Driving to Walt Disney World!


So remember how I was nuts and said we were driving to WDW from New Mexico? I wanted to drive for a few reasons. #1 airfare for a family of 5 is ridiculous! Seriously, you have to have the finances of a small country to get the privilege of being vigorously frisked by TSA only to be stuffed in an airtight tube with the rest of the passengers like traveling sardines. #2 I feel every kid should experience a good old fashioned road trip, the good, the bad, and the ugly. It allows the kids to actually see parts of the country they couldn’t see from the air, and appreciate the size of the states. Plus, it makes for some fond family memories! (Maybe some of them more fond than others…) So I was dead set on driving which I’m sure gave my Dad a few extra gray hairs, he is a worrier.

After making all of our Disney shirts, packing said shirts, making a plan of travel and loading everyone up in the car we were off on our adventure on May 12th. I had planned 2 days of travel for the 1,700+ miles to Mickey’s House. We wanted to leave at 4am but Brandon needed to make a stop at the bank before hand, so we had to wait for it to open. So we actually left a little after 9am. So after that we were officially on the road!

WDW keene trip1

Boys all ready to go. Joseph has his Kingdom Keeper books, James watching a video and Riley looking outside!

The plan was for Brandon and I to switch driving and I was doing the 1st leg of the trip. The weather in New Mexico was overcast and very windy. I was doing ok driving until we were on I-40 near Edgewood, NM where the canyon winds were in full force. It was scary driving with those winds especially with the semi’s on the road with me that were swerving all over. In fact, we seriously almost got into a major car accident not 30 minutes outside of Albuquerque! A semi swerved into my lane and I instinctively swerved to the shoulder. The little road bump things on the side caused my van to swerve right into the middle of the road. I almost hit that damn semi! Then I was trying to correct and I swerved back into the median. Seriously, the van almost flipped! I was able to control the van to finally straighten out and I parked on the median. Holy BLEEEP!!!! All of us were freaking out. I was shaking and on the verge of tears! Still having PTSD from my accident last August didn’t help! Brandon and I decided that we would switch drivers and he got behind the wheel and we headed back out. Of course when we caught up to the stupid truck I gave him a dirty look. Idiot was on his cell phone while driving.

We made it to Amarillo, Texas where we made a pit stop to potty and fill up the van. I grabbed the sandwiches I packed for lunch while the boys watched Titanic. Riley had learned about it in school and wanted to watch the movie. Of course I missed fast forwarding the part where Jack is drawing Rose so the boys got an anatomy lesson too. Oh well, there are worse things for them to see!

He is very interested in the movie...wonder if it's the drawing scene?

He is very interested in the movie…wonder if it’s the drawing scene?

Then the worst part of the trip. Driving across Texas. Holy Moly does it have to be so dang big? We saw miles and miles of wind farms which kept the boys interested for exactly 30 seconds. Other than that it was flat land and farms. Until we got into Dallas. It was already dark out by the time we got there so it was hard navigating the freeways. The boys enjoyed seeing all of the huge buildings especially lit up at night. Then we made another pit stop at a gas station that we soon realized was in a bad part of town. I made Riley stay in the stall with me turned around while I went to the bathroom, that scary! We hauled butt out of there and continued on. Once we got to Tyler, Tx Brandon was getting tired so I started looking for places to stop. I originally thought about Shreveport but many of the hotels near the freeway didn’t have the greatest reviews, dirty and unsafe. So I made Brandon drive further up to Bossier City where I booked us at Ramada Inn right off the freeway. Poor guy was exhausted and the last 30 minutes of the trip I was singing silly songs to him trying to help him focus and not be sleepy. We pulled in shortly before midnight where we grabbed what we needed and crashed. I was smart enough to pack us a bag of clothes and toiletries we could just pull out instead of dragging out all of our suitcases for the whole trip. I don’t think any of us slept very well. They had 2 double beds so I slept with Riley and Brandon slept with James, and Joseph slept on the floor with his camping mat and sleeping bag. Riley kicked me all night and I woke up several times with his feet in my face.

But the next morning we loaded up, ate from the continental breakfast and we were off again. Brandon and I had sneakily planned to head to Monroe, La. The boys and him are obsessed with Duck Dynasty and we wanted to go to their store. As soon as we pulled up Joseph recognized it immediately and started almost hyperventilating. He was so so excited! Riley was in a grumpy mood for whatever reason and was being such a pill. Probably tired  and tired of being cooped up in the car. But Joseph and James couldn’t wait to get their picture in front of the iconic sign!

