Tuesday, August 26, 2014

2014 Hilton Head, South Carolina

Hilton Head, South Carolina

Accommodations: Marriott’s Sea Pines Resorts
Hotel Activities: Beach, Pool
Outside Hilton Head: 2 Hour Kayaking Tour from Shelter Cove Marina
Restaurants: One Hot Mama’s Restaurant

What a great vacation! We had a wonderful week long trip to Hilton Head South Carolina. The 12 hour drive was a bit tiresome for the 4 of us, but we had scavenger hunts, the license plate game, bingo boards and some books on tape to entertain ourselves! 

I had spent a few hours putting together the 100 item scavenger hunt for the drive. This was good for both the 7 and 9 year old but the 9 year old was more interested in the license plate game than the 7 year old. I'll post a link for these files to this post. If you have younger kids you could do this with pictures instead of text and they could find the pictures. 

We also played word games such as picking a category and then listing items that start with the last letter of the previous word "a is for alligator, r is for rhino, o is for ostrich..." another game was listing out animals in alphabetical order.

Almost all of our time was spent relaxing at the beach, playing with our boogie boards and building sand castles. There are lots of sand dollars in the shallow part of the beach that you might step on and we found many pretty shells. The kids had never been to an ocean beach before and were very concerned about being in the water. This was an awesome first beach experience. The water was warm and there was no undertow. The beach was clean and had soft sand (aka I grew up with the Maine rocky beaches). 

There were 2 pools and a kid’s sprinkler pool. The hotel offers activities that families can join. There were cook outs, tie dye shirts, limbo, complimentary exercise classes, hammocks, corn hole, shuffle board, and more. We brought bikes because there are many bike trails but we were having too much fun at the beach to go exploring too far. They also have bike rentals for tandem bikes, kid attachment bikes, and the bike trailers.

The first day there were jellyfish in the water. But we think it may have been because there had been a rain storm. Jellyfish stings are treated with spray bottle of salt water and vinegar. If you do get stung, use a lot of the spray! The spray will neutralize the stings and any stingers that are left on the skin. 

Our one adventure off the resorts property was with Outside Hilton Head. We went on a 2 hour kayaking tour from Shelter Cove Marina. A bit pricey but well worth it. We saw dolphins, birds, and were able to learn about the salt marshes. The salt marshes flood and then drain with each tide. Cordgrass is one of the main plants in the area and it can survive in that diverse environment. The cordgrass creates shelter and food for the fish, oysters, clams, and crabs.  
Baby lizard!
After kayaking we decided to check out One Hot Mama’s restaurant. Between the four of us we were able to have a good sample of the menu: pasta and sauce, brisket chili, baby back rib tips, grilled chicken breast, homemade kettle chips, baked beans, mac and cheese, and The Big Daddy super sandwich (beef brisket, pulled pork, pepper jack cheese, chipotle mayo, coleslaw, onion rings, on a homemade roll). Would we come back? Maybe. The food was tasty but I think there are many other restaurants in the area we would want to try out before coming back.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Corn, Tomato, and Avocado Salsa

Quick, light, and easy summer salsa. I brought this for a work potluck and served with chips. I had the leftovers that night on tacos. I prepared the salsa the night before to let the flavors mingle. Other versions include cumin for some kick. Enjoy!

Corn, Tomato, and Avocado Salsa

1 ear roasted corn, off the cob
1 Red (or orange, yellow, or green) Pepper, diced
2 Roma Tomato, diced
1 cup Cilantro, chopped
1 can Chickpeas (or beans of your choice)
1 lime, juiced
Salt and pepper to taste
1 Avocado, sliced

Combine all the ingredients above except the avocado. Add the avocado right before serving. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve.