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Lator Gators & Blessed Names

I’m getting techincal and setting this to post in the morning… so, if all goes well we should be on our merry way or close to it.


Our time here was PEACEFUL & FABULOUS. My parents are wonderful hosts and we are leaving feeling filled to the brim. It’s no small task to invite 3 very small children into your home for 3 weeks. Mom already asked if I’d mind waiting until John Martin is in first grade until I have another baby. I’m not sure why she asked, she knows our track record. As the words came from her lips he was climbing naked and soaking wet from the tub onto the tile floor. She must like first grade because the funny thing is that she also fears he will nurse until he is in first grade {I’ve assured her he’s days from being done!!}. So, if her calculations are right she’ll be right on track. I think we he may have done her in. He’s 100% boy! He can’t walk yet but he has no problem getting where ever it is that he wants to go. I think he could scale a wall if he wanted. Today we were loading the car, looked over and he was sitting on the Gator. He looked at us as to say, “What? Am I not supposed to be doing this!”


I love my parents so much and thank them for the sacrifices they’ve made to have us here these past 3 weeks. They are the two hardest working people that I know. They started restoring the farm in 1996 and it has been their on-going project ever since, along with about 50 other on-going projects. My parents make me very proud. They have worked so very hard to have what they have and yet they realize material possessions hold no eternal value, which makes me even more proud. I cherish the time I have with them and wish we lived closer. Maybe you’ve noticed that we don’t get together often, but when we do, it’s not for hours, it’s for weeks. And I love that.

Thanks, Mom & DaddyBoy, for having us here for so long. We have thoroughly enjoyed our time and already can’t wait until next summer. Same time, same place… 2010, ok? Would it be okay if I brought a couple of college girls to help with the kids next year? They can stay in the cottage and we can send the kids down there every night from 5 pm until bedtime… but we’ll be sure to have the college girls come put the kids in bed while we sit on the porch and eat homemade ice cream and drink decaf coffee. Any takers!? 🙂 I could pay you with blueberries. Millions of them. And they’re organic, if you’re into that kinda thing!


And the girls could show you some awesome dance moves. Any college band party wouldn’t be the same when you return. If you’ve ever seen me dance you can tell the girls got my rhythm.


I’m really being 97% serious. We have had a wonderful time but as most of you know, vacationing with kids can be a lot of fun and a lot of work. Mom and I have spent a lot of time together but our time together revolves primarily around these three little monkeys.


In case you’re wondering, John Martin’s clothing is by God and the girls’ clothing is by Blessed Be The Name. Remember, I told you I’d show you? I’m holding up to my word.





When companies make clothes this cute it makes me want to kick my sewing machine to curb. Ashley, you are one talented lady and I’ve yet to see anything that I didn’t love!!

Lator gators! Again, prayers for travel mercies would be so appreciated… especially in light of Hornet’s trip up and forecasted RAIN! And if he chooses to be a total hornet again we’ll be “good” in a few hours… it only took me a few to get over it when we got here.


Lator gators!

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  • Shireen
    July 22, 2009 at 4:51 am

    Darby, Am I actually the FIRST to comment!!?!?!?! WOW!!!

    I prayed for your travels last night, and I look forward to hearing all about it.

    Love JM's diapers! Polka dots! Can't beat em! 🙂

  • The Tidy Brown Wren
    July 22, 2009 at 4:51 am

    I'll be praying for your safety and your sanity.

  • Mandi
    July 22, 2009 at 4:57 am

    I totally agree about vacationing with kids. It is a lot of work when nothing is child proofed, but the time with family is always worth it. I hope you have a safe trip home! By the way, all the pics are fantastic, but that last one is droolworthy!

  • julie
    July 22, 2009 at 5:20 am

    I will be praying for safe & enjoyable travels! Looks like the farm was amazing, the company=perfect, and the weather awesome!

  • Gmama
    July 22, 2009 at 5:25 am

    Hey Darby and gang,

    How about an old lady G'mama for your baby sitter next year. The kids are precious and I cannot believe how much they have grown. They are beautiful and in spite of their energy I know they are fun and your mom and dad will have to go through withdrawal when they are "home alone" again.

  • Amanda @ Serenity Now
    July 22, 2009 at 5:34 am

    Darby, this whole "series" was so much fun for me. My close family and my husband's close family mostly live nearby, so we don't really travel to see them. It was so much fun to read about all the fun you all had. I know we don't know each other at all, but you write so well that I feel like I know you better. 🙂 Have a safe trip home!

  • Ivy
    July 22, 2009 at 5:34 am

    What cute diapers! Praying for safe travels today and for a calm hornet!

  • Jenny Lynn
    July 22, 2009 at 5:47 am

    The dresses are ADORABLE!

