All the Sun For You

A mom, two boys, a husband, and a whole lot of adventure!


Because I Just Need to Share

We brought back a little bit of Disn.eyw.orld with us.  In my opinion, we brought back the best part!

When looking into restaurants and booking reservations in advance (something you must do for any sit-down meals on property), I heavily used Tri.p Adv.isor.  TA helped me find our destination wedding and honeymoon resort (which was fabulous!) and we’ve found it to be very helpful, so of course I went there to figure out where I should try finding reservations.  The #1 place on Disn.ey property, and the #3 place in ALL OF ORLANDO, was this little ice cream place.  I figured, ‘sounds good, but I’m not going to spend my time at Mag.ic searching for an ice cream stand.’  I quickly breezed past it but noted the name in case we ran into it.

As we were leaving Mag.ic on our very first day at the parks, because Matthew had had enough and even the DUCKS weren’t keeping him content, we passed this little ice cream stand.  B wasn’t with us – he was back checking something else out.  I pondered for a moment if I should get in the long line or not (there were two long lines, going in opposite directions from the place) and decided that Matthew probably couldn’t handle it.  B caught up to us and said, “I wonder what that place is.”  I said, “it’s the #1 rated food place in all of Disn.eywo.rld on Tri.p Adv.isor.”  His response?  “Well, dammit!”

I described what they had, B raised his one eyebrow (this is one of my very favorite features of his – his eyebrows are so expressive!), and I asked, “want to go stand in line?”  The decision was made, and Matthew and I were off to look at DUCKS again.

B waited in line for a good 10-15 minutes, but those minutes were worth every SECOND.

  • The Place?  Aloha Isle


  • The Location?  Adventureland in the Magic Kingdom (very close to the entrance!)
  • The Delictable Item?  The Pineapple Float


  • What is it, exactly?  Dole Whip Soft Serve (pineapple, vanilla, orange or swirl ice cream) with pineapple juice

B got his pineapple float with orange ice cream, I got mine with vanilla.  I thought mine was better, he thought his was better.  We both won!

That next night, we stopped at the grocery store and picked up a 6-pack of Dole pineapple juice and a box of vanilla bean ice cream.  We had this wonderful dessert for four of the nights we were there, and it was wonderful each time!

I just had one for dessert.  I had one last night.  I had one the night before.  B bought both orange sherbet and vanilla ice cream this time, so we’re both very, VERY happy.  They’re not as good as they were at Disn.eyw.orld because we’re not using soft serve ice cream, but they’re pretty damned good!

I suggest you try this immediately, no matter how strange it may sound to you.

And I will say this right now… YOU ARE WELCOME!

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What She Said! (NIAW)

It’s National Infertility Awareness Week, and I have nothing unique or thought-provoking to say.  I feel like it’s all been said in prior posts of mine, and those are not things I care to rehash.

Yes, infertility is hard on your marriage, your soul, your mind, and your heart.  Yes, it’s a disease that no one can understand or relate to unless they’ve been through it themselves (oh if I had a dollar for every time someone told me they know how I feel because their friend, sister, cousin’s friend, or favorite star went through IF!).  Yes, it’s devastating on so many levels, and brings out the worst in us (an “us” that we don’t even like, but we’re stuck with).

Yes, infertility sucks.

But that’s all been said, over and over and over again.  And it’s all been said on this blog, on others’ IF blogs, etc.

Today, I read something profound.  I’m sure you all follow Em at Teach Me to Braid, because, well… she’s a terrific writer and a very uniquely refreshing person to read!  So you’ve probably read this already, but in case you have not, please do.  She sums up what it feels like to be infertile so perfectly.

Joint the Movement… Validate


Big Changes Coming for Matthew!

I have spent the last few days working on Matthew’s new room!  We weren’t sure what we would do – move him into the new room or give BB2 the new room.  After much thought, we decided to go with our original plan of putting BB2 in the current nursery and moving Matthew to the front room.

This means that I get to plan and decorate a new room = FUN!

I will track progress and changes on this page, a page that used to contain my plan before all of the bedding options became, well, no longer options.  Sigh.  We started with a “Great Camp Out” them but modified it slightly.

I am keeping the same theme, but making it more “wilderness” focused than just camping.  This was B’s idea and I like it a great deal!  There will still be a camping feel, and my sister already gave us a beautiful framed print for his new room with a camper in it, but we’ve broadened the idea.

I love Etsy – I mean – I love, Love, LOVE Etsy!  I used Etsy for all of the nursery decorations and for Matthew’s first birthday, so it made sense to go there for Matthew’s new room.  I started with a pretty flat idea, but it expanded as I found more and more things.

