Tuesday, May 15, 2012

~Part 2 of GG's 90th birthday party!~

Warning, you might want to get something cold to drink and make sure you have eaten, for this is a L.O.N.G. post, but it is FULL of memories that I just had to share with y'all! =)
Like I promised...Here's part 2 of Grandmother's 90th birthday party pics, but first let me say a couple things.
#1 I was so sick Saturday night before Mother's day, that I failed to wish my 2 SPECIALS Moms a Happy Mother's day on my blog.  Thankfully I had sent them a nice card before I left for TN.
So, Moma and Mom D...(my Mother-in-LOVE), I trust that you both had a VERY HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY!  You are both VERY special to me/my family and WE LOVE YOU TONS!!!!
#2 Thank you all for your comments and prayers.  My family and I are slowly recovering from this flu.  We are still very weak and ache too.  I get up and think I can do some work, put a load or 2 in the washer, and then lie down, or do some dishes but soon I have to lie back down again.  Noah and Elijah have had this flu for over a week now and today Elijah laid down and fell sound asleep on our bed at noon(Which is NOT normal for an active little boy =) and Noah complained that his head was really hurting.
So, your continued prayers that we can kick this are appreciated!  Thanks!
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Just a little history for those of you that don't know.   GG's party was also very special to my family because of where it was held.  It was held on the campus that my parents and Granddaddy and Grandmother purchased when I was just 18 months old.  It was a 9 acre beautiful campus that until it closed was the oldest Quaker school in existence (maybe just in TN, I'm not sure) called "Friendsville Academy."
Daddy and Moma gave their lives to start and run a K-high school and college Christian school and a church on these beautiful grounds.  Since Daddy was from the Alabama Bible Methodist conference it was and still is a an Alabama Bible Methodist church.   I believe the campus bore a sign that said "Christ Church, Christ College and Christ Academy").
The school was a traditional Christian school RUN BY FAITH... and it was a boarding school (with a boy's and girl's dorm)...which offered boarding for high school and college age students.  During the 10 years we lived there on that campus (1975-1985)...Daddy was Husband, Daddy to us 4 kids, tried to like a "Daddy" for the dorm kids who were so far away from their Dads, pastor, bore the burden of PRAYING in the finances, principal, ran the maintenance crew (that had permission from the R.R. company to gather any dropped coal and any old railroad ties to burn to heat our big buildings), teacher of MANY subjects, (and he had the pressure of finding other teachers who could "live on a dime"), and mentor... to name a FEW of the hats he wore.  He sent out a newsletter ("The Friendly Chat") but never asked for money.  Daddy and Moma just told God our needs!  They made life so wonderful that we kids never knew we were "poor!" =)
Moma was wife, Moma to us 4 kids, tried to be like a "Mother" to the lonely dorm kids, cook for the entire school when we didn't have one, dietician (having the pressure of buying the food to feed everyone, and planning the menus), choir director, home-ec teacher, organist, and mentor... just to name a FEW of the hats she wore during those 10 years. 
There is no way to tell you the lives that God helped them to touch during these years!
GG's party was held in the lobby of the girl's dorm. 
~My Uncle Carson (GG's only son) and Aunt Linda have 4 girls.  Cheryl, Susan, Martha, and Christa.  Christa is the one from FL that couldn't come.
Here's a picture of Cheryl and David V. and their family with GG.  They have adopted 3 precious children.  This was the first time that I got to see little Shiloh and it was love at first sight.  Isn't she a dolly?~
~Here's Susan and Jeff H. and their 2 precious boys. (The building to the right of Susan's shoulder is the building which held our church and all of our classrooms.)~
~And Martha and Larry S. with their 4 precious children.~
~Aunt Carole and Uncle Dan have 2 girls.  Jane (who flew in from Washington.  She flew in alone this time, but she is married to Phil and they have 2 little boys) and Esther.
Here's Esther and Derek M. with their family...minus their sweet Alyssa that was on her 8th grade trip.~
~This is Bro. and Sis. Bentz (sp?), the DEAR pastor and wife of the Bible Methodist church on the campus where we held GG's birthday party.  They had worked so hard and had the grounds and buildings looking WONDERFUL!  Thank you, Bro. and Sis. Bentz for all your hard work!!  I'm praying faithfully that God will bless y'all and your church!!~
~A picture I got of one of the many groups that sat down to eat after visiting with GG.~
~My precious Daddy and Moma.  (And No, at the age of 69...Moma DOES NOT dye her hair; it's her natural color.) ~
~Sis. Carol C. and Moma.  Sis. Carol was one of the cooks during our days on this campus.
She is a DEAR faithful friend to our family and GG still today.  She was a BIG help to us with GG's party! =) ~
~We cousins and Laura's 2 girls and Katie were sitting around chatting and we asked someone to get a picture of us.  We were telling stories...but I'll spare you the hilarious stories we were telling.  =) ~
~Alabama Bible Methodist Conference President and his wife....Bro. and Sis. Hedstrom honored us with their presence at GG's birthday party. ~
~Here's my niece Darla (Laura's youngest daughter) holding cute little Shiloh.~
~Here's a picture of the kids playing on the playground, to your left is the house I grew up living in, and the long building behind the cars is the girl's dorm where GG's reception was held.
~My wonderful Brother Lincoln and his sweet wife Lyn, and dear Kelsie were able to come!  We were so HAPPY THEY CAME!! (We were Sad that their Keith couldn't come.)
(Laura and her girls were so busy helping serve food, that I failed to get a picture of their family with GG.  But, I have a family picture of them I took on Sunday that I will post.)
Here's Laura's Darla, and Brittany, and me with my brother Lincoln, Lyn and Kelsie. ~
~Moma and Lincoln.  As you can tell by Lincoln's expression he LOVES pictures.  HA! =D ~
~Me saying goodbye to Bro. and Sis. Kemp before they left.  It was so much fun to see them again!  Thank you, Bro. and Sis. Kemp, for the fun colorful dish clothes and the money to buy Reeses candy bars for my family.  I bought 3 packs and they are thrilled.  (We are saving them for when we get better! =) ~
~On one end of GG's gift table we had the pictures of the 3 families that couldn't be there at GG's party.  On the left is Christa and her family from FL (they have one girl and are expecting a baby boy), in the middle is my oldest brother Andrew and his family from AK since He and Vonnie and their other 5 children couldn't be there (Katie is their daughter who attends GBS), and my family.
When Moma told me she wanted a picture of my family to display I told her I was "Working on getting one to her!"  She NEVER DREAMED that I was having one printed so I could BRING IT TO HER MYSELF!  =) ~
~My cousin Stoney helping Moma refill the tea punch bowl.~
~Our Bryan family with GG, minus Andrew, Vonnie, Heidi, Drew, Grant, and their twins Taylor and Tyler from AK.~
~8 of the 10 cousins with GG.  She's holding Andrew and Christa's pictures...so they are "in this picture."~

