December 31, 2011

Happy New Years!

New Year's eve is like every other night; there is no pause in the march of the universe, no breathless moment of silence among created things that the passage of another twelve months may be noted; and yet no man has quite the same thoughts this evening that come with the coming of darkness on other nights.  ~Hamilton Wright Mabie

December 16, 2011

Ba-Humbug the Christmas Blues Away...

Every time Christmas rolls around I get all giddy like a child opening presents on Christmas morning but then as the month lingers on I start to get the "Christmas Blues".

This time of year brings back a flood of memories of Christmas' past. I am reminded of Christmas with my Mammaw and this year it's doubley (is that a word??) hard because we just lost my Pappaw 3 short months ago. His death is still fresh on my mind and I have been having a hard enough time dealing with his loss without throwing the holidays into the mix.

I know I need to live in the "now" because these years with Brody & Victoria will fly by while I am living in the past. I am really trying hard to stop these emotions so I can enjoy the present but I am having a terrible time at shaking it all off.

It also saddens me because Christmas is one of my favorite times of the year. I look forward to the next Christmas as we are wrapping up the current one. I love seeing my children open their presents with great joy and excitement. I love suprising them with little things that they weren't expecting or something that wasn't on their list.

I know this Christmas will be one for the books but I just have to get through this "Blah-ness" so I can make it happen. I am hoping as Christmas gets a little closer (like it's not close enough -- 9 days!!!) these "blahs" will go away. Having my parents here for Christmas will make it more exciting; espicially for Brody. He loves his Nannee and Pappaw!

So, I am Ba-humbuging these blues away so I can enjoy Christmas Day!

December 12, 2011

13 Days and counting....

It's hard to believe that Christmas is only 13 days away. Every year it seems December flies by and we're stuck waiting another 365 for a magical holiday and time with our families. For me (my husband may not agree) it's not about the presents it's about the traditions, the togetherness, the feeling of joy in the house when December rolls around. Everyone is happy and joyful and the world seems like a brighter, nicer place...that's how I feel about it some may beg to differ.

This year we started a new tradition that hit the map by storm; ELF ON THE SHELF. We (Victoria and I) have had so fun much moving this little thing around the house. It seems ours is very mischievous and gets into a lot of trouble! He's always messing up something. Brody wakes up every morning and wants to know where the Elf if and when he sees him he tells the little guy that he wants "a McDonald's like Hudson has". It's too sweet. What he is really asking for is a McDonald's play set that is like a kitchen but this one is geared to boys. His little neighbor friend, Hudson, has one and he loves playing with it. He even told Santa that he wanted it so hopefully it will be under our tree on Christmas morning. Brody has had his share of good and bad days....mostly good so he has a great chance of getting what's on his tiny little list of things.

Talking about lists! It seems each year our tree gets fuller and fuller with presents underneath the tree. I will admit that it's mostly my fault because I want our children to have everything they ask for, if not more than they ask for (that's usually the case). I tell myself each year that I am not spending a ton of money on useless gadgets and clothes that may never be worn but something comes over me and I can't help shower presents underneath the tree. You would think I would stop because it takes a ton of time and energy to wrap all of them. One thing I do NOT do is use gift bags at Christmas. There is so much joy when it comes to unwrapping a box with a pretty bow on top. I go to the trouble of making my own bows to adorn each present and that seems to take ages but it's the little details that I feel make the present unique and special. I even go overboard and pick out wrapping paper that suits the person I am giving the gift to. That may be my OCD kicking in. I can't help it though, the present has to be *perfect*. My family probably has no idea that I am like this with Christmas presents. They probably think I just wrap it with any old paper and slap a bow on it and call it day :)

The house is finally decorated and it looks great. Mike & Victoria  did a lot of work on the outside lights and I handled the inside stuff like the mantle and just little Christmas nick knacks throughout the house. I did do the front door because I am anal about that. It has to look a certain way and if it doesn't come out like I have it pictured in my mind then I am not happy with it and we start all over again. Thankfully, Victoria helps me with it because I am entirely too short to do the decorating at the top of the door and she is tall enough to hang the garland for me. She knows where things go to and likes order as much as I do so we make a good team when it comes to the front porch decorations. However, we have had some issues with the timers working at night to turn the lights on and off so that has sent me spinning into a tizzy. The lights aren't coming on when they should and I have to manually turn them on every night. We even went a few days where they would trip the breaker box and we had to fix that problem. Our lights were cutting off within 5 minutes of plugging them in. It seems like we always run into problems with the lights every year.

