Erika & Shay’s 1st Annual Road Trip!

Well, if you followed along on Instagram last week then you saw how Erika and I loaded up the kids and hit the road for our first annual mom and kiddo road trip.

My friends Melanie and Amy have teenagers, but have been doing these road trips for years and years, and they always look like so much fun!  Erika and I decided that we wanted the memories for our kids too, so we planned, we rented a van, and we headed out for our first adventure.  Two mamas and eight kids ready for some fun!

We left McKinney at 6:00 AM and headed south!

We decided to pull out their “thing” shirts from our Disney trip for day one.  I bought my “road trip” tee HERE.  We were all so excited!!  First stop…

the Little Czech Bakery!  It took us about two hours to get here, so we were all hungry and ready for kolaches and coffee.  On the way there, the kids all cuddled up in their blankets and watched movies together on iPads.  I really must brag…they were so good!!  In the van, there was no fussing or fighting…just happy kiddos!

I felt the same way, Bowen.  The same way.  Nothing says breakfast like a yummy kolache!

Coffee and a sausage and cheese kolache?  Yes please!

After that, we drove about 20 minutes until we arrived at…

…Chip and Joanna’s place 🙂 .  We didn’t hit Magnolia to shop (hello, 8 kids?!), but to play!  It opened at 9:00, so we arrived right on time…

…look at those sweet faces!  They were all excited to line up in order each time.  It’s actually birth order (9, 9, 8, 8, 6, 5, 3, 2)…which makes the Shulls all odds and the Slaughters all evens.  Funny enough, the adults work out that way too (Andrew, Tab, Shay and Erika).

Happy to be outside and enjoying the morning with Erika!

Once you’re inside the grounds of Magnolia, there are so many “outside” things to do.  We stayed here about an hour and let the kids play…

…there is a big turf field with balls right in the middle of everything…

…Britt tried some soccer…

…and Madeley just ran around having fun!


They had big swings which we loved…and other fun things too.  It was just a nice stop!

After this, we walked right down the street at 10:00 for…

…the Dr. Pepper Museum!  I don’t know why, but I always think things like this are fun 🙂 .

This was a very kid-friendly place!  There were lots of hands-on things for the kids to see, touch and explore.

Here they are doing jumping jacks for an ounce of Dr. Pepper.  They were teaching how much exercise it takes to work off a sugary soda.


We learned, we looked and we ended at their soda bar where everyone got a…Dr. Pepper 😉 .

After this, we took a short two minute drive over to…

Jake’s for lunch in Waco!  I mean…LOOK!  This was the perfect spot for kids!


Love my thing 1 so much!

Burgers and fries for the win!

Thing 8 was pretty pumped to be there too!

After lunch, we had about an hour and a half drive to…

…Inner Space Caverns.  Yes.  We went spelunking!

Madeley was all set 😉 !

We bought tickets for the one hour and fifteen minute tour.  The oldest six thought this was SO COOL!  Afterwards, Smith said this was one of the greatest things he’s ever done in his life. Hahaha!  The little two did great…but it was a mile long walk, so that meant Erika and I had to carry them most of the way (no strollers allowed)…which made us so hot and tired.  We were laughing so hard because we were FILTHY by the time this was over!

Into the caverns we go!

So cool, right?!

These two holding on to each other 🙂 .



This was super impressive and totally worth the stop!

When we were done, we got drinks, washed our hands and hit the road for the last hour of our trip to…

…the Lost Pines Resort just outside of Austin.  After 11 hours in the car, we were ready to “resort” for the next 2.5 days.  We left at 6:00 AM, arrived at 5:00 PM, checked into our rooms, put on our swimsuits and hit the pool as fast as we could.  We were so happy!

The big kids all ran off to grab tubes and hit the lazy river and slide while the little two enjoyed the bigger pool area…


Ebby Lee and Kensington are way up there on the slide about to ride.  We ate a late dinner poolside and then…

…went for s’mores!  Every night at this resort, they roast s’mores and show a family movie.

Look at Britt putting bunny ears on herself. Hahahaha!

So much fun for the whole family!


After our s’mores, we let the kids play outside for a bit.  The movie didn’t start until 8:45 and since we’d all had a long day, we decided to skip it our first night.  We played and then went to our rooms around 8:30.  My crew showered and then cozied up for Shark Week until we all fell asleep.

