Monday, July 27, 2015


When this kiddo starts laughing, I have to tell myself to keep breathing. His laughter comes straight from his belly, his little cheeks turn pink, the angel kiss on his forehead darkens, and his blue eyes glisten like diamonds. One hand goes to ears when he's being tickled, too, as if that somehow makes it tickle less. Of all the memories I have made so far with my little boy, the ones where I hold him close to me are the ones I treasure the most. Hearing his laughter is one thing, seeing his silly smiles from that laughter is even better, but being able to somehow feel his happiness erupt within him while he is snuggled up on me is the best. The. Best.

I may not be able to adequately describe to you just what it feels like to have my heart stolen by such a small person each day, but I am certain that the effects of his love for me (and mine for him, too) are written all over my face. Time passes quickly, and I already know that well; the memories, however, will last for as long as I'm alive. These five minutes that we spent laughing together while we waited for daddy to take us for a tour around the campground will always be a source of my joy - I'll hold onto the sounds, the looks, and the feelings forever and ever.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

garden city pier.

We enjoyed some good ol' footlong hotdogs at Sam's Corner in Garden City one night for dinner, and it was only fitting that we take Braxton on his first tour of a pier. We walked along the planks of wood until we spotted several cannonball jellyfish swimming below. We watched them for a little while, started talking about all the other things that were probably swimming down there with them, and quickly started walking again + changed to subject to something less terrifying. B was mesmerized by the sights that his little eyes beheld, and we kept looking at him then looking at each other with silly grins over how exciting it was to be the ones showing him the world. After we gazed until our hearts were content, we made one last pit stop at The Yum Yum Shop for ice cream before returning to our home away from home. Since this was no ordinary Sunday given that our B was officially half a year old, we gave him his first little taste of ice cream to celebrate! Goodness, I love these boys + making memories with them so much. Counting my blessings is one of my most favorite past times, and this vacation added a whole lot more to my already overflowing list.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

day trips.

We weren't the only people on vacation this particular week, and we got to spend some time with some people that we love more than most. Our first outing was to visit part of our family that was staying at Surfside Beach. We, also, went to dinner with them the following night, and I ate the best crab cakes that I've ever had (Hot Fish Club in Murrell's Inlet, we haven't seen the last of you!). B enjoyed getting extra cuddles from Granny Pat, and I enjoyed having some girl talk with my cousin, Heather. We, also, splashed into the waves with Jaden while keeping a close eye out for any sneaky sharks. All in all, it was a fun day!
Then, a few days later, we drove down to Garden City Beach to hang out with our beloved Martins for a few hours. We didn't know that we'd all be at the beach at the same time until days before we got there, and I screamed out of joy when I learned such exciting news. Mary-Michal and I went on family vacations with each other for several years during college, and it was so much fun to be reunited in our happy place. Braxton and Lola, also, met each other for the first time, and we all swooned over this introduction (especially when they grabbed each other's hands - everyone say, "awww!"). There aren't many people who hold such a near + dear place in my heart like this family does, and every second spent with them is a treasured one.

Friday, July 24, 2015

cruisin' together.

TJ and I used to drive the golf cart around Ocean Lakes when we were just little high school lovebirds, and it was quite entertaining to ride on the same streets we did ten tears ago with a mini-Teejanna in tow (yes, I know everyone says that B is a "mini TJ," but I'm the mama and I say he's mine, too). We giggled a good bit as we passed young boys + girls who looked like they were more like twelve than sixteen, and we look at each other with wide eyes as if to say, "Yep, we thought we were cool back then, too." A part of me missed those days as we drove around - dreaming of growing old together as I leaned in to the tall, good-looking blonde boy who had his arm around me - but then I was reminded of reality: we are still dreaming that same dream today. It's kind of wacky to think that my life looks a lot like I used to pray that it would all those years ago, and I am so thankful that we are still cruising around together. I still think that the boy who puts his arm around me was the cutest boy in the whole campground, and now we have a boy of our own who has already started getting googly eyes from the ladies (listen up girls: he's taken by his MAMA!). So much has changed since that first golf cart ride we took together ten years ago, and yet not much has changed at all. He's still mine, I'm still his, and that's good enough for me.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

trent turns eight.

Eight years ago today, this wild little man was born! This past Sunday, we had a fun celebration for him that included lunch at McDonald's followed by lacing up our roller skates + showing off our mad speed on wheels (or something like that). It's hard to believe that this once-baby-now-boy is already celebrating another birthday, and I love watching him grow. He is the sweetest goofball there is, and I'm proud to be his Aunt!

Happy birthday to my cheesy-face-making, asker-of-lots-of-questions, handsome-as-can-be nephew, Trent. We love you, crazy kiddo!

Tuesday, July 21, 2015


Our little one loved watching the waves roll in while he played in ankle-deep water out on the beach, and he loved splashing in the pool just as much. We concluded that he definitely liked the crystal clear water better after only a few minutes of being in it, because all he wanted to do was stare at it. He had been in the pool twice before this trip, and it was obvious that he had finally adjusted to being wet all over. Just like I did out on the beach, I walked + bounced him to sleep before laying him down to rest. He didn't nap so good while we were by the water, but we weren't terribly surprised since we were in a family campground where noise is at a whole new level of loud; it was also very hot, which probably added to his restlessness. Nevertheless, even with sleepy eyes, he splished + splashed every morning. I didn't mind escorting him into dreamland one bit - what the onlookers may have seen as an inconvenience was another beautiful memory to add to my lists of favorites. I got some snuggles AND cardio in at the same time, and I don't know of any mama who wouldn't want that!

Whether we were in the ocean or in the pool, all was well in the world (well, mostly - meltdowns aren't always so pleasant, but we lived to tell about it. hallelujah!).

Monday, July 20, 2015

bargeron beach bums.

Braxton's first beach trip was a smashing success! We were originally supposed to be there for a week, but we were able to go down a few days early to extend our stretch to ten days. We spent most of our vacay on the beach, of course, but we mixed it up every few days with some time in the pool. Our mornings were spent splashing in water, our afternoons were spent napping, our evenings were spent dining early to beat the rush, and our nights were spent playing Scrabble. All three of us had a few meltdowns over the course of our time on the coast, but we recovered from them all (by the grace of God, that is).

This is, also, the first beach trip that I didn't bring at least one book to read while lounging, because something told me that I'd be a little more active this year. I traded holding a book in my hands for holding a little babe in my arms, and I spent time memorizing the precious grins + giggles coming from Teesh + B instead of memorizing words on pages. This week, this family, this life is all a part of my story, and I want to know it - really know it - better every second. As long as our good Lord wills, I will keep turning the pages, highlighting my favorite parts along the way, and praising its Author with everything inside of me.
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