    I hope that your trip goes well and the JM doesn't get to crazy. Well, and if he does, my prayer will be that you can still hear when you get home 🙂

  • annek
    July 22, 2009 at 5:53 am

    Did your mom pack the earplugs? Here's hoping you don't need them.Safe travels.

  • nikki r
    July 22, 2009 at 6:05 am

    i love this blog, i have four kids and also live far from family. you could have just stole those words right from my mouth! i have a feeling if we lived near each other we would be fast friends.

  • duchess
    July 22, 2009 at 6:05 am

    Your kids are so stinkin' cute (almost makes me want another one).
    Safe (& quiet) travels to you & your adorable family.

  • Melody
    July 22, 2009 at 6:37 am

    Praying for your traveling mercies and your ears!! : )

  • emilia morgan
    July 22, 2009 at 6:57 am

    here's to a safe and relatively silent trip back down south

  • Amanda Thrasher
    July 22, 2009 at 7:07 am

    Happy trails. We did the high school seniors or college girls with our boys when they were little. 2 years in a row we took adorable girl to beach with us for kids' spring break. Not only was it Spring break for them but for Mama too. Great minds think alike. Your "in" box is probably going to be flooded with apps. from cute Auburn co-eds. (Like your strategy of posting nothing but "cute-ness" on the blog.) I'm sure any sitter would be convinced no-one ever talks back, makes a mess or poops in their pants. Later Gator.

  • Rachel
    July 22, 2009 at 7:10 am

    I'm not a teen, but I'd definitely take you up on a visit to the farm next year! ;o) I've enjoyed seeing your travels & family fun time. It warms my heart to see & read of all of the enjoyment you've had over the past few weeks. The tractor pics are too sweet for words!

  • morethanthestarsinthesky
    July 22, 2009 at 7:25 am

    Cute pics! What a nice barn. Did you make the girls dresses? They are so pretty.

    Amanda in Alabama

  • Erin
    July 22, 2009 at 7:29 am

    After while, crocodile:) Good luck today!! I loved getting to see you all! How long is CJ staying? Love you!

  • The Gunters
    July 22, 2009 at 7:31 am

    I have to know where you got those diapers!! I love them!


  • Southern Exposure
    July 22, 2009 at 7:40 am

    Good luck! Let me know if you have any travel pointers! We are driving 8 hrs to Charleston, SC, next weekend with our daughter (She is a couple weeks older than Hornet). I hope you had a safe trip home!

  • Jen05
    July 22, 2009 at 7:47 am

    Love those Up & Up diapers! Wonderful photos as usual 🙂

  • Southern Exposure
    July 22, 2009 at 7:49 am

    I meant to ask, what do you think of those Up & Up diapers? Do they hold up pretty well? I thought about trying them the other day but I don't know anyone who uses them. They are really cute!

  • Elizabeth Williams
    July 22, 2009 at 8:28 am

    Darby, I would definitely go with you all- I'm the college girl you need..plus I could use all the dance moves Morgan and Paige would supply me with! 🙂 have a safe trip home!!


  • Alison
    July 22, 2009 at 8:29 am

    Prayers for safe travel and maybe even good memories on your ride home. I really enjoyed reading about your trip! How wonderful! Is it weird that I want to buy those dresses for my kids? I mean, future kids, I don't have any yet. Maybe its just that they are the cutest ever! You need another one immediately!

  • CC
    July 22, 2009 at 8:30 am

    Safe travels to sweet Darby, mom and three precious little ones!

    I will be sure to shoot a prayer your way!

  • Shannon
    July 22, 2009 at 8:36 am

    Best wishes for safe and peaceful travels!
    I love reading your blog. As a newlywed with no children yet, you give me so much to look forward to!

  • Unmistakably BLESSED
    July 22, 2009 at 9:06 am

    Okay, don't laugh, but I have to know if Hornet is wearing actual polk-dotted diapers? If so, please, OH PLEASE, tell me what brand they are so my Cameron-Girl can sport some, too? Those are just too fabulous for words! A million thanks, I know you get a gazillion comments and even more questions . . . I just love your blog and all the yummi-ness you fill our (stalking) heads with! In Him!!! Amanda

  • MyLittleHappyPlace
    July 22, 2009 at 9:49 am

    Godspeed, mi amiga!

  • Love Being a Nonny
    July 22, 2009 at 10:07 am

    Cutest dresses and children~

    Did you go back and get the water fountain?????????

  • Lynn
    July 22, 2009 at 11:03 am

    I would be perfect for that job!!! 😀 I even live only a couple hours from your parents' farm (I think) in Indiana. For real, if you want someone to come play with your adorable kids next summer let me know! I even have good references 😉
    P.S. I laughed out loud when you said JM's clothing was by God. That was awesome! haha

  • Liana
    July 22, 2009 at 11:55 am

    Great pics and safe travels!

