Wednesday, June 26, 2019

What’s Up Wednesday - June 2019

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The month of June flew by, probably because a good chunk of it was spent on vacation at the beach.  Time always flies when you’re having fun, right?  Let’s get to the recap!

What We’re Eating This Week

Mon – Broccoli, mac n cheese, black eyed peas, corn
Tue – Beef and parmesan pasta with zucchini
Wed – Ham and cheese biscuit sliders, fruit
Thu – Eggs, grits, bacon, toast
Fri – Out
Sat – Out
Sun – Sunday dinner at Momma and Daddy’s

What I’m Reminiscing About

I’m still reminiscing about our beach trip earlier this month.  I just started recapping the trip here on the blog, so I’ve been going through all of the pictures and remembering every little detail.  It’s always one of my favorite weeks of the whole year with my favorite people.  <3  If you’ve missed any of the recaps so far, you can see them below and you can also check out the "Beach Trip '19" story highlight in my Instagram bio.

What I’m Loving

I have spent the better part of this year reevaluating our home décor, storage, and organization, and I’ve been making little changes here and there to get everything in the house exactly how I want it.  I’ve eliminated several pain points around the house, for example, not having a good place to allow our dish rag to dry.  I used to lay it over the faucet (which was annoying and kinda gross) but I finally installed this command towel rack inside the cabinet under the sink, and we now have a nice place for it to dry.  It’s out of sight, and it doesn’t fall off the faucet and into the sink every time I turn on the water.  It’s a tiny change that has made a world of difference and I could not love it more!

I also cleaned out the décor in the house and moved some things around to get everything looking great!  We still had decorative pieces hanging around the house that were cheap and meaningless and leftover from my apartment college days, and I finally took the time to really reflect on each piece.  If I didn’t love it (or if it didn’t spark joy I guess… thanks, Marie Kondo!) it was ousted.  Ever since, I’ve been acquiring pieces slowly and intentionally to decorate every inch of space only with the things that I absolutely love.  I used to be really bad about buying cheap stuff just to fill space, but now that I feel like I’ve found my decorating style, those days are gone.  My new reversible sign from Target (Let's Go Out/Let's Stay In) might just be one of my favorite things EVER.

I also acquired a few old pieces from my grandmother in recent months – her old mirror, an old serving tray, some glass dishes, an old scale, and an old children’s bible – and I have sprinkled those trinkets throughout the house to have some meaningful items.  Her old bible looks awesome in a stack with my grandfather’s old books that I’ve had for a while, and it makes me so happy to see all of those things on a daily basis and be reminded of her.

I plan on doing a more in-depth post about some of the recent changes I’ve made around the house that have made my life easier, so stay tuned!  I’ll share as soon as I can get everything together.

What We’ve Been Up To

The kids and I have been living our best lives since it’s summa summa time!  We went to the beach, the kids have been taking swimming lessons, we’ve ridden bikes, gone to the library multiple times, made too many homemade waffles to count, and played lots and lots of games.  We've also spent lots of time with family and we celebrated out favorite guy for Father's Day!  I’ve been recapping all of our daily happenings in weekly posts, and you can see all of the recaps below.

Summer - Week 1
Summer - Week 2 was our beach trip

What I’m Dreading

Summer heat is still the only thing on my dread list for this month.  Well, that and a potential allergy flare if the grass pollen spikes.  My allergies went crazy last summer in early July, but I’m hoping that won’t happen since I paid my dues back in March.  Everything seemed to bloom extra early this year (from our lack of winter) so I’m hoping the worst is over until fall.

What I’m Working On

We’ve been on the go since school let out, and I’m trying to spend all of my extra time with the kiddos since they’re out of school, so I honestly haven’t been working on all that much.  I have knocked out a few projects around the house, though.  Here are a few of the things I’ve accomplished this month…

