Let's start off with Charlotte's first plane ride. Planning for a trip with a baby involves way more work on the front end than the actual traveling part. Derek and I were feeling pretty confident with our preparation but still nervous for the plane ride. (I am NO expert, but feel free to contact me if you are traveling with a baby soon) It was a nonstop flight to Jacksonville, so I had scheduled the flight on the way there and on the way back during her nap time. We didn't know if this would be a good idea or not. On the way there, she took a ton of entertaining. We were frantically pulling out snacks and new toys every second to avoid any fussiness. On the way back, she ended up falling asleep. That equaled one happy mommy and daddy! Overall, she was fantastic and we received a lot of compliments on her good behavior. Let me tell you- I think making the goody bags for the passengers around us hooked them immediately ;)
This was the view from the porch of the house we rented for the week. As you can imagine, we spent all of our free time out here. We loved to be steps away from the ocean. Gorgeous sunrises and sunsets (and even rainbows) were our view every single day! We even got to see dolphins in the evening.
Before I go any further, I have to totally talk up Amelia Island. It was the first time for all of us, and we will definitely be going back. It is a small island, only about 13 miles long. So getting around would only take 5-10 minutes. The island has everything you could need and not very touristy. The perfect combination in our eyes.
The food scene on the island is definitely something to brag about. We were highly impressed with every single restaurant we went to. We mainly ate at restaurants found in their adorable downtown. The evening of my birthday we went to a restaurant at the Ritz. We had (arguably) the best dining experience. We did their chef's tasting menu. It was so much fun to not know what food they would be bringing out. We majorly connected with our waiter and enjoyed his presence so much throughout the night. He made our night extra special by offering us extra pours from the wines we loved the most and finishing up Derek's meal with a taste of his favorite bourbon. SUCH a memorable experience!
Golfing, fishing, shopping, boogie boarding out in the ocean, laying out, taking walks on the beach, visiting the national park/19th century Fort, playing Uno and Heads Up, and cooking dinners together are just a few of the activities we all got to do during the week.
Overall, this trip was exactly what we hoped it would be: a trip for Charlotte to experience the ocean and to be with family. We cannot wait to take her here every year and have it be something she looks forward to. The time here was so memorable and we cannot wait to go back!