LIFE + STYLE BLOG

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Sometimes it's too much

Sometimes all the bad things in the world are overwhelming. Sometimes the stories are so sad and heartbreaking that it makes posting about upcoming fall trends seem silly. 

I live in MO, about an 1 1/2 hours from Ferguson. My company's St. Louis office is 10 miles from where the shooting took place. I haven't talked about what happened and I don't really plan on it other than to say the entire thing is horrible. Several lives were forever changed that day with ultimately the life of a young person being lost. I pray that both Mike Brown's family and the officer and his family can find peace with whatever the outcome may be.

But it's not just Mike Brown that saddens me. It's the journalist being beheaded, the young husband and father killed in a plane crash, the 9 year old girl who accidently shot her gun instructor, and the bickering over a well-intentioned ice bucket challenge. 

I like to try to stay current with what's going on in the world. J and I watch the news everyday, but some days it's too much. Sometimes we look at each other and it's our cue to turn the channel. Sometimes the bad we see, seems to outweigh the good that I choose to believe exists. 

Maybe we all need to watch more videos like this. 

And look at pictures of true love.

And remember He is always there.

I promise to be back tomorrow with more light hearted things. Until then, I'm going to watch videos of cats and babies on Youtube:)
Friday, August 22, 2014

Friday, Friday

This week was jammed packed with lots of fun which will continue right into the weekend!

//one//
Favorite team. Monday night, my dad, Ben, and I watched the St. Louis cardinals take on the Cincinnati Reds. It was Ben's first MLB game and it didn't disappoint. The Cardinals finally pulled off a win after going into an extra inning. We live about 2 hours from the stadium and didn't get home until 1:00am. A late night, but a great experience. Jon Hamm is originally from St. Louis and threw the opening pitch. How is he so ruggedly handsome?

 I posted a pic of us at the game on fb and my friend Adi texted me that she was at the game too. It was a nice surprise to be able to see her and catch up. 

//two//
Favorite t.v. show. I am obsessed with the show Fixer Upper on HGTV. If you're not watching this you need too. Not only are the homes that they remodel beautiful, but the couple is so cute together so Joanna is gorgeous.

//three//
Favorite first. Ben's first day of kindergarten was yesterday. He did so good and I can't believe time has gone this fast.

//four//
Favorite flowers. J got me these just because. Or because he wants something and I just don't know what yet:)

//five//
Favorite naked moment. Enough said. 

No matter where you are and what you're doing, having a wonderful weekend!

Linking up Karli & Amy and Amanda.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Gulf Shores, Alabama {Part III}

As if dolphins and gators weren't enough, J and Ben managed to catch this ugly little crab while digging their hole to nowhere. Ben named him Mr. Crabby Pants and quickly let him go after Jack tried to yank one of his legs off. I tried to explain to Jack that you have to wait to do that after it's cooked and dipped in butter.

One night J and I separated from the rest of the group to have some family time just the 4 of us. As great as it was having my entire family around, it was also nice to spend some time as our family of 4. We ate at a local pizza place and then went to The Track. It's a huge family game center with go cart tracks, mini golf, and a kids area with ferris wheel, merry go round, etc. right on the main strip. Ben LOVED the go carts.

Especially ones he could drive by himself.

Although Jack was a little too young to participate, he was in awe of the cars zooming by.

We got up the next day and traveled to the USS Alabama in Mobile about 45 min away. We stopped and ate lunch at Mellow Mushroom on the way out of town and it did not disappoint. I had eaten there once before in Atlanta and it was every bit as good as I remembered. We finally got a Chick Fil A this year so maybe Mellow Mushroom will be next!

The USS Alabama is huge and there are lots of places to explore both on deck and below.

The chapel.

Kitchen.

Sleeping quarters.

In between sight seeing, we made sure to still get in our time at the beach.

By the end of our trip, Ben not only wanted his life jacket off, but he was swimming into the waves and giving this momma a little scare with his new found bravery.

Finding a "shark tooth." J's dad collects these so I bought some at a souvenir shop and we buried them in the sand so he could dig some up for his grandpa.  Ben was so proud to give these to him.

A morning story with MeMaw.

I am so bummed that this picture is showing up the wrong way, but it's too cute not to post. Did you know there are Dip n Dot stores? It was amazing. Obviously the boys loved it and each other.

Jack usually woke up before everyone else so we would go out on the deck and just enjoy the breeze off the ocean or watch the dolphins jump in the water. This was one of my favorite times of the day and Jack loved being outside and roaming the deck.

One last photo before we left. Although we didn't have to leave the condo until Saturday morning, J had the idea to leave at 6:00pm on Friday night to get most of the drive out of the way while the kids slept. Although we were pretty tired, it ended up working out great and we were in St. Louis by the time the kids woke up in the morning.

A great vacation with the ones I love!
Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Gulf Shores, Alabama {Part II}

After a full day at the beach, we decided to explore what Gulf Shores had to offer. We took a dolphin cruise and ours also happened to have a swamp tour included for a little extra where you could see big alligators and other animals.

Don't mind Jack's Cheeto hands and mouth. The tour was a little long so food to the rescue!

If you're wondering if you should take a dolphin cruise, here's the run down. We did see dolphins, but honestly we also saw them several mornings from our deck at the house. If you don't happen to have our luck or aren't staying right on the water and dolphins are your thing, then do it. These particular captains were awesome and let the kids sit with them and drive the boat a lot. They also sold snacks on board for $1 so not too bad and a nice thing to have when they start to meltdown. If you want the name of this company shoot me an email.

If you have really young children like Jack, the cruise may be a little long. The other down side is that the kids have to keep the life jackets on the entire time. I would skip the swamp tour and just stick to the dolphins to shorten the time and we didn't even see any alligators anyway. If alligators are your thing, then definitely go to Alligator Alley. It's about a 30 minute drive outside of Gulf Shores, but totally worth it.

~Alligator Alley~

When you first walk in there is a large pond full of gators. There are a few different feeding times throughout the day and while staff members feed the them, they give you a little background information about the place and the animals.

The place is made up of several walkways around the property and you can purchase gator food and toss it over the fences as you walk around.

There is also an area where you can hold baby alligators and I thought this was by far the coolest part.

This kid has no fear.

I love this picture of Jack. He may only be one, but I think it's so important to expose kids to new experiences.

Come back for Part III tomorrow as we rap up the trip!