Friday Favorites-Favorite Vacations With Kids

Happy Friday, friends! I hope the week treated you well and everyone had a great one. If you caught my insta stories (@beautifully_candid) you might have seen that Eric and I are on a little European getaway. It's always nice to have that special time as a couple but I can't wait to get some big hugs and kisses from my nuggets when we get home. 

Since I was traveling part of the week I am not going to do my typical favorites post but instead share five trips we've taken with the kids. When I did my five favorite vacations post a lot of you seemed to enjoy it so I thought it would be fun to share more. Seriously though, all of our trips end up being my favorite so it's hard to really put them in any type of order. Let's just get started, shall we...

1. Newport, RI: this was our second trip with A when he was a baby but our first road trip we took with him. We wanted to do something special for our 4 year anniversary and both of us have always wanted to check out Newport. It's only about a 3 and half hour drive from us which isn't bad at all, but the traffic was the tough part. Who am I kidding, it was horrendous. Once we hit Connecticut it felt like a dead halt. I'm talking we had to put a towel over the window and I had to hover over A in his carseat with a boob out so he would stop crying (tmi? Sorry). When we go again we will definitely leave at more of an off hour like we do now with any type of road trip. Lesson learned. 

Once we finally got there it was just as nice as I imagined. There were great restaurants, pretty beaches and the tallest lifeguard stands I have ever seen! We stayed at an adorable B&B that was perfect because it was pet friendly so Coaty got to come along with us!

2. Dominican: this was our first trip we took with both nuggets that involved flying. I have to say, it worked out pretty well and wasn't the disaster I was planning for. This was our third time visiting the Dominican, mainly because it's so affordable, has some amazing beaches, and it's also where we got engaged which will always have a special place in our hearts. You can read all about our adventures {here} and our fun dance party in the rain.
3. Disney: there's no way this couldn't be on the list because, I mean hello, it's Disney! I had so much fun not only planning this trip but feeling like a kid again when we were there. We did not try to conquer the world on this trip but instead focused on accomplishing the important highlights to us. A lot of people I talk to say that Disney is not a vacation because you need a vacation from your vacation. Now don't get us wrong, we love exploring which I think is pretty apparent from our everyday lives, but if I'm spending money to go away you better believe we are having a good time but trying our best to not burn everyone out. 

The happiness on the boys faces and getting to spend sometime with my brother out there was the best part! You can read all about our trip {here} and how we surprised the boys when we told them we were going. 
4. Greenville, SC: this was our first road trip with both of the nuggets and the longest road trip we've done with kids. I am happy to say no boob crisis took place this drive. Now that I'm thinking of it, I might have to do another follow up post because one of my all time favorite road trips was to Quebec where Coaty came along with us for that one too. Anyway, Greenville. We went out there to visit our friends and just loved everything about this town. It's very up and coming with great restaurants and fun little shops. Everything around there feels newer and very fresh. We also got to see some beautiful scenery when we ventured out a bit to go on a hike with the boys. Back to the road trip idea, since we drove through the night both there and back, both of the boys slept which worked out perfect. I have a feeling if we were to attempt this again it would probably be a much different car experience hearing them ask every 5 mins if we were there yet. Regardless of what time we leave. 
5. Aruba: this trip ended up being a bit of a backup trip but it was amazing none of the less. The long and short is, Eric and I had a trip planned to Hawaii for our 5 year anniversary and booked it before I was even pregnant with little nugget. Wellll...after we found out we were pregnant my Dr. didn't think it was the best idea to be so far away when I would have been around 6 plus months. I was kind of sad my dreams of a Hawaiian vacation were put on hold, but it was for a great reason. We decided to switch everything around, and instead we went away sooner and some where that we could lay on the beach and not feel like we were missing out on exploring. We went to Aruba for our honeymoon so it was the perfect place to celebrate our anniversary. You can read more about our trip {here}. I'm hopefully that for our 10 year anniversary I'll get that Hawaii trip :) 
I hope everyone has a great weekend! Looking forward to catching up with everyone next week.

Striped Bell Sleeve Dress and an Added Bonus With Pockets

When I come across a dress that ticks off majority of the things I love it makes getting dressed in the morning so much easier for me. I wear a lot of dresses in the summer, especially to work, so finding ones that I can easily put on and not have to think much about makes my mornings go so much smoother. And with two little ones I never really know how my morning is going to go.

