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Entries in celebration (31)


What's Your Sweetest or Sauciest Dining Out Experience? is celebrating dining out with a Sweet vs. Saucy contest


We all know that big things can happen when you are out to dinner. We celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, engagements, and other big life moments with our family. We also experience blind dates, connections with lost loves, and a few moments we'd rather not have captured on film.

If you are brave enough to share your Sweetest or Sauciest dining out moment, you just might be rewarded. Visit the Facebook page to share your Sweet or Saucy dining moment and you might win $1,000! Hurry though - you have to have your story uploaded by October 21, 2011.

Check out the Sweet vs Saucy how-to video here:

My Sweet Dining Out Story

I did my own video to capture my sweet dining out story that I'm going to enter. What do you think?

Share your own and share the prize if you win...with me of course!

Disclosure: as a thank you for spreading the word about the contest I am going to be compensated with a gift card and movie tickets. All opinions are my own and this post was neither reviewed nor approved prior to being published. I purchase certificates on my own and my sweet story is a true story and if I win $1000 I will be sure to share the news with you!


Happy Valentine's Day! Our song to us

This Valentine's Day we celebrated with a family dinner - normal for us - and everyone exchanged cards and took turns opening them up.

We also had cake.

Not just any cake

This Valentine's Day we had Ice Cream Cake from Carvel!!

Em went to a birthday party at Carvel where each child got to decorate their own mini ice cream cake to bring home. Not only did they have fun but...

can you think of a better goody bag???!?!?!?!

One that you EAT!

No plastic crap to toss out!


It also inspired a song...and candles:

Want your own?

Here's a coupon for a Carvel ice cream cake so you can enjoy one too!

Now just come up with an excuse to celebrate with one.

Hope you enjoyed your Valentine's Day surrounded by love,



Today is the first day of the second half of my life.

Wait, I think I have one more year to use that headline. But I came up with it this year so, I used it.

Today is my birthday.

Today I turn....

wait for it..

wait for it.






Thirty-nine (39),

or, one-year-away-from-forty as I will refer to it for the next few months.

Me and Dad the day I was born.

I remember turning 29 and it didn't bother me at all. I don't think 30 bothered me. 35 put me in that new age bracket...35-39 and that sorta sucked.

But turning one-year-away-from-forty is particularly annoying for several reasons:

1) The WAIT to turn 40 is probably worse than the actualy 40th birthday

2) I'm not YET 40 but have hit a new age bracket and my insurance broker is charging me about 15% more

3) If I'm lucky to live to be 80, it means I'm on the down-hill slope of my life. And downhill means you start to gain speed, and lose control and about the only thing you can do to avoid hitting smack-dab into a tree is pray and pour a glass of wine so you don't feel the moment of impact.

The good thing about being one-year-away-from-forty is that I've learned a lot, know more about who I am and what I want, and the adult acne seems to finally be leaving. Of course it's replaced by grey hair and wrinkles but they have stuff to fix that.

Hey - I have an idea! Maybe I'll treat myself to some of that stuff for my birthday!

Or maybe I should wait one more year.

Me and Mom a few months later.

Anyway, who's joining me in a glass of wine for the ride down?



July 4th and the community that gives me goosebumps

I love my neighborhood.
If you are one of my neighbors reading this, consider yourself loved...even if we occasionally disagree.
I love the sidewalks.
I love that kids play outside, sometimes in the street.
I love that we can walk just a few blocks and hang out with friends.
I love that a 4th of July parade and celebration is thrown together using email and everyone's willingness to contribute.

It gives me goosebumps.

Powered by Whrrl



Why you should celebrate a birthday at Disney

Goodies from the In-Room Celebration (read more below!)

You've already seen how I'm a complete sucker for Disney Magic.
But what made this trip extra special is that the Twofer turned 6 our first day at Magic Kingdom. We had planned this to take advantage of Disney's "Free on your Birthday" promotion thinking th
is was a real twin discount!

