Three years ago we sat with a few friends at a barbeque and talked about how fun it would be to all go on vacation together once we had kids.
Torrey…notsomuch. kinda hard without a uterus, huh Tor?
But 75% ain’t so bad. And the time finally came that we saved 36 months for – the toddler beach vacation/babymoon for our secondborn/excuse to eat-too-much soak-up-too-much-sun and take-too-many-photos.
(yes…there are seventy-four photos in this post…my apologies to those on dial-up)
We headed out last weekend. Dee had scored us a great deal for a place to stay that had six bedrooms and a great common area and access to the beach without any stairs (hallellujah!) so we forked over our $500 for the week (we paid less and got a non-suite) and packed up our bikes and bikinis and headed out.
Will is hard core on breakfast burritos. He is very dainty with them. Note the pinky up 🙂
I’ve said before that we travel a lot by car with Will and road trips don’t scare us so this time around we planned for one big ‘baby break’ and luckily we found a quaint little town to stop at. Brundidge. Yup…home of the first commercial peanut butter mill. Also home of one cool city hall next to one cool old house turned library next to one awesome wall o’ mural.
My tip for traveling with a toddler – snacks, songs, and a whole lotta Barney. And find a spot to stop that has space to run. Oh and bring a blanket.
We rolled the window down when we crossed over a bridge with the ocean.
Will wanted to take off his clothes as soon as we saw the sand – I felt the same way but look substationally less cute in the nude.
We changed the little guy and he made no hesitations toward the water.
Dads with toddlers.
You all should be warned that Lola is a ham. She has one big amazing personality squeezed into one tiny little body.
And she has a Pebbles hairdo.
Here’s the back side of the place we were staying.
Will had a hayday with the snow. And his I-wanna-be-Johnny-Depp hairdo.
A little sand to the face. He also makes this face during some of the meals I’m made.
All in all – great arrival.
And great view. I need to work on my moon-photography. Not so good.
Oh and here are the four boys. Jeremy & Torrey (red shirt) are brothers and Billy (gray shirt) and Jeff (navy shirt) are brothers.
The next day Will could barely wait to get his noodle in the water. Take that as you will.
The water was amazing. It reminded me of our honeymoon in Mexico. I’ve been to a lot of beaches but this is the only one in the US that I did not think twice about getting in the water. Yes, I get extremely freaked out by the thought of sharks, jellyfish and other painful water-dwellers.
The guys did a lot of paddleballing. Jeremy found the new paddle ball sets at Goodwill for a couple bucks and it was sortof hilarious watching him get excited about finding a good deal. Now he knows how I feel every time I smash my cart into someone elses and tackle a thrifty prize with gusto.
Let’s not even talk about how much I should not be wearing this suit.
After a day at the beach, we cleaned up and headed to a ritzy area called Baytown Wharf to eat some seafood.
We ate at a restuarant called Poppy’s. I give it a solid B+.
I give little Hayden a solid A+ mostly for the extreme cuteness…but bonus for having brown eyes.
Jer had steak. Do not eat the steak. It ain’t worth it. Eat the crab. I ordered the crab & shrimp. The shrimp doesn’t even deserve to be mentioned next to the crab. Just grab the crab. Grab it with both hands and don’t let go. Unless you are eating it.
Seriously that good. It made up for Jer’s so-so steak and some awfully neglected shrimp.
We hit up Sweeties afterward to indulge the sweet-tooth…we highly recommend the cake batter. All eight of us thought it was the best.
Cheese-balls. And dude…that’s one big lifeguard.
Oh – here’s a tidbit you all are dying to know. Will let me know he had a poopie diaper for the first time ever while on vacation. He was adamant. As you can see by the vein on his neck.
Now back to the beach…
This one kills me.
I love his lashes and his little freckles. and his lips. and his lashes. did I mention those already? I love them. and his everything.
This picture gives me hope. It tells me two is not too much to handle. It tells me we are not getting in over our heads. It tells me that I married the best man ever. It tells me that I am the luckiest girl in the world to have a loving husband…and the ability to kiss my little boy every day and to have one on the way. That is the very definition of blessed.
Also sand between my toes doesn’t hurt 🙂
We ate at the house a few nights and it was so fun to just bum it. Don’t get me wrong. One of the greatest parts of vacation is trying out local joints and not worrying about preparing food or cleaning up afterwards. But I also like not worrying about my hair or if my leggings are clean or if Will isn’t gonna have a breakdown right after the waiter brings the drinks.
On Wednesday, it was quite different outside. A storm was a brewing.
It was the first day of rain. I forgotten what Florida rain is like. It’s different than Loganville, GA rain. It’s heavy – like a old quilt, handmade and smells and new at the same time. It’s beautiful.
We spent the day perusing the outlets and hit up Cantina Laredo for dinner. Not really mexican food. Good…but not mexican to me. I don’t care what the signs says. And that giant bowl of cheese dip….my thighs thank you.
After a day of rain, we woke up not really knowing what to expect. IT WAS UNBELIEVABLE.
The weather was absolutely perfect. The toddlers were worn out.
Well – not this one. She’s dancing. And yes, she does the moonwalk and it is the cutest thing ever.
Along with her mad dance skills, she also does this thing where she tries to get your number. She flirts like Backstreet Boy at a reunion concert. She looks at you and smiles and then she gives you ‘the eyes’. She and an 80 year old woman had a love affair across the room at breakfast one morning…it was like a weird rom-com.
One of Will’s favorite things about Destin was the fact that frequent boats and helicopters came by. He would freeze…and watch…and afterward tell everyone that a ‘copper’ went by.
One evening we snuck away for a chaperoned pizza night at Ciao Bella. Somehow Lola convinced Will to pucker up. It must have been those eyes 🙂
The Donut Hole was one of our favorites for local fare. The coconut chocolate donut was amazing. The bacon…disappointing. Just keepin’ it real.
Then it was back to the beach. Do you notice a theme here? We did a whole lotta eating and beaching.
And taking photos of Lola. She was willing and happy to be my model…
We are still working on posing…
Apparently those flirty eyes wore off by day five…kudos to Will for resisting temptation. There’s five bucks in for you kid if you keep that up till you’re, oh, say thirty.
Forgot my throwing something label 🙂
All in all – super fun. And it’s not over yet. Still gotta part two to do 🙂