I find myself drawn to anything with stripes and one of my favorite colors in my wardrobe is black. I've tried really hard the past few years to add more color into my closet, and I have to say, I think I've done a good job with that. But to me, nothing beats classic black. I find that I get more wear out of my black clothes because it's such an easy palette to change up your look with accessories and accent colors. 

I love the fun bell sleeves on this dress and it was such a nice surprise when I realized it had pockets. To me, a dress with pockets is an added bonus. I was actually at work and out of habit went to put my hands in a pocket and much to my surprise there they were. I must not have realized it when I orders this but yes to all the pocket dresses. I'm sure I will be getting a lot of wear out of this and as long as I don't end up with some random surprise in my pockets (that kids thing again, you just never know) then I think I will be ok.

Unfortunately my exact dress is sold out but there are a lot of fun casual dresses that I also have my eye on. If I could get away with wearing off the shoulder to work I would have loved this gingham print dress. I also think I need this drawstring midi tank dress because how perfect would it be for going to the beach? Something additional that I wanted to mentioned is I think I've always been pretty transparent and my honesty to my readers is always going to come first, so when a few of you mentioned the fit being off on a few items you ordered I thought about how can I help minimize this for you to be happy with what you receive. The best thing I could recommend is reading the description of the garments in full detail when you're on a retailers site. I always look for the type of fabric, silhouette, sleeve length (I have actually measured my arms) and I always read reviews about the product before I decide if it's right for me. I know that certain fabrics and styles look more flattering on me or will come with a certain level of quality over others, so naturally I want to invest in those. We are all drawn to pictures and if we like what we see we want it, that's why a lot of us buy from other bloggers, but remember, everyone has a different body style so make sure you are shopping for what works for you.

Dress-c/o (sold out similar here) | Flats-old (similar here and here) | Sunnies- (here)

Father's Day

I've said it before but to me, one of the most attractive things about a man is seeing him turn into an amazing father. I could go on and on about how amazing Eric is, because seriously this guy takes the cake, but I'm sure a lot of us feel that way about our significant others which is what makes them so perfect for each of us. 

I am continually grateful for being blessed beyond measure with a man that is a true example of a hands-on father. I am not trying to downplay anyone because everyone's relationships and roles they assume are different, but I've heard stories about husbands who have never even changed a diaper before and I am just shocked by that. From day one, Eric has always been a dad who had a special bond with my boys. I love seeing them have so many special moments together and how they look up to him and want to learn everything from him. He is such a role model and I can only pray that my boys pick up so many of his amazing qualities. 

I cannot thank him enough for those moments of cleaning up the kids when one gets sick because I'm the one with the weak stomach and would end up getting sick myself. For allowing me to have me time and encouraging me to take time for myself. For caring for the boys and having everything run like clockwork when I travel. For going along with my crazy antics and taking a gazillion pics of the boys and I when I'm pretty sure he would much rather be doing something else. For knowing where the band aids are when the boys get hurt and for giving them the best hugs and love to make them feel all better. Oh yeah, I said I wasn't going to go on and on, but I guess I couldn't help myself. Ha! Well this really could go on and on so let's enjoy some throwback pics and wrap this up. 

For now, I am just really thankful. So thankful that I don't feel like I'm off an island on this parenting journey. For knowing that I am supported and that we are a great team, even in the midst of those days when it's all chaos. And believe me, there are a lot of days like that. A lot of people say there is no one like mom, and I do believe that (because hello :) but, I really think when you're an amazing dad there is also no one like dad. 

Friday Favorites

Happy Friday, friends! I hope you all had a great week. Boy was the beginning of the week a hot one for us. I'm not complaining though, when we're all bundled up in coats and trying not to slip on the icy sidewalks I will be thankful it was 98 and sunny. 

It's Father's Day weekend so we will of course be having some sort of fun, but unfortunately it will be the first year we aren't down the shore to celebrate. It's been a fun little tradition we started where both of our families celebrate together but this year Eric has to leave for a business trip so that won't be happening. How annoying he has to leave on Father's Day?! We'll make sure to give him all the hugs and love before he leaves. And I can't lie, I'm really excited but also sad about leaving the kids when I fly out there in a few days to meet him. 

