about me

    Emily Malone

    culinary arts grad. nutrition facts lover. vegetarian chef. marathon runner. country music maniac. failed dog trainer. barre fanatic. loving mama.

    Contact Emily

    For general inquires, contact: EmilyBMalone@gmail.com.

    For partnerships, contact: dailygarnishads@mediakix.com.

    Looking forward to chatting with you!


    What’s Cooking?

    Personal Bests

    5K - 23:28

    10K - 52:35

    15K - 1:38:14

    1/2 Marathon - 1:57:39

    Marathon - 3:50:58

    A Look Back.

Leaving Lanier.

Please don’t make me leave.

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I have not felt this relaxed in eight months.  I’ve been spoiled by hours and hours of downtime while the grandparents loved on Cullen.  I have swam, done at least a hundred underwater summersaults, and I’ve worked on my breaststroke.

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I have splashed, tickled toes, applied countless ounces of sunscreen to tiny pink cheeks, and snuggled with a slippery soggy little swimmer.

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I’ve had six uninterrupted days with Casey, and I’ve been able to watch him dunk, reassure, and gently encourage our little fish to embrace the water.

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With a few good naps under his belt and a few days to get used to it, Cullen started to get the hang of this whole lake scene.

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I feel pretty blessed to have a really flexible baby.  While I do my best to always respect his (loose) schedule and his needs, at the same time, Casey and I always hoped to continue to do the things we love – like travel, visit family, and spend a lot of time outdoors – once our little one arrived.

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Cullen was a total champ – being many miles from the comforts of home, three hours out of his normal time zone, and surrounded by many new faces and voices.  And yet he was his happy, smiling self all week long.  He slept (relatively) well at night, napped on the fly, and played so hard that he passed out like a newborn again.

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I credit most of it to him, but I think part of it is that we’ve had him out and about since a very early age.  We respect his needs for structure and downtime, but we also don’t just sit in our house.  We are really lucky he is such a laidback guy.

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It is so fun to watch him with his grandparents.  He absolutely lights up around them.  It’s bittersweet, and leaves me wishing we weren’t all so painfully far apart.  Best to just soak it all up and appreciate being together when we can!

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This vacation could not have come at a better time for us.  As Cullen has gotten more mobile and now demands more attention, I’ve felt pretty burnt out and overwhelmed these past few months.  This week allowed me to relax, recharge, and unplug.  The water makes me so happy, and sharing that with Cullen is something I’ve looked forward to for so long.

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I am so grateful for my awesome little family, and I can’t help but already look forward to many summers of family vacations to come.

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Cullen wasn’t a huge fan of just swimming and bobbing in the water, but we discovered the secret to helping him find his inner fish…

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Peekaboo from underwater.  You have never heard such precious baby giggles.

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Actually, you can.  Right here.  (Watch for the face plant at the end – oops!)

It’s our last night here, and we’re back to reality (and temps in the 60’s!) tomorrow.  But we’re headed home with so many great memories of a week spent with people we love.

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Until next summer!

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37 Comments so far
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Andrea     at 9:24 am

Your body looks incredible! Work it, mama!


Gabrielle     at 1:02 pm

What an ideal vacation! I live in the Atlanta metro area and grew up sailing on Lake Lanier every summer… but I haven’t been back in years. The idea of renting a cabin and hanging out on a pontoon boat is a good one. Maybe one day I’ll drag my cats and dog up there and do just that. So glad you guys had such a good time. Cullen is going to have such a treasure trove of captured memories to look back on when he is older – lucky, lucky boy.

And yeah, Grandpa is hot! :}


Amanda     at 4:26 am

Love love love those videos with that laugh! I have a couple with Claire that my Husband loved when he got back from deployment. I love how easily amused babies are.


Angela @ Happy Fit Mama     at 5:26 am

Beautiful pictures (as usual). Being away from family is hard but spending vacations together makes it all the more special. Glad you had a great time to relax and enjoy!


Monica     at 8:34 am

Glad you got a chance to recharge and spend some time with family!

I love how you guys have been able to successfully travel and adapt Cullen to the unfamiliar from a young age. Wrigley is fairly adaptable, but he is so easily distracted that we struggle with napping on the go. Maybe with the next baby we will get an easy napper. ;)

Safe travels home and enjoy those 60’s for me! It is gross gross gross heat just about every where else.


krista     at 9:35 am

Easy babies are definitely something to be thankful for! I’m 2 for 2 on them, at least so far. My youngest is 5 months and his personality is starting to really come out!
Cullen is the first baby I know that doesn’t love the water from the start! Maybe it’s a Texas thing, since it’s so hot here. Or maybe we just start them earlier because of that, who knows.


Sam     at 9:46 am

Hi Emily – I’m curious what sunscreen you used on your trip? After a bout with basel cell, I take it very seriously and use at least 55+ on my face every day and 100 when I’m out for more than 20 min between 10 and 2:00. But I’ve been hearing that Neutrogena (what I use and what my derm recommended) is full of chemicals and other toxins. I haven’t been able to find a natural sub either. Do you have any recs?


Amber @ Busy, Bold, Blessed     at 10:06 am

1. You look AMAZING! I can only dream of looking like that post (future) baby.

2. Cullen is SO cute.

3. You give me hope for life after baby, some people make it sound like you can’t go out and do the things you used to do! You rock!


Husband @ Midwestern Bite     at 8:10 am

Looks like a great trip. We’re trying to decide if our 8 month old is ready for his first vacation. I’m thinking yes!


Melissa     at 11:21 am

So sweet! Those belly laughs get better as time goes on! :)


Michelle R.     at 6:50 pm

Love the video – is that some Grateful Dead music I hear in the background??


Leah     at 8:56 am

Love this post–and so perfect for me to read today. I’m back at work today after 5 days at a lake. :)


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