This year, my little family was blessed with the opportunity of taking a 2 week summer vacation! We hadn't been able to do this since I was pregnant with Emma so two kids under 3 years old made this a true ADVENTURE full of new experiences and new stresses! Our first stop was St. Augustine, a truly magical place, immersed in history and so much nostalgia for me as this was our vacation destination growing up. As the kids affectionately call it, our time in the "Blue House" was filled with countless days by the pool, a spectacular personal fireworks show by Uncle Matt, and delightful escapades exploring the ice cream shops in downtown St. Augustine. If you were o ask our daughter, Emma, a highlight for her was catching a glimpse of a REAL LIFE pirate ship sailing in the bay. This would probably be tied with strolling through the Alligator Farm.
After bidding farewell to St. Augustine, we headed to Ormond Beach to join my husband's family. The laid-back atmosphere provided a much-needed change of pace. Days in Ormond Beach were divided between relaxing beneath the family tent on the beach and the refreshing waters of the pool. The children splashed in a homemade pool and built sandcastles while the adults enjoyed the warm sunshine with no shortage of chilled beverages. To escape the summer heat, we alternated going to the pool where Emma learned to swim like a professional in her Puddle Jumper and jumped into the deep end with no fear. I hope she always meets challenges with so much bravery. Although the vacation was at times stressful and far from restful, the opportunity to spend quality time with loved ones was truly priceless.
As I reflect on our summer adventure and how despite the stress of having young babies, managing nap times and navigating play the the beach, I am reminded that the joy and love shared with family is truly priceless, leaving us with a treasure trove of memories that will endure for a lifetime.