Wednesday, August 6, 2014

The great catch-up {Part 2}

We covered June in the last post, and now we will catch up on July.  July was full of visitors and books and music and family holidays.  I posted a while ago about the 4th and the Nichols visit, so that's covered.  The same day the the Nichols left our house (a very sad day indeed), another guest arrived!  Our new friend spent a week with us, building bookshelves for our living room and learning about The Virtual Controller with Dad.

FYI: I had planned on uploading my camera card and using the pictures from that, but I have misplaced it, so I'm using mostly pictures from our iPhones.  So the quality is not going to be excellent, but at least I have pictures.  Anyway...

Phase 1 of bookshelf project.

Bookshelves installed!!

The finished product: all the family's books in one place.  Such satisfaction :).

The next big event in July was a two-week trip to Nashville.  The first night in town, we treated ourselves to dinner at Culver's!

In early June, Delaney and I registered for the Fine Arts Summer Academy, a two-week music intensive put on by the Annie Moses Band out of Nashville.  Delaney was accepted into the orchestra and I into the chorus.  We got our family a couple of dorm rooms on the college campus where FASA was being held, and on July 13 we arrived at Lipscomb University.

I saw this driving around town one day.

Bennet Campus Center was the main hub for events during the two weeks of the academy.

Orchestra practice.  See if you can find Delaney in the first violin section!

On July 19, the Younger Division put on their musical, BookEndless.  They had only begun rehearsing together 5 days before, and they simply blew us away!  It was a fabulous show.

Impromptu soccer game~ 

Weekend showcases, a time when smaller groups of various genres got a chance to perform what they had practiced the week before.

Sunday night swing dance!  Pardon the blurry photo, but nobody would hold still for the picture ;).

New friends are such a blessing!!  Even though it was only two weeks, we made some special bonds with people. :)

This is the building where the orchestra rehearsed and many private lessons were held.

By the end of week two, we were all pretty exhausted.  My friend Angela here caught a few minutes of sleep before the next rehearsal began.

During week two, the orchestra and chorus came together and worked through the whole program.  The orchestra is only pictured here.

When we weren't singing, we were doing this.  I promise you that we sang A LOT though.

July 24...Grand Ole Opry, here we come!  After two weeks of intense rehearsals, everyone was ready for the big performance at the Opry House.

We're slightly excited.

I still can't believe that we got to perform HERE.

Backstage, where we all gathered and hung out before rehearsal.

I walked around and peaked inside most of the dressing rooms.  This was the Glitz & Glam room.  And properly named it was.

This was the designated children's playroom, mostly used by the Annie Moses Band kiddos.

There was one dressing room for these guys.

And two dressing rooms for female soloists.

This is what the room looked like in it's clean state.  By the end of the night, it looked like a department store had imploded.

Onstage before the show.

THE CIRCLE.  The very next night, July 25, Carrie Underwood and The Band Perry performed on this circle.  My friend and I had a mild heart attack standing here with this knowledge.

Austin and Nathaniel getting their class on.

It was incredible to be on this stage with such talented singers!  I loved every minute of it.
(These next few concert pictures were not taken with an iPhone)

"To everything, turn, turn, turn..."

The Andy Griffith Theme Song

Motown Medley

Patriot Medley (play with freedom!!)

This is a rather dismal photo of us packing up on Friday morning, July 25.  We hope and pray that next year we can return to FASA, it was a huge blessing to our family.

To ease the sadness of leaving, we consoled ourselves with delicious cupcakes in the Opry Mills mall.

Back to the present: National Cheesecake Day was July do you suppose we celebrated?!  Thank heavens we have a Cheesecake Factory only 25 minutes from our house. :)

~There's no place like home~

Thanks for stopping by Pure Reflections!  Drop a comment below if you want...I always love hearing from y'all!  Have a lovely day...

Friday, August 1, 2014

The great catch-up {Part 1 of 2}

June and July have been the busiest months yet for our family!  We kicked off June with a fantastic road trip up to Northern Kentucky, to the Creation Museum.  Our plan was to spend the weekend there with our friends from California, who were flying out to go to the museum as well.  

On our way up north, we stopped for lunch in Cumberland Falls State Park.  It was a beautiful day and we enjoyed a lovely picnic close to the falls.

Above the falls.

Below the falls.

The homemade peach hand pies were a hit!

God's handiwork is incredible, is it not?

There was this hollow tree...

I thought this was a very Kentucky sort of scene.

Friday night:  The Beckers were due to arrive on the 9:00 plane into the Cincinnati Airport.  Delaney had to make sure their flight was on time. :)

By the way, the kids were COMPLETELY surprised!!

The next morning, Mrs. Becker surprised Mom in her hotel room.  She had flown in early in the morning, now it was Mom who got the surprise of her life!

Having just arrived at the Creation Museum, we enjoyed a picnic lunch in the parking lot.

Jed couldn't pass up holding a Boa.

The Botanical Gardens had a few lovely bridges.

We took LOTS of pictures of these ladies.

This Zorse adored all of Hannah's attention!

Wyatt's head was also tasty, apparently.

Most of us agreed that the snake show was fascinating :).

I even got a new necklace out of it.

Meet Daisy, the 100-pound python.  She does have a head, but didn't hold still for the camera very well.

Hannah wasn't on this dinosaur's good side ;).

On Sunday afternoon, Hannah, Wyatt, Delaney and I went on their zip-line course.

Hannah was the first to jump.

Then me.

Followed by Delaney.

And last but not least, Wyatt.

Being the man of good taste that he is, Wyatt indulged in a HotLix sucker.  There was a cricket inside of this one.

I love these cuties.

Mr. Becker was adamant that this was the best way to take a group picture.  The camera survived the ordeal.

Back home at Green Acres, Libbey lights up the night with her sparklers from the fireworks superstore.

~Part 2 coming soon!~