Thursday, February 28, 2013

20 (More) Little Known Facts about Doc Momma

About a month after I started this blog, I wrote a post about 20 little ol' facts about little ol' me. I thought it'd be fun to do it again. I've been wracking my brain, and here are some odds and ends about myself I thought would be fun to share:

  • When I was little, my (single, newly employed, momma of four) Momma used to save money by sneaking candy into movie theaters when she took us to see movies on the weekends (I mean, hello! Four kids, a sudden single parent, and astronomical candy prices at the local theater!). I have vivid memories of going to a gas station before the movie, picking out my candy of choice, and having my momma stash it in her purse. I totally plan to do this with my own kiddos. :)

  • When I was in fifth grade, I ran for my first student council office: Reporter (Umm...seriously? Yes. Reporter). 
  • I was the ONLY girl on my first teeball team. The only girl. My team? Energy Options (huh?). My uniform number? 20. 
  • Until we found out our little girl was actually a little girl (at 16 weeks pregnant, thanks to the 3D ultrasound I spontaneously requested at my OB/GYN appointment after insisting I couldnotwaitanothersinglesecond to know what we were having!), her name was going to be Reese. But. While staring at the ultrasound screen, and learning we were, in fact, having a girl (which I already knew after having a very strong instinct the second I saw the positive pregnancy test), I turned to my hub and said, "Her name's not Reese." I didn't know what it was going to be, but I knew she wasn't meant to be a Reese. A few days later, while driving to the beach, we decided: Raleigh (and no, she's not named after the North Carolina city). 

  • Some days (many days), I forget to put on deodorant. I blame it on taking showers at night. Maybe I should move to France? And sorry, Fort Mill friends, if I smell badly. I'll try harder. 
  • I lived in 10 different houses throughout my childhood. At one point, we moved across the street--I have memories of moving my toys and clothes across the street in a little red wagon.
  • I attempted to dye my own hair freshman year of high school, while my mom was out of town and my grandparents were babysitting. It was supposed to be red (yikes!). It turned out orange (double yikes!), with two particularly bright, fluorescent-highlighter-esque orange streaks framing my face (triple yikes!). 
  • I worry too much about what people think of me. It shouldn't (really) matter. It does. But it shouldn't. 
  • As a child, I reeeeeeally wanted to wear headgear. As in, a large and in charge retainer (ummm...what?!?). So, I would often take a slide necklace and pull it up over my two front teeth and pretend it was head gear. Winner, right here, folks. 
  • My first nephew, Chandler, was born a few weeks before my wedding. I have this beautiful memory of holding his tiny little body moments after I married my hub (his biological uncle) and being so excited that I would get to watch him grow up the rest of his life. As a result, I am very easily able to remember his age by simply remembering how many years I am married (which, admittedly, I forgot once, when put on the spot, in front of a crowd of people, including my hub. Oops.). For the record, it's almost nine years. 
  • My favorite physical feature? My eyes. They are green and yellow. I have three biological siblings, and I am the only one with green and yellow eyes, that perfectly match my momma's. My siblings all have blue eyes, that perfectly matched my dad's. 

  • My least favorite physical feature? My hair. Maybe it's because I shower at night. But. Ugh. Thin, fine, and utterly flat when I face the mirror in the mornings. But you know what? When I have that thought, that I don't like my hair, I think about my beautiful friend, and others who have battled cancer and endured chemo, and remind myself to thank my lucky stars that I am healthy and even have hair to complain about. Enter the guilt. 
  • If it's not clear by me hogging your Instagram and Facebook feeds through my photos, I love taking pictures. Especially of my children. It is my way of coping. They are growing too fast. I take pictures. Lots of them. Sorry for hogging your feed. They are growing too fast. 

  • I am at the place in my life where I realize it is the quality, not the quantity, of friendships that matter. I love my friends fiercely. And truly value those I am lucky enough to call best friends.
  • I admire my big brother, and awesome sister-in-law, so much! They have seen some really, really amazing and beautiful places, and embarked on some crazy, fun adventures, thanks to their love of, and willingness to, travel around the world for a good vacation. I think it is awesome that they do this. I love that they have a personalized map hanging in their home with pushpins of the places they have visited, as well as plan to visit, around the world. 