We are now settled on this:


The trees are fabric wall decals, the signs will be customized to say “BEAR (or) CURIOSITY CREEK” pointing left, “ADVENTURE PASS,” and “CANOES” pointing right with a canoe hand-painted on it – and the signs will be nailed/screwed onto the big tree.  The bear is a wood cut-out and will be attached to the wall.  We really want to add some depth to the room.  We LOVE our nursery, but it is a bit “flat.”

Here is the print my sister matted and framed for us.  It’s wonderful (and also from Etsy)!

room print

Once I know what we’re looking at for remaining wall space (I have lots of newborn photos in that room to figure out what to do with – which my photographer warned me would happen when I decked out that whole wall!), I’ll be choosing amongst these remaining prints:

il_570xN_234781455      il_570xN_235592012il_570xN_234458806      il_570xN_234035580

B is working on coming up with a plan for putting a tent in the room.  We’re only going to have a bed in there since the closet has drawers already installed – no need for a big chest or dresser, thank goodness!  This leaves room for fun stuff, like toy shelves, tents, etc!  I am partial to this little teepee!


For now, I’m thinking of going with this bedding set from PB Kids (just the comforter, not the sheets).  Not my first choice, but it’s the best thing out there right now and they have black-out drapes to match.  I really hate PB Kids with a passion because I think they charge way too much for things, but when they have what you want, what are you going to do?


I am super excited and will get the room cleaned up this weekend while B is out-of-town.  A neighbor will help get the bed off the frame (we’ll put the mattress on the floor for now for Matthew’s transition to the big bed next month) and I’m moving the dresser out and hoping our friends come to get it.  If not – it’s going on freecycle!  Then it’s just me and my imagination, working on measurements and getting things ordered!  It sounds like I can have this all wrapped up within a couple of weeks if I get on it now.

So excited!

Oh, and I’m hoping B agrees to paint the walls a nice light blue.  Our entire house is brown and khaki – and it’s time to make some much-needed changes!


THIS Moment in Time (#17)

We are at the Exotic Driving Experience at the Disney Speedway. Matthew and I are waiting for B to come out and drive a super car, the Nissan GTR. This isn’t a dream that I think B has even had, because I’m not sure he ever thought it would be possible. This is one of those things that you make your husband do as he’s vacillating back and forth on the cost. I was insistent!! There was no question in my mind – B was going to do this!

So here we are, waiting, and watching others ride along in a NASCAR, which Matthew thinks is pretty awesome!!!


Travel Day – Oh Boy!

I’ve decided to try to chronicle our trip for Matthew for when he gets bigger – since he won’t remember this trip at all.  Please feel free to skip these posts as I know that other people’s vacations are far from exciting for other people to read.  HA! 

Oh, Matthew, what a day we’ve had!

We were so ready for this trip!  You and I were packed three days ago, but our bags and belongings were planned long before then.  I set out your shorts and t-shirts two weeks ago and got them all washed up and ready to go so that we knew if there was anything we were missing.  Because I buy so many clothes for you a year in advance while they’re on clearance, we didn’t need to purchase anything but sandals.  Hooray!

Daddy and I both did a lot of things prior to the trip to make it go as smoothly as possible.  There were a LOT of things to do prior to the trip, holy smokes!  Below is what we did to make the trip easy for all of us.  Both Daddy and I planned ahead for your happiness on the plane…. we wanted you to enjoy it as much as possible!

  • We took your big stroller due to storage space and planned to just gate checked it at boarding time – having your favorite stroller kept you comfortable, especially while at the check-in counter
  • I got the Britax travel bag with wheels and backpack straps for your car seat so we could drag it and carry it – depending on what we felt like at the time.  That bag had lots of space in it so we used it to store your blanket, food bag, backpack leash, etc. without having to claim another carry-on item
  • I read the manual the day before our flight on how to install your car seat on a plane, and checked out all the connection points prior to leaving the house so that I’d know how to install it very quickly once on the plane
  • I loaded up the car seat manual because everyone insisted that the airline people would want to see the documentation that your seat was FAA approved for airline use
  • Daddy got you a backpack leash to keep you close to us, but to let yourun around as well.  Your backpack leash is in the shape of a cute lion and you LOVE it!
  • I packed yours and my stuff 3 days in advance so that I wasn’t rushing at the end
  • I cut fruit and put each thing in small containers that you could handle on the plane
  • I packed a whole avocado and banana since you love them sooooo much
  • I packed an empty water cup that we filled once we got through security
  • I took a regular size diaper bag and loaded it with your food, diapers, my wallet, ID’s, our boarding passes, and an extra shirt for you (just in case!)
  • In my carry on, I loaded up mini tubs of play dough, a mini etch a sketch, and wonder markers and paper – but we never had to pull those out for you
  • Daddy bought lots of little toys and put them in his carry on and we kept them hidden until we were in the air

