now and then

one of the most fun parts of our trip to mexico last weekend was remembering back to our first visit on our honeymoon and comparing this trip to that one: how the resort had changed (even better!), how we have grown (in both senses), what little naive nerds we were last time who didn't know to go out early and reserve the best pool beds or to space out meals and room service just right to get the maximum intake of food compared to the cagey resort veterans we are now who reveled in telling anyone who asked, "no, it's not our first time here."

when we were taking some pictures this time, i found myself saying, "i think we took one just like that on our honeymoon." without even trying, we actually recreated to a chilling degree several snapshots. but when i went back looking at both sets it was fun to see how much has changed and how much hasn't, so i put together a bunch of pairs of then and now.

join me, won't you?

as before, the drinks are unlimited and come in all flavors and colors, but our favorite is still: red. based on jesse's scarlet pout this time though, it looks like the drinks are even redder now.

they still have roaming minstrels, armed with woodwinds, who will serenade you during dinner

we still take goober-y, towel-swathed self-portraits of ourselves after swimming, but the blue towels are way cooler looking then the old green ones they had...and bigger (which worked out well since we are too...welcome, jowls)

the beach and ocean are still amazingly gorgeous, but really hard to photograph from arm's reach away and just don't do justice to the actual tuquoisity of the water.

jesse is still happy to pound some gourmet breakfast buffet at our favorite restaurant on the resort. and the tropical flowers on the table still amplify his beauty.

they are still all about sending messages of love from the kitchen to celebrate your current events ("happy birthday kathleen" is a favorite memory from my 24th bday our first night ever at the resort). kind of cool to see your life's progress charted out in chocolate font, from "happy honeymoon senores dukes" to "congratulations" on our upcoming second born.

jesse still loves to find the most embarrassing ways to enter a body of water. i continue to be simultaneously mortified and in love with this behavior, and to remain on dry land doubled over in laughter until he surfaces, so sheepishly amused by himself for not caring what anyone thinks.

the beach beds are still the absolute shizz and we spent many an hour reading and snoozing in them. jesse read over 1500 pages of harry potter this time. we would move from the pool beds to the beach beds (the whole vacation was pretty much just moving from bed to bed and meal to meal) at about 3 pm, when the swim up bar patrons started getting drunker and louder. the ocean provides the perfect white noise to drown everything else out and the perfect steady breeze to cut the afternoon heat. (haha same purse!)

the oversized chess pieces have a new design but are still in full effect. they remain more charming as a concept than as actual game pieces that you have to pick up and move around (kind of a pain). in 2006 i showed my absence of saddlebags and in 2010 and i showed my devotion to my white knight

this is just freaking weird how identical these pics are. the 24 hour room service is still off the chain. jesse is still massively adorable with his bedhead and in his chosen jammy-jams of shorts and undershirt (hey, it looks like that shirt must have shrunk up a bit in the last 4 years. ha)

you can still lamely ask a neighboring couple to take pictures for you so they aren't all solo or self-taken shots. this can backfire if they interpret this as a desire to become "vacay-buddies" i'm looking at you, canadians. no, i do not want to go on a jungle excursion with you!

hmmm. though many things endure, abs change.

jesse is still a focused artist in the pottery hut as we make love-vase #2. (fun shameful fact. i once threw love-vase #1 at jesse's retreating butt during a first year nuclear fight and it didn't shatter when it hit the tile floor. symbolic of our love. a sign that our marriage has come a long way: i am 100% positive love-vase #2 will never be wielded as a hate-filled projectile.)

the grounds are still immaculate and we do our best to resist the squinty-eyed burn of the caribbean sun in our eyes

something that will never change: jesse is still my #1 draft-pick, best friend, hero, and love of my life who i am so incredibly lucky to get to spend all my days with. i thought all that stuff back then. but i know it now.


  1. Wow! That place looks amazing, and as you know...the day before your anny is our anny! Will you PUHLEASE share details...we might just have to make a trip too!!!

  2. "but I know it now" ... melts my heart! even though i am more than 100% jealous of this whole vacation, it looks like y'all had a blast! you are absolutely stunning as a pregnant lady, by the way! Love to you!

  3. K8 you look so pretty in all those pics! Pregnancy suits you well :) Great work on the whole surprise vacay, I am very impressed. Looks like it was perfect! xx

  4. You guys look great together back then and even more now!