Tuesday, April 30, 2013

The Happiest Place on Earth

After 20 years, my grandparents decided it was time to sell their house at Club Lake.  I've learned that change is a necessary part of life that you can either embrace or resist.  No matter how much you resist change it usually doesn't make a difference, so embrace it it is.  Thanks to the persistence of a certain 3 year old, we decided to travel to the lake this past weekend one last time.  I am so, so glad we went.  Sometimes it's just good to go "home."  I've always said that the lake is one of of my favorite places in the world and this weekend I realized exactly why.  As I stood on the peninsula taking pictures, what I saw through the lens was almost surreal.  I saw my Dad, Uncle, and Grandaddy waist deep in water pulling out weeds so we could swim that first summer.  I saw four blonde-haired, blue-eyed cousins laughing and splashing in the water for hours.  I saw Grandaddy helping those same kids learn how to throw the perfect cast and get a fish off the hook on their own.  I saw Grandmamma and I decorating the barge for the 4th of July parade.  I saw fireworks.  I saw two love-struck teenagers spending hours on the lake then those same "kids" taking their engagement pictures.   I saw Kadynce playing in the snow this past Christmas.  I saw all of this and so much more.  I realized that this is what made it my favorite place, the people, the memories.  I will miss the lake, but I am so looking forward to many more new and exciting memories with the people I love.  I left this weekend feeling so thankful for my many, many blessings.

We had a lot of fun taking these pictures and I hope you enjoy them too!

I planted this tree when I was in the 2nd grade.  It was literally just a stick at that time.  

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Terrific 2's...and 3's

Parenting is hard. I'm not complaining and I wouldn't trade it for the world, but it is and it is ok to admit that. For the first two and a half years of her life Kadynce was pretty much a little angel. No, she was not perfect. She was born into sin just like the rest of us, but she was just such a good baby and toddler. Now, I'm sure she did things that my mind has just chosen to block out (kinda like how we forget the pain of childbirth and continue to have more babies), but for the most part she was a very content and pleasant child. Then right around this time last year, that sweet little blonde-haired, blue-eyed girl realized that she has an opinion of her own and by golly it needs to be heard. Enter the terrific 2's that has carried on to the terrific 3's (I don't like referring to my child as terrible). My once very obedient child began to test the waters and in turn test my patience. My precious Kadynce has the sweetest most tender heart. She is passionate and that shows through the way she loves people even at 3 years old. That will though, man it it is strong. A quality that, if channeled in the right direction will be a great asset to her in the future. It sure has proven to be a challenge to this mommy, though. Sometimes I feel like all I have done for a solid year is discipline and correct. I feel like all Kadynce hears me say is "don't do this" or "please stop doing that." I worry that my love for her doesn't show through when I'm constantly having to correct her. I want her to know how proud I am of her. How special she is to me and how I wouldn't trade her for the world. Of course I tell her these things, but will she remember that or just that I'm constantly disciplining her. I've had a few moments of encouragement recently when she has just come up to me and hugged me and said "I love you Mommy." Those four little words are confirmation that maybe, just maybe I'm getting something right. Today was the first day in a long, long time that she didn't throw a fit. It was like a breath of fresh air. It's always amazing how just when you feel like you're drowning The Lord reaches down and says "I've got this, you're not in this alone." Tomorrow may be the total opposite and I may feel like she isn't listening to a word I say, but today I saw improvement and I choose to find encouragement in that.

Monday, April 15, 2013

What'll We See At The Zoo?!?!

This post is a little late, but we had too much fun and the pictures turned out so good, I just had to share!  Two Saturdays ago we met our dear friends, Nate and Bethany at the Zoo.  We had such a good day.  The weather was perfect, the animals were all out and about, and the company wasn't bad either ;)  Kadynce is at the perfect age for outings like this.  We didn't tell her that we were going until that morning and she was beside herself excited.  One of her favorite movies has always been Barney Goes to the Zoo.  The first song they sing is "What'll We See at the Zoo?"  Hence the title of this post ;) 

Kadynce and Daddy checking out the Lions.

Uncle Nate, he's a natural!

 The Tigers were being so playful!  

Kadynce and Auntie Bee sliding through the water that the Otters were swimming in.  I'm pretty sure it was a highlight of the trip for both of them ;)

Sweet sisters, dressing them alike is just too much fun!

