Labor Day Trip 2016

Zach really wanted to do something special for his dad this year. A lot of changes have gone on within Aflac this year and it’s been tough on us all in different ways. I love Zach’s desire to reach out to others, to show them appreciation and to want to bring them joy. We did something for Jordan earlier in the year and he wanted to do something for his dad as well. So for Mr. Rusty’s birthday present we took him and Mrs. Charlotte down to Orlando for the weekend. Zach planned dinner at Wreckers (where he went with Jordan for his 30th) and a day of golf for them together. SO sweet and thoughtful and I knew it meant a lot to Mr Rusty to have that quality time with his son πŸ™‚

We planned to leave Friday afternoon to head down there and Hurricane Hermine hit us Thursday night. The kids had school canceled and it kinda stunk because we could have gone down a day earlier and missed the hurricane at home if we’d had a place to stay for the night! We were thankful to not have any damage (or lose power) but several in our area weren’t as fortunate.

(We are the blue dot!)

Casey and I actually went out to eat the night during the hurricane haha #priorities! We tried out a new Mexican place in town. It was SUPER college vibe but super good too!

I recognized a couple people while we were there and I approached this guy (college age) and said I recognized him. After a few minutes he said “OH YOU ARE KYE PARKER’S MOM”

OMG. Y’all. It’s official. I’m not Emily. I’m “Someone’s Mom”

Driving through town on the way out was eery. The streets were EMPTY and we could see some of the damage. 

A super sweet family from our church had total devastation to their home. 53 people went to their house from church to help clean up. Isn’t that AMAZING? I felt so bad we were on the road and unable to help! I cannot imagine what they are going through but am so thankful no one was hurt!

Stopping at Zaxby’s on the way!

This trip we tried out a different area for us. Still in Davenport but a resort called Bahama Bay. EXTREMELY affordable and it was pretty nice! Def better than I was expecting with that low of a price πŸ˜‰

Mr. Rusty and Mrs. Charlotte didn’t come down until later in the day but we were able to get early check in and got to hit up the pool!

Kids were WORE OUT from swimming and went to bed nice and early for us!

As soon as they arrived Zach and Mr Rusty headed out to Wreckers! Zach and I weren’t sure if Mr. Rusty would be all about it or not but he really liked it!

I’ve been having ear issues since July which is super annoying. I woke up the next morning with a TON OF PAIN. I assumed it was an ear infection and luckily had some drops with me but they weren’t helpful (it wasn’t an ear infection but still months later I’m battling this ear junk). It made for a pretty miserable feeling weekend for me πŸ™ 

Zach and I had the goal of keeping the weekend as cheap as possible. Since we had paid for the place and the dinner and the golf we didn’t want to spend a bunch more money! Saturday was football day so they didn’t plan on golfing until Sunday. We debated several different ideas of things to do and decided to spend the morning visiting Art of Animation. We’ve visited the resort two times in the past (You can read about it here and here). I wanted to make sure Tess got to see it and her first Disney trip is coming up soon (13 days from now ahhhh!). We have a PACKED schedule during her first trip so it made sense to go ahead and knock this out now…plus it’s free πŸ™‚

I’ve mentioned before but ANYONE can visit Disney Resorts. You just let them know at the gate that you are looking around and they let you park, no problems at all. Art of Animation is a GREAT one to visit because they have so many things to see, a little playground, and free drawing classes!

Even the big kids still enjoy walking around the resort!

My girl with my fav princess!

Hidden Mickey πŸ™‚

Tess LOVED the Finding Nemo playground!

Kye did great but he was def over the playground pretty quickly. He’s getting to that age where it’s going to be more of a sacrifice for him to do things geared towards the younger crowds. He was more excited about the Radiator Springs area though!

