Monday, December 29, 2008

I love all things ironic...

I think well-intentioned misspellings fall into that category...especially when the object that has been misspelled is for sale to the general public. This is why I think the Cake Wreck blog is so hilarious. So, for those of you that would prefer seeing pictures on my blog rather than going to the Wreck blog...here is a particularly amusing 'holiday' wreck on their site...

Monday, December 15, 2008

Our new lamp

This is a lantern Chad and I found at a junk store on our way hiking one day. I thought it looked so interesting, and thought it had some potential.
We looked it up on the internet and found out it was a carriage lamp for a horse drawn carriage. It probably housed a candle, or a kerosene lamp, but there's obvious marks that show where they tried to convert it to DC power. The rusted wires were still inside. So, we brainstormed about it and decided to try and get it back to its origin and turn it into a lamp. Then, it sat in our garage for a while, and I then moved it to the ledge in our kitchen.











Then, this past Saturday, Chad and I exchanged Christmas presents (b/c we'll be traveling with family for the next week and a half) and Chad gave me a couple of components, which at first, I had no idea what they were....and then I realized, he'd given me what we needed to make our lamp! hooray! So, here are some pictures of the process and finished product. We simply added a wooden base, the lamp mechanism, and a flicker light bulb. We had a little trouble at first...trying to route the original base and shape it to size. After that base broke, we made a trip to Hobby Lobby and bought some replacement parts and whipped the lamp together in a matter of a few minutes! The best part is, that we didn't have to compromise the lamp's original structure at all to make the new lamp!











Sunday, December 07, 2008

Ultimate praises....

In high school, if you didn't know me then, I was in chorus. Well, I wasn't in only one chorus, but by my senior year, I had worked my schedule to be in ALL of them. There were 3; Concert Choir, Golden Blues (showchoir), and the Chamber Choir.


I LOVE to sing. I sing most all of the time. Even when people talk, I take their words and relate them to a song...I can't seem to help it.


That year, my senior year, I worked very very hard at sight reading, picking pitches, hitting notes, combining voices with my alto neighbor etc. in preparation for All-State Choir try-outs. Our teacher gave us hymnals and we learned to sightread from those hymnals. It was tough, but I absolutely loved every minute of it. After our months of practicing, it was time, and I made the All-State chorus...the mixed chorus...the highest honor! It was amazing.


This past weekend, I joined our church choir as we prepare to sing a few songs during the holiday. As I slid to the front of the pew for good singing posture, opened the hymnal to a song I did not know, the sweet conductor made a comment that made my heart drop, and tears flow freely and uncontrollably. She said, "Let's worship together just as my dear friend is worshipping God in heaven now because she just left us and she had a beautiful voice." I tried to dry my eyes, but everything that happened from that point on only magnified my angst. I attempted to sing and got a few notes out and recognized the sound when 2 alto voices sound so similar that it almost sounds like one...


You see, while all of those beautiful memories were being made in high school...I was also making a beautiful friendship with my sweet sweet Carla. I sat next to her. We were fellow altos. We learned together. We sightread together. We danced together in show choir. And we were always trying to help each other...and worked toward the ultimate goal of making our voices sound as one...But what brought tears to my eyes the most, was imagining Carla, now, in heaven with our Comforter, Counselor, Mighty God...singing His praises.


I finished choir practice and made it to my car where I just cried out to God...and in my pain from having lost this incredible friend, I was comforted in the confidence I have knowing she is singing with my Father, and that one day, I can sit next to her again, and sing with her again...Ultimate Praises to Him.

Monday, November 03, 2008

the Avett Experience



So, my brother called about 3 months ago and asked if Chad and I would like to see the Avett Brothers with he and Leah at the Peace Center on Nov. 1. Being a fan of generally all live music, and having the one of their albums (provided by my brother) we were excited at the opportunity! You see, they had bought the tix for them and another couple, who, found out that they were going to have to attend a wedding instead of this concert...so we ended up reaping the benefits of it!

