Let’s Thursday Rundown It Up!

Good evening to everyone. I am back again with my Thursday Rundown blog post. Let’s get it all started…

Discontinued Candies – I follow a few click bait Facebook pages. One of them, a food page called Spoon University, recently published an article about candies from the 1990s that are now discontinued. I got a big kick out of scrolling through the list, reminiscing at some of the sweet treats I ate as a youngster that I can no longer eat today. My favorite candies that I miss the most from the list would be cookies and cream Twix bars and Butterfinger BB’s. Make sure to read the entire list by clicking here!

I used to really enjoy Butterfinger BB’s.

Incredible Gift – Today my wife surprised me with an early anniversary gift. This June, we will be attending the Carolina Country Music Fest. A three day festival in Myrtle Beach that brings the hottest stars of country music to town, I have been wanting to attend since it started in 2015. This year, the event will bring in Darius Rucker, Jason Aldean, Montgomery Gentry, Chris Young, Lee Brice, Kip Moore, Big + Rich, Billy Currington, and more. Oh yeah, there is another guy by the name of KENNY CHESNEY who will be performing as well. I have waited my whole life to see a Kenny Chesney concert so this will be a very big deal for me. Thank you so much to Sidney for getting us tickets!

I can’t wait to attend the Carolina Country Music Fest.

Wee Hours of the Night – If you ask any mom or dad of a newborn how they occupy their time in the middle of the night when they are up with their baby, you will get a million different answers. Some watch TV, some read, some answer e-mails, some clean, etc. After the Netflix series ended that Sidney and I watched the first week after Sloan was born, we turned to something else. We now watch music videos at 3 a.m. when we are changing her or waiting for her to go back to sleep. There is a certain channel that plays contemporary beats 24/7 and that is what we have our TV set on. You better believe that Sidney and I have become experts on the top 40 music scene.

Latest Sloan Photos – In my last Thursday Rundown, I warned that I would start devoting a piece of this weekly blog post to recent Sloan photos. Since I am no liar, here are some new ones…

Here are some of the photos I took recently of Sloan.

From the Archives – In the past, April 6 has not been a very exciting day for me because I have written some pretty lame blog posts. One year ago on this date I wrote about a technique I use to maintain discipline while at the movie theater (hint: it involves popcorn). Then, two years ago, I wrote a whole blog post about something that was installed on the Coastal Carolina campus that will always pay tribute to me. I don’t blame you if you decide to read neither.

I have a brick with my name (and blog) on it at Coastal Carolina University.


Tomorrow was the original due date for Sloan. I am so glad she came early! Have a great weekend. Don’t Blink.

A Baby Gift Surprise

It is always a pleasant surprise when you are the beneficiary of a random act of kindness. This morning, my day started off on a great note…

I walked into the locker room after my workout on campus. As I walked to my locker, something stuck out like a sore thumb. The pink gift bag with white polkadots was very evident as it sat on the dark ledges that line the dark lockers. Resting on the top of the bag was an envelope addressed to “The Reser Family.”

This gift bag was right in front of my locker this morning after I finished my workout.

In hindsight, I wish I would have opened the card after I opened the actual gift to keep you in suspense on who it was from. But in all honesty, I tore open the card before I wrestled with the tissue paper. The gift was from Brentley and Victoria Broughton, friends of both Sidney and I. More on them later.

Wanting to know who the gift bag was from, I opened the card first.

After I was humbled by who sent the gift, I removed the tissue paper to discover the contents. At the bottom of the bag were five onesies folded together. At first I was like, “Awesome! We can use every one of these that we get.” But there was more to it than that…

I grabbed one of the onesies and discovered that it had Sloan’s initials on it. How cool! Were the other ones customized as well? They sure were.

I pulled out this onesie and discovered that it had Sloan’s initials on it. It would turn out that each one was customized.

The first one I had pulled out had her initials inside a shape. The next one I pulled out had her initials depicted in a type of calligraphy font. I inspected the next one and it spelled out her first name! The fourth one also had her initials configured into a shape. I then removed the final one and laughed out loud…

A look at the onesie that has her initials in a calligraphy-type font and the onesie that has her name on it.

The last onesie had DON’T BLINK written on it. I totally wasn’t expecting it and that is probably where the laughter came from, just from a state of surprise. Because, to be honest, I was more touched by it. How nice of the Broughtons to incorporate my personality and motto into the gift. I visualized Sloan literally wearing her daddy’s life philosophy and it made me feel some type of way.

I pulled out this onesie last and it made my day!

Brentley and I both work in University Communication at Coastal Carolina. We became golf buddies and we eventually introduced our wives to each other. Although friends, Brentley and Victoria didn’t owe us anything at all. They had already given us so much support in person and through social media. To be given this gift was an extremely kind act on their part.

But it gets better…

After I showered and got to my office, I called Brentley to thank him. While we were talking, he told me that Victoria had put the designs on the onesies herself! This blew my mind. I thought that they probably ordered them off of a website that allows you to customize baby clothing but it was so much more meaningful than that. Victoria had created the artwork and worked the magic you need to do in order to transfer them to clothing. To know that she put all that effort into our gift made it even more special.

A look at all five onesies given to us by Brentley and Victoria.

The onesies are sized for when Sloan is 3 months old. I am almost counting down the days until she reaches that mark so we can throw on her Don’t Blink one. Thank you to Brentley and Victoria for the very nice gift, Sidney and I appreciate it very much. Don’t Blink.

The Gift of FaceTime

Tonight’s blog post will be simple and to the point. You see, all I really want to say is this: Thank goodness for FaceTime!

