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Things to Do

Savoring Risotto At Brio Tuscan Grille

Food, Tampa

I just took a trip to Tuscany and didn’t even need my passport, can you believe it? Brio Tuscan Grille is certainly bringing Italy to you with their flavor packed seasonal Risotto menu. They invited the hubby and myself to come taste their drool worthy offerings and we couldn’t have been more impressed. We were stuffed to the brim and I might be counting down the minutes to lunch so I can eat my leftovers.

Brio Tuscan Grille Risotto Lobster Chicken Sweet Potato Beef Carpaccio Chocolate Lave Cake Bisque Tampa Food International Mall

Now through March 25th, you can savor the creamy taste of Sea Scallop Risotto, Sweet Potato & Chicken Risotto, Shrimp & Lobster Tail Risotto and Salmon Risotto. Sharing our menu below, but you may want to go ahead and dial their number to make a reservation, because it was THAT good! continue reading

Doing The Hula At Drums Of The Pacific Luau in Maui

Travel
 When you head to a place like Maui or anywhere in Hawaii, you can easily get focused on the beautiful beaches and draw dropping hikes to take. Something I’ve found so amazing and intriguing is the people that live there. There is so much deep history running through the land that makes it even more beautiful and the Drums of the Pacific Luau at the Hyatt Regency, which I’m calling the best Maui luau, does an incredible job of telling the stories. We are so thankful they invited us to take part in the tradition so we can tell you about it.

Best Maui Luau At Hyatt Regency Lahaina

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Giving You The Not So Spooky Scoop On Halloween At Disney

Fun With Kids, Mom Life, Travel
​There is this six letter word that we all love and adore…M-i-c-k-e-y. There is also a five letter word we also love and adore…c-a-n-d-y. Add those two together plus some out of this world rides, character meet ‘n greets, pumpkins, parades and all things pixie dust, and you’ve got Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party at the Magic Kingdom. This super family friendly special event is sure to leave your little ones (and you) once again mesmerized by the magic of Disney now through November 1st. I’m bringing you the ins and outs of this night so you can be sure to enjoy every Mickey filled minute!

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​There is this six letter word that we all love and adore…M-i-c-k-e-y. There is also a five letter word we also love and adore…c-a-n-d-y. Add those two together plus some out of this world rides, character meet ‘n greets, pumpkins, parades and all things pixie dust, and you’ve got Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party at the Magic Kingdom. This super family friendly special event is sure to leave your little ones (and you) once again mesmerized by the magic of Disney now through November 1st. I’m bringing you the ins and outs of this night so you can be sure to enjoy every Mickey filled minute!

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Camping At Disney’s Fort Wilderness With Kids

Fun With Kids, Kids Fashion, Mom Life, Travel

There is nothing like the magic that Disney brings to it’s theme parks and resorts, with Fort Wilderness Campgrounds being no exception. From the very front parking entrance where the helping hands told fun jokes to my kids in the back seat as we checked in, to the Chip ‘n’ Dale campfire experience, all the way to the Magic Kingdom fireworks being in view at the beach…magic. This was our kids first camping experience and something tells me it will never be topped. I want to share all the ins and outs to camping at Ft. Wilderness with kids so you are prepared for your visit!
There is nothing like the magic that Disney brings to it’s theme parks and resorts, with Fort Wilderness Campgrounds being no exception. From the very front parking entrance where the helping hands told fun jokes to my kids in the back seat as we checked in, to the Chip ‘n’ Dale campfire experience, all the way to the Magic Kingdom fireworks being in view at the beach…magic. This was our kids first camping experience and something tells me it will never be topped. I want to share all the ins and outs to camping at Ft. Wilderness with kids so you are prepared for your visit!
Camping At Disney Fort Wilderness Guide

Campfire Fun At Disney Ft Wilderness

There is nothing like the magic that Disney brings to it’s theme parks and resorts, with camping at Fort Wilderness being no exception. From the very front parking entrance where the helping hands told fun jokes to my kids in the back seat as we checked in, to the Chip ‘n’ Dale campfire experience, all the way to the Magic Kingdom fireworks being in view at the beach…magic. This was our kids first camping experience and something tells me it will never be topped. I want to share all the ins and outs to camping at Ft. Wilderness with kids so you are prepared for your visit!
Disney Tee With Stripes And Bow Mickey Minnie Mouse