We thought about getting you up early today so that you’d sleep on the plane, but I worried that we ran the risk of you not sleeping on the plane, and then you being extra grumpy later on because we got you up early.  So we let you sleep until 7:30.  Once up, we fed you quickly, showered, and got ready!  Daddy loaded up the car with the bags that we all had packed and ready the night before, and I made sure not to forget your sound machine and favorite blanket!  We got Lily loaded up to take her to the vet (spa) and you sure enjoyed taking her in the car with you!  We left the house just 12 minutes after I’d planned, so I was pretty happy with that.

We got to the airport and Daddy and I executed on the plan I’d come up with with help from my mom friends who have travelled a bit with toddlers.  Daddy and I talked about my plan the night before, so we were set and ready to go once we got to the airport.

  • Daddy dropped us off at the airport drive, put you in your stroller, and unloaded luggage while I bagged up your car seat.  I hadn’t practiced the process of bagging up your seat, and that was tricky, but we got it!  I put your car seat on my back and we were off!
  • You and I waited inside for Daddy to park the car.  This worked out great because the line was long, and there were ample things for you to look at.  Daddy met us just as we were getting ready to check our 3 checked bags, so that was perfect (and went according to PLAN!)
  • At security, I went first and got out all of our liquids ready for inspection (your food pouches count as liquids, so we had to have pouches that were 3 oz and no more) and unloaded stroller.  The folks at the security line were SO helpful!  They offered to take your car seat from me and also the stroller for a hand-check, which meant we didn’t need to deal with it.  Daddy kept you while I finished unloading stuff and then I took you through the scanner.  You waited like a good boy for me to come behind you.  HA!  Daddy went to get your stroller and car seat while I reloaded bags with the leash attached to you.  That was AWESOME!  We loaded up the stroller and were off!  It took less than 5 minutes
  • We kept you on the leash but let you run wild and look at the planes and trucks!
  • At boarding time, I went first with your car seat to get it installed and ready for you.  I am so glad I prepped the day before on how to install it, because it would have been hard not knowing what to do!  And for the record, we were asked by 4 people if your car seat was FAA approved, and it was so handy just pulling out the manual, open to that page, and presenting it to them for inspection.
  • Daddy brought you on the plane once your seat was installed.  You were so excited to see your seat that you hopped right in!  We strapped you in and you were ready to go.

You did fuss on the plane here and there, but we gave you toys throughout the flight and you were just fine.  You even fell asleep!  We did feed you on the way up, so that you were swallowing and clearing your ears well, and then again on the way down.  Your ears didn’t seem to bother you at all.  You were just so good!  Once we landed, Daddy took you off the plane to get your stroller and change your pants while I loaded your car seat back up in the bag – and that was it!  Your first flight since you were 8 weeks old was a success!

Daddy went to get the car seat while you and I got luggage.  Daddy got your seat loaded up and you were such a good boy during the drive – but you didn’t fall asleep at all.  We got to the resort and you LOVED it!  You still weren’t done exploring the condo when it was bed time – you just loved running around so much!  You enjoy opening the main door way too much and we need to keep the safety lock on it so you don’t escape.  You watched the kids playing in the pool 12 floors below and you thought that was a hoot.  Your favorite part though?  Your favorite part so far is that Curious George came with you for the trip!  Daddy bought a special cable to hook his Surface up to the TV and we can freely stream CG all day long, if needed.  It’s like you’re still at home!

We did grab dinner and groceries, and you had a great time at with Daddy while I got a few things (divide and  conquer!).   You watched some CG before bed time and then we did our normal routine in your own room here at the condo – and you went to sleep without a peep.  I cannot believe it!  I know you’re super tired, but still!

So I would say that your first day of vacation is a success, my handsome boy!  You made things so easy for us, we can’t believe it!

Tomorrow, we go to the Magic Kingdom!  You’re going to LOVE it!

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Quick Updates!

It has been a while since I’ve blogged – we’ve been super busy.  Between my grandpa’s funeral and getting ready for our trip, it seems like there’s never a moment to just sit and “do nothing.”

