a lovely living

Monthly Archives for June 2021

Stone Harbor 2021

This past week we spent with our toes in the sand in Stone Harbor, NJ with our dear friends. We typically visit every year and it truly feels like a second home the second we pull into town. We have a routine, know the local spots we like to hit and enjoy every bit of it. Since I know a bunch of friends and followers vacation there as well or have inquired about visiting, I decided to share some insight into our week.

Even though we stayed a few blocks from the beach, the walk was pretty much a breeze now that we’re past the baby/toddler phase. Well, maybe it was a workout for the dads, but I didn’t hear any complaining ;)

We’ve stayed at numerous places over the years, bayside, beachside, close to downtown and there honestly isn’t a bad area in my opinion. I think my personal preference is to stay within walking distance to downtown since it’s a place we frequent both morning and night. Coffee Talk is our morning ritual for the best flavored coffee (salted caramel iced coffee is my go-to!).

Even though we had a party of ten, and the town was quite busy, we didn’t have much trouble getting into restaurants, although having a reservation would be recommended when possible. Quahogs is a favorite and they offer both restaurant seating as well a a to-go Taco Shop. Some of our other restaurant favs include The Watering Hull, Stone Harbor Pizza, Mack’s pizza, Fred’s Tavern, Borgies on the Bay, The Fishin’ Pier for breakfast, Playa Bowls (for acai bowls) and Green Cuisine for healthy lunch options. There’s also Crespella Gourmet Creperie which offers amazing sweet and savory crepes and Springer’s Ice cream Shop which is all the rage.

The bulk of our days were spent on the beach, enjoying the sun and the sand and the boogie boarding.

This girl and I grew up less than 30 minutes from each other in Pennsylvania, but didn’t meet until we were both living in Hoboken 12 years ago. We didn’t yet have children, became instant friends and have been raising our families together ever since despite being separated in miles once again. We think alike, act alike and now not only do we get mistaken as sisters, but our kids were assumed to be cousins <3

It’s been forever since our kids have gotten to spend this much time together and I can’t tell you how much they enjoyed it. I know mine were quite emotional to say goodbye at the end of the week!

My beach babes, growing up much too quickly.

Every year I enjoy running around town, admiring the homes and getting inspired by their beauty. There are homes of all shapes and sizes, each with their own personalities. Plus, the landscaping is to die for <3

I always get asked where we stay and for the most part we tend to bounce around quite a bit. We’ve always worked with Diller & Fisher Realtors, renting through them, and would recommend searching through their site. We don’t always luck out with a pool, but it’s a huge perk when we do!

The dads and the older kids took a boat out to fish one morning, so the moms and these cuties headed out to brunch.

This year we stayed on the bay which was quite convenient for our fishermen.

The neighboring town of Cape May has a local zoo that we have been to a number of times and the kids love. It’s great to visit on cloudy days or when you need a beach break.

We also took a drive down to Cape May’s Washington Street Mall which was full of cute shops and eateries.

We grabbed lunch at Big Wave Burrito where we surprisingly found some of the best smoothies and acai bowls!

This guy started out the week a little under weather due to what was eventually diagnosed as a staph infection. Thankfully he was able to quickly get on the right meds so that he could finish out the week strong! So very thankful for this time with him, our kids and our best of friends in one of our very favorite places <3

Early Summer Vibes

Laid back, put together style feels like my go-to lately. Regardless of the season, my day-to-day typically allows for casual dress, yet at the same time, I like to feel as though I put a touch of effort into my outfits. Playing around with color combos and various materials are two ways to to do that. I love this mix of dusty green and mauve, topped with denim which grounds the look. I had been eyeing this particular jacket for a while because I constantly read rave reviews about it. Once I received it I immediately understood the hype. It’s feels as though you’ve worn it for years, with a perfectly broken in fit. It has the appeal of an over-sized jacket yet at the same time gives you some shape without looking like a sack of potatoes! The gauzy material of this top feels like you’re wrapped in a cloud while the light, linen shorts complement with another casual element. I’ve grabbed a few different styled neutral sandals this summer and these slides are some of my favorites. Cute, comfortable and they pair with just about everything!

