Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Best Anniversary Ever.

(This is a repost. This post was doing weird things when I published it a few days ago, so here it is again. Read the next post for a general update and links to other posts.) 

Okay, so DK and I had theeeeeeeee most amazing anniversary ever. I'll skip over the whole "We've been together almost 13 years, married for eight...and it's wonderful...not perfect...but we love each other and we support each other...and DK's my best friend, etc." because you know this, right? I still have a huge crush on my husband and would marry him again tomorrow. So let's skip that part.

Let's talk about this anniversary date.  We went to Atlanta this year for an epic experience. We had lunch at one of our favorite spots: Pappadeaux (and B'ham is getting one in the fall -- woohoo)!  I filled up on the fried alligator appetizer (amazing) and salad, and ending up taking my gumbo to the hotel room (and forgot it when we checked out -- boooooo!).


The restaurant has some good-looking desserts, of course, but I wanted something else.


The one closest to where we live closed a few years ago, so I try to visit Cold Stone every time I'm in a city that has 'em.  

Then we headed to the hotel with a few hours to spare before our big anniversary "event." DK loves the hot tub and pool and always brings his swim trunks when we travel. There was no way way I was going to get frizzy, humidity-crazy hair before my evening with my BFF (my other BFF, not DK...read on). I just did what I typically do...sat back in a lounge chair and chatted with DK while he enjoyed the hot tub or pool. (For the record, I think public hot tubs are disgusting and I'm afraid I'll get a staph infection that will enter my body through a small cut or something and I'll die or lose limbs. I saw that on Orange is the New Black. It happens, people. And other stuff happens, too.)


I ended up getting frizzy hair anyway because of all the humidity in the pool area, but whatever. I was spending time with my man.  My BFF would understand when I saw her later that evening.

So the time came for us to walk to our destination. We passed the SkyView Ferris Wheel.  And yes, I've ridden this thing and have seen it countless times, but I still like getting a picture of it every time. It's huge and gorgeous and I like looking at it...so there. 


We got inside the Georgia Dome pretty quickly, found some good food (duh), and found our seats (which were pretty good).



And if you didn't see my social media posts or still haven't a clue where we were, then the next pic says it all...


Yessssss. We went to see my BFF (in my head) and her husband. Best anniversary date everrrrrrr!


Anyone who knows me know I love Beyonce. Sasha Fierce. Yonce. Bey. Whatever. Love her.


And while she's clearly talented and gorgeous and easy to love, I've always been more impressed with her work ethic.  ESPECIALLY in the past few years and since she's become a mother. She's one of those women who works hard, loves her career, and makes no apologies for it. I dig it.


I cannot describe the level of epic-ness from the show. Neither DK nor I had ever been to a concert of this magnitude (I mean, Beyonce? -- major).



The lights, the sound, the show overall was pure excellence.




And the energy...


...oh, my goodness, the ENERGY!


I felt like I was partying with 70,000 of my closest friends. 
We were all singing and dancing the whole show!



It. Was. So. Amazing.

Of course I took some video, too, because I wanted to remember as much as I could about the experience. Not sure I'll ever seen another artist as big and talented as these, two. (In some of the videos, you'll notice that majority of the picture is the jumbotron -- obviously because it made for a clearer picture. But Bey and Jay can be seen on the left side of the screen onstage.)

These videos aren't censored, so you may not want to watch this at work or with the babies around.










I didn't expect to enjoy Jay's performances as much as I did, but they were SO GOOD. He performed hits new and old -- many of the songs he's made that I actually love.








Believe it or not, "Single Ladies" is not one of my favorite Bey songs. I knew the performance would be amazing, though, so I got the last few seconds of it.


Before the show began, they had a big sign in the middle of the stage that read "THIS IS NOT REAL LIFE." Yes, we know, Jay and Bey, y'all are regular people.  Super talented, but yes, regular at the end of the day.

But toward the end of the show, they showed a sign that read "THIS IS REAL LIFE," and then showed tons of pics and home videos of their family. Jay and Bey have never been very open about their home life, but they gave us a very sweet peek into it. BEST PART OF THE SHOW.






