Trip to Toronto Part 1

March 2017

When Colt came to me some months ago about spending the weekend in Toronto I was an immediate, without a doubt, YES. Canada has always been on the good ol’ bucket list and Colt was going to be flying out there for a case competition with school. Since Colt was going to be busy most of the time with his competition and school stuff, we invited my sister, Angel, to go fly out with me so I wouldn’t have to travel alone. For the past few months, we’ve been counting down to this trip… it did not disappoint.

We flew out on Friday. I didn’t take the day off from work thinking it would be a breeze to leisurely leave right after school and jet on over to the airport. I was wrong. The whole day was a whirlwind. Deadlines needed to be met before I left work, substitute plans had to be made & set out, there was some drama with a few of my students and a parent called wanting to talk to me before I left. I finally left work only to be met with horrific traffic the entire way to the airport. By this time I was sweating buckets. I was set to board at 5:45 PM and I wasn’t quite sure I was going to make it! I still had to park my car and take the shuttle to my gate! Alas, I made it just fine and all was well. My sister and I grabbed a bite to eat and then boarded our plane. I could finally take a deep breath and leave all my worries behind. Canada, here we come!

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We landed in Toronto close to 11 PM and we had to get through customs and call an uber. For as long a day as it was, I wasn’t too exhausted. I was excited to be in this vivacious metropolis and couldn’t wait to start exploring!

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Since Colt flew in the day before, he and his friend met us at the hotel where we changed and went out to this cute little place across from our hotel where we enjoyed a few night caps. We didn’t stay out too late though because we wanted to get an early start the following morning!

Saturday morning we woke up bright and early to downtown Toronto. The view from our balcony was breathtaking. The weather was a little dreary, it was windy, cold but we were ready to go out and see the sights and the soaring skyscrapers. We had heard that Toronto was the “clean version of New York City” and I definitely agree that it was!

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Saturday we walked the downtown strip, went shopping, had lunch at the Hard Rock and ate some delicious Poutine, watched some talent shows in the main square, did more shopping at Toronto’s largest mall, Toronto Eaton Centre and enjoyed the crisp, cold weather. By evening we were exhausted and ready for a mid evening nap! We headed back to the hotel, met up with Colt and took a luxurious nap. We woke up starving and headed over to this quaint Japanese place for ramen.

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After ramen we ubered over to Madison Avenue Pub. This place was the coolest! There are 6 British style like pubs inside these 3 connected Victorian Mansions! Complete with dance floors, patios and a piano bar! Little did we know that this is also the popular spot for the local undergrads to hangout. It was overly crowded with early 20 something year olds and you literally could not get through the crowds, but still so fun. We were easily the oldest people there. I’m pretty sure I was at least 10 years these people’s senior, but we didn’t let that stop us. We stayed until 2 AM closing time, where we crowded around the piano with the fellow Canadians and belted out Billy Joel’s “Piano Man”. It wasn’t until everyone was leaving and walking down the street trying to catch their ubers when we realized we were located on “Greek Row”. Hah! The cherry on top was the snow fall we got to see right before we left. What an epic night!

Sunday morning we were up fairly early and dressed to make the 10 minute walk to church. We visited St. Michael’s Cathedral Basilica. It’s one of Toronto’s oldest churches and the church of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Toronto. Mass was lovely and the cathedral and its architecture was absolutely stunning.

After Mass, we walked back on this beautiful, sunny, but cold, Sunday to meet up with Colt’s buddies at the hotel and pick up our rental car. There was no time to waste. Next up on our agenda… Niagara Falls! First we headed to “PATH” which is Toronto’s famous “underground city”. There are tunnels, subways, shops, food and entertainment underground. This was basically built to help pedestrians stay warm and safe from the harsh conditions of the winter cold and snow. How neat is that?! We picked up the rental car and headed off on our hour and a half journey to Niagara. Unfortunately, this also happened to be the coldest day of our trip!!!

After stopped traffic and a stop at Tim Horton’s for the world’s worst meal, we arrived at our destination. We were greeted with ice cold winds and dropping temps but we were eager to see The Falls! We walked for what seemed like forever before finally catching a glimpse of the waterfalls. By the time we made it up to the falls, I could no longer feel my legs nor my face. That didn’t keep us from enjoying the views and taking a ridiculous amount of pictures. #americantourists

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Tesla! 

