Wednesday, December 31, 2008

McKenzie is taking dance for the first time this year and she is LOVING it. On my birthday (December 18th) her dance teacher let us come watch them practice as a birthday present to me. Actually, it was parents' night and all the parents could come, but this is my blog so it was a present for me. OK, Betty says it's OUR blog, so it was an anniversary present to us. Anyway, of course I took my camera and got some shots of McKenzie strutting her ballet and jazz/hip hop stuff. Matt watched attentively. I had to take him out of the room towards the end because he wanted to get out on the floor and dance with McKenzie. I immediately took him home and played cars and trucks and football with him and rubbed dirt on his face.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

McKenzie's Cooking Show

McKenzie got an Easy Bake Oven from Santa this year. Saturday, we got it set up and she wanted to make some sugar cookies. So, we decided to make it into a cooking show. It has the energy of Rachael Ray, the Southern drawl of Paula Deen, and the comedy cameos of Matt. So, sit back and enjoy McKenzie's Cooking Show!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Santa Came!!!

Santa has finally come! McKenzie was so excited last night she couldn't get to sleep. She came to our bed about midnight. Bless her heart, she couldn't stop talking and it was a little crowded, so I went to her bed about 1:00. I could still hear her talking to Betty (who was asleep). She finally went to sleep and woke us up at 7:00. As you can see, she was so excited when she saw what Santa brought her. Matt didn't get up until about 7:30, and he looked like he was confused about why all these toys were in the playroom. He quickly got into it and started playing with his stuff. Here are some pictures from this morning.

McKenzie's presents.

Matt's stuff.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas!

We would like to wish all of our family and friends a Merry Christmas and a blessed New Year!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Christmas Inside and Out 2008

Christmas is in full swing at our house. We are having alot of fun! We only have a few more days to enjoy our decorations. Here is a slide show of our home. I have included a few pictures of McKenzie and Matt's rooms. They are enjoying their decorations. Matt has a sports tree...of course, and McKenzie has a pretty "girly" tree. Hope you enjoy the tour!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Christmas Cards

One of my favorite things about Christmas is going to the mailbox every afternoon and getting those Christmas cards. It is so much fun. Every year I enjoy making our Christmas card. I finally finished ours last weekend and mailed them. I like to do "theme" cards, so we did a "night before Christmas" card. I put the kids in their matching Christmas pajamas and had McKenzie read Matt a bedtime story in her bed. Boy, was that stressful. At one point Matt was on the floor kicking and screaming. It took a couple of nights to get a decent shot. You know those two year olds want to do things their way! McKenzie was so disgusted with him. We finally got it, though.
A couple of years ago I was trying to think of a way to display all the photo cards and be able to look at them. So, I decided to hang a garland around the door leading into the Christmas tree room. I punched a hole in each card, then tied each one onto the garland with a piece of ribbon. I love it! It looks very festive. I need more garland because I am running out of room.

Each year I take our card to Neblett's and have them frame it. Then I hang it with the other photo cards in the kids' playroom.We started this tradition McKenzie's first Christmas.
Here are a couple of pictures of my christmas card garland and my collection of our framed cards.

Happy Birthday To Me!

Thank you to everyone who sent birthday wishes to me yesterday. I did have a very happy birthday and anniversary. Thank you also to the kind soul who left the wonderful comment which prompted my lovely wife to make some peanut butter cookies with Hershey's kisses. Thank you, Betty, for the kind words you wrote yesterday. It was almost word for word what I told you to write! :)

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Happy Birthday!


David, we hope you have a great birthday today. You are the best husband and daddy in the world. Thank you for all you do for us. You always put us first and for that we are very grateful! We are blessed to have you in our lives. We love you soooooooo much!

PS Happy 15th anniversary! These have been the best years of my life. I am so glad God picked you for me. You make me laugh every day and that is one of the many things I love about you. Can't wait to go eat at Orleans tonight!!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Jackson Wentworth Branscome

Congratulations to Amanda and John on the birth of their son, Jack. He made his arrival this afternoon at 2:46 weighing 6 lbs. and 10 oz. and he is 21 1/4 inches long. I hear he has adorable dark curly hair. It was exciting to keep up with them all day. Thank goodness for cell phones and text messaging! That way I could still be a part even though i couldn't be in Jackson. Mommy, Daddy and baby are all doing well tonight and hopefully getting some much needed rest. Can't wait for this sweet little family to get home. You can check out more about Jack on Amanda's blog found under our favorite blogs. Her sister Nicole was going to try and put some pictures on it soon for Amanda.

Tonight McKenzie had her school Christmas program. It was really cute and got you in the Christmas spirit hearing all the children singing. McKenzie LOVES to sing. Here are a few pictures David took tonight.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Baby Jack!

