Great things that happened this week!

Firstly, The Bar Method Winter Park turned 1!!!!

Secondly, Karen taught her first Level 2 class at the studio. She was absolutely fantastic. She taught the class flawlessly, with confidence and finesse.
We enjoyed 4 sets of thigh and two sets of seat. It was challenging and fun… and felt such an accomplishment at the end of class.
We were so proud of our seasoned clients who joined and conquered the class!

Thirdly, the 2012 Olympic Opening Ceremony in London! Wow! What a truly fabulous spectacular.
I have to admit, I got pretty teary watching it all. I am so proud to be British.
The hubby and I LOVED the Queen’s “entrance”… and Mr. Bean was an absolute hoot!
I wish all the athletes the very best of luck and here’s to a happy and safe Olympic Games this 2012.

Fourthly, we are off on holiday!!! Sin City here we come!
Somebody’s turning 40! I wonder who???

Sarah & her war wounds and buddy, Jingle!

Baby Sash

Happy Anniversary The Bar Method Winter Park!!!

One year ago today, Karen Moreno opened The Bar Method Winter Park.

Little did I know that when I walked through those doors last year, that my life would change dramatically…. in such an amazing way!

Karen is easily one of the best bosses I have ever had. She is hard-working, approachable, fun, adorable, and generous to a tee.
I have so much respect and love for her. She exudes warmth and is the type of person who brightens a room just by being in it.
The same goes for the wonderful group of instructors that she put together as her team for the studio. They are all so different, but each one of them is wonderful and special.
I feel so very blessed and honoured to now be a part of that team.

So happy 1st birthday, The Bar Method Winter Park!
I love you, I love our clients, I love my coworkers, and most of all, I love Karen for bringing all this into my life!

Karen & I

My husband.

Gwennie talks a lot about meeting her “handsome prince”. She told me the other day that she just can’t find anyone decent enough and “OMG!” will she ever find the right one?

I told her that she has plenty of time. She needs to find someone kind, handsome, loyal, and true… and someone who is a good cook. Someone just like her Dad.

She now wants to marry Bill.

I’m so cool with that!

Oh if it were that simple.

Here are some of my favourite photos of G with her Daddy….

She had her first bug… Daddy was there to make it all better.

The camera doesn’t lie! Look at the love here!

Pool time!

Big grins!

Father’s Day 2010

Seattle September 2007 – Mel and John’s wedding

Lake Tomahawk Thanksgiving 2007

I hope she gets as lucky as me.

Of movies and sushi!

Happy weekend!

Bill, Gwennie, & I went to see “Ice Age: Continental Drift” yesterday. It didn’t fail to disappoint.
Again, the reviews for it were a little mixed, but I think I look at these animated films now through different eyes… those of a 5 year old. I see the silly humour in everything and don’t take them too seriously.
The cast was a fabulous of array of stars… the old faithfuls of Ray Romano, Denis Leary, Queen Latifa, and John Leguizamo. This time they were joined by Peter Dinklage, Jennifer Lopez, and Nicki Minaj.
As always Scrat stole the show with his hilarious antics!
Gwennie’s favourite was JLo’s character, Shira, a beautiful sabre toothed tiger. I fell in love with Sid’s Granny, fabulously taken on by the wonderful Wanda Sykes.
Before the movie began, Maggie Simpson starred in a short called “The Longest Daycare”. It was absolutely brilliant! We all loved it!
The entire movie theatre enjoyed the entire entertainment and there were rounds of applause after both the Simpson short and the movie finale.

Afterwards we headed on over to a restaurant we haven’t tried before. Sushi Pop is located near UCF.
Bill had read good reviews about it and so we decided to give it a whirl. It is such an understated little place on the outside and we were so surprised when we walked in!
It is very spacious and modern and has a very cute ambience. There is Manga art on the walls and Gwennie was mesmerized by the TV screens playing Anime type movies.
Banzai trees are displayed all over the locale. The waiters and waitresses are all dressed up in cute little outfits. Lucy, our waitress, looked like a modern day flapper girl.
The food was tremendous. Bill and I both enjoyed the Pop Salads and then the Ceviche and Hot Mess rolls. The fish was super fresh, as were all the amazing flavours.
The chef put together a dish of tempura chicken with bok choy and rice for Gwennie, which she enjoyed.
Then we all shared two wonderful desserts… a coconut creme brulee and something completely decadent called PMS (think chocolate lava cake filled with chocolate and peanut butter… accompanied by sea salt caramel ice cream!!!! OMG!!!!). All washed down with a Japanese wheat beer (I don’t remember the name!) and a lovely glass of Sauvignon Blanc, which was deliciously apple-y and complimented the rolls perfectly.
Lucy was delightful and was super attentive, cute, and a hit with Gwennie… especially after awarding her with a bunch of chopsticks to take home, complete with a child’s chopstick “learner” tool!
We will definitely go there again.