  • I get stuck in food ruts. As in, I will have the exact same breakfast, every single morning, for 6 months or so before switching to something different, which will then last for 6 months or so, etc. Previously, this consisted of a bagel with Nutella (mmm!!). Currently, this consists of whole wheat bread with peanut butter and honey and a side of freshly juiced juice (mmm!). 
  • I feel completely overwhelmed if I don't get on Pinterest for a few days. Oh no! What did I miss! I need to pin, pin, pin. Calm down, Linds. Everything will be okay (welcome to the random conversations that happen in my brain). 
  • One of my sisters and I are about to write a book together. It's an idea that came together about six months ago. We just need to find the time to do it. But. It's awesome! And I'm excited! As soon as I finish gathering photos for my first book.
  • I have a very vivid memory of saying my first curse word. I was in fourth grade. I whispered it to myself, under my breath, while on the playground. I then said it loud enough so that, if someone had actually been within earshot, he/she could have heard it. Such a rebel. And for the record? That word was shit. 
  • Bad grammar is such a pet peeve of mine, despite the (stylistic? purposeful?) poor grammar I elect to use on this blog. Incorrect comma usage is particularly painful for me. I once reviewed a neuropsychological book, and my review was subsequently published in a well-known journal; yet, I had a really hard time even focusing on the content of what I was reading when reviewing the book because I could not overlook the grammatical errors. This pet peeve now extends to Facebook statuses, blog posts, etc. Again, I say, calm down, Linds. Sheesh. Everything will be okay if a comma is misplaced. 

Is that 20 yet? Because I have a rather large pile of laundry in front of me that's not gonna fold itself. Until next time...

Sunday, February 24, 2013


My sister-in-law, author of the awesome Goat & Lulu blog, recently wrote a post about a few current events in her life, as inspired by another blog, Jones Design Company, and two of my other favorite blogs (Cupcakes & Running Shoes and Total Tippins Takeover) also followed suit (gotta love the social network of the blogging world). 


I thought it’d be fun to do the same; so, here we go:

Loving: The fact that my little buddy has achieved two major milestones over the last week. First, he is now completely out of diapers. While he has been toilet-trained for day for over a year, he has always worn a diaper for nighttime; however, we recently noticed that he was waking up with dry diapers. So, last week, we did away with the nighttime dipes and haven't looked back since! 

Second, my little buddy has been been a thumb-sucker since he was just shy of 4 months old. We have been (inconsistently, with, admittedly, poor effort) working on thwarting this habit for the last six months or so. Finally, last week, I bit the bullet and bought "Suck-cess" (i.e., a prescription, liquid medication that is put on the thumb at night and tastes nasty to  any sucker of thumbs). I also bought a new $3 monster truck (my boy’s current obsession) at a consignment sale as a reward should he make it through the entire night without sucking his thumb. Annnnnnd....success! See ya later, thumb-sucking. Way to go, little buddy. Now, stop growing up so fast!!

Reading: After recently finishing the life-changing book Enemies of the Heart, I was in need of a new book. After a recent conversation with one of my very best friends (Hi Mox!), I just ordered Proof of Heaven. Really, really excited about this one! 

Waiting for: My little girl to stop climbing on top of every possible object she views as an invitation to climb. Seriously. The train table. The couches. The step stool. The toilet. The ottoman. Her brother’s bed. The stairs. Every.Possible.Surface. I cannot turn my back for a split second. I am tired!

Excited about: Spring weather! I know, I know. So cliche. But I truly believe that sunshine is good for the soul. It’s also good for the ever-moving bodies of two little ones I know. Bring it on, sunshine and mild temperatures. We’re ready and waiting for you.

