Saturday, July 31, 2010

Happy Birthday Thing Two

Happy Birthday from Thing One to Thing Two. This might sound strange to those who aren't siblings, but our Dad dubbed us that from way back to forever! I'm not sure if it was because we always were wanting him to read us the Cat In The Hat stories, or if he really thought we were sooooo mischeivious. Nevertheless, we are now and always have, and will continue to be Thing One and Thing Two. Notice if you please, I AM THING ONE. Not to say, Sally, that diminishes your just still means I  Am The Boss.

Sally has been our creative and adventurous sister. She used to 'run away' periodically when we were growing up. She got as far as the house on the opposite end of our block. Mom had a rule we could not cross the street without an adult. Running away? Yes, just can't go further than the end of the block. Worked for Sally, worked for Mom. I'm not sure how thrilled the people at the end of the block were, but since Sally would just sit in the bushes under a window and play with her imaginary friends I think it was all good! This isn't Sally running away in the picture below...but you can see a glimmer of the idea...I mean with Gramma Bet as your mentor...the world was her oyster!
When Sally got old enough she 'ran away' to camp. While I was spending summer vacation at the beach...Sally spent 'The Summer" at away camp in Georgia mountains. It would become a lifelong love for her. She eventually became a head counselor and then an Assistant Director. Sally excels in working with people. She is a real people person and helps bring out even the shyest of people.

For a while she graced us with living in New Orleans after college. Was a good move, because that was when she met her future husband. Uncle Fred keeps her in the groove and happy. Sally and Fred, remember, this is the creative married on a riverboat. It was New Orleans after all, and we had a blast. What more could you want than to cruise up and down the Mississippi dancing the night away!?!
Dad looked pretty dapper himself posing at home for pictures before he walked his daughter down the aisle on the riverboat, don't you agree? I still see him looking at Sally and thinking..."Yep, she's Thing Two!"
Sally and Fred spent much of their married life living in her beloved Georgia. Now they have moved back to our hometown. Funny how life goes in circles sometimes! But wherever life takes my sister, she always makes it fun!

Love you Thing Two...Happy Happy Birthday~

*All For The Love Of Sam

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Eleven Years...Wow

Happy Anniversary Terri and Steve! Eleven years strong! Ahh, wedded bliss with the pitter patter of children's feet. It seems like yesterday it was another hot, hot, hot July and we were listening to God affirm your marriage with a lightning bolt!

Steel is the gift for a couples eleventh anniversary. I actually think this is quite appropriate. It takes a bond forged in steel to weather some of the trials and tribulations of marriage. Eleven years brings much love and happiness, but the time to have weathered a few of life's storms. Perhaps I should clarify...more squalls than storm. Either way, the two of you are forging your love and have eleven years to show for it. Eleven years and two beautiful children!

Happy Day...Happy Eleven Years...


*All For The Love Of Sam

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

All For The Love Of Sam

Many of you who read my blog are family and friends and know about 'our' Sam. To try and explain to those that don't know about Sam and the beloved place he had in our family is an almost impossible task. Love for Sam cannot be condensed into a few sentences but for those new to our goes.

Sam is our nephew and from the tender age of nine he spent many summers and holidays with us. He was more of a brother to our kids than a cousin.  Sam had a smile that lit up a room and a giggle that was as infectious as could be. Sam lost a bravely fought battle to lymphoma on October 3, 2005 at the age of 26. He left behind his son of  almost six months, his wife and step-daughter. He was such a proud Dad...he loved his 'baby Sam' with all his heart. 

Our hearts were broken that day, but our love remains strong.  His sister, Anne, our niece, is raising money in his honor for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS). I asked Anne if I could post in my blog about her loving tribute to Sam and she graciously gave me her blessings.

I would love for you to join Anne in her efforts to raise funds for this important effort in Sam's honor. It doesn't have to be a huge amount and you can donate anonymously if you choose. Although, I would love to see some family and friends names on the list, the choice is yours.

I am posting a link to Anne's fundraising site  and at the end of each of my postings until Anne's fundraiser is over I will place a link *All For The Love Of Sam, as a gentle reminder and request for you to join in the quest to help end this dreadful disease. Please feel free to spread the story of my sweet niece and her love for her brother...I think it is a beautiful story and one that should be shared. The more who know his story possibly the greater the funds raised?

