Monday, July 30, 2012

Delayed Gratification

When you start dating someone at sixteen, you don't realize how much you have to learn about them.  Their likes and dislikes, talents and struggles, pet peaves and those cute little quirks that eventually aren't so cute anymore.  It was a fun season of our relationship that seems very long ago some days.  What is really fascinating is how many of those things I learned about Brent in the early 1990s are still the same, this many years later.  
I can't remember exactly when during that fall Brent first cooked for me.  It may have been on New Year's Eve.  Anyway, he made the best steaks I had ever had, and his burgers were out of this world!  Not the average sixteen year old talent.  When we got married, his grandparents gave him a gas grill that we used until it wore slap out.  I think it made it through med school, but by Winston Salem, we were on our second grill.  It held up pretty well, but we ended up leaving it as a house-warming gift for the couple who bought our little house on Briar Glen Road.  

When we got to Gainesville, a grill was not in the budget.  At least, not the grill he wanted.  So we decided to wait and save for a nice, forever kind of grill.  We eventually bought a little charcoal Weber grill that he used on the driveway.  It worked great, and we all fell in love with that charcoal flavor again.  

So this summer, he got the bug to get an egg shaped grill.  Right after the 4th of July, he went and picked it up.  Here he is with his new favorite toy.  Also known as the fourth child.

 And here are two yahoos posing with Daddy's new "greel" as Jon Jon calls it.

We have decided that he will cook on Tuesday, Saturday and Sunday nights from now on.  I am thrilled with this new development.  If you know Brent at all, you will not be surprised to learn that he is continually scouring the internet for new ideas to try.  We've had awesome burgers, turkey burgers, chicken breasts and this beauty so far.  In the background you can see the two best baked potatoes ever cooked by a human being.

Saturday night, he decided to make pizza.  He even made his own dough!

We had to buy a pizza peel.  Here is the first one before going on the grill.

And afterwards.  It was quite possibly the best pizza I have ever eaten.  And I only say quite possibly so that you who did not get to sample it don't feel too badly.

We are looking forward to many more years of great cooking with this grill, and of course our favorite grill master.  Brent, we are so proud of all you have accomplished and how hard you work at everything you do.  We are thrilled for you to finally have time for a fun hobby.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Monday, July 16, 2012

4th of July

 We started off our day with a patriotic breakfast thanks to Pinterest.  Some of us ate our toast assembled, and some of us disassembled it first.

 Then we got dressed and headed to Granny and Grandaddy's for a fun day.

 Grandaddy has built a workshop behind the pool, and the boys love spending time with him out there.  He always has a sawhorse set up for them to practice using his tools.  They love it!

We spent a lot of time in the pool, since it was a scorcher of a day!  There was bbq for lunch, and Gigi and Papack joined us.  This is the only picture I have from the afternoon.  I decided to enjoy the day and not worry about taking pictures of everything we did. 
Thanks to Granny and Grandaddy and Nana and Pop-O for hosting us.  We had a great time!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Okefenokee Joe

 Our library has a great summer reading program.  Each week when we go for new books, we take our reading logs and the boys earn a prize of some sort.  This is the third summer we've participated in the program, but the first year we've been able to do some of the other activities they offer.  In addition to the weekly prizes, there are special guests and events most weeks.  One of the guests was a blast from the past for Brent and me. 

In Junior High, I remember well an assembly in our gym where a man named Okefenokee Joe came to visit.  He was a snake man who had lived in the swamp for twenty plus years.  He talked about the importance of preserving our earth, but what I remember most clearly is that he brought all kinds of snakes and they crawled all over our gym floor.  Brent remembers him too, so I guess he visited all of our county schools.  When I saw on the calendar that he would be in Hall County one afternoon in June, I made plans to take Andrew and Coleman. 

The room was packed out, but our boys were able to get seats pretty close to the front.  Joe hasn't changed much since he came to Morrow Junior High.  He started off with a talk about himself, the swamp, and his dog, Swampy.  Then he sang a couple of songs about Swampy.
 Finally, it was time to see what we came to see! 
 First he pulled out a huge black snake.  Not poisonous, but he better not come creeping into our yard!

 Next up was a copperhead.  Good grief!
 And then a water moccasin.  You can see them both together on the table. He was saying something about how the snakes were leaving each other alone because they don't need to bother each other and how we as humans could take a lesson from those snakes.  Well, that's fine and good, but if they come in my yard they will be bothering me so Brent will just have to kill them. 
 Then those two friends went back in their boxes and out came this fella.  His tale was rattling as soon as Joe opened the box.  Sounded like a cicada, but much more ominous.  He rattled the whole time he was on the table.
 I love this picture below.  You can see Coleman's blonde head leaned to the left right up next to Andrew.  They sat like that the whole time, with their heads together.  I wish I could have seen their faces.

