Thursday, December 29, 2011

Another month has come and gone...

We have had a pretty busy month since our last post.

The first weekend of December we took a trip with two couples from our Growth Group -- Shane and Alicia Shaddix and Cameron and Erica Keith. We rode down to Rock Hill, SC, which is where the Keiths are from, and spent a few days there. We left after everyone got off work that Thursday night and rolled in around 1am (to Steak 'n Shake). 


Friday and Saturday were spent relaxing, playing ping pong, watching football, and even playing some football. It was a lot of fun and was a good time for us all to spend together.



We've had several Imago Dei folks moving lately. In a span of seven days, we helped move four people/families out of and into apartments. It was really cool to see the people of Imago Dei living in community and serving each other when they were needed. That's just one more reason why I love this group of people.

Drew Raynor trying to make it all fit.

Since it is/was the Christmas season, Christmas parties were a regular occurrence for about three weeks straight. Between our two job parties, "launch team" church party, leadership church party, small group party, and I feel like I'm missing one, we had our fill of Christmas parties for the year. They were all a blast, though. 


On Christmas Eve, Imago Dei had a service at 6pm. Donnie led acoustic musical worship and Tony preached on Mary's song from Luke. As usual, we also read Scripture and took the Lord's Supper. It was a really good time of worship. CaryAnne had to work until 8pm, though, so she didn't make it. Fortunately, Tony and Kim had a lot of people over to their house afterward and she got to come there.

video

Speaking of Christmas, we had the Hollises, Britts, and Shane over Christmas morning for breakfast. None of us were going home to see family, and Shane's wife, Alicia, was working so we figured we might as well get together and hang out for a little while on Christmas morning. We are very thankful for our friends that we have up here.

The Rakes got Izzy a vest for Christmas. She loves it.

Imago Dei also hosted a Christmas Dinner on campus at NC State for people that weren't going home for Christmas. We expected a lot of international students, but there was also a good number of local students. I think it was a really good night and hope we get to go back and do it again sometime. From what I've heard, many people who were there got to talk with and share the Gospel with a lot of the students. Big thanks to Seth and Lauren Brown for coordinating it.


Now for some random stuff.

CaryAnne with the Andruskos' HUGE dog. She is biig.

Audrey Claire in Izzy's cage. It looks like Judah's taunting her.

video
Judah and Donnie playing "All My Fountains" -- Judah's favorite song.

Well, there's that. Hopefully that wasn't too long, but it probably was.

Since you're reading blogs, may I recommend one for you? My good friend, Cody Cunningham, has been tearing it up lately on his blog. You should check it out. www.codycunningham.com

Also, in case you don't know, CaryAnne and I are going to Europe in February. I went on this trip last year with Pinelake Church and they've asked us both to go back with them this year. We are looking forward to it and would like to ask for prayer from you all. Pray that God would use us for His glory and that the people we interact with would see His love and grace in our lives and theirs.

Hey, since it's almost 2012...you should come visit us!

"Christ lived the life we couldn't live, and He died the death we should have died."

Saturday, November 26, 2011

November

We have had some visitors since our last update. My parents came up for 4 days or so a couple weeks ago and Justin, Lydia, Isaac, and Stacy were here last weekend. It has been a lot of fun, but very busy.

The week that my parents were here was really busy before they got here. I think starting Tuesday morning, CaryAnne and I had pretty much no down time, due to work, drum lessons, Growth Group, and a recording session (not to mention preparing our apartment for company). They flew in Thursday evening. I had rehearsal that night, but CaryAnne got to hang with them while I was gone. She worked Friday so I took them around our area and showed them a few different places -- where I work, the church, and of course a couple bike shops for Daddy. We ate at Crazy Fire Mongolian Grill that night and went and saw the Hollises and Britts.



