posted by on Natural Parenting, Photography

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It’s always a thrill to hear from gDiapers, so when they asked a couple weeks ago if I’d like to do some photos of their new good natured gPants & write on the theme of kindness (plus a giveaway! Read to the bottom…), I of course said yes!

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Kindness is something that for me comes naturally towards my own family. But for my introverted self, I feel a little more stretched when extending kindness to strangers. It’s easier to go about whatever I’m doing and just keep to myself. Interaction can feel vulnerable. Like taking a risk.

DSC_0185But as I’m growing older (and wiser? Can I say either of those yet at 25?) I feel like I’m learning more and more the impact of spreading kindness.

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One doesn’t have to look hard to see the bad in the world. In the media, on the news, there is plenty to go around every day.

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But kindness. A kind word, an act of kindness, a gentle gesture. Kindness can give people hope.

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That in our world, sometimes there will be bad. But there is always good too.

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And that hope is worth spreading.

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Giveaway

gDiapers offered to spread a little love to one lucky reader – a good natured gPant in winner’s choice of size :-) Enter below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Spring Breakers

Mar
2014
26

posted by on Life

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March is a really fun month around here because we get to see so many friends from up north! I remember back when we discussed the pros and cons of moving to Florida from Minnesota, thinking how it wouldn’t be so bad because we’d still see all our friends and relatives when they’d vacation in Florida. I’m not sure we’d see so much of them if we’d moved to Montana ;)

This year we’ve had three waves of visitors so far! Lots of fun :)

Starting our spring break festivities at the Magic Kingdom.DSC_0073-2DSC_0065-2DSC_0068-2We loved seeing Keith & Vanessa! Remember when they got married?DSC_0050-2DSC_0026 DSC_0160DSC_0143-2DSC_0116She enjoyed It’s a Small World, even though you might not know it from her face ;)
DSC_0092DSC_0094DSC_0080-2I love that they added Rapunzel’s tower to Fantasyland. It’s magical.Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetLittle Snow White watching big Snow White. DSC_0208-2She loved the Dream Along with Mickey show so much. She would bounce when she got excited and smiled & clapped & waved at Mickey and Minnie. It was so precious, made me cry <3DSC_0194-2 DSC_0219-2Papa Walt was our second visitor. DSC_0297Bella, I’m gonna need you to move…
DSC_0268Pancake breakfast.DSC_0345 Ballgame essentials.DSC_0355 On their way to Spring Training! (Except the girl in the nightgown. She was on her way to a nap ;)DSC_0380We went to Raglan Road for Valentine’s Day and it might be our new favorite place. We knew Landon’s dad would like it so we made a return trip. This time we sat outside (shorter wait with no reservation) & it was so nice! Live music, dancing, we could see the Downtown Disney balloon making its trips up and down, it was really great.DSC_0700 DSC_0654DSC_0672 DSC_0688 The citrus salmon salad was alright. I cut out dairy about a month ago – on some gallbladder-liver detox pills from the Chinese dr. & she says no dairy for three months :’( So this was not the Raglan Risotto. But for what it was, it was alright. Had to get a couple refills on the Irish soda bread to fill up, and that is delicious.DSC_0707Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetAnd our third and final visitors for the month, Grandma Teff & Aunt Sandy. Alia can be a little slow to warm up.DSC_0727 I love having my grandma here. DSC_0738-2DSC_0794DSC_0815DSC_0860Considering Papa’s request for kisses.DSC_0840Family dinners are the best.
DSC_0878DSC_0883-2DSC_0891DSC_0888Finishing up our evening watching Tangled. The first time I saw Frozen I thought I liked Tangled better. But each time I see Frozen I like it more and more. (Ps “The Art of” Frozen/Tangled books are amazing. Got them for my birthday, love them.) I love that Frozen is in Norway. And on that note, Disney Cruise Line announced yesterday they’re doing a cruise in Norway next summer! How amazing would that be?? Could they send me for free? If I blog about it? A girl can dream…DSC_0903

18 month photos

Mar
2014
25

posted by on Photography

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DSC_0288I wanted to do “18 month photos” with Alia and she turned 19 months yesterday, so these were taken Sunday. The day before still counts, right? ;)

We took them in the same field as a few of my maternity photos with her, with her baby quilt as well.

