Oslo, Norway

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Oslo is the capital of Norway, so my expectations for this city was pretty high.  We got off the boat in some rainy & cold weather, but we were not going to let that get in the way of a fun day.  The biggest attraction we wanted to see in Oslo was the Vigeland Sculpture Park.  This park has over 200 sculptures which essentially showcases Gustav Vigeland‘s life’s work.  There are so many sweet baby and children sculptures, some are a little creepy,  some show really raw human emotion, but at the heart of the park is the most well known- The Monolith – which was made from a single piece of granite and took three mason’s 14 years to make.  It’s a little strange looking at it up close, all the bodies intertwined together… add to that all the extremely provocative sculptures surrounding it… anyway… look it up, or click the links highlighted in this paragraph to fully grasp what I’m talking about.

The park itself was very picturesque and even on a rainy day the landscape design was stunning.  The flowers we blooming so bright!  I can only imagine how packed that place must be on a beautiful day, it was perfect for a picnic and a game of hide and seek.

The other spot we really wanted to enjoy was a quaint little fishing village named, Drøbak, which is a very traditional Norwegian fjord town.  Very cute, lots of art, and of course a Christmas store open year round!  The boys enjoyed exploring the marina, deciding what kind of boat we were going to get, and devoured some delicious ice cream in the sweetest little shop- no pun intended ;).

All-in-all… It was a really great day in Oslo!

 


Copenhagen, Denmark

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You guys.  Copenhagen was so wonderful, I wish we could have spent more time there.  This was our first stop on our Disney cruise, it was drizzling, fairly chilly, but we were ready to tour the town!  We hired a private driver and tour guide for the day and it was perfect.  We hit all the hot spots like The Little Mermaid statue, Amalienborg Palace where we got to watch the guards march around the square, had lunch at the Torvehallerne KBH which had so much variety of some of the freshest foods I’ve ever seen (!!) and tasted (!!), and last but certainly not least- we enjoyed walking around Nyhavn.  When you think of Copenhagen, I’m pretty sure Nyhavn is what you picture.  The beautifully colored storefronts and lots of people enjoying the restaurants and scenery.  The boys indulged in some yummy ice cream in waffle cones while I indulged in people watching ;).  The weather cleared up mid way through our tour and made for a fabulous afternoon.  Would love to see this place again someday in the future, but for now, it was a delightful start to the trip!

xx


Dover, England

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Last month we flew out to England to catch our Disney ship out of Dover, and since we arrived an entire day early, we decided to do some exploring!  The White Cliffs of Dover are jaw dropping beautiful, I could have spent days hanging on the beach with that beautiful weather!  The boys had so much fun running around and playing in the empty fields in front of the cliffs where we spent a little time,  then we decided to drive up to the top of the cliffs and found there were multiple walking paths to take in the scenery.  The path we decided on had barriers so there was no way to fall off, but there were definitely paths with no barriers what-so-ever!  People were taking pictures on the edge where one wrong step backward could have sent them plunging into the North Sea. Scary!  Did you know that the mineral that makes the cliffs white is chalk?  And because of natural erosion, the cliffs are constantly being reshaped and the line of the cliffs are constantly changing…  We admired the views for a while, then decided to skip over to tour the Dover Castle.  The castle which was built in the 1180’s (whoa!) has seen multiple wars all the way up to the 1900’s with the two World Wars.  After walking the grounds, we were pretty wiped, so we went back to the hotel, ate an early dinner, then got a good night sleep since we were getting on the Disney Magic the following morning!  Can’t wait to post all about it!  Stay tuned!


Niagara Falls

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Good Lawd, this post should have been posted about 3 weeks ago.  Whoops.  That’s my life these days.  It seems I really enjoy pushing myself to endure at least 4 to 5 super stressful things at the most inopportune times, so it delays all life moments from diligently being added to the blog.  My poor kids, I hope they don’t look back at this and go, “well, what was happening during all the lulling moments on here?!?”  I’ll tell you what has been happening behind the scenes: I’m making lunches for summer camp,  taking you to see the latest movies (Lion King and Toy Story 4), martial arts for Bennett, trying to maintain my mom tribe, going to “Meet the Teacher” appointments, playdates at the trampoline park, offering ALL THE SNACKS IN THE WORLD, changing diapers when I know little dude should be going on the potty (grrrrr), swimming in the pool almost every single day… all super fun things!  Certainly not complaining.  But there are a lot of moving parts around here and it seems I just can’t keep up anymore.  And that’s ok.