Check out the video...and listen really close for my voice, because we were all sitting right behind the guy videotaping this...The concert was awesome! I am a huge fan now! It's a folk band that clearly loves what they do (by the jumping and headbanging...yes, headbanging to the banjo) They added a good amount of rock to this show, and it was just amazing...I can't wait to see them again!

The headliner was also good: Nicole Atkins...man, that little girl can wail!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Today I...

A friend from college does something on her blog that I thought was very interesting...she lists short sentences about her day. I liked it. Simple, yet, informative. So, here goes.

Today I....

had coffee with fudge chocolate creamer

sat under a tree in my car with the sunroof open and did my bible study

suspected the guy sitting near me in his car was up to no good

spoke spanish

taught 3 new students the alphabet in english

regretted the thought that i might have to turn the heat on

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

This one's a doozy...but has all the details!


...I was going to post all these individually, but it was going to take a loooong time...sorry if its hard to make out what they are!

Friday

- flew out of GSP at 10:38A and landed in Newark, NJ at 12:30P.


- we checked in at our very simple, modest, safe, and clean hotel, Riverside Studios, in the upper west side next to the Hudson River and 2 blocks from Central Park http://www.riversidestudioshotel.com/.

- immediately after we got to the hotel to put our stuff away and get ready, we got all dressed up for the evening and went directly to the Empire State Building. (aside: the fabulous shoes I bought to go with my dress and other outfits had made my feet actually bleed by the time we were at the Empire State building...and while we waited in line, Chad (my hero) went all the way down to street level and bought band-aids in hopes of cushioning my feet a little)

- we had a wonderful dinner at Meli Melo and listened to old man play the clarinet! It was so romantic! (especially watching Chad so lovingly apply these band-aids to the inside of my shoes)


- Then, we went to the Majestic Theater on Broadway to see Phantom of the Opera on Broadway from the front row!! I had been wanting to see this for about 12 years...(dorky maybe, BUT, our high school band won state competition playing the music from Phantom...and I went to many of the competitions)


Saturday (today we got up around 6:30)

- delicious breakfast at the quaint diner around the corner from our hotel

- early tour of NBC studios (saw the following studios: MSNBC, Brian William's desk, Conan O'Brein, SNL) sorry there are no pics of this, b/c the sets at NBC are all trademarked so no cameras are allowed. (oh, and neither are dangerous finger-nail clippers!)

- It was sprinkling now as we waited in line for the ferry to take us to Ellis Island and by the Statue of Liberty. But, by the time we got on the ferry...the clouds parted and we had beautiful weather!

- Then, we went sight seeing in Financial District: NY Stock Exchange, Ground Zero, Alexander Hamilton's grave, etc. We really couldn't see much of Ground Zero because the fencing around the entire block has a green mesh cloth that blocks any views. However, we did get a couple of pictures. It was really hard for me to grasp the enormity of it all b/c I hadn't seen it before the attack...

- We headed over to Chinatown in search of some yummy lunch. Chad asked a couple (maybe in their late 40's/50's) if they knew of a good place to go. They said "follow us!" So, the four of us walked around Chinatown and finally ended up at Shanghai Cuisine, put our names in to be seated, and discussed what we should have. They recommended the dumplings. When they called Patrick and Helen's names, they looked at us and asked us to join them! Chad did the ordering b/c I had been pre-occupied with all the street sights instead of looking at the menu. They brought more food than I could have ever imagined! So, we shared our food with Patrick and Helen (from California)...discussed work, their children, politics (and surprisingly we were on the same side of the fence) and had a wonderful time!

- It was getting later than we realized, so we had to abruptly leave our new friends and head back to the hotel for a little rest


- we rested for about an hour, then got ready for another night in the Big Apple.


