Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Marando Ranch

Happy Tuesday, everyone! 

We took a quick trip over to the new Marando Farms location called Marando Ranch.  They opened up a Ranch in Davie which is an awesome addition to the smaller location in Fort Lauderdale.

 They have a petting zoo, horseback rides, organic and local produce, a smoothie bar, and even healthy pet food. 
Here are some pictures from today's visit.

I've had the pleasure of meeting their owner, Chelsea Marando, a few years ago and she is the sweetest. Thank you for a fun morning, Marando Ranch! The McGuire girls had a blast. 


Marando Farms Facebook page here to keep up with events and news

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Ava Turns 4 !

I can't believe that I haven't posted since May! 

I know I say this all the time, but I really need to start remembering to post on here more often. I don't want Facebook to be the only thing I look back on one day to record my memories. They have websites now that can turn your blog into a book! How cool is that?! (note to self: must look into that too) 
It is so hard blogging though! For example, right now as I type this: I have Elle trying to climb onto
the kitchen counter for animal cookies and Ava asking if I can make a necklace for her. It never stops. 

Why not wait to blog until they go to bed at the end of the night? Well, I hang out with my husband then. I suppose now that he's traveling more for work, I can designate his away time for catching up on the blog. Blogging is the last priority on the list and you can tell by how well I update it! ha

Anyways, our first baby turned 4 years old !
I look back on these last four years and don't know where they went. I know every parent probably says that but it is so true. Ava will start Pre K this upcoming Fall 2017. 
With her birthday being November 2nd, she will be one of the oldest kids in her class like I was. 
We aren't sure where she will attend Pre K yet, but Mark and I plan on touring some schools soon.

 I am excited and a little sad for this change in our lives. I am excited for her because I know that she will love making a ton of new friends and thrive in school. I am a little sad because being home with both of my babies is all that I have known for 4 years now. I love having them both with me and watching them grow and play together. Elle is going to miss her big sister during the day but that will also give me some one on one time with her. 
I catch myself all the time thinking, "This is our last: September, October, November... with no schools and no schedules to follow." 
 I am guilty of absolutely loving this. I love NOT having to be anywhere at any specific time. It is totally up to us and our mood on any given day to be somewhere at this stage in the game.  I am going to miss that a lot. I cherish these (exhausting) and sweet years at home with them. 

Anyways... back to Ava's party: 
For Ava's 4th birthday party, we decided to go with Sky Zone trampoline park. (big mistake) 

It was fun but the staff was clueless and Ava's poor uncle Luke broke both of his arms that day. He is doing great and is recovering from surgery now. 
I didn't realize how dangerous trampolines can be!
Aside from that, Ava had a blast so it was a success in her eyes. 

When we first arrived, they didn't have a separate bounce area for our party which I was told prior that there would be. I guess they figured out by may facial expression how I felt about that because one was opened for us. (The place was PACKED and we had small kids in our party). 
 Once they did that, I felt much better. 
They jumped, played, and had a great time. 

Ava loved her Peppa Pig themed cake and party favors. She calls her little sister, Elle, "George" sometimes who is Peppa Pig's little brother in the show. She says it in an English accents which kills me. Cracks me up when I hear her say, "No no, George!" in an English accent to Elle. 
Poor Elle is going to think her name is George soon.

Happy 4th Birthday, beautiful Ava! 
Keep being that sweet, goofy, and funny girl that we love so much. 

Thursday, May 5, 2016

The McGuire Family Goes to Disney World

I really cannot express how happy this trip made me.

We started our Disney voyage on Thursday night. We drove up this day so that we could sleep in Orlando and be rested for the first morning that we would start at Animal Kingdom on Friday. 
Animal Kingdom was cute. Ava basically thought we were at the Zoo/ fair. She rode a Dumbo-like ride, met Goofy & Pluto, went on a safari tour, etc. Our friends, The Roche Family, made a trip that weekend as well so it was fun seeing them as well. 

My mom came along with us too! It was so special having her with us to experience the first trip to Disney with the girls. 

On Saturday we went to Hollywood Studios where we watched a Disney Junior Live puppet performance, watched a Frozen performance, met Doc McStuffins & Sophia the First, etc.  

Ava was thrilled to meet Doc McStuffins!
Watching the Disney Junior Live show

Finally! Sophia the First!
After that, we headed over to Epcot with our friends, The Roche family. Here, we met Belle from Beauty and the Beast and saw Snow White. We had some wine from "Italy" and called it a day over some dinner all together which was really nice.

As Sunday morning approached, I could barely sleep. I knew this dreaded "Spring Forward" time change was happening and I was so afraid that we would miss the breakfast inside Cinderella's Castle that I worked so hard to get us into! ( I woke up at 5:00AM *4AM to my body* after a dream that I overslept! After answering a few emails... (that's for another blog post)  I went back to bed. 

Sunday morning was finally here! 
Magic Kingdom day!!!!

