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As a mother of three daughters, it’s so important for me to teach my girls about strong, talented women who were able to turn their dreams into success. I love that Lucia chose to honor Frida Kahlo and her own Hispanic heritage by choosing this particular costume as one of her Halloween looks. I was even more pleasantly surprised that she was able to put together this DIY Frida Kahlo costume for under $5! Head to our blog to find out how. Have you ever made your own costume? .
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If this isn’t perfect for Halloween, I don’t know what is 🤷🏻‍♀️🤣
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Want to make some fun treats for your kids but don't have hours or a big budget to do it? Or, do your kids want to have some fun in the kitchen and you don't want to deal with a huge mess? These spider cookie treats are made of just 4 ingredients that are prepackaged and easily purchased from your local grocery store. In just minutes, you can have these fun and super yummy Halloween spider treats ready to put smiles on everyone's faces! Head to the blog for the step-by-step recipe!
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AD: What's for dinner tonight?...

Yesterday we visited a local farm and Falynn had the best time ever. She desperately wanted to hold a chicken but she didn’t know how. I love that she wasn’t afraid to ask for help. After learning the right way and trying a few times, she finally got the hang of it. I believe she held 3 different chickens. One 💩 on her shirt and we told her it was good luck. 🤷🏻‍♀️🤣 How was your weekend? Did you try anything new?
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Finally... A costume that has...

World Mental Health Day is a day that affects us all. Whether it’s you or a loved one, it seems as though more and more people are speaking out about their struggles with mental health and how it affects their lives. Since having been diagnosed with an anxiety disorder myself years ago, I’ve connected with so many people through social media and am so grateful for this platform where we can reach out to others and let them know that they aren’t alone. What hurts my heart the most, is hearing about the amount of kids that deal with anxiety these days. I wish there was a magic button we could press to take away anxiety from our kids, so that they can enjoy their childhood, but unfortunately, it’s not that easy. Fortunately, there are steps we can take. I am grateful to @theanxietyhealer who has written another guest post on our blog today for those with teenagers who may be struggling with anxiety. She shares what signs to look for and when to seek help. I hope you’ll take a moment to check it out and pass it onto anyone with teenage kids. Let’s help in any way we can. .
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I also spent twenty minutes searching for my glasses which were sitting on top of my head yesterday 🤦🏻‍♀️. Please tell me I’m not alone here. .
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I also spent twenty minutes...

Things to do in Florida {Series} – Theater of the Sea

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During our recent stay at Amara Cay Resort in Islamorada, FL, we were given the opportunity to check out a local favorite. I’m continuing our “Things to Do in Florida” series with Theater of the Sea in Islamorada, FL.

Welcome to Theater of the Sea

Located in Islamorada in the beautiful Florida Keys, Theater of the Sea is family owned and operated since 1946 and one of the oldest marine mammal facilities in the world. The lagoons and lush, tropical gardens are home to Atlantic bottlenose dolphins, California sea lions, sea turtles, tropical and game fish, sharks, stingrays, alligators, marine invertebrates, and birds.

Theater of the Sea offers dolphin, sea lion, and parrot shows, a bottomless boat ride, a lagoon-side beach, as well as a fish and reptile tour with tropical fish, sharks, sea turtles, stingrays, alligators, and crocodiles. There is something for all ages to enjoy! You can even paint with the animals and take home a painting!

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Endangered Sea Turtles

Theater of the Sea is home to four different species of endangered sea turtles. Each of the sea turtles on display are considered non-releasable for different reasons, including birth defects, buoyancy disorders, boat strikes, entanglement injuries, and predatory attacks. All sea turtles have an assigned primary caregiver, are hand fed a specific diet, participate in daily training and enrichment sessions, and receive routine veterinary care.

Seeing these beautiful but injured creatures broke our hearts. While some are against places like Theater of the Sea, claiming that the animals are considered slaves, I believe that facilities like these are the heroes, taking animals in and giving them a better life where they would have been more in danger out in the wild.

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Swimming with Dolphins

What drew me to Theater of the Sea was that there are a lot of ways to interact with the marine life. Years ago, when I was in Cancun, I was given the opportunity to swim with dolphins. It was an experience I will never forget. I knew that my daughters had to do it and since it was Lucia’s 13th birthday trip, it was the perfect time for her to experience it. When they offered to allow both her and her best friend, Caitlyn, to experience it, I was more than grateful and probably more excited about it than they were.

While they were both a little nervous, it didn’t take long until they both felt at ease. The staff was so thorough, giving them instructions and walking them through exactly what was going to happen during their swim. Dolphins are such beautiful, gentle animals and they really enjoyed every moment they got with them. Lucia kept referring to them as the puppies of the sea.

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Lucia’s First Kiss

I never imagined I would be present for my daughter’s first kiss, but there it was. The wettest, slipperiest, most public display of affection ever and we couldn’t look away. Lucia couldn’t help but giggle through the entire thing and I loved every second of it. It was awesome!

