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Life Lately: Summer Recap


I’m back! It’s so good to “see you” again! 🥰 How was your summer!?

Slowly getting back into the swing of things after my summer break–and wow, let me tell you–I savored every second of it. ♥️ It was much needed. It went by so quickly and at the same time, July also seems so far away from us now. I think we nailed the balance between “too many activities” and “not enough activities”–we traveled quite a bit, but we also had some wonderfully slow downtime with family and friends.

On Wednesday, I’m headed to Michigan for our second annual lake house trip with a big group of friends (and all our kids–I think there are 12 adults and 9 kids under age three? We’ve lost our minds.) I’m so excited–it was so much fun last year (and we thought we were crazy then, but in the last year several friends have had more kids to add to the mix and ALL the babies are now toddlers 😂 pray for us.)

Anyway, I’m not quite back to my regular posting schedule yet (aiming to get back after the lake house trip–squeezing ONE more week out of summer!) but in the meantime, I thought I’d share a small snippet of photos from the summer. Let’s go! We’ll start from the beginning of June!

Life Lately: Summer Recap

Life Lately: Summer Recap

We kicked off summer with a two-stop trip to visit my family in Oregon, stopping in Denver on the way home to visit friends! This is my niece–she and June are obsessed with each other and it’s just the best. ♥️ (This was taken the day of her “preschool graduation.”)

June's 1st birthday

We didn’t have a birthday party for June, but sang Happy Birthday three different times with three different groups of family! So happy we got to celebrate with my family when we were in Oregon too! My sister made her this sweet cake! She wasn’t sure about the cake but LOVED when everyone sang to her!

Dads hiking in Denver | Life Lately: Summer Recap

Girl dads on our hike in Denver! ♥️ (This hiking pack is the best and highly recommend!)

On June's actual birthday

On June’s actual birthday!

It’s so crazy looking back at this picture that as just a few months ago because she looks so much older now. 😭

breakfast at West Town Bakery

My birthday is just a few days after June’s–we celebrated with breakfast at West Town Bakery. (Which I highly recommend!) June gave me a kiss for my birthday–which, if you know June, is a big deal. She is VERY stingy with them these days. 😂

Shaheen, Anna and I got to go visit ABLE's headquarters in Nashville

Shaheen, Anna and I got to go visit ABLE’s headquarters in Nashville and to say it was an absolute treat would be a massive understatement. It was so cool to meet the team who makes their magic happen behind the scenes and it made me fall in love with the company and their mission of helping women even more than I already was. They’re simply a wonderful brand and I’m so proud to be one of their partners! (BTW, my code JESSKEYS15 is always on and always gets you 15% off!)

June and toddler friends | Life Lately: Summer Recap

One of my favorite shots of summer.

June and her friends looking like the cutest little pack of rugrats. ♥️ And by “June’s friends” I mean my own friends who also have toddlers. 😂 These four had so much fun together–it’s so cool to watch them all get over and start to interact and develop their own friendships!

Carlyle Lane cups and Vo custom beaded stack

Two of my favorite things this summer: my Carlyle Lane cups and Vo custom beaded stack!

Camping Trip | Life Lately: Summer Recap

One highlight of the summer was definitely our camping trip! (June’s first!)

It was not without it’s struggles 😆 but it was so much fun and she LOVED it. We camped at Kettle Moraine South and this is on one of our hikes on one of the nearby trails. It was so beautiful–June also fell asleep and is tipped over on the other side so you can’t even see her in this photo. 😆

Post-hike parking lot happy hour

Post-hike parking lot happy hour. (This hiking pack is the best and highly recommend!)

happy hour dates

And speaking of happy hours, we managed to take full advantage of daycare, sneaking in a few happy hour dates before pickup! (This is much easier to pull off than dinner and no need to get a babysitter!) Queen Mary is one of our favorites in our neighborhood!

Jess drinking at Ada Street

We went to Ada Street to celebrate my birthday–it’s one of my favorite restaurants in the city and we hadn’t been since right before June was born. That was a trip. 🤯 Wearing my “Elisa” dress I designed with Elisamama! (More details here–there are a few pieces still left!)

Toddler bear towel robe | Life Lately: Summer Recap

Random post bath shot but one of my favorites 😆 This little bear towel robe is SO CUTE.

Couple Ireland trip | Life Lately: Summer Recap

Another big highlight of summer was our Ireland trip–which was SO much fun! (My two part Ireland guide coming soon!)

