10 Year Trips & More!

Happy first week of SUMMER to us!!!

I don’t know where you are right now…but geez, I hope it’s “summer” there already.  This is our first full week, and I’m already in deep.  I love the lazy mornings, the late nights and all of the fun outdoors.

Today, I have a super sweet post because I’m going to share with you all about our 10 Year Trips as I share PART 1 of my Vacation Essentials with Nordstrom for your kids (PART 2 will be on Thursday as I tell you what I’m bringing on MY vacation!), but today, is all about the kids (Kensington in particular!).   I partner with Nordstrom a lot because I am always so pleased when I shop there.  They just make everything EASY!  From free shipping and returns (which I do all the time!) to their expertise and knowledge in all departments to their amazing customer service (they want you happy with what you pay for), I could shop anywhere, but I continue to go back to them time and time again.

In our family, we have been counting down to today for months now.  This morning, Kensington left on her 10 Year Trip with my mom and dad.  When I was younger, my grandparents took all of their grandkids on a vacation when they turned twelve.  We could pick anywhere we wanted to go and they took us.  I remember that trip like it was yesterday!  Just look…


To be fair, it was July 4th (I have no excuses for the shorts, fanny pack and socks though…).

This trip was really sweet and special for so many reasons, but none more than the fact that I am their oldest grandkiddo, and I’m sure sitting there on the beach that day, they had all the hopes and dreams of the trips to come…and my grandfather wouldn’t live to see them all.  I am so thankful that I got to take that 12 year old trip because only five years later, at 64, he was gone. My grandmother took my youngest cousin by herself when she turned 12, so the tradition was completed, just not the way we all thought it would be.

Since the day Kensington was born, my parents have said they were going to do the same thing when their grandkids turned 10 (they tweaked the age), and today, they’re doing their first one with Kensington!  My dad literally gave her a map and said to pick her destination and she picked…Maui too 🙂 .  I’m not sure if it’s because that’s where her mom picked and it sounded like fun, or if it’s because we don’t typically take beach vacations over at the Shull house…but she is Maui bound this morning.  I haven’t seen her this excited in a long time.  She cannot wait to be there with just her grandparents!

She couldn’t go on a beach vacation unprepared, so the other day, Kensington, Madeley and I headed out to do some shopping and get her vacation ready…

…first stop, we hit the Nordstrom bistro at our local store for some fuel.  How cute is she?!

Here we are on the other side of the booth 🙂 .  We had a yummy lunch and then we hit the store for some kids summer essentials…

We came home from Nordstrom with two pairs of shorts: white and denim along with three really cute tops: coral, pineapple and eyelet!

How adorable is this romper?!

A palm tree cover up?  Yes, please!  And the cutest ruffled swimsuit too!

She couldn’t go without a beach bag and sunglasses either!

And of course…


I’m sure I’ll have a million pictures of her post-trip to show you, but I wanted you to see what we bought for her fun vacation.

Okay, speaking of a million pictures, friends, how cute are these first day/last day pictures from Thursday…

Look how much she grew this year!!  I mean…SO MUCH!  She entered 4th grade a little girl and came out a pre-teen.  What in the world?!  #someoneholdme  (Clearly, she loves that dress she has on because she is wearing it in almost every picture in today’s post!  That was not on purpose! Hahaha!  She also loves those sneakers and wears them every.single.day!)

Look at this cutie pie!  We finished kindergarten!!  I was just so proud of Ashby this year!  She NAILED it!  I was nervous for #allthethings that could have gone wrong this year, but instead, she thrived!!  She thought her animal dress was the perfect “end of school” dress.  Who doesn’t want a soft cotton dress with bright animals all over it?!  She’s also a big fan of her sandals too 🙂 .

This guy loves wearing the same thing on the first and last day (or at least as close as he can).  I think it might be time to retire his tee 🙂 .  Smith is just always our constant over here.  He just goes to school, handles his business, never complains, makes a ton of friends, is always happy…he just is that kid who never makes his mama worry (at least not yet).  I’m so happy he had a great 3rd grade year!

And little Miss Madeley already finished school before Memorial Day, but she wanted a pic too 🙂 .  Have you guys bought Mini Melissas for your girls?  I’ve talked about them for years and years around here because they’re my favorite shoes for young girls.  They’re comfy, you can hose them off, they’re cute, they wear so well and they smell like strawberries!  I can’t even tell you how many pairs we’ve bought over the years, but I continue to buy them because the quality is amazing.  These right here come in several colors, but Madeley’s heart loved the pink the most.

