Outer Banks Vacation: My Neapolitan Brother

With our first day mostly spent travelling to our Outer Banks beach house destination, everyone was eager to spend the second day on the beach soaking up the sun. And that’s exactly what we did. More so for some, like my brother, than others, as he turned into a human form of Neapolitan ice cream.

neapolitan, sunburn, outer banks, vacation, family, north carolina, beach, ocean

Not so much chocolate as strawberry and vanilla, but I’d make the argument he’s neapolitan-ish. All of us were like….

Popcorn Sunburn Joke Meme

But hey, you live you learn burn, right? He was in obvious pain almost the rest of the trip, but he handled it quite well. I’m sure his best friends Bud and Jack helped.

Going Mom, Avery, and I made sure to cover up with our skin-safe Badger Sunscreen and enjoyed our beach experience with only minimal burn. Not bad considering how long we spent digging in the sand and playing in the waves. The calm ocean waves made for a perfect first beach experience for Avery.

outer banks, vacation, family, north carolina, beach, ocean

Not a lot of people out there, but more came as the time passed. No crazy crowds though, which made it perfect for a family-friendly vacation. My top two goals for Avery’s first trip to the beach were to dig a big hole in the sand and play in the waves with her. Both were accomplished on the first day.

Playing in sand on beach with mommy and daddy
Taking a break after digging a family-sized hole

Even G-Ma got in on the hole digging action.

We’re digging to China! #beach #obx #outerbanks #funinthesun #familyfun #firsts

A photo posted by RC Liley (@going_dad) on

We were so close to China! I swear I could hear labors working hard on cheap plastic products to ship to the U.S. That’s when we decided to stop and make use of the abundant water resource (aka ocean) to wash off the sand and sweat.

outer banks, vacation, family, north carolina, beach, ocean

Avery took a few surfing lessons with good form.

outer banks, vacation, family, north carolina, beach, ocean, surfing

After riding the waves, Avery seemed to have a newfound pride/confidence exuding from within. What do you think?

outer banks, vacation, family, north carolina, beach, ocean
Yeah, I’m awesome

Our first day on the beach was a blast, and our daughter’s love of the ocean was confirmed.

A photo posted by RC Liley (@going_dad) on

From all of the family fun we had on day one, there’s no question we’ll make another trip to the ocean for a future family vacation. One of my other priorities while by the sea was to take advantage of the fresh, local seafood every day. For the first night, the seafood du jour was jumbo lump crab with chunks of avocado and a generous serving of veggies.

A photo posted by RC Liley (@going_dad) on

Kelley and Avery loved the crab. It was Avery’s first crab experience, and she was anything but crabby about it. Yeah yeah, I know, I’m corny. I was surprised that my wife, not the biggest fan of seafood, even enjoyed the meal. The three of us ate different meals than everyone else most of the time, but we did get to sit down together a few times.


Not a very clear picture, but I think it adds to the excitement felt by all. From left to right, that’s my cousin Aaron, grandma at the end of the table, and G-Ma, Avery, and my wife/Kelley/Going Mom. Avery could hardly sit still during dinner ever, but luckily G-Ma acted as a human restraint for the restless tot.


To top off the fun-filled day full of all play, no work (the exact opposite of The Shining for good reason), we watched the sun set behind a bushel of fluffy storm clouds emitting thunder and lightning.

outer banks, vacation, family, north carolina, beach, ocean

A thunderstorm rolled by that night, but didn’t last long. Good thing, because we had more plans for family fun on the beach ahead!

Outer Banks Vacation: Journey to the Beach House

The first day of our Outer Banks family vacation was mostly just getting to our destination in Corolla, NC. We rented a beach house through Seaside Vacations for Going Mom, Avery, G-Ma, Grandma, Uncle Preston, Aunt Tammy, Uncle Paul, and their boys/my cousins Aaron, Noah, and Nick.

Besides Kelley (aka Going Mom), Avery, my mom (G-Ma), Uncle Preston, and myself, the rest of the family were driving down from their home state of Pennsylvania. For us, we first had a plane trip to Richmond, Virginia.

Outer Banks, vacation, beach, ocean, family, kids, parenting, travel, richmond, virginia, airport

From Richmond, we rented a car to drive four hours to our destination.

