Category Archives: Recap

Memorial Day Weekend & turning 35!

Happy Tuesday!

I hope you had a great Memorial Day weekend. .. we were at the Lake – it. was. wonderful.

Just thought I’d pop in and share a little life update and weekend recap.

We’ve been enjoying the spring sunshine.

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And this stuff is amazing. I love it on avocado toast or hard boiled eggs.

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Loving that we live just a few blocks from the boys’ school.

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My new favorite flavor!

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Luke and Mom movie date.

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sometimes you just have to nap. . . in the middle of the house.

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Making cookies with my boys.

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Luke is such a great big brother.

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5 months old!

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Feeling the love with a birthday cupcake.

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And a Caribou gift card from my favorite girls.

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My 35th birthday started out with birthday BODYPUMP.

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And dinner with my family and sisters at Red Robin. Yum! Smile

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Followed by ice cream!

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And then we headed to the Lake for the weekend.

Doughnuts!

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First boat ride.

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Time on the dock.

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And <love> with #gopackgo

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Time to get ready for work! Hope you had a great one. Smile

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Filed under Abby, body pump, Jake, Lake, Luke, Recap, summer, weekend update

Disney World Tips

Here it is. My BIG Disney World tips post.

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**disclaimer: this is just my own thoughts and tips after our very first trip to Disney World with two young kids.

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Before your trip:

1. You can make dinner reservations 180 days in advance, so as soon as you book your trip, get on My Disney and book away!

2. If you can swing it, I would highly recommend staying at a Disney property. We stayed at the Grand Floridian and it was so beneficial.

*If you stay at a Disney resort, they will provide transportation to and from the airport

*They will take your luggage from the airport directly to your hotel room.

*If you stay at the Grand Floridian, you are one monorail stop away from the Magic Kingdom, literally about a 3 minute ride.

*Free transportation to any of the parks. We took a bus to Animal Kingdom and Disney Springs.

*You can book fast passes 60 days in advance. Fast passes are basically a cut to the front of the long line by getting in the shorter line.  You can pick three fast passes per day at the park. These are HUGE TIME SAVERS if you pick the right rides/attractions.  You sign up for a fast pass time on the My Disney Experience (either website or phone app). You have an hour window to use the fast pass. There is actually a 5 minute lag either way, so if you’re fast pass is from 2-3, you can get on from 1:55- 3:05.

On your trip:

1. IMHO, only plan for one park per day. I think the park hopper tickets would be a waste of money with young kids.

2. Plan for a rest day. It’s hot in Florida. The pool is a great place to spend the day and rest your feet.  Smile

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3. Bring snacks.

4. Plan to spend a ton of money on food and for it to not be good. Seriously, the food was awful and super spendy. *Dessert from the candy store at Magic Kingdom was the exception* Character buffets are worth it to be able to sit down in air conditioning and get something to eat while meeting all the characters. We did one with Cinderella and one with Winnie the Pooh and I would recommend both for the experience, not the food. . . I will say that Luke seemed to enjoy the food and they definitely did a great job catering to the kids with mac and cheese, pizza, chicken nuggets, etc.

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5. We usually made one food reservation per day and then ate snacks or stopped for a quick bite to eat along the way.

6. Plan ahead for what/when you’ll eat. .. or at least think ahead. Lines tend to be super long so if you wait until you are already hangry, it’s not going to be fun to wait another 20+ minutes before you get food once you decide where you are going to eat. . .

Decide ahead of time if you are going to do signature books for Characters to sign and/or pin trading.. . and come prepared. We didn’t know about signature books for the characters to sign, so we missed out on that one. We got some pins for Luke to trade on our last day and he LOVED it. I wish we would have gotten him started sooner, and I wish we would have bought some ahead of time to trade as they are pretty spendy in the park.

All of our character visits were worth the wait. We tried to fast pass most of them, but they were really the highlight of the trip.  Other fast pass suggestions for Magic Kingdom:

  1. Peter Pan’s Flight
  2. Jungle Cruise
  3. Pirates of the Caribbean

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Another highlight, the Safari ride in Animal Kingdom – so cool! Try to do it early in the morning when the animals are most active. .. and fast pass it!

