Day One: Exploring John Pennekamp State Park

One of my favorite parts of our vacation in the Keys was our time spent in John Pennekamp State Park.  Our rental house was right across Rt. 1 from the entrance to the park, so it was really accessible to us. On the morning of our first full day in Key Largo, we explored a few tourist shops along Rt. 1.  The giant lobster caught our attention first… as giant lobsters are prone to do, I suspect.  We stopped only to take a picture with this big fella, but ended…

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Home Again, Home Again, Jiggity Jig

Have you ever heard that saying?  Home again, home again, jiggity jig?  My parents used to say it all the time when we returned home from vacation or a trip away, and I found myself saying it to my own kids today as we pulled into our driveway from our vacation to the Florida Keys this past week.  It’s always nice to be away, but it is definitely jig-worthy to come home!  We had such a great time.  It was the perfect balance of relaxing and activities, and it is…

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Summer Schedules

A few years ago, I learned that the trick to enjoying my summer was to have a very loose, flexible daily schedule.  When I would wake up and just “see where the day took me,” it often didn’t take me anywhere.  The kids and I would stay in our jammies all day being lazy and driving each other crazy.  Don’t get me wrong.  We still have lazy days like that and they are awesome, but every day can’t be a jammie day.  And so I try to keep a general,…

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Happy 8th Birthday, Bean!

Yesterday Bean Man turned 8 years old.  He was lucky this year and his birthday happened to fall on the first day of summer vacation, which was a coincidence that definitely needed to be celebrated.  So, our family spent the afternoon at Disney and Bean set our entire itinerary. He just finished reading the first book of the “Kingdom Keepers” series, which is an adventure series that takes place in the parks of Disney World.  The first book is set in the Magic Kingdom, so that’s where Bean wanted to…

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Hello, Summer!

Today was the last day of school for our family.  Hallelujah!  I woke up super early just so I could have time to get these pictures taken, which involves scouring all my computer files to locate the little signs that I have used for the past few years.  Can you see the 2015-2016 year on them?  I tried to mark it out with a gray marker this morning because who has time for Photoshop (and also because I don’t know how to use Photoshop… Summer goal:  learn how to use…

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Double Trouble

The older kids get, the harder it is to keep a straight face when they are in trouble.  AmIright???? The other day, we were driving down the road and they were getting on my last nerve.  They had been in one of those playing hysterically moods where their “fun” can quickly become “murder charges” in the blink of an eye.  I had been getting onto them to leave each other alone, to settle down, to keep their hands to themselves…  Blah, blah, blah… Finally, I reached the last straw and…

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Back to Yale

This past weekend, Chris and I took a quick trip back to Yale.  The chair of Chris’s graduate department was retiring after 40 years.  Ben Sammler is a giant in the field of technical theater production.  When Chris was an undergraduate student at the University of Central Florida, he studied text books written by Ben.  It blew his mind when he was accepted to Yale for graduate school and realized he would be taking classes with none other than Ben Sammler himself. (SIDE NOTE:  The Buddha ice sculpture is a…

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Chasing the Cruds Away

Thursday morning, I had a horrible headache, which is really uncommon for me.  By Thursday night, my throat was itching, and by Friday afternoon, I had a fever.  Yuck.  I came home Friday and slept from 7:00 that night (even skipping dinner!) until 8:00 the next morning.  And I STILL woke up feeling like I needed another good 12 hours sleep.  Fevers always make me tired. I spent Saturday morning at Bean’s baseball game, which was nice.  The weather was beautiful and it felt great to be outside in the…

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Easter Recap 2017

We have had a glorious Easter today, friends.  I hope your families were able to spend time together, like ours, soaking up God’s love and Ultimate Sacrifice. Chris and I were ushers at one of our church’s services this morning. I was a little worried because Easter has one of the largest turn outs all year, but it turned out to be a perfect day to serve. I loved welcoming people into one of my favorite places on one of my favorite days. Plus, I was checking out all the…

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Beeeeeeeee Happy

Today was the coolest. Okay, wait.  Let me back up. About a year ago, my mom mentioned to all of us that she would like to start keeping bees.  Now, as random as that sounds, that is not nearly the MOST random thing my mom has gotten in her head before.  She wanted a goat for a while (still does).  She wanted chickens for a while before that (still does).  She wanted a cow (still does).  But, thankfully, there are laws against her having barnyard animals in her neighborhood.  So,…

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