Wedding, Beach and HOGWARTS!

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This past weekend I was able to spend some time with my girl friends from High School.  We graduated High School 12 years ago and these ladies are still such an important part of my life.  That’s the bond a small, all girls Catholic school can create.

The weekend started on Friday when we met in Lake Mary, FL.  We just had a nice casual dinner and spent time catching up, not via texting, at Sonny’s.  It was some really good BBQ and conversation.  Then on Saturday, my friend took us to her childhood home and showed us around New Smyrna.  We met her grandma and had some great conversation.  Then we walked to the beach.  It was gorgeous and I was truly appreciative of the moment because I had been checking into the weather back home and it was less than ideal.  We took a long walk down the beach.  Like 3 miles or so to the jetty where we saw a lighthouse and I picked up some large seashells for my kids! We also saw some tortoises on our way back to the car.

It was time to head back to get ready for our friends wedding.  It was an absolutely beautiful ceremony.  The bride and groom had all of the bridal party and immediate family hold their rings for each of them to say a quick blessing, quietly, and share their love.  When they came back around, the rings would hold the love of everyone who touched them.  It was a really nice moment.  The wedding and reception were beautiful.

The next day, we headed to HOGWARTS!!! I couldn’t come to Florida and not go to Universal studios if I was less than an hour away.  We started first thing in the morning when the park opened and left when the park closed.  Yes, we stayed at Hogwarts or Diagon Alley almost the entire day.  We rode the Hogwarts express between the parks!  The day started with the ride at Gringotts, which was really exciting.  Then my friend and I had to get wands from Ollivanders.  I originally wasn’t going to get one, but then we found out they were interactive and had a life-time warranty so I was sold.  We were just like the little kids doing spells to make things move, stop or spit water!  We ate at the 3 broomsticks and had butterbeer, of course.  It was truly a magical day. I was so thankful that I was able to spend this time with my friends whom I hadn’t seen in quite some time.

If you ever get the chance to go to Universal, I highly recommend getting a wand.  At least one for your group but kids definitely would enjoy all of the interaction.  Next weeks blog post on Wednesday will be an updated Advent list for families.  I’m going to modify and adjust based on my time availability and my kids interests.  Until next time, be confident, be fit, be you!

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Spousal R&R

I am the first person to admit that I have extra mom guilt when it comes time for a date night with my husband.  We both work all week and barely see our kids during waking hours as it stands.  So, why would I want to find a sitter and spend more time away from them?  It is always a very challenging thing for me to do and therefore I don’t do it very frequently.  I completely understand the importance of time away with your significant other, it’s just easier to deal with that guilt.

Guilt aside, my husband and I took a trip to Fallingwater in Mill Run, PA for his birthday.  For those that may not know, Fallingwater is the house designed and implemented by Frank Lloyd Wright for the Kauffman family in the late 1930s.  Added history lesson in this post!  My husband is really into architecture and studied Wright in high school years ago.  The house is pretty incredible to see and the tour guide we had was knowledgeable and personable.

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Our tour was early in the afternoon and we spent almost 3 hours there looking around the house and exploring the grounds surrounding the house.  We ventured to our hotel a short distance away in Uniontown, PA.  On our way we drove through Ohio Pyle and there was a huge festival going on so the town was hopping.  We passed the Laurel Caverns and a battle field that can be toured.  There are also two other houses by Wright in the area.  It was during our drive that we had wished our weekend away was a little longer.  There was so much to see in that small little portion of the map.

The next morning we woke up at 7am.  I know you are already thinking it so I’m going to say it, “What the heck were you doing up at 7am when you had the opportunity to sleep in?”  The answer to that question is, I have no idea.  The hotel was fairly new and so the accommodations were very nice.  But, we enjoyed a nice breakfast, filled up the car and headed home.

Although I experience guilt when leaving my children for fun times with my spouse, I understand the importance.  It allowed us to reconnect and enjoy time together.  We were able to talk without being interrupted.  We still thought about our kids a lot and talked about them a good bit.  But, it was our time.

I’d definitely recommend this as a weekend get away.  Young children are not allowed at Fallingwater, so it makes a perfect retreat for any couple that enjoys nature or history.

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