Family Pics…and Our Sweet 16

Today we celebrate our sweet sixteen; Judd with a quick business trip up north, me with freshman orientation and football pics of the seniors, and together with a family football dinner with our son’s new team.

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This year the candlelit dinner or romantic beach walk just won’t quite fit in, as we’re experiencing a big dose of three-kids-in-three-different-schools, two-current-sports, two-jobs, one-business, and a-partridge-in-a-pear-tree kind of reality…

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But reality is what we do best!! And our reality is pretty messy and completely wonderful!

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Our reality started 21 years ago, in first grade at Bristol Elementary School. I was climbing up the green tunnel in the middle of all the big slides, Judd was chasing me, and mid-climb pointing out, “Hey, I can see your underwear.”

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I’m sure I was sporting a Bright’s Creek skirt with matching hair bow (a devoted matchy-matchy-girlie-girl) and Judd was already looking up girls’ skirts, but with comedic fashion!

Hopefully, at age 6, it wasn’t the underwear that kept him chasing after me 😂😂😂 but we became great friends!

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My parents’ driveway became our bball game location and where we created the “can’t quit till you make a swish” rule…and I even managed to “win” a few games!

The school bus was where we shared a crammed seat of musical instruments, school projects, Charlotte Hornets puffy coats, and Walk-Man’s with songs that had words that made me blush (and Judd knew every word!).

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We saw iconic movies like The Bodyguard, and forgettable ones too (can anyone even remember With Honors or The Pelican Brief?), all while sporting our silk shirts and Doc Martens.

We talked (yep TALKED, this was before cell phones after all) for HOURS on the phone and I swore Judd was right outside my window, watching me, he knew my routine so well.

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We even had one more underwear incident…me, in a game up to bat; Judd, watching behind the plate, pointing out, “You shouldn’t wear red heart underwear with your white softball pants!”

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And we grew up…and grew apart. We explored different interests, made different friends, experienced our own highs and lows, and only talked during that one dreaded gym class during first block or while Mrs. Kopy (I can’t even remember if that’s how she spelled it) passed back our Trig homework.

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We barely knew each other anymore on that senior year spring break, but talked like besties in the pool under moonlight, and decided to go to prom, just as friends (and to avoid awkwardness with classmates we knew we had waiting for us back home).

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Prom was it, the rekindled friendship, dancing to “No Diggity,” maybe even sneaking some Dark Eyes Vodka (it had to be cheap – 18 was the drinking age, right? 😉).

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When fall came, and Judd left for football in KY and I headed down to Bloomington, we knew our distance wouldn’t last long. We married after our junior year and welcomed our first baby 15 months later. Both Breckin and Whitley were at my college graduation and Stella came during the building of our second “flip” house.

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Sixteen years of marriage…

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…three kids, four dogs (not all at once, sweet Lord!!), two cats (passed on, one the absolute Devil himself), a teaching career, a small business, a sales career with several companies, countless vacations, sporting events, broken bones, broken hearts, beach days, lake days, best friends, best days of our lives (and an underwear story we’ll take to the grave 😂)…

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and it’s pretty sweet!

 

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