Sunday, July 22, 2012

He's Gr{eight}!!

My sweet little brown eyed boy-
{Okay, I probably can't call you little for very much longer, but you will ALWAYS be my brown eyed boy.} Happy eighth birthday! I am so proud of the wonderful young man you are becoming. You are so very smart and kind.
I know that most people, those who don't really know you all that well, think you are serious and quiet. But I know the real you. The little boy with the dry sense of humor that absolutely cracks us all up. The boy with the smile that will literally light up a room. It takes you awhile to warm up to situations but when you do, man, there's no stopping you.

I used to worry that you lacked self-confidence but I know that's not the case. You know who you are, you just quietly go about your business. I love that about you. You aren't at all concerned what other people think, you are perfectly content being you. You are fearless and strong.
I love being around you, because in the chaos and disorder that is sometimes my day to day, you ground me. {Yes, you, my 8 year old son grounds me.} Your quiet spirit and calm demeanor helps me to focus on what really matters.
There's a song that I listen to sometimes called "Quiet Your Mind", one of the lyrics are "If you're too busy talking, you're not busy listening". You ALWAYS listen. You hear everything, it seems. You take it all in and decide what's right, what you believe and then you act.
You really do amaze me, Jackson. You are so very smart but you never, ever show off. You can solve puzzles and clear video games without really even trying but you never brag about it. You win awards at school and I find them crumpled in the bottom of your backpack. Not because you don't care but because the limelight isn't your thing.
You're just you. And the you that you are is pretty amazing. Never forget that.
I hope you come to find that the limelight is okay sometimes-I saw you enjoy it a little bit with your school play this past year-you strolled across the stage in a dog costume {with just one line} and just about stole the show. Because, like me, when people see you, really see you they think you are pretty amazing too.

I love you so much, Jackson Scott. Keep being who you are. I have no doubt you are going to accomplish great things someday. I thank God everyday for giving you to us.
Your Momma

Friday, July 6, 2012

Where The Boat Leaves From...

I'm warning you now-this post has a TON of pictures-so feel free to ignore this one, if you aren't interested in that kind of thing...
It's been about a month since we've been back from vacation and I'm finally catching up on things-life is slowing down a bit.
We went to Destin, Florida for the week of Memorial Day-it was wonderful. Perfect weather, the beaches were beautiful (no Junegrass!) and the crowds were thin. We spent most of our time in the city of Destin-last year we were east of Destin in Santa Rosa and spent most of our time at those beaches-St Andrews & Grayton. This year we stayed in Destin and took a shuttle over to Henderson State Park-the sand was soft and white and the water was bright blue.

The twins loved the beach-snorkeling, skim boarding, even catching small fish.

Jackson, well, he tolerated it. He spent a lot of time building elaborate sand villages and canal systems to protect his sand villages.
Moose, on the other hand, did not care for the beach. At all. He screamed "Go away sun!" and hid under a towel. He refused to go into the ocean unless he was attached to either Chuck or me. The only time he seemed even slightly happy was when he flinging sand at someone. I guess I never have to worry about him dropping out of college and living on the beach some day.
We didn't spend all of our time at the beach-we did lots of other fun stuff too-went to Harborwalk Village for dinner and sightseeing, took the kids to Fat Daddy's arcade (their favorite place in all of Destin), we rented a pontoon boat and went fishing (sort of) and visited Crab Island, Chuck took the twins on jet skis, and we even caught a movie.
We found a fun new area to spend an evening in-Baytowne Wharf- where we tried (unsuccessfully) to convince Chuck to eat 3 pound burrito, the boys got to do the Euro Bungy ride, and Moose got to ride a "Chicken Horse" at the carousel. Baytowne Wharf is located in Sandestin and has such a cool atmosphere, we will definitely be adding it to our list of things to do next year.
We went to the Gulfarium-Florida's Marine Adventure Park right on the beach, where we saw sea lions and dolphins. Jackson and Moosey got to touch Starfish, while Chuck and the twins messed with hermit crabs.
We visited the Okaloosa Pier-with it's colorful shops and restaurants. Definitely want to be spend more time here next year!

 We walked all the way onto the pier and enjoyed the beautiful view of the Gulf-water as far as you could see. People all over the pier were fishing. Very cool atmosphere.

Our last night in Destin, we took a sunset cruise and went looking for seashells. The interesting thing about Destin and Crab Island is that there are a decent number of shells but most of them have live hermit crabs still in them! It's much harder to find empty shells in this area of the Gulf. But Chuck and the twins found quite a few-and all four boys got a chance to captain the boat before we ended the evening seeing a beautiful Gulf sunset.
This vacation was really amazing-so relaxing and fun. I love that I got to spend a week doing the things we love to do most, with the people I love the most. We love going to Destin, it's one of those places you can go back year after year and discover something new each time. I'm already counting down the days until next year's trip. :)
Until then, here's a few of my very favorite photos of my little back next week for a recap of what else we've been up to lately...end of school festivities, VBS week, fireworks and more!