Lifestyle, Travel

Christmas 2016 Travel Diary

It was our first time to be away from home for Christmas and we celebrated it in Florida, where the weather is warm and sunny. We live in Michigan and it’s really cold here around winter time. So if you are dreaming of a winter wonderland Christmas, Michigan is the place to be! My son Lucas said it feels different to have Christmas with no snow but he doesn’t mind at all celebrating it in Florida, most especially when they get to visit Disney World!

We stayed in Florida for ten days, at three different hotels! You probably think, it is a lot of work to move from one hotel to the next. It is, if you think of it that way but it wasn’t really for us. It is quite an adventure to go hotel hopping and we actually had fun experiencing different environment and services every three days.We first stayed at Lake Buena Vista Resort and Spa, this one is close to Disney World and there is a shopping mall next to it.

This is our third time as a family to visit Disney World and as usual, it never failed us. That’s why we picked this place as one of our itinerary during our Christmas vacation. Disney around Christmas time is nothing like the ordinary, Christmas decorations and trimmings are everywhere. They also have Christmas shows like for example Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party at Magic Kingdom and  other Christmas shows at the other parks. In this vacation, we did two parks. The Magic Kingdom and Hollywood Studios.

My kids have an almost five years age gap. My son Lucas is 8 years old and my daughter Olivia is 3 years old. Lucas is no longer into the meet and greet with the Disney characters, he already passed that stage. He just wants to do the rides, his favorites are the Space Mountain, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad and The Pirates of the Caribbean.

On the other hand, Olivia loves to meet the princesses and the Mickey Mouse clubhouse characters. So what we did, we split. The boys did their rides and the girls did the meet and greet  and mini rides suited for Olivia.For the shows and rides that we can all go together, we meet up. Fast pass is a huge help in scheduling our rides and don’t forget to download Disney app to know the waiting times and to help you navigate around the park. It is so much easier now!

After our Disney excursion, we went to Boca Raton and spend Christmas there with my husbands relatives. We stayed at Renaissance Boca Raton Hotel. It has such a  beautiful contemporary interior and exterior design. The rooms are clean and updated. The lounge area by the pool is so relaxing. I can just stay there all day and just enjoy the nice warm weather.The hotel is located in the metropolitan area, so basically it is nearby to almost everything like their upscale mall,supermarket and restaurants.We would love to go back here again on our next visit.

We only spend a couple days at Boca Raton. We didn’t really got the chance to explore the city because of the holidays with the family but that’s totally fine. Besides, it is Christmas and it’s good to spend time with the family most especially to the ones you rarely see. We have tons of fun with them and we also enjoyed our stay at the Renaissance.

Our next destination is the Hammock Beach Resort at Palm Coast,Florida. I love this resort! They have stunning villas and suites range in size from one to three bedrooms, and feature full kitchens, washer/dryers and multiple bathrooms – making them the perfect choice for family retreats. Aside from the big golf course, they also offer a lot of activities:

  • Kids Crew program
  • Fantasy Waterpark with slide and lazy river, and pools geared to all ages
  • Ocean-skim boarding and surfing
  • Putt-Putt golf and bicycle rentals
  • Full service spa and fitness center

Multiple restaurants and bars appealing to a variety of cuisine interests.

We have tons of fun here. They have everything for the adults and the kids and the view is absolutely gorgeous!

Definitely coming back!

In those ten days vacation, we were literally hotel hopping. Some of you might find that as a hassle, but for us it wasn’t because we like to go to different places and maximize our time. The packing and unpacking might be somewhat challenging for some of you, especially when tagging along kids but it wasn’t bad at all. We eventually learned some tricks as we went along and it is quite an experience to look forward to your next destination every so often.

It is different to be away from the comfort of your home during Christmas, you kind of missed some of the usual traditions you do at home with your kids around Christmas time. I was also extra busy, because everything has to be done earlier, so that we have time to prepare what we need for the trip. So we celebrated Christmas parties with friends and family earlier than usual. The kids also get to open their presents from us before the trip.Then they get to open the gifts from Santa when we get back from our trip.

It was quite stressful getting it all done in time before our vacation and I’m glad it’s over and done before we left.