    We love Target diapers, too– I'd buy them regardless of the design because the price is so good, but the new polka dot design is too cute!

  • Jenna
    July 22, 2009 at 1:00 pm

    I can totally relate to the 100% boy – I have two of them! Actually, my youngest little guy is a week or two older then John Martin, and my oldest is a week or two younger than Paige. I find that to be funny. 🙂

    I love the diaper too! Someone else said they're from Target, I'll definitely have to check those out.

    Praying for your safe travels. I know how it is with little ones…

  • Blessed Names
    July 22, 2009 at 1:00 pm

    hey darby!!
    thanks so much for the shoutout!! you are a precious blogger and i check often….the dresses look precious on the girls!! my blog has definately been visited by lots from here…thanks!!
    ashley eiler

  • Phil
    July 22, 2009 at 1:05 pm

    So cute…prayed for ya'll twice today as I was on the road to my Mama's for a week alone….dresses are so cute….Mandy

  • Beth
    July 22, 2009 at 1:09 pm

    Must commend you on the subtle John Deere plugs! My husband and father-in-law own/run John Deere/SunSouth dealerships. I can spot green & yellow from a mile away!

  • Jacci
    July 22, 2009 at 1:10 pm

    Just prayed for you all 🙂

  • Susan
    July 22, 2009 at 5:42 pm

    You amaze me! Please tell me that you drink some caffeine to make it through the day, and that your drinking decaf is just a hobby.:-) I started drinking two cups of coffee in the mornings after my third (he's a week or two older than JM) and I have not looked back. I find that on some days, I need more caffeine in the afternoon just to stay up! Loved all of the pics from the farm, too. Hope you survived the drive home –

  • The Gotbeters
    July 22, 2009 at 5:59 pm

    Praying for your trip! And about the nursing…I have 2 boys one whom nursed forver.. and another who is 20 months and still going strong! They all wean ( hugs ) And just so everbody knows, they are 500% boy! We were at my moms last night and West took off his diaper and teeteed all over her floor, laughing all the while! Wonderful post!

  • ski
    July 22, 2009 at 6:03 pm


    I have been a blog stalker for, well over a year and even comment now and again. I have tried just about every recipie you have put out there. And have LOVED pretty much every sewing project you have done. So much so that I finally took the plunge! Thats it, I bought a sewing machine! I am super stoked and for some ODD reason felt the need to share this wonderful purchase with you! I cannot WAIT to go through the tons of ideas on your site!! Thansk for getting those creative juices going!!


  • Jesse
    July 22, 2009 at 7:51 pm

    Hi there, I found your blog thru your sisters, and love it! Your family is beautiful! Great dresses too, I'll be checking them out! Safe travels!

  • style chronicle
    July 22, 2009 at 8:26 pm

    Looks like you had a wonderful time. Isn't it a blessing to have parents who love you and your family so much? Your pictures are fantastic. Thanks for sharing your life with us…

  • anglia
    July 23, 2009 at 2:46 am

    It looks like everyone had a great time! I know when I'm spend the day with my mom (she lives near by) it seems like we are too busy running down behind kids or telling them to stop doing something that we barely get to say two words to one another. I absolutely love the pictures!

  • LSU Melanie
    July 23, 2009 at 8:04 am

    Good morning!
    I am a new blog stalker!!! I made your petit fours this weekend, but my icing wasnt thick enough, but they were still very tasty. I really enjoy reading blog! It has inspired me to start sewing again:)

  • Carrie
    July 23, 2009 at 8:33 am

    I hope that your drive home was much easier than your drive there! I really enjoyed all of the pictures and stories from your vacation, thanks for sharing everything!

  • jade
    July 23, 2009 at 1:55 pm

    love the song 'blessed be your name!' going to check out their stuff now. you crack me up too darby. i get all of your jokes! funny lady.

    safe travels friend!

  • lindsey
    July 23, 2009 at 2:28 pm

    love it! love everything about it! what a respite that place seems to be…it's like all is as it should be. so glad you and the kiddos had time there and with your sweet parents.
    lindsey O

  • Jennifer
    July 24, 2009 at 8:57 pm

    Your photographs are always so good. I would love to know what camera and editing software you use.

  • Allison
    July 27, 2009 at 8:40 pm

    I am so glad y'all survived the ride home:) My little Lawson has the same dress and it is my FAV dress ever! They have it for Fall in 3/4 sleeves and is so precious! My sister, Amelia, works for BBTN! I found your site through her:) Love all of your posts!