The next morning, we got Starbucks for breakfast inside the hotel and then hit the pool at 10:00…

…the bigs and the littles 🙂 .

We swam, we ate and we enjoyed the day!  We had more s’mores after dinner and then…

…watched Coco that night.  I only took two pics on this day…so clearly, I was too busy having fun!  Isn’t that setting beautiful?!  They served us free popcorn and gave us towels to make the whole thing so comfy and nice.

We didn’t get back to our rooms until 10…which means we were outside for 12 hours this day (and the next!).

The next morning…

…there were lamas in the lobby.  Ha!

We went out to the pool at 10:00 again…

…and enjoyed the day!

For lunch, we walked over to this pizza place on the property.  And then as we were walking back to the pool, I looked up and saw this…

…my hearted melted.

We swam some more, ate dinner and then…

…enjoyed s’mores on our last night.  We followed that up with…

…watching Finding Dory outside 🙂 .

Ashby and Bowen all settled in with their popcorn ready to watch!

And Madeley too!

We went back to our rooms again around 10:00 and headed to bed.  Poor Ebby Lee started feeling bad during the night, so the next morning, we left right on time and headed straight home.  We are so thankful that no one got sick any of the other days and that she felt better pretty quickly after that.

Erika and I consider our first annual road trip a HUGE success!  We didn’t lock our keys in the car, we didn’t lose anyone, we didn’t need to visit the ER, we didn’t cry (ha!)…we just had FUN!  We hope to follow in Melanie and Amy’s footsteps and have many years of road tripping in our future.  I sure do love all of these people so much!  We’re already planning our road trip for next summer…oh where the adventure might take us! xo

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  • Kelly July 31, 2018 at 4:44 am

    This is such a fun idea! Thanks for sharing your fun trip with us! One quick question- how did you two handle the logistics of 8 kids in this resort? Do you go with the “always stick with a buddy” rule and let them go off together (on the slides, lazy river, get a snack, use the restroom, etc), as long as they’re not alone? Or does one mom go for bathroom trips while the other watches all 7? Just curious- I’ve always wondered the right age and maturity level for this!!

    • Mix and Match Mama July 31, 2018 at 5:59 am

      Yup! This resort was gated and small, so it kept everyone really close. They each had a buddy and then the big kids took turns hanging with Ashby and Bowen. For the most part, they all stayed right there together (which is sweet!).

  • Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog July 31, 2018 at 4:47 am

    I’ve never had a road trip before but you’re making me want to go on one so bad! The kids’ Thing tshirts are SO cute, omg! 😀

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

  • Rebecca Rooney July 31, 2018 at 5:02 am

    Sounds like a great trip! You’ve had a busy summer!

  • Samantha Harris July 31, 2018 at 5:40 am

    Y’all are so brave! Wonderful memories!

  • Emily July 31, 2018 at 5:51 am

    Your posts always make me want to move to Texas! Love your framily times and only hope we will find friends with kids the same age to do such things with.

    With all the talk lately about water safety, I’m curious at what age you felt comfortable letting kids swim on their own? I don’t think there is a right or wrong answer here and I know you do swim lessons etc to make sure kids are safe. You just mentioned the big kids doing the lazy river so I got curious. I remember having a lot of swimming and bike riding freedom as a child but times change with each generation.

    • Mix and Match Mama July 31, 2018 at 5:57 am

      I think it all depends on the situation. This lazy river was only 1 to 3 feet deep all the way around…there are other lazy rivers at other locations that I wouldn’t let them do alone (like at the Atlantis for instance!). This whole resort area was small, so it was perfect for two moms keeping up with 8 kids.

  • Alexis deZayas July 31, 2018 at 6:00 am

    Such sweet memories!! What a perfect spot for the kiddos!

  • Elspeth Mizner July 31, 2018 at 6:22 am

    Wow! Sounds fun! Great idea making stops along the way for more fun things!!

  • Erika Slaughter July 31, 2018 at 6:25 am

    SO MUCH FUN!!!! I’m noticing I got my days mixed up on my post but when you’re “resorting” that’s what happens-you lose track of your days. Right?? 🙈🙈 We had a blast and are already looking forward to the 2nd Annual Trip!

  • Anna July 31, 2018 at 6:42 am

    I just wanted to say I’ve been so inspired by you that my husband and I are finally following in your footsteps of saving up 2 years for a trip! We are planning for Australia and New Zealand for 2020!

