Tag Archives: Holiday

New Years Eve 2012

Davy loves New Year’s Eve.  He talks about it year round.  So this year without the Carothers and Krulik families here we knew that we would have to make it extra fun for him.  We talked about burning the Christmas tree in the fire pit like last year, but then decided to just buy a big pack of fireworks instead.  They were so cute, the sun had barely set and they were grabbing us to go outside.  Dan, Debbie, and Andrea came outside to watch the fun.

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Matty lasted until about 9 and Davy made it until 11…he tried.  At 11:45 we woke them up, toasted with some bubbly, and watched the ball drop to bring in the new year.  This is mine and Andy’s 15th New Years together…love him.

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In typical Westchase style, parties were going on all around us and fireworks were being blown off half of the night; and not just little ones, I’m talking about the big multicolored Continue reading

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Christmas Morning 2012

It’s Christmas morning and Andy and I wait patiently on the couch for the boys to wake up and come running down to see what Santa brought them.  I had expected them to beat me out of bed, but instead they slept a good half hour longer than normal.  Davy was the first to come down, his eyes sparkled and he was soooo happy.  We sent him back up for Matty, there was no way we were going to let him get started without him. 


Santa brought everything on their list this year, except for the Xbox 360.  After all the gifts were opened, we brought out the last one from Andy and I and let Davy open it.  He was so happy.  He jumped up, hugged me, and said “Thank you so much mommy!”  It’s the best feeling ever to see such childhood joy on their faces.  The big gifts this year were: Lego table, Lego’s, Furby’s, Xbox 360, Skylanders, Slushie Machine, Jake pirate ship, Quirkle, Chuggington trains, Scooby Doo house, roller blades, cowboy cap guns, remote control monster truck and boat, metal detector, Matty’s “jeep” 4-wheeler, and Davy’s phone.

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Christmas Eve 2012

DSC_0011Today we decided to keep everything low-key.  Davy is still recovering from the fever and we all need to get a little better before the big day tomorrow.  We watched movies, baked gingerbread men, ate dinner with Dan and Debbie, drove around and looked at lights, threw carrots on the roof and sprinkled the lawn with sparkly oats, left out Santa’s cookies and milk, spent a little time Facetimeing the cousins, and then headed off to bed to read “The Night Before Christmas”.  I can’t wait to see their faces tomorrow morning!


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Oh Christmas Tree! Oh Christmas Tree!

It is the day after Thanksgiving and per our annual Zahn tradition, down went the fall decorations and out came the Christmas ones.  This year we decided to head back over to Sickles High School to check out their trees.  Last year we did a little shopping around and in the end we ended up back at the school.  For the last three years this is where we have purchased our tree.  The tree tents were surprisingly bare and as we were leaving one of the gentleman working the tent said,” We really want your business, sorry we don’t have more trees out we have been slammed today and can’t get them out fast enough.   Please let us unwrap a few, we’ll find one you want.”  So that’s what we did.  He opened up three, we picked out one, and were on our way.  This tree is 8 feet, we thought that it might be a little big, but once we got it home we realized it was smaller than last years….and perfect! 

Originally, we were going to make homemade pizzas and decorate the tree, but it quickly became dark outside so we turned off the lights, made hot chocolate, and put in Polar Express.  On Saturday morning, Matty and I ran to Target for new white lights and then the family decorated the tree when we got back.  Only two broke from little hands….  Not bad, if I do say so myself… 🙂


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Idlewild Holiday Tables 2012

This year for Holiday Tables Rochelle, Catie, and I decided to do two tables and decorate them baby shower shabby chic.  We had fun decorating them and can’t wait until next year…


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4th of July in Washington DC 2012

Happy Birthday America!  Being so close to Washington DC, we had to take the kids in to celebrate with the Nation’s Capital.  We started our day with a red white and blue breakfast, blueberry pancakes with strawberries and bananas and then we loaded them into the car and headed for Springfield to take the train in.

Every little kid loves to take the train.

We got off at the Smithsonian stop and headed over to the mall to camp out our spot for the fireworks before the crowds came in.  We parked our blankets on the hill, right under the National Monument facing the reflecting pool and the Lincoln Memorial.

It was really hot again today, pushing 100 and the heat index was said to be 105, so to cool off the boys we took them down to the WWII memorial fountain to put their feet in.

All throughout the mall there were water fountains, established and brought in, as well as hoses for the kids to spray themselves down.

Another fun find were the air vents…

On our way to lunch we stopped by the White House for the classic out front photo.  Davy was so sweet,when I told him we were going to see the White House he says, “Will we get to see President Obama???”  If only it were that easy… 🙂

We saw this hanging off of the side of a building, I thought that it was nice.

