Our Start to 2020 Summer – the New Normal

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Technically summer just started, but we are still stuck in that quarantine haze – it feels like the year has flown by while simultaneously time has stopped all together. I had always thought the years I was pregnant would be the blurriest in my memories just with how tired and worn out I was, but I get the feeling 2020 is going to take the cake.

Well, one of the amazing things about planet earth is that no matter what changes for humankind, it keeps on turning. So here we are starting off summer in the middle of a pandemic, something I surely had never imagined I would experience in my entire life! Our 5-year-old has a deep mind and perceptive soul, far beyond her age on paper, so a pandemic and all the other things going on in the world have all been discussed at depth. In normal times we are an extremely busy and social family, so the fact that we haven’t had a guest in our home since February, that I am no longer working, we are no longer traveling, are of course things she would notice and can’t simply be swept under the rug. So, we are being open and honest, and trying to work together as a family to find ways to make the best of where we find ourselves summer of 2020.

So, what have we been up to? Vivienne has terrifying asthma, so the truth is we are not comfortable going out all that much and have been trying to find ways to have more fun at home. I spent $7 on a little inflatable pool and it was probably the best purchase of the year so far, since every nice day we take it out in the back yard and let the girls splash in the water to keep cool. There are surely no swimming skills being developed, but Vienna (who is NOT a water baby in the slightest) has surprised us and gone from not wanting to even put a finger in, to being excited to hop in and splash around. A few hours of giggles while they cool off is surely good for us all! The bunnies have even made it out there with us a few times, and it is a positive way to pass time.

Kiddie pool time with Frozen bathing suit
Vienna who hates water, now super willing to get in (possibly only because she has a Frozen bathing suit?)
Our Lionhead bunny “Ham” outside for some play time. She was relatively un-amused, but that is how she lives her life!
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As holidays come and go, we have also made sure to have lots of fun with them, and take advantage of the excuse to celebrate something, make a special meal, and change up the day-to-day. Father’s Day was the most recent and we had a great day! We started off with my signature jumbo cinnamon roll (it takes up a WHOLE PIE PLATE), gave the hubs some gifts featuring a few of his favorite things (baby Yoda and tacos), and took the day to relax and spend some quality family time. I put the baby down for her nap so he could play Halo with our 5-year-old, we watched some Mandolorian, and ended the day with some damn good homemade sesame chicken. I know what you are going to ask, and don’t worry – a recipe for the cinnamon roll IS in the queue!

Also, I know I said we aren’t comfortable going out, but that doesn’t mean we are totally holed-up at home. We are getting out for walks and hikes, of course always staying masked in scenarios where keeping distance is not possible. I blogged about our Franklin Falls Hike which was FANTASTIC! Plenty of room for everyone and the river noise was so soothing. Vivienne and I have also gone to a drive-in movie where you watch from your trunk, and we have gone out for a picnic here and there. All simple things, but even just a little time out and about in the fresh air feels amazing.

If you follow me on Instagram I am sure you have seen what a ridiculous amount of time we are spending in the kitchen as well. Honestly, this has been an awesome experience and my hubs and I have both grown SO MUCH as cooks since this whole thing started! Even during the initial closure we were both working full days from home, but without commuting that allowed us an extra 2-hours at home 5 days a week… that adds up quickly when you think about it! We have been of course spending some enjoying our babies, working on home projects, and tackling some new recipes and techniques has been on the list too. We buy all our flour, sugar, eggs, and butter in bulk and cook off it for months – plus we no longer purchase any type of carbs at all! Breads, tortillas, muffins, rolls, are all now made totally in-house which not only has been a fun journey, but an awesome step in our sustainability as a family (not to mention, a delicious one!). So far I blogged my lemon blueberry bread, homemade easy English Muffins, and my Focaccia Bread recipes, but there are many more coming your way, so stay tuned!

no knead bread
This is a loaf my husband has been making – the recipe yields about 4 small loaves and you can keep the dough in the refrigerator for the week and scoop some out and bake it as needed. We would have NEVER taken this baking jump without the extra time on our hands.
Vivienne and I saw Trolls 2 at the Drive-In Movies at Thomas Family Farm. Of course the Mickey popcorn bucket came with, and yes that is her lovey dressed in dog clothes, ha ha!

Well, I would say this is the majority of what our start to summer 2020 has looked like so far. Add in lots of outdoor dinners on the patio, some gardening, and that is about it! What have things been like for you this summer as the world changes? I would to love to hear how you are keeping busy.

As always, thank you for reading!

X.O. – Abbey Co.

Vienna’s summer style – no pants, and only one shoe on because she prefers one on for fashion, one off for traction, ha ha. Have a great summer everyone!
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Dillitop Sprinkler for Kids, Splash Pad, Wading Pool and Kiddie Pool, Summer Outdoor Water Play Mat for for Boys Girls Fun Sprinkler Pool Sprinkler Toy Inflatable Spray Pad (Blue)

*Disclaimer* I am an Amazon affiliate and get a tiny kickback if you purchase anything from my links… I only share things that I use and love, and it is just a small avenue for me to earn money to support my blog as I go.

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