- We went to Gotham Comedy Club. We managed to get the best seats in the house...second row, front and center (Chad was so excited!) The headliner (Dom Irrera) actually mentioned Columbia, SC! so, I had to give a little shout out...he stopped and said "seriously? I never get a shout out for Columbia, SC!" and then he proceeded to talk about the nickname for the Gamecocks and how ridiculous it was...I would have to agree with that! ha! (go Tigers)


- After the show, I was still hungry (b/c the Cesar salad was not so good) and we stopped at a little corner restaurant and had a yummy Gyro.


- We walked down to the Hudson River (right down the street from our hotel) and looked over at the lights of Jersey City. I was pretty scared though (you know, all those terrible things you hear about the parks at night in NYC) so, we only stayed a minute, and went to get some much needed shut-eye.


Sunday


Because we tarried a little on Saturday, we used Sunday to catch up on some of the sights we had missed.
-breakfast at the cool diner next to or hotel


- We went to the Planetarium inside the American Museum of Natural History & learned about the Big Bang Theory! the show was actually amazing though


- we took a brisk walk through Central Park in order to get to our next destination very quickly (b/c we're running short on time and had to get to the airport soon)

- Finally, we made it to La Maison du Chocolat and planned on tasting the best chocolate in NYC (b/c my hubby knows me so well...and I LOVE chocolate) But they didn't open for another hour! and we had a flight to catch! :( oh well...nice attempt...the good news is...you can order online!

- then we headed back to the Museum to get our bags out of coat check and started the 1 1/2 hour trek back to the airport (subway, train, and bus)

- running most of the way, we still only barley made it on the plane in time!

How did he do it?

If you are just checking my blog after a few days, please read the previous post "It's Monday and you might ask....."

Well, a few weeks ago, Chad made a list of the types of outfits I needed to bring: 1 dressy outfit as if I were going to a show, 1 trendy outfit, comfortable shoes, 1 outfit for a short hike/park visit. So, I packed everything accordingly into my little duffle bag with some hanging clothes out so they wouldn't get wrinkled in the bag.

As we got into the car, I hardly noticed the large suitcase in the back seat b/c we packed all our stuff into the very back of the car. We went on our way! After a few miles, Chad pulled out the file folder and talked me through page by page. He had to pull over the car b/c we were both too excited to be operating heavy equipment!

Once we parked the car in the airport parking lot, he pulled out the giant suitcase, and out of it, he got the small 'carry-on' sized rolling bag! So, I began to re-pack my clothes...taking out the shampoo, conditioner, nail polish remover, extra jacket, etc...and fit it all into this carry on bag!

He had done so well! He had left his hanging clothes out, was dressed for rafting, brought a silly had my dad gave him to wear on the water (that, by the way, said "Paddle Faster, I hear banjos"), and even made comments about the gel in his hair and how he'd have to wash it before going on the water b/c it would make his hat smell bad!

We printed our tickets and waited to board the plane. As we sat in the concourse, Chad pulled out my iPod, 2 sets of headphones, and the double connector so we could begin watching the movies he'd downloaded that take place in NYC! Isn't he amazing! He thought of everything!

You see, Chad has been dying to take me to NYC. I had been there once before during a long lay-over (after missing my flight to South America) but we only spent a few hours in the city. So, he had promised that one day he'd take me...but little did I know, that day would come sooner than later...

Sorry it's just words for now, I'll post some pictures soon...there are just so many and so much to say that I don't want to miss anything!

Monday, October 06, 2008

It's Monday and you might ask, "What did you do this weekend...?"

This past weekend, Chad had planned a weekend to celebrate our anniversary (9/23). He said we were going rafting in Charlotte at their man made raft course with his parents and that there were some surprises in store after that....

We packed our bags, went on our way Friday morning and headed out. A few minutes down the road, he hands me a file folder labeled "Clues" and tells me to read the clues and he prompted me to turn the pages. Here are the clues...