Minnie Tee by Piggy Had Tea

lodging

Tent or Pop Up Camper Sites: These start at $59 per night and are great for the full camping experience. Definitely doable with toddlers, but I’d advise the next few options until they are a little older.
RV Hook Up Site: Starting at $73 per night, these are a fabulous option to get your camping on while meeting in the middle. You have a bed or bunk to sleep in, electrical hook up which means A/C in the Florida heat and sewage hook up. While I don’t recommend anyone going number two in such a small, small space, it’s nice to have in the event of an emergency. There are nice bath houses in each area so don’t worry, no toilet paper leaves needed.
Cabins: Starting at $309 per night, these fall more under glamping, but they are fabulous. We’ve stayed in the cabins at a past visit and they have all the amenities of a hotel, but with a rustic feel. Sleeping up to 6 adults, they make great use of the space and include a kitchen for meals. I hear these days, you can even have groceries delivered so you can make a delicious meal to be enjoyed on your patio.
The Lodge: Starting at $307 per night, if you just aren’t a fan of even being close to anything outdoorsy, the lodge is for you. This is beautiful resort with all the bells and whistles–detailed native decor, multiple pools, restaurants and turn down service of course! *Keep in mind, this is it’s own resort entity and is on a separate location from the campsite, but can be reached by a short boat ride.

​All Disney lodging options or reservations can be reached here.


what to do:

Grab Your S’mores Gear: Join Chip ‘n’ Dale for their campfire sing-a-long and movie nights. The fires are blazing for lots of marshmallow melting and don’t worry, if you forget s’mores supplies, they have a food truck with full kits for $10. They start off the evening with the sing-a-long as the characters mingle with the crowd, taking time to visit with each family, then as it gets dark, transition to movie time, a Disney one of course. There are ample benches and bleachers, but this is a camp favorite, so try to arrive a little early for a great spot. 
Activities For Camping At Disney Fort Wilderness

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Watch The Pyrotechnics: With the resort sharing a lake with The Magic Kingdom, you can catch the fireworks show by the lake at 9PM. If you grab a spot by the dock, the live music feed from the theme park is over the speaker system and the view will not disappoint.  
Fireworks At Lake Buena Vista Disney Fort Wilderness

Take A Dip: Take a dip at one of the pools onsite. The largest pool, the Meadow Swimmin’ Pool, features a 67 foot slide and kids splash pad area. My three year old twins braved the big slide, but mostly got their excitement from going down the mini slides in the gated splash pad area. This pool is central to many other activities like the tennis courts and archery. The other pool is the Wilderness Swimmin’ Pool. This pool is more for leisure, but still meant for all ages to enjoy and even has movies under the stars. If you stay at the Lodge or happen to be dining over there, their largest pool also features a large slide and amazing kids splash pad with a mini flume.
Fort Wilderness Pool Flumes For Kids Camping at Disney

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Get some R & R: Something we never do enough of, so instead of always having a vacation agenda, we leave room for downtime. Some things we love doing: Grab the kid’s sleeping bags, like these from Olive Kids, to stare at the stars, have a picnic on a lawn or just enjoy all the little things.
Kids Sleeping Bag For Camping

Dinosaur Sleeping Bag For Kids

Butterfly Sleeping Bag For Camping With Kids

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Explore The Wilderness: You’re in the great outdoors, so take a long walk along the jogging trails, let the kids get up close and personal with leaves, pine cones or even some good old fashion dirt. 
Get your blood pumping: The grounds has basketball and tennis courts, jogging trails and a sand volleyball court lakeside. For the little ones, there are multiple playground sites, all fenced in for extra safety. If you have a pup, there is even a little obstacle dog park that sits in the meadow with the largest play areas. If you prefer to explore by bike, the Bike Barn has rentals for $18 per person.
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Playground At Disney's Fort Wilderness