Trying to: Work out more. I am trying to figure out a way to work this in to my daily, or every other daily, routine. I’m thinking a little Jillian Michaels is going to have to start happening during my babes’ naptimes. Otherwise, I’ll have to re-commence my nightly runs, which first started to shed pesky extra baby pounds following my littlest one’s birth last year. At the time, they were a nice little respite and excuse for some me time. I guess those runs would have to replace my nightly glass(es) of wine. Hmm. On second thought, maybe I’ll start with the daytime Jillian Michaels plan. :)

Working on: Letting go of the ugly. Facing what is causing the ugly. Offering forgiveness. It is hard. I am working on it. Two steps forward, one step back. Working on it.  

Enjoying: Watching my little girl discover the world. It is amazing how much her language and vocabulary have exploded over the last month. She mimics everything we say, words, inflection, and all, and says new words every day. It’s awesome seeing how excited she gets to see us get so excited for her. She is also becoming quite the independent little soul-wanting to brush her teeth by herself, put her own sippy back in the fridge, and put her blanket and favorite little monkey back in her crib after naptime and bedtime. Slow down, little lady! Where’s my baby?!

Using: My new vacuum, many, many times a day, under the kitchen table and high chair.  Repeatedly. News flash: Kids are messy when they eat. News flash: I have a bit of OCPD in me and have a pet peeve about stepping on crumbs post-meal. Enter the Electrolux Ergorapido, which came highly recommended by a sweet friend. This thing rocks, and my little buddy’s new favorite chore is vacuuming for me. problem little buddy. And P.S., I’m pretty sure blogging about a vacuum seals the deal that I am officially a housewife. 

Wearing: A peacock on my head? Seriously. The great post-partum hair shed finally ended about 3 or 4 months ago. But. The end result? The top of my head constantly looks like a stuck my finger into an electrical socket thanks to the tearing and loss of only partial strands of hair. Most of which are on the top of my head. Even hairspray won’t contain these pesky porcuipine-esque quills. Nice. 

Planning: A fun, fun, fun Bachelorette party and a fun, fun, fun couples shower for my baby sister. She’s getting married!!! And I can’t wait to celebrate the happiness and love and joy of one of my most favorite people. And any excuse for a good girls weekend is a good excuse to me. 

Singing: Lullabies to my babies before bedtime. I have my own special song with each of them, which have been ours since the day they were born. My son’s? You Are My Sunshine - we used to dance to this every night before bed when he was just a tiny, new little body who would fit in the crook of my arm. Now, I sing it to him, or every once in a while, he sings it to me. Swoon. My daughter’s? Isn’t She Lovely. When I sing this to her and rock her each night, she nestles down into my arms, tucking her sweet hands between her belly and mine, and just relaxes her little body as I sway and sing. I just adore these precious moments with my babies. 

Needing: To be more patient. Sigh. 

Learning: To be more patient. Sigh.

Listening to: My little boy’s sweet voice say, “Mommy, I’m awake,” each morning. It’s just one of the sweetest parts of my day. Since the kids’ bedrooms are upstairs, and our Master is downstairs, I have their two baby monitors turned on all night. And, at 7:00 am sharp each morning (thanks to the Good Nite Light), Banks’ voice rings out and I go greet him at the top of the stairs. Never gets old. 

Wishing: And hoping and praying for really good things to happen for some really good people. Constant prayers and love and hope and faith constantly being sent their way.

Doing: A lot of packing and unpacking lately! And there will be lots more of it in the upcoming months. But. There's nothing like spending time with great friends and family, and if that means packing and unpacking over and over, so be it. 

Dreaming of: What the future will look like for our little family. But also? Enjoying the here and now. The moments that are passing too quickly. And trying to soak it all in. 

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Banksisms, Part 4

Whew. A much lighter post to close out the week.

He's been at it again, our funny little buddy. And now, I proudly present, the latest round of Banksisms (following Parts 1, 2, and 3):

Banks: "I pledge allegiance. Let us play football. Amen."

Banks: "Mommy, can we race these planes?"
Momma: "Sure! Where should we start?"
Banks: "At the finish line."