These sisters still ask to be dressed alike!  The only difference now?  Ashby is loving her “big girl” sandals .

Last day of school, y’all!

Speaking of cute dresses that are easy to wear, look at these

…on Friday night, we found ourselves with the little girls only because both big kids had plans (foreshadowing, anyone?!).  Same shoes…cute pink dresses!

Andrew and I took them to the square for pizza at our favorite pub.  They did not hate all of the attention.

You can find their dresses HERE .  Their spunk?  It’s the one thing you cannot buy at Nordstrom 😉 .

One more “cute dress” reminder.  Remember these from two weeks ago?

All of the red, white and blue fun is still in stock!

Okay, here is what everyone is wearing:
Smith’s tee
Smith’s sandals
Ashby and Madeley’s dresses
Kensington’s dress
Madeley’s shoes
Ashby’s shoes
Kensington’s shoes

I mentioned the girls’ shoes up there, but I want to remind you how much Smith loved his Natives when he was younger.  I have probably blogged about Natives like 4 billion times.  What are Natives?  These…

…they make them for both boys and girls and they’re amazing!  Just like the Mini Melissas, you can play hard in them and then hose them off later.  They come in a gazillion fun colors and wear SO WELL!  They are the perfect summer shoe!

Whew!  That’s a lot in one post!  Our 10 Year Trip tradition, last day of school pics, cute summer dresses, the best shoes for the season and so much love for Nordstrom where you can get it all.  On Thursday, I’m showing you what’s inside my suitcase for our upcoming vacation!!  From beauty stuff to clothes, shoes and accessories too, I’m going to need to pack this week just so you can see 🙂 .  In the meantime…

…our house won’t feel the same this week as we miss our big girl so much!  It’s just not going to be the same around here without her.  Frenchie Macaroon is sure going to have a sad week too 😉 .

Want to hear one more cool thing before we call it a day?

Today, my parents celebrate 42 YEARS OF MARRIAGE!

How awesome is that?!  Happy anniversary Mom and Dad!! xo

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  • Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog June 3, 2019 at 4:57 am

    Oh my gosh, the kids look adorable in their new clothes! Perfect for vacationing! 🙂

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

    • Darlene mitchell June 3, 2019 at 3:23 pm

      Shay, I love the post you did today!!! It’s brings back so many good memories for the grandparents as well. We loved you so much before the trip but we learned so much about you on the trip that we didn’t know. One thing was how you never missed a night doing your bible study, no matter how late it was when we got back to the hotel. So many other things that made you the wonderful person you are today. Love you always ❤️

      • Mix and Match Mama June 3, 2019 at 3:34 pm

        Love you so much, Grandmother!!

  • Danielle June 3, 2019 at 5:06 am

    Hi Shay! Do you find you need to size down or up in the mini melissa shoes? My daughter is a size 7.5 toddler. I love the shoes, I just don’t know what size to get her!

    • Mix and Match Mama June 3, 2019 at 5:30 am

      I would not size down. When in doubt with MM, I would go to the next size up.

  • susan Jeffries June 3, 2019 at 5:09 am

    Your kids are so blessed to have wonderful grandparents!! And Kensington looks exactly like you in your younger years photos(:

  • Mallory June 3, 2019 at 5:25 am

    So cool! My grandma did the same thing with me, my sisters, and my cousins, except for us, instead of an age, we got our special trip the summer after we finished 8th grade. I spent my 13th birthday on a plane back from Rome! 🙂

  • Erika Slaughter June 3, 2019 at 5:27 am

    I’m so excited for Kensington! She was pumped about this trip! Can’t wait to hear all about it!

  • Susy June 3, 2019 at 5:46 am

    Those trips are an even greater gift for the grandparents—a time to create an immeasurable bond—Italy for the first 12-year old; Eastern Europe for the second! Laughter and joy and never even mentioned their parents! Precious, precious moments!

  • Narci June 3, 2019 at 6:43 am

    How fun!!! I know she is going to have a blast on this trip with her grandparents! So special. 🙂

  • Kate June 3, 2019 at 6:49 am

    You and your family are very very blessed! My parents have only brought my 12 and 15 year old out to dinner twice and to a local jump place once 😂 Seriously though, what a fun tradition! Is it a “Southern tradition” because I’ve never heard of it until now!

  • Robyn June 3, 2019 at 6:51 am

    So excited for Kensington! Also, I love the posts about clothes for girls Kensington’s age! I have such a hard time finding clothes for girls that are cute and age appropriate. I still want my girls to dress like little girls and not teenagers when they are only 7!

