I was lucky enough to join Albin on the tail end of a business trip on Oahu. I hadn't been there since childhood, and I was SO thrilled to be exploring with my husband. We were like two honeymooners, eating leisurely meals, taking walks, reading, exploring, hiking.. it was AMAZING. Now we are home and back at it, but savoring these memories of paradise.
We are in the final phase of Summer. (Kind of.) Bennett will be starting preschool next month, so that will add a bit more structure to our weekdays. But in reality, Summer weather is probably going to stick around a couple more months. We have had a few cooler, foggy days sprinkled in, and I love it. A tree on our street is turning colors already and a few leaves are beginning to fall... Changes are slowly coming.
In the meantime, there are still many beach days and backyard Popsicles ahead. Though our Summer has been mellow, it's been pretty wonderful. I have had so many fun adventures with the kids, made some new friends, and enjoyed our city immensely.
We've got our girl sleeping in her own big girl bed all night, which is so major. I've also been taking serious advantage of our gym membership and the wonderful childcare they provide. Me time, a private shower, a workout or swim. All while the kids are happily playing and being entertained- it's been wonderful for all of us.
This morning, a fog has settled on our little hill and both kids are sporting serious runny noses. (No doubt a preview of what preschool is going to be like.) So we've got a quiet day of movies and chicken soup planned, plus essential oils on repeat.
I'll be back later in the week with a post about some of our favorite fun spots here in town.
Man alive, it's bloody hot! We are in the midst of a heatwave. Fires to the north of us, and the Santa Ana's are blowing. It's in the 80's at the beach.. meaning it's the surface of the sun in the inland areas. Usually around the end of July, the heat cranks up and sticks around unrelentingly through October. When Autumn weather finally phases in, we are always ready. The heat kind of takes it out of you, and it's easy to just get tired and do nothing. But our house has no a/c. (We don't really need it at the coast.) So the best remedy to beat the heat is to get out of the house. Usually, the beach is the best solution. That ocean breeze is downright invigorating. Sometimes, it's just a library stop or a museum visit, followed by a shady picnic in the park. That was our choice today, and we had the best (still hot) time. We enjoyed that cool A/C at San Diego's Natural History Museum and then found a shady spot in Balboa Park to have our lunch picnic. We were in view of the Balboa Park railroad, so naturally.. we capped it off with a train ride before heading home.
Bennett was my wonderful little helper, throwing things away, and keeping things in order. He listens to what I ask, and always stays in sight. We've made a point of taking outings since both kids came on the scene, and we're getting really good at it. In the early days, it seems impossible to leave the house sometimes. SO much to think about and to bring, and then hope everything goes smoothly. Hint: It often doesn't. I've lowered my expectations, and things do seem to be getting easier. One umbrella stroller and a bag of treats are all we need for an outing of fun these days.
Getting out the door is the toughest part. So go ahead, adventure Mom's. Beat the heat!
Here are a few shots from a session we had a couple weeks ago with one of my favorite photographers- Kaitlyn Ray. I am so thankful to have our family captured in this moment in time, right in our element- Balboa Park. I know I will cherish these images years from now when I miss squeezing my little babies.
Remember our late 70's camper trailer from a couple years ago? We bought it with big dreams of family fun and a plan to fix her up. Well, Colette was born, the trailer became our guest suite, and the updates got put on the back burner. It's definitely had its share of fun sleepovers, but the itch to lighten it up remained. I knew we would get around to it eventually.
Last weekend, we finally got to work. There were many evenings spent scouring pinterest and chatting with people who restore vintage trailers to get up the nerve to pull the trigger. Once I got started, there was no turning back. It's a small space, but it's a lot of small parts and detail work. (Details aren't my strong suit. Ha!) Albin took down the loft bed that was really just crowding the space and it gave me the little shelf above the bed area. It already felt so much bigger.. We removed the cabinet doors and painted everything white. It took a primer and two coats to cover all that fake wood. I had many naysayers tell me I would never be able to get the paint to stick, and that I should leave the "perfectly good" camper as-is. But I am so glad I took the plunge anyway.
When the paint dried, I put down new laminate flooring. I am so pleased with how it came out. It was pretty easy to do. I was able to complete it by myself in about a day while the kids played in the yard. I have no experience in this area, so for me to be able to complete a project like this really says something! It's a major update to the look for very little effort and money.
My mom helped me recover the cushions, and I put up some simple new curtains. Rather than buying new hardware, I spray painted the existing knobs gold to brighten them up. I also recovered the counters with marble contact paper. There are imperfections, but the overall result is MUCH prettier than it was. In the kitchen area I hung a textured brick wallpaper. My original thought was stick on subway tile, but the cost and effort to find them, proved unworth my time. I'd still like to do something with the sink and stove, but I haven't completed it yet. Also, the bathroom is still on the list.
In total work, this took about 4 days to complete. If I can do it in between taking care of my two rascals, ANYONE can do it. I am thrilled with the result and I can't wait to have our own family sleepover in the finished camper in the next few days. It's one of those things where you wonder what took you so long to get started.
Hooray for easy DIY!
A couple before photos...