Hyatt Lost Pines

We decided to have a little staycation for my birthday/Mother’s Day weekend. We always passed by Hyatt Lost Pines when we head back to Louisiana, but this was our first time to actually stop and stay.

We absolutely loved our stay here. I described being here like a cruise. There are plenty of actives for everyone and anyone. If you just want to hang by the pool, go for it! If you want to do crafts, you can! If you want to watch movies all day and night, here’s the schedule! If you want to just chill and read a book on your balcony, by all means do it!

When you exit to their driveway, you are welcomed with a beautiful stone sign and a winding road before even seeing the resort. My daughter described it as a “road slide”. Big trees surrounded both sides of the road and our car would go uphill and downhill. “Weee! Road slide”, Sweet Eloise said.

We were greeted by the valet and bellhop. While my husband checked us in, Eloise and I looked around the lobby and front lawn area. It was a beautiful evening. We were experiencing not a typical Texas May. It was a 57 degrees and breezy. We saw people enjoying riding bikes, walking around, and sitting by the fire pit. We were starved so we headed to the Firewheel Cafe, which served a buffet. It was so delicious! My favorite was the pasta station and Eloise’s the desert table. LOL!

After stuffing ourselves, we decided to burn some calories by walking around the resort. We saw people enjoying sitting by the lake, playing corn hole and horseshoe, and my favorite making s’mores! A staffer already placed marshmallows on a long pitch-fork, then when your mallows were roasted how you wanted them, you bring it to another staffer that places them between 2 graham crackers and a chocolate bar. Talk about service!

In our hotel room, they gave us a schedule of the weekend’s festivities. We met the mascot (longhorn), said “Hi” to the alpacas, road bikes (free!), swam in the pool, did the arts & crafts, watched parts of a movie, enjoyed their restaurants and room service.

Our last night we ate on the patio at Sheller’s. I reflected on another year around the sun and really soaked in our time as a family.

I highly recommend staying here. Our weekend here was so much fun.  We can’t wait to make this a yearly staycation!

Scroll all to the end to check out our video.





Dear Eloise

Dear Eloise,

You’re already 2 1/2 years old! Time really does fly. I still remember when you were 2 1/2 weeks old. We were still living in Raleigh, and we explored the Duke gardens. You had no problems adventuring out and about. You still have no problems going on an adventure. You are so much more independent, active and hard to keep up with sometimes. We love your soul. You are so kind and compassionate. When you saw a little girl sad, you said “Aw,  she crying. Are you okay?” and went to to rub her back to comfort her. You are so funny. You were ringing your bells that your cousins got you for Christmas, you said “Too loud?” and I replied, “Yes, too loud.”, so you barely rang it and you said, “like this?”, I said “much better”. Another time, I asked you where Jesus lived, you said “heart”, but pointed at your belly. I said, “That’s your belly, not your heart”, you laughed and laughed, “my belly” you giggled rubbing your belly. We have so much fun with you. This morning, you saw mama blowing her nose and you asked me, “Are you sick? Need to go to doctor?” then you went to your playroom and came back with your Doc McStuffins stethoscope to give me a check-up. Then, you got your otoscope to check my ears. You looked at my right ear, then left, all while doing the bird chirping sound just like Dr. Shannon did at your check-up, last week. “Birds in your ear” you said with a big smile.

March- you turned the wild 2. We had so much fun celebrating you at Little Land with our family and friends. You were a busy body, barely posing for pictures. Daddy, me and you went to the Waco zoo on your actual birthday. You love pointing out all the animals now. “Rawr” you said when you saw the lions, “chirp chip” when you saw the birds. For your final birthday celebration, we went to Great Wolf Lodge in Grapevine, TX. You loved to swim, wanting to go back even though the pool area was closed already. You enjoyed story time at the pajama jamboree, well, you liked trying to steal other kids’ snack more LOL. You met your cousin, Roman, for the first time. Y’all both had the same wild hair.

April- we met sweet baby Logan. “Ogan!” you would say, “Aww, he cute”.

May- You spent some time with your Lolo, Lola, Mawmaw and Pawpaw. You loved helping bake shakoy and pan de sol with Lola. You, also, love to watch those cupcake baking shows- maybe you will be the next great baker. You went to Louisiana to spend quality time with maw maw and pawpaw and our family there. They enjoyed giving you donuts for breakfast 🙂 You still ask, “Where maw maw? Where pawpaw? Where Max? Where Ryan?”.

