Baha Mar Vacation with a Toddler

Baha Mar Vacation with a Toddler

We’re back from an amazing vacation in the Bahamas! It was our first time going to Baha Mar and we had the best time. There were lots of things we wish we knew ahead of time, so I’m going share our itinerary and a few tips!

We booked a “suite-style” room in the Grand Hyatt West Tower. We preferred this room over a standard room because we had a separate living area to watch tv in while Everly slept. It was called a 1 Bedroom Fountain View if anyone else is looking. Our room did not have an ocean view, but the view over the front of the hotel and the fountains was really nice! The room included a full kitchen with a microwave, sink, fridge and freezer, and stove. There were all kinds of cooking appliances including a blender, silverware, plates, etc. We also had a crib delivered through the hotel for Everly.

At booking we picked the West Tower and I really liked it! It’s between the SLS and the main lobby of the Grand Hyatt. We used the amenities for the SLS quite a bit because of convenience. There are two Starbucks, a convenience store, high end shops, the casino and countless restaurants on the lobby level. On the Fountain level at the Rotunda there are lots of other shops including Lilly Pulitzer and local Bahamian shops – this is also where the Explorer Kids Club is for children ages 3-12.

The pools are very expansive! There are lots of cabanas and lounge chairs, but everything fills up very quickly. The cabanas are available in advance – you’ll definitely want to get one of those ahead of your arrival. They were booked when we were looking and they are pricey!! The lounge chairs at the pool and beach are nice, however, they get claimed very early in the morning. We thought this was VERY annoying, but the pool staff was helpful and accommodating to get us set up. There are a few dining options around the pools and on the beach including sit down restaurants, food trucks, a poke bowl restaurant, and DAQ’s (the smoothie place).

As far as the restaurants for dinner go, I would recommend booking reservations ahead of time! There is an email address you can use to set these up through the hotel concierge. Prime dining times go really quickly, especially for large parties. We found a few restaurants on the Opentable app too!

Also available through the concierge are airport transfers (could be pricey – our taxi was $30), Explorer’s Kids Club, In Room Babysitting, and reservations at the Sanctuary for swimming with the sharks, Flamingo exhibit, etc. I highly recommend that you use the email address and do not call them! It’s an international number and will cost $$$.

Day One

We arrived in Nassau around 11:45AM. Our flight was a breeze and the airport is very small – lots of taxis available outside right away too! We checked in on the Hyatt app and as soon as we landed we learned that our room was ready! The check in process at the hotel was very easy – they give out bracelets instead of room keys to get into your room and make charges. When we walked into our room we were stunned – the views are incredible – especially from the 22nd floor.

After getting situated in the room we headed out to explore the pools and the beach. We walked up and down the pier on the beach – the water is sooo clear. We stayed on the pier and soaked up the view for a while. We ate at Jefe’s (the taco truck) for lunch and we weren’t too impressed. In the same area is the Fried Chicken Food truck.

Finally around 2pm we were able to head over to the pool and go swimming. There were ZERO pool chairs. We had to walk around for a while and never end up finding anything, so we dropped our stuff and jumped in the water. The first two days were really hot and I’m so glad we remembered sunscreen because we definitely needed it. The towel attendants also have sunscreen available for free if you need it!

This night we ate at the Swimming Pig for dinner. It’s a tavern style restaurant with lots of tv’s and a very large bar. The menu has lots of options from wings and nachos to seared salmon and steaks. We noticed this restaurant was pricey for what you get but my salmon dish was very tasty. Also important to note – my glass of Merlot was only $7 or $8. Definitely the cheapest glass of wine at the resort!

Day 2

We woke up early and were determined to get to the beach first! We quickly grabbed coffee and a small breakfast at the Starbucks and trekked out to find beach chairs. It was the sunniest day and we were nervous that everything would be taken but there were plenty of chairs when we got down there at 8:30am. In the water there are huge mats and trampolines – really nice to lounge on to cool off! There are also lots of vendors that walk along the beach – selling Bahamian souvenirs and offering to take you parasailing, jet skiing, etc! It got kind of annoying after a while but it’s easy to tune out.

On the beach there are lots of food trucks. Jake and I tried the Poké Bowl restaurant – very good – and Everly had a slider from sliderzzz (yes that’s the name). She was impressed! We basically spent the whole morning relaxing here. We tried to get Everly to nap at the beach – that was a major fail. After an hour of her whining we took her up to the room to get some rest and she passed out! The best part of our room was that we could stay in a separate space to watch tv and relax while she was asleep.