These pictures were taken before we went on vacation. We have a little gathering with our family before we leave for our trip.

So there you go, Our Christmas of 2016. It was definitely an adventure and I would love to do it again!

Thank you so much for reading and may you have a great day!





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  • Reply robin masshole mommy

    Oh fun! We go to Disney in August every year. I am looking forward to going back this summer.

    January 18, 2017 at 5:12 pm
    • Reply April Kus

      That’s awesome! They said August is the best too coz it’s not that crowded. Is it true?

      January 21, 2017 at 3:37 am
  • Reply JeeYoung

    What a fun trip! Definitely nice being home around the holidays, but I want to do this one year for a change!

    January 18, 2017 at 8:25 pm
    • Reply April Kus

      Yes, it’s nice to experience it for a change.

      January 21, 2017 at 3:38 am
  • Reply Nellwyn

    A Disney Christmas sounds like so much fun for kids! The castle looks so magical all lit up with lights like that!

    January 18, 2017 at 9:50 pm
    • Reply April Kus

      Thank you, truly magical!

      January 21, 2017 at 3:38 am
  • Reply Michelle Sevy

    Wow! It looks like it was very memorable and a wonderful time with family.

    January 18, 2017 at 11:26 pm
    • Reply April Kus

      Yes, totally one fore the books!

      January 21, 2017 at 3:39 am
  • Reply Amy Jones

    Seems like you guys are having such a fun vacations! These pictures are so beautiful <3

    January 19, 2017 at 1:04 am
    • Reply April Kus

      Thank you so much Amy!

      January 21, 2017 at 3:40 am
  • Reply Sarah-Louise Bailey

    I bet this was one of your memorable holiday ever. Being with family on a very important occasion will always be the best thing to happen and we should cherish every moment we have with the people we love.

    January 19, 2017 at 3:06 am
    • Reply April Kus

      You are totally right Sarah this is the most memorable one!

      January 21, 2017 at 3:41 am
  • Reply Heather Pfingsten

    I live in Cincinnati so our weather varies annually when it comes to Christmas. That being said, my dream is to one day spend the holidays at Disney World with my family. Yes, it will be VERY different than anything that we have ever experienced but WOW. Your pictures, the memories… it looks amazing.

    January 19, 2017 at 4:59 am
    • Reply April Kus

      It is truly amazing! Like you said,totally different from what we experienced every year. It’s one of the best Christmas we had so far.

      January 21, 2017 at 3:43 am
  • Reply Annemarie LeBlanc

    Looks like you had a great time with family. I miss those days when my kids were still young. Now they are all grown and have their own activities and travel plans. Maybe we can come together again as a family and go on a trip, just like old times.

    January 19, 2017 at 9:32 am
    • Reply April Kus

      Awww I just want to hug you right now.Hopefully that will happen soon Anne. Wow, time flies for sure. My hugs to you!

      January 21, 2017 at 3:48 am
  • Reply Rachel Mouton

    It looks like you had an amazing holiday season. Disney World is simply breathtaking this time of year <3

    January 19, 2017 at 12:04 pm
    • Reply April Kus

      It is superb! I am so grateful to be there and enjoy this time with the family.

      January 21, 2017 at 3:49 am
  • Reply Fatima

    Oh my gosh, how fun!! I bet your kiddos will always remember this 🙂

    January 19, 2017 at 2:47 pm
    • Reply April Kus

      Totally! They still talk about it till now.

      January 21, 2017 at 3:50 am
  • Reply Joanna

    I wouldn’t mind spending a Christmas in Florida, going to Disneyland and being in a resort with family. It looks like your children had a lot of fun and it was much better than a cold holiday. 🙂

    January 19, 2017 at 3:36 pm
    • Reply April Kus

      Yes, we had so much fun! When we get back home, I can’t believe how cold it is much colder than we left and I just wanna go back to Florida lol

      January 21, 2017 at 3:52 am
  • Reply Tiana

    What a glorious and wonderful Christmas holiday! I wish I was there

    January 19, 2017 at 4:16 pm
    • Reply April Kus

      Thank you Tiana

      January 21, 2017 at 3:52 am
  • Reply Natasha

    We are planning on traveling Thisbe year for Christmas. I’m not sure if we will hit Disney, but some of the other places you listed I’m going to look into. It looks like you all had a great time!