Banks: "Are these hineys?"
Momma: "No, those are chickpeas."
Banks: "Well, they look like hineys."
(I totally agree.)

Banks: "What's picking daisies?"
Daddy: "It's so you can stretch your hammies. You know what hammies are, right?"
Banks: "Oooooh...stickers!!"
(Gotta love the attention span of a 3-year-old.)

Banks: "I'm smarter than a cow. A cow is smarter than a moose. I'm smarter than a cow and a moose."
(And that, my friends, is Philosophy 101 from a pre-schooler.)

Banks: "Mommy, when you're singin', that hurts my ears."
(Point taken, little man.)

Momma: "Banks, how much do you think you weigh?"
Banks: "Umm....two dollars."

Banks: "I drew a 'B'" 
Momma: "Great! Let me see!"
Banks: "Never mind. It's a parking lot."

Thanks for the laughs, sweet boy. Keep 'em coming... 

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Ch, Ch, Ch, Changes: Part 2

And now, without further adieu, Part 2 of my Ch, Ch, Ch, Changes...

This one is a little harder for me to write because, after all, who likes to admit when they know they are wrong. When they know they have deep-rooted flaws that need to be changed. When there are ugly parts of oneself that need to be exposed.

Yeah. This one is hard.

I am not going to air all my dirty, personal laundry (who would want to see that anyway? Gross.). I will say that recently, I felt certain ugly parts within my self starting to swell and slowly spewing out, in little pieces here and there, and I didn't like it one bit. What it was doing to me. My view of the world. Of others around me.

I realized I needed help addressing some of the ugly. This was bigger than me. And I needed help.

So. I turned to the person who helped shine a light on my spirituality when we first started attending church in Atlanta a few years ago: Andy Stanley.

Andy Stanley is the founder and senior pastor of North Point Ministries. He is more than that, though. His way with words is the sole reason that, for the first time in my life, I ever actually looked forward to going to church. He is the sole reason that, for the first time in my life, I actually listened and understood what was being said in church. He calls his the church for un-church people. I love that. And honestly? His church is what I miss most about Atlanta (And for the record, for anyone who is interested and not an Atlanta resident, his sermons stream live, online, each Sunday, and videos of previous sermons are also available. I highly recommend listening. Highly, highly, highly.).


I never felt small or uninformed when I went to church and Andy was preaching. I wanted to learn more about what he was saying and how to apply it to my life. He has a way of making religion and spirituality feel real. And important. And significant. And tangible. And life-changing. And life-giving.


When I was recently feeling lost, and feeling the ugly well up inside me, I knew where I needed to turn.

Let me introduce, this amazing book:

I read it. My hub is reading it now. I already have someone waiting in the wings to borrow it because, for me, it is just that good that I wanted to recommend it. I felt like I needed to share it with anyone out there who may feel lost or who may feel the ugly welling up or who  may be feeling moments doused with anger or sadness or guilt or jealousy or greed or just-not-wholeness.

This book is changing me. It is a slow change. There are things I am working on, every single day, based on what is outlined in the book. But I can feel things shifting, and I can feel the ugly slowly subsiding. And it is good. 

And I just thought you might like to know. Because I think we all are just trying to do our best. And that is all we can do. But sometimes? Sometimes we need a little help. At least I do. Yes, this book is changing me. And it is good. Slow. But good. 

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Ch, Ch, Ch, Changes: Part 1

Okay. So. In a previous post, I mentioned two significant changes that I am in the process of undergoing, along with (in part) my little family of four. 

Here's Part 1. 

You know one thing I don't like?

People throwing things in my face that they think I should try, do, participate in, etc., all because it worked for them.

I do not want to be one of those people.


I am simply going to talk about the two life changes that are underway in the Luton household. Feel free to ignore this post, shut down your browser, and sloooowly back away  from your computer if you don't want to hear about these things.


