Mermazing!

Sunday, August 2, 2015 by  

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When our daughter turned 9, The Pearl Princess movie launched that week. “Wouldn’t it be great if I could be a mermaid, too,” our little future marine biologist dreamed.

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Her party revolved around The Pearl Princess, aquariums & water events but her greatest joy was the sparkly blue fintail that awaited her!

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bright spot flowerThe Bright Spot – Everything about birthdays & mermaids!! ;)


Bianca

Double-Digit Extravaganza!! (Part 1 of 3)

Friday, July 10, 2015 by  

Birthday joy, tickets to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Universal Studios, Florida, Orlando, great excitement (3)Birthdays are a big deal in our household. Turning double digits?  Birthday joy, tickets to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Universal Studios, Florida, Orlando, great excitement (2)

Well, that’s just momentous.

These photos are the tickets to an adventure of a lifetime: We took Little One on a Tweendom Extravaganza to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Universal Orlando, Disney’s Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, Titanic Artifact Exhibit, Disney’s Epcot Center, and the Clearwater Marine Aquarium to visit Winter & Hope of Dolphin Tale 1 & 2, CoCo Key Water Resort & Mystic Aquarium.

We walked over 120,000 steps – thank you, pedometer – which translates to 52 miles!

In blue are links to Parts 2 & 3 of this story – yes – so remarkable, they deserve their own posts!

To explore the magical world of wizards & wands, chocolate frogs, Butterbeer & Platform 9 3/4, click Part 2: Harry Potter World

To see Winter, the sweet dolphin who lost her tail when she was only 2 months old, click Part 3: Winter & Hope
Animal Kingdom, Disney World, Magic Kingdom, Epcot (2)  Animal Kingdom, Disney World, Magic Kingdom, Epcot (6) Animal Kingdom, Disney World, Magic Kingdom, Epcot (7)

Animal Kingdom, Tree of Life, Rainforest lunch, up close with Little One’s favorite bird, Safari

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Disney World’s beautiful Main Street and big smiles!

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Cinderella’s castle, reserved birthday spot to see Disney’s Fantasy Parade & meet the characters, Animal Kingdom, Disney World, Magic Kingdom, Epcot (19) Animal Kingdom, Disney World, Magic Kingdom, Epcot (20) Animal Kingdom, Disney World, Magic Kingdom, Epcot (21)
Enjoying Disney’s Ferry Boat ride, power lines on the I-4 – cool!! and Epcot Center

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Gorgeous Annual Flower Festival at Epcot, Space Center, coral reef cuddles

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Animal Kingdom, Disney World, Magic Kingdom, Epcot (26)  Universal

Animal Kingdom, Disney World, Magic Kingdom, Epcot (36)  Titanic Artifact Exhibit

Dad & Little One enjoying the water resort where we stayed. That slide was insane!

CoCo Key Water Resort Orlando (2) CoCo Key Water Resort Orlando (1)

♥♥♥ And best of all was celebrating at Mystic Aquarium & CoCo Key Water Resort with family & friends. ♥♥♥

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bright spot flowerThe Bright Spot – Enjoy the stories of Harry Potter World and Winter & Hope by clicking these blue links…or just keep scrolling, they’re next. We highly recommend both vacation sites!!  :)


Bianca

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter (Part 2 of 3)

Thursday, July 9, 2015 by  

Harry Potter World, Universal, Harry Potter, wizards, wands, Universal Studios (28)Incantations, frothy Butterbeer, chocolate frogs & interactive wands. Hogsmeade & Diagon Alley, Hogwarts Express & Flight of the Hippogriff…all wizarding wonders our young Harry Potter aficionado enthusiastically embraced.

Humidity & sunny 90 degree weather in a full-length black satin & polylined cloak ~ with a touch of heat exhaustion on the 2nd day ~ could not stop this 10-year-old from soaking in the sights & sounds of Universal’s magical adventure.

The conductor at Hogsmeade, spotting her special birthday pin, suddenly stopped the crowd of hundreds in the station to heartily announce the arrival of our birthday darling to which the crowd spontaneously erupted into thunderous applause.

It was a movie moment. A memory to last a lifetime.

