Wednesday, July 30, 2008

A Photo Slide Show from Biloxi

I promise I am going to post again - SOON! But I wanted to share these photos from Biloxi, taken the evening of Gretchen and Joe's engagement announcement. 

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

"Goin To The Chapel and We're Gonna Get Married...." : )

Gretchen and Joe are ENGAGED! We're having a wedding! This past weekend we drove to Biloxi, Mississippi after a week at the Softball World Series in Panama City beach, FL. Talk about a busy week! We had one to remember! 

Over a month ago Joe called and said he was going to be calling on a customer near where we live, so he wanted to take Bobby and me out to supper.  That night he asked for our permission and our blessing to ask Gretchen to marry him. He had an elaborate plan for how and when and where he would propose, and we were to be a part of that plan! But we had to keep QUIET for more than a month!  We did!

This past week his family was at a work conference at the Beau Rivage Resort and Casino in Biloxi. (What a swanky, luxurious place that was!!) We were invited to be their guests there for the weekend, but Gretchen did not know that. She was also there as Joe's guest. We arrived mid afternoon on Friday and were whisked away to our hotel room to hide out until Joe called us on his cell phone. His plan was genius! He arranged for a fake drawing to take place during the conference, and Gretchen was announced as the winner of the drawing and was instructed to go to a room down the hall to claim her prize. She envisioned a big screen tv... maybe even a cruise as they told her the Casino gave a BIG prize!!  (Ha ha!)

Meanwhile, Joe called us and told us to head down because Gretchen was on her way to the room to claim her prize.  : )

When she arrived at the room and opened the door, her "prize" was waiting at the end of a rose-strewn path lit with candles! There, he proposed! After a few minutes, they came out to greet Joe's family who was waiting in the hallway to congratulate them! BUT, Gretchen had NO idea that her own family would be standing out there as well! She was in for a shock!

She came out smiling at his family, and then she saw us and she went very emotional on us!! She cried and shouted and ran toward me and threw her arms around me and boo-hoo'd!  Then she stepped back and wiped her tears and saw Bobby, Nathan, Katelyn and my brother Edwin all standing a few feet beyond me. (We left Hannah behind at World Series since her team was still in it at that point, and Zach had to remain behind to work.) But most of us were able to go. She hugged all of them as well and then came back and hugged me again. She just cried and cried! It was all too emotional! But it was happy tears! She was SO HAPPY that we were there to share in this special occasion with her.

It was a fun weekend as we spent time with Gretchen and also spent some time getting acquainted with Joe's family. They live in Texas so it was our first meeting.  They were very warm and welcoming and have expressed so much love for our Gretchen. We enjoyed our time together. We couldn't be happier as Joe and Gretchen are very best friends and love one another deeply. They'll make a wonderful lifelong team.

The coming months will be busy ones as we plan a wedding! I think they are looking toward having a beach wedding this coming spring, so that should be fun!

Sooo, it has been a busy and momentous week for us! You all will have to help me along in the coming months, as I have never planned a wedding with my child! Sniff!

We are glad to be home after a week of travel. Next time I will share about our week in Panama City, staying with Karol and playing ball every day.  Just had to share the weekend news first! More soon...

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Softball World Series Time...

Yes, it's that time of year again - the annual USFA (Fastpitch Softball) World Series in Panama City Beach, Florida. Hannah's team is going to the World Series.  Who knows how far they'll get in the quest for 1st place and 2008 World Series Champs, but at least we'll be there!

I'm looking forward to going as I'll be staying with my good friend Karol and I have sure missed her since moving away from Panama City. Some of you may be familiar with Karol as the owner of  Home Sweet Homepage Graphics.  Karol is also in my blog list at Home Sweet Home Inspiration

When I lived in Panama City we used to meet up regularly and make a Starbuck's run, or go browsing at Hobby Lobby, or go for a bike ride at the beach. Those were fun times and it was nice to have a good friend to bounce things off of, to share things with. We listened to each other and encouraged each other so I miss those times getting together.  It'll be NICE to visit again.  Hopefully we can take a few pictures during the week and I can share some here in a few days.

I don't have much to talk about other than the visit ahead, this week... and games, games, games!  It's been raining here and in Panama City, so we could be in for a steamy,hot,  rainy week ahead - I hope not! Later in the week I hope to blog again and share some other interesting news, so stay tuned!

Friday, July 04, 2008

SALUTE TO THE LAND OF THE FREE AND THE HOME OF THE BRAVE!!

 

Happy 4th of July to Americans EVERYWHERE!

 

 

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

WHICH WAY?

I know people like to read happy posts, light-hearted posts about daily happenings in the family. But with our nation about to celebrate Independence Day on the 4th, I am worried, very worried about the state of our world and the particularly the state of our nation.  I would call your attention to one of my favorite web sites - Two Sisters From The Right and ask you to read the article there. Written  for July 1, the article is titled "In Remembrance of... America"  by Rich Carroll. Very important reading there and I left a comment for Rich.  When you read that article, you will understand my title for today.

There's not much going on around here right now, that I can speak of.  We are struggling along, and that is the truth.

We've been talking about ways to cut expenses around here.  Bobby approached the car dealership where we bought our Hyundai Santa Fe about 13 months ago - asking about trading it in for a smaller, more economical car - the Elantra.  We figured we would save a couple hundred dollars a month in car payments and less gas consumption. Unfortunately they refused to deal. They are unable to take any larger vehicles for trade right now, because they are unable to sell anything other than the small, gas friendly Elantra model.   The salesman honestly told Bobby that he and the other salesmen were barely selling any cars and all of them were in desperate financial distress. Still, they couldn't take the trades of larger vehicles because they were losing money on them.

I was discouraged, very discouraged. This means we will continue to have the higher payment and the higher fuel cost. : (  The car and house are our two largest expenses. Having only been in the house for about 6 months, we would absolutely lose our shirts and then some, if we sold this house... IF we could even sell it at all.  There are 10 houses for sale in our short two-block subdivision.  I have been very discouraged this past week - seeing no way to ease the financial pain and distress we are feeling.

HOWEVER, I am going to end this post on a happy note!  Monday my daughter Gretchen (center in photo) took a very important and Lynn Gretchen and Hannah difficult state exam.  She PASSED!!! She did well!!!  And she is now a very important person with initials after her name! : )  Gretchen Campbell, RD,LD.  She is a full-fledged registered and licensed dietician in the state of Alabama!  This is the culmination of 7 long hard years of college study.  She graduated last May, turned around and enrolled in a graduate / internship program and finished that this past February. She was immediately hired by the employer she interned for. They loved her and couldn't wait to have her onboard permanently.  So after being there some 4 months, they offered her a great promotion. But in order to receive it, she had to go ahead and sit for the state exam and become registered. There was a lot riding on the results of the exam! She was happy happy happy when she called me about noon on Monday and told me it was over and she was now a registered dietician! I'm as proud as I can be, for her!!   Her good news was SUNSHINE in my otherwise gloomy week.