I hope that everyone had a fatty Thanksgiving! We sure did! Most of our cooking and prep work was done on Wednesday. I made pies and my mom made cornbread dressing {as we Southerners call it} With all that out of the way, we were able to start out our Thanksgiving morning with mimosas and little family breakfast. We followed that with watching the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, and then the dog show. I was pulling for the Boston Terrier, but they were robbed this year!

We were true gluttons and gorged on all of our family traditions such as Mac & Cheese, Mashed Potatoes, Sweet Potato Casserole, Green Bean Casserole... oh yeah and turkey! Keating especially loved the sweet potatoes and green bean casserole. But those nasty diapers had me second guessing cloth diapering! Talk about disgusting. {That is wrong of me to go from talking about food to poop... So sorry!} The rest of the day we enjoyed watching the multitude of Christmas movies that were on and ate pie!

I know that Black Friday is usually a ladies outing, but a few years ago Brad and I started venturing out in the early morning hours looking for TV's and big ticket Christmas gifts. This year we didn't really have anything to buy, but we ventured out anyways and brought Keating along for the ride. He was actually a trooper and enjoyed every minute of it. They even gave him a cookie at Home Depot, so he was a happy camper! We went to 3 stores and the mall... and all we ended up with were three 1$ poinsettias. There were so many good deals out there, I was sad we don't currently have a house to buy anything for.

I was awful about taking any photos. I have been swamped with Christmas card photo sessions... so photography is the last thing on my mind when I'm at home! But, speaking of Christmas cards, thank you all for voting on the photos! It came down to photos 1 and 4, and we ended up deciding on #4.

Here is the Shutterfly design that I decided on for our cards. It wasn't the design that I had originally had in mind, but it had two of my qualifications... it said Merry Christmas and it had religious reference. So many of the designs had a lot of red in them, and they didn't show up against the photo, I thought this tied it all up nicely. I hope they arrive soon, because I am a procrastinator and it will take me forever to get them out! Other than that, Keating has been working on cutting a lot of teeth, and it has made our lives miserable. He isn't sleeping through the night anymore and he whines a lot. So far I haven't noticed the teething necklace working, but I haven't tried it in a while. Maybe I will give it another whirl... I will try anything at this point!

I hope y'all had a great Thanksgiving!



In case anyone happens to be bored and browsing my blog {which I doubt} and you notice that I have a lot of photo bucket messages over my photos... I am working to fix that. Apparently they dont give you a message to inform you that your free space is nearly filled up. It should be fixed soon!

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving!!!



Christmas Card Vote!

So after a lot of disappointment and failed attempts at getting a good family picture for our Christmas card, I have decided to only have Keating in it this year. Between using a tripod, a timer, and having Keating, Lola, Brad and myself all looking in it... this just seemed easier!

Now I am having trouble deciding which photo to use. If you could, please vote on your favorite in the comments, I would greatly appreciate it!

Thanks Yall!




I'm leaning towards 1 and 4...


Mountain Get-Away

Last weekend our entire family took a little trip to the Great Smoky Mountains. They don't call them smoky for nothing!
More specifically, we went to Gatlinburg, Tennessee. We had a great time enjoying the wilderness as well as the people watching! If you have never been to Gatlinburg, then you are truly missing out... it is like the Panama City of the mountains, a "Redneck Riviera" of the Hills! If you've never been to Panama City then think airbrushed T-shirts, permed mullets, and trinket shops every ten feet. Not that there's anything wrong with those things, just trying to paint a picture!

We left early Friday morning and took the scenic route through back country roads. It was a gorgeous drive and the leaves were glowing. My dad thought that it would be nice for us to drive up to Clingman's Dome to take in the view. Clingman's dome is the highest point in the Smoky Mountains, half in Tennessee and half in North Carolina. I had the WRONG impression of what this place entailed.

Here we are in the parking area overlooking the mountains... Looks pretty high right? Well apparently that wasn't high enough.

For a "short hike" we could go to the very top. I'm pretty sure the words "hike" and "cowboy boots" are oxymorons, needless to say I was not prepared for this little adventure, but I forged through it. It wasn't a hike per-say, just a paved walk way at a constant steep incline. When we got to the top, we found this.
Which led to this. I guess two sore feet were worth a great view, just wish I had come a little more prepared!A view from the top.

With Shonnie and G-PawAfter our little expedition, we made our way to Gatlinburg which was PACKED! We decided that we would find our cabin and wait for everyone else to arrive.

The next day we drove through Cade's Cove, which is a park that used to be an early mountain community. Brad and I had come here a few years ago, so it was neat to be back with Keating. Many of the families of the community lived in tiny one room houses with 9 children... {and I thought the three of us were crammed in the basement!}

We actually have this same photo of the two of us here years ago. Please just ignore what I am wearing. My outfit looked a lot cuter with my coat on than it does in this photo. Oh well, I was "roughing it."

Brad is dressed in workout attire because he, my dad, and brother-in-law thought it would be a great idea to ride bikes through the park. {10 hilly miles} We knew that sounded like too much work, and lucky for me, I still can't participate in strenuous activities... per Doctors orders! Darn! =)

They were still pretty energetic at this point. 5 Miles later, they were trying to bum a ride from us by holding onto the side mirrors of the car!
Keating wasn't so sure what to think about this mule... I don't think he has ever seen an animal bigger than our family's yellow lab!
A tired baby that skipped his nap.

My sweet Reece that had us rolling laughing the entire car ride. She is a little comedian!

Blue and Auntie

The primitive Methodist Church, one of the historic buildings in the park.