Our hearts still miss our nephew...I pray with each dollar raised by Anne we can all help her exceed her goal and keep the efforts going to find a cure for this horrible disease.

Bless you Anne...Bless all of you for joining in her efforts and remember she is doing it...
Tim, 'Sam', Dan
*All For The Love Of Sam  .

PS: To my kids who aren't in this picture, when my in home 'Genius' gets my scanner re-loaded for Snow Leopard, I will put a 'family' picture with all of you with Sam. This was the only one already in my computer. xoxox

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Lovely Lisa Birthday Girl

Happy Birthday, Lisa! Wow, can you remember what life was like a year ago? It was very busy, perhaps a tad uncomfortable?
We were all so excited and curious as to exactly 'who' we were going to meet in a few short weeks!
  It was so much  fun showering you and your little one to came from near and far to help celebrate the pending Bundle of Joy!

 Before we would find out, who, when, and where... you were a good sport and loving sister- in-law, attending parties and out of town weddings for your new sisters to be! 

With a smile on your face, you participated in all the family festivities, and I think sometimes it might have been a challenge. One thing I know for sure, Lisa, you 'show up' and make your loving presence felt. Even when it may be at a cost to you...not that anyone would know.

And then the momentous day arrived! We met your daughter...our granddaughter....Lily! What can I ever say, a million thank you's would never be enough!
Lisa, I know I have told you before, but probably will repeat it many, many times-you created such a lovely, serene and happy nursery for Lily. It's one special room!

You are such a loving Mom. I love to watch you with Lily! You both have mega watt smiles for each other. I listen to you 'chat' with your daughter...she is learning so many things from you.

 Lily can be sad or tired, but when you appear, her world is whole again. You give her all that she needs to bloom.

If Lily is at all little touch from you and she is fine! Just that light stroke of your fingertips...the reassuring hand. I love to watch her settle, as if by magic!

I don't know about you but it's been a rapid fire year. Our world is sweet. My son has a thoughtful, loving wife and a new daughter! It seems like yesterday we were looking forward to the year you two would be married. It was Christmas and your wedding was just around the corner!
Life can go by in warp speed! One day you are a bride to be...the next you are a Mother and attending weddings for your new siblings. Bebe, in tow!

So, your life goes from footloose, fancy-free and attending football games with the family~

To a fork in the with fun and love and more happiness yet to unfold! Your last year has given you a daughter, what once was now three!

Isn't it strange but wonderful how much can change in a year? 

And isn't it all so grand! Happy Birthday Lisa! It's been quite a year for a very special 'daughter'. 

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Celebrons Bastille Day

Just a quick note in honor of Bastille Day. My parents were married July 12...and celebrated Bastille Day while on their Honeymoon. New Orleans heritage and all that jazz.

 It was such a big 'thing' for them that for years I thought they were married on July 14 instead of July 12!

Now everyone go sing Marseillaise at least once!

...I can hum the tune anyway!
Love you Mom and Dad...

Monday, July 12, 2010

Sunshine For The Soul

Golden Holden Beach
I always find myself so very content and relaxed while at the beach. My earliest memories of vacations are from the beach. Growing up we went to Dune Allen Beach in Florida. Happy memories I've shared before...! 
Since we moved to North Carolina we have been spending most of our summer vacations at Holden Beach. In fact, when I haven't been to the beach at least once a year, my soul is not quite as sunny. Really. Ask my husband, he will agree. Really, really, really - agree. A soul without sunshine and salty scented air does not make  a pleasant wife. Again, ask my husband who will again, really, really, really - agree.
Once again we gathered all of our children and grandchildren for a sun filled, fun filled, soul filling vacation at Holden Beach. If you look closely, you will notice we are missing our grandson Peter in this 'Family Picture'. Picture date and time were announced the day before. Unfortunately at the tender age of two, after a day at the beach, and a traumatic splinter removal, every appointment can't be kept. Peter had a previous appointment, one we didn't have the heart to take him away from:
But we do have pictures of everyone enjoying themselves throughout the week. Scott and Erin started out early for the beach. They managed to get in an early lunch in Wilmington at one of my favorite restaurants on the Cape Fear River, The Pilot House.
Did you see the shirt Erin gave Scott...Mr Fixit!

Did I mention we were there for the Fourth of July? Check out these Stars and Stripes!

While on the beach one day...we spotted a very busy sand crab.