  • Maria June 3, 2019 at 7:00 am

    Happy Anniversary to your parents! My parents are celebrating their 46th wedding anniversary today as well!

  • Leah June 3, 2019 at 7:02 am

    My grandparents also took us all on a trip when we turned 10! This Wisconsin girl chose Texas… we stayed at the beach! Unfortunately, my grandpa also past before all the cousins had their trips but my grandma still took the last cousin on his trip. My cousins and I still talk about the fun we had on those trips! Such a fun tradition.

  • Jeni June 3, 2019 at 7:03 am

    How exciting for Kensington…such a special time for her!!! And-do all of her beach clothes come in my size??? For real-I would wear them all!!! Hope she has the best trip.

  • KJ June 3, 2019 at 7:09 am

    My grandfather did the same for all 11of his grandchildren at 15 years old. Especially with him now gone, I’m SO grateful for the memories from my cruise to the Bahamas.

  • Alexis deZayas June 3, 2019 at 7:17 am

    How fun is that?! I’m going to Maui for the first time later this summer so can’t wait to hear all about their trip!

  • April Parrish June 3, 2019 at 7:19 am

    What a great tradition! A trip that Kensington can cherish for a lifetime. Happy Anniversary to your parents!

  • Elena June 3, 2019 at 7:19 am

    Do you have Texas road trip suggestions? We live in Texas and typically go to San Antonio or Houston – where else are good destinations in Texas?

    • Mix and Match Mama June 3, 2019 at 7:53 am

      Have you been to Fredericksburgh? It’s our favorite!!!

  • Sheaffer Sims June 3, 2019 at 7:21 am

    I’m so jealous of Kensington and her trip! How amazing! And I cannot get over how much she’s grown this year. One more thing, after getting a whiff of Carter’s shoes last week, I really wish he had shoes that smelled like strawberries.

  • Amanda Wilson June 3, 2019 at 7:22 am

    Wow!! Just when I think your family couldn’t possibly be any more awesome!!! We decided we were going to take our kids on a trip anywhere they’d wanted to go in the world when they turn 17. One last hurrah at home to show them a piece of the world. I can’t wait to see all the pics of Kensington’s trip. Her hair is getting so long and she is just growing up so fast.

  • Elspeth Mizner June 3, 2019 at 7:41 am

    What a fun tradition! So excited for Kensington! Cant wait to hear all about it! Its amazing how much they grow from school year to school year! Happy Summer Shull family!

  • Amanda @ That inspired Chick June 3, 2019 at 7:51 am

    So fun!!! She is going to have a blast!! And I’m pretty sure I could match that fanny pack pic, look for look. 😂

  • Liz Winter June 3, 2019 at 7:56 am

    What a blessed little girl— amazing! And Maui is a solid choice! What memories they will make together!
    Happy 42 years to your parents! 🥂

  • Kathy June 3, 2019 at 8:49 am

    What a fun tradition to pass down for your family! I know Kensington is going to treasure the memories she makes with her grandparents. Happy Anniversary to them! Love all the cute stuff you picked up for her Maui trip, and the cute dresses and sandals for the little girls at Nordstrom. I love shopping there too!

  • Alyssa Marie June 3, 2019 at 8:57 am

    Hi Shay! Did you know they also make Natives in adult sizes? They’re equally as great (gardening, rainy days, etc.) and come in super cute colors. I have noticed recently they’re branching out into more “modern” styles- think pointy toe. Hope you have a great day 🙂

    • J June 3, 2019 at 9:45 am

      Happy Anniversary to your parents of 42 years and counting!
      Yay for Kensington with her 1st trip with her grandparents! Making memories happen! 🌴☀🌈

  • Erin Rohman June 3, 2019 at 9:08 am

    We are headed to Maui this fall with our kids so I’d love to read a little recap of K’s trip if it’s feasible 😉 She looks so excited!

  • Katy June 3, 2019 at 9:23 am

    So fun!! My husband and I just got home from Maui! We took my parents (their first time there) and had the best time! If your parents are looking for a cool place for dinner that Kensington will love too I highly recommend Fleetwoods on Front Street..their house band The House Shakers play on Thursday and Fridays nights and they are amazing!! It’s a very cool spot (with yummy food!)

  • MelanieL June 3, 2019 at 9:27 am

    I love this so much! My sister and I are the only grandkids on my mom’s side and our grandparents took us on fun vacations 5 years in a row and paid for our mom to take us to Disney one year lol (they weren’t going there)! Kensington will have the best time!