  • Narci Dreffs July 31, 2018 at 6:42 am

    What a fun trip!! I love all the pics from Magnolia and the resort! What a blast!!

  • Sheaffer Sims July 31, 2018 at 6:42 am

    Well, it looks like y’all had a great time and made some wonderful memories! It looks like I had a panic attack for no reason!!! 😉

  • Tracy B Borgmeyer July 31, 2018 at 7:23 am

    I am so excited that you went to Inner Space Caverns! We’re already planning a trip there this weekend and I was thrilled to see that you went! (It’s always so great to see your posts before I venture out with the family to uncharted territories!)

  • Heather July 31, 2018 at 7:27 am

    Those are actually alpacas not llamas…I know because we got married at the Lost Pines and had one of the alpacas roaming around during our cocktail hour (it was a hit)! Lost Pines is one of our favorite staycation resorts, so I’m glad y’all had such a wonderful time

    • Mix and Match Mama July 31, 2018 at 7:47 am

      Well, there you go! Hahahaha!

  • Erin Port July 31, 2018 at 7:33 am

    Oh my word that is just SO fun! We are caravaning with our besties up to our lake cabin this weekend and the kids can hardly wait 🙂

  • Amanda @ Cupcake N Dreams July 31, 2018 at 7:36 am

    What a great memory to start for the kids! I remember most of the times my mom and aunt would bring my cousins and I to RI in the spring just us and the moms. I love how much you and Erika do with your kids! Especially having 8 between you guys!!
    Amanda @ Cupcake N Dreams

  • Mandi July 31, 2018 at 7:48 am

    We do a similar trip every year with my sister and her 3 kids so 7 kids and 3 adults (grandma comes). One year we took the train and it was so fun because everyone could somewhat move around. Our tip would be if you have a big group just pay a little extra and buy the whole first class car so you have the whole place to yourself. It was a fun way to travel.

  • Jessica July 31, 2018 at 7:51 am

    How did you do rooms? We have been wanting to go to Lost Pines but as a family of six we can’t decide on logistics. Do we have to have two rooms for a family our size?

    • Mix and Match Mama July 31, 2018 at 8:19 am

      They allowed us to put five in one room! We each had standard rooms.

  • Elaine July 31, 2018 at 8:21 am

    So glad you shared this! We are actually moving to Austin soon! We already love the Czech Stop and Waco, but haven’t done much of the others! I’ll add these to my list!

  • Heather Stanton July 31, 2018 at 8:42 am

    Please, please share where you and Erika get your energy and stamina! Packing and loading kids ✅. Breakfast stop✅ Magnolia ✅ Dr. Pepper ✅. Lunch ✅. Spurluniking with littles✅ Drive to hotel…then swim✅ Dinner✅ Bed✅ Good heavens! I would need IV caffeine! Well done Mommas!!! Ps….does anyone else think Smith is the spitting image of Andrew?? The KS shirt…Yankee hat…they look identical!

    • Mix and Match Mama July 31, 2018 at 2:34 pm

      Bahahahahaha! Does the answer “coffee” count?!

  • Becky July 31, 2018 at 8:45 am

    We’ve been to Lost Pines but have never been to the JW Marriott… I know you’ve now been to both…How do they compare?

  • Kelly July 31, 2018 at 8:55 am

    Such a fun thing to do! I’m so glad that it went so well and that there will be more “framily” road trips in your future. You are making such great memories for your kids!

  • Mary July 31, 2018 at 9:04 am

    Hi! Fun trip!! What lipstick are you wearing? Also, are you using the same serum you posted about a few months ago? Your skin looks great!!

    • Mix and Match Mama July 31, 2018 at 2:34 pm

      Yesssss! Love it! I think I’m wearing Bobbi Brown’s Bikini Pink!

  • Casey July 31, 2018 at 9:08 am

    I grew up in Georgetown, Inner Space Caverns was just down the road. It was basically every school field trip. My grandparents took me to Waco on a trip, & we did the Dr Pepper museum & the Domino Factory (you can get a custom set of dominos) – both were so great!

  • Clare B July 31, 2018 at 9:20 am

    We love the Lost Pines and smores out by the big fire pit! Glad y’all had so much fun!

  • Tracy July 31, 2018 at 9:24 am

    What fun! Great memories you’re making for your kiddos.