For dinner we had a babysitter coming that we booked through the resort. She arrived after Everly was asleep and hung out and watched the monitor for us. She was VERY pleasant and would have been fine to put Everly to bed/play with her, but Everly was wiped! The fee was $25 per hour with a minimum of three hours.

Jake and I had dinner at 3Tides. It’s the seafood restaurant on property and we weren’t really impressed. It wasn’t anything special or romantic for a date night but we survived 😂. We also took this time to check out the rest of the resort and the casino!

Day 3

We had awesome weather this day and decided to try the pools. We lounged for a bit and ended up moving back to the beach. It was so much easier for Everly to play by herself in the sand when she didn’t want to be in the water. All morning was spent here and for lunch we ventured over to the Drift Bar and Grill. The food was very good and our table overlooked another pool area. After lunch we took Everly back upstairs for nap time.

When she woke up we decided to check out the Explorer Kid’s club area. They have a drop off program for kids aged 3-12, but they also have a Toddler Room available with lots of books, puzzles, stuffed animals, coloring supplies etc. This room was awesome! You have to stay with your child while they play, but it was nice to take a break from the sun.

For dinner we made reservations at the Japanese restaurant, Katsuya. We had a table outside – absolutely beautiful! The menu was great with lots of things to share. Everly loves sushi so it was perfect for her. There were plenty of kid friendly options including noodles, chicken or steak skewers, etc.

Day 4

Of course on our last full day we had the worst weather. It didn’t rain but it was very windy and impossible to be at the beach. We sat pool side at one of the beach entry pools. Everly LOVED being able to walk right into the water and play. The pool also has all sizes of life jackets for kids! I wish we had Everly’s puddle jumper but this ended up being perfect.

We ate lunch by the pool with sandwiches from Out Island Bar – this is the place that has the cheapest kid’s menu! All kid’s meals are either $6 or $8 and my wrap was delicious!

We were able to check out the Sanctuary this day and see the sharks, turtles, stingrays and starfish. Definitely a must do – it’s free and you can walk through everything on your own.

For dinner we found the Regatta Cafe. It’s the Baha Mar buffet with SOOO MANY options. The best part is that kids under five eat free. This buffet price includes soft drinks – I think it was about $50 per adult plus tax and gratuity. The options were endless – pasta station, raw bar, chicken wings, steaks, lobster tails, multiple salad stations, pizza and desserts. LOTS of desserts. We found this place to be the best value for the price. Everly enjoyed pasta, pizza and roasted vegetables. Then had her first jello (she was not a fan) and a popsicle for dessert.

Day 5

Our flight was at 1:30pm, so we grabbed breakfast and spent the morning at the pool. Everly had to say goodbye to the sharks, fish and sting rays that are in the aquarium at the pool. We checked out of our room at 10:45am and grabbed a taxi to the airport. We were so glad we got there early because the bag check and security lines were long! The flight home was a breeze and E slept for about an hour.

A few other important tips that I wish I had when we went. Bring LOTS of snacks and make sure you have all of your toiletry items, toys, etc. Items for sale at the hotel are pricey! I was shocked to find that a bag of salt and vinegar chips was $13.44. Make sure you have everything you’ll need or plan a trip to go off hotel property for a morning and stock up. If your baby drinks milk you can bring the Horizon Organic individual milks that don’t need to be refrigerated. Bring protein bars, chips, lots of sunscreen, and plenty of little toys too.

I already mentioned this, but make your reservations ahead of time through the concierge email address especially if you have a large party.

Wake up early to get your beach or pool chairs. Head downstairs first thing and put your book/cover up on a chair to reserve it while you go to breakfast. This technically isn’t allowed but everyone did it!

Walk around on your first day and explore the whole resort. It’s really big and there are so many little things to do!

Download the Baha Mar app! There’s lots of information on there that you can check out to help you plan your days.

If you’re traveling with children, book the hotel babysitter for a night! They are great and it was well worth the cost to enjoy a date night!

If you gamble, sign up for Club Blu to get $50 of free slot play. I didn’t really win anything, but it’s always fun to gamble with someone else’s money 😜

Enjoy yourselves! The staff is great and the property is amazing. Soak it all up and take lots of pictures! Tag me in your pictures you post to social media too!

