Thursday, April 29, 2021

Yay, BAND!

 Last night Valerie had her first band concert in over a year.  It was held at the stadium instead of in the auditorium, but we'll take it.  It's been a whole year of nothing for the band kids, so they were so excited to finally do something.  In other good news, marching band practice is starting next week.  It'll be interesting to see how it goes because two grades have no marching experience.  This year's freshmen and the incoming freshmen all have to learn how to march.  Everybody is also required to attend "rookie camp" to start building up their endurance for what's to come.  



Wind Ensemble group


Senior High Honor Band Award

Val and the 2 BFF's (the friends we went to TN with)

Excuse the messy hair - it's hot and humid!

I decided to dress for the occasion.  Veronica was going through a dress phase and I bought this on Amazon for her a few years ago.  She never wore it and now it's too small.  I decided I would start wearing it to the band and choir performances.  




In other news, it's nice to have things getting back to normal!  Fingers crossed it stays that way.  I hope schools ditch the masks by next school year.  



Monday, April 26, 2021

Monday, Monday....

 Our  weekend was pretty quiet.  

On Saturday afternoon, Valerie and I went to the mall.  (Funny how she forgets that she hates me when she wants me to take her shopping!!)  

Sadly, our mall is dying.  Back in the 80s and 90s, it was the place to be.  I have such great memories of walking around the crowded mall.  It was always busy, especially on weekends.  You'd see everybody you knew in the mall.  Friday night was mall night for the teens, and there were groups of friends walking the mall until closing at 9pm.  Eventually it got so bad a curfew was enacted and no teens were allowed unaccompanied after 6pm.  It had a 4 screen movie theater and a few decent restaurants.  The anchor stores were surrounded by all the popular mall shops.  Now, it's so dead.  It gets a little busy around Christmas, but nothing like it was in it's heyday.  The entire Sears wing is almost empty.  The theater closed about 15 years ago after The Palace 10 opened a few blocks away. (oddly, now The Palace is struggling to stay open.)  All the restaurants either moved elsewhere or shut down completely, so there's not many food choices. Every now and then a new store will pop up, but it never lasts.  I've heard the rent is outrageous so nobody can sustain a mall space very long.  Just in the past few months, H&M, American Eagle, and F.Y.E. closed.  Aside from JC Penney, Dillard's, and Shoe Dept., we have almost no reason to set foot in the mall these days.  Unless something comes along to breathe new life into it, I suppose it will shut down completely eventually.  It would make a good Amazon distribution center -- just sayin'! 



This was the only "busy" section 









Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Blue skies and Wednesday blues

It's a beautiful spring day here but my mood is quite gloomy.  Parenting teenage girls is hard y'all.  Ugh.  Teen angst is in full force.  We are horrible.  Everything we do is wrong.  Life is horrible.  Everything has been and is horrible!  At least according to the teens.  I actually had to get in my car and drive away the other day to escape the drama. Sigh. This too shall pass.  I know.  Still this mamma's heart is sad!!  

Anyway...  

Onto good news.  My calendar is once again full!  For the first time in over a year, we are booked solid the rest of April and all through May.  Band and choir rehearsals and concerts are back!  We got next year's marching band calendar and July - November is non-stop.  Marching band is happening and for that, Valerie is so happy. 

Veronica was once again nominated for Talented and Gifted (TAG) for choir.  She was recommended a few years ago when she first made All-State Honor Choir, but the froze at the audition.  She was better prepared this time and passed the first round audition with no problem.  I'm waiting to find out when the second round is, and hopefully she does well.  If so both girls will be in TAG music next year - Valerie for clarinet and Veronica for choir.  

Oh and Veronica is also auditioning Friday for a part in a summer community theater production of "The Little Mermaid.".  I think she's going to try out for for Ursula.  

We've had several days of flooding rain back to back, so today's nice weather is a welcome break. I'm happy to say that after all the ice we had this past winter, all of my yard is coming back.  






I'm way too excited but in the weeds behind our shed, I found a wild blackberry bush!!!!   It was full of white blooms and now it's starting to get some berries.  I used to go blackberry picking in the woods with my Dad and would cry to go home when I got stickers in my fingers.  It sure would be nice to get a cup or two of blackberries out of it.  At least enough to make some blackberry dumplings would do....  








Thursday, April 15, 2021

Happy Spring Break!

Well there I go NOT blogging again!!  And I'm way behind with all of you.  I will catch up eventually.  

We took a little drive of 1,440 miles (round trip) for Easter week/Spring Break and visited Pigeon Forge, TN.  That is the farthest  north I have ever been and yet it's still considered the south.  We've wanted to visit the Smoky Mountains for years but just never followed through with it.  When one of the band moms invited us to go, we knew it was time.  We traveled with 2 other families making us a total 6 adults and 7 kids!  

We had lots of fun eating, shopping, and visiting local tourist traps.  I say traps but the entire area seems like a giant tourist trap!!   It seemed like block after block of junk stores, moonshine, museums, and really tourist-ty places.  We visited the Alcatraz Museum, Bird Mountain, The Island, The Gatlinburg strip, bought moonshine, visited Dollywood, The Apple Barn, mountain coasters, and Paula Deen's Lumberjack Feud show.  Dollywood was the favorite and I would like to go back and spend a little more time there.  

One thing I learned is that I do not like driving on mountain roads.  Well, Clint drove but you know what I mean.  At one point on our way to Gatlinburg, we were so high up that we were almost looking down on the Skybridge and lift.  Curves, drops, hairpin turns, steep inclines.... scared me to death.   Take me back to the swamp and flat ground!!  

Maybe for Thanksgiving we'll go back and maybe we'd see some snow! 






















Wednesday, April 07, 2021

Wordless Wednesday from the mountains!

 Wordless Wednesday greetings from the Smoky Mountains!