Thursday, December 15, 2011

Semester Ovah - Holiday Break

Holiday break...  5 work days and counting!

My first full semester of grad school is finally over... thank goodness, because my brain was on freaking overload for the past few months.  Whoever decided that going back to school, with two boys under the age of three and working a full time job, must be insane.  Well, anyways, I am done for now and happy to report, still in honors standing no less.  This is a nice little break before classes start back again January 12, 2012.  Now on to more important things; liking attemping my first prime rib for our Christmas Eve supper.

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Smokey Mountains

The family took a little trip up to Gatlingburg during the Christmas season.  Chad went hiking with his high school buddy, Kyle Nolen and I decided that the Tanger Outlets would be a great place to accomplish some Christmas shopping so I enlisted the help of Yaya and Nana.

Chad, Noal, Nana, Trace, Yaya @ Dixie Stampede
Our fam @ Dixie Stampede

We took the boys to the Dixie Stampede and they absolutely loved it, especially Noal.  I expected Trace to be the one who enjoyed it the most, but Noal never moved the entire show.  He didn't even look down to get his food, which for those of you who have seen the kid eat, know is a BIG deal!  Trace enjoyed it too, but was ready to go for those last 15 minutes, he 3 year old hiney had set all it could set I guess.  Nana really enjoyed it as well and I was glad she got to experience that with the boys.

It rained the entire time we were there, and one night we even got to see a little bit of snow.  The shopping was a little hindered, because between the rain and the massive double stroller I couldn't get as much accomplished as I had planned, but it was still a great time.  We ate at the Chop House while we were there and it was delish...  Noal was passed out though so he wasn't able to enjoy it like the rest of us!

Noal asleep in the stroller @ the Chop House.
Trace liked it, crayons and pizza, he was one happy kiddo.  Well, after a minor episode that landed him a trip to the bathroom with Mommy!

Chad hiked out of the mountains on Wednesday and that night we went to our favorite place to eat in the mountains, Park Grille.  It was excellent as always, if you have never been while in Gatlinburg, it is a must visit for me!  Then we took the boys to the aquarium, since Trace is fascinated with isch and shaawks right now.  The both really enjoyed it and so did Mommy and Daddy.

Yaya and Trace watching the sharks at the aquarium.

Gatlingburg was a fun quick trip for us, but I love any kind of trip.  I am glad to say that my boys are excellent travelers too.  Traveling is something that Chad and I both enjoy and share a passion for and it is nice that our boys have always been excellent passengers along the way.  Both of them have traveled from the time they were born and I wouldn't have it any other way.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

If it's free take two!

I love a bargain...  this is the free coffee mug I designed thanks to a coupon from Shutterfly.  Even better, for posting this on my blog I get a $10 giftcard.  Handy to have right before the holidays!
 
 
Blank Project Collage Mug
Create cute birthday cards & birthday invitations at Shutterfly.com.
View the entire collection of cards.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Family Beach Vacation

This year for our annual family beach vacation we went to Destin, Fl.  Joining us on this family vacay was my dad and stepmom KC.  It was a lot of fun and a lot of firsts for the boys.  It was Noal's first time to go to the beach:

(unless you count while he was still in my belly last year!) and it was Trace's first time to go deep sea fishing:


which he absolutely loved.  They both were very well behaved the entire trip.  Chad and I feel so fortunate that both of our boys have always been great travelers.  Traveling is something that Chad and I both love to do and so the boys have been drug along by association since birth!  Our annual beach trip is something that I look forward to every year.

This year was no exception, work had been cRaZy to say the least and a week long vacation with no made plans was just what I needed.  They boys, while good travelers, are still very young and so we spent a lot of time, doing a whole lot of nothing, in the beach house with the boys.  Let me tell you, it doesn't get much better than that... not that I don't look forward to the days where we wake up and go, go, go. but it was nice just to have some quality time to spend with the boys and with my family as well.





The deep sea fishing trip was, well let's be honest, not my favorite.  I would normally leave that kind of thing to the men, but with Trace, I wanted to tag along to help.  Trace, on the other hand, absolutely loved the deep sea fishing trip and was awesome.  He spent time outside with Daddy and helped all of us reel in our catches and then was a very big boy and played on mommy's phone for entertainment on the two, yes two, hour trip back.  So even though the deep sea fishing wasn't my thing, I am glad that I got to share in such a special memory with Trace and Daddy.


