24 Apr 2015

Tampa Mama Top Picks: Screen on the Green and Friday Extra Concert Series

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There are some pretty awesome family friendly events coming to parks in the City of Tampa. Mark your calendar, bring the kids, and pack a picnic! Here is what you need to know:

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20 Apr 2015

Abby

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Naptime with Theo and Beau

16 Apr 2015

A Vision of Hope: The CARES Foundation Gala

No Comments Adventures, CAH, Personal, Raising Children

I’m actually living my dream. Right now. I’m in a state of euphoria that seems somewhat surreal because all my wishes came true and are happening before my eyes. The ones I prayed and prayed and prayed for that I wished so hard on every star and promised God the world if he would make them come true.

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I get to see my son play baseball. I get to watch my daughters in a recital. My children excel in school. They are kind. They are happy. They aren’t sick. I get to put my children to bed each night in their own bed. They are healthy happy and living a normal life. THIS is the life I dreamed of that I wasn’t sure would be a reality.
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11 Apr 2015

Mama Loves: To Look Good- Blo Blow Dry Bar Tampa

No Comments Lifestyle, Personal, Review, Tampa, Tampa Bay

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Am I right?! I know. It’s hard. Trust me taking a shower, wrangling kids while attempting to curl your hair, cook dinner and apply make-up is always fun ( I know) but come on… WHEN, was the last time you looked REALLY good? I mean the last time you took an uninterrupted shower, dried your hair and spruced up to do something fabulous?! I know my navy blue yoga pants are my tried and true, but I’m beginning to think people might think that’s all I own. Going to the grocery store, running errands, chasing a toddler might not be the most glamorous job (and she doesn’t mind my yoga pants) but I will say, I do feel better about my whole day if I’m put together, ready to conquer the day.

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06 Apr 2015

Easter With My People

No Comments Adventures, Lifestyle, Monday Motto, Raising Children, Uncategorized

Monday Motto: Keep it real.

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A simple day. Just us. No fuss. Just family time. We cooked together. We laughed. One of the best holidays.

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04 Apr 2015

Push Away The Screen: NCAA Women’s Final Four in Tampa Bay Florida

No Comments Adventures, Florida, Kids, Tampa, Tampa Bay

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Did you head down to Amalie Arena to experience the NCAA Women’s Final Four while it was here? Are you planning on going?

Do it. Make it down there. Push away that screen and get your kids out for a day they won’t forget. Thanks to the Sports Commission of Tampa Bay for all the work they have put into making Tampa the host city for the 2015 NCAA Women’s Final Four.

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27 Mar 2015

Feeling Good About Diapers

No Comments Ad, Kids, Parenting, Review, Sponsored

We are almost there. Almost done. So close yet so far.

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This is my monkey. She lives in the trees (or at least I would gather that she would rather most days). She’d rather be naked most days and we are on the verge of potty training, but we just aren’t quite there yet. So here we stand. On the final diaper frontier. I can say that over the past 3 children that I have raised I have gotten to be much more knowledgeable about the diapers that my kids wear, what goes into their body, what goes on their body and so on. There are more certifications and labels that I see now on products that state organic, eco-friendly and so on. But I am much more aware of what these mean and what works best for my family too.

I fell in LOVE with the diapers that Abby is wearing now, the Bambo Baby Diapers. I can honestly say that they are the best diapers I have used and my only regret is that I didn’t find them sooner.

Abby has super sensitive skin and these have been the only diapers that she hasn’t had an allergic reaction to because they actually let her skin breathe. They contain no dangerous chemicals and or allergens, and if you have a child with sensitive skin, you will be very aware of anything that touches their precious skin.

According to Web MD, 95% of parents use disposable diapers, but do you really know what they are made of? And of course, the cloth diaper debate is also one to look into as well (my good friend Calley, The Eco Chic, LOVES her some cloth diapers and is considered an expert so you can ask her here).

But for us, we went with an eco-friednly, dermatologically tested Bambo Nature line that made me feel good about purchasing diapers for the time that we have left in them.

Thank you to Bambo Nature for sponsoring this post!

Bambo Nature

For more information and to purchase the Bambo Nature Baby Diapers click here or read below about the product:
For over three decades, Bambo Nature has taken every measure to bring you a premium baby diaper that’s gentle, soft, and made of 100% sustainable materials. Bambo Nature has earned more credentials, awards, and eco-labels than any other diaper on the market. While other brands are busy making claims, we’re busy substantiating our diaper’s premium quality with concrete proof.

