Saturday, February 26, 2011


We went to see the Scotts when little Win was born.  He is so sweet and adorable! 

After Daddy's retirement we went to Stillwater Tap Room to see Packway Handle Band!  I have been a fan since these guys formed in Athens back in 2002.  It has been two years since we have seen them but they are just as good as ever.  Hopefully, it won't be that long next time! 


Last Friday, we celebrated Dad's retirement from GA Department of Natural Resources.  There were about 80 people that joined us to celebrate at the Thomson Depot.  He's been with the state for over 30 years and half of those he has been the regional supervisor.  There were friends from college, his boss from Sapelo and his old one from Thomson, employees from across the state and family!
 Dad's mother and two of his brothers.  It was great to have them there!  Levi was presenting a paper in Kentucky and couldn't make it.  :(
 One of Dad's old biologists drew this sketch of his old hunting dog, Bandit.  He did such a good job!
Daddy got a shotgun!  He has been after a new one for a while so the guests and his region got one as his retirement gift.  He was so excited!

I gave a little speech and slide presentation...

when i started thinking about what i wanted to say tonight, of course, the usual things came to mind. i wanted to thank my dad for supporting, along with mom, our family for 33+ years. providing for us to do the things we enjoy and for our educations. i wanted to mention his dedication, pride and passion for this profession and organization. hard-working and loyal come to mind as well. to work for an organization for 30+ years is rare these days and i can say he truly enjoyed every minute of it. well, maybe besides working on the budget. :)

but, all of you here know my dad and know all of these things already. so, i decided to share some lessons that he has taught levi and me through the years.

 how to share.  i also learned this day not to get my ponytail caught in the fishing reel.
 to promote hunter safety
 to train killer whales
He taught us to be dawgs.

 to charm the President.

to get proof of the big catch
 and to lie about the little ones
 the importance of education

 to appreciate nature's beauty
 to be water babies
 to take advantage of child labor  (someday!)

Since Levi wasn't able to be there, he sent a video.  I am not sure if this will work but he talked of his early aspirations of being a cowboy during the week and a wildlife biologist like Dad on the weekend.  And how much he learned tagging along with him and how Dad's career is influencing Levi's.

It was a great night celebrating a long and wonderful career!! 

And the toast I gave:

to dogs in the field, birds in the bag and fish on the hook!


Some of you know that we lived on Sapelo Island right after I was born.  This small barrier island is inhabited by state employees and the island's plantation's original slave descendents only.  (If you read the link, you will see Cornelia Bailey's name.  She is an island expert/business owner and babysat me and my brother while Dad worked for DNR and Mom did research at UGA's marine lab there.)  My Dad started his employment with GA DNR (with whom he just retired) here and we spent a few years living on our own private island.  I don't remember those years but we did go back to visit friends and camp throughout our growing-up years.  It is so beautiful and unspoiled! 

Anyway, Brad and I had dinner at Frog Hollow Tavern last Thursday as a semi-Valentine's dinner and look what was on the menu!

Pretty cool huh?!?


I have been on the baby shower circuit the last couple of weekends!  I think there is something in the water...

Natalie and I hosted a shower in Louisville for Martha with two of her friends there.  Here's the yummy food.
 All the pretty gifts.
 Natalie and I with Martha.
 The next day, I went to a shower for Michele and Elizabeth Rigsby.  Here they are with their haul.  Their whole family was sick that weekend, poor things. 
 Melissa, Kathi, Michelle, me and Whitney at Melanie's shower last weekend. 
With Melanie.  She has been on bedrest for months but is almost done!!  Her little girl, Tensley Grace, will be here in April. 

We have a shower tonight for Allison and Nathan Thompson too!

Monday, February 14, 2011

sweet potato ravioli

I made this yummy sweet potato ravioli for dinner tonight with haricot verts. 

Frog Hollow Tavern on Thursday for our Valentine's dinner!  

Thursday, February 10, 2011


Another dear friend had a baby today!  Martha and Win Scott welcomed Baby Win around noon.  He will be joining Becca in the Scott family. 

I will get to meet this little nugget tonight and will have more pictures then!

Beth and Martha were both in my wedding and ended up having babies one day apart.  And another one, Melanie, is due in April!

Can you believe we hosted a shower for Martha this past Saturday?  She did great to be so close to giving birth!  Pictures on that and a shower for Michele Rigsby to come...

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

swiss chicken

Here's another great recipe for a quick and easy dinner.

Swiss Chicken

6-8 skinless boneless chicken breasts
can of cream of mushroom
1/4 cup milk
8 slices swiss cheese
2 cups Pepperidge Farm herb stuffing mix
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted

How to make it:

Spray slow cooker with spray
Put chicken breasts on bottom of crockpot
Cover chicken with swiss cheese, layering if necessary
Combine soup and milk and mix well, then pour on top of cheese
Put stuffing mix on next
Pour melted butter on top of mix
Cook 8-10 hours on low, 4-6 on high

I modified it for just Brad and I to do on a weeknight.  So, I used two pieces of chicken and two pieces of cheese.  I mixed a tad of milk and 1/2 can of soup and just covered the top with the stuffing mix.  I did add the butter but don't believe it is necessary and will skip that next time.  Maybe the milk too.  I did all this in a casserole dish (covered with foil for the first 45 minutes) for about an hour at 350.



The VanSant family said goodbye to our loving family dog yesterday.  Shadow gave us 13 wonderful years and she will be missed greatly!  Rest in peace sweet girl!!

welcome harrison

Today, Beth and Ryan Neal welcomed Harrison Raley Neal.  Isn't he adorable??  Well, except for that thing on his head.  :)  Ryan went to Auburn and Beth is very tolerant.  They did win the National Championship after all. 

Can't wait to meet the little nugget!