Reviews of Products & Places, Uncategorized

5 Reasons why we LOVE Goldfish Swim School

We’re still swimming away at Goldfish Swim School and loving every minute of it! Little Johnny has been learning so much (and so have my husband and I!) 😉 We have been attending every Thursday for the past 2 months and it has adapted into our weekly routine very nicely! We even attended their Grand Opening event, which we really enjoyed our  “family swim time” along with meeting the famous “Bubbles”!

So far Little Johnny is learning to: 

  • become comfortable in the water
  • kicking with barbell (unassisted)
  • pulling paddle swim with face in (unassisted)
  • conditioning with water in face
  • breath control in underwater dip (5 seconds with assistance)
  • superman glide (unassisted)
  • wall hold (assisted)
  • crab walk (assisted)
  • climb out of water (assisted)
  • underwater jump and turn back to wall (assisted)
  • underwater dip and rollover, front to back (assisted)
  • relaxed in back float position (assisted)
(This is a sponsored post, but as always my opinions are my own.)

Mostly right now Little Johnny is learning about safety skills, especially how to easily get out of the water. (elbow, elbow, tummy, knee, knee) He is still in the Mini 2 lessons and it has been so nice to be able to attend as a family. My husband and I switch off with participating with Little Johnny in the pool. I look forward to our Thursday morning swim classes! Every time we walk into the building we are always greeted with smiles and a very warm welcoming! They even know Little Johnny by name and immediately interact with him, which is so comforting as parents!

Let’s “dive into” our 5 Reasons we LOVE

Goldfish Swim School! 

  1. They are always concerned about safety 1st! (especially with the infant/toddler classes)
  2. Friendly Environment– ALWAYS greeted with smiles
  3. Swim Instructors are very supportive– If you’re child seems to be struggling with a specific skill they instructors are right there to provide assistance and tools in order for them to advance in that area
  4. We LOVE the songs that are incorporated– It’s a fun environment when we are learning skills to the tune of children’s songs.
  5. They teach the parents too! – Every lesson my husband and I learn something new we can incorporate with Little Johnny when he is in contact with water. Also, for older kids at the end of each lesson they bring the parents in and have the kids show them what skills were taught! I love the collaboration involved with all the adults!

A snippet about our most recent experience… 

Last swim class Little Johnny had a hard time floating on his back. The swim instructors stepped right in and adapted to the situation with providing “tools” to help make him more comfortable. They gave him a mirror that we held up so he could see himself floating, which seemed to help. The instructor also took over to see if Johnny would do better with them. It was so comforting as a parent to see the support offered by the instructors.

My husband and I made a short video to document Little Johnny’s first experience with swim lessons, and we wanted to take this opportunity to share it with you!

Having FUN while learning to swim! 

If you’re like me and enjoy kids activities that have “themes” to them, you’ll really like the fact that Goldfish Swim School has monthly celebrations that they incorporate into the lessons along with the kiddos getting a “prize” for the month.

Here’s a fun article about their monthly celebrations!

Goldfish Swim School Monthly Celebrations 

Just this past month the theme was “Celebrate Animals” and all the swimmers received a float toy which was the Goldfish Swim School mascot, “Bubbles”. Little Johnny loved it and actually started saying “bubbles” for the first time!

The BIG question…Is it really worth the money? 

We all know that as parents we have to closely watch where we spend our money related to lessons or kids activities, especially since there are so many out there! I mean we work hard for it, right? So, I’m sure we can all agree that we want validation that the money we are spending is actually going to benefit our children. Are you still unsure about the cost, and wondering if it’s “really worth spending the money for swim lessons?” Well, I honestly believe that this is an investment in your child’s future. They will truly “thank you” for providing them with this type of learning opportunity where they won’t grow up afraid of water, and as they get older they will have more confidence in knowing that they can swim. Below you will find a short post I found helpful that provides more details about the Top 5 Reasons Goldfish Swim School is worth the money.