Brody FINALLY had his picture taken with Santa Claus with crying and I was beside myself. He even talked to Santa and told him about the Elf on the Shelf and what he wanted for Christmas. It was a really sweet and most perfect memory that I will hold dear to my heart. It's amazing how fast he is growing up and believing in all of these magical things. He loves Christmas and that makes my heart happy. He keeps asking when Santa is coming and we have strict orders  that we can't have a fire in the fireplace the night he does decide to come. How precious. I am really going to soak up these next few years with him and Santa because before I know it he will no longer believe in the jolly old fellow.

So from my house to your house; Merry Christmas! I hope you enjoy the holidays as much as we do. And remember to start traditions that last for many years to come. Those will be the memories you have to look back on knowing you did the right thing.....Santa still lives in all of our hearts....we just have to make our children aware of his love.

December 7, 2011

Recipe Time! Chicken Casserole

It's always nice to have a warm casserole to serve for dinner during the cooler months as well as Holiday parties where you must carry a covered dish. My saving grace is a recipe my Mammaw used to make and then passed on to my Mom who then passed on the recipe to me. It's seriously delicious and so easy to make. I even make them for new neighbors or if someone is home bound; so here goes!

**This recipe was originally taken from the St. John's Luthern Church cookbook published in 1975**

Chicken Casserole Ingredients

1 package of Pepperidge Farm Stuffing
2 cups of Chicken (I cheat and buy the cooked chicken in the large can)
1 stick of margarine, melted
1 can of cream of chicken soup
1 can of cream of mushroom or cream of celery -- your personal choice

Preheat oven at 350 degrees.

Melt Margarine and mix with stuffing mix. Put 1/2 of stuffing mixture in a casserole dish, top with chicken. Blend both soups together with a 1/3 cup of water and mix well. Pour over chicken. Spread the other half of stuffing mix over top of casserole. Bake 20-25 minutes until bubbly and browned on top.

It's yummy!!!

Rain, Rain, Go Away

There is nothing I hate more than a rainy, dreary, cold day! I swear, they bring the "Blah's" and I can't shake them until the sun is back out and shining.

For some reason days like today memories come flooding back...good ones and bad ones. I usually start thinking about my grandparents which now are both deceased. I start thinking about all of the good times that I experienced in my childhood and in return it makes me sad. It makes me miss them even more knowing I can't pick up the phone to hear "Hello Sugarfoot". What I would do to hear that one last time. I guess I did hear it one last time but I didn't know that it would really be the *last* time. I'm not sure how long one grieves for their loved ones. I know I have a couple of days a week where I break down in tears when something hits a nerve of the past. It could be a smell, an elderly person or just something from the past that just reminds me of my grandfather. I also think the recent death of my Pappaw brought up memories of my Mammaw so I got a double whammy of sadness.

Maybe I will get to a point in my life where days like today will not bring up memories that make me sad. I hope so because it makes the day very long and painful.

December 5, 2011

Holiday Memories that Last

I think that Christmas (besides Halloween) is my most favorite time of year. It's like it's the one time your spirit is free to be a child least for me it is.

I get all wrapped up in buying the *perfect* tree that always tends to be entirely too big for our living room but somehow we manage to get it to fit. Usually it entails a little cursing and a fit or two but it does make itself into an upright position and the angel looks perfect when we are finished decorating the massive pine tree.

Another joy of the holiday season is BAKING! I love to bake/cook the common household staples around Christmas time. You get cookies, candy, dipped pretzels, cheese straws and so much more. It's like your kitchen becomes a bakery during Christmas! The smell of your house is a mixture of sugar and spice with a splash of pine tree....HEAVEN.

This year my parents will be here for the holidays and I am beside myself. It will be a wonderful holiday filled with so much love, laughter and days full of making memories. I always make a gingerbread house with Mom and the kids so I can't wait to do that this year. It always turns out so pretty and it's a wonderful bonding experience and something that Victoria will hopefully do with her children. Hopefully we are making traditions for her and Brody....that's what Christmas is all about right?!? Family traditions?

