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With our move to Italy now just five months away, preparations are in high gear. Gregg and I recently packed our mini van with family heirlooms and hit the road. We prefer to leave some furniture behind in the care of family, instead of bringing them to Italy. Gregg’s family lives in Florida, so we decided to combine some business with pleasure.

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A huge blizzard delayed our departure by a day. Luckily, we encountered dry roads for most of our thousand mile journey.

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After dropping off two tables and a chair at Gregg’s boyhood home in Florida we checked into our beach front hotel. Having lived in Florida for 12 years I still find it difficult to walk outside in 60 degree weather without a sweater. Even Spencer felt a chill when he put his feet in the surf.

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I desperately wanted to see the Space Shuttle Atlantis before moving to Italy.  With NASA only an hour away from our hotel we decided to give Spencer an up close and personal science lesson.

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The Atlantis Experience is included in the price of admission.  I highly recommend getting in line for the attraction upon first entering Kennedy Space Center.

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We had an extraordinary day at Kennedy Space Center.  Spencer now dreams of becoming a NASA engineer.

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Since we still had a couple of days before we needed to head home, we asked Spencer if he preferred a trip to Disney or Universal Studios. As a new Harry Potter fan Spencer opted for Universal.

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We paid for the one day-two park pass so we could take the Hogwarts Express train between Universal’s two parks.  The quick train ride connects Diagon Alley and Hogsmeade.  Thankfully we arrived at Universal just as the gates opened at 9am, so we did not have to wait for our train.

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As you can tell by the picture, Spencer can’t understand why Harry Potter fancies butterbeer.  I, on the other hand, love the sweet beverage and gladly relieved him of his mug. If you’re a fan of cream soda, try the butterbeer.

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While in Diagon Alley you may hear a loud rumbling.  Make sure to look up, this means the dragon is angry and things are about to heat up. In all we spent eight hours in both Universal Parks.  We finally headed back to the hotel when Spencer decided he’d seen enough.

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We made one final stop on our journey back to Indiana.  Gregg’s Aunt and Uncle live in St. Augustine so we dropped by for a short visit.  Gregg’s Mom (on the far left) and Aunt Joan treated us to a fabulous lunch after a quick stroll on the beach.

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With our empty mini van fueled up we headed back to Indiana.  Now the process of clearing out and cleaning up the house begins. We still have a long list of tasks to complete before our permanent move in July.  Thankfully another trip to Italy is only a month away. I’m in desperate need of La Dolce Vita.

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