Charming Charleston #Rowloyolo

When Ryan matched for his Orthopedic Surgery Sports Medicine fellowship in Greenville, SC last spring, we decided we better start getting familiar with the South! We quickly booked a trip to Isle of Palms, SC right outside of Charleston. We rented the most adorable Airbnb just blocks from the water and had the BEST time exploring the quaint little beach town. We were provided with a golf cart which was super convenient with our crazy crew on board, and we split our time between the beach and our backyard pool. The house came equipped with a beer pong table and screened in porch perfect for grilling and watching sports. Needless to say it was a perfect landing spot for our group. As if that wasn't enough of a vacation, we decided to head inland to Charleston for the last 2 nights of the trip for a totally different vibe.

Charleston with kids in-tow is a MUCH different ballgame than our previous trips had been sans  carseats and strollers before, but we didn't let them slow us down too much! We still managed to find plenty of time for delicious seafood, rooftop bars, and lots of sightseeing (between all the naps and meltdowns of course)! The trip was an absolute dream and looking back at these photos makes me SO excited to be headed to the beautiful south to LIVE this summer! 

Thames Summer Daze

Well, in my true fashion it's taken a full year to finally share our "Thames Summer Daze" vacation from last summer. My parents took all of us to Carillon beach near Destin, FL on 30A and it was truly the most magical vacation EVER! We packed our days full of fun; endless sun, refreshing drinks, pool games, cookouts, sand castles, seafood, guitar picking, shopping, exploring, and even a day of deep sea fishing. Needless to say it was one of our favorite family vacations yet, and I'm beyond thankful for such a crazy group to share these bright memories with. I'll let the photos tell the rest. (Side note- "beach baby meltdown" photos not included. Let's be honest, babies at the beach require a lot of work. With sunscreen in their eyes and sand in their diapers, we certainly had our fair share of reality but somehow our sweet babysitter Amy and these beautiful beach views made it all tolerable!)

We adore our photos by Two Lights Photography in Florida! Sheena was incredibly efficient with kids and super talented behind the camera!


I was so excited a few months back when an old friend of mine who moved to Paris reached out with a fun blogging opportunity. She works for a really great Paris-based company called Melijoe which sells a fantastic array of kids apparel from an impressive list of high-end designers. She offered to send a few little goodies for my boys to try out, and it's safe to say that I was ecstatic when I saw that some of them were Burberry. Let's be honest, buying Burberry for my babies isn't really in the cards for me at this stage in the game.....however, I was very relieved to find that Melijoe has an incredible range of price points on their site and offers something for all fashion-forward kids regardless of their mama's budget. They offer everything from Versace to Vans and many other designers I could only dream about my kids wearing (I mean Oscar de la Renta...for kids...who knew?!). I think the good Lord knew I should only have boys at this stage in my life....could you imagine if I had daughters to dress?!

As a mama, I know many of us want to pull out all the stops and outfit our kids in the best of the best while still being cognizant of price. Melijoe truly offers endless options for parents with all different budgets and kids with all different styles. Be sure and check out their adorable back to school apparel- you can thank me later! 

Part 1: Boys in Burberry

Burberry Parka  |  Hunter Boots


Part 3: Burberry at the Beach

Roaming Rowlands; our trip to Europe

I've decided to keep a little personal journal here on my new website to document fun memories and little life pleasures along the way. I adore my family and our experiences, but certainly realize not every person who visits will share those same feelings! Therefore, instead of cluttering my main work blog with personal thoughts and photos, I thought this would be a great little spot where friends and family can visit to see what's new with the Rowlands. No promise on how frequent or in depth these little posts will be, but I'm excited to at least TRY to share some of what makes us happy as a family on a more regular basis.

For starters, I'm going to throw it back to last March, when Ryan and I took a trip of a lifetime to Europe.....

In life you hear people say "there is never a good time to have a baby"...well Ryan and I decided there is never a good time to go to Europe either. With that being said, we decided to book a trip ASAP, because it just too short!! 