This is my little space on the world wide web, and as I've said before, I want this blog to represent honesty and highlight what is pertinent in my life right now, for the sake of the good, the bad, and the ugly.

Anywho. Here we go.

A couple of months ago, my hub, who is much more of a night owl than this early-to-bed momma, saw a food documentary and became intrigued by the information that was being presented. He watched a different one the following night and asked if I would watch yet another one with him a few nights later. I've always been a fan of documentaries; so, I obliged. And this is going to sound dramatic, but it truly changed the way I view food and what I am putting in my body and my little ones' bodies.

In case you're interested, the perspective-shifting documentary was called "Hungry for Change." Not in a movie-watching mood? This is a great article summarizing the movie. 

Admittedly, I fell asleep toward the end of it (as I said, this momma? An early-to-bed-early-to-rise-er). When I woke up, my hub informed me that he had just purchased a not-so-cheap juicer from Amazon. Clearly, he was serious about this. I was a little more hesitant. A juicer? Seriously? Ummm...okay.

The next night, we watched "Forks Over Knives." Again, talk about a shift in perspective.

We waited for our juicer and went about our daily lives, albeit with a little more hesitation with each bite we took because now we knew what we were putting into our bodies.

Finally, a day or two later, my hub (who was out of town on business), emailed me a YouTube link and asked me to please watch (or really, just listen to) the video. I did, a couple days later, as I found myself alone in the car for a long drive. I listened to the video and was, finally, ready to fully jump on board.

I do not want to go into the details of the documentaries or the ah-may-zing-ness that is that video. I surely cannot say things any more convincingly than they can. I will just suggest that you watch and/or listen to them one day. Seriously. Strongly, strongly, strongly suggest it. 

Basically, the premise is that we, as human beings, and more specifically, Americans, are overfed and undernourished. Also, processed food is way worse than originally thought. This may not sound mind-blowing, but I promise you, if you watch/listen to the movies/video, you will think about food differently. I absolutely, 100% guarantee it. 

The impact on us? What's ch, ch, ch, changing? 

Well, we have made some major changes as far as our eating over the last month or so.

For starters, we use as many organic foods as possible. This is especially important to me, personally, given what has come to light as far as children, especially little girls, and early puberty, which has been linked to both the significantly higher rates of obesity in this country as well as the amount of hormones now added into processed foods ("But I wasn't raised on organics, and I turned out just fine!" was my previous argument. But. Now I know. Food is processed differently now than it was when I was growing up. Much differently.).

Yes, using a largely organic diet is more costly. I always just (naively) thought it was because of the snobby farmers selling their snobby organic products to snobby customers. After listening to that YouTube video (which is short-like 20 minutes!), I don't think that anymore. I now understand the politics behind it and the reasons for the government-enforced costs. Also, we have actually been buying our milk and eggs from a local farm to support the business and incorporate these fresh-off-the-farm staples into our diet on a daily basis (next thing you know, we'll be eating only granola and sporting hemp-ha!).

Also, we, as in the three eldest members of our foursome and sometimes the littlest one as well, all have fresh fruit/veggie juice as part of our breakfast each morning, thanks to that new juicer my husband bought at 10:00 pm on a Friday night. The beauty of this for us? My meat-and-sweets-lovin' son has absolutely no idea he is getting a healthy dose of (organic) vegetables first thing in the morning because the fresh pineapple, blueberry, strawberry, raspberry, banana, etc., taste dwarfs the veggie taste. Take that, picky 3-year-old palette. :)

And now, perhaps the biggest shock of shocks...this non-cooking momma has actually been, well, cooking! Organic, non-processed, made-from-scratch meals! Almost every night! Can we please pause for a moment of silence. Because y'all? I can't believe I just typed that. But. It's true. It has been well documented on this little ol' blog that I do not like to cook. But. There is some small element of enjoyment in knowing that what I am preparing is good for the kiddo bodies that'll be eating it. So, I have been cooking homemade, healthy, non-processed meals each night. I know. I'm as shocked as you are. 

