Friday, October 19, 2012

Happy Anniversary! the BIG ONE.

Happy Anniversary Jake! I can't believe it's been ten years, but then again, it seems like a lifetime ago. We have both changed so much, and grown into adults from kids. We even had a couple of our own along the way. We have traveled, laughed, lived in one apartment, and two houses (soon to be three) and enoyed each other so much. I love you and glad we have made it this far and look forward to many more!



Check out all the details from our wedding back in ,ahem, 2002 here :

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Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Ode to our kitchen...

I mentioned doing something like this a long time ago. Since we are moving in (eeepppp!) two weeks, I wanted to take afew minutes to look back on our "almost" former home. It has been a good home to us, and has held LOTS of memories for us. After all, it was the home we brought the babes home to! Since the babies have spent almost three years of their life here, I wanted to take aminute and look back on some favorite memories that have happened here, room-by-room :)

Posing on the kitchen table - in a PICNIC basket! (teeny babes!)

First cereal on the kitchen table (we are also getting rid of the kitchen table)

First Birthday party. (note the babes to the left)

Josh contantly getting out the strainer

Paint fun on the table!

Running around the kitchen island - constantly!

We loved playing with pots and pans!

Let's start a band!
Baths in the kitchen sink :)
Hehe. More eating :)

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Thursday, October 11, 2012

These guyz...

Are growing up right before my eyes! Seriously, they are little people, even though I still call them my babes.

Lately my loves...

...want to hear stories at night. While, yes, we read books, they want Mommy to make up stories to tell them. Starring? Naturally, Josh and Jules. Each story has Josh and Jules going off on all sorts of adventures. They even sometimes meet up with all their friends from Mickey Mouse and Yo Gabba Gabba.

...are obsessed with clothes, especially Josh. He picks out his outfits every night before bed, and also his shoes. He loves jackets, and shirts with buttons. He loves his clothes! Jules' note home from school said that she showed everyone at school her new shoes :) their breakfast. They choose it every morning. While usually its oatmeal, they pick out any fruit "accessory", and it makes them really excited.

...are loving their stuffed animals right now. You will not find Jules and not find "Bunny" and Foofa. She takes them with her EVERYWHERE she goes. Poor Foofa is desperately in need of a bath. Last night heard from Jules' crib: "Now, bunny, you need to take good care of Foofa and sleep with her, because she is really little". Swoon. doing new things. Josh loves new things. "What do you want for breakfast"? "Something new!" "What song do you want Mommy to sing?" "Something new!" Like I said above, they like to pick out their breakfast. But, the other day I asked Josh what he wanted, and he said "Oatmeal with bananas and raisins...THAT'S SOMETHING NEW!!!" He was uber excited.

...are my little helpers. They love helping me do anything, as much as "not helping" as it might be.

...are very big people pleasers. As soon as I raise my voice at all, or if they know they are in trouble, and I am getting frustrated, they say, "You happy Mommy??" It's the sweetest thing. That is something they came up with on their own, and they say each time I get upset with them. They both don't like an unhappy mommy, and they know if Mommy's not happy they need to be good babies.

...are really fun right now. I can honestly say this is my very favorite age. They are my little buddies. I can just hang out and talk to them all day long.

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Tuesday, October 9, 2012

It's a Cousin!

The babes are getting their first cousin! We are so excited that Jake's sister Jennifer is expecting their baby girl. And I was even more excited when she asked me to take pictures of their "annoucement". Thanks for letting us be a part of your big news! It's fun to practice my photography skillz :)

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Monday, October 8, 2012

A Post about Parenting...and Football...

I love it when I see other blogger posts that not only make me laugh and cry, but also make me be a bit of a better parent. I came across one last week that did just that. And the cool thing is? It's written by a dad. Love it. Maybe it's because I live in the south and football is a way of life, but there is something about it that is pure awesome. Add that to a lifelong bond between parents and children and thats what memories are made of!

