I Saw You Today

I saw you today, standing up there with her as she tried to hold back every tear. You stood by her rubbing her back saying “Baby you got this” when she stood there talking about you. I saw you today, laughing at every single one of us crying because you’re gone and none of us were ready, telling us to “suck it up wimps, I’m fine” and just danced around the room. I saw you today, standing there besides your brother with a beer in your hand looking at the pictures they set up of you telling him each story of the ones he was pointing out and he laughed like he heard every one.

I saw you today, standing proud as they folded your flag, as they saluted your flag.

I saw you today, you walked right up to me and looked me in the eyes and told me to Love more, be more, and do more, hold my babies tighter and kiss my husband slower. You told me that you are here for me when ever I needed you, and that you’ll always listen and to never take a day of my life for granted. You just gave me a hug and walked away.

None of us were ready for you to leave, all of us wishing for more time, But we are happy you are better now walking, dancing, and jumping around drinking a few beers. You touched so many peoples hearts and lives, You are such a great person, husband, father and friend and you will be so incredibly missed.

I saw you today and I hope to see you again someday.

Staying in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee

For our Honeymoon My husband an I wanted to do something fun and different, we were thinking about going to Disney for a whole week, then we thought about going to Universal for four days, but one day James came home and told me about going to Tennessee. He said one of his co-workers had gone there and that it was beautiful and they loved it. We looked into it and ultimately we decided this was the place to go, I noticed while looking on Pinterest of things to do, there wasn’t really anything on Pigeon Forge and more about Gatlinburg, so I thought I’d write a few our favorite things we did and where we stayed just in case someone needed some ideas like we did!

So here are some of our favorite things we did and where we stayed here in Pidgeon Forge, Tennessee!

Places to Stay

Obviously, this is a tourist area so there are many hotels to stay in down the main road to everything and all within 5 minutes of pretty much anything you want to do, But we stayed at one of the cabins from Cabins for You and it was by far such a better experience I believe then if we would have stayed in a hotel, We were in the cabin Hooked on Love and it was so adorable! One bedroom with an upstairs game room, it could sleep up to four with the couch in the large living room, a fireplace, and an outdoor hot tub overlooking to a beautiful view of the mountains. James and I would come back from going to a few museums and hop in the hot tub and eat dinner and just relax and watch the sun go down, It was perfect!

Places to eat

My first tip to you is when you go to Pigeon Forge and are staying in the cabins, go to the grocery store and buy food, like cereal, some snacks, and some quick dinner meals you can throw in the microwave or oven. It will save you a lot of time and money so that you don’t have to eat out for every meal and can spend more time doing other things like hikes or museums. When we did go out and eat, we avoided fast food and chain restaurants we know that we have back in Florida so we were getting something new when we went out to eat!

The first restaurant we went to was Paula Deen’s Family Kitchen, and oh my gosh talk about some comfort food! It was so delicious, it’s family style eating so that means that you pay one price per person and you all basically share but it’s endless food and you can keep refilling your dishes So it’s definitely worth it. Our main dishes were The Best Ever Southern Fried Chicken, and the Chicken Fried Pork Chop. With the sides of Creamed Potatoes, Creamed Corn, Baked Mac and Cheese, and White rice. The Creamed Potatoes were my favorite along with the Baked Mac and Cheese. There is also a beautiful view from inside the restaurant looking out into the mountains.

The other place we went to was Fuddruckers, it was okay. Just an average burger place and is a chain restaurant but we had never been there so we wanted to try it.

Things We Didn’t Do

There was a lot we actually didn’t get to do because we ran out of time or it just didn’t seem that appealing to us, so here is a quick list of fun things to do if you got the time!

Things We Did

We had so much fun, we mostly went to Museums and they were all a blast. Our First stop was “The Island in Pigeon Forge”. It was 10 Minutes from our cabin and had a lot of things to do while you are there, LIke Eat at “Pauls Deen’s Kitchen”, and try some delicious moonshine at Ole Smoky Moonshine, where you can try 15 different kinds of moonshine for $5 a person. I personally do not like the taste of Moonshine, but James tried all of them and liked pretty much every single one.

We went on the Wheel that was on the island and had one of the most amazing views of Pigeon Forge. It was pretty expensive  ( about $15 per person ) for a ride on a Ferris Wheel but the view was worth it especially during a sunset, and we were on for a good 20-25 minutes.

