I had so much fun at home a couple of weekends ago. I had a lunch date with my mom and sister, a sleepover with my niece and nephews, a photo shoot with the kids, a birthday party for the kids, a dinner date with college friends, and a tea party.
Whew. I packed a lot into 3 days and enjoyed every minute.
(Blogger is still driving me crazy with the spacing issues. Please forgive things that are smashed together.)
Here is our table as it was almost completed. We were
so into the party that I forgot to snap a shot of the finished setting.
We had such fun with hats, scarves, and jewelry.
Caitie even dressed up the Haitian doll I gave her.
Mary was playing with my vintage umbrella and I had to jump in. Silly sisters.
Daddy brought freshed picked tulips for our tea party. He saved
them from the mower at work. Isn't that sweet!
We put them on the coffee table in an ironstone pitcher and
surrounded them with hats for the party.
Mom, Mary, and I went to Conway, AR for a girls day.
We ate at my favorite sandwich shop in the world.
If you are ever in Conway you simply must visit Stoby's.
It really is a local institution.
We took the kids to the capitol for pictures.
The AR State Capitol is a 3/4 square replica of the nation's
capitol. I wish I could have gotten a dome shot but it didn't work out.
We had to throw in a fun shot.
The kids were tired and just relaxing when I snapped this shot.
It turned out to be one of my favorites.
I must say it was a whirlwind but I wouldn't have changed anything. Squeezing in my college friends at the last minute was a special treat. I haven't seen Kristi in months and Stacey in years. It was so good to catch up with Stacey and her husband Chris and to meet their son. What a wonderful weekend. I am truly blessed.
Today is my daddy's 78th birthday. However, Daddy isn't your typical 78 year old. Anyone who knows me has heard my description of my father several times. I tell people that Daddy still works full-time and plays golf once or twice a week. And maybe I'm biased but I really don't think he looks his age either.
Those who know me will also be familiar with other descriptors of my daddy. My father is an ex-Marine Corps DI who escaped from POW camp in Korea. I have an amazing amount of pride in the fact that I have a bonafide American War Hero father.
My entire life my father has been the epitome of strength. And this image isn't reserved to family alone. Many friends have told me that my father is the ideal of the big, strong daddy that could save anyone or any situation. Just ask my dear friend Jennifer. She'll validate my claims. While Jennifer had a beautiful relationship with her father it wasn't the same as the one I shared with mine. Jennifer's dad was of average build and scholarly. Mr. Brown was a wonderful, delightful man respected by all. And while Jef loved her father, if you ask her she will tell you that my daddy is the image as I described to her and others alike. (You would be hard pressed to find two more different men than Mr. Brown and Daddy. However, these men respected and liked each other tremendously.)
While I am used to his size, for as long as I can remember I have been told that my daddy is a big man. I'm sure it wasn't just his size to which people were referring. Standing at 6'2", and still looking like a Marine, Daddy is far from small, especially next to my demure 5' tall mother.
I remember walking across my high school campus with Daddy as he dropped me off for a band trip. My high school sweetheart told me that a couple of guys asked him with whom I was walking. When he told them it was my father he said their eyes widened and they said, "Man I sure hope he likes you." Later in college I was dating a member of the swim team. Upon meeting my father he said he was nervous and hoped Daddy liked him (he did not). He said he wasn't sure he could out run my dad but if he could get to the river he thought he could out swim Daddy. Fortunately the relationship didn't last too long and there wasn't any chasing needed.
So you get the picture that my dad isn't exactly small. That said, there is so much more to Daddy's stature. My father's character towers above his shadow. He is one of the hardest working men I have ever known. His work ethic is unmatched by most men half his age. And his willingness to help those less fortunate than he is an example to us all.
And oh, the encouragement he gives me. He reminds me to trust God. He laughs with me. And I can hear the ache in his voice when his little girl is hurting.
Recently, Daddy told me he hopes to retire in about a year and a half. Can you imagine working until you are 80? If I had my way he wouldn't have to work now. But if he weren't working he would be out on the links and my mother would be a golf widow. So maybe work isn't so bad after all.
I’ve noticed that Daddy is beginning to slow down a bit but I think he’s earned that right. I only hope he knows that his strength isn’t determined by the ability to keep a certain pace or perform in the same manner as when he was my age. His strength is his character and that is ageless.
I am so frustrated with blogger. I have tried for a couple of days to post pictures and captions from my weekend at home. However, when I actually click "publish post" blogger changes the spacing and font size.
I've tried several times to publish my post but each time there is either a caption or paragraph that gets reduces to the smallest font size, rendering it incapable of being read. Additionally, the pictures are either too close together or too far apart.
Help. If you have suggestions I'd love to hear them. I have tried everything I can think of including starting over from scratch to no avail. I don't know what else to do.