Category Archives: Vacation

Playing Hooky From Work

Mark the date…. 03/19/2013 was the day I officially played hooky from work and spent the day at Universal Studios. Though this was technically a vacation day I chose to spend it at one of my favorite places , Universal Studios, in Orlando, Fl. The forecast called for 40% chance of rain, but there wasn’t a cloud in the sky and the temperature was perfect. The day started around 7:30 am when the wife’s mom and aunt arrived at the house. They had no clue what was in store for them but we hopped in the car and stopped at our first destination which was Starbucks. After we all had our drinks we hopped in the car and headed towards the interstate, it was at that time they found out that we were going to spend the day at Universal. The wife and I hadn’t been there in a long time, but my mother-in-law’s sister hadn’t been there and was a Harry Potter fan so it was sure to be a fun time. Once we arrived we made our way to the front gates of Islands of Adventure, knowing she was a Harry Potter fan we went there first. To get there we went in reverse and started at Seuss Landing and worked our way back to Harry Potter. Once we left Harry Potter we went thru all the other areas and stopped at Blondies for a quick lunch. We then proceeded to walk thru the other parts of Islands of Adventure making our way to the front of the park to head towards Universal Studios.

Welcome Globe

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Blondies

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Once we made it thru the gates of Universal we proceeded to the broadcast area to make a quick stop in to see a friend and then we were off to E.T. The wife love E.T. so we rode that and then continued to walk the park, but couldn’t help but notice all the changes and construction that was happening in the background. Making our way back to Men In Black, we passed more construction, but the place was still full of life and families enjoying the day as far as one could see. Making our way past Men in Black we passed what appeared to be the home of an upcoming attraction Transformers 3D which I can’t wait until it’s done and I can go back. We rode Twister and then passed Shrek 4D and the Blue Man Group which I have yet to see, but everyone keeps telling me I need to and headed towards the front gate.

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Once back in the car and heading home we decided to go to The Original Hooters in Clearwater for dinner and I was perfectly fine with that. What’s on the menu for dinner after a long day at the theme parks you ask? Well I had boneless chicken wings (classic BBQ), medium buffalo shrimp and fries, and of course I had to wash it down with ice cold Bud Light (as always it was a pitcher… or maybe 2). Oh, and who could forget that I always have to have a piece of peanut butter cup pie to take home with me. The place was pretty busy and service was awesome as usual, but I wouldn’t expect anything less from them and that’s why the wife and I choose to go there out of all the other locations. All in all it was a great day of hooky we played and everyone seemed to have fun. I’m sad it’s over and I’m back at work today but I feel another day coming on soon.

Where’s your favorite place to play hooky? How often do you get play or take time off?

New Year’s resolutions

With 2012 coming to an end I’ve started thinking about New Year’s resolutions and decided 2013 is going to the “Year of Mike”. Something I’ve tried in the past but failed miserably at due to letting others manipulate my schedule. The year seemed as if it flew by and now with 2013 approaching it’s time to set some resolutions.

Fitness:

In 2013 I plan on creating a workout routine and sticking to it, holding myself accountable with goals and rewards. With that being said I’ve decided my goal weight is going to be 200lbs. This will leave me with about 35lbs to lose over the year and I know I can do it if I stick to my guns and workout as I have in the past. This will also be the year of my first 5k race. I’m not sure when or where, but I will commit to and run one.

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Vacation:

In 2012 once again I’ve failed to take all my vacation time, time which my company gives to me and if I don’t use it I’ll lose it. I’ve determined vacation is going to be a key ingredient in making my resolutions a success. Vacation will also allow me more time to be spent doing the hobbies which I love to do. Hobbies that help maintain my sanity as well as reducing stress.

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photo 2Charity:

Charity is another area where I was lacking, but I feel 2013 will be a great year for us and doing as much charity work as our schedules will allow us to. This is going to be the year we spend growing Jingle Bikes for Kids.

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Family:

Family time seemed to be at a minimum for 2012. I’m hoping to spend more time doing family “functions” or “activities”. Family activities this year seemed to be at a minimum due to work schedules. Vacation time and working normal hours should allow for this to happen.

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Blogging:

I know I haven’t been blogging long, but I plan to be more active with my blog in 2013. This past year if I’ve only learned one thing about blogging is to post often. I’ve been thinking about this one for a bit and I’ll be attempting to expand my blog over the next year and create a more structured approach. I’ll be incorporating several items and features which over time should take me to where I’d like it to be.

What goals have you set your sites on for 2013? How do you plan on reaching and maintaining them?

The end is near

No I’m not referring to the Zombie Apocalypse, but the end of my vacation. I’ve been off the entire week and it’s taken me all of that to catch up on chores that have piled up over the past few months. I fixed a few things around the house, ran errands and even started to clean the garage. The one thing I did not catch up on is sleep. It’s funny how your body can get used to a schedule and not be able to adjust. I’m usually up between 5:00am and 6:00am for work during the week and my vacation apparently wasn’t any different. While everything was business as usual (as far as holiday stuff) we did take the opportunity for an impromptu visit to The Seminole Hard Rock Casino on Friday for a bit of much needed fun. We played the slots and ate lunch at The Hard Rock Café which is something we hadn’t done in a while. The place was empty and you could hear bells everywhere (even on the machines Nanci and I played). We were up on the slots and kept playing and playing for what seemed like hours until we were back to what we took with us. You see what I consider to be a good day at the casino is coming home with what you took (or maybe a bit more) and playing for a while with their money. Saturday brought Nanci to the movies with some family and I never left the couch (well maybe for a few but I decided to just relax, watch some TV and turn off the brain for a bit). Later than night we ended up at Nanci’s brother’s house for some pulled pork, corn muffins, coleslaw and grilled corn. You see her brother is a master chef when it comes to cooking (I believe he inherited that from his mom). Hopefully today will allow Nanci and I to get the Christmas tree setup and spend the last little bit of time together with the boys before going warp speed back into that crazy thing we call work and life.

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What do you normally consider a good vacation? Do you ever get any down time or is it as crazy as usual?

Back to the Basics: Week # 6 wrap up

Week #6 proved to be a tough one as I was off on vacation all week and chose to relax for a few days. This brought a few challenges but I feel as if I made it through.

Gym:

With being on vacation I found it too easy to take time off from working out. I slept in and this threw my workouts off. I did find myself doing a lot of walking though as I went to PSP World Cup 2012 for several days. One thing I wished I had was a pedometer to calculate exactly how much walking I did.

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Diet:

The diet was definitely tough as I found myself almost caving to temptation several times. The wife and I went to Walmart last week and I found myself throwing junk food in the cart and it did manage to make its way home. While relaxing on vacation I found myself gradually working my way towards the junk food and I admit I did cave in.

Results:

While this week was weird and filled with not much of anything exercise- wise, I still managed to lose. Given my weakness and temptations I threw at myself I consider myself very lucky to have gotten the results this week. With that being said I’d like to report that I managed to lose 1 lb this week. It doesn’t seem like a lot but it is a loss after all so I’ll take it.

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What’s your worst week been? How did you recover from it?