Our First 5 Days of 2015

Well hey there, I haven’t talked to you all since¬†last year!

Last year being five days ago, but still! Happy New Year! I hope you all had festive celebrations and fun times with family and friends. All the good F’s.

Besides some lingering sickness (read: hacking death coughs), we’ve been having a great time ringing in the new year in Florida! So much happened, but instead of boring you with a lengthy recap of everything, let’s do this alphabet style. I would like to share the fact that I do indeed know the alphabet. ūüėČ

Ringing in the New Year: By the Letters

Avocado toast // Saturday night’s dinner along with sloppy joe meat and roasted cauliflower

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Beach trip // played frisbee for a couple hours

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Crepes // using Alton Brown’s recipe

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Ducklings // spotted in our neighbor’s backyard

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Ebelskivers // delightful Dutch round pancakes made by my aunt and uncle

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peanut butter-filled aka happiness-filled

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Forecast // looks very pleasant for the upcoming week here in FloridaScreen Shot 2015-01-03 at 8.48.38 PM

Group photos // ’tis the season

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Humbling // doing pistol squats and this leg workout after a week of being sick

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Ice cream // of the cookies and cream variety on NYE

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Jokes // trying to come up with some to incorporate into my Boston University tour guide script with only minor success

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Kansas family friends // who now live in Florida and are like family to us (they came over for NYE dinner with us, and then we went to their house for dinner on Friday night!)

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Luau // Disney’s “Spirit of Aloha” dinner and show was a blast!

(Besides the fact that I had to stand outside due to intense coughing at the end. Two people thought I worked there as I stood outside and asked me to point out the bathrooms. One of them was a little boy who called me ma’am!)

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those dinner rolls would be PINEAPPLE COCONUT rolls!!!

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I spy Madre

Marshmallows // roasted over hot charcoals for NYE s’mores

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Char, peel, eat, repeat

New Year’s Eve // spent at home with family and friends eating pulled chicken sliders, salad, ice cream, and more

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Overnight¬†oats // with way too much peanut butter left at the bottom of this jumbo jar‚Ķnever thought I’d say that

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doughy, peanut butter goodness

Pancakes // green silver dollar¬†banana ones on Tuesday and “Melt-in-Your-Mouth” Bisquick ones on Saturday

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Quiet time // I need to set this aside for at least an hour before going to sleep

Ricola // cough drops are a hot commodity in this household currently

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Spinach in my smoothie // with frozen banana, vanilla protein powder, almond milk, cinnamon, nutmeg

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Typhoon Lagoon // Ben and I spent our Sunday there with our relatives

(There was a WICKED wave pool that reminded me of the huge wave that swallowed the world in the movie, The Day After Tomorrow. It was intense.

Dinner eaten at Downtown Disney, followed by the most difficult mini golf ever at Fairways.)

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Ben: “Again [with the selfies]??”

Upride down // did ten handstand pushups in a row with an abmat underneath my head!

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Visiting Disney’s Hollywood Studios¬†today!

Wawa walk-through // because Ben heard so much about this high class gas station chain

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Xylophones // one of the only practical words that start with X

Zzzz’s // caught some during several naps throughout the week

To all those going back to school and work today/sometime this week, I wish you good luck! You’re all rockstars, so let. it. ROCK.

{Happy birthday to my best friend and partner in ridiculousness, Daliza!!!}

So tell me:

Some letters that describe your weekend!

Have you ever tried Ebelskivers before?

Do you like wave pools?

Are you starting work/school today or later? Or have you already been on the grind?

10 Out of 10

‚ĶI’m not talking about Paul Walker (RIP).

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Even though it IS #mancrushmonday.

I’m¬†giving a 10/10 to these past three days! My uncle has been asking us how we rate every day on this vacation on a scale from 1-10 (10 being the best), and I’ve given everything 7 or higher. Mall day was an 8 and Disney World was a 7.5, but this weekend has shown even higher ratings on my radar!

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Joining the marvelous Monday party on Katie‘s blog!

Friday: Madeira Beach and Bubba Gump

Ranking: 8

This was my first time going to Madeira beach, which is on the Gulf of Mexico side of Florida. The waters are considerably warmer (like, almost HOT) than the Atlantic waters, and the waves are pretty calm. It’s two hours away, so we stopped at a Vietnamese restaurant called Ben Thanh for lunch.