So cool πŸ˜‰

We got done walking around and found out that there were issues with their arcade so they had it open to everyone FOR FREE. Yay! We played until the error was fixed and it started charging again and then we headed out πŸ˜‰ 

They used to have an animator studio experience at Hollywood Studios (I believe) but it shut down and now they have animation classes at Art of Animation Resort. Again, totally free and you don’t need to be a resort guest to participate! We hung out and watched some Mickey Mouse Clubhouse while we waited for the class to start. 

Drawing Minnie Mouse!

Finished products!

Kye is very much a perfectionist and is at this age where he has a hard time enjoying things if he’s not “the best” at it. It’s frustrating as a parent because I just want everyone to have fun! He did a GREAT JOB on his Minnie Mouse but he was very upset and disappointed about his finished product. 

Mrs. Charlotte wanted to keep the originals to put up in her house πŸ˜‰ So I took pics of all the art work to have in the blog book!



Mr. Rusty’s



When Kye got upset the animator did the typical Disney thing and tried to cheer him up by giving him the original. I mean I thought we all did decent until I saw this haha!

(Zach didn’t have one because our deal was that he’d handle Tess)

We got back at nap time and during naps Zach and Kye went to play some tennis!

I’m TERRIBLE at remembering to get family pics! So I made sure to ask Mrs. Charlotte to snap one of us πŸ™‚

That afternoon the goal was to get the kids out of the condo. UGA played in the afternoon time and that game was so important to Mr. Rusty so we wanted to keep the condo as quiet as possible for him. Zach stayed to spend that quality time with his dad and Mrs. Charlotte and I took the kids to the World’s Largest McDonalds. We visited as a family back in 2012 (you can read about it here!) so we were well due for another visit. 

Not only was it a much further drive than I remembered (about 40 min from where we were staying) but it has changed a TON since our last visit. Still the largest McDonald’s but now remodeled including the world’s largest prices. Yall. I got three kids meals. That’s IT and it was $17. No Ma’am. I sat there and worked it out with the girl and got my total down to $9 but still. Do you know they changed me EXTRA for fries in the KIDS MEAL? Seriously. I basically told the kids they’d have to eat more when we got back if it wasn’t enough for them haha Had to make it work!

The play place hadn’t changed much. It was a ZOO and Mrs. Charlotte does not enjoy those types of situations haha. She sat and watched the big kids while I chased Tess. Who insisted on playing in the big kid area that was meant for ages 4 and up πŸ˜‰

It was CRAZY. As in kids randomly peeing everywhere and other kids playing it CRAZY. We didn’t stay very long haha

Goodbye Epic McD…and with those prices…probably forever!

We got back and got the kids to bed and tried not to interrupt the guys from their football watching. It gets pretttttty intense haha

Mrs. Charlotte and I did not partake in the McD and instead went out to eat at Carrabbas! It was only my second time ever eating at one and it was REALLY good!

When the boys are watching three football games at once…you know you gotta get outta there πŸ˜‰

The next day was the guys day together. My ear was KILLING me so Mrs. Charlotte and I slow rolled the morning as much as we could (we were busy getting our Zulily Christmas Shopping going haha)

Once we got up and rolling we hit the tennis courts for a bit with Kye before going to the splash pad area!

They had a REALLY neat water play place. The coolest thing to me was there was a button to turn on the water. It was then on a timer and ever so often we’d have to run over and turn it on. Such a GENIUS way to conserve water! 

It was seriously THE most perfect area. At first Kye acted “too cool” for it but soon he was running and laughing and playing and all three kids were SO HAPPY that Mrs. Charlotte and I could literally just CHILL. We pretty much mapped out an entire Disney trip for the whole fam next summer πŸ˜‰ 

The guys got back and Mr. Rusty and Mrs. Charlotte went ahead and hit the road. We just had a chill evening and soaked up some family time!

Panera and How I Met Your Mother! Comfort food for my ear discomfort!

We had a really great, really relaxing weekend away! 

Love some rest stop hand holding πŸ™‚

No more trips planned until DISNEY!!!

Videos from our weekend:


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