This is one of my favorite photos ~
one of my favorite memories.
J, the dude, & I took a road trip to
Minnesota last September. We stayed
in a hotel with a pool and an awesome
mini splash area that the dude loved.
He loved it so much & played so hard,
that he was pretty tired whenever we
ventured outside the hotel. Our plan
was to take him to Nickelodeon Universe
in the Mall of America, but the dude was
kind of crabby and we started to think
it was going to cost too much money anyway,
so we decided to head home early.
I was feeling pretty deflated
but settled on the idea to leave.
The mood in the car was somber.
After a few minutes circling in mall traffic,
without saying a word, J turned the car around
and drove back to the mall.
"Let's just do it!" he said.
The dude and I lit up and
we headed to Nickelodeon Universe.
We had an absolute blast. The dude loved all the
rides and was giddy the entire time. This photo
was taken while he & J rode on a giant hot air
balloon. The dude has a stuffed hot air balloon
hanging in his bedroom that he's had since he was
born. So he was excited to see a giant balloon he could
actually ride in. This was the last ride of our trip,
so he was exhausted but still super excited.
He was literally closing his eyes with his head in J's lap
in the moments before and after this shot was taken, but
the look of pure joy on his face just sums up the entire trip for me.
It makes my heart burst at the seams and
reminds me where my smile is hiding on dark days.
It makes every tough moment worth it.