Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Beach Babes

My friend Sarah organizes a girls' beach trip every year and this year we trekked to Seagrove Beach, which is near Seaside in Florida. I have always heard such wonderful things about Seaside so I was excited to get a little glimpse of the area. My sister came along too this year and I really enjoyed getting to spend so much time with her!


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We chose a charming little restaurant called The Great Southern Cafe in Seaside for our night out.

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Kristyn, Senica, and Tamekia

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Apparently the Great Southern Cafe is famous for their mojitos, so I gamely tried a strawberry mojito.

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 Me, Allyson, and Tamekia

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Senica, Kristyn, and Sarah

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We spent a good bit of time at the beach - you can see in this picture how we could see a thunderstorm rolling in.

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Lifeguard Sen

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On our last day at the beach, Kristyn and Allyson and I ventured back to Seaside to do a little gift shopping and to explore the town better. It had been very crowded the night we were there and almost everything was closed because we had gotten there so late - we were all eager to try to get a true taste of the town. I'm glad we went back - it is such a cute, beachy area!

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I'm always a sucker for festive lighting!

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We lingered in this store, called The Art of Simple, for quite some time. It was like an Anthropologie of beachy things and it smelled heavenly. The air-conditioning was much appreciated, too!

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The town center area that we were in had a fun corner full of food trucks. We were pretty hungry by that point so Kristyn selected a grilled cheese sandwich and I opted for a hot dog.

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We took our dinner and strolled across the street, right onto the beach. It was so relaxing to enjoy the sun and sand and sea air, and we even got to snoop on a wedding a little ways down the beach. Of course we stayed long enough to check out the bridesmaids dresses and the bride!

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Steve had sent along a package of drinks for everyone so we had a toast before heading out onto the evening beach to take some pictures.

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I could have stayed out there all night - just look at that view!

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Later that evening, we sat down to play a friendly game of Cards Against Humanity, and we noticed that Allyson was wearing this shirt:

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She used to tease me ALL the time about being such a fan of Harry Potter. She had borrowed all the books and movies from me years ago but never said a word about it. I didn't even think she had actually read them! Sneaky sister. So now she's a fan, and with H.P. apparel, no less!!

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We had a wonderful time and I always love getting to explore a new beach with some great girls. I feel it would be appropriate to close out this post with one more beach picture!

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Bike Tikes

A couple of weeks ago, we teased Anna over breakfast that we had a surprise planned for that sunny Saturday. She was highly intrigued the entire way to the store, and never guessed the surprise until we turned the corner to see a big rack of big girl bikes. Her face lit up like it was Christmas and she immediately started trying to pick her favorite one.

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The store had a pretty small selection of the bikes in stock so it was pretty easy to make a decision. We ended up going with a 16" tire size (the bike in the above picture is 12" tire size, and it was way too small). Anna was over the moon and rode her new bike all the way up to the cash register.

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Happy girl!

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We let Maddie pick out a little toy too and she picked this Doc McStuffins dress up kit. She loves it but it was the bane of our existence because the girls squabbled over that damn thing the entire day!!

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I was impressed with how quickly Anna caught on to the new pedaling position (vs. her tricycle), and she has had fun reciting "Forward, GO! Backwards, STOP!" to us.

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Maddie finally got to inherit the bigger tricycle - which was our main motivation for splurging on a bicycle now instead of waiting for her birthday. She seems much happier with her "new" ride!

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Terrific Two's

I always love going back and reading the girls' milestone posts and I figured a 2 year old birthday (ish) warrants one!

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Maddie is so firmly a 2 year old right now, it makes us laugh. Happy, smiley, snuggly one minute - tantrum the next! At her pediatrician checkup, she measured 34.3 inches tall, and weighed in at 26 lb, 4 oz. And declared to be the perfect picture of a healthy happy little girl!

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Maddie is a total chatterbox and it thrills my heart to hear my girls carrying on conversations with each other. I love being able to communicate with her and being amazed with each new sentence. She always wants to pick out her outfits for the day, and asks for me to pick her up so she can properly view her clothing options in the closet. It is charming to watch her hold her finger up to her mouth while she contemplates - apparently sartorial choices are a big decision! Her favorite outfits right now are dresses (she is particularly partial to a green smocked flamingo dress and to an ice-cream fabric dress), and her favorite shoes are these silly little Frozen play shoes. It's a battle sometimes to convince her to wear her real sandals out in public - all we ever hear is "Fwozen shoes"!! She also frequently demands a hair bow from her bow display board, although they never seem to stay in her hair for very long. Oh! And her tutus, of course!

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Those purple shoes are the "Fwozen" shoes.

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Opening a birthday box from Poppy and SuSu.

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I have moved her into Anna's old 2T wardrobe and they fit perfectly. There is something about making the switch into toddler sizes that makes me feel like I am losing a part of their babyhood, and I am so comforted when Maddie buries her head into my neck in a big hug or when she's upset, or when she takes my hand all on her own. Sometimes I even still catch whiffs of sweet baby smell and I can never resist scooping her up for a quick snuggle.

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Maddie totally adores her big sister. She wants to do everything that Anna is doing, she imitates her pouts and sulks, and she will tag along to whatever new game or mischief Anna has concocted. She is a tough cookie though - she will for sure stand up for herself and squawk if Anna tries to take her toy or Mommy's lap when it's Maddie's turn!!

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Maddie's favorite toys right now are anything baby-related. You might remember that SuSu and Poppy surprised the girls with doll high chairs and cradles for Christmas, and those have been in constant use recently. Maddie has two or three baby dolls she carries around the house, and the girls have run their little toy stroller right into the ground (although the fact that Anna has been riding in it too might have contributed to its demise!!). She loves to be a little mommy, and she and Anna both will beeline for my closet to pick out some high heels to clomp around in so they can pretend to go shopping with their babies.

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Check out those little curls!

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A pretty girl with Popsicle on her face!


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