I am thrilled to be back on the blog today! Maybe not so thrilled to be back in the snow and ice of Ohio, but I am excited to be back in the swing of things! As may of you know, I went on a 7-day cruise last week. If you didn't know, you might not have realized it either because I scheduled out a blog post here, Manic Monday posts for Classroom Freebies, and all my Facebook and Twitter posts for the whole week ahead of time! I knew I would have no Internet at all for almost 10 days, so I really had to think ahead on that. Who says you can't be in more than one place at a time? lol
I brought back some wonderful pictures (I might be biased of course as I took them) which I have posted below. And then after the recap, I have some 2013 news which might pique your curiosity as well. Enjoy!
First up, we had to get out of the state and FAST as there was a blizzard hitting our area. It slowed us down quite a bit, but we were able to finally get out of the white stuff.
We made it to Fort Lauderdale and the sun was a welcome sight! Our hotel room balcony was overlooking the Intercoastal, as well as this super fun drawbridge that allowed yachts to come through pretty often. My little one was ecstatic every time we heard the announcement that the bridge would be opening.
No trip to Florida would be complete without catching up in person with one of my blogging BFFs! This is a picture of me, my hubby, a family friend of ours, and Denise from Sunny Days in Second Grade and her cool hubby as well! Sorry for the blurry picture. Apparently the waitress was not fluent in iPhone picture taking, but it will do fine as is. :)
After a fun two days in Lauderdale, our ride was waiting for us! We sailed on the Princess Caribbean. We have done a lot of cruises in the past with Princess, Royal Caribbean, and Carnival. This was my second Princess cruise.
Here is my oldest on the top deck before we set sail.
First stop was Curacao, which is about 40 miles away from the coast of South America and very close to the equator. Beautiful buildings! I also learned that the island students pretty much have the same school year calendar as most of us, but they have a week off in October, 2 weeks off in December, and 6 weeks off in the summer. They wear uniforms (pants and polos) and only go to school from 7:30 am until about 12:30 pm as the schools are too warm to continue teaching later than that. Pretty interesting...
Our next port of call was Aruba. I think I want to move there. :) This was my very favorite image which captures the tranquility of the sea.
On one side of the island, there is nothing but waves, wind, and cacti galore. It is here that you are supposed to stack a rock on top of another and make a wish. Here are some of the rocks stacked up on top of lava rocks. There were stacks everywhere here.
Here is my little man stacking his own too.
We also visited an ostrich farm at the request of my daughter. I learned that ostriches can maintain a running speed of 45 mph for over an hour! They were giant birds for sure.
The California Lighthouse and a view from a high spot on the island.
Back on the ship, I snapped a picture of a boat in the water next to us. The color of the water is truly unbelievable - and none of these images were enhanced at all.
Our formal night picts. Sometimes it is fun getting dressed up as the life of a blogger normally includes attire mainly consisting of sweats. lol.
Ahhhhhh - I seriously cannot wait to go again!
With that last picture in mind, I had a ton of time to relax, unwind, and get the creative juices thinking again. And I have mapped out some new ideas for 2013 that you might be interested in as well. :)
I took many of the suggestions from fans who filled out my survey where I asked for some input, as well as ideas that were given on several Facebook posts and can't wait to share some new materials with you. While I don't want to ruin the surprises, I can tell you I have decided to limit the amount of printables I am creating to only a few here and there (with freebies always thrown in of course) as there are a ton of those out there right now. I do plan on offering resources that will be in a different format and - hopefully - will make your life easier in the process. :)
Oh - and did I mention the weekly TV Show "The OC on TV"? Stay tuned for more details about that one! Make sure to subscribe to my newsletter on the right sidebar right here at the website for all the latest info!
Ok, I have talked your ear off enough and I need to get back to creating! A vacation can do wonders for you, can't it? Where is your favorite place to unwind when you get a chance? I would love to hear in the comments below.
Talk to you soon!