Friday, December 30, 2011


Robbie's older brother, Bryan, lost his battle with cancer on Tuesday morning at 10:06am.

He was diagnosed with Mantle Cell Lymphoma in February of this year and fought it for 10 months. It was a very rare very aggressive form of cancer and it held true to it's description. Bryan fought a brave fight the entire time and never gave up.

It has been a long and tough year for the Raybon family, especially Rick and Vicki who have been Bryan's primary care givers. They showed love and unwavering support every step of the way until the last breath.

Bryan was cremated and there was a service held yesterday in a beautiful Methodist church in Atlanta.

Please keep the Raybons in your prayers as we all morn the death of Bryan and remember all the things that we love about him.

Friday, December 23, 2011

What a fun week!

Fresh haircut heading to Honey's house!

Gotta clean up!

Christmas present swap with my girlfriend, Miller Anne

Playing at her house

Hanging out with my friends Mickey and Santa

Hawkins and I have been on Christmas vacation at Honey and Big Daddy's house all week. What fun we have here! Hawkins loves the Christmas tree and playing with select "soft" ornaments. He can flip the switch to turn the tree on himself and he gasps in delight each time the lights come on - such sweet moments. He really loves his plush Mickey Mouse - an early Christmas present.

He plays hard and sleeps well :) We have played and had lunch dates with his friend Miller Anne. They are 3 months apart and have had a blast playing with each other. It is so much fun to see them interact.

Big Daddy loves to take him outside to play and even keeps the baby monitor at night. That means Mommy gets 30 extra minutes of sleep in the morning - glorious! I even got to get my hair cut while Honey babysat yesterday. I could get used to this.

We are heavily anticipating Christmas morning because Hawkins is appreciating every second of this Christmas season. He makes everything so much more fun!

Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 19, 2011


December is always a crazy month with gift buying, baking, cheese straws, cheese straws and more cheese straws...traveling and celebrating Jesus' birth.

December 2011 has been even more stressful because of some health issues on Robbie's side of the family. His brother Bryan continues to go down hill, so Robbie has made several trips back and forth to Atlanta to be with him.
On Wednesday we got the news that Robbie's paternal grandfather passed away. He was 94 years old, so it was not a huge shock, but he was not sick and died suddenly. Robbie was in Miami for work, so he took a direct flight to Atlanta rather than coming home first. Hawkins and I packed up our entire house and got on the road on Friday. My parents kept him and I headed to Atlanta.

We were able to spend time with Bryan in addition to driving to South Carolina on Saturday for the funeral. (7.5 hours round trip in one day). It is so hard to see Bryan in the condition he is in, but he continues to amaze everyone.

We believe this is all in God's plan and he has a purpose for these events. That does not make each minute easier. I want to say a special prayer for Robbie's parents as they are Bryan's primary care givers and are with him every single second - day and night. It takes strength only God can provide to see what they have seen and to watch your first born son go through such agony.

We pray Bryan can get some sense of peace and be pain free. Thank you for each of your prayers during this difficult time.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Christmas decorations

This has been a crazy month for our family, but I have still taken time to enjoy the Christmas decorations in our home. I LOVE decorating for Christmas!

I love a REAL Christmas tree, our little gum drop tree, the tumbling snowmen my Mom passed down to me, stockings over the mantle, and the real holly to use for an extra touch.

We got home the Sunday after Thanksgiving (exhausted) and I immediately started unpacking our boxes of decor.

I am away from home right now, so I can't take any pictures but I wanted to share my favorite new decoration this year. Honey gave this felt nativity set to Hawkins over Thanksgiving and I could not wait to set it up.

It is perfect for little ones b/c he can pick up the figures and can't break them! He is too young to know about the nativity, but I have told him about Mary, Joseph, the wisemen, shepard and Baby Jesus. Next year he will be able to know them apart!

Pottery Barn has the cutest decorations this year! You can find this nativity here.

I will post more pics later of our home....

Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011


My day on Tuesday:

Bake cheese straws from 6:30am - 10:30 am
Get myself showered and dressed
Pick up the boo boo from school
Feed him, play and put down for a nap
Begin prep for dinner while he naps
Run errands in town - deliver cheese straws
YMCA - run on treadmill then stay for first half of zumba class
Get the boo boo home - feed him supper
Play, bath and put him to bed
(Daddy had a late meeting)
Cook TWO pots of spaghetti for us and 2 friends who just had babies
Bake chocolate chip cookies
Make chocolate covered ritz and pretzels for Hawkins' teachers
Literally was in the kitchen until almost 10pm.

Am I crazy? Yes, but I love it!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Recent pictures

December fun with my Honey!

Wearing my Big Daddy's shoes

All dressed up for church

Doesn't seem too thrilled...

So excited about my early Christmas present from Honey and Big Daddy. A new table and chairs just for me!

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Hustle and Bustle

I am trying to enjoy every minute of this Christmas season - even if most of those minutes are being spent behind my cheese straw maker in the kitchen.

I have been baking and selling CS for 3 years now and my busiest time of year is December. I try to prepare for it each year, but this year I had a LARGE wedding order in October and then sold out for Thanksgiving too. I started over in December, but I can't keep up with the orders! I do truly love carrying on this family tradition even if it means my house smells like cheese all the time :)

As a stay at home Mom I don't have the intellectual stimulation of a job in the corporate world anymore. My CS business gives me s sense of accomplishment and it is nice to bring in some small income!

Speaking of being prepared...I have almost finished my Christmas shopping! I have been known to start shopping in July, but this year I think I bought my first gift in October. I LOVE to get started early to get things checked off my list. (I also like to get a deal, which is must easier to do the earlier you start.)

My guest room turns into my wrapping room and it is a MESS. I will halfway wrap a few things at a time. There is paper, ribbon, tissue, etc etc everywhere. I dread but also get some sort of satisfaction from hand wrapping all my gifts. It is time intensive, but there just as much love put into the wrapping as the gift itself.

I need to go wrap a few more gifts now...

About me

Here are a few things that you may not know about me :)

-I love naps. I take a nap every day while Hawkins takes one - even if it's a short one.

-I hate when people put Xmas instead of Christmas. Pure laziness.

-My favorite time with Hawkins is right after he wakes up in the morning or from a good nap. I give my complete attention to him and we giggle and play together. He is in the best mood!

-I like white wine better than red wine.

-I love to bake - cookies, cakes, anything :)

-I especially love to bake when I am stressed. I don't know why...

-I dislike artificial trees. Why would you put up an artificial tree when you can get a real amazing fresh Christmas tree??

-And it is not a "holiday" tree. It is a Christmas tree.

-I do not like ketchup or mustard.

-I don't know what my natural hair color is. The last time I saw it was in 11th grade.

-I like my fingernails and toenails VERY short.

-I wake up thinking about drinking a cup coffee, and I go to sleep thinking about the coffee I will drink the next morning - I love it.

-I really cherish alone time more than I ever have. Remember when you were single in college and you had all the time in the world to watch mindless TV all day or veg out with your friends? Well, in marriage and motherhood those days are over. I am constantly entertaining a toddler, feeding a toddler, feeding my husband, doing laundry or having some sort of an adult conversation with my husband. If I happen to have a few minutes in silence by myself it is wonderful and much appreciated.

-I don't know where I would be without my family. I love them so much.

Ok, that's all for now. Maybe more later.