Killarney Brewing & Distilling rooftop

On the rooftop of Killarney Brewing & Distilling’s new facility just outside of town in Killarney!

Neal’s Uncle Liam is one of the founders and several family members (us included) are investors, so we got to go for a pre-grand opening investor weekend. It is absolutely STUNNING and I can’t recommend stopping here enough–their restaurant and rooftop are not to be missed, and of course, if you’re a whiskey or beer lover, you must do a tour! They’ll be open to the public very soon! 🙌🏼 (Wearing my Maha leather jacket–you can get 15% off with code JESSKEYS20–jumpsuit is old–and Amazon slides!)

Toddler grinning

Somehow during the summer my baby grew into a kid 😭 (Shoes + outfit!)

My trip to Lisbon with Whitney | Life Lately: Summer Recap

Another big summer highlight: My trip to Lisbon with Whitney on a scouting trip to finalize the details of our Atlas Adventures Lisbon this October!

Pulaski Park | Life Lately: Summer Recap

We discovered the cutest public pool (Pulaski Park!) not far from our house!

We took lots of long walks through the neighborhood

We took lots of long walks through the neighborhood. (Stroller reviewed here!)

Auntie Sissy and June

We had some great patio evenings with Auntie Sissy (my SIL–we all call her Sissy) and discovered a love of tater tots. So grateful she lives so close and we get to see her so much! Many of our day nights and overnight trips are also possible because of her. ♥️

toddler in portable high chair

Speaking of sissy–we love visiting the bar she works at on Sundays!

(This portable high chair is truly the best BTW. It can self-stand on the ground/table or has two different straps to secure to the back and underneath of any chair! (Note the bar rag as a bib 😂)

Jess purging/organizing tear

I went on a purging/organizing tear because I reached a breaking point with the clutter in our house and it felt SO GOOD. (Shirt is a favorite from Madewell!)

Baby flower sunglasses | Life Lately: Summer Recap

June left her sunglasses on for about 2 minutes so that’s a big improvement 😂

Smoke Daddy cocktail | Life Lately: Summer Recap

Another neighborhood cocktail favorite: Smoke Daddy (our favorite BBQ spot–also very kid friendly!)–we loved their fresh watermelon cocktail!

BuyBuyBaby sandals

Just can’t handle those little legs and feet 😭 (Found her sandals in store at BuyBuyBaby!)

Labor Day at the lake house | Life Lately: Summer Recap

What felt like the first day of fall–Labor Day at the lake house. June’s sweatshirt says “Junebug” on it and is from Rey to Z (a local mom-owned brand!) You can save 20% with code JESSKEYS20 at checkout!

June and Nani on the beach | Life Lately: Summer Recap

June and Nani on the beach. Nani was another MVP of the summer–couldn’t have done it without her and my SIL helping out, especially during our travels!

Mom and daughter snuggling

This past weekend watching Moana–a rarely snuggly moment! She looks like such a big kid here. 😭 I never realized that you really only get one summer with a “baby” and while every age gets more fun, it simultaneously breaks my heart that she’s growing up so fast and is already a full-fledged toddler!

Jess and Neal anniversary staycation

This past Friday night we did our annual staycation to celebrate our anniversary-5 years!

We stayed at the Waldorf, which is where we got engaged–right in this circle drive! You can see a recap of previous staycations here!

Before I leave you, some moments NOT captured on film for levity: Multiple bouts of sick days (the last year of daycare has been a crash course for my immune system)–the worst being hand foot and mouth (that June then passed to me and I could only eat Panera soup for 4 days because everything else hurt to eat 😵), June puking on us multiple times due to motion sickness on plane rides and car rides, getting torrentially downpoured on during the camping trip, me crying missing June in Ireland, the phase she just went through where she wanted NOTHING to do with me and only wanted daddy, Nani, Sissy or seemingly anyone who wasn’t me, the 15 month sleep regression we’re going through right now, and so on. 🙃

Lots of parenting struggles for sure, and it’s never the *easiest* choice (in fact, it’s often the hardest one!) to make plans with a toddler, take a trip with a toddler, take a trip away from your toddler, and so, on–but for us, it’s always worth it. Just remember, I’m still right there with you–even if these moments aren’t always captured!

Again, just a tiny collection of the best moments–I hope you enjoyed coming down memory lane with me. I’m truthfully so sad that it’s already fall, but I am SO grateful for the memories we made. Every summer with this girl gets better and better. ♥️ I hope you had a wonderful summer as well!