The beginning of summer is always a thrilling time of year. The kiddos are out of school and you’re probably having a meltdown because the freakin’ kiddos are out of school. How the hell are you supposed to entertain them for the next two and a half months!? I have only one solution for you: kick their butts outside and into a body of water. Safely, of course.
For the first weekend of summer vacation, Roban and I packed up our Chicklet gang and drove south to Palm Beach Gardens, Florida where our dad and step-mom call home. Since we had my unpredictable and nearly six-month-old little Piper along for the adventure, we decided to just take it easy on this trip. Fancy dinners and late night Palm Beach parties are totally our thing, but we knew that Piper may have a different opinion.
Our first day in PBG was a bit of a rainy one, so we took it as an opportunity to traipse off to our favorite little gourmet market for some goodies.
If you’re a foodie like we are, Carmine’s Gourmet Market is guaranteed to make all of your wildest dreams come true.
The selection of fresh summer produce was absolutely mouthwatering.
Even Piper couldn’t wait to get her chubby little hands on one of those glorious apples.
I’m typically not a salad kind of girl, but Carmine’s fresh salad bar is enough to turn me into a salad girl.
As a bonus, there’s an incredible Italian ristorante attached to the market that we visit quite frequently (the spaghetti con aragosta is delizioso). We had to skip it this time because of our adorable little ticking time bomb (aka Pippa).
After the market, we made a quick stop at our dad’s favorite hoity-toity pet store, Woof Gang Bakery.
If this isn’t the most Palm Beach pet store you’ve ever seen…
Clearly, our dad’s dogs shop at fancier stores than we do.
It’s not often that I think dog treats actually look delicious. Can I have some?
Late in the afternoon, the sun decided to make an appearance and we all hightailed it for the pool.
Is there anything better than a chunky baby in a tiny swim suit?
The pool was a tad too chilly for Pip Pip, so we warmed the hot tub to a nice bath water temperature and she was a happy camper.
That evening, Dad grilled some hamburgers and hot dogs for his hungry passel of daughters and granddaughters.
Then Joan aka Steppie topped off the evening with a surprise 40th birthday cake for Roban. Needless to say, we where one sun-kissed and well-fed gaggle of girls.
Day two was spent soaking up the sun and chowing down on some of our Dad’s famous Jersey-style Sloppy Joes (recipe here).
Dad’s best friend from childhood, Kirby stopped by to catch up and tell us some inappropriate jokes. The usual.
On our final day in Palm Beach, we invited over some family friends and their granddaughters and had ourselves a little pool party (because we hadn’t been partying and pooling enough).
I’m never cutting watermelon the same way again!
God bless America. And dessert.
This is our favorite wine of all time, which we affectionately call “Pussy Fusy.”
Weekend one of summer vacation was a complete success. Grumps and Steppie got to spend a little time with their granddaughters while Roban and I got to day drink and take lots of naps. Win/win, right!?
Roban, Piper, and I left the older Chicklets with our dad and Joan for the week while we returned to Pensacola. So, of course, the next weekend we had to head back down south to scoop them back up.
Instead of doing a kiddie swap and heading straight back home, our Chicklet gang got to spend the rest of the weekend with our dear cousins in Orlando.
Isn’t their home just lovely!? Kidding. It’s simply their chicken coop! They call this mini mansion “The Chick Inn.” Pretty clever, right?
After meeting the chicken family… you guessed it… we hit the pool.
Although Piper was perfectly fine just chatting it up with Melissa in the shade.
All while Jay became the kids’ favorite pool toy.
Nothing screams summer quite like popsicles from a plastic tube.
That night we feasted on grilled sausages and chicken, fresh vegetables from the farmer’s market, and gooey chocolate chip cookies while the crickets sang in the backyard and the kids wound down from the hot day. Our first two weekends of summer were your textbook hot American summer and we wouldn’t have had it any other way.