Monday, September 29, 2008

A Quick Trip to K'ville

We took a quick trip over to Knoxville to visit Keith's brother and his family. We ate at a great Japanese steakhouse (a great way to keep kids occupied!) and then on Saturday went downtown to visit the park where the 1982 (I think?) World's Fair was held. It was a perfect day weather-wise...very cool and overcast and not another soul in sight. We had a really nice time!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Take Me Home, Country Roads

It's perfect. Absolutely perfect, this new place that we live. I have always dreamed of living "in the country" where fields encased with long horse fences stretched as far as the eye could see and trees stood tall like islands in the vast openness. But, being the somewhat "city girl" that I am, I never wanted to give up being close to my beloved Wal-Mart or good restaurants to go for true country living.

Well I've found the best of both worlds.

We are maybe a mile from the interstate yet you'd never know it. In 10 minutes, I can drive to one of the largest malls in Nashville, yet on my walk this morning, I did not see a single person...only the aforementioned scenery with lots of cows and horses. It was glorious.  With my iPod cranked up as high as it could go, I walked open roads and viewed beautiful sunrise vistas and sang out loud to my heart's content. To those who know me well, this is about as close to heaven as it gets for me.

Take me home country roads...or take me to the mall. Either way, I'm loving our new place.

Oh What a Night

Oh my. I haven't been that into a football game since I don't know when. We screeched in from our trip to Knoxville just in time for kick-off, hunkered down in the living room and tuned in. This was a biggie...our eighth-ranked Crimson Tide taking on number 3 Georgia "Between the Hedges" (in Athens). The game ensued. And then we scored. And scored again...and again...and again until it was an astounding 31-0 at halftime. It was unreal.  

In the third quarter we looked like we had fallen asleep in the locker room under the veil of a comfortable lead but we woke up and closed it out 41-30 for the win. Between jumping off the couch (much to my dismay considering the carefully-folded laundry stacks that flew with me) to texting my bro-in-law with updates every 9 seconds or so, it was quite an evening.

I'm so proud of this team. And no, I'm not uttering words like SEC Championship, National Championship or anything of the like...but for one night, on my couch in Franklin, Tennessee surrounded by boxes of unpacked possessions and strown laundry, I had a heck of a good time.

Friday, September 26, 2008

The Prettiest Yet...

OK, I will go ahead and apologize that this has turned into Katie's Sunrise Chronicles...but, folks, it is one of my favorite times of day and I can't help but share! I will probably try to post one each day just to have them for myself...hopefully you'll enjoy them, too.

This morning was particularly breathtaking.

(click image to enlarge)

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Football Fun

Our friend Chris gets a kick out of D's passion for football. 
I'm not sure who wears who out first...
D. has a seemingly ENDLESS amount of energy!

VICTORY!  Celebrating D's catch of a long pass!

I love this shot because the blurriness captures D perfectly. 
Always on the go!

This Morning ~ Sep. 25, 2008

Sun beams take a brief rest on patches of morning fog

Rays of sun slanting through the trees

"My Tree" - I loved how the fog was creeping up behind it this morning

Pup, Contented

(click on any image to enlarge)

Our golden retriever Cassie has certainly taken to her new home. With 2 and a half acres to roam and freedom to come and go as she pleases, this is one happy puppy dog.

What a life.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Morning Ritual

The early morning stillness
Allows me to join in
To soak in the solitude
Of a day still in the making

It is in this quiet
This peaceful nothingness
I am made new

It is my time
My daily renewal
My much anticipated
Morning ritual

The moon hangs high over the early morning horizon...

The rosy glow...a promise of things to come...

You will see more of this tree in the distance.
To me, it is as if it is framed by the other trees just for my viewing.
I love this tree.

A new day begins...

Monday, September 22, 2008

On Any Given Day

On any given day
I am in love with how
Your sweet innocence
With a fiery temper
And unending curiosity

On any given day
I welcome the sound
Of your good morning gurgles
And your sigh of contentment
As I lift you into my arms
As the first rays of light
Slant through the window

On any given day
I am all at once frustrated
But grateful that you cry
When I turn to walk away
This means I am "your person"
I cherish that role

On any given day
You are an answer to prayer
My second son
My youngest child
And I could not love you more.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Moving Day

Things have been pretty quiet on here (on the blog--certainly not in my house!) this week as we get ready to (once again) pack up all our belongings and move into a new home. The difference is...we will be STAYING FOR A LONG TIME. Mark my words. Read my lips. And, of course, reference this post when I call to tell you Keith has been transferred again. Perish the thought!

Moving has to be one of the most stressful events in your life. To think about packing all of our things up, loading it into a vehicle, driving it 5 short minutes from here and unloading it and setting it all back up. Ugh.

BUT-- the bright side (gotta look for that, don't we?) is that it is a chance to organize, clean out and start afresh in a new place, right? Right. Right-o. I will keep telling myself that. Maybe that will help me not have a breakdown this weekend while a 9-month old walks around pulling up on fragile boxes and yanking the leaves off of plants and a 6-year old whines because, well because he can. All this and a conference coming up in 3+ weeks. Oh my good gracious.

Have I mentioned I want a boring life? REALLY. I do. It just never seems to work out that way.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

A Beautiful Day, part 2

And by the way...any pic with me in it was taken by Mr. D... I think he did a great job! Maybe he'll love photography as much as his Mommy does!

