our summer so far: food, fun, and uninhibited goodness :D

Our summer has been full and delightful so far. :D I'm really enjoying the freedom of not doing school! :) {Am I even allowed to say that as a homeschooling mom? hahaha! I am so thankful for this break! :P}

We have had lots of unexpected fun, like stumbling on a splash park and going for it, fully dressed... :D

I've gotten to relax with this guy a bit more: 
The kiddos have been tagging along wherever we go, but at home they've been building forts and playing legos for hours. 

We've even enjoyed shopping for groceries {at Costco, anyway!}:

One day we got to see a real fire truck:

And we taught the kids how uncomfortable it is to sit in the back seat of a police car {a very important lesson, no?}:

I subbed two early morning fitness classes, and had the chance to have Starbucks outside before 7 a.m.!! :D 

Happy, happy, happy things. :)

We also spent last week seeing a parade of local homes for fun. One of the houses had this amazing rocking chair that was soo comfy:

Rob and I went on a date on Saturday and watched the sun set over a grape vineyard. Oh, if earth can be this gorgeous, what will heaven be like?

We could have called our date night heavenly all around. :) We ate nearly all of this!

So worth it. :) Our little tag-along even had a late night snack {it was empty ;)}:

On Sunday we had fun spending time with two of my very favorite dads:

And because my husband loves ice cream, that amazing Jersey cream turned into this sugar-free ice cream amazingness:

I used lots of Truvia and real vanilla and it tasted like Haagen Daz. OH my. I'll need a week of working out to counteract those two days of goodness. :) But they were worth it. :)

And just like that, we were back to another fun summer week. :) Hey, even if it flies by, I'll take it.

The other day I started thinking about what we need to order for homeschooling next year and my brain suddenly went on strike and completely refused to entertain any such ideas. It's much too soon. ;)

What was your favorite moment last week?
The vineyard with my man. :)

Have you ever had Jersey cow milk?
It's at least 10x better than regular dairy cow milk.

If you had to choose between fudge brownie, homemade ice cream, cheesecake, or strawberry shortcake, which one would you choose?
Clearly, you know my answer. I chose them all! :P But really, as far as favorites go it might be a close call between the brownie and the shortcake. Cake usually wins over chocolate, but brownies win over whipped cream...? cake is to brownies as ice cream is to cheesecake... :P


  1. I love how you asked if earth could be this gorgeous what will heaven look like? Or for that matter even feel like emotionally??? Sometimes its too much to even think that it is real.

    And since I am prego and I love to cook I would love homemade ice cream. :)

    1. oh I'm with you- it's hard to even imagine. This place is so lovely!! And homemade ice cream is the best! Have you made it before?

  2. I'm from NJ and I've never even heard of Jersey cow milk! I'm guessing the name doesn't come from the location :-) Looks like you're having a phenomenal summer, which makes me smile! It's so beautiful to see how in love you and your hubby are even after all this time and so many beautiful children! Such good role models to young marriages like mine. Hope you continue to have a beautiful and relaxing summer!

    1. I'd never heard of it before either, but it's way higher in protein apparently! :) And thank you so much for your sweet words- I hope you have a lovely summer as well!! :D

    2. Sophie from FranceJune 17, 2014 at 2:17 PM

      Jersey is a breed of cow, which comes from the island of Jersey, near Great Britain. Perhaps Jersey cow milk comes from this breed of cow and not from NJ?
      Mandy I love your notebook!
      And only two weeks before holidays, here....we look forward to it!!!

    3. picture of a Jersey-- http://kimberlys-cup.blogspot.com/2011/12/buttercup.html Jerseys typically have more fat in their milk which is great for ice cream and butter.
      Holsteins are the black and white milk cows that are so common here in the states.

  3. First, I have to tell you, I love your blog! It's my favorite! The picture of your kids in the police car was great...the look on your daughter's face is priceless! ;) I hope your summer continues to be as fun and relaxing as it has started!

    1. oh yay!! thank you Kim!! :D I hope yours is awesome too!! :) {and we're only 2 weeks in! yay!}

  4. Like Sophie said, Jersey is a breed of cow. They tend to be brown. What you think of as a "standard milk cow" is a Holstein. They tend to be white and black. Jersey's are known for having a bit richer milk, more cream. But Holsteins tend to produce more milk, hence they are more standard. My cousin owns the family dairy farm. We have all worked there at one point in time and it used to belong to my great-grandparents. So I know a fair amount about cows. :) We have about 50 milking head right now, mostly Holstein but one Jersey. She's the sweetest thing!

  5. Mandy,
    You were talking about getting your homeschooling materials; how do you decide which to use. Is there one you recommend? Also, don't think about it too much...enjoy your summer.

  6. I love seeing your life in pictures! :)
    When we are really bad and it's usually a special date for us, my hubby and I do the exact same thing you guys did with desserts!! Haha, that actually made me feel very relieved. ;-) Where did you get them from?
    Jersey cow milk is amazing! It is highest in cream which makes for much better ice cream than any other kind of cow's milk. :) When we can get it, we looooove it! I don't recommend Truvia tho. It was developed by Coca-Cola and Cargill! Ugh. If you don't know about Cargill, watch Food Inc. I use Stevia drops by NuNaturals which is actually more potent (so you use less - yay to money saving!) and doesn't have the aftertaste a lot of the powdered ones do. Or maple syrup! Oh my, that in ice-cream is amazing. :)


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