Once a year we take a beach trip with my parents. We rent a house or a condo, drive down with the car loaded up, and spend a week or so enjoying family time in the sun, sand, and surf. The older I get, the more I love the beach. There’s just something about that ocean breeze and the sand between my toes that makes me feel at home!
This year, we traveled to St. Augustine, Florida. We’ve rented the same quaint 3-bedroom condo for three years now and we love the location and the space. The condo has changed ownership since the first few times we stayed, but we were happy with the service and the updates to the decor. We rented our condo through Vacation Rental Time. (Click here to check out what they offer!)
Our Favorite Things to Do and Eat in St. Augustine
Of course, our favorite thing to do when we go down to St. Augustine is to play in the ocean and sand! The condo we rent is right on the beach and it’s easy to pop out a couple of times a day to play and then come back for a meal or for a rest.
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When it comes to the kids’ birthday parties, I feel like we’ve done it all. We’ve done the super-cute Pinterest party, the easy/simple at-home party, the expensive kid’s play-place party.
I’m thinking the only thing left to try is the “hire a party planner and have them do the set-up and clean-up” type party. Maybe next year!
This year, we did a joint My Little Pony and Pirate Pool Party for the kids. They both have September birthdays, so joint parties will be a norm until they specifically request their own parties. Graham was dying to use a pirate pinata we had leftover from his birthday party two years ago, so he wanted a pirate theme. And Maddie is obsessed with My Little Ponies, so that’s what she picked.
I kept things really simple with decorations from Party City, food from Costco, and cakes from Publix. I didn’t make any cute Pinterest-y things this year. But I think the party turned out great anyway!
A few weekends ago, we decide to take a last minute weekend trip to Chattanooga. We’ve visited a few times in the past few years. It’s a short drive from Atlanta and a great place to spend a night or two when you’re wanting to get away. The city is also super kid-friendly! Here are a few of our favorite kid-friendly Chattanooga attractions.
My kids are (thankfully) pretty good eaters. My son, in particular, loves trying new foods! He likes kale, spinach, sushi, raw oysters, quinoa, and lots of other foods that typically aren’t considered “kid-friendly.” Any time I post pictures or videos of my kids eating different kinds of food, other moms will ask, “What did you do to get your kids to try new foods? My kids won’t eat anything!”
I got lucky. I don’t really think it was anything I actually did. My husband and I both love food. In fact, I have a really hard time thinking of foods I don’t like! Maybe our kids have a genetic predisposition to love food like we do? Ha!
But looking back, I guess there are a few things I did over the years to get my kids to try new, healthy foods.
10 Tips for Raising a Healthy Happy Eater
1. We (usually) sit down as a family to eat.
Confession time – I really don’t enjoy eating with my kids. They’re messy, loud, don’t stay seated, and tend to ask me for a million things (usually right after I sit down). Mealtime together as a family isn’t exactly relaxing. But I know how important it is to eat together as much as possible. Family meals strengthen relationships, build self-esteem, instill a sense of belonging, and are great opportunities for parents to set examples of healthy eating.
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Disclaimer: I was provided with free product from Stuck on You in return for my honest review. All thoughts an opinions are my own.
I know we’re still deep in the thick of summer, especially those of us here in the south where the temperature is way above “glistening” and on to full “sweating.” But back-to-school time will be here before we know it! My son is starting Kindergarten this year and I’m so excited for him. He’s going to an amazing charter school with a wonderful community of teachers and parents. We’ve already had a couple of play-dates and a family picnic this summer to get to know people.
His new school is nut-free, and we’ve also cut out almost all dairy from our diet. So school lunches have been on my brain. My son eats a peanut butter and jelly sandwich almost every single day. (In fact, when he was 2, his teacher at preschool told me he cried that day during lunch when he saw he had a ham sandwich instead of peanut butter!) Needless to say, I’ve been preparing him so that he’ll know he won’t get to have his beloved pb&j at school anymore, but he can have it at home! And I’ve been wracking my brain trying to think of healthy, filling school lunches that don’t include dairy or nuts.
Here are a few ideas I’ve come up with so far:
4 Nut and Dairy Free Ideas for School Lunch
Mediterranean favors fill this lunch box. My kids love hummus almost as much as I do, so I know this lunch will be a hit.