Shop the Look:

When it comes to pretty and unique items for myself or a gift, Rifle Paper Co. is one place I’ve always turned to. Their bold and beautiful designs are striking to me and can turn any ordinary item, like an umbrella or a lunch box for example, into something eye catching. They started out with stationary and have grown into so much more. I had been on the hunt for a living room rug for our home and finally discovered exactly what I was looking for at Rifle Paper. Although I love their bold prints, a more subdued rug is what I was looking for and this one was absolutely perfect. And when I was on the hunt for a cute new keychain, this is where I found one!

I love all of their collaborations as well. The rug that I mentioned was in collaboration with Loloi Rugs, they partnered with York Wallcoverings to create the prettiest wallpapers, and their collection with Corkcicle includes the prettiest insulated drinkware I’ve ever seen. They also create gorgeous sneakers with Keds and their most recent collection with Summersalt swimwear had me ordering immediately!

From accent pillows to party supplies, their merchandise is sure to be appreciated and noticed by your guests, gift recipients or yourself! Why settle for plain and ordinary when you can add a little pretty to just about anything <3 If you’ve ordered from them as well, what’s been your favorite purchase? Let me know in the comments!

Shop Rifle Paper Co.:

Flutter Sleeves

School’s out for summer rin our household! Granted, we still have to wrap up dance with a recital and soccer with one more game, but no more homework or having to pull kids out of bed for now :) Swim team starts this week and it’s been such a great experience with my older two over the years. Audrey is still a new swimmer, but we’re going to give it a shot with her and see how it goes! I love that we can have one activity that they all enjoy and having strong swimmers gives me as a parent, such peace of mind.

I wore this top a couple of times this past week and absolutely adore it. Of course I love florals and a cute ruffle detail, but the colors on this one are what drew me in. You could pair this top with a pencil skirt for work, skinny jeans for a night out or with wide leg pants as I did here for church. If you don’t own a pair of these Everlane wide leg pants, I encourage you to try them. They are incredibly flattering on all shapes/sizes and the quality is amazing, especially for the price. I’m so glad I ordered them in this bone color because I’m wearing them even more than I expected. I often wear these pants with flats, but threw on my wedges with this outfit as well as my go-to bracelets. If you haven’t checked out the variety of bracelets that Magpie and Bobbin offers, browse them here and use code Lovely20 to get 20% off your order!

Shop the Look:

Today is the last day of school for my kids, which means summer is full speed ahead! We spend a great deal of time at the pool throughout the summer because my kids are basically little fish, but we also have a beach trip planned for the end of June. I know many of you are looking forward to some upcoming vacations as well, so today I put together a little beach inspiration board for you. For those of you that won’t be hauling any littles to the beach, a comfy chair and an umbrella are basically all you need! Toss some drinks into a cooler tote and a book and towel into a bag and you’ll be set for the day. For those that will be sprawling out and bringing all the things along with your kiddos like us, you’ll have a little more in tow…but it’s totally worth it! We’ve been taking family beach trips since Jack (12 years today) was a baby. We’ve been through all the phases of lugging tents and baby pools and huge coolers and strollers, not to mention toys, toys and more toys! These days, the three of them spend the bulk of their time boogie boarding in the ocean and then running back to re-fuel and re-lotion. I’m not exactly at the point in my life where I can peacefully read a book, but I absolutely love watching them enjoy every ounce of the day.

There are some key items that enable our family to settle in and enjoy some long days under the sun. A wipeable blanket that easily allows you to shake off sand is a must. No one wants to sit down for lunch worrying about sand getting into their food! This is also why I love turkish towels for everyone. They don’t hold as much sand as other towels do There are multiple ways to transport everything down to the beach, but a collapsible wagon has been our go-to. Jack makes it look all too easy as he pulls it through the hot sand ;) Cooler bags packed with food and drinks are another must have as we typically pack our lunches as well as snacks and drinks for the afternoon. Toys are somewhat necessary, but I’ve found that good shovels (key for digging those moats), a few buckets and something fun like an icecream cone set are really all we need. Who doesn’t love a good sand cone, or 20?! Speaking of toys, a mesh bag is perfect for carrying them all without bringing half of the beach back with you. A waterproof bluetooth speaker one final item that we always have in hand. Listening to a little Bob Marley totally makes a beach day :)

Here are links to everything above as well as some additional options to help make your beach vacations run as smoothly as possible!