How to make 2 boys happy happy happy? Take them to Monroe, Louisiana!

How to make 2 boys happy happy happy? Take them to Monroe, Louisiana!

When we got into the store the boys were in awe. They were like kids in a candy store! Joseph had to look at everything and couldn’t decide what souvenir to get. The big boys decided on bobble heads and Duck Commander dog tags. Riley got a duck call cross necklace. We spent more time in there than planned but we were out of the car for a bit. No, we didn’t see the Duck Commander guys, but the boys didn’t seem to mind!

Then we were off again! Brandon was still driving and I was the navigator. Which worked out better anyway because the love of my life couldn’t read a map to save his life! We were planning on making our way to Mississippi before the next stop. We were making pretty good time and made it to the river in the early afternoon. When Brandon and I pointed out we were crossing the river the boys didn’t believe us! They were used to the Rio Grande River of ours that is more like a stream than a river. Riley insisted it was a lake! We stopped at the Welcome Center for a potty break and to take in the scenery.

Hello Mississippi!

Hello Mississippi!

 

Between the 1st picture and this one Riley was grumpy about something. Oh well, I guess...

Between the 1st picture and this one Riley was grumpy about something. Oh well, I guess…

It was a lovely Welcome Center and I recommend it for any of your road trips. So then we were back on the road heading up to Jackson, Ms. Either it was the Benadryl or Riley stopped fighting his grumpy sleepiness and finally fell asleep! Ah, nice and quiet! The boys watched a gazillion movies on the way. I had planned all of these activities, books, etc and the thing that kept them entertained was the DVD player. Thank you kind sir or madam who came up with this glorious invention!

Finally asleep!

Finally asleep!

We made our way into Mobile, Al where the boys got their 1st tiny glimpse at the ocean! We saw a cruise ship and some other barges nearby and they thought that was pretty cool. After one little wrong turn snaffoo we were back on track and made our way across the bridge heading towards Daphne, Al which is where by best blogging buddy Mandi lives! I had been updating her through text and let her know we’d stop by on the way back. We were so close to Florida now! Riley was beside himself with asking when we were gonna get there! Finally not long after we made it!

We made it to Florida!

We made it to Florida!

So we got here at about 5:30pm. About 30 minutes after the Welcome Center closed, so no freshly squeezed Florida orange juice for us. :( So we just had a little pit stop and headed back out again. About this time my mom called and said she was in Orlando and at Caribbean Beach. I was really wanting to make it there tonight so she wouldn’t be there by herself. By my calculations we’d make it in about midnight. So we were trucking along when about 2 hours later Brandon was exhausted. I tried to drive but I was exhausted too. We decided to be safe and pull into the next town. Which was Chipley, Florida. Remember this town, we will be talking about it later… We decided to stop at Quality Inn for the night. When we 1st got to the room we were happy to see Queen beds! But after Riley being a sleeping ninja the night before no one wanted to sleep with him! So he got his own bed, Brandon and I in one bed, and the big boys on the floor in their sleeping bags.

Sleeping Ninja in the bed by himself!

Sleeping Ninja in the bed by himself!

We had ordered pizza, took showers and hit the hay. We all slept like rocks. The beds were very comfortable! When we woke up the next morning we all felt better. We got breakfast at the continental breakfast, packed up and were on the road again! We knew we were getting closer and closer when we started seeing Disney billboards! And some not so Disney billboards advertising a very adult establishment that “welcomed couples”!

We finally made it home for the next week at Caribbean Beach Resort a little after 3pm! We made it! All in one piece! We didn’t have to tie any kid up on the roof rack! Now we were ready to be immersed in all things Disney! However, in the next post you’ll see a big “Oh No!” moment!

QOTD? Have you ever made a long family road trip? What is your favorite memory?

Checking In!


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Hello! I know, I know, I am a bad blogger! As you can see from the past few months I’ve had a lot going on in real life. Plus, I will be totally honest, these past few months I have not been feeling it as a writer lately. I have it seemed permanent writers block and writing was such a dreaded chore. It was difficult for me to find something awesome to write about when I had the stress of real life going on. As a blogger, you question how much you really want to share about your personal life! You want to share enough that maybe someone else can relate to. But you also want to keep some of your private life private! However, I think I’m ready to dip my toe back into my writing and being with all of you! I cannot promise I will post daily, but at least once a week. It seems when one part of your life settles down, another part picks up! So here’s what’s been going on with our family lately!

