Have you ever had one of those weekends that just carries you through the week? ...the brightness of your time spent in the weekend lasts until the following Friday? Well that's where we are right now...in the afterglow of an amazing weekend.
Josh and I spent this weekend in Bonifay with lots of family and friends. Josh flew...I drove, but we were both there.
Friday we drove to Graceville, Florida to eat the best fried shrimp in the whole world at "Grady's." Grady's could be likened to a "hole-in-the-wall" restaurant, but I don't know if I'll ever eat at another place that I love as much as it. When you go to Grady's with the Swindles (my family), or really anyone from the wiregrass area, you have two choices...a whole fry (12 shrimp) or a half fry (6 shrimp). We always start the meal with good ol' southern sweet tea, a Grady's salad (lettuce & tomatos) with delicious house dressing, and fried onion rings (the best on the planet). Then the shrimp comes. This place is amazing, and it's definitely something I miss most about living in North Florida.
On Saturday we hosted a suprise party for my parents' 30th wedding anniversary. It was next to impossible to keep the party a secret...especially with my extra nosey mom...but we did it. Collaborative efforts between family and friends added up to a perfect party!! None of us could have hoped that it would've gone any better. The party was held at the Waits Mansion, an historic home restored in the 1920s. www.waitsmansion.com Tables were set with white linens and vintage china, stemware, and flatware. Calligraphied name plates topped each place setting. The atmosphere was very classy, yet extremely comfortable. Everyone seemed to enjoy talking to everyone else, and I haven't heard that much laughter in a long time. Roger Swindle grilled steaks outside the house...it smelled wonderful! Seth Swindle and 5 of his friends, dressed in black slacks and white shirts, served the party. They placed a steak, delicious broccoli salad (recipe from the Junior League of the Palm Beaches), baked potato, and freshly baked roll on each plate. They did such a great job! After dinner, Mom and Dad ceremoniously cut a chocolate layer cake (with rasberry filling), baked by Publix bakery. The cake was also served on vintage china. Then, everyone joined Mom and Dad in the foyer of the house for a roast! Mom and Dad were such good sports and it was fun to hear embarassing stories about them before I was born. Many people shared touching stories and many others shared hilarious stories, but it was sweet to see just how many peoples' lives have been touched by the lives of my parents. The evening closed with a DVD I made about Mom and Dad's first 30 years of marriage. Thankfully, the technology cooperated, and the DVD appeared to be a big hit. I even noticed a few tears. The evening was so perfect it's hard to believe it actually happened. See the Anniversary Photo Album in the Sidebar for pictures.
To top off the weekend, we had a family bar-b-que at my parents' house on Sunday afternoon. Bert made his delicious hamburgers, there was potato salad, deviled eggs, baked beans, and sweet tea! Activities included cannonballing in the pool, an impromptu game of swimming pool basket ball, playing with the dogs, and jumping on the trampoline. The stars of the after noon were Clara Jane, my cousins' precious daughter, and Maw my grandmother. Clara Jane had a blast splashing in the pool and turning her skin black on the trampoline. Maw had a great time hopping on the back of Dad's Harley Davidson motorcycle. (She was careful to wear a helmet!) We will add pictures soon.
Having three such wonderful days in a row made it very difficult to return to life in the "Real World." But on the bright side, now that the party is over, I'm on to my next project...my very own vegetable garden. Wish me luck!