Outer Banks, vacation, beach, ocean, family, kids, parenting, travel, richmond, virginia, airport

Then we could officially start our vacation. Unless you count waking up at around 4 am with a toddler as vacation.

Surprisingly, Avery handled getting up and out the door much better than expected. If I had placed a bet on it, I would’ve been out money. One of our friends, Mr. Penta, was so kind as to agree to drop us off and keep our car at his house so we didn’t have to pay for parking. How awesome is that? I’m scared of when we will have to pay him back by driving him to the airport a 5 in the morning on a weekend. Geesh!

Getting to the airport proved issue-free, then we just had to find coffee (easy to do at DFW), and entertain this little girl.

Outer Banks, vacation, beach, ocean, family, kids, parenting, travel

Mommy and Daddy put Uncle P to work for as long as possible.

Outer Banks, vacation, beach, ocean, family, kids, parenting, travel

That did the trick for a bit. Of course, my little brother spent the entire night staying up partying with friends and had zero sleep, so his effectiveness only lasted so long. Luckily, boarding time arrived quickly. The bad part of this was that I downed a hefty dose of caffeine and needed to pee a lot. Happens every time, I never learn.

Going Mom and G-Ma sat with Avery in the middle and Uncle P and I sat on the same row but different sides with other people. We were right behind the girls though, which made for great entertainment watching them keep Avery busy. G-Ma always seems to put a smile on her face.

A photo posted by RC Liley (@going_dad) on

Again, Avery surprised us with how well she behaved on the flight. We expected her to sleep a little, but that never happened. Maybe that’s what she was trying to do as we waited for our car rental.

Outer Banks, vacation, beach, ocean, family, kids, parenting, travel, richmond, virginia, airport

Whatever she was going for, it never worked out as our rental car van was prepped and ready to go. If I had a preference in vans, I would’ve gone with the Honda Odyssey only because I’ve heard so many great things, but rocking the Chrysler Town & Country turned out to be pretty cool. Cool in the sense of vans, that is.

Chrysler Town & Country Van Rental for OBX

We found a Whole Foods Market and a Costco right next to each other in Newport News off the highway and planned to make a stop there.  As a family that avoids all fast food and eating out in general, finding a Whole Foods was essential as a place to grab wholesome food to fuel our journey. Having a group of hungry people riding in a van together is less than ideal, and thanks to Whole Foods, we avoided any hangry outbursts.

Group photo at Whole Foods Market
Group photo at Whole Foods Market

After getting a bite to eat, we bought a few groceries at Whole Foods and drove across the street to Costco for more food to bring to our rental house. And Uncle P was so amazed with the prices of Bud Light that he bought a case. Most was for him and Cousin Aaron to have while hanging out, but he made sure to enjoy a few beverages in the backseat as we made the trip.

No sleep and a few beers made for quality commentary from my brother. With every sight of water, bay, ocean, pond, or just a puddle, he’d say “That’s a good fishin’ hole right there.” and then laughed. Eventually, we were all saying it and laughing along. Why? No clue, but I’m sure lack of sleep played a role.

Avery gave in to a couple of very short naps as we drove, but the excitement of seeing construction trucks and spotting Jeeps just made it too hard to sleep I guess. With several beers down the hatch, Preston turned his third row seating into a bed the best he could for probably just around thirty minutes. He got a little more sleeping time since my navigator/wife never entered the exact address of our rental house and we ended up driving 5 miles past the place.

I gave her a hard time, but tried to back off once I realized I was pushing her patience too much. Note to all husbands, little sleep and food is not the time to give your spouse a hard time. Why do I feel like I’ve made note of this many times before?

Either way, arriving at our final vacation destination helped improve everyone’s mood. We quickly unpacked as we were greeted by the rest of our family who had arrived just a couple hours earlier. Before it turned dark, we walked the half mile distance down to the beach for Avery’s first official ocean sighting.

ocean, kids, experience, firsts, obx, corolla

She was amazed at the vast body of water and quickly fell in love. The waves were calm, the water pretty cool, but getting our feet in was a must. G-Ma took first dibs at getting her feet wet with Avery.


