We Need Each Other.

Hello Friends!

It’s been a little while since I posted on the ole blog, but I wanted to break my silence to share some things that have been on my heart over the past 24 hours.

Yesterday, we received what felt like a massive amount of bad news from several friends and family members. We heard from one family member, then another, then a friend, then a co-worker. This morning, things feel… heavy. I just don’t have any other word for it.

We have friends and family that are facing illnesses, sudden deaths, news that they feared the most, and when I think about all of this, combined with what 2020 has been so far, it reminds me of a very important truth—we need each other.

We need each other, not to tear one another down, but to lift each other up. The scrapes and bruises of life are hard, some stinging more than others, which is why we need friends and family to stand beside us and walk with us and encourage us. I really believe that’s who God has called us to be. We were never designed to be alone, whether we think we were or not.

Stay safe, friends!

New Orleans

Summer is definitely in full swing and we’re out here trying to make the most of it. What have you been up to so far this summer? We’ve been in Mississippi the past few weeks visiting family and basically eating all the fried catfish I can find.

While in Mississippi, we decided to take a quick trip down to New Orleans for a night. New Orleans holds a special place in our hearts. We have family not too far from the city and we also took our first trip as a couple there when we were dating for her birthday!

When we arrived, it was lunch time, so we stopped at Louisiana Pizza Kitchen for pasta.

I got the gulf shrimp and crab pasta with roasted tomatoes and basil in a lemon butter sauce. Ashlynn had the Bolognese. Both were incredible!

After lunch, we walked down through the French Quarter to Cafe Du Monde for dessert. If you’ve never had a beignet from Cafe du Monde, it is an experience all in itself. Sitting in the French Quarter, covered just about head to toe in powdered sugar is pretty close to heaven in my opinion.

Next, we headed to our hotel. We stayed at The Eliza Jane, a boutique hotel on Magazine. If you ever want a centrally located hotel, we highly recommend.

The hotel is only a couple of years old. They have a restaurant on site, but it was closed due to COVID-19. We really enjoyed our stay here and will stay here again next time we’re in New Orleans.

We decided to stay in rather than going out to eat, so we ordered delivery from Oceana Grill. Ashlynn had a sampler of crawfish étouffée, gumbo, and red beans and rice, and I had the shrimp po-boy.

The next morning, before heading out, we stopped and had brunch at Stanley in the French Quarter.

I ate the crab cakes Benedict and Ashlynn had bacon, eggs, and grits. They also had incredible coffee!

This trip was so much fun and a much needed getaway! There were so many places friends recommended that we weren’t able to get to. One of the best guides I found is on Joy The Baker’s blog. If you’re planning a trip, it’s definitely worth taking a look!

What We’ve Been Up To This Week.

We’ve had a crazy week around here! Ashlynn is finishing up her school and I’m getting ready for our summer programs to start. I feel like my head has been spinning all week just trying to keep up, but it’s pretty amazing to see the product of your hard work in tangible ways. Here’s what we’ve been up to this week.

The Blue Angels flew over Nashville this week and it was so cool!

We cooked these perfect spaghetti and meatballs and they definitely live up to their name!

Like I said, Ashlynn has been closing out the school year this week and is moving grades. We’ve been packing up her room and I had no idea everything she’s accumulated over the past few years. I love how much intentionality she puts into what she does!

We also had Chicken Florentine and Hasselback Potatoes from the new Magnolia Table Cookbook.

I’ve been reading this book lately because I heard it was pretty amazing… and so far, the critics are right! It’s about a guy who moves back to his small town to take care of his family after his sister passes away.

Rainy Evening.

We had a pretty nice evening around the house tonight! We had our Zoom small group, which I’m loving more and more every week! Ashlynn also cooked me a home cooked dinner from my favorite restaurant in Mississippi, Porches! It was so good! She fixed poppy seed chicken and hot pineapple casserole, two dishes they are famous for. If you are ever anywhere near central Mississippi, you have to go check them out (once restaurants open back up anyway)!

And after small group was over, we decided we deserved a little treat from Tiff. The small things tend to turn into the big things in our life, don’t they?

Seasons.

One thing I’ve learned is that much isn’t certain, even when we think it is. Yesterday shook us up a little. We received confirmation about concerns I’ve had for the past several years. On top of that, we found out a lot will be changing for us come this fall and into next year. This morning, I got up to take Ryman out and saw this incredible sunrise. I feel as though life is composed of seasons blending into one another. I know this season is very temporary, but I feel blessed to be able to wake up, look out my window, and see this.

The future has been on my mind so much lately, even more than normal. I have no idea what God is up to, but as I’ve seen over and over and over in my life, it’s going to be good.