Saturday we did some shopping at a few different places. CaryAnne cooked sausage dogs for supper and Meghan and Judah came over. Then we watched the newest Harry Potter movie that Mama bought from Best Buy earlier that day. Sunday we had church, CaryAnne cooked chicken spaghetti, got Meghan to take some pictures of us for Christmas cards, did a little more shopping and ate some Mexican food. They flew home Monday. We had a great time with them and it was really nice to see them. We wish they could've stayed longer, but hopefully it won't be long before they're (and you're) back up this way.


The next weekend, Justin, Lydia, Isaac, and Stacy drove up to spend a few days. It was good to hang out with them. We got to introduce them to a lot of the IDC people and went over to the Meridas' house to sit in on a meeting with some of the interns going through the Aspire program.


We also played disc golf, sorta. I don't like playing, so I almost never go with them when they play. Since Justin was in town, though, I decided to go and walk with them. On the third hole (I think; things get a little fuzzy from here out), Michael threw a bad shot, picked up a stick, and hit a pole with it. Somehow, when the stick broke, part of it flew toward me and hit me in my head. It hurt a little, then I touched where it hit and realized part of the stick was stuck in my eyebrow. I pulled at it a little and it didn't move, then Justin came over and pulled it out. Michael took me home to CaryAnne and Alex and they took care of me from there. All week I've had a big band-aid on my eye -- thanks, Michael!



For Thanksgiving, anybody from IDC that wasn't going out of town was invited to the Meridas' house to eat lunch. There ended up being probably 25-30 people there. We ate lunch, watched football, and played basketball (until there was a knee injury) all afternoon. For supper, CaryAnne and I ate with our neighbors. I actually didn't eat because I was so full, but it was fun to hang out with them for a while.

We went Black Friday shopping again this year. It wasn't nearly as bad this time, though. Last year, we got up at like 3; this year we didn't get up until 5(ish). We didn't really have anything we needed this year, so we decided to just go see what we could find. There were several good deals, but we only got a few things. We went to Chick-Fil-A for breakfast and were able to get a free chicken biscuit because they were giving them out if you brought in a receipt from Black Friday. It was a nice surprise.

It has been a nice, relaxing weekend and we're looking forward to worshipping with our IDC family tomorrow.

We miss you all. Come visit us.

"Christ lived the life we couldn't live, and He died the death we should have died."

Monday, October 31, 2011

It now feels like we're grown-ups...sorta.

CaryAnne is pretty settled in at her new job (UNC), and so am I. I started last week teaching drum lessons at a music store up the road from us (Falls River Music) on Tuesday afternoons. This week, I have my first recording session at a studio in Wake Forest (PureMix Studios). If nothing else, we're staying busy.


We went to the state fair a couple weeks ago. It was very crowded but we had a great time. We rode two rides -- the thing that takes you straight up then drops you, and the ferris wheel. When we got on the ferris wheel, fireworks went off. I'm not being romantic, there were literal fireworks that started going off as we rode it. We have good timing, I guess.







Last weekend, we went with the church on a "Reformation Retreat" up to Oxford, NC. We got there Friday night around 6:30, ate supper, then had a time of singing and teaching (Donnie and Tony). Tony talked about Martin Luther's life and how God used him to change the Church. Then, we made smores -- inside, around the fireplace, because of rain -- and watched the movie Luther. Saturday, we had breakfast, a time of discussion, then hung out and had lunch before leaving. It was a good trip.


When we got back Saturday night, we went over to some of our new friends' house and played games. It got heated a few times, but it was a lot of fun!

I've recently been meeting with a couple missionaries from a different faith. They stopped by one night and we talked for a while, and they've been back twice since then. We're trying to find another time for them to come back. Through talking with them, I have seen how easy it can be for someone to be deceived. My eyes have been opened to how gracious our God is. That He would take our filthiness and give us His righteousness in return is a mind-blowing thought. Not only has He done that, but it's through nothing that we have done or can do that He does it. We can't earn it, but He gives it to us! His grace is sufficient.

