Hamptonians

Summer is unofficially-officially over! 🙊:'(

Am I the only one who is in denial this is happening? I REFUSE to accept that fall is almost here despite the leaves turning and fall fashion EVERYWHERE. Summer doesn’t officially-officially end until the 23rd so if you’re with me, let’s keep making summer memories. 🙂

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You’ve probably heard of the coveted Hamptons in upstate New York where celebrities flock to their lavish mansions from Memorial Day through Labor Day. They host grand parties, sun bathe on their yachts, and dine at the finest restaurants when not being served by a chef in the comfort of their swanky homes, of course. I wouldn’t mind experiencing a week of the lifestyle of the rich and famous, but don’t see that happening anytime soon.

Growing up in New Jersey, just three hours away (with the traffic-god on your side), I used to think the Hamptons was reserved for A-listers. Like, somehow a yacht or a private plane was required for entry and or acceptance. I DREAMED of visiting until last year when we celebrated one of my dear friend’s 30th birthday in Amagansett. I was almost 6 months pregnant with the twins.

Contrary to what you believe, the Hamptons is not only for the exclusive; you, too, can enjoy this summer getaway. Time isn’t on your side this summer, but you can make plans for next year. ☺

The Hamptons provides a great escape from the overly congested city of New York. It is just hours away and offers access to numerous public beaches, quaint little villages with quintessential Hamptons-style. If you’re like me, window shopping is about all you will do, but that’s still great fun.

We had a lovely day at the beach.
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I’m not sure about playing in this stuff
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It doesn’t taste too good either
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The first lighthouse in New York State.
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We watched the sunset at the beach then settled in for the night. It was a LONG night. The kids were restless. They are horrible sleepers when not in the comfort of their own beds. In fact, this trip is making me reconsider overnight trips. They were awake before the sun even had a chance to kiss the sky.

We grabbed breakfast from
Pierre’s in Bridgehampton. An ABSOLUTE MUST despite the exorbitant prices. Personally, I recommend dining in for breakfast and ordering the French Toast. It may not sound like much from the menu’s description, but it’s THE BEST French Toast I’ve ever had. Its so fresh and just melts in your mouth leaving you wanting more with each bite. Before you know it, you’ve devoured the entire thing! You might even be tempted to order a second.

We drove to Sag Harbor and had breakfast at the pier, watching tiny boats to mega yachts depart for their adventure. It was a lovely morning. It’s always a great Saturday when you wake with nothing on the agenda and a view like this.

With stomachs full it was time for a different view. We were off to the beach in Montauk but opted for Amagansett Square to unwind before our drive home.

Always putting on a show 🙂
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We feasted on cold refreshments and snacks from Mary’s Marvelous . I recommend their mango smoothie and the CHOCOLATE CHIP MUFFIN is to die for!! If you are a chocolate lover, it is worth every single calorie.

The strawberry smoothie was rather delicious too. My boy didn’t want to share with his sister.
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In total agreement with my two year old, “I wish we had a beach house so we wouldn’t have to go home” 😐

~TOODLES~
Stacey

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What A Wonderful Day, Mom!

A Sunday afternoon in Georgetown, Washington, DC; what could be better? Nothing, besides hearing my daughter’s sweet little voice repeatedly saying, “WHAT A WONDERFUL DAY, MOM” as we played in the gardens.

It was, in fact, quite a wonderful day because we left the twins at home with their dad.  It felt wonderful being out with just her.  We had a quick picnic, courtesy of Wendy’s; played soccer, chased butterflies and even birds.  We were careful to sneak up on the birds and we didn’t tell the rabbits. Shh

The grounds were much smaller than I expected, but nonetheless, worth the trip.  It was very quiet, at times feeling like you were experiencing the wonders of your very own garden, except a more manicured one.  I would say plan no more than two hours for your visit.  Just enough time to relax and recharge before your next adventure.

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It was only the hottest day of the year with temperatures feeling like almost 110 degrees.  In the cool of the shade it was quite a lovely day, but every step in the sun felt like five steps in the desert. It was time to cool off.

Georgetown Waterfront Park seemed like a great local as any, and less than fifteen minutes away.  I’ve driven many times to and from Georgetown University Hospital when I was pregnant with our first child, but had no idea what I was passing along the way.

As I drove, anticipation was building. Great shops and beautiful restaurants adorned the streets. There’s something here for everyone.  There are lots of garages to park in or you can scurry for free parking at the end of K street.  There’s a three-hour limit Monday through Saturday, but free on Sundays.

This park is a great place for a run; your little ones will enjoy splashing around (be sure to bring bathing suits) and the views aren’t so shabby either.  It’s a great place to paddle board, kayak or just people watch.  I recommend a trip in the late afternoon; bring some snacks and a blanket for some good family time, then send the kids home and enjoy a date night with your honey or even just ice cream and a stroll.  I haven’t been here to watch the sunset but can only imagine how beautiful it would be.

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And, in honor of National Ice Cream Day, how could we resist 😉

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More Sundays should be made of these.

Today was a wonderful day!

~TOODLES~
Stacey

Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden

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You could and probably will get lost in time here, like we did.  Two hours should be sufficient to tour the grounds said the young ladies as they checked us in. Five hours later and we didn’t even see the entire garden 🙊🙈 We were one of the first visitors and probably one of the last ones there, but we had the best time!

The Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, located in Henrico County, Richmond VA, was recently voted the 2ND BEST PUBLIC GARDEN in NORTH AMERICA by USA Today readers.  It is definitely worth the cost of admission!

The butterfly exhibit is the perfect place to showcase your inner Sherlock Homes. Daily at 10 a.m new butterflies are released. Come and watch caterpillars metamorphose into gorgeous butterflies or simply enjoy them flying around in their natural habitat. I dare you to not get wrapped up in this excursion. I dare you!

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The smile only a butterfly landing on your head can bring
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There’s so much to see here and I now realize I have way too many photos (what else is new) to share despite not experiencing the entire garden, so stay tuned for the next chapter in this series.

Listen, if there was a photo rehab, I would be a permanent vacationer. Lol, I’ll be the first to admit, I have a photo problem but don’t you enjoy living vicariously through my camera and or phone lens?

I digress..

Part two of the series will be up later this week. See you soon!

~TOODLES~
Stacey

Don’t forget to like, comment and or share. Let me know you’re out there!

Maymont Park

My hubby is from Richmond, VA. We are getting ready to celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary, yet we’ve NEVER visited a park during our many trips home.  All that will change this year though.

The first stop was Maymont Park.  Everything was beautiful. The deeper we walked into the garden, the more relaxing it was.  The perfect day for an afternoon stroll.

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Maymont Park is nestled in the heart of Richmond, about ten minutes from the heart of downtown. It is the perfect venue for weddings, graduation parties, or an afternoon family picnic. There’s also a petting farm to occupy your little ones. You will not be disappointed by Maymont’s beauty.

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I must warn my fellow stroller toting mamas. The Japanese and Italian gardens are not stroller friendly. I suggest you use your baby carriers when you visit or unless your hubby doesn’t mind carrying the stroller.

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I hope viewing these pics you can relax for a few minutes and appreciate what nature has to offer.

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~TOODLES~
Stacey

Ice cream Anyone?

When life gives you lemons, you make lemonade.  Sometimes lemonade just isn’t enough.

We’ve been planning to go into the city during the Cherry Blossom Festival since last year.  Last Monday hubby, the twinsies and I headed out to do just that but we never made it 😐

Construction on a major highway in the middle of the day..why not?  To make matters worse, my son was screaming at the top of his lungs. I  had to pull over but he wouldn’t calm down.  I was at my wits end when hubby suggested ice cream at the National Harbor.

It was a little windy for the twins but a perfect moment for the hubster and I. We kicked back on the pier and gazed into the city 🙂

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I love days like this (without the traffic of course) 😉

~Toodles

Stacey

Enid A. Haupt Garden

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It was a beautiful spring day, the sun was shining, the sky was blue, the winds were calm and temperatures were in the 70’s.

Downtown DC was bustling as usual, it was rush hour and by some sheer luck I found parking on the side street across from the garden. I leaped with joy. I loaded the twinsies in their stroller and off we went.  As I walked into the garden I was amazed by its grandeur. A beautiful castle peering atop the magnificent pink cherry blossom trees. It was so much more than I expected.

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As I explored the garden further, I nodded with approval; it was like many described it; a gem in the middle of the city, not spoiled by all the tourists ( well I’m putting it out there now).

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I  wanted to see different local places to experience DC’s cherry blossom time of the year; I’m glad this was on the list.

This is the first stop on my 2015 DC Travels list, and I chose it because my grandma (who just celebrated her 79th birthday on April 9th) also shares the same name, Enid.

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Nestled in the heart of the city, the Enid A. Haupt Garden is part of the renowned Smithsonian Gardens. It sits atop a museum and two galleries. Amongst other things, Haupt was an American publisher and a garden enthusiast.

Thank you for your generous donation. My twinsies and I enjoyed our visit. I can’t wait to see them and their big sister running around. I can already hear their laughter ☺

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These pics are from my two-hour trip into the city during my 3 hour road trip home. I have a DC addiction I know, but to be fair the blossoms only last about two weeks and besides, I know you wanted to see them too 🙂 You know you did!

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I hope you enjoyed

Toodles!

Stacey

Washington, DC In All Its Glory

SPRING IS HERE!!! While the temperatures say otherwise, it means you should be getting ready for the Nation’s Cherry Blossom Festival.  The festival runs March 20th to April 15th with peak bloom dates of April 11th through the 14th (all could change depending on the weather).

Many people flock to DC during this season. In fact, thousands plan their vacation hoping to see these Japanese trees in all its perfect puffy white glorious state. It is truly a beauty to behold; it’s as if DC gains its wings, albeit just for a few days.  The festivities celebrate the 3000 trees given to the United States in 1912 honoring the relationship between the U.S and Japan.

2014 Cherry Blossom (1)

For the past two years its been our family tradition and we are so excited once again. We make sandwiches, bring fruits and veggies and enjoy a picnic. Last year I was pregnant with our twins; they are now seven months old.

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Everyone should be a part of this spectacular celebration, so come on out and cross this off your bucket list (you didn’t know it was on the list, huh) and watch DC earn its wings; you haven’t seen DC until you see it during the Cherry Blossom Festival.

2014 Cherry Blossom (2)