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Leslie

Fall in Hershey, PA – Matching Skeletons at HersheyPark in the Dark 2019

HersheyPark in the Dark has easily become one of our most favorite things to do every Fall. It is something the boys look forward to every year, ever since I took Brooks 3 years ago!

Here’s a look back at our HersheyPark in the Dark moments over the years, including a VIDEO of our fun times there: 2018 / 2017

My Skeleton Onesie / Graham’s Skeleton / Brooks’ Skeleton / Boys Treat Bags

And if you’ve been following along for a while, YOU KNOW I love a good opportunity to do matching costumes – or matching anything really. I saw this skeleton onesie for myself, it was soft and so comfortable – basically heaven – so I knew I had to round up the troops to get our matching skeleton family on! It was warm + cozy and black – perfect for rollin’ around a theme park in the dark! Highly recommend – plus each costume was under $20! Win!

So Hershey does an incredible job celebrating every holiday – they do a great job with everything, period. BUT Halloween is one of our favorites – likely, because chocolate.

Hershey is OBVIOUSLY the most perfect place to spend Halloween – they don’t skimp on the treats!

The boys and I were treated to an incredible dessert reception before the HersheyPark in the Dark festivities opened. All of these cookies, cupcakes and sweet treats were beyond delicious.

My favorite little spot was the Make Your Own Hot Chocolate Station.

So if you aren’t familiar with HersheyPark in the Dark – it happens during 3 weekends in October – November every year. More than 50+ rides and attractions are open during this time, there is so much for everyone to enjoy!

There are also special events happening throughout the park – A Character Glow Party, Hops & Harvest {Beer Garden anyone?}, Creatures of the Night in ZooAmerica and Treatville!

Treatville is a Trick of Treat Trail throughout HersheyPark, ZooAmerica and Chocolate World! My kids LOVE doing this every year and the candy they give out is always amazing.

Side Note: Visiting Chocolate World and riding the Chocolate Tour is always free. It’s so nice they offer part of Treatville inside Chocolate World incase you have younger kids that can’t hang at the park!

Aside from all the rides + treats happening at HersheyPark in the Dark, being inside the park at night is always such a treat because it’s so LIT UP for the season and beautiful to enjoy. We lucked out going on a super mild night and no one event needed coats – another serious win!

So if you haven’t hit up HersheyPark in the Dark yet this season – it’s still happening this Friday, Saturday + Sunday as well as NEXT Fri/Sat/Sun after Halloween to continue the fun of the season AND to get one more wear out of those costumes before the kiddos outgrow them!

I’d love to know if you and your family have every been to HersheyPark in the Dark or if you plan to go! What is your favorite ride or thing to enjoy there this season? Please share and thanks so much for reading!

VIDEO: Day 1 in Iceland – The Blue Lagoon, Brimketill Lava Rock Pools, Gunnuhuver Geothermal area, Reykjanes Peninsula Edge + The Bridge Between Two Continents!

So I am so excited to finally start to share with you our Icelandic Adventure! I think I’ve finally had time to get home, get organized and really digest the incredible time we had while in Iceland on our accidental ‘baby moon.’

We started looking into booking a trip because we wanted to celebrate buying our new home + selling our city home. We also took it as a excuse to getaway after our crazy summer dealing with the move and also our heartbreaking miscarriage. When looking at trips we knew we didn’t want to go anywhere with Zika – because we were hoping to get pregnant soon-ish and didn’t want to have to delay trying because Zika is still very much a thing. Luckily we booked Iceland because we ended up finding out we were pregnant about a month before we left for our trip!

Charles and I were initially looking into France or Spain or Rome – I have never been to any of those places before and he really wanted to go there with me, but when we figured out an itinerary we liked, we would have spent so many days of our vacation as travel days with 20+ hours of flights or trains. I wanted something a little easier where we could enjoy our time away.

Enter Iceland.

My sister + brother in law had been to Iceland last October and RAVED about it. My in-laws had also been a few years ago and loved it too. A quick, non-stop 5 hour flight sounded like heaven to me and Iceland had always been a place I had wanted to go – this turned out to be the perfect time to do it – and I’m so glad we did!

