What a whirlwind! After my brother-in-law’s visit, the hubby and I packed up the pup and drove up to my parents’ home to spend Fourth of July weekend with them and my grandma. Between trying to tie up pre-holiday loose ends at work and plan upcoming content for our Grand Canyon trip, these past couple weeks have been crazy to say the least!
Luckily, being up at my folks’ house is always a great way to let off some steam and get caught up on real life, so this past weekend has been so relaxing and much-needed.
Mommy + Me with Princess E
I had been waiting to get dressed up with our sweet pup in our matching Lirika Matoshi strawberry dresses for a few weeks, and my family’s fenced-in backyard seemed like the perfect safe spot for photos sans the distractions of public parks or fields. Plus, my mom still has the homemade copper pipe photo backdrop frame we had made for my bachelorette party years ago, and a ton of big white sheets! So, the pup and I got dressed and headed to the slightly-sweltering backyard (my parents live in the foothills not too far from LA, so summer is HOT…) where my amazing hubby was waiting with the camera.
Despite being a pretty energetic and rambunctious dog, Princess E was actually on her best behavior! It only took a few tries to get some adorable photos that will be spamming my social media feeds in these next few weeks. Here’s a peek of our faves!
Even though there’s a community pool in the neighborhood, we always prefer the privacy and low-key vibe of my family’s backyard on holiday weekends. Last year, I had picked up a Minnidip pool at Target because it was just too cute to pass up, and luckily it was still in great shape, so we got it set up on the lawn for a much-needed cool down spot!
Princess E had so much fun splashing around with me and my hubby, and even grandma (aka my mom) got in on the action! It’s always fun to relive those nostalgic summertime moments of childhood.
What’s Fourth of July without food?! Our family usually goes all-out with holiday feasts, even though I’m an only child and it’s just the five of us (grandma, mom, dad, hubby, and me) plus the pup most of the time.
For lunch on holidays, my mom puts out cheeses, crackers, deli meats, and other charcuterie-type items for us to graze on while we’re in and out of the kitchen prepping for dinner. She got a big ball of burrata cheese this time, and it made a yummy spread over some fresh tomatoes, basil, lemon zest, and olive oil! I always eat way too much throughout the day, but somehow I’m still hungry for dinner…
Speaking of dinner, my dad got a Traeger smoker a few years ago and has really honed his love of grilling and smoking meats since he retired last Fall. He decided to make ribs and his famous barbecue sauce this year, much to our enjoyment! (Just some backstory- I LOVE classic American barbecue and all the traditional summer fixings, but since Noah and I don’t have it too often when we’re in San Diego, it’s a treat for us!)
After hours on the smoker, several bastings with apple juice in a spray bottle, and a final topping of sauce, the ribs were ready and looking delicious! We finished off the meal with roasted corn, my mom’s potato salad, watermelon with lots of fleur-de-sel, and of course, more barbecue sauce. We just might need to make this again soon because it was THAT good…
For dessert, we had classic ice cream cones with all the toppings, homemade chocolate covered pretzel rods, and chocolate dipped strawberries that my mom and I (slightly messily) made earlier in the day. There’s nothing quite like ending a summer holiday weekend with a sugar rush!
I just about lived in my bathing suit all weekend because of the SoCal heat, but I did throw on a loose cotton button-down shirt from Target for cooking inside. Shop my looks below! (PS- my bathing suit was only about $20 on Amazon!)
Hope you had an amazing holiday with your loved ones!