| 08.30.2005 | look at me, ma!

Marla has taken a few cute shots of Our Boy Henry over the past few days that I had to share without delay.

First is a play-by-play series of Henry's first taste of delicious sand. We were at the Lagoon for a Mom's Club cookout and Henry decided he'd like to see what that stuff on his toes tasted like. Apparently not so good, but the grit in his mouth couldn't keep him from smiling anyway.

His latest obsession is pulling up on everything. He seems to have little interest in crawling but sure does want to stand up. Marla went in today after a nap and spotted him staring up at the quilt on the wall. His expression is a classic "Busted!" moment.

@ 9:57 PM by TNorthcutt | Comments (2)

| 08.28.2005 | visiting the farm

Visiting the old family farm is always a highlight for me when we head back home. I have such great memories from when I was a kid: running around in the woods with my brother, exploring rotting barns, stumbling across a cow's skull (bleached white from the sun), loading freshly split logs into my grandfather's (ugly) green pick-up ...

Emma already has memories after just one trip. Her mantra on the drive there this year was, "Pickle won't lick me." Apparently the experience last summer left a lasting impression.

In one of the shots you'll see initials carved into a tree. We discovered this while walking along the bank of the Broad River on our property. Our guess is that this is Laura Kane (a great aunt) and was carved at least 30 years ago. How cool to randomly find a family "message" from the past?

@ 3:30 PM by TNorthcutt | Comments (1)

| 08.26.2005 | williams family reunion

Twice a year my grandfather's brothers and sisters would gather their families together for a reunion. Every August and December dozens upon dozens of aunts, cousins, great uncles and great-great-grandparents would gather for home-cooked food and some "visitin'".

One of the reasons we chose to return to Atlanta in the heat of August is so that we'd be there for a reunion. Henry and Emma would be able to meet relatives near and far in one big setting.

While getting to know your family is great and all, the highlight for me has really always been the food. Every family brings one or more dishes and they're always delicious. Of the "Top 5 Things To Do On Vacation" for me this year fully 3 of them involved gorging myself on some item at the reunion:

  1. Eat Aunt Ruth's creamed corn
  2. Drink sweet tea from a gallon pickle jar
  3. Buy boiled peanuts from the side of the road
  4. Go fishing
  5. Eat more creamed corn

Though there are fewer and fewer of the original generation (only two of eleven brothers and sisters remain) my generation is slowly filling in the gap with children of our own. This year my cousin Leigh Anne and her husband Chris contributed a daughter Erin, my brother Paul and his wife Jessica contributed Bailey and Marla and I added Henry. This may be the most fruitful year on record!

It was a treat for me to head to "The Country" during the summer to play with cousins thrice removed at a great aunt and uncle's home. I hope that we'll continue to attend these as often as possible so that Emma and Henry can grow up knowing the names and faces of relatives that might otherwise be considered "distant."

@ 10:18 PM by TNorthcutt | Comments (1)

| 08.20.2005 | henry and emma meet bailey

We're back from a wonderful, if wet, two week vacation in Atlanta. I believe it rained 10 out of the 12 days we were there. It's not unusual to get a short thundershower as the hot afternoon fades into cool evening in the South but it is odd to get so much!

Over our first two days in Toccoa we topped out the rain gague with 5" - amazing weather for folks like us used to 5" all year! Despite the rain, though, we had a grand old time visiting with family and friends.

This first set of photos is from our first visit with Cousin Bailey. We've seen her grow so much over the past months via the web that it was a little bit anticlimactic when we finally met her. "So... she looks just like her pictures."

Watching her, Henry and Emma play together, though, was anything but anticlimactic. She and Henry are nearly the same size and are pretty much on par with one another in terms of motor skills. It was really cute to see them reaching out to one another. (I'm sure it was just so they could gnaw on one another's arms or clothes but it was still cute.)

In the final shots of the series you'll see some evidence of Emma's latest fascination: shoes. She spent the vast majority of the vacation clomping around in various paris of Granma Northcutt's high heels.

More to come...

And, of course, happy birthday to Mommy, who reached the ripe old age of 32 today!

@ 9:42 PM by TNorthcutt | Comments (1)

| 08.02.2005 | vacation here we come

Mommy has been the prodigious writer and photographer thus far in July. I'm falling far, far behind. While Marla has written two giant entries and taken several hundred photos I've written a measley 200 words and taken a paltry 88 pictures. Definitely a slump for me!

I suspect, though, that this will all change soon as we'll be heading off for a (much deserved) vacation in a few more days.

We're off to Atlanta to visit my folks (and various other friends and relatives). I'm really looking forward to a few days on the farm, some fishing and generally lounging around while completely unplugged from the Internet.

I'll also take this opportunity to bid a fond farewell to our trusty '94 Volvo 850. It has moved on to a new owner and a shiny new Volvo S60 2.4T has taken its place in our garage.

And now, off to bed for me!

@ 10:03 PM by TNorthcutt | Comments (1)