Monday, December 31, 2012


it was early afternoon this weekend as i rolled down valley hill.  it was still cold and windy, but the sun was starting to peek through the clouds.  the delta is usually a dreary, desolate place in the winter with the seas of green and snowy white having given way to an ugly brown that seems to go on forever.  but the past week's rain had left the now empty rows of the fields filled with water.  my kids thought it was some sort of cool maze, and with the sunshine dancing on the water it was a really pretty sight!

i think you have to be from the delta to understand the delta.  and if you are from the delta, you don't really understand how unique of a place it is until you leave.  i went home for a wedding this weekend, and it had been a while since i had been home.  driving through our small town, i was reminded how blessed i was to grow up in a small town.  small stoplight.  doors remain unlocked.  directions sound something like, "turn left between the cotton fields, head straight toward the water tower, and go past the church to the second house."  you know who lives in every house.  you can walk in those houses unannounced.  you have to drive to the next town to go to the grocery store, get a haircut, or do anything.  kids ride their bikes all over town, not just around their cul-de-sac.  and parents don't have to worry because everybody else in town knows that kid too.  if she decides to pick all the flowers out of a neighbor's garden because it seemed like a good idea at the moment, the parents will know about it before she even gets home.  (hypothetically, speaking!!  :)) you can roam with bb guns in the woods beside the old railroad track.  the cars in the street will stop and wait while you retrieve your kickball or football that went out of bounds.  you can load yourself down with firecrackers and blow up ant piles or have bottle rocket wars without anyone thinking you are a crazy lunatic.  it's just a simple place.  a mayberry of sorts.

and it's sad when you come back after a while to see that things have changed.  a gas station torn down.  an empty lot where the house of an older lady that i used to go visit and play cards with as a kid once stood.  the tree where our neighborhood tree house used to be is not there anymore.  and so forth and so on.  but as much as things change, they soooooo stay the same.  the delta and those small towns aren't what they are because of the landscape or the buildings.  don't get me wrong, we have some pretty awesome buildings....

but there's only one thing that makes that place what it is.  it's the people.

you typically think that the bride's family puts on the wedding.  and that might be true in most cases.  but this weekend, i watched this entire town put on this wedding.  people bending over backward to help in any way that they could.  from driving vans and golf carts to transport people because of the muddy conditions to getting the "big house" decorated just right.  from directing the wedding to cutting the cake.  i'm talking about the parents of childhood friends, old teachers, old coaches, kindergarten friends, high school friends, college friends, the guy that lives across the street.  i realize that this happened at my wedding, but i guess i didn't see it from this view!  but this weekend, it was a cool thing to see it all unfold, and it just made me even more proud to be from that stop sign on a blacktop.  everybody should get to experience being small town kid at least for a little while!

so thank you, jane anna and whit, for bringing me home and making me even more grateful as we enter the new year.  while my kids are ringing in the new year with y'all's cowbells...

i'll be busy writing thank you notes to the entire town for putting on that wedding of mine 10 years ago!!  :)

happy new year, y'all!  bring on 2013!

Thursday, December 27, 2012


christmas is over!  can i get a high five?!?!  everybody is always talking about how this is their favorite time of year.  not me.  i think we need to skip everything and just make it a religious holiday.  call me scrooge if you like, but our tree came down christmas night.  i'm excited that the radio stations are back to playing regular music.  wal-mart will go back to being just plain horrible instead of super duper horrible.  and i won't have to try to remember to move that durn elf every night.  i will, however, miss those christmas m&ms!!  :)

we started out with parties at school last week.  i only managed to get pictures of wes' party.  he built a gingerbread house with his daddy.  i'm thinking all the creative/artistic genes must have gone to aunt holly.

wes and sam

i came back after walking over to william's party and found these two snuggled up in the reading center!

shortly afterwards, we made our way to madison for the henson christmas.  we were sad the jackson hensons missed out on the festivities due to the flu, and reed really missed his playmate!  but we survived.  presents helped!  and somehow i got no pictures of all the cousins.