A Beautiful Day

We spent the better part of our day at our new home. I took some pictures of the area including some shots of the boys playing in an adjacent lot (that just so happens to have a tire swing). It was a beautiful day with clouds dancing in a wide open blue sky and a strong breeze blowing. It was a lazy, hazy day usually reserved for the depths of summertime... but we sure had a good time.  (now Daddy might argue with the lazy part since he was mowing 2.5 acres while we did this little photo shoot!

 Click on any of the images to enlarge...

at the base of our driveway

the tire swing

a favorite picture of D.

Baby J. was oh-so-content

The Evening

White lightbulbs dangled
Criscrossing above our heads
Sound checks...check one two, one two
Practice strums and idle chatter

We sat side by side
At a table for two
A comfortable silence
Taking it all in

A leisurely dinner
Followed by dessert and coffee
I notice our knees brushing
An awareness usually reserved
For first dates

The show begins
And familiar harmonies
Fill the air
My shoulders relax
My worries cease

I am floating on the melodies
I am young
I am free
I am...happy.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Plugging Away...

Lost 6.2 pounds at weigh-in today! Of course, that was for a 2-week period but I was still pretty surprised! Especially considering all the temptation in Baltimore last week. Ay yay yay.......


If you have read my blog for a while, you know the adoration I have for all things autumn. The steamy, sultry days of summer are slowing fading as a teaser of cool air occasionally caresses my cheek...if only to say "I will be there soon."

The pots of mums are on full display at all the curbside stands and my dreams of warm apple cider and the crackle of a fire have already begun. I yearn for this season and all the comfort that it brings. The changing leaves, the home-baked smells, the crisp air, colors changing from the summery turquoises and peaches to bold rust, plum and earthy brown hues...all of it.

I am ready.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

In the Land Where a Dropped Pacifier Means Life or Death

Oh how we learn. But, we are gluttons for punishment aren't we? According to the Daddy person (not assigning blame...he's just more [ahem] OPTIMISTIC than I am) Baby J. would be FINE, JUST FINE at his first Alabama football game. Because, and I quote, "I will HOLD HIM. He'll be FINE, JUST FINE."

Famous last words, my friend.

OK, so I exaggerate but only a little. We did want our football friends to meet the little guy and he did sleep through the first half of the game stretched out across my lap like a limp, wet dish towel. But then, as soon as the gloriousness of sleep ended. Just about the time the Million Dollar band piped up with what I think may have been a tribute to Queen or Bohemian Rhapsody or something.

I then spent the entire third and fourth quarter with my youngest down on the sidewalk that separates the stands from the field. It wasn't all bad. In fact, I gained an entirely different new appreciation for people watching at my post in front of section HH and plenty of folks stopped to coo at my handsome lil' guy.

Bama did win their game and we were back on the road headed to Nashville--firm in the knowledge (at least I am!) that Baby J. has seen his last football game for oh, I'd say the next 5 years. :) But, of course, I did catch some pretty cute pictures of the boyz at the ballgame.


Thursday, September 04, 2008

A Bloggy Real Life!

Oh what fun. Meeting one of my favorite bloggy peoples in the In person. Face to face. How cool was it to hug the neck of Anna of the wonderful blog Sincerely Anna...and the utterly adorable Max and Minnie! I warned her that I was going to eat. them. up. And people, let me assure you that is exactly what I did.

Seeing Anna for the first time was surreal. I read her blog every day and feel as if I know their family inside out. If I could only read 5 blogs a day while stranded on a deserted island...hers would be one of them. She is just as sweet and beautiful in person as she comes across on her site and is such a good Mommy to those sweet kiddos.

We took the water taxi across the Inner Harbor (quite a treat for Max) and ate lunch at the Cheesecake Factory. I had to rush back to get a presenter set-up for the meeting but then Max got quite a thrill from seeing the boats from "Miss Katie's" room.

Here are some pics from our wonderful visit. Hopefully they'll be stopping through Nashville around Christmas and staying with us for a night. That would be such a treat!

Thank you Anna for driving up to Baltimore and for spending a delightful few hours with me. You are more wonderful in person than I could have imagined!

Monday, September 01, 2008

A Breath of Fresh Air

Yes, call me a sap but the scene below really tugged at my heartstrings during the Alabama vs. Clemson game Saturday evening. 

You see, the man on the left had two tickets for the seats directly in front of us and two up in the very highest "nose bleed" section of the Georgia Dome. His boys-- ages 12, 8 and 5-- were not old enough to be on their own and so he was in a quandry. He left the older two holding the seats directly in front of us while he went to see if he could offer those seats to someone up top so that he and his boys could all be together.

While he was gone, his two older children were as mature, gracious and well-mannered as two children can be. "Yes, ma'am" flew off their tongue quicker than melted butter as they sat patiently awaiting their father's return. When he came back to fetch the two older boys, the family to the right gave them the two seats they had purchased for their own kids (ages 2 and 4) at a whopping $50 a piece. They said they would just hold their sons in their laps so that the gentleman and his boys could all sit together.

What's so touching about this story besides a random act of courtesy and unselfishness?  I guess it just impressed the heck out of me that the family that owned those seats would do something so nice for someone they didn't know. And the unbelievably good manners of the kids on the left blew me away. Also, the tenderness for which both of these men cared for their children...priceless.

Call me hormonal. Maybe I missed my kids a bunch and the sight of these two families enjoying time together warmed my heart. It's just so rare to witness true selflessness these days ...true hospitality and graciousness and, well, KINDNESS.

It was a welcome breath of fresh air.

Plus, we won the game.  It was a great night.