 

Enjoy this 30-second video of Little One going through Platform 9 3/4, the fire-breathing dragon atop the amazing Escape from Gringotts 3-D ride & more.


Harry Potter World Snippets
1st stop – Ollivanders – Makers of Fine Wands since 382 BC – to pick up her interactive wand which works throughout the park to make water fly, needles knit, feather pens write, and lots of hands-on spellcasting. It was there that she chose Dumbledore’s Army scroll case & wand collection as a fine memento – heavy, well-crafted, great quality.

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Hogwarts Castle is simultaneously breathtaking & ominous.

Harry Potter World, Hogwarts Castle, Universal, wizards, wands (2)Harry Potter World, Hogwarts Castle, Universal, wizards, wands (6)The paintings move & talk just as they do in the movies.

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The Birthday Girl enjoyed a special breakfast in the Leaky Cauldron & a Butterbeer toast followed by…

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Harry Potter World, Universal, Harry Potter, wizards, wands, Universal Studios (14) Harry Potter World, Universal, Harry Potter, wizards, wands, Universal Studios (13) Harry Potter World, Universal, Harry Potter, wizards, wands, spells (27)

…an adventurous visit to Gringotts.

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The Hogwarts Express took us on a fascinating journey to Hogsmeade…with Harry, Ron & Hermione!
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Then lunch at the Three Broomsticks & more spellcasting lessons from a passerby witch.

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And what would a trip to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter be without a stop in Honeydukes sweet shop or Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes store with Wildfire Whiz-bangs or Every Flavour Beans

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Okay, seriously, how excited is this reader ~ broomstick in hand, all her Potter books have come to life!!
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From the Muggles’ perspective, Phillip & I were thrilled for our Little One and her magical week!!

 

 

bright spot flowerThe Bright Spot – A wonderful adventure for Harry Potter fans. Highly recommend it!!

To see part 1 & 3 of this story, click Part 1Double-Digit Extravaganza for Magic Kingdom, Epcot, Titanic & Animal Kingdom.Harry Potter World, Universal, Harry Potter, wizards, wands, Universal Studios (40)

For Part 3, click: Dolphin Tale-Winter & Hope for the Clearwater adventure or just keep scrolling, it’s next. :)

Thank you for sharing and we hope you enjoy a trip to these family-fun places in the near future.

 

 

 


Bianca

Dolphin Tale – Winter & Hope (Part 3 of 3)

Wednesday, July 8, 2015 by  

Clearwater, Courtesy of Fintastic Photo (1)

As part of our daughter’s 10th birthday extravaganza, we surprised her with a special visit with Winter, the beautiful dolphin who lost her tail when she was only 2 months old. Her tail was caught in commercial fishing lines.

Clearwater, Courtesy of Fintastic Photo (7)

(Courtesy: Fintastic)

 

 

 

 

She is now 9 years old & lives with her best friend, Hope, at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium.

 

Clearwater, Courtesy of Fintastic Photo (4)

 

 

 

Our budding marine biologist was thrilled to meet them both and all the marine animals under treatment in the hospital.

 

Clearwater Marine Aquarium, Winter, Hope, Dolphin Tale, Dolphin Tale movie, Dolphin Tale 2 (28)

Winter’s real-life rehab story has captivated audiences worldwide in Dolphin Tale & Dolphin Tale 2.

Clearwater Marine Aquarium, Winter, Hope, Dolphin Tale, Dolphin Tale movie, Dolphin Tale 2 (8)

Both movies, starring Harry Connick, Jr. & Ashley Judd, were filmed on location at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium with Winter.

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Clearwater Marine Aquarium, Winter, Hope, Dolphin Tale, Dolphin Tale movie, Dolphin Tale 2 (7)

A look at the timeline these past 9 years and how Winter has inspired suffering children & veterans:

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Clearwater, Courtesy of Fintastic Photo (3)

Our fintastic trip wrapped up with a trolley ride between the filming site rehab center & museum, dinner on the water, and the best memories of Winter & Hope!

