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    Is LEGOLAND Florida Toddler Friendly? – #LEGOLAND Review

    My family and I received complimentary admission to LEGOLAND Florida in exchange for our honest review. All fun was had by us, and all opinions expressed are my own ;). 

    When we planned Zayn’s birthday trip honestly I had RJ in mind. I really wanted to take him to LEGOLAND because he LOVES all things LEGO. He begs me to take him to the LEGO store EVERY mall trip, he watches LEGO shorts on Kids YouTube and he has a good amount of LEGO books. I knew we had to make the trip there during our vacation. 

    LEGOLAND actually isn’t in Orlando, unbeknownst to me. It was about a 45 minute drive from our hotel in Winter Haven, Florida. We packed the kids into the rental, and made the trip without telling RJ where we were headed. I wish I had the footage of when we arrived to the park. He literally started singing “Everything is Awesome” and sang it from the parking lot through the gates. 

    With such small kids, my main concern was would the 45 minute drive from Orlando to LEGOLAND actually be worth it? Would they be able to do anything? Was I setting myself up for toddler meltdowns???

    The trip was 100% worth it! LEGOLAND is designed for kids ages 2-12 and I knew that from looking at the website before making our decision to go. When they designed the park, their littlest LEGO lovers definitely weren’t forgotten and I LOVED that about the park. From the mini splash pad, to kiddie coasters and indoor spaces designed just for toddlers to take a break from the blazing temps, LEGOLAND has it ALL and you won’t regret taking even your youngest children there. 

    RJ honestly loved LEGOLAND more than Disney and when we came back everyone kept asking “did you go to Disney World?” and he responded “Yea but I went to LEGOLAND!” almost every single time. We didn’t even check out the water park side (which I’m sure he would’ve loved because he is OBSESSED with water parks) and for him it is still the most memorable part of his trip. I’m considering taking him back for his 4th birthday in October and staying at the resort because I know he would absolutely LOVE it. 

    What’s the best advice I’d give for your visit?

    – Go during the week. While I was sharing on social media during our trip via instastories a lot of people mentioned to us how they loved it there but the lines were long. We went on a Friday and the lines had virtually NO wait. RJ rode a few rides back to back without having to wait in line. 

    – Bring your own water bottle. There are a lot of water fountains around the park and Coke freestyle machines that they let us refill with water for free! It came in handy because it was HOT and the boys wanted to drink NONSTOP.

    – Get there early. When we first got to the park I thought it small and it definitely STRETCHED way beyond what I imagined. Also, there are 2 parks so you want to make sure you have ample time to visit both. 

    – Get your child pre-measured. While lots of rides are for littles there are some designed for the bigger kids to enjoy and some rides do have height restrictions. LEGOLAND has the great option to get pre-measured so that your child doesn’t have to go through being measured and turned away after waiting in the line. 

    The boys had an amazing day at LEGOLAND and I definitely want to take them back. I can easily see how people spend multiple days there and I cant wait to check out their themed hotel! It was definitely worth the drive from Orlando and we had a quiet, nap-filled ride back! 

    Have you ever been to LEGOLAND? What’s your favorite amusement park for your littles? 

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    The Suite Life! |Lake Buena Vista Resort Village & Spa

      My family and I were hosted for 2 nights at Lake Buena Vista Resort Village and Spa to facilitate this review. All opinions expressed belong to me ;). 

     

    If you don’t know it is ALL DISNEY, ALL THE TIME in our house. I wanted to take RJ to Disney for his birthday last year but timing didn’t work out and I chickened out with taking Zayn while he was only 3 months old. So this year, our plans were SET. Disney for Zayn’s first birthday because we were ALL ready to go. RJ had started asking, I’ve never been, we were ready. I googled for MONTHS about what to do, where to go, how to get there, what to wear what to eat, but most importantly I had to know where to stay. I knew we would see more than Disney on this trip and while I know there are amazing benefits to staying on Disney property, I just wasn’t sure if we were ready for that. 

    *Enter Lake Buena Vista Resort Village and Spa*

    When I came across LBV resorts condo style suites online I IMMEDIATELY fell in love. If we can, I try to stay in suites whenever we vacation for multiple reasons. The comfort, space and amenities definitely make it worth it and more often than not the location is ideal. Our resort was located right next to Lake Buena Vista Factory stores so when we realized last minute that we didn’t shop for RJ’s stepping up ceremony which was the day after we got back, we walked over to Osh Kosh and got the kids cute clothes at outlet price! In case you need further convincing, here is a complete breakdown of why you need to reserve your next Orlando stay at Lake Buena Visit Resort Village and Spa.