Today we are getting ready to enjoy an afternoon with Grandpoo by the pool. Here are some photos of the crazy duo from last week!

Swim buddies!

Ready, steady….



Movie Reviews… “Brave” & “War Horse”

Bill & I took Gwennie to see “Brave” last weekend. I was excited to see it as I love Pixar movies and I wasn’t disappointed.
Both Bill & I were blown away with the stunning and realistic animation. I instantly liked Merida. She is quirky, cute, fun and strong-willed.
And who wouldn’t adore that head of massive red curly locks!
The cast were fabulous and it was so fun to hear all these famous voices (Billy Connolly, Emma Watson, Robbie Coltrane).
I was a little surprised that so many critics found the movie bland and lacking in content. I didn’t find it to be that way at all.
However, I do think it is more of a “chick flick”. By the end of the film, Gwennie and I were snuggled up together with tears running down our cheeks.
To me, it is a story of a young woman and her mother… at the beginning of the story, they misunderstand each other and butt heads.
It is a story about them coming together, despite their very different personalities and outlooks, and appreciating what the other one is about.
We loved it!
It is a little scary in parts… so be aware if your little one balks a little at these more frightening parts in Disney movies.
We will be buying it when it comes out on DVD. Go Pixar! You did it again!

Last night Bill & I watched “War Horse“. Oh. my. goodness.
What a beautiful, heart-wrenching story. The movie begins in the stunning rolling green fields and hills of Dartmoor.
Again, the cast is phenomenal. As for Joey the horse and (later on) his friend Topthorn… well, those animals should have gotten Oscars.
I don’t think I stopped crying the entire movie. It started off with just the tears welling in the eyes, moving on to the silent tears rolling down the cheeks,
finally progressing to the ugly cry and ending with the full on “can’t hold back” sobbing. (If you have watched the movie, you will know which part I completely lost it at!)
Thank GOD it had a happy ending. I don’t think my heart could have taken it otherwise.
It is such a moving story… about a friendship between a young man and his horse and how, once separated, their lives run parallel…
both experiencing war and the loss of dear friends… until they finally find each other again.
What a wonderful film. I really want to see the stage show. I hear it is phenomenal also.
If you watch the movie, have your box of Kleenex close by. I defy you not to become completely enveloped by this sweet and tragic tale.

I love family time!

Spent a fun morning with my two favourite people. I decided to forgo my workout when Bill mentioned going to the Winter Park Farmers Market.
I love going there! It has such a great atmosphere. Families and locals trundle through the variety of stalls with their dogs.
There is a great selection of produce, plants, baked goods, cheeses, and so on. We made a beeline for our favourite stalls.
Bill bought me a beautiful phalenopsis from Ginny’s Orchids.

Ginny’s Orchid

Then we went and bought some pistachio pesto from the Pesto Diva lady.
We sauntered in to the “inside” area of the market and bought some fabulous Gloucestershire cheese laced with Stilton cheese. Yum!
We shared strawberry and lime-lemonade that had been freshly made right in front of us.

We then headed over to the Whole Foods Market on Aloma, where we stocked up on various delicious-looking pastas, chicken kabobs, and vino!
Yummy Dinner R Us this weekend!!!

After that we decided to hit our beloved Ravenous Pig for lunch. Alas, they were doing a one-entree only menu… and as it was clam bake, we declined.
I am sure it was delicious, but we didn’t think Gwennie would be too struck!
A few doors down was Dylan’s Deli. We hadn’t eaten there before so decided to give it a whirl.
It was a cute little place and the service was good. Bill had “The French” and I had “The Oslo” (smoked salmon with sweet onions and feta on a dill-sprinkled french baguette), which was delicious!
We enjoyed small house salads which came with yummy homemade French vinaigrette.
Gwennie enjoyed a spectacular ham, cheese, and egg crepe. It was to-die-for!