  1. Sold several old things around the house that we’ve been wanting to get rid of.
  2. Took that money and bought a new rug for our kitchen table and a new rug for our living room.  See more below!
  3. Developed pictures and updated several frames around our house.
  4. Finally decided what I wanted to hang next to our entertainment center in the living room.  We’ll be heading to IKEA this weekend to grab what I need to complete it.
  5. Painted my grandmother’s old stand alone mirror.  It looks gorgeous!  I'll be sharing the completed project on Friday!
  6. Updated the kids’ baby books.  I haven’t quite finished but I’m getting close!
  7. Still whittling away at my Master To Do List.  I’m on track to cross off about 25 more things this month!  This month was all minor stuff since I haven’t had a lot of time to do anything.
  8. And, of course, blogging.  Here are some highlights from this past month:

What I’m Excited About

My new rugs from Target!  As I mentioned before, I sold a few things around the house and used the money to buy two new rugs.  We’ve been in need of a new rug under our kitchen table because the old one was disgusting since it was the one we had when the kids were teeny tiny and always throwing food on the floor.  I went with this natural outdoor rug because I thought it would be a little sturdier than a traditional rug.  The kids still occasionally spill things and drop food on the floor, so that’s exactly what we need under the table.  It actually looks and feels like more of an indoor rug, though… it’s surprisingly soft!  It looks perfect in there and I got a SWEET deal on it!  It happened to be on sale the day I looked at it plus I had a coupon to take an additional 20% off.  Add my 5% off from my Red Card and it was a friggin’ steal.  It's currently on sale for 5% off + an additional 25% off if you pick it up in the store.  That brings it to just $56.99!!

We have never had a rug in our living room, partially because I’m soooo picky about rugs and can never find one that I like, and partially because our living room is kind of small and awkwardly spaced.  Standard rug sizes are 5x8ish or 7x10ish, but our room is too small for a 7x10, so I had no choice but to get a 5x8.  Well, interior design rules state that rugs in a living area should be big enough to touch every single piece of furniture in the room and that you should never have a rug just “floating” under the coffee table.  Unfortunately that’s the way it has to be in our house, so I had no choice in the matter.  I stressed over it for a couple of days because I was breaking one of the main interior decorating rules, but I figured, I love it so much so why does it matter if it doesn’t follow the “rules?”  Who makes these rules anyway?  ;o)  And I honestly think that having the smaller rug in there looks better than no rug at all, so there’s that.

I've had my eye on this rug from Target for a good year, so it was nice to finally make it ours.  It's currently on sale for 10% off right now, too, which is rare, because this is the first time I've seen this one on sale!  They're stingy with this brand for some reason.

I’d love to know your honest opinion, though… 5x8 rug under the coffee table or no rug at all?  Do y’all think it looks awkward or anything?  I put a video and a poll on Instagram stories this morning so check there and let me know!

What I’m Watching/Reading

Watching – B and I are watching The Bachelorette and also eating up every single episode of The Handmaid’s Tale as it comes out.  Same for Big Little Lies.  We’re also watching America’s Got Talent with the kids and we’re bingeing Better Call Saul during the times that we’re caught up on everything else.

Reading – Last month when I answered this prompt I had just started my first book of the summer – My Oxford Year – and I’ve since blown through 3.5 more – Confessions of a Domestic Failure, Swear on This Life, The Dinner List, and I’m now reading Nicholas Sparks’ new one, Every Breath.  I LOVED My Oxford Year, thought Confessions of a Domestic Failure was so cute and the perfect beach read, thought Swear on this Life is one of the best books I’ve EVER read, and I loved The Dinner List, too.  I’m on fire with choosing awesome books this summer.  Every Breath has proven to be pretty good so far, too, so we’ll see where that one goes.  And I already have two more books lined up to read once I finish this one.  Library for the win!

What I’m Listening To

The kids are completely and utterly obsessed with Old Town Road by Lil Nas X so that has been on repeat for weeks over here.  We’ve had numerous dance parties to it.  Other than that, we’ve been doing a lot of shuffling of our summer play list!

What I’m Wearing

I’ve been wearing lots of summer dresses this month.  This Amazon dress is a favorite as well as this one from Kohl’s.  I’ve also been living in these cutoffs.  They’re stretchy and soft and so comfy!  And Olivia has been living in this pineapple dress from Target.  It's her favorite right now and it's on sale for 20% off!

Cutest dress from Amazon here

Most comfy summer dress ever here!

