Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Christmas Recap

Well, Christmas has come and gone--seriously, how did it go so fast??

My family has never had a special, set-in-stone Christmas Eve tradition, so it has actually worked out just wonderfully that my parents have joined the Sledges in theirs! My sister's and brother's families are with their respective in-laws on Christmas Eve, so my parents now come with us! The tradition is the attend the candlelight Christmas Eve service with Mark and Lisa and Mark's parents at their church, then head back to the house for some DELICIOUS homemade gumbo. This year Lisa served crabcakes as the appetizer and they were so yummy! The gumbo was outstanding, as usual. I love that I married into a family of great cooks! Now if they would just rub off on me...

Taylor, Trav, and me with MawMaw and Grandaddy:

Beautiful tree!
It's also the Sledges' tradition to open Christmas gifts to each other on Christmas Eve. Since Mom and Dad were there too, we went on and gave them their gift as well. I was SO excited to give them and Mark and Lisa their gifts--I made a photobook of our deercamp, Fairview, for my parents, and one of our Paris trip for Mark and Lisa.
Cute dads:
And cute moms!

Taylor making fun of my profession with the meat injector Santa brought him! Crazy boy.


The next morning we woke up, ate a leisurely breakfast, and opened our gifts to each other. I tried to make a special breakfast for us--my Granny's cathead biscuits. I failed. Miserably. As Taylor said, they looked like really overweight pancakes. Ha! I still can't figure out what I did wrong....it's one of those things where you kind of have to know what you're doing, because there's no real recipe. And, obviously--I don't. I will have to get a little help from Dad next time. But hey, the bacon and cheese grits we had instead were still pretty good!
Then it was off to Mom and Dad's for exchanging presents with my side of the fam. As our family has grown, we've started drawing names. I drew my sister-in-law, April, this year, and Taylor drew my niece, Olivia.

Anna and Beth pumped over their loot:

Olivia and her new DSI game:


Ang, Neil, and me:


April modeling her gifts! We had gone shopping for the purse a couple of days earlier so she could get just the right one. But I wanted something for her to open under the tree, so when I saw this apron, it was just too cute to pass up. I know she loves to bake with her girls, so hopefully she will get some good use out of it!

The boys:

Me and sweet Ted:
My Daddy and his daughters:

I hope you had a merry merry Christmas, and that you have a Happy New Year!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Holiday Happenings

So here's a quick recap of some holiday happenings!


A pic of Olivia and me from before one of the Carols' performances:


And then one of Taylor and Olivia during an impromptu jam session at the Thigpen household!



And now on to the Tacky Christmas goodness! Our supper club has what we call the Annual Grizwold Family Supper Club Christmas Party, and let me tell you, it is an event. We eat yummy food, we play dirty Santa (it can get ugly, lemme tell ya)...and obviously, we dress up!


Taylor and "WeeWee"



Our friend Kim showing off her tacky sweater:


Matching jumpsuits:
And here are a few from Fairview. I can't remember if I've mentioned on the blog that my parents are selling their deercamp. It is a bittersweet thing for my family--we've had so many good times there! But it will be a good thing too, and I know that we'll have many good times at the new place as well!
I got to go hunting with my Dad one last time at the place, and it was so fun! Looking forward to many more fun hunts Dad!



One of our favorite roads on the property. Years and years of travel on this historic road have worn the road down into the trench.






Camp table set for a yummy breakfast.


Dad reminding me how to make my Granny's buttermilk cathead biscuits...SO good!!




Taylor and I just got back tonight from our family Christmas with his grandparents on his Mom's side. We had a great time hanging out with his aunts and uncles and cousins! Unfortunately I didn't get to take any pictures because I was too busy visiting! I guess that's a good thing though. :)
More updates and pictures to come throughout this fun and busy week!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Carols by Candlelight

This weekend was my church's Christmas program, Carols by Candlelight. I had the privilege of singing O Holy Night with three wonderful girls in a quartet--we had so much fun! Our little segment was modeled after the Celtic Women, if you've seen them on tv--so we got to wear long pretty dresses! (Pictures to come later.) Everybody kept teasing us and asking if it was prom night every night! Took me back to my pageant-ing days. :)
Seriously though--it is simply amazing how worshipful music can be. I am so thankful for a musical outlet in my life and for the ability to sing God's praises and tell other people about Him through music. I remember having a conversation in college one time in a Bible study about what heaven will be like. We talked about how beautiful music can be, with all the various instruments and combinations and harmonies. If this world is but a shadow of the world to come, then it only stands to reason that the harmonies and music we can experience will be doubled or tripled or something even beyond that! Harmonies beyond what my little finite mind can conceive. Exciting, isn't it!
This was the last song of the night--they put it on Youtube after the concert was over because everyone loved it so much. Amazing Grace is one of my favorite hymns--and you know, it's interesting--we don't usually think of it as a Christmas song. But it is!