 This is an Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake.  He lives below Macon, which is another great reason to stay where we are.  The whole time he was out, he was coiled and ready to strike.  He followed Joe around the table and struck at him once!  The audience gasped, of course, but you could tell that was just what Joe was wanting. 
I think the boys really enjoyed it.  They didn't want to get their picture made with Okefenokee Joe, but I bet they'll remember him for a long time. 

Thursday, July 12, 2012

June Fun and Father's Day

 Our June was super fast and super fun.  Here are a couple of activities that haven't been posted about yet.  Our church decided to put a different spin on Bible school week this year.  For three nights, we participated in Our Family Matters.  Each night we ate supper together at the church and then participated in a theme night.  One night was movie night, one was game night, and the last night we went to the water park. We also had two really funny guys speak each night on family life.  Silly skits, songs and door prizes rounded out the evenings.   It was really fun and the boys loved it! Here's a picture of our five in our shirts the first night.

 Another fun thing we did in June was date night.  While we were at the water park, Andrew noticed a sign about an upcoming community theatre event.  The local children's theatre group presents a musical production each summer, and this year it was How I Became A Pirate, based on the book by David Shannon.  I found out how to get tickets and took Andrew and Coleman on a date night.  We went to the play after supper and then hit the Dairy Queen for blizzards.  The boys loved the play and we are looking forward to next summer's production. 

 So here's a funny story from that evening.  Andrew and Coleman got bathed before supper and then after we ate, I told them to go get dressed in something nice and handsome for our date.  Andrew put on his favorite button down shirt, khaki shorts, belt and sandals.  Coleman hid his shirt from me and wanted me to leave his room for him to get dressed and surprise me.  So I did.  In a few minutes, he proudly came and found me to show me his outfit.  He said, "How do you like my handsome clothes?" 

 I told him I loved it and that he sure was smart to remember that he had a shirt with "handsome" on it!

I don't want to forget about Father's Day either.  We celebrated with Brent on Sunday before church.  He opened his gifts from us before breakfast.

 We had a super special Sunday breakfast of baked cheese grits and cheese danish (the boys chose the menu for him).  I love this picture of everyone smiling at the camera.

 And here they are before church.

We cooked out that night for supper.  We celebrated with our grands at the 4th of July, but I forgot to get pictures of them with the boys and their gifts.  We are so thankful  for the godly heritage our boys have on both sides of their family tree. 

Friday, July 6, 2012

Music Camp for Jonathan

 This year, Jon Jon was old enough to get to go to Music Camp with Ms. Pam.  He had a great week!  He was a little hesitant Monday morning, but he was soon joining right in and leading everyone else.  I had a great time with him one on one.  It was so fun to see him interacting with other kids his own age and doing activities that were geared just for them.  Here are some pictures of our fun.

The theme was Under the Ocean and Ms. Pam had tons of fun activities for them.  Here they are getting their first instruments from her.

 Jonathan had a great time, but took his instrument playing very seriously.  He would laugh and smile and talk until he had an instrument in his hands.  Then it was down to business and serious stuff while he made music!
Here he is with an egg shaker.
 She had little pans of sand for them to play in.  Guess who was the first to dump his out on his feet.

 We flew kites and listened to the wind.

Here he is bouncing some balls on a sheet.  He loved this!


 Another serious Jonathan playing a wood block.

These little hula hoops were supposed to be our boats.  He loved spinning around and around in ours.

Those naughty tambourines made an appearance one day.

Ms. Pam even integrated some technology with her ipad.  Here they are watching a whale breach.

Oh the lollipop drums!  Is that a hint of a smile on your face Jon Jon?

This picture cracks me up.  He was so happy to go to Ms. Pam for me to make a picture.  Then he stops smiling when the picture takes.  As soon as it was over, he gave her a big hug and kiss on the cheek!

Coleman gets to go to camp in a few weeks and we can't wait!  We just love Ms. Pam!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Swimming Lessons 2012

 The first two weeks of June, Andrew and Coleman took swimming lessons at our local college.  They had a great time and learned a lot.  Andrew in particular is swimming like a fish this summer.  Here are some highlights of their lessons. 

The first morning, Jonathan wanted his swimsuit on too, and had a very hard time understanding why he couldn't get in the pool too.  Sometimes it is just hard being the littlest.

 Andrew's class waiting for lessons to begin

 Coleman's class practicing kicking

The second day of class, Jonathan was much happier to stay upstairs and eat a snack and play.

Here's Coleman on a kickboard.  He improved a ton over last summer.  Now he can actually balance by himself and kick around the pool.  Last summer he flipped over as soon as the instructor turned him loose.

Andrew can swim across the pool, on top of the water, coming up for breaths without stopping.  We're still working on that "shredding" water thing.

Coleman had the best float in his class. 

Here are the boys with their certificates.  Neither one wanted their picture made with their instructor this year. 

We are all looking forward to next summer.  Jonathan will get to take lessons next year too.  That means Mommy will have no one to wrangle upstairs in the balcony!  Yahoo!