Living the Good Life

Hello from the Outer Banks!


Matt and I are here with his family and their family friends the Hays (and their kids, who are our age and our friends as well). I would like to stay here forever, thanks.





Plus more that I didn’t get a chance to photograph yet!

We arrived on Saturday and so far we’ve had our share of delicious food, relaxing beach time, and pretty sunsets. It’s nice renting a house instead of being in a hotel because we can cook most of our meals! On Saturday night, Matt’s parents grilled kabobs for everyone.


The Hay contingent (they are staying in a house down the block) brought over a potato/green bean salad:


And we also had corn on the cob, of course. What would the beach be without corn on the cob? :)


My plate.



Matt also found one of our favorite NC beers, the Copperline Amber Ale, in one of the little stores here; it’s made at Carolina Brewery in Chapel Hill — a place we frequented when we lived there! How fun to enjoy it again. :)


We got a lazy start on Sunday and then Matt and I headed out for a short run around 10:30. It was hot but with views like this, we couldn’t complain.



We ran 1.5 miles out, then stopped for a mini boot camp. Here’s what we did:

  • 10 push ups
  • 20 sit ups (any kind)

Repeat above 3 times.

  • 10 jumping lunges
  • 5 burpees

Repeat above 2 times.

  • 30 sit ups (any kind)


Then we ran back! 3 miles, done.


The rest of the day was spent like this:


And playing in the water — my favorite part of the ocean. :)

Around 6, the Hays brought down provisions for happy hour on the beach! Best idea ever.



We enjoyed a delicious crab dip on a table created using boogie boards:


We even had fresh oysters to shuck and eat!



Last night, we had dinner at the Hay’s place — Mrs. Hay made an amazing quinoa salad:


They also made some sautéed zucchini for everyone to share, and we made some grilled asparagus.


For our main dishes, the Hays grilled some swordfish for their house, and Matt and I made my Almond Encrusted Tilapia (click for recipe) for our house! I love this recipe — SO delicious and super easy, too. It was a big hit! They key is the extra toasted almonds that you add on top. :)


My plate:


I went back for seconds on the quinoa and tilapia. Delish!

I’m heading out for another run shortly and then we have another day of relaxing on the beach ahead! :)


  1. 1

    Looks like such a healthy vacation! I am always looking for interesting ways to cook fish, especially Tilapia, so I will definitely take note of your almond recipe. Thanks!

  2. 2

    It looks so beautiful there and you look gorgeous! Cupcake Chardonnay is one of my favorites!

  3. 3

    This looks perfect! Just what you needed, a nice relaxing vacation and what a better place than the OBX to do so.

    Enjoy the rest of your trip unplugged!

  4. 4

    Great photos. Looks like heaven with that beautiful sunrise!

    OBX looks like paradise -especially when you’re enjoying “happy hour” with fresh oysters on the beach! :-)
    And great workout with Matt……stay on it!

    Keep celebrating life -and having fun! :-)

  5. 5

    I’m jealous! Looks like a fun vacation with many delicious eats! I think I’m adding that tilapia to my meal planning next week :)

  6. 6

    Any chance you could get a recipe for Mrs. Hay’s quinoa salad? It looks delicious as does the rest of the food. Enjoy your vacation!!

  7. 7

    Looks like the perfect weekend!!! I love summer! Love the mini boot camp workout too. Anything for fitness!!!

  8. 8

    Looks like such a fun, relaxing vacation! Renting houses at the beach are the best way to spend a vacation if you ask me!

  9. 9

    Yummmm, all those grilled items look amazing! I especially love love love grilled corn :)

  10. 10

    OBX is on my travel bucket list! It looks so amazing and relaxing!

    All of your eats look amazing, too!

  11. 11

    how fun!! what a beautiful beach! those kebabs look so yummy!! mmmm!

  12. 12
    Pat Elsberry says

    The Outer Banks is on my list of places to go … not an easy way in or out but SO worth it once you arrive! Enjoy – you deserve it! Hope you’re going to share what was in the quinoa salad … looks yummy!!

  13. 13

    I too would love the quinoa salad recipe and PLEASE the potato and green bean salad recipe. I have fresh green beans and red potatoes from my farmers market and would love to make that this weekend.

  14. 15

    Your vacation looks awesome! Enjoy the time before you have to go back to work!

  15. 16

    What a fantastic vacation! That quinoa salad looks delish! Please get the recipe and share with us :)

  16. 17

    That food looks delicious! I’ve only been to western and central NC, never the outer banks! It looks gorgeous

  17. 18
    Adventurer says

    One word: envious! Looks great. Wonderful first day. Hope today was equally good! Enjoy…

  18. 19

    Glad to see our boogie boards put to good use! Have fun. :-)

  19. 20

    I’m with the others who are requesting the recipe for the quinoa salad!

  20. 21

    SO JEALOUS. I’m seriously beach deprived & can’t wait to play on the beach with you & the girls in July!

  21. 22

    Ah, sigh… breach holidays are the best! Enjoy the ocean (my favourite!)

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