Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Travel Tuesday: Hogsmeade, Diagon Alley, Jurrasic Park and more...

Today I'm going to take y'all somewhere pretty special. Somewheres actually. To a wonderful land called Universal Studios where all of your dreams come true! You can soar alongside your favorite superheros. You can walk through life as a comic book character. You can venture out with the dinosaurs scavenging for fossils and running from dinosaurs in Jurassic Park. {Unfortunately the Jurassic Park ride was under construction yet again. We were devastated. We didn't end up spending much time here since the other ride is for kids and we have explored the science and learning center the last few years :)}

And most importantly, you can become a wizard and hang out in all of Harry Potter's favorite spots. We started the best part of this day venturing into Hogsmeade.

We headed straight for Hogwarts to hop on some brooms and help Harry, Ron and Hermione save the day. Between my bum ankle and my growing belly {it's a leg dangling and jerky ride}, I decided to opt out and hit up the baby swap room. They were playing the first HP movie in there so I was able to watch while the girls rode. They decided to do single rider so it practically took no time at all!


Then we went to go meet Buckbeak and ride the Flight of the Hippogriff! It was a pregnancy friendly mini-coaster for kids which was perfect for Ali and me! Julie and Ashley decided to duel some dragons {another roller coaster} next while Ali and I waited with the owls in the owlry!

Since we had been to Hogsmeade several times, we didn't stay for long. Just long enough to ride the best rides and see the best shops. It was time for our first ride on the Hogwarts Express to take us to London!

After a brief journey, we arrived at Platform 9 3/4 and ventured out into the London air!

We saw the Knight Bus and knew we couldn't be far from Diagon Alley!

After a few taps of the right bricks, we made it!

We went straight to Weasley's Wizarding Wheezes to check out the latest and greatest pranks from Fred and George.

Julie even had her wand ready to perform spells at all of the magical stops. It's such a cool concept. What Muggle doesn't want to be able to perform magic?

After all of our morning travels, it was time for a quick pit stop for some energy in the form of frozen butterbeer of course. Hello delicious. Since we were enjoying our treats, we thought we'd walk around the shops and see what Diagon Alley had to offer!

However, one wrong turn took us down the dark and mysterious Knockturn Alley. We stumbled upon the dark magic store Borgin and Burkes and couldn't resist the temptation to go in and scope it out.

There were dark artifacts all around including a vanishing cabinet that dark wizards used to sneak around from one place to another without being detected. It's pretty serious stuff. We snapped a picture, but kept our distance since we're good muggles wizards.

We gathered our wits and rushed out of the dark and dangerous street back to the hustle and bustle of Diagon Alley, and decided it was time to head into Gringotts Wizarding Bank.

It was a little shaky looking on the outside, but the inside was decorated beautifully. Since I was being rolled around in a wheelchair due to my ankle injury, we were able to skip the 90 minute wait thanks to a fine young gentleman who sent us through the fast pass lane. Score one for the boot and wheelchair!

Goblins make sure that Gringotts runs smoothly from day to day, so we were able to see them at work! Be careful with goblins though. They're sneaky little creatures and don't follow the same laws as wizards. Never make a deal with a goblin that you can't keep. ;)

We were able to ride down into the vaults far deep beneath Gringotts just to find out that Harry, Hermione and Ron were there on a mission. The dragon had escaped and we had to help get everyone out to safety. No worries though. Everyone returned with all body party in tact.

Unfortunately a combination of too much sugar from butterbeer and riding the cart in Gringotts had this pregnant lady feeling quite sick. My stomach had been starting to get out of whack the past few days and it really hit me hard after the ride. It got to the point where I was miserable. We decided to leave Diagon Alley and head back to London for some lunch and additional adventures.

Outside of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter is a land of excitement with of neat rides featuring different pictures from Universal Studios. There are a lot of roller coaster and jerky rides that I needed to refrain from for so many different reasons. Luckily it gave me time to rest and let my stomach try to settle.

I couldn't resist going on the Despicable Me ride though! There were non-moving seats that I was able to partake in. I had to keep my eyes shut for most of it though because the 3D bit was crazy and it make me quite nauseous.

After a few more rides, including Shrek and some roller coasters that Ali and I skipped out on, the girls went on a Revenge of the Mummy ride while I enjoyed an excellent view of the parade from my wheelchair. It was awesome that the parade went right by us, but that also meant that after the ride, we were kind of stuck. It took us a little while to dodge and weave with the wheelchair to get out of there!

It was about time to finish out the day, so we watched a horror production show and went on the awesome Men in Black shooting ride. We finished out our day wandering around the streets and shops of Diagon Alley before heading to the train station to take us back to Hogsmeade on the Hogwarts Express. We even disappeared right through the Platform 9 3/4 entrance without a single muggle noticing us!

Overall it was an absolutely wonderful day full of so much adventure. My stomach eventually settled, but I was in a significant amount of pain for several hours. I tried not to let it get me down and I hope I didn't put a damper on the girls' day! Oh and side note: the rides on the Hogwarts Express are different each way so I suggest riding both ways if you get a chance to go!

