5.02.2016

The Perfect Mother's Day Gift





Mother's Day is this Sunday, friends! I know that every blogger claims to have found the most perfect Mother's Day gift, but I'm here to tell you that I have found the best....the best! the best!

Long story short, Billy has asked me for a while now what I would like and the only thing that I really wanted (besides like an hour of peace and quiet-who's with me) and came to mind was a personalized double bar necklace, so that I could have both of my boys' names on one necklace. But literally none of the shops/necklaces I was coming across had exactly what I was looking for, until I stumbled upon Chip & Chisel. The personalized jewelry that Lindsy, the owner, makes (necklaces, bracelets, earrings, for him, and the most adorable mommy & me collection) is absolute perfection and is exactly what any mom would want - your kids' names, initials, or a memorable date on a piece of jewelry. They have such good pricing, too!

These are a few of my favorites... (the one I "asked" Billy for is this double bar necklace)


She also has the classic bar necklace available. If you're looking for a gift for your mom or sister, you could do this classic mom necklace, or put her grandkids/or kids names on any of these.

Did I mention the awesome story how Chip & Chisel came about? No? Well, Lindsy started the shop when she was going through a three year journey with IVF as a way to raise money for the payments. She now has two beautiful twin girls! You can read her whole story here. Talk about inspiring!

How cute are they?

Get your shop on, girls (ahem-send your husband right over here!)) Thank you, Lindsy, for ending my search for the perfect personalized necklace and for making gifts for all my mama friends in the future that much easier.

PS: Don't forget to look at the items she has available for him, which would make great Father's Day gifts!

4.28.2016

Our Trip To Disney

 

Happy Thursday!

I wanted to do a short (let's see how short this really is!) recap on the day we spent at Magic Kingdom, in case anyone is contemplating taking your baby/young toddler for a day. Like I mentioned before, we were only interested in making it a one day thing since Cam is still so young (15 months), so an early flight into Orlando was essential. Our flight got in at 830am and after picking up our luggage, rental car, and some breakfast we were in the parking lot at Magic Kingdom by 10:15ish. It was a cloudy day in the morning, but it never rained and the sun came out in the afternoon so it ended up being a really nice day. It wasn't too hot either and there was a breeze, so that was really nice! Our plan was to spend all day at Magic Kingdom and then leave around 7pm, when Camden normally goes to bed, so that he could sleep in the car for the 3 hour drive to Naples. It all worked out really well with (luckily) no bumps in the road, therefore we are so so happy that we did it.

Camden enjoyed it so much more than we expected. It was truly amazing to see his face light up at the characters. The parades throughout the day that they had were great for his age because he could see all the characters, and the music was really loud and fun for him! On the rides we went on, he was really mesmerized by them, especially It's A Small World! I think he could have gone on that ride 10 times! The entire time we were there he kept eyeing and reaching for the Mickey Mouse balloons they sell, so of course we had to get him one. He loved it and carried it around with him EVERYWHERE for the next 4 days. I actually deflated it and brought it home with us to keep as a memento in his baby book, he loved it that much. ha. :) His favorite part of the entire day was meeting Mickey Mouse one-on-one in Town Square. For those who haven't been, they have it set up so just your family gets to go in a cute decorated room to meet Mickey and get your picture taken with him. The second we turned the corner into the room and Cam saw Mickey, he practically jumped out of my arms and started pointed like crazy at him. Mickey "talked" to him for a bit and Cam wasted no time leaning in and gave him the biggest kiss on the nose! It was honestly the cutest thing I have ever seen! Truly a memory that we both will NEVER forget. He was literally starstruck and right then and there we knew we had made an excellent decision by taking him!

 
 
 
 (such bad pictures, but they were from It's A Small World!) 
(his personalized shirt is from here!)

I actually did get better group shots of our family by the castle (that aren't so blurry!) and pictures of all of us/Camden with Mickey Mouse, but I forgot to insert them into this post so I'll have to come back and add them! 

All of that being said, we are so glad we only did one day for a couple different reasons...1. There were only so many rides that he could go on, so it's not like we needed a week to fit everything in. and 2. It's really hard to get the most out of it when your child still needs naps throughout the day. Cam did take a nap in the stroller (very thankful we brought our BOB with us-because I don't think he would have napped at all in a small umbrella stroller) for a little over an hour, but he was still exhausted due to the excitement of everything. 3. It's exhausting for the parents, too!  