Hang With The Horses: For the littlest campers, there are pony rides within the corral  for $8 each. If you head to the Tri-Circle-D Ranch, you can do a horseback trail ride for $55, wagon ride for adults $8/kids $5, or even a carriage ride for $45. 
Horseback Riding At Disney Ranch Ft Wilderness

Horses and Petting Zoo at Fort Wilderness Disney

Head out on the water: Lots of options here–boating in all shapes and sizes. You can head down to the lake to rent large pontoon boats for $45 per half-hour or even hop in their two person mini speed boats for $32 per half hour. If you want to stay in the inland waterways of the campgrounds, you can rent a kayak or canoe for $13 per person with no time limit, but likely the adventure will take about an hour. There are also great spots for fishing alongside the waterway fun as well, so bring your gear!
Get Your Game On: There are two arcades for the gamers to enjoy, cutely named the Davy Crockett and Daniel Boon Arcades. You can load credits onto a card at the arcade, so no need for change.

All recreational activities can be found here.

Magic Kingdom Boat From Resorts Transport At Disney


where to eat

PSA-You will save yourself from having to sell a kidney if you make your own meals at your campsite or cabin. We generally try to do breakfast and lunch on our own, but usually treat ourselves to dinner out. Each campsite is equip with small square grill and large picnic table. We brought lots of non-perishables, but planned ahead on some cold items to make sure they’d keep. If you don’t have access to a stove in your camper, a large griddle or portable stove will do the trick and keep you creative on meal prep. The kids loved watching us cook things in new ways they were’t used to. 

For camping appropriate dinnerware for kids, we chose Re-Play as they are environmentally friendly, BPA free and easy to wash. They have their massive collections (the Sorbet Collection is shown, $110) with everything you’d ever need for a meal, or they break down products into mini sets of plates, bowls, utensils and cups. Most six piece sets are around $18 or you can grab a two pack of plates for $5.99.

Re-Play Recycled Kids Plates and Cups For Camping

Snack Cup By Re-Play Camping With Kids

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Hoop-Dee-Doo Review: A frontier musical for interactive family styled fun accompanied by good for the soul food. Prices start at $64 for adults and $38 for children under 10.
Mickey’s Backyard BBQ: A character dining experience under a large pavilion with all the fixins. Prices start at $67 for adults and $37 for children under 10.
Trails End Restaurant: Old-fashioned Americana flair ranging from $15-34.99 for adults.
Crockett’s Tavern: Walk-up and order dining with items like pizza, wings and nachos. All items priced under $14.99.
Meadow Snack Bar: Located at the Meadow Swimmin’ Pool, this option is great for poolside snacks and drinks including frozen lemonade.
P&J’s Southern Take Out: All the yummy fixins, but to be enjoyed anywhere you please. Prices under $14.99.
The General Store: Down by the lake, this store is a mix of souvenirs, candy and most importantly, Mickey pops.
Don’t forget, you can take the boat over to the lodge and there are additional dining options of varied prices as well. 

​For all dining options or to make reservations, click here.

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Mickey and Minnie Tees by Piggy Had Tea
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getting around

Golf Cart Rental At Disney's Fort Wilderness

Once you get your camper unhitched, you really shouldn’t need your vehicle again. For travel within the resort, the golf cart rentals at $59 per day, you can ride your bike or even take the bus routes that are within the resort only. If you want to leave the park to head to Disney Springs (which is ah-may-zing since they remodeled)  or the theme parks, you can head to the front of the resort and catch the bus system that travels within all of Disney. The bus system wait times are posted on screens so you know how long you have to entertain your littles, but should only be about 5-10 minutes. If you prefer the water route, you can take of of the two boat routes, one of which heads to the Magic Kingdom.
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magical, right?

See, who would have thought camping could still be so wonderful, but that is Disney for you! No detail is ever missed and you are sure to make some incredible, magical memories at Disney’s Fort Wilderness Campgrounds. Be sure to tell us below if we should add any tips to our list! Thanks for reading and hope you enjoy your own magical adventures ahead!
Stronger Than Fear Kids Tee

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Savoring Summer: Kids Fashion Spotlight

Kids Fashion, Mom Life, Tampa
I can’t believe I’m saying this, but school starts in two weeks. Ugh. Yes, this momma is having a pity party. I know I can’t keep my kids all to myself forever, but I love the extra time I have with my oldest when she isn’t in school. I will wipe away my back-to-school-blues (for a moment) to look back on a few of my favorite moments and the cute kids summer fashion attire they were wearing while we lived it up. We still have time to squeeze in a few summery adventures and you bet I will bottle up every giggle, dance party and look of awe I can.

