What We Did On Our Summer Vacation

summer vacationI was completely taken aback when I realized the other day was the first day of fall. I couldn’t believe that autumn was already here. It’s not that the two major signs weren’t there; September and school. But I still felt like it came fast.

Our summer was filled with swim lessons, beach days, ice cream, late night runs around the yard, all the things summer is supposed to be made up of.  This was also the summer of travel for our family. The boys are already pretty seasoned travelers given their few years on this planet, but this year we were packing in three big trips over the course of the summer.

Destination 1 – Massachusetts

Our summer began with a Cape Cod vacation.  We always try to head to Massachusetts every summer, and thankfully have made it to the Cape each year. To me, Cape Cod epitomizes the American summer vacation, when family and extended family, fill up their cars and head across the bridge to the island.

Our summer vacation began with the annual family 4th of July party where the boys ran endlessly with their cousins and watched their first fireworks. Some were magical and others, one might not exactly call magical, but still a big hit with the under 6 crowd. At the end of the night plans were made for the week ahead.

My parents rented a house and filled it with their grandkids.  Every morning began with the cousins running around outside, imaginations flying. Each day was filled with an activity that you can only be done on the Cape (or at least in my mind). We went clamming, and crabbing, went for ice cream and they had their first gummy worm, checked See a Lighthouse off their bucket list, went to the beach, the marina and fairy hunted in the forest. And of course had our sunset picnic, juice for the kids and wine from a jug for the adults.

summer vacation

the pooping dog
the pooping dog

summer vacation summer vacation summer vacation

Living so far from family, these trips to the Cape mean more every time we go. The boys absolutely love being with their family, cousins who chase them, Uncles who let them eat as many chips as they want, Aunts who plan adventures and more cousins who play whatever they want giving me a break for the much-needed glass of wine. It is these vacations the nostalgia of my childhood gets to be re-lived through my children. I can’t wait to go back.

Destination 2 – Northern California

Our next trip was up North to Kris’s family reunion. What made this trip so special was the boys were meeting for the first time their great-grandmother. Grandma Bobby is their only great-grandparent and we were excited for them to finally meet. She is an extremely important member of our family and it felt emotional when they finally met.

This was a whirlwind week-end, full of less than ideal travel hiccups, but mostly a fun-filled three-day trip. We hadn’t been able to go to the last two reunions because of work and then infant twins, so we were surprised to see how much Kris’s family had grown. It’s hard to keep up when everyone lives far away and has busy lives, but I think the kid count tripled since the last reunion.

The boys had a blast running around the yard with the “bigger” kids, bouncing in the bounce house, making art with their big cousin. And it was so fun for the adults to catch up with each other in person. Plans are already in motion for the next reunion.

summer vacation kidskillcoolness

Destination 3 – Colorado

Our last trip came at the end of the summer to Estes Park, outside Denver, Colorado, for a wedding. This would be the boys first wedding and between the cake, the dancing, more cake and more dancing, they have determined, weddings are where it’s at. The days leading up to the wedding were filled with everything that childhood dreams are made of. The boys had their cousins and an endless supply of family and friends to play with. They played outside in the fresh mountain air, climbing rocks, looking for wild life, dipping their feet into clear mountain streams. At one point Kellan declared he wanted to live in Colorado. I couldn’t blame him, it is heaven for a child.

summer vacation summer vacation summer vacation

So here we are, at the start of fall and as I think back to our summer vacation, and everything we did, it is so clear that the best parts where when we were with family.

Summer Reading…Our Favorite Books This Summer

Summer Reading

I have been reading books to the boys since the day they were born and thankfully their love of books has grown with them. 

I, too, love to read, so I don’t mind when they ask me to read book after book.  However, we don’t have an endless supply of books and while they LOVE reading the same books over and over, while I don’t. I was very excited to get them library cards at the start of summer to help relieve me of some of that repetitiveness.  Our literary summer was a fantastic revolution of books, with a couple of store bought ones sprinkled in.  Here are our top books of this summer

Favorite BooksWhen she finally stopped, she was far beyond the reef. Here the water was gloriously empty…no one watching, no one to hide from. “This, by far our favorite book of the summer. We bought it in our favorite books shop on Cape Cod and read it multiple times a week.  It is a magical, sweet escape under the sea.


Summer BooksTrip Away; Make No Stay; Meet Me All By Break of Day. Hand in Hand With Fairy Grace, We Will Sing, And Bless This Place.”  This BabyLit book feels so magical. I bought it thinking the boys would clearly become literary masters upon reading Shakespeare but we all fell in love with the poetry of fairies. Each have their favorite fairy and have since spent the summer going on fairy hunts.

summer readingBear was a rambling musician. An entertainer. A legend. One bear extraordinaire.  For the boys the sing-song way the book was written made it a favorite. For me it reminded me of a Wes Anderson movie so I didn’t mind reading Bear Extraordinaire on a loop.


summer booksI’m FRUSTRATED because I can’t do it. It’s hard and I want to cry. I don’t know whether to give it up or give it another try.  The boys turned 3 and emotions have taken over. I found this at the library thinking it might help them to use their words when crisis takes over. It has helped immensely. They try to figure out the word for what they are feeling or I can help them identify it,instead of just having a tantrum. A parent win for me!

chicka chickaA is out of bed and this is what he said: “Dare, double dare you can’t catch me. I’ll beat you to the top of the coconut tree.”  This is always on a top list of letter books. I am not sure if it is the pile up of letters or the mischievous way they sneak out to climb the tree. I am sure we will be borrowing this one quite a few times.


The little pea“A peacock appeared. The little pea exclaimed: “I want to be like a peacock. With a tail as beautiful as a bouquet! The little pea picked up a feather and attached it with a string. My, how handsome am I?”   The Little Pea’s independent spirit and confidence is one of my top wishes for the boys so I am happy to read this as much as they want, hoping those lessons sink in!

busy buildersSunday! Dream it day! Study, scribble, scheme day.  Another score from our favorite East Coast book store. They get to pick out their own books now and Kellan picked this winner. It has all their favorite elements; trucks, animals, building and playgrounds.


where is my teddyA Giant Teddy Bear! “Is it Freddie? said Eddie. “What a surprise! How did you get to be this size?”  I find this book so clever. I have no idea if the boys get that when reading it but they always bring this one over when I tell them to pick a book


little cloudLittle Cloud changed into an airplane. Little cloud often saw airplanes flying through the clouds.  Another favorite book, Sector 7, has turned the boys on to the magic of clouds. So this was a no brainer when we were choosing at the library. Everyone loves to imagine what a cloud looks like and of course, author, Eric Carle created a great book about that very thing.

sweet dreamsGood night my precious child, may your dreams be long and sweet- And full of great adventures with the friends you’re soon to meet.  I am always on the look out for the perfect bed-time book. And this one is pretty close. Magical dreams of animals and the forest are what I always want the boys to have when they sleep.


1 2 3 23

%d bloggers like this: