Tuesday, November 30, 2010

a huntin' we will go

I stepped out of my comfort zone and into the great outdoors. I never thought that hunting would be a "vacation" that I'd want to go on. Instead, hunting season has always been a nice break for me - until this year. The boy has gone every weekend, except one or two, in October and November. It makes for long weekends, especially when my kids are gone.So, for my Thanksgiving break, instead of staying home, fighting shopping crowds, cleaning, doing laundry and stressing over my lost (but finally found) Christmas decor, I decided to pack my bags and head south with the boy and his daughter.

I almost waited too late to find a place to stay. (It's baby steps, I'd go to the deer lease by day but needed running water and a comfortable bed by night.) Lisa, another girl going, found us a Days Inn in Brady that had a vacancy for the two nights that we needed. Shew!We left Thanksgiving day around 6:45. The four and a half hour drive was nice. I love to sit and talk to the boy with no interruptions, that's the nice thing about us - we love to talk to each other. If I have learned anything, it's that communication is a crucial part of every relationship. We've got that part covered. We arrived in the woods around 10:45, joining the others. After visiting for a bit in the freezing cold night air, Lisa and I headed to Brady for the night.

We slept in on Friday morning, giving them time to go on their morning hunt. By the time we got there, they were finishing up breakfast and ready to just hang out until the afternoon hunt at 3:00. I decided to be adventuresome and go on this hunt with Joey and Kayla. I brought my magazine along and almost got in trouble because it was too loud turning the pages. Oops. We didn't see any deer ... booooring.

Friday night we drove into Brady for dinner and it was back to the Inn for Lisa, her son, Kayla and I. The two kids needed a good night of rest so they decided to join us. We got up early Saturday morning because one of the guys had shot a nine point deer. We headed out to see it and to watch that one and three other deer be gutted ... gross. Joey took me into Brady to look for my great-grandmother's old place and for a few groceries that afternoon. At 3:00 it was time to hunt again but this time there was some sunset action; a doe, a baby deer. Kayla aimed her gun at the doe and shot it in the leg but we couldn't find it because it had gotten too dark. It was my first time to hear a gun shot and to witness all that. It wasn't too bad.

Lisa and her crew left Saturday night and Kayla and I stayed in the camper. Yes, for one night I decided I could rough it. I slept through the Sunday morning hunt, got up and cleaned up the camper and got bags packed and ready to head home. I wasn't ready to leave and get back to reality but it was time. They found Kayla's doe, gutted it and we were on the road by 10:30, Crandall bound. We ate Chicken Express for lunch and from I20 on I drove us on home.

It was a great get-away. He may regret taking me because I did enjoy it and want to go back :) I am glad that I gave nature a chance.

the blogs of Fall - part II


I have been crazy, busy with photo shoots every weekend (Saturdays and Sundays) and some weekdays. It's been a lot of fun meeting new families and mingling with the families I've taken pictures of before.

Clayson turned 13, which seems so surreal. First of all, I should not be old enough to have a teenager. Second of all, it seems like just yesterday he was my first baby, then a biting toddler, a daddy's boy infatuated with tractors, a mouthy preteen and now a 5'7", 127 1b. grown boy. He is such a help to me. His new thing is to just pick me up and carry me off somewhere else when I am getting after him - it's so crazy. He got a 30*6 gun for his birthday - he chose this big gift over a birthday party and has big hopes and dreams for this gift to kill him a nice buck at the deer lease.

We spent our annual Saturday-before-Thanksgving over at Mamaw's making candy and playing games. My job was to make chocolate covered cherries and I did just that and they were tasty.

And then there was Thanksgiving. I have so, so much to be thankful for this year. I am thankful for my kids; Clayson, Trey and Ashlyn - they are my biggest blessings and are the littlest loves of my life. I'm thankful for my family that may not agree with all my decisions but love me unconditionally. I'm thankful for my friends that knew behind my smile was a broken heart . I could not have made it through many rough times without their encouragement, support and for the many, many times that they listened to me moan and groan over bad decisions, the divorce and all the of the emotional struggles that came my way. I've got some pretty great friends. And, of course, I am thankful for the boy who came along at just the right time, swept me off my feet and has brought me months of happiness.
We had a Thanksgiving Eve feast at my house with all my kids, Joey and his three kids, his grandaughter and her mom, along with my parents and his mom. We had the whole gang and had so much fun. I gave cooking a whirl with a turkey, dressing, mashed potatoes, corn, green beans, rolls, fudge and a chess pie. Everyone said that it all tasted good and I have to say I thought that I did a pretty good job for my first big holiday meal. I enjoyed the company of my cousin Angela and her two kiddos while I prepared and cooked. I'm becoming a fan of being in the kitchen.
That night the kids left to go to their dad's and it left me with tears. In 13 years this was my first Thanksgiving without my kids and it was hard. I kept in touch with them often. I spent Thanksgiving day over at Mamaw and Papaw's and had such a great time with the family. We laughed, we threw rolls, spilled some tea and listened to Joey make up crazy stories. It was a great day (minus my three kiddos). It was Joey's first time to meet most of the family but he fit right in and they all liked him ... what's not to like about someone like him?!
Another month has come and gone ... bring on December and the Christmas season. I can't wait to make new memories.

the blogs of Fall

Wow! Time flies when you are having fun. Last I remember we were preparing to go back to school for a new year and now we are preparing for Christmas in just 25 days. At least I can say that I have something to show for all this time, a great big smile. So much has been going on since October (my last post): an injury, a surgery, a birthday, the holidays have arrived and I have stepped out of my comfort zone. Due to time, I'm going to let the picture collage do most of the talking. After all, pictures are worth more than a thousand words, right?

Clayson had elbow surgery due to a football practice injury. His football season ended almost as quickly as it started. He broke a bone off of his elbow which required a screw being put in so that it would heal correctly and wouldn't affect his future in sports. It was a day surgery and momma held up pretty good until it was all over and then I passed out - literally. Clayson did awesome- his biggest fear, the IV, was not put in until he had taken the "silly juice" and fallen asleep. He was a trooper and soon we hope that he will be released back into the world of athletics.
I turned 35 (see previous blog) and had an amazing birthday weekend. It's so crazy to be 35 and starting life all over again. But, I am thankful for second chances.
We also got all dressed up for Halloween and had a Fall Festival at school and then trick-or-treated with friends in their neighborhood on Halloween night. Clayson was a scarecrow, Trey a hobo and Ashlyn a ladybug.

(Due to technical difficulties, what was meant to be one long blog will be turned into two blogs. Stay tuned for November happenings.)