That idea is what Tony has been preaching (from Galatians) since we launched. We are justified by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone. Pray for those guys -- Perez and Chase -- that God would open their eyes to the truth and give them a new heart.

CaryAnne is a little sick from the weather changing, and I think I'm getting sick too. It's cold. It's a cold.

My parents are coming to visit in a couple weeks. We're looking forward to seeing them.

Imago Dei is going great. We love our small group and the overall attitude and vision of the church.

If you're reading this, we miss you...unless you live here, in which case we probably saw you yesterday. We miss you too, though!

Happy Reformation Day. Come visit!

"Christ lived the life we couldn't live, and He died the death we should have died."

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Golf, Jobs, and Ford Aspires

Last week, Donnie, Michael and I decided to play golf. Michael and I had bought a coupon from livingsocial.com that gave us a round of golf for 2 for $24. Thursday afternoon we loaded up and rode to Wake Forest to play at a 9-hole course by Southeastern Seminary (formerly Wake Forest College, I think) which is where Arnold Palmer played when he was in college. So, the course has some pretty cool history, in my opinion, although it's nothing special.



We had a great time and all played pretty well, actually. I had my best score ever ( 105 :/ ). There was some drama involved, too. Going into the last hole, Donnie was ahead of Michael by one stroke. Michael, being the golfer that he is, ended up birdie-ing the hole and Donnie made a bogey, making Michael the winner of the day. We plan to play again soon.



Saturday, we went to a driving range up to road and Michael, CaryAnne, and I hit a bucket of balls. CaryAnne got in the swing of things (see what I did there??) and was hitting pretty well by the time we left. I guess she has some of those Gary/Cathy Rake genes in her. She also was giving me pointers when she had finished hitting all her balls. After talking with her mom, I found out that her advice was good. She's just a golfer at heart, I guess.


We ate lunch with Michael and Alex after the driving range. Outside of the Mexican restaurant where we ate, there was a car show going on. I know what you're thinking -- a bunch of tricked out, fancy-looking cars with "cool" paint jobs -- well, you're wrong. There was a parking lot full of '90's era Ford Aspires and Festivas. No cool paint jobs, just straight out of the '90's, or maybe even late '80's. It was pretty incredible. We just had to walk around and check the sweet rides out.




CaryAnne's grandparents from Hattiesburg passed through Raleigh last Wednesday morning so we got to see them for a little while. We ate lunch at Panera Bread on their way out.

We had supper with two couples from our small group last night -- Shane and Alicia Shaddix and Cameron and Erica Keith. We cooked burgers and played a game called Bezzerwizzer. It was a lot of fun, but the girls pretty much kicked our butts. It was embarrassing, really.

Nothing else new has really happened, except CARYANNE GOT A FULL-TIME JOB! No biggie, she's just a full-time CT Tech at UNC Hospital. She started yesterday and seems to be really enjoying it, so far. Maybe I'll be able to talk her into writing a blog about it.

I also got a part-time job this week at a pharmacy in Wake Forest. It's Monday - Thursday 9-2 and I'm basically a cashier with a few other duties. It's good stuff.

Guess I should turn in now. Justin is coming to town tomorrow, so I better rest up.

"Christ lived the life we couldn't live, and He died the death we should have died."

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Our God is Good

Imago Dei officially launched today. It was a great morning. We had a full band for the first time, so I got to play my full drum set instead of the cajon. We had around 160 people show up. Here's what the service looked like:

- Tony read Psalm 103 and prayed
- We played two songs (Glory to God Forever and Forever Reign)
- Donnie read the scripture for the message
- Tony preached on 2 Corinthians 5:11-21
- We had a time of response (Lord's Supper, offering, prayer)
- We played three more songs (Lord, I Need You, You Alone Can Rescue, and Hallelujah, What a Savior)
- Five new people signed the membership covenant and became members.

