Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Monthly Recap: May 2012

I think maybe I'll try doing a monthly recap, at least with any photos. This month was a busy month for us, but we got it done! We're starting summer off right with some days to just be at home and not have to be on a schedule.

Back at the beginning of May, the Hume-Fogg Silver Jazz Band had their Spring concert. I think that concert is my favorite of the year because the band has been playing together for several months and they are more relaxed. Also, they have a tradition of reading cards that the seniors write about what they will be doing after graduation and their thank-yous. It makes the evening kind of long, but still worth it!

Here is a video of the band playing their first song of the night, "Reverend Jones." The entire song is great to listen to, but if you want to see Daniel's drum solo, you can fast-forward to 6:45 or 7:00.

The day after the concert, Hume-Fogg had a block party as part of the Centennial Celebration for the school's 100th anniversary. Daniel took his SATs that morning and stayed afterward to attend the block party. I was planning to meet him down there. While I was running an errand on my way downtown, I got a text from Daniel saying that he was getting ready to play with one of the jazz combos on the stage at the block party (not previously planned). I scurried to get down there in time and was able to hear the last song they played. These photos were taken that day.

For Mother's Day, Daniel served me breakfast in bed and we had a nice day hanging out together and with our family. We had our family dinner that evening with some barbeque sandwiches and ice cream. We had our typical chaos of trying to get some pictures and it was more challenging because we were inside due to the weather. Good thing we take pictures year-round and not just on holidays (ha!).

Erica had her preschool Spring program the next weekend, so of course, we attended that! It was fun to see her sing with her class and she was so excited to show us her art work (when we could find it hanging up). It will be fun to have many years of school programs that Erica and Mary Lane will be a part of!

Erica is the "sheep" in the middle

Finally, to wrap up the month, we got to spend some time with Uncle Bud and Aunt Vickie, who came to visit from Memphis. We had a good time just sharing some meals and hanging out together. They loved getting to see all of the kids (although I was remiss and didn't get a picture of Daniel this time). It is fun to see Erica and Mary Lane interact with Bud and Vickie and we're all looking forward to making a trip to Memphis later this summer.

I think we're ready for June!

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Happy 100th!

My Granddaddy, Gwyn William Blevins, Sr., was born on May 12, 1912, so he would have been 100 years old today. If he was here with us, he'd make us laugh with his stories and jokes. He'd love getting to see his great-grandchildren ("the young 'uns," he'd call them).

Granddaddy loved a celebration, so he'd be happy to blow out his candles and have us sing "Happy Birthday" to him. And if it wasn't his birthday or if it was Christmas, he could hardly wait to give us the presents he'd bought.

I was able to spend a lot of time with Granddaddy and Maw-Maw, my mom's parents, because they lived only three and a half hours from us and we could drive down to Bel Air, Maryland from New Jersey for a long weekend or holidays. Some of my favorite memories of Granddaddy are of him in his garden or mowing the lawn (his own or the church's yard) or when he would sit in his recliner and listen to the Orioles play baseball on a summer night. And he was a devoted husband to my grandmother, patiently caring for her needs, even when he had to return shoes to the store multiple times. He was the grocery-shopper in the family (since my grandmother didn't drive) and could have won big money on "The Price Is Right" if he'd been a contestant (it was his favorite show).

Oh, and he loved to go get soft-serve ice cream at the local drive-in. After supper on summer evenings, he'd get us all in the car and drive down the road to the Arctic Circle for a cone. Wherever we went in the town where my grandparents lived, we'd run into someone he knew. It was always fun for me to go to even the most ordinary places with Granddaddy because he was always so proud to introduce me to his friends.

Granddaddy and Maw-Maw were so excited when I came to Nashville to attend Belmont College in 1985. They loved to watch The Nashville Network (TNN) and when I'd call, they'd tell me that they'd been "watching Nashville" that week. They got to come to Nashville in person for my college graduation and for my wedding. Little did we know that the last trip in October 1991, was going to be one of the last family occasions when he was healthy. Soon after my wedding, Granddaddy was diagnosed with bone cancer and he passed away in early January of 1992. I'm so thankful that he got to come be a part of those two special occasions in my life and I am even more thankful for the legacy that he left and the memories I have of my Godly, strong, fun-loving Granddaddy.

By the way, there seems to be a lot of other notable 100-year anniversaries in 2012. Maybe 1912 was a banner year, I don't know. Since I keep hearing about something or other being around for 100 years, I thought I'd put together a list (cause I like lists).

Here are some that were especially interesting to me:

1. National Cherry Blossom Festival in Washington, D.C.
2. Girl Scouts (I was a Brownie, Junior and Cadet)
3. Titanic (coincidentally, it's also the 10th anniversary of the movie, Titanic)
4. Hume-Fogg High School (Daniel's school)
5. New Mexico 

OK, I had to look up that last one about New Mexico, but since I've had lots of fun memories visiting that state, I thought it was worth including.

Yes, I think 1912 was a banner year, mainly because my Granddaddy was born!

Friday, May 11, 2012

Friday Favorites: Frappuccinos

Starbuck's Frappuccinos are a favorite treat of mine, especially during the special times of the year that they offer Frappuccino Happy Hour from 3:00-5:00 each day! Of course, their goal is to get us all "addicted" to these fun drinks just in time for us to have to pay full price for them again. And you do have to be careful about the calories. But the best thing is that last year, Starbuck's started offering "custom-made" frappes, which for me means I can get them made without sugar-free and decaf.

My favorite flavors to get are Caramel or Vanilla Latte, Chai Tea Latte, or if I'm really being indulgent, I'll get the Vanilla Bean Creme Frappuccino. Those are just a glorified vanilla milkshake, but they're a fun treat.

This week's Happy Hour will be going on for a couple more days (through Sunday), so go get a frappe!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Let's play catch-up

I know I've probably been disappointing the two or three readers of this blog by my sparse posts, but we've been living life and I haven't had made time to sit down and write (and post photos, which I like to do).

Anyway, here are some things that we've been up to (and will hopefully blog about soon):
  • Jazz Band Spring Concert (Daniel played with the main jazz band, plus was in a combo)
  • Hume-Fogg Centennial Celebration Block Party
  • Daniel took the SAT (and said it went well)
  • Celebrated Cinco de Mayo (we don't really need an excuse to eat Mexican food, but it was fun)
In the meantime, I'll tell you about the excitement we had at the "church house" (where I work) this past Monday. Vice President Joe Biden came into town for a fundraiser and his motorcade route went right by our church. I didn't actually see it when he went by the first time (maybe he had a different arrival route), but we waited and watched and watched and waited and then saw the large entourage drive by on their way back to the airport.

My coworker shot the video on his phone so it's a short clip:

Stay tuned . . . I'll try to post some more soon!