Her sweet little bear is “good good”. Daddy got it for Alia when we were in Virginia & she was sick, for a “feel better” present. “Good good” is what Alia would say when we’d ask her “how are you?” and now it’s the bear’s name too :)
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posted by on Life

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Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetKaden has been asking my dad for months to take him fishing. I’m not sure where he got the idea, maybe a little critter book? Tonight after dinner they finally went, and Kaden was so excited. Processed with VSCOcam with b5 presetThis feels like such a big kid milestone. And he has been looking like a big kid lately. I’m not sure what to really think of all of it. He’s going to be four in May. It’s almost hard to believe that he was just a baby in the not so distant past, but I still think of him as one. I’m thinking maybe I always will. Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetThought these pictures were too cute not to share :) Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetall photos by my brother, Davis ;)

Saint Augustine

Mar
2014
06

posted by on Life

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This is my last catch-up post! We spent a long weekend in St. Augustine in January celebrate our five year anniversary & had such a nice time, I wanted to be sure to put something together on it to remember all the fun we had.DSC_0053 St. Augustine was really a neat little town, I’d definitely like to go back someday. Lots of walking, lots of history, lots of shopping, lots of eating. That’s a good vacation to me :-)

Kaden got this little gator (or dinosaur?) toy in the gift shop our first day there and he went everywhere with us the rest of the trip.
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Our friend Ashley is a student at Flagler, and she met us for lunch & gave us a tour on our first day. DSC_0103 DSC_0100We stayed at the Hilton Historic Bayfront which was really beautiful and right in the middle of everything, so perfect for walking. The balcony off our room overlooked the bay, it was fun to watch the boats out the window. And horses and cars and people and lights. It was a really beautiful, active location (especially for a three year old boy’s appreciation!)Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetDSC_0219 DSC_0262DSC_0267Day 2 started with breakfast in the hotel lobby. The kids were thrilled that there were berries on the buffet. I think they may have eaten their body weight in blueberries, and half of that in cantaloupe. DSC_0356DSC_0342 DSC_0363Then we got ready to explore St. George Street.DSC_0322Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with c1 presetProcessed with VSCOcam with f2 presetAlia and I really loved the Red Pineapple store. She sat in her little sling and looked at all there was to see. They had beautiful clothes, shoes, bags, wall decor, notecards, note books, necklaces, earrings, hair clips, rings, bracelets. It felt so fun to find such a unique shop with so much beautiful stuff. I just loved experiencing it together. We talked about a lot of the pieces and she liked to try on the bracelets and I’d tell her “pretty!” and she’d want me to try it on then too. I settled on getting some earrings and a notebook for myself and some springy flower earrings and hair clips for Faith for her birthday. I could have shopped in there a lot longer and spent ten times what I did. It was so fun.

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We went to the Hyppo, the coolest little popsicle shop. We’d been there the day before and Kaden was so excited to go again he beat me to the counter, stepped right up and said “I’d like strawberry.” The lady working the counter (who had helped us the day before) and a table of ladies eating their popsicles couldn’t help but giggle, it was so cute. Then he remembered he wanted peanut butter today instead. He wanted me to try a bite of his, and asked for a bite of mine. As soon as he finished he walked right back up to the counter, I think hoping for another pop. We told him tomorrow ;)

IMG_7932Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetDSC_0397After naps we all got dressed up to go out for the evening. We had dinner at Collage. It was a beautiful, unique, elegant experience, just perfect for our 5th anniversary. The food was delicious. The room was really lovely. The service was wonderful. The kids did really great too. It was so fun to have them with us. They looked adorable and behaved wonderfully. Had lots of O’s/granola bars, raisins, banana, & fruit pouches for dessert. Kaden had jasmine rice & the mango palate cleanser from the restaurant. It gave him brain freeze. He said “my head hurts!” Landon ordered the lobster ravioli and I had blackened grouper. They were both really fantastic.

DSC_0412 DSC_0424 DSC_0509DSC_0437Our third and final day we took a carriage ride tour of the town, which was fun. I’d been curious to hear more of the history and it was a fun way to do it (next time I think we’ll try the Old Town Trolley. A ticket lets you ride three consecutive days, and takes you to sights like the fountain of youth, the fort, etc.)DSC_0715

It was neat to see the oldest Catholic Church in America, the Presbyterian church Henry Flagler attended after he built it in honor of his daughter who passed away and where he is entombed, and drive down the oldest street in America riding in a horse drawn carriage. Hearing about the fort was cool too, how they built it out of cocina sea shells after the British burnt down the first two Spanish settlements, and the original town gates at the entrance of Saint George Street too.

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 presetAfter the tour we got popsicles, and went to lunch. Once we finished eating lunch I asked Landon if he wanted to go back to the “H-Y-P-P-O” one last time and Kaden said “the hyppo! Yes! Let’s get more popsicles!” And I was like “whaaaat?” But you know, then we had to (which we wanted to anyway.)DSC_0731DSC_0748DSC_0738 DSC_0756 DSC_0773

Kaden told Mimi when we got home that the popsicles were his favorite part of the trip.

I really love traveling with the kids. It feels so special because it’s so obvious that we will never be at this place with these kids at this stage of our lives again. Really every day is special because we will never be there with these kids at this stage again. But for some reason it’s just more obviously apparent on vacation when we’re outside our normal routines & surroundings. Easier to be happier and let things go. More natural to soak up the moment and smile and be happy.

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