  • Joan Dukore June 3, 2019 at 10:12 am

    My first trip/plane ride/hotel stay was in Maui when I was 8, and we stayed at the Maui Marriott too! This was in ’84. I’m from Oahu so it was a short flight. Chose the trip over having a birthday party. Just my mom and I.

  • Ella June 3, 2019 at 10:23 am

    My grandparents took us on trips as well. Since we have a large family, they took the older kids (usually 3 at a time) so my parents could focus on the younger kids for a few days. We didn’t get to choose where to go, usually somewhere within a few hours drive, and they chose the itinerary, so it was grandparent friendly.
    I have a ton of pictures and great memories of those trips.

  • Sarah June 3, 2019 at 10:27 am

    Your grandmother looks exactly the same, what a doll!! I spent a lot of time with my grandparents when I was a teenager and loved it. What a special time to spend together. Good choice with Maui, she knows her stuff!

  • Lauren Chitwood June 3, 2019 at 10:39 am

    Wow, can your family just adopt me? 🙂 Also, I am so obsessed with this blog that last night i literally had a dream I was hanging out with your family… haha how odd is that?! So funny, I woke up and told my husband and he thinks I am so weird, but I just love you guys THAT much! 🙂 Enjoy your first week of summer!!

  • Lauren S Chitwood June 3, 2019 at 10:41 am

    One more question! My husband and I will be married 2 years in July. We want to go somewhere budget friendly but fun and warm. Any suggestions that is on the cheaper side but fun and warm?

    • Mix and Match Mama June 3, 2019 at 2:31 pm

      Where do you live? Does it need to be within driving distance?

      • lauren June 3, 2019 at 3:00 pm

        We live in Colorado! Driving distance or flying! 🙂

        • Mix and Match Mama June 3, 2019 at 3:35 pm

          Okay, I’m a big fan of Mexico (it’s easy to get there and gorgeous), but I also have people tell me all the time that 30A in Florida is great too!

  • Beth Knecht June 3, 2019 at 11:14 am

    What a fun tradition! I love any tradition that involves spending quality time together! We are currently in Maui on the Pride of America. I will think of Kensington when the airplanes fly over!

  • Lydia June 3, 2019 at 11:37 am

    In the UK we’ve just had a weeks break from school (half term) and started back today for another 7.5 weeks until summer ☹️

  • Olivia June 3, 2019 at 12:25 pm

    Oh wow that is amazing! I bet she’ll have so much fun.

  • Natalie June 3, 2019 at 12:37 pm

    Wow! That is wonderful for Kensington. Maui is beautiful . She will love it . Why don’t you pick beach vacations? I have noticed that . Although , I would love to go on some of your trips .

    • Mix and Match Mama June 3, 2019 at 2:30 pm

      Andrew and I like to go and see. Some people go on trips to relax (and that’s totally fine!), but we like to go to do things, explore, learn…one beach day is good for us, but we couldn’t really do a whole week of it.

  • Lauren June 3, 2019 at 1:16 pm

    This has nothing to do with this blog post. I just wanted to let you know that I have followed your blog for a while now, and all your stories of adoption. Both of my cousin’s are adopted, but within the United States. Today, my oldest cousin, who is 22 and 1st runner up to Miss Mississippi, I thought you might like to read a blog post she wrote today. It’s very touching. All adoptive parents should read. https://www.arrowandroot.org/blog/what-they-don-t-tell-you-about-miracles

    • Mix and Match Mama June 3, 2019 at 2:29 pm

      Oh my gosh!!! Going to read it now!! How cool is that?!

  • Amanda @ Cupcake N Dreams June 3, 2019 at 1:42 pm

    Aw I saw your dad’s post on instagram and wondered where they were off to. What an amazing experience to have with your grandparents. I was able to orchestrate a European trip (their first!) with mine a few years and I will never forget those memories. I know a special little girl who could use some of those adorable dresses! Thanks for sharing!

    Amanda @ Cupcake N Dreams 

  • Katie June 3, 2019 at 2:08 pm

    Have you gotten a pair of Natives for yourself?? I ordered some a few weeks ago and I absolutely LOVE them! Perfect for yard work and all things outdoors when you want more than a sandal!

  • Leslie S June 3, 2019 at 2:28 pm

    What an awesome tradition! Our parents are older, so trips with grands won’t be possible. BUT I think we will just have to start this tradition on our own with our kids! It will be awesome and I’m so excited thinking about it! Thankyou for sharing your family with us – I’ve gotten some wonderful inspiration from you to tweak for my family! HAPPY SUMMER SHULL FAMILY!

