This was my last summer before both kids started school so I enjoyed as much time with them as possible because now I'm home alone all day! 

Earlier this month, we went on our first family vacation out of state. My mother in law (who just beat cancer!) came with us to celebrate. I wanted to take the kids to a beach because Missouri is landlocked, we don't have any nice beach areas.  I got on google maps and found the closest point from our house to Lake Michigan and that was Michigan City, Indiana. It was over a 5 hour drive but the kids did great in the car! We had loads of car snacks and a little dollar store toy or sticker book for them at different points on the map and that probably helped

We stayed at Al and Sally's Motel, a family owned 1960s motel. It was one of the most reasonable motels in the area that had the best reviews and since the five of us shared a room, it was one of the few that had a room that could accommodate all of us. The motel was just as the reviews said, clean, quiet and kitschy. Our room had a pink bathroom with glass brick windows and I loved the neon sign out front. There's a small but very clean pool out back so we took the kids for a dip after dinner one night.

We went to the beach two days in a row. We played at Washington Park beach and Beverly Shores. We could see the Chicago skyline far in the distance and Rhys, Olivia and Pj saw their first funnel cloud. That's Rhys and Pj catching some waves!

We collected pretty rocks and beach glass as the waves crashed in. My kids have never seen such a big body of water or waves before. They were absolutely in heaven! I can't wait to take them back to Lake Michigan and someday to the ocean.

I was so badly sunburned (although I did use a ton of sunblock!) that I couldn't wear a bra on the last day so I went to the Walmart in town and grabbed this floral strapless dress that looked okay-ish with my bolero. I've been wearing it a lot since we got back from vacation.

 Before our trip home, we went to the Hesston Steam Museum, which has 3 different antique steam powered train rides. We happened to go on a special discount day too, which was awesome! There is an adorable vintage soda fountain/restaurant on the grounds, where we stopped in for ice cream and lunch.

 You can see Pj's video of our trip to the Hesston Steam Museum that he made for his You Tube channel here:

It was a wonderful relaxing weekend! Next year, our big family trip will be out west to Arizona to visit my vintage loving friend, Katie and explore the desert!