Officially Started

Posted: June 12, 2011 at 4:50 pm

Our annual family vacation doesn’t officially begin for me until our first family dinner.


We have visited the same group of restaurants on our yearly vacations for the 25+ years we have gathered in Daytona Beach. The group has seen some come and some go, but regardless we always have a nice-sized crew to enjoy our meals together. Last night we took our first dinner outing at Park’s – one of my grandfather’s favorites.

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After perusing the menu, nothing really stood out to me for my dinner. Since I couldn’t make up my mind, I ended up deciding to split a couple of dishes with my lovely sister.


I actually really like sharing dishes with someone because then I can sample more than one thing. Too bad both dishes weren’t too appealing.


We split an order of broiled scallops in a spinach hollandaise sauce and crab stuffed shrimp. The scallops ended up a little flavorless and the stuffed shrimp had very little crab meat. Meh. At least the margaritas were good.


Wait. Make that great.


I ended up with two…and a slight buzz. I couldn’t turn down a second. These were perfect. They had quite the bite to them, which I love. I hate a super-sweet, mix-tasting margarita. Give me the tequila por favor. Ahem. When on vacation, right? 😉

Now that we had the official beginning to our vacation, we could wake up today and get a jump on our beach action. We hit the beach early, around 8 am, in order to get in a decent amount of beach time.

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For the record, I don’t think a sweeter picture exists than this little moment I captured….


After getting sufficiently sandy (seriously how do kids get sand basically caked into their skin?!), we headed in for lunch and naps. With two little ones we sadly end up spending a few of our mid-day hours indoors. Although since I have to embrace my pale ways, it works. It also gives me ample time to prepare (and share) a delicious lunch.


At the beach, I must have a light and refreshing lunch. Today’s made my stomach all sorts of happy. I had a sandwich made with ham, swiss cheese, avocado, spinach, tomato, and mustard. Along with cherries and carrots.

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I about busted out a happy dance in the grocery store when I saw these cherries on sale. I scored them for $2.24/lb – way better than the $4/lb I typically find. I will relish these little balls of fruit this week. Just as I plan to relish the sand and waves. Time for more beach fun! And a crazy evening tonight. It will include costumes, funny stories, and food from the 1940s. You just wait.

  • Is there a certain grocery item you love but will only buy when a good deal?
  • Do you like sharing meals or ordering your own thing?

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43 Comments to “Officially Started”
  1. Jess says:

    I am SUCH a sucker when it comes to cherries – I could legit eat a whole bag if left alone with a fresh batch. They are one of the best parts of summer for me – that and watermelon. YUMMY! PS. Those margaritas look absolutely perfect!!

  2. Maria says:

    I love sharing meals, especially when I can’t decide between two items. I also like to split meals at restaurants with my mom. We both don’t like to eat huge meals all at once, so it helps with portion control and of course, leaves plenty of room for dessert!

    I love living your vacation vicariously! How about next year I come as your babysitter? 🙂

    • Tina says:

      That would be very tempting! Although luckily we already have many built in babysitters with family. Hallelujah! 😉

  3. I think I forever had margaritas ruined for me when I went to Costa Rica. You talk about tequila?!?!?! I watched the bartender make it, it was 75% tequila and 25% mixer. It was AWFUL! Haha! Oh well! 😉

    I actually like sharing meals. I used to not like it but now I do! I love sampling many different things! I guess being a blogger changed the way I approach a dinner out. 😉

  4. Great pic of you and your sister!
    I love sharing meals, but my husband does not. I still pick at his 😉

    • Tina says:

      That’s the same as us. He never wants what I want to try, so he’ll end up not eating what I order and I’ll end up tasting off his still. Their loss, I say !:D

  5. Sounds like such a fun vacation so far! Glad to hear that you guys are having a great time! That is so neat that you continue this tradition of a family vacation each year…how fun!

    Fruit is something that I buy when it is a good deal–and when things are expensive (come winter months), I tend to load up on bananas and frozen fruit.

    I love sharing meals since I can rarely finish a restaurant meal and don’t enjoy next-day leftovers.

  6. Amber says:

    Oh my gosh!!! I am from there!! I live the beach. I hope you guys have a blast.
    Ps that picture us super cute moment. Nice work.

  7. Lee says:

    I like sharing but usually the people that I’m with don’t want the same things as I do. Really the only person that I typically share meals with is my mother since we eat sort of similarly.

  8. Robyn says:

    $2.24/lb for Cherries … who wouldn’t bust out a move or 2? 😉

  9. I am LOVING the shirt you’re wearing out for dinner – looks fantastic!! I have to say cherries and cheese are 2 things I love but only buy on sale. They are both quite expensive on a normal day so I stock up when I find a deal!