CaryAnne and I have been hanging out with our neighbors a lot, lately. They play cornhole outside of our apartment, so we joined them last week and have played several times. CaryAnne is really good. We also had supper with them Friday night -- CaryAnne cooked enchiladas -- then cooked out and played cornhole and poker Saturday night with them. It was CaryAnne's first time playing poker and she won. They came to church this morning and we ate at Chili's with them for lunch.

Izzy got sick yesterday so we took her to the vet. She apparently was a little dehydrated and has hook worms, so they gave her some kind of injection that was like a camel's hump that stores water and disperses through her body as she needs it. It looked pretty weird, but neat. They also gave us some medicine to sprinkle on her food that should help with the worms. Hopefully she'll eat the food. She seems to be doing better already, though.

CaryAnne starts working the night shift this week. She's doing that four nights a week for the next three weeks.

Overall, we're doing great. We're excited for what God is doing in Raleigh and we feel blessed to be a part of it. It is so nice to be involved in such a great church with so many incredible people that are devoted to Christ and the gospel.

You should come visit.

"Christ lived the life we couldn't live, and He died the death we should have died."

Monday, August 29, 2011

Earthquakes? Hurricanes?

Within the last week or so, we have experienced a small earthquake, a hurricane (Irene), and a hail storm. The earthquake was kinda cool, since we've never really experienced that. We thought it was someone's washing machine shaking upstairs (because that usually shakes the ground, right?). We also had a hurricane come through on Saturday, which ended up not really doing much for us. It got pretty windy and rained, but it didn't get scary. Our lights flickered once. Today, as CaryAnne was coming home from work, a huge storm popped up. It was much more intense, I feel like, than Irene was. It hailed for about five minutes. It's been an eventful week.



We started meeting in our building for church on August 21. We've had two weeks of mainly just the Core Team meeting and trying to get in a routine for set-up and tear-down and worshipping together. We have also had some visitors coming in. It is a very exciting time for us all.



This coming Saturday (9/3), we are having a fish fry at a park near the school (which is where we meet on Sundays) to reach out to the community. There is a group coming up from Temple Baptist in Hattiesburg to cook and help us out, so we're very grateful for them. Sunday, we're going to have a "soft launch" service where we invite people to come, but it's not advertised and what-not. Our official launch date is 9/11.

CaryAnne had a birthday last week. She turned 22. She old.

Last Saturday, which happened to be the day Irene came through, Matt Papa and Shai Linne had a concert at one of Summit Church's campuses. We went with the Britts and met up with the Sigmons (one of our elders). It was a great night. If you haven't heard Matt Papa's new album, This Changes Everything, I strongly recommend you buy it.



We started our Growth Groups this week. Ours met tonight at the Sigmons' house. We had supper together -- poppyseed chicken -- and discussed the passage from Tony's sermon this week. CaryAnne and I are both excited about this time of community with our new friends.

Donnie and I are playing pretty much every weekend this month.

We're having a blast here. I wish you all could be up here with us. Obviously, that's not an option for most of you, so you should just come visit! We also appreciate any and all prayers, just so you know.

Oh, I almost forgot. The Browns are here now! Seth and Lauren moved up last week. We're super excited to have them up here. Our Mississippi crew just keeps growing.

I'll end with a quote that is said a lot around Imago Dei --
"Christ lived the life we couldn't live, and He died the death we should have died."

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Long Drives

The past 36 hours have been exhausting, so I apologize for the poor writing that is about to occur.

Last weekend, the core team took a trip up to Stafford, VA and Washington, DC. It went very well and was a lot of fun. We spent Saturday afternoon in DC and went to Arlington Cemetery, the Smithsonian American History Museum, and had supper at a Mexican place close to the capitol building. Sunday, we led the musical worship at Mt. Ararat and Tony spoke. It was a good time.

We got back from that trip Sunday evening. After crashing, we got up Monday and did laundry and stuff to get ready for our trip to Mississippi. Donnie, Meghan, Judah, CaryAnne and I began our overnight drive at 6:30 Monday night. What was supposed to be a 12 1/2 hour drive turned into a 15 hour drive when Judah got sick just outside of Atlanta. Poor little guy threw up twice, and had to sacrifice his blanket, which acted as a "barf bag" thanks to Meghan's quick thinking. We made it, though, so it was all good.

