Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Merry Christmas!

We're about to load up the car and head out for Christmas. Hope you all have a great one!

P.S.- sorry we didn't send out Christmas cards. My only excuse is that I have been studying for the last 6 months for a big licensing exam that I took last Friday and it took over my life (no word on whether or not I passed yet).

Sunday, November 22, 2009

1 Year

Where did the year go!? I gave Kent tickets to see Cory Morrow for our anniversary. Kent loves Texas country music and has been doing without since we moved to Florida. He played last Saturday in Birmingham, so we spent last Saturday there. Here's the only picture we got of us...and half of my face is cut off:

This is where we stayed. I had never stayed in a bed & breakfast before and we both really liked it! It was like staying in someone's home (I guess we technically were).

And here's the year old cake which was actually really good. We even ate it on our china (It's the first time we've used our china).

Sunday, November 8, 2009

North Carolina

Work has been incredibly busy and stressful lately, so I decided that I needed to get away from it for a few days. I headed up to North Carolina to visit Rebekah, who interned with me at Appalachian State 2 years ago. I was hoping to get some fall colors, but unfortunately there was an early snow this year that caused most of the leaves to fall. I did see some though! It was a good trip even though the weather was not the best. Lots of eating (I ate fried chicken every night I was there and even brought some home in a cooler- healthy, huh?), shopping, and visiting with friends! Here are some pictures:

We went to an old haunted schoolhouse. It was scary. This character here kept trying to scare me while we were in line because he overheard me say I am not a fan of clowns. He was scary until I heard him say something and he had a kid's voice. Little punk.
This is one of the places I really miss. Notice the fog in the background. It was like that pretty much the entire time I was there until the day I left when the sun came out...of course.
My last day there was the only day it didn't rain, so we went hiking. There were lots of these guys along the way:
The first waterfall we saw:
An old Homestead:
Stone Mountain:
Stone Mountain Falls:
A few remaining fall colors:
After the hike, we drove along the Blue Ridge Parkway. Check out that waterfall in the distance:
My last picture as I was heading back to Florida:

Saturday, October 24, 2009


I'm putting an end to my blogging hiatus with a recipe. One of the things that Kent and I have missed the most since moving to Pensacola is good Mexican food. There is NONE here! I think I took for granted the good Mexican food on every corner in Texas..and also the fresh tortillas. I LOVE nice thick, fresh tortillas. I even went as far as going down to a questionable part of Pensacola to the "Taco Rock" (where I was the only one speaking English) in search of good tortillas...even those were bad (I think they were store bought). After that I decided to just try to make some of my own. I found a recipe online that is fabulous and SO EASY. Here it is:

Texas Flour Tortillas (adapted from The Border Cookbook by Cheryl Alters Jamison and Bill Jamison)


2 cups of all-purpose flour (can make them whole wheat by substituting one cup of whole-wheat flour for white flour)
1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder
1 teaspoon of salt
2 teaspoons of vegetable oil
3/4 cups of warm milk


Mix together the flour, baking powder, salt and oil.Slowly add the warm milk.Stir until a loose, sticky ball is formed.Knead for two minutes on a floured surface. Dough should be firm and soft.Place dough in a bowl and cover with a damp cloth or plastic wrap for 20 minutes.

After the dough has rested, break off eight sections, roll them into balls in your hands, place on a plate (make sure they aren’t touching) and then cover balls with damp cloth or plastic wrap for 10 minutes. (It’s very important to let the dough rest, otherwise it will be like elastic and won’t roll out to a proper thickness and shape.)

After dough has rested, one at a time place a dough ball on a floured surface, pat it out into a four-inch circle, and then roll with a rolling pin from the center until it’s thin and about eight inches in diameter. (If you roll out pie crusts you’ll have no problem with this.) Don’t over work the dough, or it’ll be stiff. Keep rolled-out tortillas covered until ready to cook.In a dry iron skillet or comal heated on high, cook the tortilla about thirty seconds on each side. It should start to puff a bit when it’s done.Keep cooked tortillas covered wrapped in a napkin until ready to eat.

Can be reheated in a dry iron skillet, over your gas-burner flame or in the oven wrapped in foil.While you probably won’t have any leftovers, you can store in the fridge tightly wrapped in foil or plastic for a day or so.

Makes eight tortillas.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Our week in Cameron

I've noticed that my past few posts have not been very happy at all, but I guess that's just life sometimes. We just spent 5 emotionally exhausting days in Texas and I'm still trying to process everything that we experienced. We initially thought after driving all day Thursday (the 10th) that we would be able to sleep in and rest until Darryn's visitation Friday evening. We learned shortly after arriving that we would be going with Darryn's family at 8am Friday morning in a police escorted motorcade to Easterwood Airport in College Station (about an hour away) to pick up Darryn.