Our Frist Museums we went to was Alcatraz East Crime Museum,  Where you go through to read and learn about the different criminals who went to Alcatraz and what they did, back to Bonnie and Clyde, and Ted Bundy,. Honestly, this was one of James favorite Museums being in Law Enforcement this type of stuff has always interested him. There was also an awesome tribute to fallen officers and the fallen Heros and Victims of 9/11 which was both beautifully done.

The Hollywood Wax Museum was up next and it was a lot of fun. As you can tell James had a blast with all the celebrities they had on show, and this is only a few pictures of what happened. We even got the ” VIP Tour” and went all the way to the top by the gorilla and got another beautiful view of Pigeon Forge.

 

Because we got the VIP Tour at Hollywood Wax Museum, Castle of Chaos passes came with it and I have to say I hated it. I will never bring my kids there, and if you don’t like Haunted houses, or Zombies I wouldn’t even waste the money or time. The only “childlike” thing was the Maze of Mirrors and that was it. Again I didn’t like it because I do not like Horror that much and I have horrible anxiety when it comes to stuff like that.

Our Last Day and our last Museum was the Titanic Museum there was no picture taking beside one room in the building but I do have to say it is amazing. The things they have found and the stories you hear about are just breathtaking. When you walk in you are handed a card with a passengers name on it, it tells the class you were in and a little bit about your self. You find our your fate near the end of the museum and also a beautiful memorial wall.

Our Tips to a great time!

  • Go in an off month, where school is still in session and there are no breaks. We went in April and I feel like we had Pigeon Forge to ourselves.
  • Wake up early and go first things when the Museums open.
  • Get a Cabin definitely worth it.
  • Don’t go to Chain Businesses you can go to when you are home! Explore and eat at different Resturants.
  • Definitely, use the coupon books your hotel or cabin employees give you. it could save you a few bucks here and there.

Pigeon Forge was the best honeymoon for us, we loved every second we were there and can’t wait to go back with our kids and explore some more places with them! I hope this has helped you in any way! If you feel we missed something you did in Pigeon Forge write it in the comments and let us know how your trip went!

5 things I learned in the first week of homeschooling

We recently pulled Bentley out of public school, for many reasons including that the communication with parents was unsettling and lacked tremendously. Bentley has had some problems with school recently with the new changes of starting kindergarten, going from a smaller class size to a much larger and overpopulated class size, from staying in his one classroom all day to now going to multiple places throughout the school. It just wasn’t working for him and he started acting out and getting in trouble during class. So we looked into home education for him, and it honestly is the best decision.

Here are 5 things I learned in the first week of homeschooling.

Have a set schedule 

Now obviously this varies from different families, but with Bentley, I have learned that he definitely needs structure and a routine to keep him motivated during the day.

Plan everything the weekend before.

I had been planning our lessons and getting them out the night before, but I have noticed it just is too much after a long day and that I probably should have gotten them done before the week started,

Go outside more.

Now we live in Florida and this week it rained almost every day all day, so it kept us locked up in our house the whole time, which made me realize the with homeschooling we definitely need to go outside a lot more so the kids can run around and explore.

Expect the unexpected.

Obviously I knew things wouldnt go 100% as planned, thats a given but I definitely was not expecting to have to go to the hospital. In the middle of our Space Science lesson Leo fell and split his tonuge open, we had to rush him to the hospital and he ended up needing surgery. We never finished the lesson that day, and just ended up pushing it to the next day.

The library is your best friend

So when I do something I go all out, I want all of the things, tools, and books. Well let’s be honest that’s just not happening. I started figuring out that spending all this money on books we might read once is just a waist. So I took Bentley to the library and he got his own card and went to the children’s section and got quite a few books and we definitely are going to get more next trip!

The first week was a chaotic surprise, but I still stand with our decision with home education. Obviously I knew all these things prior to starting but it didn’t sink in until now! If you’re starting your home education journey congratulations to you and I wish you luck! If you are thinking about starting, I honestly encourage you to look in to it a lot, it’s definitely worth it!