We had a great time at home. In the five days we were there, we saw almost everyone we had hoped to. Tuesday, we had lunch with my mom, then the Rakes fixed supper for us. Wednesday we had lunch with Cody, went by King's Daughter's and CaryAnne saw a lot of her old coworkers, then we headed to Clinton for Donnie and me to play at Pinelake. It was great to be back at Pinelake and to see everyone. Afterward, we went to Newk's with some of the guys. Thursday, we got up and went to Hattiesburg. We saw Toni, Zachary, Mackenzie, and Jackson in Petal then went and saw CaryAnne's grandparents. We took Carson with us and got to spend the day with him, too.



Thursday night, mama cooked enchiladas for us then we played tennis with Jon and Cody. On Friday, we had lunch with several friends, went to Loyd Star to see Erin's room, then I played at Recess 101 with Topher Brown & the Family Business. CaryAnne also met up with an old friend from high school and they spent most of the day together. We had a Hart family reunion Saturday around lunch, then went and said goodbye to the Rakes. From there, we met Cody and rode to Monticello for Hunter and Carly Speeg's wedding, which was great, then went back to Erin's for Carson's 2nd birthday party. We drove through the night and got in around 11am.



It was a busy week, but we had a lot of fun. We really enjoyed getting to see everyone and spend some time with them.

Oh, I almost forgot. CaryAnne got a job! It's a PRN (as-needed) job at a hospital about 25 miles from our apartment. She's very excited and so am I.

I have a job interview tomorrow, too, at a Hilton Hotel that is really close to us. I don't know even what position it is for, but I hope it goes well.

We're about to go to sleep, now, since we're both running on fumes from the drive home. We had our weekly core team meeting tonight, which is the only reason we're not in bed already.

Hey. Come visit.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

It's been almost a month...

It's been almost a month since our last post. Sorry about that. I'd like to say we've been incredibly busy and haven't had time, but that would be a lie. We have had time, we just haven't felt like writing, I guess. I'll try to catch you up as quickly as possible.

We've gotten more settled in and are feeling more and more comfortable up here every day. Road names and landmarks are becoming more familiar. We're meeting people (slowly) and making some connections. We changed banks last week and talked with two different guys -- from Regions and Wachovia -- who are active in their churches and were very supportive of us. It's nothing big, but it's a connection.

Things are coming together with the church. We officially have a meeting place and a launch date. On August 21, we will begin meeting at East Millbrook Middle School. The official launch is September 11, but we are getting in there a few weeks early to try to get things going smoothly. We are all very excited to get everything kicked off.

The IDC core team is going on a field trip next weekend. We are going up to Stafford, VA, to Kimberly's home church, Mt. Ararat. Tony is going to speak Sunday morning and Donnie, Kimberly, and I will team up with some of their players to lead the music. I think we're going to drive up to DC Saturday sometime, too. Neither of us has been there, so we can't wait.

Donnie and I had our first couple of gigs. We played last Saturday at a pizza place and had a blast. They seemed to like us and said they want to bring us back. We also had a "tryout" for another place downtown. We basically had to go in on a Tuesday night, play for about 45 minutes, and see if they liked us. It went well and the guy said he wants to try and bring us in sometime. Hopefully we can get some more things booked.

Job search: CaryAnne has had a couple interviews that looked promising. One didn't pay well -- at all -- and we're still waiting to hear back from the other. I've filled out several applications to various places, but haven't had much luck. I'm waiting to hear from a few places I spoke with last week.