Here is the story, written by Stevie Cocksman as seen on the fabulous Outkick the Coverage sports blog. Yup, I said a sports blog! A parenting post! And you should check Clay Travis' blog out anyway, because the writing is hysterical.

Love it so much...Here it is:
Despite my passionate love of college football, I’ve always had a strong aversion to boys throwing a football in the tailgate parking lot. First, those that primarily engage in it – eight to eighteen year old boys – are not by nature a considerate group.

Seldom does a 12-year old boy stop and ask himself: “What are my surroundings and how will my intended actions impact the things and people nearby?” Secondly, if the average completion percentage in the NFL is somewhere above 60% and the average completion percentage in college football is above 50%, the average completion percentage in these tailgate parking lot “games” hovers consistently below 10%. Balls bounce awkwardly and roll into tailgates. Errant passes hit cars. And, in the most unfortunate of incidents, balls land on the table with the food. I automatically protest anything that puts uneaten barbeque or chicken wings at risk.

For the last 4 years, I’ve gone to the Gamecock football games with my son. He is now 10. The females in my house – my wonderful wife and my delightful daughter – do not care about football, so it is just him and me most Saturdays. A party of two does not really tailgate. He vocalizes his disappointment with this circumstance almost weekly.

For this weekend’s Gamecock game, his mama (my wife) was going with us. That meant tailgating with a large group of people, including a number of his friends. He was pleased.

As we loaded up the car to leave, I noticed that tucked under his arm and gripped tightly against his black #7 Jadaveon Clowney jersey was his football. Despite his relative inexperience with it, he knows the basics of tailgating – the primary rule of which is that 10-year old boys take footballs. I offered no comment. We left.

Any dad that loves football hopes desperately that his son will love it too. Not just half-heartedly follow it or feign interest to please his dad. But love it.

My son started attending Gamecock games with me regularly in 2009. He was 7. He went enthusiastically but I never got the sense that year that he loved watching football. I wasn’t even sure how much of what he was watching he understood.

Then came the Clemson game that year. I had promised my other ticket to my brother before the season started. My son repeatedly asked to go, but I didn’t have a ticket for him. On Thanksgiving night at my parents house, I walked into a room and he was wiping tears from his eyes. I asked what was wrong. He replied: Nothing.” When he left, I asked his mom. She said he started talking about how he couldn’t go to the Clemson game, and he started crying. He was too embarrassed for his dad to know.

That sealed it.

He went to the Clemson game. He had on his Gamecock jersey and Gamecock hat. I taught him how to stand in the parking lot and hold his index finger in the air.

A Gamecock fan walked up to us and held out a ticket.

“How much?” I said.

“He’s going to use it?” the man asked, pointing to my wide-eyed son.


“Then it is free. Go Gamecocks.”

Clemson was playing in their conference championship game the next week. Clemson had a rocketship named C.J. Spiller playing running back and returning kicks. Clemson had won six of the last seven. Ten of the last 12. Sixteen of the last 21.

The Gamecocks won 34-17. When we walked out, my son said: “Dad, I must be good luck for the Gamecocks. I can never miss another Clemson game.” Since then, I haven’t been to a Gamecock game without him at my side.

Last week, he was asked by a neighbor to go to the game with some friends of his and sit in “The Zone.” In "The Zone" they have TVs. And chicken fingers.

The dad told me that my son said, “I can’t. I go to the games with my dad.”

My daughter is 8. Of all of God’s creations, few are as delightful as the 8-year old version of my daughter. But she is by nature a mama’s girl. I consider any attention or favor from her a gift, and I cherish it accordingly.

She went to camp this past summer. She returned having learned a simple hand-clap/chant routine about ice cream. She asked if she could teach it to me. Once I mastered it, she said to me: “Daddy, this can be our thing.”

Sweeter words have never been spoken.

We do it every night. It is our thing. I wouldn’t give it up for a million dollars.