Mickey Pumpkin Pie Pops

Food always tastes better if it’s shaped like Mickey, because you feel like you are there celebrating whatever it is with Mickey Mouse himself! I’ve been on a pumpkin everything kick and I’m not hating it. So the other night I decided to make us some Pumpkin Pie Mickey shaped pops. It was a huge hit with the boys! I’m actually thinking about making some for an upcoming PTO meeting if they will let me! I mean whats a better way to make a bunch of grumpy women who are exhausted smile? These treats turned out to be so delicious and extremely easy to make, I would imagine if you would find them at Disney they would definitely look and taste like these! Enjoy!
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Mickeys Pumpkin Pie Pop!

What you will need
Instructions
  1. Defrost the frozen pie crusts on the counter for about an hour.
  2. Roll flat with a rolling pin. Use a Mickey Mouse head cookie cutter to cut out the shapes.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350F.
  4. Combine the pumpkin puree, brown sugar, maple syrup and pumpkin pie spice in a small bowl and mix well.
  5. On a parchment lined baking sheet or a silicone baking mat, set out half of the Mickey shapes.
  6. Brush the beaten egg over top of each of the entire Mickey shapes.
  7. Carefully press the lollipop stick into the pie dough, making sure it’s indented slightly into the dough. There should be at least 1 inch of lollipop stick pressed into the dough.
  8. Add a small spoonful of pumpkin mixture to the center of the Mickey, over the lollipop stick, being sure to leave at least half an inch of space around the outer edges of the pumpkin shape to seal it closed.
  9. Line up the other half of the Mickey shapes on top of the bottom pumpkin shape and the pumpkin mixture. Press the edges closed slightly with your fingers.
  10. Using a fork, press around the edges of the pumpkin shape to seal it completely.
  11. Brush the top of the pumpkins with the beaten egg.
  12. Bake at 350F for 20 to 25 minutes until golden brown.

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Fall Bucket List

Fall is a wonderful time full of Pumpkin Spice everything, and cute fall colored cardigans. The normal fall things we do is lay around the house and watch Hocus Pocus, while of course, that is still something we will be doing this year I want to spice it up a little and do more Fall activities! Florida is probably one of the worst states when it comes to Fall because it never really happens here. So doing some of what we put on the list will hopefully make it feel a little more like Fall to us! Hope it does for you too! Enjoy.

DIY Elegant Disney Tangled Wedding

To get married at Disney is a dream come true, and I had been playing my wedding since I was 16. I’ve always wanted to get married in front of the Cinderella’s Castle at Walt Disney World. But unless you have over 180k that is just not happening. We got married at the beautiful Iola Lakeside Events venue who went above and beyond to help our day be perfect! Our Theme was the Disney movie Tangled, one of my favorite movies. I want to share with you guys today how we made our wedding Elegant like a wedding at Walt Disney World but easier on your pockets!

Our colors were

  • Light Purple
  • Gold
  • Light Yellow

Groom and Groomsmen

We decided to put the groomsmen in a light purple dress shirt, with dark grey dress pants, and a light yellow tie.  James was in a full dark grey suit with the light purple shirt and the yellow tie as well. We got the suits from Jcpennys and all the ties is from Amazon for only $1.50 each, Awesome deal!

Bridesmaids 

The dresses for my lovely bridesmaid was bought from Davids Bridal, and I let the girls just get white heels. They all looked beautiful!

Flower Girl and Ring Bearer

Alice my beautiful flower girl we put in a Rapunzel dress and shoes from Jcpennys in the Disney section.

And our Ring Bearers were our sons and we put them in two matching cute suits that matched the guys too and we bought those at Jcpennys as well. Which was actually really hard to find even though we bought them right before the wedding right around Easter.

Bride

I went with a Rose gold colored ball gown. My beautiful maid of honor and parents bought it for me at David’s Bridal after they saw how much I was in love with it! It went perfectly with the colors and theme. I definitely felt like a princess in this dress!

Now to the more Disney Tangled theme.

Tables

My mother made all of the flowers for each table from flowers at the Dollar Tree. She took the Square foams pieces and stuck the flowers in according to what she thought looked good! You definitely can turn Dollar tree flowers into beautiful centerpieces!

The taller lantern candles were the Long-Stem Glass Tealight Candleholders from the dollar tree and I printed and hot glued the flag from the movie to the outside of the candleholder, and placed a little tea light in the middle!

Drink a lot of wine, or know a few people who do? Ask them for their empty wine bottles. We used wine bottles and spray painted them light purple and went and found some tree branches that had already fallen to the ground and spray painted them gold and put them in the wine bottles to give it that “woodsy” feeling!

