charlotte | for mother's day.

okay, if i'm being totally honest, the real reason i ended up in charlotte on mother's day weekend had less to do with mother's day and more to do with a certain tour de compadres that was passing through charlotte on that particular weekend. but listen, that's a whole story for another post. my point is, i was in charlotte for mother's day weekend. and yet, here i am with a whole slew of luca photos and like, one or two others.

as i was going through them all, i started to feel a little bad that the photo ratio of luca to anyone else is about ...twenty seven to one. and then i stopped feeling bad about it because the reasons i compulsively take photos of luca are not reasons to take photos of a grown adult. for example, there's nothing particularly exciting about my mom sitting at the dining room table and eating a meal with a fork, or sitting in a lawn chair out on the back patio.

if i had thought of it at the time, i probably would have documented her doing those things for comparison sake, but i didn't so let's move on.

i ended up taking the whole day off on friday, which meant i was up and on the road at such an early hour in the morning that it could also technically be considered the middle of the night. (but no, can i pause right here to compare how i got up at four a.m. to drive seven hours to see my people and my brother got up at two a.m. to drive thirteen hours to surprise his girlfriend?) (he is a pretty okay boyfriend, i guess.) (we taught him well, didn't we?) (kidding. kind of.)

where was i?

that afternoon, after lunch and learning how luca throws that high-shouldered, head-tilted, heart-melting grin around any time he does something fresh because LOOK AT HOW CUTE I AM THOUGH (you want to laugh when he does this but you also want him to be well behaved, so it's a struggle) (especially for the grandparents who have been there/done that), T and i stepped out and got ourselves a couple of double chocolatey chip frappuccinos (because, frappy hour) and pedicures (because, mothers––and aunts––deserve to have fresh toe nail polish).

honestly, i don't really remember what all else happened and in what order, except for that friday was the night J was still there and we played a couple of stale-mate games of tic-tac-toe on the living room floor before mom, T, and i watched that awful nicholas sparks movie (the best of me). i'm telling you, if you have the option to, CHOOSE THE TEARS OF JOY EDITION. otherwise, proceed at your own risk.

and then, saturday night was the concert.

everything else just kind of blends together because we didn't really do a whole lot except hang out, play in a dirt pile, pretend to mow the lawn, and ride on a roller coaster. and by we, i mean luca did all of those things while we watched (and took photos).

i do remember, though, on saturday morning, my mom came in to wake me up, and as she pulled the blinds open, she shared a whole lot of things that i think had to do with our plans for the day. then she left the room, and when she came back five minutes later, she repeated all the things she had said five minutes earlier. because, after years of delivering monologues while driving me to school every morning, she knows i am not one to jump into a conversation seven seconds (or thirty seven minutes) after i open my eyes.

after re-sharing her thoughts and potential plans for the day, she asked, "what do you want to do?"

drink coffee.

happy mother's day, mom. may you never change.

i'm sad to say that we took about five of these photos before giving up, but for the sake of documenting our activities (and including a photo, sans luca), i slapped on a black and white filter, mostly for the sake of myself and those bags under my eyes, and am presenting it to you.

the lot next to my parents' house is (was) in the very beginning stages of being built. meaning, there was this pile of dirt sitting there, and luca was OBSESSED with scooping very small amounts from the big pile into a new pile he created right next to it. every few minutes, he'd point to the pile a few feet from where he was standing, and then walk over there and start a new pile of scooped dirt. it was all very thrilling, especially when he spotted a bug.

(this activity was so fun, it happened each day we were there. he was not, in fact, wearing two different outfits here because he got messy while playing in the dirt. let's be real. any time he'd get some on his hand from scooping, he'd lift it up so we could brush it off for him.)

this particular game is one of luca's favorites, as he is very into lawn maintenance these days. someone holds a bat (or any object of that shape/size) and makes an "uhhhhhh" noise while pretending to be leaf blowing, and the other person pushes the lawn mower.

you can put bubbles in this lawn mower so that they fly out at you push it around, but i really think that's an additional feature more beneficial for T, who would follow luca around pretending to leaf -blow, but really trying to pop all the bubbles with the bat.

this game was my favorite. luca would come down the roller coaster, i'd catch him at the end, and then push him back up to the beginning. after doing this once or twice, i asked for a kiss at the end after i caught him. he happily obliged, and then added it to our routine. down the roller coaster, kiss for auntie, back up the roller coaster.

those curls. those eye lashes. THOSE CHEEKS. that head-tilt and smile. his kiss face. the way he holds his motorcycle toy by the handle bars.

this! i mean, he would randomly walk by you, or even just look at you across the table, and give that squinty-eyed, scrunched-nose smile. and you never know when it's going to happen, so what i did here was hold up the camera the entire time he walked that thing (loud, obnoxious toy) back and forth between the kitchen and the dining room, hoping to catch him do it. these aren't the best quality photos, but no photo can really capture the way it makes your heart melt into a puddle so i'm okay with it.

he treats eating food like it's the most outrageous and unenjoyable experience. (unless you're feeding him m&ms, then by all means he wants another and another.) the photo on the left, i feel, is an accurate depiction of what it's like for him and every one else at meal times. on the right, i just can't with that face he's making.

and last but not least, me + my favorite moms went to see the tour de compadres so we snapped this photo before we left, and thank god we did because HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY.

*in other news, T has finally blogged about what luca's been up to lately. she shares more stories and details and photos there, in case the 96 photos i shared here weren't enough. (they're not. i left some good ones out because she posted them.)