Saturday, December 30, 2006

Farewell, Foxtrot!

As most of you know, Jeff and I are big comic strip fans. One of our favorites is Foxtrot, by Bill Amend. He's been doing the strip for 19 years now, and Jeff has been reading it for most of those years! We have several books/treasuries and we really enjoy the family dynamics. There's Roger, the bumbling Dad; Andy, the work-at-home Mom; Peter, the 16 year old eating machine; Paige, the 14 year old fashionista; Jason, the 10 year old uber-nerd; and Quincy, Jason's iguana. Now for the sad news -- Bill Amend has decided to expand his universe by scaling back on his comic strip. As of today, he will no longer be inking daily strips, and will only be doing Sundays. So, Amend joins the ranks of such greats as Bill Watterson and Gary Larson, who retired long before we were ready for them to! You can check out Foxtrot at this link, and you can see Bill Amend's website here.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

"I'll Be Home For Christmas"

(Eh, just turn your head sideways to see the top picture -- I can't figure out how to rotate it!)
Here are a couple of pictures of Jeff and me in costume at the musical, as Norma and the "Newscaster". The close up was taken at the Commerce Cultural Center, where we performed. The dress I'm wearing is, I believe, authentic 1940's. The buttons are glass, and the zipper is metal, and it's "gently worn" as they say. I bought it on E-Bay for $5! A local antique store loaned the church about a dozen hats so that the choir would have a really authentic look. Jeff is wearing his dad's suspenders. Apparently men's fashions haven't changed a whole lot in 65 years!

Ballerina Girl

Katie is taking ballet again this year at Grove Level Baptist Church. She loves it, especially because her friend Lydia is in the class, also! They have performed twice this month. Once in front of the children's church, and once at a local nursing home. (In the picture taken at the church, Katie is kneeling just below the door.) They'll have another performance in the year end recital in May.

O Tannen Baum!

Because we moved to this house in January, this will be our first Christmas here! I had not given much thought to a Christmas tree, but one day Jeff said, "How in the world are we going to fit a tree in the living room?" Since practically the only solutions were to 86 the couch or suspend the tree from the ceiling fan in the middle of the room, we thought we would forego the tree this time. Fortunately, our friends the Cospers had a spare little tree that they let us borrow to put in our bay window. You can see in the picture that it's really pretty perfect! (They also gave us their tree trimmings to use as decorations.) A tradition that I began with our kids is to give them each an ornament every year. To represent their first year, I use their first baby shoes. Katie's is a little white crocheted bootie with pink ribbon and Joe's is a more traditional white leather shoe. The Willow Tree nativity scene was a Christmas gift from Jeff last year. I couldn't wait to set it up this year! (The books you see on the shelf beneath are Katie's school books.) Another tradition we do is to have an advent calendar, counting down the days until the birthday of the Saviour of the world. The tiny white stockings hanging across the mantel are what we use. Katie and Joe love taking turns opening a stocking each day to find the surprise inside. Well, they love the surprise part, not so much the taking turns part!

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Poor Little Joe

Saturday morning Jeff rode with a friend to the high school state playoffs. The local team, Commerce, was playing Jeff's old school, Lincoln County, and Jeff was determined to go see the Red Devils win. (He wasn't disappointed!) I hated having to call him to tell him I was on the way to the emergency room with his son. Saturday afternoon Joseph was playing in his room and hit his head on the toy box, cutting himself above the right eye. (Just to the left of where he cut himself last time on the coffee table.) When I had him in the bathroom mopping up, assessing damage, Joe was fascinated with his reflection in the mirror. "My boo-boo!" he kept saying with a big grin. My friend Chrissy came and took Katie home with her and I took Joe on to the emergency room at the local hospital. Seven stitches were required to close up the cut and Joe and I both cried our way through the process. Fortunately we found a size three toddler football uniform, complete with pads and helmet, on e-Bay so we shouldn't have any more injuries.