Going Mom is the camera expert in the family, so she took most of the pics, obviously. As she started shooting, I took my turn with Avery’s first ocean experience.


Kelley then took over playing with our precious daughter (who still had very little sleep!) and reveled at the site of the moon.


With the camera back in her control, my wife took a picture of the rest of us before we all returned back to the beach house.


Aunt Tammy happens to be quite the photographer as well, and she caught an excellent shot of our little family on the beach.

Outer Banks, vacation, beach, ocean, family, kids, parenting, travel

Tired, hungry, and in need of a shower, we quickly checked off each to-do before heading to our rooms for the night. Our sleeping quarters during the week long stay was the size of a dorm room with a bunk bed. The plan was daddy on top with mommy and Avery on bottom.

Bunk Bed in Outer Banks Beach House

Things don’t always go as planned though.

That’s it for day one. Stay tuned for our first full day of beach fun in the Outer Banks!

A Personal Opening Day + Puns for the Occasion

Upon the publishing of this post, I am preparing for my personal ‘opening day’ in a few hours. No, I’m joining a Major League Baseball team (how cool would that be?), I’m literally getting opened via incision in my right shoulder to release my entrapped suprascapular nerve.

Yeah, that atrophy thing I wrote about a couple months ago will hopefully be on its way to getting rectified with this surgery. Going Mom will be my escort to and from the hospital as G-Ma stays home to watch darling little girl. Whom, by the way, just took one big bittersweet step in growingup-ville with her new Naturepedic big kid bed.

opening day, funny, surgery, growing up

It doesn’t seem that long ago when I wrote about our first days of putting her in the crib. Seriously, this parenting thing takes a major emotional toll! I guess on the bright side, snuggling with her for a nap will be much easier than it was in the crib.

Testing out the crib on my birthday.

Anyway, *wipes tear from eye* back on track now. The surgery will be an outpatient procedure, so I get to go home the same day. Hopefully the anesthesia doesn’t make me too crazy or anything. I’d hate for Avery to see Daddy in some weird altered state that scares her or something. I might go crazy from lack of food alone since there’s no eating or drinking (even water) after midnight the night before and my opening day procedure doesn’t start until almost noon.

I’ve always been a fan of fasting, so at least it’s not a new thing to endure. And no getting the area wet for three days after means I won’t have a real shower until Saturday, but I’ll be sure to soak in a bath. You’re welcome, wife. 🙂

Once I’m able to get back in the groove of things, I have a little week long vacation to the Outer Banks I want to write about. Until then, I guess I’ll just depend on my trusty standby content of puns. And why not? They’re freakin’ awesome. Even the ones that elicit a sickly groan still bring a smile to the face……usually.

Since doctors, hospitals, and other medical areas are on the mind, today’s puns will be in these categories.

opening day, funny, puns, pun, humor, snowman

  • I had to drink food coloring after losing a bet. Luckily, I’m not sick, but I feel like I’ve dyed a little inside.
  • Listening to a brain surgeon and anaesthesiologist talk is mind numbing.
  • They tried to save him with an I.V. but it was all in vein.
  • An editor went to the doctor for help with his poor circulation.
  • The brain surgeon refused to take no for an answer, so I gave him a piece of my mind.
  • Two surgeons were joking about sutures and had each other in stitches.
  • A pediatrician is a doctor of little patients.
  • My hematologist said my outlook is good since I’m a B Positive type.
  • A doctor drank while putting on patients’ casts. He was soon plastered.
  • A surgeon’s comments are incisive remarks.
  • After 5 years with the same chiropractor, I had to change doctors. It was quite an adjustment.
  • I couldn’t decide which of two physicians to see. It was a paradox.
  • It was really crowded at the diet doctor’s office but then it thinned out.

Legion Genesis Greens Superfood Review

The supplement market is saturated with products promising a wide variety of health supporting nutrients in a convenient capsule or as a powder. Searching for a good brand with quality ingredients that actually do as the bold words on the bottle claim is stressful. Luckily, Legion Genesis delivers a powerful greens superfood punch and has the research to back it up.

As Legion says, there are two major reasons why most greens products fail on their promises:

Legion Athletics Genesis_Other Greens Don't Work

Legion Athletics provides a host of supplements for men and women wanting to perform at their best every day. They are committed to providing products with high quality, healthy ingredients at clinically effective doses backed by published research. This is what makes Legion’s Genesis Greens Superfood stand out among the rest.