What I quickly learned is that a birthday at Disney is more than free admission. In fact, if you pay your admission (as we did because we bought the dining+room+park tickets package) there are other very cool options to choose from!

Birthday celebrants get special treatment at Disney

If you decide to spend someone's birthday at Disney be sure to a) bring evidence like a driver's license or stamped birth certificate and b) TELL EVERYONE.
We told the folks during check-in and receive our first (yes, we got more than one) surprise bouquet of balloons in the roo

We told the folks at the park entrance and they issued each girl a special birthday button that also had their name on it. This button alerted the staff and other patrons who promptly shouted "Happy Birthday L! Happy Birthday M!" as they walked through the park. Disney characters look for people with these special buttons and make a point to come over to them during the parades. AND, each girl received a separate dessert during lunch at Cinderella's Royal Table with a candle and lots of chocolate goodness (FREE and tasty!).

Birthday Options if you choose not to go for free

First thing we did upon entering the park was head over to guest services (same people who gave the girls their buttons). I presented their birth certificates and told them we had already paid for our park tickets but had heard there were other options. Here they are:

1. Birthday no-return Fast Pass!
Deets: this is the golden ticket o
f Fast Passes. Basically it's a separate card that you can insert into the Fast Pass machine and in return you get a ticket that allows you to get in the Fast Pass line immediately! No return means you don't have to come back to that ride in an hour or later. You get right in the FP line and for us that meant no more than a 10 min wait!

You can only use the Birthday FP on 6 rides and they give you a list of two groups to choose from (pick 3 rides from each group). However, the list had all the rides we wanted to go on at Magic Kingdom so we were thrilled. Plus, we could still use our room key to get 'regular' Fast Pass t
ickets (with return times) which we used in the early morning. Also - the birthday Fast Pass is good for up to 5 people including the birthday celebrant. That means most families can enjoy the benefits.

2. Gift card good at any Disney hotel, park or downtown Disney gift shop!
The gif card value for a child ticket was $63
.00. This was a terrific thing to have because we knew we would not have to say NO all weekend long to every item they picked up in every little shop. Not only did we not have to say NO, we didn't have to feel the pinch of the wallet coming out when we did say YES!

TWIN Discount Alert: Because we had twins we opted for one of each - one birthday Fast Pass that covered our entire family, and one $63.00 gift card which, if you continue reading, ended up being a treat for ME!

Disney Florist and the "In-Room Celebration"

OK, here is the 'sponsored' po
rtion of this post. It was not my intent because all of my other Disney posts have come straight from me as I surprised the girls and then planned the trip. However, I did reach out to the Disney staff and explained that I was going to be down there covering the Free on Your Birthday with my twins, and that I've been generating a lot of interest from my readers and Twitter friends, and was there anything else I should look into while I'm down there? (pretty much that exact run-on sentence too)

It was then that I was offered the In-Room Celebration to help us celebrate the girls 6th birthday. HOLY MOLY ON A CANNOLI!

This package consists of 5 huge, bright-colored boxes stuffed with goodies and left as a surprise from Mickey and the Gang (Minnie, Donald, Goofy and Pluto).
Needless to say, we were speechless.

The girls, however, were SCREAMING with 11:30 in the evening. Whatever exhaustion they had felt from dealing with the rain, the wait for the bus, and the ride back to the hotel was gone. Just. Like. That.

If you are planing a birthday at Disney all I can say is GO FOR IT. GO for some kinds of in-room surprise, even just the balloons. My kids were thrilled the first day thinking that Mickey had snuck into their room to deliver the balloons. (They were crazed when they got this mega package!) But the surprise is what made it all so special.

And when all was said and done the girls had enough Disney goodies that my husband suggested I spend the gift card on myself. Which I did.

Read more in this series:
Disney Magic: Now I get it!
Help! Disney World Questions - Need Your Input!
The Twofer Get a Disney Surprise

Enjoying the memories,