Mrs. Cathy and Kelly came up last week. It was great to have some familiar faces up here with us. We really enjoyed having them around. They got here Tuesday afternoon. We ate a late lunch (Crazy Fire Mongolian Grill), went to the mall down the street, ate supper at Panera, then they came and saw Donnie and me play for 45 minutes. Wednesday we got up and ate breakfast, went back to sleep -- well, some of us did -- then got cleaned up and went to another mall. We spent a few hours there and had a good time. From there, we went to the Natural Science Museum, which was really cool. That night we went downtown to The Pit and had supper with Michael and Alex. It was delicious. They left Thursday around 2 and drove all the way home. It was great to get to see them.



I almost forgot, we had a get-together last night with a lot of the people from the core team. We ate taco soup and white chicken chili, then played an intense game of kickball. The game went into extra innings. It ended with our team scoring the winning run with 2 outs in the bottom of the 11th. Yeah, it was intense. We had so much fun, though. It was also Donnie's birthday, so we had some cake afterward.

If you get time, check out the church's website and keep up with what's going on through it, too. www.idcraleigh.com

We'll try not to go so long next time without a post. Come visit.

Really, come visit.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Getting settled in...again

It has been a good week. Since we got back into Raleigh Monday night, we have gone downtown to explore, met with a guy that has a studio, redecorated our bathroom, met with the core group, and gone swimming at Falls Lake.

Earlier in the week -- Tuesday, I think -- we put some of the gift cards to use that we got from our "going away" reception on Sunday. Our guest bathroom was transformed from red and brown to green. The walls are still khaki, but the shower curtain, floor mats, and soap dispenser are green. Pretty, huh?

We've still been eating pretty much every night with the Britts and Hollises. We can't speak for them, but I know we're not tired of it, yet. We hope it keeps going and we can start bringing other people/couples in at some point.

The promo pack for Donnie and my acoustic "band" is pretty much done. They sent the stuff off to get printed last night and we are supposed to be having a CD burning party Monday. Once we get it all back, we can start really trying to find places to play.

For some reason, I feel like Donnie's trying to replace me. It's the weirdest thing.


On Friday, CaryAnne and I went downtown and drove around until we found somewhere to eat lunch. We ended up in a cool part of town at a Mediterranean place called Shish Kabob. We both got a chicken gyro and split an order of fries. It was very good and we plan to go back.


After lunch, we drove down the street a bit and met a guy who runs a recording studio. I had contacted him through email (after I Google searched for studios in Raleigh) and he invited me to come check out his place. He showed us around and we talked some about what type of music I'd like to play on. We seemed to get along pretty well. He told me to send him a few songs that I had played on and he'd get in touch with me next week sometime. I really liked his studio and hope to get the chance to work with him.

This morning we had a core group meeting at the Meridas' house in Wake Forest. It was great to be back with everyone and worship with them. Donnie led a few songs (with me accompanying him on my new cajon) then Tony spoke and we took communion. We all ate together afterward. It was great. We've been live streaming the last two meetings at www.livestream.com/idcraleigh if you're interested in watching at all.

When we left the meeting, we rode over to Durham and saw Kyle and Katie Howe who were in town for a few hours. They were flying to London at 6pm and had about an 8 hour layover here today. We met them at one of their friends' apartments and talked with them for probably an hour. It was great to see them, as it always is. We're trying to talk them into moving up here. I think it's working. ;)


This evening we rode out to Falls Lake because Michael and Donnie had seen a rope swing that we wanted to go play on. We loaded up the ice chest with sandwiches and drinks and headed out. When we got there, though, we discovered that the tree that the rope swing was on had been cut down. That was a bummer. Luckily, we found another one right up the lake from it that was sufficient.


Tomorrow we are going to the Summit again. We really like it there.

Also, happy birthday to my beautiful sister, Erin. She's the hottest 28 year old I know! No, of course she didn't tell me to say that... We love her and miss her.

Anyway, come visit.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Going home is hard

Over the past couple weeks, Donnie and I (mainly Donnie) have been working on a promo pack to take to some restaurants and places to try to get some gigs. It has come together pretty nicely, so far. We've recorded a four-song demo of cover songs, also. Oh, and I bought a Cajon -- a "box drum".