Here's a look at some of our fun from this week...

1. Carnival: the summer wouldn't be complete without visiting a carnival (or 10) and having all the cotton candy, ice cream, and riding fun. Speaking of rides, A was able to go on almost everything  because he is getting so tall, but little nugget could barely ride on anything. Well, what happens when one can do something and the other can't...oh yeah, a tantrum breaks out. After the third meltdown we spotted this little magnetic fishing game that we let little nugget try which distracted him while Eric took A on some more rides. He only needed to catch one fish but he just wouldn't put that pole down and probably caught about 10. We did let him ride on the carousel twice since that was one of the only things he could go on. I think the joy on his face speaks for itself and A's expression clearly shows he would rather be on something else.

2. Rosé all day: last weekend was national rosé day and it also happens to fall on one of my friend's birthday weekends. So what do you do when your birthday falls on rosé have a rosé all day party of course!

3. Pool fun: we also got some pool time in at my dad's and with the crazy hot weather we had it was so refreshing to be in the water. Eric and I already decided our next house needs to have a pool or a place where we can put one in. I think we would be out there all the time during the summer. Oh, and if you look closely in this pic you'll see that A is holding a frog. He found one in the backyard and carried that thing around all weekend until we told him he needed to let him go be with his family. They are fearless when it comes to critters so I know I am in for it with these two. #boymom

4. Toddler choices: I cannot believe that little nugget is going to be two in August. Time really needs to slow down. He's been very opinionated lately and his vocabulary has really taken off. He's definitely finding his voice, which I love, because hearing the little conversations between him and A is the cutest little thing. I'm telling you, he just woke up one morning and was talking in sentences.

The other day we were leaving for school and he decided to go pull his rain boots off the shoe rack and put them on himself. I tried a little bribery, explained to him why he can't wear them to class, but he had other plans and refused to leave the house without them. Thankfully he did take them off once we got there but only because his teacher asked him to. Why do they always listen to everyone else but mom?! Anyway, when we came home what was the first thing he did...put those rain boots back on of course. He also has been loving his little garden tools and they somehow make their way into the car every morning. I just can't with his little mixed matched outfit and expression, all the heart eyes right there.  

5. Strawberry and cherry picking: in case you missed my post from earlier this week, another highlight was our annual strawberry picking. We also ended up picking cherries too and have been enjoying berry overload over here. We decided to give some away and freeze a lot of them because we have way too many. It seems like a lot of suggestions have been to make jam with them, but honestly, that's not really my jam ;)

I hope everyone has a great weekend and very Happy Father's Day to all the amazing dads out there. Here's where you can find me linking throughout the week for all the linkup fun. 

Embroidered Gingham Top and Random Thoughts

Scalloped Bag
If you guys remember a few weeks ago, Eric and I meet up for a random picnic lunch date that turned out to be such a nice time. Well, when I shared a pic of us on my instastories I got a lot of messages about this embroidered gingham top I was wearing. I wore this to work and I can't tell you how many compliments I got on it. I really like it but it does run larger than I would have liked. Since I'm on the petite side, sometimes I can feel lost in clothes. I'm wearing a small and while I think the length is perfect, this shirt was a little wider than I would have liked. I would recommend to size down. 

I also mentioned before that I carry my camera with me everywhere. That might sound a little crazy to some of you but that's just how it is. I usually have a bag this size that is able to hold what I need along with my camera yet doesn't feel bulky. And since I had my camera with me, I asked Eric to take a few pictures of me (best blogger husband right there). I knew the lighting was really harsh because it was midday, my hair was all windblown, and I'm pretty sure I might have had some pb&j on me. But you know what...not every moment can be "picture perfect" because, #reallife.

This random picnic moment got me thinking about how great sporadic moments really are. I know it's good to be prepared and have a plan of action in place, but those moments that are least expected end up being some of my favorites. 

As a family we are always on the go. We take on a lot and usually have a pretty full schedule. The summers in particular have so much going on that I don't want to blink and feel like it never happened. Then again, when I look back at each summer it feels like each one was better than the last. So here's to managing all the crazy and also enjoying those random moments even if they're far and few between. 

Top-(c/o here) | Jeans-(here) | Sandals-(here, currently on sale)  | Sunnies-old (similar here) | Bag-(here)
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