Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Good wife. Great mother. Decent Lady. BAD BLOGGER.

I miss it.

I miss the days that each Sunday I could sit down and review the week.  I initially started the blog for our parents so they could keep up with the grandkids.  After awhile, it became more than that to me...a journal of sorts that allowed me time to reflect on life as it happened.

And that is exactly why I miss it.  As more and more of life keeps happening, there is less time to reflect on the life's "happenings."

I will not try a superficial attempt at "catching" up, but as I look through the picture library of the year, there are some things to highlight.

So I present, my list of 2011 favorite things:


Although we entertain a lot, my favorite gathering of friends from 2011 occurred during the first few moments of the year.  Nothing kicks off a year better than to be surrounded by those you love.  I remember looking around as my parents, dear friends, our children, and my sweet husband rang the start of 2011 in our new outdoor den.


The weather surprised us many times in 2011.  Definitely one of our favorite times was gathering with our neighborhood pals for a huge sledding party.  This picture is with my childhood sled.  It didn't work great in the southern, light, fluffy snow, but it made for great pics!


Although it was taken at Grandma Dee's funeral, I love this picture of my family.  It is the first one we have had taken in awhile and it is still the screen saver on my laptop.  It makes me not miss them all so much!


There is no other picture taken that could sum up the complexities of my Lily girl and this year her personality has just blossomed.  Although I can predict some difficult days ahead, I know I'm gonna dig being this girl's mom.  She's a special kinda thing and I can't get enough.


We have a friend with a cabin that overlooks this:

And who better to bring along for inspiration than these ladies:

After the death of my grandmother in January, I felt this screaming and yelling of my soul telling me that I needed to write.  Of course, I couldn't do it alone.  We gathered the troops and headed to a place where we could stay in PJs all day and take in some quality "girltime".  Definitely one of my favorite moments of the year.


He wanted to celebrate his Kentucky Wildcats so all we needed was a gym, some balls, and a bunch of great friends.  This pic was taken as he displayed his moves during the dance competition.


This pic was taken outside the Children's Museum in Wilmington, NC.  The kids and I had a great visit with the Hurleys for Spring Break complete with a walk on the dock, catching crab, beach play, and lots of fun pics.  Of course I loved the pineapple salsa from Flaming Amy's and fish tacos from K38!


This pic was taken by my dear friend, Leslie, on JoJo's dock, which is one of my favorite places.  It makes me happy every time I look at it.


What better way to celebrate another year of life than with fish tacos from Taco Mamacita and a beautiful group of ladies and their wonderful husbands (not pictured)?


We had a wonderful Easter weekend with Robbie's parents.  All year long, Papaw has been working on a treehouse for the kids.  This was the first weekend of construction.  Of course, we cleaned up and took time out to celebrate our risen savior.


Robbie and I celebrated 10 years of marriage on the beaches of Mexico.  This was our first trip without friends or family.

This is a pic of a sedote (swimming hole).  I was a sad tourist because I didn't get to swim due to a rainstorm.


Another great weekend on Dale Hollow Lake with Robbie's college buds and their wives.


Our first spring at the ballpark was a complete blast, especially with daddy as a coach and me as a scorekeeper.


I am not sure what goes on there, but Robbie, his brother, Adam and their buddies have a great time at K Day weekend in Paintsville every year.


What a great weekend in Gatlinburg celebrating 40 years of marriage with Papaw and Mamaw including a great dinner at the Dixie Stampede.


This year Tate and Daddy kept working on their golf game while Lily acted as the best caddy and ate all the snacks.


The first day of school was extra special this year as our baby went to Kindergarden.


The annual girls' weekend is always jam-packed with laughs, but this particular weekend had an added twist.  10 girls and a double-decker pontoon boat on Dale Hollow Lake created a perfect scene for the greatest comedy of the year.


To mom's dismay, Tate decided it was time to cut of his strawberry blonde locks.


Check out these cutie patooties, featuring both old and new friends, celebrating Lily's 6th birthday.


The kids always try to keep their candy away from daddy on Halloween.  This year, they not only had to hide the candy, but they were competing for "Best Costume" too.  Although daddy looked cute as Derek Dooley, he was beaten by the Midnight Butterfly and Darth Vadar.


It's been several years since I have spent Thanksgiving in New York, but not a thing has changed.

There's still plenty of food, family and fun to go around.