Top 5 Reasons Goldfish Swim School is Worth the Money

We enjoy our experiences at Goldfish Swim School and would love for others to join us! Remember they specialize in infant & children’s swim lessons. If you want more information you can visit my two previous posts listed below!

“Splish, Splash” Goldfish Swim School is Opening in Florida! 

We’re Splishin’ and Splashin’ at Goldfish Swim School (Our 1st Swim Lesson Experience)

And of course, make sure to visit their social media accounts and show some love by following them for updates! 🙂

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Happy swimming! 

Wishing you well,

~Amanda

Family Adventures, Recipes

Weekend Recap & An Italian Pasta Salad Recipe for Beach Days

It’s been a while since the Florida Morehouse family had a day to just relax & enjoy our beautiful Florida weather TOGETHER! We decided to dedicate our Sunday to a beach day! I was so excited about just enjoying my little family at the beach, that I decided to put together a fun picnic for us! We ventured over to our local Trader Joe’s just to get a variety in our menu. I love the idea of a yummy pasta salad at the beach (and of course chips & dip) because it’s not too heavy on your stomach OR messy!

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We ended up going over to the East Coast, and found a family friendly beach area near Cocoa Beach called Cherie Down Park. It couldn’t have been a more perfect beach day. The weather was gorgeous with temperatures in the 80’s, sun shinning, and that salty breeze just floating in the air. There is something about the beach that helps to take me away from the stress of “life” just for a while (long enough to recoup and get back to it once when we get home).

If you don’t live near a beach, and you’re feeling the blues…put this video on in the background, trust me it’ll help.

I’ll probably be raising a “beach toddler” because it seems as though Little Johnny really enjoys it too!

Before I move onto my easy Italian Pasta Salad for the beach, let’s talk about

BEACH TOYS! 

Any guesses as to where we purchased just a few beach toys? Yup, the Dollar Tree! If you don’t know already, well I’m kind of obsessed with this store, especially since having a little one. I use to shop here all the time for teaching supplies, but now things have shifted to more toddler items!

They have a wide variety of fun beach toys. We all know that these toys tend to get lost a majority of the time, so why spend a hefty amount. Here’s just a few of the items I bought and Little Johnny loved playing with them.

  • pin wheel
  • bucket & shovel
  • football
  • squeeze balls
  • kite (we didn’t get to play with it this time though)

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I truly try my best to keep the packing simplified when we go to the beach. 🙂

OKAY, onto the recipe!

I’m bringing back my new obsession again….Mason Jars! This is the 3rd time I have used these jars at the beach where I stored our lunch. Now, you’re probably thinking “why doesn’t she just use Tupperware?” Well, I have this “weird” quality about myself where if the food is in a pretty jar, plate, or bowl I find it more appealing…Is that just me, or do you enjoy eating out of pretty things as well? 🙂

Anyways, beside just being “appealing” Mason Jars work very well at the beach because they truly help to keep out the sand. They’re so easy to hold onto and eat right out of them. So, I ended up storing our Italian Pasta Salad in these beauties. 🙂

Ingredients

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  • 1 cup of spinach
  • 1/2 cup of mozzarella cheese
  • 1 box of tri-colored rotini
  • 1 can of black beans (make sure to rinse them)
  • 1 cup of cup of pepperoni cut into quarters
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon of oregano
  • 1/2 cup of balsamic vinaigrette (or adjust to your liking, you may have to add a bit more the next day if you refrigerate the pasta salad.)

Directions

  1. cook  the tri-colored rotini by following the box directions
  2. Meanwhile, cut up the red bell pepper, and pepperoini and place into a large bowl
  3. add your spinach, cheese, black beans to the large bowl
  4. once the tri-colored rotini is done, run under cold water and place into the large bowl
  5. add the oregano, lemon juice, and balsamic vinaigrette, MIX WELL
  6. divide the pasta into your mason jars, and your good to go!