Clearwater Marine Aquarium, Winter, Hope, Dolphin Tale, Dolphin Tale movie, Dolphin Tale 2 (29) Clearwater Marine Aquarium, Winter, Hope, Dolphin Tale, Dolphin Tale movie, Dolphin Tale 2 (31) Clearwater Marine Aquarium, Winter, Hope, Dolphin Tale, Dolphin Tale movie, Dolphin Tale 2 (33)

Clearwater Marine Aquarium, Winter, Hope, Dolphin Tale, Dolphin Tale movie, Dolphin Tale 2 (32)

bright spot flowerThe Bright Spot – Empowering your children to grow up living their dreams.

For Part 1, click: Double-Digit Extravaganza      For Part 2, click: Harry Potter World


Bianca

Dolphin Trainer

Sunday, June 14, 2015 by  

Cruise ship 2How we kept it a surprise I have no idea! After weeks of planning and several days cruising across the Atlantic on the gorgeous Norwegian Breakaway, we landed at King’s Wharf and headed barely after daybreak onshore with our Little One.

“Why are we leaving so early? Where are we going?” Still mum, Phillip & I guided our inquisitive daughter to a huge, weathered wooden door battered by storms but fixed firmly in place by its centuries-old surrounding stonework.
Her eyes grew wide as we knocked loudlyDolphin Trainer, Dolphin Quest, Bermuda, Hawaii, baby dolphins, feeding dolphins, gating, measuring, loving dolphins (18) on the door. No one was around but us. A short while later, the door creaked open and we were led into a large courtyard – the National Museum of Bermuda at the Royal Naval Dockyard. It was clear it would not open to the public until later that morning.

We walked through the dockyard until we came to a building where a young woman greeted us. She knew the day had been a surprise for our daughter. When she explained to our Little One that she would be joining her team for a day of dolphin training, the excitement in the room was electric! Then she was handed a Dolphin Quest swim top and felt very official. “Wow!” she whispered under her breathe.Dolphin Trainer, Dolphin Quest, Bermuda, Hawaii, baby dolphins, feeding dolphins, gating, measuring, loving dolphins (15)

Our daughter’s dream of loving, studying, and safeguarding marine life just took another leap forward. Years prior, our family had only swum with the dolphins. Jamaica. Bahamas. Florida. But this was different. It wouldn’t be just a 45-minute encounter with a group. When we saw that Dolphin Quest in Bermuda offered a Dolphin Trainer for a Day program, we booked it for our daughter straightaway.

She spent the day with 8 dolphins including 2 baby dolphins just 3 months old ~ talk about over the moon!

Our Little One gained experience in fish preparation, dolphin feeding, gating, hand signaling, dolphin relationship building, swimming, measuring and dolphin training.

Dolphin Trainer, Dolphin Quest, Bermuda, Hawaii, baby dolphins, feeding dolphins, gating, measuring, loving dolphins (13)

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Dolphin Trainer, Dolphin Quest, Bermuda, Hawaii, baby dolphins, feeding dolphins, gating, measuring, loving dolphins (4) Dolphin Trainer, Dolphin Quest, Bermuda, Hawaii, baby dolphins, feeding dolphins, gating, measuring, loving dolphins (8)

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I’m not sure who had more fun, the dolphins or our darling!

Dolphin Trainer, Dolphin Quest, Bermuda, Hawaii, baby dolphins, feeding dolphins, gating, measuring, loving dolphins (17) Dolphin Trainer, Dolphin Quest, Bermuda, Hawaii, baby dolphins, feeding dolphins, gating, measuring, loving dolphins (31)

Dolphin Trainer, Dolphin Quest, Bermuda, Hawaii, baby dolphins, feeding dolphins, gating, measuring, loving dolphins (16)Later that day, she enjoyed lunch with her mentors and when we picked her up at the end of her session, the dolphin trainers said they had never had a person know so much about marine life before and that she was the most excited participant they had ever had in all their years and that she would be a welcome participant for their 5-day training program there or in….Hawaii!! Yeah, looks like that may be the next dolphin destination! I’m ready to pack…

Dolphin Trainer, Dolphin Quest, Bermuda, Hawaii, baby dolphins, feeding dolphins, gating, measuring, loving dolphins (19)

bright spot flowerThe Bright Spot  – Our daughter has been waiting 5 years to swim with her beloved Beluga, Juno.

