Saturday, February 25, 2012


I'm very blessed to have what I consider two groups of "best friends." The first two "best friends" I met when I was six years old! Yes, six! Crazy, but true. I've blogged about them here. The other set of "best friends" I met when I entered college at Union University. It is very hard for me to choose who is my "best friend" so I just say they all are (even though my dad says I can't do that) because they are all so pivotal in my life.

This is Audrey, one of those four girls I mentioned. She & I met basically the first day of college. Yes, we did! We were in some crazy honors class (that we dropped, by the way) where we had to stare at those pictures within a picture? Do you know those?

Anyway, I couldn't see the pictures. I sat there almost crying frustrated that I couldn't see the stupid picture. Sweet Audrey (who had looooonnnnnnng hair back then I was obsessed with staring at her perfectly straight, long, dark, beautiful thick hair in class since I had the opposite--blonde, curly hair) tried desperately to help me when the rest of my group had all but forgotten (or gotten annoyed by) me. I never did see the picture, but that developed into a life long friendship which included being roommates for three years of school. We went to formals together, enjoyed (and sometime didn't enjoy) dating boys & the stories of our lives just were interwoven for those four years. I love her dearly.

On Saturday, she came to Jackson, Tennessee, to visit her sister. I drove up from Memphis to meet her so she could finally meet Micah! She lives five hours away in Missouri so we never get to see each other except for when her family comes to visit her sister Amanda (who also went to college with me.)

First, we went to the small, sleepy town of Humbolt, Tennessee, to the gallery/vineyard where Amanda sells her art. (Don't worry my Baptist friends, there was no drinking only gallery observations. I always feel the need to say that lest someone judge me or get mad at me.)

Audrey and I in front of the vineyards.
Audrey and her sister Amanda (who is pregnant with her FIFTH child--bless her!)
"Papa Rusty" as he is now called in his grandfather days & Audrey's son Kale.
I love Audrey's dad! I've enjoyed the company of their entire family for almost sixteen years now. Yikes!
After driving to Humbolt, we spent some time shopping. Then we had to go to Union to take some pictures. This is not what Union looked like when I went to school here. The bell tower in the background was built the year I graduated. There was a tornado in Jackson that wiped out all the dorms four years ago. So the place I lived is no longer standing, and many things have been rebuilt or added from that event. This sign wasn't even here when I went to school here!

Audrey, me & Micah (Mr. C spent the day at home sleeping. Audrey's husband was at home working, too. We missed them but surely did enjoy our girl time!)
Closer up.
We decided to try and make this a Union themed photo shoot and be artistic with my camera. Well, you can see how that went.

Micah wouldn't look, the wind was whipping about...
At this point, he's starting to get mad that I'm holding him on the edge of this sign...
Ok, and now he is really mad, but Audrey is shooting away trying to get that generational college alumni shot. Well, it didn't work.
I guess we'll have to settle for this far away shot where he wouldn't look at the camera! Oh, babies! They sure have their own little minds, don't they?

While I had the boys cornered (ahem, strapped into carseats), I took a few pictures of our sons together. Otherwise, they wouldn't sit still for a picture. I realize these aren't that great, but hey! You do what you can, right?

Two kids sitting still and looking in the same direction. I'll take it!
We loaded up Micah's car seat and Kale's car seat and now headed out to Beech Bluff, Tennessee. If you haven't already kept up that is a trip to Jackson, Humboldt, and Beech Bluff. The point of this trip (after some major shopping) was to take the kids back to nap at Amanda's house. Micah got his nap in the car between all our stops, so he was happy & ready to go!
While several of Amanda's four kiddos napped, we entertained ourselves with things like finger mustache tatoos! I have a lot of pictures of Audrey, and I have to say this is one of my faves ever.

Audrey & her niece Ellie (who looks just like Amanda in my opinion)

Mia, daughter #2 of Amanda, showing off her new cowgirl boots.
After naps, gallery observing, & was time for dinner. I mean, we had a big day on Saturday! We left Memphis at 9, and we didn't get home until almost eleven Saturday night. Micah was such a champ! In true college fashion, we debated about where we wanted to eat. Only this meal included four adults, one grandpa, and six children seven and under. You might think we are crazy, and maybe we are but the kids were so awesome! They did a great job! I am a firm believer in continuing to live your life with kids as you did before as much as you can. If you never take them out in public, they won't learn proper manners.

Much debating abounded, but I made this comment, "I know you guys are trying to think of somewhere to eat, but you know Papa Rusty will want Sakura in Jackson!" You see, since 1997 whenever Audrey's parents would come in town to visit they would take me, Audrey, Amanda, and any boyfriends we had at the time (which eventually became our husbands) to Sakura. When your best friend is Asian, you learn to eat lots of Asian food! She introduced me to things I didn't even know existed before college--food wise.

Here's our group (going around the table from left to right):
Mia, Kale, Ezra, Brian, Digory, Amanda, Ellie, Papa Rusy, Audrey, and Micah who turned around in his seat. I obviously took the picture.
The kiddos wanted to make silly faces:
Mia, Kale, & Ezra (Brian's mini me)
Mia, Kale, & Ezra
After almost twelve full hours of my best friend, it was hard to leave. I even cried a little on the drive back to Memphis. I get all kinds of nostalgic sometimes remembering the past, where I've come from, how I've changed, and all the people who have entered my life. I loved this time in my life so much, and it went by so fast! I'm just so thankful to have memories, experiences, and friends that truly have lasted a lifetime thanks to Union.

Audrey & I, February 2012.
We met in 1997.
We've known each other fifteen years.

How is that possible?
Love you, Dro. Miss you every day!
How was your weekend?

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