Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Cruisin' 2014 // Cozumel, Mexico

Our last port day was spent in Cozumel, Mexico. We had an excursion through the ship to an all-inclusive park called Xel-Ha. Our port stop was Cozumel, but we took a 45-minute bus ride to Cancun where the park is. Xel-Ha is a natural park that includes snorkeling, cliff jumping, tubing, and all other sorts of fun things! Our tour guide was really friendly and seemed to always be there. He'd literally pop out of nowhere and be "Hola, Amigos! Do you need anything?!" Haha!
{Coming in to Port at Cozumel, Mexico}
{Our nasty little friend that greeted us upon arrival!}
Side note: This was a natural park, so it contained lots of the local wildlife. Including iguanas stinkin' everywhere! I'm scared of lizards, so imagine my horror at having gigantic lizards literally sitting everywhere.
{On the train to go snorkeling}
The first thing we did after getting our bracelets was load up on the train to go snorkeling. You could either tube down the river or snorkel. We were on limited time, so we went with snorkeling! And you can't see all the pretty fish if you're in a tube!
{all geared up and ready to snorkel}
{mask selfie}

{the water was COLD!}
{We found a hidden cave, which later we decided was a secret love nest for iguanas and I hauled butt out of there!}
{practicing my dive skills}
{swings into the river}
One of the really cool things about the river was that it had different spots where you could get out and do activities, like these swings and then cliff jumping spots!
{thanks to Colin's Go-Pro for catching these shots!}
{I'm honestly not sure if this is Taylor or me? We were twinning that day with our swimsuits!}
After we finished snorkeling the river, we headed over to one of the three all-inclusive restaurants for a bite to eat! Our tour guide described them as "grandma's cooking," "authentic Mexican," and "Taco Bell." We went with Grandma's cooking first since that's what our tour guide suggested! It was amazing food! Ethan was really afraid of drinking the water in Mexico, so he (who is not normally a beer drinker) ordered a Corona from the bottle, no ice. Me, Taylor and Colin decided to chance it and have frozen Margaritas! It's been on my bucket list to have a margarita in Mexico, so it was fun to get to check that off!
{view from inside the restaurant}
{best guac I've ever had!}
{margarita in Mexico - CHECK!}
After lunch we decided to explore the park a little bit to try to find the rope swing that was advertised. Spoiler alert: don't waste your time on the rope swing. Not worth the 30 min hike!
{gorgeous place - this is the river we snorkeled!}
All-in-all it was a gorgeous place, but I'm not sure I'd go back or recommend someone to go? It had a lot to do, but it was pretty pricey and we had very limited time. I'd say if you're going to Mexico for vacation not through a cruise ship (where you have to be back on the ship at a specific time) go for it! I felt very rushed the whole day since we wasted 3 hours on ferries and buses to get to Xel-Ha! It was all-inclusive, which is a bonus, but I wish we had more time!
{selfies with the parrots - I have an animal selfie addiction I think}
{stubborn thing wouldn't turn around for my picture! Haha!}
{exhausted after our long day of fun!}
We had a good 30-minute bus ride back to port so we could get on our 45-minute ferry ride back to the ship. You better believe naps were taken! Oh, and word to the wise: bring extra dry clothes! We were all so cold and shivering on the ferry in our wet clothes! We did have a second to snap a picture of me at Senor Frogs! One day maybe I'll actually get to enjoy a margarita there too!
I loved being in Mexico and would definitely go back! Out of all our stops, Mexico was the best and the only place I'd visit again! Up next is our last day at sea before being home!
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Tuesday, November 25, 2014

My Marley Lilly Obsession

I'm a Southern girl tried and true. I love my college football {Go Noles!}, extra sweet tea, and most importantly my monogram! And I'm here to share with you my favorite monogramming shop Marley Lilly! I learned about Marley Lilly from my Aunt years ago and have been obsessed with them ever since! From these adorable {and new} monogramed flats, to countless variations of these scarfs, and my favorite the monogrammed luxe cross body clutch - you can't go wrong gifting any item from Marley Lilly this Christmas season! So, family, if you're out there and you're taking notes: Katie loves some Marley Lilly! ::hint hint::

I love this beige-colored monogramed scalloped luxe cross body clutch. The outside is a pebbled synthetic leather with a light yellow trim and gold hardware. My monogram is shown with the interlock font in chocolate brown. The inside is spacious and lined and includes a snap closure to keep my valuables secure! I love that the chain is detachable so that I have the option of wearing it as a cross body or holding it as a clutch.

