Sunday, July 13, 2008

4th of July Weekend in TN

We spent the 4th of July with my college roommates. As always, it went by too quickly, but this time around we made sure to pack our time full of fun memories.

On Friday after lunch together, us girls headed to the only open shop around...the nail place! It was a fun indulgence (and my first pedicure ever!). The boys drove around Knoxville looking for houses for Lisa and Nick.

Afterwards Lisa and I made a cake for Jessica's birthday. The best part was enjoying the "leftover" cake batter. Abbie was appalled that we would take such a health risk, but we thought it was worth it! :)

Friday night found us headed to Knoxville to the World's Fair Park. I had found out that the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra was performing a FREE full length concert before the fireworks. Being the music enthusiast that I am, I couldn't pass up an orchestra concert, especially a free one! After squeezing through the crowds to find enough open grass to lay down our blankets and set down our chairs, we listened to about three songs before the wind picked up. We knew there was a chance of a thunderstorm (isn't there always during the summer?), but so far the weather had cooperated. What was first a little wind became a serious problem for the orchestra members whose music started flying and the sound system that stopped picking up delicate wind instruments and instead started projecting the trees whipping in the beginnings of the storm. Thunder and lightening soon followed and, on the suggestion of Jessica, we packed up before everyone else had a chance to. Not long after we made our way to the parking deck, we realized that the organizers of the event had asked everyone to vacate the area due to the incoming storm. Thankfully we were able to make it out of the parking deck before chaos ensued and made it home in time to watch the orchestra concert start up again once the storm moved out. The concert was followed by fireworks, and by that time we were quite glad to be watching the festivities from the comfort of the living room!

Here's Chuck with Olivia, the only little one of our group (so far). She'll turn 3 in October and was a delight to be around. She and her baby doll had a great piggy back ride back to the car after the storm began. Later we realized she really need to "go potty" but thankfully was able to make it back to Lisa & Nick's house since our options for potty locations were slim!

Here's Jessica blowing out candles from her birthday cake...and Olivia "helping". We enjoyed cake and ice cream while watching the fireworks and playing poker (no real betting allowed!).

Saturday was spent together at the neighborhood pool just relaxing and playing cards. Jess and Olivia did get in the water some, but the rest of us decided to stay dry and enjoy the peaceful surroundings. I was quite surprised that the pool was so quiet, but we figured everyone was either on vacation elsewhere or had had enough of the pool on Friday. It was a nice way to spend the day together.

We really did enjoy our time with Olivia too. She is such an inquistive little girl. It is amazing how quickly she has grown. I went to visit the weekend she was born and got to cuddle and feed her and marvel at how beautiful she was. Now, no longer a baby, she is turning into a little reflection of the beautiful woman that her mom is!

College roomies - From L to R - Lisa, Abbie, Jessica, and me

Saturday after the pool, Jess and Scott took Olivia to her grandparents' house and we decided to have some all-adult time. Now if we were the wild bunch, I would say we went "out on the town" but I don't think that coffee and dessert at TGI Friday's you? Either way, we had a great time just being out and spending time together telling stories about each other's lives and reflecting on the experiences that we've had since the last time we were all together. I was able to talk about my mission trip to Romania and Jess about her and Scott's to a race trace ministering to kids. I feel so blessed to have such wonderful friends! Even if we don't get to see one another very often, I know that we all care about one another so much and value the friendship we have. Praise God for good friends and good times together!

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