~The Great Grandkids with GG...She has 33 I believe. The other 16 couldn't be with her on her special day.~
~I took this fun picture of one of the candles at the end of the party.  It's sort of like GG's life.  She has lived a very full and very happy life serving Jesus and loving her family!  We hope she keeps living for a long time...we LOVE her to pieces!~
~My niece Kelsie trying to sweet talk her Daddy into taking her and her 3 big girl cousins to Starbucks before they had to drive back to VA.  It worked...he took them.  =)~
~This is how we all felt after GG's party...especially GG!   =) ~
~Katie from AK, Moma, Daddy, and I.~
~Our original family minus Andrew.  You can see the HUGE gym behind Daddy's head.  It has a full-court basketball/volleyball court, in our day there was a full size trampoline, and it has a "stage" with a curtain to draw that we used for plays or the platform for services.  Some of you may have heard of Training Righteous Youth (T.R.Y.) that was an organization where youth from Holiness schools all over met to compete in various categories.   There was no team sports competition in T.R.Y., just individuals competed in lots of areas.  There was a strong spiritual emphasis with a holiness preacher preaching each night.  Many students came from several different states.  There are people in the Holiness movement today that found out during their youth at T.R.Y. that they could do something.  Orlow Webb was the founder and my Daddy was vice-president.   This campus is where T.R.Y. was held for it's first 4 years, 1982-1985.  Unfortunately T.R.Y. is no longer...but its influence is still among us.  (I won first prize on homemade bread its last year. =)~
~This is another fun family pic with our house (where we lived for nearly 10 years) behind us.~
~The "Big Girl" cousins and Darla.  Andrew's Heidi and my Kimberly would have LOVED to have been there.  This is right before Lincoln took the 4 older girls to Starbucks.~
~These were the "Big girl cousins" of my generation of cousins.  L to R: Laura, Cheryl, and Jane (Aunt Carole and Uncle Dan's oldest daughter who lives in Washington.)   These cousins were a 3-some, always together and always had their picture taken together.~
~After GG's reception ended and we helped clean up, my cousin Susan suggested that we cousins take a "walk down memory lane" and go around the campus telling memories.  Right behind us is the small apt. [in the bottom corner of the basement of the girl's dorm] where GG and Pop Pop lived for years.  (They SACRIFICED and sold their beautiful ranch home to help pay for this campus!)
Each Christmas all of us cousins would have a delicious breakfast at GG's house and open her FUN gifts, then head out to our house to have a yummy dinner and open gifts at our house.  =)  FUN MEMORIES!!~
~Then after our walk around campus one of the cousins suggested that we all go out to eat together before they left town.  So we headed to a restaurant called "Zaxby's."  I had never heard of Zaxby's chicken restaurant...and probably after we left they wished that hadn't heard of our family.  Hee! Hee!  ~
~We had a GRAND ole time!!!   We ate their delicious food and laughed and talked for 3 hours or so. ~
~It was SO FUN being with all of my girl cousins and having heart to heart chats and LAUGHS together!  I had REALLY been MISSING being with my cousins, so enjoyed these few hours immensely!!
Thanks cuzins we HAVE To do it again really soon!  =) ~
~Susan and I were "Best Cousins" and learned a lot together!!  What fun memories!!~
~Susan's Jeff had to get into our picture.  I think he thought he was a "rose" between 2 thorns.  Ha!~
~As we were leaving I told little Shiloh goodbye and asked her if she wanted to go with us.  She reached out her little hands toward me and I took her.  Then she looked back at her Daddy (David V), and said, "Bye, Bye, Daddy!"  I loved it!  Of course we had to give her back and drive away without her.  ~
~Then we went to Wal-mart (OH! How FUN! to shop there again!!) and afterwards we went to Aunt Carol's house and practiced specials for church on Sunday.~
Being all together for GG's birthday party was a more WONDERFUL TIME then I can even describe to you!!   And if you aren't too bored I still have about 43 more pics I want to post of the rest of my SPLENDID TIME in TN!!