Beluga, Juno, Mystic Aquarium, touching whale, touching Beluga

She learned about the program when she was 5 years old but the rules require people to be a minimum of 60 inches to get in the tank with the whale.

 

So guess who’s 59 & 3/4 inches?!?

Yes, I think we are heading to Juno before summer’s done! (photo of Little One with Juno left). It’s truly a pleasure to empower children’s interests.

Click here for the story about Juno at 5: Harmony & Magic

Click here for the Florida dolphin swim at 6: Pixie Dust & Dolphin Kisses

Click here for Dolphins in Jamaica at 7: Paradise for Families

Click here for Winter & Hope at 10: A Dolphin’s Tale

Dolphin Trainer, Dolphin Quest, Bermuda, Hawaii, baby dolphins, feeding dolphins, gating, measuring, loving dolphins (11)


Bianca

Best Mother’s Day Ever

Sunday, May 10, 2015 by  

Mother's Day, NYC, New York City,  bike ride, Mama Bird, baby birds, Freedom Tower (9)Our 9-year-old led us on a 14-mile bike ride to the Freedom Tower on Mother’s Day.

 

 

 

 

7 miles down Manhattan Island & 7 back along the Henry Hudson River South Waterfront Bike Path in sunny 75 degree weather.

Mother's Day, NYC, New York City,  bike ride, Mama Bird, baby birds, Freedom Tower (8)As we rode along New York City’s beautiful path, we enjoyed an air display, basketball games, families picnicing at the many parks on the water, the famous ballerina statue, the Intrepid, Concorde & space shuttle, views of the George Washington Bridge & distant Tappan Zee, and best of all…discovering a mama bird feeding her newborns on Mother’s Day in a blossoming tree!! Breathtaking!! (precious video below)

Mother's Day, NYC, New York City,  bike ride, Mama Bird, baby birds, Freedom Tower (7)

After stopping for ice cream, we enjoyed a lovely dinner and then Phillip gave me one of the most wonderful, thoughtful gifts ever!! Ever!!

To put into perspective how special this Mother’s Day gift was to me, may I just say that one year, he surprised me with a beautiful Mercedes convertible in the driveway; another year, matching silver Mercedes’ with huge green bows. Yes, those were exciting.

But the gift he gave me this evening made my eyes tear & my heart swell! I’ll explain at the end of this story.

Mother's Day, NYC, New York City,  bike ride, Mama Bird, baby birds, Freedom Tower (21)  Mother's Day, NYC, New York City,  bike ride, Mama Bird, baby birds, Freedom Tower (14)

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Stopping for ice cream after the 14th mile:

Mother's Day, NYC, New York City,  bike ride, Mama Bird, baby birds, Freedom Tower (2)

Mama Bird & her babies:

Okay, so this was Phillip’s gift. A few days earlier, we saw this sign at Nordstrom’s. WOW is exciting for us because it’s our daughter’s initials. Flipped upside down, it spells MOM.
Phillip carved this WOW~MOM sign for me from a block of wood. A handmade gift is the best gift of all to me and the meaning behind it was heartwarming & made with love and thought.                            
What an amazing husband, I love you, Darling. Thank you!!
Those magenta-orange-pastel-sherbet colors are some of my favorite hues & it will be painted those colors soon. 
Zooey Deschanel, Mother's Day, Nordstrom, Nordstroms (3) Zooey Deschanel, Mother's Day, Nordstrom, Nordstroms (4)
WOW, MOM, gift, husband, Mother's Day (1) WOW, MOM, gift, husband, Mother's Day (2)
Mother's Day 2014, WOW MOM sign
One of the best Mother’s Days ever (2014)!!
Today’s 2015 Mother’s Day was just as delightful!
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After breakfast & celebrations, we snapped pics under a very significant tree, then Phillip & the kids surprised me with an afternoon of painting together at Pinot Palette in New York, followed by dinner with my Mom.
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For more on my Mom, just click: Mom
For more on my Mother-in-Law, click: Grace
Thank you for sharing. And thank you to my family, I love you all!!         
Family, Bianca Tyler, Bianca's family (3)   Family, Bianca Tyler, Bianca's family (5) 
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Family, Bianca Tyler, Bianca's family (10)   Family, kids, love
Family, Bianca Tyler, Bianca's family (2)
bright spot flowerThe Bright Spot – Celebrating Moms Everywhere – Happy Mother’s Day!!!!
 