Friday was a hard day. The drive to College Station was actually pleasant. I sat next to Darryn's grandmother and we had good conversation...I think we were all avoiding what we were about to do. As soon as we caught sight of the airport the entire van went silent. When we arrived at the airport there were dozens and dozens of Patriot Guard Riders there waiting for us...holding American flags. We waited about 45 minutes for Darryns' private jet to arrive and then we went out to the tarmac for the "ramp ceremony". They had lots of military men there and one Captain who had been with Darryn since Afghanistan and stayed with him until he was buried. I can still see the flag-draped casket being rolled off the plane and I can still see the expression on his pregnant wife's face. I don't think those images will ever leave me. We were escorted back to Cameron and no one said a word the whole way back. When we passed through Caldwell the huge flag at their car dealership was at half mast. When we got back to Cameron the entire town was waiting for us. They were all standing at intersections holding American flags. We passed by the high school and every student and teacher was lining the sides of the street with flags. It was surreal and just the homecoming that Darryn deserved.

We then spent time at the funeral home where the Army Captain who had travelled with Darryn from Afghanistan informed us exactly how Darryn died. Darryn was in the second hummer in a line of hummers and the first one hit some kind of explosive. They all got out to secure the perimeter and Darryn saw that they were getting attacked by a rocket propelled grenade launcher. He physically pushed 3 guys out of the way, saving 2 of them. The 3rd died a few days later. I can't think of anything more heroic than that.
As a side note, central Texas had been in drought conditions for about 3 months with little to no rain. Shortly after we picked up Darryn, it started raining...and I mean raining. It rained pretty much the entire time we were there. They intially told us to prepare for war protestors, as they had purchased permits to protest outside of Darryn's service. I think the rain was a factor in keeping them away. How can you not believe that God and Darryn played a part in that weather?! It was definitely representative of the mood.

Friday night was the visitation. So many people came out (in the rain) to pay their respects. Saturday afternoon was the funeral service and they estimate around 600 people attended. The little First Baptist Church in Cameron has probably never had to accomodate so many people. It was such a nice service. There were 20 or so military people there and Darryn's family was presented with some awards (Purple Heart and Bronze Star) and Darryn's dogtags. I don't think I've ever felt so patriotic and so inspried to grow in my faith.

Monday we rode in another police escorted motorcade all the way to San Antonio so Darryn could have a military burial at Ft. Sam Houston. Bagpipes were playing. The rain held out, but it was still a cloudy, dreary day...consistent with our moods. They brought the casket to the site on a horse-drawn caisson. They presented flags to Julie and little Daylan as well as Darryn's parents and twin brother Jarrett. They did the rifle shots and a bugler played taps. Taps always gets me.

Darryn was a true American hero and I feel so honored to have known him. Please continue praying for his family and friends.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Saturday, September 12, 2009

A Hero...

A scene from today (notice Kent in the front). It's been 2 stressful, long, emotional days so far and it's not over yet.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Please Pray

I've really slipped on updating this thing, so I don't even know if anyone reads this anymore.

We found out Saturday night that one of Kent's best friends, Darryn Andrews, was killed in action in Afghanistan. He and his wife Julie have a son Daylan who just celebrated his 2nd birthday yesterday. Julie is also pregnant with their little girl due in December. Darryn's only surviving sibling is his twin brother Jarrett, as their parents also lost Darryn and Jarrett's older sister years ago. Truly heartbreaking. It literally makes my heart hurt to think about what the Andrews family is going through.

Kent has a very close group of friends from Cameron and I know he is struggling with the loss. We're heading to Cameron on Thursday and the service will be Saturday afternoon. Please pray for Darryn's family as well as all of his friends who are struggling with this loss, and the soldiers who are still over there fighting for our freedom.
Darryn, Julie, and Daylan

All the guys- Jarrett, James, Kent, Ryan, and Darryn

Darryn & Kent

Monday, August 3, 2009

Tough Weekend

This will probably be a really long post with lots of pictures.

On Friday I left with Kent and my mom to spend the weekend in Havana {Havana is just a few miles north of Tallahassee- when my mom lived there the population was about 1,000 and it hasn't grown much since then} and Tallahassee. My mom and her older sister Sibby put my grandmother {Grandmammy} in assisted living in Tallahassee in January 2008 and she was diagnosed with Alzheimer's. We went to visit her and go through the house to try to make a dent in all the STUFF. They built their home in Havana over 60 years ago. That is where my mom and her 2 sisters grew up. It is the house where my Grandpappy died 15 years ago and it is the house that Grandmammy didn't want to leave. It's also the house where I remember many Thanksgivings at the "kid's table" in the living room.

This was my first time visiting Grandmammy since she's been in the assisted living. I lasted all of about 2 minutes with her before I lost it, which then caused my mom to lose it. She had no idea who we were and didn't talk much. We didn't stay very long the first day we went to see was just too hard. The second day she said a little more. We asked how she is doing and she said "Oh I'm pretty good. My daddy's taking care of me. He's a doctor". Hmm...her daddy certainly was a doctor. Maybe she does see him? Who knows. Grandmammy will be 90 on Thursday. She doesn't know that either.
Going through the house is quite the task...and very sad. There is so much stuff and the house just needs to be completely gutted. Kent worked his butt off cleaning off the porch and scrubbing the kitchen floors and counters. Me, my mom and my aunt Sibby kept getting sidetracked by pictures and memories. It's really hard not to. Now, on to some pictures!

