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 Longoria...you 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!

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