Saturday, July 30, 2011


Ever since my mom started taking me and my sister to the library when we were little, I have been a HUGE reader! I always have a book started although it is hard to get more than one or two read during the school year. I live for summer when I can read to my heart's content. This summer has been no different. I have read:

  • The Postcard Killers by James Patterson

  • Heaven is for Real by Todd Burpo

  • Kindred Spirits by Sarah Strohmeyer

  • Then Came You by Jennifer Weiner

  • Faking It by Elisa Lorello

  • Love the One You're With by Emily Giffin

  • Something Borrowed by Emily Giffin

  • The Girl Who Played With Fire by Stieg Larsson

  • White Oleander by Janet Fitch

  • Heart of the Matter by Emily Giffin

  • She's Come Undone by Wally Lamb

  • Baby Proof by Emily Giffin

  • Lifeguard by James Patterson

  • Something Blue by Emily Giffin

  • Worst Case by James Patterson

  • Hide in Plain Sight by Marta Perry

  • Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

  • Fly Away Home by Jennifer Weiner

  • The Opposite of Me by Sarah Pekkanen

  • Blue Shoe by Anne Lamott

I didn't realize I had read that many books this summer until I started typing them out!!

Friday, July 29, 2011

My Favorite Things Today

My super-soft pillows on my bed,

gauze bandages,

some good painkillers,

and my 2 sweet children who are being extremely helpful.

These are my favorite things today!

I had to have 2 places removed yesterday: a cyst on my neck and a mole on my leg. So I am resting comfortably (I guess!) as my favorite people wait on me. The best thing is, whenever they come in to bring me something or check on me I get lots of hugs and kisses!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Lake Martin Trip

Last week we got to enjoy one last family trip together of our fun summer. We drove down to my aunt's lakehouse at Lake Martin. Her lakehouse is in the Elmore County part of the lake. It was such a great week to be down there. We had great weather (even if it was extremely hot!) and made lots of memories together. We were a little delayed in leaving because of a problem with one of the tires on our boat trailer. We were packed and ready to go after church on Sunday, but God made sure that we were home when the tire decided to go haywire and not on the Interstate! So we didn't leave until Monday morning when the wonderful mechanics were able to get the parts and fix our trailer.
As soon as we got to the lake, Caitlin, Harrison, and Brady got their swimsuits and life jackets on.

They were so excited and ran way ahead of me!
The first thing we did was take the boat out on the lake.

There weren't many boats out since it was a Monday, so we were able to anchor our boat and have lots of swimming races.

Brady preferred to just watch. This is the first time we have taken him out on the boat, so we didn't really know how he would do. He was a great rider, but he did NOT like jumping in!

He did much better swimming right beside the dock in the shallow water.

Caitlin and Harrison had the job of catching minnows for their Daddy.

They must have done a good job because this is just one of the many catfish he caught! We are so lucky to have a fisherman in the family who also knows how to clean them and cook them.

We ate lots of ice cream and fudge bars to cool ourselves off.

And we had fun just relaxing after the sun went down each day.

We also had fun in the water especially when it got hot, hot, hot!

One of their favorite things to do was jumping in the lake off the dock.

Harrsion couldn't let his big sister outdo him!

The last day we were there (Friday), Daddy loaded up all his fishing gear....

for a fun boat ride. The plan was to anchor down somewhere so he could fish for a little bit and then go tubing for a little bit.

Things went a little awry when we stopped to put the tube in. Daddy and Caitlin immediately jumped in the water to wait for me to drop the tube. As I was climbing on the back of the boat, my foot and one of the fishing lures met and it was NOT pretty!! I screamed, Randy and Caitlin jumped back in the boat, and I realized that I am still Randy's best catch. Haha! We rushed back to the lakehouse so Randy could pull the hook out of my foot. We soon realized how foolish that idea was because that hook was stuck way down deep in my foot. We had to get dressed and drive to Tallassee Community Hospital for the hook removal. After some absolutely wonderful treatment by their friendly staff, I got a new doctor:

He and the doctor thought it would be funny to let him play doctor with my injured foot! I hobbled out of the hospital, and we realized that we were super hungry since we had never eaten lunch with all the excitement. Since we were in "town", we had to go eat at my Daddy's absolute favorite restaurant in the whole entire world....Cotton's BBQ.

This is the building they used to be in since they opened way back in the 20's. This is the one I remember coming to when I was little and visiting my grandparents.

Luckily for us, they have refurbished it right across the road.

And this is some of the most delicious barbecue you will ever taste! We also got a to-go cup of their campstew to bring back to my Daddy since he doesn't get it too often.
So.....even though the last day of our trip ended in a minor emergency, it was a fun week spent with my favorite people at a beautiful place!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Artists in the House

There is a place in Huntsville called My Spirited Art that I have heard a LOT about from friends. You go online to their website and sign up for a painting that you would like to paint. That night you show up with your friends (and wine if that suits you!) and paint according to the directions given out by the instructor. Everyone ends up painting the same picture, but they all turn out different.
I went with a group of teachers from my school last Friday night and had a BlAsT!!! We painted an iron cross, and they all turned out beautiful.

