Friday, November 21, 2014

Schlitterbahn Beach Waterpark and Resort: The Perfect Beach Holiday!

Experience the Valley's premier entertainment destination on Texas' island jewel! This beach paradise features a 221-room resort hotel, indoor waterpark, full service restaurants, and more! Enjoy 11 world-class attractions, roar down twin water slides, feast at the Shrimp Haus full-service restaurant, or kick back and relax on the beach! Schlitterbahn Beach Waterpark and Resort is the perfect combination of family adventures and state-of-the-art attractions, right on Texas' favorite beach! The resort offers a unique mix of attractions, along with an amazing carousel, complete with that beach atmosphere that tops off any family vacation! It's the perfect beach holiday! Book yours today! 

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Our New Braunfels Day Trip, Part 2: Natural Bridge Wildlife Ranch.

Before we headed underground to check out the amazing Natural Bridge Caverns, we spent the morning exploring the wildlife safari next door at Natural Bridge Wildlife Ranch. While Ava had been twice before, they were both when she was two or younger, and she really enjoyed rediscovering it and interacting with all of the different animals! It was obviously Jack's first time, and we've certainly added another animal lover to our family, because he ate it all up! From feeding the goats to seeing the parrots and monkeys and lemurs on foot, to all of the safari animals during the drive through portion, he was in awe:

When we first arrived, we needed to stretch our legs after the drive down, and so we hopped out and checked out the petting zoo and walking portion of the Wildlife Ranch. The petting zoo and feeding the goats was a huge hit with both kiddos!

After we managed to feed the goats what amounted to a bags worth of food, we then explored a bit more - visiting the twin baby giraffes that are only the ninth documented set born in the world (!!), and hopped into the car for the drive through experience!

The park itself is separated by region, and the first portion was comprised of deer, elk, buffalo, yak, antelope, giraffe, and other similar creatures, and definitely was a great way to kick off the sightseeing!

From there, we then visited the Tower Plains addition that was new since our last visit, and added a couple miles to the experience!

We then made our way into the Kenyan Preserve, complete with zebras, ostriches, and more! 

We love getting up close with the animals, the kids especially, and Natural Bridge Wildlife Ranch is the perfect place to see zoo-like animals in an up close and personal, one-of-a-kind experience!

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Natural Bridge Caverns: A "Natural" Wonder in Central Texas.

We may not have the mountains and redwoods I was raised amongst in Central Texas, but we have many other gorgeous natural wonders to behold. One of my favorite things about Austin is all the greenery and bodies of water, directly in the middle of the urban sprawl, but another of my favorite landscapes happens underground, in the caves at Natural Bridge Caverns.

We recently took a day trip down to New Braunfels to visit both of the attractions at Natural Bridge: the Wildlife Safari, which I'll post about later this week, and the Natural Bridge Caverns, an underground network of caverns and formations. While I took Ava to visit caverns a couple of summers ago, she was two years old, and barely remembered the trip. This time, however, she was the perfect age for it, and loved exploring!

We arrived just in time to squeeze into a tour that began a few minutes later (tours depart approximately every forty minutes), so I strapped Jack into the Ergo*, and off we went with one of their very knowledgeable and friendly tour guides (*Let me just say here that, if you're planning to visit with a baby or toddler, a baby carrier is absolutely necessary! No way could I have managed keeping my tiny one in check during the stairs and inclines, nor could I have kept him from attempting to touch everything, without having him in the Ergo.)!

The tour began with a quick history of their formation and discovery, as well as our tour guide going over the rules with regards to touching (not allowed) and whatnot. Then, with a step down and into the climate controlled doors (the caverns are kept at 70 degrees and 99% humidity - see 'fro pictures for evidence...), we were off!

I won't share too many photos from down under here, because I don't want to ruin it for those of you who have yet to visit, but let me just say that all of us were impressed with what we saw. Every time I would snap a photo, thinking that surely this was the most beautiful spot in the caves, I would then round a corner or ascend a staircase and then see something even more spectacular! Here are a few of my favorite formations:

^^Ava looks psyched, right? LOL. She is currently going through an, "I don't want to smile in pictures" phase that I could certainly do without, but we had a great time, and managed to get this one blurry, awful photo of the four of us while 180 feet underground. Eh, they're not all gems, but at least the experience was amazing! 

Aside from the tours, Natural Bridge Caverns also has a gift shop, a canopy playscape and zip line, gold panning and more - definitely fun to be had for the entire family! 

You can find Natural Bridge Caverns roughly an hour South of Austin and half an hour North of downtown San Antonio at 26495 Natural Bridge Caverns Rd, 78266. 

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Valentia's Vitamin C Serum: Anti-Aging Serum for Everyone!

I recently had the opportunity to review Valentia's Vitamin C antioxidant and anti-aging serum. This even glow serum, which boasts 20% Vitamin C brightens and evens skin tone starting with the very first use, reducing the signs of aging - significantly after regular use.

Upon my first use, one of the first things that I noticed and was pleasantly surprised by was the way that the serum smelled. While many anti-aging creams have a medicinal smell to them, Valentia's Vitamin C serum had a citrusy scent to it, accented with the smell of cinnamon and cloves - I could think of nothing sweeter to put on my face! It's definitely not something I mind leaving a lingering scent on my pillow!

Aside from the amazing smell, I was also impressed by the way that it felt on my skin. The serum glided on smoothly, absorbed quickly, and left my skin feeling hydrated and silky, rather than greasy. I applied it between washing my face and applying my regular nighttime moisturizer, and noticed a difference in my complexion within the very first use!

Other ingredients, aside from the 20% Vitamin C base, include Organic Rosehip Oil, Organic Sea Buckthorn Oil, and Hyaluronic Acid - a naturally occuring amino acid in the skin that boosts firmness and fills fine lines and wrinkles. Best of all, Valentia Vitamin C Serum comes with a lifetime guarantee, meaning you can try it today risk-free!

Monday, November 3, 2014

Costume Carnival 2014!

Last year, Jack was just a wee little pumpkin on Halloween, but I hauled my one-week post-cesarean booty down to A's school for their annual costume carnival anyhow, and I was so glad I did. It was so adorable - and so was her Ariel costume

This year, Jack participated with his nursery school class, which made it twice as awesome - and I didn't feel like death warmed over, so that helped ;)

Here are some photos from this year's event!

Oh my goodness, how I love Halloween as a parent and having babies in school for holidays. Have you ever seen anything more adorable?!

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