Planning Our Walt Disney World Honeymoon with Tips & Secrets

Truth be told, I did not want a Disney World honeymoon.

Because we visit the house of mouse every other year (on average) I wrinkled my nose and shook my head from side to side whenever someone asked if we were planning to do Disney for our honeymoon.

“We want to do something different, something we have never done together before,” I would say to anyone willing to believe me.

For several months I researched cruises, Sandals destinations, and numerous other tropical getaways. I pitched idea after idea to my fella, but I never truly felt excited about any of the options I presented.

Finally, one day, we reached a decision. We were going to go as far south as we could in the United States. We were going to Key West.

We picked out our hotel, started a list of restaurants to grub at and bars to stumble out of, and we even saved ideas for fun excursions.

Then, we totaled it all up and our jaws hit the floor.

“We could take three Disney vacations for the cost of this one,”
were my exact words to Justin.

And that was that — that is the story of how we decided on Disney World for our honeymoon.

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Mountain weekends

As someone who often feels out of place in this big ol’ city of Charlotte, I talk a lot about my mountain roots. Let’s be honest, I miss Asheville and would probably move back there at the drop of a hat if the right opportunity came along.

Until then, though, I’ll be down here in the Queen City daydreaming of the rolling hills of Carolina and escaping on weekend getaways to my hometown when I am able.

This past weekend happened to be one of those special times. As I mentioned last year, Highland Brewing’s Cold Mountain Saturday has become somewhat of a tradition for Justin, myself, and two of our very best friends. If you follow me, you know that I am a North Carolina beer chaser. Therefore, when the holy grail of craft brews is released every winter, there is no way I am going to miss that celebration. Continue reading

Disney World, baby bumps, and the fear of being a motherless mother

I want a baby.

I have made this statement to myself and then out loud at different points over the past two years, and I mean it when I say it.

It’s difficult, though, when you want so badly to bring another life into this world but you know that your job will not provide you with the financial means or schedule flexibility needed to properly care for a tiny human.

So, you postpone turning your “want” into a “have,” and you take the necessary steps forward to plan for a future that includes children.

You find a new job — one that does grant you the peace of mind you need.

You move into a house, and though it might be small, it is perfect for bringing home your firstborn.

You finally get to a point where you and your partner feel ready to build a family.

You plan a vacation to Disney World and decide to make that trip the official baby-making kickoff.

Then, you return home, the excitement of vacation wears off, and you realize that planning for a baby when you’re a motherless daughter is more emotional than you ever imagined.


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26 and the Big Easy

Whoever thought celebrating a birthday and traveling to New Orleans in back-to-back weeks was a good idea clearly was younger than 26. That person was probably in the prime of her 25th year and thinking she could easily keep up with all the parties, plane rides, and navigating a new city. Well, she was wrong. And that she is me.

March has been a wild month for this old girl. If you could see my Lilly Pulitzer agenda right now, you would ask me what in the hell was I thinking. This month is so scribbled over that, at this point, I can’t tell which events belong with which days. I’m not complaining, though. It’s good to be busy. Especially when you have things such as “Birthday,” “Best Friend Visits,” and “Leave for New Orleans” penciled on your calendar.

I guess you could say I brought all this upon myself, but I choose to place some blame on Justin and Emily (my best friend) because they love me enough to plan a party in my honor and then not tell me about said party. In the months leading up my birthday, it is possible that I mentioned on more than one occasion that I wanted a surprise party. I didn’t think anyone was listening to me. Again, I was wrong.

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Yes, we’re going back to Disney World and this is why

People always ask me why I love Disney as much as I do. They also ask why I insist on going to Disney World as an adult when I don’t have children and why I want to go year after year. It never fails. I go ahead and brace myself for the questions when someone finds out that I’m obsessed with the D.

My love for Disney, well, Disney World, even rubbed off on Justin. How could it not when he’s hand-washing my Disney coffee mugs and waking up every few weeks to me walking around the house with Minnie Mouse ears on my head.

He was first exposed to WDW in 2013 when we went for my 23rd birthday. That trip could not have been better. I hadn’t been since I was probably 5 years old, and I was probably more excited at 23 than I was at 5. I mean, I got to eat lunch surrounded by my fellow princesses at Cinderella Castle on my actual birthday. What more could a grown woman want?

I kid you not, I knew Justin was the one for me when he looked at me on the plane ride home after that trip and started listing things he wanted to see/do “next time.” He had me at “when we come back.”

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Sorry Tom, But You Can Go Home Again

It was Monday Morning, shortly after 8 a.m. I had just unlocked my office door, pulled my chair out from under my desk and taken a seat in front of my computer screen. There was nothing out of the ordinary about this Monday, except the unwavering urge to go home. No, not the place where I eat, sleep and watch Netflix for 15 hours at a time. I’m talking about home. 

For me, going home isn’t about a good southern meal on the stove. I’m sure if my mom were still alive that would be different — going home might actually feel like going back to childhood then.

When I vocalize that I just need to go home, it’s because I’ve reached a breaking point; because I’ve been fighting a battle within myself and I need to retreat to a safe place to quiet my mind and recharge my soul.

Going home isn’t about the people I’ll visit when I roll into town, but about the person I become when I see the first peak in the distance as the wheels on my car carry me west on Interstate 40. All of sudden, a weight is lifted off my shoulders and I’m just me again — I’m a simpler human. Going home means finding peace, even if it is only for two days.

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