Me: Well, as you all know my family went to Walt Disney World in May. We drove all the way from here to sunny Orlando, Florida! It wasn’t as bad as I thought driving 1700+ miles one way! I’ll blog about it later! But we had a fabulous time!

So after we got back from WDW I thought I’d get back to real life. BUT, obviously that didn’t happen! My mother had planned a trip for my grandmother to travel to New Orleans, La to visit a dear family friend for a few days. My mom had a nursing conference to go to there so she saw the opportunity for grandma to go too . So the plan was for my mom and dad to take my grandmother up to see the friend who went to nursing school with grandma. My grandmother has a list of health problems and also is suffering from Alzheimer’s and this will probably be her last trip anywhere. It took a lot of planning because of her health problems, confusion, and she requires oxygen all the time.

About a week before they were supposed to leave my parents dog got really really sick, so my dad didn’t feel comfortable leaving her while she required some heavy duty meds. So my mom asked me if I could come and help take care of grandma. Thankfully I have a pretty awesome boss who understood I was needed by my family. My mom and I flew grandma to New Orleans where the family friend picked us up, took mom and I to our hotel and then took grandma back with her to her house for a few days. That meant we had a few days of a break to explore the awesome city of New Orleans. I was pretty happy to spend my birthday in one of my favorite cities in the world! Then it was time to take grandma back home. It was quite the adventure and I’ll have to give you all more details in another post! (Look at that, already 2 blog posts in the works!)

So as you can see, my grandmother is needing us as a family also to help take care of her. My parents, me, hubby and even the kiddos are rallying around her and my grandfather to help them as best as we can. I go over to their house at least twice a week to help with her meds, give my grandfather a break, and help her with her daily needs (bathing, etc). My grandparents have been there for us and we feel very privileged to be able to give back to them.

The travel agency is also going really well and takes up a lot of time! I currently have 5 agents that keep me on my toes! They are doing great and the agency is growing a bit each day!

Brandon: Well my husband has a lot going on as well! About a month before we left for WDW he was sought after to be a general manager for a restaurant here in town. He has known the family that owns it for years! They needed him to manage the employees and makes some changes to make the restaurant more profitable. It seems like this change was meant to be because there were some things at his old job that were causing him a lot of stress and it just wasn’t working. I have not seen my husband this happy in a long time. He is really enjoying his job and is like a whole new person! Plus the fact that this restaurant has a delicious menu, and he’ll bring us home some yummy treats!

Joseph: Joseph had kind of a rough end to the school year. I think he got a little too confident in school and got a little lazy. So his grades showed it. But luckily Joseph is the kind of kid that all you have to do is call him on it and he takes the initiative to fix it. He also has started soccer again and is doing great on a competitive team! He has the coolest mom ever who let him dye his hair blue for the summer! He is looking like a cool dude! I’ll have to post a picture of it when he has it all done up!

James: Oh my sweet James. As you know he’s had a heck of a year and the teacher saw there was something going on with him. He’s been getting tested for a lot of things and we finally heard back from the school district with a diagnosis from the Psychologist. He’s been officially diagnosed with mild to moderate Autism. I literally just got this news yesterday so we’re still processing it. I already had a strong feeling this is what was going on. But to have it there on paper brings a lot of mixed feelings. I think this definitely deserves a blog post on it’s own. I’m hoping that maybe what we’ve been going through can help one of you.

Riley: Well Riley has been having a great summer so far. He had a rough end to his school year though. He has been having trouble in school with his behavior. So right before we left for WDW I had to have a meeting with his teacher and a team to discuss it. I try really hard to be supportive of the school staff, and I sure as heck know my son isn’t always an angel! But, I’m frustrated with how best to help him. I don’t know if the staff and my husband and I are on the same page with what to do that’s best for him. I’m hoping we can come together and figure out what Riley needs to be a happy kid that makes good choices!

So know you know a little bit of what’s been going on around here! I am planning on continuing our journey through the resorts, talk about our trip to WDW, my trip to New Orleans, and of course our journey with James. What’s been going on with you? Any fun summer plans?

 

Mom’s Survive Summer Giveaway!


Mom's Survive Summer Giveaway!

I cannot believe I haven’t blogged in a month! Sometimes you just need a break and life gets in the way! James has been working so hard at school and actually finished a whole month early! Thank God! One less stress for now! Riley is hanging in there in school and hopefully will make it to the end of the year not in trouble! Why is it the youngest one always gives you gray hair?! Joseph has been keeping me busy as well with all of his activities!