(ever seen National Treasure?)

x


at this point, he's pulled the car over, both of us are teary-eyed and I'm speechless...we weren't on our way to I-85, rafting, or even Charlotte....

.....more to come.....

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Slideshows

Well, I'm not sure why you guys can't see the slideshows (youtube links) I added, but since I'm not that savvy, I've added a combo slideshow to the menu bar...take a look!

Saturday, September 06, 2008

A weekend at Shining Rock

By looking at these two slide shows, you probably have realized I'm not the best photographer in the world (I'll leave that to Liv) but here are a few more shots of our camping trip to the Shining Rock Wilderness. I've been there a few times before, once with the girls and the dogs and once when Olivia and Matt began their real courtship...talking all through the night and giggling like middle schoolers!! ugh! But, yes, we are all thankful for that night because they are a happy wonderful couple today :)



This was Chad's first camping trip where he had to carry all his supplies on his back! We hiked in (about 5 miles) on Friday night and got to the Shining Rock Gap about 9:30pm. It was so eerily quiet...we set up camp, made some dinner, and went to bed. We had planned on making the long treacherous trip to Cold Mountain (8 miles one way) the next day, but we were both so tired, we just played around our campsite on Saturday. We found an unbelievable blueberry patch, I beat him in poker, using leaves and tiny pinecones as currency, (I won the rites to his sleeping pad for the night), found a big clearing with an awesome view of the valleys (I'd like to camp there next time), met some new friends, and watched the sunset atop Shining Rock. It was a great relaxing trip...and one we'll probably make again.

Hucks Family Beach Vacation 2008



Here's a quick slideshow from our vacation with my side of the family. Everyone was there!! Mom, Dad, Terry, Kendra, Rachel, Will, Adam, Leah, Isabella, Elissa, Chad, and Allison! We played beach bocce ball, mini golf, ate great seafood, and celebrated Will's (aka, Spiderman's) 3rd birthday.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

The Post-Father's-Day Father's Day Adventure

That's right, 'post' father's day...one of the things about being married...is learning how to be creative with holiday planning! Thankfully, we both have amazing parents that are just happy to spend time with us anytime! So, the weekend of the actual (Hallmark holiday) Father's Day, we went to Ft. Mill to hang out with Chad's parents. Then, the following weekend, we entertained my parents in G-Vegas! It is always so nice having them here!

So, for a long time, my dad has been saying he wanted to go to Hendersonville, NC. Its a neat place, although I've always thought of it as a place to go in the fall during apple season and pick apples. But, because it's too early for apples, I was worried we would get up there and not have enough to do to make the trip worth the drive (although it is only about 45 min away) So I researched and found all of these possibilities for our day.

Then, just before breakfast on the day of the trip, my mom said, "Guess what I heard on the radio..." and it turned out that very day was going to be the 17th annual Antiques Festival in downtown Hendersonville! Wow! Any my parents LOVE antiques!!! Needless to say, we had a great time there...
Then, as the rain came in, we went to the biggest antique store I've ever seen. We wandered for what seemed like hours...and hours....and hours...but just long enough for the rain to subside, and for us to make our way to nearby Chimney Rock State Park!
We had so much fun!!! My parents don't get to see that kind of beauty in Columbia, and Chad and I were so proud to be able to show it to them.








Then, as it's closing in on dinner time, and we were discussing dinner plans, Chad suggested we go to Saluda, NC on the way home and eat at The Purple Onion. So, we sat on their covered porch in the tiny downtown Saluda restaruant drinking the best organic decaf coffee ever, and enjoyed a unique Chicken Caesar Pizza together!

Sounds like fun huh?? :)

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Vacation!





Hi all!
Well, I promised pictures of mine and Chad's Hilton Head vacation...and, well, here are maybe the only 2 good ones from the whole trip! ha! well, maybe not...

Chad and I had so much fun in Hilton Head. We played on the beach, we rode our bikes, ate delicious food, slept in late, got really relaxed etc. it was a dream vacation! Really, Chad needed a vacation so badly, and it was so nice to see him totally relaxed!

We learned that there are a lot of restaurants to choose from that you think might be worth the high dollar because of appearance or location, but don't be fooled by the aesthetics! Choose your food carefully!! Perhaps 2 of our favorite restaurants were:

Signe's Heaven Bound Bakery This place was awesome! (Noted by Rachel Ray from the Food Network.) The food was so fresh and the decor was like an English Country Tea Room...so cute! I am also proud to say that Chad and I decided to ride our bikes to/from Signe's which ended up being a 16 mile bike ride that day!

Also, Santa Fe Cafe is quite possibly the BEST Mexican food I have EVER had!! Seriously, this is no joke. This restaurant ranks right up there, for me, as Stax Peppermill. If you go, ask to sit on the terrace get the Painted Dessert Soup (truly a work of art in taste and presentation)...oh, and be sure to budget a pretty penny for the well-worth-it meal.

Honorable Mention:
Hudson's, HH's oldest restaurant and reasonably priced.
The Sea Shack, is just that, a little beachy shack, but the food is really good!!

Monday, May 12, 2008

New stuff...

Hi everyone! Sorry it's been so long since I posted last...for ALL of you out there that read our blog :)

After all that hype about the Leatherheads movie...you couldn't even see Chad in it :( But, the guy in the pic with him below had a great shot at the beginning of the movie, and a guy we go to church with was the bellhop in the scene with George at the hotel!

Soccer is going well. I had a pretty good game last week...and was the epitome of aggressive elbowing like crazy (without getting called of course) but, no goals for me :( seems like a mid-fielder curse I need to just get in gear! I will brag on my BFF, Olivia, though, because she's been playing awesome and even had a HAT TRICK this past game! wahoo!
Other news: Allison has gotten a new job! Yep, my stint at the Disabilities and Special Needs Board has been good. I LOVE the consumers I work with and am seriously avoiding telling them I am leaving...Starting June 2, I'll be working as a Program Manager at the Greenville Literacy Association with their English as a Second Language program! I have actually been wanting to do this for some time and am so excited at this opportunity!
One of the best things about changing jobs right now is that Chad and I get to take a vacation before it starts!!!!! And even better than that is that one of Chad's basketball buddies is letting us stay at his oceanfront condo in Hilton Head for free!! Chad's never been to HH, and I have only been once...and that was probably 15 years ago! So, if any of you out there are frequents to the island, leave me a comment telling me where the best places are.

Once we get back from vacation the last week in May, perhaps I'll have some pictures to post. Until then, just words! :)

Friday, March 28, 2008

Leatherheads...Coming soon!

As you may remember, about a year ago, Chad was an extra in the upcoming Leatherheads movie. Here's one of the pictures from the shoot. For more, check out the 2007 blog posts...should be sometime in April.

Well, the movie comes out on April 4th and Greenville is buzzin' b/c of all the locals that participated. Now, we're not too sure if Chad will actually be noticeable in the movie or not....but, we have watched the "official" trailer...and have actually spotted him!!!! Check it out:

Now, if you don't believe he's in there...just look at this!



Monday, March 03, 2008

After 12 long years.....

After 12 long years, I, with much coercion from Chad and Olivia, played an indoor soccer game this past Thursday!!!!! Yep, that's right, I began thinking about how long it had been since I played a real game, and I believe it's been about that long....since just after my ACL surgery.

Olivia's been playing on a co-ed league, and asked me to play because they thought they'd need a girl sub....well....they didn't need a sub b/c there weren't even enough players! So, I PLAYED THE WHOLE GAME!!! I seriously thought I might pass out in the first few minutes, but I slowed down a little and was able to at least keep running. I had a couple of good passes and it was great feeling the aggression that comes out in you while playing soccer...but the biggest event of the night was Olivia scoring her first goal of the season!!! whaooooo!!!! Sadly, we ended up losing the game 8-4, but keep in mind that the other team had only 1 girl and had subs...and we had 3 girls and no subs...NOT a fair match!!

