚

If you caught my last post, then you know that he had a special wake-up call on his big day. Most of those balloons are still hanging around his room. Not sure we’ll ever be able to pop those little suckers….haha! He’s really enjoying them.

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We kept his birthday day pretty mellow, and it was just the 3 of us. We ventured to the movie theatre for Liam’s very 1st experience with the “Big Screen” and chose to see Disney’s ‘Planes Fire & Rescue’. He is in love with the Cars movies, and we watch those repeatedly. We got the 1st Planes movie through our DMC, but he wasn’t as into it. Thus, we weren’t sure how this trip would go over.

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Walking into the theatre was exciting for him & we had to explain what everything was. We got lucky & had almost the entire theatre to ourselves so he could walk around. There were SO MANY previews! — that definitely was a bummer….lost his interest a bit.

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Thoroughly enjoyed the movie theatre popcorn & his Hi-C drink πŸ™‚

But folks….we only got through about 2/3 of the movie and he asked to go home….literally! Ha!

He was done. So, we headed out & went to lunch at Crispers. We’ll have to catch the end of the movie on DVD πŸ˜‰

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After nap, we headed over to Sweet by Miss Holly for our most fav cupcakes. I think you tell by this super awesome smile that we enjoyed this treat!

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Later that evening, we enjoyed a visit from Mimi, Aunt Heather & cousin, Sierra. Liam was thrilled to get some awesome birthday gifts, including the Radiator Springs town from the Cars movie, as well as play with his cousin ❀

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The next day, we headed over to Grammy & Papa Rock’s house for a visit. Of course, this guy got some more presents and was all about it. This time, it was Thomas!

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My little conductor! All Aboard!!!!

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The fun continued on Saturday, when we got to celebrate one of our very bestest friend’s graduation from UCF with her doctorate degree in Education!! We are SO very proud of her. I am loving this pic below, but have to laugh because Liam was NOT happy that I pulled him away from playing in the pool to snap a quick pic. Can you tell? LOL

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We have TONS of birthday party pictures to share! I am working on those posts now.

Stay tuned!!

~H

July 2014, Latest & Greatest News

Happy 3rd Birthday Liam!

Happy 3rd Birthday, our sweet little man, Liam Michael!

We love you SO much & are so proud of the strong individual you are becoming. It is definitely amazing to watch you grow right before our very eyes. Many times, I wish I could freeze time & hold you tight just a little longer before you take that next forward πŸ™‚ …you are the light Mommy & Daddy’s lives!

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A few nights ago, we sat down & “interviewed” Mr. Liam. That was pretty fun. He was both very thoughtful & serious with his answers. HA! We are going to start doing that from now on each year on his birthday.

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I found this FREE printable interview sheet here via Pinterest (my fav!).

Other notable things these days….

1. He has started to do “pretend play” with his toys. He will talk to (or among) his toys as he is playing. Cutest darn thing. You can hear him making up stories now as he is playing.

2. He wants to do everything himself… or at least try. Makes for some difficult decisions, at times, but we manage. Gone are the days when I can pick out his outfits, too (insert my sad face…LOL).

3. Most recently, we have entered what I’ve been calling the “why” phase. He has started asking “why” to EVERYthing. Since we don’t want to diminish his inquisitiveness, we are answering him as best we can, but oh my gosh, dude….sometimes, it’s just because we said so πŸ™‚

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Thanks to my obsession with Pinterest, we put a bunch of balloons in his room last night while he was sleeping and streamers on his door so he had something fun to wake up to this morning. He also got his present from us — his 1st watch (he had requested that).

When he came into our room this morning after waking up, he said: “Santa brought me balloons & a present” ….hahahaha! That was so cute!

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Lots of fun planned for this little man the next few days. I’m sure he’ll be all tuckered out by the end of the weekend πŸ˜‰

~H

July 2014, Randomness

Throwback Thursday: Murphy Birthday Memories!

We are officially ONE WEEK away from Liam’s THIRD BIRTHDAY!! The excitement is definitely building around here πŸ™‚

In honor of this most special day (and, of course, TBT), I wanted to take a look back at his last two birthday’s because ya know that’s always fun!