A few weeks ago, we took the fam up to the Canadian side of Niagara Falls for Husband’s birthday weekend.  None of us had been there before (surprising!) so we were pumped to see what all the fuss was about.  It was spectacular!  The views from our hotel were jaw dropping, and the experience of being able to go under the falls was one we will never forget.  I don’t have the time or energy tonight to list out details of where we stayed, ate, or enjoyed- but this is a VERY popular destination spot for families in the U.S.A. and it would be easy to plan a trip.  Not to mention it is relatively inexpensive to visit!  If you have young kids, it’s a must!

I wanted to tell you guys that for the adults there is a town called Niagara on the Lake that is super cute and quaint.  They have a street full of unique boutiques and restaurants.  All around the area are tons of small wineries that are so charming!  And very kid friendly!  Best of both worlds!  Oh!  And the Butterfly Conservatory was a huge hit!

Bennett’s first day at his new school is tomorrow.  I’m anxious and excited for him at the same time.  His teacher seems super sweet and I can’t wait to see what this year brings for him.  I’ll keep y’all posted!

xx P.S. thanks for following along even when I’m not up to date with our current events, LOL! ‘preciate y’all!


Switzerland on the Bernina!

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This post is LONG overdue, but, you know… life.

Y’all, Switzerland is stunning.  One day on the Bernina Express is not enough, although it was perfect for the boys.  We trekked out of Lake Como, through & up the mountains, where poor Bennett got car sick for the first time ever, crossed into Switzerland, and caught the train.  The views from the Bernina were everything I expected and more!  Looking down from close to the top of the Swiss Alps is like something out of a painting.  It almost looks fake.  Passing through the quaint towns and even enjoying lunch in one of them was wonderful. I swear when we stepped off of the train, it was like we were transported into The Sound of Music, although I know that was filmed in Austria.  The setting was glorious! The boys loved being on the train all day, the adults indulged in all the views from every direction, and it was a wonderful!

I kept telling Husband that we will have to make a trip to explore Switzerland more.  Or maybe even a ski trip?!?  One day was good, but a week would be incredible!


Lake Como, Italy

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We’re back!!  After a magical week at STUNNING Lake Como, we have so much to share!

Can we just start by admiring that incredible view from the villa we found with Luxury Retreats?!?  The first picture really captures the beauty of Bellagio, which is the town we stayed in, and it’s where the lake splits and goes to each side of this peninsula.  The mountains surrounding all of Lake Como really are the icing on the cake for the views, in the distance you can even see the Swiss Alps!

Two days of our trip were spent on the cutest wooden boat with a captain to show us all the sights.  You name it, we probably saw it.  Richard Branson’s house, Orrido di Nesso (aka the secret waterfall), the gardens at Villa Balbianello, and of course The Clooney’s home… we saw it all!  And it was fabulous!  We enjoyed gelato on the steps of Varenna, had lunch at the cutest and quaintest spot that for some reason I don’t remember the name of (whomp whomp) but when I do I will update!

On Sunday, Husband & I took a cooking class (with wine pairings ;)) from a place I found on TripAdvisor that ended up being really fun and full of Americans!  We made pasta, gnocchi, and creme brûlée’s, all of which were delightful.  Highly recommend!  Did I mention or did you notice in the pictures that grandparents of the boys were on this vacation with us?!?  Husband & I were able to go out on dates and do fun things like the cooking class because we had so much help with the boys.  We are so thankful for them!

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When we first landed in Milan it was pretty early in the morning so we had some time to kill before heading to the lake.  We decided to go into the city and admire the Duomo… omg… the most stunning architecture that literally takes your breath away as you turn the corner and it comes into view.  WOW!  On another note, there were tons of pigeons who love the tourists.  There are gentlemen who make a a living off giving tourists handfuls of corn and the pigeons literally flock to you like bombs out of the sky almost nailing you in the head in the hopes for one small kernel.