As we looked on at the two and their sweet Blue Ivy, they lovingly stood back and held one another. You could see the pride they had in showing us pictures of their little girl.  Just like regular parents. And all this crap in the news about them splitting...WHO CARES? I love Jay and Bey, but my goodness, I don't give two flips if they're having marital issues. That's not my business nor anyone else's but theirs. And if they are, in fact, having marital issues, guess what: they're human. And just like all of us, their relationship isn't perfect. And if they are "putting on a show" for the public eye, that TOO is their business. Folks need to get a life. A hobby, or something. Because I can promise you neither Jay nor Bey give two flips about what we think.

Anyhoo, back to the adorable ending to the concert: Thank you, Mr. and Mrs. Carter, for showing us that you are human, and the things that make you happy are really the same things that make all of us happy: FAMILY and LOVE.

Best anniversary date ever.


We stayed in Atlanta that night, but had to get up early the next morning because I had to get back in town for a meeting. I took the picture above from the hotel room as the sun was just starting to peek out. So beautiful.

So yep, amazing anniversary! So glad to be married to a guy who respects my love for Beyonce -- ha! :-)


Saturday, August 23, 2014

Here Comes Fall (Plus Our Little Gymnast)

Hey, good people! I haven't popped in here since June, so of course I have all kinds of stuff to post. I have no clue HOW I made time to post every week at one point, but I'd really like to get back to that place. Because trying to gather pics and organize content for things that happened (what seems like) so long ago is kind of a pain. I'd love to get back to posting on a regular basis, so maybe I can work on that this fall. (But seriously, though, how did I have time for that before?)

We had a great rest-of-the-summer, and I've recapped it into several posts you can find below.  Good times!
And although we still technically have a month or so remaining of "summer," once school starts, I start calling it FALL. It's fall, y'all. And what does fall bring?  FOOTBALL. This is the first year DK hasn't coached football (since I MET him). I'm usually a single mom this time of year, so I'm not going to know how to act having a husband around.  DK is enjoying being able to come home like a regular person at the end of the workday, and I can't say I'm not enjoying it, too. Ha! It also means he can also relax a little more on the weekends and not have to get up and go to work on Sundays after a whole day of Bama football/tailgating. More than anything, though, and one of the main reasons he decided not to coach this year, is so that he can experience things like this:



M went to her first gymnastics class the other day.  DK and I had been talking about extracurriculars for her since she's now school-aged. DK is no fan of starting kids in certain activities too early for certain reasons. And I'm not a fan of kids being in too many things at once, so we decided that we'd see if M liked gymnastics. It's a sport that builds agility, balance, strength -- all transferrable skills for when/if she ventures out to other sports. Gymnastics is also a sport that she's least likely to get coached incorrectly. We took M to visit the gym first to see if she was interested, and she wanted to start immediately. We went back for our first class the very next day. 





I was so impressed with what they were doing with her the very first day.

(And yes, my pics are horrible because they're zoomed in phone pics.)






There were tons of girls in the gym, but you couldn't tell from the pics (which is a great thing). Lots of individualized attention. The coach told us she was impressed with M's first session -- she even asked us if she'd taken gymnastics before. (Yes, if you count silly handstands and shaky cartwheels in the living room -- ha!) DK said they tell everyone that the first time, so I guess we'll eventually see if has a knack for it - ha!

So that's what we'll be doing this fall. I may look into a Girl Scout troop as well now that M is old enough to join. I was a Girl Scout, and it was a memorable part of my childhood. I want that for M, too. 

As for me this fall, I'm trying something new, too. In addition to teaching my own students every day, I'm also a distance learning instructor to students in three different counties. I'd considered being an online instructor before, and finally applied last fall. Fast forward through the application process, phone interview, acceptance, and training (which I did over the summer), I now have my first class. I am so blessed to be doing what I love and connecting with even more students. 

So that's kind of what we're all be up to this fall. I'm looking forward to it all. If you want to know how we spent the rest of our summer, scroll back up and check out the other posts. I've blogged my fingers off today. Go read! :-)

Until next time.

G


Kindergarten!


We've! Started! Kindergarten! 

It's kinda surreal that my baby is in elementary school.  She was so excited about her first day, and was so glad to be there. 


