Jersey Shore

We’ve been home from the beach & back at work for 2 weeks. Needless to say, we’ve been pretty busy since we’ve been home so enjoy this tardy recap of our vacation.

Most of our trip was similar to last year, so check there for any missing details 🙂

We packed up our new mini-van & hit the road around 6:00 am, the morning before we were planning to arrive on the beach. We wanted to take our time to get up there and enjoy the trip. By the way–having a mini-van is AWESOME for traveling.

Van packed & ready to go @ 6:00 am

Van packed & ready to go @ 6:00 am

Since we had some extra time built into the trip, we were able to make plenty of stops. This kept Elodie & a 30-week pregger momma very happy 🙂

One stop was a drive-through zoo/safari somewhere along I-81 in VA. We bought a bucket of food, and drove around to see & feed animals. I didn’t love the animals coming right up to our car, but Elodie & Chris were having fun.. so that’s all that matters.

Stop in VA to feed some animals

Stop in VA to feed some animals

After our first long day of driving, we stopped  somewhere in Delaware for the evening. There’s a ferry that you can drive onto and it takes you from Lewes, DE to Cape May, NJ–Cape May, NJ is only about 20 minutes from our final destination in Stone Harbor, NJ. This saved us from having to drive too much the next day, and we thought it’d be a fun experience for Elodie.

DE-NJ Ferry

Driving our van onto the DE-NJ Ferry

On the Ferry

On the Ferry

I got a little sea-sick on the ferry, but Elodie enjoyed running around with Chris and looking for dolphins. We didn’t take it on the way home, but it was a fun thing to do once.

After the ferry docked, we had a short drive to meet up with our family and begin our lovely beach vacation.

Ahhh, finally at the beach

Ahhh, finally at the beach

The rest of the week consisted of beach, beach, seafood, ice cream, family, zoo, shopping & some more beach. Similarly to last year, the week were there happens to be around July 25, which is Christmas in July. Santa can be found all over town all week. This was an added bonus to our trip because we ran into him all over town. Between this & getting ice cream every night, Elodie was in heaven.

Our lovely set-up. This tent was AWESOME for Elodie.

Our lovely set-up. This tent was perfect for Elodie’s afternoon naps.

The biggest difference from last year & this year, aside from my giant belly, was Elodie is a whole year older. What a difference a year makes! Last year she was drinking bottles, wearing diapers, and was only a year and a half.

Trying to make our lives a little easier, since we knew we weren’t going to have to be running back & forth for bottles and diaper changes, we purchased this tent in hopes that Elodie could just take her afternoon naps right on the beach. It worked like a charm. She loved it and loved napping in it. We loved it because we could lounge around on the beach all day and not have to worry about messing Elodie’s schedule up. Best investment for kiddos ever. I STRONGLY recommend getting one if you’re planning a long beach vacay.

Elode + Grandma

Elode + Grandma

Our nightly trip to the ice cream place

Our nightly trip to the ice cream place

❤ (30-week baby bump)

She loved digging in the sand

She loved digging in the sand

Santa!

Santa!

On one of the cloudier days, we took a day off from the beach to enjoy the (free!!) zoo. Elodie enjoyed the drive-through safari thing so much, we knew we had to take a day to visit the zoo. She is kind of obsessed with animals and had a blast.

Our day @ the zoo

Our day @ the zoo

Daddy + Elodie at the zoo

Daddy + Elodie at the zoo–don’t let her grumpy face fool you, she was having fun

As usual, vacation weeks always go by way too quickly, so we had to soak up every last ounce of sunshine and family time on our last day.

Enjoying the final day

Enjoying the final day

Family enjoying our last day

Family enjoying our last day

Another shot of that baby bump

Another shot of that baby bump

Chris + Grandma + Elodie

Chris + Grandma + Elodie

Thanks everyone for a great week! Looking forward to having our new addition with us next year!

xoxo

Ash

Light Show in AC

When I posted about our time at the beach and trip to Atlantic City, I forgot I had this video to share. It’s a video of a light show being projected onto a large building on the boardwalk in AC. It drew quite a crowd, and was pretty fun to watch. Enjoy the short clip!


xoxo

Ash

 

 

Summer Road Trippin’: Part 3–The Beach!

In case you missed this preview, we spent a week in Stone Harbor, New Jersey at the beach–this was the final destination of our summer road trip (check out part 1 and part 2).

Chris’ parents and one of his aunts & uncles rented a house a block away from the beach, as they do every year. Unfortunately, for the last several years, our school schedules interfered with the week of the trip.. until this year! Chris had been working hard during his first semester of grad school (which, by the way, he made all a’s this summer!) and I was home with Elodie for the majority of the summer–we were both SO ready for a vacation at the beach. Beach vacation meant golfing with family for Chris & getting a tan & reading for momma. What more could you want?

Beach House

A block away from the beach

Most days, we took Elodie down to the beach in the morning, then back to the house for lunch & a nap, and we hung out around the house in the afternoons. Mommy, daddy, grandma & grandpa all took turns watching her so everyone got to enjoy a little bit of what they wanted to.

All dressed in her beach gear

Enjoying a snack

Watson’s

Elodie + Grandma

She LOVED the water

Elodie in a baby pool we brought with us to keep her occupied

Flying a Kite

Spending the afternoons recovering from the beach by reading the paper

We were not only accompanied by Chris’ parents and one of his aunts & uncles, but 4 of his (adult) cousins as well. His cousins were there sporadically throughout the week, so we were glad we were able to see all 4 of them! We even managed to sneak away a couple of nights and hang out with them sans baby!

All the “kids”

Michelle + Jack, the newly weds!

Our beach set-up + spread out family

In addition to beach time, most nights we would walk to the downtown area where we did a lot of shopping and ice cream eating with the family.

Christmas in July @ the ice cream joint

Going on a walk

With Elodie in tow, we couldn’t have exiting outings every night, so there was even a little bit of the south brought up to New Jersey via low country boil one night.

Low Country Boil

One evening, Chris, his cousin Brandon and I made sure we went out to Atlantic City to try our hand at some gambling.

Caesar’s Palace + Trump Plaza in the background

Chris had been to Las Vegas before, but Brandon and I were definitely amateurs. We played blackjack with Chris for a while, but spent most of our time at the slots. Between Chris and I we ended up leaving with about $10 more than we started with! Not too bad, especially for my first time.

Our biggest win: put $5 in a slot machine and won this!

Unfortunately, our week had to come to an end & we headed home. It was a great vacation & we’re so thankful to have such a wonderful family to spend our vacation with. Thanks for everything, guys! We love ya & miss everyone already! It weeks like this that make us bummed that we live so far away from everyone.

Chris and I being lame before we left

We really hope to be able to join his family for future beach trips.

xoxo

Ash