Kids Summer Fashion Curtis Hixon Park Downtown Tampa

 



kids summer fashion spotlight

One of my most favorite summer memories was when I had a date day with my girls to see The Little Mermaid on stage at the Straz Center. We pulled up to the top of the parking garage and it was empty, so this momma set the camera timer to catch the memory and we just danced. We laughed and laughed because we didn’t have any music, but made our own.

I L-O-V-E this new small shop I found online called Denise’s Boutique. Everything is majorly adorable and majorly affordable. I know that was a lot of emphasis, but I can’t say enough good things about their clothes. Although my girls are not afraid to play in the dirt, they also love to be girlie–so this pink off the shoulder to with headband (20.00)  and striped jumper (17.00) did the trick.

Mom Blog Tampa Downtown Mom and Kids Summer Fashion

Straz Center Little Mermaid Girls Clothing Striped Jumper and Pink Top

Tampa Art Museum Kids Fashion Jumper



Downtown Tampa Park Playground and Girls Fashion Top Off The Shoulder

Baby Chelle Leather Sandals For Kids Bow

Boys Graphic Tee Aint No Mama Like The One I Got

Can’t leave my little man out of the fashion fun! He was rocking this Ain’t No Mama Like The One I Got tee (22.00) at one of our trips to the zoo. Remember that affordable part I mentioned above? This tee comes with these light wash, fitted jeans and they are caaaauuute! His daddy may have even wished he had a pair in his size.

Lowry Park Tampa Carousel Zebra Kids Fashion Tee


baby chelle

Kids Leather Sandals Baby Chelle Girls and Boys Styles

These adorable sandals (37-39.00) by Baby Chelle have been with us all summer–that’s huge devotion from a pair of shoes. The zoo, the park, camping and everything in between–they’ve been there. They are super easy for the kids to get on themselves (what?! I know!) and not one complaint about their feet hurting on our busy adventure days. Hashtag mom win!

Mickey Mouse Striped Tee For Disney Trip



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wolfpup threads

Stronger Than Fear Tee For Kids Wolf Pup Threads

With the twins being almost four, this summer had a lot of firsts as they are getting older.  That, and we finally feel (more) in control of our beautiful chaos enough to venture out more with all three. For sweet little reminders, I adore these Stronger Than Fear, Brave Explorer and Live For Today tees by Wolf Pup Threads (22-25.00).

Brave Explorer Wolf Pup Threads Graphic Boys Tee

Live For Today Tank For Kids


the pickled lemon

Giraffe Animal Beaded Necklace For Kids

Is there anything better to wear to the zoo than these sweet giraffe and panda necklaces (24.99) by The Pickled Lemon? I think not. Even the zookeepers and fellow mommas had to stop to see them.

Panda Necklace With Tassel For Girls


freshly picked

Freshly Picked, most known for their unbearably cute moccasins, has branched out into newer styles like these sandals, penny loafers, Mary Janes and even bow moccasins.  The girls love the buttery soft leather feel that keeps their toesies comfy as they run about. Styles run in the price range of 40-60.00 and will transition through many seasons to come.

piggy had tea

Living in Florida often means a trip to Mickey Mouse’s house during the summer. It can be to the theme parks, Disney Springs or in this case, camping at Ft. Wilderness. Given the magic that Disney always brings to everything including a camp ground, these tees from Piggy Had Tea (20.00) were a must. If you have a trip to Disney planned, their store has so many whimsical designs for the kids and even the parents (you know you want to, so just do it!).  Most styles have the option to add a bow, headband or monogram as well.

Kids Summer Fashion Small Shops

Well, if that picture doesn’t explain how much we’ve loved summer, I don’t know what will. We are sad to see it coming to an end, but will savor the memories. We might(well, for sure will) even take some of these cute clothes with us back to school.