I love days like these.

Had a fun day yesterday too. Had a couple of dear friends, Emily and Lauren, come over with their little ones. We ladies just chatted, ate lunch, and generally caught up.
The four children just had a ball playing in the pool. They all played so well together.
I love Emily and Lauren. I feel that we can really be open with our hearts to each other on some tough subjects. It’s so nice and refreshing to have that comfort within a friendship.

I love days like those.

Hope, Gwennie, and Taylor on their “boat”!

JD chilling with Larry!

Beach Break

Spent a couple of days at Daytona Beach Shores with Gwennie and Kendra. We were lucky with the weather as the beginning of the week was on a real downer with Tropical Storm Debbie.
We drove over on Wednesday and it was still overcast and windy. Luckily the hotel we were staying at had an indoor pool, so we took Gwennie to have a little play in there.
Much hilarity ensued between Kendra and I at the temperature of the pool…. was it heated electrically or by all the kids pee??? LOL!

We stayed at Perry’s Ocean Edge Resort. The hotel is situated right on the beach front.
Our room worked really well for us. We had a great ocean view and there was a separate little area with bunk beds for Gwennie.
The hotel looked a little “tired”. I think they are slowly working on renovating and decorating and it certainly needs it.
The rooms need redoing and they need some new loungers by the indoor pool. It was clean though and had everything we needed.
The outdoor pools were nice and there was a Tiki Bar (we never tried it) and areas for shuffle board and mini-golf.

We went to Crabby Joe’s for dinner. It is positioned at the end of a pier over the ocean.
My friend Jenn came to join us after she had finished work. She lives in Ormond Beach.
We had good service and the food was nice. We shared crab cakes and enjoyed Mahi Mahi and Tilapia.

Thursday turned out to be a glorious day. The weather was perfect and not too hot after the storm.
We hit the beach and had fun making sandcastles and playing in the waves.
Kendra turned out to be an amazing sandcastle architect and sand sculptress! Very impressive!
Jenn joined us at the beach for a while until her porcelain skin sent her running for the safety of the indoors!
We also spent some time by the hotel pool and Gwennie, of course, made some friends.

That evening we went to Aunt Catfish for dinner. This is a cute little restaurant in Port Orange situated on the river.
We had tried to go there the previous night, but were told it was an hour’s wait for dinner, and as it was late and we had a 5 year old in tow, we went to Crabby Joe’s instead.
I had called during the day to make a reservation for 7pm. When we got there we were given a lobster buzzer and we waited for our table.
We waited and waited.
There was a nice little outside area with a mini-playground for the kids and there was a lovely girl playing the guitar and singing.
Gwennie thoroughly enjoyed herself playing with all the kids and dancing to the music.
Long story short, despite a couple of complaints from us, we still waited a good hour for our table.
Once we finally got seated, the food was good and our waitress was sweet. (The welcoming hostess at the door was NOT.)
The restaurant was cute inside but it seemed as though they were understaffed and a little disorganised.
I’m not sure whether I would go back there again. Maybe lunch time would be better???

Gwennie was a trooper despite having two very late nights. She is normally in bed and tucked up by 7:30pm.

Friday morning, we packed up our stuff and checked out. We hit the beach and pool for a couple of hours before heading out.
We went to a cute little place called Ocean Deck for lunch. We enjoyed fish tacos and the view of the beach.
Then it was time to head home.

It was a fabulous couple of days.
Kendra was amazing company and we had such a laugh. I really miss our late night chats!
She was an absolute gem with Gwennie too. Such a great person!
It was fun to spend some time with Jenn too. We don’t get to see each other enough.
She and Kendra got on really well too. I knew they would. We all have the same crazy sense of humour!

Some photos of the trip…

Room at Perry's Ocean Edge

Gwennie and the sea life!

View from our room!

View from our room

Kendra and Gwennie

Kendra and Gwennie – in matching bikinis!

Kendra, Jenn, and Gwennie

Kendra, Jenn, and Gwennie

Gwennie and I

Gwennie and I