She and Caitlyn got to interact with the dolphins, swim around the lagoon and perform behaviors like dorsal tows, hugs,and foot pushes. The smiles on their faces were priceless!

My Disappointment

The only disappointment for me, as a photographer, was where they asked us to stand during the interaction. We weren’t allowed to get closer to the girls while they swam (for the safety of the animals). We had our sight blocked by the trainers and staff photographer who were working right in front of the dolphins. Getting good shots was nearly impossible and watching your child swim with dolphins for the first time is something you want to capture for them. Luckily, I was able to get a few shots and we wound up purchasing the photos that their staff photographer took so that I could have a couple of close up shots.

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A year after Hurricane Irma hit the Keys, Theater of the Sea is still working to repair their beautiful grounds, but that shouldn’t stop you from visiting and experiencing all that they have to offer now. It was a day that my girls will never forget and I’m sure we will be back in the future (this time with a zoom lens) 😉

Have you ever gone swimming with dolphins? Comment below and let us know!

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Theater of the Sea offers dolphin, sea lion, and parrot shows, a bottomless boat ride, a lagoon-side beach, tropical fish, sharks and more!

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53 Comments
  • Shannon Gurnee - Redhead Mom
    June 19, 2019

    I have family in Florida and I’d never heard of this place before. I would love to check this out the next time I visit Florida.

  • Rosey
    June 18, 2019

    How wonderful that they got to swim with the ‘puppies of the sea.’ 🙂 My daughter just turned 20, but I’d still like to have her do this… I think she’d love it.

  • Jessica Hughes
    June 18, 2019

    I’ve ALWAYS wanted to swim with dolphins! I’m so jealous but I’m glad you guys had fun!

  • Lavern Moore
    June 18, 2019

    Theatre of the sea seems like an ideal Florida destination. I have never been but an now convinced!

  • Fatima Torres
    June 18, 2019

    We’ve been meaning to check out more of the Keys. We love Islamorada.

  • katrina Kroeplin
    June 18, 2019

    looks like everyone had an amazing time. we haven’t been there but have had friends that have and they had a blast! love it 🙂

  • Tiffany La Forge-Grau
    June 18, 2019

    That looks like the place to be this summer! I would lover to go swim with dolphins.

  • Emman Damian
    June 18, 2019

    I want to swim with dolphins too! My niece would love Theater of the Sea. i hope we can visit it.

  • Terri Steffes
    June 18, 2019

    Florida seems to have an endless amount of fun activities! I would love to see this one! I agree with you about the photography. I think they wanted you to have to buy their photos.

  • Ntensibe Edgar Michael
    June 18, 2019

    Aaawwwwww…..these are so sweet! I am so happy the girls had lots of fun.

  • Viktoria (Traveltipster)
    June 18, 2019

    Looks like a fun adventure! I do love Florida, and so do my two boys!

  • Annemarie LeBlanc
    June 18, 2019

    This is a great place to take the children. I believe it will help raise their awareness to care for the environment, to help prevent the extinction of marine and land animals. My grandchildren are still pretty young to swim with the dolphins, so maybe when they are a bit older, we’ll give them that experience.

  • Jacy Jay
    June 18, 2019

    Glad you have a really good time there! I have never been to Florida yet, maybe in the future. So I can swim with the dolphinnn

  • Erin
    June 17, 2019

    Turtles and swimming with dolphins? Sounds like a perfect day!

  • Marysa
    December 29, 2018

    What a cool experience. I’ve never heard of the Theater of the Sea, but it sounds like the kids had a blast. We have been wanting to go to Florida for a while and this would be a good one to put on our list.

  • jeff
    October 2, 2018

    That looks like an amazing trip. The worst part of these bog posts though is i’m slowly learning just how little there is in my own area lol

  • Acupofassamtea
    October 1, 2018

    Florida is such a destination with endless options to explore. We visited Florida some ten years back now your post makes me plan soon.

  • Kelsey
    October 1, 2018

    I have always wanted to go to Florida! It looks like you had a great time there!

  • Jenn@OneHouseSchoolroom
    October 1, 2018

    What a fun adventure! We’re headed to Florida next summer and we might need to check this out. I’ve always wanted to swim with dolphins!

  • David Elliott
    September 30, 2018

    That looks like it would have been such an amazing experience. I do have to laugh how you were there for your daughter’s first kiss. Although as a parent I think I would be comfortable with that kiss. 😉

  • Jeanine
    September 30, 2018

    I’ve always wanted to visit Florida. I hope to visit there at some point soon so this will be great!

  • Krystle Cook
    September 30, 2018

    My kids absolutely love to do the things like this when we are in Florida. Such a great experience!

  • Angela Cardamone @marathonsandmotivation.com
    September 30, 2018

    This looks like such a fun place to visit! My kids would absolutely love it there. I will check it out on our next trip to Florida!