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After the photo op we headed inside for coffee, hot chocolate and to defrost while waiting for the sun to go down so we could see Niagara at night. It was so worth it. At night, the falls light up with all different colors. It was beautiful. How incredible are these natural wonders???

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The Canadian Flag!

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The walk back down to our car didn’t feel nearly as bitterly cold as it had been earlier. Still, we couldn’t wait to get in the car and put the heat on full blast and turn on the seat heaters! I fell asleep instantly once we got on the road. Before I knew it, we were back at the hotel picking up another of Colt’s buddies and onward to our next adventure!

If you made it this far, kudos to you & thanks for reading! I hope you’ve enjoyed following along! Part 2 of our Toronto trip will be up on the blog soon.

Stay tuned!

XO

 

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Day Trip to The Silos

January 2017

January has brought with it less stress and returning our home back to normal. Actually, we just took down all our Christmas decos last Monday…but who’s keeping tabs. 😉 It’s nice to have the house back to its normal self. Everything is back to being clean, orderly and organized. We are getting back to our normal routines and I am finally getting this post up. I have been meaning to update the blog with our quick day trip but to be honest when I’ve had free time, I’ve been taking that time to read, rest and rejuvenate. It’s been blissful. Now on to the deets of our trip!

Christmas break was quickly coming to an end. We were in the final days of our break and we woke up one morning and decided to take an impromptu road trip to Waco, Texas to go see Magnolia Market at the Silos (and were hoping to catch a glimpse of Chip & Joanna!). Like many of you, we are huge fans of the show “Fixer Upper”.  We haven’t been and it has been on our to-do list for quite some time.

It was a beautiful, unseasonably warm day in December. Colt filled the tank up with gas, packed some snacks and we were ready to head off to Waco. Adventuring is our favorite! We were anticipating all the sights the Silos had to offer. When we arrived, we didn’t have to park too far away and we eagerly walked hand in hand up to the entrance.

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It was incredible how many people were there on a weekday. Everyone was so friendly and kind. Someone was even sweet enough to offer to take our picture for us!

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I loved that all the Christmas decorations were still out. It made the grounds that much more festive. It was such pleasant weather to walk around, sight see and enjoy the outdoors. Everything was just so quaint, pretty and perfect!

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We checked out the Seed Supply Store, as well as, the greenhouse. It made me want to buy up all the flowers, herbs and seeds and plant it all. I really wish I had a greener thumb than what I have. I hope this spring I have more time to garden.

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How do I grow my own vegetables and herbs?! I would love to be able to do that. Also, seems like a lot more work than I care about taking on right now. Maybe someday! Plant lady goals.

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After the seed supply store, we walked over and checked out all the food trucks. When Colt used to live in San Antonio, I would go visit him and one of our favorite things to do was to go check out the food trucks and try out different foods. This reminded us of S.A. Food trucks for days. Yum!

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It was a bummer this one wasn’t open! Must go back and give it a whirl! 

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I loved how there were picnic tables for eating, swings for swinging, comfy outdoor chairs and more than enough outdoor games for families and friends to play. Such a warm and welcoming atmosphere.

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Finally, it was time to head in and check out Magnolia Market! Give me all the cotton stems and milk glass vases!

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Can you spot, Colt?!

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How adorable is this little girl’s bed?! Swoon! 

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I had heard from several people, that many of the items were overly priced. Now that I have seen it with my own eyes, yes, lots of items were pricey. I was looking at a wreath when I overhead the gentleman next to me tell his wife, “This stuff is expensive. We can go get the exact same thing at Hobby Lobby!” Which is probably true. Hah. We still bought a few things… “when in Rome…” right?!

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After a long while of shopping, perusing and looking at every.single.thing. We decided it was time to head out for a delicious treat! Off we headed to the bakery building. Lots of people must’ve had the same idea because the line was wrapped along side the building! We were willing to wait. We weren’t leaving without a sweet treat!

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So many treats sold out!!!! 

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These window boxes though!!!

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The wait wasn’t too bad. It was about 15 minutes before we were able to go inside. Once inside there were cupcakes for days! Cupcakes are life!!!!!

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We paid for our treats and headed outside to enjoy these tiny pieces of heaven and sit at the cutest bistro table together. Colt ordered a chocolate chip cookie and I ordered a lemon lavender cupcake!

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Seriously the BEST and tastiest cupcake I’ve had in a long while! Sharing a lemon lavender cupcake, on a December evening, with my handsome husband, was the cherry on top of an already perfect day.

