Tiny Tales Thursday...

Once upon a time there was a mom that "had it all together".

Or so people thought.

She had three darling, children that "always" smiled for pictures. A super hot husband that just gets cuter every single year. A house in a nice neighborhood. Doting parents. Amazing friends. And a cool job that kept her young.

Her children were polite and well behaved. Her house was always clean and organized. She worked full-time, volunteered at the kids' school and set aside devoted time to God. Oh, and her hair was basically perfect.

She was living a real life fairytale.

Except... not.

Y'all. Yesterday I realized that I was supposed to be a work retreat that I thought was scheduled for today (Thursday). I made this connection when I sat down at a staff meeting that I "popped" into while my kids were stationed in my office with the ever maternal, "do NOT make a noise or I will never feed you again" exit. I really only noticed my HUGE oversight when our Director wasn't at the staff meeting.

Me: Is Luke sick?
DL: No?
Me: Where is he?
DL: At the VP retreat.
Me: Is it two days?
DL: Nooooo sees fear in my eyes and talks fast Why? Areyousupposedtobethere?Areyoupresenting?SHouldyoubewearingsomethingelse?
Me: Panic. Fear. HOLY CRAPNESS spread across my face.

I exit the meeting, grab the kids with a, "y'all we have to go because I made a huge mistake and I'm supposed to be somewhere in one hour and have no idea what to do with you."

Call Ryan.
No Answer.
Call Ryan.
No Answer.
Call Ryan.
No Answer.
Call Ryan.
No Answer.


And y'all... HE REPLIED.

"I'm training a driver but I'll get off the car and come get the kids. Don't worry."


Moral of the story.

That girl that you think has it all together all the time? Doesn't.

She struggles. She worries. She yells. She doesn't wash her hair for days at time. She feeds her kids weird food. She cries. She stresses. She forgets things. She makes mistakes. She prays. She forgives. She yells some more. She eats weird food. She totally drinks too much coffee. She still hasn't washed her hair.

And sometimes, she just needs saving.

Don't forget that part.

We all need saving. And by the grace of God... we already are.


What I learned from a day at the waterpark...

We5Kings spent the day at Schlitterbahn Galveston this weekend and had the best time cruising the lazy rivers, navigating the white rapids and picking our bathing suit bottoms from our booties after every single slide. We picked Radley up from a week at Sea Camp that morning and headed straight for the park. Seven hours later and we had all the fun that we could take and as we headed back to College Station, I kind of reflected on our day and realized that I learned five valuable lessons that day.

Talking to strangers isn't always bad. 

It drives my kids crazy that I talk to strangers. The whole "danger" thing. They've finally figured out that adults can talk to strangers. We set our stuff down at the first shaded table we could find when we walked in the park - mostly because we had never been there and didn't know which area we wanted to hang out in. Cut to one ride around the lazy river and the discovery of a kid's area and we knew we wanted to move.

I had zero things to hold a table with while Ryan and Radley moved our things and the girls swam. So... I asked some strangers if we could borrow a couple of their bags to hold a table and we are now best friends. The end.

When people are rude... just be nice. 

There was an area of the park that was built for younger kids. Emmy and Landry had the best time going down the same three slides. Up and down... up and down... up and down. At one point Emmy and I made our way up the stairs to wait in the short line and a little girl popped right in front of Emmy.

Emmy looked up at me with that, "Mom... she TOTALLY just cut" look in her eyes. I gently held her back and reassured her that she'd get her turn soon enough.

And then the mom of the little girl appeared. With two more kids. That she promptly plopped in front of Emersyn.

And I didn't want to be nice. I really didn't. Because, well... that's just rude. But I kept my hands rested on Emmy's shoulder and offered some grace. Even if the person didn't deserve it, because the same is offered to me every single day.

Food out of a cooler just tastes better. 

Maybe it's the sun. Maybe it's because we were starving. Or dying of thirst. But isn't "cooler" food just the best?

Being brave can help you discover new things. 

