Waving good-bye to June

Wait, June is gone? Ju-lying! (Yeah, D didn’t think it was funny either.)

We did so much in June, it was insane!!

D and I had house plans drawn up (thanks Dad!) and took them to a contractor. This was incredibly exciting, however, absolutely terrifying. What is money, even? Where does it come from? Who wants to share some with us? Just kidding!

No, but seriously… how necessary is having more than one bathroom? Do we really need a fireplace? Do we really need a garage? Nah, nah, scrap it all. Let’s throw up some walls and put a mattress on the floor, we’ll be golden!

Mid-June we set off on the great Ducote Family Vacation of 2018! To Gatlinburg, Tennessee! It was beautiful. And wonderful. And so chill. Except for the parts of it where my child was running from one side of the cabin to the other screaming. And the parts where my child was in the car screaming. And the parts where my child was supposed to be napping, but was instead screaming.

Zoned in to Mr. Bean.

He did have so much fun, though! He watched Mr. Bean and played with his Aunt Hannah (aka Aunt Boo) on the ride down and back. They had blankets, pillows, iPads, snacks, juice boxes, and toys strewn across the back seat. Paradise!

Our first afternoon there (Thursday), we just relaxed. Lee got re-acquainted with family members he hasn’t seen in a while and made quick friends with his Great Uncle John (who bears a striking resemblance to his Grandpa)! This was very confusing. He knew that this imposter was not his Grandpa, but he looked a lot like him. And he was fun to play with!

The next day (Friday) we went to the aquarium. You had to hold Lee tight because if he could get away, he would take off running. He went into pointing overload. “Look, Look, Look,” he exclaimed at every tank we passed by. At this aquarium, they have a tunnel that you can walk through where the sharks are swimming above you. This was Lee’s favorite part!

On Saturday, we went exploring! We drove into the Smoky Mountain National Park and up, up, up, deep into the mountains. By pure luck, we happened upon Clingmans Dome, which

Clingmans Dome.

happens to be the highest point in the park (6,643 feet). D and I loved it!!

Lee, well, not so much.

(Look at his face in the pic on your left! He has his puppy and his thumb in his mouth.. it was a miracle he was even still awake. He has been growing so much lately, it is crazy! Every morning he looks taller to me.)



We more than made it up to him on Sunday, though! We found this place called Rainforest Adventures Discovery Zoo. It’s indoors, (thank you Lord!) and so, so much fun.

They have exhibits featuring all of the creatures from (you guessed it!) the Rain Forests of the world. There were separate exhibits for mammals, reptiles, amphibians, birds and bugs. D and Lee insisted on spending entirely too much time in the snake exhibit. I was standing way far back (hovering towards the back door) because I was having Harry Potter flashes and no.


They had a small petting zoo behind the building with a bunch of animals running all around. Lee’s favorite were the goats. I’m thinking maybe it was because of the horns..? But I can’t be sure.

He kept calling them over and when they would stick their heads through the fence, he would pet them ever so gently, with his palm completely flat. He was so absolutely wonderful with them. He treated them with as much love and kindness, as he does our pups at home.

Also featured on the Ducote Family Vacation of 2018 was:

A very intense pool tournament, which D’s uncle Andre and I ended up winning out. This was a stroke of pure luck on my part.

Baby bear!


A close encounter with a bear. Wellllllll, maybe not so close. D’s Aunt Renee was on the front porch making a phone call when she ran back inside to the kitchen, grabbed D and I by the arm and pulled us outside where a wittle baby bear cub stood! Nevertheless, it was very cool.

Lots of love for Grandma Ducote! The downstairs main room of our cabin had been converted into a game room, complete with a pool table (as mentioned above), two Ms. Pacman/Galaga stand-up arcade games, and two of the sit-down racing game simulators. Now be warned, if a racing game is in the vicinity and you leave your hand dangling long enough for Lee to grab it, he was pulling you over to one of those consoles.

Grandma Ducote helping Lee race!

*****Side Note:

Though he had his fair share of tantrums and screaming fits, Lee was actually quite wonderful on this trip. For a sneak peek of “Vacation Lee” in his natural habitat, please see below.


The end of June was a lot of fun as well. D and I celebrated our 4th wedding anniversary with a dinner/movie date. It’s funny how, even though you are going out to spend alone time together, all you end up talking about is your cute child. We were so excited to get back to him.img_1124

Oh, and I almost forgot! The morning of our anniversary date, we took Lee out to his very first donut shop for breakfast. It was so much fun! He couldn’t believe these delicious morsels of heaven were actually considered a breakfast food.

I’m excited to see what all July has in store for us and I know Lee is too!


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