Thursday, September 3, 2015

September Goals

So before we get to my September goals, let's recap how I did with my August Goals... 

  • Clean my closet. - Epic fail. I'm actually laughing as I type this picturing the typhoon that is currently my closet. At this point, I'm going to wait a few more weeks, then pull out all of my maternity clothes & pack away my summer stuff at the same time. 
  • Get my classroom set up. - Done! I had my room all set up & ready to go by the time students walked in yesterday! I even had a little bit of time to change up a few of my bulletin boards! 
  • Stockpile Breastmilk - So... stockpile is a stretch, but I did have more than enough to send to daycare this week & am keeping up with what Olivia is eating. 
  • Design & Order Olivia's Birth Announcement - Done! I absolutely loved them too!

Now, onto my September goals. September is a crazy month for us as a family. Not only am I back to work, I'm also back to coaching, which means longer days away from home & a whole lot of stuff to be done in a short amount of time each evening. So, my September goals really focus on getting us into a solid routine & also carving out time to devote completely to family. 

  • Clean My Closet 
    • We're going to try this one again... My summer clothes need to be packed away & I plan to do a little purging as well. I should really do Ella's too, but that might be overly ambitious.
  • Pack My Lunch 4 out of 5 days a week
    • This is to save money & calories....
  • Meal Plan & Cook at Home 
    • See above...
  • Go Apple Picking 
    • I love all things apple & wanted to plan a family activity for this month. Apple picking seems like the perfect fit! Our favorite place closed this year, but I've done some research & found another that seems just as awesome!

What are your goals for September?

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Myrtle Beach 2015: Days 4 to 8

We're officially back to school! Yesterday was a conference day, but the kids are back in the building today & it's time to get rolling for the year! Even though I'm happy to be back - because I really do love my job - I can't help but wish I was still at the beach...

Day 4: Broadway at the Beach

Tuesday morning started off with fresh Krispy Kremes thanks to Uncle Matt & Aunt Britt!

My sister brought me a lemon filled one & it was SO good. I'd never had anything besides the original glazed & honestly didn't even know they made anything else. It was probably better that way because I'm drooling as I type this...

After "breakfast" we lounged by the pool all day until it was time to get ready for our evening plans. The guys had tickets for "Tuesday Brewsday" at the local baseball stadium, so us girls were on our own. We decided to grab a quick bite, then spend the evening at Broadway at the Beach.

Since we had both kids with us, we wanted a quick dinner, so we went to Chick-fil-a. Now, I don't want the southern readers to pass out when you read this, but we'd never had Chick-fil-a before. We don't have them in NY & we used to always go to Sonic while on vacation. But now that we have a Sonic five minutes away, we decided to branch out. The verdict was unanimous though - we loved it & will be back again as soon as we get the chance!

After dinner, we drove over to Broadway at the Beach, got parked & unloaded the strollers. We browsed a few shops, then this happened...

And it was followed by about 20 more rides as well. They have the rides set up in three sections throughout the boardwalk and if Ella was big enough to ride it, she rode it!

We ended the night with the world's most expensive ice cream cones ($4 for a kiddie size? WTF!) then carried a very sleepy three year old up to bed.

Day 5: Outlets & Key West Grille

We woke up to grey skies on Wednesday morning, so after our walk, we decided to head out & do some shopping! Myrtle Beach has two outlet centers & on Wednesday we went to the ones on 17N. I was able to pick up some fall clothes for the girls on major sale at Gap Factory & also found the cutest fringe booties for Olivia at Old Navy! I didn't get to shop much for myself, but we had a nice time.

The weather cleared up for a few hours in the afternoon, so we were able to hit the pool when we got home. Unfortunately, it didn't last long & it poured from four o'clock on! This was a problem for us because we had plans to go out to eat with Uncle Matt & Aunt Britt while my parents went to dinner with some friends. Getting two kids into a restaurant when it's pouring & there's only street parking was comical. Well, it's comical now, not so much at the time....

Anyway, we ate at Key West Grille at the Market Common & it was delish! The restaurant is a sports bar & is owned by Ben Rothlesburger - though we didn't know that when we picked it. I had wings & waffle fries, while Ella ate a quesadilla the size of her head. Eric opted for a build your own chopped salad & said it was fantastic too.

We'd originally planned to walk around the Market Common & do some shopping, but since it was still raining, we headed home & put the kids to bed early. Then, the grown ups watched a little Hard Knocks because who isn't getting excited about football season?

Day 6: The Aquarium

Going into vacation, Eric & I knew that we really wanted to take Ella to do something special with just us. She's gone through a lot of changes this summer & doesn't get very much one on one time with us right now, so while we had babysitters, we took advantage. We decided on Ripley's Aquarium & Ella absolutely loved it.