June- You had your first dance recital! You danced with daddy on stage. We were worried that you were just going to run around like you did at the rehearsal and fall off the stage, but when the big day arrived, you were a rockstar! You hit your mark and knew your moves, you even did a cute wave good-bye; maybe you just needed the stage and lights!

July- we have been spending time enjoying the summer: going to splash pads, baseball games, Blues on the Green, day trips to Gruene and Wimberly, and hanging out with our friends. Mommy started work and you started daycare. We were both messes at first, but now we are settled and enjoying ourselves.

August- We went to Port Aransas with your cousin, Sammy. We all had fun swimming, relaxing, and eating. You liked to build sandcastles, swim in the pool, and splish splash in the beach. You didn’t want to go in any further than knee deep, “baby shark in the ocean” you said scared.

September- Sweet Eloise, you are starting another year of dance and school. No tears at school this time around, barely a sad good-bye. You love your friends and toys over there. You say, “I had fun” when I pick you up.

We always pray for you. Pray that you know how loved you are, that you know you will always be enough, and that one day, you will choose Jesus as your Savior.

Daddy and mommy are working hard to change our family tree so we can help you and your children, one day.

Love you BIG!

10 Things to do in San Francisco with a toddler

We went to San Francisco for my birthday and Mother’s day weekend. We were only there for four days, but we did so much that I had to make 2 travel videos. You can find them here.

  1. Alcatraz– This is a must for history buffs. The tour takes you on the island where criminals, like Al Capone, were imprisoned. Also, start a National Park Service passport for your little one (get it stamped at guest services). Eloise was a trooper until we got into the cells. Our little miss independent didn’t want to be in the stroller anymore and was running into people. If we tried to pick her up, she would cry. Since I’ve already been on the tour, I brought her to the gardens for her to run around and hubs continued the tour.
  2. Golden Gate Bay Cruise– Take a tour under the Golden Gate bridge, loop by Alcatraz island, and check out the beautiful skyline from the bay. It was a little windy, so we stayed inside drinking hot coco and saw the views through the window. When the boat went under bridge, we went outside to soak in the beauty.
  3. Pier 39– This place is a must! There’s cool shops, good restaurants, a fun 2 story carrousel, and the cute sea lions. We ate at Fog Harbor for lunch and it was so yummy. We ordered the clam chowder and the seafood tower. One of our neighbors recommended this place, and I’m glad she did!
  4. Muir Woods– Only 16 miles north of the hustle and bustle of the city, is this majestic place. Our little babe received another stamp on her National Park passport. Dedicated to the founder of National Parks, John Muir, this park is perfect to soak in the glory of Jesus. Look up to be in awe of the redwoods that are over 150 years old and tower over the trails.
  5. Twin Peaks- At 925 feet elevation, it is the 2nd highest point in the city with only a 3 feet difference to Mount Davidson. There was construction when we arrived which made parking a little confusing. We ended up parking next to a fence blocking the road. Since there was construction, part of the road was closed so we were able to walk on the street and take in the skyline undisturbed.
  6. Painted Ladies– The famous, colorful Victorian houses known as the Painted Ladies are a must. Bring a picnic and watch the sunset hide behind the houses from Alamo Square. Despite what people think, the Full House house is not one of these ladies.
  7. Full House house– A few blocks away is the infamous Full House house, ya know the show, cue the Tanners. If you’re in the area, check it out to feel a little nostalgic 😉
  8. Ghirardelli Square– There are fun shops, a pub, restaurants, and of course, Ghirardelli chocolates. We got a cute souvenir shirt for Eloise; can’t wait for it to fit her.
  9. Golden Gate bridge– Walking across the bridge should be on your bucket list! It was super windy when we walked across. I’m so glad we were dressed in layers (always my brother’s advice when we visit). You can see a beautiful view of the skyline, Alcatraz Island, Angel Island, and the Marin Headlands.
  10. Sue Bierman Park– Our little babe needed a break from the stroller and this was a good place to run free. We stumbled upon this playground across the street from the Ferry building. We love hanging out at the local parks. We met a few families there; one wanted to have a play date, but unfortunately, we were leaving later that day.