Me and my handsome hubby.  I love this man more than words can say!

Oh and this lovely lady too!

I promise this child has shoes.  She just REALLY likes to be barefoot.  

Kadynce asked Timon where Pumba was lol.

 This sweet little girl is such a trooper.  Always going with the flow.  We are so blessed.

We had a yummy dinner at BJ's and topped the day off with some Starbucks.  We loved getting to spend time with Nate and Bethany, even if it was a short visit.  It's all about quality, not quantity to us.  Kadynce loves them both so much (her Mommy and Daddy do too, of course).  Pretty perfect day if I do say so myself!

All photo credit goes to either Bethany or Jonathan.  Thanks to both of you for supplying me wonderful pictures to treasure forever and of course to show off!  

Monday, April 8, 2013

Friday Night Lights Filming Location Tour

     Last week we finished watching the TV series “Friday Night Lights” on Netflix.  I’m not sure why we didn’t watch it when it was actually on TV, but I’m kind of glad because getting we liked getting to watch multiple episode in a row.  I think one of the reasons we loved this show so much is because it really captured the essence of High School Football in Texas.  Really not just football, but Texas High School in general.  Jonathan and I met when I was a freshman and he was a Sophomore.  I think it took us back to “the good ‘ol days.”  Revisiting memories and remembering how it all started can be great for a relationship.  Needless to say, we really enjoyed watching this show together over the past few months.  

     One of the really cool things about this show is that it was pretty much all filmed on location and not on a sound stage. I had forgotten until we started the first episode that it was actually filmed all around the Austin area.  A lot of the first season was shot at Kuempel Stadium in Pflugerville, right in our backyard!  We decided that after we watched the entire series we would do a tour of all the primary filming locations around Austin.  We took our tour last Thursday and Friday.  Call us nerds, but we have been super excited about this and it definitely lived up to our expectations.  It’s the little things that make life exciting! 

  Our tour began Thursday evening with a stop at the football field and field house that they used for seasons 2-5.  It was an old field that they made to look like the stadium they used in the first season.  I didn't take a picture, but the field house is panther blue on one side and lion red on the other. 

This was the Panther's field, the Lion's field was an old run down field on the other side of it.  

We had dinner at the Applebee's that they used in the show.  It is where both Tyra and Julie worked.  They have since remodeled the Restaurant so it doesn't really look like it did in the show, but it was still really neat to eat there and of course we enjoyed the yummy food.  

Across the street from Applebee's is the dealership that they used for Garrity Motors.

Friday morning we headed out for the rest of out tour.  First we stopped by Kuempel Stadium, where a lot of the first reason was filmed. 

Can't you just picture Coach Taylor and the Dillon Panthers out on the field!

As I mentioned before, most of the show was shot on location.  They actually rented out houses around Austin for filming.  They all looked just like they did on the show (from the outside at least). This is Coach Taylor's house.  

Vince Howard's apartment

The Riggin's house

The Saracen's house

This DQ was "The Alamo Freeze" where Matt and Smash worked.  

Here is the "City Market" (now Arlan's Market) that was shown several times in the last two seasons.

We actually ate at the teen's popular hangout "Fran's Hamburgers" a while back.  We had no clue how significant the place was at the time lol. 

Trophy's bar and grill is right down from Fran's and is a club that Landry's band "Crucifictorious" played at on the show.

This was Buddy's Bar, where Tim Riggins ends up working in the last season of the show.

The Landing Strip is actually a real men's club.  Who would have thought?

This baseball field was used in some scenes as a practice field. 

These pictures are where my least favorite part of the series was shot.  When Landry and Tyra try to cover up their accidental murder by dumping the body in the river.  

We made a stop at Ray's BBQ, where Jess and Vince both worked and a popular East Dillon hang out.  The minute we stepped in the door and smelled the meat that Ray himself was cutting we regretted our decision to eat lunch at Subway.  We did treat ourselves to some yummy Blue Bell though.  

This place looked just like on the show both inside and out!!!

I wanted to save our favorite place for last and thought it only appropriate since this is where the show ended.  Tim Riggin's little piece of Texas!  It really is breathtaking and pictures don't begin to do it justice.  

I hope you enjoyed our tour of Dillon.  I know we sure did!  Below I have a map of all the locations in case you're in the area and want to see everything for yourself.  TEXAS FOREVER!

View FNL in a larger map