The travel agency is really picking up which is where most of my time is going these days! I have a few more new agents and of course with Disney coming out with Free Dining for the fall, all of us have been on hold with Disney for hours and hours! I swear if I hear It’s A Small World one more time I’m going to go crazy! But it’s great that it’s finally getting going and we’re helping our clients!

Anyway I wanted to let you guys know that I’m pretty much back. I don’t think I’ll be able to post 5 days a week like I had hoped right now, but it won’t be a month in between! But to make up for it I have a giveaway for you all! I have teamed up with 7 awesome bloggers to do a “Mom’s Survive Summer” Giveaway. It’s a $75 Visa Gift Card AND $50 Disney Gift Card! We thought it would be great to do something for all of our readers to help kick off summer being home with your kids! Use it to take them to the movies, ice cream, ear plugs… Anything you need to help save your sanity being home with kids all day everyday!

I will re start my series of the resorts of Walt Disney World soon and get back into the swing of things! Thanks for understanding that sometimes you just need a break! Make sure you sign up for the giveaway and Good Luck!

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10 Things I Heard Over Spring Break!


10 things

I know some of you have already endured Spring Break with your kids. But I’m right in the middle of it with mine! I have bagged up almost 7 huge garbage bags of clothes they’ve outgrown and done enough laundry for at least a small army. (Which is weird because the boys always say they don’t have anything to wear) Being home with all 3 has been hair pulling with the fights, or silently laughing to myself when I hear them talk to each other! So I thought I’d share a few little gems so far!

1. I don’t know if you’ve showered lately but I have so I know my butt doesn’t smell. (Said by one of the twins to their younger brother)

2. This time next year I’ll be a teenager! (Said by one of the twins today. Oh Lord help me!)

3. After eating those hot wings it’s gonna be fun tomorrow! (Also said by one of the twins, yeah think I’ll steer clear from their bathroom tomorrow!)

4. Mom you need to keep this because it makes you beautiful! (Said by Riley as I was going through clothes to giveaway…the clothing item he’s talking about? My Minnie Mouse pajama bottoms. Not sure that’s the look I had in mind for them, but I’ll go with it!)

5. Mom I’m going to the park to play some baseball. (Said by Joseph still sporting the black eye. Too soon buddy!)

6. Huh? So she’s a zombie who eats brains and catches bad guys? Yeah, that makes sense. (Said by James after catching part of iZombie. Interesting show, jury’s still out if we like it or not)

7. Hey Mom, remember when I used to pick my nose and I’d stick my finger so far up there it’d bleed? I was such a dork when I was little! (Said by one of the twins, ah such fond memories!)

8. No my shoes don’t stink they’re still good! *smells said shoes. Oh Man maybe not, Yikes! (Also said by one of the twins, what is with stinky boy feet? Those things are lethal weapons!)

9. Well just text them back and tell them that you have a husband weirdo! (Riley at dinner tonight sitting next to my mom, she was having some random person texting her inappropriate things. Probably spam?)

10. Mom I know what happens to boys when they go through puberty but what happens to girls? Do boys get man boobs? (Asked by Riley, kind of a loaded question!)

Ah yes never a dull moment in the testosterone filled household! They crack me up and life is never boring! So what have you ever overheard your kids say?

April Fool’s, It’s Triplets!


That is what I was hoping the doctor wouldn’t say 12 years ago today! I knew from when I was a little girl I wanted to be a mom. Being an only child I hated not having siblings and vowed I would never have just one. Well, God has a sense of humor and when I went in for my ultrasound and they said there were 2 in there I will be honest I was nervous and scared! Little did I know twins run in my family and we have at least 20 sets that my grandfather has tracked through our family tree! I thought just having one baby was a blessing. Never in a million years did I think I’d be doubly blessed!

The boys birth announcement! They were so little!

The boys birth announcement! They were so little!

Now it’s 12 years later! Where does the time go?! I can’t believe my babies are growing up too darn fast! It still feels like it was yesterday I was 38 weeks pregnant, bigger than a whale and suffering from heartburn every day! Those 38 weeks felt like they would last forever! I can’t tell you how many times I was hospitalized for pre term labor, and thankfully went home each time with the babies still in my belly. Then at 34 weeks the doctor finally said if labor started then they wouldn’t stop it. And wouldn’t you know it, nothing! Mother Nature is hilarious I tell you!

