Category: Twins

Sep 17 2016

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Pool and inside deck area on the ship!

Once we were back on the New Holland Zaandam cruise ship after exploring the town of Seward, Alaska we were able to check out more of the ship.  The girls were thrilled to see all the cool activities and places on the ship.  They couldn’t wait to try out the pool deck, play a little bit, and try out the different foods as well as fun activities that were coming up that week.  Thankful for the opportunity to spend this time with the family.  We had a blast spending time together.  It was a wonderful family vacation!

Alaska, Alaska Cruise, Zaandam, New Holland, Wildlife Conservatory

Testing out the courts…..they had fun even in the rain! 🙂

Cruising on the Alaska Trip - New Holland Zaandam - Summer Vacation

 Brina enjoying her first dinner on the cruise.  She found out that although the window views were nice at dinner it was a little chilly and she needed her jacket!

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Our first night on-board the ship and heading to dinner!

p1680531cBrina and I trying to stay warm at the evening meal.  We were trying to get used to the cooler weather after coming from the 100 plus degrees we were having that week in South Carolina!

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Jake and Karlie having fun at our first dinner on the cruise!

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Sep 17 2016

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First glimpse at our Home-Away-From-Home this week as we pulled into the Seward Port!

We made it to Port Seward and caught the first glimpse of our ship!  The kids were super excited (and Dad & Mom too)!  We arrived at a good time so were able to drop our luggage off, go through the check in process, drop items most of the backpack items off in our rooms, and head back out to tour the town of Seward.  Our visit to the Alaska SeaLife Center  took up the majority of the time we had in the town, but was a great activity for the whole family.  It was a cloudy and misty day in Seward, however, we still had a wonderful time.  It was a beautiful area, small town, and the local people we met were very nice.

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Beautiful views as we roll into the town of Seward

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 Someone crashed on the way to  the port!

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Sweet girls having fun in Seward and excited about going on our Alaska cruise

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Gorgeous area!

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Sep 12 2016

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Our family at Glacier Bay National Park!

On our Alaska cruise we were able to visit Glacier Bay National Park.  It was BEAUTIFUL!!!  The day started out as rainy and cool, but it cleared up as we were getting closer to the glaciers.  The overcast, misty, and foggy day gave it a really neat look.  Thankful for the opportunity to visit this beautiful place.  We LOVED hearing the glaciers snap, crackle, pop, and watching them slide into the water.

The water was a gorgeous blue color with lots of ice chunks floating around into it.  The lines and colors in the glaciers were super pretty.  You could really see a lot of the dirt, rocks, and items that the glaciers brought down through the mountains and valleys with it.  It was a super fascinating experience!   We took a lot off pictures, but even the pictures don’t do it justice.  We even saw several animals while on the boat going through Glacier Bay…a bear near a camp site with campers in a tent, otters swimming in the water, and more!

We had the privilege of visiting Glacier Bay National Park on it’s 100 anniversary!  While we were cruising through Glacier Bay National Forest Rangers were giving talks and sharing information about the area.  It was a very educational and fun activity for the whole family!

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 Overcast, but beautiful in Glacier Bay National Forest

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Our family on the deck of the ship with a glacier in the background!

Glacier Bay National Prrk - Alaska Cruise, Family Vacation - New Holland Cruise

 Big glacier!

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 The water, mountains, and beaches were pretty at Glacier Bay

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 The fog made it have an even more distinct and beautiful look to it

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 A private boat in Glacier Bay

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You can see from the striachens on the rock where the water ran down it into the turquoise water below

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 You can see the waterfalls coming down the mountains

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 You can see all the rocks, dirt, and items that a recent glacier moved down this mountain.. Fascinating that ice can move that many items along with it!

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 Huge glacier coming down between two mountains and into the water!

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Love the beautiful colors and lines in the glacier

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Water streaming down the mountain!

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 Iceberg floating in the water below us

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 Glacier coming around the corner of the moutnain

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My favorite people – thankful for my family!

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 Massive iceberg, part of a glacier!

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A little cave like area of the glacier

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On the middle-right side of the picture you can see something that looks like a cloud near the water?  That is actually a part of the ice breaking off and falling into the water.  It was loud and super cool to watch!

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 Freezing cold, but gorgeous to see so close!

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 Brina hanging out on the deck and trying not to get too cool

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 I knew the glaciers were a pretty turquoise just didn’t expect it to be so vivid and beautiful in person!

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Mesmerizing watching the water splashing along beside us.  Peaceful and pretty at the same time!