We went home last weekend for Brandi and Cass's wedding. It was a great wedding and was nice for us to get a chance to see all our friends and family again so quickly after our move. We decided to fly home Thursday, which cost us $10 thanks to two free one-way flights I had earned, and drive my car back up when we left. It was a good time for us to go home, too, because Aunt Jackie was in town and we got to see her. The weekend was full of wedding festivities, time with family, and hanging out with friends. It was good.

Sunday morning I played at Pinelake's Clinton campus. Mama, Daddy, and CaryAnne came up to the 11:00 service. Afterward, Chris and Maya Schopmeyer from Pinelake had planned a reception/"big box party" for us at their house. We went straight over after church and enjoyed spending some time with them and several other friends. We are so thankful for our Pinelake family and already miss them.

Sunday was also our one year anniversary. We tried to eat some of our wedding cake that we kept in the freezer, but it was pretty bad. It's been a great year, though!


It was actually really hard for us to leave everyone this time. I think that because we knew we were coming back in a couple weeks the first time we left, it wasn't as hard. This time, though, was very tough. We saw our families one more time Sunday night before we left and it got a little emotional for us. That being said, COME VISIT!

We got back to Raleigh around 7pm Monday and went over to the Hollises' to pick up Izzy. It was very nice of them to keep her while we were gone. Last night we had supper with them and the Britts and watched a movie. We had planned on playing tennis after supper but there was a wildfire somewhere and we were under an "Air Quality Alert" so we didn't chance it. Also, Donnie and Meghan decided to do yoga for us.


We're excited to meet again with the core group this weekend, especially since we missed last week's meeting. A couple of the Elders are meeting with one of the potential locations for us to have services today, I think. Pray that it goes well. We're also still looking for jobs and gigs, so we appreciate prayer for that, also.

We miss you all. Whenever you want to come visit, you have a place to stay!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Poppyseed Chicken and Putt-putt

Well hello world. This is my (CaryAnne's) first time updating the blog, so we shall see how this goes.

We started off this morning with our coffee and some reading, and then got all cleaned up and hit the town. Between the three Brookhaven/Hattiesburg families up here, we have been taking turns cooking supper pretty much every night. Let me just say it's been yummy! And super nice to not have to worry about what to cook every night. Last night Michael and Donnie made fried catfish and hushpuppies. Brett and I brought some warm brownies with vanilla ice cream with that magic shell chocolate that hardens when you put it on. Tonight, I made some super easy poppyseed chicken with hot pineapple casserole and some green beans and honey-butter biscuits. Oh yeah, we are eating good. I would say you may see us gaining a little weight, but I am proud to say Brett and I have been in the fitness center here at our apartment complex the last two nights! Go us...

Let's pause and rewind a little. Brett and Izzy were a little sleepy after we got back from shopping for tonight's food at not one grocery store, but two. As you may have seen on my Twitter/Facebook earlier, so far I'm not a Super Target girl and will never be a Food Lion girl. After today I think we are gonna mainly stick with WalMart.


Adorable, I know. We have rearranged our furniture some in the living room and it feels a lot more comfy. We also have all of our clothes finally hanging and in drawers and MOST of the boxes emptied. There are still some boxes that were labeled "JUNK" in the beginning so yeah. They may stay packed up for a little while. The only thing we are really waiting for now is the maintenance people to come put pantry shelves in. Right now most of our pantry food is on our kitchen table. Which is fine for now, but soon we shall start our Domino nights! --- (Shout out to the Bradys!!)

And here are the boys playing on our "putting green" after supper. Yeah, they played a full nine holes of golf. How you may ask? Leave it to their imaginations :). I will say they had an incredible cheerleader and encourager. Judah would say, "Weely close, weely close".



Anyway, we are about to shower after our work out and hit the sack. Check back with us soon! We love mail and emails too :).

Miss ya'll Mississippi.