Bianca

Winning Streak at Belmont Stakes

Friday, May 8, 2015 by  

Bianca Tyler, horseback lover, horses, loves horses, stables Bianca Tyler young, young horseback rider, young rider, horseback lessons
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Having always been a big animal lover, my favorite childhood activity was horseback riding. Now years later, one of my favorite date nights was when my husband surprised me with horseback riding at sunset.Bianca Tyler and pony, pony love, sweet pony, loving animals

I love them big. I love them small. And I love them fast.

I dream one day of owning a sanctuary for rescued horses & ponies.

 

Summers in England attending Newmarket & Royal Ascot were a favorite pastime. English racing, horse racing in England, England, horseback riding, racing, Royal Ascot, Royal Enclosure, Newmarket Race Track (1)English racing, horse racing in England, England, horseback riding, racing, Royal Ascot, Royal Enclosure, Newmarket Race Track (7)-aBeing picked up in a Rolls Royce with a personal chauffeur (his name happened to be Arthur), Bianca Tyler, Rolls Royce, off to the races, England (4)  Bianca Tyler, Rolls Royce, off to the races, England (1) English racing, horse racing in England, England, horseback riding, racing, Royal Ascot, Royal Enclosure, Newmarket Race Track (2)enjoying strawberries & cream, endive-wrapped smoked goat cheese and escargot in a private box within the Royal Enclosure & my own personal winning streaks at Ascot in years gone by are fond memories. Royal Ascot English racing, horse racing in England, England, horseback riding, racing, Royal Ascot, Royal Enclosure, Newmarket Race Track, grass racecourse English racing, horse racing in England, England, horseback riding, racing, Royal Ascot, Royal Enclosure, Newmarket Race Track (4)

I took our little one to the Belmont Stakes a few summers ago. Belmont Stakes, Belmont Racetrack, Belmont Races, horse races, horse racing (1)The only differences were that the courses I attended in England were grass, and the track at Belmont is the largest thoroughbred dirt racecourse in the world, plus, we did not go via Rolls, but instead in our Mom supermobile minivan, chauffeured by yours truly :)Mom's minivan, love our car

 

 

 

It rained that day but it didn’t dampen our spirit. Our daughter watched with awe as the horses thundered past.Belmont Stakes, Belmont Racetrack, Belmont Races, horse races, horse racing (3)

 

 

 

 

 

And guess who called the winning horse, race after race?

Belmont Stakes, Belmont Racetrack, Belmont Races, horse races, horse racing (5) Belmont Stakes, Belmont Racetrack, Belmont Races, horse races, horse racing (4)                                                                                     Yup, our little one. It became quite the topic of conversation as folks heard about the streak of winners.

What surprised everyone was how the horses were chosen ~ she picked her favorite color of the saddle pad in the current race lineup. As the horses pranced by, she would say, “That’s the prettiest blanket, Mommy, that’s the one I think will win.”

And sure enough, as luck would have it, horse after horse with the pretty-colored blanket would cross the finish line.

The Bright SpotTM bright spot flower – I would have had a bit of fun placing a bet but I never had the chance to since each choice was made just as the race was about to start…but the best part of the day was sharing Mommy/Daughter time and visiting the jockeys and horses after the races.

Bianca Tyler, loves horses, horseback ridingBelmont Stakes, Belmont Racetrack, Belmont Races, horse races, horse racing (7) Belmont Stakes, Belmont Racetrack, Belmont Races, horse races, horse racing (6)  Bianca Tyler and beautiful horse, horseback riding, snuggling horseToday – after 37 years! – the Triple Crown trophy was won by American Pharoah

horse, horses, horseback, horseback riding, children & horses, Belmont Stakes, Triple Crown (2) – the thoroughbred racehorse who is only the 12th horse in 147 years to earn the title of Triple Crown Champion! Phenomenal!

horse, horses, horseback, horseback riding, children & horses, Belmont Stakes, Triple Crown (1)  horse, horses, horseback, horseback riding, children & horses, Belmont Stakes, Triple Crown (4)Our Little One is older now and loves horses so much. Watching this event will surely last with her for a lifetime.