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If you’re wondering did Little Johnny enjoy it, well the answer is NO. He’s a picky little eater. Big John and I really liked it though! 🙂

Is there a yummy recipe you enjoy for beach days? 

I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend! Here’s to a great week ahead!

Wishing you well,

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Family Adventures, Outdoor Adventures

Sunday Afternoon- Gone Fishing

This past weekend the Florida Morehouse family had a Sunday afternoon to actually enjoy some family time. The morning was busy with Big John working, and Little Johnny and I participated in a fun project with other wonderful moms & their little ones!

Lately I have been “trying” (quotations only because it’s hard enough to do regular cleaning with a little one, so it’s a work in progress)  to do a little bit of spring cleaning around our house, specifically rearranging our bedroom. While cleaning Little Johnny recently found where his daddy keeps his fishing poles. He now LOVES to play with them (no need to worry, they don’t have hooks on them and I’m always monitoring him). So, we figured it’s probably time to take him fishing.img_5868-11e995886-45cf-41cd-bf49-c7e7d3ddffc5-1b9ed3026-8934-4224-9719-b3860def6897-1c5672dd7-32e7-4966-8deb-19180e939927-1

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Originally I was going to update my park list with adding Gaston Edwards park by Lake Ivanhoe, but it started to rain after about 15 minutes of the boys fishing. (Have to love Florida for those afternoon showers, right?!) We waited in the car for a while, but Little Johnny was getting antsy, so we decided to check out the park another day.

While this post does not have much to offer, it does share our experience as a family and sometimes those are the best moments to share for me! PLUS, Little Johnny touched a fish for the first time, umm yeah, that’s a huge deal! (If you’re wondering what kind of fish they caught, it was just a little sun fish.) Let me just add too that Little Johnny definitely punched the fish when he first saw it…that’s what happens when you raise a little one while opening a Mixed Martial Arts gym…he wants to punch everything, he means well though. =)

If you’re wondering where we purchased Little Johnny’s Columbia Performance Fishing Gear outfit, we bought it at Once Upon a Child for about $12. Such a great deal!

sidenote-We pretty much buy all his clothes there!

I hope everyone enjoyed their weekend and got a chance to have some family time, I know how hard it can be sometimes to bring everyone together and just relax.

What’s something your family enjoys to do together?

Here’s to a great week ahead!

Wishing you well,

Happy Mama, Happy Wife, Happy Life

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Family Adventures, Outdoor Adventures

Exploring Bill Fredrick Park

This past weekend the Florida Morehouse family finally spent an afternoon exploring a unique landmark in Orlando. It’s been soooo long and I missed it! We’ve been very busy with opening our gym, and our little boy’s first birthday that “exploring” was put on a hold for a while. I’m excited to share with you a beautiful park that features so many amenities for a family outing! My husband was laughing at me about my giddy excitement (it’s the little things that make me happy). img_3246-1

Bill Fredrick Park is 183 acres of land along the Turkey Lake, which is filled with not just a scenic view, but many recreational activites. This list is ridiculous! The best part is your enjoying the beautiful Orlando weather! (well, most days… we actually went on a cold cloudy day, but still had a great time)

Children’s Farm

Nature Connect Trail

Sand Volleyball

Boat Dock

Fishing Pier

Horse Shoes

Disc Golf

Playground

(^one for older kids and a Tot Lot)

Softball

Swimming Pool

Wedding Gazebo

Primitive & RV Camping

Cabins

I told you, right?! So MANY activities! Any nature lovers out there? This is definitely your spot in Orlando.

Our Little Family’s Adventure

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Tot Lot! Perfect park size for Johnny. 
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Ma! What are these? 

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Someone thinks he’s a “big kid”. Always playing in the mulch! 
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Huge “big kid” park! (I even enjoyed it, I guess I’m a big kid at heart!) 
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I spoke with a wonderful lady who tends to the farm animals and she shared with me that this farm is actually a shelter for animals that could no longer be cared for. It’s NOT a petting farm, but you could just tell in the animals eyes that they enjoyed people visiting them. They came right to you. It’s a viewing farm only. 

