Friday, September 27, 2019

Universal Studios

Happy Friday, friends!! I'm so ready for a wonderful weekend with a little R&R, family time and yep,  my friend laundry. For our final installment of our vacation trip, after our Royal Caribbean cruise, we headed to Universal Studios.

Back in March, as a birthday present for C, my sister in law brought up us all going to Universal Studios as we were there in Florida already. C absolutely adores Harry Potter so we figured it would be an awesome trip for her and the 7, 5 and 3 year old would just have to keep up. Little did we know our  7 y.o. was the adrenaline junkie in the bunch!! 

All nine of us arrived from Fort Lauderdale in a fifteen seater! We stayed at the Portofino Hotel in Universal  and would go back in heartbeat. My sister in law's superstar aunt organised it all for us and accompanied us  as well. This beautiful hotel comes with the Fast Pass included and it would be hard to go back any other way. 

We fell in love with the beauty and size of the rooms after a teeny tiny cruise ship

We went over to City Walk for dinner and a little measurement!! Barely made the cut with her sneakers.

Day 1, we hit the ground hard with Shrek!

So many absolutely fun rides. The Transformers ride was one of my very faves. But I screamed for many rides. So did C. A did not... she enjoyed every thrilling moment. 

I did not expect the Jimmy Fallon ride to be so much fun. The virtual reality and simulations made almost everyone of these rides more thrilling!

Springfield time!

Then it was HP World time!! Friends, as a not very avid fan, it was amazing!!! And for the fans.... this was her look many, many times!!!

My brother bought a wand for her to do the spells in HP world. 

Diagon Alley fun!

Friends of ours recommended the Diagon Alley ice cream shop and boy did it deliver. We had them both days we were there. Here we have my chocolate chili and C's raspberry chocolate with chopped nuts-- just like Harry did. A ordered strawberries and cream which we all loved so I ordered that one the day after. Sidenote, they were huge... split with a friend if you can... or a daughter. We ended up throwing away half of almost all the first day.

A was tired and coming down with a cold so we borrowed the stroller to take her back to the room  as she was wiped and hadn't been feeling well all of August . 

Waiting for the ferry

 C stayed with my brother who is awful with his phone and I forgot to bring my phone back with me so nothing is pictured. My aunt and my cousins who live in Florida also came to visit us and go to dinner at Hard Rock Cafe!! 

Day Two and ready to do.

This time we started at Islands of Adventure.

It was blistering hot!

Spiderman was another one of our faves. 

We got SOAKED in a water ride so here we are hungry and a little worse for wear.

C was so wet she went back to change.


Disney is all about the characters... Universal- all about those rides!!!

After all the thrilling rides, this adrenaline junkie was not impressed with the carousel!

More time in HP world including my favourite ride, The Forbidden Journey. Okay, I had to sit after the ride for a bit but boy was it worth it.

This interaction with Stan from the night bus was so much fun!!

My aunt met us the next day and we headed for some lunch, a walk on Citywalk and some voodoo doughnuts before heading to the airport.

And that is a wrap on our awesome Universal adventure! What a fun way to end our summer!!

Have a wonderful weekend, friends!!!

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

What's Up Wednesday- September 2019


Three cheers for hump day! This 5 day week feels like it's dragging on. I'm spoilt with those lazier summer days!

What we're eating this week?
Monday- leftovers for the family while I went to a ladies' dinner with my neighbours.
Tuesday- Red lentil, sweet potato coconut stew
Wednesday- I'm thinking chicken on the grill and a salad.
Thursday- leftover stew maybe
Friday- most likely takeout

What I'm reminiscing about
Not a whole lot at all. Being grateful (and sometimes overwhelmed) with this somewhat hectic life.

What I'm loving
This neighbourhood and how very social they (we?) are. A music party at one of our neighbours two weeks ago, a golf tournament, a live music happy hour/backyard party, dinners out, mens' cards night. My neighbourhood is generally older, migrate for the winters, they are so welcoming and they do life good. #retireelifegoals.

What we've been up to…
Date night was really lovely a couple weeks ago!

What I'm dreading…
Winter...hahah!  I really am not looking forward to winter temps.

What I'm working on
Cleaning out my bedroom/bathroom. It's my September/October project yearly. 

What I'm excited about…
All the beautiful trees that will be changing colour soon!! Oh and my kids teachers. We have a couple really good ones and I'm excited about the school year and what it brings.

