Happy Friday friends! So if you girls follow along on Instagram and IG stories you probably saw that we snuck away to Big Bear over the kids’ Christmas break. I’m trying to focus more on experiences and creating memories this year and have to say that this little mountain getaway with the fam was the PERFECT way to start 2018! My parents used to take me to Big Bear as a kid and I hope that Ava and Luca will have the best memories there too.
If you live in SoCal, Big Bear is literally a hop, skip, and a jump away but literally felt like we were in a different state. It felt so good to get out of OC, explore outdoors and just disconnect for a few days. My brother and his family recently moved to CA and we are all SO excited for more family vacays. I love waking up to a busy chaotic house and the kids are beyond excited to have their cousins close now. Some young and some in high school, but they all still mesh and my heart is just SO full! Okay, okay, now on to our Big Bear recap! So many of you were messaging about where we stayed so I wanted to share those details with you.
Anyone else’s hubby LOVE a road trip as much as mine?! lol
This was our first time renting a house and have to say it was pretty awesome! Now while I’ll admit we do love a hotel for a little room service (holla!) and house keeping… renting a house turned out to be great! If we’re going with multiple families honestly we’ll be looking into renting houses for future trips for sure. It’s so nice once you get the kiddos to bed that you can still come back and hang out.
This cabin was a rental and it may be on AirBnB or VRBO but I found it on DestinationBigBear.com. It was a 5-bedroom house with a nice jacuzzi in the front and literally backed up to a national forest.
Check out this view…seriously AMAZE! It was so awesome having our morning coffee here and grilling out to this view in the evening!
It was a 5-bedroom house with most of the bedrooms downstairs (and a set of bunk beds the kids were obsessed with), not to mention the teenagers loved that it was their little escape from the 3 and 5 year olds 😉
The kitchen was so pretty! I knew we would be spending a lot of time in the main space and cooking there so I wanted a rental with a really inviting space, and this one was perf.
Not our best pic but hey he volunteered for a selfie so I’ll take it! 😉
These little hamburgers had such a blast with all the boulders and trails to explore on.
I mean how cool is this huge boulder that was in the backyard?!
Luca livin’ his best Mountain Life xo
(his mini boots HERE)
Our place was only about 5 minutes to Big Bear Lake Village which had SO much charm! There were tons of shops, restaurants, bars and a couple cute kids toy shops too. If you’re coming with a large party, definitely try to make your reservations in advance. I would put Oakgrille on your list (it was definitely one of the nicer restaurants on the strip and booked up fast). Also if you’re looking for a good family-friendly pizza place, check out Saucy Mama’s. Thank you to you girls who recommended Santa’s Village in Lake Arrowhead (about 30 mins away) it looked so cute and we will definitely put it on our list for next year!
Hot Chocolates with extra whip with this little love!
Mountain getaways call for comfort food and a country breakfast!
I rarely eat like this so when I’m on vacay or back home in Virginia (hello Cracker Barrel!), I always indulge!
Off to the Snow Park!
My favorite view
A lot of you asked about where I buy the kids snow clothes, and truth is borrow, borrow and borrow lol. The kids grow so fast, we’ve literally just been borrowing friends clothes for them for the last couple years 😉 H&M has this snowsuit that’s super similar to Luca’s and is only $35. I did have to buy some snow boots for them this year so we got THIS PAIR for Ava and Luca. This Pair is also amazing and loved them in previous years too (and a bit more affordable too).
There was literally no REAL snow this year and we were bummed at first, but honestly it kind of worked out for the best. The bundling and unbundling of the little ones is definitely a task and they wouldn’t have been able to explore and “hike” if there was snow.
While the big kids took their first snowboarding and ski lessons, we took the little kids to the Snowdrift Tubing Park. The kids had a blast and they provide the tubes so no need to bring your own. I was worried about the speed and height of the slopes but if you have little kids they have smaller slopes that were perfect for Ava and Luca.
I found these budget-friendly sunnies back in stock HERE
Also, a lot of you were asking about my necklace. Sorry I lagged on responding. It’s this one HERE but is kind of pricey so I was trying to find a look for less option for you girls too. I’m loving This Longer Version under $100.
When she realizes you’re trying to take a picture with her 😉
Dippin’ & Sippin’
(my off-the-shoulder ruffle bikini is this one HERE)
and let me just say the hot tub was a hit this trip! If you’re booking a cabin, definitely look for ones with a hot tub and a pool table. All the little extras are definitely worth it!
(for you girls asking about Ava’s suit, it’s from Target!)
A Post-sledding Sugar Pit Stop
Okay and can we just have a moment of silence for this gllllorious assortment of fudge?! If you guys go to Big Bear, you have to check out the North Pole ice cream and candy shop. It seriously was so charming and such a little gem!
I took a few goodies to go for the older kiddos and even the hubby said the fudge was the best he’s ever had.
That one person you bring to the mountain that’s always just a little bit extra (lol definitely me!)
and I mean how cozy are These House Slippers?! Yassss!
So excited to break out that Winter Wear!
and I posted This Jacket on my insta stories a few months back and finally pulled the trigger. I am obsessed with the fit and oversized lapel. I wore it with my Faux Leather Leggings (best under $100 and another great option HERE), Oversized Beanie and my Lace Up Wedge Boots (also wore the Wedge Ankle Version). I’ll definitely be repeating this look on our next snowy getaway.
A lot of you were asking about my photos and honestly I take about 90% of my travel photos with my iPhone. I touched on this on my Insta story, but I try to make my trip photos as less intrusive at possible (with the exception of a forced outfit pic or two from the hubby 😉 for the people I’m with. I feel like using my phone just always turns out for more organic pictures because I always have it on hand. It’s a bummer that the quality isn’t as good as with a DSLR, but from past feedback from you girls, I think you prefer selfies and camera roll shots over the professional, ya? Always love your girls’ honest feedback.
Also, if you want to see more videos and behind-the-scenes from our trip, I’ve saved some on my Insta Stories under the CABIN LIFE highlight section on my Insta profile (@andeelayne). You can see random snaps and more video of the cabin we stayed in too xo
Hope you all have a great weekend!