Billy and I both agreed that we think the perfect age to go is 5-6 years old when you don't have to work around nap times, they will remember it, and they can go on most of the rides. Billy already mentioned starting to save to take our kids back then, ha. I think it's also perfect/most convenient if you stay on property, so that you can come and go as you please when you get tired and whatnot.

Anyway, since Disney gives you 3 Fast Passes with your tickets, I booked the ones we wanted to do 30 days in advance online. You could use a Fast Pass to meet Mickey at Town Square, so I booked that first because I had been told it would sell out (and it did.) My tip for the Fast Passes would be to book them back to back as early in the day as you can, because once you are done with your 3 initial Fast Passes they have kiosks around the park where you can then book more. You can't book more until they are all complete, so that's why it's important to book them for earlier in the day. Every single ride we went on with Cam we had a Fast Pass for, so we never had to wait in line more than 5 minutes!! It was a lifesaver as I can't imagine trying to wait in line for 30-45 minutes with a toddler (NO THANK YOU!)

Once 6pm hit and we were all Mickey'd out, we decided to hit the road - happy but beyond tired. This preggo thought about Cam the whole time and did not take into consideration how much I would be on my feet (I actually had bruises and so much swelling in my right leg), so I took a long bath once we got to our place in Naples. So needed!

Looking back on the day, it was totally worth it and we all had so much fun. We know Cam really enjoyed it, which was all that mattered to us, and we can't wait to take him and his brother back many (many) years down the road, ha!

Had to add in these pictures from this past weekend because Cam has been nonstop cuddling his Mickey Mouse towel... those smiles! too much!

4.27.2016

The One Where You Post 100 Photos From Vacation


I've said it before and I'll say it again, Naples is just dreamy. You can always count on blue skies, sunshine, clear water, not a ton of crowds, seeing dolphins at the pier, beautiful streets and homes, and delicious food. So pretty much everything I'm looking for when taking a vacation.

I'm sure you can guess but the toughest decision we had for our days was if we were going to go to the beach or the pool, and what we were going to eat for dinner. Life is good when on vacation, right? #takemeback.

I think everyone questions how vacations can be relaxing with kids and the truth is - it's definitely not as relaxing as it would be without kids. But it's also not as rewarding and the memories you make are priceless. Taking Cam to Florida with us is one place that I consider to be on the easier side since it's my parents place so he has his own room and we have a full kitchen, plus it's a quick nonstop flight for us. Traveling with kids gets easier the more you do it, just because you learn more tips and tricks to make it better! I'm so happy we had Cam with us for this trip (and of course that we took him to Disney) - our last trip before baby brother joins us! We made so many wonderful memories!

Anyway, to make our days flow better we decided to just give Cam one nap per day while we were there so that he would have more time to play, which worked out really well. We would head to the beach or pool around 930 or 10 which gave us a good amount of time to play/relax before lunch. When he took his first steps in the sand it was almost like he was thinking, "what is this soft stuff?" because he made the funniest faces. But that didn't last long because he quickly got used to it and was soon darting straight towards the ocean! He loved playing in the sand with his sand buckets and shovels and watching other kids play. This was the perfect age to take him to the beach as he was just so much more into it than the last time we took him when he was only 6 months old. Oh, and the pool? He's crazy about floating in his little boat raft. He would've stayed in that thing all day long, if we let him! So. much. fun.

We would put him down for a nap around 1 and he would sleep until 3:30 or 4 most days, so once he was down for a nap Billy always encouraged me to go relax at the pool by myself. Um, yes please...you don't have to twist my arm!

We did venture out for dinner most nights, which typically consisted of seafood (you have to! Cam actually tried a bunch of different fish for the first time) and being close to the water. We like to go to dinner more on the early side around 530, so that Cam is still happy and not extremely tired or starving when we get there. He loves to stare and smile at the people at tables around us - always wanting their attention! Then once he was in bed at 7, me and Billy just relaxed on the back porch with drinks (non-alcholic wine for me) or sometimes I would go shopping! See, trips with kids CAN be relaxing, too! :) 

Here's some pictures of our time... (that make me want to go back right this very instant)


 
 
 
 


Sorry for the billion photos of Cam, but we had so much fun with him. He makes our lives and our vacations so much better!

Tomorrow I'm sharing all about the day we spent in Disney, so come back then for that if Disney is your kinda thing! Happy hump day!