The boys were about 6 months old here. Brandon is holding James, I'm holding Joseph. Ugh they were so stinkin' cute! (BTW wow Brandon and I look like babies ourselves! WOW!)

The boys were about 6 months old here. Brandon is holding James, I’m holding Joseph. Ugh they were so stinkin’ cute! (BTW wow Brandon and I look like babies ourselves!)

My doctor had me come in the morning of April 1st to be induced. After having my water broken, Pitocin, an epidural, and several hours of labor those babies were determined to stay put! The doctor decided to put me out of my misery and go ahead and do a c-section. (now we know that the boys were head to head so they both were in each other’s way) I remember being wheeled into the OR scared to death. They let me have my mom and Brandon in there with me. I remember the nurses telling me I wouldn’t feel any pain. But I wish they would have told me that you can still feel pressure and tugging!

Then at 5:41pm Joseph Allen was born! I remember hearing crying but they didn’t let me see him. He was having trouble breathing and they whisked him away to the NICU. Then at 5:42pm James Austin entered the world! I remember him wailing and crying and the nurse held him up to show me. After Joseph being taken away I was concerned with them looking after James and I remember telling the nurse that I saw him and to make sure he was ok! Then Brandon went to the NICU with the boys and my mom stayed with me while they stapled me up.

Afterwords they took me to recovery. Somehow in transit my epidural came out unexpectedly and I could feel EVERYTHING! It was awful! I was in so much pain and friends and family were coming in and out. I remember I just wanted to be left alone, but I was hurting so much I didn’t have it in me to say anything. I wanted to see my babies but at that point I wanted to not hurt!

Then they wheeled me into my room. I was still hurting, they wouldn’t give me any pain meds and I was too shy say something! Finally we kicked everyone out and I tried to sleep. But I was STILL was hurting and I hadn’t seen my babies yet. I already felt like a guilty mother!

In the morning grandparents came and said they were going to the nursery to see the boys. I was pissed! Dammit I was their mother and I was the only one who hadn’t seen them yet! So I very carefully got in a wheelchair and they wheeled me to the nursery where I finally saw them. They placed Joseph in my arms and it was surreal. I couldn’t believe that they were finally here and they were mine. Poor Joseph had a dent in his head from where he was resting on my hip. James was so quiet and chill and just took in his surroundings. When the medical staff felt they could come be with me in my room they wheeled them in 1 little bassinet. They were so tiny!

A few days later we were discharged home. I remember feeling weird that they were just going to let us take the babies home with us! I think Brandon drove 5 miles under the speed limit the whole way! Then when family left and it was just the 4 of us Brandon and I were terrified! We were responsible for the 2 little humans!

The boys 1st Birthday! Joseph on the left, James on the right. Adorable! Look at those cheeks!

The boys 1st Birthday! Joseph on the left, James on the right. Adorable! Look at those cheeks!

Flash forward to now I still see their same personalities that were there in the beginning. Joseph has always been vocal and not scared to take risks. Joseph is 1 minute older and takes that 1 minute and runs with it acting like the older brother. James just lets him go with it and is still very laid back. James is very quiet and analytical. He’s always been more shy and the thinker. Yet when they get together they are unstoppable! Like the time I thought they were down for a nap when they were about 3. I decided to take a super quick glorious shower! When I came out they had managed to push a chair to the fridge, climb up on it and unlock it, grab the whole gallon of milk and drag it to their room. They tried to pour it into their sippy cups. But they instead poured a whole gallon of milk on their floor!

The boys when they were about 4. Still so sweet and cute!

The boys when they were about 4. Still so sweet and cute!

Being a mom in itself is amazing, exhausting and terrifying. But being a mom to twins is multiplied by more than double! These past 12 years have been full of laughter, lots of tears, and memories I wouldn’t trade for anything! I am so lucky to be your mom Joseph and James! I hope you have a wonderful 12th birthday!

And here they are now! My babies are not babies anymore! :(

And here they are now! My babies are not babies anymore! :(

Back From My Break!


Does time just ever get away from you? You have a plan to do this or that and then life happens and you don’t get it done? That’s what’s been going on around here lately! James has really been needing me during the day with his schoolwork. And as much as I love blogging and connecting with you, my boys needed me. Since he was home from school because I opted him out of PARCC I used that opportunity to really get him where he needs to be with school. So far, it’s paying off. He’s done with 2 of his classes and is on track with his other 2!

Joseph's eye right after catching the baseball with his face!

Joseph’s eye right after catching the baseball with his face!

