Moments 07.2020 JoyFoodSunshine - We finally got to get away for a family vacation, revealed some big news and enjoyed more summer fun!
I can't remember all the times I tried to tell myself to hold on to these moments as they pass."
Welcome to “Moments” here on JoyFoodSunshine. At the end of every month I share a recap of our family's favorite moments! So here it is for July 2020!
Life with my tribe
This month we finally got to get away for a family vacation, revealed some big news and enjoyed more summer fun!
In case you hadn't heard, we're having our sixth (and final) baby in January 2021! I wrote an entire post on it here: Baby #6: 16 weeks.
It had been NINE years since I had seen the ocean. N-I-N-E. For a girl who grew up thinking I'd live on some beach somewhere, never going a year without visiting an amazing beach in some exotic location and feeling that where the surf meets the sand is where my soul really belongs - it was way too long.
We had this vacation planned for May, but had to delay it until July. I'm so grateful we got to enjoy a much-needed, months-delayed, unplugged beach vacation. We stayed at a resort with a private beach, which was absolute perfection because I didn't have to worry about hoards of people around my kids. Ritch and I got to just sit there and soak in time with our family.
We splashed in the waves, played in the sand, caught a glimpse of wild seals and dolphins, watched the sunset over the ocean, collected seashells, found crabs, swam in the pool, soaked in uninterrupted family time and Ritch even got stung by a sting ray!
It was my kids’ first trip to the beach and it was pure magic. One day, as we were walking across the sand towards the ocean B said, “I don’t know why, but I feel like I belong here” and I understood what she meant, deep down in my soul.
So I am just going to drop a whole load of photos here of our vacation, because I want to remember it and because I can't choose just a few. 🙂
Keilah LOVED the beach. She enjoyed playing in the sand and running in and out of the waves. One of her favorite games was holding up sea shells one-by-one as I said, "Wowww" every time. It was adorable. She got a little sunburned under her eyes, but she was a total delight on this vacation, which was amazing.
All my beach babies!
Mara preferred playing in the sand more than in the ocean. She spent most of the time digging and building sand castles, and loved every second of it.
Naomi loved everything about the beach. She caught crabs, built sand castles, swam in the ocean, you name it she did it with pure joy.
Bethany was very similar to Naomi - I think her favorite thing was catching sand crabs. Every day she tried to break a new record - one day she caught (with Ritch's help) over 50! She went back and forth from digging in the sand to swimming in the ocean. She totally came alive on this trip!
Gabe preferred digging in the sand. He spent two whole days making a "fortress" which was a large hole in the ground surrounded by giant logs. He was so diligent and so proud of his sand creation.
My favorite thing to do was sit and watch the kids play and chat with Ritch. After that I would get up every morning and go for a long walk on the beach by myself. That time with my toes in the sand and water and only the sound of the waves and birds was life-giving for me.
One day the whole family humored me and went on a great (and short) walk on the beach. It was so wonderful walking with my babies.
Keilah - 17 Months
It finally happened!!! Keilah turned a corner and isn't Ms. Grumpy Baby anymore! I can't pinpoint exactly when it happened, but one night, after we put the kids to bed I asked Ritch if he noticed that we didn't have to coddle and entertain a needy Keilah after dinner until bedtime anymore. He agreed he had noticed it too - I think we were both trying not to jinx it LOL!
She is more independent and can communicate her needs a little better, which I think is part of her newfound happiness. She started shaking her head "no" to everything instead of nodding "yes," and I think I prefer the "yes!" LOL!
Keilah has added some new words to her vocabulary. She can now say all her siblings names in a decipherable way. She says cookie, baby, wow, see, up, please (the cutest), water, potty, no, yeah, and all her siblings names. She tries to say any word we ask her to, but it's often undecipherable.
We were at the beach on Ritch's birthday, so we celebrated the Saturday before we left. The kids' favorite thing about his special day is that they get to decorate his cake. I let them pick the colors, give them each a bag of this vanilla frosting, and let them do their thing.
We take our kids on daddy-kid and mommy-kid dates on a rotating schedule. This time it was Naomi's turn to go on a date with Ritch. They went bowling, out to lunch and then to pick out some pretty jewelry. She is so much fun to take out because she is pure sunshine. She just loves being with you. She talks a mile a minute - because she always has a lot to say and there are no siblings around to interrupt.
We highly recommend dating your kids! They are so different when they are alone than in a group of their siblings. I love getting to know them as individuals and hear what's really going on in their hearts.
A few of my favorite things...
Here are a few products and other things I have loved in July
I have had serious pregnancy ice cream cravings, so I've used my ice cream maker so much this month. I love making chocolate ice cream, vanilla ice cream (or paleo vanilla ice cream) and this healthy chocolate peanut butter ice cream.
This was our first time flying since Keilah was born! So I had to get a few new suitcases to supplement our collection so we could pack for all 7 of us. This 3 piece luggage set is amazing and SO incredibly reasonably priced I couldn't believe it. We have the older version of this luggage and it's still going strong after owning it for over 10 years!
This is my absolute favorite honey. I've been disappointed in the past with honey brands that leak, or solidify in the bottle and become a nightmare to use. This Nature Nate's honey is amazing. It's smooth and tastes great. Plus it costs less on Amazon than it does at Sprouts (where I usually shop)! I use honey in my coffee every morning, as well as in many of my favorite recipes (including these breakfast bars) and this honey is the best.
Recipes I'm Making on Repeat
Here are a few recipes we enjoyed in July!
Made on the stovetop this is a great easy lunch or dinner for hot summer nights!
When do I not make these?!
Ok - summer 2020 is sponsored by burrata. I've made this burrata salad so many times!
I often serve this roasted broccoli with mac and cheese! It's my favorite way to eat broccoli!
So good! Use only 1 egg to make it even fudgier!
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