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So many horses! They really liked following Johnny. 
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Chickens and Guineas! 

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Probably our favorite part…an outside xylophone! Have you ever seen one?!

img_3241-2img_3244-2img_3242-2A Little Bit of the Details


Cost: $4 per car (if you are by yourself, then it’s just $2)

Hours of Operation: November – March: 8 a.m. until 5 p.m.
April – October: 8 a.m. until 7 p.m.

Click Here to view a price list for rentals and recreational activities.

Directions:  Click the link to take you over to google maps and be on your way to an outdoor adventure! It’s actually close to Metrowest Area within Orlando.

Plan a Trip


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Make sure to pack your suncreen, swimsuit, picnic items (you can also grill out), and your hiking shoes! Enjoy a beautiful day with your family.

Hike It Baby will be hosting a hike on Sunday, February 5th, 2016 from 3:30-4:30. Perfect opportunity to meet new families in the area that also appreciate a great time outdoors!

I always love hearing from people, so feel free to share your insights in the comments below! Thank you so much for taking the time to read!

Wishing You Well,

Happy Mama, Happy Wife, Happy Life

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Motherhood

Well, Hello There 2017

Here we are into the New Year, a fresh start as I like to view it. Call me crazy, but I get excited about pulling out my new planner and opening up to not just a new month, but a new year! 2016 has been one of those years where I had to adapt to many changes, and if you don’t know already I tend to not handle changes very well (something I am trying so hard to work on).435c36f8-5b51-4326-aec8-dcbc28d24aeb

Before I go into our year in review I have to share with you some real life moments from our Christmas & New Year’s Eve because everyone always asks “How was your holiday?” and I thought it would be easier just to write about it! 🙂

Well to start, we had an amazing time celebrating Christmas with our family up in the great state of Wisconsin! We are very blessed to have so many people that not just love my husband and I unconditionally, but also love our sweet little boy. I tear up when I think about how many people love and support us through our parenting. It’s more than any material gift could ever give. It was fun seeing Johnny “open” his gifts (quotations because mommy and daddy mostly opened Johnny’s gifts, he didn’t show much interest in the opening part, plus it would take forever!) 

The Flight

We ended up flying up North on Christmas Eve and Johnny was not very happy during the first 2o minutes of the flight. He just could not settle down or get comfortable. I honestly get so much anxiety flying with a baby because for one you have no where to take them when they’re just not happy and secondly, you just feel “stuck” with everyone’s eyes glued to your next parenting moves…(I know, a bit dramatic but it feels like that! Eventually I’ll get over that fear…). Believe it or not, it wasn’t myself that got Johnny to finally take a nap…it was my dear husband who always seems to stay calm in these situations, which is probably what helps Johnny to settle down. So if I haven’t said it already, thank you my dear husband. (he was the one that put Johnny to sleep on the flight back too!) If you would like a tip about flying with a little one, probably the biggest one is to try to remain calm and don’t let the anxiety/nerves get the best of you. (Also, ALWAYS pack an extra pair of clothes for you & your little one, you just never know…)

Sleeping & Routine

Routine is something that is long gone when you’re on vacation and visiting family, which is totally expected. I think I may have Johnny on such a routine that he doesn’t do very well without it, especially at night. We had a night where Johnny would just not go to bed, he was quite a fighter in that sleep department. My husband and I were so exhausted that my mom stepped in and helped us. I believe I remember myself saying “I don’t know what to do.” Of course I couldn’t sleep until Johnny was in bed, so there I was sitting on the stairs half asleep listening to make sure he was down for the night. Real life moment right there! Thank you mom!

End of our Trip 

Johnny had a blast playing and visiting with everyone, but towards the end of our trip he started to get what we call in the motherhood world, blowout diapers. He had one right as we got to the airport (thankfully it wasn’t on the plane). So, that was quite an adventure! Not only that, but I realized Johnny’s first molar started cutting through, so he was just in all kinds of pain (being a baby is SO TOUGH!).