A photo posted by RC Liley (@going_dad) on

I take many supplements each day. Some in powder form, some as capsules, and some as a liquid extracts. They all serve a purpose in helping me think, feel, and perform better, but it gets overwhelming trying to keep up with taking each one separately, not to mention time consuming by having to measure out each dose.

greens supplement superfood

With Genesis, most of the supplements I take are inside, and Legion did all the work for me by providing each ingredient at clinically effective dosages backed by research.

Legion Athletics Genesis Supplement Facts

When I was given the opportunity to review their greens supplement, I jumped at the chance to try their product. Not only would it save lots of time from measuring, I already know how Legion uses only the best ingredients and cares about what they put into every product they create.

Here’s a list of key benefits taken directly from Legion’s site:

Legion Athletics Genesis Supplement Benefits List

Genesis is geared towards active individuals, but even if you’re just getting started in living a healthier, active lifestyle, this superfood alone will help get you going and stay on the right path. Here are the main players in Genesis that give this powder such potency. Provided from their site.


Research shows that supplementation with spirulina

  • Improves the cholesterol profile [52]
  • Increases muscle endurance [53]
  • Helps control allergies [54]
  • Reduces muscle damage caused by exercise [55]
  • Helps the body eliminate heavy metals [56]
  • Lowers blood pressure [57]
  • Helps protect liver health [58]
  • Reduces systemic inflammation [59]
  • Improves insulin sensitivity [60]

The clinically effective dosage of spirulina ranges between 2 and 10 grams.


Astragalus Membranaceus

Research shows that supplementation with astragalus membranaceus…

There’s also animal research suggesting that astragalus promotes longevity, but this has yet to be explored in human studies. [69]


Moringa Oleifera

Research shows that supplementation with moringa…

  • Helps protect heart health [71]
  • Reduces blood pressure [72][73]
  • Mitigates DNA damage [74]
  • May have anti-cancer benefits [75]

The clinically effective dosage of moringa ranges between 500 and 2,000 milligrams of the leaf.



Research shows that supplementation with maca…

  • Improves subjective sense of well-being [76]
  • Improves sexual function in men and women [77]
  • Improves sperm production and health [78]
  • Improves libido in men and women [79][80]
  • Helps preserve joint health [81]
  • Can reduce feelings of anxiety and nonclinical depression [82]

The clinically effective dosage of maca extract ranges between 1 and 3 grams.


Broccoli Sprout

Research shows that sulforaphane is a promising anti-cancer nutrient and is also known to have potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. [85]

The clinically effective dosage of broccoli sprout depends on how much sulforaphane it provides, and the clinically effective dosage of sulforaphane is 1 to 9 milligrams.


But what about the taste? Something dark green with all of those healthy supplements must taste bad, right?

Nope. With the use of only stevia and erythritol as natural sweeteners and nothing artificial or full of fillers, the taste is quite pleasant. I just used water to mix my dose each day and could easily sip and enjoy the drink. If mixing with almond milk or in a smoothie, I bet it would be even better.

So it tastes good, but does it work?

Yes! I just returned from a week long family vacation and had no desire to lug my entire stack of supplements. Instead, I chose to bring Genesis to take at the start of each day. I’d drink a serving in water every morning on an empty stomach and could feel the smooth stream of energy, health and mood-boosting benefits throughout the day. Mixing is easy with no clumping in a shaker bottle. I mixed with a fork and had a few clumps, but since it tastes good, I didn’t mind.

As a guy who prefers to cook his own food, I had limited resources which meant I was eating less than usual. Being at the beach and a lover of all things active, I wasn’t just lounging around, I was fighting the waves, playing in the sand and water with my daughter, walking all over the area, and kayaking. I attribute my ability to maintain healthy energy levels and recover properly to do it all again to Genesis.

Legion Genesis_Perform Better

Playing with my daughter is extremely important to me, and my confidence in this supplement has been won for helping me perform at my best.