    January 19, 2017 at 7:52 pm
    • Reply April Kus

      In between Boca Raton and Palm Coast around Christmas time, Boca Raton is much warmer but that resort in Palm Coast which is Hammock Beach Resort is amazing! Their private beach is so wide.They have lots of pools, a lazy river, golf, pot pot and activities for the kids.Their room is gorgeous and well maintained.

      January 21, 2017 at 4:00 am
  • Reply Hey Sharonoox

    Oh what a fun trip! Looks like everyone had lots of fun. I hope to bring my family to Disney someday. Opening presents and going for a vacation that like a dream come true.

    January 20, 2017 at 1:58 am
    • Reply April Kus

      Hopefully one day….Thank you Sharon

      January 21, 2017 at 4:02 am
  • Reply Amber Myers

    Yay for Disney! We’re going there in March and I cannot wait. I’d love to go there during the holidays.

    January 20, 2017 at 2:13 am
    • Reply April Kus

      I’m so excited for you! It will come sooner than you think. Enjoy guys!

      January 21, 2017 at 4:03 am
  • Reply Chelsea Padgett

    I love Disney World. We are annual pass holders at Disneyland, but I can’t wait to take the kids on a trip to Florida. Growing up we would visit for Christmas too. My Grandma and her family lived there. Looks like you guys enjoyed the holidays.

    January 20, 2017 at 5:42 am
    • Reply April Kus

      That is amazing! Disney is always the best. Thank you Chelsea!

      January 21, 2017 at 4:05 am
  • Reply Elizabeth O.

    You have the most adorable kids! I think it’s nice that you spent your holidays in Florida! There’s nothing like Disney in December! Looks like you all had fun during your vacation.

    January 20, 2017 at 1:06 pm
    • Reply April Kus

      Thank you so much Elizabeth!

      January 21, 2017 at 4:07 am
  • Reply Fatima Torres

    I live less than four hours away from here, and I have yet to take the kids. I’d love to plan a trip when they’re a little older. Looks like your family had a great time!

    January 20, 2017 at 2:34 pm
    • Reply April Kus

      Wow 4 hours, that is amazing but you are right it’s better to bring them when they are a bit older, they would enjoy much better and get to go to all the rides! Thank you Fatima!

      January 21, 2017 at 4:59 am
  • Reply April Kus

    Wow 4 hours, that is amazing but you are right it’s better to bring them when they are a bit older, they would enjoy much better and get to go to all the rides! Thank you Fatima!

    January 21, 2017 at 4:08 am
  • Reply Marielle Altenor

    Amazing memories! I would LOVE to take my family to Disney around Christmas time. My kids would be so thrilled to see Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party.

    January 22, 2017 at 4:03 am
    • Reply April Kus

      Thank you! Yes, Disney around Christmas time is the best. Check out their crowd control page, where you can check how crowded the parks around those times. It worked really good in guiding us which parks to go during the day. Have a great day girl!

      January 24, 2017 at 1:17 pm
  • Reply Ana

    We go to the Orlando area a lot too, it such a great area to visit with so many options for all ages to enjoy. Our favorite places to visit is also Disney, but SeaWorld and Legoland are up there too. Your trip looks amazing, what a great way to create unforgettable memories.

    January 25, 2017 at 2:41 am
  • Reply stacey

    Looks like you had a great time. And I love the matching outfits.

    January 26, 2017 at 9:18 am
  • Reply Hra

    A Disney Christmas sounds like so much fun for kids! The castle looks so magical all lit up with lights like that!

    January 26, 2017 at 9:51 am
  • Reply CourtneyLynne

    Omg looks like y’all had a fabulous time
    At Disney!!! I’m Disney obsessed so we try to go as much as possible

    January 28, 2017 at 3:57 pm
  • Reply Ayesha Heart

    Indeed a fun trip! I miss Disneyland. Ohhh the Castle <3 It's nice to read that there's so much good vibes, love all the photos <3

    February 9, 2017 at 5:12 pm
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