I have countless hopes and dreams for my children. One of them is purely selfish: I hope that the day comes where - although I will always be their father – our relationship is more one of companions and friends than it is of parent-child. As much as I wish it wouldn’t, the day will come when they don’t need much parenting. And I cannot bear the thought of not having a close relationship with them.

I’m not exactly sure what that will look like with my daughter; I will take whatever I can get and do whatever I can to get it. But I do know a little bit about what that looks like between fathers and sons.

Due to certain defects with the male species, close male relationships almost always have to center around a "thing." Women can talk about what is going on in their lives, what their feelings are, what they are worried about, what they are going to wear, how their husbands watch too much football . . . but men don’t talk about any of that stuff. Guys have to have a thing – sports, or politics, or their faith, or their work – that acts as the conductor between them and draws them together.

A father and son can have all of the love and affection in the world for each other, but unless they have a thing they will struggle as adults to be companions . . . friends.

My son and I have countless things right now. But time will chip away at them. When he is in his twenties . . . we won’t play XBox . . . or go see “Avengers 6” . . . or watch “Phineas and Ferb” . . . or throw a football or baseball in the front yard. But I’m determined that we will have a thing.

I don’t know what it will be, but I’ll confess this: There is seldom a Saturday at Williams-Brice Stadium when I don’t think to myself: “Son, this can be our thing.”

On Saturday, it took about thirty seconds after my son and his football arrived before a game broke out between the rows of cars and tailgating tents.

Any responsible parent would have called him over and run down the list of things he needed to be aware of. Look out for cars. Be careful not to hit any people. DO NOT . . . under any circumstances . . . let your football hit a table with food on it!

But, in that moment, I had no desire to parent him. I just wanted to be a father with his son. Companions. Friends. At a football game. He had a blast. And if his football ended up landing in your cheese dip . . .

I don’t even care.

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Steppin Out Saturday - Heart Walk and more golf parties

Hey all! Long time no post! If you still remember me, you know I am a certified crazy person. I have never had such a busy fall in longer that I can remember. Not only are we re-doing this house (which is now not going to be ready by move in-awesome) but work is crazy busy, it's football time, and I have had brochitis, so I have been so sick this past week. Lovely, no??

Life must go on!

I actually got out of the house this weekend and worked our Nashville Heart Walk. I love, LOVE working Heart Walk. If you guys don't know, I actually work for the AHA and have now for the past six years. I am the Youth Market Director and work with the youth segment (schools, youth groups) throughout Middle TN. You can see last year's Heart Walk here.

Heart Walk is awesome because its so very community focused. You actually SEE the lives we are touching right in front of you. My booth was the "Share Your Story" booth. It really didn't get any more personal that that. My and my good friend, fellow AHA worker and blogger, Polly worked the booth where anyone could come up and share their personal story on camera on why they were walking that day. Lots of people came up, and the highlight was a couple there walking in honor of their son, Dylan, who is a BABY, who was born with all sorts of heart problems. He has had numerous heart surgeries. He finally came home week, only to go into cardiac arrest on Friday. Luckily, he survived, and is now back in the hospital. To listen to his sweet dad tell his story, and thank the AHA for teh money we raised, let's just say Polly and I were crying our eyes out. Wow.

Saturday night was teh last of teh golf tournament parties for Jake, so we got to dress up and go to the party at Golf Club. jake and his partner won their flight (yea!) and it was fun. However, super cold and rainy. Yuck.

Sunday was low key. We took the kids over to the new house and looked around at what all had been done. Fun weekend overall!

Me and Polly - it was freezing!


Our honor/memory wall.

Me and Joshie before the party. Not the greatest light. On me:
Top: Monkey See Boutique//Pants: Victoria Secret//Shoes: Steve Madden

Straight hair!

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Linking up with The Pleated Poppy, Harpers Happenings, Monday Mingle, Join the Gossip, Weekend Update,