My Mom Summer Survival Tips


There is so much to love about summer but there is also so much not to love about summer. Lazy mornings, not packing school lunches, swimming and water balloon fights are fantastic! Filling days and weeks with entertainment, surrendering to a messy house, and battles over electronics and between siblings are not fantastic. We have a pretty mellow summer this year so I am trying my best to create a nice balance of fun and structure. Let me share with you some of my plans to help me survive this summer… Keeping it Fun Crafting: I am not a big crafter but my kids love them and I have found that we actually have a […]

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San Diego Musts for Families

San Diego

Over 32 million people visit San Diego each year and it is easy to see why. The amazing weather, gorgeous beaches, excellent dining, and overabundance of entertainment make this city a top tourist destination from around the world. Growing up, my family would come to San Diego at least a few times every year. Now that I live only an hour away, my own little family gets to go and play there often. I love seeing my kids creating many of the same memories I did as a kid and we have also discovered many new adventures over the years. Today I would like to share with you some of our family’s favorite things to do in the […]

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Ready, Set, Summer!

summer fun

It’s no secret that I love summer. Usually I look forward to getting back in the pool and on to vacation for weeks. This year, though, I’ve been feeling pretty emotional about this season since my daughter will be going to school at summer’s end. Where we live, schools start the first week of August, so our summer vacation feels quite short (although the summer temperatures will linger for a good 6-8 weeks after school begins). In an attempt to make this a memorable summer and soak up as much time as I can with both of my girls at home, I’ve been planning all kinds of activities for us to do the next two […]

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Looking Forward to Summer

Chalk art

One reason we moved back to Arizona after being in Utah for five years was that I had a really hard time handling the snow and cold temperatures. You certainly don’t find much of those in Phoenix. A self-imposed condition of our move was that I vowed to never complain about the heat to my husband since I was so thrilled to be escaping the snow. As a native Arizonan and a true desert lover, I often feel the need to defend my home state. Whenever anyone complains about the heat, I am quick to speak up about its perks. This week has been a bit warmer than usual for this time of […]

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Family Fun in the Valley of the Sun

Valley of the Sun

Do you ever just want to pack up your family and leave behind all obligations for fun adventures and quality time together? I almost didn’t make it to our spring break but it finally came and it was exactly the escape I needed! No school, games, practices, meetings, scouts, etc! Our family headed back to our native land of Arizona for spring break. I had big plans for this trip to Az. My husband, Matt, usually only gets to join us on trips to Arizona when we go for holidays or family events. But this trip was our’s to plan and he was coming, so I wanted to pack in as much fun as possible. Although it […]

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My List of Favorites at Disneyland and California Adventure

Last year our family got annual passes to Disneyland for Christmas. This past Monday we made our last visit to this magical place before the passes expire. I’m not going to lie, I almost cried walking down Main Street holding hands with my oldest son as we made our way out of the park that night. Disneyland really is amazing and I have loved getting to spend so much time there this past year. We created so many wonderful memories together and I feel like I just want to savor these Disney memories as long as possible! Since my brain still wants to be all about Disneyland, today I would like to share with you some of my favorites at Disneyland and California Adventure. […]

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10 Simple Ways to Enjoy Outdoor Playtime

10 Simple Ways to Enjoy Outdoor Play Time

If you follow us on Instagram (@citrusandsandals), then you probably know that 80% of my posts are of my kids playing outside. This winter has been seriously wonderful! I always say that summer is my favorite season because I love swimming and trips to the beach. But I have been absolutely loving winter this year and have been spending a lot of time outside with my girls. My oldest daughter is somewhat of a homebody. She is content to stay inside and play, read, and craft all day every day. Sometimes it is a challenge to get her excited to be active and go out in the sunshine. I have to be creative and make […]

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Shannon’s 2016 Highlights

As another year comes to a close, I love to look back at the moments that made 2016 special. Today I would like to share with you my 2016 highlights! January- I have two highlights from last January. First, for Martin Luther King Jr. Day, the kids and I met my sister and her kids at the Point Loma tide pools. If you are ever in the San Diego area and want a fun outing, Point Loma will not disappoint! These are not the most active tide pools I’ve been to, but the rocks are so fun to play and explore on and the views are amazing! Just be sure you go when it is […]

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A Christmas Service Project

Last December, my parents gave each of their children’s families a little money and asked that we, instead buying them gifts for Christmas, use that money to do service as a family. Some friends of ours have a tradition of feeding the homeless in downtown San Diego during Christmas time. We loved that idea so our little family decided to use our money to put together sack lunches, along with some warm weather gear, to pass out in downtown San Diego. This turned out to be such a fun and rewarding family experience. The night before we delivered the sack lunches, we all gathered together in the kitchen, preparing sandwiches, folding beanies, baking cookies and […]

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Colorful Bottle Brush Trees: An Easy and Fun Holiday Craft

This lovely, lovely lady is my sister Maren.She got the gorgeous olive skin, fabulous dark eye brows, and all of the crafty/artistic talent in the family. Thus, she is always engaged in a project for herself or other people. A few weeks ago, I helped her dye some bottle brush trees for a Christmas party she is doing this weekend. The trees turned out so beautiful and it was such a fun and easy project that I had to share! This is actually a 2 day project but it only takes about 20-30 minutes each day. Let’s start from the beginning shall we? Supply List: Bottle Brush Trees- This is a package of assorted trees from Michael’s. With […]

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