  • Sara mayo July 31, 2018 at 9:31 am

    What a perfect summer your family has had. So happy for you!!! How do you drink your coffee and what’s your favorite brand?

    • Mix and Match Mama July 31, 2018 at 2:33 pm

      Lately, I’ve been loving Dunkin’ Donuts whole bean with a splash of cream and one Truvia!

  • Brooke Richardson July 31, 2018 at 10:00 am

    Looks like a blast!!!!! I wish I just had a tiny fraction of Madeley’s tan. Lol.

    • Mix and Match Mama July 31, 2018 at 2:33 pm


  • Amanda @ That Inspired Chick July 31, 2018 at 10:32 am

    This looks like so much fun!! I had no idea this place even existed! Keeping it in mind for Spring Break next year. Loved all the pictures!
    That Inspired Chick

  • Rachel July 31, 2018 at 11:25 am

    I’m so curious how you manage nap & eating schedules, especially with little ones, on trips like this! I only have one (haha) so maybe that’s why I’m amazing at this :p I’ll probably loosen up with baby number 2 (due any day now) 🙂 But am especially curious how the littles do with staying out until 10pm? Do they adjust pretty well to “vacation schedule”?

    • Mix and Match Mama July 31, 2018 at 2:33 pm

      Those fourth kiddos have adapted so well!! That being said, every day Britt and Madeley both fell asleep on a lounger for at least an hour or so. I’m not sure why no photos were taken because it was realllllly cute!

  • Darcy July 31, 2018 at 11:43 am

    So fun!!! And I love how K is standing on her tippy toes in the Magnolia group picture. 🙂 I can’t wait to road trip with my boys some day! (2 1/2 and 1)

  • Karen July 31, 2018 at 11:55 am

    Shay, (maybe it’s just me?, but) your road trip shirt is not linking for me.. Could you take a look?

    • Mix and Match Mama July 31, 2018 at 2:32 pm

      I just checked (bc 99.9% of the time, it’s me) and it worked!

      • Claudia July 31, 2018 at 10:31 pm

        Still doesn’t work?

        • Mix and Match Mama August 1, 2018 at 5:49 am

          Well, that is just weird! Email me! I’ll get you there!

          • Claudia August 1, 2018 at 7:21 pm

            What is your email address? It says something is wrong with the URL

          • Mix and Match Mama August 2, 2018 at 5:42 am


      • Karen August 1, 2018 at 9:16 am

        Thanks for checking!! It must be my computer!! Boo to my silly PC. 🙂

  • Susie Harrold July 31, 2018 at 12:23 pm

    Have you been to Magnolia on another occasion? Some tips would be great because everything I’ve read is all about the crowd. I though a weekday would work, and being there at opening, of course. I was surprised y’all didn’t stop I at the bakery!!

  • Leanne Gilchrist July 31, 2018 at 12:50 pm

    This looks like the BEST trip!!! I just melted at the way Britt was smiling now! She’s changed so much in the time she’s been in her Forever Family! And Ashby…And Madeley!!!??? AWWWW!!!! Having bonds are so important and so special! Thanks for letting us see into your days, your trips, and thanks for “sharing” your family with us! My daughter, Lucie, is Kensington’s age, and Kensington’s care for the littles reminds me so much of our Lucie! Sigh. It’s just so good to see you all thriving!

  • carol July 31, 2018 at 1:49 pm

    Madeley’s brown as a berry tan makes me smile every time I see her.

  • Denise July 31, 2018 at 1:51 pm

    Lol never knew Gulley’s real name!

  • Liz July 31, 2018 at 2:26 pm

    of you!❤️

  • Jordan July 31, 2018 at 6:10 pm

    What a fun idea! If you are ever looking for a fun summer road trip with the kids, check out Broken Bow, OK. There’s so many kid friendly things to do and you can rent a cabin on AIR BNB or VBRO for so cheap. It’s onky three hours north of us (I’m in Frisco). I think y’all would love it if you haven’t been there yet 🙂 If you end up going there The Grateful Head has the best pizza!

  • Angelique at Four Points Mom August 1, 2018 at 10:10 pm

    You were in my neck of the woods and didn’t say hello!!! ;). So glad you had a blast. We’ve been meaning to try out Lost Pines, especially since we had a blast at the JW Marriott Hill Country last year. I think a girls weekend with the kids would be a great excuse to do so!