Family Adventure at The Beach! *Plus A Giveaway*


Be sure to read the bottom of this post- Three families will win a Family Movie Night Prize Package of one of my all time favorite movies!

When I was in my early teens, my parents began taking us to Panama City Beach once every two years or so. Except for my very first beach vacation, PCB is the one I remember whenever I think about the ocean so I was thrilled to be able to take my kids there. This was their second time seeing the ocean also, which made it even more special.

As I mentioned before in a previous post, several months back we realized that our life was growing increasingly more hectic and busy. As a result, even on weekends, we work all of the time! No matter if its a Saturday or not, if I’m home, I feel the inevitable pull of the computer or that mountain of laundry begins calling my name, all the while our kids are still growing – but with decidedly less involvement from us in the process. This just wouldn’t do.

So we started calling a “Family Adventure Day” each weekend whenever possible. We choose a day, get up early, and head out somewhere. Sometimes we know our destination, sometimes we just wing it. Our preferred day trips are those about an hour or two from home where we find something new to explore or discover but the kids ultimate trips are those in which we get to stay in a hotel.

I imagine that for them staying in a hotel is the equivalent of a world cruise for some, but hey it works for them and makes them happy so every now and then (when we can afford to), we like to do this for them.

When Country Inn & Suites approached me asked if we’d like to stay on one of their properties for three nights, my kids were over the moon! JVC got on board as well by providing a HD Everio camcorder to record our trip and I’ll be bringing you that video in a future post. My husband is over the moon on that camcorder. He did most of the filming and he said it is the clearest most realistic video footage he has ever seen.

We had a wonderful weekend at the most family friendly hotel we’ve ever stayed at and while there, I got to do something I’ve only dreamed of my entire life. Hang on, I’ll tell you about that in a minute.

It was a very windy weekend but we had a ball!

The Treasure Ship restaurant was a boatload of fun!

Alas, they wouldn’t keep them while we ate… ~sighs~


Being silly on the couch in our hotel room.

Me and my boy!

Me and my girl!

The whole family eating at a beach side restaurant where I had the MOST DELICIOUS side dish.

I spoke with the chef and he gave me the recipe! I’ll be bringing it to you along with an interview in a future post.

Now for my dream come true! I’ve wanted to do this all of my life. I used to beg my parents to let me, but back then it was very expensive and we just couldn’t afford it. While at Gulf World (which is AWESOME by the way), I had a chance to “shake hands” with a dolphin!

It was all I could do not to crawl right into the water with her! So sweet, soft, and warm, I’ve waited all of my life to do this!

The photographer said “Wow, you really lit up!” and I told him “My dream just came true!”.

(and the Jordan family loves this hotel!)


(THREE winners!)

I hope you’ll make YOUR families dream come true by setting aside time just for them. To help three families have a special night of doing just that, I’m giving away three movie night packages, from the Jordan family to yours.

Please note, this giveaway is not sponsored by anyone, it is just a little something from my family.

Nowadays, it is getting more and more difficult to find family friendly television or movies (don’t get me started on the lack of family friendly television!) and so when I happen across a great family movie, I get pretty excited! Secondhand Lions is one of my all time favorite such movies and I can’t even tell you how many copies of this DVD I gave away for Christmas last year (I know it was more than six) so that everyone could see why I loved this movie so much!

Three people who comment below will be chosen at random to receive a Movie Night Prize Pack which will contain:

A DVD of Secondhand Lions

This is the story of a young boy sent to live with his two eccentric  uncles on a farm in Texas. It’s filled with humor, adventure, lessons of integrity, and is just an outright joy to watch. You will literally laugh, cry, and be on the edge of your seat during this film – which is why I bought three more copies to offer in this giveaway  (I just checked and that brings my total copies purchased to twelve) because I LOVE THIS MOVIE!

Popcorn ( know, it’s a movie night!)

Assorted boxes of candy (see above reason)

AND Silly Straws – because everything tastes better when drank from a silly straw. Why? Because I said so.

To enter my giveaway, simply leave a comment below.

Tell me the last time you went to the beach, tell me if you’ve ever stayed at a Country Inn & Suites before, tell me if you know of any family friendly movies I might enjoy – or just say “HI!”. All ya gotta do is leave a comment and you’re entered! I’ll draw three winners on Friday of this week and announce them on this post!

Can’t sleep? Count your blessings.

Submitted by CJ. Submit your quote here or pick up a few more to help you keep that smile on!

FTC Stuff: We were very fortunate recently to be able to spend a long weekend in Panama City Beach, Florida courtesy of Country Inn & Suites, who very graciously provided our hotel for the three night stay as part of their 1, 2, FREE promotion where anyone who stays two nights through May 15th gets a third night free. I have not been compensated for this post but Country Inn & Suites did provide free lodging for my family and myself.  I will be reviewing my JVC Everio further in a future post and have been given one of the cameras for this purpose but received no other compensation. My opinions are entirely my own and you know it wouldn’t be nice to be dishonest about something anyway. Seriously, stick with what ya picked up in those first few weeks of Kindergarten and you’ll be fine. We never outgrow basic life lessons :).


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  1. Tammy says

    Wow! I have never seen the beach before and i’ll be 23 this coming monday…My husband is currently in iraq and will be coming home in June and we were gonna save money throughout this deployment to go in July but thats before we found out we were gonna be parents…now the money we were gonna save for our 1st beach trip is going on formula and diapers for our 1 month old daughter..I would love the opportunity to go and see it for myself…ive only seen it in movies and pics. and its beautiful but never in person.. Also, i was wondering when you were gonna get be in the huntsville area…was hoping you would come there as 1 of the places to sign your cookbook..would love the opportunity to meet you…Ive made several of your recipes (banana pudding is my fav.)…hope to hear from you soon…

  2. Lee B says

    I lived in PCB for 10 years, and loved the Treasure Ship. I lived about 3 blocks from there. Best AYCE crab legs on the top deck. Sadly, it burned down not too long ago, and the owners don’t want to rebuild.

  3. Mandy Slovinsky says

    Would like to thank you and your family for sharing your story and pictures with me and my husband Kids are all grown up and we are enjoying the grands we moved to Georgia about 12 years ago and love it because we are about 4 or 5 hrs from any beach and ga has a lot of man made beaches in the many parks here thank you for sharing



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