This is what the trees look like around pretty.

Here's the house...lots of memories here.

Meet Dotty Bowen. This is my mom's younger sister. I'm not sure how old she is in this picture, but this is the picture of her that was always up in the family room. She lived in the house up until she died. She died from an eating disorder when she was 35 and I was in the 4th grade. She's the reason I am a therapist specializing in eating disorders.

Meet Dr. and Mrs. Counsel Maxwell. These are grandmammy's parents. He had a 60-year career as a doctor and delivered over 7,000 babies. She was in the first graduating class at FSU...there were only 2 or 3 of them.

This is the house in Calvary, GA {about 9 miles north of Havana} where Grandmammy grew up. It is a bed and breakfast now and apparently is haunted. It's on acres and acres of land with pecan trees.

Here's the living room in Grandmammy's house. It's the only room in the house that looks the same. All the others are a mess with boxes and stuff everywhere. Walking in this room is like stepping back in time.

I'm tempted to take this chair and recover it...I think it has potential.

Not so much this one.

I was able to get some stuff from Grandmammy's house. The first thing is this cedar chest. It looks like a dresser, but it's actually a cedar-lined chest. This along with the mirror pictured below it came from my great aunt. Grandmammy got them after she died about 15 years ago. My great aunt Cat's husband owned an antique store and that is where these came from.

I was also able to get 12 place settings of Johann Haviland china. This came from my great grandparent's house in Calvary. I love it! The first picture is one of the serving pieces and below is a picture of some of it stacked up.

This is just a little oil lamp I grabbed that needs to be cleaned really well.

This is the cedar chest that Grandmammy was given when she married Grandpappy in 1941.

And I'm done! If you're still reading you're probably bored to tears!

Thursday, July 30, 2009


I haven't really posted in a while, but that's mainly because nothing has been going on. Just lots of working and studying. I'm taking the day off tomorrow and going with Kent and my mom to Havana {where my mom grew up}. We're going to visit my grandmother {who has Alzheimer's} in the assisted living home and then go to the house where my mom grew up and where my grandmother lived until she was put in the home. We'll be going through lots of stuff figuring out what to keep and what to get rid of. Not really a "fun" trip, but something that has to be done. Be back after the weekend!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

New Pet & Peppers

Meet our new pet. Kent named him Alfred and he's been hanging out around our house for quite a while now. The first time I saw him I went out to the garage to get a drink from the fridge and he scurried across the garage floor and nearly gave me a heart attack. I didn't like him and wanted to go away. I've gotten used to his presence now and if he's out there eating mosquitos then I don't mind him. After some investigating, it seems that he is a Five-Lined Skink.

Also, check out these habanero peppers we grew. Kent loves super hot food, so he ate these things. It gives me heartburn just thinking about it.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Friday with Fritz

Happy Friday {he has no shame}!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Cross Country Trek

Last Friday my brother {Matt}, sister-in-law {Jae}, and their 3-year-old daughter {Ella} embarked on their cross-country move from Seattle, WA to Newport, RI. It really doesn't get much more cross-country than that. Can you even imagine doing that drive?! Anyway, Matt has been documenting their journey here if you would like to check it out. They have been stopping at attractions along the way to liven it up a bit. So far they've been to places like Mt. Rushmore, Little Bighorn, and the 'Corn Palace'. Here's a picture of Ella at the Corn Palace, which she apparently enjoyed a lot more than Matt and Jae did. Today they make their way to Wisconsin.

In other news, I've officially started studying for the EPPP. This week's topic is 'Theories and Principles of Learning' {think Pavlov's dogs for those of you who took PSYC 101}. Fun times.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Friday with Fritz

Cheer up's Friday!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Back from Colorado

Kent and I just got back from spending a week in Estes Park, CO with his family and we had a great time! It was so nice escaping the brutal heat and humidity for a few days. It would take way too long to type out all that we did, so here are lots of pictures...and this is still only a small snapshot of all the stuff we did. Now it's back to reality {and heat}.
Kent and I spent the first night at The Stanley Hotel. This is where Stephen King wrote The Shining. The show Ghost Hunters has been there multiple times and Kent requested that we stay in the room where they found the most activity (Room 401). I was scared. Nothing happened. Well, except the TV turned off when I unplugged the iron...and our video camera scanned through screens we had never seen before....and the computer acted funny. But that's not ghosts, right?
Then on to this amazing house for the rest of the week {thanks to Kent's generous parents}
And here's the deck with hot tub right along the river {note that the hot tub at 100 degrees is cooler than it's been here in Florida}

Baby elk

Mule deer scrounging for food

Feeding baby ducks
Bear Lake

Enjoying the view
We played lots of mini golf

Moraine Park {while horseback riding}

Horseback riding through Rocky Mountain National Park

View at the top of the Aerial Tram {I faced my fear of heights- mainly because I knew I'd get to feed chipmunks at the top}

And here I am...
The Hole in One pose

Picture of the whole gang