 


Bianca

Color a Positive Thought – 10-year-old’s Perspective

Wednesday, May 6, 2015 by  

My husband met Harry Bell by happenstance.Color a Positive Thought, C.A.P.T., Harry Bell, positive thinking, positive coloring book, coloring book (7)

If anyone understands the value of early intervention, positive thinking, and the reinforcement of basic values, it is Harry Bell.

Color a Positive Thought, C.A.P.T., Harry Bell, positive thinking, positive coloring book, coloring book (18)

He was born in Bridgeport to a troubled young mother, and raised by his aunt, who realized he needed a male role model.

His aunt connected him with a local family who had a son that ended up being Harry’s 3rd grade teacher.

 

Color a Positive Thought, C.A.P.T., Harry Bell, positive thinking, positive coloring book, coloring book (5)

Their efforts paid off. Today Harry Bell is employed by both the Bridgeport Board of Education and the University of Bridgeport as a Security Officer.

Seeing so many children going through some of the same problems, Harry was determined to do something about it. He developed a very special coloring book, Color a Positive Thought! He explains how it’s an anti-bullying, self-empowering, positive thinking tool in our May 12th broadcast on WGCH radio (archived links below.)

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Color a Positive Thought, C.A.P.T., Harry Bell, positive thinking, positive coloring book, coloring book (9)
The book has had such a positive impact on children & the community. It can be found in schools, pediatrician offices, everywhere!

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Our 10-year-old loves Color a Positive Thought and gives us her perspective on it as a child. Here are some snippets of the second half of the interview, just click image below:


May 12, 2015 ChitChat with Children – a 10-year-old’s perspective

Our daughter’s principal & teachers enjoyed the interview and her 4th grade teacher even played it in the classroom.

Harry Bell, William King, Color a Positive Thought, radio show, WGCHWe were thrilled to give voice to a man who’s had such a difficult upbringing, was able to pull himself up, surpass expectations and fulfill his dream. To hear the full hour, click: Full Interview.

bright spot flowerThe Bright Spot – This was his 1st radio interview and Mr. Bell & his liaison, William King, were amazed at how much this 10-year-old gleaned from Mr. Bell’s book. Very inspiring!

Click here to order the book: Color a Positive Thought


Bianca

Amazing Grace

Saturday, April 18, 2015 by  

England, Britain, Great Britain, Grandma, English beauty, English skin, grandchildren (89)iQueen Elizabeth, Queen Elizabeth II, Queen of England, Britain, Great Britain,
Blessed with lovely skin & timeless English beauty, my mother-in-law, Grace, and the Queen have always borne a striking resemblance. A woman ahead of her time, Grace, always gave new things a shot.

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And nothing slows her down! Approaching 90, she has a personal trainer at the gym, Skypes us every Saturday without fail, uploads her digital images to her hard drive and e-mails family nearly every day.

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The epitome of Englishness, she is gracious, discreet and always polite. During tough or sad times, Grace keeps a stiff upper lip and her chin up.
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Her mainstay, of course, is proper English tea. It must steep in a         silver pot and the teacup must have a white interior.

England, Britain, Great Britain, Grandma, English beauty, English skin, grandchildren (41)Bianca Tyler, England, Britain, Great Britain, English GardenShe keeps her gardener busy and has redecorated parts of her home four times in the past 10 years.

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Young Grace:

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Grace is an avid reader & animal lover. She enjoyed many years dancing with her dashing husband, Geoff, whom she misses very much.

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I’ve learned lots of things from my mother-in-law over the years, from baby tips and awesome authors to food advice, fabric care and beauty tips.

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One of my favorite gifts from my mother-in-law was this beautiful statue sent from England shortly before I gave birth to our daughter.

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A few months old (above)            4 years old (below)

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To avoid arthritis in her hands, Grace knits and knits and knits. Beautiful sweaters and hats and any request our little one desires.

I mean any! Like the day our 7-year-old said, “Grandma, can you please knit me a cuttlefish & grimpoteuthis?” And in short order, the beautiful cuddly sea creatures arrived in the gift package made with grandmother’s loving hands. A whole array of knitted marine life:

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Knitted headbands & sweaters, ballerina shrugs and ponytail hats!

