Last weekend we went to Atlanta for all kinds of festivities. As a tribute to my Dad, my mom took everyone to the practice rounds of the Masters at Augusta National. As a family, we decided to take something special of Dad’s and bury it under one of the pine trees at Amen Corner, his favorite part of the course.
The place where they decided to bury Dad’s item was under the pine trees right there the 13th hole dog-legs up to the green. For his 50th birthday, we all gave him a painting of the view from that very pine tree. I thought everyone did a great job finding the perfect spot.
While the family was at the Masters, I decided to stay home with the three wee ones. We had a blast, but three under the age of four is INSANE. I don’t know how some parents do it! I was exhausted by the end of the day! But it was a huge success! We got up and played in the living room for a bit while I cleaned up breakfast.
After an hour or so, we moved upstairs and played while I got them all dressed. My kids loved playing with all of Tillman’s books and toys. They climbed up into his crib with him and read books (well, Tillman chewed on them…) while I got dressed. They all had a ball! Tillman makes this loud, long, happy wail when he is having fun, and you could hear him all over the house! It was hysterical!
After Tillman’s morning nap, we had a quick lunch and then headed up to this fantastic park in my sister’s neighborhood. It has bikes and playhouses and pretend kitchens and playground equipment and sandboxes and swings… It is amazing. We played there for over two hours!
When we got home, we napped and then hung out and waited for everyone to get back. I loved every minute of it, and I’m pretty sure the kids did, too. Well, maybe Gracie didn’t enjoy EVERY minute…
As if the Masters and enormous neighborhood parks weren’t enough, we also went to a Braves game that weekend. We’ve taken the kids to one before, but Gracie was in her crying all the time phase, so it wasn’t very enjoyable. This game, though, was perfect! I had so much fun with the kids, and we had awesome seats. We were in the outfield and sat on the first row of a section, which meant that we had a little extra leg room to move around. Critical when you’ve got two little ones. I was worried about the sun because we were going to be sitting directly in it all afternoon. But I slathered the kids up pretty good and made them both wear hats, and nary a sunburn was found!
(Can we talk for a minute about how big Bean looks in this picture. I’m having distinct images of him as a high schooler, and I do not like it. Not one little bit. He’s a stud, though, that boy.)
When we weren’t doing super fun things at Aunt Ginny and Uncle John Michael’s house, we were hanging around on their front porch and taking family walks around their neighborhood. And we are quite the motley crew when we’re traveling in a herd!
I have to tell you this little story. We were walking by a house that was having some renovations done. While we were passing by, the workers threw a huge piece of something into the dumpster and it made a loud boom. Bean didn’t see it happen, and didn’t even look up. But he took off running straight ahead without saying a word at the instant of the noise. He was mid-sentence and just BOLTED, arms pumping at his side, eyes fixed in front of him. He was a man on a mission, and I swear I could hear him saying, “I’m out!” We all cracked up, even Bean when he realized what the noise was. Funny bunny.
It was a really great weekend. It is always a great weekend when we get to see family. Especially my sister and her family. Little T-Man is growing up so happy, and I love being around their family. It is always a joy to see your family growing and thriving, especially while we remember those that aren’t here with us anymore. I know my dad would have gotten a kick out of this weekend, and not just the Masters. I think he would have been really proud of his family. I know I am.
Gracie turned two yesterday, but we celebrated on Saturday with family. It was a pretty low key celebration, which is just the kind of party that Gracie likes. She’s not big on the crowds and action, so hanging out with grandparents, aunts, and uncles was perfect for her.
But even the low number of people in attendance made our living room look like Christmas morning!
Gracie wanted a Minnie Mouse themed party, so we had little Minnie Mouse decorations hanging from the ceiling in the kitchen (which I did not take any pictures of, sorry…). We also got Minnie Mouse balloons, along with pink and white balloons for our mailbox and scattered in bunches around the living room. There was also a Spiderman balloon that we snuck in there somewhere for Bean Man… And, of course, there was the Minnie Mouse birthday cake.
After opening presents and eating cake, we headed outside to play with Gracie’s two biggest gifts. Nana got her a new water table, and Grandmomma got her a sandbox. I think I am just as excited about this as both of the kids were. During the summer, we are outside all day long and these toys will be perfect!
Yesterday, on her actual birthday, Chris and I took the kids to the zoo to celebrate. It was a small zoo, but there was still a lot to do. It was gorgeous weather, and we stayed almost all day!
When we first got to the zoo, Gracie flipped out at the very first exhibit. Chris and I were like, “Great. She’s afraid of animals and we brought her to a zoo on her birthday…” But, turns out, she’s just afraid of birds! And who can blame her? They kind of freak me out, too!