Growing up we had a few family traditions like going to the same Christmas tree lot every year to pick out the not so small tree. Coming home putting the tree up and decorating it while listening to Christmas music. We would always ride down Union Street and little side streets to look at the beautiful lights that lined both sides of the streets. We would always watch "It's a Charlie Brown Christmas" and several other holiday cartoons. I would always go to the Carolina Mall to get my picture taken with Santa Claus.  It was a magical time for me growing up. My parents made Christmas special even though I am sure they thought these small gestures didn't mean a whole lot to me (but they did).

I can only hope that I am making the holidays special for my children. I want them to look back, smile and get that warm fuzzy feeling inside like I do when I think of my childhood during the holidays.

December 4, 2011


Gesundheit!! We are barely into the winter season and my poor little Brody is already sick with a very gurgley, nasty cough. So it's off to the Doctor we go tomorrow.

I feel so bad when my little bugaboo is sick because he is so helpless. He can't blow his nose very well so he has snot all over his face which creeps up into his eyes where they matte shut. Ugh. It's so sad.

I was hoping we could get into December before anyone became ill in our household but with the kids in school I guess that is asking a lot. Victoria rarely gets sick but germs seem to swarm in preschool. I know he had to pick up some other kids nasty germs. Which brings me to my reason for my post...

Dear Parent,


I will be the first to admit that Brody goes to preschool when he has a slight cough or a little runny nose but he DOES NOT and WILL NOT go to preschool if he has a fever, a croupy cough or has been throwing up. I don't want to subject another kid and their family to my families ailments.

Okay, I feel better now to get that off my chest. So the moral of my post is keep your sick kids at home so they don't pass off their nasty cold to the other children in the class!

A peeved parent.

December 1, 2011

Happy Birthday to.....ME!

Today marks my Thirty-Three years on Earth. Honestly, I am not so sure what to make of it. I am blessed to have so much in such a short amount of time but at the same time its 33 YEARS!!!! I don't feel like I am old enough to be 33 and it seems like time kind of stopped when I was 21....or at least counting birthdays did.

So here I sit wondering what the next 33 years will hold....I would be 66 years old and hopefully, retired. I am sure I will have a couple of grandkids running around the place. I just don't know what to think of all of that yet so I will just stay in the "now" and enjoy my 33 years of life.

November 28, 2011

It was a Wine and Country Song type of day....

Today was one of those days that a drunken country song writer could have possibly made his biggest hit with. My life is not close to being called boring; it's borderline crazy at all times. You NEVER know what could happen in the Beemer household.

My day started off great (yay) with girl talk at Starbucks with Susie but quickly went down the drain afterwards. I was supposed to help tutor at my underprivileged school today but learned I had looked at the wrong time to do so and that upset me. I look forward to seeing my two little students once or twice a week and I was really ready to see them after the Thanksgiving break at school. So I was a bit bummed when that plan didn't work out.

Next plan was to order our Christmas cards online since I already had the picture in mind that I wanted to use. I pondered over Wal-Marts photo lab online for hours and finally picked the perfect card and I was all excited until it came to checking out and that particular store had issues with their one hour printing and it was down for the day. *Gasp and tears*. My next best option was the Wal-Mart in the ghetto of Albany but I was determined to get those darn cards out this week so I ordered from there. By the time I picked up Brody at daycare the cards *should* be done and I would be on my merry little way home in a matter of no time. WRONG!!!!!!!! I picked up Brody and headed over to the ghetto WM only to stand in line behind a bunch of layaway customers because that is where this particular WM decided to set up their  headquarters for layaway. I patiently waited for 10 minutes until I was rather irritated and I asked about my pictures that I just had received an email alert that they were ready.....ummmm, "No, Maam, not yet". WTF. Are you kidding me???  I received an alert saying they were ready but they were only halfway through according to the photo lap tech. You gotta be kidding me After not so patiently waiting they were done in about another 30 minutes. I was just happy to have the things that I paid and went on my way trying to not cuss the next person I came in contact with out.