The table runners my mom found at a thrift store, but they really just are some fabric that you can find at Joann’s! Pulled the whole table together!

Guestbook

For our guest book we used an old window and etched the Tangled castle with lanterns flying in the sky, and our guests signed around it with gold paint markers. Making it a beautiful addition to our home and a great way to remember who was all there to celebrate our big day!

Cake or Donuts?

Cake and Donuts are what we did, the cake was for us but we had my grandfather make Donut stands made from an inch thick piece of wood and wooden dowels and we stacked Publix Donuts which everyone actually preferred to eat! I mean who doesn’t like a delicious Donut?

Cake stands were made from a candlestick holder and a clear glass plate found at the dollar tree glued to each other. Super easy and inexpensive way to have cakes stands!

Bride and Groom table

This was probably one of my favorite tables of the night, my parent’s handmade the Tower from the movie as one of the key focus points of our table! It was beautiful, and I’m definitely going to have my mom tell me how they made it and write another post for you guys so hopefully, you can make your own! The Mr & Mrs was from Amazon for only $16 dollars! Find it here. 

I honestly could go for hours and talk about our wedding, but ultimately we made a DIY wedding look like it was planned by the professionals! I definitely couldn’t have done it without my wonder Bridal party and my parents most of all! I hope you loved it as much as I do! Have any questions or want to know more about how something was done? Leave a comment below!

Life update

It’s been a while since I’ve posted on this specific page, I had a site through Siteground but just ended up switching back to this one. So that means you guys have missed a lot!

  • Leo’s first birthday

  • Our wedding
  • Bentley’s first day of Kindergarten
  • Some house updates
  • Possible homeschooling Bentley.
  • Tennessee Honeymoon
  • Growing by four feet

There’s just a lot that you have missed. Throughout the next few weeks, I’ll be posting what’s been going on and bringing our page up to speed!

Honestly, thank you to those who have stayed with us throughout this journey! We love and appreciate you all!

Toy Story Land Opening Summer 2018

Yes you read the title correct! Its finally here, well almost. Hollywood studios is building a brand new section called Toy Story Land! My first question is, Why did it take so long for us to finally get it!

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Bob Chapek announced that this Land will be opening in summer of 2018.  It’s going to feature two new attractions! One of them being Slinky Dog Dash, This fun family coaster will take you through dips, turns, and some awesome drops! Sure to be a huge hit for the family! Bentley loves Toy Story its one of his favorite movies, so this will easily be a favorite ride!

Another attraction coming to Toy Story land is Alien Swirling Saucers, where the aliens try to swoop down and snatch ya with “The Claw” Um hello , how freaking awesome! There is so much to come in this Toy Story land and I know that its gonna be a hit with our family! How about yours? Are you excited for the upcoming additions to the parks?

Let us know in the comments about what you think about it!

Future of Epcot Rides

Over this past weekend was the D23 Expo which was at Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, California. The D23 Expo is basically a Disney geeks dream from upcoming Disney store products coming out to new information about Disney parks updates!

Bob Chapek, Chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts released some exciting news for Epcot over the weekend. The first thing he talked about was a new ride that is inspired from Disney’s popular movie Ratatouille! Race through Gusteaus five star restaurant to try to get to safety, all at the size of Remy from the movie! How awesome does that sound! This attraction is going to be past the Eiffel Tower in the France Pavilion of the World Showcase! We’ve got some Concept art from Disney, and from the looks of it , its going to be amazing!

rat2340987FIPhoto from Disney Parks Blog

Another awesome announcement is of another attraction in Future World in Epcot, it is the new Guardians of the Galaxy attraction, it’s inspired by the space world of Guardians of the Galaxy! The ride is suppose to go with the concept for future world of space travel! How freaking awesome is that? Becoming a huge GOTG fan the whole family is sure to love this ride! This new attraction will take the place of Universe of Energy that’s closing this year on August 13th. Sad to see it go, but so excited for this new ride and adventure coming to us here at Walt Disney World.

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Photo by: Disney Parks Blog

All of this is said to be done by or before Walt Disney World’s 50th anniversary in 2021! This is just a small snip bit of what is to come to the parks! Stay tuned for more information of whats coming to Florida! What do you think? Leave a comment below and let us know!