May the Lord bless you, and may you remember Him in this very special season of the year!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Thanksgiving Recap

So I am a little behind, but I wanted to post a recap of the holiday! It was so nice to relax with family and eat some YUMMY food.

To start, here was my Thanksgiving dessert contribution for Taylor's family--turkey cupcakes!



My sister's foiled attempt at her kids' Christmas card:

Jump!

Then it was off to Negreet, Louisiana for the Carter Family Thanksgiving!
My Uncle Ike and me:


PRECIOUS Jose:





My two great aunts (in more than one sense!), Beth and Maxine:


An old part of my great-grandfather's farm:


Blacky drank the rest of Taylor's sweet tea and crunched all the ice!



Kisses for my cousin Anne:


Cool pic of the barn:


Mom and Dad:


Taylor inspecting an old family heirloom violin. It was my great-great grandfather's:


My cousin Anne and my aunt Jordana:



Negreet, Louisiana is just 30 minutes from Natchitoches, LA, where they have the annual festival of lights at Christmastime! For all you southern girls out there, this is the river and the town where Steel Magnolias was filmed! It is just as charming as it was in the movie.




So thankful for my family this and every season of the year!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Old Timers?

So I am finished with my boards!!!!! Well....so far. I will feel a heck of a lot better when I get that envelope in the mail and can see what my score is. Still praying about that one! They were hard, but I felt ok about everything when I left the testing center last week.

However. I think all that studying has taken a toll on my brain. If you can, imagine for a second a jar that is CRAMMED FULL of stuff. It has a little hole on the top, where you can cram in more stuff, and a little hole in the bottom, where things can fall out. And every time you jam something into that top hole (which seems to be more and more difficult to do), a couple of things fall out the bottom, never to be seen again.

That, my friends, is the current state of my brain. I think if it could talk, it would be screaming "WARNING! WARNING! OVERLOAD! DANGER!" and there would be one of those hazardous materials sign over it that I see on all of our medical waste bins up here at UMC.

So what I really need to know is--am I normal??! Does anyone else ever feel that way, like you are so overwhelmed that if you put one more piece of information or event to remember or appointment to schedule or document to mail in your brain, it might explode into a thousand pieces?

I think I need a vacation.

This weekend was my birthday, and it was so much fun! My sweet husband gave me what he is calling the manliest birthday gift he's ever heard a girl ask for--a new TV for our den. The reason, you ask? Well it all has to do with my morning rituals. Every morning, I do one of two things. I either wake up and sleepily grab my gym bag and my packed lunch and head to the gym--OR--I wake up early and head to the kitchen with the doggies to make my lunch for the day and eat breakfast. I love to watch the news in the morning, and if I don't have to be up at the school until a little later, I love to watch the Today Show. But--the problem is that there was no TV in our kitchen. There was a TV cabinet, with the cable jack and everything, but no TV. I've been trying for months now to run back and forth from the kitchen into the den to see the 7-day forecast as soon as they announce it, but invariably I am carrying my bowl of cereal and end up spilling milk all over myself, and then missing the forecast anyway.

You can see my dilemma.

So--I asked for a new tv! The one in the den was really too small for the space anyway, so we moved it to the kitchen, where it fits perfectly in the little tv cabinet, and got a new one for the den. Sweet Taylor had it all set up when I came home from school a couple days before my birthday. We also got to head up to Fairview, my parents' deer camp, for the weekend with my parents, two couple friends of theirs, and our sweet friends Clay and Christina. I am SO bummed because I accidentally left my camera at home and thus didn't get to take any pictures. I'm going to make up for it at Thanksgiving though, let me tell you. I'm gonna be a picture taking fiend.

Speaking of, I am SUPER pumped about the dishes I'm making for Taylor's family Thanksgiving. I am going to take one of them over to my sister's house too (she is hosting for my family) in hopes that they will eat it. I like to mix things up and bring different dishes, but my family always has the exact same thing every Thanksgiving and every Christmas--so not too much of mine gets eaten! Maybe I just need to figure out what my specialty is and stick to that, so it can get incorporated into the "regular" dishes every year.

Hope you are well and have a wonderful Thanksgiving! I know I have so much to be thankful for.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Mistletoe!

So for any of you who are unfamiliar with Mistletoe Marketplace--it is a giant Christmas shopping extravaganza put on by the Jackson Junior League to raise money for various charities around our city. And it is SO FUN! I have gone every year since I can remember--it is really the start of the Christmas season for me! Vendors come from all over the country, seriously from California to New York and everywhere in between. Several of them that I spoke to this go-round said that Mistletoe is the biggest and best of anything like this around the country. It is always held on a Thursday through Friday, usually the first weekend in November. Today is the last day, so if you haven't stopped by yet, it may be too late for this year--but make plans to make the trip next year! The website with all the information is http://www.mistletoemarketplace.com/.

