Gosh, this summer FLEW! It was a busy one for sure. Fortunately despite how busy it was, it was also incredibly fun and productive too. Perhaps this is the first summer in a very long while (perhaps my entire career) where I had equal amounts of productivity and fun. I have not really thought about my classroom at all, which is so odd for me! Sure I've done a bit of professional reading here and there but with my travels and my grad class, I did not spend all summer thinking about the upcoming school year. This is not a bad thing...in fact, I think it will be very good. I feel rested and energized and ready to tackle the year (good thing too since I am headed in to set up my room on Monday!).
In July of course, I spent a week at Princeton University courtesy of Gilder Lehrman and it was awesome but highly academic. On August 6, we left Michigan to drive down to Orlando to Disney World. What a fun vacation! The Husband had been there at the end of high school but The Littles and I had never been. I could have done without the drive but we didn't want to spend the extra money on air fare. It all worked out and we managed to not get on each other's nerves so it's all good.
We spent an overnight in Atlanta, Georgia on the way down. Our first stop was Palm Coast, Florida. I had never seen the ocean in person (except when I flew over it which I do not think counts!). Here is my hunny and me at Palm Coast :)
We pretty much perfected group selfies while on vacation :) Here are the four of us (The Oldest did not come due to the fact that she is now a momma and had other responsibilities of her own). The Youngest is on the far left, Middle Child is on the right.
We spent Monday, August 8 at Sea World - Orlando. It was incredibly fun and I'm so glad we went. The Littles love animals so it was a good choice. (I wanted to go to Universal Studios but its so pricey!) I got splashed by a dolphin within about 5 minutes of being in the park LOL It was incredibly HOT in Florida the entire time we were there (seriously I will never gripe about 90 degrees and humid in Michigan ever again!) but we made the most of it and had a blast.
We stayed at a Disney Resort (All Star Movies) and on Tuesday, August 9 we headed to the Happiest Place on Earth :)
You can't go to Disney without riding the Dumbo ride (despite the fact that all of us are 13 and up lol). The Youngest and I are in the front, The Husband and Middle Child managed to get in the picture and wave from the back :)
August 10 is my favorite day of the year? Why? Because it's my birthday :) This year I got to spend it at Hollywood Studios--pretty awesome way to spend your birthday, no? We had so much fun, even if it was H-O-T. We saw Beauty and the Beast live and an Indiana Jones stunt show. We met Kylo Ren and Chewbacca from Star Wars too and just had an awesome day. I got a little sun as you can see :)
On Thursday we went to Epcot and on Friday we went to Animal Kingdom. Both were amazing. We narrowly avoided rain all week (it rained during lunch while we were at Sea World but the other days it kept going around us--yay!). We didn't get as lucky at Animal Kingdom. Just as we finished the safari ride, it started POURING. Thank goodness we packed ponchos "just in case" :)
Saturday, the 13th, was our last day and we slept in and went back to Magic Kingdom to do all of the things we missed the first time! It was so much fun. We stayed for the electrical parade and fireworks. I have never seen anything so amazing in my entire life. It was so awesome. The Youngest snapped a pic of The Husband and I with the castle lit up behind us (not the best picture in the world but a 13 year old took it lol).
We made the super long trek home on Sunday, August 14. The trip home was so hard just because there wasn't much to look forward to when we were done! :) We stayed overnight in Chatanooga, Tennesee at an Embassy Suites hotel that was very nice. Then I drove 11.5 hours home on Monday (finally waving the white flag in defeat 30 minutes from home). Yuck! We needed Tuesday to recover from our trip! :)
I developed a slight (read: major) obsession with BB-8 while we were at Disney. So fun and much cuter than R2-D2! I like to think BB-8 is a girl even though its a droid and thus really genderless :D (I also got a case for my iPhone which is not pictured because I ordered it through the mail).
The last couple of days, The Littles have been visiting my mom, I got to see my super fabulous grandbaby on Thursday and Friday and The Husband is on a weekend bike trip...so I have been ALONE since 6 am today. It's been awesome to just have silence around me! (That is short lived since I have to pick the girls up today.) Being on vacation is loud! :)
This was a perfect way to end my summer. Monday and Tuesday my student teacher and I are headed in to set up our room and then things get real. Middle Child is starting high school (*what?!*) and we are doing some transition work with her to curb her anxiety. Then I am taking Thursday and Friday to myself because the 29th the real work begins--the first PD days and my research phase for my doctorate all begin on the 29th. So the summer is officially over and its time to get thinking about how to tackle 3rd grade this year.
I am so, so grateful to have had the opportunity to travel as much as I did this summer because I really do feel relaxed and ready to head back to the full time task of teaching. I hope your summer was as epic as mine :)