Joseph has been keeping me busy too! Last week he added probably 50 gray hairs to my head! He and his friend rode their bikes to the park to throw around a baseball. Joseph is a sporty kid and was thinking about trying out for baseball next year. Well, maybe 45 minutes after they left I get the dreaded phone call. “Mom, I got hit in the face with a baseball and there’s blood everywhere!” My heart stopped and I couldn’t get in the car fast enough! I raced to the park where his nose was bleeding and his eye looked like he lost the fight! Luckily he and his friend are both boy scouts so they did some great 1st aid on his eye. Thankfully his nose wasn’t broken, I think the ball just hit the side of his nose and burst a blood vessel and that’s why it bled. I palpated around his face and his eye to check for any orbital or facial fractures. All good! Poor kid was miserable. As I’ve said before, being a mom to boys is not for the faint of heart!

His eye 2 days later!

His eye 2 days later!

Riley, well thankfully he’s finally I think getting the hang of his emotions. There’s a couple of boys at school that when the 3 of them get together it is not a good mix! They are like magnets to each other and can’t stay away. But then they get each other in trouble! For the last month Riley is doing great and I haven’t gotten the phone call from school about him making bad choices. Whew! Being the youngest he hates it when his brothers boss him around. At school he’s a lot smaller than his peers and sometimes he feels that the kids are trying to be in charge of him too. So he really gets upset and acts before he thinks. We have been working on having some things in place so when he feels himself getting upset he can stop and think. It’s a constant learning experience for him and constant reminders. But we’re getting there :)

The travel agency is growing slowly but surely! I have 3 agents as of right now and they’re doing great! But as I said previously they are brand spanking new and have a lot of questions! I want them to be successful and not leave them hanging so it’s taking more time than I thought to get them started. The agency is my new baby right now and I have to nurture it and take care of it at any time of the day! I really want to do it right and not drop the ball so I’m being extra cautious and double checking everything! My goal is to have the agency become an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner. We all know how Disney is very particular with all of their products and I want to have the same expectations with the agency.

Add to all of that I have been hit with a dreaded stomach bug! This thing is evil people! I thought it was a 24 hour thing, that was last week and I’m still dealing with it! James got it too and I think my husband had a mild case. Since the kiddos are home for Spring Break this week we are sanitizing the heck out of the house and doing some major spring cleaning! This has been a bad year for being sick! They’re not to excited to be cleaning during the break but I have a few fun things to do with them too!

Tomorrow is the twins birthday! 12 years ago today I was as big as a house and couldn’t even wear shoes because my feet were so swollen! I’ll be sharing some pictures of them and talking about when they were born tomorrow.

QOTD: Are your kiddos on Spring Break? What plans do you have? Or if you already had Spring Break, did you do anything fun?

Currently


st patty

Happy St. Patrick’s Day everyone! Are you all decked out in green today? Will you be feasting on corn beef and cabbage?

I thought since I haven’t been able to post as much as I usually do, I would do a post on what is currently going on with life these days! The past 2 weeks have been full of kids and travel agent things!

Currently working on: I have been very busy getting everything done with opening up the agency. As well as helping a few of my brand new agents get started! I want to be able to be there for them as soon as they need me, so because of the time change, sometimes they email me at 6am my time, and I get up and help them right away! Then during the day they’ll contact me with questions, and I will make it a priority to help them. So this means a lot of my blog post ideas will get lost in my mind! But I know this is just a short time that they’ll be new so I want to make the best of it! If you’re interested in joining my team, you can go here and apply! :D

Currently worried about: I briefly mentioned to you all that something was going on with one of the boys. James has been having a very difficult year and the teacher and I have been working together to figure out if there’s something going on with him. I’ve been going to SAT meetings at school, taking him to be tested, and in contact with the teacher a lot to hopefully help him. We were thinking maybe he had a learning disability, or something to explain some of these issues. I have always known that there was  something special about James, and I do feel relief that someone else sees it too. Of course you don’t want your kid to have any hurdles he may face, but it has been frustrating and stressful figuring out what is going on with him. Part of me worries they won’t find anything and part of me worries that they will! I just haven’t quite figured it all out yet. We still don’t have any exact answers, right now we’re in the process of elimination phase.