Brody and I finally got home and what I was hoping would be a quiet two hours of blissful sleep on Brody's part turned into a banshee screaming for over an hour! He refused to take a nap and was a very unhappy camper about the whole nap scenario. After hearing him play, cry, plead and  beg for two hours I finally went up and got him so he would be quiet. I couldn't take the noise any longer. So the next best thing was a quiet Brody watching Dora the Explorer. Things could be worse, I Barney worse. I just had to watch the "Gooey Guiser" episode 20 times to make the little guy happy. You know, it's the small things on a toddlers part.

As dinner time closed in I thought things would get better but they only got worse. Brody was a tiny terror and Vic was telling me how articles out of her art box at school was stolen. NEWS FLASH: Jamie breaks into the bottle of wine at this point. I can NOT take any more. I failed to mention that I had already been through two sets of clothes today because our dog Lucy continues to break out of her yard and roams freely until caught. She weighs as much as I do so you can see how that can be a problem especially on a pouring, muddy type of day. I was DONE and wine sounded GOOD.

After all of this I was reminded that my Birthday is this Thursday. Not sure how I feel about it. I also can't remember if I am turning 32 or 33. You kind of stop counting after a while. I don't care about it really. I want to celebrate it....not my age but just the fact I made it through another blessed year. That's all one can ask for even if your day was full of screw ups like mine was today :)

November 22, 2011

Take Off

Today Mike's Aunt Annie is coming into town for the Thanksgiving holiday and as usual we scurry around to get the house looking spotless...and that hit me today....WHY do we do this?

We put so much pressure on ourselves to make the house look immaculate when in reality most people "live" in their houses's never spotless or white glove clean.

I don't know about other houses but ours is lived in. We have a teenager and a toddler living under this roof and it never stays "clean"; it stays picked up and tidy. That is all I can do. Yes, I am blessed with a housekeeper but honestly my house is a disaster 2 days after she visits.

Well, back to Annie, we are excited about her arrival. We have not seen her since Brody was a few months old. So it will be nice to see her this evening. Mike is beside himself he loves her to death and considers her a mother figure. She has been there for him a lot the past 20 years. He enjoys her company and she brings a piece of his "home" with her....and we all need that around the  holidays.

So with that being said, I better stop the blog so I can finish up some things around the house ;)

November 18, 2011

Holiday "Ho Hmmmm's"....

I am one who can't wait to get through summer so I can celebrate my 3 favorite holidays: Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas. I honestly LIVE for these three occasions. However, it hit me today while I was in a discussion  disagreement with my significant other that even though I love these occasions they bring me the most stress. I worry about the preparation of the meals, decor, and I am really overly OCD about it all. This Thanksgiving will be especially difficult for me because I am sharing my kitchen with Mike's Aunt who will be flying in from Colorado. Southern Thanksgiving's differ HUGELY from Thanksgivings out West. So we are kind of doing a South meets West dinner and I am so stressed out about it. Don't ask why, I know it will turn out perfectly as it always does but the stress of it all will be brewing inside me until I eat my last bite of turkey and dressing. I need to learn to let go and be thankful that I have someone to help me with the preparation of a large meal but I don't think it's in my DNA. So I may have to have a bit of wine to help me get through it all. It will be 5 o'clock somewhere in the Beemer Bistro on the 24th starting at 11 am when the cooking commences. Cheers!

Leslie's "Cream of Broccoli Soup", thanks to Aunt Judy

A couple of years ago we were hanging out with our Concord neighbors, Leslie and Richard and we experienced the most amazing Cream of Broccoli soup on a very cold evening. It was so good that I knew I had to get the recipe so I could repeat the recipe for my family during the cold winter months. It's so good that I want to share it with my Facebook/Blogger world friends! So here goes.

 You will need the following ingredients:

1 lb of Broccoli (I buy the 1 lb bag of frozen florets)
8 oz of Butter NOT margarine
1 cup of Flour
1 Qt of Chicken Stock
1 Qt of Half & Half
Salt, Pepper and Garlic powder

Now you are ready to make this tasty dish!

Steam the Broccoli in 1/2 cup of water until tender. Do not drain.
Melt butter in a pan over medium-low heat.
Add flour by the tablespoon to make a roux. Cook 2-4 minutes.
Add chicken stock while stirring with a whisk.
Bring to a boil and then turn heat to low.
Add Broccoli, Half & Half, salt, pepper and garlic powder (to your liking).
DO NOT BOIL.....stir often.