This year Taylor and I were so excited to be able to attend the Preview Gala! Taylor's parents were kind enough to get tickets for the two of us, plus Taylor's brother Travis and his girlfriend Caroline. The gala is held on Wednesday night, and it is SUPER formal. Here is a pic I snapped of us (thanks to the self-timer feature on my camera). I kinda felt like we were back in high school, headed to the prom or something!






It was so much fun!! The Tip Tops played, there was delicious food, a silent auction, and best of all, we got to look at all the stuff the merchants had brought before the masses hit the next day! I got to scope out the goods so I knew right where I was headed when I came back for a girls' shopping trip the next morning with my Mom, sister, and sister-in law. The Thursday shopping trip has been a yearly tradition for Mom, Angie, and me for a while--and now that Neil and April have moved back into town, I'm so glad that April can be a part of it too!
My mom, who is a realtor (if you need one and live in the Jackson area, she does a great job!), just recently sold a house and offered to treat us all to some Mistletoe shopping this year! Woohoo! I tried not to go too crazy--but I got a really adorable hat/ear warmer, a cute necklace, a couple of Christmas ornaments....and my favorite--my early birthday present--a REALLY cute, really nice new bed for the dogs! I know, you may be thinking I am a little crazy to want that for my birthday. I think my sister thought I was. But I'm telling you, this thing is so cute. It is really more like a really nice pillow or small piece of furniture. It's for the living room, not the bedroom or laundry. Here is a pic of them enjoying it in front of the fireplace!



If you like the bed, it's by a company called Lazy Bones Beds. The founders/owners are a couple of girls, originally from Jackson, who now live in Memphis and have started this company! It has really taken off--Paula Deen even has one in her living room! They have three sizes and tons of cute patterns and colors. The beds are stain, odor, and UV resistant. The outer cover can be unzipped, removed, and washed, which is great!

And here's a pic of my cute new hat (ish) and necklace!
Thanks Mom!!

This next week for me is going to be a hardcore study marathon. I take my national boards in nine days. It is a two day test, with the first day lasting about 9 hours, and the second about 4 hours. I am scared and not excited about it, but I am sure ready to get the dang thing over with! I have studied as much as possible, but it has been really hard to do while managing and treating patients at the same time. I guess all I can do is my best, right? If you think about it this week, please say a prayer that it will go well! I am ready to be through so I can move on to concentrating on much more fun things like Thanksgiving and Christmas!

Hope you have a great week!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Grovin' Fools

Well it was back to the Grove last weekend for the Sledges for a weekend of fun and football! This time we rented a house just off the square with our friends Kim, BC, and Drew, and it was a BLAST! It was so nice to be able to walk everywhere--to the square, the Grove, the game, you name it. I would love to do it again in the future.

Here's Taylor bustin' a move, as he tends to do when we first get to the Grove. He just can't help himself! Good music, great people, great food....I mean it kinda makes me want to dance too!

My friend Audrey stopped by our tent and chatted for a while. This girl is one of my bff's from college, and I am so thankful for her!


My friend Lauren and me at the game. My parents gave us four tickets to use for the game (thanks Mom and Dad!) and we were so excited that Lauren and William came to sit with us! Made the game (which was a little sad score-wise) a lot more fun!


Ann Elizabeth, Haley, me and WhittyKat, as we prefer to call her. Haley went to Georgia, but she made it over to Ole Miss for games several times while we were in college. Her boyfriend, Chris, went to Auburn, which is who we played last weekend, so they came up to enjoy Oxford and see the game!


This next pic is towards the end of the game. I got tired of standing and watching us get creamed, so I just sat for a while. And here was my view--two cute booties! That's Tay on the left!

Mmmmm.....chicken.

Ok, so to all you Ole Miss fans out there--I would like to make a comment. So listen up Rebels! I was seriously SO ashamed of all of us last weekend. About 3/4 of the way through the game, the game against the NUMBER ONE team in the NATION, mind you--all of our fans were gone. It might has well have been an Auburn stadium. We may not have played the very best, and we may not have won, but we did score thirty-something points on the top ranked team in the country! I was seriously so ashamed of our fans. And y'all, now don't get me wrong. I love the Grove. I love the Grove even more than I love the football--or at least as much. But I think we should get something straight--the Grove would not even exist if it weren't for the game!!! All I'm saying is--I don't believe in being a fair-weather fan. I think you need to stick by your team and cheer them on no matter what. That applies to many other things in life as well. Let's take a lesson from the Saints fans, ok? They may have worn paper bags on their heads and lamented for years and years--but they were still there, cheering on their team. So fins up, Rebels! Let's get our priorities straight!