Autumn turns 6!!


Time is literally flying by. It seems like I blink, and another year has passed. Every time I see Autumn, I wonder how it’s possible that she is getting to be such a big girl. On Sunday, she turned 6!

This kiddo is the best niece ever. I know, I know, I’m a little bit biased. But she is so fabulous, I can’t get enough of her. Her and I have a great bond. Since she was a little tiny baby and I would babysit her or pick her up from daycare, she has always been a joy to watch and spend time with.


welcome autumn me and mike    me autumn baby

autumn hat fave pic

autumn hooter onesie    baby autun with mike

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me autumn snuggling    autumn hat


And  now, all of a sudden, she is this big girl, in Kindergarten, has a booster seat in the car, spends weekends at our house, and has the funniest conversations with us. She is incredibly smart and has the ability to make me laugh like there isn’t a care in the world.


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me mike autumn 091513    me autumn johns pass 102613

me autumn seaworld silly    me autumn seaworld smile


Autumn had a super fun birthday party at the bowling alley on Saturday. Her and a bunch of her cute little friends. Watching little kiddos bowl is too fun. It was a great day!


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bowling kiddos    bowling boys

cooper bowling    autumn bday bowling 1

autumn bday balloon     autumn gift

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autumn bday friends 1    autumn papap jenna nick 1

autumn grandparents    autumn silly friends    


It’s hard to believe she’s 6 years old… I am so excited to se her grow up and become the amazing young lady I know she will be. But for now, can we slow the clock down a little?!


Happy Birthday Autumn! We love you so much!

I highly recommend playing hooky…


With my Aunt Darlene in town this week, I am trying to work as little as possible. I don’t address it too much on here because I do my best to keep it separate, but being a small business owner is hard work and STRESSFUL. It is 24 / 7 no matter what, and my brain is constantly “on”. So if the opportunity comes along to skip work for the day (despite how incredibly hard that is), I’ll take it. Hubby surprised us with tickets to Universal Studios and Island of Adventure and we headed to Orlando on Tuesday along with my mom and aunt. It was a PERFECT day and very much needed. I went as far as not taking calls OR checking work email all day long. It was so nice.

After a quick stop at Starbucks, the four of us hit the road towards Orlando. Considering it was in the heart of rush hour, we made great time. We were also anticipating rain, and even with the cloud cover we saw heading towards Tampa, we never saw a drop of rain all day.






We arrived around 10 and made our way thru City Walk. It has been WAY too long since hubby and I have been there. We used to have annual passes and went often. We really need to do that again….








My Aunt Darlene lives in California and has been to Universal Studios there. And just to make you laugh, I’ve been to Universal Studios out there too, in the 80’s when Miami Vice and Conan The Barbarian were big. If only I could find those pictures…. Anyhow, they do not have Island of Adventure out there, so Darlene was beyond excited to go. It’s even on her bucket list. She was most excited about the whole Harry Potter thing. I guess I should also mention that I have never read one single Harry Potter book nor have I seen one single Harry Potter movie. I couldn’t tell you why, I just never have. When we arrived, we headed to Islands first and made a beeline for The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, along with every one else on spring break. Of course, we had to walk through Seuss Landing to get there, which is my favorite part of the park.






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Clearly, this is still the most popular part of the park. It was packed, The ride lines were really long, as were the lines for Butter Beer, and the stores were packed. When we were done here, we headed out to the rest of the park.


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After we walked through Islands of Adventure and had lunch, we headed over to Universal Studios. This is my favorite park. I love ET and Twister, and walking through all the different area of the park like Beverly Hills and New York. The weather was perfect and I was having such a great time with my hubby, mom, and aunt. I was also happy to be getting some mileage in, and even more happy that I could walk just two days after the Sarasota Half Marathon. It’s the little things in life…


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On our way out of the park, we stopped in the Universal Gift Shop and my mom bought these key chains for my sister-in-law Jenna and I. Remember how we were Boob 1 and Boob 2 for the 3 Day last year? They were perfect!




We had such a great time being big kids at Universal for the day. It’s always a great time when you get to spend that day with loved ones.




On our way home, we stopped for dinner at the original Hooters in Clearwater. Hubby and I are no strangers to Hooters and Darlene was excited to go too. We sat out on the patio and enjoyed the nice breeze, wonderful company, great food, and ice cold beer.


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Thank you so much to my hubby for the tickets and a great day. It was the perfect escape and a fun time!


What is your favorite escape? Do you have a favorite theme park?

Happy Valentine’s Day!




happy valentines day



Happy Valentine’s Day, honey! I am a lucky girl to have you. Thank you for always being there for me, loving me, taking care of me, supporting me in all I do, and loving me with all your heart. I love you oodles and oodles!!!