Can't believe the time has finally come for our dear friends Amanda and John to have their baby boy! We are very excited at our house about this special event! They are traveling to Jackson on Monday to be admitted and she will have Jack sometime Tuesday. What a wonderful Christmas gift they will have at their house this year. They are going to be great parents. I have no doubt about this because Amanda has been absolutely wonderful with McKenzie and Matt. She treats them as if they were her very own and that means so much to David and me. Next time I post, I hope to have a picture or two of baby Jack!

Good luck Amanda and John...we will be praying for all three of you!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Our Weekend

As of 10:00 Friday morning, David and I will be free for the whole weekend. We are going to our favorite place...Memphis to celebrate our 15th anniversary! We love McKenzie and Matt and really enjoy doing fun things with them, but it is nice to get away by ourselves. It is like old times. I look forward to digesting my food. We already have planned where we will eat every meal. Can't wait to go and see a "non-kid" movie. David got us tickets for the Point of Grace christmas concert Saturday night. They are my favorite christian group. We took McKenzie to Nashville when she was three to see their christmas concert, so we are definately not telling her this detail because she would be very mad at us! Besides Hannah Montana, they are her favorite, too. Nana and Grand (David's parents) are coming to stay at our house for the weekend and keep the kids. We are so thankful for them. They are always so good to keep McKenzie and Matt when we need a break.

We're staying at our favorite place in downtown Memphis - The Westin.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Songs, a baptism, and a trip to the ER

McKenzie had her Children's Choir Christmas musical this past Sunday night. She did great! She loves singing and dancing (or creative movement since we're Baptists). Her cousins, Jordan, Justin, and Anna Catherine were in it too, so here are some pictures of them as well.

I have the video of McKenzie's baptism on YouTube. She was so sweet looking. I couldn't see her face from where I was sitting, so I'm glad we got it on video. Betty was at the top of the stairs of the baptistry, so that's who McKenzie kept looking up at.

I also have the video of our men's quartet singing Sinner Saved By Grace. I have the first solo and Brad Branscome has the second one. We are joined by Keith Johnson and Andy Cummings.

Finally, Matt made his first trip to the ER this morning. He pulled a lamp down on his head and cut himself at the hairline. He bled quite a bit and scared Betty to death. She ran to him and he had blood running down his face. She called me at work and I hurried home and we took him to the ER. Betty's sister, Mary Catherine (who works at the hospital), met us there. Matt was a good little patient as they cleaned him up and when the doctor put the Derma-bond glue stuff on his cut to close it. Doesn't he look pitiful?

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Something For Everyone

Saturday was a big day for everyone in our family. It started out with our usual KFC and Wal-Mart routine for me (David) and the kids with "Da" (aka Caleb). Then McKenzie had her children's choir practice for her program on Sunday night. After lunch we all headed to Jackson for a day of trains, crafts, shopping, and food. Something for everyone.

We started off at the Mississippi Ag Museum, which had a model train exhibit and a Christmas arts and crafts fair. Matt and I went to the train exhibit while Betty and McKenzie hit the fair.

Here's one of the train layouts. This one shows Mississippi trains during the 20th century.

Matt absolutely LOVED the trains. He could've stayed there all day pressing his face to the glass and pointing excitedly at any train that moved.

Matt didn't care too much for the creepy life-like characters in the various exhibits in the museum. We came up on this guy and I wasn't looking his way and Matt whispered in my ear, "What that guy do-nin'?" I turned and saw Creepy Farmer Guy staring at us and we just moved along and mostly stayed on the other end of the train exhibit.

This is one of Matt's new friends. He knows just about everything you'd ever want to know about trains and he's more than happy to tell you about them. He and Matt made an immediate connection.

Here's another one of Matt's new friends. They were fun to watch run from window to window watching the trains. Here Matt is telling his new buddy something important about the train coming down the tracks.

This is the father of Matt's new friend. Matt just walked up to him and asked him to pick him up so he could see the trains.
Here's McKenzie enjoying a relaxing front porch rocker.
McKenzie isn't a fan of farm fragrances.
No trip to Jackson would be complete for Betty without a visit to Target. Somehow we managed to get Betty out of there without buying anything. We were looking for a Christmas train to go around our Christmas tree, but we couldn't find what we were looking for at Target or Home Depot, so, we decided to head on over to The Happiest Place On Earth.....
Hamil's! If I lived in Madison, I would no doubt weigh 300 pounds. Hamil's has the best food I have ever eaten in my life -- and I've eaten a lot of food. Their ribs are slap-your-momma good.
Here's me attacking the buffet at Hamil's.
The search for the Christmas train ended at Wal-Mart in Madison. This train plays either Christmas carols or train sounds and looks very Christmasy....unfortunately, it sounds like a leaf blower when it runs. So, we're taking it back.......and the search continues......