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    I Have to Stop Calling My Oldest a Toddler | CoCo Key Water Resort Review |

    My family and I were hosted for the weekend at The Hotel ML & CoCo Key Water Resort in exchange for sharing our experience with you! As always all opinions expressed are my own.

    A week and a half ago my big boy turned 4. I cannot believe that I have a four year old. I got emotional when I realized that I don’t have two toddlers anymore. I have a toddler and a preschooler. I have a whole school aged child. How did that even happen? Wasn’t I just sharing his birth story like yesterday? It’s unbelievable.

    Anyway, we’ve started trying to travel more especially for birthdays. Our children are blessed to have big families and of course.. blog life, so they truly don’t need anymore “things”. We took a big trip to Disney and LEGOLAND this summer and I was hoping to be able to take RJ back to LEGOLAND for his birthday this year because he fell in love with it, but we weren’t able to. Bonus: knowing your children! My kids LOVE water so I was on the search for an indoor waterpark, not too far from the city where they could “swim” to their hearts content, and have access to other amenities as well.

    If you live under a rock somewhere, CoCo is an OG when it comes to the indoor waterpark game. Located about 2 hours from our house, it was the perfect distance for us to take a short family road trip. We left in the afternoon and got to the resort early evening. We didn’t get to check out any water park features that evening, but I thought it was great that inside CoCo Key they hosted family movie nights both nights that we were at the hotel. The first night they showed COCO (one of RJs favorites and the second night they played Horton Hears a Who. The boys opted to just watch COCO in the room but I loved that they still had the option of an evening activity.

    The next day was the day RJ probably dreamt about all night. We woke up for breakfast downstairs (the hotel has packages that offer buffet breakfast with your stay), went outside for a little while, and then we waited. RJ asked over and over if we could go to the waterpark but we were waiting for his cousin to show up and he had no idea. When they got there it was finally time and we headed around the corner to the water park (thank God for a first floor room!).

    The boys absolutely loved the waterpark, as expected. I love that Coco Key has something for everyone. They have 2 hot tubs, a lazy river, multiple slides and a kiddie pool plus more. All ages were enjoying the 80+ degree temps as if it were a summer day in NJ and not the middle of fall. Another cool thing was there were multiple birthday parties going on. I never thought to have a whole party at one of these places, but I guess I haven’t gotten that far into mom life and birthday planning yet. They have birthday party packages as low as $228 for up to 10 kids, which I think is an amazing price for the fun your kids are gonna have. To check out their rates, you can visit their reservations page here.

    Have you stayed at Coco Key? Are you a waterpark fan? Am I the only one sad that my kids are growing up? LOL

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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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    FALL for the East Coast – Captain’s Quarters Resort is An AMAZING Family Destination

    RJ turned three 2 weeks ago and we desperately wanted to get out of New York. We’re trying to step our travel game up so when we got the opportunity to head to Myrtle Beach for the weekend it was a fast and obvious YES! 

    We set out on our road trip EARLY Thursday morning and arrived at Captain’s Quarters Resort that evening. It was a LONG trip but we were immediately excited to get out of the car. No one was more excited than RJ especially since he had some birthday loot waiting for him once we got to our room. 

    IMG_2121 from Tanay Howard on Vimeo.

    I’m going to admit I’m a habitual trip checker and I researched everything up and down when I’m headed on a trip. I was sooooooo happy with our hotel choice and I knew after a good night’s sleep RJ was going to be EXCITED to check out the pools. Captain’s Quarters boasts an impressive 15 water features and we tried just about all of them! Myrtle Beach still has beautiful weather at the end of October so we were able to enjoy both the indoor and outdoor water features which RJ LOVED. 

    Everything at the resort was super kid friendly and they truly pride themselves on being the friendliest resort on the beach. This was our first birthday trip, our first trip as a family of four and our first long stay away from home all together and I couldn’t have been happier with our stay at Captain’s Quarters! 

    Fast Facts About Our Stay – Captain’s Quarters Resort Myrtle Beach, SC

    • We stayed in an Angle Oceanfront Suite. The view was beautiful (see below). Captain Quarters has a variety of room accommodations to fit families of various sizes. Accommodations can be checked out here
    • Level 6 Entertainment Center hosts a variety of games, 20 AMF lanes of bowling and a bar. We fully took advantage of the fact that each guest receives a free game of bowling per day!
    • Captain’s Quarters has several dining options. Our favorites were Loco Gecko, and the Vista 9 buffet-style breakfast. I’m bummed we didn’t get a chance to get a window seat because the view up there is amazing! 
    • The back of the room key is a discount card to a lot of local places around Myrtle Beach. Though by the time we realized this it was our last day, and the boys randomly got a cold so we took it easy most of the day. Check out all the places it can be used here
    • Fall and Spring are the best times to visit Myrtle Beach as the ocean waters are warm and inviting, the sunshine and ocean breezes are abundant, and there’s more elbow room on the beach.

    Where was your last family getaway? Have you been to Myrtle Beach?  

    My family and I were provided complimentary accommodations by Vacation Myrtle Beach to facilitate this review. All opinions expressed belong to LifewithTanay. 

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    I LOVE Harry Potter But I’ll NEVER Go To Harry Potter Festival in Chestnull Hill

    And when I say never I legit mean probably… NEVER. 

    You see this little human…

    He decided (literally…. he wasn’t due for weeks) he wanted to be born on October 23rd.

    Chestnut Hill’s annual Harry Potter festival falls on October 20th and 21st this year. Like every year, it’s on his birthday weekend and I just feel like I’d be a bad mom to let my fandom interfere with celebrating his life. 

    But since I can’t go, do you wanna know what goes down? 

    Fans of all ages can attend the festival on October 20th & 21st for two days of film screenings, scavenger hunts & more! 

    Some of the festival highlights include:

    The Hogwarts Express and Opening Ceremony
    Each year, the Hogwarts Express (a.k.a. SEPTA’s Chestnut Hill West regional rail line), has departed from Jefferson Station and making all regular stops to Chestnut Hill West. Also onboard? Harry Potter, Hermione, Ron and Dumbledore look-alikes to greet guests.

    Quidditch Tournament
    One of the main festival events is the 8th Annual Philadelphia Brotherly Love Cup Quidditch Tournament at Chestnut Hill College.

    The tournament runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.. Admission to the tournament is completely free.

    Read more: http://www.visitphilly.com/events/philadelphia/harry-potter-weekend-in-chestnut-hill/

    I wanna go, I wanna go, I wanna gooooooo! *stomps and slams the bathroom door*

    For more info or to check out other events in the area make sure to check out Visit Philly. And maybe tell them to change the dates next year just for me? LOL

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