There is SO MUCH we got to see and do – if you follow along on Instagram, you know! I posted a bunch but I am so excited that I was able to get some video footage for you as well. I’m going to be breaking our trip down by day – so its not a million hours long and I can focus on the highlights for each day for the different areas we were in – because we moved around a lot!

So here it is, for Day 1 in Iceland – The Blue Lagoon, Brimketill Lava Rock Pools, Gunnuhuver Geothermal area, Reykjanes Peninsula Edge + The Bridge Between Two Continents! Check out the video + be sure to Subscribe to my YouTube Channel to let me know what you think !

I knew I wanted to do the Blue Lagoon to minute we booked the trip. I got the go ahead from my doctor right away, which was awesome – the lagoon is never really that hot, so its not an issue for pregnant women. Its normally around 100* – hotter in some areas – but I was always just warm and comfortable, like I was in a bath. It was lovely.

We went back and forth about doing the Blue Lagoon at the start or end of our trip. It’s only about 15 minutes from the airport and both the airport and the Lagoon are about 45-60 minutes away from Reykjavik. Being so close to the Blue Lagoon when we landed I wanted to take advantage of its proximity and knock it off our list right away. Charles wasn’t sure if we would be able to enjoy it with the jet lag but I read online that people went there to beat jet lag – and that’s exactly what we did! It was relaxing and so enjoyable to be able to hop off our plane, rent our car and just about hop right into the lagoon.

After an overnight flight, it was heaven.

I booked us the 8am entry to the Blue Lagoon – we landed at 7am and got there shortly after 8. This was another amazing call because in the beginning of the day, you have the place to yourself.

If you plan to visit, my tips would be to get there as early as you can – to be crowds and tour buses, etc. – and to put SO MUCH conditioner in your hair before you go into the water. My hair still feels a little crazy from all that silica, weeks later!

And if you get the opportunity, DEFIANTLY visit the Blue Lagoon!

After spending a few hours in the Lagoon, we decided to explore the Reykjanes Peninsula area a bit more. I did a bunch of research before and found out there was lots to see in the area, all fairly close to the lagoon and the airport – so we wanted to take advantage of this before we headed for the big city!

Our first stop was the Brimketill Lava Rock Pools. We went on a crazy windy day and the waves gave us a SHOW! It was beautiful and wild and apparently super different with the seasons.

After that we made our way over to the Gunnuhuver Geothermal area which I believe is the largest in Iceland. It was so crazy to see the steam and mud pools and we got to learn a lot about this country we just landed in.

Next we made our way over to the Reykjanes Peninsula Edge where we got to see dramatic cliffs, rock formations and a beautiful lighthouse. Quick stops, but each was so different and I’m glad we made the time to road trip around while in the area.

Our final stop was the Bridge Between Two Continents, which was such a cool place to check out. This area separates Europe and North America with the tectonic plates actively rifting apart. It felt like what I imagine it to feel if I was to walk on the moon. Super wild!

I don’t think many people explore the Reykjanes Peninsula – but if you are in the area, you totally should! It’s a great spot to explore with so much to see before heading out to Reykjavik!

More about our trip coming up – if you have any specific questions about our visit or our itinerary, please let me know and I’ll be sure to include it in my posts! Thanks for following along and I can’t to share more – this is just the beginning!

Pregnant with Baby BOY #3!

Hello Hello!

I’m back from Iceland. We had the most amazing time and I have so much to share from our trip, but I think the most important piece of news would have to be THIS:

Oh Boy!

Baby BOY #3 is coming our way this April and we couldn’t be more excited!

I’ve been dying to share the exciting news, but after our {missed} miscarriage in July, we wanted to wait until we were more comfortable with everything this time around.

And it was sort of a moment for me yesterday after I shared the news on my personal FB page and on Instagram because after pushing ‘Publish’ I soon realized that yesterday was National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day.

We are so lucky and beyond blessed we were able to get pregnant again so quickly after our loss this summer and after it took about a year of trying for babe #3 – I don’t take this pregnancy or any pregnancy lightly, especially after being a member of the miscarriage club.

