Back from Florida

We’re back from our annual trek down south to Florida. Every Summer we take a vacation to visit our families and spend lots of time eating home cooked meals, swimming in bayous, riding in boats, late night fishing and lots of time laughing with our parents.

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This was Thom’s first Florida visit. It was also his baptism. My sweet man.

This summer all our siblings and spouses and kids from both sides of the family were able to make it to Florida for the baptism. Such a special day for all of us.

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Lily – my beach baby. Loved every second of the vacation. She never had a bedtime and woke up whenever her body … or cousins woke her up. I tried really REEAAALLLYYY hard not to be such a “helicopter parent” this summer. I think I did OK. There were a few moments when I had to give myself a pep talk and say… ” let her deal with this on her own” or ” she’s not going to drown or get eaten by an Alligator out in the middle of the bayou as she falls off her skis”… I just took a deep breath and looked away.

Thankfully no gators in the bayou ate Lily or Thom for that matter!

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Thom took to the beach like… sand to the … well beach.

His little toes wriggled in the sand trying to process this funky feeling. The beach was pretty calm one evening so I took him into the water … in the waves and he loved it! A few feet from us, we saw a family of Dolphins swimming around. The tourists thought they were sharks… but my local sense knew… dolphins. Also, they probably thought I was crazy hanging out in the water with a 7month old… so close to sharks – which were actually Dolphins. 20130715-151424.jpg

Lily has a knack for finding her jungle creatures everywhere she goes. And this little fella – Spotty- was a sweet friend who she met one afternoon. She petted Spotty, sang him a sweet song as she does and fed him some grass.

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As we have come to expect… Summers in Florida have their own share of thunderstorms, tornadoes, waterspouts and wacky rainy weather. This summer was no exception. We have quite a few days where we stayed in and watched the rain… only running out on the boat to go skiing or tubing for the 30 mins or so that the rain let up. 20130715-151606.jpg

Thom had to wear his life jacket on the boat. He was not a fan. He kinda sat like this the whole time and stared at me… like… what. do. you. have. me. in. this. time. woman.! 20130715-151623.jpg

There is no shortage of shopping malls in florida… and with shopping malls come… splash playgrounds! 20130715-151702.jpg

This never gets old does it. Lily loves a good splash ground! 20130715-151733.jpg

My sis-in-law has two gorgeous GIANT Great Danes… they make our Jonah beast look like a little medium-sized dog! 20130715-151827.jpg

SInce both of our families live in the same town… we are constantly bouncing from house to house. When we stopped over to visit my mom and g-ma… Thom got his first dose of “life with girls”. DRESS UP! 20130715-151912.jpg

These two. Lily kept an eye on Thom the entire vacation. Even though she was out skiing or tubing or catching fish at the beach… she always came back to give Thom sweet kisses. Such a great bond… I hope it continues when the teen years hit! 20130715-151952.jpgThis is just round 1 of my summer vaca coverage… more coming up about food in the Florida Panhandle!

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