Currently dealing with: Well, after a lot (and I mean a lot!) of research I decided to opt the boys out of PARCC. If your state doesn’t do them, basically it’s this new controversial standardized testing for students in 3rd-11th grade. I went back and forth about writing a blog post about it. But it’s not really my style to talk about something just for the viral factor. And I feel we all should do what’s best for our child, some may agree with the test, and some may not. I will say, since I’ve opted them out I have noticed a change in their behavior. Riley hasn’t had many of the issues he’s had at school, and James seems to feel like a weight has been lifted off of him. However, since opting them out, 2 out of the 3 schools the kids go to have been great. But 1 was not, so I have been having to email back and forth with the district about it. I really don’t like confrontation, so this has taken me out of my comfort zone a little! But you know how us Mamas become like protective Mama Bears when something isn’t being done right by our children. You find your strength and your voice!

Ok now on to some fun stuff!

Currently watched: On Saturday my mom was able to get us all tickets to go see Cinderella! The boys weren’t too thrilled about it, but they went and saw it anyway. I don’t think they loved it as much as my mom and I did! The little girl in me just loved it! Who didn’t dream to be Cinderella as a child? It was a great movie! The costumes, the sets, everything was just perfect! If you have a chance to see it, I highly recommend it!

Currently tried something new: Before going to see Cinderella we decided to go and eat lunch at this little place in town called “Tim’s Place“. It is owned by a man with Down Syndrome. You may have seen an article on him, I know I’ve seen People wrote about him last year. This guy is amazing! He’s participated in the Special Olympics, was Homecoming King in High School, went to college, met the President. Basically, this man is not letting his disability be an obstacle in his life. He is super fun in person, when we went to eat there he was actually sitting down with some customers and eating lunch with them. We then were able to meet him, get one of his famous hugs, and get our pictures taken with him! If you’re ever in the Albuquerque area, go check out his restaurant! The food is great and it’s just a feel good atmosphere!

tims place me

tims place boys

Currently Planning: I have been planning a trip to Walt Disney World for us! After looking at prices of flights for the 5 of us, I decided we should drive instead! It is a 26+ hour drive across 6 states! I’m hoping by the end we’re not ready to tie a kid to the roof rack! But I want the boys to experience a good old fashioned road trip! I remember taking them as a kid and I loved it! I’m planning lots of travel activities, as well as teaching them how to read a map so they can get involved in the planning. I think I’m more excited about it then they are. To them, the time is so far away so I don’t think they’re in the excitement part yet. Although this morning as Riley was getting ready for school he was deciding which rides he and I would ride together. I’m also planning on making some shirts for us to wear while we’re there! Hopefully I won’t have a Pinterest fail and I’ll share them with you!

QOTD: So what is currently going on with you? Anything that’s frustrating? Or anything that you are just so excited about?

 

Guest Post from Amanda Middleton


Good Morning! Are you guys surviving the time change? Ugh, it is amazing how one little hour can make such a big difference! We all are still dragging along and I’m trying to let the boys sleep in just a little bit so they can catch up on some much needed sleep!

I’m working on the next installment of our Walt Disney World Resort Series so in the mean time here is a hilarious guest post from my best blogging buddy Mandi! She is so funny and has such a great outlook on some frustrating things that can happen with twins, or just anyone with young ones! Please enjoy her hilarious retelling of a what could have been a very bad day!

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So as you know, I have twin two-year old boys, Chip and Dale. (I start a lot of my post off with that very same sentence. A LOT!) When I put them down for a nap they are not fully ready to always nap but, guess what, mama is! Some days I will put them down for a nap and two minutes later I hear them jumping on their beds like trampolines, laughing and screaming and having a good ol’ time. I hate to be the mean lady to break up the party every time, but they need to go to sleep, not just for my sanity but, because they are grumpy boys if they don’t get a nap. Not to mention, my light fixtures on the first floor rattle as they are doing their acrobatics in their beds on the second floor.So, on this particular day they did their normal routine of jumping and finally drifted off to sleep long enough for my oldest, Minnie Mouse and I to get some school work done. We were almost done with school when we heard them stirring, it was within a matter of minutes before I heard the jumping. Minnie and I decided it was time to wrap up school when we heard the scream. This was not a normal happy, I’m playing with my bro scream, this was I am hurt scream. I rushed up the stairs thinking, great one of them jumped out of the bed again. (Yes, I said AGAIN.) But to my surprise when I walked into the room there was Dale with his leg stuck through the slats of the bed. I did what any normal mother would do and got the coconut oil. (What? Yes, coconut oil, better than butter right?) I lathered his sweet chunky leg up with coconut oil and went to work. I tried to push it back through and it wouldn’t budge, not to mention he screamed in pain every time I tried to push it back through.
I tried breaking the slats of the bed, no go! Those cribs are made pretty good, they wouldn’t budge. So I did what any wife would do I called my husband and you can only imagine that conversation. This is how it went down:Me: Hey, we have a problem. Dale’s leg is stuck in the slats of the bed. What do I do?
Chris: Get it out!
Me: No really, I’ve tried Chris! I can’t! I put coconut oil on his leg and it won’t budge.
Chris: How did his leg get stuck in the crib?
Me: I don’t know! So what do I do?
Chris: Break the slats!
Me: I can’t, I’ve tried! They won’t budge!
Chris: Yes they will!
Me: No they won’t! Chris, what do I do?
Chris: Try harder, break the slats!
Me: OMG, really dude!You get the gist of that conversation, right?Chris wasn’t anywhere near our house so luckily my dad was about twenty minutes away so, I tried to keep everyone calm. Surprisingly Dale was the calmest of all of us, but he was starting to get tired, he had all of his weight on one foot. So, Minnie kept Chip calm because he was getting nervous. He knew something was wrong with his brother. I propped up Dale the best I could, lifting up on him just a bit.