Once this is made in the pot on the stove I transferred the soup into a crockpot on low heat. That way it's available all day long!

This is a quick and easy soup....a must try!

November 15, 2011

All Systems: Slow Down

Wow, where has this year gone?!?! I feel like time has flown by and now the holidays are fastly approaching us! Next week is Thanksgiving.....eeeeekkk.

This is really a random post because our life has been a whirlwind the past couple of months. I am honestly ready for things to slow down so I can enjoy the holidays and not feel so rushed. However, I don't think that is going to happen.

We started out the month attending my Dad's annual Hospice Charity concert and as usual it was a success and fun was had by all that attended. The music played and the wine poured freely. They raised money for a great cause and people were already signing up for next years even tickets. Can't go wrong with that. I am so proud of my Dad and his band for doing this. Hospice is such an amazing organization and it's something that you can fully appreciate until your family has to use their services. We have had to use them twice and each time I walked away with a new found respect for the nurses and staff that work within the organization. They truly are miracle workers.

We cleaned out Pappaw's house while we were there for the concert and rented a truck to bring back a few items that were left for me. My grandmothers dining room set, a bedroom set and some other miscellaneous things. All reeked of cigarette smoke so we spent most of Saturday bathing the furniture (and ourselves) in Murphy's Oil and Liquid Gold. I smelled like cleaning supplies for two days. We already have the dining room set in  the house and every time I walk in there I smell my Mammaw & Pappaw's "house". It's kind of weird but comforting feeling. I know my Mammaw would be happy that her set will still be used for holiday dinners. I am actually excited about using it this Thanksgiving and Christmas. I had to get the chairs recovered because the fabric was old and smelly so those cushions will be done today and I am looking forward to seeing what they look like when I pick them up :)

This past weekend we went and saw our neighbors children compete in their YMCA soccer tournament. We have the best neighbors and we try to support them and their children. It was a perfect fall day and they did a great job. They won their first game but lost and fell out of the tournament during the second game. They played hard and we enjoyed watching them since we are a soccer family....Vic's soccer conditioning as a FRESHMAN will start in a few short weeks. Say what?!?!??? My kids are growing up entirely too fast....TIME SLOW DOWN, PLEASE!

I have been spending the past few Mondays at Morningside Elementary School tutoring children that come from lower class homes that do not get the support they need at home. Either they come from a broken home, their parents are not able to help them or far worse; their parents aren't around. I have truly enjoyed my Monday mornings with my two little boys Juaneye and Jordan. They light up when they see me walk into the classroom and that makes my day. I was able to volunteer through our church. It's a great mentoring project that helps our community and that is what First United Methodist Church is all about; giving back to the community.

I am SUPER excited about Thursday because I will be attending the Stewart & James holiday show. Kristen and Arre Fuller always have amazing frames and all are unique and one of a kind. They are a little pricey but you know you are getting a one of a kind reclaimed wooden frame. I have several around the house and I always love to add more to my "collection". It's a nice night to get out and have girl time with wine and cheese. It's an event I look forward to every fall.

Well, I will wrap it for now because I have been in my PJ's too long! It's time to get dressed and try to get some things done today!! I do have another recipe to add so be looking for that one to be added to my blog later in the week.

November 10, 2011

Rosie's O-Mazing Pot Roast (Have to Share)

When my Pappaw passed away we were given loads of food from friends and family and there was one meal that my Dad and I could not get enough of....Rosie Culbreth's Pot Roast. It was the closest thing that I have eaten that compared to my Mammaw's Pot Roast so you know I *had* to have the recipe to cook for my family back in Georgia. My husband is a Pot Roast connoisseur so I will be anxious to see what he says about our meal tonight!!! So on to the recipe....make sure you have a crockpot (Yay, that makes this recipe even better -- easy cooking and easy clean up!!!).

(I used a 2.5lb Chuck Roast)

Season meat with Salt and Pepper and brown Roast on all sides with 2 tablespoons of Olive Oil on High Heat. Put Roast in Crockpot with Lipton Onion Soup (just the packet; no liquid). Add Worcestershire Sauce until the bottom of the Crock pot is covered. Cook on High for 6 hours. Peel 6-8 small/medium potatoes and place under roast. Add a bag of small baby carrots on top along with another packet of Lipton Onion Soup. Add enough water to cover the entire Roast. (I may try beef stock but her recipe called for water). After the ingredients are added cook for another 2 hour; voila' your meal is done!!