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The loss of her beloved husband took a toll on her but did not stop Grace from living life. She hopped on a plane to surprise my husband for his birthday and stayed for Christmas that year.

England, Britain, Great Britain, Grandma, English beauty, English skin, grandchildren (70)Grace flew over every summer to stay with us. In 2001, my Mom took Grace and me to Mohegan Sun, the big casino upstate for a grand shebang before my mother-in-law headed back to England. It was the 1st time she visited a casino. My husband warned, “My mother may weary, don’t stay out late.”

Honestly, nothing wearied her the past 8 decades… so when I arrived home at 4 AM with two happy grandmas, my husband was speechless. Not only did his mother have a marvelous time, she even won!

A few hours later, the towers came down and the world changed forever. Flights were canceled that week and Grace stayed with us longer that year. Phillip worked by the towers and felt the 2nd building crash to the ground. It took hours and hours and hours for him to get out of the City and back home. It was a mother’s nightmare and
a wife’s torment. Late that night, he finally made it home. We were grateful to be together as a family again, safe and sound.

bright spot flowerThe Bright SpotTM – A Grandma’s love. Every visit with Grace has been memorable. The stories she tells, reminiscing the history of the family and her great love of Britain; she is a treasure in our lives and all who know her.

My mother-in-law and the Queen were born the same year…Grace is our very own queen xoxo

England, Britain, Great Britain, Grandma, English beauty, English skin, grandchildren (77)    Queen Elizabeth, Queen of Enland, Queen Elizabeth II, England, Britain, Great Britain, Grandma (2)


Bianca

Superhero & Baby Sister ~ Turning 10

Tuesday, March 31, 2015 by  

Darling Eyes looking up 2

How time has flown!!Elsa dress (2) Little One turns 10, what a wonderful decade it’s been!

 

 

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Video: Here is a look at the early years with her very own Superhero Big Brother:

VIDEO: Here is a look at the early years with her very own Superhero Big Brother:

bright spot flowerThe Bright SpotTM  – Having an incredible Big Brother to look up to & count on forever!
Smiles - Caribbean 10   Big brother, little sister
Big brother, little sister 2     Reading with Aga Close children (8) Close children (7) Brother, sister, smiles Trampoline, relaxing, summer breeze Baby reaching, loving eyes, kindness Baby reaching, loving eyes, kindness, sweet Reaching - nose to nose, sweet Missing each other, true hearts Walking together, hand in hand, red dress, yellow flowers red dress, yellow flowers, hugs, hugging, siblings trampoline, playing outside, outdoors, healthy kids, laughter hugs, snuggles, purple dress, princess, brother, sister, feeling loved pumpkin picking, looking the same way, sweet brother and sister, hayride Memorial Day, high flying, brother, sister, fun in the sun, fun Snuggles, cuddles, England, sweet Caribbean, sister in pool with brother, playing in pool, baby with brother, sweetness kisses on cheek, sweet baby kisses fairy hugs, hugging little sister, big brother, baby sister, Tinkerbell, Tinkerbell costume, wings, fairy wings Brother and sister smiling, smiles, big smiles together, Big brother, baby sister, happy kids


Bianca

Nifty 50!

Sunday, February 1, 2015 by  

Everyone kept asking me what Phillip was planning for my 50th. He’s arranged some pretty spectacular things for me over the years so I knew whatever it was I’d be thrilled. Our son captured the moment:

Birthday joy, tickets to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Universal Studios, Florida, Orlando, great excitement (2)   Birthday joy, tickets to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Universal Studios, Florida, Orlando, great excitement (3)

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Good Lord! What could it be? Well, prior to opening this envelope, Phillip planned a weekend of delights including dinner at La Panetiere.

Bianca Tyler, birthday, La Panetiere, 5-star restaurant, French cuisine, family, love (4)

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We visited the Cloisters on the northern tip of Manhattan overlooking the Hudson to enjoy the stunning array of more than 5,000 pieces of European Medieval works of art from the 12th – 15th centuries including the famous Unicorn Tapestries. The Cloister’s Library contains over 15,000 volumes of books.