Because Matthew will wake up in a matter of minutes, I’m sure, I’m going to do a big bullet list update.  I apologize in advance for this 😉

  • B was out-of-town all last week until last Friday, and goodness was his return wonderful!  Matthew missed him like crazy but also wasn’t surprised to see him Friday afternoon when B went in to get him from his nap (he came home while Matthew slept).  This made me feel WONDERFUL knowing that Matthew was secure the whole time, knowing that “Daddy will be back soon.”
  • We spent the weekend running errands for the trip, and also found some time to meet B’s mom for lunch on Saturday.  It was nice to see her – Matthew puts on quite the show for B’s parents because they truly focus on HIM the entire time we’re with them.  It’s fun to watch!  It is not like this with my parents, which is sad.
  • We went home Sunday for my grandpa’s funeral and the visitation and funeral were very nice.  There is a whole post to write about this, as my parents are just so strange and handled things with little to no communication, leaving all of the grandchildren confused about goings-on for the weekend.  There were some very disappointing moments, but all-in-all, it was wonderful to see the family come together to send Grandpa off.  He looked terrific, and it felt good knowing that he’s with my grandma in heaven right now!
  • Lily (the cat) seems to be doing just great – as if there’s nothing wrong with her at all.  I forget that she’s a possibly very sick kitty.  I’m having a hard time believing it.  😉  She’s snuggled up to me right now and loves spending time with all of us, including Matthew.  I am not worried about her dying while we’re gone.  Not at all.
  • We go on our trip TOMORROW!  I have never been so prepared for a trip in my life!  Matthew has been packed for over a week and I’ve been packed for days.  Everything is ready to go – we just need to get there!
  • I think we have a name for BB2.  YAY!  On the drive home on Sunday, I asked B if he could commit to a name that he really seems to like.  He agreed as long as we can change our minds if something else jumps out at us (it won’t – I don’t believe it’s possible).  BB2 will be “Bryson Lawrence” or “Bryson Theodore” unless something else grabs our attention.  “Lawrence” is my dad’s name, and his mother’s maiden name.  “Theodore” is my paternal grandfather’s middle name and goes back a long way in the family.  Tough decision.  I wanted to name BB2 “Theo Lawrence” but B said no  🙂
  • BB2/Wilson/Bryson is very active – way more active than Matthew was.  He’s beating me up on a regular basis.  He is all over the place and likes to make his presence known and remembered!
  • B scheduled a “man trip” to Kentucky with his best friend (men don’t call them best friends, but I do!) the weekend after we get back.  I am really excited about this!  He needs a road trip desperately – and he needs to just go with no commitments and reservations to be held to.  I expect him to come home VERY happy!
  • I MUST get started on figuring out the “room situation” for the boys the week after we get back.  Move Matthew into a new room, or put BB2 in the new room?  I prefer to move Matthew into a new, awesome room!  Lots to do… lots to do…
  • A HUGE thank you to all of you who have left such nice, supportive comments on both my Lily and Grandpa posts!  This community is so wonderful, so caring, so important.  I appreciate every word I read from all of you.  Thank you!

And in the spirit of quick lists and updates, here are some photos of the most recent happenings in our house.

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A Quick Update for my “Cat People” and “Pet People” Followers ;)

I got a call from the vet today – and he left me a voicemail with a very upbeat tone.


So I called him right back.

We repeated blood work on Lily on Tuesday and the results came back almost identical (super high calcium, everything else perfectly normal – even her blood sugar implying that she is in remission with her diabetes).  Dr. Dan (the vet, not my therapist) told me that he “just isn’t convinced that this is definitely cancer, so (he) called an internist for another opinion.”  I love this vet… he is such a terrific guy!  Anyway, the internist agrees that something else may be going on instead of lymphoma and wants Dr. Dan to run a special blood test to look for the “something else.”  They are looking for something to do with her thyroid, because it just doesn’t make sense that only her calcium would be elevated if worse things (cancer) were going on.  A big factor in this is that Lily is acting perfectly normal – loving, happy, hungry, thirsty, using her box regularly, spending time with us and her other kitty friends, and tolerating Matthew’s affection.  Dr. Dan says that this type of behavior is not normal for a cat with aggressive cancer.

Now – I know we’re not out of the woods at all.  I know that she very likely could have cancer, lymphoma specifically.  But this is good news.  I am cautiously optimistic (man alive, I learned and lived that term going through all the IF 3 years ago!) that we may not be dealing with cancer.  If she does have a thyroid issue (and I can’t remember what he specifically called it), it will need to be controlled which will be complicated and difficult, according to Dr. Dan, but it’s manageable.

I am good at managing sick kitties.  Lily never missed an insulin shot when she required them twice daily.  My prior cat, the BEAR, never missed a daily heart pill.  I can manage whatever they throw at me.

So – this special test is being run while we’re in Florida and Dr. Dan said that the timing is fine – that we’re not pushing things by waiting a week.

He even chuckled on the phone with me.  Because of this, I’m feeling pretty good!