The monogramed tassel bracelet is seven inches long with an extra inch of chain for a more adjustable length. {Big cheer for us big-boned girls!} The tassel comes in a variety of colors to match your style and mine is shown in burnt orange! It's the perfect orange for you Auburn fans out there! The monogram shown on the charm is the interlocking font.
{Follow Marley Lilly ~ Facebook & Instagram}

Top // Target
Scarf // Bows and Arrows
Tassel Bracelet // c/o Marley Lilly
Arrow Bracelet // Stella & Dot
Scalloped Clutch // c/o Marley Lilly
In the spirit of full disclosure, I was gifted the tassel bracelet and scalloped clutch by Marley Lilly to review.  All opinions are honest and my own. The links provided are not affiliated links, but my way of showing you my favorite items from their website.
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Monday, November 24, 2014

Weekending + a Giveaway

Happy Thanksgiving Week, friends! I hope everyone has already picked up anything and everything they need for their share of the Thanksgiving cooking! You know those shelves will be bare come Wednesday night! I'm in charge of desserts this year and I'm proud to say I've got everything ready to go!
This weekend I got to spend lots of time with friends and it was wonderful! Our friends Brad and Chelsea were in town visiting family, so we got to snag a night with them! Then I got to spend my "off" Friday with my Grandma and my Saturday with my friends Marissa and Taylor! I'm pretty sure I ate out every single meal this weekend.. Oops. So much for trying to be healthy! We also spent a good bit of time visiting with my sister-in-law Emily in the hospital. She's been put on bed rest for the remainder of her pregnancy, so say a little prayer for Em and baby Mila!
{Thursday night celebrating Chelsea & Brad being in town!}

{Lunch at Norma's with Grandma - best chicken salad in town! }

{FSU makes it 27 in a row!!}
Now on to the really fun stuff: a giveaway! I've teamed up with 12 other friends to bring you a $155 gift card to World Market! You got hard to shop for people on your Christmas list?! World Market is my favorite place to get a gift for that person who already has everything! Not to mention the wine selection is pretty out of this world! Enter below and best of luck to you!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

This giveaway will be live from 12:00am EST on November 24th through 12:00am on December 1st. Open to US residents only. All entries are verified. Winner will be contacted via email and has 48 hours to respond and claim prize or a new winner will be randomly chosen by the Rafflecopter.
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Monday, November 17, 2014

Weekending + a Giveaway

Good morning, Folks! Hope you're waking up someplace warm this morning, if not, no worries.. everyone is having crappy cold weather this morning. Except for South Florida. My cousin just posted a forecast for their week and it's all mid-70s. It's supposed to be 20-something here tonight in Northwest Florida. That's just not fair. Or right for that matter. But enough about me pouting about the weather. I had a good weekend and I'm willing to share!
Friday night Ethan and I went to the Ice Flyers Hockey game with my Grandma. We grabbed dinner at Outback and then met up with my brother at the game! I haven't seen that little workaholic in so long! It was good seeing his face! It was also good watching some wiener dogs race on the ice and then ultimately watching the Flyers become 6-0!

Saturday was a me & Ethan day. We got breakfast at IHOP, bought a Christmas tree at Dirt Cheap for 50% off, and had lunch with my sister-in-law Alexis at the mall! We even checked out a couple houses on our "possible future house" list. We headed to my grandparent's house later that afternoon to eat some chili and watch some football games!
 It was a crazy weekend full of upsets, but Florida State managed to pull out the win! Come on, boys! Only two more games left in the regular season! Let's stay undefeated!
Sunday morning Ethan and I went to church at Hillcrest, had lunch with Grandma, then went to my baby cousin William's 1st birthday. He is seriously the cutest little boy in the world!
{His new big truck from my parents & us!}

{He's obsessed with tractors}

{Opening presents like a pro!}

{So excited he couldn't sit still. Hence, the blurry pics!}

{He's sit in awe of the present}
After presents, it was time for the smash cake! He wasted no time digging it!
{Singing Happy Birthday}

Happy Birthday to my favorite one-year old!
Now, to get you through this cold Monday morning, how's about you enter the giveaway I'm a part of this month! As Karli pointed out in her post, Christmas is only 5 (FIVE!) weeks away. Holy. Cow. I've got to get on it! Now, go enter and good luck on winning some Christmas moolah!

bailley | nelle
karli | katie | hayley | crystal
lindsay | becca | amy | andrea
bex | kristin | karissa | lauren
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