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Later, we toured the World of Wings butterfly atrium where I had my 1st opportunity to take photos with my gorgeous new Canon from my son. For the amount of time I invest in my photography, this latest Canon with touchscreen, image sensor & built-in Wi-Fi was the p-e-r-f-e-c-t gift!! Thank you, darling!

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And if anyone knows our family well, you’ll know why the logo above is so significant!! :)

As you can sBebe's necklace (1)ee, this day was magnificent with brilliant sunshine & deep blue skies. But 50 years ago, there was a blizzard and my mother arrived at the hospital with a police escort. That’s one way to make an entrance.

Mom recapped the story over dinner. Then she surprised me with a very special gift…a piece of jewelry I’ve admired for 45 years. It was given to mother by my father’s mother when I was 5.Bianca Tyler, gala, television, broadcaster Bebe's necklace, Miss Connecticut (1)

 

 

 

I’ve worn it in the past with great delight (photo on right), but on this special night, my mother said it was now mine. Overjoyed is an understatement. It means so much to me on many levels.

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So what was in the envelope in the opening pics? Let me first explain that my greatest gift ~ now & always ~ is being loved by my family & friends. Flowers & cards, emails & posts. All is appreciated. The kindness, the thoughtfulness, the time spent to make my day special. Thank you all!!

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The above cards from my children touched my heart deeply. My son chose a card that says I make him feel understood, happy and loved. Wonderful, wonderful!! And our little one says I make her happy every day…down to even the school snack. What more could any mother want? Happy, thriving kids – this was, by far, the very best gift of all!!

Happy childhood, loving, nurturing, sweet childhood, comfort, understanding, son, Bianca Tyler  Happy childhood, loving, nurturing, sweet childhood, comfort, understanding, son (5)Happy childhood, loving parents, Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, comfort, understanding, son, Bianca Tyler (3)       Happy childhood, loving, nurturing, sweet childhood, comfort, understanding, daughter, love, Bianca Tyler (7)

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16 years ago, I started the Harry Potter series with our son…reading it in “real time,” that is, waiting each year for another book to be published…standing in line at midnight openings with great anticipation for 1st edition hardcovers. We saw the movies, he had the posters, the comforter set, the throw pillows, the robe, Harry’s wand, etc. He even had a Harry-esque look to him, especially when he got his glasses.

Happy childhood, Harry Potter, posters, white tiger, son, friendship, boys, video games Happy childhood, loving, nurturing, sweet childhood, comfort, understanding, son (6)

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Fast-forward more than a decade and our little daughter & her friends are relishing in the adventures, quoting the spells, whipping up potions and donning the robe. The perfect hardcovers have moved from our son’s room to our daughters’s bookcase. Over the holiday break, we watched all 8 movies (Yes, 8. The last book was filmed in 2 parts).

My friend, Sara, took one of our daughter’s best-est friends (since the girls were infants) to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter last month. The girls are now 9 & 10, the perfect age for the story. Sara posted this video of Platform 9 3/4 on her FB page & that was it!! What more fun could our family have than to venture through the fantastical world of wizards?

Sara said Universal Studios did a magnificent re-creation, a trip not to be missed! With the entire storyline under our belts just the previous month, I could not have dreamed of a more fanciful place to go for my birthday present!! In the envelope was a newspaper-like invitation from the Daily Prophet along with tickets to the mystical world of Harry Potter and a week’s stay at the CoCo Key water resort hotel. Simply marvelous, my darling husband, I love love love it!! And so do the kids!! (Well, as you can clearly see from our little one’s reaction in the 1st photos above as we opened the envelopes together.)

Courtesy of Universal Studios, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Orlando, Florida (1)

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CoCo Key water resort & hotel:

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We finished up the weekend celebrations with my favorite movie, The Scarlet Pimpernel, with Jane Seymour & Anthony Andrews. Luscious ~ Dreamy ~ Yum!

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So many other details went into this weekend that I would just like to say thank you to my husband, my whole family and my friends for marking this milestone with great joy.

bright spot flowerThe Bright SpotTM  – Thankfulness that my mother is feeling better, it’s on & off and for my birthday she was really “on!” Even sparkly! And thank you to all who sent wishes for a beautiful birthday weekend. So ready for this next great decade, bring it on!!


Bianca