  • KENDRA BLAKE June 3, 2019 at 2:37 pm

    Wow, 2 trips just for her 10th birthday!! That’s amazing. Can’t wait to see what she gets when she turns 16. Lucky little chick-a-dee!

  • Laura June 3, 2019 at 2:48 pm

    I just LOVE how amazing they are to their grandchildren!!! I’m heading to Kona with my grandparents this month! The exact same thing, I’m the youngest girl grandchild and it’ll be just us 3 🙂 I hope Kensington has the best time, grandparents are some of our most cherished gifts God gave us! Happy Summer Shay!!!!

  • Katie Stuen June 3, 2019 at 4:57 pm

    What a fun tradition! My grandparents did this when we graduated high school. My grandpa rolled out a map and I chose to go to New York. My sister picked Disneyland (We live in LA)…odd choice in my opinion lol. My cousin picked Minnesota and now they are down to the last one next year.
    Can’t wait to see pictures!

  • Ruth June 3, 2019 at 5:52 pm

    Maui is wonderful and how fun for Kensington to go on a solo trip with her grandparents, what special memories she will have. I will add though, my husband and I went to Maui for our honeymoon and I’ve been to Oahu. I spent probably two days total on both trips at the beach. A lot of time was spent driving around exploring the islands and their landmarks, etc. Pearl Harbor, the dole plantation, hiking, or just walking around the old school towns😁

  • Mary Dollar June 3, 2019 at 6:01 pm

    I had forgotten how young you were when your granddad left us. He was a beautiful soul, gone too soon!

    • Mix and Match Mama June 4, 2019 at 5:54 am

      He died two months before I turned 18. That will be 20 years this August 10th!

  • Ave Perry June 3, 2019 at 6:58 pm

    What an amazing family tradition! I have a random question about your hair stylist. I am in desperate need of a haircut and your hair always looks so good.

    • Mix and Match Mama June 4, 2019 at 5:53 am

      Ah! Thank you! Email me and I’ll give you her contact info. I’ve been going to her for 16 years.

  • Megan June 3, 2019 at 7:36 pm

    Where did Sean and your cousins go on their trip? Such a fun idea!!!

    • Mix and Match Mama June 4, 2019 at 5:53 am

      The Bahamas (Sean and then my cousin Brandon went there too) and Brooke went on a Disney Land & Sea vacation.

  • Ash June 3, 2019 at 7:40 pm

    Love this so much!!!! Can’t wait to see how much fun she has! We’ll be there with kids in 17 days!

  • Desiree |Beautifully Seaside June 3, 2019 at 9:11 pm

    So sweet! Your babies are sooooo beautiful and I love how much they’ve grown in one year! Congratulations to your parent’s 42 wedding anniversary! Showers of Blessings from Jesus over them always! XOXO

  • WhittyWife June 3, 2019 at 9:27 pm

    What an fun trip for Kensington!! I’m fairly certain your beautiful grandmother never ages! ❤ Also, Ashby’s arm looks amazing!! She looks so healthy – the surgeries must be helping so much!

  • Laurie June 4, 2019 at 5:33 am

    Where did Sean go for his trip?? And your cousins?

    • Mix and Match Mama June 4, 2019 at 5:52 am

      Sean and my cousin Brandon went to the Atlantis in the Bahamas (not together, they just both picked that destination) and my cousin Brooke went on a Disney Land & Sea vacation.

  • TG June 4, 2019 at 10:49 am


    Did you plan this trip for the 3 of them? Do you typically plan your parents vacations through your travel agency?

    • Mix and Match Mama June 4, 2019 at 11:43 am

      I do, I do, I do!

      • TG June 4, 2019 at 6:27 pm

        So fun!

  • Diana June 4, 2019 at 2:07 pm

    What a fun tradition! You all are so fortunate to have grandparents that can afford trips like that! Great quality family time! 🙂

  • Sarah Lewis June 4, 2019 at 10:33 pm

    What an amazing idea! I’m going to nudge my parents to do this too! Also, I can’t get over how awesome Ashby’s arm looks in that pic of her and Madeley in matching dresses! I can tell such a huge difference in just how she’s holding her fingers and wrist!

  • Annie June 8, 2019 at 9:13 pm

    How do you keep Kensington’s white shorts clean? I need allll your laundry secrets!

    • Mix and Match Mama June 9, 2019 at 7:29 am

      Oh my gosh, I’m the last person to give laundry tips! I’m the worst!! I do separate whites from other colors, but that’s about it. I add in oxi clean. I mean…I’m a really lazy laundry person. #sigh