We were very lucky to score a great deal at a Disney Resort for the end of January/beginning of February. The All Star Music resort ended up being less than $90 per night and the kids are still both free at the parks since they are under 3. With a deal like that, we couldn’t pass up the chance to relax and enjoy the nice Florida weather while it was snowy and freezing at home. We were lucky enough to get such a great deal that my parents came with too.
How did we get such a great deal? I checked their website a couple of times each week and priced out every week for the next couple of months to see if there was a deal. For whatever reason, each day the prices seem to change for each week at each resort. We had an “up to 30% off” code for returning guests, but you can often get an “up to 25% off” or free dining plan code if you wait until the right time to book. Sometimes it takes a bit of patience and the ability to travel within the next few weeks to get the best deals. Keep in mind that the best rates are during the week, so if you travel Sunday – Friday you will get the best rates.
We have been to Disney many times and have even stayed at Disney resorts a handful of times. We really love the value resorts because they seem to be much more geared towards kids than the moderate resort we have stayed at (Coronado Springs). The rooms are cheaper, and so are the dining options. We have stayed at All Star Music and Pop Century and I would recommend both.
We had nonstop flights from Milwaukee to Orlando and back. The kids did remarkably well. Harrison got his own seat and Micah snuggled up with us. The trip back was definitely harder, but the car ride was the worst part. Harrison had a backpack of entertainment and Micah was mostly entertained by snacks.
Once we arrived, we used Disney’s Magical Express for transportation. This service is nice because you don’t need to get a rental car, and they deliver your luggage right to your room. As long as you plan on staying within the resorts and parks I recommend this service.
We had 4 days of park hopper tickets. We spent the first morning (Monday) at Animal Kingdom and then hopped over to Magic Kingdom. The next day we spent at Epcot. Wednesday we were at Magic Kingdom all day and stayed until the fireworks. We relaxed and spent some time at Disney Springs on Thursday, and we finished out the trip at Hollywood Studios on Friday. We booked our fast passes as soon as we booked our room, so we were able to do most of the rides we wanted to. The last 2 times I was at Disney I was pregnant, so it was nice to finally have a chance to do some of the roller coasters.
Micah slept so much during the day. We took pictures with him all over the parks sleeping in his carrier. It made the day easy and he was happy whenever he was awake! Harrison also took naps in his toddler Tula baby carrier.
Harrison LOVED meeting the characters. He watches Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and Winnie the Pooh at home, so those were really big hits. We did a Character Lunch at Magic Kingdom where the characters from Winnie the Pooh come right to the table (Crystal Palace). We really enjoyed it, but it was the most expensive part of the trip.
We brought a sit and stand stroller, which was a life saver. Both kids loved it and we had a lot of storage space for everything the kids needed. We brought a lot of food and snacks with us to save money, which was also a big help.
Harrison asks us every single day if we can go back to Disney, so I’m sure there will be more trips in our future. It is such a great family vacation and the kids love the magic of it all (Harrison especially). As Micah gets older I’m sure he will love it too.
I would be happy to answer any questions about our trip! We aren’t exactly experts, but we really do love Disney. As always, thanks for reading!
If you follow along on Instagram or Facebook, you already know that we recently made a trip to Chicago for MommyCon/Wear, a natural parenting conference with extra emphasis on babywearing. This was the second MommyCon we have attended and we already have our tickets purchased for next year, because we love it so much. We love everything about it, including the vendors, talks, giveaways, and support from other parents. They have several shows around the US throughout the year and we definitely recommend it to any parents looking for natural parenting ideas.
We started the weekend at the Wear Party, hosted by Abby’s Lane. Our boys loved seeing and playing with other kids, while Ryan and I socialized and filled up on yummy appetizers. The theme of the party was “Keep Doing What you Love” and several amazing women spoke about getting their businesses started and maintaining it all while raising a family. Ryan won an awesome Smartbottoms potty training set for Harrison, including 2 trainers, a seat saver, and key chain. We are very appreciative to Abby’s Lane and Smartbottoms for this giveaway and we can’t wait to try them out.