Emmy and Landry had decided before we walked in that they were only riding "small and medium" slides. We convinced them to try a bigger slide "just once" and through some fake tears and drama they walked up those 1035 flights of stairs to the top, got in their tubes, and declared it THE BEST DAY EVER!

We had to ride that thing four times in a row before we finally called it quits. I took the opportunity to remind them that being brave is one of the best gifts we can give to ourselves. Otherwise, we may miss out on a million different discoveries of things we love.

I want as much confidence as a granny in a bikini. 

It's a well-known fact that we are not all created the same. God made us different and equally beautiful. And fashion people designed bathing suits for all shapes and purposes. And waterpark inventors created crazy rides so that people wearing strange bathing suits could give us all a giggle when they are walking out a ride pulling at all the parts.

Me included.

But y'all. Just one day of my life I want as much confidence as a granny in a bikini. Because oh my word. They owned the day.


Girls Just Wanna Have... Cute shoes...

A couple of weeks ago, I polled my Instafriends regarding a fabulous pair of shoes. 

Clearly I the vote was going to be in my favor (77% to 23%)... but if we're honest, I was going to get them regardless. Because, they are DARLING and they were only $24. I'm not much of a jewelry person... my ears aren't pierced, I don't change up my rings and I never wear bracelets. I really only wear necklaces so a fun pair of shoes to add some color to an outfit is a win! 

And because all of us appreciate a cute shoe... here's some others that I found and loved! 

**note this is a kid's shoe**
(yes, I wear kids shoes)

Also kids shoes but I LOVE them!

These would be PERFECT for any Aggie gameday! And they also come in blue!

These Boden beauties are amazing and currently on sale!! 

These KS sandals are simply precious. They also come in solid blue and mustard yellow which means I clearly need them!

Happy shopping, friends! 

The links above are affiliate links so by clicking and purchasing, I may receive a small compensation. Thanks!



I can't believe how long it's been since I've seen this view. I haven't been consistently writing all year and I haven't even opened this space since my last post which stresses me out a little.

But honestly... this break has been rejuvenating. I got to a place where I no longer felt like I was writing for me. I was writing to meet some unwritten checklist that I had created. I started competing against myself to make sure I was blogging "enough". I abandoned something I once loved and became motivated to write to (sadly) gain attention. I was discouraged when I didn't get comments or people didn't respond. I didn't live up to some fake expectations that I created.

So I took a break.

And some days it was hard because I wanted to be here... but I couldn't really find the words. They felt forced and untrue and more than anything I want to be honest. I never want to misrepresent my thoughts and feelings.

So I'm back here, hopefully more regularly. Hopefully with stories of our day mixed with lessons I'm learning along the way.

But most importantly, committed and happy and ready to share.

Glad to have you here with me.


Emersyn is EIGHT...

This tiny tot went to bed a precious seven year old and woke up making us the proud parents of a darling eight year old. Y'all. How in the world did we get so lucky? 

At eight, Emersyn is creative - she comes to life when she is making something. A new piece of art, a fancy recipe or even a board game. I hope we can keep nurturing this gift in her to use in the best possible ways. 

She is kind - she senses when one of us is sad and needs some extra attention and is so quick to offer an extra hug. She's also not our snuggler so hugs and attention from her is extra sweet!

She is so quick to forgive - Landry isn't the easiest baby sister... she retaliates in the typical physical 6 year old ways like shoving when we aren't looking and Emersyn simply turns the other cheek. 

She is ours. And that's my favorite part of her. 

She wanted to celebrate at Freebirds which I think is funny because I feel like the only time we ever go there is on her birthday. Maybe we should go more often!

Her special request was to bring her cake (that she decided she didn't want at her slumber party) and share with the crew. 

 And what an awesome crew we have. Seriously, I love that we have a village that shows up to celebrate the big and small of life. That no one complains when they hear the restaurant of choice and shows up all smiles! 

