Monday, December 31, 2012

David & Laurie's wedding

 On our first morning in Troy we woke up to a little snow- such a rare treat for us!  

We spent the morning at Norma and Vann's and got to meet Sam.  He's such a happy and cute fellow!

Norma built him his first snowman and it looks like he likes it!

The groom to be!

 A visit with my dad

On our way to run some errands we went by the church where Steve and I got married.

The next day - a picture with my dad and his new hat he got on his birthday

David and Laurie's tacky Christmas sweater rehearsal dinner- it was so funny!

The wedding day:

proud parents

smoothing out the hair

At the reception

my nephew, Brian and his wife, Brittany and Sam

Three generations- my dad, my brother, his grandson

Grandaddy, Sam, and Henry

I didn't get any pictures of my sister, Norma and her husband at the wedding or reception or of the bride and groom.  There was just too much visiting going on.

It was such a beautiful wedding and reception!  Congratulations David and Laurie!

Christmas in Tennessee

Steve and I left Ormond Beach around 6:30 p.m. on Christmas Eve to spend the night at Allison and Brian's house in Lawrenceville, GA.  We were both so tired when we left and it was a long 7 hour drive.  The fog didn't help with our sleepiness, but it was very festive . . . then one foggy Christmas eve,  Santa came to say . . . 

It was strange being at Allison & Brian's without them or Toby there.  We didn't arrive until 1:30 a.m. so we slept in on Christmas morning.  We left around 11:30 a.m. for Tennessee.

It's funny how much more I appreciate Tennessee's beauty since being in L.A. for almost a year.  

Our first stop was at Kathy and Rick's house in Franklin.  They had all of their family over and it was so good to see them.  We also enjoyed some delicious left overs!

Meeting great-nephew Elliot for the first time!

Allen & Gillian, Matt & Amy, Jennifer & Matt

Rick fixing some dishwasher problems

                                                  Merry Christmas Peabody family!

Our next stop was 2 hours away in Jackson where my brother Karl and his wife, Martha live.  My niece, Ashley and her husband, Ryan were also there.  We got to meet their new baby, Henry!

They, too, offered to share their Christmas leftovers, but it had only been 2 hours since we had eaten, though Steve did have a piece of delicious Coconut cake!

                                                            Merry Christmas Warren Family!

By the time we arrived at Norma and Vann's house in Troy, Brian, Brittany and Sam had gone home, Mark had left for Alabama and David was with his fiancĂ©, Laurie.  We visited for a few hours (and Steve may have eaten some pound cake) before we left for our hotel with plans to return bright and early the next morning.  With their son's wedding in just 4 days away we were there to assist in any way.

Merry Christmas Kissell Family!

This Christmas was wonderful!  I can't remember the last time we spent Christmas in Tennessee.  Even though we missed being with Allison, Brian, John, Tiffany, Silas, Scott, Shelby, Natalie and Dan, - it was great being with my siblings.  

Steve went to Memphis two days after Christmas to spend time with some of his siblings.  He had a great time catching up with Rebecca and her family, David, and Mark.   Wished I could've gone along to visit too!

Christmas in Ormond Beach

Natalie and I arrived in Ormond Beach on Saturday, Dec. 22nd to join Steve in celebrating an early Christmas with John, Tiffany, and Silas.  We were enthusiastically welcomed by Silas who exclaimed how happy he was to see us!  It was so good to see him and hug his neck; it had been way too long since we had seen John, Tiff, and Silas.

On Sunday, Silas went to church with us and it was wonderful being back at our church and seeing our friends.   Afterwards Natalie's fiancĂ©, Dan, joined us at the house for lunch.  It had been way too long since we had seen Dan, too.  He had arrived in St. Augustine the day before from Norfolk, VA.

Late that afternoon, Silas opened his Christmas presents.

On Christmas Eve morning we all went out to eat at Cracker Barrel.  Later, Silas decorated some cookies that Natalie and Dan had made to take to Melissa's.

Most of the morning was spent building the rocket that Silas got for Christmas.  You can see the guys working on it in the background.  They got it built and I think it was a hit with Silas!

It was a short visit, but such a sweet one.  So very thankful for being able to celebrate Christmas with them all!  John, Tiff, and Silas left for Orlando at the same time Dan and Natalie left for St. Augustine.   It was sad to see them all go, but so grateful for our visit.   Steve and I left that evening and began our journey to Tennessee.

Christmas in Gainesville

I left L.A. on Dec 16th and flew to Orlando where Natalie picked me up.  For the next 8 days we were together- such a treat!  It was so much fun to be with her and in her home in Gainesville.  It was so festive with a Christmas tree, lights outside, and a swag on the door (I wish I had taken more pictures!).  It was finally starting to feel like Christmas.  Steve and I didn't do any decorating in L.A.  -all of our decorations are up in the attic at our house in FL and since we weren't going to be in California for the holidays so we decided not to decorate.

Natalie and I spent a lot of our time talking about her upcoming wedding.  We spent one day in St. Augustine and finalized a lot of details.  It's going to be beautiful!  This is where Natalie and some of her bridesmaids are staying the night before the wedding.

On Friday, Dec. 21st, Allison arrived in Gainesville.  Brian dropped her off and he continued on to his parents in Leesburg.   It was fun to fill Allison in on all the wedding decisions that had been made.

The next morning Allison, Natalie, and I left for Orlando to do a little shopping before going to Winter Park for Natalie to try on her wedding gown that had arrived.  Thanks Natalie for making me feel so at home in your cute house.  I loved our time together in Gainesville!  

A quick and light lunch at Panera before trying on the dress

The Collection- a shop full of beautiful gowns

Natalie looked beautiful in her gown!  After not seeing it for almost 7 months, I was relieved that she still loved it.  It was the first time Allison had seen it in person and she loved it, too.  Afterwards, we sat at a coffee shop and looked at pictures of Natalie in her wedding gown.

Brian and his parents met us in Winter Park to pick up Allison.  It was too short of a visit with Allison (and just minutes with Brian), but Natalie and I were so thankful that Allison was able to orchestrate her plans so she could be a part of viewing the dress.  Thanks Allison for making it happen!  We said our good-byes and then Natalie and I drove to Ormond Beach for the next leg of our Christmas!