Everyone who attends gets a gift bag of freebies and coupons from vendors. There are several giveaways at the parties and in the vendor hall. We did not have tickets to the Tula or Cottonbabies parties, but we heard they were great too. Tula Baby announced their newest product, the Free to Grow carrier that can be used from birth to toddler without an insert. We are sad we missed the party and reveal!
My favorite part of the conference is getting a chance to meet and speak with vendors. There is something to be said about getting hands on with products before purchasing them, and the discounts were nice too! I finally got a few things I have been really excited about and have a few more added to my wish list.
MommyCon also offers information sessions that focus on natural parenting concepts (cloth diapering, babywearing, breastfeeding, labor and birth, etc.) I attended a sleep consultation and sessions on crying prevention, car seat safety, and growing your passion into your profession. Ryan attended those talks and a session about being the support in a breastfeeding relationship. There are a lot of sessions geared just towards dads. Each room is set up with a toy box of goodies for the kids to play with so parents can enjoy the talks. The entire schedule is available online if you are curious about what else MommyCon has to offer.
The countdown has begun to big birthday #1! This time last year we were scrambling to get everything set for baby #2 and had an induction scheduled. We were nervous about labor, delivery, and our baby boy. Now he is a happy, healthy little guy that is on the move!
Micah is so close to walking, and it could happen any day now. He lets go of furniture and stands on his own but hasn’t taken that first step yet. Ryan was traveling all of last week and I was so nervous Micah would take his first steps while he was gone, but he held off.
Micah loves music. If he hears music, even in the distance, he starts dancing or clapping. He loves to play around on the piano and has learned to be gentle with it. He also loves to wrestle with his brother, but isn’t quite as gentle with that.
Micah has started to give hugs and kisses. He is starting to say a few words and is working on his animal sounds. Cows say moo and everything else says woof woof!
Micah is staying right on his curve at 22.5 lbs and 30 inches. He has definitely grown quite a bit in length this month but has slimmed down a bit. We are so happy to see him growing so big and healthy.
As far as his kidney goes, he will be having a VCUG (a series of x-rays that watches his kidneys and bladder empty) after his first birthday to assess whether he has grown enough for surgery. We will keep everyone updated when we have more information, but he will stay on the antibiotics until we can get him the surgery he needs.
We had an exciting month with a weekend at MommyCon Chicago and I will post a bit on that later this week. Look for more updates soon and thank you for reading!
I’m one day late because of the amazing vacation we just got back from, but more on that later! Micah is 10 months old!
Micah is becoming more independent every day, which is great. He is starting to have more preference over what toys he wants (usually whatever Harrison is currently holding) and plays independently or with Harrison. The boys actually get along great, but we did have to move Harrison’s train set upstairs so Micah can’t tear it apart.
Micah is also starting to test limits to see if he can walk. A few times now he has let go of furniture and stood alone. He’s still very wobbly but he wants to walk, so I don’t think it will be long. He also loves to dance, sing, give kisses, wave, and clap. He now says “Dog” and “Muah” for kisses.
Micah weighs almost 23 pounds and measures 29 inches. He is such a big, happy boy! Both boys came home from vacation with new teeth. Harrison is cutting his 2 year old molars and Micah got tooth #8!
We took a family vacation to a Disney resort this past week. My parents came along, which was a huge help with the kids and so much fun. We visited all of the Disney parks and spent a day at the pool. It was great! Micah flew on his first airplane and we didn’t have any major meltdowns. He absolutely loved Disney and napped on and off in my Tula carrier. Harrison and Micah loved the rides and shows, but they especially loved meeting all of the characters, including Pooh, Tigger, Piglet, Eeyore, Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, and Pluto. We did a character lunch with the Pooh characters and they stop right by the table, which the boys loved!
We’ve got more pictures on Instagram and Facebook and I will write a post soon with more details of our trip. Even though the kids may not remember everything from the trip, we will always remember how excited and happy they were. It was worth every penny.
We also have kitchen renovations going on and some fun spring time things planned, so check back soon for more updates! Thanks again for reading!
Micah Miles is 9 months old! He enjoyed his first Christmas this month and has learned so much!