Finally my dad got there and he tried to pry the slats open. Again, wouldn’t budge! So he went down to our messy garage, (You know the kind you can’t even fit your car into anymore because it’s so messy) and happen to find limb trimmers and cut through the wood slats of the crib! Finally Dale was free! Chip proceeds to tell my dad: Good job, Pop Pop!

Now our crib is duct taped together from the “ouchy” it has, as Chip calls it. Hey at least it is black duct tape right?

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Look real hard for the black duct tape! ;-)
Do you have any crazy parenting stories? Or crazy twin stories? I would love to hear so I feel normal! Please share!
If you’d like to connect with Mandi you can find her at her two blogs, Amanda Middleton and Walt Express

 

Winner of MealEnders Giveaway!


you won

Well, we have a winner for MealEnders! Congratulations Em Mahr! Please email me at enchanteddesertminnie@gmail.com to give me your address so MealEnders can send you your 4 pack of lozenges!

Also, I know that I haven’t had many posts this week, many things going on here in Real Life Land! I’m debating whether or not if I should write about it. When something is going on with your kids, it’s sometimes hard to digest. Once I wrap my head around it and figure out what and how to write, I will. Who knows, maybe one of you is going through the same thing and could use someone who understands. :)

I hope you all have a fabulous weekend! Do you have any exciting plans?

Big Travel Agency News!


Whew, I apologize about being MIA the last few days! I had a weird thing happen to the blog where I couldn’t log on to the admin part, therefore I couldn’t publish posts! But thanks to my host we finally got it taken care of! #bloggerprobs

logo for WOW grey

Well I’m not sure if you all have noticed but I’ve been rather quiet on the travel agency home front. For the past 2 months I’ve been getting everything together to open up my own agency, without a host agency! When you’re with a host agent you use their insurance, their travel industry information, and anything else that allows you to book client travel. I won’t go into the details as to why I didn’t feel it was a good fit for this host agency, and my main goal was to open up my own place anyway. It just happened sooner than later! So I’ve been very busy with reaching out to suppliers, getting my own travel industry info, insurance and everything else that it requires for you to be in business! It has been quite a learning experience!

So we are officially opened as World of Wishes Travel! I am very excited and look forward to what this adventure will bring! We are still free to use, and will book trips as well as book Disney Dining, Disney Cruises, and Port of Call excursions! We are going to work very hard to become an Authorized Disney Vacation Planner and cement our relationship with Disney!

If you would like to join our team as a travel agent we would be happy to have you! So far I have a great group of agents and look forward to adding more great people! You can go here to fill out the form and I’ll get back to you right away! If you have any questions about joining, please, email me at shayna@worldofwishestravel.com! I will be happy to answer any of your questions, especially if you’ve never been an agent before!

I’ve also linked up with Mandi from Walt Express in this new venture and she will be the main Disney blog for WOW. She has a great blog with lots of Disney info and I felt it was a great fit for those traveling to Disney! Yes, I blog about Disney too, but I write more as an opinion for my personal blog and her blog is more information regarding everything Disney related! But…I also am a contributor to her blog too, so sometimes you’ll see some little gems from me :) It’s just one more great way that we show as women and bloggers we are helping each other and supporting each other!

Thank you to everyone who has supported my new business venture! I couldn’t have done it without you! And I look forward to having some of you join the WOW team!