Friday
Nov092012

Disney World {and a few helpful hints}

Needless to say we had the BEST time in Disney World. Thank you to everyone who followed along via twitter, instagram, and facebook. Also sorry to those who may have gotten a bit Disney'ed out by me. Ha. We were there nine days and did all the parks with downtime intermingled. Both the Mr and I came home with some sort of cold that had gotten the best of us, but it was so worth it. The kiddos were super fun and had the time of their lives.

We stayed in Port Orleans Riverside and I could not recommend it enough. The staff were all super kind. The rooms were rather nice. The pools were so much fun even though it was too cold for me to take a dunk. We also took carriage rides and biked around.

We could not leave without at least one pic of the Mr and I so Ellie took on the challenge and I must I love it! May have a budding photographer on our hands.

I really can't believe how old she is starting to look.

Little man KJ officially became a momma's boy. He seriously would not leave my side unless riding a roller coaster with dad. I didn't realize he even missed me since starting school, but this trip proved other wise. Love him more than I can ever express.

Of course what is Disney World without a little dressing up? This was for one of the character dinners in Epcot. Serious highlight for Ellie.

Yes, we managed to get a pic with EVERY princess that mattered for Ellie. She was beaming day and night and KJ could not have cared less.

The trip would not have been as wonderful without this man. The bonding time he got with Ellie and KJ is worth every exhausting moment. He worked hard planning every detail which at first I so thought was nuts, but now really am so thankful for. To be honest having him all to myself for a bit was rather nice too. Sometimes life gets in the way and you don't even realizing what your missing.

A few tips for ENJOYING Disney:

- Plan out every detail... restaurants, downtime, etc, etc. I seriously think that is what kept us from bickering and the children remaining peaceful. It was sad seeing families fight and children being less than stellar to say it nicely.

- Disney does food allergies well. I being Gluten free was not a problem. If you book a restaurant let them know you are gluten free and a chef will walk you through the possibilities and even make you special desserts. Boma in Animal Kingdom was my favorite. Left needing to wear sweatpants good. Quick service meals and breakfasts also have options. Just mention it to someone and they will carefully make you something. Also I was tipped off by  a sweet reader about Babycakes NYC in Downtown Disney. They have cookies, donuts, and cupcakes. I won't ever admit how many times I went and how much I indulged.

- We borrowed a BOB double stroller and it was a life saver!!! It kept the kiddos from getting too exhausted and kept our pace up. Saw so many parents carrying around their much too big children and I can not imagine the havoc on backs it caused. You can rent them there, but they aren't the cheapest and since we were driving we had the room to lug one about.

- If you are on a meal plan like we were bring cash for tips. Makes for some happy wait staff.

- Make sure to pack for not only the predicted weather, but also for a swing. It was expected to be in the high 80's, but with Sandy pushing the cold air down it was in the 50's! Luckily for us I am always cold so I always pack for chilly nights just in case. The Mr thought I was being silly, but after seeing whole families searching for winter wear while we out he thought my over packing wasn't so bad.

- Enjoy it!!! Disney is so much fun and you don't have to do/see everything, its seriously okay. I think the hussel and bussel made some people overwhelmed and lent to the fighting and temper tantrums. So sad really.

- favorites in order with a 7 and 5 year old... Epcot hands down was a winner (went twice). Magic Kingdom which we didn't love 18 months ago on our first trip. Kids hated it then love it now (went three times). Not sure if that had to do with age. Animal Kingdom we really do adore, but only went to it once. I feel once you do it once then you really don't have a need to do it again during the first trip (went once). Then Hollywood came in last (went once). It really was neat. We truly loved it all, but after riding a few of the rides we honestly started to feel sick. Ha. Probably great for older kids or people who love the need for speed.

- Last two days of our trip we stayed at Art of Animation. It's a little cheaper, brand new and loads of fun. My and KJ's favorite part was Radiator Springs. The pool had cabanas made out of orange cones. It was so neat. The downside compared to Port Orleans were the beds were only full's. This is not practical for a 6'6 husband, two children, and myself. No coffee maker which is a MUST for me, and it was way more crowded with the younger folk. That's not necessarily awful, but a bit hectic at times.

- If anyone seriously wants to see our whole iterniary I will be more than happy to email it to you. I mean the Mr. rocked it.

If you really feel inclined you can see a little bit more of our trip here! Just scroll down a tad.

Don't forget about the Minted giveaway going on down below. The winner is announced on Monday!!!

Wednesday
Nov072012

A Giveaway with Minted

It's that time of year again where Christmas cards are on the fore front of my mind. As you know Minted is our go to. They feel custom with all the various options available without the price tag. This year they even have an option of using different edges {one featured in the first image} that has me head over heels. I am still narrowing down our pick for this year, but these are a few that are my radar. Oh, and the last pic is of us from a couple of years ago. The kiddos officially think they are famous. Ha. The giveaway is for $75.00 towards any holiday card of your choice. Yippee!!!!

Now to the rules:

Go to Minted and pick what your favorite holiday card design. Then hop back on over here and let me know your pick in the comments! So easy. Be sure to leave me a way to contact you if your comment doesn't attach to an email already.

I will announce a winner on Monday!

Wednesday
Oct312012

The Home Depot Holiday Challenge Reveal

We are still in Disney and having a blast! I thought I would pop in and let you know that the Holiday Style Challenge I did for Home Depot is up on their blog today. I seriously had so much fun getting to take part. My particular challenge was the mantel and I hope you pop over to see all my hard work. Ha. Go here to see the full post! Hope you like it!

Very soon, possibly tomorrow, I will be hosting my yearly Minted giveaway!!!! Be sure to check back for more details.

Wednesday
Oct242012

and we are off...

We are off to Disney World today! We could not be any more excited. Some days we are visiting parks and others we will be relaxing at the resorts. Who would have ever thought Disney World would become such a vaca destination highlight for me. Ha. The things that having kiddos did to me. To be honest though eating through Disney is a major perk for me. I already have my gluten free menu mapped out thanks to the Mr. I tried to create posts for the coming week although I did not have time before we left. I did try! Our trip will be a no blogging one I am sure, but I will continue to tweet and instagram away! {paulacoldiron is used on both accounts FYI} See you all soon!!!!

- image of Chanel Iman for Vogue Deutsch photographed by Mark Seliger

Tuesday
Oct232012

The Laundry Room {inspiration board + process}

The last project I have for inside the house is to makeover the laundry room. It is the most awkward space. It not only serves as a tiny laundry room, but also the walk through from the house to garage. I really can not express to you how tight it is especially since both doors swing into the already tiny room. One day I hope to change out the door that leads into the house into two smaller double doors that swing outward, but it's just not in the budget as of right now. I may try taking the door down for now and possibly using NICE curtains to cover the doorway if I can accomplish it without it looking too awful. We shall see. Above is the inspiration board for the space. The walls are already painted anew gray by Sherwin Williams and I still like it so it will remain. I will then take the one wire rack in the room, which I can't even reach, down and replace them with three wooden shelves with corbels. I plan to paint them Home Depot's Yolo Paint in Thrive. The shelves will begin just above where the washer and dryer begin. That way I will be able to at least reach one shelf. Ha. I rod will also be mounted so I can hang clothes as I go. The top shelf will house some gorgeous baskets I found at HomeGoods and store my crazy amount of fabrics. The shelves will also hold my bulk buys of Mrs. Meyers. I love the idea that Ana White made out of plywood and laundry baskets. If I can make it fit between the two units, I want to build something similar with three "drawers" to store all the folded laundry as I go. I can then bringthe baskets to the designated room once all the laundry has been completed and unload. Of course I will design it to fit our space better. Without having one of the doors in the way I would then have space to hang a drying rack and large ironing board. I am giddy with the prospect. Of course they will not fit in the laundry room open, but I can bring them into the large hall on laundry day. To top it all off a print from Old Try will make an appearance to cover the unsightly water supply valve thing. I believe this one would make me have a continual good attitude. Anyhoo, that is my process and plan for the laundry room. Hoping to accomplish it ASAP!

Basket | Corbel | Storage Idea | Yolo paint from Home Depot | Mrs. Meyers | Old Try Print | Ikea Drying Rack