Thursday, July 29, 2010

Where in the World is Carmen San Diego?

Ok, so I'm not Carmen San Diego, but do y'all remember her?! I loved that computer game back in the day, when computers were ginormous and I was learning to type with Paws and Mavis Beacon Teaching Typing. Good times.

Anyway, so...I guess I'm not Carmen San Diego, but my initials are the same as hers, C and S. This post may start a new series for me...maybe each time I travel I will do a Where in the World post and make you guess before I reveal where I am! I am really passionate about travel and learning about other places/cultures (as is Taylor) and I hope to do a lot of that, so hopefully these posts won't be too terribly far apart!

Ok, so here is your (very big, probably going to give it away) hint for my current location:

Can you guess where I am??

PS: For those of you who asked, thanks, and yes recording went well! It was really fun! Of course it is always my tendency to micro-scrutinize myself into oblivion, but for the sake of fun and gratitude for Taylor coming to the studio with me and recording one of the songs, I will take it for what it's worth and try not to be so critical of myself. :) Will post one or two of them when I get home. Toodles!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Finally the Fourth...and some random thoughts

After a hectic week of seeing patients, I am finally getting around to posting these pics from the 4th of July!
My brother's youngest, Dorothy--how cute is she?! :

the fam (some of it anyway!), plus our friend Triston:

me and Olivia:

Mmmm watermelon! All these pics were taken down at the "beach" at my parents' hunting camp. A bayou runs through part of the land and a real beach, real enough anway, borders it on either side! We've had a lot of fun over the years swimming in the bayou, eating watermelon, getting into mudfights on rainy get the picture.

Cute pic of daddy and daughter:

And one of MY daddy and his daughters:

my bro Neil, his wife April and their two youngest girls watching the fireworks:

Mom with Angie and her kids:

My brother and his family have lived in Atlanta for the last 10 years, and on Tuesday, THIS Tuesday, they are moving back home!!! I still can't believe it's really happening. I haven't lived in the same town with my brother since I was 15 or so. I am just so thankful that they are moving home, and that they'll be very close to Taylor and me, just a short drive away. I'm thankful for the chance to get to know all his girls even better, and to spend as much time with them as I get to spend with my sister's kids. I feel like a new, fun chapter of life is about to start!

Also, randomly--I'm really excited because tomorrow after church, I am going to a recording studio to lay down a few tracks! My dad has always been unbelievably supportive of my interest in and penchant for singing, so he bought some time with the guy who runs the studio a while back so I could record some stuff for fun. I'm even more excited because we are going to go to the studio a couple of times, and next time Taylor (he's out of town deep sea fishing this weekend) and I are going to sing something together! There is a song by Dolly Parton and Ricky van Shelton called "Rockin' Years" that is sort of our song. I am so excited about recording it, simply for posterity's sake. I'm hoping we can fit in a harmonica somewhere because Taylor can really hammer that thing down! I'm not sure if I've mentioned it on the blog before, but he is an incredible harmonica player. Also, I'd love to get my sister's husband, Lee, in on the action with his guitar. I'm going to see what I can do! So far, here is the list of songs I'd like to record:
1) Feels Like Home--written by Randy Newman
2)Light in Your Eyes--Leann Rimes
3)The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down--The Band
4)Fire--Pointer Sisters
5)Rockin' Years--Dolly Parton (this one with Taylor)
6)This is Us--Emmylou Harris and Mark Knopfler (with Taylor)
Thoughts? I hope to get through 3 or 4 of the solo songs tomorrow. I hope they turn out ok! I'm not looking for perfection or anything, but I would like for them to sound decent! Maybe if I get really brave I'll post the audio of one on the blog......but I doubt it! :) Hope you are having a good weekend!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