I am still sore, but for someone who's turning the big 3-0 this year, not too shabby!! I only wish I had some pictures!

Monday, February 25, 2008

Countdown to Closing!!

This is my condo...the place I purchased a couple of years ago marking a major life change....a settling, my "growing roots," my independence. I fell in love with this place, bought it, and made it my own. I anticipated living there for years, meeting the man of my dreams, and making it our own little love nest....then, I met him, and he alreay had his own house! Sooo......we rented it, then put it on the market and................




.....after a few short months of being on the market, our condo has finally sold!!! All in one week, we had a renter lined up and 3 offers on the condo! Can you believe it?! Truly amazing...


So, to celebrate, Chad took me out for the most fabulous dinner I think I might have ever had!!! We went to Stax Peppermill and had their Maine Lobster Special!!! It was AMAZING! Everything was great, the atmosphere, the service, the food...the whole experience was wonderful. If you're looking for a relaxed and romantic place to go, the Peppermill is the place! It was impressive, coming from a "foody" background, for so many reasons, but one was that the owner and managers both visited our table a few times assuring that our experience was a pleasant one...wow! Is my husband wonderful or what!?!? He is truly the man of my dreams!



Thursday, January 17, 2008

2007-2008 Pictures!

Okay, the next series of pictures I'm about to post are of some of the following things: Hucks family dinner at the Nicholsons over Christmas, Christmas at Granny and Papa Nicholson's, Christmas at Mimi and Poppy Hucks' house, babysitting Isabella and Elissa (making a wonderful mess of making and decorating cookies) and of the great snow storm...Enjoy!

Left to right: Isabella, Rachel, Will, Elissa then, my big brother Adam and big sister Kendra at our house for dinner!











Granny and Papa opening presents at their house and Granny getting a makeover from Chad's mom.















One of the Hucks traditions is all the men give each other gag gifts. This was one of them...crazy looking teeth! They all really seem to get a kick out of it. Chad did so good this year and made a multi-tool out of normal sized tools. It was pretty funny. My mom (aka Mimi) also tries to get matching jammies for the grand kids each year...here's this year's pick...well, needless to say, Will didn't get the cute little ruffly pjs with the sparkly snowflakes...but, his were still super cute!














Chad and I had the pleasure of babysitting Isabella and Elissa so Leah could take Adam out for his 33rd birthday! We made a big mess making cookies (thankfully uncle Chad wasn't home for that mess!) but then, we made another mess decorating them! Thanks to uncle Chad for helping clean up our mess!!









Check out the newest addition to our downstairs game room. We've recently aquired this from my grandparents house as they are transitioning into assisted living and we couldn't find a good spot for the large painting in their tiny room at their new facility.


It's a painting by my uncle Jack of he and my dad playing football. My dad (the GT player) is recovering a Georgia fumble! Well, that's the way we see it. Jackie painted this in 1970 around the time when the twins played at their rival schools. It's not what some art critics would consider a master piece, but I have always liked the painting and think it makes a nice addition to this room in our house.

On Thur, Jan 17th it snowed and we decided to stay home from work and play a bit.


This is Harry the snowman.


and this, is Chad and I sledding in our pitiful little SC snow...it was so fun though! We sledded down our hill in the backyard and almost ended up in the creek a couple of times!



video
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Thursday, January 03, 2008

Its a Hucks Life

Hey, I know it's been a while since I posted last, but honestly, I've gotten a Facebook page and now I'm a little addicted...but, perhaps I can come back to the old blog in 2008...

Some exciting news...my big brother has a blog now!!! (check out the new link in the link menu) I just thought I'd bring it to your attention...his little girls are adorable, and he and his wife, Leah, take lots of pics, so I'm sure you'll enjoy checking up with them every now and then too!