This month went by in a blink with all of the Christmas events. Micah did great with traveling, but we ended up spending 4 hours in the ER on Christmas with a high fever. With his kidney issues we had to rule out a UTI. It turns out he just had some kind of bug, but was kind enough to keep it to himself.
Micah weighed in at nearly 22 pounds at that doctor visit and has grown at least 1/2″. He has become really playful and loves to play peek a boo, patty cake, gives high fives, and claps. He also says Mama, Dada, Buh bye, and Yay! Micah cut one more tooth, and now he has 2 up top and 3 on the bottom. He has been pulling to stand and is starting to cruise along the couch.
Micah is working on a full head of hair. He looks more and more like a little boy every day.
Micah also got to feel snow for the first time this month. He got to ride his sled around the yard with his big brother and they had a blast. As much as we love the winter weather, we decided to book a warm getaway. We will be taking the boys to Disney world later this month. The change of scenery will be nice and I think Harrison will love meeting Mickey Mouse!
There are a lot of fun things happening around here and the best way to stay up to date is to follow us on Instagram and Facebook! We’ve got a lot of renovation projects and trips coming up we would love to share. Thanks for reading and we hope to have more updates soon!
This blog is quickly transitioning to a “Mommy Blog” which isn’t really my intention, but it is how I spend most of my day. I promise there are more chicken and house projects going on in the background but I hope you enjoy hearing about my kids too!
When Harrison celebrated his first Christmas we did a little photo shoot and his pictures turned out so adorable. I’m definitely not a photographer, but I get excited every time I get some pictures that turn out…because there are quite a few failures. Today we got some great pictures of Micah for his first Christmas, but also of our boys together.
These are the days I will miss. I have read the blogs about putting the camera down, enjoy the moment, etc. I believe that, I do, but I will also cherish the pictures that show how happy my kids really are. I’m trying to take it all in, but it’s going so fast, as any parent understands. The days are crazy, but I really wouldn’t have it any other way. As a bonus, our kids really like each other for the time being, so I’m going to capitalize on that and get some good sibling pictures while I can.
I hope the season brings you happiness and joy! Give your little ones an extra hug and enjoy these days, as busy as they are. From our family to yours, Merry Christmas!
The holidays sure make time fly. Micah is already 8 months old. This time last year we found out we were having a baby boy!
Micah is as happy as ever and getting his own little personality. If I had to describe him in one word….LOUD. He has a new squeal that he loves to use. He only does it when he is happy, which is only about 90% of the day. While looking back at his 7 month stats I had to laugh…sleeps 7 hours? Um….no. Wishful thinking I guess. We are back to waking up every 2 hours. Harrison is also on a sleeping strike, so night time is a new level of fun. I’m going to miss this someday….I’m going to miss this someday….I’m going to miss this someday???
Micah has been ready to crawl for a little over a month. Right now he gets on hands and knees, rocks, and then bellyflops forward, but he gets where he wants to go. He can go from a crawling position to a sitting position and he has pulled to stand on his toy car this week.
Micah got 2 new teeth this week. He has started to grind his teeth. I remember Harrison doing that when he got his top teeth too. I hope the phase is short, because the sound makes me cringe. He seems much happier now that his teeth have come in though!
Micah weighs about 21 lbs, which is only 7 lbs less than his big brother. He is growing so much and is more and more playful every day. He loves to tackle Harrison and they play together now. Harrison has learned a lot about sharing and is a great big brother. We are so excited to celebrate Christmas with 2 littles this year! Stay tuned for more updates soon!
Hey, hey, hey! Micah is 7 months old! I had an interesting question for Ryan this morning. “I have been awake more in the last 7 months than any 7 month period of my life. Why does it feel like it went so much faster?” This kid is not a big fan of sleep, but I think we have finally turned a corner. He has only had 1-2 middle of the night wakeups for 3 nights straight! Hopefully this doesn’t jinx it!
This month has been a big one for Micah. He has learned to sign for milk, has started to say Mama when he’s hungry, started to wave, and has been getting on his hands and knees and rocking. We’re going to have a crawler before too long. He’s also working on a couple of teeth, but they haven’t officially cut through, so for now he’s just got the 2 bottom ones.