Ahhhh, an air-conditioned lunch… 🙂

Cucumber gin and tonic with some of the best macaroni and cheese ever…  Yum!

Street vendors were lined up everywhere selling water, ice pops, and fruit!

Fat suits, according to the boys…

The Marine Corps jazz band started playing at 6 and entertained us throughout the evening.  Right before 9 o’clock, 850,000 people sang the “Star Spangled Banner” together and then did a countdown from 10 to 1…  The beautiful fireworks shot off into the night…

After the fireworks were over, Davy turns to me and says, “Well that’s something you don’t see everyday!”  Love him!

Little Matty didn’t quite make it back to the train.  Although we were all hot, dirty, and tired…we finally made it home.  This was a wonderful experience and I can’t wait to do it again!

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Filed under 4th of July, Bucket List, Carothers Family, Holiday's, Richmond, Vacations

GA Day 1 – Vogel State Park and Crane Creek Vineyards

Every year, on the last Friday in May, Davy gets out of school at 11am.  His summer officially begins at 11:01 and keeping with a new tradition that we started last year, we loaded up in the car and headed north.  Last fall, when we were driving around north Georgia, we came across a little town called Blue Ridge.  We decided that this would be our destination in the spring.  We found a cute little cabin about 5 miles outside of town on www.vrbo.com (#14512), and it was perfect.  The drive up was only around eight and a half hours, it was super easy and we weren’t to tired.

Our first day of exploring!  We started with breakfast down in Blue Ridge at a cute little place called Serenity Garden Cafe.  Our thoughts were to kill a little time because Blue Ridge was having their spring arts festival and it opened at 10am.  What we didn’t anticipate was that they would charge you $5 per person to stroll through it.  Needless to say, we passed and decided to get on the road.  Crane Creek Vineyards was also having a spring festival, so Andy decided to drive us in that general direction and here’s what we found!

The next town over is called Blairsville.  They too were having a fair.  A beautiful church sits in the middle of a round-a-bout and venders were set up on both sides of the road all around the circle.  This one was free, so we parked the car and went for a stroll.  If you know us, then you know that we love BBQ sauces and honey.  We picked up some Sourwood Honey from Berry’s Honey Farm and Southern Delight Barbecue Sauce from Kickin Mule…yum yum!

A while back ago Andy read an article about a place called Mountain Crossing.  It is the first outpost and general store along the Appalachian Trail.  It is here that hikers unload their packs, mail stuff home, and pick up anything that they think they might need.  Off to our next destination.

Along the way we came across Vogel State Park.  After spotting the waterfall from the road, we pulled in for a quick hike to bottom of it.

The store was fantastic.  It was complete with home decorations for sale, all kinds of hiking gear, and the walls were lined with signed packs and boots from past travelers of the trail.

Next stop Crane Creek Vineyard!  I found this vineyard on-line searching for festivals and fun things to do.  Apparently, there are 41 vineyards in north Georgia.  It was advertised as a fun family event, so Andy and I thought that this would be a nice place to celebrate our 9 year wedding anniversary. 

They had us park behind the vineyard, and then transported us to the entrance on a hay ride.  The boys just loved this, while we loved the view.

Once inside, the festival included a wine tasting, live music, lunch, painting for the kids and fishing.  It was beautiful and very relaxing, just a little hot.  If the temperature had been ten degrees cooler, it just would have been perfect!  We bought a bottle of wine, and let the kids play.  This was a nice stop.  Happy Anniversary my love!

For dinner we drove back into Blue Ridge and went to Joe’s BBQ.  It is a walk-up BBQ place with some very very tasty ribs.  After dinner we drove over to Lake Blue Ridge to check out the views. 

This house looks like a dream mountain house to me!  🙂

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Filed under Georgia, Memorial Day Weekend, Vacations

Davys Kindergarten Christmas Party




Gabriella and Colton




Mrs. Lewis

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Filed under Berkeley Prep, Christmas Traditions, Holiday's

Happy Halloween 2011

After a full day of rain and waiting, the sun finally came out and the children excitedly got dressed…it was time to go Trick-or-Treating!!!  Since Friday a few things have been lost along the way: Matty’s hook, Davy’s sunglasses and tie.  They didn’t care though, at this point it was all about the candy.  At about 5:30 Colin and Connor came over and we knew then that not many were going to make it to six.  I was lucky to get a few photos before they ran out the door.  Once again, here is my OSS Super Agent Kid Spy and Captain “Matty” Hook!

Emma is dressed up like Strawberry Shortcake and Jack is the UPS Man.

Caiden and Hudson were both Ninja Turtles.

I love this photo because although there are so many different things that the children could be carrying to collect their candy in, they all seem to still want to carry the orange pumpkin.

Andy and I feeling a little bit of Halloween spirit!

