May 6, 2016

Cinco de Mayo · Epcot Style

I'll be the first to admit that we've never been big Cindo de Mayo-ers, but I don't need a reason to enjoy sipping on margaritas + stuffing my face with tacos (big surprise there). When the opportunity to visit Epcot arose yesterday afternoon, we decided to join in on the festivities. As I mentioned in my Goals for May post, we (my mama, G and myself) recently became Disney annual passholders. Yesterday was the first day we've visited since purchasing our passes. It's been about five years since our last visit to Epcot, so it was a real treat — especially since their International Flower and Garden Festival is still in full swing!

All of their Disney-themed topiaries + exhibits were incredible. And then there were the drinks. Epcot is really the place to go if you want to "drink around the world", as they say. We started off with a rosa margarita, an elderflower watermelon sangria and a frozen mango margarita in Mexico (we were sharing all of these drinks, just fyi). Then we worked our way to a piña colada in Morrocco, followed by a "la vie en rose" frozen slush in France. Just when I thought our drinking endeavor had come to a close, G spotted a sign for frozen spiked chai lattes, so we couldn't pass up trying that one. All of the drinks we got were fantastic, but my favorites were the sangria, piña colada + spiked chai. We enjoyed strolling around the world, drinks in hand.

Now, you'd think we would choose to eat Mexican for dinner like the majority of the people visiting yesterday. But, surprisingly enough, none of us were feeling it. We opted for Chinese food instead, lol. We chose a sit-down restaurant (which I wouldn't recommend). The food was okay. I guess I just had higher expectations because of the crazy prices. I think it'll be best to snack our way through the parks in the future, unless we're celebrating a very special occasion! After we finished eating, we made ourselves comfy on a bench and waited for IllumiNations (their firework show) to begin. It was actually chilly outside when the sun went down, which was odd for a May evening in Florida. Disney definitely knows how to put on some great firework shows, that's for sure. It was a very memorable day, to say the least. Now, onto the good part — photos!












"She looks thirsty!"
Haha, on that note, it's a wrap!

May 5, 2016

Goals for May


Yeah, so, the last time I created a monthly goal list was way back in February (oops). Let's take a moment to go over what I was able to knock out (or didn't knock out) over the past three months.

(✔) Finish another book. I finished reading three (almost four).

(✔) Purge my closet + sell or giveaway the rejects. Done + done.

(✘) Finish gathering the final pieces for my gallery wall. Nope, still need a few things.

(✔) Do two fun outings with my family. Yes! We've done a handful of outings since February.

(✔) Take the science portion of the GED test. Yeah, buddy. I passed it in early April.

(✔) Plan a getaway with the hubby. We visited New Smyrna Beach + Kennedy Space Center.

Not too shabby, given the fact I had three months to get this junk done instead of the usual one. We aren't too far into May yet, so that should give me just the right amount of time to accomplish some things this month as well.

+ Finish The Bullet + one other book.
I'm about halfway done with the book I'm currently reading, so that'll be easy. I'd really like to dive into another right after I wrap that one up. Not sure which one exactly, but my Kindle is full of books I snagged on sale!

+ Continue studying for the GED math exam.
I try to study at least 30 minutes to an hour each day depending on how long the lesson is. I've been working my way through the Kaplan Mathematical Reasoning Prep book. I'd really like to knock out the whole book by the end of the summer if possible.

+ Take photos for our 6th wedding anniversary.
May 15th is our 6th wedding anniversary (whhhaaatttt?!). I've asked a close friend to take photos for us since we haven't had any "nice" ones taken since our engagement photos. Fingers crossed that our schedules will coincide so we can do this!

+ Visit Disney at least three times.
Okay, so a couple days ago we became Disney annual passholders (eeeek!) After weighing the pros / cons (although there weren't really any cons that I can recall), we decided to purchase the Florida Residents Weekday Select passes since we are normally free throughout the week. I know that will change whenever G starts school, but we'll work around it. With the price of tickets jumping up almost every year, we're still saving a ton even if we only get to go a handful of times. The tickets are good for all four Disney parks + includes free parking. That's a win/win if you ask me!

+ Keep tracking calories throughout the week.
Last month, G and I started tracking our calories again. However, we've been using MyNetDiary instead of MyFitnessPal. So far, I like it much better. The layout is clean and it seems to scan barcodes quicker. I've lost a couple pounds, but nothing astronomical. I'm focusing on how my clothes fit verses weight. We count Monday-Saturday and Sundays are cheat days.