New Year’s Eve & Day

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Well, those blowout diapers turned into diarrhea for the past few days (sorry for giving too much information). So we spent our New Year’s Eve in our cozy little home. Johnny went to sleep during his normal time and my husband and I didn’t even make it past 10pm! We did enjoy a cupcake along with a Blue Moon (I know, classy right?!) We’re just tired new parents! Plus, when you’re little one doesn’t feel well it takes double the amount of energy out of you. The very first day of a new year I spent trying to comfort my little boy. So, my house was a mess, I never made it into the shower, and I ate terrible food all day (lay’s biscuits and gravy flavored chips for brunch?! AHHH) At the end of the day though I think about how thankful and blessed I am to be there for my little boy, even when I’m exhausted.

Our Year in Review 

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2016 has been quite a year with sooooooo many new life changes. If you have been following along you may have read my post about “A Mom Managing Anxiety”, so you know that I have anxiety about many things, but this year I feel as though I was able to work through it and I accomplished so much! It may have a lot to do with being a mom and the fact that I really don’t have a choice but to be brave for my little one, I just have to do it! Here’s just a few changes that happened all within one year!

  • We had a beautiful baby boy on January 15, 2016!
  • I became a MOM!
  • I adjusted to going back to work for a few short months after just 3 months of giving birth to my son.
  • I quit my teaching career (which was a HUGE decision for me) to become a SAHM.
  • We adjusted to living on just one income.
  • I was very brave and started a blog to document my journey through motherhood!
  • I actually started cooking & baking more, and started to find some enjoyment in it! (that’s huge for me!)
  • my husband recently quit his job to pursue opening his own MMA gym. (we’re in the process of it right now and I’ll go into more details a bit later.)

OH MY! That’s quite a year!

Onto the NEW YEAR!


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With that being said 2016 has also been the most AMAZING year of my life! I mean come on we had a baby during this year, so it’s bound to be great, right?! 😉 We definitely had our challenges, but I truly believe that the hardships in life help to make you stronger & build you up. That’s exactly what’s happening with our little family. I am having so much fun documenting our life and sharing it with you!

I choose two resolutions for 2017 (it’s always strange writing/saying the new year, isn’t it?!). I have thought long and hard about these resolutions because I’m not the best with keeping them, so I had to make sure they were realistic ones. Feel free to message me about how they’re going! I need accountability with this! 🙂

{2017 Resolutions}

  1. spend more quality time with my husband
  2. trust myself (build my confidence)

As I dive into these resolutions I’ll share with you my journey and how I’m incorporating them into my life. 2017, I’m ready for you! I have no idea where you’ll take me, but I’m willing to be brave and follow along! I have a feeling it’s going to be another AMAZING year for my little family!

Thank you for following along and I can’t wait to share more with you!

I wish you and your loved ones a Happy & Healthy New Year!

I always love hearing from people, so feel free to share your insights in the comments below! You can also share this post with anyone else and follow me on my facebook page,  as well as instagram. Thank you so much for taking the time to read!

Wishing You Well,

Happy Mama, Happy Wife, Happy Life

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Family Adventures, Motherhood

Our Family Needed to Relax, Rejuvenate, and Recharge >>>Sunday Vibes<<<

This past weekend the Florida Morehouse family needed a day to chill out and recharge for the new week ahead. You know as a mom that your family needs a day like this when everyone is on edge and tired from the previous busy week. Plus your 9 month old son is off his schedule because his mama kept him too busy! It was just a much needed day OFF!

Everyone relaxes differently, some people like to lounge on the couch and binge watch shows, others like to stay active with their hobbies. There isn’t a right or wrong way to enjoy relaxation, it’s whatever makes you feel rejuvenated afterwords. Continue reading “Our Family Needed to Relax, Rejuvenate, and Recharge >>>Sunday Vibes<<<“