With a husband in residency who works around the clock and being a mom/traveling photographer we truly don't have much structure and very rarely any free time together. He's typically on call when I'm off and by Murphy's Law I seem to always be traveling for weddings or shoots when he's free! I sometimes find myself longing for an 8am-5pm job where I leave work at work, come home to cook, clean, and have dinner promptly on the table at 7pm (with kids bathed of course before my dashing husband in a perfectly pressed business suite comes home predictably at 6pm sharp). Instead our lives involve 4am alarm clocks (for Ryan, duh!); wrinkled scrubs; dashing to day care; a slew of emails; endless editing; wedding scheduling; multiple feedings & diaper changes; laundry; errands; phone calls; dirty dishes; meltdowns; happy hours; bridal meetings; evening shoots, and coming home late to a messy house where the boys are still awake and not bathed!! I wouldn't change it one bit, because our unpredictable schedules keeps me on my toes, and I seem to do better under pressure. 

Although we have very little structure in our weekly routine, it also allows us to to find time to connect elsewhere which leads me to my main point.....TRAVEL!

Ryan and I both have our own hobbies and interests; few of which overlap. One of our favorites is to travel together and therefore we promised each other to always work hard, play hard, and travel often! We are blessed with the most incredible families (on BOTH sides) that enable us to leave our babies on occasion and disconnect from the daily grind. Ryan's schedule is pretty tight; however my job as a wedding photographer has enabled us to travel to beautiful destinations we might not have seen otherwise. I'm still waiting on that magical client who wants to fly us to Europe for their destination wedding...but until then we took matters into our own hands :)

Our trip to Europe was totally a last minute decision we thought was nuts at the time. Fast forward almost one year and another baby later, it was by far one of the best choices we could have made! Extra money and free time will come and go, but these memories will last a lifetime. 

Our itinerary was: Dallas > Madrid, Spain > Barcelona, Spain > Rome, Italy > Sienna, Italy > Paris, France all in 9 days! Without going into too much depth on the day to day agenda, I noted a few favorite memories and mishaps below:

  • Flew into Madrid, Spain. Spent 45 minutes trying to work a metro machine to get passes, entered wrong area, got stuck in holding vestibule where there were no other passengers; freaked out a bit; waited on passes to reactivate; carousel finally opened on the opposite side from where we were stood; huge obnoxious American luggage got jammed in pass through; all within the first hour of our arrival. I blame the jet-lag.
  • Went to visit my sweet friend Elizabeth in Spain. Couldn't work (or fit on) the elevator in her apartment 
  • Went to lunch with Elizabeth and almost got robbed by lie....
  • Got train tickets to Barcelona and entered the first car we came to. Train was luxurious and surprisingly spacious so we took a seat admiring the leg room and electrical outlets. We were in total heaven watching the beautiful Spanish countryside pass us by outside of our giant window. The train police came to check our tickets...they were wrong.... We had accidentally found ourselves in first class when in reality we were to be in the WAY back coach. We took the walk of shame through 10 train cars, once again with our giant obnoxious American luggage. Each car we entered got smaller and smaller. Our suitcases were bumping each innocent passenger in our path to where Ryan finally had to carry our big obnoxious bag over his head to dodge innocent bystanders.
  • Almost missed our flight to Rome because we had too much fun watching Barcelona vs. Madrid at a pub the night before
  • Got to Rome to find our bags were lost. Hunted for them in a foreign airport with minimal English speakers for an hour, went through staff entrance to get them, seemed illegal.
  • Rented a stick shift in Rome, during rush hour, in the rain.... thought we might die
  • Stalled out in front of the Colosseum (literally) with crazy Roman mopeds basically dive-bombing us
  • Drove the Italian countryside in a tiny smart car that Ryan could barely fit in, stopped for the best gas station espresso I've EVER had
  • Arrived at the most charming Bed & Breakfast in Sienna at sunset and planned our Italy trip over a glass of vino
  • Planned a day trip to San Gimignano, got lost in the Italian countryside with bad cell service and a very bad map. Ended up in a one horse town of "Siminano" instead!! Thanks google maps.
  • Got to Paris feeling lucky we were still making it, sat at a cafe for drinks to plan Paris trip
  • Decided to visit the Arc de Triomphe.... after watching all the people at the top; we couldn't figure out how they got there?! We almost resorted to playing chicken with crazy Euro-drivers and run through the giant traffic circle encompassing the historic structure to find that there is an underground tunnel that leads pedestrians there. Thank you Jesus.
  • Were so broke by the end of the trip that we ate at the McDonalds at the end of the Champs Elysées, a famous street with the most high end of designers. 

To ANYONE visiting Paris or a surrounding area, I'm TELLING you to contact Stacey Reeves of  L'Amour de Paris to book a session.

It was the best souvenir we came home with!! Her beautiful work pictured below!!