His 1st birthday party was a big to ‘do at our house and we opted for a “Baby Mickey” themed party. It was a very special celebration….

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I was “that” mom who didn’t let him have cake leading up to his birthday, so he had NO IDEA what to do with it once we gave him his little smash cake. Hilarious!

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That’s more like it πŸ˜‰

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This was THE most perfect birthday boy outfit that our great friend hand-made just for Mr. Liam.

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Last year, for his 2nd birthday, we opted for his 1st trip to the Magic Kingdom instead of a big party. It was magical day….

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**I can’t believe how tall he’s gotten since last year looking at these pictures! Wow **

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He had fallen at school a few days before our Disney trip so you can see the nice goose egg right smack in the middle of his forehead for most of these picks. Oh well πŸ™‚ …

I remember it was so hot last year trekking around the park. I don’t know if we were more crazy or brave for doing that, but we had a blast. You can check out the 2-part original post from our trip here & here.

Lots of fun is planned for next week!!! Can’t wait to share it with you all! ❀

~H

July 2014, Randomness

Throwback Thursday: Murphy Memories!

In continued celebration of my Grampy’s birthday this week, I thought it would be fun to share pictures of his birthday party from two years ago — 2012. This was when we had just moved him out of the house he shared with my Grammy & into his own apartment in the retirement community where he still lives. He quickly made friends there and we had a large group gather together that day to enjoy his cake with us. It was a really nice afternoon. Liam was just shy of his 1st birthday that day, as well. Look at that face….I could just eat him up πŸ™‚

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~ H

July 2014, Latest & Greatest News

Recent Happenings

Today, I would like to wish my Grampy a VERY Happy 89th Birthday!!

I am so thankful that are we able to create wonderful new memories with him. For those of you who know, the last few years have been rather difficult since my Grammy passed & we figured out that he was progressing with Dementia. It’s gotten worse more recently, and I give huge kudos to my mom for taking such great care of him. It’s definitely not an easy task on a day-to-day basis.

However, we had a great afternoon with him on Sunday to celebrate his birthday, and I was thrilled that he was feeling good and seemed to really remember everyone. We took him out to lunch and met up with his sister, Frieda and her two daughters (his nieces).

Liam colored a picture on his own birthday card for Grampy. Β It was really cute. We all know you can’t make an almost Β 3 year old do anything he doesn’t want to do, so it was awesome that he said yes to me when I asked him if he wanted to color a picture, and then he told me when he was done πŸ™‚

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This was our group picture taken at lunch. It came out really awesome!

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The last few times that we have visited with Grampy, I have asked Liam to take a picture with Grampy but he has been too shy. So, I didn’t force. Let me just tell you that he was very loving and affectionate to Grampy on Sunday. It was awesome!! I know that in those moments it really made Grampy feel special. It warmed our hearts! I am treasuring this picture. When we brought Grampy back to his apartment that afternoon, Liam even went over to him and gave him a hug & a kiss all on his own. It was adorable ❀

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY, GRAMPY!! WE LOVE YOU!

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So, I was a little behind last week with my posts & didn’t get a chance to put up our 4th of July pictures. After much debate about where to go to catch fireworks, we ended up going back to Lake Eola & it was a great time for us, again….despite the rainy afternoon. Thankfully, all that cleared up just in time for the sun to go down πŸ™‚

Here is me & my little man hanging out on our blanket and waiting for the festivities to begin.

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Snack break!

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Even though Liam has seen fireworks on tv several times since we saw them here last year, in person, nothing compares to the BOOM you experience live…well, it scared our little guy at first this year. This picture shows that emotion. I actually think it turned out pretty sweet. After a few minutes he settled down and sat up and watched the rest of the show. Afterwards, he said he had a good time and liked it πŸ™‚

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It really was a good show!

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Hope everyone’s July is off to a good start….can you believe we are already half way to August?!?! Where is the summer going?? Crazy!!

~H