If you follow me on Facebook  or Twitter, you may have seen this status update last night….




The reason behind that? Not only did hubby bring home flowers and gifts for me, but he also bought flowers for my mom. Hubby and my mom have always been close so this comes as no surprise, but my goodness it’s sweet…

The sweet gifts hubby got me…. Beautiful pink roses, a bottle of wine, and beautiful card, and a gift card for a 60-minute massage at my favorite massage studio in Tampa. And I love that he can never wait to give me a gift. Too cute.


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And these are the pretty flowers he bought my mom… Seriously. Sweetest man ever. He also blogged about it today, you can read it here.




Happy Valentine’s Day!


Did you receive a Valentine today? Does your significant other every give you your gifts early?

Favorite posts of 2012




happy new year 2013



As 2012 comes to an end tonight and we welcome 2013, I am thinking about this year and all the things I accomplished. 2012 has definitely been the year of stepping outside of my comfort zone. I’ve done so many things that I normally would not do. I hope that I continue to face my fears head-on in 2013.

To finish out the year, I thought I’d do a list of my favorite posts of the year. This was really tough to narrow down and I’m probably forgetting something, but these posts meant the most to me. From completing not one but TWO half-marathons, meeting the wonderful women of Tampa Bay Lady Bloggers, my first blog conference, becoming Yelp Elite, starting Jingle Bikes For Kids, wonderful family time, along with several struggles I faced - it’s been a memorable year.  I hope you enjoy this look back with me…



I love my blog and I really look forward to continuing to blog in 2013 and to see how it grows. I would like to thank each and every one of you for following and showing interest in my babbling. It helps to keep me sane.

Wishing you all a SAFE and Happy New Year!!

Thanksgiving Fun 2012


Another Thanksgiving has come and gone. A day full of fun, food, laughter, food, family, and more food. This year we finally took part in the Tampa Bay Times Turkey Trot here in Clearwater. For years we’ve been saying we should do it, and this was finally the year. Even more exciting? My mom joined us, her first official walk!




It was a nice crisp morning and made for a chilly wait for the 7:30am start time, but I like to be early. It was fun to see all the people there so early on a holiday. We saw people in funny turkey hats, and saw one guy in just shorts and a knit cap, no shirt. Crazy. And isn’t this cool….




Before we headed to the start line, I was standing in line for the port-o-potty and I saw Caroline from My Fascinating Life and a Tampa Bay Lady Blogger. he had her hubby take a picture of us, so there is now proof that I was in line for the port-o-potty. (Hopefully Caroline won’t be mad that I borrowed her picture….)


Turkey Trot My Fascinating Life Caroline Calcote-6


Heading to the start line, I kept my eyes open for Steph from Kitchen Kilometers, also a Tampa Bay Lady Blogger. She is one of the reasons I  wanted to do the Turkey Trot this year after she created an event for it on Facebook. She was there with her boyfriend. he is such a good guy for getting up early on a cold Thanksgiving to walk with her.




While we were waiting for the walk to start, I spotted a turkey that I had to have my picture taken with. It wouldn’t make sense any other day to have my picture taken with one, today was the perfect day. Gobble gobble!








And finally, we were off! I knew there were a lot of people there, but when the walk actually started, I couldn’t believe just how many people there were. The walk started on Keene Rd., a 5 lane road and the crown spanned the entire road. It was amazing. I tried to get photos of the crowd, but since I’m so short, it didn’t really work. We were in a sea of orange for miles. I later heard that 17,700 people participated. Wow!




The 5K took us a little over an hour, just from the number of people alone. But, it was a great walk and I am sure that we have started a new tradition. Yay for new traditions! You can also read hubby’s post on his blog….




After the walk and a quick trip to Starbucks with Blue and Ozzie (spoiled Aussies that they are…), we got ready for the rest of the day, which would be spent at my mom’s. She was cooking her traditional Thanksgiving dinner and I was in charge of putting up her Christmas tree and decorating it. As long as I can remember, since I was old enough to do it, I have been the one to decorate. While my mom did her amazing cooking in the kitchen, I did this….




My sister Jenni was there and after lunch, my brother Nick, his wife Jenna, and cutie-pie Autumn came over. It was a very nice day together. As I knew there would be, there was laughter and fun and silliness and eating and more. Our traditional Thanksgiving dinner includes turkey, stuffing with Italian sausage, mashed potatoes and gravy, corn, shrimp cocktail, “crab cakes” (actually fried stuffing, no crab), and pumpkin pie. We also had yummy brownies.


























Yes, it was a wonderful day all around! Now I am looking forward to another 3 days off from work There will be walking, relaxing, the movies, and more!


How did you spend your Thanksgiving?

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