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Sep 12 2016

We had a nice long weekend this past weekend.  It was great having Labor Day off for the whole family.  We packed in a lot of fun family events as well as tackled a few projects around home too.  The girls had off Tuesday and Wednesday too because it was Professional Work Days for their teachers so they enjoyed more time with Jake and I.  I was able to take off Tuesday from work and hung out with the girls.  We rode bikes, played games, and many other good activities together!!!

Over the long weekend we started another fun adventure as a family.  We took a hike along the Appalachian trail and was able to get though a little chunk of it only 2,000 plus miles to go before we can say we did the whole trail, ha!  The girls (and their parents) were wondering if we would make it the first mile since it was a steep climb, but we pushed through and the trail was much easier once we got higher and could feel the breeze.  Thankful for the extra time with my family.

Looking forward to another great week.  We have a handful of new events coming up, the girls with some more of their school clubs and activities beginning as well as more learning and growing activities for me as well.  Here are my goals for this week:

Last week’s goals

Family Goals

  1. Read the book The Land of Stories – The Wishing Spell by Chris Colfer to the kids –we are reading through the book together (maybe halfway now)
  2. Go through 7 more Brain Quest Flash Cards with the kids.
  3. Read through 7 more pages of History Trivia with the kids.
  4. Reflect on our blessings and prayer time with kids every night.
  5. Plan one special activity with the family – went for a family day hiking trip along the Appalachian trail
  6. Play a Game with the Kids – the longer weekend gave us more time to play  Yahtzee, Pet Detective, and Travel USA
  7. Create Memories with the Family
  8. Spend Quality time with each family member
  9. Do a new, unique, or different activity with the family this week – we went for a hike together along the the Appalachian Trial
  10. Spend extra time with the family over the Holiday Weekend

Kid Goals

  1. Do Homework Monday – Friday
  2. Pack Lunches and Prep for the next day
  3. Spend one-on-one time with kids each day – friday night I crashed on the couch before the kids went to bed and when I woke up they were already asleep

Personal Goals

  1. Drink 8 glasses of water
  2. Wear FitBit (at least 10,000 steps and 10 sets of stairs every day)
  3. Do Yoga at least 5 times this week – did it some, but not quite 5 times

Home (Yard & Pets) Management Goals

  1. Household Cleaning / Organization – Hang Up Girls Souvenir Necklaces – got the necklaces and labels on the necklace holders, but need Jake’s assistance to get them hung on the girls walls
  2. Plan out the Menu for the Week
  3. Work on yard projects – Picked up sticks, b0nfire, mowed lawn, and got some work done outside this weekend
  4. Speed clean & pick up the house 15 minutes a night – a couple of nights we didn’t get a chance to do it this week

Business Goals

  1. Update Work Notes – working on them
  2. Get caught up on blog posts – getting some of the summer trip adventures done
  3. Work on a few special projects – need to work on them more
  4. Update my LinkedIn Profile – working on getting the items together to update it
  5. Research a couple of items in regards to the blog – hoping to get more done this week
  6. Confirm the tasks my plate as I transition to a new team – work in progress
  7. Pick from a couple of the “extra” activity and/or product options – narrowing down my choices

Ministry Goals

  1. Go to breakfast or lunch with a family member or friend
  2. Counting my blessings journal

Financial Goals

  1. Schedule a meeting with the financial advisor – putting together a list
  2. Get our finances and budget back on track – doing better
  3. Pay down debt we owe – made an extra payment
  4. Limit amount spent on Groceries, Household, and Other Items (use what we already have at home) – went a little bit over budget

My goals for the upcoming week

Family Goals

  1. Read the book The Land of Stories – The Wishing Spell by Chris Colfer to the kids
  2. Go through 7 more Brain Quest Flash Cards with the kids.
  3. Read through 7 more pages of History Trivia with the kids.
  4. Reflect on our blessings and prayer time with kids every night.
  5. Plan one special activity with the family
  6. Play a Game with the Kids
  7. Create Memories with the Family
  8. Spend Quality time with each family member
  9. Do a new, unique, or different activity with the family this week
  10. Coordinate and review schedules at beginning of week to confirm all obligations, appointments, and other activities

Kid Goals

  1. Do Homework Monday – Friday
  2. Pack Lunches and Prep for the next day
  3. Spend one-on-one time with kids each day
  4. Attend Robotics Club and Other After School Activities
  5. Appointments – Pediatric Eye Doctor Re-check

Personal Goals

  1. Drink 8 glasses of water
  2. Wear FitBit (at least 10,000 steps and 10 sets of stairs every day)
  3. Do Yoga at least 5 times this week
  4. Sign up for Women’s Ministry Bible Study Class
  5. Date and Couples Massage with Jake! XOXO
  6. Appointments