CrazieChrisa said...

It makes my heart ache that I wasn't there to "party" with y'all. I'm so thankful y'all had a great time. Thanks for "including" us:-) Hoope y'all all feel better soon! By the way, thank you for taking all these wonderful pictures!

Love you!

CrazieChrisa said...

I finally blogged just for you:-))

Making Memories 1999 said...

Your love for your family and getting to be together with them again shone through your post. I'm so very happy for you, that you were able to join in this wonderful celebration. Thanks for posting the pictures...It was great seeing some of my college classmates again! Some of them I haven't seen in so many years. Thanks again!!

Stephanie Burley said...

I could almost feel the energy coming off of every pic! What an enjoyable time. There is nothing as special as being with family.
I am trying to remember where I stayed on a choir weekend in Friendsville...maybe at your sister's house? You'll have to jog my memory a bit. We also visited there one Wed evening service while vacationing when I was a teenager.
The sacrifices our parents made for Christian Ed were huge, but like you, I didn't notice. Our lives were rich with God, family, ministry, and relationships. And one sure gains buckets of experience and flexibility when wearing all those "hats!"

lila said...

Soooo wonderful you got to be with family you hadn't seen in a long time. What neat walk down memory lane. So thankful for all the lives that was touched for Jesus there. Very nice post. Glad you all are feeling some better. Looking forward to the rest of the pics. love and prayers

~Carla~ said...

What a wonderful heart healing time for you! SOO glad you got to be there! Love all the pics, Carla

Daryl Hausman said...

Thanks for the pics, Heather and the fun memories. I was SOOOO glad we did the walk down memory lane. Priceless! Love ya much, Praying for a complete recovery and SOON! Laura and family

mmsbryan said...

We all so wished you could have been there also Christa. So close, yet so far. Andrew had planned to fly down for Grandmother's reception but as had to come "out" for Grandma Bryan's Memorium he took a couple days at that time and enjoyed them with Grandmother. We took missed him! It was hard to pull away before all this excitement started with the cousins but duty called Daddy and I again and we were happy to be back with our Westfield church family. How I enjoyed the story and pictures of a wonderful day now past. We thank the Lord and are paid many times over when we hear the words from former staff and students say, "Friendsville were the best days of my life." Praying you all will soon be well again. I Love you, Moma

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