Monday, November 3, 2014

Halloween 2014

Halloween was such a blast this year that it is blog-worthy. I just have to say that doing things with kids makes it so much more fun. Logan was still pretty itty bitty last year during Halloween so having a walking, playing, interactive kid this year made it so much fun!

Halloween 2013
Trick-or-treating with friends on Halloween last year
Let's start with his costume. There are not many 14 month olds that are still bald so we decided that we wanted to capitalize on the baldness with this year's costume and who better to dress a bald baby as than Charlie Brown! It was perfect and so recognizable to everyone we saw. 

A friend's Halloween party (10/25):
The first occasion to dress up as Charlie Brown was at a friend's Halloween party. Mitchell and Logan BOTH dressed up as Charlie and it was awesome!

Boo at the Zoo (10/30): 
We went to the zoo's Halloween event with our neighbors. It was threatening to rain on Halloween so I think an excessive amount of people showed up to the event the night before. It was so jam packed and kinda not worth it. There was trick-or-treating at booths, a magic show and dance party. We enjoyed all of these things but were ready to be done after being there only an hour and a half.
Noah and Logan
Boo at the Zoo
On Halloween!
We started the morning off right with a free scary face pancake at IHOP.

Stroller Strides: 
I have been participating in Stroller Strides and have absolutely loved it. The workout is great (not just walking with strollers), it's a fun play time for Logan and an opportunity for me to meet and talk to other moms. Well, Stroller Strides had a big Halloween event, including stroller trick-or-treating.
Half the group and our instructor
Our treat we gave out - cheese balls
stroller trick-or-treating
with his loot!
Halloween play group:
We have been blessed to spend our Fridays with our play group that we have gone to before Logan was even born. We hosted this play group and as always, it was crazy busy but a blast!
My attempt at a giant spider web
Cutest kids ever!
Halloween crafts!
We rendezvous-ed with our friends in their neighborhood and went out for some trick-or-treating! Eight kids and eight adults. The rain held off and we had a blast! Logan loved trick-or-treating. He waved at everyone to say thank you for the candy. 

Such a fun Halloween making special family memories! :)

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Disney World - Grand Gathering 2014

I love Disney World. It really is the happiest/most magical place on earth. The very first time I met Mitchell's family there was talk about a Disney trip the following year. Me, the unmarried, unengaged, fairly new girlfriend said I was in. Sign me up. Before we went on that trip we got engaged and married. Less than four weeks into marriage, we went to Disney World on the first ever Grand Gathering.
Grand Gathering 2011
It took us three years to get back but Grand Gathering 2014 was just as fun and magical. And we had a new person to introduce to the magic of Disney - Logan!

We stayed at the brand new Art of Animation resort. It is a value resort but with the way Disney does everything, I mean everything, at such high quality, you would never know it. It was incredible! With our Disney dining package you get a refillable souvenir mug and my favorite way to start the day was to wake up before Mitchell and Logan, grab my Magic Band and mug and walk up through the resort to the restaurant and get myself a *free* cup of coffee. It was so calm and peaceful at 6:45am and felt refreshing to start what would be a very busy day that way.
Swimming in the Nemo pool
Our section - The Little Mermaid
Hakuna Matata
It's the ciiiiircle of life!

Day 1: Hollywood Studios
It was snowing!! (Frozen Summer Fun)
Toy Story Midway Mania with Grandpa & Gram
Morning nap on Daddy
Dinner at the 50s Prime Cafe
Aerosmith's Rockin' Rollercoaster
Day 2: Magic Kingdom
Here we go!
In line for Winnie the Pooh 
Nap on Mommy during it's a small world 
Be Our Guest Ballroom - AMAZING!
Us with Disney, Mickey and the castle
Splash Mountain!
Argh matey!
Love the castle at night!

Day 3: Epcot

Day 4: Animal Kingdom
The Tree of Life
Sleeping through the safari
Meeting Rafiki!

The "mom, I'm done" face
We had such a great time. In my experience, when you have a kid, life gets more challenging. It just does, I'm not being negative. It's not as easy to go on a vacation, fly on an airplane, sleep in a different place so it's tempting to just skip out on things because it's going to be hard. But I have tried to not let that stop us. Just because it's going to be hard on me and tiring for me doesn't make me not want to do it. I feel we would miss out on too many awesome experiences. I hope I can keep that attitude as our family grows. Disney was definitely one of those things that was not as easy with a kid as it used to be but the time with family, the memories made and the fun we had was WELL worth it.

Here are some of the things I learned about doing Disney with a one year old:

1. No matter how many blogs you read on ways to do Disney with a kid, it's not going to be the same as when you did Disney without a kid. There's no matter of preparing and planning that's going to make it easy. You have to move at a different pace. You have to spend time taking care of the baby rather than just wandering around care free. So just mentally prepare yourself for that.

2. USE the baby care centers. Each park has a baby care center in it with a private nursing nook, changing tables, high chairs, AIR CONDITIONING. I was shocked at how empty these centers were when I was in them.

3. Be fair to your kid. We stayed in the park all day, every day. By the end of the trip poor Logan was tired and was done with being in the stroller or being held. The boy wanted to run free and explore. Next time we will be going back to the hotel for naps and a bit of play time. As the parent, you will appreciate this time too.

4. Unless you're fine missing all the night time shows and rides, don't go by yourself. Mitchell and I were so blessed to have Logan's loving grandparents and great aunt take him back to the hotel for the night so that we could enjoy Disney for a bit without a kid. Unfortunately we were bone tired by then too (haha) but still appreciative. We got to see Fantasmic because of this and that show is my favorite thing at Disney World.

5. Enjoy seeing Disney through their eyes. Logan was surprisingly enthralled by all the rides, shows and parades. He was mesmerized.
Watching Nemo
on The Little Mermaid ride
We had a great time and can't wait to go back! Well, some day.