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Beware of FOMO. You can’t, won’t and shouldn’t try to do it all in one trip/day. Seriously, you could drive yourself nuts because every time you turn around something new or different is going on in front of the castle or down main street. My best tip is to just enjoy the trip. Take your time and soak it in, and just stick to one or two areas per day.

I wasn’t sure what the dress code is for Disney. . . I went for the comfortable Lululemon route and would highly recommend that to anyone. Comfortable tennis shoes are a must!

If you have a young baby, Disney has a Baby Center in each park. They have a quiet room for nursing, changing tables, a place to mix up formula and warm up bottles. They also have a room for the bigger kids to watch a movie or read books while Mom and Dad are taking care of the baby.

We carried around a backpack for all the things we would need while at the park. We had sunscreen, a small first aid kit with band aids and Advil, water bottles, snacks (granola bars, applesauce packets, fruit snacks), backup phone charger, supplies for Jake (light blanket, diaper, wipes, bottles, etc.)

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Random suggestion for parents with kids – have a souvenir rule and prep kids ahead of time. Scott and I decided that Luke could pick out one souvenir per day. We prepped him for that rule ahead of time. So, no melt downs or fights while we were there because he knew the expectation and rule ahead of time.

It is a truly magical place. Enjoy it and enjoy watching the kids soak it all in!

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Filed under Recap, vacation

Friday Favorites–Carrot juice and spring weather

Happy Friday!

I have lots of happy endorphins from my PUMP/CX class this morning!

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I’m also super excited to be heading up to the cities to spend the day with my sister. We are shopping, eating and going to see Wicked!!

Finally, I am on Day 10 of an AdvoCare 24 day challenge. I have a love/hate relationship with the fiber drink. . . don’t get me wrong, it’s not bad, but after doing it for 10 days, I’m ready for a break. . . and for max phase! Smile

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Otherwise, I’ve been enjoying my last few weeks of working a part time schedule hanging with my boys. . .

Legos and snuggling are my life.

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And carrot juice. My fav combo – carrots, apples and lemon.

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Just hanging.

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4 months old!! time. slow. down.

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that face. seriously.

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Running in the sunshine.

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Practicing letters for Kindergarten. Seriously, someone hold me. Winking smile

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Trip to the park.

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Evening stroll.

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#perfection

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Alright, I’m off to shower and get ready for the day!

Hope you have a great Friday and an awesome weekend! Whatcha up to??

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Filed under advocare, Jake, Luke, Recap

Life Photo Dump

Happy Monday!

Life has been crazy busy, awesome and passing in the blink of an eye right now. . . How is Jake 4 months old??

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Because it’s been so busy, I haven’t had the chance to blog as much as I would like. . . and so I have a bunch of pictures on my iPhone that I haven’t shared. . .

So, quick life recap via photos today!

Caribou coffee date.

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Trying to take a family selfie. . . #fail. Winking smile

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Loving spring weather running with my little man.

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His little face makes me so happy.

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Post-run snuggles.

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You can never have enough baby snuggles.

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Abby agrees..  .

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Loving tummy time.

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Luke always wants Jake to be involved in all activities.

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Teaching PUMP/CX combo on Friday mornings.

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My boys.

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Easter Eggs!

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#truth

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When my Dad died, my friends from the YMCA, gave me the beautiful gift of a tree planted in his honor at a local park. So, when my family was in town for Luke’s birthday, we planted a beautiful maple tree.

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the end. Smile

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Filed under Jake, Luke, Recap

5!

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And just like that my first baby boy is 5 years old. . .

He turned 5 on Easter Sunday. .. so we had a family birthday celebration.

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We spent the day building his new Legos and checking out his new Ninja Turtle bike. . . hoping those training wheels can come off this summer!