 










I did enjoy getting to spend time with my boys on the beach.  Noal was unimpressed by the beach, but did enjoy it I think.  Trace LOVED it, he still wakes up asking if we can go to the beach.  He really surprised me because I thought he would be scared of the ocean, because for as much as we are out on our boat, he can sometimes get scared of the lake.  I just knew that if the lake scared him ocassionally, the ocean would be out for good.  Boy, was I wrong.  He loved getting in the ocean and playing in the waves.  Chad even got him to go out one day past where he could touch and he just swam around in his puddle jumper like a big boy.
















Another fun thing that we did was take Trace to Alligator Beach at Fudpuckers.  For those of you who have been to Destin, you know that Fudpuckers is kind of one of those necessary evils.  It's the place you go that has the okay food, for the ridiculous long wait, and even more ridiculous prices.  However, Trace LOVES "cwocadiles" so I really wanted him to go see the alligators (they all look same, right?).  Luckily, we went for lunch and didn't have to bad of a wait and so while we waited Trace got to hang out at Alligator Beach and see the alligators.



Of course we had to have some family photos taken while we there and I learned that getting good family photos could pose to be a problem for the next few years; it seemed I was the only one interested in getting them done instead of playing on the beach... SHOCKING! (-:  I do have to say for the little amount of cooperation I had, we got some pretty good photos:























Overall, it was an amazing vacation and has already left me anxiously awaiting our return next year!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Sunday Funday

On Sunday afternoon Chad and I decided to take an impromptu trip to Murray, KY.  We both graduated from Murray State University and absolutely love the town.  Even though it is only about an hour away, we don't get back there as often as we would like.  We needed to make a Lowe's run for some house improvements before Noal's big first birthday bash, so we just opted to go to Murray instead of Clarksville for a change of pace.

We were meeting some great friends of ours for dinner at August Moon and finished with the Lowe's trip a little earlier than expected so we decided to take the boys to the park to play and had a blast.  The park was INCREDIBLE.  I couldn't believe how much the had redone since I had been there last.  It was a great time and we got some great family photos out of it as well!


Noal and Daddy

Go Trace Go!

Mommy and Noal

Movin' on down

What a cutie!

Gotta love my boys!

BIGGGG Slide!

Daddy and Noal
On your mark...  Get set...

Racin' Slides


Go!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

---Blessed Birthday---

I had a wonderful birthday weekend and was so blessed to spend some quality time with so many of my friends and family.

On Friday, Chad and I went to Nashville for the night.  We went out to Cabana for dinner and they had the most amazing "sweet tea chicken" and sweet tea slushy that I have ever had.  The food was so good and the it was one of the best things I have ever drank.  Joining us for dinner were some of our favorite couples, I was so glad they could make the trip down to Nashville to join us.

Soon to be Megan Mitchell Squared (My future sis-in-law!)

The hubs and I.

The ladies, plus two...  Notice Nichole and Ash's lil bumps.
 After dinner, we went downtown to the Gulch, AKA the Gooch.  We had some drinks at Cantina Laredo and my favorite park was my birthday brownie complete with sparkler.
My birthday sparkler.
 On Saturday, Chad and I went on a little shopping trip to Green Hills and ate at Carabba's.  We loove Carabba's, it is our favorite and has become our staple date night/lunch place.  Although I really enjoyed my night out, I was very anxious to get back home to my two precious boys.

On Saturday night, we were able to celebrate Travis and Megan's engagement.  We are so excited for them and the engagement party was a great way to celebrate in this exciting time in their lives with them.

Chad, Megan #1, Megan #3, and Travis
Chad and I were both tired, so we left early and took our niece Ally Jane home with us.  So Trace had his first girl in his bed... Too bad it was his cousin.  :)  They are going to kill me for those pictures when they are older, but they were just too cute not to share.


On Sunday, (my actual birthday) we took the cousins to church and it was fun getting Ally Jane all dolled up.  I love my little boys, but getting her ready and curling her hair was a fun treat for Mimi!  After church we went to Gramps and MeMaw's for lunch and then headed to the lake.  My big sis, Jodi, came down and went out with us, Dan and Abby, Trav, Trace, and our babysitter Taylor.  We all had a blast and we rocked out some wakeboarding.  It was the best I had ever done!

All in all it was an incredible birthday weekend.  I realized just how blessed I was at dinner on Friday night.  Megan had got me a Dogeared wish necklace for my birthday and as I was thinking about what to wish for I couldn't even think of a single thing I didn't already have.  So my wish was for Travis and Megan to have the happiness in marriage that Chad and I share...  and I think they are well on there way!  I am so blessed with a great husband, two amazing children, and wonderful friends...  I am one very lucky girl.