and it didn't take long for the first of the lego creations to get put together!

back at our house on christmas eve, we worked hard on some slice and bake cookies.

and then we went outside for what may be the craziest thing i've ever seen.  my mom saved three paper lanterns from one of her recent weddings.  paper lanterns.  you light an attached piece of tar on fire.  it somehow fills up the paper lantern and floats off.  paper lantern.  on fire.  i was certain that we were going to burn somebody's house or yard up.  once they got on up into the sky, i felt a little better.  and i laughed thinking what the cars on the road must have been thinking while looking at these fire balls floating through the air!  i was surprised we didn't wake up to a picture of it on the front page of the paper asking if anyone saw the unidentified floating object on christmas eve!  it was pretty cool, though, and they did get super high before they eventually disappeared!

when all that relief that we didn't catch our neighborhood on fire excitement was over, we opened our christmas eve present and went to bed with christmas ninjago pjs.

despite the fact that william said the "nighttime takes forever," christmas morning came, and they were all ready.

well...not really.  reed would have been happy to sleep for a few more hours, but the other two weren't going to let that happen!  he perked up when he saw presents!

yes.  the 5 year old is obsessed with the titanic, and the light sabers are a big hit!!  after reed finished his annual christmas breakfast of a box of whoppers....

they had to go on a scavenger hunt and find clues that lead them to their last present!

and they got to ride them for about 30 seconds before the monsoon came through!  so the rest of the day was spent inside playing with the rest of the new loot!

so that about wraps up christmas over here.  it was fun while it lasted, and my house is still a disaster to prove it!  but now let's bring on the new year!!

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Wednesday, December 19, 2012


two years ago, i really thought somebody picked our house up in the middle of the night and moved us to antarctica.  it snowed 5 times that year.  one of them was a 9 inch snowpocalypse, and one was a 3 inch white christmas.  it was cold.  i remember the morning it was 9 degrees outside, and chase didn't even go outside to get the paper!  the christmas thing was pretty cool.  i mean, that probably won't happen again in my lifetime in mississippi, but i have to say...this weather we've had this december has been awesome!  i'll take 65 degrees 5 days before christmas over freezing any day!!  the little people like it too....

christmas parade without a jacket...

leaf piles while waiting on big brother at swimming...

cotton plant without freezing...

maybe we don't have to move to south florida after all!!!

Sunday, December 2, 2012

joseph - man of many talents

we sit in the back of our church.  with 3 little people, it's just the best place for us to be.  william and wes have a notebook that they bring to church each sunday.  they have to listen to the sermon and draw two pictures based on what they hear.  today, they were antsy, and i wasn't really sure they were listening.  i saw a ninja on one page, and i know i hadn't heard bill say anything about ninjas.  but little did i know that the 7 year old can multitask.  he can totally draw ninjas and listen at the same time.

our sermon today dealt with mary and how she conceived not by man but by the holy spirit.  how joseph was a righteous man and was going to divorce her privately.  how an angel came and told him not to.  in the process of all of this explanation, the words "mary's eggs" and "sexual relations" were used.  i was worried.  thankfully, that was over his head.  at least i think it was.  he didn't mention it, and i'm not bringing it up!!  :)  but all the talk about mary and joseph got him to thinking about the christmas story.

tonight as he was working on a project for school, he looked up from the table and asked, "was joseph a doctor?"

i've learned not to answer questions immediately.  he's usually not asking what i think he's asking, and then i just have to answer more.  so i either just sit there and look confused, or i ask, "huh?" "what?" or "why?"

me: "what?"

william:  "was joseph a doctor?"

me:  "are you talking about mary's joseph?"

william:  "yes.  because they weren't in a hosptial, so was he a doctor?"

me:  "ummm....."

william:  "because the baby can't get out if the doctor doesn't get it out.  so if he wasn't a doctor, how did the baby get out?"

me:  "yep.  dr. joseph.  good thing he was there, wasn't it?"