Family Adventures, Recipes

Weekend Recap & An Italian Pasta Salad Recipe for Beach Days

It’s been a while since the Florida Morehouse family had a day to just relax & enjoy our beautiful Florida weather TOGETHER! We decided to dedicate our Sunday to a beach day! I was so excited about just enjoying my little family at the beach, that I decided to put together a fun picnic for us! We ventured over to our local Trader Joe’s just to get a variety in our menu. I love the idea of a yummy pasta salad at the beach (and of course chips & dip) because it’s not too heavy on your stomach OR messy!


We ended up going over to the East Coast, and found a family friendly beach area near Cocoa Beach called Cherie Down Park. It couldn’t have been a more perfect beach day. The weather was gorgeous with temperatures in the 80’s, sun shinning, and that salty breeze just floating in the air. There is something about the beach that helps to take me away from the stress of “life” just for a while (long enough to recoup and get back to it once when we get home).

If you don’t live near a beach, and you’re feeling the blues…put this video on in the background, trust me it’ll help.

I’ll probably be raising a “beach toddler” because it seems as though Little Johnny really enjoys it too!

Before I move onto my easy Italian Pasta Salad for the beach, let’s talk about


Any guesses as to where we purchased just a few beach toys? Yup, the Dollar Tree! If you don’t know already, well I’m kind of obsessed with this store, especially since having a little one. I use to shop here all the time for teaching supplies, but now things have shifted to more toddler items!

They have a wide variety of fun beach toys. We all know that these toys tend to get lost a majority of the time, so why spend a hefty amount. Here’s just a few of the items I bought and Little Johnny loved playing with them.

  • pin wheel
  • bucket & shovel
  • football
  • squeeze balls
  • kite (we didn’t get to play with it this time though)


I truly try my best to keep the packing simplified when we go to the beach. 🙂

OKAY, onto the recipe!

I’m bringing back my new obsession again….Mason Jars! This is the 3rd time I have used these jars at the beach where I stored our lunch. Now, you’re probably thinking “why doesn’t she just use Tupperware?” Well, I have this “weird” quality about myself where if the food is in a pretty jar, plate, or bowl I find it more appealing…Is that just me, or do you enjoy eating out of pretty things as well? 🙂

Anyways, beside just being “appealing” Mason Jars work very well at the beach because they truly help to keep out the sand. They’re so easy to hold onto and eat right out of them. So, I ended up storing our Italian Pasta Salad in these beauties. 🙂



  • 1 cup of spinach
  • 1/2 cup of mozzarella cheese
  • 1 box of tri-colored rotini
  • 1 can of black beans (make sure to rinse them)
  • 1 cup of cup of pepperoni cut into quarters
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon of oregano
  • 1/2 cup of balsamic vinaigrette (or adjust to your liking, you may have to add a bit more the next day if you refrigerate the pasta salad.)


  1. cook  the tri-colored rotini by following the box directions
  2. Meanwhile, cut up the red bell pepper, and pepperoini and place into a large bowl
  3. add your spinach, cheese, black beans to the large bowl
  4. once the tri-colored rotini is done, run under cold water and place into the large bowl
  5. add the oregano, lemon juice, and balsamic vinaigrette, MIX WELL
  6. divide the pasta into your mason jars, and your good to go!


If you’re wondering did Little Johnny enjoy it, well the answer is NO. He’s a picky little eater. Big John and I really liked it though! 🙂

Is there a yummy recipe you enjoy for beach days? 

I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend! Here’s to a great week ahead!

Wishing you well,


Family Adventures

Beach Days At Ponce Inlet, Florida

Beach days are fast upon us, and this “winter” in Orlando has been quite mild. While my mom, Larry, & Lester were visiting we enjoyed two beach days at the beautiful serene Ponce Inlet, Florida, which is near Daytona Beach.(And yes, it was in the month of February, can you believe it?!) I wasn’t going to let them go back to Wisconsin without visiting the beach!  Think sound of ocean waves, the smell of sea salt in the air, & that sun just beaming down. Get the picture? (it was still a little chilly, around 71 degrees, BUT it was still a wonderful adventure.)


We actually enjoyed our beach visit at the Lighthouse Point Park, which is a dog friendly beach (sad to say Big John had to work on our first visit, and then the second visit Johnny was sick, which Big John was so kind to stay home and take care of him while I enjoyed time with my mom, Larry, & Lester) . What I like about this park is the privacy. It’s not as busy as your actual public beach. It’s a perfect place for little ones becuase it’s not as wide open as most beaches, plus the waves aren’t nearly as high.


(Side note: Absolutely no editing needed for any of my pictures. It was that beautiful.)


  • dog friendly
  • pavilions available
  • you can bring in food and coolers for a picnic
  • bathrooms available (no changing tables/showers)
  • many people fish off the shoreline
  • beutiful boardwalk
  • small town feel
  • family friendly beach
  • walk down the board walk and your next to the public beach
  • cost is $10 per day (with 1 re-entry) They do except credit/debit cards.
  • nearby there you can tour and climb the Ponce De Leon Inlet Lighthouse & Museum
  • there is also a nearby restaurant that is also dog friendly


Who’s ready for a beach day? If you don’t live in Orlando, but plan to visit definitely choose this for your beach destination!

Wishing You Well,