Also, there is an awesome, awesome, awesome family who has a blog called "100 Days of Real Food." One of the things that is so GREAT about them is that they have a Facebook page, and when you "like" the page, you are given free access to complete meal plans for four different weeks. As in, breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks, all planned out with links to recipes and all! But that's not all. She even has the SPECIFIC grocery lists that are needed, including the prices of the items listed, for each ingredient of the recipes. Now, we do not follow these meal plans to a T. But. I have been picking and choosing different dinner meals (so far), grocery shopping accordingly, and just following along with her recipes. It is so easy! And honestly? Quite delicious.

Some of my favorite non-processed recipes so far?

  • Quinoa as a delicious side dish (I seriously love this stuff now and I didn't even know how to pronounce it three weeks ago. For the record, it's pronounced /keen wah/).
Served on Valentine's Day (hence the fun shapes)

I will say. We are not 100% onto the totally organic, non-processed food train. I mean, come on. I still love to bake and need sugar and cupcakes. No, really. I need something sweet at least once or twice a day. I will say, my sweet friend who is also a new passenger on the non-processed food train just passed along an awesome recipe for some delicious, 4-ingredient peanut butter cookies; so, there is hope of going completely non-processed one day. But not yet. Baby steps. 

Plus, sometimes, I just need to grab a convenient snack for the kids when I am trying to cook dinner or we are out and about (a la Goldfish, Cheerios, granola bars, and the like). My goal is to have delicious non-processed convenient snacks one day. But for now? We are starting gradually and slowly attempting to significantly decrease our processed food intake.  

It is certainly a major lifestyle change for us. But we are also trying to be realistic with what we eat and what we offer our kids so that this will actually stick for us over the long-term. Further, we know that when we travel (perfect example, when we were in Disney) or visit others who are not on-board this train, we'll just have to go with what's available (and P.S. I was not about to turn down M&M pancakes nor the many desserts I had with each meal at Disney. Wasn't.Gonna.Happen).


Part 1 of the Ch, Ch, Ch, Changes? So far, so good. I really, really hope I've maybe, possibly, in some way encouraged at least one person who has read this to even consider watching the video and or movies I mentioned. Even if not, this is one change we are excited to welcome into our family. 

So. Bon appetit! 

Up next, Part 2...a totally different kind of change...

Thursday, February 14, 2013

As Long As...

As long as the sun keeps rising.

And the sky is painted blue.

As long as Spring hosts fresh blossoms.

I'll keep on loving you.

As long as clouds dance o'er us.

And Summer bares morning dew.

As long as waves greet sandy shores.

I'll keep on loving you.

As long as stars keep twinkling.

And Fall boasts its reddish hue.

As long as thunder roars hello. 

I'll keep on loving you.

As long as Winter chills us.

And each snowflake glides anew.

As long as fire embraces warmth. 

I'll keep on loving you.

Now, should the Earth fall silent.

And the heavens quiet, too. 

One thing remains, steadfast and strong:

I'll keep on loving you.

Happy Valentine's Day to the two littlest loves of my life. 

With All My Heart, 


Sunday, February 10, 2013

The Most Magical Place on Earth

Disney World. 

There truly is no place like it, especially in the company of a 3-year-old.

There is no way I could sum up the memorable time we had. I know I keep saying it was "magical," but that's just because I can think of no other way to aptly describe it. There were many times during the trip I made it a point to stop what I was doing and try to take a mental snapshot of exactly what was going on at that moment: what it felt like to have my little buddy snuggled up to me on a ride, the look in his eyes as he took in everything around him, how it felt to have his little hand tucked in mine as we strolled to the next show, his carefree demeanor as he boogied to particular songs that caught his attention, the excitement in his eyes upon hearing the word, "Yes!" to almost every request he made, feeling his breath slow to a measured pace as he fell asleep in my lap at the end of the day.

Yes, magical is the only way I can think to describe it. 

The magic began the second we left our house Sunday morning and arrived at the airport. We had a first-time flyer on our hands, and I cannot begin to tell you how excited he was to fly in a real airplane. 