And because it happened back to back from the D&C – it’s even more crazy to say that I’ve been pregnant for the past 6 months, but only have 3 months of this baby belly to show for it. My body {and hormones} are slightly all over the place, but I 100% do not mind this belly popping out so early this time around.

We had a doctors appointment on Monday and an ultrasound as well and everything is looking really good, they actually moved my due date up a week! Since all our tests came back and we got to see the little guy being so active on the big screen, we decided to tell the boys the good news.

Once they knew, we were fully aware the whole world would know, so we went with it.

At the ultrasound appointment, the technician was so sweet. She put little “Hi Brooks” and “Hi Graham” notes on the photos for the boys and hooked them up with Big Brother stickers. We took a video of our telling the boys the news and it was so special, I know we will cherish it {and laugh!} forever.

Highlights of telling the boys include:

  • “Mama, how you did that?” – Graham
  • “I’m going to teach him how to play video games every day” – Brooks
  • “Jackson, you’re going to be a big brother again” – Brooks
  • “Are you tricking us? There’s literally a baby in there??” – Graham
  • “Does it come out of your mouth?” – Brooks
  • “Does the doctor pull the baby out with a claw?” – Graham
  • “I can’t wait to babysit!” – Graham

It was very sweet and while it’s only been a day of the boys knowing, they are taking any chance they get to rub my belly and say hi to their new little sibling in the making. I can’t wait to meet this new little boy in April!

Stay tuned for more on all our travels and fun in Iceland along with my thoughts on pregnancy after miscarriage and an update on how the first trimester was for me! And as always, if you have any questions for me – please don’t hesitate to ask!

Thanks so much for following along and for all the sweet messages from our announcement. It all means so much to me and I can’t wait to take you along on this journey with #3!

Travel Adventures: Off to Iceland!

Today is the day!

Charles and I are soon to be heading out of the country – to Iceland! It’s a birthday trip of sorts – to celebrate mine that was in June and his that’s at the end of October. It’s been a rough summer so this is something I’ve really been looking forward to – I can’t wait!

We initially started planning this trip thinking we would be going to Spain or Italy – but I started doing a little research on Iceland and after talking with friends and family that had been and LOVED IT. I am pumped for the focus of the trip to be more on adventure + the outdoors – not to mention the travel time to Iceland is WAY less than other European options, which also makes me happy.

Travel Bag / Iceland Guide Book / Wool Hat / Sunglasses

Our itinerary over the next week is slightly planned, but also wide open for all the exploring. We are renting a car and going to enjoy Iceland at our own pace, stopping and going as we please.

We are going to be spending a few days in Reykjavík followed by a few days in Vik and then another day out in the Þingvallavatn area. I’m so excited to bust out my hiking boots and see this incredible “moon planet” as my SIL lovingly calls Iceland.

I’ve gotten a TON of recommendations and research about everything from these books in the photos below and this incredible podcast – All Things Iceland – which goes along with the blog, From Foreign to Familiar.

Also, being able to pack my solo carry-on has been a real treat.

#momwin

Wool Hat / Iceland Guide Book / Dubarry Boots {similar}

It’s been a slight challenge with my other packing though, since we plan on being out and about everyday – and the word on the street is that the weather in Iceland can vary from hour to hour, so we are preparing to brace all the elements. And that means lots of variety incase we inevitably get rained on, not to mention its going to be on the colder side of things in Iceland, much more Fall than this ‘Fall’ season so far in Philly.

So naturally I brought my entire LL Bean wardrobe with me.

A girls gotta have options.

Juniper Down Jacket / Pink Quilted Pullover / Mustard Fleece Zip Up / Black + Purple Sweater Pullover / Grey Bean Vest / Cream Pile Fleece Vest

So that’s about the size of it! The bags are packed and I set the kiddos up as best I could for a week away and we are ready to go! I’ll be Instagramming, GoProing and taking a million pictures and videos to share with you – while we are there and I’m sure when we get back.

If you have any Iceland tips, tricks or favorite places to go/see/do/eat – PLEASE let me know! Send me a IG or FB message for sure, as I’d love to hear about it!

So for now – go͝odˈbī – and I’ll see you on the flip side!

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