August 16, 2017 | These two are constantly being dragged in front of the camera for light-testing…
August 13, 2017 | While D was on a guys’ lake weekend, I saw there was a cool Butterfly Festival happening at a garden/park about an hour away. Once again we grabbed Nana, and made our trek out to the event! First stop when you walked in was a wing-making station…and those wings are still in use today. We probably could have walked out the door after that and she wouldn’t have cared! We went through a set of double-doors to the free-flying butterfly area, and it was amazing. They were huge, and would land right on you! E was convinced that her wings were fooling the other attendees into thinking SHE was a butterfly… 🙂 Eventually we got lost in the garden…and it was like a survival trek to find our car again. E had to potty, as did I, and we were so hungry/thirsty after all of the journeying! There was a woman dressed head-to-toe as a butterfly, and E called her the Butterfly Princess. Her blue wings really made a big impression on E, and she loved her! We will be sure to return next year… 🙂
August 6, 2017 | When there’s a craft fair downtown, E, Mom and I have to go check it out. The Strawberry Swing has all sorts of fun handmade things, and E was thrilled to pick out a necklace and a couple of bracelets from Hazel & Ollie. Emily is the best! There was a food truck with the most amazing soup/bread (that took forever) but E got to wander around the Nelson a bit to find a picnic spot. Since we parked in the same lot of Kauffman Gardens for the shuttle, we thought a quick walk through the flowers was in order too. E liked the flowers, but the resident CAT was her favorite. 🙂
That night we hosted the C family for a cookout…Jenni and I talked so much that I only took one photos of the kids out back!
July 30, 2017 | I don’t remember how we decided, but this was the Summer we took E on her first flight/vacation! FL was the destination of choice, and thanks to a recco from a friend/client we chose Tradewinds as a family-friendly resort. Lots of on-property activities, and kid-focused fun seemed like the simplest way to go. This is going to be really long…and I’m not sure I remember all of the details over the course of several days, but I will try!
Day 1 she woke up and took the final chain off the countdown which was a SUN. We were armed with a TON of new books/toys/activities for the plane ride. I mean, a 3-yr-old on an airplane? I wanted to be prepared! Perhaps it was TOO much…but E loved having out suitcases all packed, and carrying her very first purse. Adorable! The airport was a breeze, and with E riding on our new luggage it was a snap getting from the gate to our rental car. She promptly fell asleep on the way to the hotel…so much excitement! But then she saw the beach for the first time, and loved the sand/waves. We brought out the new beach toys and she was so happy to just dig and play. It was cloudy and overcast (which was an omen of the whole trip), but she didn’t seem to notice.
Day 2 we woke up to more rain, so we tried the KONK club for a little crafting activity. It was fairly packed with a lot of kiddos that had to spend the whole day there (which is odd to me), but E painted a sea shell nightlight. It was pretty cute, and made it home in one piece. Despite the clouds, we still walked to the beach and played a bit in the sand. In a random turn of events we discovered that Aunt Susan and Cousin Kaylee were staying just 30-mins down the beach from us! They were at a condo, so the beach had a totally different feel than our resort (that was pretty nice). We were out in the water a bit, building sand castles, and later made a quick visit to William Dean chocolates! I had a photo-shoot (also random timing with long-time clients) so they all hung out and waited to have dinner with me VERY late. I think we got E to bed around 11 PM? Oops!
Day 3 was our one day of sunshine — and it was awesome to wake up to! We dressed right into swimsuits and made our way to the reserved cabana. Also it was finally time to have some cliche blended drinks (that were insane $$) including a virgin-strawberry daiquiri for E — which she loved. We split the time between the beach, and the pool, and all of us got a little bit of sun! That night it was photo-shoot time that I had pre-paid for. It was an interesting experience for sure, but we ended up with a few images that I really liked! E acted a little weird during the shoot, and wasn’t very hungry during dinner — despite eating really late AGAIN. Plus we promised her ice cream if she was good during photos, which she was. The next morning would explain that!
Day 4 E woke up feeling awful — so a quick run to the drug store for a thermometer and cold medicine showed that she had a fever. Which isn’t really ideal when it comes to vacation. We watched way too many shows on the iPad and lounged around the room for hours. Everytime we attempted to leave the room, the skies would open-up and we’d be running back the room. I know she would’ve loved to just watch shows all day, but it was the final hours of BEACH! D let me journey out to take some photos with my camera — which was left in the room all the time due to the rain — and hit one souvenir shop. We even drug her to a pirate show that evening which was…crazy. But hilarious. She was a total trooper!
The final day when it was time to go, the skies were sunny and the weather was perfect. Of COURSE! E was feeling better, and excited to get on a plane again. But with a little time to kill, why not stop at the chocolate shop again? Mom and Dad needed a little treat for watching Mosby…& we wanted some amazing chocolate too. E had a whole new set of fun things to occupy the flight home, and did amazing on the flight. When we got to our car and starting driving home, that’s when her sickness/tiredness hit her. She was so tired, and couldn’t get to sleep in her car seat, so a lot of tears ensued. Poor kid! Overall it was still a great trip, despite all of the madness, and she still talks about returning to FL someday… 🙂
And here are the few images from the SLR!
July 24, 2017 | Sometimes E is a bit of a homebody, which I don’t mind too much, but I also like for her to see different things! Especially downtown, and this Monday it was time to ride the street car. It was free, and the original plan was to ride to the Rivermarket. But she heard the announcer say we were passing the Library, so I had no chance of getting her past that. Turns out the downtown library is incredible! Not only is the building gorgeous, but they had all sorts of activities and cool books. Since we were right by Crown Center, why not stop in for the free Thomas the Train exhibit?! I had originally told her that we were going to eat at the Train restaurant (Fritz’s) but on the way in the line was a mile long. After Thomas, we returned and the line was even LONGER, so I had a heart-to-heart with her about choosing another spot with no line. I was completely impressed with how she handled it. She admitted that it was sad, but we got to eat our food right away! I really love our days together, and when we got home D took her out back where she loves to play with lizards in the pond. She could be out there for hours!
July 18, 2017 | D and I like to plan these little “Days of Fun” and decided it was overdue. And who doesn’t want to start their day at a craft store picking up some more yarn?! D is such a good sport… 🙂 I needed some more fluffy yarn for crochet water balloons.
We hadn’t been to the new Boulevard Visitors Center, so that was basically our only plan! We arrived pretty early, and snagged the last two spots on the tour. Even though we know so much about Boulevard, it’s so great to just hang out and enjoy the beer! I also have a favorite image of D taken ever… 🙂
As if the day wasn’t fun enough, Jennifer was back in town to see Sarah before she returned to Kenya, so we had a quick ladies-dinner at Unforked. I’m so glad I got to see her so many times on her trip back home!