*Bonus*Kirby Cove– we were unable to make it here due to construction. We could not figure out a place to park then how to get down there. I was super bummed and I definitely would make a trip back to SF just to experience swinging while overlooking at the magnificent Golden Gate bridge- and why not, take a pic for insta, too 😉



13 Things to do in Seattle with a toddler

Seattle is so pretty, even when it rains. They have SO many family friendly activities for both the indoors and outdoors.

  1. Museum of Pop Culture (MoPOP)– This is a fun museum for all ages. Currently, their exhibits include: David Bowie, Jim Henson, Jimi Hendrix, Star Trek, Seattle Seahawks (We  are 12). They also have a fun sound lab on the top level to get hands on experience. You can play drums, guitar, keyboard, and even sing in your own “studio”. Really cool!
  2. Artists at Play playground- Perfectly located right in front of MoPOP & the Space Needle in the Seattle center. If your kiddos need a break, let them run around and explore at this super fun park. There was a nice toddler area that our sweet little babe loved to climb and slide by herself. She also loved this rock chime nearby. You throw rocks and it would hit these chimes that make music sounds.
  3. Space Needle– You can’t not go to Seattle without seeing the Space needle! The views from the top look amazing, too!
  4. Kerry Park– For a classic Seattle view, check out Kerry park! Parking can be a little chaotic, but most people don’t stay too long so if you wait, someone will be leaving soon! There is also a cute park below Kerry park. Our little babe loved sliding down and meeting new friends there.
  5. Pike’s Place Market– This place is a must! Not only is the first ever Starbucks here, but they have best flowers for cheap! We bought a dozen sunflowers to give to our hosts for $10! What a deal! They were fun for props to take pictures around, too 😉 They also have the “flying” fish here, but we never saw it. We came multiple times, too, maybe we just missed it. There will be a line at the Starbucks, but if you order a pour over or drip coffee, you’ll get it way faster than ordering a latte. After you get your coffee, stop over at Piroshky Piroshky and order their popular smoked salmon pate and beef and onion piroshky. It won’t disappoint!
  6. Aliki Beach– For another beautiful view of the skyline, come check out Aliki beach. You can walk, jog, rollerblade, have bonfires, have a picnic, or just sit and listen to the waves crash in.
  7. Snoqualmie Falls– About 45 minutes from the Sea-Tac airport, and a short hike down. Our little babe didn’t want to be in an Ergo (roll eye emoji); she’s quite an independent little lady, as many are at her age. She walked down to the bottom of the falls with minimal distractions and only 1 fall when she ran too fast and tripped on a rock. The hike back is a different story! It’s steep, and she did not want to cooperate. She wanted to keep throwing rocks and go off trail. So, we waited at the lower parking lot while hubs hiked back up to get the car to come get us.
  8. Fremont Street– Cool neighborhood! Check out the troll that lives under the bridge & the Sunday farmer’s market.
  9. Gum Wall– Be sure to have some super bubbly gum to add to the wall and take some cool pics for Instagram 😉
  10. Museum of Flight– Check out all the different planes, Boeing field tours, pilot experiences- fun for all ages.
  11. Starbucks Reserve Roastery– First ever Starbucks roastery (currently will open 6 more with only 2 more in the U.S.A.). Pretty cool experience especially if you are a coffee lover. You can order a cold brew flight or a pour-over. While you wait, you can watch them sort the beans. You can also purchase beans from different parts of the world.
  12. Harbor Cruise– We went around Elliot Bay which was really nice. I thought we were gonna see the ‘Sleepless in Seattle’ houseboats, but we were on the wrong body of water- lol! Check out their tour on Lake Union and the Ballard locks.
  13. Gas Works Park– A former gas plant, it contains the remnants of the sole remaining coal gasification plant in the United States. Bring a kite, a blanket for a picnic, or read a book and enjoy the Seattle skyline.

We loved Seattle so much; we looked into the housing market- lol I’ve listed just a few things to do, but there really is something for everyone there.

Hope you enjoy!





