Daytona Beach, FL

No summer is complete without sinking our toes into the sand somewhere! In September we headed to Daytona Beach, FL. My parents have timeshares and we found a good deal on an exchange in Daytona at a place with lots of pools and right on the beach.

Dustin’s parents joined us. We flew down on a Sunday. As soon as we got there, we needed to find lunch. We stopped for Thai food on our way in…no vacation is complete without Thai food.

Monday through Thursday was really just lots of beach and pool time with the adults taking turns for Prince K’s naps. One afternoon, Dustin took Princess K for her first theatre experience and saw Cars 3. We also had a round of putt-putt

We took our fancy camera out for the “golden hour” to take some family pictures because our kids were a mess by the time the lighting was good at night.

We were supposed to stay until the following Sunday with plans Saturday to head  to Orlando and go to Downtown Disney, as well as take Princess K to Disney on Ice. But Hurricane Irma was approaching. Despite the fact that it wasn’t supposed to even hit the Florida Keys and Miami until Sunday night, everyone was was in ultra panic mode so our resort ended up closing Friday afternoon.

On Thursday we thought we had a plan we were going to go to Hilton Head for a few days, Dustin’s parents have always wanted to go there and I figured its far enough north that we would be fine there until Sunday. We got our Delta tickets rerouted to fly home from Savanah and thought we had it figured out. Thankfully one of the people I was communicating with on accommodations informed me HHI was going to evaluate on Saturday morning (seemed a little premature) but thankful we didn’t drive there and then figure that out.

So we decided we should just figure out the best way to get home, we called Delta back again and got flights home on Saturday from Atlanta. Unfortunately we had to drive to ATL because the Friday flights from Daytona Beach they only had 3 tickets left and we needed 5. So a normally ~6 hour drive turned into 11 hours. But the kiddos were so good. And we got to enjoy dinner with our friend Vinus who leads the Jamaica mission trip that Dustin and I have been on before. It was fun she got to meet the kiddos since we haven’t been on the trip since we became parents.

We got home a day early, which actually turned out to be a good thing, we enjoyed lunch at Liberty Center with the family, and then also checked out the Popcorn festival that afternoon (Princess K picture below enjoying her Apple Cider Sushi and new purse). And Dustin had time to get some things done around the house prior to heading to Whistler, Canada for his company’s grand meetup. Overall great time, although Grandma Hartzler says she’s not going back to FL in September again. 🙂

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Vacation 2014

As we wrap up our first vacation as a family of three, we just wanted to share some of our memories from the week. There were a lot of firsts for baby K, including her first plane ride and her first trip to  the beach!

We flew out of Cincinnati because they had a direct flight to Tampa, we always try to avoid stops if possible, especially now when traveling with a baby. We timed the arrival perfectly and were able to walk right on the plane as it was boarding! We didn’t intend this however, but traffic and our ticket not saying “infant in arms” required some delays.  Most people this would make nervous (those that have flown with me in the past can attest!), but most of the time it works out for me, I hate the hurry up and wait process when flying!

We arrived in Tampa on Wednesday afternoon, got our rental car and headed to one of Dustin’s favorite vacation spots Sweet Tomatoes, after a yummy lunch, we made a quick trip to Target for diapers and other essentials. Then conveniently Whole Foods was in the same plaza so we grabbed our groceries for the 3 days in the Tampa area. Our time there we spent enjoying the beach in the mornings and the pool in the afternoon. Baby K did great, even napped in my arms on the beach one day.  It was definitely a different type of trip to the beach with a little one who constantly wanted to eat the sand! It rained a good amount most evenings, but we got one clear night where we were able to watch the sunset over the water. One of my favorite things to do..such a great reminder of the vastness of God’s creation. K is super close to crawling, so a nightly ritual was Dustin trying to teach her! Not sure why he wants her to be more mobile, I’m ok with a few more weeks of the sitting, no crawling stage!

We headed to Orlando on Sunday to enjoy some time at a nice resort my mom was able to give us a few days at with her RCI points.  We’ve already decided we need to come back in about six years when we are ready to bring her to DisneyWorld. The property is great, multiple pools, 2 lazy rivers, mini golf, game rooms, all in the heart of the disney properties.  We went to Downtown Disney this morning to walk around a bit, and of course get K a souvenir. We enjoyed the pools and lazy river and relaxing here. We are headed home tomorrow. Hope you enjoy our cute baby pool and beach photos. Since K turned out to be a good traveler…we are dreaming up the next more adventurous trip for 2015!