Leave a question in the comments or send me a DM if you need any other info!

xo,

Jacci

30A Family Vacay

With my family being in Orlando and Jake’s in Massachusetts we alternate Christmas and Thanksgiving. Instead of going to Orlando we decided to make a full blown family vacation in Rosemary Beach, FL. None of us had been, but it was a place I always wanted to go, so I got my whole family on board. They were immediately sold when they saw the house I picked.

We stayed in a rental house I found on Airbnb – I’ll link the exact house at the end. It was five bedrooms and seven bathrooms – a huge outdoor kitchen, tv/patio area. We were all in love with it’s beachy charm. Our house ended up being perfect – central to everything, with a tram that drove us to the beach, four bikes to get around the town, and smack dab in the middle of Rosemary Beach and Alys Beach. Each morning we were able to walk to coffee and bike to shops. It was perfect! The roof of our house had a great view with the ocean and perfect sunsets in the distance.

Rosemary Beach is very family friendly! There are lots of open lawns to play on, live music and family friendly restaurants. The first day we arrived we had our thanksgiving dinner – ordered from Whole Foods and picked up on the way.

Day #2 was our first full day with lots of exploring to do. We had lunch at the Mexican restaurant, La Cocina. The food was great and the margaritas were strong – my kind of place! We walked around the town and popped into the shops. We also checked out The Pearl hotel and relaxed on the lawn that overlooks the beach. img_3524

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On Day #3 we took the tram in our neighborhood over to the beach. It ran every 15 minutes or so and held 8 people plus our beach stuff. The rental house had beach chairs, an umbrella, beach toys and a bottle of sunscreen which was nice to have! The water was kind of chilly but it was very sunny and the beach was full! The beach was huge – lots of white sand and a shower to rinse at the top. img_3298img_3816img_3291img_3289img_3293

Day #4 was full of bike riding and shopping. We checked out the Seaside Neighborhood and spent a lot of time in Alys Beach. The weather started to get a bit chilly and we noticed that everyone that was there for Thanksgiving was leaving. This part of town is VERY seasonal. By the Monday everyone was gone and Tuesday the place was a ghost town – a lot of the restaurants also shut down for the season. img_3617img_3587img_3573img_3613img_3581img_3533img_3527img_7545img_7473img_3455img_3420

If we were to go back we would definitely want to go for a spring break or the summertime. Thanksgiving was great weather-wise but because it’s a seasonal destination the stores and restaurants were either closed or packed. I know summer is the busiest time, so keep that in mind if you’re interested!

Here’s the listing for the house I found on Airbnb. It was a 10/10 in our book!

https://abnb.me/fOyJhj2h52

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Have you been to 30A? Let me know your favorite spots!
xo,

Jacci

Clean Friday Sale Roundup!

Hello! It’s the most wonderful time of the year – HOLIDAY SALES!

I have been looking forward to this sale for quite a while now and am so excited to share the details. Beautycounter is offering 15% off sitewide with free shipping on orders over $50. Some items are excluded from the sale (regimens, collections, flawless in five), but the holiday sets and the NEW Countertime line is included!

I’ve rounded up my five favorite products to purchase at the sale –

Counter+ Skin Care Favorites

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This is my favorite way to try the top products in clean skincare. It includes four travel size products that are great for all skin types. First is the Lotus Glow Cleansing Stick – it is the new version of our top selling Cleansing Balm and it comes in a stick. When it meets water it turns into a creamy makeup remover, but it doesn’t strip away the good oils on our skin. Also included is our Overnight Resurfacing Peel, #1 Brightening Oil, and the Balancing Charcoal Mask. With the 15% off this set becomes $75!

Body Butter Trio + Hand Cream Trio

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These two sets are great gifts – I usually like to gift a hand cream and a body butter in a cute little gift bag for teachers, friends, or mother in laws. Each set comes with three in different scents. The best part is that these are clean products safe for all. No need to worry about any toxic chemicals in your lotions.

Countermatch Adaptive Moisture Lotion

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Our top selling moisturizer has to be on this list! It’s one of the founder, Gregg Renfrew’s, favorite products. The Countermatch line is great for anyone with sensitive, combination skin. It adapts to your skins needs at the time of application and feels lightweight all day. With the sale this moisturizer is $42 and a tube should last around 3 months! When clients are looking to make the switch to safer – this is the first product I recommend. It’s EWG Verified as well!

Counterman Carry-On

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We can’t forget about the men in our lives! They deserve clean, safe skincare too! This set comes with four of the products from the Counterman line in travel size. Jake has all four in his travel bag for his overnight trips and loves them. This set comes with the purifying shampoo, energizing charcoal body wash, oil free face lotion, and the daily exfoliating cleanser.

