I love to ramble off my week and weekend, so here I am again for 5 on Friday!
1. Bloglovin'. Most of you know what Google Reader is going away on July 1st, 2013. Since I will be gone next week and since I haven't already done the Bloglovin' pump up post like other bloggers have done, I wanted to ask you now to follow me on Bloglovin' if you are currently using Google Reader. I don't want to lose any of my readers and if you are new here I'd love to have you as a new follower! Bloglovin' lets you follow blogs just like Reader, but it has a little more flexibility in that you can add folders, dim out the blogs you've read already for the day, etc.
Follow me on Bloglovin' by clicking here.
2. Disney/Next Week on the Blog. Next week we will be in sunny Florida enjoying Disney for the first time with the kids. This is something I have looked forward to my entire life, sharing Disney with my kids. I can't believe Nathan is 7 and Autumn is 4 and this will be the first time ever that they fly and see Disney! I think these are awesome ages and hopefully they will remember it and beg for us to take them back again. I really cannot wait to ride The Dumbo with Nathan and riding Its a Small World with Autumn. I also really cannot wait to eat at Be Our Guest in the new Beast castle in Fantasy Land. We are SO so SO lucky our travel agent got us reservations. We are also staying at the Animal Kingdom Lodge, which I have always wanted to stay at. When we were there last November (sans kids) for the Wine & Dine half marathon, we had to stay off site due to so many people booking before us!
If you follow me on Instragram you'll see I sent a huge package to Animal Kingdom Lodge filled with the kids Mickey Mail (apparently I found out you can't check wrapped gifts on the plane!) and lots of juice and snacks! Please follow me on Instagram here to stay up to date on what we are doing on the trip! I post on IG a lot more often that I do on Facebook!
Next week while I am away I will still have a full week of posts for you. I have two guest posts and on Tuesday I will be sharing what Nathan is wearing to Disney (just like I did for Autumn here and for me here). Then, I'll have a July 4th post and the Five on Friday again.
3. Chicago. Speaking of trips, Brian and I really wanted to do a long weekend trip this summer sans kids. So, yesterday our travel agent let us know that Southwest was running a $100 a leg round trip deal. Yes, so for $400 we are flying to Chicago round trip! I was looking at prices for the Amtrak train and its only going to cost us $100 more to fly and we won't be sitting in a stuffy train for 5+ hours. We are flying into Chicago's Midway airport, which I have heard its nice... now I just need to decide on a hotel...
Some of the hotels we're considering are:
Hyatt on Wacker (nice canal view, but not right off of Michigan Ave.)
W - This looks sort of cramped in the rooms and I believe its also not directly off Michigan Ave. Beautiful hotel, tho!
I am also trying to plan some activities for us while we are there... Brian is working on this, too! I've done all of the museums (days and days!) and I know that is what I don't want to do this time.
This is what we've come up with so far:
Bobby's Bikes, Bites & Brew Tour - We are definitely doing this! Its a leisurely four hour bike tour where you try a hot dog, a cupcake, a slice of pizza and a beer. I just haven't been on a bike in forever, so I am a tad nervous about that. ;)
Cubs Game - too bad they aren't playing the Cards!
The Cloud Gate/shiny bean, I really want photos of us by this!
Book of Mormon - we might go see this show
Dinner cruise on the lake
Run on the lake
DEEP DISH PIZZA
Ikea (never been)
Shopping on Michigan Ave.
Weber Grill Restaurant (want to go back)
Navy Pier again.
If you have any restaurant suggestions or ideas for things to do in Chicago, please let me know in the comments.
4. Moonlight Paddle Boat Picnic. My kids are finally home from Michigan, I can't wait to see them after work today! Even though I still have a lot of loose ends to finish up before our Disney trip, we decided to plan a fun evening last night at the Forest Park Boat House. The Boat House does Moonlight Paddle Boat Picnics every Thursday during the summer and we have done it a couple of other times and it is just awesome. The VERY first time we went, I had written Brian a list of 100 things I love about him. Then, I forgot the list at home (silly me!) and so I recited most of them to him by memory! It was such a romantic evening and the water sprays in the Grand Basin, the moon and view of the art museum is just lovely. You get to pick out a bottle of wine, choice of sandwich and then they pack snacks in the bag, too! Every year its a little different and they are NICE paddle boats, too! I can't wait to have this relaxing evening with my sweetie tonight!
Here we are before we boarded the boat
There are always ducks that beg for you to feed them. We even saw a Momma duck and her babies. So sweet.
Brian surprised me with flowers before we left the house, I love him so! :)
5. Co-Host for the Inspiration Gallery. I really love crafting and I try to make time to do it regularly. Recently, Taryn from Design, Dining and Diapers posted that she was looking for Co-Hosts for the Inspiration Gallery link up party. If you don't know what a link up party is, its where people link up their crafts and recipes that they've created and then the hosts of the party select 5-10 of these that are linked up (usually from 50-300 people will link up things, depending on the size of the party) and FEATURE them. To be feature is a huge reward, they are saying they loved your craft/recipe enough to feature it at the top of the blog post for the next link up party.
As a co-host, Taryn will feature several of my best crafts/recipes at the beginning of the party to introduce me, then I get to select which items I want to feature that week from everything that is linked up! This is a lot of work, but I am SO excited as this is my FAVORITE link party of them all in bloggy land! So, to be a co-host is huge for me.
I was actually at my hubby's high school reunion when I got the email from her and I was so worried that all the slots would be full (they only had a handful) before I could respond back. But, whew! I got in!
The date that I will co-host the Inspiration Gallery is August 22nd, which a follow up post on which features I've selected on August 24th. Don't worry if you forget these dates, I'll remind you when the time comes (of course!).