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Grilled pork vermicelli bowl

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Power napping!

It was a perfect day to be at the beach! We swam a bit, collected shells, kicked around a soccer ball, and built a sand castle that someone ended up stealing. Hmph. We didn’t even get to take a picture of it, but it was a fabulous castle. I also attempted handstands. I flipped over three times.

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Once we worked up an appetite at the beach, we cleaned up and walked over to Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. for dinner. “Run Forrest, Run!”

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There are little notches under the cups so that they can hook onto each other. Magic = ruined.

I ordered the gumbo and house salad, and they were very¬†meh.¬†I had about three bites of the gumbo because it was WAY too salty, and the house salad was average. I ended up sharing my aunt’s seafood pasta and Daliza’s mac and cheese (so good!).

Even though we were stuffed, as we were driving home, my aunt spotted a shake shop with a really long line, so she exclaimed: “That’s gotta be a GOOD shake shop!” Sooooooo we went and got shakes there.

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Mint shake for me!

I drank as much as I could, but this thing was huge, so I finished about ¬ĺ of it. Sugar coma.

Saturday: “Staycation” with Daliza

Ranking: 8.5

While my mom took my aunt, uncle, and cousins to St. Augustine, Daliza and I slept in and stayed home for the day. We started with a leisurely breakfast and a flashback movie‚ÄĒ Mulan (aka my hero).

After spending way to much time trying to pump up the bike wheels, we finally got to biking around my neighborhood in the hot sun.

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Daliza said it felt like we were out there for 10 minutes, but we biked for about an hour before coming into the air-conditioned house for a refreshing lunch at 4 PM…Ha. Then we tried to hunt down alligators (by hunt down, I mean take a good picture of them) in the lake behind my house. We found one peeking out of the water!

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Yep, that little thing in the water would be it.

I couldn’t zoom in quite far enough to get the details, but Daliza’s video camera showed that it was an alligator for sure. After a few hours of doing that plus a whole bunch of nothing, we did an¬†hour of Pilates before hunkering down for dinner and more Disney movies. We mini-marathoned it with Hercules and Mulan II.

Sometimes it’s nice to take a vacation from hard core vacationing‚Ķif that makes sense.

Sunday: Orlando Farmers’ Market and Cocoa Beach

Ranking: 10

I finally found my 10/10 day! Yesterday started with an early morning wake-up call (read: I overslept and my mom had to barge into my room) for 8 AM Mass and a little grocery shopping. After breakfast, we all headed downtown to the Orlando Farmers’ Market!

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I was overwhelmed by all the amazing food and merchandise stands there. They even had outdoor yoga classes for $5! Daliza and I might try that next Sunday. Yesterday we were just sampling all the food. ALL THE FOOD.

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We also encountered some fun/ferocious/freaky animals. The swans were trying to eat my little cousin. We even saw black swans!

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After eating, sweating, and repeating, we drove to Cocoa Beach. It was sunny and gorgeous when we got there, and the waves looked a whole lot more exciting than the ones at Madeira Beach. Daliza and I weren’t planning on swimming, so we didn’t bring our bathing suits. However, the water looked too enticing to pass up, so we bit the bullet and just bought new bathing suits there. Worth it! Even though the clouds started coming in and looking nasty. They just made the waves bigger for us!

Apparently there was a riptide, so we all had to be careful and not go out too far. Daliza and I just sang this song as we jumped over the waves.

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All the beach fun wore us out and made us READY¬†for dinner. It was a quick drive to “Thai Thai” restaurant for some Thai and Japanese cuisine. Sushi for me, kids meal katsu chicken for Daliza. She loved it.

Then it was time to head home, finally. But first, we made a pit stop to Abracadabra Ice Cream Factory for some liquid nitrogen ice cream!

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They start with the cream/sugar base, you choose three toss-ins, and then they add the liquid nitrogen

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I chose mint, oreo, and graham crackers for my ice cream concoction. We all thought the ice cream itself was just sickeningly sweet, so most of us didn’t finish. A travesty, I know. That’s enough sugar for the rest of the week.

I’m done. Peace out.

Have a wonderful day, friends!

So tell me:

About your weekend!

Do you like the beach? Waves or no waves?

What do you love the most about farmers’ markets?

Have you ever tried liquid nitrogen ice cream?