As the day went on, though, Gracie warmed up to the zoo. I think at first she was worried that something was going to jump out and get her. She was really jumpy. But Bean was a real life saver because the more he did, the more Gracie wanted to do, too!
Our favorite part was the giraffe exhibit. They had the spectator platforms built up really high so that we were literally face to face with the giraffes. They were really friendly, and you could feed them right out of your hand. Gracie liked them from afar, but Bean Man was right there in the middle of it!
It was a really great way to spend Gracie’s birthday, and we had fun together as a family, too. I can’t believe that sweet Gracie Girl is two! Where has the time gone????
I am sitting on my couch fighting either a terrible low pressure headache because a big storm is rolling in, or an oncoming migraine. Either way, I feel like my head is being squeezed in a juicer. While I lay here on the couch, moaning and trying to get Chris to have mercy and rub my feet (which I am convinced solves all of life’s problems), I’m going to leave you with these pictures from this weekend.
We went to my sweet cousin, Abby’s, wedding in Atlanta. It was beautiful, and she was a radiant bride. The only person who glowed as much as she did was her handsome groom, Joey. They are just the kindest, down to earth couple and their wedding felt just like them. I love that at weddings. My two favorite parts were that Abby’s brother, Jake, stood with her (in lieu of bridesmaids) when she stood at the alter. I absolutely LOVED that. They are so close, and it just seemed perfect that he would be the one standing there with her.
My other favorite part was that Abby and her dad, my Uncle Tim, danced to “My Girl.” So stinking sweet!!! And they rocked the dance floor! I loved that!
We had a great time at the wedding. The kids were on their best behaviors, my mom and Grandma were not, and Ginny, JM, and Baby Tillman were looking good. It was really a great weekend for all of us!
And now I will leave you with the most handsome of the wedding guests. He’s my new boyfriend.
Don’t tell my husband.
It is widely known in my family that I am a last minute person. I’m never late when I attend something, but I’m last minute when it comes to preparations. And, honestly, nine times out of ten, I’ve done little to no preparation for whatever it is we are doing anyway. This is completely opposite from my mom and sister, who both plan lightyears in advance and have often been known to send out color-coded spreadsheets to organize family weekends.
I don’t quite understand this about myself, really. I’m a very organized person. I hardly ever lose anything. Except my cell phone… and my debit card… and my wallet… and my sunglasses… and my entire purse…
I’m just not one of those people who have it all together ahead of time. I can get it together as we go, but I’m not going to be that person who shows up having done lots of research and preparation for something. This has blown up in my face a few times. Like that we went to a pumpkin patch and I had dressed my kids in fall clothes thinking we’d take a few pictures and leave, only to discover this was, like, the Pumpkin Capitol of the Universe and the lines were incredibly long and there were corn mazes and lots of action and it was 9,000 degrees and so my kids were sweaty and miserable and I hadn’t even packed a water bottle or an extra diaper. Fail… But for the most part, I can wing it pretty well.
My family is used to me, though. Which is why before I leave for a family trip somewhere, my mom will call me for days in advance saying things like, “Don’t forget diaper wipes,” or “Did you pack socks?” They don’t trust me. And I don’t blame them.
Usually, the reason I forget things when we travel is because I don’t pack until about ten minutes before we leave. That’s right, friends. I pack four people in one SUV for a three-day trip in about ten minutes. Quite frankly, it’s a miracle I don’t forget MORE things.
BUT TONIGHT! Tonight is the night! We are heading to Atlanta this weekend for a family wedding. Currently, I have not even thought about what our family is going to wear. I’m just crossing my fingers it’s warm in Atlanta right now because Gracie only has summer dresses. And I hope Bean has enough clean underwear for a three day trip.
BUT TONIGHT! Tonight is the night! I am going to get us ready A WHOLE DAY before we are supposed to leave! I’m so excited! I sent Chris the following email, just to make sure he was on the same page as me. I titled the email, “A List of Demands:”
Demand #1: I demand that you come home early-ish from work.
Demand #2: I demand that we go get you a sports coat for the wedding.
Demand #3: I demand that we grab a quick dinner at chick-fil-a on our way home.
Demand #4: I demand that we pack for Atlanta tonight so that for once in our lives we actually arrive before 2:00am.
That is all.
Tonight – A FULL DAY EARLY! – we are going to make sure everyone has what they need, we are going to go buy what we will need that we don’t have, and we will be packed and ready to go as soon as we get home from work tomorrow, instead of three hours later like we normally do.
I will get my shit together. TONIGHT.