Sunday, October 23, 2011


One of my favorite things to do with my girls is to take a "girls trip" up to New York City. We have gone together three or four times now and we always have a great time together. We all love NYC! Our favorite things to do include finding really good restaurants (of which there are millions to choose from!), shopping, and going to Broadway shows. But we also love the people watching, strolling through all the cute neighborhoods, and hanging out in Central Park. We pretty much love everything about it. So when we get a chance, NYC is always at the top of our "fun places to visit" list.

Laura and Lindy's fall break was last week, so we took a few days and had a long weekend in the city. Ashley couldn't go with us this year, unfortunately. That's what happens when you're a new mommy! :)

We saw War Horse on Broadway and it was amazing. It is coming out as a movie soon, so we are excited to see it. We ate at lots of good restaurants! A few of our favorites were Dos Cominos for Mexican, Two Little Red Hens for the best muffins in New York, and The Corner Shop Cafe on Broadway and Bleecker. We stayed in Tribeca this time and so we were close to all the SoHo shopping that we like. We had a lot of fun!

Here are a few pictures from our trip. They aren't really in any order, but I think you can get the idea of how much fun we had. :)

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Boone & Blowing Rock

I wish I could bottle up this gorgeous fall weather we are having this weekend. It almost makes up for the month of August (almost!) haha

Yesterday we went up to Boone and Blowing Rock to visit Laura and hang out. Just about every year since our kids were really little, we have gone up there around this time so it is kind of a tradition with our family. And now Laura goes to school up there, so we get to go visit her when we are there!

Ashley brought David with her this time so he got to join in the fun!

Unfortunately John had to do some landscaping work since this is their busiest time of the year, so he couldn't come. :(

When we got there, we met Laura and went to her apartment so Ashley could see it. Ashley has been so busy getting married and having babies that she hasn't had a chance to see where Laura and Lindy live! Laura has her apartment fixed up so cute. I love going in there because it reflects her personality so much!

Then we shopped around a little bit in Boone and walked around campus while we waited for Mark to get there.

Appalachian has a beautiful campus!

When Mark got to Boone, we all went to lunch at Our Daily Bread. It was so good. Boone is one of those towns that has very few "chain" type restaurants. Everything is local and that makes the food extra good in my opinion!

We always have to make a trip to the Mast General Store when we're in Boone. David doesn't appreciate it now, but one day this will be one of his favorite parts of coming to the mountains. It has huge barrels of every kind of candy you can think of and tons of old-fashioned toys that are tried and true.

I bought him a slingshot, (I mean, after all, his name IS David!) and we all had fun playing with it when we got to the lake! :)

They were also giving samples of hot apple cider so I bought some of their mulling spices. Yummm!!

When we left there, we headed to Bass Lake. We walked all the way around the lake (which really isn't far). Ashley carried David in her K'tan baby carrier so her back was starting to hurt after a while. That boy is a chunk!!

But it was so pretty and we got lots of good pictures.

It was back to Blowing Rock after our walk. Blowing Rock is such a quaint little town with the cutest shops and restaurants. I think everybody and their brother had the same idea we had to go up there this weekend, though, because I have NEVER seen it that crowded! We shopped and got free candy samples and drinks and watched the candle making and strolled around for a long time. Then we went to the park across the street and let David get down and play. He loved being able to crawl around in the grass and pick up leaves and be down for a while. He was so adorable! We all enjoyed just sitting out on the grass together and enjoying the day. Steve said he felt like we were in a Norman Rockwell painting because it is so "picturesque".

By then, it was getting late so we headed to one of our favorite places to eat... Woodland's Barbeque. It is delicious and not expensive. That's a winner for us! Barbeque, cole slaw, hushpuppies, onion rings, sweet tea....delish!

After dinner, we said goodbye to Mark and we took Laura back to her apartment and then headed back to Charlotte. It was such a fun day! I love spending time with my family! We always have the best time together.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

What I Love About October

October is here! This is one of my favorite months for lots of reasons. One of the best things about it is the weather. Today was a perfect example of one of those perfect fall days where the temperature is exactly right and you wish you could stay outside the whole day. (I did let my class play outside just a little longer than usual today just because it was too gorgeous to come back inside!)

October is also the month my hubby was born so that's a great thing, right? Today was his birthday and I am so thankful for him. We have fun together and just enjoy sharing life together. God has blessed me by giving me such a wonderful person to live my life with. (He also happens to have a twin sister, Susan, so I wanted to wish her a happy birthday, too!)

Anyway...we went to dinner at one of his favorite places tonight...Cajun Yard Dog. It's never a small gathering when our family gets together and we always have fun catching up. We love their fried catfish and cheese grits. And we got a big piece of their chocolate pecan pie for dessert and we all shared it.

It was Steve's birthday, but David was really the center of attention!

And Lindy and Mark were both home for fall break, so that was fun.

My parents joined us, too, but I didn't get their picture somehow!

Another thing that I love about October is our trips to the mountains. We go every year and this weekend we are headed up there to celebrate a little bit more with Laura and just to enjoy the leaves and the beauty!

And October is the month of fall breaks! Laura and Lindy are on theirs right now and next week the three of us are headed to New York City for a long girl's weekend. I can't wait!

One more thing I'm looking forward to this month is getting an iPhone. I've never had one, but I have an iTouch and Steve has an iPad and I know I am going to love it. I was sad to hear that Steve Jobs died this week. His creativity and vision and accomplishments were amazing. I will remember him while I'm on my new iPhone! :)

Hope you're having a good October!

Saturday, October 1, 2011


Having good friends is really important to me. I love looking back over my life and knowing that I am still good friends with some girls that I have known since kindergarten!

And I am always happy to hear from an old high school friend on Facebook or to see them at reunions or just around town. Every neighborhood I have lived in and every teaching job I have had has brought me some of my sweetest friendships and I am so thankful for that. But it takes time and effort to keep relationships going. Sometimes I get so caught up in life that I don't take the time to get together with my friends even though I love them and enjoy their company so much.

But recently I have been able to make more time to get together with girlfriends. Somehow it worked out this week that I had three days in a row of "girlfriend" fun. Thursday night I went to dinner with a friend I taught with last year. She was such a good friend to me when we were teaching together and I always have the best time talking with her. It was a beautiful night and we sat outside and seriously talked (over an absolutely delicious meal) for about three hours! I think good "girlfriend talk" is made so much better when there is some yummy food involved, don't you? What I love about her is that she keeps it real. She is genuine and tells it like it is and I appreciate that. She makes me laugh and she is smart and we see eye to eye on lots of things in life. She's just fun to be with.

Then last night I went to a friend's house for a "Ladies Night...Bring Your Favorite Thing". I sing in the choir at my church and all the choir ladies were invited to come and bring some idea or recipe or product that you loved. (Kind of like Oprah's Favorite Things!) And there was guacamole there, so that is a party to me! I got some great ideas from where to find the best cowboy boots and which lip gloss works best to where to find a good fitting pair of jeans and what face soap can make your skin glow! Plus I love those ladies and it was fun just hanging out and spending the whole night talking "girl talk".

I forgot to mention that I met three friends for Mexican food last week, too. I hadn't seen them in a while and they have the BEST stories to tell. We are all very different so that makes it fun. We literally stayed at that restaurant for almost three hours gabbing our heads off! keep the girlfriend fun going, today I gave a shower for one of the girls in my Sunday School class. She has also become one of my sweet friends even though she is way younger than me! I was so glad that I was able to help give her a shower because she is always doing so much for other people, so now it is her turn! She is having a little boy in November. She has waited a long time for this baby and I know she is going to be a wonderful mother.

So, this week I just feel very blessed that I have such good girlfriends. I think we all need them. They encourage you and inform you and relate to you and understand you. They are really a gift from God and I am thankful that He has blessed me with such sweet ladies in my life!