Florida Christmas {2017}

We headed down to Sarasota this year to celebrate Christmas in Florida with Greg’s family. We had an amazing five days filled with family, fun, and sun.

The kids spent a lot of time in and on the water. It was way too cold for me to even think about getting in. The boys caught several fish from the dock and I paddle boarded with the manatees!

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We had dinner out on the circle on Saturday night and spent some time at the beach on Christmas Eve.

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We opened presents on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. The kids spent the rest of our time playing with their presents.

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We had such a great visit and a wonderful Christmas with Greg’s family. We loved seeing the Gilbos in Florida and the kids especially loved seeing their older cousins!

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween!

Kenley started her day with a Character Parade at school with the kindergarten and 1st grade classes. She chose to be Pinkalicious from the book Pinkalicious and Aqua, the Mini-Mermaid. We also have the book Aqualicious which has the same characters in it. She was excited to be able to take her pink mermaid to school with her and dress in pink from head to toe. Crosby had his Storybook parade yesterday and was Spiderman.

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Tonight, we headed out for trick or treat fun with the Jenkinsons. They kids were all superheros! Kenley was Batgirl and Crosby was Justice League Batman.

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Greg and I keep talking about how much fun we had tonight. The kids had such a great time too and crashed as soon as we got home.

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Halloween through the years.

2011 // 2012 // 2013 // 2014 // 2015 // 2016

 

Christmas {2016}

Merry Christmas! We have been having so much fun this week and I have so many pictures to share of all of our adventures with all of our visitors.

Before Christmas, we had our friends in town for a few days to play as they were on their way down to south Florida. I had to work until Friday, but Greg and the kids had a great time. They went to the Science Center, the park, and we made s’mores on the front porch after dinner one night.

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As the Mangos were leaving, my parents, Michael and Rachel were arriving for Christmas. I ran 10 miles with the girls on Christmas Eve before we were off to church in the afternoon for our candlelight service. My favorite.

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After putting milk, cookies, and carrots out for Santa and his reindeer, we woke up on Christmas morning to see what Santa brought and exchange gifts. We spent the rest of the day playing with our new toys, inside and outside.

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We headed to Light Up UCF on Tuesday to ice skate! It was the first time ice skating for the kids and the first time in a very long time ice skating for the rest of us. Crosby didn’t like it, but Kenley loved it! We went back out a second time and it was hard to pull her away.

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On Thursday, we got to meet up with our friends who were visiting from Canada! We had a perfect morning. We had breakfast at Townhouse, then went strawberry picking!

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The rest of the week included drinks at the Brass Tap, dinner at Tijuana, gelati at Jeremiah’s, swimming, trips to the park, donut making, and shopping. We’ve had such a good week!

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We had a wonderful Christmas and a great week with family!

advent calendar activities {2016}

Welcome to another season of Pinterest Christmas!

Pinterest Christmas

My first project for the year was to come up with activities to fill the buckets of our diy advent calendar. I am so excited for all of our fun activities this month. When I sit down to make the list of activities, I always have my calendar out so I know what fun things we already have planned so I can fill those buckets first. Next, I fill in the remaining weekend days since those days are good for more time-intensive activities. I fill in the remaining days with activities that worked well in the past, or with new ideas from Pinterest. This year, my friend Lindsey shared her list with me, so I borrowed some of her ideas to mix in some new ones.

{1} Find Sprinkles the Elf [on the Shelf]
{2} Mail Christmas cards
{3} Go to Disney Springs to see the Christmas decorations
{4} Build a gingerbread house
{5} Make reindeer chow
{6} Have snowflake pancakes for dinner
{7} Get a blizzard at DQ
{8} Wear Christmas pajamas and read Christmas books
{9} Listen to Christmas music
{10} Build a “sand” man at the beach
{11} Donate toys and clothes to others
{12} Kenley shops for Crosby’s gift
{13} Drink hot chocolate with marshmallows
{14} Watch How the Grinch Stole Christmas cartoon
{15} Make a Lego Christmas ornament
{16} Family movie night: The Polar Express
{17} Crosby shops for Kenley’s gift
{18} Go to Sea World to see the Christmas lights
{19} String popcorn for the Christmas tree
{20} Drive around and look at Christmas lights
{21} Celebrate Christmas with friends
{22} Roast marshmallows over the fire and makes s’mores
{23} Make Christmas cookies for Santa
{24} Go to the Christmas Eve service at church

Some activities are small compared to others, but I don’t want to over commit ourselves or feel like we are rushing from one thing to the next. The point is to enjoy the Christmas season together as a family and that is what we intend to do! You can see our previous activities here and here.

Keep an eye out for other fun projects coming soon as part of Pinterest Christmas and don’t forget to check out Misha’s projects at Emerald City Diaries.

You can also see past Pinterest Christmas projects here.

Happy December!

my [long] weekend in photos

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we headed down to sarasota for the long weekend to spend some time at grammy’s house! we got up on saturday morning and went down to the dock for some fishing.

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crosby didn’t quite have the necessary attention span for fishing, but kenley enjoyed it!

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we hit up the mote marine lab & aquarium on saturday, which was super fun. this guy was by far my favorite. more photos to come!

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we fished again before dinner and greg caught one with the mickey mouse fishing pole!

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we went out for a family run on sunday morning and ended up doing four miles. it was brutal between pushing the kids and the heat and humidity. i ran the bridge and greg took the kids to the top, where kenley accidentally dropped her rubber fish into the ocean…hence the saddest face ever.

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we headed to the beach after our run fully expecting to cool off in the water…until we saw this sign. needless to say our beach trip was short-lived.

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ready for the party to get started!

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the kids had such a great time playing with their second cousins. we all had a great time catching up with family.

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sunday sunset over the water.

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our last walk to starbucks of the weekend before it was time to head home. it was back to the grind once we got home, running errands and packing lunches.

we had such a fun long weekend away. it was much needed!
how was your long weekend?

happy labor day!

4th of July weekend, continued.

I shared last month about our trip to Indiana over 4th of July weekend. Since then, I’ve finally gone through the pictures on my camera, so I wanted to be sure to post those too.

Maggi and Greg hosted the Lower clan for a fantastic brunch on Saturday. It was cooler than normal that weekend, but the kiddos still took advantage of the pool and water balloons. Kenley was so excited to see that Sami had the same swim suit as she did!

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Family photos were a must since so many Lowers were in town from four different states!

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On Sunday, the Faris crew came over for lunch after the Outrunning Autism 5K and 10K.

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It was a great 4th of July weekend with family!