Our Florida Beach Week

Happy weekend. I am writing this post from my hotel room in Kingsport, Tennessee. I am here leading the first weekend of 200-hour yoga teacher training at Vidya Yoga & Fitness. I cannot believe that I started working with the team at VYF back in 2018 when Finn was four months old and now we are hosting our fifth(!!!) training together and Finn is four years old!

Flashback to our first training at Vidya when Finn joined me for six of eight of our teacher training weekends. They went above and beyond to support me as a new mom…and I cannot even fathom at this moment in time where the strength and resourcefulness I found to make this happen came from. It was a very special and very empowering time of life. I would love for you to go back and read the post I linked to above about how I came to work with this studio if you’re not familiar with my relationship with the studio. <3

While I am always happy to talk yoga teacher training, that’s not what this post is about. Rather, I have photos from our summer vacation week in Florida to share with you. It was such a treat to spend seven whole nights in Florida with Finn to visit with my family. We had an awesome time and made many sweet memories. Here’s what it looked like.

BEACH + POOL

This simple photo makes me so happy. My little dude walking down to the beach with his tan, sandals, seersucker, ball and hat.

Beach baby. Finn has been coming down to Florida since he was four weeks old and is so comfortable in the water.

I think it’s amazing that Finn thought it was fun to shovel sand from the beach and dump it in the ocean. This activity went on for 30 minutes!

Please tell me your preschooler smiles like this too. 😉

My favorite afternoon of the trip was when I went tandem boogie boarding with Finn. The surf was really up one day of our trip with safe current conditions so I decided to take Finn out for his first boogie boarding experience. I wasn’t sure how it would work with two of us but we had a big, slick board and it was no problem. Finn LOVED it. Every time we rode a wave in he would say “again, again” before we even got off the board.

He was brave, tough and followed every instruction I gave him. We laughed and screamed nonstop for almost three hours.

Boogie boarding was one of my favorite things to do with my brother when my family vacationed in this same area growing up. It’s so special to be sharing these fun summer traditions with Finn and making our own memories. <3

You can see a video of it here on Instagram.

I wish I could share some videos in this post but Finn is swimming in the pool! 2+ years of swim lessons are finally clicking and coming together this summer. He’s jumping in and swimming to the side and also able to swim from one side of the pool to the other. I am a proud mama! Now, I just need to get him wearing goggles consistently so that his eyes don’t hurt from the chlorine. He doesn’t like them but I think is finally understanding why he needs them.

NON-BEACH ADVENTURES

Go carts and arcade games.

My mom suggested an outing to the Emerald Coast Science Center. Given that we are members at Discovery Place in Charlotte, I was a bit skeptical but I was pleasantly surprised by how well done it was.

The indoor facility is small but very interactive. The outdoor area is big, contained and super cool. There are some rescued/rehabbed animals inside and outside.

Morning donut date with my Finn and my dad after dropping their golden Beau off for grooming.

While we’re talking sweet things, ice cream sandwich dessert on Mema’s balcony.

On the last night of our trip, I asked Finn if he wanted to eat at home or go to a restaurant with mommy. He chose going out to eat and we had a great dinner! We went to a local and very casual seafood joint on island and the wait to order and to get food was looonnnnngggg. Finn was so patient and really enjoyed his dinner once it came.

I had grilled snapper, hush puppies, green beans and fried okra. Finn had the kid’s fried fish (which he called “fish sticks”) with fries and hush puppies. He said two very cute things. The first was was, “I don’t need ketchup on my fish sticks when they taste this good.” The second came as we were leaving when he said, “thanks for bringing me to a good restaurant, mommy. Let’s come back.”

MY HEART!

QUALITY TIME

My favorite thing about extended trips to Florida is getting uninterrupted quality time with Finn and my family.

It’s 100% our happy place and I feel so relaxed and at peace when we are visiting.

Just look at these two. We always stay in my grandmother’s guest bedroom when we are visiting and we love the time we get with her.

SAYING GOODBYE

Last swim.

Saying goodbye to Mema is never easy. This extends back to my childhood when I would boohoo every time I had to leave after a long visit. It is one of the biggest blessings of my life that my grandmother and Finn have been able to know each other and develop a close relationship.

Travel back to Charlotte was easy peasy although I had less than a 24 hour turn around before I left for Tennessee. It was no big deal as I was prepared for teacher training and have packing and prep for it down to a science.

That said, I just did the math and I’ve been way from home 17 of the last 25 nights. While I’m grateful that I was able to spend 15 those nights in Florida with my family, I am also ready to feel settled at home for a bit before taking off again.

And with that, I am signing off. I have an early wake up call for Sunday’s training followed by a drive back to Charlotte.

Always, always, always…

Thank you for being here.

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