Thoughts By Natalie » travel Style, motherhood, wellness + life. Thu, 16 Jul 2015 12:03:39 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Downtown Mattapoisett Wed, 15 Jul 2015 12:00:08 +0000 Back in the 1800s, one of Brian’s relatives lived in this house! This visit to my parents’ house has definitely been different than years previous. Back before Jack was born, we basically just relaxed all day long. Nothing but boating and drinking and lounging around at the beach or on my parents’ deck. Not a worry in the world. And while this trip isn’t quite as restful as trips past, it is just as enjoyable in its own way. It’s so special to see Jack in an environment where I spent so much of my childhood, and of course my parents are in total baby heaven getting all of this time to play and snuggle with their only grandson. We usually try going out on the boat most of the days we’re here, but due to weather and Jack’s resistance to life vests, we’re finding other ways to spend our time. Yesterday we ventured out into downtown Mattapoisett for some lunch at the Inn on Shipyard Park. Jack LOVED watching all of the people in the restaurant—at least for the first 30 minutes or so until he realized he was strapped into a high chair and decided he needed to […]]]> 3 Boating in Buzzard’s Bay Tue, 14 Jul 2015 12:00:16 +0000 Boating is probably my favorite water activity. Despite living in a coastal town, I am not one to swim in the ocean or surf—I’ve actually been afraid of open water ever since I did a triathlon back in 2009. But boating? That’s my jam. I grew up going sailing on my grandpa’s boat every summer and being out on the water is both nostalgic and therapeutic for me. We traded sailing for power boating about a decade ago, but it’s still just as special to me to be out on the water. Yesterday we ventured out into the water for Jack’s first-ever boating adventure. As perfect as the photos above look, he sort of hated it—poor kid! There were definitely some good moments, but between the massive infant life jacket and the overstimulation of the boat and the water, he was over it pretty quickly. Needless to say, we didn’t stay out very long, but it was a good trip nonetheless. Especially because both of my 90-something-year-old grandmothers were with us. So special to have so many generations together at once.]]> 0 Back Deck Happy Hour Mon, 13 Jul 2015 19:54:27 +0000 One thing we love to do when we’re visiting my parents is sit outside, pour a few drinks and listen to my dad play guitar. He’s always been musically inclined, but only in recent years has he started doing these little jam sessions. It’s such a wonderful way to spend time together! Above are several photos of last night’s concert on the deck. Jack especially loved it—he was getting a little fussy before bedtime, but as soon as my dad started strumming, he mellowed out and was totally mesmerized by the music. And that picture of him holding my mom’s hand? Too cute for words. What little traditions does your family have when you get together? I’d love to know!]]> 3 Beach Day in New England Sun, 12 Jul 2015 20:30:03 +0000 After a full day of flying yesterday, we made it safely to Massachusetts! It’s been such a good trip already, and we haven’t even been here for 24 hours. Today we ventured down to the beach with the little guy and let me say…he is a water baby! He loved splashing around and crawling on the sand bar at low tide. It was so fun to watch him play! This is the first trip that I’ve remembered to pack my nice camera and I’m so glad I did. Though the iPhone has always been good to me, there’s something special about capturing memories intentionally with a real camera. Plus, it’ll make for better photos to print off for framing or putting into a photo book. (Speaking of which, we’ve been using Chatbooks to make memory books from our little vacations and they are so great! If you’ve never tried them before, you can use the code H934RFEF to get your first book free.) I’ll be sharing bits and pieces of our trip on the blog this week rather than the usual content I post. I hope you enjoy it! Happy Sunday :)]]> 0 Minimalist Travel: One Week in Texas Tue, 09 Jun 2015 17:00:36 +0000 If you follow me on Instagram you know that we recently traveled to Texas for a week to visit family and friends. Traveling with Jack and all of his baby things, I knew I needed to keep my packing to a minimum so I decided to stick to a simple, neutral color palate that could easily mix and match. This is what I wore for our week in Texas: LOFT Jumpsuit / Target Scarf / Target Sandals (Similar) / Madewell Ring J.Crew Tank / J.Crew Shorts (Similar) / Target Scarf / Merona Sandals (Similar) J.Crew Top (Similar) / J.Crew Shorts (Similar) / Merona Sandals (Similar) / BaubleBar Necklace / Madewell Ring Mossimo Dress / Merona Sandals (Similar) / Madewell Necklace Boob Design Dress c/o / Madewell Vest / Merona Sandals (Similar) / Madewell Ring LOFT Tank / Target Jeans (Similar) / Merona Belt / Merona Sandals (Similar) / Madewell Necklace / Madewell Ring J.Crew