From Sea to Shining Sea, Part Deux

I don't know about you, but I've decided that the FIFTH of July should also be declared a holiday!! I loved the fact that this year the holiday many people took off from work was on a Monday, after the holiday weekend. There's nothing better than a good four-day weekend, in my opinion. I love the feeling of relaxation after a fun weekend on a Sunday night, but there is always Monday morning looming in the very near future. With a long weekend, you get to go to sleep Sunday night and not worry about setting the alarm for the next morning! Blissful.
Taylor's parents were kind enough to let me invite my sister and her family over for their FIFTH of July celebration. Here's Angie with my nephew Kyle:
Caroline and me:
My cute mother-in-law rockin' the shades and floppy hat look:
My niece Olivia and our friend Triston:
Kyle and me hanging on for dear life. These pictures don't really show it, but Taylor has no mercy when he is driving the boat! You'd better hold on to your swimsuit bottoms!
Carter and Olivia getting fancy:
Triston and Olivia fished off the pier after we got back from tubing--they caught 5 catfish!
Mark taking a break from grilling and fishing to enjoy the shade:
Mark, Minto, and Taylor enjoying a sunset swim--aren't the colors beautiful?
I got a little out of order with these--I still haven't posted the pics yet from the actual 4th of July, when we went down to my parents' hunting camp. Stay tuned!

Monday, July 5, 2010

From Sea to Shining Sea

Ok, so we didn't quite go from sea to shining sea this weekend, but we certainly took a respectable tour of south Mississippi and a little bit of Louisiana for our Fourth of July celebration! Friday night Taylor and I went with my parents to the coast to see the concert tour of the original cast of this Broadway musical:

We are huge musical theater buffs, and while this show wasn't the actual musical, it was a great taste of some of the show's tunes, plus other favorites from the great 50s and 60s group bands. The guy who played Frankie Valli originally in the show is an actor named Michael should look him up. He is amazing. Seriously amazing. His voice doesn't even sound real; it's so piercing and high and pure. A God-given talent.

As for the rest of the weekend, we spent it with my uncle and cousin in a small town just north of the Mississippi coast, then in a small Louisiana town with Taylor's grandparents, then at my parents' hunting camp, and finally today finished up with a day on the reservoir with Taylor's family and my sister's family. If I try to fit everything into this post, it will be a mile long, so I will split it into two! Here are a few pics:

My uncle Rip in his characteristic glasses, with my dad in the background:

My sweet cousin, Kaleb:

Rip and Kaleb's thriving garden! While there we harvested tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, and squash. I learned that you know when corn is ready for picking when the tips of the ears, where the silks stick out, turn brown. Their corn wasn't quite ready yet.

Here's a pic of my Dad's high school hangout--the good ole Frosty Mug! I remember as a kid coming here every time I'd visit my grandmother. She lived in this same town where my Dad grew up and where my uncle still lives, until she passed away several years ago. They have the BEST ice cream around, and they fill their cones up so high you can barely make it back to your seat at the outdoor tables before it either falls over or has melted and dribbled down your thumbs. Yum!
my cute mom:

And on to the next leg of the trip.....
Taylor's Uncle Brent and his new little cousin, Laken. She is about the cutest thing you've ever seen, and has us all wrapped around her finger.
His beautiful grandmother, Gloria. She cooked an amazing meal of vegetables ALL from their garden!! There were tomatoes, okra, banana peppers, bell peppers, butter beans, and OH MY GOSH the best corn on the cob I have EVER put in my mouth. (Mr. Gene and Mrs. Gloria, if you read this, I'm not flattering you, it was SERIOUSLY the best corn I've ever put in my mouth. The kernels were so fat they looked like if you touched them they'd burst.) Mr. Gene cooked ribs that were the icing on the cake.

Taylor and his grandfather:

Their blissful backyard--no wonder Taylor talks about going to his grandparents' place as a child (and now as an adult!) and thinking of it as a country paradise:
Front porch livin':

I will hopefully post about the rest of the weekend tomorrow! I'm so thankful that we had the opportunity to take a little time off to celebrate our country and our freedom with our families. I so often take for granted the life I have here in this country. Thousands of men have fought and died so that I and my family can have the right to live with all the freedoms life can afford--to live, worship, and play as we wish. Thank you from the bottom of my heart to all the military men and women and their families, and thank you to God for the ultimate freedom that you give to us if we accept it. God bless America!