Disney World, Life, Vacation

Disney World 2017 Day 1: Hollywood Studios and Epcot!

As I’m looking through photos to share in this post, I have some tears a brewin. Why? It was a really fun vacation and something we both really needed. It’s been a long time since we’ve had a vacation and this much one-on-one quality time. I wanted this to be a great vacation for my husband because he’s been working so hard the last few years. PT school straight into a full time job that he puts a lot of hours and energy into. He needed some time off and we had so many thing to celebrate! Graduations, anniversaries, birthdays… it was about time. I’m so glad we had this week for just the two of us; it really was incredible. Now I’m actually crying… aghh. 

To Hollywood Studios! I used the Undercover Tourist Crowd Calendar to plan out which parks what days and Monday was rope drop at Disney’s Hollywood Studios! Hollywood Studios is majorly under construction at the moment which really makes it a 1/2 day park. It’s almost not worth going to unless you have a park hopper… but with that being said, it does have a few of the best Disney World rides.

We were about a 7 minute drive away from the DHS gates and we arrived a tad before 8:30. We still had our magic bands from our honeymoon but we weren’t sure if they were still going to work since it’s been almost 3 years and we’d heard the batteries die after a couple years. Luckily they were still working which was a pretty exciting discovery. I thought for a second it wasn’t going to work, but the cast member was like, “don’t be sad yet!” because I hadn’t scanned my finger yet. Yay! We were in. 
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Life, Vacation

Daytona Beach, Disney Springs, and a budget hotel review

We’re back from Disney World! Well actually, we’ve been back since Sunday but it was an amazing and much needed vacation and I can’t wait to spam you with our vacay photos! We did 5 full days in the parks last week so I’m going to split them all up into separate posts so I’m going to start off with the beginning of our vacation just to catch us up. 

This post is part of a series I’m doing on Disney World – If you want to check out more posts, click here.

We left for our vacation after Brady finished work on Friday (May 5) and started our long drive down to Florida. Driving saved money on flights and rental cars so it’s what made sense. We had a room booked at the Hampton Inn in North Florence, SC on the way down which ended up being a bit over 7 hours drive because of the traffic we hit going around DC.  Continue Reading

Happiness, Life, Vacation

Our Disney World Honeymoon

After we got engaged in March 2013, we quickly decided on a July wedding the following year because there was a natural break where my husband would be out of PT school for a week. We looked into a lot of places for our honeymoon with some of the top contenders being Hawaii and St. Lucia. The reservation with either vacation was the amount of time it was going to take to travel compared to the amount of time we had total. 8 months after getting engaged we looked at each other and said, “Disney World Honeymoon?” It was the perfect solution since it would come well under budget (ie: lots of spending money), quick travel, no language barrier, and it would be a lot of fun. 

We decided to stay off property and rented a nearby private vacation home with our own pool. This saved a lot of money in comparison to staying in a Disney resort as well as being quiet and private. The company we rented through no longer exists, but Trip Advisor and Air BnB are great places to start your search. Some people feel that we were missing out because we didn’t stay on property, but having this place was magical enough for me!

Vacation Home in Florida near DIsney World

 

We flew from Maryland to MCO around midday on July 21st, 2014 (the day after our wedding) and we picked up our Chevy Spark rental car for the week since we weren’t staying on property. Renting a car gave us the freedom to go out for dinner, visit all the local outlets, grocery shop, etc, and the size of the car was perfect for the two of us! Continue Reading

Healthy eating, Motivation Monday, Weight loss

Motivation Monday #6

Hello! It’s Monday again and time for another roundup of healthy motivations to get you through this week! I was just recalling that it’s been about 2 years since I started posting some blog posts and almost exactly 2 years since I signed up for my first Iron Girl! It’s crazy to see how this journey has taken shape over the last couple of years with all the little bumps in the road. I’m pretty sure I’m going to be doing the race again this year though I haven’t signed up yet. My sister and I are still planning on running the Chicago Half Marathon as our first half at the end of September so that’s the money priority at the moment.

In other news, the Summer Corn Chowder is back at Panera! This is the first thing I ever tried at a Panera after going on a date with my mom to see Mamma Mia back in high school. 

Panera Summer Corn Chowder is Back!

Meal Inspirations

I’m currently working on cleaning out my recipe book and reorganizing it into a more useful resource because at the moment, I’m rarely using it and so many of my printed recipes are just hanging around. I follow a good collection of food blogs and I often find some recipes there that I can use or modify to fit my needs. Pinterest is another tool I use a ton but if I’m looking for something a tad more specific, Google search is a great recipe finder. Here are some of the recipes I’ve curated this week! Continue Reading

Biking, Exercise, Life, Week in Pictures, Weight loss

Crepes at Cafe Mezcla, bike rides, and hammocking

It’s been a beautiful week around here as all the flowering trees are fully in bloom and the landscape is greening up. Last week was Brady’s birthday and we were able to do a lot of outdoor adventuring to celebrate. I had been planning a weekend backpacking trip to Shenandoah National Park for the weekend but we didn’t end up going because the weather forecasts were looking potentially stormy and I was also dealing with a strained muscle in the hip flexor area. Sad. We’re still hoping to go this summer and we may try doing a shorter and close to home backpacking trip this weekend.

Since Brady worked late on his actual birthday, we went out on Wednesday evening to Brookeside Gardens to see the tulips before meeting up with his family at Cheesecake Factory for dinner.

Brookeside Gardens tulips in spring Continue Reading

Healthy eating, Motivation Monday, Weight loss

Motivation Monday #5

Happy Boston Marathon Monday! Hope you all had a lovely weekend and a great Easter with your family yesterday.

I spent some time being frustrated because it seems as though the Boston Marathon organizers have sold out and the only way to view the marathon is by logging into NBC Sports with a cable package account. Thanks for making the decision to choose money over everything else that this race is supposed to stand for. 

I’m not bitter.

Anywho. This last week I’ve been dealing with a few aches and pains that have prohibited me from running and even held back my step count for a couple days. I broke a 14-day streak of 10K+ steps per day. I strained a muscle in my hip flexor and though I’m not 100% positive, I’m pretty sure it happened while I was doing yoga. Serves me right for trying to stretch out my stiff body. I’m hoping that I’ll be able to start running again in the next few days as the pain keeps subsiding. 

If you’re currently dealing with an injury and something else that’s keeping you from running, here are a few ideas to keep you fit and going. Do what you can but don’t hurt yourself even more!

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