Friday, November 30, 2012

Time to see the Animals

During our wedding weekend in Birmingham, we unexpectedly ended up with a free half day, so we voted as a family- and went to the zoo! It was a bit nostalgic for me- the last time I remember being at that zoo was a hot September day, right before we moved, on one last outing with the Phelps. The boys were both in strollers, the little girls not even yet a thought, and all Georgia wanted to see was a cow- which we never found!
This trip was great- the weather was beautiful and cool, and all three of our little Hippos enjoyed running around and seeing the animals. The zoo had done some new things since the last time we were there, which was added fun for us.

We stopped to watch the baby elephant getting fed, and found out this little big guy was from Tampa too! He's on loan from Lowry Park zoo in Tampa- just visiting in Birmingham for a bit!

Lincoln wanted to feed the giraffe.. Georgia wouldn't even get near it! She had a traumatic experience earlier in life where a giraffe tried to bite her little head off! I guess she hasn't forgiven and forgotten yet...

The Lions kept a watchful eye on us as we came by... 
The Tiger was snoozin, of course. Seems a lot of Tigers have been off their game this Fall!
Lincoln most wanted to see the Alligator, which he kept calling a Crocodile...
Georgia most wanted to see the flamingos- because they're PINK of course!!
Georgia's growing into a beautiful giraffe! See past Georgia the Giraffe faces here (2008) and here (2009)

Auburn Pitstop, Fall 2012

As has become our custom, we stopped for breakfast in Auburn on our drive up to Birmingham for Heather and Jonathan's wedding. The kids expect the stop now, and what better place to stretch our legs, refuel, and find any Auburn gear we may be lacking!
Georgia especially loved getting to experience a taste of Fall, with all the leaves turning colors and all over the ground. She's truly our little botanist. She used the majority of their 45 min run-around time gathering the leaves from an area of Samford Lawn, determined to get a big enough leaf pile to jump in! And then she was generous enough to share that sweet little pile with her brother!
Of course I tried to get the kid group shot in front of Samford Hall... you'll see how that turned out... ;)

The Toomer's Corner trees were looking very sad. All the branches had been cut back to nubs. We were there just a few weeks before the trees caught on fire, after being rolled with toilet paper for one of our only wins this season. So, so sad...

Monday, November 19, 2012

Heather and Jonathan's Wedding

On a recent beautiful fall day, November 10th, 2012, Larry's sister Heather and long-time beau Jonathan were joined in holy matrimony. All five of us proudly stood beside them with the rest of the bridal party, as they said their vows with the background of the golden leaves reflecting on a shimmering pond, in the beautiful afternoon light. Family and friends gathered near to celebrate this special moment, and celebrate this special couple. We love them very much and pray a lifetime of love and happiness for them!

And now on to the pictures!! :)
Of course I wish I'd taken about 1000 more pictures than I did, but I was trying to keep three kids clean and out of the pond, keep myself clean and out of the pond, - daddy was on his own keeping clean and out of the pond! Oh yea- and I had NO voice. I could barely speak in a whisper! I had completely lost my voice the night before due to a sinus infection and laryngitis. So- I was trying to keep everyone clean and out of the pond with sign language, arm waving, and "mommy eyes"- you know, the ones that cut right thru you when you're doing something wrong, and can see out the back of mommy's head. Thankfully, I had lots of help and a husband that kept me on a constant cough drop regimen.
 Everyone looked so beautiful! And handsome! Us bridesmaid's wore neutral colored dresses of our choosing, and the guys picked their own bow tie/ suspender/ vest combo. It all looked amazing against the fall leaves and bright wildflowers and sunflowers, and was a fitting rustic/ vintage type look for the country wedding.

 I always love the details in a wedding, and I loved the "look" Heather created with the bright flowers, mason-jar candles wrapped in twine, sweet love birds gracing the tables, and fresh-cut log coasters. And an antique desk was the perfect touch as the welcome and sign-in table.

The ceremony took place at the end of the T-shaped dock, with these gorgeous flowers running up each side. The family and bridal party were on the dock, and the rest of the guests gathered on the banks of the pond. And it seemed that everyone cried!! Happy tears, for sure, but man- I could have sold tissues for a premium price from behind my bouquet! ;) The kicker for the tears was when Jonathan surprised Heather with her wedding band, which she still thought had been delayed in New York because of Superstorm Sandy, but Jonathan found the same ring locally to surprise her. And que the waterworks!! :)

Didn't my girls look beautiful!?! I love them- little golden girls. I took this picture right before I realized these benches on the dock were completely filthy and now both girls and Lincoln have brown dirt marks all down the back of them!! Ahh!! So much for staying clean- at least I kept them out of the pond.
They did a great job for having such a long, busy, nap-free day. Georgia is an expert flower girl by now and has a new flower girl dress if you need to book her for your event. Rosemary hung in there all day, thanks to lots of help, and we ended up just carrying her down the "aisle" in Larry's arms, then handing her off the Joseph for the ceremony, where she sat happily eating Apple Jacks while Aunt Heather and Uncle Jon got married!

Lincoln took this picture- nice job, buddy!

Not this one- Uncle T took this one. Nice job, Uncle T! ;)

The family all looked great and enjoyed spending this special day together!

Jonathan (pictured looking quite spiffy above) got the guys in the bridal party these great hats- are they called bowlers? No- that doesn't sound right... newsboy caps? Linc looked like a little newsboy in his! Larry had him going around saying "Papers! Papers for five cents! Got your papers!" So funny! But so handsome too! They wore them for the rest of the day and they were the perfect touch.

Joseph was a God-send! He was home for the wedding from his first semester at University of North AL. If you remember, Rosemary latched onto him (and only him!) when we were up here for 4th of July, so we asked if he would help keep an eye on the little tornado (that's what we call her!) on wedding day. He was great! She still loved going to him, though not only to him this time, and the two spent most of the day together. So great for us- and they both loved it too!

Georgia loved getting to see aunt Jaclyn again too! They practiced curtsies together- to bow to the Princess Bride of course! :)

"The Farm", as this place is known as- though there are no animals, just woods, a pond and a skate park- also has an amazing kid fort that looks like a castle. Our kids loved it!! We made them wait till after the ceremony, so the whole time in the afternoon they were "Soooo bored", and Lincoln said "I don't like weddings, I don't want to go to any more weddings", but afterward they were like "This wedding is Awesome! We had so much fun at this wedding!!" Of course- they've never been to a wedding with a castle before!!

And did I mention the castle had a fireman's pole inside! Oh yea!! This wedding is Awesome! ;)

 After millions of pictures (if you're 5 and 3), and a beautiful, tear-drenched ceremony, we all enjoyed a delicious dinner, s'mores at the fire pit, and congratulating Mr and Mrs White!

Music played, toasts were made, cake was cut (picture below of the cake from Heather's friend Jillian- I admit I missed the cake bc I was wrestling the tornado, or trying to catch a bite of dinner or something), first dances were danced, and a lot more pictures were taken, but soon after the first dance was done, as dusk fell and the lights began to glow, I snuggled one very worn-slap-out tornado named Rosemary close to me, and I sat and watched sweet friends and family finish the celebrating, with a cough drop melting in my mouth, and a tornado finally sleeping, for the first time that day.

We love you, Mr and Mrs Jonathan White! Thank you for letting us be a part of your very special and beautiful day!!