  • Katrina Ellen
    September 30, 2018

    I have always wanted to swim with the dolphins. This looks like it would be an amazing experience.

  • Kita Bryant
    September 29, 2018

    Now that would be so much fun. I have always wanted to swim with the dolphins!

  • Flossie McCowald
    September 29, 2018

    Nope, never heard of/been to this place. Sounds as if your family had a great time, though! Your daughter’s first kiss…LOL!

  • Jenn Mitchell
    September 29, 2018

    This looks like it would be such an amazing trip. I have always wanted to go and see the sea animals up close.

  • Deborah Salko
    September 29, 2018

    I live in Florida and never even heard of this place. I have to check it out because I love taking my baby girl to places like these.

  • Hollie
    September 29, 2018

    I actually have never been to a park like that but it seems like a lot of fun. I got to swim with turtles once in the tropics and really enjoyed that.

  • Sarah S Kasulke
    September 29, 2018

    I lived in florida for a while and I can’t believe we never did this! Why does it seem like all the touirsts do this stuff but the locals dont lol

  • Vyjay Rao
    September 29, 2018

    The Theater of The Sea seems to be an awesome place. I can see your daughter really had a whale of a time or rather ‘dolphin’ of a time there. Nice way for the kids to understand the marine creatures.

  • Andrea
    September 29, 2018

    I haven’t been to fl in years. I would love to experience a day like this and kiddos would flip. So cool!!

  • Anosa Malanga
    September 29, 2018

    I guess it part of the strategy of the company so that their photos would be bought buy the customers. Glad you were able to snap a good one.

  • Laura Liira
    September 29, 2018

    Ahhhhh that looks amazing!! I looove turtles!!

  • Emily
    September 28, 2018

    Wow, this looks amazing! Getting to do something like this with my kid would be so much fun. We are actually planning a trip to Florida next year, I will definitely be keeping this in mind.

  • Leigh Suznovich
    September 28, 2018

    Looks like so much fun!!

  • Pam
    September 28, 2018

    I love visiting Florida. I have never made it down to the Keys but there are so many cool experiences to be had there.

  • Evelyn Hernandez
    September 28, 2018

    I love Islamorada, we also went to Theater of the Sea, my son had a great time there. It is great place for families.

  • Ricci
    September 28, 2018

    Now this looks like fun place to visit in Florida! I would love to check this out the next time I’m in FL!!

  • SHELLEY KING
    September 28, 2018

    I have never heard of Theater of the Seas. I would love to visit there when we are in Florida. My boys love swimming with Dolphins. This sounds like a great experience.

  • Sam | Away She Went
    September 28, 2018

    That looks like such a fun place to visit! I would love to swim with dolphins! Hopefully someday!

  • Terri Steffes
    September 28, 2018

    I love dolphins and love to see them in the water. I haven’t swam with one before but I think I want to!

  • Monidipa Dutta
    September 28, 2018

    Florida is actually lovely. There are many things to see around and do around. Indeed it is an amazing place.

  • Tabitha Blue
    September 28, 2018

    What a cool experience!! My daughter SO wants to swim with dolphins and it’s not something we’ve done yet. We live in Florida too!!! Ha.

    Great recommendation 🙂

  • Sarah Bailey
    September 28, 2018

    This sounds like such a fun thing to do if you are in the area, I’ve always wanted to see dolphins closer in person – they seem like an amazing animal.

  • Jenn@Engineermommy
    September 28, 2018

    My kids love going to see animals up close. I bet they would really enjoy a trip here. Swimming with dolphins sounds like a once in a lifetime experience.

  • Tara Pittman
    September 28, 2018

    That would be so cool to watch my kids interact with the dolphins. They look like gentle animals.

  • Amber Myers
    September 28, 2018

    This would be so neat to do! My daughter is all about animals, so I know she’d love this. She has gone swimming with dolphins at Sea World before.

  • Stephanie Miller
    September 28, 2018

    What a very cool place! I have been to the Keys and other areas of Florida but was not familiar with this place. Thanks for sharing. Glad you were able to get a few shots of the kids – I agree, too bad they didn’t have it set up for a better view for you and other parents.

  • Mikah
    September 28, 2018

    I swam with dolphins in Cozumel years ago and I still remember every moment. Loved it SO much. They are awesome creatures.

  • Rhonda
    September 28, 2018

    Looks like so much fun! I’ve always wanted to swim with dolphins. So sorry that you guys couldn’t get a good view of it all though. But glad they had a great experience!!!

  • Laura Dove
    September 28, 2018

    We have plans to visit Florida over the next few years and I will definitely be considering these suggestions! Theater of the sea sounds like a great place to visit!

  • candy
    September 28, 2018

    For everyone who lives in or around Florida it is wonderful to see things to get out and see and do. Really good for all the family friendly things to do. Great for those planning a trip as well.

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A Birthday Celebration at Amara Cay Resort in Islamorada, FL
Things to do in Florida {Series} – Theater of the Sea

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