We’re back with another family recap today… this one is from my very favorite places! I’m not going to lie… when I sat down to start writing this blog post, I had absolutely no idea where to start. How do I sum up these 5 days in just a few lines?!
If you know me or have been following along for a while, you may know that Stone Harbor, NJ is one of my absolute favorite places and that I’ve been visiting this magical little beach town at least once a year since before I was even born! (If you didn’t know that already… well, now you know!) My grandparents have the best home in town, and each time I visit, it is always the highlight of my summer. We somehow manage to fit a crazy amount of family under one roof and usually drink enough wine to float a small boat. It is always so great to see and to catch up with my Grammy, Poppop and extended family, and I am so grateful for how these summers at the shore have kept me so close to my family.
There’s something magical about driving down Stone Harbor Blvd with your windows down and being hit with a salty wave of air. Even at 10:30 at night after a long drive and an even longer day at work, it makes my heart feel lighter and helps so much of my stress fade away. I always know I’m in for belly laughs, long beach days, sandy toes & some of the best tasting tap water in the entire world. The drive I do in reverse out of town, jut a few days later, is usually always met with a few bittersweet tears. My time down the shore growing up has shaped so much of who I am, and it is SO special to share a piece of that with you today.
If I’m being completely honest, in years past, the thought of taking my camera out while I was on vacation literally made my skin crawl. I was working like crazy, I was burned out without even knowing I was, and all I wanted was to take a few hours away from my inbox without feeling like everything was going to implode. When I got home though, I always wish that I captured a little bit of that seashore magic. I missed my family, missed our time together and wished that I had taken a few “real camera” pictures to hold onto. This time, I swore that I would make that happen! And guess what?! I actually LOVED having my camera out this time around! It fired me up in a way that I thought was long gone with turning photography into a career, and it was so validating to know that all of the hard work I’ve been putting in on myself and my systems has gotten me to a place where taking photos just for me was FUN again!
I can’t wait to introduce you to one of my favorite places! Though I’m not recapping our entire week at the shore (I did let myself put my camera down for a few days!), I am sharing a lot of it! This blog post may feel super random to you, but like I’ve said on here before, I would love for this blog of mine to be a bit of a life scrapbook for me in addition to where I also keep my business happenings and portfolio! So… random? Yes, but also something that makes me so incredibly happy! Let’s dive in!
I got in super late on Tuesday night! Wednesday was the first full day that I was there, and it started out SUPER foggy. We headed to the Point at low tide on Wednesday to look for shells. (My mom was determined to find a sand dollar!) I brought my camera along, and even though we couldn’t see more than 20 feet ahead of us, it was still beautiful! Learning about all the birds! These are some of my absolute favorite views! Please note my wedding flat tan line and desperate need for a pedicure 🙈 My brother found a little friend! We tried to go to the beach a little later that day… and were promptly poured on! Thankfully, I didn’t have my camera with me then! We spent the rest of Wednesday relaxing around the house & looking at the stars on the beach as we waited for my sister and her boyfriend to arrive! My go-to beach snack!! I recently went grain/gluten/dairy-free & these crackers have been a LIFESAVER. They are SO good! After the first cloudy day, we had SO many great beach days! Thursday was spent at the beach & taking family photos (more on that later!) with a concert on the lawn at night! Friday was spent relaxing on the beach… which brings us to Saturday! I really wish I took a picture of how we got Spike Ball to the beach! My brother and my sister’s boyfriend may or may not have held it by hand on the roof of my sister’s car! The water was so blue this year! Every year growing up, my mom and I would look for a conch shell. It’s been YEARS since we found one, but my mom found one this year!! (plus a few sand dollars!!) Girl cousins! It was so fun to have everyone together! Saturday’s beach crew! Back to the house for outdoor showers & dinner! (It was hotdog and hamburger night!) A few quick cell pics! My dad made us Aperol Spritz, and they were SO good! (And pretty!!) Can we talk about this giant 8-pound bag of fries 😂 Someone was REALLY hopeful that a burger would fall off the grill! Sweet Penny! Me: Everyone act natural
Everyone: Sunday morning! (Our last half-day!) My dad made omelets for everyone every morning! I woke up on Monday and REALLY missed them! On Sunday morning, we got up and walked over to 96th Street for some shopping! I normally forget to bring my camera along, but this time around, I grabbed it and was so happy that I did! I just love this part of town! My new little plant friend! We totally forgot about the Sunday farmers market until we saw it, but we were so happy to find some Jersey corn, peaches & tomatoes! I still wish I brought a few tomatoes home! (They’re the best!) Until next year, Stone Harbor!ONE more family recap is coming at you tomorrow: our family portraits!
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