    Location 

    I already told you that the resort is located right next to the outlets, but Lake Buena Vista Resort Village & Spa is centrally located close to many of the must see attractions/parks in Orlando. Our first night we drove to Disney Springs, the outdoor shopping complex at Walt Disney World Resort. It was about a 15 minute drive to most attractions, and the resort is also close to many restaurants, and we saw a few other outlets close by. 

    All Suite Style Rooms

    The rooms at Lake Buena Vista Resort Village and Spa are BEAUTIFUL. My photography really doesn’t do it justice. The resort features all suite style rooms of different sizes. Each suite includes a full kitchen and a private balcony. There was ample space for our family and we only ended up sleeping in one room (cosleeping problems). The extra spacious suites definitely give the feeling of being at home and would be perfect for families. 

    Outdoor Pool & Bar

    While neither of my kids are swimmers, they both think they can. THE FIRST thing we did after checking out the room was head to the pool located on the resorts property. The boys loved the pirate ship (which actually has a slide if you can tell from my picture) and I loved all the outside seating available. There is also a bar located on the pool deck that serves drinks, ice cream and different “bar type” foods. I definitely went there by myself when I had a VERY BRIEF free moment ;). 

    On-Site Dining & Grocery 

    We went out to dinner our first night but the second night after had a long day at Magic Kingdom, no one felt like going back out. The Pizza Hut express was perfect for all of us to grab something quick to eat. RJs favorite food is pizza and daddy was able to get pasta. Plus there was a fully stocked grocery section in case you needed to grab anything to cook in your full kitchen! We weren’t really grocery-minded but I wish I would’ve remembered to head down there when I realized that I had forgot to bring deodorant. They literally had EVERYTHING. 

    Customer Service

    All in all, the customer service at Lake Buena Vista Resort and Spa made the trip even more special. The concierge was available to answer all the thousands of questions that I had being a Disney newbie, we were able to check in early without there being a lag in service and the smiles were genuine and didn’t feel forced. Even with the resort being as beautiful as it was if the customer service was poor, it would’ve ruined the experience so I’m glad that was not the case. Everyone was more than willing to help us out at all points of our stay and I was so grateful for that. 

    We had an amazing experience at Lake Buena Vista Resort Village and Spa and it made our first family trip to Disney even more magical. I’m so grateful for our experience and I would definitely stay here again, check out the spa, and maybe even take an adult trip =). 

    Have you ever stayed on a resort that was off Disney property? Where do you Disney? 

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    8 East Coast Festivals Every Black Girl NEEDS to Be At This Summer

    Festival season is upon us and I suffer from major FOMO every year. I find that I always find out about festivals at the last minute and then I don’t have the proper time to get my life/coins together so that I can attend. After going to Curlfest for the first time last year, I’m determined to hit as many festivals as possible this year and I’ve created this list of festivals that are (mainly) on the east coast JUST so I don’t forget where I need (want) to be and when. If you love good vibes, good food and good music then you probably want to check a few of these out too! *festival names are clickable… you’re welcome ;)*

    Governors Ball * June 1st – 3rd – Randall’s Island, NYC

    Roots Picnic * June 2nd – Philadelphia, PA 

    Essence Festival * July 5th – 8th – New Orleans, LA

    Technically NOLA isn’t considered the “east coast” but if you don’t know by now that Essence is THE festival to be at I’m not sure how you even came across this list. Do you even festival?? 

    The Greatest Day Ever * July 14th & 15th – New York, NY

    Curlfest * July 21st – Brooklyn, NY

    Panorama Music Festival * July 27th – 29th – Randall’s Island, NYC

    Swing through @BrooklynSteel to peep the fresh mural 🌐

    A post shared by Panorama NYC (@panoramanyc) on

    Afropunk * August 25th & 26th – Brooklyn, NY

    Made in America * September 1st & 2nd – Philadelphia, PA

    There it is! Which festivals are you most excited about? I can’t wait for Curlfest and Afropunk! Hype to go to a festival that I didnt list? Not tryna go alone and want to meet up? Leave your thoughts in the comments below. xoxo

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    The 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport Starts ALL the Conversations

      I drove the 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport for a week in exchange for my honest review! Like always, all opinions expressed belong to me =)

    I drove the 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport for a week in exchange for my honest review! Like always, all opinions expressed belong to me =)

    Something about birthdays, Atlantic City, and the Outlander Sport must be my thing. If you’ve been around for a while then you know back in February of 2016 I drove the 2015 Outlander Sport for my 26th birthday trip to Atlantic City with my boyfriend.

    When my sister wanted to go to Atlantic City for her 30th birthday I knew the Outlander was going to be the perfect vehicle to take us on our road trip! The Outlander Sport has gotten a few upgrades since their 2015 model but a lot of the amazing things about the design have remained the same. I am still absolutely in love with their sunroof because…. amazing views & selfie lighting.