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Friday, March 27, 2015

22 Week Bumpdate

It's time for another bump date! 

How Far Along? 22 weeks 

Size of Baby: A spaghetti squash! {I actually had some for dinner last night...interesting.} She is about 10 inches long and finally weighing in at 1 pound!

Weight Gain: Up about 12lbs from my pre-pregnancy weight

Maternity Clothes: I bit the bullet and bought a few maternity items for Target. I got a few tank tops, a pair of jean shorts and a pair of workout pants! I can still rock the belly band with some shorts and jeans though. Several of my sports bras and workout pants have been removed from my dresser so I don't try to wear them.

Stretch marks: Not yet and hopefully never! 

Symptoms: Headaches, occasional dizziness, low blood pressure, increased appetite, acid reflux {I was diagnosed with reflex several years ago and had it under control. I continue taking my medicine, but it's starting to rear it's ugly head!}

Cravings: Whoppers Robins Eggs, fruit, chocolate milk, salads

Gender: Little Baby GIRL!!!

Mood: Happy! I'm enjoying this stage of pregnancy :)

Nursery: We're going to look at paint today and I've started to order a few things. I know exactly what I want and can't wait to see it in real life! My mom and aunt are coming over next week to start rearranging furniture in the room and getting rid of extra junk.

Movement: Lots of kicks and punches and stretches. I have a little ninja in me and love it! Last Friday at our doctor appointment, my OB was listening to her heartbeat and she said that little miss was just bouncing around everywhere. Sounds like she's definitely my daughter.

Sleep: Still waking up once or twice at night for potty breaks. I purchased a Snoogle pregnancy pillow and love it! It's helping me to stay on my side and gives me great back support. I've started getting leg cramps every so often, but it's mostly after a day that I workout harder!

Workouts: As of last Friday, I am officially out of the boot! I've been doing modified workouts that include exercises that I need to do to rehab my ankle. Everything is at a lower intensity and I am perfectly fine with that!

Sunday: Rest
Monday: Tabata class 
Tuesday: 45 minute spin class {I can teach again!}
Wednesday: 40 minute strength and core workout
Thursday: Tabata class again!
Friday: Rest
Saturday: Planning on a walk with the pups :)

What I Miss: Saturday morning runs and not feeling hungry. I'm hungry ALL THE TIME!

Belly Button in or out? In...but it's stretching more and more. So weird.

Wedding rings on or off? On

Labor Signs: No 

Anything making you queasy or sick: Meat. I haven't been eating much meat because the only way I'll really eat it is if it's mixed in with something like pasta, soup or salad. I couldn't just eat a grilled chicken breast because it makes me queasy.

Best Moments The Past 2 Weeks: Truly feeling all of Chloe's movements and getting our registries started.

Looking forward to: Going to Babies R Us today for more registry fun, booking a maternity photographer and preparing for our anniversary/babymoon trip. We're leaving in just 19 days!

Here's a look back at the last few weeks official bump pictures!

And now onto this week! I'm loving my little bump. I think I'm loving the fact that I'm actually looking pregnant these days instead of looking bloated or like I ate too much :) It's also nice not feeling sick or exhausted beyond all measure. Of course there are other symptoms like wanting to eat the world. At least this symptom let's me eat yummy things!

Now onto another week of growing my little girl big and strong! Happy Friday and have a wonderful weekend y'all!

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Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Life lately...

Hi there! It's me again. I know, who do I think I am showing up a week after my last post like its no big deal. Well, I'm a tired pregnant lady. That's who! I thought I'd give tall a fun update without just talking about being pregnant and watching little miss grow big and strong. So here's what been happening lately around the Gougler house...

Lately I've been...

...reading...Clash of Kings. The second book in the Game of Thrones series. If y'all like to read and you like the show, I highly recommend the books. I read the first one and went straight into the second! They are really, really long though. Be prepared to be reading it for quite some time.

...watching...Dance Moms, Chasing Life, Pretty Little Liars, Dancing with the Stars, Forever, 19 Kids and Counting, and other shows on Lifetime, TLC and ABC Family :)

...feeling...pregnant! I'm finally starting to show more and I'm feeling the aches and pains of pregnancy. Even though my belly may not be that big, she's still growing in there which just means that everything inside me is more compact! Next bumpdate will be up Friday for sure! I'm also pooped. I'm thinking about doing another day in the life post to show you what it's like being a pregnant trainer and instructor! 

...working out...more and more! No running for this girl for quite a while, but I'm officially out of my boot as of last Friday. I still need to wear it if my ankle starts acting up or if I feel like I need additional support. Now I'm in a smaller, sturdy brace which allows me to participate in my classes with my students and teach cycling. I switch up my exercises, so more intense exercises are swapped for my rehab/therapy exercises. I'm just glad I can do more and walk with even legs :)

...doing...everything I can while I'm still able! This past weekend, I rodeoed with Kristin and celebrated Penelope's 1st birthday with a pancakes and pjs party! This weekend we have a baby shower and an engagement party. I'm trying to get out there and be with our friends as much as possible without over doing it. I know that as each week continues, it will be harder for me to do as much!