She was most excited about the sharks. All morning long, we talked about the sharks. So when we finally made it to the shark tunnel, she was pumped!

She also got to touch a baby leopard shark & a sting ray! They offered to let you touch jelly fish too, but there were warning signs all around the exhibit & there was no way I was going to put my own hand in there, let alone my 3 year olds!

After the aquarium we went back to the beach house & spent the rest of the day by the pool while Ella took a long nap. To cap off the day, Uncle Matt made his famous Chicken Parm for dinner!

Day 7: Last Day in the Sun 

Friday was our last day & the weather was perfect! Eric & my dad headed out to get one last round of golf in and I was down at the pool with Ella bright & early. She was a total fish this year, so I knew she'd want to get as much swimming in as possible!

We laid out & just enjoyed the day. A very peaceful end to our vacation...

Day 8: Heading Home

So, we left even earlier to get home than we did to get there, pulling out at 2:30 a.m. It was so ridiculously early, but in the end I'm glad we did it because we were home by 5:30 p.m. & I was able to get out for a long walk to stretch my legs!

Olivia wasn't quite as well behaved on the way back, probably because she'd been held by Gigi all week long. She slept until about noon, then all hell broke loose. After that point, I could get her to sleep for maybe half hour intervals, but the rest of the time she was totally fussy!

this is how Liv felt about her carseat... 
I drove a stretch on the way home too, because Eric was exhausted. I powered us through Virginia, which means I had to maneuver I-95 through Washington D.C. - not fun. But since it was the only 4 hours I drove all trip, I can't complain too much!

So that was our trip to Myrtle for 2015! Ella's already asking when we get to go back & I'm sure Liv feels the same way. You just can't beat sunshine & family :) Until next year...

Monday, August 31, 2015

Myrtle Beach 2015: Days 1 to 3

Normally, I'd do a weekend recap today, but my weekend consisted of riding in a car all day Saturday then cleaning, unpacking, doing laundry, and just generally pulling it together to go back to school all day Sunday! So instead, I thought I'd dive into a recap of this year's trip to Myrtle Beach. 

If you're new here, we go on this trip every year with my family & it's my favorite week of the year. I love spending time with my whole family and this year was extra special because we took my Grandma with us & she got to spend a ton of time with Olivia as she took on the role of official baby whisperer. 

Day 1: Road Trip!

Ella rode with my parents this trip, so it was just Liv, Eric & I riding in our car. Because of that, we completely based our schedule around Liv's feedings. We left at 3 a.m., right after she ate, then stopped for gas and food whenever she was hungry. Without stops, the trip is about 13 1/2 hours from our house, but with Liv it took us 16 hours on the way down. We knew that she was going to need about 30 to 45 minutes at each stop, so we left in the middle of the night to still arrive by dinner.

Olivia completely surpassed my expectations for this trip! I sat in the back with her while Eric drove the entire way down (thank you 5 Hour Energy!) and she was happy as could be 85% of the time!

We arrived at the beach house just before 6:30. Ella was already in the pool, mom & Britt had already gotten groceries, and the pizza was already ordered for dinner. It was actually a pretty sweet deal for me :)

Day 2: Pool Day

Sunday was a really laid back, relaxed pool day for us. The whole family floated around the pool & just enjoyed the sunshine. I did make an excursion to pick up some supplies & grab an iced tea, but other than that, I was in my swimsuit on the pool deck. 

Sunday was also Eric & my night to cook dinner for everyone. We made chicken fajitas that were quite delicious - completely thanks to Eric's cooking - all I did was chop. After dinner, the ladies all piled into my mom's van & headed out to Sonic for some ice cream :) I of course had my favorite Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Blast, but ate it so fast that I didn't get to take a picture!

Day 3: Beach Fun & Drunken Jack's 

Eric took off to golf with my dad on Monday morning and my mom offered to wrangle the girls for a bit so that I could get a run in. This was my first run post-baby & it was slow, but it felt good! I was glad that I started at 6:45 though, because the heat & humidity were already insane. Overall, I did over 2 miles without stopping & was pretty darn pleased with myself! 

Once I got back to the house, I got Ella dressed & we headed down to the pool to swim until lunch time. Then, once naps were over & Eric was home from golfing, we headed to the beach! 

And Monday night, we went out to dinner at my mom's favorite restaurant - Drunken Jack's. They have a huge salad bar & serve hush puppies instead of rolls - she could eat those two things alone & be happy. But they also have amazing seafood & steak - which is what I had. 

Excuse my hair in this pic, the humidity had a field day with me this year!

Another cool thing about Drunken Jack's is that they have goats on an island. I know that is totally random, but kids love to watch the goats from the boardwalk surrounding the restaurant! 

And just a little snapshot of my sweet family with the goat island behind us!

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