I am more and more about the grand day out with the family as the boys and I get older. I spend a good deal of my time at work thinking about two things I should do more of when I’m off. Working out, and spending time with my small army. So far I’m only getting to one of those. I’ll just cut down on doughnuts for now.

A day at the blackberry farm There are just a few things required for all of us to have a nice outing. A chunk of time, a place to go, organized supplies, and a good attitude. Chelsea, of course, favors the organization. I don’t know if it’s a mom thing or what but she is not so much a “fly by the seat of her pants” type person. I, on the other hand, am pretty much good as long as I have shoes and underwear. Certain restaurants may refuse to serve me but hey…I'm going places.

Hanging out at the blackberry farm's community area

The “good attitude” portion of things goes hand-in-hand with the “organized supplies” requirement. As you may have noticed by now, Chelsea is a bit of a worry wart. When things aren’t organized, she gets a bit…well, sometimes she needs to go down for a nap with the baby.

Eating blackberries and sipping from the Tervis tumbler

Fortunately, we were recently introduced to our new sponsor Tervis, a snappy little tumbler company with just the solution we needed. Our four boys usually swap and share cups, but it gets a bit noisy with them fighting over whose turn it is for a drink and which cup belongs to who. Plus, after Minion has his turn, the cup is always a little slobbery and that leads to more crying. Tervis provides for a better situation with their customizable stainless steel tumblers.

Custom Tervis tumblers at lunch

As the boys have grown up (now with our oldest at the ripe old age of six) they acquired pseudo ‘spirit' animals along the way. Some Boy adopted the monkey, with all his curiosity and wisdom. Sidekick got the bear because he's so cuddly and sleeps like he’s in full-blown hibernation. Minion garnered the lion not only because of his glorious mane, but because he is so strong and survived a nearly-deadly bout with RSV. While he was fighting for a week in the PICU as an infant, we coincidentally had multiple friends gift us stuffed lions as encouragement. The lion quickly became our little fighter's personal mascot. Bam is still a bit premature for his own animal, but so far he seems drawn to giraffes.

Creating a custom cup on Tervis

So we hopped on over to the Tervis website to customize stainless steel tumblers with little pictures of the animals that represent each boy. Chelsea bought some stock art of the animals on Adobe Stock and uploaded them directly.

Bam with a baby Tervis sippy

They also have ready-made designs in stainless and the classic insulated variety. Bam got a baby version with woodland camo and Chelsea got one to match so as not to make him feel ostracized. I, being the wise one, got a matte black tumbler.

Picking blackberries on a hot day

This all worked out perfectly when our friends invited us to blackberry picking at a local farm on my day off. We packed up the boys, tumblers, and Chelsea (who was in a remarkably good mood!) and headed off for the hills. We pulled up to the farm, paid our five dollars for a berry container and drove in to find a place to park. We found a nice spot on the grass to let to boys stretch their legs and run around while I ordered some of the local fare. The food was..okay.

Custom Tervis tumblers for the kids

Altogether, it was wonderful experience. With some lunch slowly being consumed, out came our own custom Tervis tumblers. For once, without confusion or fighting, drinks were had.

Carry drink containers in a wine tote to keep everthing organized and keep the family hydrated.

Chelsea, as organized as ever, had even packed them all up in a wine tote. That's another one of those “organizational” things that a lot of moms seem to have on-hand.

Picking blackberries with friends

Funny thing about those berries, they seem to evaporate right after being picked in the fields. They made us pay for a $5 container but I think we ate about $10 each before filling up and leaving. Ha, joke's on you.

A large stainless steel Tervis cup with antlers

How do you keep your family hydrated on a hot, busy day?