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This was a great day filled all my favorites: shopping, sun, leisure, tasty treats, and most importantly this handsome guy next to me. It was just what we needed before heading back to the hustle and bustle of school and work.

This day was a fairy tale.

This is the Way the Season Starts

December 2016, Uncategorized

Happy Christmas Week, everyone! Wow! How unbelievable is it that Christmas is only 4 days away?! The hustle and bustle of the holiday season is upon us and we have been soaking up every minute of it. We have loved all the chaos this time of year brings. Colt and I are both on Christmas break and I am finally getting a minute to breathe, kick up my feet and blog. Ironic how I just said, “I have a moment to breathe…” Actually, right now I can’t breathe out of my nose. Yesterday, I had to take a trip to the doctors office. I have somehow managed to come down with some sort of upper respiratory infection. It’s like my body knew I was on break and I could get sick. Mouth breathing is the absolute worst! Praying and hoping I’m feeling much better by Christmas!!! I will not let this put a damper on my fun and excitement.

The last two weeks of school before break was crazy! Imagine trying to still teach 19 8 & 9 year olds who are so filled with excitement and joy that they can’t even see straight! I can’t blame them though. Their teacher was just as excited if not more. Our school had a “Breakfast with Santa” one Saturday morning to kick off December. SO fun! We’ve had festive dress up days, holiday music was playing daily in our classroom, Santa’s reindeer cam was on live stream and our classroom kindness elf was bringing us different ways to spread kindness in our classroom, home and community. Not to mention all the sweets and treats my little darlings were bringing me on the reg. Plus, on top of all that, our dear office staff were hosting teacher treats every single day! Cookies, sweets, popcorn, cider, hot cocoa, and more galore! Pretty sure my consumption of treats and sweets exceeded the “healthy limit”. I’m ashamed to say that my self-control has definitely been thrown out the window…

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We found this little guy in our classroom one morning! Randolph the Reindeer spreading holiday cheer! 

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Saturday with my students @ Breakfast with Santa!

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So grateful for my 3rd grade team! These ladies have helped my transition from Kindergarten to 3rd be a smooth one. Love them! 

The month of December has been nothing but fun pretty much the whole month! Some other fun things we’ve been doing this month include:

Christmas Cookie Exchange with the TCU MBA wives. We always have such fun together. Friends and delicious cookies are a must this time of month!

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My parents, my sister, Colt and I enjoyed a Saturday at Bass Hall to see the Nutcracker. It was beautiful as always. Watching the ballerinas on stage reminded me of my own dance “career” as a child and the several times my sister and I were in the Nutcracker Ballet as little girls. Such great memories that I will always treasure.

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After the ballet, we were starving ! Taking selfies in the cold while waiting for valet then dinner!

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Later that night, mom and I had a date to see Andrea Bocelli in concert at the American Airlines Center. His voice is that of an angel. This is our second time seeing him in concert and he was once again breathtaking. His rendition of  Adeste Fidelis and Amazing Grace was incredible!

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This past weekend we went on a double date with our friends Dante and Anna then headed to a Christmas party afterwards. We didn’t get to stay out too late because Colt is taking a winter mini-mester class that started early the next day. Still a fun night though!

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Hanna, Me, Anna, Angela 

Anyone else frantically trying to get all the wrapping finished??? Christmas shopping has been done and I planned on having all wrapping finished by this time until this sickness set in!

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Last night my littlest sister, Al (short for Alexa), spent the night and she cooked dinner and we baked more Christmas goodies.  This is us this morning. Not sure why my face is 3x more giant than hers nor why I look so pale…  We laughed and laughed about this! LOL

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Here are few snippets of some of the decorations I put up in our house. If you’re like me, you find a way to put up as many Christmas trees as you can. This year we added one to our bedroom and I’m in love! Something about the glow of the tree lights at night just makes my heart go pitter patter.

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Flannel sheets and a cute pillow make any bed more festive and sweet! 

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Monday, I enjoyed the first day of break with peace & quiet and sipping hot cocoa in my warm bed.

Cheers to two weeks off from work and enjoying every bit that the season has to offer. Looking forward to spending this time with family, friends and the hubs. We are enthusiastic about no alarm clocks, mid day naps, movies, lounging and preparing for the New Year! (And definitely kicking off this cold!) December has brought so much fun. We don’t ever want it to end!!!

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Hope everyone is having a joyful week!

Tis the season to be merry!

We love you all!