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Then, last weekend, Luke had his birthday party at the YMCA. It was a superhero theme. They made superhero masks, played games and played in the pool.

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And finally, on Sunday, both families came over for a family birthday party. . .

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My family.

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Scott’s family.

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and Luke’s third birthday cake (batman, superhero and transformers). . . he’s one lucky kid!

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Life. slow. down.

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Filed under Luke, Recap

5!

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And just like that my first baby boy is 5 years old. . .

He turned 5 on Easter Sunday. .. so we had a family birthday celebration.

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We spent the day building his new Legos and checking out his new Ninja Turtle bike. . . hoping those training wheels can come off this summer!

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Then, last weekend, Luke had his birthday party at the YMCA. It was a superhero theme. They made superhero masks, played games and played in the pool.

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And finally, on Sunday, both families came over for a family birthday party. . .

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My family.

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Scott’s family.

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and Luke’s third birthday cake (batman, superhero and transformers). . . he’s one lucky kid!

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Life. slow. down.

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Filed under Luke, Recap

Disney World–Magic Kingdom Day 2

Happy Friday!

I’m popping in today to share my last recap post from our Disney trip!

One of the best pieces of advice I got while planning our trip to Disney was from Becky and it was to take a rest day.

Best. idea. ever.

After two days at the park, we were all more than ready for a chill day.

And Luke couldn’t wait to go swimming in the pools.

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Jake didn’t mind hanging poolside. . .

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As long as he didn’t actually have to go in the water. Winking smile

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Much better..  .

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After our afternoon in the pool, we went to Disney Springs for dinner and to wander around. They have the biggest Disney store in the world there and Luke picked out his souvenir. . .  a pink Minnie Mouse dog carrier with Figaro in it! Not exactly what I would have picked but he loved it. Smile

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Then, we spent one more day at the Magic Kingdom.

And oh man, it was HOT. 90+ and sunny!

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Character lunch with Winnie the Pooh and friends.

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More wandering. . .

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Luke became an honorary pirate from Captain Jake Sparrow.

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We met Tinker Bell. . . Luke kept asking before we met her if she was going to be little or big. Smile

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We caught the parade.

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And finished our Disney vacation with the fireworks.

Our last day was more swimming, taking the Magic Express back to the airport and getting back home.

Luke is already asking when we can go back. . . Winking smile

And I’m super excited for the weekend – we have Luke’s 5th birthday parties, friends party tomorrow and family party on Sunday. I’ll be back on Monday with a recap.

Have a great one!

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Filed under Jake, Luke, Recap, vacation

Our Trip to Disney World–Animal Kingdom

Day 2!

We headed to the Animal Kingdom.

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First stop: African Safari.

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oh my goodness. it was so cool! we saw crocodiles.

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and giraffes.

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I didn’t take too many pictures because Jake was sleeping and I was trying to hold him tight to me with all the bouncing to keep him asleep.  .. but we also saw elephants – including a baby one! Lions, hippopotamuses, rhinoceroses. This “ride” is a must do it you go to AK.

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my only complaint was that the ride was so fast! It would have been nice to slow down a bit. . . but I also understand they are trying to get lots of people thru fairly quickly.

Then, we got to meet Mickey and Minnie.

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Iced white chocolate mocha was #necessary.

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And then after a super scary, horrible dinosaur ride (according to Luke), we met Pluto and Goofy.

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And ended our day with one more ride.

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After some souvenir shopping. . .back to the hotel for showers, PJs and bedtime!

Day 3 at the pool and Day 4 at Magic Kingdom coming up next!

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Filed under Jake, Luke, Recap, vacation

Our Trip to Disney World–Magic Kingdom

Wow.

What a trip!

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A friend told me that when you have kids, if you take them with, you call it a “family trip.” If you go alone, it is a vacation. Winking smile 

No, seriously, we had a great time. Luke had such a fun time, Jake was a trooper and Scott and I had some fun too.

I wanted to share a few recaps from our trips. . . because holy pictures. And I also plan to share a recap of some tips and tricks from our first time for anyone planning to go with young kids.