That afternoon we went back to town to eat at the local brewery and watch the UGA vs. AU game.... not even going to go relive that game. By the looks of Keating's pullover, it seems like we converted to Auburn-ism. I can assure you that we did not, he was wearing red and black underneath!!

We enjoyed touring the town, people watching the MANY people there were to watch, and eating way too much salt water taffy.

We also found ways to express our growing Harry Potter excitement! Yes, we are nerds.

I have more photos, but I am sleepy so I believe this is enough for now! Probably only my mom will read this whole post anyways, but if you're still reading... THANKS!!!!


Kate Middleton's Hats

I have a love of fabulous hats. I always tell Brad that I am going to be one of the old ladies wearing a big at church and blocking everyone's view. I am always too scared to sport one now, so I figure by the time that I am eighty, I wont give a darn anymore. One lady that can truly wear a hat is Kate Middleton. This girl has an amazing fashion sense and always looks impeccable.

She even makes feathers look classy!

Does one have to be a future royal to rock a hat like this??

I hope she has a fantastic hat for her wedding!

Christmas Cheer

I decided that my blog needed a little seasonal face lift. What do you think? I am adding new things to my nav bar. Be sure to check them out!

I will be back later to update y'all on our last week, and even seeing a bear out in the wild!


It's beginning to look a lot like... Christmas??

It seems that Christmas is rapidly approaching! Our grocery store already has the tinseled decorations hanging on the light posts, the mall is playing Christmas Carols, and in replacement of political propaganda commercials... the toy companies are hitting us hard with the newest greatest toys of the year. This year is exciting for our family because we have Keating. Christmas with a baby is going to be very special.

One of my favorite things about Christmas, is receiving Christmas cards from all of our friends and family. While viewing the cards we get, I always take a mental note of the ones I love. Last year I noticed a few of those were from Shutterfly, they were nice heavy weight cards and even came in a matte finish. I perused their site and found a few I LOVE! Here are some of the contenders...
My main card qualification is that it has to say "Merry Christmas." Even better if it has a religious reference. There is a great selection of religious cards and even gift tags as well. Which card is your favorite? I need to get our family pictures taken fast so that I can take advantage of their 20% off sale!

New Shoes for Blue!

I had been thinking for awhile that it was time for Keating to have a pair of play shoes. The only "real" shoes he had were for church and a tiny pair of cowboy boots. He didn't have any casual shoes. I had the image of tiny Chuck Taylors stuck in my head and he had to have them! I decided to get them in red, naturally. Since I don't get to buy red patent leather mary janes for a little girl, then I had to get red Converse!

He likes his new shoes! Mostly he tries to pull them off and chew on them. Nice. But they are a lot more handy to stand up in and walk around the furniture.
He also had to have a jacket because it is already SO COLD HERE! I found this at Old Navy on sale and its really cozy inside. Once again.... its red. {I may have a problem!} He isn't fond of the jacket. It gets in his way, he reminds me of the little brother in A Christmas Story that "CANT PUT MY ARMS DOWN!" But he sure does look cute in it!
Tiny shoes are just the cutest thing ever!


Give Thanks!

$25 + shipping

Just wanted to let yall know, I have reopened my Etsy shop and I am selling/ taking orders for my new Give Thanks pillow. They are hand painted on cotton canvas. You can email me at mrssouthernbelle@gmail.com or go to my etsy site. http://www.etsy.com/listing/60811757/give-thanks-pillow



What happened to my baby??

Once again I am late on posting Keating's 8 month photos. So late, that he is almost 9 months old. Oops! This is the best photo I could get with him and Lola this month. Lola didn't want to sit still, she wanted to fetch... Keating is now fascinated by stickers and wanted the sticker off of his shirt. Oh well, its all we could do just to get them to both sit still at the same time.

8 Months was a very productive month for Keating. He learned to crawl and he got two new teeth! He also has started waving and giving somewhat of a high five. Best of all, he can shake his fist and say "hoo hoo" when we say "GO DAWGS! SICK'EM! WOOF WOOF!" Gotta teach them the important stuff when they're young!

Look at those cheeks! He has a bruise under his eye from one of his wipe outs.
He is in to EVERYTHING. If it is at his level, he is going to dig in it. He especially likes the dogs food, toys, and bed.
He has quickly grown tired of crawling and would rather stand... Lord help me if this child walks early.
My grouchy tiny baby has been quickly replaced by a happy BOY. He is getting so big, time just flies too fast!

This is my favorite part of the day. I will go into his room to get him up from a nap, and he is SO happy to see me he just laughs and rolls around. It makes my heart want to explode with joy. Its the little things...


Happy Halloween!!

Sorry for my lack of posting lately. I have been feeling a bit under the weather, and speaking of weather... we had a tornado go over the house last week! It happened so fast that we didn't even really know what was going on. Brad was on the porch and saw the clouds start circling around. Before we knew, it the fence was blowing and it got REALLY windy. By the time we realized we should head to the basement, it had passed. We never heard the typical train sound, it just sounded like we were in a wind tunnel.

A minute later there were trees snapped in a straight line down the street and the neighbors tacky halloween decorations were scattered around the neighborhood! Thankfully, it wasn't a big tornado, but still neat to witness that. I have always wanted to see one, I just always wanted to see it from further away!

Keating had a great time trick or treating. Well, he didnt really trick or treat, we just dressed him up. He was a brave little lion. I think he is the cutest lion I have ever seen!! He wasnt so sure about the fur around his face.

His friend Gates came over to compare costumes. Lions and tigers!
He's a mama's boy!

With his cousin "Cinderella"

and with his "Auntie"

I can't believe it is already NOVEMBER!