July 21st, 2014
Our first full day on the beach was awesome! We didn’t build this sand castle, but it gave us inspiration for the rest of the week. We learned how to “decorate” the towers with sand art from the creator of this castle, which kept the girls busy for hours!
Rose. Loved seeing her more reserved and actually a little intimidated by something (the waves). She surprises me every day.
Noelle was eating it up! She wanted these sunglasses so badly for our trip that she paid for them with her own money. Now I see why she wanted them so much. She’s a fashionista!
Anna Kate is super tactile. It was so cool to see how she was processing our surroundings with her sense of touch. Love this kid!
Look at her go!
So yeah, about this little half-umbrella… we met some friends at the beach, so we were planning on sharing their huge family tent for the week, which is what the did the rest of the days, but today was their wedding day, so they ended up not coming to the beach. We thought we could wing it for just one day, but the heat/sun was so incredibly intense. We found this umbrella left by someone who probably just didn’t want to cart it to the trash, but it was all the shade we needed for Rose. She only left this spot a couple of times; She absolutely loved her little fort!
The extent of my boogie boarding, ha!
She’s got determination!
Noelle wrote this is the sand for Mike and me. She’s precious!
Rose finally faced her fears, and let the waves move in on her legs. She is so fearless about some things, and precautious about others! The ocean is the latter. Her hand position is like, “Okay, I got this!” as she’s beginning to relax. I know her so well.
When Noelle was swimming a good distance out with Mike, some guys said to her, “You sure are a brave little girl!” This made her day! She is so proud in this picture, and I was happy to capture the moment.
The sand was amazing, but you have to just roll with it being absolutely everywhere and sticking to your sunscreen!
Well, yes it is!
July 18th, 2014
July 18th, 2014
July 17th, 2014
Cracker Barrel in Louisiana hit the spot! Noelle loomed it up on the road trip for all her friends we were meeting in Florida!
This was the view from our hotel room at The Hilton Garden Inn in downtown Jackson, MS. Thankful for our noise machine with all these train tracks. We don’t leave home without it! With that being said, I never saw a moving train. Most of the buildings in this picture and on the downtown road leading up to the capital are abandoned and in disarray. I told Mike it looked like a ghost town. The girls got really freaked out, so I had to explain what that meant.
The lobby was super fancy in an almost eerie way, considering the broken glass windows and weeds in buildings right outside! The elevators were golden and there was a grand stair case made out of marble. It was all a little bizarre. Honestly, we won’t be back, but it was, as Anna Kate says, “Instressting.”
We sure are a silly bunch! One travel day down and half-way there.. we’re getting so close!
July 16th, 2014
I remember less than two weeks ago being in these moments, excited and terrified of our first family road trip to Florida. My parents tried to take us on a beach vacation to Florida when we were little, and we all got super sick from this crazy awful stomach bug, so once we got there, we turned around and drove home. It was absolutely miserable, and we’ve never been back since. The only thing I remember from Destin is the pavement, yikes! Thankfully, the PondFam5 attempt was a success!
On to these pics, I think I should be a professional packer for little girls… is there such a thing!?! I always line up what the girls are wearing each day and then put all three outfits (one for each girl) in a big ziploc bag. That way, when we get there, I don’t have to worry about a thing. Oftentimes, I’ll label the bag, but now that I have the hang of it, I usually remember what I have planned for each day, and if they want to wear something different, no big deal, just grab a different bag! If we change clothes out and about, I’ll just grab a ziploc and everyone has a fresh outfit ready for on the go! I do this with swimming suits and pjs too! When we get to our destination, I line shoes up, and let them mix and match. They are pretty self-sufficient with a little guidance.
We had driven 8 hours in the days leading up to our Florida trip, so we were all a little car sick. The middle picture above is in central Texas. Texas is so diverse and beautiful! Right as we came down this hill, I saw on Instagram that my cousin found a sea horse in the ocean in Destin, where we were headed (she lives in Texas too, and it was so exciting that we were going to be there by chance at the same time). I showed the girls this picture, and we all got a renewed energy to start our trip to the beach the next day. And just in case you were wondering, the sea horse was still alive, so she put the little guy back in the ocean. I’ve never seen a wild sea horse or heard of anyone finding one at the beach. We couldn’t wait to get there!
July 16th, 2014
July 15th, 2014
July 14th, 2014
These are some super fancy, super fun girls right here ready to celebrate our freedom!
Did I say we like things fancy around here!?! Over the top? Of course! That’s the fun of it! The girls were in heaven, flags flying, yelling “Happy Foh-ourth!” in our thickest southern accents and all!
3 year olds ready for a nap, but I still love this pic!
Poppa was saying, “Nachos!!!” This is all definitely as much fun as it looks! Thank you Uncle Andy and Aunt Elsie for having us!