Olivia's pineapple dress here
Best cutoffs here

What I’m Doing This Weekend

We have a super fun weekend on deck… we’re taking the kids to our first Atlanta United soccer game!  They play at Mercedes Benz stadium in ATL, so we’ll be heading there for the day Saturday.  We’ll also be making a stop at IKEA for a couple of frames.  Be sure to follow along on Instagram stories!

What I’m Looking Forward To Next Month

Having more weeks off with NOWHERE TO BE!  So far we’ve had a week of appointments and packing for the beach, a week at the beach, two weeks of swimming lessons, and one week of VBS (this week).  It’ll be nice to finally have a few weeks without obligations.  I’m excited to get back to the lazy days of summer instead go go going all the time.

What Else Is New

We received Olivia’s professional dance pictures earlier this month and they turned out so sweet.  I can’t believe we’re only a few weeks away from signing up for another year of dance! 

Another new development is that the kids have started requesting that we ride with the sunroof open every day.  My last two vehicles were purchased with a sunroof because I used to love the sunroof so much back in college.  Most of the time nowadays I forget all about it, though, and it had probably been years since I’d opened mine in my current car.  Just a few weeks ago, Jacob asked what the hole was in the ceiling so I showed them, and they’ve been requesting to ride that way every day since then.  I don’t mind a bit… makes me feel like I’m in college again!

Happy Wednesday, y’all!

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Tuesday, June 25, 2019

30A Beach Trip 2019 - Day 4

I may have said that Day 3 was my favorite day of the whole trip, but Day 4 was right on up there with Day 3!  It was so good! 

We knew that there was a really good chance that Day 4 would be our last chance to spend the day at the beach because there was lots of rain in the forecast for the rest of the week, so we were up early to get the day started!  We didn’t want to waste a single second of the sunshine! 

Since Charlie’s Donut Truck in Alys Beach is an outdoor thing to do, we decided to head there for breakfast.  We threw on our swim suits and coverups and made the two minute drive… once the kids are a little older and are more proficient bicycle riders, we’ll probably end up riding bikes everywhere instead of driving since everything is so close.

Charlie’s was jumping, as always, and we all picked out some flavors to try and we headed to a picnic table in the square.  While Brian was paying, I heard someone call my name, and lo and behold, it was my friend’s sister-in-law and her baby taking a morning walk!  The world is such a small place, y’all!  I hugged her neck and chatted with her for a sec, and then joined B and the kids at a table to eat.

Olivia wanted to play at the splash pad in the square, so when we were done eating, she went out to play.  Jacob wasn’t interested in playing because he didn’t want to sit in the car all wet (even though it was only a two minute drive back – LOL) so he hung out with us while she played.  We let her play for a few minutes, and then we headed back to the car because we were all itching to get to the beach! 

Everything is just so picturesque in 30A – pretty much every corner is a photo-op – so I did have B snap a quick pic of me in my cute lil’ beach cover-up that I got at Walmart last summer for, like, $8!  It’s amazing that I literally rolled out of bed and got ready in, like, 10 minutes, and I love this picture of myself.  Everything is just better and easier at the beach!  Haha.

We made it down to the beach a little after 9 and it started out a bit cloudy.  We could tell that the rain was getting closer because some seaweed was starting to form in the ocean, too.  The Gulf water is typically crystal clear with an emerald tint and there’s usually not a stitch of seaweed in it, so that was different!

Because of the whole debacle the previous day with those ladies setting up in front of us, we set up our stuff right at the edge of the sand, so there would be no possible place for them to get in front of us unless they were in the water.  Lol.  

I got a good bit of reading done that day and B did a good bit of sunscreening that day since he had burned the tops of his feet to a crisp the previous day.  Just look at how much sunscreen he put on his feet that day.  LOLOLOLOL.

The kids and B also worked on an epic sand castle… their biggest one to date!  At first, they made the whole thing out of sand.

And then they eventually added a bunch of sprigs of seaweed and decorated it with the beach toys, too.  They were so proud of themselves and they kept asking me to take pictures of them with it every time they would make another change.  Side note – doesn’t Jacob look adorable in a baseball cap?  I wish he would wear them more often.

