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Choosing what to prepare for dinner can be challenging for me. Often, I stick to our favorites and find myself catering to the likes of a precious and picky three-year-old in our home. This means that we sometimes get into a rut with the same old meals over and over.  For Mother’s Day, my mother-in-law purchased me a week of meals from Blue Apron. I was excited to try out this meal delivery service and see what it was like…. Read more »

Life We never expected cover

In my former life (this means life before children and becoming a stay-at-home mom), I was a teacher. Though it seems like ages ago now, my years as a teacher were some of the best and the worst years of my life. I had years that make me smile to think back on, and years that still make me shiver. The best years of my teaching career took place in the special education classroom. For several years and two different… Read more »

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I am watching it happen right before my eyes. It hasn’t snuck up on me, but I haven’t been able to stop it either. I knew it would eventually happen. And now, it is.  Though I am not sure exactly what point in time the hugs got a bit shorter, the playtime didn’t require me from beginning to end, and my assistance in getting dressed was no longer needed, but it happened. Slowly and surely, days to weeks to months… Read more »

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Celebrating the 4th of July is one of the highlights of summer. And while each year we say “Happy Birthday” to America in slightly different ways, things are also kind of the same. One thing is for sure, for us, the 4th of July is made of family, food, fun and fireworks.     Growing up, celebrating the 4th of July meant going down to the river for a fish fry with family and friends. We are in the South after… Read more »

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About halfway through our Alaskan cruise aboard Royal Caribbean’s Explorer of the Seas, we were fully enjoying our vacation. We had somewhat familiarized ourselves with the ship’s layout and locations, and we had stopped at two fantastic locations in Alaska (Juneau and Skagway). Our fourth day onboard was a day at sea, however, on this particular day we were sailing through the Tracy Arm Fjord. When we first booked our cruise, I was most excited about getting off of the… Read more »

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Day three of our Alaskan cruise brought us to the amazingly beautiful Skagway. From the moment I stepped onto the deck of the ship and got a good look at my surroundings, I was in love. The scenery was spectacular. Yes, I realize I have used the words amazing, breathtaking, and spectacular frequently in my posts on our travels to Alaska, but honestly, it is just so true. Our day in Skagway began with a ride through the mountains on… Read more »

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The first stop on our Alaskan cruise was in Juneau. Not only was it great to wake up to some beautiful scenery, we were excited for our day’s activities. On this particular stop, our group of eight had differing interests. The guys wanted to go salmon fishing, while others wanted to whale watch. My children would not have enjoyed either or endured the many hours the excursions lasted, so we opted to all go our separate ways and try out… Read more »

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On one of our days at sea on our Alaskan cruise, we were all debating on what activities to participate in to fill our morning. My son, now six, quickly announced that he wanted to climb the rock wall. If you have been on a Royal Caribbean ship, then you know how tall the rock walls are (especially for a child). If not, take my word, they are tall. My husband always climbs several times when we cruise and loves… Read more »

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In all of our cruise travels, we have splurged once on a balcony room and a few times on an oceanview (usually a round porthole or window). Typically, we like to save money on our room, since we are only in there to get cleaned up and sleep, and mostly opt for an inside stateroom.  I am most often asked if the staterooms on cruises are small. Well, yes they are. However, up to this point with our two children… Read more »

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Cruising is one of my favorite ways to travel. It is so easy! Just get on the ship and sail to amazing ports of call and enjoy loads of fun along the way! My first cruise was as a high school junior with my parents back in 1999, and I have enjoyed upwards of 15 plus cruises since, some with large groups and some just my husband and I. While we have yet to cruise on one of Royal Caribbean’s… Read more »