Recently, I have really enjoyed the capabilities of FaceTime for two main reasons, although both center on Sloan. First, my family on the other side of the country is truly able to see and get to know our daughter. Sure, it falls way short of being able to actually pick her up, feel her fuzzy head, or smell her sweet baby skin but it sure beats the technology we had at our disposal just a decade ago.

At least on FaceTime you can hear her baby noises, look into her oversized eyes, and see the latest outfit she is wearing. You can also observe moments such as her bathing, eating, and moving her little feet and hands. For my family who is starved for anything Sloan-related, FaceTime is a godsend.

It also isn’t that bad of a deal for me, either.

It is very rewarding to be able to FaceTime with Sloan.

Yes, the second reason why I have really grown to like FaceTime is because I can utilize it to see Sloan as well. Up to two times a day at work (before the day gets started and during lunch), I will either “call” her or she will “call” me. Sidney is great at moderating these sessions and it is the biggest jolt of energy you can get during the work day. I know the FaceTime calls will likely diminish over time, but as a new dad who is still struggling with leaving her behind for several hours during the day, these “conversations” are very much appreciated.

I would like to give a big THANK YOU to the inventor of FaceTime. I don’t know where my family and I would be without it! Don’t Blink.

A Very Fulfilling Final Four Year

Never before have I enjoyed a Final Four so much. In fact, never before have I enjoyed TWO Final Fours so much.

The storylines were thick for me this past weekend.
1. I had my hometown team going up against the team of the state I now live in.
2. I had my favorite college basketball team going up against my father-in-law’s favorite college basketball team.
3. The chance for another major state university in South Carolina to join Coastal Carolina (school I work at) and Clemson as national champions was on the table…twice.

In the end, it all seemed to work out perfectly. Well, I should probably wait until later tonight to say that. But as of right now, things are about as good as they can be.

Gonzaga defeated South Carolina in the men’s basketball national semifinal round on Saturday night. To be honest, I was cheering for the Bulldogs all the way. I have roots with Gonzaga and I have cheered for the Zags my whole life so I couldn’t help it. However, if the Bulldogs did stumble, it wouldn’t have completely destroyed my life. I would have taken solace in the fact that my wife (who openly cheered for the Gamecocks during the game) and my father-in-law would be happy campers. I also would have delighted in the fact that it would set up South Carolina to win a national championship and make our state look really good. If you remember, CCU won the baseball title in June and Clemson took home the football trophy in January. For the University of South Carolina to complete the trifecta with a basketball title would have been huge.

Turns out that even though the Gamecock men ended up losing, a basketball national championship for the state was still won. The women’s basketball team at the University of South Carolina cruised through the women’s Final Four to achieve glory. The Gamecock ladies defeated giant slayer Mississippi State to bring the third major NCAA sanctioned national championship to the Palmetto State in nine months.

Don’t think the Chanticleers and Tigers wanted to see the Gamecocks falter on the national title stage. Both fan bases of CCU and Clemson enthusiastically cheered for the University of South Carolina, a sentiment that was shared on social media by both schools. I had the pleasure of working with Robbie Fitzwater, Clemson’s social media director, to engage in a good natured Twitter dialogue that left no doubt that our schools stood behind our rival in Columbia. The conversation was a huge success as it was heavily retweeted and picked up by the media.

We ended the dialogue with GIFs wishing South Carolina good luck. The GIF rotated between a CCU baseball national championship graphic, a Clemson football national championship graphic, and a South Carolina Final Four graphic.

So with Gonzaga advancing to the national championship and with the state of South Carolina already capturing its third national title in nine months, there remains just one thing left to do: The Bulldogs need to win!!

It would be a huge deal if the little Jesuit school in eastern Washington pulled off the win tonight against North Carolina. It would make me extremely happy and it would cap the most memorable Final Four year of my life. Let’s see how it all plays out. Go Gonzaga! Don’t Blink.

A Life Changing Month Followed By Another

I have gone on record before saying how much I love the month of March. However, this past March was by far the best one ever. In fact, from now on I will forever look upon the third month of the year with even more adoration than before. The birth of your child seems to do that to you.

You can’t have much of a better month when your daughter is born.

What a crazy and beautiful ride March 2017 was. It was perfectly broken up in two halves. The first couple weeks saw us preparing the house for Sloan, purchasing last minute necessities, and celebrating baby showers at work. Then, just like clockwork, things became a lot more real at the midpoint of the month on March 15. Sidney went to the hospital that morning and the doctor made the decision to start the labor process. A couple days later on St. Patrick’s Day, the best moment of our lives arrived as Sloan was born. The next two weeks would bring joy, surrealism, and enlightenment.

I accompanied Sloan to her first pediatrics appointment (this is me feeding her in the examination room). She had a great report!

April hit this weekend and it will no doubt be a second consecutive “best four weeks of my life” type of month. It will be our first full month with Sloan and we will undoubtedly fall even more in love with her as we delve into a routine and bond with her even more. April will be marked by a visit from her west coast grandparents as my mom and dad will arrive in Myrtle Beach on the 19th. We will also be able to share Sloan with Sidney’s extended family members and our friends as well. Yep, big things are in store for our baby daughter this April as the world opens up to her a little bit more each day.

The world opens up a little more each day for Sloan.

Making this month even a little sweeter, we will celebrate my favorite holiday, watch my hometown basketball team play in the national championship, and enjoy The Master’s/MLB Opening Day.

Life is good when you have so much to look forward to. Thanks to Sloan, we won’t have any shortages of motivation and excitement for a long time. Don’t Blink.