Tank / Target Jeans (Similar) / Target Scarf / Merona Sandals (Similar) / Merona Belt We spent the first half of the week in Galveston with family, and the second half in Austin with friends. We knew it would be cooler than usual thanks to some […]]]> 5 Santa Barbara Babymoon Tue, 03 Jun 2014 23:03:33 +0000 If you follow me on Instagram, no doubt you’re oh-so-sick of seeing my vacation photos. If so, lucky you—I’m home and back to reality. But can I just say that we had the most amazing time? It was every bit as relaxing and pleasant as I’d hoped for. Part babymoon, part belated anniversary trip, we went all out and stayed at the Belmond El Encanto in Santa Barbara. Brian coordinated everything, and he did a spectacular job. The concept of the babymoon is still relatively new, I think, but it’s one that I was really glad to get on board with. In essence, it’s sort of a last-hoorah vacation before your baby comes and travel becomes a lot more challenging. All in all, it was by far the most relaxing trip we’ve ever taken (well, maybe tied with our honeymoon), and we’re already dreaming of the day we get to go back. Here’s a peek at our time away in Santa Barbara… Fish and chips (and a tasty Arnold Palmer) for lunch at Arch Rock The view, plus the beautiful lobby/restaurant area. Love its East Coast vibe. Poolside essentials: Arnold Palmer, aviators, and John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars […]]]> 10 Colorado Recap Tue, 14 Jan 2014 23:40:50 +0000 The climate in San Diego right now could not be more different that what we experienced in Colorado this weekend. That being said, the chilly, windy mountain air and peeks of white snow was just what I needed and wanted this month. It was nice to have a real reason to layer and wear boots, but most importantly it was just lovely to spend the whole weekend with our dear friends. We arrived on Friday afternoon and headed to a coffee shop called The Cup on Pearl Street in Boulder, where Brian and I worked all afternoon until we met up with Erin and Dave for drinks, then dinner (homemade tomato soup!!) at their adorable apartment. On Saturday we explored Boulder for hours, enduring some pretty serious winds, but happy to be out and about on a sunshiney day. We wandered around the CU campus, walked down Pearl Street, hopping in and out of shops to get a break from the wind. Lunch on Saturday is perhaps one of the most notable parts of the weekend. Erin is the Director of Events for Frasca, which also owns Pizzeria Locale next door, so we got a full tour of the kitchen […]]]> 15 Salton Sea Mon, 06 Jan 2014 23:38:01 +0000 For my dad’s birthday every year—which is two days after Christmas—we’ve started a tradition of taking a little day trip to get out of the house and explore a new local spot. In years previous we’ve gone to Idyllwild and Joshua Tree National Park, and this year we ventured out to the Salton Sea—a a shallow, salty rift lake located directly on the San Andreas Fault around California’s Imperial and Coachella Valleys. The Sea was created by a flood in 1905, in which water from the Colorado River flowed into the area. The only way for water to get out is through evaporation, making the water saltier and saltier over time. Interestingly, in the 1950s, the Salton Sea was a greater tourist draw than Yosemite National Park. Who knew? We learned so much while we were there, and of course snapped a million photos. Have you gone any adventures lately? P.S. For those who asked, you can shop my outfit (and similar items) here…]]> 6 What’s the best way to learn a new language? Tue, 03 Dec 2013 19:00:22 +0000 On our drive home for Thanksgiving, Brian and I decided to start dreaming of our next big vacation. Earlier this year we went to Hawaii, which was so beautiful and tropical, so in 2014 we were thinking it could be fun to go with something totally different: Europe! Specifically, we’re thinking about Paris (I’ve never been!), Barcelona and Germany (my favorite). Having studied abroad in Heidelberg, Germany in college, there was a time when I could speak enough German to get around town, shop and travel. Those days, of course, are sadly behind me, and I find myself wishing I still could speak the language. And what better time to re-learn than in the months before traveling back there, right? So, yes, my New Year’s resolution is to speak German again, but I’m wondering, Have you learned a language in your adult years? What’s the best way to learn at home? Apps? Rosetta Stone? Other online programs? Help me out! Image via Cookies est une cuillère à absinthe]]> 9 Virgin America Safety Video Wed, 06 Nov 2013 13:00:40 +0000 Have you guys seen the new Virgin America Safety video yet? I just watched it yesterday and was so amused. I mean, how did no airline before them think to do something like this. Both entertaining and informative, I’ll bet more people watch this video than any other safety video around. It’s hilarious—and catchy! Overall, I think it’s brilliant. What do you think about the video? Good idea? Or is it weird?]]> 8