...planning...our trip to Europe! We're leaving in just 3 weeks for our 2015 Eurotrip. We're going to London, Paris, Vienna and Salzburg. We are so stinking excited for our 5 year anniversary trip/babymoon. We're taking out time on this trip instead of framing everything in because this pregnant lady will be moving a bit slower and probably need a nap here and there.

...enjoying...this stage in life! I'm trying to take each day one at a time. I don't want to do too much, but I don't want to miss out on things either. I'm starting to enjoy pregnancy more which is such a relief. The first trimester and even into the second was rough for me. My injury didn't help. Now I can take the pups on more walks, enjoy outdoor activities and so much more. It's not easy by any means, but I'm loving it!

That's all for now! Hope y'all are having a fabulous hump day!


Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Travel Tuesday: Around the World at Epcot

I'm getting bad about keeping up with all these awesome Disney posts! Unfortunately, last week I was pretty busy plus I was off trying to get over a cold. It may not seem like much but being pregnant, injured and sick is really not a recipe for fun. At all. I digress. Let's get back to more exciting and awesome topics...DISNEY! I'm onto Day 3 of our Disney Parks adventure...you can see Animal Kingdom and Magic Kingdom too if you're a Disney fan or just wanna see more pics!

First things first, we needed to get this girl a wheelchair. After 3 days of scooting around on my knee scooter and 2 three mile walks in my boot, I was completely worn out and a wheelchair was a necessity. It was an excellent decision. Big thanks for my girl Ali for pushing me around ALL day at Epcot since Ashley and Julie were recovering from the half marathon that morning!

Ashley, Ali and I got to the park a bit before Julie. She needed to take a quick nap since she was the only one who woke up SUPER early each day! The girls and I decided to try and hop on a ride before we met back up with Julie along with Rachael and Joe for our Princess Lunch! {We rode the Nemo ride at The Seas in case you were wondering :)} After the ride, we hopped right over to Norway for our special lunch at Akershus!

For starters, the food was so yummy! We started with an appetizer buffet of traditional Norwegian cuisine. Now I'm not a Norway expert, but I pretty much have family there and I've been twice. I thought that the food was very similar to the types of foods I would eat if I was over there! Of course, there were some things I didn't recognize, so I'm going to assume they were super Norwegian. After that, I had the salmon and potatoes for my main course. It was amazing! Fun fact: The first time I went to Norway, I didn't really like fish and wouldn't touch salmon. Luckily, the second time around I was a fish lover and I ate so much delicious seafood there! That being said, the salmon was super tasty and the presentation was perfect!

Now onto the absolute most important part of this lunch...the princesses! Shortly after our main course came, so did the princesses. It was pretty steady stream so it took a little while before we were really able to sit down and eat. Other than that, everything was great. We were able to meet 5 princesses, and Ali, Julie and I were sure to get autographs!

Lunch was a huge success and we were ready to continue traveling the world at Epcot! Next stop...wheelchair parking :)

Just kidding, our next stop was Mexico! We rode the Los Caballeros ride and then Julie and Ashley got a well deserved margarita while the rest of us ran off to meet Donald! Taking as many pictures with characters was one of Ali and I's goals this time.

From Mexico, Rachael and Joe were trotting away to Magic Kingdom while the rest of us continued country hopping! Next we visited China where they had quite a few unique shops and we showed up just in time for the acrobatics show! Guess when having a wheelchair comes in handy? That's right, when you watch a show that doesn't have any seating. I already had a chair. #winning

Next we had to check out the tiaras in Germany. We are princesses you know! But before we knew it, we needed to hop on the boat that took us back across the lake to Future World for our Soarin' fast pass.

After Soarin', we had fast passes to meet Mickey, Minnie and Goofy! Yay for more character pics and autographs in my book.

After our pictures with Goofy, he started hugging the pole. It was so random. I think he was lonely since we left him for Minnie and the people after us were still with Mickey. Poor Goofy. We still love him...

Next it was time for more fun rides like Spaceship Earth {in the big Epcot ball!}, Mission: Space and Test Track! I had to sit out a few of those since I don't think Chloe would have liked them much. It did give me a nice little break to prop up my poor, exhausted ankle and drink lots of water of course!

We finished up the evening with a delicious dinner in France! The food was delicious! I had a bowl of  lobster bisque {oh my yum} and shared a veggie lasagna with Ali. No pictures were taken and every bite of food was consumed. We were pretty tired at this point. Scratch that. Completely exhausted. A bit brain dead. And we just needed to go home and go to bed. So we did!

We planned on staying for fireworks until we realized during dinner that we were fading fast. After 3 races and 3 days at Disney, we needed our beds. Plus we had Harry Potter World to get ready for! You can't go to London and Hogsmead without a brain! Check back Thursday for Universal Studios!!!

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