When we arrived to our hotel (Animal Kingdom Lodge) early that afternoon, we had already decided to simply take in the sights around the hotel and (attempt to) rest up for the busy two days that were to follow. The day did not disappoint, as we spent time at the (heated) pool (swimming in February =  awesome!). I sat poolside and watched my boys splash and cannonball to their hearts' content. We spent the rest of the afternoon and evening animal watching around the hotel and participating in impromptu bongo drum and marshmallow roasting sessions. 

We spent the entire next day at Magic Kingdom, leaving the hotel at 7:00 am and returning home at 9:00 pm. Whew! This was, without a doubt, my very favorite day of the trip. It was just amazing-from the character meals to the shows to the rides to the parades to the fireworks-it was just awesome. But. Man, were we worn out by the time our heads hit our pillows!

The following day was split between Animal Kingdom in the morning and Hollywood Studios in the afternoon (more on this decision coming in my next post). It was a more laid-back, but still very full and fun, day, lasting from 7:45 am to 8:00 pm. Needless to say, we were one tired trio by the end of Park Day 2. 

Although we were sad to have to leave the magic that is Disney World on Wednesday, I was really excited to get home to my little lady, who had a blast with her Bammy while we were away but still gave me the sweetest reception when I walked in the door. Oh, and the kind and thoughtful pilots on our return flight invited Banks into the cockpit before we took off, which was a great way to end our trip.

Because I don't want to forget any of the beautiful memories we made on the trip, now, in no particular order, are some of my very favorite moments:

  • The smile that spread across my little buddy's face the first time he saw Mickey (which was at a character breakfast just before starting our day at Magic Kingdom). I literally had tears in my eyes and had to tell myself to hold it together so as not to melt into a puddle on the floor. Such a precious moment.

  • Being SO excited every time he was allowed to chew gum, which was every time he asked for it-minimal no's and mostly yeses at Disney. We do not let him chew gum yet (when you're 4, we tell him!); so, this was a special treat. :)
  • His little hand reaching out to grab 3D images during the various 3D shows we enjoyed.

  • Seeing his sweet face light up upon seeing Woody. Ohmygoodness, Woody!

  • Resting in my lap in the late afternoon during a train ride through the Magic Kingdom.
  • Watching him full-out dance without a care in the world during the Electrical Parade. Little fella had no shame. It.Was.Awesome.

  • Watching him steer his race car around the track while his daddy controlled the pedals-that little body behind the wheel-ahh!

  • Having him fall asleep in my lap on the bus on the way home from a very full day at Magic Kingdom. 
  • Watching him bust a move as we awaited our final show on our final night-Fantasmic-and then seeing how much he loved watching Mickey sword "fighting the bad guys" and "throwing them in the special trashcan" (huh?!?) during the show.
  • Seeing his face light up each time we bought him a souvenir (Sword! Pirate flag! Race cars! Giraffe! Light-up Mickey necklace!). 
  • Seeing his excitement over flying high on Dumbo-his first authentic ride. 
  • Watching him be so excited to travel by his way of choice for the majority of our trip-on Daddy's shoulders.

  • Watching him pull his new little rolling backpack through the airport and knowing how thrilled he was over his first flight.

  • Hearing him say, several different times, he missed his sister and then helping choose souvenirs for her (a special bracelet! A new puppet!).
  • Jumping and jumping and jumping off the wall and into daddy's arms into the February!

  • Letting him have chocolate milk with every single meal.
  • Seeing him asleep in his daddy's arms as we we entered Hollywood Studios.

  • Seeing his wonderment as we viewed different animals during our safari ride in Animal Kingdom.
  • Watching the giraffes and zebras and gazelle graze outside our hotel balcony.

  • Seeing our little boy stand in front of the very same "Tree of Life" I stood in front of as child.


Thank you, Disney, for making the dreams of a very special 3-year-old boy, and his Momma and Daddy, come true. We will never forget this amazing time with our little buddy.