She met new friends (named Lily and Riley). She said her favorite part of her first couple of days were lunch and playing with PlayDoh. She also remembered her lunch number, which I told her one time the night before school started, and she remembered. Such a big girl. 

Speaking of lunch, she's enjoying the school lunches...maybe a little too much. She eats all her bread, a little of her meat, and all of her fruit. Veggies?  Nope. Maybe I'm a bad parent for sending my Kindergartner to school with the ability to choose her own lunch - ha! We're going to try packed lunches soon. Maybe we'll save a little money, too. 


She was excited to be dropped off and was not clingy at all. 


I love this sweet little picture. She looks ready for the day!


My in-laws were there to help us get her day started because DK and I had to leave shortly after dropping her off to meet our own students for the first time. They stayed with M until her class left the cafeteria, and even spent a few minutes at the parents meet and greet for us. We're so grateful.


And my mother-in-law was thoughtful enough to get a picture with the three of us on M's first day of "big school." So glad because there probably wouldn't have been a picture of us that day otherwise.


So far this girl has been coming home with BIG SMILES on her face because she LOVES Kindergarten so much! Here's to a great school year! :-)

Beeeeeach!


We spent the last part of July at the beach with my in-laws again this year. FUN as always. This year's trip almost didn't happen because of how early DK and I had to be back at work (July 31!). Between DK and his sister, though, they made it happen. I was only able to stay three nights because I had to be at a conference a few days before going back to work. DK stayed four nights and rode back with a co-worker. M was able to stay the whole week with my in-laws. Lucky girl.








Silly Uncle T and his his lady, Z, hung out this year.


And so did these two -- my brother and his lady! They drove over from Biloxi, and I was able to finally meet her (though I felt like I knew her already). She's so sweet, and I love her for my brother!


And this little girls was so happy to see her Uncle C.




M played alllll day and got the prettiest, brownest tan!


The boys played, too. They were too far out for my comfort (remember THIS?), but whatever. 
I told DK at least I had a good life insurance policy on him. Ha!


The "adults" (you know, our parents and grandparent) played cards...inside...


...and outside. 


It never fails that we see a family or two taking their annual beach pics in cute, regular clothes. My family and I have never attempted 'em, and have to settle for these hit or miss snapshots of all of us covered in sunscreen. Welp. (And yes, I know my child is almost as long as I am, but I know very soon she will not let me hold her like this. I'm cherishing the days.)

My loves.

Silly girl. 

Z

N

MIL


W/my mom, grandma, and brother.

...and the newest addition to the fam. :-)


My MIL being silly with some Longhorns fans. :-)
My mother- and sister-in-law.

And their girl. 
This girl just really had a blast this year. 
Entertaining her grandparents and great-grandma.

I was so glad my grandma came. I don't see her very much (my own fault, for not making time to go home), so I appreciated the time with her.

Photobombed by my brother.




Jumping waves.


It was a fantastic trip! So grateful for time with family!

Stuff I Talk About

2011 30 day shred age update AKA animals anniversary appreciation aquarium around the house art museum Atlanta baby/toddler sleep issues baking bama football beach birthday birthday party blog awards blog buddies blogher books camping causes celebrations celebrities cheer days childhood children's museum children's theater Christmas christmas card class reunion college days concert conference cousins crafts dance date night dating days deals decluttering dentist Disney dk easter engagement facebook faith fall fun family family fun fashion father's day favorite blogs field trip field trips football friday flashback friends fun event funny pic Gaylord Opryland genealogy girl scouts goals god grad school grateful graves' disease Halloween health holidays Hollywood honeymoon instagram Iron Bowl key west kindermusik learning letter to my daughter library Los Angeles m me miami mlk day morgan is three museum Nashville national championship game natural hair nature new look new orleans New Years nyc out on the town parks parties phone fun pinterest play days at home playdate playground action pregnancy professional development Race for the Cure raleigh ramblings reading Recipes relay for life school program shows singing skating snow soccer social networking sorority spring break spring fun stress summer summer fun summer reading summer to do list teacher life technical difficulties terrible twos Thanksgiving the girls the park theme park thomas and friends three thyroid tragedy trains traveling tricycle trips twitter valentine's day video walk for autism water play we love being outside wedding wordless wednesday work wrapup Yo Gabba Gabba zoo
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