New Layout

Blogger has updated their site and given people the option to upgrade and change their blogs. So, I'm experimenting with these options and adding information and generally trying to figure out how everything works now! I'll be done "tweaking" when I'm satisfied with how it looks. Until then, expect frequent changes!

Christmas Musical

Once again, pictures will have to wait until I get them developed, but I thought I'd go ahead and update everyone on what's been going on with us. Last weekend Jeff and I were in "I'll Be Home for Christmas" a 1940's themed Christmas musical. The story revolves around a family in 1941. The choir performs all the music and the shows that the family hears "on the radio". I played the mom, Norma, and even sang a duet! Jeff did a fabulous job as the newscaster who breaks in with updates about "the war in Europe" and delivers the news about Pearl Harbor. It was a lot of fun, but I'm glad life can get back to normal now. Whatever that is!

Monday, November 27, 2006

Jeff and Joe

I just wanted to give all of you a treat by letting you see both of my guys! They are handsome, don't you think? What a blessing they are! Every day, I have to answer the question, "Where's Daddy?" a hundred times. I say, "Where IS Daddy?" and little Joe says, "Daddy's at work!" Jeff has acquired a 1973 Volkswagen Beetle, and they both love to go driving in it. Jeff has been after me to post pictures of it, so I will one of these days.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

What Happened to November?

I absolutely cannot believe it is nearly December! Thanksgiving was spent with my side of the family this year and we had a blast. We drove down to meet Mom and Berk in Wrens, where they left their car and made the fateful decision to ride with us! No, we had a nice, uneventful trip to Granny and Papa's in Blackshear. As always, the food was great (yummy fried turkey!) and the company even better. We played games and laughed and stayed up too late talking. We stayed the night with Mom and Berk in Aiken on Thursday night and left there on Friday. Let me tell you about what a lovely hostess my mom is. The children had two bowls of cereal each in addition to popcorn for breakfast. She made coffee for herself and let me have some. Of course, it was not flavored coffee, but plain -- because Jeff likes the plain better. When Jeff came into the kitchen, she said, "Hello, Jeffrey. Would you like some bacon? How about a bacon sandwich? Or a fried egg? How about a fried egg sandwich with bacon? Would you like cheese? Whatever you'd like!" When Jeff agreed to all of the above, my mother said, "Okay, well, Jeni, I'm getting in the shower. You can handle all that for Jeff, can't you?" On the way home we were blessed to be able to have lunch with Jeff's twin brother Joe and his wife Jennifer. Jennifer made a really good Chicken Chili, which we called soup so Katie would eat it. We also had that wonderful pistachio-marshmallow-pineapple, etc. dessert whose name currently escapes me.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Katie in Disguise. . . With Glasses!

At Katie's check-up this year, I requested that her eyesight be tested. Considering my eyesight (not great) and Jeff's (deplorable) I figured it was a wise move. I'd also seen little signs that she might be having trouble seeing. They did a preliminary exam at the doctor's office, and then recommended that we take Kaitlyn to an optometrist. When the doctor put up the chart for her to read, she got to the third line and couldn't read it. He was surprised, and turned to look at me like, "Is she serious?" Sure enough, our little girl needed glasses! She got them a couple of weeks ago and she absolutely loves them. They are wire-frame, and rosy pink. She is completely adorable in them. The only problem is that now Joseph keeps asking for glasses! Unfortunately, he'll probably get his wish before long.

Monday, November 06, 2006

From GA to NC to See Georgia

Last Thursday, I drove to Wake Forest, North Carolina to see my newest "niece". Oh, yeah, and to see her parents! Baby Georgia is absolutely beautiful and was so well behaved while I was there, though the picture doesn't show it! I expected to be up all night with her, but she woke up only to eat -- which I could definitely not help with! I also expected the six hour drive to be awful, since I loathe driving, but it was a gorgeous day and I loved looking at all the fall colors. (A book-on-tape also made the drive fly by!) The visit was wonderful. Leah and I never run out of things to talk about, and I always enjoy conversations with Nathan, too. I went home on Saturday, after Nathan and Leah went out to lunch together. I think they were a little nervous about leaving their two-week old baby, but that was overridden by the excitement of getting to go on a date. Of course, the best part of any trip is coming home and this was no exception. Jeff was just settling Kaitlyn and Joseph into bed when I arrived and they promptly attached themselves to me until I finally made them get in bed. The worst part of the trip had to be my fruitless search for a Hazelnut Caffe Mocha from Starbuck's on the way home. I settled for a Coke from McDonald's.

Happy Halloween!

For our church's Fall Festival last week, I scrambled to come up with costumes for Katie and Joe (at the last minute, naturally). There are thousands of cute, super-easy costume ideas out there -- and all you need is a plain, solid color sweatsuit in your child's size. The hard part is finding a plain, solid color sweatsuit in your child's size! After scouring four different stores, I gave up and brainstormed these costumes when I got home. Joseph is puppy dog with floppy ears sewn on his hooded jacket, and a brown dress sock safety-pinned to his rear end. Katie is a cat with felt ears sewn on a cloth headband, and a pink fuzzy sock safety-pinned to her rear end. I had to use my make-up to give them faces, so now whenever I start to put mascara on, Joe says, "Nose!" P.S. Brown eyeliner makes great cat/dog whiskers!

A Very Merry Unbirthday

We celebrated Katie's 6th birthday with a tea party for a few friends: Lydia, Danielle, and Karah. The girls loved drinking pink lemonade out of china teacups and getting to serve the food themselves onto china plates. They felt very grown up! After "tea" they gathered in the livingroom to open presents, with Katie getting some of her favorite things -- new clothes, snacks, and crafts! The girls dressed up in my nice dresses, then the mommies did their makeup. After that, I read Beth Moore's children's book, "A Parable of the King".

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Georgia on My Mind!

Georgia Elisabeth is here! Nathan and Leah Finn welcomed their little girl this morning at 4:18 a.m. She is 20 1/2 inches long and weighs 7 lbs, 5 oz. Georgia picked the perfect day to come -- her Mommy's birthday! These pictures are courtesy of Georgia's maternal grandmother, Linda Phillips, via her adoptive Aunt Sandy.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Kaitlyn is 6 today!

Today is Katie's birthday! Six years ago, Kaitlyn Grace Pittard arrived weighing 7 pounds, 5 ounces and measuring 21 inches long. Since then, she's "sextupled" her weight and doubled in height. We just hope that trend doesn't continue over the next six years!

We'll be having a tea party with a couple of her friends on Saturday the 21st, and I'll post those pictures later. For now, this is a picture of her in May when she did her ballet recital. She takes "praise ballet" at a local church. They dance to Christian music and learn scripture as part of the performance.

Friday, September 22, 2006


I finally got my pictures developed and on CD -- the results are infinitely better this way rather than attempting to scan them. I love the picture of Katie and Joe on Papa's lap -- they loved wearing those sunglasses! And I couldn't resist posting the snapshot of the kids on the swingset in our backyard. It's hard to believe Joseph is big enough to be swinging all by himself.

The picture of Kaitlyn in our kitchen was taken the first week of school. We were doing a science "experiment" with water. I think Katie's favorite part was guessing what would happen and then recording her guess and the actual results in her science notebook. (The three small containers to the right in the photo are homemade fingerpaints that we had made the day before.)

The picture at Pittard Park in Winterville, Oglethorpe County was taken on the way home from Granny and Papa's. We had seen this park before and wanted to stop and check it out. Jeff got the names of the Pittards who had settled the area and did some research on them. He determined that they are relatives of his, albeit 6 generations back. It's a pretty, shady park with a nice covered picnic area.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

What's Happening?

We have definitely been busy lately! Last Thursday was Ladies' Night Out, which is put together by our church. Held at the Commerce Civic Center, the program this year featured Iris Blue, a lady with an amazing testimony. Out of that night there were 12 salvations and 42 women who rededicated their lives to following Christ. A few weeks ago, I started a Beth Moore Bible study on David, in addition to an evangelism class on Monday nights and teaching Sunday School. Katie is taking a kids' version of Beth's study on the beloved disciple, John, and doing children's choir. She is in my Sunday School class this year. Jeff has started attending a new men's Sunday School class that he is really enjoying. He continues to sing his wonderful bass in choir and to play his saxophone during Sunday services. We're both excited about the Christmas musical our church is doing this year which has a 1940's theme. Joseph is loving his AWANA class on Wednesday nights, called AWANA Bees. He treasures the little art projects they do there and in Sunday School. He points to his name written on the back and says, "My 'Joe'!"

Labor Day weekend we drove down to Granny and Papa's, which is always lots of fun. (It was made much more enjoyable by the addition to our family of a minivan, I can assure you. There simply cannot be a price set on separating small children on a five-hour drive!) We had a nice long visit with Granny and Papa and assorted family. We got to play games and drive "Scooter" down to the river, which thrilled Katie. Jeff always packs work clothes along in the hopes that Papa will have a project that needs doing -- he wasn't disappointed!

Last weekend, we went to our nephew Joel's fifth birthday party at Chick-Fil-A. We had a great time spending the day with the Pittard clan, despite the fact that the children are rapidly outnumbering the adults!

Stuart called me yesterday and let me know that he and Virginia and Ralston have settled in nicely in Charleston. Ginny graduated in the spring with her PhD and has gotten a job there. Last week, they got a marriage license and they'll be getting married either this weekend or next. So, that's what's new with us -- whew!

Monday, August 28, 2006

Schoolhouse Rock

Today was the first day of school for Kaitlyn! We're off to a great start. I think the tentative schedule I've set for most days will work out very well. Most everything can be done in the morning after breakfast. We do Bible reading/lessons during breakfast. Things like science (which involves experiments), art, and math that require little Joe to be elsewhere can be done while he's napping later in the day. Since Jeff wanted to be involved in Katie's school too, he will do music and geography in the evening. That will only be one day a week for music, and a couple of days a week for geography. She'll have art just 2-3 times a week. We are thankful every day that God has given us the opportunity and the ability to homeschool. Even on the frustrating days, it's entirely worth it all!

Monday, August 14, 2006

Happy Birthday, Little Joe!

Today is Joseph's second birthday! On Saturday we had a little party for him with our parents, siblings, and our friends the Cospers. We had a great time and I loved being able to cook for a bunch of people! Our friend Abbie owns Common Road Bakery here in Commerce and she made the cake from my description of a rock quarry.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

"You Wreck Me, Baby" (Tom Petty)

Well, I have wrecked our Taurus. I was driving home in heavy rain at 9:30 on a Friday night -- never a good combination! To top it off, I was heading into a curve and the car coming at me had its brights on. The road also has a railroad spur crossing it to join to the main track. When I completely lost sight of the road, my right front tire dipped off the edge. I might have gotten the car back on the road, but the tire caught on the train track. The car simply followed the rail up to where the two tracks joined and wedged itself in! It's hard to believe the damage it did. After talking with the insurance company and the guy at the body shop, we've decided to cut our losses and buy another vehicle. The insurance company will pay to fix the car, but we'll take that money plus what the body shop owner pays us for the Taurus and buy a van we were looking at just last week. (Until Friday night, the plan was to sell the Taurus and buy the van.) It's a 1996 Windstar -- the same color blue as our "old" car. Pictures to come!

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

It's a Boy! And a Girl!

Jason and Paige are the proud parents of two new babies! Jacob Carter and Sarah Elizabeth were born July 25, 2006. Jacob weighed 6 pounds, 13 ounces, Sarah was 6 pounds, 7 ounces and they were both 19 3/4 inches long. Of course, they are absolutely adorable! I'll post a picture when I get the film developed.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Bonnie and Clyde/Katie and Joe

Kaitlyn: She's beautiful as ever! And very loquacious -- this is one case where the "Parents' Curse" has come true. You know the one: "I hope you have a kid who's just like you!" Thanks a lot, Mom! :) She is constantly in motion and constantly talking. Her imagination is totally unfettered. She makes up stories about her toys, draws pictures and tells stories about them, and she loves to make up songs. Usually she transforms a praise song or hymn that she knows into something of her own creation. Katie loves to read and write and learn -- she's very inquisitive. She's also silly as a goose. Her best friend is Lydia and her favorite food is tortellini.

Joseph: Cute as a button! And a study in perpetual motion! He has two speeds -- fast and asleep. He loves heavy equipment -- especially Daddy's dump truck. Nothing makes Joe happier than seeing Daddy walk in the door. Unless you count food. He is highly motivated by his tummy. He has a shoe fetish -- if there are shoes lying around, they'll be on his feet in no time! He loves to sit and read books, especially "the Bike Lesson" by the Berenstains. He is becoming quite independent and knows exactly what he wants. Whenever he willfully disobeys, Joe backs away from us, covers his hiney with both hands, and giggles. His favorite song is "The Three Little Pigs" by Mr. Eric, and his favorite possession would have to be "Binky", his pacifier.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

One Room Schoolhouse

How to educate the children we have been blessed with is one of the biggest decisions parents make. For our part, Jeff and I started wondering what to do before we even had kids! When Katie came along, we began really paying attention to the world of schooling -- home, public, private. Jeff and I both came to the conclusion that if we wanted to raise her with the best education possible and still retain a Biblical worldview we would have to take it on ourselves. For our family, God was telling us that homeschooling was the best choice. Last year, when Kaitlyn was a month shy of five years old, we started her out doing Kindergarten and she loved it. We did only reading, handwriting, math, art, and Bible, in addition to taking advantage of "teachable moments". I had decided that we would use it as an evaluation -- if she thrived, then it would be on to first grade. If she didn't do well, we'd repeat Kindergarten with a full curriculum. She did great! So this Monday we ordered her first grade books and supplies for the fall. After much research and prayer, we decided to go with Sonlight Curriculum. They are a veritable feast of curriculum! It's one-stop shopping for all the best resources out there. In addition to the core classes, which focus on history and literature, Katie will also have Bible, art appreciation/skill lessons, and music appreciation. I love that Sonlight's worldview is Biblical, and teaches children to think critically about their faith, how to apply it to their lives, and how to share it with others. The hard part will be waiting until September to start school!

Monday, July 10, 2006

The End of the Rainbow

Last Wednesday, Katie and Joe and I drove down to Mom and Berk's so we could all go to Blackshear the next day. The five of us rode in Mom's Toyota Camry which made for a very interesting trip. And by interesting, I mean crazy! I had to choose between the lesser of two evils - allow the children to sit next to each other, meaning they could also touch each other - or to sit in between them, meaning I would have a 5-year old on my right and a 2-year old on my left. Hmmm. . . Those of you with children will know that this was quite a conundrum. I chose to sit by the window on the trip down, but I separated the two on the way home! Poor Berkley, who had never had the privilege (?) of going on vacation with small children before had also not had the privilege of actually hearing children complain that "He's touching me!" Or changing a diaper, literally, on the side of the road. Or listening to "Bullfrogs and Butterflies" ad infinitum. Or playing "I spy" for a hundred miles. I'm sure he's glad now that Stuart and I were already surly teenagers when he began dating Mom. Anyway, other than that, we had a wonderful visit with Granny and Papa, Uncle David, Jessica, Albert, Kiley Jo, Aunt Cindy, Shanna, etc. As always, Granny had lots of good food -- watermelon, fresh corn, chicken & dumplin's, cream cheese pound cake, scalloped potatoes, ham, rice & tomatoes, and sausage for yours truly. When we first arrived, Granny asked us if there was anything special we wanted to do while we were there so Mom, Berk and I gave her a list. We wanted to eat a lot, go for walks, take naps, rock on the front porch, go out to the pond, visit with family, and play Scrabble. Can you believe that we managed to fit all that in? I just love going to Granny and Papa's!

Oh, and don't feel too sorry for Jeff, not being able to go. We very much missed him being there, but he did get a rare treat -- to go out to dinner at Longhorn Steakhouse, followed by Superman Returns. Not bad for an evening of "baching it". :)

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Honor Plant

Martin Marietta Materials' Jefferson Quarry has won Honor Plant this year! The company magazine, The Conveyor, says, "The Honor Plant selection committee evaluates performance in eight areas: safety, operating costs, maintenance practices, appearance, community relations, productivity improvements, innovation and financial performance." According to Executive Vice President Dan Shephard, "To be chosen as an Honor Plant shows that you were the best of the best. . ." The award is given to only five plants out of the more than three hundred in the company. The plants are evaluated over a three year period.

Saturday, June 24th, Jeff and I will be going to a banquet to celebrate the award. Not for the first time, either -- in 2002, the Warrenton Quarry won Honor Plant when Jeff was an employee there. Coincidence? I think not!

Wednesday, June 14, 2006


We have a new addition to the family! An adorable little orange kitten showed up at our door several nights ago and we couldn't resist. She quickly melted Jeff's heart and left her tiny pawprints in it! The kids are completely enthralled. We think little Mollywobbles is great, though not exactly the cutest cat we've ever seen (she has a pointy nose). Maybe she'll grow out of it . . .

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

May 14 - 24 Mission Trip

Time has flown by and I'm back now from the mission trip to Southwest Asia. I didn't post on here that I was going anywhere, but I figure that everyone who knows me knew I was going. We had an incredible time! We were in a closed country, so I was not sure how much we'd be able to share with those around us but God did some amazing things. The missionaries there told us that when we met with students from the universities, they would ask us questions and we could feel free to answer openly. Well, one of the first questions we were asked was, "What is the meaning of life? Isn't it all futile?" So we were able to talk openly about our faith and one of the missionaries really laid the gospel out for the Muslim students.

One of our purposes for going was to do Vacation Bible School for the children of the missionaries. The trick was cramming it all into a day and a half! We did crafts, played games, ran round outside, made T-shirts, threw water balloons, acted out Bible Stories, sang songs. . . in other words, we all had a blast!

Kaitlyn and Joseph stayed with Jeff's parents and really enjoyed themselves. After a few days of living the "bachelor" life, Jeff decided enough was enough and brought Katie home with him for the weekend! They had some great "Daddy-Daughter" time together. Naturally, all three were very happy to see me at the airport -- and I was thrilled to be back with them.

Thursday, April 20, 2006


I'm trying to get the hang of scanning pictures and adding them, so here are my first few feeble attempts. I hope to get better soon! I don't know why the picture is there twice -- it's not that way in the file. Oh, well. :)

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Anniversary Trip

Jeff and I celebrated 8 great years together yesterday -- well, 6 great ones, and 2 that were so-so. Just kidding! Of course they've all been wonderful! We met my parents halfway Friday night and they kept the children while were away for the weekend. Saturday morning we drove up to Gatlinburg, Tennessee. We took our time, and had a picnic lunch at one of the overlooks on the scenic route through the Smoky Mountains. We stayed the night at a bed and breakfast at the top of a mountain. That was fabulous! The owners, Bob and Shirley Price are Christians and in addition to being a professional chef, Shirley also has every Grace Livingston Hill book ever published! Her husband is a huge Agatha Christie fan, so they have all her books and plays, too. I wanted to stay another night just to look at the books. :) Jeff and I absolutely loved the porch swing on the balcony. We had a gorgeous view of the Smoky Mountains. For breakfast, we had strawberry soup, blueberry-pecan french toast, sausage, and creme brulee. Wow! We drove back through North Carolina and met Mom and Berk in Greenwood, SC to reclaim our children. The kids had a blast and I think Mom and Berk will recover soon.

Monday, March 13, 2006


Jeff and I thought it would be really neat to have a place to let everyone know what's going on with us, so here it is! You'll find short posts to tell you what's new, pictures of us and the kids, and anything else we think is interesting. At the very least, I'll have fun adding things to it -- it's like a virtual scrapbook! Enjoy.