Mini Lip Gloss Vault

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This set is the best value! You get ten mini lip glosses for $75. When I get sets like this I like to break them up and gift individually. This is such a sweet gift for teachers, babysitters, friends. I’m planning to gift a lip gloss and Starbucks gift card to each of Everly’s teachers this year! Nine of the ten colors are brand new to Beautycounter — hoping that they keep amber shimmer around because that’s my favorite!

 

The other great way to save this time of year is to sign up for the Band of Beauty rewards program for $29 – it gives you lots of great perks with no order requirements, autoship, auto renew, etc. – you earn 10% product credit on every order, free shipping on orders $100+ and you get the Body Butter in Citrus Mimosa (as a free gift) if your product total is $50+ when you join.

I hope this round up was helpful! Happy Shopping!

xo,

Jacci

Holiday Outfit Planning with LIT Boutique Part Two

Good Morning! Last week I showed the first outfit from LIT Boutique in the North End. Today I’m sharing another fabulous look that they styled me with perfect for an upcoming holiday event. TBH, I was a little hesitant to pull a look this bold off, but it was awesome. The key to any outfit is feeling comfortable and these pants are exactly that.

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Pants: Greylin Sequin // Blazer Top: Carbon Leather Black Blazer // Clutch: Electra Metallic Silver // Earrings: Quinn Large Hoops // Heels: Lima Suede Sandal Black

These pants have a zipper enclosure and were true to size. They hit right under the ankle which is perfect to wear with a strappy heel. They also have pockets – win!

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The blazer runs true to size and can be worn with a bodysuit underneath and buttons undone. We kept it buttoned and wore it as a “top”. It has plenty of structure, but is also soft enough to wear all day.

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The clutch is so versatile and has a removable silver strap – it also comes in a few colors!

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This outfit would be great for a holiday party, but could also be multi-functional. I absolutely love how bold it is for a special occasion. As I mentioned before LIT Boutique has the best staff available for styling – they are informative without being pushy and they really know their stuff!

xo,

Jacci

Gifting Ideas: Husband’s

I put up a question box on Instagram and asked “Who is the hardest person to shop for?”

The number one answer from my followers was husbands and dads! I can totally relate – Jake has everything and he never asks for anything! With his help, I came up with a men’s gift guide. Perfect for any man in your life – interested in sports, tech, lounging, etc.

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Glion Dolly Scooter – this is Jake’s way to get to and from work every day! It was his Father’s Day gift and he loves it. It would be perfect for someone to use for short errands, a commute or just riding around the neighborhood. This model goes 15mph for 15 miles on one single charge! It weighs 28 pounds and has a handle to travel easy when you’re walking through crowded areas.

Lululemon City Sweat Pants – Jake has these in two different colors and loves the softness and look. He wears these to lounge around the house on the weekends when playing with E. I am a huge fan of Lululemon and love their Align leggings. You can’t really go wrong with anything from this store as a gift.

Patagonia Fleece Pullover – This pullover is perfect for cooler temps in Boston. Jake got this as a gift for Christmas last year and it’s held up so well. Patagonia is also a B Corp and practices sustainable business practices which is so cool!

Bose Home Speaker 300 with Alexa – We have an older version of this speaker, but I’ve had my eye on this new one! It has Amazon Alexa built in and 360 sound. Bose has incredible customer service as well – we’ve never had any issues with any of their products. AND they are based in Framingham, MA.

Honest Beef – I am a huge fan of this Nebraska based company. It is run by one of my Boston mom friends who recently moved back to NE. I have ordered from them lots of times and I love sending their packs to my dad for Father’s Day or Christmas. This is the perfect gift for someone when you have no idea what to get them. They are a sustainable, family owned ranch with the highest quality cuts and the best customer service. The Ribeye Share is my favorite!

Beautycounter Counterman Carry-On – Couldn’t make a men’s gift guide without including the Counterman collection. This gift set includes four travel size products from the Counterman line. The products are the purifying shampoo, the charcoal body wash, the exfoliating cleanser, and the oil-free moisturizer. Perfect for any guy that travels a lot for work!

Apple Airpods Pro – These are a brand new release from Apple. They include wireless charging and free engraving. They also sell a carrying case that can easily clip into a laptop bag or backpack.

UGG Ascot Slipper – Thank you Tom Brady for making Ugg’s cool for men haha! Another perfect gift for your guy that likes to lounge! These make a great gift for Father’s or Father-in-laws too!

