Sunday, January 29, 2017

Weekend Wear-abouts (Past TWO Weekends!): Family + Disney + Artegon + A Whole 30 Update

Not gonna lie, had this post in a draft (title only) to write about LAST weekend, and lo and behold I'm just now getting round to writing it. SO- we have a multi-weekend 'wear-about' post, m'k?

Last weekend Will and I checked out some more of the International Festival of the Arts at Epcot. Didn't eat any of the food (hello, Whole 30) but tried all the photo ops and enjoyed the atmosphere. We also bumped into Kate (KateJuneau) and her friend. 

On Saturday, we headed to Artegon, a unique indoor mall filled with various vendors selling alternative wares. Artegon closed as of January 29th- it was pretty empty when we were there, but we found some neat photo opportunities. 

On Sunday we enjoyed a cool morning at Magic Kingdom. 

This past Friday, my mom was in town and she, Will and I headed to the Windermere Library for story time followed by a visit to the Windermere Farmer's Market. Windermere is such a charming little town and feels worlds away from Disney, which is only a 10 minute drive away. John and I also had a date night while my mom stayed home with Will. We headed to Fantasia Mini Golf and had a great time putt putting. He and I had played twice at Winter Summerland before we had Will; I won one match and John one another. This round was to crown the winner and it was... John. I only lost by three strokes though, and the course was so cute and fun. 

On Saturday I kind of hit bottom and was just in a foul mood, including feeling like I was starting to catch a cold (more below in our Whole 30 recap). After a few tears, I holed up in bed for a couple of hours to decompress and nap. I woke up feeling much better, physically and mentally. It was a nice cool day so we headed to Animal Kingdom for the last few hours of the evening. Oh, and we went and had our taxes done that morning. FUN! ;)

On Sunday we drove an hour north to Ocala to visit John's grandfather and aunt in The Villages. It was so special to see Will with his great grandfather. We took lots of pictures to remember the day. 

Ok, a little update on Whole 30. We've been doing really well, documenting our food via Insta Stories on Instagram, and staying excited/motivated to try new recipes and such. It hasn't been awful, not in the least, but I'm not gonna lie, there have been a few rough patches. For one, whenever we visit the theme parks, it's tough not to grab a 'walkin' beer' or a sweet treat. Also, there's been two nights so far where I just wanted a glass of red wine SO BADLY! Our date night would have been the perfect chance to have an adult beverage and split dessert. And on Saturday, I was DONE. D-O-N-E. I had no desire to plan and prep meals. I was seriously thisclose to throwing in the towel. I honestly don't feel like I've gained a ton of energy since being on the program, and I don't think I've lost any weight (you're not supposed to weigh yourself during the program, so I haven't. John has, being the rule breaker that he is, and has lost about 5 pounds). We just finished Day 14 and I hear it's day 16 where everything just *clicks* so I'm looking forward to seeing if that happens. 

So why haven't we just given up on Whole 30? I personally work better when I have a defined time and know there is an 'end' to my goals; hence, I know that in 15 more days, I'll be done with Whole 30 and can indulge in some of my cravings again (french fries, cheese, wine, chocolate). Also, if we just stopped Whole 30 but still tried to commit to eating clean, I know I'd think to myself, "A little piece of cake or small fry from McD's won't hurt." Which is true, it won't, but those will add up and I'll basically give up on clean eating. For me, it's easier to just DO IT and see it through. Plus I hate giving up. PLUS I'd hate to fess up that I gave up, via Instagram (which is why I'm documenting it to begin with). I've had some GREAT support through there and can't thank everyone enough who has written words of encouragement or asked questions about the program. 

Ok, long enough post. You still here?! Awesome! :) I'll check in again and let you know if I've felt the TIGER BLOOD euphoria that is supposed to kick in within the next week. 

Hope you had a great weekend and thanks for reading!

XO, Ashley

Friday, January 20, 2017

Disney Baby: Will is Five Months Old

This kid. How'd we get so lucky, nay, blessed to be his parents? 
In this past month, Will has:

- Celebrated his first Christmas and New Years
- Met Mickey Mouse
- Spent the first cold day of our Florida 'winter' in the Magic Kingdom
- Had a few overnights at Nana's
- Visited Tampa and cheered on the Clemson Tigers as they won the National Championship
- Mastered rolling over
- Became an expert 'scooter'- army crawling all over the place
- Discovered his love for jumping in his jumper 
- Started rolling over in his sleep and sleeping on his stomach with his face FACE DOWN on his bed- making his momma very nervous
- Tried lots of new foods- his favorites being oatmeal, pears, carrots, and tastes of lemon and pickles
- Sat up on his own for a few minutes at at time- including in shopping carts, highchairs and the like

As he gets more mobile, these monthly pictures become more of a challenge to take. Here's a few outtakes from our photo sesh. 

*Sigh* I love him so much. 

Thanks for reading! 

XO, Ashley

Monday, January 16, 2017

Weekend Wear-Abouts + Life Lately

Hey hey! Stopping by to catch y'all up on what's been happening on this side of the screen lately-- we've been busy busy BUSY and lovin' life. 

Let me start by saying GO TIGERS! How awesome that the Clemson Tigers are the 2016-17 College Football National Champs! I'm a Gator fan but married a Clemson man, so I've adopted the team. Plus, I can wear orange to support both, so win-win! 
We headed to Tampa to see the game on Saturday. We stayed in St. Pete for three nights, visiting with John's dad and having a mini-vaca at the Bilmar Beach Resort. Will and I tailgated at the game for a bit, where we got to see some SportsCenter taping, before leaving John and his dad to attend. What a game! SO GLAD Clemson brought home the W-- it was due time that someone beat 'Bama. I was so happy that John was there in person to experience it. 

Later in the week Will and I made a visit to Disney's Animal Kingdom to ride Kilamanjaro Safari and see the new baby elephant! I also took photos of the baby center there- I've photographed them in each park and plan to do a post about each one. I've had some readers ask about tips for taking a baby to the theme parks, so that will be fun!

On Thursday, we hit up Whole Foods and Trader Joe's to prep for our Whole 30 journey (we started today!!) My mom came to visit and we all went to IKEA on Friday. We also went to Sweet Tomatoes where Will tasted several new foods, including pickles and lemons, which he loved! That made for a fun InstaStory (@Disneyfied_Ash on Instagram). 

This weekend we ran errands, took down Christmas decorations and went to Epcot to check out the new International Festival of the Arts. It runs every weekend (Friday-Monday) through the end of February, and is really fantastic! Food and drink specialties at various booths (a la Food & Wine Festival), artists creating live art in the park, specialty merchandise, a Figment art scavenger hunt, special Photopass photo spots, and more!

A few things that made my Disnerd heart SO HAPPY: The Odyssey building is used as the Festival Center, and for the first time in a long, long time, the windows are open, offering a view out into the park. These have been covered over for years and years with decals; I remember going to events in this building 15 years ago, and I haven't seen the view from inside out since then. 

Also in that building are two art exhibits featuring Mary Blair and Herb Ryman (click each name to learn more about them-- do it!!). Both fantastic! And speaking of Herb Ryman-- I also picked up a poster featuring his concept art for Epcot. It's beautiful, and I can't wait to get it framed and hung in the house. 

Oh, and most of my purchases from the Lilly Pulitzer After Party SALE have arrived, including the Callahans I'm wearing below. I can't fit into any of my others (yet!), so I'm happy as a clam to have a pair that fits. 

That about sums up our past week. Like I said before, we're starting Whole 30 today. I'll be posting our meals and progress on my Instagram Stories, so follow along if you're interested. 

Thanks for reading! XO, Ashley