18 months update

Sweet little Eloise is 18 months today! I feel like at 18 months she is no longer a baby. She is exploring, climbing, and developing a little personality. She knows where her ears, eyes, belly button, head, and nose are. She can sign milk, crackers, all done, and banana. She can say mama, ma, dada, daddy, dog, aysha, nana, doll, dog, slide, outside, bubbles, want help, all done, what you doing, here you go, and there are more that I should’ve written down! She currently loves to put on shoes… doesn’t matter if they fit her or if even they are hers! She can go down the slide by herself, climb the stairs up and go down, and takes good care of all her dolls by feeding, changing, & putting them to sleep. She can drink from a cup and feed herself with a fork and spoon. She loves crackers- demanding them at times. She shows empathy. She sees someone sad and gives them a hug- pretty amazing how early on they learn this emotion! She loves to give hugs and kisses. She’s been hitting all her milestones, and I really don’t know how she is learning all of these things!

This month, she will have many firsts including going to school and taking dance class! I feel now she will only grow and learn even faster. I’m holding on tight to these moments, even when she throws herself on the floor because she wants to put on another pair of shoes.

To mark the special milestone, we did a photoshoot in the garage 😉




Motherhood has been great- not easy, but great. The most important thing that I have learned in these 18 months is to give myself grace. I may not be perfect or have it all together, but by God’s grace I am living the life He has called me to. 

“Her children rise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: “Many women have done excellently, but you surpass them all.” Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised. Give her of the fruit of her hands, and let her world praise her in the gates.”

-Proverbs 31:28-31




Paris, je t’aime



Our time in Paris was made even more memorable by taking professional family photographs (BIG shout out to Alex Baranda Photography for gifting us such a special gift). I would highly recommend it, especially in the city of love. Our photographer, Nadia from Better Travel Photos, was so kind, patient with our very active 15 month old and knew a plethora of information about Paris even giving us recommendations on a place to eat.

You will never regret capturing sweet memories of your family. I can’t wait to hang these memories on our wall.



**Disclaimer: All rights belong to mrsabbys. Do not copy.

Travel Diary: I dream of Marfa

I have been dreaming of spending some solitude in Marfa, more specifically El Cosmico, for a few months now. I really wanted to stay in a yurt, but the only time we were available to stay for a couple nights were in December. I did see that the yurts have a fire pit to keep you warm, but with a baby I can just imagine us constantly chasing her away from it. We opted for the airstream which included a heater and an indoor bathroom with shower! WooHoo! We, also, brought our little pup and celebrated her 10th birthday around the sun. It was nice to have our whole family there.

The drive to Marfa is about 6 1/2 hours from us. The last time we drove during the day with our little babe was miserable. We stopped frequently to feed and to change her and she still cried -a 3 hour road trip took 5 hours! We started to drive with her at night, which has been great since she just sleeps. This time, we were unable to travel during the night, but surprisingly she did so well during the day.

When we arrived in our airstream, it was a dream… an airstream dream 🙂 The countertop was hot pink, the comforter was this awesome rainbow color and there were supplies to make a pour over. The heater was already on so it was nice and cozy. I was so happy that Eloise loved their bed and stayed away from the heater or anything else that could be dangerous. She liked crawling to the windows and looking outside. We did bring a few of her toys to keep her entertained, too. The campground also included a communal kitchen and hammock area and you can rent dutch tubs or bikes. Since it was super cold when we went, we stayed inside most of the time.

We bought groceries and stayed in for dinner and breakfast the next day. It was so nice to just do nothing. Hubs read his devotional and I caught up on a book I have been trying to finish since summer. There were no distractions from the busy world. We were able to get closer to one another and to God. I know that might sound silly, drive 6 1/2 hours to find peace and quiet with one another and God, but it was nice to get away from any obligations or any electronic distractions.

We did do some “touristy” things. We checked out the Prada Marfa, which is 30 minutes away in Valentine. We were the only ones there so that was nice to snap pictures without people in it to make it even more desolate. Sweet Eloise fell asleep on the ride out there so she missed seeing the shoes and purses. There is a “love lock” fence in the back, where couples wrote their names on a lock and locked their love on the fence. We, also, went to the Marfa Lights, which was 10 minutes away. Eloise fell asleep again so I stayed in the car with her and hubs went to check it out. I was a little creeped out because it was dark and we were the only ones there! I did see something when we were leaving. We talked to a waitress that said many people believe the lights are demons, but it’s so sporadic that no one knows.

People have told us how much they love that we take our baby girl with us on our adventures and honestly, we love doing life with her. Sometimes, it can be tough if she is fighting her sleep and crying and everyone stares at you or you can’t stay in a yurt, but we feel like it’s worth it. We love showing her new things and letting her explore.