  10. Ah, vacation! The best feeling! Raspberries (and most locally grown berries) are so spendy that when they’re on sale (OR I’m really craving them) I’ll go for it. Yest for example, I bought a pint of strawberries for $3. I froze a few and am eating the rest in the next few days in my cereal and for snacks. Yuuum. Enjoy your vacation!

  11. Lauren says:

    I love eating dinner out at the beach, especially seafood. But you are right, they never seem to make the plate look very appealing but the seafood is always amazing!! Enjoy your trip Tina!!

  12. Lauren says:

    Your top at dinner is so cute! I love sharing meals, especially when my boyfriend & I order a bunch of sushi rolls to share. Even better – ordering multiple desserts to share!

    • Tina says:

      You and I would get along just dandy if we ever had the chance to dine together. I love love love sharing sushi. I actually was just saying to Peter this week I’m so bummed he isn’t a sushi lover for us to share. Although we do love sharing desserts!

  13. Jolene says:

    LOVE cherries and love when they are on sale. that and a whole watermelon on sale and I’m a happy camper. LOVE the pic of your sleeping men!

  14. Erica says:

    So fun! Love the top you wore tlo dinner. I have such great beach memories from my childhood, cant wait to take the peanut. Those pictures of your little guy and gal are so cute. Enjoy the trip

  15. Brindi says:

    I love sharing meals. My Mama and I usually do whenever we’re together. However, my husband does NOT like to share. lol. Whenever I see tomaotes or avocados on sale I get as much as I can carry!!

  16. I LOVE sharing meals and if not sharing, I at least like to taste what other people are having. I know some people find this annoying but that’s kind of a stipulation of being my friend. 😉

  17. Looks like such a great family vacay so far! I prefer my own meal, but I’m getting better about sharing 🙂 And I just got cherries on sale, too! Used them in my pancakes yesterday…so yum! Your lunch looks like a perfect beach lunch!

  18. I agree with you on cherries! I buy them when they’re on sale — they are so good but so pricey!

    I love the beach pics! So cute!

  19. Jess says:

    Wow, those cherries are at a great price. I say stock up with several pounds and put em’ in your suitcase 😉

    Cute pictures!! Continue to have fun 🙂

  20. The margaritas do look really good! And that brown top is really cute on you.

  21. Suzanne says:

    Have a wonderful vacation.

  22. looks like your having a fabulous time 🙂 now i want a margarita….

  23. lindsay says:

    sweetest picture. True relaxation! and now, I am craving a margarita as big as my head. Dang tina, I wish we lived closer. We’d have a blast on vacation together.

  24. Coco says:

    I definitely look for cherries on sale. I’ve spent $$ on them though–so yummy! I love the pciture of M too!

  25. Those margs did look good! I agree, I like a stronger marg with less of the sugary mix!

    Great pictures! Have fun! 🙂

  26. Errign says:

    I’m the same way with cherries – I LOVE them, but I hate to pay upwards of 5$/lb for them!

  27. Sable@SquatLikeALady says:

    Ohhh those little toes in the SAND! Squueeeeee 🙂 My ovaries are ACHING now!!

    I hate getting gypped out of crab meat!

  28. I like my margarita’s the same way, STRONG and less sweet! Maybe that’s why I (used to) take straight shots of tequila with a little lime juice and salt and it was DELICIOUS while everyone else suffered through. To each his own..

  29. Jeannie says:

    Looks like fantastic time! I always look for any of my favorite staples on sale and then stock up! I also look for fresh berries on sale other wise they can be darn expensive.

    I usually get my own dish but love to share if someone else is wants something appealing as well. Love being able to have a taste of more than one dish if possible.

  30. Mandy says:

    Looks like you are having fun! Yum on the margaritas! 🙂

  31. Yessss margaritas!! Tequila is only good when you’re on vacation because it doesn’t ruin the next day’s productivity then 🙂 I like to order my own thing. I’m a sharer with most things, but not with my food!!

  32. I only buy toilet paper & paper towels when they’re on sale if that counts! And those margaritas look so awesome! I don’t like going to a restaurant and having the margarita taste pre-fabricated, so if you found a good one, you definitely deserve to have two 🙂 I usually order my own dish & don’t really like to share, but a bite or two to try it is always welcome haha.

  33. What a lovely start to your family vacation! 🙂 that pic of Peter and B is simply adorable!

    I like to get organic berries but they can be pircey! fortunately I found some at TJ”s this weekend. I def like to split meals bec then I can try a couple diff things! 🙂

  34. Have a great time on your vacation!

    I love to share meals, that way I can taste a little bit of everything 🙂

  35. Brittany says:

    Sometimes i like sharing meals, sometimes not! I get kind of fiesty with my Sushi 🙂

  36. Your kiddos are too cute! I love your baby’s feet in the sand…he’s looking more like Peter to me! M looks like you through and through!!!

    I can’t stand when strawberries…my favorite…are normally $4/lb. When they’re on sale for $1.88/lb, I stock up!

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