February 2016

Catching Up From Winter Break

Time is, once again, ticking away faster that I can keep up with. With that said, I would be so mad at myself it I didn’t post these pictures and stay on track with chronicling our little family adventures, so here goes….

It already feels like a lifetime ago, but we had a bit of a vacation during the week between Christmas and New Year’s. Liam was out of school and I was also off of work.

Liam had almost 2 and a half weeks off of school, in total, for his winter break, so his fun started the week before Christmas. Stephen & I were both still working, so he spent that week in camp. He enjoyed some fun with his friends, including a trip to Light Up UCF where he got to go ice skating for the very 1st time. Since he was on campus, I was stoked to be able to walk over on my lunch break and hang out with him for a bit πŸ™‚

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The weather was gorgeous while we were off, so a trip to the park was a must. I was so impressed that Liam now knows how to swing himself — another milestone down in the books πŸ˜‰ !

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Our local Christmas carnival made it’s way back into town, so of course, we had a great night of family fun! ❀

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We usually steer clear of the carnie games, but this time, we let wee-man stop & play. He was pretty pumped. He had to throw darts to pop the balloons…..and, he won a Scooby!

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Bumper car boys πŸ™‚

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Liam was completely discouraged that he was still too small to ride the regular Himalaya, BUT found he was loving this mini-Himalaya {not that ya couldn’t tell from his face here}.

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We were definitely in an awkward ride phase this year. Not a fan of as many of the kiddie rides this time, like this one, but again, still kinda small for the bigger ones.

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Still had a blast at the carnival, once again! πŸ™‚

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One of our other adventures on winter break was heading over to the Science Center to check out the NEW KidsTown. We had been anticipating this expansion for the longest time, so were super stoked to visit. We’ve always loved KidsTown when it was on the 1st floor, but now it encompasses the entire 2nd floor of the Science Center, and is just about 3 times the size of the old version at a total of 11,000 square feet πŸ™‚

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As we walked through each of the room, honestly Liam and I were just amazed! It was so much more than what I thought either of us anticipated. There was a whole room for the orange groves that all the kiddos love. We didn’t even stop to play there on this visit, so definitely next time. He saw this ClimbTime structure and that was all she wrote, folks. LOL! We spent most of our time here. It was so much fun!

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DripDropSplash is the new water table & play area that is also WAY bigger than the previous water structure area and so sleek looking too, I might add ❀

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Toytopia was the traveling exhibit that was on the way out, so we stopped in for another look before we called it a day. Loved this gigantic Monopoly piece!

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At the end of the week, we were excited to have Papa G and G-ma come for a visit. These two had a blast hanging out ❀

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We closed out of winter break with a trip to the movies — SING!

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It was definitely nice to take a break from the hustle & bustle of work, school, homework & the daily grind. We enjoyed some good, quality family time and made some good memories ❀

Until next time,

Script Signature

October 2016

Thankful Through the Storm

This last week has been an emotional one for us here in the sunshine state. Early last week, we started watching the news diligently and following along to see where our 1st hurricane in 12 years hit would along our east coast — Hurricane Matthew.

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By Wednesday morning, as I participated with Liam in National Walk to School Day, I knew it was just a matter of time before we all received news of school closures & preparations for the storm to come. Sure enough, we received word late that morning that both the county schools and the university where I work were both closed down Thursday & Friday. This was real & it was time to get prepared.

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The last time a major storm affected our area here in Central Florida, Stephen & I were not yet homeowners OR parents. I have to be honest that preparing for this storm AND waiting for it to come felt VERY different this time around. I had a lot of nervous energy on Thursday. I just kept cleaning & doing laundry. I had to keep busy. I also took Liam to Publix….He was hilarious, as he kept yelling out, ‘you were right Mommy, the shelves are empy!!’ Β — I had told him that the store might look different because many people were buying food & water to prepare for the storm πŸ™‚

We prepped as best we could in the time we had. All of our patio and front yard stuff got piled into the garage, along with our stockpile of water. Again, since we hadn’t been through a storm while in the house before, we kinda felt like we were winging this a bit.

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Tub full of water….always a precaution. We did remember that from Charlie.

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We went to sleep (well, as much as we could, anyhow) on Thursday night knowing that the winds were picking up and Matthew would be moving through by early morning.

We dozed off and literally woke up to answered prayer ❀ ….the storm veered to the East about 10 miles, and it was just enough to keep the eye & all the worst winds off shore from our area. We had some high winds & gusts and a good amount of rain still throughout the day, but nothing overwhelming. So, so thankful & blessed!!

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We were so relieved to see that our family & friends here in Florida were all okay, as well. Especially Stephen’s family in the Vero Beach area, as they were much closer to Matthew’s impact. We were also worried about my dad’s house up in Jax, but they fared well, too. Β Both of our mom’s are also here in FL & they are also doing well! Prayers for all those still recovering & waiting for power to be restored. St. Augustine is one of our favorite places to visit, and they were hit very hard 😦

On Saturday, we all went outside, as a family, and began the clean up process. Luckily, the debris wasn’t overwhelming for us. It was nice to get it picked up, and as we were outside, we saw many of our neighbors also out cleaning up their yards, too. Liam enjoyed being a helper….Timber, as well! What a difference a day makes in the weather, right?!?!