So, today, I’ll share pictures from traveling and our first day at Magic Kingdom.

Excited to hit the road. . . best decision ever, spending a bit more for a early afternoon flight. Everyone was in a much better mood than when we try to do an early morning flight!

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Jake did great on the flight. . . slept most of the way there.

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How we roll thru the airport. Winking smile 

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We stayed at a Disney resort, so the transportation from the airport couldn’t have been easier. <—more details in my tips post.

I booked dinner at a Character Buffet dinner at the hotel. It kicked off our trip perfectly. Luke got to meet some characters and eat some dinner.

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Prince Charming.

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Cinderella.

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The evil stepmother <—she was awesome!

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Here she is trying to convince Luke to come work for her in the castle.

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Those faces.

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And we didn’t have to travel very far and were able to get the kids in bed at a decent hour so we were ready for our big day at Magic Kingdom. And again, I cannot say enough how easy transportation was from the Disney Resort.

We hit Magic Kingdom right when it opened at 9am. . .

We started the day at Beast’s Castle with breakfast.

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And then we went to meet Ariel.

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Jake pretty much fell asleep after breakfast and took a great nap in the Baby Bjorn.

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So, Scott and Luke checked out Dumbo.

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And then we popped over to meet Donald and Pluto.

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Had to check out the Mad Hatter spinning cups.

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well. . . they did. Jake and I don’t do spinning rides. Winking smile 

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It was on my Disney bucket list to meet Gaston.

Jake started crying immediately when we got to our turn. Gaston said to him, “It’s ok, I know I can be overwhelming!”

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Ahhhh I cannot believe I forgot to show my guns. Winking smile 

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Family selfie with the castle.

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And then probably my favorite thing of the whole day..  . meeting Belle. She. was. awesome.

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One more ride. . . the magic carpets.

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We finished the day with dinner at the park and then picking up treats from the candy store. We didn’t stay for the fireworks the first day . .. a quick boat ride and we were back to our hotel room to shower, put on PJs and collapse into bed.

It. was. wonderful.

Day 2 coming up!

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Filed under family, Jake, Luke, Recap, vacation

Life Favorites–Jumping into the BIG pool!

Happy Wednesday! I am a busy bee today trying to get ready for the family to head to Disney World! This will be my first time at Disney World and I could not be more excited. . . full recap next week when we get home! If you have any suggestions for our first time, please share!! Smile 

It’s been a while since I’ve checked in, so I have lots of favorites.  ..

One of the biggest ones was Luke jumping into the BIG pool at swimming lessons all by himself {to a noodle}. He was so excited and proud of himself. . . and I’ll be honest, this Mom was too!

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Nice weather! It appears that spring has finally made an appearance in MN. I am loving the 50s and 60s and running outside!

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Baby smiles and coos. Heart melting every day.

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He is getting too big too fast!

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And he looks just a little bit like his brother. . .
Luke on the left, Jake on the right!

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Aunt Jenny came to visit!

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Mom and Dad selfies with Jake.

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A little too much fun with snap chat filters.

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Luke continues to be the best big brother. It is amazing how much he thinks of his baby brother and how he wants to make sure that all activities include him!

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Back to teaching at the YMCA. Both BP and CXWORX.

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Aunt Laura came to visit!

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Cupcakes from the new place in town – Bluebird Cakery. Delicious! The cookie dough one was amazing.

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Sunday morning coffee run in PJs.

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Framing the newborn pictures of Jake {print from Shutterfly} . . it already seems so long ago that he was that little and new. It seems like he has been part of our family for a long time already! <—that might be part of the sleep deprivation. Winking smile And I am loving my new Easter bunny sign. ..

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I am looking forward to the weekend at Disney. . . and hoping that I don’t melt in the 90+ degree heat!!

Hope you are having a great week – any highlights to share? Plans for the weekend? Have you ever been to Disney? Advice for us??

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Filed under body pump, Friday, Jake, Laura, Luke, Recap