Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Turkey Day

Thanksgiving is always full of chaos, noise, food, laughing, and a whole lotta love.  My sister brings all of that with her from Mobile to our get-together, and I am so thankful for it!
 At Mimi and PawPaw's house, it's a toss up who's the loudest, but I can tell you who loves the camera the most....
 And who can tell one heckuva story! 
 Over at Grandmother's, the atmosphere may be a little more...uh...Baptist...but there's still a heap of cuttin' up to be done.
 Like with this cute turkey.
 The kids table never changes by the way.  Kids may get bigger, but they never get to move to the dining room.  In fact, Jeff and I may be nearing "middle aged"....but we still slept on air mattresses with all those people crammed in is what it is...!
 Friday morning we were up with the roosters....correction:  I believe the roosters were still counting sheep.  Actually, I'm not sure that they do that, seeing that's it's a fellow barn animal and all....anyhow.  Point is, we were up WAY TOO EARLY to go hunting.  Because Daddy loves it, and Jeffrey loves it, and I love being with my two favorite men on earth.  Frankly, I'm an afternoon hunting kinda girl, and then I could be there all day, because there's nothing more peaceful to me than sitting in the quiet woods and listening to absolutely nothing but what God made just for us.  It's a nice reality check sometimes at how simple life can be.
 We saw 3 werewolfs, 5 turkeys, 2 deer, and some birds.  Ok, maybe they were coyotes, but they looked like werewolfs to me.  These creatures entertained me for hours.  We snuggled high up in that tree house to keep warm.  I shopped on line the Black Friday sales (I do still have needs, though I wear camo.)  I texted Uncle Pat and cousin Hunter to make sure they werent napping.  My dad kept texting me just how good his pound cake was (because he thought it was hilarious we forgot ours).
 All this texting and whispering and shopping kept us entertained for hours until we climbed down, peeling off some layered and met up for the other Simpson hunters.  Then we headed to the little country cafe for lunch, and back out to the woods for an afternoon hunt.  And is there a more fittin' name for a resturant in Highland Home, AL where time just doesn't seem to matter than ....what else....
November was a long month for my family, but it ended on a good note, with lots of love and quality time together.  I hardly even took the camera out for just wanting to hold on to everyone around me.  I am so thankful for every face that sat around the kitchen table at Thanksgiving, those far away that couldn't be with us, and those that are looking out for us from above. 

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Sprinkles and Girlfriends

A few weeks ago, I had the honor of "sprinkling" mom-to-be, and my old roomie, Anna Kate, as she gets ready for baby girl #2, Libby to arrive in a few short weeks! 

Whenever I see these awesome ladies, I want to throw on a date party t-shirt, patagonia shorts, and sit on the front porch of the McKee House with some Pat McGee playing on Napster, and talk weekend plans!  Oh the glory days!

Of course a few things have changed....and I was very careful not to drink the water just yet!
Next up was a little indoor tailgating at Leah's house for the Auburn-Georgia game.  We may not have been on the Plains, but the spread was still there!  Leah, I'm STILL craving you mini pumpkin whoopie pies!
And I'm definitely still craving this baby tiger, Caroline!
Mary Miller may not have been able to give us but one "TOUCHDOWN!!" but it was way too cute to not ask for repeats if you ask me.  And Hayes tried to keep the house tidy with all these grown ups running around.

It was a much needed girls weekend, all the way around.  My calendar is already out, OOC Weekend in INKED in, Bham girls weekend in the works oh man, I'm ready to hit the road again! 

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Football and Halloween

I've got some catching up to do, but it's been a rough few weeks, so I get a pass.  Thank you friends, for all your love while my family has had a really hard time with the hand life has dealt us.  If ever a lesson was learned, it is that lives here on earth are truly temporary, and that we should never take a moment together for granted.  I've heard it, I've even said it, but believe you me, I'll be living it here on out.