Our Premium Promise:
· Guaranteed Skin-Friendly – No Dangerous Chemicals and or Allergens
· Guaranteed Eco-Friendly – Sustainable Resources and Less Waste
· Guaranteed Sleep-Friendly – Maximum Absorbency, Ultra-Soft, Ultra-Flexible

16 Mar 2015

Soulmate Sisters

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I have been hotel hopping since I was about 8 years old. When I was young, we visited a number of pretty snazzy hotels and resorts all over the Milwaukee and lower Wisconsin area. Mostly with my Papi while he worked. My sister and I would play in the pools, meet other kids on vacation, marvel at the opulence that was in every corner and on every wall of the hotel. We became professional hotel explorers.

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It was fun to be rich, even if just for the weekend.

I had a déjà vu moment this past weekend as oldest girls, about the same age apart as my sister and I, frolicked during a night swim on my last vacation. It brought me back to swimming at the pools of my youth when my Papi would bring us, while he worked, to hotels for the weekend. I hadn’t remembered the similarities until just that moment.

My infatuation with hotels and weekend getaways was finally making sense. What if this was a way my father was telling to remember the best times of my childhood? Could it be he’s sending me a message? I fully believe in signs and have always believed in the way that things do happen for a reason.

Ten years ago, my Papi left two little girls on this Earth. We were his world I’ll always remember that for sure. But signs are everywhere telling me he hasn’t ever forgot us and even surfacing out memories I haven’t thought about in years.

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Sisters are soulmates.

We used to stay at hotels because he would work as a mariachi singer and play Sunday brunches for these fancy hotels. The rooms were comped and food was always complementary. We enjoyed our weekends in the hot tubs and pools with him because it was much better than the fridged Wisconsin winters outside. We would have so much fun getting ice cream, using fancy glasses and running around exploring the hotel.

It all stopped so suddenly. Like over night. And then he was gone. And it happened no more. Because we weren’t rich. And that wasn’t what a normal kid did every weekend.

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But the other night was magical. Watching my girls laugh, splash and soak up every moment of being a kid in a fancy hotel pool… Just like I did…once upon a time. And reminding me that my first friend, my oldest companion was my sister. I’ve been with her since day one. She knows what we’ve been through, what happened, how it felt and is my soulmate. Sisters are a little bit of childhood that can never be lost.

So on that night I was reminded that childhood memories are all for the making. There’s a small window to make them remember what their childhood felt like. But sisters will always be there to help you remember where you came from.

Happiest days of birth to my little sister, Gina. May happiness fill your soul and feed your life with pure bliss. xoxo

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16 Mar 2015

A Million Memories And Counting

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How quickly time flies when you are young. As Spring Break ’15 is all over and wrapped neatly with a bow and we are on to the next chapter. It seems surreal that it’s over and upon us soon will be year end parties, summer celebrations and endless summer nights. But are these memories just a dream in the making or will they truly remember what we did together?
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04 Mar 2015

Family Fun at the Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival at Walt Disney World in Orlando Florida

No Comments Adventures, Disney, Family Travel, Florida, Kids, Orlando, Review, Travel Tuesday

Updated March 4, 2015

Each year, I have the opportunity to visit the Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival that takes place early March through May at Epcot in Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida.

Backyard Garden Epcot

It is by far, one of my favorite times of the year to visit Disney. The weather is beautiful and the sites are just gorgeous! The topiaries, flowers, experiences throughout Epcot are amazing and each year they bring out new bands, food and more to bring the festival to life.

Muppet Topiary Epcot

This year, 2015, marks the 22nd annual Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival. It will kick off on March 4th and run through May 17th, 2015. A few new additions that we can report are the following: (pictures to follow)

  • The Garden Rocks concert series kicks off with The Gin Blossoms (I know, right?!) every Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Shows will be at 5:30pm, 6:45pm & 8pm at the America Gardens Theatre and are included in admission.
  • Follow along with others on social media using the #FreshEpcot
  • Illuminated Gardens will have you wanting to stay into the night to visit the park while the gardens are a glow! You must stay for the IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth, award-winning fireworks display at 9pm nightly. Have your spot picked out or purchase tickets to the IllumiNations Sparkling Dessert Party and be ready to enjoy desserts from all around the world.
  • Butterflies on the Go Presented by Go Go squeeZ: The butterfly garden is always our favorite as you can marvel at these gentle creatures as they fly around this beautiful garden! Always a favorite with my kids, this year, the garden will have some wonderful surprises from the gang at Go Go squeeZ!
  • Of course, the famous character topiaries are always a must see! For a full line-up of who is where, visit the Disney Parks Blog here.
  • Dining our way through the World Showcase at Epcot is always on our list of things to do. Of course, you can dine with the characters at Akershus Royal Banquet Hall in Norway (make reservations here) or watch fireworks from your window side table at Tokyo Dining or on the patio at the Spice Road Table. There are so many place to choose from…what are you in the mood for!
  • Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival

    Your entire family will enjoy Epcot during this amazing time of year. Spring is even more beautiful than you could have ever imagined. And of course at Disney, it’s even better.

    What’s your favorite part of the festival?! Talk with me on Twitter throughout the festival and let me know!