Monday, July 14, 2014

Vacation Recap!

We went on our annual family vacation the week of June 28th-July 5th. My parents rent a house big enough for my siblings and our families in Sea Isle City, NJ. It's a quiet part of a town with the bay behind us, which makes for some awesome sunsets, and the beach in front (very convenient with kids). Every morning my Dad took Ellie to walk on the beach. I tried to get her to go to the playground the first morning, but she only wanted to go to the beach. It was actually a nice break since we go to the playground daily at home. Sunday morning I woke bright and early for a 5 mile run through the town and on the boardwalk. I finished with stretching and abs on the beach. It was peaceful. One of my favorite sounds is the sound of the waves. I wish we lived closer. It's very relaxing and a good place to meditate.

This is a picture my Dad took of Ellie one morning. I'm in love. It's beautiful. 

One of the highlights of our week was meeting Elsa and Anna at Shoobie's. During one of my runs I saw an advertisement that they would be there that night. My Mom and I took Ellie and my niece (6) and nephew (4). Ellie wore her new Elsa dress (her latest "happy jar" reward). Elsa sang "Let It Go" and her voice was so beautiful. Ellie watched in awe and sang along. It was so sweet to watch. Then they had a red carpet and you could take your picture with them. Ellie and my niece went up together and they had the biggest smiles on their faces. Too cute!! I got some great pictures. Elsa and Anna did not disappoint and I was impressed with their costumes and personalities. It makes me look forward to taking the girls to Disney World when they are a little older.

I was hoping Summer would love the beach as much as Ellie, and she did after a few minutes of fussiness. When we first put her down in the sand she was not a fan:

But, after a few minutes she was happily playing in it and got used to the ocean after an hour or so. Thankfully! I couldn't imagine having a child who didn't love the beach as much as Ellie and I! Hopefully it stays this way through their childhood.

Our first evening at the beach- all smiles!

One downside of vacation this year was that we all got an 8-hour stomach bug. It was not fun. Ellie was first to get it. She came home from the beach Monday after playing there all day and threw up. Sorry for the details. We were convinced it was dehydration because she had been out all day and hadn't drank a lot of water later in the day. She threw up a few more times and that was it. She slept all night and woke the next morning happy as can be. That theory changed when I got the stomach bug Tuesday night. It was all night for me, but the next morning I was better and even spent a few hours napping on the beach. Wednesday Nick got the virus, then my brother and my dad, then my little nephew, and Summer Wednesday night. It was so sad to see Summer throw up for the first time! It was tough to not be at home. I had to do wash in the middle of the night. She was sick from 11:30-3:30, then slept till 8:30 and was happy and nursing well Thursday morning. She missed Thursday's beach day, but Nick and I took turns relaxing at the house and hanging on the beach. Thursday night my sister and niece got the bug, but everyone was all better Friday. Phew, what a week! My oldest nephew and my Mom never got sick and my sister in law (who is pregnant at 37 weeks) got it the weekend we got home.

Luckily, though, we really didn't miss any days on the beach since it was such a short-lived bug. We were able to eat the next day and get back to normal. We just didn't sleep as much as we would have liked, but who really sleeps on vacation anyway when you have kids?! I also never got to read as I had planned or got to relax any extra since Nick took a guys vacation the week before. I did get to enjoy some quiet time on the deck each day. The view was beautiful. Nothing better than the beach (in my opinion)!

Thursday we had made reservations at Buddakan in Atlantic City to celebrate our 5-year wedding anniversary. We ended up cancelling it since Summer had been sick the night before and I wanted to be with her and I really just wanted to spend time with the girls. We can do a date night anytime (and we are planning to go to the one in Philly sometime soon). Instead, we all went to the rides on the boardwalk in Ocean City. It was a fun evening. The kids had a blast and we enjoyed watching them. Nick and Ellie and my brother and nephew went on the log ride towards the end of our night. It was a big drop at the end so I was a little nervous how Ellie would react. She loved it and hardly got wet. My nephew got soaked so he wasn't quite as happy. My dad and I took Ellie on a second time so I got to experience it with her, too. What a ride, especially for a 3 year old! I took Summer on her first ride- the train monorail. She was so cute sitting next to me holding on.

Ellie was very excited to see her Grandmom and Pop-Pop arriving at the rides

We took a few pictures and got ice cream and I picked up lobster from Mike's Seafood on the way home. My favorite. Friday morning was the 4th and we usually go to the parade down the street, but it was cancelled because of rain. We had brought Ellie's bike to decorate and had festive outfits for the girls so that was a little disappointing. Instead we watched Frozen and got to be lazy in the house for a few hours. We took the kids to the arcade and got ice cream before dinner. My sister's boyfriend came in that night and we had dinner together.

Saturday we packed the car and got ready to leave. I was taking pictures of the girls at the beach so put them in fancy dresses and shoes. I took my camera out of the car and shut the door before realizing the keys were on the front seat and the doors had locked. That was not quite the morning we had planned. I really wanted to stop and get the cream donuts we love so much before heading home. That didn't get to happen because we had to wait over 2 hours for help. I took a ton of pictures and got a few good ones. It was hot and sweaty and windy. Needless to say it was difficult to get them both to look at the camera at the same time and smile while taking the picture at that exact moment. This is why I am hiring a photographer for family pictures! You can view my favorites HERE.

Another awesome, memorable family vacation. Ellie and Summer play so well with their cousins and they are all so sweet together. It's so nice to spend so much time with everyone without having to make plans around busy schedules. My sister was also able to spend the week with us this year, which was so great. Thank you to my parents who make this week happen for all of us!

Summer Vacation, 2014

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