This kid – big food lover. He has even started to chow down broccoli. He has had about 20 foods. He loves chicken, pork, and beef and has had them cooked all different ways. BLW has worked out really well for us so far. Micah can sit and eat dinner with us every night and can eat the same foods. It’s great!
Last week we saw a new nephrologist – the head of pediatric nephrology at the UW Children’s hospital. We wanted to make sure we were covering all of our bases as far as Micah’s kidney, ureters, and bladder go. So here’s what we know:
-Micah has reflux from his bladder to both kidneys, much more severe on the left side. When his bladder fills up it also fills his kidneys and ureters (the tubes that go from bladder to kidney). This makes him at greater risk for infection. Micah has been on antibiotics since birth for this and will continue until we can surgically correct the reflux.
-Micah’s left ureter should look like a small straight tube, but instead looks more like intestines. It is thick, long, and meandering. They call this a torturous ureter.
-Micah’s has renal dysplasia on the left side. His left kidney is small, has a cyst, and has some limit to it’s function. From the tests we have had done so far, this kidney does have at least some function and should not get worse due to the reflux. The kidney is growing, which is a good sign. Renal dysplasia makes Micah at greater risk for high blood pressure, so we will monitor that at every appointment.
-We also learned that when Harrison was scanned they detected that he may have a duplicated system, meaning he may have 2 ureters on one side. This has no negative impact on him but shows that the kidney issues may be genetic.
-We will have Micah scanned again when he is 12-18 months old, but we will most likely be putting off surgery as long as feasible with the antibiotics. As much as we hate to have him on antibiotics long term, the more he can grow into his oversized ureter the better the surgical outcome will be.
You would never know Micah has any kind of kidney issue because he’s the happiest baby you will ever see. He is so full of smiles, giggles, and squeals that he can brighten anyone’s day. My happy Micah Miles!
When Harrison celebrated his first Halloween we took pictures of him in a pumpkin. When we went to pick out pumpkins this year Harrison picked the biggest one he could find. Ryan and I both looked at it and thought, “Micah might actually fit in that one.” So here we are two years later with another baby in a pumpkin.
Micah actually loved it and probably would have stayed in it even longer if we had let him. He is the most photogenic baby.
Harrison helped take pictures, but we got him in on a few too. Of course, it was after nap so Harrison has crazy hair.
I bet you would never know they were brothers.
I’m about a week late again, but I wanted to get Micah’s official measurements from the doctor and his appointment wasn’t until yesterday. I had to do a double take at the scale (much like when he was born) because he weighed in at 20 lbs, which is the size of an average 10 month old. Everything checked out well and he got up to date on his vaccines, so we are all set for another 3 months!
I took his pictures today and he covers most of his banner. He is 27.5″ long, which is near the 80th percentile. He has outgrown all of his 9 month clothes and I’m looking at unpacking some of the 18 month clothes soon. He probably won’t fit in the holiday clothes Harrison wore his first year, but he might fit into the clothes Harrison wore the 2nd year!
Micah has started using his hands for fine motor skills, but his favorite thing right now is pinching. Ouch! He especially likes grabbing our faces and cheeks. I don’t think he understands quite how much it hurts when he pinches the back of our arms so he’s lucky he’s cute.
Micah has started eating solids and has tried about 10 foods so far. He loves sweet potato. He has also tried baby oatmeal, avocado, broccoli, zucchini, green beans, pumpkin, squash, and scrambled eggs. We are doing baby led weaning again and it has worked great for our family. Soon we will introduce some fruits and some meat.
Micah is on the move! He has started to army crawl short distances and rolls if he wants to get somewhere fast. It’s only a matter of time before his is crawling, because he has started to get on his hands and knees.
On another note, Micah spent his first night away from home when Ryan and I took a trip to San Francisco. Harrison and Micah did great while we were gone. In fact, if we could get them to sleep that well at home we would be all set. They adjusted to being back home pretty quick and things are back to normal around here. We appreciated the vacation, even though it was a work trip for Ryan.
Celebrating the holidays with little ones is my favorite. With Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas coming up I am looking forward to making new memories. This is my favorite time of the year! Make sure you check out our Fall Photo Shoot if you haven’t already and check back soon for more updates!