Florida Vacay: Part 2

0C24E311-22A5-444D-B760-4A6A04DC3316

From Part 1: When we got back to the beach house, I decided to go take a look at the ocean for the first time on the trip. It was so nice to be so close! We spent the rest of the day cooking, playing games, and watching movies….and prepared our minds for DISNEYWORLD!

I don’t know if I can explain how many dreams came true on this day. The entire time leading up to it – the road trip to the park, waiting in line to get our tickets, riding the ferry, walking down Main Street, U.S.A – it felt surreal. I kept saying, “Is this really happening??” I’ve wanted to go to Disney World since the very first Disney movie I ever watched, and I can’t thank my sweet parents enough for making this amazing trip a reality. ♥

To tell you the truth, we really didn’t take very many pictures. But I don’t even care, because we got the important ones and spent the rest of our time enjoying ourselves!

697A480D-6277-41EF-A1A2-B42ADB277DFA

703C25E6-EC1F-40EE-82E4-303D8C37E4D7

E9BEA438-D08F-47B1-82A4-F0B1C514499E

Observations:

  1. HOLY CRAP there were so many people, and yet, the park operated very efficiently – we were really impressed!
  2. Even though we had to wait awhile for a couple of rides, the only one that wasn’t exactly worth the wait was the Seven Dwarves Mine Train. But only because it rained while we were in line and they had to close the ride down twice. By the time everything was said and done, we were too invested to just leave the line, so we stuck it out. It was still fun, but not exactly worth 3 hours of waiting…lol. *thumbs down* Other than that, the lines moved relatively quickly, and our second longest wait was for Space Mountain (which was expected, and also the first ride we did).
  3. Dole Whip lived up to the hype! So good!
  4. I literally have no idea how people do multiple parks in one day.
  5. Probably one of the best moments from the entire day was Mom getting to relive her college days and ride Space Mountain again – she never stopped laughing. :)

Funny enough, the place I took the most pictures (besides the castle) was the Swiss Family Robinson treehouse! This movie was a Simma kid favorite when we were growing up, and it was also the first movie Daniel and I watched together, the night we finally confessed that we liked each other. ♥

I know. We’re cute.

We spent the rest of our Florida days playing more games, watching more movies, and laying on the beach. Before Daniel and I flew home, we also got to meet some of Corey’s coworkers, learned how to play Jackbox games (which are awesome!!), and ate some seriously good Cuban food at Mambos Cuban Café. If you’re ever in Jacksonville, you neeeeeed to go there!

F26C8E21-07D1-4C49-8015-48ECC6AAE078

BC860E07-1323-45B0-8E9D-F2E5F56542DD

Ready to go back! Just let us know when to take off work next summer, Dad… ;)

Florida Vacay: Part 1

4F54D1F3-70B9-44B0-8CDE-A2E8BF9090BC

As of this summer, my first trip to Florida is officially in the books! What a great almost-week spent with my family. ♥ We hadn’t been all together since our group road trip to Colorado last year, so our time together was precious and long-overdue.

We stayed in this CHARMING beach house (which Dad has already said he would like to stay at again…!) that was only two blocks from the beach. My brother Corey moved to Jacksonville last Christmas for a new meteorologist position, and he worked at the station a few times while we were there. But he spent as much time with us as he could, and we filled our days with lots of fun outings, including beach trips, exploring St. Augustine, and a day at Disneyworld!

I really enjoyed our trolley tour of St. Augustine. Corey had taken Mom and Robyn when they visited him earlier in the year, but they both liked it so much that they decided they wanted to go back to show the rest of us. Trolleys stopped at 20+ locations across town, and you could hop on/hop off as many times as you wanted to see the sights (and get some gelato, of course).

EC0270ED-21B1-435E-A8E6-BC3186025467

My people.

One particular place my dad wanted to stop and see was the Lightner Museum, a huge historic hotel in downtown St. Augustine. It was filled to the brim with bizarre collections of antiquities – everything from crystal dishes to shaving mugs to musical instruments to pocket watches. The picture above is a cafe now, but when the building was a hotel, it was actually a giant pool!

Daniel, Robyn, and I explored the St. Augustine distillery, which had a very cool atmosphere. We even got to taste-test a few things and try a sip of their bourbon on National Bourbon Day.

We met back up with Corey and my parents at the Castillo de San Marcos – the oldest masonry fort in the continental US. Unfortunately, we were a little too late to go inside, but it was still neat to walk around the outside, and the view of the bay was gorgeous!

B9988B57-F553-411C-A0AD-503122A21389

The Shades were reunited after all these years. ;)

When we got back to the beach house, I decided to go take a look at the ocean for the first time on the trip. It was so nice to be so close! We spent the rest of the day cooking, playing games, and watching movies….and prepared our minds for DISNEYWORLD!

Click here to read Part 2!

Hendrickson Family Photo Shoot

Hendrickson-18

I don’t have anything to say but WOW. This was such a great morning, and although I could write for days about how fun/sweet/loud it was spending those hours with Cromer & Co., I’m just going to let the photos speak for themselves. Enjoy! ♥♥♥

 

 

I still can’t get over how cute the photos of my in-laws are – Christy captured them so well, and she even got Steve to smile with his teeth! ;)

 

Hendrickson-3

 

And just look at these babes… ♥ ♥ ♥  I love being an aunt so much!

Hendrickson-40Hendrickson-47

Thanks again to Cromer & Co. for making our session such a terrific experience! Wrangling 17 people (including three very squirmy littles) is no easy feat, and Christy was a champ. Two thumbs way, way up. You can see more of their work on their websiteFacebook, and Instagram.