Thanks Rosie for the great recipe!! This is something that I will continue to cook for our family.

Happy 236th Birthday Marines

Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they made a difference in the world. But, the Marines don't have that problem.
Ronald Reagan, President of the United States; 1985

Marines I see as two breeds, Rottweilers or Dobermans, because Marines come in two varieties, big and mean, or skinny and mean. They're aggressive on the attack and tenacious on defense. They've got really short hair and they always go for the throat.
RAdm. "Jay" R. Stark, USN; 10 November 1995

The wonderful love of a beautiful maid,
The love of a staunch true man,
The love of a baby, unafraid,
Have existed since time began.

But the greatest of loves, The quintessence of loves.
even greater than that of a mother,
Is the tender, passionate, infinite love,
of one drunken Marine for another.
"Semper Fidelis"

General Louis H. Wilson
Commandant of the Marine Corps
Toast given at 203rd Marine Corps Birthday Ball
Camp Lejueune, N.C. 1978

November 3, 2011

What's so special about a number?

I have asked myself quiet frequently what is so important about a telephone number? I mean it's just a number, right? The more I thought about it the sadder I became because the number I had on my mind was 782-6320. That set of  numbers I have dialed a million times but in a matter of one day, I no longer had a reason to call because my "reason" no longer resided at that number. Heartbreaking. I can remember calling that number as a little girl excited to ask my Mammaw & Pappaw if I could spend the night or if they could come get me so I could come play. I would call them with exciting news from school like good report cards or receiving special awards.

As I got older the questions turned into what time do I need to be there for lunch or dinner. I ate at my grandparents house every day for lunch once I went to college and Sunday dinners were a did not miss those.

Once I moved out on my own the calls were to confirm if I was coming over for lunch on my lunch break at work. Mammaw always cooked for me if I was coming and I was a permanent fixture at their dinner table Monday - Friday until my Mammaw became sick with Leukemia.

As I got older the calls became less frequent but I did do my best to call and check in on my grandparents on a weekly basis. I called to check on my Mammaw and her illness. I called to let them know what was going on in my busy chaotic world of racing. They were so proud of that. Their "darling" was involved in a sport that shutdown the house on Sunday's after dinner.  

But it still brings me back to the fact the feeling I feel knowing I will no longer dial that number. Over 30 years of dialing it and as of 2 weeks ago the number has been disconnected and no longer in service. Honestly, that is how I feel.....disconnected.

I will no longer hear my Pappaw's voice on the other end asking how "His Boy" (Brody) is doing and how "Sugarfoot" (myself) was getting along. I will no longer hear how I am missed or when am I coming to visit again. I will no longer say "Goodbye Pappaw, I love you" and I will never ever hear " I love you too, Sugarfoot".

I guess the moral of this tiny blurb of a blog is don't take the smallest things for granted because one day they may not seem so small.

November 2, 2011

I'm Thankful...

Last year two new traditions were started in the Beemer house thanks to ideas from a few of my Facebook friends. The first tradition I started was each day in November my status update will read something I am thankful about. We all spend so much time griping or blabbing about nothing that it's nice to take 30 days out of a month and think about something we are truly grateful and thankful for. Halfway through you really have to start to think about them because they don't come rolling off your fingertips as fast as they did in the beginning. That to me is sad, but I am guilty.

The second "new" tradition we have is our "Thankful Tree". I go out in the woods pick up a few long branches and stick them in a large vase full of seed (so they will stand) and place it on our front porch with all the fall decor. Every day each family member fills out what they are grateful for on a leaf made out of construction paper; that leaf is then placed on the tree with ribbon. Sometimes I have to push a few family members to add theirs but they do and at the end of November we have a full and beautiful tree. When November is over I take the leaves off and place them in a Ziploc bag and save them to look back on. I have already went through last years and a few warmed my heart, made me smile and chuckle. Making memories....that's what this stay-at-home Momma likes to do.