No one's smile was as big as hers! We had so much cake that the kids decided to ask other customers if they wanted some, too. Y'all. Some of these college kids had the best reactions to FREE CAKE - some even opted for two pieces.  

Most importantly, our girl felt loved and celebrated by friends that are family...

family that added to our crew... 

people she idolizes... 

and people she's stuck with whether she likes it or not.

Eight years of loving her is one of the easiest things I've ever done. 


Party patrol...

As soon as we got back from picking Landry up at camp, we went straight into birthday mode for Emersyn. She couldn't decide between a pool party and a slumber party, so we decided to do both. Her friends met us at the pool late that afternoon so they could swim and work up an appetite before dinner. 

One of my favorite childhood memories include slumber parties. At my house or friends' houses it didn't matter... the evenings were filled with giggles and being goofy and all the girlie things. Too much make up, licking icing off cake and maybe sometimes freezing bras and undies. 

I still love the noise and the silliness and the make believe. I love the cooking challenges and the make overs and the movie marathons. There is just something so beautiful when you are in the company of other women... women that lift you up and know your secrets and simply just make you laugh. 

And on top of that... pick out the perfect gifts to celebrate you!

I have a little tradition of taking a sleeping picture the night before the kids' birthdays... my attempt at remembering them just as they were at that age. This picture is a total fake because I wasn't about to stay up as late as the girls to get one. 

I'm not sure what time they actually fell asleep - when you come from the school of Gigi you learn real quickly to just put away all the breakables and hope for the best. Regardless, they were all ready for some morning "cake and ice cream." I ordered her an actual birthday cake, but at the last minute she decided she just wanted her friends to sing to her the morning of her birthday with donuts and ice cream. Well... 

This may be the best birthday cake ever!

They all had the best time... even this guy... who was the hero of the party and survived an 8:1 ratio for 16 hours. 

Can't wait for the next (no) sleepover!


Landry goes to camp...

Landry finished kindergarten on a Thursday and that next Sunday we packed her and Millie up and shipped them off to their FIRST OVER NIGHT CAMP.

What in the world? They are JUST BABIES!!

But she was more than ready to go - she had been talking about "Camp Carolina" for WEEKS, asking us daily when she got to leave. She was 1000 percent more ready to go than I was ready to let her leave. I mean, yes... #thirdkid but also the BABY.

We got her all signed in, and her smile never left her face. She was practically pushing us out of this room to get to her cabin. 

Campers are split up by age groups (K-4) and this year Landy was a zebra. 

As we were moving all her stuff in, we noticed a new little addition to the cabin - each camper was assigned a chore for the week. Millie and Landry hit the jackpot, y'all.  

She was especially excited that she got a top bunk since she sleeps on bottom at home. They tried to shove us out of there but we insisted on making them actually walk us outside. 

Emmy didn't want to let her go. 

But they were more than ready for the four days ahead!

I love that Carolina Creek uploads pictures each day, so we can stalk check in on all the fun the kids are having. She was all smiles that next morning... 

and throughout the entire week. Cindy and I would text back and forth when new pics were uploaded but both noticed that the girls weren't in any pictures together. This could mean:

1. They had a fight because it's Millie and Landry and they are more like cousin siblings than anything
2. They are comfortable in their friendship and did a great job of including other people

We went with option 2. 

And on the last day we finally got to see their smiling faces together!

By Wednesday morning we were ready to see our girls and got to camp just in time for cabin awards. Landry received the "kindness" award for including others, being kind, and making friends with everyone. 

::Mom heart explosion:: 

We couldn't have been more proud of this girl!

After cabin awards, we all made our way to the gym to get a glimpse of what a day at camp looks and feels like. Counselors do a skit, campers sing a song and you hear testimonies from campers - the whole thing just lights up every part of these kids faces. 

Plus, you get to run into your old counselors making your anticipation for when you get to come back THAT MUCH GREATER!

A few final pics...

and we were heading back home, a complete set of three once again. Radley was so excited and proud of Landry. I love how much he loves them.

Thanks, Carolina Creek.... see you in August!