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Carrie Elle

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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The Moments Family Vacations Are Made Of

It's hard to believe that just a few short days ago I was cruising around tropical paradise in my bathing suit, soaking up the sun, and tonight I'm back in Dallas, curled up in bed with the heater on.  I'm happy to be home, but part of me definitely misses the gentle rocking of the boat as I drift off to sleep at night and the excitement of the unknown as we loaded up the kids and headed off to explore a new city at each port.

I was lucky (so lucky!) to go on a Disney cruise last week.  We set sail on the Disney Magic and experienced a seven-night cruise to the Western Caribbean that I'll never forget!  My cruise expenses were covered by Disney, and I went as a blogger for Today's Mama (where I blog about fun things to do in the Dallas area, and I would say a Disney cruise definitely qualifies as fun!).  You'll find information about Disney Cruise Line sailing out Galveston, the fun I had on board the ship, stories about our shore excursions, and more over at Today's Mama.

But I've got a few stories and pictures to share that don't quite fit in my Today's Mama blog posts, so I'm going to share them here.

Here are a few of my favorite random memories from our week at sea.

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Friday, October 26, 2012


Maybe I am dating myself here, but, I used to love my tapes.

Cassette tapes, that is.

I'd pop License to Ill into the tape deck of my 1986 Chrysler and blast "Paul Revere" as I drove up and down the coast with my friends, a cold Peach Snapple between my knees (drink holder?  What drink holder?  Those were for fancy cars!) and strawberry lip gloss so potent you could smell me coming a mile away smeared across my lips.

The other day, I found this on sale at Target.  It was in the clearance bin for $.75.

Of course, I bought it.

I'm pretty sure that kids these days probably don't even know what they are...those funny-looking plastic contraptions taking up space on the cover of a notebook that could have something cool on it, like Justin Bieber (he's still cool, right?) or Angry Birds.

And so, I'll reminisce about the "good old days," when I had a box full of mixed tapes I made from recording songs off the radio (so resourceful we were, back then), and wonder what kinds of things my kids will stop and reminisce about when they're grown and have children of their own.  

Books, maybe?  

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Tuesday, October 23, 2012

The Day I Rocked the Mom Jeans

I did a bad, bad thing.

I wore mom jeans.  All day long.  With little to no shame (depending on where I was).

It was unintentional.  I didn't know they were mom jeans when I bought them.  I mean, I technically should have know that $13 Gloria Vanderbilt jeans from Costco probably weren't going to be the hippest of denim, but they had me at $13.

These are *clearly* mom jeans.  What was I thinking?
Here is their story.

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Friday, October 19, 2012

Turning Into My...Dad??

My dear old Dad (and maybe some other "older" members of the family that shall remain nameless) has inspired a game Charles and I sometimes play.

It's called "Dear Old Me," as in, "Dear Me-When-I'm-an-Old-Person."  It's a way we remind ourselves of the annoying things our parents do in hopes that we can somehow avoid doing these things to our own children when they are grown adults.

For instance, a few months ago we went on a trip, with my dad, that required passports.  Our passports were expiring, and we needed to get some for the kids - so, the entire family needed new ones (and I'll say here that passports are expensive...!).  For, oh, SIX MONTHS or so leading up to the trip, every.single.conversation with my Dad went a little something like this:

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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Interview with a Three-Year-Old

Last week, I sat down and asked Jack some questions, with high hopes of getting a glimpse into the life of a three-year-old.

Mostly, he talked about Transformers and poop, so I'd say it was a success.

Read on for more of life's greatest mysteries, solved (my commentary is {bracketed}, and in blue).

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Sunday, October 14, 2012

Remember That Time I Went on a Cruise?

Some of you may remember the time - just six months ago - when Charles, the kids and I went on a sick cruise.  And I don't mean "sick" in the, "Duuuuuude, that was sick!" kind of way.  I mean, we were actually really, really sick.  You can read about it here if you'd like...but the short version is, we were in Urgent Care the night before we boarded the ship and we set sail with ear infections, eye infections, colds and two grumpy kids.

You can imagine how that went.

So, you might be surprised to hear that I'm dusting off the passports and going on another week...and without Charles.  And I'm happy about it.  Like, really, really, really happy!

Because this is different.  This is so, so different, in so many ways.

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Thursday, October 11, 2012

Pumpkin Fun at the Dallas Arboretum

Today, I took the kids to the Dallas Arboretum.

I have done this every year since Jack was born.  I spend a lot of time picking out the perfect Fall outfits and we head to the Arboretum, which can only be described as The Most Perfect Place to Take Pictures, Ever.

This year they have over 50,000 pumpkins on display.  50,000!

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Monday, October 8, 2012

The Pin That Wasn't Meant To Be

A few days ago, I got an itch to make a cute Halloween banner for the spookification of our house (last year, I was a total Halloween Scrooge and this year things are going to be different, by golly).

As luck would have it, this banner turned out *super* cute, in fact, that I thought I'd turn it into a pin-able blog post with a tutorial and everything.

See?  It's cute.  

But here's the thing about Pinterest: if you're gonna pin it, you need amazing pictures.

And O-M-G it was difficult to photograph this thing!

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Friday, October 5, 2012

Zebras and Emus and Elk, Oh My!

This past weekend, we ("we" being my mom and I - Charles was enjoying himself in Chicago) took the kids on a weekend getaway to Glen Rose, Texas.

If you're in the DFW area and haven't already been, you need to check out Glen Rose.  Seriously, it's the prettiest little town ever and it's got *tons* of stuff to do with the kids.

We had planned on visiting Dinosaur Valley State Park - where you can stand in real dinosaur footprints - but as luck would have it, it poured the entire time we were there (like, from the time we left the house in the morning until we woke up the following day) and outdoor activities were low on our list.  So, we ended up going to Fossil Rim Wildlife Center, instead.

Fossil Rim is one of those safari-type places you drive through, and you can actually feed the animals. Totally right up my alley!  

We could all use some pictures of exotic animals in the rain, right?

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Tuesday, October 2, 2012

My Son, Jack

I feel compelled to write about my son, Jack.

A few days ago, I bought him an Optimus Prime costume for Halloween.

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Monday, October 1, 2012

Fun at the Fair!

When you have kids, every weekend is a busy weekend.  Seriously, just sitting at home is work because kids don't just "sit"'re always feeding/entertaining/cleaning up after/attending to their bathroom needs/etc.

But this past weekend was an *extra* busy weekend.

My mom and I took the kids on a road trip - that included an overnight stay - and then drove back to Dallas Sunday morning in time to meet Charles at the State Fair of Texas for Big Tex's 60th Birthday Celebration.

We were there to honor Big Tex (with a milk toast, par-tay!) and then headed over to the Dairy MAX Dairy Discovery Zone with a few other bloggers for some dairy education and family fun for the kids.

Jack milks an life-size replica of a cow and fills up his backpack with some free goodies at the Dairy Discovery Zone.

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