November 1, 2011

The Princess Fairy and The Little Dragon

For Halloween this year I found the cutest costume at a consignment sale I went to last month. Brody is all about Dinosaurs and Dragons and I was lucky enough to find him a very nice and pricey Dragon costume for only $10! Great find if you ask me (consignment sales are the best--they rock).

Brody was beside himself when I told him what I bought for him and I have had to hide it in my closet for the past month so he wouldn't play with it! I am so glad Halloween is over now so he can have it to play with because it really is too cute to not use.

We did trick-or-treating a little early this year because he is so small and can't "hang" for very long. We hit about 7 houses and he was pooped and I was pooped from carrying him to the last few homes. He was happy with his loot so we came home and handed out candy to the trick-or-treaters. All in all it was a very good Halloween for the Beemer bunch!

Redder Regalement

We were lucky in the neighbor department recently when our old nerighbors retired and headed further south and sold their home to a family of 5....well, nine if you count their animals. The Redder family is a fun loving bunch that we enjoy hanging out with when we can; which is often because....well...they are right next door! They have 3 precious boys and the youngest is Brody's age so he has a partner in crime these days. The other two boys are sweet and a joy to be around. You have Jackson who is the creative artistic one and you have Nolan who is a little dare devil. Hudson the youngest is Brody's bestest "freend".

We had the Redder's over on Sunday to carve our pumpkins for Halloween so here are some pictures of our afternoon. We ended up having some pretty cool pumpkins but I may be a little partial : )

October 31, 2011

Homecoming 2011

Mike's worst nightmare came true this past Saturday.....Victoria was old enough to attend her FIRST homecoming dance in High School. I think he had heart palpitations all evening and probably gave himself a couple of ulcers in the meantime.

Victoria and I went dress shopping several weeks ago and for the first time no one walked out in tears - score!

I helped her pick out the cutest little Jessica McClintock cocktail dress. She wasn't too keen on it while it hung on the hanger but once I begged her to put it on she didn't want to take it off. She looked amazing in it. I was also secretly happy that she chose the dress because I wore Jessica McClintock dresses for all of my formal occasions in high school. Her designs are always classy and sophisticated; you can't go wrong with that.

Victoria attended the dance with a group of friends and her "date" was a young man named Spencer who is a really sweet Southern boy. He got the "okay" from Mike and I was charmed with his manners. I think they had a good time and secretly if she had to choose a boyfriend he ranks #1 on my list. He is one of the schools mascots and his step-father is the Principle of the 9th grade Academy. Vic seems to have surrounded herself around a really good group of kids and that is always a nice feeling for a parent You are always going to worry about who your child hangs out with but this group seems to be grounded and most are involved in honor classes, sports and academic clubs. They come from good families who stay involved with their children's life. That is very important these days. I admire the parents that know what their child is doing and where and who they are hanging out with. It's hard to keep up with your teenager so when the parents know their child's "business" it shows me that they care and are on top of their children's every move. Some may call it overbearing but I don't...I call it being responsible.

Of course, Brody had to have a picture with his Sissy all dressed up. Too bad he couldn't have been her date....or at least old enough to keep his eye on her during the dance ;)


October 26, 2011

Happy Birthday Pappaw!

Today my Pappaw would have turned 80 years old. I am so lucky to have had him in my life for the past 32 years. I was his "Darling" and in his eyes I hung the moon. I will always remember our trips to Kure Beach, taking Sunday drives listening to CCR but most importantly I will remember how much he loved me. I am blessed that he was able to spend the past 3 years with Brody teaching him all the "old tricks" he taught me...."how the horsey eats the corn" , "I got your nose",  and "singing "Picking up Paw Paws".

Happy Birthday, Pappaw. You are loved and missed.

October 20, 2011

J. Lancaster Photography for my Concord peeps

Several weeks ago before things became a major roller coaster ride for my family I had a very dear friend of mine take a few pictures of Brody and I on her parents land. It's lovely when you can use God's background as a backdrop for your photographs! We had a pond, weeping willow and a red rocking chair; sounds lovely to me.

My friend Jennifer Lancaster owns J. Lancaster Photography and she does an excellent job with all sorts of occasions, people and pets. I highly recommend her and I am not just saying that because I have to...she really is talented and has a great eye.

Here are a few of my favorite pictures from my mini session with her: