Monday, December 28, 2015

Christmas in Dixie

We had a festive week in Huntsville to celebrate Christmas with my side of the family.  We started off with a dinner date with Moma and Daddy at a new Huntsville spot, Taco Mama. 

Double date!

It was incredible!  I got the Alabama Redneck and Cheesy Beef and I can't wait to try more of their tacos. We had a great time together!

We continued our tradition of walking the Tinsel Trail in downtown Huntsville.  Companies around town adopt and decorate a tree and there are hundreds to enjoy.

This is our fourth year going and the third with our guys!  

Moma and Daddy went all out to make Christmas beautiful, meaningful and memorable.

We spent Monday getting ready for our annual Open House with some of our BSF friends.  Chris made his traditional cookies...that's one cute chef!

It was wonderful to have a house full of friends!

Of course, Moma hosted some party games that had us all in stitches!

We started a new tradition this year- Thrift Gifts!  We drew names in August and hunted thrift stores, antique malls, yard sales and pawn shops to find the perfect gift for whoever we chose.  We decided to open the thrift gifts before dinner on Christmas Eve.  Nick had Daddy's name and found him the cutest little sheriff at a yard sale.

Abby had Moma's name and found her the mini version of her tea glasses.

And in a typical twin twist, I had Abby's name and got her the mini versions of our Nanny's glasses!  I also found a pink one that is 100% ABBY!  I found my treasures as a couple of thrift shops.

Daddy found Chris an all-purpose tool at a pawn shop...

...and Chris found me a giant rooster at an antique mall.

Moma had Nick's name and found him a board game and a cuddly puppy that has a long back story!  We decided to make this a yearly tradition!

We always go out to Christmas Eve dinner and then go home to open gifts (except for the stockings Santa brings everyone on Christmas morning).  It's all just so fun and we love opening gifts one at a time and "oooo" and "ahhhh" at everything.  We all got so many great gifts but the only pic I took was of Chris with his new smoker from Moma and Daddy!  Ummm...YUM!

Nothing beats Christmas in Dixie!

Friday, December 18, 2015

Just in time!

Except for framing, my first cross-stitch is all done just in time for Christmas!

Can't wait to start my next project!

Monday, December 14, 2015

Out of Luck

We had the last minute opportunity to go the Jacksonville Jaguars vs. Indianapolis Colts game yesterday- my first NFL game!  Even though Chris is from Jacksonville, he's a huge Colts fan, but unfortunately their QB Andrew Luck was out...and so were the hopes of the Colts fans.  They got creamed but we still managed to have fun!

 Included with our tickets were parking and free food in the cabana area- fun times!

These screens are the largest in the NFL- very impressive!

Here's the view from the MetLife blimp...we were at the goal line for the Colts.

 The intro of the team was dramatic and exciting...even though I was trying to cheer for the Colts.

The fly-over...

The mascot bungeed off the very top of the stadium lights into the middle of the field.

You can sort of see him dangling in the middle...

The only drawback to the experience was the blistering sun...don't think I've ever had a sunburn at Christmastime!

So though Chris's Colts didn't have a good time...we sure did!

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

The Little White House

On our way back to Jacksonville, we were excited for a quick detour through Warm Springs, GA to visit Roosevelt's Little White House.

There's a lot of very interesting history behind FDR's relationship with Warm Springs but in a nutshell: he found out the warm springs actually helped his polio symptoms feel better.   He ended up building a little white house that he visited often.  He also created a resort for kids with polio.  His time in middle Georgia and with the rural people of the area influenced his New Deal, Social Security Act and his compassion towards those struggling in the Great Depression.

(Moma- Please note, the above paragraph counts as an entry in my field trip notebook!  Old homeschool habits die hard!)

FDR's leg braces weighed about 10 lbs a piece.

Here's a model of FDR's "Floating White House"

We were photo bombed!

This is the car that FDR drove around Warm Springs.  Since he didn't have use of his legs, he had special hand controls made.

This stage coach was used for local parades and outings. 

The property surrounding the house was so's our first look

The Little White House-  The house was very simple and actually reminded me of my great grandmother's home.

FDR was sitting in this chair in the living room having his portrait painted when he suffered from his fatal stroke. 

This is the view off the back porch...with the guard's shack ready to go!  The property and view reminded me of my grandparent's property in North Georgia. No wonder FDR loved it!

Here's the portrait he was sitting for when he died...still unfinished.

We love taking ourselves on field trips and discovering historical spots.  I'd highly recommend a detour on your next road trip!