Sunday, January 7, 2018

40 Pics for 40 Years {1978 - 2018}

Wow!  My husband is 40!  A few years ago that really seemed OLD.  Haha!  Now...not so much.  But I am really honored to be this man's wife.  He has accomplished so much in pursuing his dreams with honesty, integrity, loyalty to his family and friends, and a whole lot of humor and fun.  We all just adore this man and are so very thankful for him.  In honor of the last 40 wonderful years, here are 40 pictures to summarize Eddie's life and legacy:

1.  He made his grand entrance into the world on January 7, 1978.  Wasn't he adorable?


2.  Right from the start, he was breaking hearts with that adorable smile!


3.  And he was also pretty cute naked.  Haha!



4.  And he grew into an adorable toddler.


5.  He became the cutest cowboy until his own little boy stole his title.


6. Occasionally, he did look a little like a "Problem Child," but he was always a sweetheart.


7.  He was always a sports enthusiast, but he later decided he would rather watch than play.  Football is more his jive though.


8.  He also aspired to serve in the military and enjoyed his time as an ROTC officer, but he found his calling as a forester so the rest is history. 


9.  He was an adept hunter from a young age and just enjoyed being in the woods with his best buddy, Lewis, and his dogs.


10.  Always a smarty pants, he graduated with honors from high school in 1996.


11.  He loved his big family and especially his Grandmother Mattie who passed away shortly after this picture was taken.


12.  He was an aspiring world traveler and began his journey in college with a trip to London with his best buddies, Titus and Josh.


13.  Seeing Big Ben was a dream come true.


14.  Eddie and his pal Titus hung out on London Bridge overlooking the Tower Bridge.


15.  After what seemed like forever, he finally fell in love in 2000.


16.  Sealed with a kiss.  He was the best boyfriend ever.


17.  After much hardwork, he graduated from his favorite alma mater, NC State University, to pursue his career as a forester.


18.  He began his career as a forester with the NC Forest Service where he fought wildfires in the state and all over the country as well as promoting responsible forest management practices. He received numerous awards during his tenure with the NC Forest Service for Stewardship Forestry because he wrote so many forest management plans and planted so many acres of trees.



19.  He never missed an opportunity to have fun!


20.  Yep, he "put a ring on it."  Haha!  In 2002, he popped the question, and of course, she  said Yes!  It really was the sweetest proposal when he gave her a special Valentine's present of a charm for her charm bracelet with her "new" monogram on the front and "Will you marry me?" on the back.


21.  We said "I do" and began our happily ever after in June 2003.


22.  We continued our traveling aspirations with a honeymoon in Maui, Hawaii.


23.  And we made our first trip to the Big Apple in a very cold January to see a Broadway show and take in the sights.


24.  We celebrated our first year of marriage in our first little house together.


25.  We decided to become responsible adults and buy our first little house together in 2005.


26.  In 2007, we began the journey of parenthood.


27.  First, our precious son Evan was born.


28.  What a fun Daddy!


29.   Eddie could not be happier to have another little sports enthusiast.  Evan was a ball lover from the earliest age.


30.  He wanted to continue his travels with his young son, so he took him to visit the Giant Sequoias and Redwoods in California among many other adventures.  We still remember not quite 3 year old Evan's sweet request for "shoulder time, Daddy" when he was tired of walking in the snow in Yosemite.


31.  We became a family of four in 2011 when our little Brody joined the family.


32.   We attended a fancy masquerade ball in 2012 for Sherry's law school formal.


33.  And we took our two young children to Disney World for the first time.


34.  With much support and love, he encouraged his wife to pursue and graduate from law school in 2013.


35.  We celebrated our 10 year anniversary in June 2013 with the pending arrival of our precious daughter Mattie.  Eddie was so excited to meet his little princess.


36.  We met our little angel on June 30, 2013, but she got her wings to fly to heaven.


37.  After a hard couple of years, we joyfully welcomed our beautiful third son, Mattox, into our family in 2015.


38.  And we were doubly blessed with a second surprise rainbow in late 2016 when our precious Grayson arrived.


39.  The Happily Ever After is just beginning, and we cannot wait to see what the next 40 years will bring!


40.  Happy Birthday to my dearest love!   May all your dreams come true!


Saturday, December 30, 2017

Mattie's 5th Christmas



Dear Mattie,

Merry Christmas and happy 4 1/2 year birthday!  We celebrated another Christmas without you.   A lot has happened to our little family since last year.  We moved to another house in another town in another state and have been adjusting to being so far away from you and the rest of our family.  We haven't been able to visit you this year like we usually do.  Your family has visited you and put flowers on your grave for your birthday and other holidays.  We really miss having you here with us at Christmas and every day.  At almost 5 years old, I know you would be getting so grown up and wanting to do more big girl things.  You would be preparing for kindergarten and may be going to pre-k at your big brothers' school.  We wanted to see you open your presents along with your brothers and see your little face light up with joy and excitement.  We wanted you to be a part of our family pictures and memories.  We wanted to see you enjoying Disney World with your brothers and know you would have loved to do all the princess stuff.  It is getting harder to imagine what you would want for Christmas since I can't know you here on earth.  I know in heaven none of these things really matter, but they matter to us down here because they are just another reminder that you aren't here.  Watching Mattox and Grayson playing together so well shows me how much you would likely have loved your brothers.  I think you and Brody would have been very close since you were the closest in age.  He was so excited to get you.  I know you are watching over us all, and I hope you enjoy sharing in our traditions.  We love you and will never forget you.  We will likely have many more years of missing you here with us.  For now, here is how we honored and remembered you this Christmas: 


Our family pictures never feel complete without you. 
You would have worn matching pajamas with us. 




I know you would have loved the Christmas tree and helped decorate it. 


Your special ornaments, little tree, stocking, and picture are still my favorite decorations. 

We finally got to visit you and take you some new flowers after Christmas. 

It was your baby brother's first visit. 

All of us together. 

I love all 5 of my babies! 


Daddy and Cocoa love you too. 

You would need some elf pajamas to match your brothers' other Christmas pajamas. 



A new Christmas dress for you. 

I don't know if you would need a sweater dress too much here, but it has been pretty cold this month. 

You could definitely wear this one more around here with a little sweater if it turned chilly. 


For presents, you may have wanted an American Girl doll. 

Barbie dolls would probably also be a hit.  I love these "professional" dolls. 

More barbies. 

And barbie clothes. 

And a Barbie house too. 

We hope you enjoyed your Christmas in heaven watching over us again!

Love,

Mommy

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