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Our Lovely Little Fourth!

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We could so get used to having 4th of July on a Friday! A long weekend with the family, not having to rush back to work and what made it even better was the weather! It was not the usual scorching, Georgia July heat but a nice, cool breeze and temps in the 80’s.  It surprised us all! We stayed outside the majority of the weekend and the kiddos played and played and played. It was wonderful and so relaxing!

So how did we celebrate the 4th of July in a good ole’ Georgia small town?

First up the local parade and festivities:

Parade 1

You never know what you will see in our hometown parade!

Parade 2

The men were drooling over this truck.

parade 3

Hayden is ready to join these guys! We’ll see…:)

Ty best

Ty and Lily watching the parade.

Lydia best

Lydia doing her thing!

Hayden llama

There were llamas

Snow cones

and snowcones

ice cream

and ice cream.

Then we headed to a family baby shower, can you believe we took no pics?!? Oops! Just use your imagination – she is having a baby girl, so there were lots of cute dresses and all things pink. 🙂 The boys were hilarious, Ty said, “I have never been to a baby shower before, are we all giving a baby a shower or taking a shower with a baby…..?” Poor kid, but he wonders no more because the family “showered” the expectant mommy with lots and lots of wonderful presents.

After the shower we headed to real water – the swimming pool! And what a great day to go, we practically had the pool all to ourselves. We did get pics there!


The kids were spoiled – an Olympic size pool all to ourselves, score!

swimming lydia

Lydia loved the diving board and she is just like her mama – has to hold her nose. 🙂

Swimming Hayden

Hayden has the best expressions!

swimming ty

Smiling Ty!


Lydia and Mama D

The day ended with a family dinner – with everyone! It has been years since we all have been together and enjoyed a meal. It only took us 7 tries to find a restaurant open on the 4th but the hunt was worth it. The absolute best way to spend your 4th of July – with family!


Of course, we got a pic! Excuse the tired faces, we had quite a busy day! 🙂

How did we end this already fun-filled, jam-packed day?


With fireworks

fireworks ty

and sparklers


and brisket!

 What a wonderful day! Next year has quite the challenge to live up to! 🙂
Hope your 4th was just as amazing as ours!


Our Christmas Bucket List

Our Christmas Bucket List

Thankful Thursday


“In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”                  1 Thessalonians 5:18

Today as America celebrates THANKSgiving, we can easily come up with things that we are thankful for: family, friends, good health, a nice car, etc. But Thanksgiving should not stop after we put our leftovers away, take an afternoon nap, play some family football; we should continue giving thanks for ALL things. Thanksgiving is wonderful because it forces us to stop and remember all that we are thankful for, but then what?

Tomorrow we go back whining, moaning, wishing, complaining. Let’s stop this behavior. When you wish you had a new car, stop and thank God for the car that you do have. When you are complaining about your job, stop and thank God that you have a job. When you moan about your kids misbehaving, stop and thank God that you have kids. See where we are going here? We get so wrapped up in our day to day lives we so easily forget about what we do have, what we are blessed with.

Our family vows to  not only be thankful today but everyday! How about you?

Thankful Thursday – Mini Vaca’s

Thankful Thursday – Mini Vaca’s

A couple of weeks ago we decided to disconnect and take a Fall Break trip to Tallulah Gorge. It was just what this family of 5 needed to reconnect with each other and take in all the gorgeousness of Fall. Even though our “fun funds” are lower now that we are a one income family, we still believe it is important to take mini vaca’s. In order for us take this trip as cheaply as possible and not deplete all of our funds, we decided to tent camp at Tallulah Gorge. This Georgia state park is beautiful and I highly recommend it, no matter your camping style. We were able to score a site right beside the playground and a stone’s throw away from the bath houses. Nice! All of the hiking trails are accessible from the campground and there is shopping only 15 minutes away!


At the bottom of the gorge!

Its fall

Simply beautiful!


We love FALL!

We only went for 3 days, and only were an hour from home but it made a world of difference. The kids had such a great time as evidenced by these pics:

hayden Collage

Hayden played ZERO video games all weekend – We say that is success!


This is only 1/3 of the pics we took of Lydia. She was quite the camera hog!

Ty Collage

Ty really showed his fun personality this weekend!

Chris and I got in on the goofy action, too!


We even captured Hayden taking an accidental slide down a rock. It was one of those “hey, watch this” moments!


He said that it would have been more fun if the water was not ice cold. 🙂

On Saturday and Sunday, Tallulah Gorge had a water release and kayakers came from all over to kayak in the Gorge. It was such a site to see – some very  adventurous folks!

kaykers Collage

Kayakers at Tallulah Gorge

We were even able to snag some geocaches while we were camping.


If you can handle the steep stairs to the bottom of the gorge, we highly recommend it. We conquered them! The kids wanted to do it again on Saturday but we needed an easier walk. 🙂 Those are some tough stairs but so worth it!

stairs 2 stairs3

Don’t let life get away from you and miss out on experiencing new or new-old places. We have driven past Tallulah Gorge so many times but never stopped. We are so thankful that we did it for the first time with our little family during a mini-vaca. Get-aways can be done, even with one income! It only cost us $36 to camp for the weekend and all of our adventures were FREE! It’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of life and miss out on what’s most important – each other. You don’t have to spend a lot to invest in your family! Thankfully, we love to camp and the best part it’s super cheap.

family1 family3

A short vacation was all we needed to recharge ourselves and remind us to make those memories. Here are some more snap-shots into our mini-vaca. Don’t forget even with low funds, trips can be done! If you need help planning an inexpensive trip with your family, just message us! We are the master at taking cheap vacations! 🙂

boys chrisandmelissa foggylake kids7 kidsanddad lake melissalydia turkey tylydia1

Those moments that make your heart flutter…

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We just love our kids. Plain and simple. They are such a blessing to our lives and everyday we thank God that He gave us 3 of the most awesome, coolest, smartest, creative, amazing, super-duper children that have ever been born.


So, we may be biased but who cares, they are that awesome and they are our kids so we can think that! 🙂 We will always be their biggest supporters and their biggest advocates. Always.

And then sometimes they go that extra mile and it really just makes our hearts flutter that much more.

Last night, while we were helping Hayden with his homework he looked up  and said, “I love you and if I had been born into a different family then I would run away and join this family.”

Yep, that did it.  He knew just what to say to get more help on his homework and it worked.

We love the random things our kids say and do. It makes them them! And we wouldn’t have it any other way.