That's about it. I'll keep it simple this time around ;)

May 4, 2016

Four on the Fourth


Woah. Let me brush the dust off this space as it's been laying dormant since the middle of March (my bad). I've fallen behind on sharing over the last few months, but there hasn't been anything life-altering, per se. I'll just focus on a few recent events.

1. I've been reading tons lately. Honestly, I feel like I've read more books in the past five months than I have in years. The Bullet by Mary Louise Kelly is the one I'm sucked into at the moment. I'm a little over halfway through it.

2. I'm not sure if I shared, but G received his GED back in January and he recently enrolled at SPC. He starts in the fall and I couldn't be more proud of the steps that he is taking to better our life together. I, on the other hand, still have one exam to knock out ... math. Dun, dun, duuuuuuun, lol. I've been studying each day and it's slowly starting to come back to me. Fractions and algebra and geometry, oh my. However, I do feel as though I'm understanding it better now than I did whenever I was in high school so that's a good sign! After I receive my GED, I'm planning on enrolling at the same school as G. I'll probably only be able to take 1-2 classes a semester with work, but it's a better plan than waiting until after he's finished. Imagine that. The girl who was so against going back to school has changed her mind. I'm excited, although a little nervous.

3. In other news, I dyed my hair purple the other day (bottom left photo). Although it came out a tad bit on the red side of the spectrum. G keeps saying it looks like sangria, lol. Don't get me wrong, I love it! It just wasn't the exact shade I was going for.

4. On May 1st, my mama celebrated 30 years as a small business owner. We rounded up all of our employees and took them out for a nice dinner at Olive Garden to commemorate the special occasion. Just a heads up, if you have never tried their steak gorgonzola alfredo, you have really been missing out. It was great having everyone together. We really have a great team and I'm thankful for their hard work + dedication to our little family business. Without them, we wouldn't have gotten this far.

And, as a bonus, happy Star Wars Day to my fellow SW lovers out there :)
#maythefourthbewithyou


March 15, 2016

New Smyrna + Kennedy Space Center

G and I took full advantage of leap day this time around. Early Monday morning, we packed an overnight bag and headed across the state. We hadn't even decide where we were going to go until the night before. With a free day in our grasp + a wee bit of spontaneity, we each picked a few destinations that sounded cool. These destinations were then written on tiny scraps of paper, folded up and placed in a baseball cap. New Smyrna Beach was our pick. I quickly found + booked a beachfront hotel and tried to come up with an overall game plan. We'd only planned to stay for one night (hello, travel budget), but I knew I wanted to do something special while we were on the east coast of Florida as well. After some thought, visiting the John F. Kennedy Space Center seemed like the best option since it was less than an hours drive from where we would be staying.

I tried my best to keep the whole space center idea to myself, but I ended up letting the cat out of the bag only 15 minutes into our drive. I swear I can't keep anything from my husband, lol. He was excited since he'd wanted to go for quite some time. It took us less than four hours to reach New Smyrna, after a quick stop for lunch at The Coop in Winter Park. Our hotel was right on the beach and I was blown away at how nice our suite was (snagged it on Hotels.com). After relaxing for a little bit, we were out the door and on our way to the New Smyrna Marina to have dinner at Outriggers Tiki Bar & Grille. The restaurant was kinda tucked away, like a hidden gem, so I'm surprised we were able to find it. But, boy, am I glad we did! It was well worth the hunt.







I went out on a ledge and ordered a mai tai + the "Eleanor Rigby" — their version of a Cuban sandwich made with ham, bacon, pickles, cream cheese and tomatillo jam. Yeah, it was just as delicious as it sounds. I was not disappointed whatsoever! G stuck with tacos, which you can't ever go wrong with. We spent the rest of the evening watching television and eating donuts, haha (#marriedlife). The next morning, we checked out of the hotel and made our 50 minute trek down to Cape Canaveral.

Most of our afternoon was consumed by exploring the visitor center. I really learned a lot and very much enjoyed our time there. We were able to take a bus tour as well, which gave us the opportunity to view various launch pads (like where Apollo 8 was launched), Kennedy's Vehicle Assembly Building, and the SpaceX facility. The tour bus dropped us off at the Apollo/Saturn V Center. It was such an awe-inspiring experience. SpaceX had a launch planned for that night and we had hoped to stay in the area for dinner just so we'd be able to witness it, but it was sadly canceled due to high winds so we headed back home.