That busy little crab would scoot down in her hole and a minute or two later come scurrying up with an armful of sand tucked up between her legs and her body. She would do her little crab dance bup bup...tip toe - tip toe and then with a quick movement, fling the sand away from her hole! She was quite the industrious little crab! And by the way...Pop says I don't know for sure it was a she...but I SAW her bottom. She was a She, says I.

A new wrinkle was added to our sojourn to the beach this year. A house with a POOL! Yep, we all had fun floating, splashing and soaking up the rays at the pool when the beach just got Too Hot!
Lisa,Tim - Sush, Pop
Terri and her Little Men
Saints Back Up Quarter Back

Aunt Elise and Lily Bug
Am I precious or What?

That's our Laura behind those Foster Grants!

They're forever blowing bubbles....
Lisa enjoying a dip in the pool sans Lily
Sush and her Beach Bunny

Oh and yes...most of the pool pictures were taken with Steve's new camera from LAST Father's you can use...

Ahh, yes we did love the pool, but the first and foremost reason for going to the beach is well  after all...the beach!
 And it doesn't matter if we play at the beach all day...
My Adorable Grandsons!

WHY can't I eat the sand?

or if we play all night:
We never ever want to leave...right, Trey?
We did have fun at the Beach House, lots of porches where cousins could play. The bedrooms were on the level of the first floor porches...playtime and rockers were way high up on the top level porch. The lower level was the quiet zone. Mostly. Sometimes...if we could help it.

The tippy top porch was a favorite spot to run around and around and around...
The Polar Express!
And around...
Room to cuddle...
A daylight pose of sweet sisters...
Get haircuts from the Best Barber on the East Coast!
And yes, Trey did go first. It is the job of the big brother...

And sometimes the porches were a great place for a quiet spot to read...

Inside we had lots of snuggle time and lounging time!

Vacations are great for trying out some moustaches...but not on a permanent basis, please?
Lily, checking out the fuzz on her Dad and Uncle
And we had the opportunity to get beach pictures of all the married couples...
Sadly, Laura and Daniel weren't able to spend the entire week with us...and had to head back to the work zone on Wednesday. Grrrr!

Everyone did take turns in the kitchen...we had mouth watering,  meals!

And on our last night at the beach we love to go out for a wonderful seafood dinner. 

Some of us were busy coloring:
Some of us were exhausted from a whirlwind, sun-filled day:
We had time for one last hug between two 'sisters':
We tried very, very, very hard to get a cousins photo with Peter awake and smiling. It's hard to be cheerful when you just wake up! We'll keep trying...

But Lily and Trey were up for the task! And Lily was modeling a playsuit worn first by her Mother...we LOVE heirlooms!
I am not sure who looks the sleepiest in this photo, but I do know Daddy had to drive home after dinner. Trey had a T-ball game first thing in the AM, with the very important Team Picture that wouldn't be the same without him in it!

And if you look very closely at this photo, you might be able to see something new about Lily that she accomplished while at the beach...
Lily's first tooth...lower left looking at this picture!

After we left the restaurant, Steve, Terri and the boys headed for home. We then put Lily in the car with her Dad, Pop and Uncle Scott. The remaining females piled into Sush's new hotrod. It was now time for the remaining females in the group to head up the strip for some much deserved and put off for way to!
 *We found a new artist's shop.  Lisa became the proud owner of an original... Erin and Elise selected gorgeous prints. I will be returning for a print from the artist's Nautilus series. She captured canvas sails from a sunken sailboat and used the sails to paint a series of paintings. I'm hoping to get a copy of the print, "Sailor's Delight" from that series. A fine tribute to my Dad, I'm thinking!  Another really pretty one she had is titled diving into daisies...what a glorious thought! Some of us bought prints, some of us purchased pottery. After some 'quality' time spent at the Artist's shop, we headed to another fav store for High Quality knick knacks and/or this year's edition of Turtle Watch t-shirts. 

In conclusion...we had another wonderful summer vacation at Holden Beach. In lieu of the disaster that has befallen our beloved Gulf Coast, I extend an open invitation to all our family scattered across, Louisiana/Mississippi/Arkansas/Texas/Wisconsin/Minnesota and wherever else life takes you to give our East Coast bit of Heaven and Paradise a try.
You really will love it!

A very heartfelt....sigh~goodbye~hope to see you soon~