A few weeks ago, I finally made it over to the Loveliest Village on the Plains for a little tailgating for the Ole Miss game with some of the loveliest people on the Plains.  War Eagle to that! 

 Halloween we spend in Juniper at Jeff's, and country trick or treating is a bit different than in town.  The crowds are definitely not here, nor is your door bell ringing off the hook.  And I loved it!  We fixed our supper of BBQ and cream corn, and plopped right down on the front porch waiting on our goblins to arrive....
 Most are family and the few neighbors who are out there, maybe a total of 6 or 8 all night, but they don't trick-and-run.  They stop and stay a while!  Like niece Abigail, the ballerina, who stayed long enough to show us all her best moves!
 A few came in cars, but it's totally normal to pull up in a Kubota, or other ATVs.  This little man came rolling up behind his daddy's 4-wheeler, in a mini 4-wheeler of his own!
 This cutie-patootie neighbor came by too.  Gracie was a very serious (and hot pink!) pirate!
 With the best toothless pirate growl I've ever seen!  Argh!!
 Then my sweetheart Rani-bug came straight from dance, and was another precious ballerina to grace the front porch.
 Big brother Jake, who came straight from karate, was the new karate kid, I suppose, and was quick to show me his newest moves!  Hi-ya!
 And little man, Garrett, who has stolen my heart, was by far the.cutest.cowboy in all the county! 
So I've decided trick-or-treating is definitely quality over quantity, in my book! 

It's been an emotional few weeks, but good friends, an amazing family, a bunch of sweet kiddos, and the love of my life, has made it so much more bareable.  Now, one foot in front of the other, and here's to brighter days ahead.

“Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing praise.”
James 5:13

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Brittany's Wish

 Last week I had the honor of helping sweet Brittany's wish come true!  This young lady deserves a break, in more ways than one, and so it was my pleasure, and my personal mission!, to make sure she got everything she wanted on her wish day!
First off was having a send-off party at her favorite restaurant in town, with her favorite people.  So I contacted Cheddar's, and they were so generous to us all night long.  Brittany was treated like the celebrity she was!  And her sister Chelsey, and her grandmother, who has gone to the moon and back for these two girls, were right by her side to celebrate!
 Brittany has wished to go to Disney World, on Halloween!  When I asked her at her party at Cheddars what she is most looking forward to, I just knew this teenager would say some sort of rollercoaster...but she said, "I just can't wait to meet Mickey Mouse!"  God love the innocence of a child.  With that, everyone got new luggage, and Brittany got a new backpack in her favorite colors full of goodies for ther trip!
 And before the appetizers were even on the table....guess who couldn't wait to dig in her prizes!  And why not, it's her day!  We told her she could order anything and everything she wanted, and do anything she wanted!  The sky's the limit when you're making a wish come true, right!
  A simple book about the theme parks, sent to Brittany from Disney World itself, made her so excited she could hardly put it down to dig through the rest!
 Of it doesn't take much with children to light up their world.  Some funky Halloween socks, LOTS of candy, glow sticks, anything hot PINK in her eyes....and we're like totally cool.
 One of my favorite gifts to give is a Barbie.  Matel makes a collector Barbie just for Make-A-Wish we give our wish kids, and they make a HotWheels edition for the boys.  It's one way Matel gives back, and I can tell you it'll keep me buying Barbies and hotwheels for a long time.
 We celebrated and counted down the hours until her 7 day vacation to Disney begins, where Brittany gets to just BE A KID!  We made a list of all the must-sees and must-dos.  She was more than excited when we left, and I could tell by the hug she gave me, the energy was just beginning to accumulate in her! 

We ended the evening with Cheddar's surprising us with these wonderful signature desserts, and we all grabbed spoons and dug in!  I cannot wait to hear this sweet girl's voice when she returns this week, and get all the totally cool details about everything they did and saw!  Brittany, I'm so glad your wish came true!!  You deserve it, girl!