Happy Birthdays!…1.2017

January may be filled with cold, cloudy snowy days in the midwest, post holiday blues & new years resolutions,  but this month also includes two birthdays…Claire’s & mine!  

At the airport….so happy to heading down to see Claire, Sara & Kevin!  Danny, his Mom & I flew down to Orlando early Saturday morning & arrived just in time for a super special birthday party for Claire! 

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She turned 2 on the 3rd of January & we’re so excited to be able to be here for the big celebration!  Sara baked yummy cupcakes & decorated with darling Mickey Mouse banners (Claire loves anything & everything Mickey & Minnie).  It was such great fun watching Claire interact with the other little kids & her cousins.  So. Much. Fun!

On Sunday, Danny & I were up & ready to leave at 3am with Sara to cheer her on while she ran her second marathon at Disney.  It was freezing with a windchill of 26…sure didn’t feel like Florida!  She is so tough & pretty excited to running another marathon.  Just makes my head spin to think of all the miles she puts in training; then to race on such a super cold morning.  I’d packed my cheesy signs & waved them high in the air as she ran by.  This is probably a great course for runners, but not so much for spectators, but we got to see her three times & I love, love, love watching her run & being at the race with her!  

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Monday, Sara, Claire & I just chilled.  Danny drove his Mom over to the coast to stay a night to visit with her cousin.  Sara made an super yummy mexican dinner that night!

On Tuesday, we got a BIG surprise!  Sara & Claire were taking Danny & I to Universal Studios for our birthdays!  YIPEE!  Danny & I are such extreme Harry Potter fans & we hadn’t seen the new addition to the park.  YAY!!!  We packed up early, the sun was shining, the temps were rising to wonderful & we were off for a day of fun & wizardry!  Claire loved riding the train & all things Dr. Suess.

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OMG!  I so much love coming to these magical places!  I can (have) spent hours just looking at all the tiny details that make this place so awesome!  I’d love to have a beer with some of the designers & just listen to their thoughts about creating such a wonderful fun place!

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Claire loved riding the Hogwarts Express!  We rode back & forth between parks three times! 

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And…the dragon breathes FIRE….so cool! (Actually, it was pretty warm standing below it!)

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I really wish I could ride the big rides without puking!  I once told Jill that of all the things I could envy about her….her beauty, her brains, her bank account, etc. I really wish I had her ability to ride the big crazy rides!  I’m always left behind…but this time I got to be with Claire…which was BETTER than riding the rides.  I know though someday, she’ll be on those zooming rides having a blast!

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Platform 9 3/4!  Love how you just disappear into the wall….so GREAT!

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We ate lunch at the Leaky Cauldron & enjoyed a beer brewed especially for Diagon Alley by Florida brewing company.  A stout called Wizards Brew..it was really good!

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Two over the top Harry Potter Fans loving this day!

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The day came to an end with a firework display!  Not near as fantastical as the Disney display, but I always love to see sparkles in the sky & this was Claire’s first time to see fireworks!  Even though she’s a Disney-regular & has been more times already than I can count, she hasn’t seen the fireworks there. It was great watching her watching the sky & seeing the wonder in her eyes!

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And once again, I was ‘drunk’ on butter beer (it’s non-alcoholic).  There are three different types, & I hadn’t had the hot one, so I decided to do a ‘butter beer’ research project & try all three!  Frozen, Original & Hot!  I thought the hot was the BEST!  the Frozen came in Second & last but still so yummy…the Original.  (A fact you might not know about me, is my intensive research projects & studiesI’ve completed on food.  I know many think I’m ‘uneducated’, but I’m the go-to person if you want to know the best Margarita, Cinnamon Roll, chocolate dipped ice cream cone, cuban sandwich, mojito & now I can add butter beer to the list!)

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What a super fun day & so loved spending it with Sara, Claire & Danny!

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