    Two of the main upgrades to the interior of the car is the 7″ Touchscreen Display Audio System, and the Rockford Fosgate premium sound which boasts an impressive 9 speakers throughout the car which is perfect for the hundreds of HD radio channels you an listen to in the car.  

    I’m not gonna lie, I have zero sense of direction so when I couldn’t find navigation I was really confused and low-key stressed out. But thats because this was my first time driving a car that was equipped with Apple CarPlay. Super convenient having so many of my apps open up right on the display including maps! 

    The Outlander Sport turned out to be a big conversation starter, the octane blue metallic color is BEAUTIFUL and everywhere we went people were stopping us to ask about the car. If crossover SUVs are your thing, I’d definitely check this car out! 

    The 2018 Outlander Sport turned out to be the perfect car for our weekend trip away. Pricing starts at $19,595 and you can check out all the specs here. Do you own an Outlander Sport? Have another Mitsubishi car that you love? Leave it in the comments below! 

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    The REAL Rules for Roadtrips with Small Children

      Special thank you to Mazda as I received the 2017 Mazda CX-5 as a loan free of charge for our road trip in exchange for my honest review! All opinions expressed are my own! 

    Special thank you to Mazda as I received the 2017 Mazda CX-5 as a loan free of charge for our road trip in exchange for my honest review! All opinions expressed are my own! 

    So I’m not gonna lie, when it came to planning RJs birthday trip I was super excited. As the days ticked down and it got closer??? Dread! I just knew I was plum crazy for planning a trip that would take us 12 hours to drive to with a 3 year old and an infant that hates the car seat! Wtf was I thinking?? Truthfully when road trip day (night) arrived anxiety almost made me cancel. I just knew it was going to be awful and it wouldn’t be worth it. I was sooooooooo wrong. Taking a long trip with two kids this young though did make me realize that the rules of the road are completely different when it comes to traveling with kids. 

    1. Be prepared to spend some time in the back seat. 

    Comfort played a big factor when we were thinking about the long drive. I knew I’d have to spend some time in the back seat between two car seats consoling one kid or the other and I was happy it wasn’t a SUPER struggle in the car we drove for our trip. The 2017 Mazda CX-5 had a decent amount of space in the backseat even with 2 car seats back there. I’m not gonna lie though I’m still SOMEWHAT small even after having two kids haha. I don’t think my boyfriend would have fit back there.  

    2. Speaking of time, don’t even watch it. It doesn’t matter when kids are involved.  

    I tried to plan our departure time perfectly. Both times according to their sleep schedule. I convinced myself that if we left during a time they were normally asleep that we’d have more time with them asleep in the car and it’d make the drive a little less painful. I think RJ woke up within 1 1/2 of us driving down with a cheerful “Good morning Daddy!” Ready to take on the day… at 5am.  

    3. Don’t put a limit on stopping. You will stop. 100 times or more.  

    When we road trip alone, my boyfriend makes it a habit to remind me 1000 times that he IS. NOT. STOPPING. He’s obsessive about getting to our destination and he always says “I’m stopping ONE TIME”. Ask to stop again and die. Except this trip. We stopped. I can’t even remember the amount of times but it was ALOT. Thankfully, we only had to stop twice for gas since the CX-5 averages 26 highway mpg. We got to stop at bigger rest stops and didn’t have to worry about just getting gas and leaving. Kids need to stretch their legs and everyone was a lot more pleasant after taking a break from sitting for hours. We stopped at Chick fil a’s that had play places so RJ could run some energy off and I even let him run around a rest stop at 5am *shrugs*. Sorry not sorry. We had a long drive and he wasn’t hurting anyone. A couple 20/30 minute stops made a BIG difference in how the drive went. 

    4. The drive is still part of your trip, use it as an opportunity to make memories.  

    I quickly realized RJ was just excited to be on an adventure. He loved looking out of the sunroof at airplanes and pointing out different things in the sky, and he loved sticking his head out of the sunroof even more. He also loved sitting in the trunk which is super spacious in the CX-5. He called it his cave! This is definitely a time to relax and not be super crazy with the rules. Within reason and safety first of course! He wasn’t sticking his head out the sunroof while we were driving or anything LOL. 

    So basically, like anything with toddlers/infants involved, there are no rules on road trips! As long as everyone is comfortable, not screaming their. heads off and everyone makes it to their destination then I’d call it a #momwin! 

    What has your road trip experience been? Have you braved the road with small children? Interested in reading more about the Mazda CX-5? Leave your thoughts below!

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