A Mountain Memorial Day

Because my birthday is always Memorial Day weekend, we have spent many many trips and travels with my family for the holiday weekend.  Most have been spent at the beach in the sand with a huge crowd of people.  Lots and lots of memories that we talked about and laughed about on this trip.  But I have to say there was something really special celebrating Memorial Day in the mountains. 

The boys on Sunday played in a family foursome golf tournament at The High Hampton Country Club.  When I tell you this place is gorgeous that is an understatement.  

Justin, Poppy, and JB getting ready to head out

Look at that view

Uncle Colby with the boys
Now the worse part of what started that day was the stomach virus.  Yuck.  It took JB down first but by the end of Sunday had taken down Gracie and Aunt Laura.  And it was a yucky one.  Then before the whole trip was over Madison, Abigail, Ma, Dave, Poppy, and me all experienced effects of the bug.  Thank goodness it wasn't all at once, the boys didn't get it, and it moved on relatively quickly and didn't ruin the trip.

While the big boys were away, Gracie was spending time with her cousins (pre-virus) so Dee Dee, Madison, and I took the boys into The Highlands to play on the playground.  

Super sweet story - when Beckett & Eli found out their daddy, Poppy, and Uncle Bubba had gone to play golf without them they were heart broken. Eli kept saying "Eli play golf Dee Dee" he was looking for his little clubs that he has at home.  This sweet boy wanted to play golf. On the way back from playing, I ran into the grocery store and while I was in there Dee Dee took them into the dollar store next door and found them some golf clubs!  Eli drug them EVERYWHERE.  This is a picture Poppy snapped of him on a walk with the clubs when Poppy got home.  So precious..

When they came back from golf, we had a yummy yummy lunch ready.   I am telling you.. these ladies know how to cook!

Lunch spread
Making some home fries.. a family favorite

Laura and Colby invited us to an awesome picnic at the Hampton Inn.  Unfortunately Gracie, JB, Laura, Madison, and Poppy did not go because they were suffering from the virus and caring for the ailing. We walked in and it almost took my breath away how gorgeous the view, the grounds, the scenery, and the evening was.  The mountains surrounded us, the water was like glass and pristine, the guests were all dressed, and the kids were dancing and running barefoot.  I felt like I was in a movie like Dirty Dancing in the type of summer resort they went too.  Justin said Great Gasby but I am thinking more 50's not 20's :-)  Whatever it was, it was a first time experience for me and I loved it.

popcorn on arrival

watching the dancers

Madison and Abigail took such good care of my little ones

relaxing and enjoying the music

Beckett finally decided to dance!

lawn games

yep.. in the water

Ma and 2 of her girls

My uncle Colby said about this..
Luann there are only 3 kids at this ENTIRE party that are in the water
1 is mine.. but 2 are yours!


Don't splash the Juicy :-) Ha!

Oh yeah.. brought back some old memories.. HOE DOWN 


Abigail was my smore making partner

On Memorial Day morning, Poppy and Justin headed out early to meet Uncle Colby and Madison for their fly fishing adventure.  The went to a river near Sylva and just the views from the road when they showed us were gorgeous.  From what I hear it was a "roaring" success.. Ha!

While the boys were away us girls & JB got going on a special Memorial Day lunch.  Poppy has a "famous" bar b que chicken and we all wanted to eat it for this holiday before JB, Madison, and The Clarks had to head home that afternoon.  Well, as the time got closer we realized Poppy wasn't going to be back in time and the boys (and us) would be ready to eat so JB stepped up to the plate on the BBQ chicken.  With the help of both of us, our general knowledge of how the process went down, and our trusty friend Google I have to say that JB ROCKED the chicken.  

Veggies from Dee Dee's garden

The new grill master working his magic

oh yeah... 

Look at that yummy spread!

The finished project

My JB gave the most precious blessing remember and lifting up my granddaddy who was in the service as well as Dave and praying for all those who protect our freedom. A verse he used was was from John 15:13 "There is no greater love than to lay down one's life for one's friends." What a great tribute remember that all the freedoms, mountains, family, BBQ, and fellowship came at a great cost. 

After an afternoon of napping, shopping in The Highlands, and relaxing we decided to go on a Memorial Day hike. Mom and I scouted out the location earlier in the day and it looked kid friendly and easy enough for us just a 2 mile up and down to see the gorgeous views from Whiteside Mountain.   It was pretty easy for me and Dee, a little tough on GG, but the hardest on Poppy and Justin because Beckett & Eli "hiked" on their shoulders most of the way!  They got down a little but would not cooperate in the direction we were heading and preferred the view from the top ;-)  We passed them off a little and managed just find.  Don't think we would have made it another mile though!  The view from the top was so worth it.  

No worries.. Justin is behind the rock holding him

wanting to be just like dad!

water break with his new water bottle for hiking

oh yeah.. loving his Elmo water

There's dad!

Dee Dee, the boys, and Poppy

view from the top 

ok.. getting a little too close for me!

He loved the mountains and "big rocks"
Even though we got a little rain sprinkle we made it down in plenty of time before the storm and it did not dampen our spirits a bit.  As we walked I felt such a peace being surrounded by beautiful creations from our Lord. When we got home and I got back to my ipad I read some verses about mountains from the Bible and included verse 4 on my facebook that day.  I love that I rediscovered this Psalm and felt connected to it even more after a day surrounded by the glory of God's creations.   

 Psalm 95

1 Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord;
    let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation.
2 Let us come before him with thanksgiving 
    and extol him with music and song.
3 For the Lord is the great God, 
    the great King above all gods. 
4 In his hand are the depths of the earth, 
    and the mountain peaks belong to him.
5 The sea is his, for he made it,
    and his hands formed the dry land.
6 Come, let us bow down in worship, 
    let us kneel before the Lord our Maker; 
7 for he is our God
    and we are the people of his pasture, 
    the flock under his care.

A blessing to share Memorial Day surrounded by family, love, and the beauty of the mountains.


The Riley's