What I'm watching/reading…
Hello Season Premiere week!! I can't wait to get into all my faves. I also want to get into Fleabag as it won so many Emmys. 
I'm reading Autobiography of a Yogi these days.

Autobiography of a Yogi (Self-Realization Fellowship) by [Yogananda, Paramahansa]

What I'm listening to..

What I'm wearing…
It's still summery so sleeveless tops are my jam!!

What I'm doing this weekend…
Some fall fun, a playdate, skating and trying a new dosa restaurant in town.

What I'm looking forward to next month? 
My parents coming to visit! Divali, Canadian Thanksgiving and Halloween fuN!

What else is new?
This peach, tomato, burrata salad that I made the other day. We practically inhaled it!

Have a wonderful Wednesday, loves!

 Linking up with  Shay and Shaeffer

Monday, September 23, 2019

Media Monday

Happy Monday, everyone! Here's a little catch up on some of the media I'm into these days in top three order...

Fave TV shows about to start back this week
This is Us
A Million Little Things
Grey's Anatomy
(can you tell I have a favourite genre)

Image result for this is us meme

Where do I get my news from
Google Home (Reuters, BBC, CBS and Kiss Entertainment)
The View

Podcasts I'm Listening to
The Wellness Mama (girlfriend talks so fast though, I always have to make sure the speed is set to normal)

Books on hold in the Library

Fave Shows to have on in the background while I'm doing house stuff
Live with Kelly & Ryan
Private Practice (current binge watch)
The View

Instagram Accounts that bring me joy

Favourite Songs in Our House 
The Fresh Prince of Bel Air theme song
Speechless- Aladdin
Count Your Blessings (the hymn. High School hymn that we've been listening to almost every weekday morning)

Image result for count your blessings hymn

Favourite Youtube Exercise Workouts
Fightmaster Yoga
Pop Sugar Fitness
Zumba with Noemi

Last Three Things I saved off FB 

(or a mother)

Make your Monday magical, lovelies!!

Friday, September 20, 2019

Labadee and Cruise Finale!

Happiest of Fridays, friends!! Back at it again, this time with the final leg of our cruise!! 

Day 6 started off with an a la carte breakfast at the American Grille.... not our favourite as we ended up waiting forever for breakfast... the freshly squeezed juice through the cruise was on point though!!! We ordered one for each of us (and shared with all) whenever we could.

Labadee!!! RC's private part of Haiti!

In Labadee, my parents came out for a bit!!

We took a shuttle to the ocean. It was stinkin' hot!!! Our deodorant was on overtime ;-P

But the water was absolutely beautiful!!

Lunch, entertainment, and back in the ocean not pictured!!

I miss fresh coconuts!! These did not disappoint!!

Back to the ship!!

My body was craving vegetables at dinner!

This kid and her loom.

Not pictured were the awesome Phillipino rolls our servers gave us for dinner as well as a phillipino chicken dish!

White night and a little show.

So many amazing shows on this ship.

Day 7 started with some fruit-- yep we were feeling the need for lighter eating at this point!

Every floor has different beautiful artwork. At this point, I started to take the stairs.

And did a couple laps on the walking track.

We also spent some time on the boardwalk where we took advantage of the drinks package clearly.

My kids dominated this kids' area. There was a bar next to it, so the dads were happy to supervise.

Live music for the win! And hot dogs for lunch. #winning.

We watched shows, relaxed a bit, did some packing and got ready for our last dinner there.

We still saved some room for dessert!!

Our servers went above and beyond!! They always brought out many different meal options in addition to what we ordered. And were on point with service!!

A live show on the promenade, a couple comedy shows and we called it a night!!!

And that's a wrap on our Royal Caribbean cruise experience. We had a simply wonderful time. A few people have asked how it compares to Disney. Both cruise lines have their strengths. Royal Caribbean has so many different entertainment options for both big and small, more of a variety of food, more restaurants, is a larger ship and is waaayyy cheaper. Disney's quality of food was better, their shows every night were very high quality, the kids' club is second to none, their staterooms are better maintained and there is a certain star service and quality of experience. I also didn't feel nickle and dimed that much when we were with Disney. It was wonderful when my kids were younger and more into Disney but definitely more expensive. With a bigger group with more diverse range of ages and budgets, I would definitely do Royal Caribbean again!

Thanks for tuning in!! Next stop, Universal Studios!!!

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