U.S.-Themed Christmas Trees at Ripley’s Aquarium

During our trip down south towards the middle to end of November, we stopped in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina where we visited Ripley’s Aquarium.

There, they had a beautiful display of Christmas trees. Each of the trees featured a U.S. State! They were all decorated with various ornaments, which featured each state’s characteristics.

Here are some pictures of the trees we saw throughout the aquarium!U.S.-Themed Christmas Trees
U.S.-Themed Christmas Trees at Ripley's Aquarium in Myrtle Beach, SC

U.S.-Themed Christmas Trees

2015 + 2016 Recap & Now

It has been a WHILE. We are back to the real world!  So we ended up skipping Milan for the 2015 World Expo, but we are okay with it. There was just so much going on at once and sometimes life gets in the way. Michael was extremely focused on his clients during tax season from January-April, and I was still trying to figure out what path I wanted to take, career-wise. I worked for his parents’ business and his grandmother’s tax practice too.

It was towards the end of May that I landed what I thought was going to be my permanent job for a long time: a position at Hasbro toy company. I was so excited to have secured this job, but once I settled in few a month or so, I soon realized that this was not the right fit for me.  You never know until you try!

In September 2015, I started working at the Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs at Brown University, and I had never been happier! It just took a few different attempts at figuring out what was best for me and how to balance that with my family priorities. It’s all about that work life balance, since our family has grown.

We took our first family trip to the Poconos when Kai was just 3 months old, where we rented a house through Airbnb.  It was hard to believe how much stuff we needed to pack for the trip. We had to stop several times since Kai was still breastfeeding and eating around the clock, but we wanted to enjoy our last few days together before the end of my leave from work. It was the end of July in 2016, and I just remember it being so hot too! Thank goodness for central air conditioning in that rental 🙂

After going back to work for two months, in October 2016, I decided to leave my position at Brown University to become a full-time stay at home mom. Since then it has been such a whirlwind of adventures! It has definitely been the most challenging gig I’ve had thus far in my career. Our holidays were very special since we had the opportunity to take an extended family vacation in December to the Outer Banks in North Carolina. Kai and I flew down with my parents. This was the first time Kai rode an airplane! Michael drove down with Stanley, so they got to do some bonding. Michael’s parents drove down together and met up with us after their holiday party. This was a perfect time for our parents to spend some time with their first grand baby. They gushed the entire trip, and everyone seemed to have a great time with Kai.

In April 2017 we celebrated Stanley’s 2nd and Kai’s 1st birthdays. We figured this was the perfect time to continue our family travels…we booked an all-inclusive in Mexico for the end of September. However, as the nicer weather approached, we were itching to get away. So we decided to take a leap….by booking a cabin in the Cape. Yes, a cabin. Michael and I had seriously contemplated renting or even buying an RV! We almost went through with it a few months ago actually, but thank goodness we did not. You can read more about our memorable week-long trip to the Cape in our next blog post.