Standing with Avery in Ocean_Back

Even on the plane trip there and back, I was fasting until I could get to some real food, but Genesis kept me functioning at healthy levels. Without having water, I simply put the powder directly in my mouth and was amazed at how good it tasted like that. Imagine Pixie Sticks flavor, but in superfood form.

Now that we’re back home, I’m still taking Genesis every day and not touching my giant stack of supplements. I’m sure I’ll get back to them again, but why spend so much time when Legion has just what I want at the doses proven to work?

I’ve been completely satisfied with this greens superfood supplement and honestly can’t find anything bad to point out. Some people may not like the flavor, but I find it pleasing and could even eat it as a treat. I’ve used other healthy greens supplements and can say firsthand, they are not as pleasant.

Legion’s Genesis gives anyone that’s active or looking to become active what they need to get going. As a parent, I couldn’t recommend this enough to keep you performing at your best for you little ones. Life is too short not to get down and play with your family, so make sure you are living and leading the healthy life you want your loved ones to follow.

Legion Genesis_Be All That You Can Be

Check out Legion on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to keep up to date on their latests supplements and promotions.

Disclaimer: I received Legion Genesis free of charge in exchange for my honest review. All thoughts and opinions are 100% my own, and I truly love everything this company offers. Promise! 🙂 This post also contains affiliate links. If you click on them and make a purchase, I will earn a small commission. Thank you in advance if you do so. 🙂

What’s the Most Stressful Part of Vacation?

What’s up with vacations sometimes creating more stress than usual? Does vacation stress you out more than you’d incur had you not gone at all?

Of course, factors such as duration, destination, and who you’re vacationing with play a big role which will make stress levels vary. Luckily, we enjoyed the destination, Corolla, NC in the Outer Banks, and who we vacationed with, my wife, daughter, mom, brother, aunt, uncle, three cousins, and grandma.

vacation, family, obx, travel
Missing my oldest cousin, Nick, in this pic, but everyone else is present.

For us, it seemed to be the duration that took a toll. Don’t get me wrong, the time there was great, but it seems like more things to do pops up on our mental checklist for when we get home. It didn’t help that we returned to a home full of pee spots and hair patches left by  the stupid cat I refuse to claim. I don’t care how funny it is to watch him chase laser pointers, he needs to go.

But it’s not just pets, it’s the getting back in the groove of things, stocking a bare fridge and pantry (especially important when you cook all of your meals!), setting the old nap and bedtime routine for kids, unpacking, cleaning, etc. While packing for and planning vacation has it’s own stressors, the looming return back to reality is the real kicker. Sometimes you gotta ask…..it worth it?

You bet it is!

Outer Banks Vacation Family Photo_Outside of The Paper Canoe

Especially when it’s with family you rarely see and in a beautiful area like around The Outer Banks. Make no mistake, coming home to a mess makes us question things sometimes, but there’s no doubt that going on vacation is still worth it all.

I wrote a post using an app on my Samsung that was scheduled to publish on the day of our return, but as luck would have it, something messed up. I was able to track it down and have it right below. Still working on returning to homeostasis around here, but, as you will find out other factors are not making it easy. Once things settle down, I’ll work on getting a day to day recap of the trip.

What stresses you out the most about vacation?

We’re on our way back from our week long family beach vacation at the Outer Banks in Corolla, NC. Lots of fun and memories were had during our stay. We loved being in such a relaxing place and watching Avery soak up her first time at the ocean.


Family Instagram Collage on the beach_OBX

But all good things must come to end, and that’s probably for the best. Our poor little girl’s recurring staph issue reared its ugly head which put a damper on the last few days of vacation, but she never let it her down.

Raising arms high while in a sand hole


Well, besides down in a hole in the sand. Going Mom and I were bothered more than her. Now we have the stubborn staph along with my shoulder surgery to deal with.

I made good use of my two good arms by playing in the ocean and kayaking before I’m down to just one for a few months. Here’s hoping for a fast and full recovery. Avery’s healing kisses will certainly help!


With that said, my recap of vacation might be a bit delayed, but it will happen. Just need to figure our what typing will be like after my shoulder goes under the knife.

More pics and stories to come about our little family vacation.


I'm a health conscious stay-at-home dad looking for products that keep us fit, happy, and healthy. Follow along as I share our experience and discoveries with my daughter as a side-kick.

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