Taking a Spring Break

Some days are just perfect. Some days remind you that everything WILL be okay. 
This is one of those days for me and I got to see my family enjoy an old school diner and laugh together. It's nice to have reminders about how good life really is. 

Slow it down...

Today I found myself muttering the words "I need a vacation". I immediately started wondering what that means. Does that mean I need a break from my life? Does that mean I am not appropriately handling my stress and my problems? At the end of the day does the need for an escape mean that I could be doing better?

 I don't have answers to any of those questions but I do know that I have suddenly, over the course of the last month, begun to feel like time is ticking by at rapid speed and I have moments only to try and right myself-- to take a break or take a breath or have a drink with my girls or even watch television. I try, I do, to take time for myself for my relationship with my husband, but I am just going 100 miles an hour at all times and it doesn't always feel good.

How is it April already? Why does it still feel like Christmastime and Easter has already gone by? Is this parenting? Is this being an adult?

How do I slow things down?

Lessons from a Lost Soul

This morning, I woke up before my alarm, too early to do much besides overthink and scroll around social media. I stumbled on a picture of Marilyn Monroe and one of her many quotes she is often credited for but certainly did not say. I got to reading up on celebrity misquotes and also some of her real quotables that we never seem to hear or see slapped on motivational instagram pictures ( "It's nice to be included in people's fantasies but you also like to be accepted for your own sake"). As I read Marilyn fan comments as well as those from haters, I saw just how easily it is for one person to think you are a "drug addicted whore who wouldn't be remembered if not for her suicide" and another to think you are a "shining star and forever symbol of old hollywood glamour and beauty". Not only are each of these human beings completely entitled to their feelings and opinions, but they are not really wrong.

Shes been long gone and also is long remembered for BOTH her roles as a celebrity movie star and her infamous affairs with other celebs and even presidents. While I don't think we need to really use words like "whore" no matter what our views of promiscuity is, I can see why someone is annoyed that she may be being given credit to profound and thought-provoking quotes. Above all else that the example of Marilyn implies, and above all the other implications of bringing up this topic, I could not help but project my own life and my own life experiences on this thought. And I really found myself contemplating this morning as I got up and got ready for work...

Can we really ever control other people's perceptions of us? 

I have struggled with not just my ex husband but also with my husband's ex wife, who both fixate on caring more about how they are perceived than how they act. They put so much weight in that and so much stock in the idea that if people THINK they are good they don't actually have to be good people. On the flip side of that, I have often been bad-mouthed and scapegoated by BOTH of these individuals and have worried about how the misinformation they were feeding people to villainze me would create a false perception of who I truly am to the people they choose to talk to.

After thinking about the idea of Marilyn as America's Drug-Addicted Sweetheart who may have used her body to reach fame, I wondered if any of it mattered. Was my friend Amanda correct when she told me "Anyone who will believe that bull shit isn't worth your time. Plus, trust me, people know [her] and they can tell you are a good person even if they humor [her]" ? I think she is right but I often find myself needing reminders of it. I think that the real truth of life is this:

You cannot control the character you play in someone else's narrative. You can only make sure your story is a good one.

Petunia Pickle Bottom + Disney = a Parent's Dream Come True!

Late this winter I reached out to Shop Disney in hopes of getting to try out one of the many new amazing luggage and bag collaborations that they have right now. I knew I needed a bag that could meet my family's needs this summer but I was not sure what to specifically request and after I got speaking with my wonderful contact there she said "I know just the thing!" and a few days later, wrapped in magical tissue paper my Petunia Pickle Bottom backpack arrived.

 This beauty features adorable whimsical sketches of Winnie the Pooh & Friends and immediately wowed me! I have never considered using a diaper bag for my summer adventures with my "big kids" but just as easily as I opened the bag up did I see how useful the sections were! The side bottle pouch fits a bottle of sunscreen PERFECTLY and the included changing pad and wipe containers were great for us because I still pack wipes and the changing pad is great for the kids to have to sit on when we are on a law that is wet or dirty! By far, however, our favorite feature is the insulated bottom!!! 

We tested this beaut out on a day trip to the Bronx Zoo. We are NY Wildlife Conservation Society Members and are going to spend a lot of time enjoying the parks this summer. We were able to pack lunch, snacks, and drinks for 4 children, 3 adults, and a toddler in this great cooler section! It was a HUGE hit for all of us. My husband actually told me that he was "excited to use this bag in Disney World" this July! 

Look out for more of our adventures with Pooh & Friends and Petunia Pickle Bottom this summer! And be sure to check out their Mickey & Minnie collection as well! 

LeSportSac and Expedition Roasters GIVEAWAY!

As we kick off a cool post-wedding pre-honeymoon Disneyland trip report I am so super stoked for our first contest with some awesome sponsors who were willing to send me some great items that are both on my personal "favorite things" lists AND awesome for Spring Break adventuring or planning your summer vacay! I am working with one of my favorite bloggers, Melissa from Rolling with the Magic!

The contest is open to residents in the continental United States ONLY and features the following prize pack (a $110 value!!!):

Enter Here: