Saturday, March 31, 2012

Spring Break Fun (Part One): Stone Mountain, Georgia

We planned a little weekend getaway for the kids for Spring Break. We tried to think of somewhere fairly close by that was kid friendly and reasonably priced. We came up with Stone Mountain, Georgia and it was a great decision. We had the best time and I recommend it to anyone looking for something like we were.

The first day we visited the Confederate memorial carving and skyride. It was interesting to learn about the carving. It is the largest relief sculpture in the world and depicts Jefferson Davis, Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson. The surface carving covers about 3 acres. It was started in 1915 and wasn't completed until 1972. It was impressive!!
The kids were super excited about getting to ride the skyride and going on top of the mountain. We got our best attempt at a family shot before riding.

We rode in the red skylift, which made Jack mad because he wanted to ride in the blue one because he said it went faster! Hee!!

On our way up the mountain!!

Finally a top the mountain and it was beautiful! It was an overcast day and very windy. If you look closely you can see the downtown Atlanta skyline in the background to the left of the kids.

The park was absolutely beautiful! The azaleas, dogwoods and cherry trees were blooming everywhere and the weather was PERFECT! We picked a great weekend to visit!

Georgia Anne was glad to find the "Georgia" marker on the lawn below the mountain.

I had to snap a picture of Jack with this quote by Stonewall Jackson. Jack's full name is Jackson Thomas. Stonewall Jackson's name is actually Thomas Jackson. My dad always teases and says we named Jack after Stonewall Jackson!

I have a lot more pictures to share with you! Hopefully I can get them uploaded in the next day or so!!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Before & Afters

I thought I'd share a few recent projects with you. Both are frame projects that I picked up at local thrift stores.

These first two I found at The Salvation Army last summer. I actually bought several others that I have used for other projects, but I still had these two remaining. They were professionally framed so I snatched all of them up as soon as I saw them!
I purchased matching ivory mats at Hobby Lobby for just a few dollars each. Next I needed something to put in them. I found these great antique feather and egg prints at The Graphics Fairy. They were free downloads, so I simply printed them on heavy weight bristol board and then added them to the frames. I did use a french matting technique on the mats. I simply purchased a fine point gold marker and added the lines to the mats. Love these and who would have thought they cost under $6 each?? Not me!
You can find the print downloads here and here.

I found this framed needlepoint at a local antique store. I think I paid $8 for it. I knew I could use the frame for something and as an added bonus the needlepoint was attached to a wooden board that I knew I could use to paint something on. No cutting a board required here!
My sister-in-law, Kami just opened a new real estate company and I used the frame to display her logo for her new office. I didn't have a photo of just the picture, so as an added bonus my sweet in-laws and Virginia Kate are in the picture! I need to go and take a few more pictures at her office. I can't wait to share the table we painted! Hopefully I'll get by and snap a few pictures soon.

You can check out Kami's website here.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

School Pictures

I wanted to share the kid's school pictures with you. I always think these are such a hoot!! Enjoy!

Friday, March 23, 2012

My Sweet Granny

One of the finest women I have ever known is my Granny, Sara McCaig. Sadly, my sweet Granny went to be with the Lord on Friday, March 9, 2012. She had a way about her that would light up a room, light up your day, or as in my case, light up your life.

Granny was 94 years old when she passed away. She had a long, happy life and I am so blessed to have been her granddaughter. She spent her entire life dedicated to her husband, her son, her grandchildren, her great grandchildren, and her Lord. Granny's sweet and caring nature was a benchmark I don't think will be surpassed.

Granny was born in Bessemer, Alabama on July 26, 1917 to Clarence and Hattie Cook and had one younger sister, Alverda. Granny loved her parents and spoke of them often. She often told us stories of their childhood. Among my favorites were when a young Granny drove the family car through a store front in downtown Bessemer, stories of when she met my Papa and their courting, and of the loving sacrifies her parents made during the Great Depression for her and Alverda. She was raised "right" which was a trait she passed on later in life.
Granny around age 3

After high school, Granny worked for Dr. Smith, a Bessemer dentist. This photo was taken in the late 1930's.

She married my Papa, Delmar McCaig, Sr. on February 22, 1941. Early in their marriage, she would travel all over the country to visit Papa who was in the Army. She told of long train rides where her feet and ankles would swell from standing so long just to be able to spend a few precious days with him. Papa passed away in 1984, leaving Granny a widow for almost 28 years. Although she missed him, she led a very full and active life after he died.
Granny and Papa (left) in 1944

Granny and Papa - Christmas 1976

On October 4, 1947 my dad was born. He was her one and only child and she loved him the way a mother should love a child. Anyone who saw her with him or heard her speak of him knew this was true. One thing we always heard from her friends was how she carried him until his feet dragged the ground. That always tickles me to think of the sight.
Granny and Daddy - 1948

Daddy and Granny - Christmas 1964

She graduated from the University of Montevallo with a degree in early childhood education. She taught first grade for 25 years. I can only imagine what a wonderful teacher she must have been. Her sweet nature was perfect for teaching a young age. Anytime I went anywhere with Granny in Birmingham, her former students would come hug her neck and tell her how much they loved her. It was very nice to hear from several of her former students after she died. I thought I'd share a part of an e-mail from one of these students:
"Try to remember the first day of school. You are a first grader. You don't know a soul at school, and you are scared. You walk in and are greeted by a sweet face that makes you feel welcome and safe. That was your grandmother....I am very thankful to have had her for my first teacher."
A school picture of Granny in the late 1970's

My sister, Tori and I had the best Granny ever. I often say she was what everyone dreams there grandmother should be. My early memories are of being with her and Papa in their sweet, little house in Hueytown. Her house was as cute as her and I often long to go back there. It always smelled so good, was so open and inviting, and was filled with so much love. She would sing and read to us, cook anything we wanted and spoiled us like a grandmother should.
Granny and me - 1974

Even though Granny lived two hours away from us, she always had time for me and was always there no matter what. There was never an excuse of why she couldn't make a birthday, school event or just to visit. She was just there....anytime and every time. That is the way it should be. I can honestly say she never let me down, disappointed me, or failed me. Hopefully one day when I have grandchildren, I promise to try and be the kind of grandparent she was.
Me, Granny, Tori and Mama - 1995

The past 12 years, she has lived with my parents in Tallassee. She loved Birmingham, and it was hard for her to leave, but I selfishly admit I am glad she was here. She was here for the birth of all three of my children and has shared their birthdays and holidays with them. Some of the happiest times I remember of Granny are those precious moments she shared with Georgie, Jack and Daniel. I will never forget her smile the first time I saw her hold each one of them. She loved them, and in turn they loved her. I am so thankful she got to see them and know them and more importantly, they got to know her.
Granny and Georgia Anne - 2004

Granny, Daddy and Jack - 2007

Granny and Daniel - 2009

Granny raised my Dad and devoted her entire life to him. In turn, my Dad and Mom need to be thanked for being the ones to step up and give back to Granny the way she gave to all of us. They took the best care of her in her final years. She never had to live in a nursing home. They allowed her to be with us daily and be a part of the family she loved so much.
Mama, Granny and Daddy - Thanksgiving 2011

I am sad she isn't here. I am sad she will miss seeing my children grow up. I am sad I won't be able to see her sweet face and smile anymore. I keep reminding myself of a verse from the Bible that is so true. "The day of death is better than the day of birth." (Ecclesiastes 7:1) I am reminded by my 8 year old daughter that Granny is happy in Heaven....she is with her parents, her sister, her husband, and her Lord. For that I am thankful!!
Thanksgiving 2011

Sara Cook McCaig
July 26, 1917 - March 9, 2012

Monday, March 5, 2012

Daniel's 3rd Birthday Party

Sunday, March 4th we celebrated Daniel's 3rd birthday with a Thomas the Train birthday party at our house. I can hardly believe it has been three years that we welcomed this fun-loving, sweet boy into our family. He is such a blessing and we love him to pieces!!

It wasn't hard selecting a theme for his party since he is OBSESSED with Thomas the Train! I thought we could do just a train party, but no, it had to be Thomas.

We rented a bouncy house for the party. It was a lot of fun and the weather was perfect. Don't you just love the static hair?

One of the funniest moments at the party was when Daniel "tried" to blow out the candles. I bought sparkler candles for him, but every time you thought he'd blown them out, they would flame back up. Everyone thought I'd gotten the trick candles, but they weren't. They just needed a little ore wind than usual to extinguish. Needless to say it was funny!

He blew, and he blew....

Ian and Bronner decided to help out. So all three blew, and blew...

Then finally Paw Paw picked him up and helped him out just a little....

And yea.....finally they are out!

Mr. Bush and Mrs. Irene (aka Banjo and Sparkles) came for the entertainment.
They tied all kind of balloon animals...

Did a little face painting....

and did lots of magic tricks that had everyone amazed!

Daniel and Banks were so happy to see each other!

We were so happy sweet Brittan and Miss Virginia Kate got to come.

Daniel wanted his teacher from school to come to his party. He was SO excited when Miss Sara showed up!! Thanks, Miss Sara for coming and making his day!

Isn't this little train conductor the cutest thing ever??

Georgie and Andy sword fighting....
but they really love another!!

Daniel and his best buddy, Warren saying good-bye. Sweetest thing ever!

Happy Birthday, Daniel Dawson Butler!!!