It didn’t take long for Davy to ditch the mustache, he said that it itched.

Grandpa Barnhart was handing out little bibles and Grandma Barnhart was handing out the candy!

Colin as Harry Potter.

Ashlynn and Landon also dressed as characters from Harry Potter.

Davy and Ashlynn wanted to go trick-or-treating together, so we let Davy run ahead and have fun with her. :O)

Prince Charming and Cinderella.

Grandma Jenni handing out some candy.

Reese dressed as Rapunzel.

While Davy ran ahead, Matty thought that it would be fun to catch a ride in a couple of different wagons…here he is in Mr. Brian’s wagon….

and here he is in Mr. Garrett’s wagon.

Daddy and his boys.

They finally gave up and decided to call it a night.  Daddy let them pick out a handful of candy each to open and they chose to sit on the front porch and watch the other kids go by and collect candy from Papa.  They were so happy today and Andy and I loved every minute of it.

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Memorial Day Weekend 2011 – Chimney Rock

Davy just finished his last day of school and with a long weekend ahead of us, we decided to pack up and spend the weekend in North Carolina.  Davy loves the mountains so much and we had the time, so this gift was for him.  After we had our celebratory lunch, we went home and packed the car, and we were off.  The ride up was easy and we pulled in around 11pm.  Here’s sweet Matty sleeping on the way up.

When we woke up on Saturday morning, we decided to head over to Asheville and do a little exploring.  We stopped at the BP for a cup of coffee and a sausage biscuit and then headed out.  We figured by the time we got there it would be the perfect time for brunch.  Asheville has so many independent places to eat at, but we had such a great meal at Tupelo Honey the last time we decided to take mom there so she could see it for herself.

As we pulled into Asheville, we saw a sign for the Asheville Farmers Market!  In the spirit of being spontaneous, we decided to go and check it out.  I love Farmer’s Markets.  There were several different hangers all filled with produce, plants, meats, jams, jellies, honey, etc.  We were not disappointed and ended up having a honey taste test.  Yum!  We bought Blueberry Honey, pure Wildflower Honey, Sourwood Honey, and some Hotter than Hell Chow Chow.

We were officially starving so off to Tupelo Honey.  It was actually a good thing that we stopped because they didn’t open until after 9.  We had a half hour wait, so the boys played across the street.

Once you sit down at the table, they bring out biscuits, jelly, and honey.  Here are the boys eating theirs.  For brunch I had a sweet potato pecan pancake, mom had a grilled chicken sandwich, and Andy had fried chicken with biscuits and red-eye gravy.

We decided today that we would check out Chimney Rock; so we headed southeast out of Asheville and about 25 miles later we were there.  Chimney Rock is located in Chimney Rock State Park and is apart of the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area.  The rock is at and elevation of 2, 280 and you can see out up to 75 miles.  When climbing up to Chimney Rock it is roughly 400 stairs.  We parked at the bottom, took a bus to the entrance and then began our climb.  Davy and I went ahead first, Andy carried Matty, and mom followed in the rear.

Here’s Davy and I half way up to Chimney Rock.

Now, when you get to Chimney Rock lookout, of course there is a trail to go even higher and we weren’t going to give up there.  We had to go to the top to check it out!  Exclamation Point is at an elevation of 2,480 ft and is the pinnacle of the park, and essentially we just hiked 3/4’s of mile straight up.  We were so proud of Davy and Matty.  Davy didn’t complain one time, in fact he loved it, and little Matty wanted to hike it too…he’s just a little slow.  Here we are at the top.  :O)

After we hiked back down to the entrance of the trail, we met up with mom and decided to hike on over to Hickory Nut Falls.  It was also 3/4 of a mile to get there; meaning that we ended up hiking 3 miles today.  This waterfall is one of the highest falls east of the Mississippi.

By the time we got back to the bus we were hot and tired….but we were so glad that we went the extra distance.  The views and the waterfall were beautiful.  At the Chimney Rock lookout we spotted Lake Lure and decided to drive over and get a better look at it.  There was a really cute little village, a beautiful resort, and a beach on the lake.  This beach reminded me of one that you would see in a movie.  It was very clean, crowded, lots of things to do, and with a gorgeous backdrop.  Matty fell asleep in the car, Davy took one look at the water slides, and we had to stop for him.  :O)

One of the neatest things that they had here on the beach was a water balloon firing station.  You could purchase the balloons at the check-in desk, the kids would fill them up with water, and then they would launch them at each other.  Davy loved this!

After we left the lake, we headed back towards Asheville.  All of us were starving so we stopped at their local Mellow Mushroom for some pizza.  Yum Yum!!!  The weather was beautiful so we ate outside.  Today was a great adventurous day!!!














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