We hurried through 3 kinds of transportation that it takes to get to the Castle, but we finally made it! 9:25AM was finally here to unveil the breakfast with all the Disney Princesses for Ava (and Elle ;) 

***Side note: when I made this breakfast reservation, there were only 4 spots available. That was IT. I got the LAST reservation and took it knowing that my mother would not be able to join us during this special breakfast.  Knowing my mom wouldn't want to miss Ava's facial expressions during this meet and greet with the Disney Princesses, I had been calling their reservation number every day to ask if there were any cancellations to fit my mother into our reservation. With no luck, I thought it was pointless to ask when we arrived there...but I DID. 
I walked up to the castle's front check in desk and basically begged the lady to check if there was anyway possible I could get my mother into this breakfast with us. I explained that the infant would be on my lap the entire time anyways and so no one would have to know... (It is all about head count there and not about the actual seating apparently ?) 
 I should also mention that Mark was wearing a FSU shirt and the lady at this front desk wore a name tag that read "University of Florida" under her name.
I realized this after I "begged" and then saw it as she made the phone call. 
All I could think was, "If Mark's shirt ruins this for Ava....."  haha
Lucky for us, there was a spot available and my mom got in! I knew right there and then that Disney made dreams come true after all. haha. 

In we went and the cuteness unfolded. Princess after Princess, Ava was in heaven.

Ava's favorite...


"Elle-belle" was just excited about her birthday cupcake that they brought for her as well as her peek a boo time with daddy.

After breakfast, my only and final request for that day was to have Ava get a royal makeover at the Bippity Boppity Boutique. I came across this Magic Kingdom service while "researching" this trip. For some reason, I was under the impression that reservations were not needed to for this service and that you could just walk right in (silly me). 
So over to the next door in the castle we went and up to the front desk I went again... 

Once the Bippity Boppity Boutique's receptionist asked if we were checking "in" I knew I was in trouble. I asked if I needed an appointment and she explained that they do take them because they fill up so quickly but that she would check if there was any availability.

(Longest 10 seconds ever of me asking the "Disney gods" to perform yet another miracle)

They had a 12:00 appointment available. I shouted, "I'll take it!" before she could speak anymore. 
One hour to kill, and that appointment was Ava's! 
It worked out perfectly!  

Off we went to the carousel next-door in the meantime... 

As we were about to start the ride, Mark shouted over to us, "What's Ava's shoe size?!" 
I answered but didn't know why he was asking. He took Elle while Ava, my mother, and I rode the carousel. 
When we got off, we met him inside of a little store nearby. He bought Ava some "glass slippers" to match her Cinderella dress. Silly me had her wearing neon orange sneakers for her big Princess makeover!
That man thought ahead and bought beautiful shoes for Ava to wear for her big day. 

Get the tissues ready....

I look over and he's propping Ava up on this big chair,  kneels down on one knee to put her princess shoes on and says, "Look Ava, just like Prince Charming puts on Cinderella's slipper."

I melted into a puddle of mush right there and then. Ava was so happy and felt like a princess with her new shoes that her Prince Charming was placing on her feet.
I love that man...

Now that Ava had her new shoes, we were ready for her Princess Makeover at Noon. 
I seriously don't know how to begin expressing the cuteness that unfolded throughout this entire appointment. Liz was Ava's stylist and she was 100% amazing. She made Ava feel special and pampered while making her laugh throughout the appointment. I sat back and couldn't stop smiling. 
Nail time! 


After she was all done, the told us to go over to the store that we were just in buying the shoes and I had no idea why. They said that there was a photographer and I just thought that meant they were linking the set of photos taken of Ava in the boutique onto my photo pass card. 

Well, low and behold, there was a full on glamour shot room going on in that store that I didn't see before! After two little girls in front of us finished, it was Ava's turn to model for the first time. She nailed it ;) 

Overall, if you have a girly girl like Ava for a daughter, take her to the Bippity Boppity Boutique. It was worth every penny and more. 

After the photos, we walked around and enjoyed a parade before we headed out. Ava had fun picking out some new Tinker Bell toys with her Disney money as well as experiencing all of the magic of Magic Kingdom. 

We stayed in Orlando one more night to rest up and get back on the road to get home on Monday morning. 
All in all, we enjoyed ourselves. Even Mark was surprised at how much fun we had as adults taking two small children. Disney World is a lot different when you are worrying about stollers, nap times, getting to attractions on time with crowds, cranky kids, etc. It was surprisingly pretty easy for us to navigate considering we are Disney newbies.

Big Thank You to our friends Jared and Jacki Roche who basically planned that trip for us since they are "Disney vets" and know the in's and out's. Another big Thank You to my mom who came up with us. Not only was she a GIANT help for us at the parks, but it also allowed Mark and I to escape after the girls would go to bed and have "date nights" close by. I loved getting to have my mom with me to get to watch her granddaughters experience Disney for the first time and watch all the cute moments alongside with us. 

Well, that's it for our first Disney trip as a family! I can't wait to go back and see double the cute reactions once Elle is a little older. 

Sorry this post is super duper LATE! We have had a lot going on... a month of visits from family members coming in town, weaning Elle after 14 months of breastfeeding, planning some house projects, and of course, life! ha 
I will be trying my best to post regularly as I would love to get back into blogging more. I love using it as my creative outlet to remember this special time in our lives. 

 Hope you all have a nice day and upcoming weekend with Mother's Day around the corner.