Here is the BiG class that was there that night.

Then on Sunday afternoon, Caitlin went to a birthday party for a dance friend at the same place. Kayla picked a cute, cute picture for the girls to paint.

Caitlin is on the back row to the far right. She is such a perfectionist and keeps telling me that she messed up on one of her flowers. I think it's perfect!

I am so glad that we both got to go to this neat place! Now we have new, original artwork for our walls.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Swim Lessons 3.0

Harrison just completed his third year of Swim Lessons this week. He had a great time and learned a lot!
I think he was a little cold!

His swim teacher, Ms. Brenda, expanded on the basics and then taught them the proper diving form.

Over he goes!

Here he is trying it off the side of the pool.

Up and over!

Not a dive in any form or fashion....just a fun jump off the diving board!

But yay!!!! He swam the entire length of the pool after that crazy jump!

It helped him to have 2 friends in his class with him: Saige and Alex. Also, he absolutely adores Ms. Brenda so he did everything she asked!

So proud of him!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Happy Anniversary Ma-Ma and Pa-Pa!

I am so very blessed to have parents that are celebrating their 52nd wedding anniversary today!! Things I love about their marriage:

  • They still kiss each other good night.

  • His license plate is WNM for "Willie and Martha"

  • He still gives her 1 dozen red roses each July 12.

  • He opens her door for her everywhere they go.

  • Sometimes he orders for her in a restaurant.

  • He carries her purse for her if she asks.

  • They go EvErYwHeRe together.

  • They say "I love you" to each other all the time!

What a wonderful example I have!

Awesome Way to Spend a Summer Saturday

On Saturday, we spent the day out on Guntersville Lake with our friends, the Aronsons. We had such a GrEaT time!! We had sunny skies, cool water, good food, and the fun and laughs that go along with being with great friends.
Luckily Randy bought a new tube because it got a LOT of use!

Caitlin and Taylor jumped at the chance to be the first riders of the day.

While Alex and Harrison decided it was snack time.

Then it was mine and Randy's turn. We have never gotten to ride together, so that was fun!

Trying to get Alex and Caitlin situated for their turn.

Caitlin then rode with Todd.

FiNaLlY...the 2 little boys got their chance to ride. They were a little scared, so they took a slow ride around the lake.

My future model!

We finally got Laura in the tube.

After all that riding and tubing on the lake, we were STARVING!!!!

So we docked next to Todd and Laura's campsite for a delicious meal of hot dogs and hamburgers. Todd did a wonderful job with the grilling, or we were just really, really hungry because they were wonderful!
All in all, it was an awesome way to spend a Summer Saturday!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Braves Win! Braves Win!

One of my favorite summertime memories from growing up is my Daddy taking us to see the Atlanta Braves at Fulton County Stadium in Atlanta. Randy and I used to go to games about once a summer BK (before kids) including the 1991 National League Clincher Game. It has been harder for us to go lately especially since both of our kids are old enough to be involved in things and have their own schedules. But one of the reasons for our Atlanta Road Trip was to take the kids to a Braves game.

The front entrance is so pretty.

Posing in front of one of the many BIG baseballs at the park

We got to the park early enough to see Batting Practice.

And in case you don't know...this is Terry Pendleton who is now a coach for the Braves but used to be one of my favorite players when he played 3rd base for the Braves.

Two of their great pitchers warming up.

One of the players, Jonny Venters, even came over and autographed Harrison's T-ball game ball!

He was soooooo excited!

We actually got another pitcher, Brandon Beachy, to come over to the fence and autograph his ball as well. However, my camera's batteries picked that exact moment to quit working! AAARRRGGGHHH!!!!! But we have our memories to remember that fun day at the Braves game. Just know we had a lot of fun...but lots of fun!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

The Best Thing We Ever Ate~Atlanta

I don't know if you've ever seen this show on Food Network:

but we watch it ALL. THE. TIME!!!
The celebrity chefs tell what their favorite food is at different restaurants. They put the food in categories such as barbecue, desserts, chocolate, chicken, etc.
Well, one day about 8 month ago, Caitlin and I were sitting on the couch watching this favorite show of ours when the category was barbecue. We were excited because who doesn't love some good barbecue?!? One of the restaurants happened to be in Atlanta and looked soooooooo very good! Caitlin wrote the name of the restaurant down (Daddy D'z Barbecue Joynt) and put it on our refrigerator to remember for our next trip to Atlanta. She would point to it about once a month and say, "When are we gonna go to Atlanta and go to that restaurant?" So we knew once we planned a road trip to Atlanta this summer that we needed and wanted to visit this restaurant.
We put the adddress in our GPS, and found it very easily. And let me tell did not disappoint!!! It was the best pulled pork and ribs we have ever eaten!

Look at the evidence!
We told our waitress about seeing their restaurant on the Food Network and Caitlin writing the name of it down, and she was so impressed that she got the owner out of the back to come see us. He was so nice and gave Caitlin...

a big, huge cookie! (She's getting to the point where I embarrass her with all the pictures I take!)

It was such a fun experience, and I would definitely recommend Daddy D'z Barbecue Joynt if you are ever in downtown Atlanta!