just the kids and i got an early start on thursday morning.  with baby dolls and dinosaurs in hand, we loaded up all of our yummy snacks, and headed a few hours up the way to my cousin’s house in orlando…there’s nothing quite like a first cousin.  off we went and i must say, i have two of the best travelers.  we were making great timing and everything was smooth sailing, until i looked ahead at what seemed like an eternity of cars ahead of me at a complete stand still.  it was unavoidable, and we were definitely about to come to a complete halt.  i was only minutes from cousin lindsay’s exit, which just wasn’t cool.  i was disappointed until i looked back and caught eyes with lucy.   in that moment, i got so happy to be at a dead stop.  locking eyes with a little girl who has been sitting ever so patiently in her car seat for two hours, starring at the back of my head without a single complaint.  that little traffic jam was just what lucy needed.  she needed to see her mommy’s eyes, play peek-a-boo, make silly faces, and sing “the itsy-bitsy-spider” with all the hand motions and facial expressions.  she TOTALLY deserved a little traffic jam.

 i loved that 20 minute traffic jam.

i had no clue how well we were about to be treated.  i get a phone call from my sweet cousin before i arrive telling me to “answer your phone, i’m almost at publix and want to make sure to get lucy the right soy products”.  i knew that since she was digging into the fine details of our over-a-week-ago phone conversation where i casually mentioned lucy’s lactose allergy, that we were about to be treated like royalty…down to the almond milk that she picked up for my sweet girl.  what a menu she had for us, each and every meal.  her cooking was so exceptional that i left with the recipes and will be heading to the grocery store first thing tomorrow to re-create her yumminess.

her home was exquisite.  breathtaking.  magazine-like.  it was so beautifully decorated and her hospitality was unmatched.  we were treated like royalty the whole time.  you know that saying “my house is your house”?  well, that is just how we felt.  even with two kids that make messes, tinker with everything, and leave itty-bitty fingerprints on her pretties, she still welcomed us.  so nice.  i wish i had a picture of her phatty-daddy pad, but i kept forgetting to take one.  rats!

B.R.A.D.Y.!! cousin lindsays sweet boy.  he is one month younger than lucy (although he’s a whole head taller than my little peanut), and he was a complete joy to be around.  he’s got personality like none other.  my favorite thing about him was how every time i laughed at something lindsay said (which was constantly because she is hysterical), he would fake laugh because he is consumed with joy.  that kid is sure to go through his life having fun, being full of happiness, while having tons of followers.  i’m predicting his senior superlative as class clown or most likely to succeed.  mark my word.  he’s cool as they come.

brady wore that smile constantly.  aren’t they darling?
we did a great job hiding their “glory-land” (as my husband calls it).  go us!!

 brady and lucy romped around in their diapers and were basically inseparable the whole time.  they exchanged dozens upon dozens of hugs and kisses to each other.  they were so cute to watch.  brady looked up to nathan and wanted to play with whatever nathan was playing with, and do whatever nathan did.   now that didn’t always sit to well with nathan, but that is to be expected when trying to put those two age gaps together.  picture this: nathan and all his intensity, is quietly buidling a castle out of legos, and is completely enthralled.  brady, and all his intensity, is nothing more than a curious toddler, who genuinely wants to play with nathan.  brady doesn’t know how to be a team player and help nathan build that castle simply because he is only a 17 monther who doesn’t know the legalities of “sharing” at this point in his life, nor should he at this early age. but, brady IS confident in his i-wanna-bust-down-and-hear-all-those-toys-hit-the-tile skills.  so, he does just that, leaving nathan in shambles.  after that incident, we learned to put nathan up high to play and that did the trick.  we were happily ever after.

what little scuffle?
so sweet.

 as i sit here, typing and reflecting on our sweet trip…i smile.  i smile because i know that my babies had a friggin’ blast.  when they hurt, i hurt worse.  but, when they are happy, i am happier.  if i had to guess what their favorite part out of the trip was, with these choices: swimming, splash park, play ground, or all the new toys that belonged to brady…i would pick, none of the above.  what i think my kids loved most was my cousins staircase.  the loved climbing up, and scooting down on their bums…over and over again.  both days, by 5 o’clock, our kids were wiped out and totally over it.  i was so proud of my kids for rolling with the punches of a new environment and going straight to bed without a fuss or fight.  all it takes is reading a few books, and saying a little prayer, and they know the drill.  all three of the kids have the exact same bedtime, which is a nice, early, 7 o’clock!!  leaving the rest of the evening and well into the night, for us cousins to sit out by the pool, and chat the night away.  i had fun.  they had fun.

fun?  nathan?  not a bit.
lucy getting her slide on!
sweet, sweet babies!
no matter where we are, she is sure to be loving on her momma!
momma’s little lucy!

i forgot to throw this cute little tid-bit in here.  on the way up, i told nathan that we were going to visit my cousin, and go swimming, and blah blah blah.  when we arrive, lindsay opens the door, hugs my neck, and nathan says “hi cousin”, and that is what he called her the whole time.  he thought that cousin was her name, not lindsey, but cousin.  also, i told nathan that derek (my cousins husband), was brady’s daddy.  he must have heard me wrong and referred to derek as “baby’s daddy” the whole time.  nathan is just way to cute.  on the way home he says from the back seat “thank-you, mommy…did you have fun?”  i just love how he asks me those sweet little questions with such sincerity behind the tone.  to answer his question…yes, i sure did have a good time at “baby daddy” and “cousins” house.  we must have been good house guests because we got invited back.  heck yes!!

i hope my children have cousins that treat them this good someday! 

pause button please!



1 Comment

  • Bethany

    I love this one. Savannah and I did a girls road trip to see her cousins earlier this summer. (Darrin's sister's family). We, like you, came to a standstill on the highway, but we just cranked the radio and sang at the top of our lungs. Oh how I love these special times with my girl.
    And, like Nathan, Savannah has always referred to Darrin's sister's family as "the cousins". So cute:)
    Thanks for sharing!

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