Belkin Wireless Charging Pad – I’ve been searching for a new wireless charging pad for my iPhone and Apple Watch and this one has REALLY good reviews. There are so many different brand that make these, but this one has a two year warranty. It can charge a phone from 0 to 80% in 35 minutes!

Hope you guys enjoy these options for the men in your life! If you have any recommendations, leave them below in the comments!

xo,

Jacci

 

Gifting Ideas: Mama’s

This post contains affiliate links. I earn a small commission when you shop from these links included in the post below.

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1. slipsilk pillowcase // 2. Vince Camuto Gigietta Bootie // 3. Counter+ Skincare Favorites // 4. T3 Singlepass Curling Iron 1.25 inch Barrel // 5. Orolay Down Jacket // 6. Lemongrass Body Set // 7. Quinn Weighted Blanket // 8. Kreafunk bGEM Wireless Headphones

It’s time to get gifting! The holidays will be here before you know it. I’ve put together eight items that any mom would love to receive.

The first gift is a silk pillowcase – I’ve tried other brands off of amazon and this is by far the best one. It keeps your skin from wrinkling and your hair neat while sleeping.

Number 2 – the best booties! They are so comfortable and easy to dress up or down. Every time I wear them I get so many compliments.

The third on the list is the Counter+ Skincare Favorites Set. This set was a favorite of mine last year and it’s quickly becoming a top seller. It’s still in stock for now, so don’t miss out on this one!

If I’m not curling my hair with my straightening iron – this T3 curling iron is my go to. It it so easy to use and gives the perfect beach wave curl that I’m always going for.

#5, This might only be for my mama’s in cold weather temps but it is GOOD! The coat runs true to size and for the price it is SOO warm. I ordered the beige color and have been loving it. Temps are dropping very quickly in Boston as of late!

The sixth on the list is the Lemongrass Body Set. The scrub has been one of my go-to’s in the shower for a while now. Having the body butter in the set has been sooo nice. The scent is perfect and it feels so luxurious.

Number 7 is a weighted blanket that I’ve had my eyes on for a while! Weighted blankets are used to reduce anxiety, calm and relax. Sign me up! The color is beautiful and I’m excited to try one to see if it lives up to the hype.

For the last and final item on the gift guide I chose a new pair of headphones. These were actually sent to me on accident, but they are so good! If you’re looking for something better than AirPods these are the ones. Put in the ears and tune out the toddler whining hahah!

Hope you enjoyed this gift guide! I’ll have a bunch more coming in the next few weeks. Happy Shopping!

xo,

Jacci

Holiday Party Outfit featuring LIT Boutique

I absolutely love shopping small in Boston. There are so many boutiques in the area with the cutest clothes and accessories. I have been loving LIT Boutique in the North End. They have several locations in New England and the best outfits for going out, holiday parties, or everyday wear. The best part about LIT is their staff. They are amazing at styling and helping you find the perfect pieces to complete your look.

I had the pleasure of shooting with LIT last week. They styled me in three outfits and today I’m featuring the first look. It’s perfect for a night out, a holiday party, or can be dressed down for brunch with friends.

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Coat: Turner Faux Fur Jacket Sweater: Show Me Your Mumu Sweater Leggings: Vegan Leather Leggings Necklace: Alexei Layered Coin Purse: Ella Pebble Crossbody Shoes: Steve Madden Jillian Bootie Belt: Margaux Chain Belt

 

I have been obsessed with Show Me Your Mumu and was so excited to try on this fringe sweater from them. It fits true to size and covers enough of your back end to wear with leggings… win! We paired the sweater with a faux fur coat – it was so soft and cozy. It would also look beautiful with a fun cocktail dress and over the knee boots.

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The best part of the outfit were the vegan leather leggings! They suck everything in and have a seam down the front that helps elongate your legs. They were a little long, so they’d be perfect for any tall girls.

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My booties were an #nsale find from July! I wear them all the time – they are sooo comfortable and give an outfit the perfect amount of edginess.

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We finished off the look with a gold statement belt to help cinch my waist. It is adjustable and can give any outfit the perfect amount of bling. The gold belt helped tie in the coin layered necklace and handbag. LIT has so many cute accessories from belts, bags, bracelets, to underwear, shapewear, and fashion tape! This purse also had an over the shoulder strap – love a bag that converts like that!

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Hope you guys love this look as much as I did!

xo,

Jacci