We went up to the condo for another quick lunch of sandwiches and fruit, and the whole time we were up there, I kept looking out the window and stalking our spot on the beach to make sure those ladies hadn’t tried to sabotage us.  Lol.  They did end up going down there again and they sat up just to the left of us, right in front of some other people’s chairs.  Sigh.  Better them than me this time.  I would have lost my mind.  Lol.

After lunch we headed back down to the beach and stayed there the rest of the afternoon.  It ended up being pretty sunny all day, so it was nice to get in another sunny day instead of clouds.

We finally headed back up to the condo around 4ish and got ready for the evening ahead.  We knew this could possibly be our last night to do something outdoors, so we decided to head to Seaside for the evening.

We stopped in the parking lot for pictures on the way out because we had the cutest little fence separating our condo from the house next door, and it made for the perfect little backdrop for pictures.  Another couple who was staying in our condo saw that we were taking pictures, and they offered to get one of our whole family.  Wasn’t that so sweet?  I love it when that happens!

We also snapped a few more after the couple left.  

When B and I ask Jacob or Olivia to snap a few pictures of us, they always hold the button down and snap, like, a hundred, so B and I always run to them to grab the camera as they're still snapping away.  That always results in pictures like this one.  Lol.

We made the 10 minute drive to Seaside and found a place to park, and then we walked around for a bit taking in all of the sights and sounds.  If you’ve never been to Seaside, then you should make it a point to go some day.  It’s perhaps one of the cutest little beach towns I’ve ever been to, and we love it so much!  There’s a huge green in the middle surrounded by shops and restaurants on three sides, and food trucks and the ocean on the other.  It’s such a unique little place and I just can’t say enough good things about it!

We decided to try Bud & Alley’s Pizza Bar for dinner, and they seated us on the back deck.  The benches on the deck were covered in big, plush pillows and the ceiling was covered in string lights so it was beach perfection, y’all.  I could have stayed there all night.

B and I ordered a couple of cocktails, a Moscow Mule for him and a Tropical Lemonade for me (Vodka, Lemonade, Cranberry Juice, and Orange Curacao) and we got some cheesy bread as a starter before our pizzas came out… which were divine by the way.  The kids colored the evening away and we all talked about our trip so far.  It was just the most peaceful dinner in one of my favorite places and I was feeling particularly grateful that evening.

When our bellies were full, we all headed down to the beach to watch the sun set and to take some family pictures.  We take family pictures every year while we’re there because the back drop just can’t be beat.  We usually bring the tripod down with us to get our group shots, but we had left it in the car that evening, so I offered to take some group shots of another family in exchange for their services to take a group shot of us.  It was already getting pretty dark by the time we got down there, so the lighting wasn't ideal, but they still came out beautifully. 

I also couldn’t resist getting some pictures of our lovies together.  Gosh, I just love them both so much! 

We headed back up from the beach to wash our feet off after that, and then it was time to do some shopping!  Side note, see that cute little restaurant area behind Brian and the kids in the picture below?  That’s just where we had eaten dinner… soooo stinking cute and cozy! 

Our next stop was The Seaside Style to get some Seaside sweatshirts for the kids and me.  I’ve been wanting one for forever plus I also hadn’t brought anything warm on our trip, and I needed something snuggly to wear in the condo.  Good thing I did, too, since the next few days were rainy, windy, and a bit chilly for June.  We also let the kids pick out some souvenirs.  Jacob chose a tube of sea creatures and Olivia chose some glittery lip gloss.  Lol.  Not very souvenir-ish but it was her choice!

We walked over to Dawson’s Yogurt and Fudgeworks next, for frozen yogurt.  When you get different flavors besides vanilla or chocolate, they put the flavoring all along the edges of the yogurt and it looks SO COOL.  I can’t really explain what it looks like and I have no clue how they do it, but it’s really neat!  Messy, too.  Haha. 

We carried our frozen yogurt out to the green to listen to the band that was playing, and we stayed there for the rest of the evening.  Before we knew it, it was 10:30 PM back home, so we called it a night and made the walk back to the car (which we almost couldn’t find – LOL) and then we made the short drive back to the condo to hit the hay.

If you’ve missed any of my recaps you can see them below!

I’ll be back with another beach recap hopefully on Thursday if time permits and I can get my act together and get it up!  In the meantime, stick around for What's Up Wednesday tomorrow!