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Being cooped up in the house for a few days did give me a chance to finally finish up our Halloween decorations! Liam & I also baked up some yummy Halloween cookies πŸ™‚

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Once we were out & about, we took a trip to the Orlando Science Center to check out their new traveling exhibit — TOYTOPIA. It was so cool to see so many of the toys that Stephen & I played with as kids. Liam enjoyed the Toy Story display and the awesome model trains that was both Lego & electric!

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Introducing Little Man to a little nostalgia from the movie, BIG! πŸ™‚

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We closed our weekend out with a visit to one of our local pumpkin patches …that definitely always brings all the feels of fall! ❀

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Until next time, friends!

Script Signature

January 2016, Latest & Greatest News

Winter Break

Over the last few weeks, not only did we enjoy the Christmas & New Year holidays, but Liam & I also enjoyed some time off of school & work. I am fortunate to work for an amazing university that closes at the holidays so I pull little man out of daycare to hang out with me, too. We wish Daddy could pal aroundΒ with us, but he’s got an important job to do …and at least, we had the weekends & after work to play πŸ™‚

Liam had really enjoyed riding his new bike and getting used to this “big boy ride”. He was zooming around the sidewalk in no time.

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We hit up Sea World on Christmas weekend to check out their holiday decorations. Β The park really looked festive! We spent a lot of time this season checking out Christmas decorations and lights at various venues, and just driving through local neighborhoods. So fun!! I think we found a new tradition that we’ll continue in years to come. All of us thoroughly enjoyed it.

At the time, we thought this was going to be our last visit before our annual passes expired, as well as Liam’s Preschool Pass….BUT, the park JUST announced this week that the Preschool Pass is returning for 2016 so we may be going back again. It’s such a great deal πŸ™‚

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One of things we were most excited to see this visit was the holiday update to the Wild Artic ride — for Christmas, it becomes The Polar Express Experience! This is one of Liam’s most favorite Christmas movies, and he was over the moon to see this πŸ™‚ …it was such a cool ride! You really felt like you were on the train & in the movie.

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Watching Β a clip of the movie before we “boarded”….

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All smiles & ready to do it again….

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New Year’s week, my Orlando Mom’s Blog team gave us the awesome opportunity to hang out at the Science Center for the afternoon. We had let our annual passes lapse over the summer, so it had been almost 6 months since we last visited. It was so fun to see my team members from OMB, and we also hung out with Aunt Heather & cousin Sierra. Such a fun afternoon. I literally had to drag Liam out of there after FIVE hours! πŸ™‚ …this mama was wore out!

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We were thrilled to see the new additions to the Nature Works exhibit. The fish tanks are beautiful, and the kiddos loved picking up the different star fish and examining them. What a great experience for sensory learning!

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New Year’s Day, we took little dude to the local carnival. He had been asking & asking to go, so we caved. This same one comes around at the holidays each year, and honestly, it was surprising thatΒ Stephen & I had never been to it, ourselves, in the past. It was super fun!

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Can you tell that Liam is used to me taking pictures? πŸ™‚ …cheese!!

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quick selfie while little man was driving a tractor in the background…ha!

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these two….driving bumper cars!

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We met up with Aunt Heather & cousin, Sierra again…these kiddos love hanging out together. I can only imagine what this pic will look like in about 12 years from now…when they REALLY want to take the car for a drive together . Lord help us! πŸ™‚

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baby teacups!

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Seriously, this Ferris Wheel was GINORMOUS!! …My people rode it. I did NOT. I was freaking out while they rode it. Too big & too high for me. Liam loved it (of course!).

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It was a fun & restful break from work & school. I was able to get some things done around the house that I needed to, and Liam enjoyed playing with his new Christmas presents. I do think he missed his friends from school, though, and the structure/routine that he’s used to. I know after a while we did πŸ™‚ …haha!

Until next time, friends

Script Signature

August 2014, Latest & Greatest News

Recent Happenings

The weather in the evenings last week was so nice! We took advantage of the {slight} drop in humidity and went to visit our neighborhood duckies one night after work.

There is something about this quick photo I snapped of these two that I just love. Just a little moment stolen quietly between Daddy & son….they didn’t know I was “watching” πŸ™‚

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Liam & I drive by this pond every morning on the way to his school. We always say ‘good morning, duckies’ as we go by. It’s just something I started way back when, and I can’t stop now…lol. So, he really gets a kick out of walking up to try to say hi to them in person.

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We decided it would be fun for little man {and us} to invest in a family pass to the Orlando Science Center. It really is an awesome deal, if you look into it. Liam LOVED it…and we didn’t even go through all the floors, yet. We are saving some for our next trip.

Lately, Liam has totally been into reading his Curious George book. Well, the Science Center had a traveling exhibit of Curious George, and he was over-joyed to check it out {as you can see from his face below}.

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One of the rooms had play trains, planes, cars, etc. Obviously, this choo-choo was a fav! I was trying to get him to say ‘cheese’…but instead, I got a ‘choo-choo’ πŸ™‚

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Here are the boys playing with wooden derby cars on a huge track.

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Checkmate!

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Kidstown! was a clear winner to this little dude. In this area, there was a water table that was like a large rock. I love that they had plastic smocks we could put on Liam to keep his clothes dry. Awesome! You can imagine that it was NOT easy to pull him away. He and another little boy started playing together, and both began singing “Under the Sea” from the “Little Mermaid” movie….too cute!

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It was a great morning at OSC. We plan to go back again in a few weeks when they open up a new “BATS” exhibit, just in time for Halloween {yes, that’s coming…..omg}.

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Until next time, friends!

~H