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There were yummy street carts set up with fresh made donuts and churros that would be split and stuffed with Nutella. My mouth was watering from the moment I smelled the dough frying!

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We also went into Milan one night to see the opera at one of the most beautiful and world renowned opera houses, Teatro alla Scala.  We got all dressed up, had a nice dinner, and enjoyed the ensemble in the historic building.  There was no AC, nor were they selling water… it must have been about 85 degrees in that building, but it was worth it just to say we have been.

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We did a day trip to Switzerland which I will write about in my next post, but I wanted to dedicate this entire entry to beautiful Lake Como, Italy!  I feel like we did it right by going and exploring all of the little towns for the entire week.  We ate so much pizza and drank too much wine ha ha ha… but dang we lived it to the fullest!

Ciao!


The Dietrich Boys Take NYC!

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Approximately number 13 on my bucket list would be to stay in a hotel that completely overlooks Central Park without any obstructions.  Well… CHECK!

Yes, it was excessive.  Just a little.  But dang, it was worth it!

The Dietrich boys painted the town red!  Our weekend started with a trip to The American Museum of Natural History which itself could have taken up an entire day if my boys were that patient.  When researching fun things to do with the kiddos in NYC, I saw that there was a limited time exhibit dedicated solely to the T-Rex!  Bingo!  From the moment we started the walk through, Bennett was engrossed by every little detail surrounding the ideals of this no longer existent predator.  There were sculptures of how scientists believe it was created, what it looked like as it transformed into the beast we know it as today, there were interactive tools that kids could enjoy to learn more, there was even a 3D video-like imagery that took up an entire wall (think maybe 2 times as big as a movie theater screen) of a T-Rex and baby stomping around the woods, breathing heavily, grunting, and staring at you directly like it was there in real life… yep!  That’s what we saw!  It was so life-like, Remy flipped the ‘F’ out!  He was so scared!  Poor guy, it kinda ruined him for the rest of the museum.

We moved on to the entire dinosaur wing, which is the largest dinosaur collection in the world (by the way), where Bennett had to see the Stegosaurus which is his current favorite dinosaur.  We also got to see the newest member to the museum, the Titanosaur, which was discovered in Patagonia, and the cast of this dinosaur is 122 feet long!  It’s only been there since 2016, go check it out next time you are in New York!

On Saturday we spent majority of the day in Central Park.  The boys loved climbing all the big rocks and staring out at the skyline.  We rode the Carousel, which they absolutely hated.  We then moved on to the small, but fun (!!) Central Park Zoo.  Our favorite thing to see was the penguins.  They were SO interactive!  They loved coming up to the glass window and diving right in front of everyone, they really put on a great show for us!

To top off the trip we had a late lunch at Serendipity 3 where we indulged on the frozen hot chocolate (the best!), then moved on to Dylan’s Candy Bar where Bennett got a cotton candy bigger than him!

We had such a great time and did more than I thought we would!  There’s just something about doing all the kid things in NYC that is just SO.MUCH.FUN.  Seeing and experiencing everything new to them is what makes patenting the best!  I don’t know… now that I have my sons, I feel like I have such limited time to share with them.  I want to show them the world!  We are not promised tomorrow, take the trips now! Who cares if they are wearing the latest designer outfits and who cares if they miss so-and-so’s 3rd birthday?  Make the sacrifice, plan the trip, and go.  There’s nothing more educational than traveling.  I promise.  Someone once asked me, “Why do you travel so much?  Do you not like being home?” It really took me aback a little bit and made me judge that person slightly (if I’m being honest)… my response was probably something like…. “uhhhh… because we love it… and it’s awesome!!” but really, I felt happy in that moment with this person, because it’s not every day you get to try to influence someone to travel more :)

Anyway, that’s my daily rant for now!  WE LOVE NYC!  Gotta go pick up my little rugrats from escuela!

P.S. Guess who’s turning 4 years old on Wednesday?!?!?!?