Home (Yard & Pets) Management Goals

  1. Household Cleaning / Organization – Hang Up Girls Souvenir Necklaces
  2. Plan out the Menu for the Week
  3. Clean & Organize Storage Room
  4. Speed clean & pick up the house 15 minutes a night

Business Goals

  1. Update Work Notes
  2. Get caught up on blog posts
  3. Work on a few special projects
  4. Update my LinkedIn Profile
  5. Research a couple of items in regards to the blog
  6. Confirm the tasks my plate as I transition to a new team
  7. Pick from a couple of the “extra” activity and/or product options

Ministry Goals

  1. Go to breakfast or lunch with a family member or friend
  2. Counting my blessings journal

Financial Goals

  1. Schedule a meeting with the financial advisor
  2. Get our finances and budget back on track
  3. Pay down debt we owe
  4. Limit amount spent on Groceries, Household, and Other Items (use what we already have at home)

I think it is important to share and encourage each other as we seek to improve our lives and the lives of those around us.  I want to live intentionally not just hope all my dreams and goals come true.  When I focus on small steps of improvement I am able to see results as I get closer to my goals.  Some weeks I get closer to the goals I have in my life and other weeks a take a few steps back (life happens, emergencies occur, people get sick).  Once the goals are written down and shared it provides a guideline for what I aim to accomplish this week.

Why Share My Goals?

  • To keep me accountable
  • To share a piece of my life with you as I strive to be a better Child of God, Wife, Mom, Friend, Homemaker, Entrepreneur and the many other roles I have each week
  • To have my goals consistently written down so I can gauge progress more accurately
  • Create healthy habits in my life
  • To encourage you to share your goals with me as you continue to grown and learn

How did you do this week on your goals?  Feel free to share or link to your list of weekly goals.

The picture above is one that I created for my own purposes, however, The “SMART” acronym was originally coined 30 years ago by Peter Drucker in his classic work, Management by Results

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Sep 02 2016

Anchorage, Alaska

Super neat and comfortable boulder chairs!

Our family recently had the opportunity to travel to Alaska for our family vacation.  We arrived in Anchorage in the middle of the night, slept a couple hours before getting up and heading out to explore Anchorage.  One of the first stops we made was the Anchorage Museum at Ramuson Center, 625 C. Street, Anchorage, AK.  The hotel driver dropped us off right outside the entrance of the museum.

The kids loved the opportunity to learn about Alaska – fFrom displays with the culture, life styles, people, and history of Alaska. The kids loved exploring the neat science and technology exhibits as well as watching the animal presentation! They had really cool boulder chairs and places for parents or grandparents to sit and relax in the common area which seemed popular for the adults! The kids loved it and it was entertaining for us as parents too.

If you have some extra time while in Anchorage and you’re traveling with your family you should check it out. If you want you can use a free locker to put your travel items in while going through the museum. Also, it is part of the Science Center Association so if you are a member of your local Science Center check to see if they are part of the Association and you will get into this museum for free! 🙂

We had a blast at this museum!  They were not into the “art” gallery as much as the history, science and more kid focused rooms.  They had a lot of neat history and culture regarding Alaska.  It’s a great place to visit if you have kids and some time while in Anchorage, Alaska!

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Karlie giggling as she tries to sneak up on me with her pillow boulder!

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That’s a big pebble Brina!!!

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Goof ball Karlie!

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 Brina and Jake checking out what will happen if an earthquake hits near a house….

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 Brina and Jake in the bubble ring

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Now that’s a pretty shoe for you to wear!  Brina loved it!  Karlie said it didn’t look comfortable at all! It’s beautiful, but not sure I could stay upright in them.

 Designer Paula Rasmus-Dede, Not Your Mama’s Mary Janes, 2003 (consists of glass beads, patent leather, and different colors of wire)

“I made this peice because I like Mary Janes.  My grandmother made me wear orthopedic shoes when I was a child.  I wasn’t allowed to wear black patent leather Mary Janes like all the popular schoolgirls.  When I started making shoes I decided to make my own Mary Janes” – Paula Rasmus-Dede

I think Paula’s shoes may be a little bit fancier than just the average Mary Jane.

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Brina and Karlie lifting Jake up.  Testing the different types of pulleys

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Karlie and Jake in a giant bubble!

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There’s a bear behind you!

The “Travel and Vacation” series is an insight into our trips together as a family, ways we relax, and tips on how to make trips more enjoyable.  Life is short and we were thrilled to have the opportunity to build memories with family and explore of of the most amazing places during our time away.  Explore with a good attitude, look for fun, and it will be an awesome trip jammed packed with positive memories.  It is refreshing having some time away from the regular routine.  Make it a once in a lifetime opportunity to meet new people and learn.  You just might see or try something new that takes your breath away!

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