Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Another Driver

Emily got to drive for the first time while we were back home as well.  She's never had any interest in getting her license, but I figured if I could just get her behind the wheel and let her try it out in a field where she didn't have to worry about hitting anything or anybody, it would light a fire under her and she would get excited about driving.

I was right.

She has now completed driver's ed and has her learner's permit!

Monday, July 21, 2014

A Man of Many Talents

 My father-in-law is one of the most impressive people I've ever known.  The man can build anything, make anything, fix anything - and I'm not kidding either.  He once neutered my cat on our dining room table with a steak knife.  That cat was well and truly "fixed".  I've often wished I had taken a picture of that moment.  It would have been awesome to have company over for dinner and whip out a photo and say, "Guess what happened right where you're sitting?  And with that knife you're using too!"

One of his latest projects has been carving building replicas.  This barn is one he made from scratch, including carving every roof shingle by hand.

 The end comes off so you can see inside.  My girls would have had a fit to play with this when they were younger.  Polly Pockets having their very own barn?  It would have been paradise for the girls and the Pollys.

FIL also carved this cabin.

 The roof lifts off so you can see inside of this one as well!

 Some of the furniture is purchased, some of it he made himself.

 Not restricting his talents to small-scale projects, he also built a full-sized cabin.

And a bridge.

I'm telling you, he's got some serious know-how!

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Georgia Mastiff

While we were in Kerry's home town, we met a mastiff who is possibly related to Gene Simmons.

 His tongue hangs out all the time - it won't all fit in his mouth apparently.

When we first met him, he was sitting in the road with his tongue covered in dirt and leaf was stuck to it.  Oh yeah, and a chihuahua was chewing on it!

I can't make this stuff up!

Friday, July 18, 2014

My Home Town

Next on our Big Fat Trip, we stopped in my home town.  Somehow I only managed to take two pictures while we were there.  I just wanted to sit with my family and have quiet time.  I didn't want to go out and visit old haunts or meet up with friends from the past.  I just wanted to spend time in the house where I grew up with the people I grew up with.

We did meander out to a store where the girls tried on vintage style clothes.

And I had the best brownies and the best cole slaw ever.  I should have gotten a picture of those, but instead, I got the recipes!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Big Fat Trip

We went on a big, fat trip through our home state and various states we've lived in.  We drove 2200 miles altogether, saw friends and family, had one life changing moment and a few smaller moments that were just life.

It started when Ben got a job in Virginia for the summer.  We had planned to go join our family at the beach for Father's Day, but since Ben had to be in VA by the 25th, we thought we'd just change our vacation and have it while delivering Ben to his destination.

First stop was at a hotel about six hours down the road.  Nothing momentous to report.

Second stop was in Alabama to see my BFF Mary and her nine kids.  Nine.  And that's not all, there's more on the way!

Mary has been my friend for 13 years.  She can make me laugh like no one else.  My three kids and her oldest three kids were the same genders and similar in age.  They played together for years when we lived near each other and kept in touch long after we all moved.

Despite the fact that Mary and I talk or text several times a week, we haven't actually seen each other in person for seven years.
She's added quite a few kids to her family since the last time I saw them.  There were five or so that I had never actually met!  Two were missing from this photo.

Me and Mary

It's been so long, I have no idea why we took this photo!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014


I have NOT been able to get in the blogging groove for quite a while - I'm trying to catch up now, but I have got a long way to go!

Let's start with prom.  Emily went to the homeschoolers prom in St Louis with two of her friends.  

They came to our house to get ready as Kerry and I were the ones driving them to St Louis.

I told them to strike a pose and Emily was the posiest.

I took Emily to the salon and got her hair done.  She asked them to do it like Elsa's coronation hairdo from "Frozen".

She hated it.

When we picked the girls up at the end of the evening, Emily came out with a tiara and limping.

Knowing her as I do, I immediately assumed she'd conned some poor girl out of her tiara or possibly just tackled someone to the ground and wrested it away.

Turns out my darlin' sweet pea was crowned Junior Prom Princess of the Junior class!!

(And now I remember why I am so behind on blog posts:  I had asked Emily to write about the actual prom and I didn't want to put these pictures up until I had all the details - I'm still waiting.)

Monday, July 7, 2014

Emily Is 17!

Seventeen full years she's been on this planet.  She took her time getting here - arrived two weeks late -and still had to be forced to finally present herself.

She's usually on time these days but still pretty darn stubborn about what she's going to do and when she's going to do it.

This year, she didn't want a cake.  She wanted her Daddy's cobbler.  And she wanted her Mama's stroganoff for dinner.  And egg nog.  And she didn't want a party, she wanted to watch The Lord of the Rings Trilogy.

I had ordered her a mandolin for her birthday this year, but she found out about it when she was checking Amazon and saw it in my orders.  I threatened not to get it for her after all.

 She was pretty excited when she opened it.

 She knew I'd never really take it back as much as she wanted it.

Cobbler, stroganoff, egg nog, Lord of the Rings, and a mandolin.
She's a pretty happy 17 year old camper right now.