If you look smack in the middle of the picture, you will see my husband holding three very happy kids.  This year the annual Kentucky vs. Tennessee ended in sweet victory.  My husband and kids were celebrating for one reason, but I was happy for a completely different one.

As Eleanor Roosevelt says, "Happiness is not a goal, it is a by-product of a life well lived."  Indeed it is.

Stay tuned for a holiday update soon!

Sunday, February 20, 2011


Living this life of mine, is not an easy thing.  Not to mention, walking alongside me.  There is no denying that my husband has to make a lot of sacrifices to support me and my career.

Kids in Kentucky...
Surprise Day Off...
Dear Friends...
Concert Tickets...



to express gratitude, appreciation, or acknowledgement

I just felt thankful and I wanted to let him know.  So I called his boss, took the day off, bought concert tickets and invited some best buds.  Cheesecake Factory made for a delicious dinner, Darrius Rucker and Brad Paisley made for a great date and Big E and Lil T made for the best double-daters.  

I don't say it often enough, but I feel it all the time.  I am the luckiest girl in the world to share this life with him.


Lucky Seven

Seven is a magical number.  I would even venture to say it is the most perfect number (and I think I could reference some scripture to support that statement).

Blue eyes peering from behind the lenses...
Fumbling, bumbling around the room...
Stuttering and stammering as he finds the right words...
And then he smiles...



capacity for sympathy, feeling or affection

Seven years ago, we were blessed with the most amazing gift.  When I watch him, I find myself completely captivated by his charm, intelligence, and pure perspective for life.  He teaches me something everyday and it usually involves how to be kind to others.  I have no doubt in my mind, that he will change the world someday.  In fact, he's already started...

Tate, I am so blessed to be your mom and know that I am forever changed by your beautiful soul!  Thank you for your love.


Saturday, February 12, 2011

Soft Shell

Parenting is tough.  Some crucial advice I was given early in my life as a mother was, "Don't try to figure out how to get them to thrive...Just love them and they will thrive on their own."  No matter how hard I try, that theory is tested over and over again.

Eggs and a Spoon...
Kids in a Line...
Race to the End...
And suddenly...



to break with a sudden, sharp sound

Who knew an egg race could turn into one of those moments that challenged the spirit of a child?  One after another, the egg would crack and then the spirit would break...disappointment, failure, lack of confidence...  

Fortunately, our wonderful cruise director, Nonny, was able to redirect and bring smiles back on their faces quickly.  I think next time, I'll leave for the eggs for the cake :)

Tate's B4

That boy of mine has such a beautiful heart (stay tuned for annual birthday post on Monday).  So, when I approached him about the plan for his 7th birthday, he managed to show that beautiful spirit in full force.

Kids running...
Kids jumping...
Kids screaming...
One happy, birthday boy...



a thoroughly, enjoyable, lively party

Tate's Big Blue Birthday Bash was a great time.  He wanted all teams to feel welcome, so while celebrating his Kentucky wildcats, he invited his friends to wear the jerseys of their favorite team.  There is nothing that makes me happier than to see me kids smile, and man was I happy all day!!!


Friday, February 4, 2011


When I was a kid, I thought Pepto Bismol could cure anything.  If I fell and scraped my knee, all I wanted was the pink milky syrup to make my pain go away.  This past weekend I thought it was time to rip the bandaid off.

Cabin retreat
Moments alone
Circle of friends
Tears and laughter



to make healthy, whole, or sound

That word means a lot to me right now...WHOLE.  I needed to write, so I gotta out of town.  Thankfully, I had some friends follow my bread crumbs to one of my most inspirational places.  There are not many people that understand the nuances of Autumn, but these ladies...they get it.

I sat in the sun feeling the wind blowing through my hair.  I was pretty excited that I had actually written the intro to my book.  I had focus and purpose with my writing like never before.  And then the greatest thing happened...a spontaneous dance party...right there in the great wide open!!!  Little house on the prairie will never be the same again...

Thank you to Turner, James, Mish, DDK, Lou Lou, Doc Mondi, and the Dirty Librarian for loving me, filling me and making me WHOLE.  And thanks to my husband for knowing how much I needed it and making it happen.  And of course, thanks to Warren for allowing us a slice of his mountain retreat. 

This girl found her spirit somewhere between the lounge chair and the hiking trails.