I believe it was almost 6 years ago when I first found Jessica’s blog and started following along with her homeschool journey with her 2 girls.
We went from comments to email to phone calls to texting several times a week to meeting last year when they came here. She is one of my dearest friends and my ‘go to’ person when I need to talk about anything. Her friendship means so much to me even though we are over 1000 miles apart.
This year when they took their trip to her husband Greg’s parents house, Jess and the girls came to stay here for a couple of days. We had the best time ever. I love her and her girls (and Greg too but he stayed with his parents). Keilee adores them all and we just have so much fun!
After the initial hugs and squeals they brought their luggage inside so we would all fit in their SUV. They also came bearing gifts which we LOVE. But…the best gift of all was they brought Keilee a OLD typewriter. Jess knew she had been wanting one and Greg found one at a tag sale. Keilee was speechless and has spent many hours since their visit typing away on it.
Then we took them to Lowe Mill. On the way we stopped by Mooresville which is Alabama’s oldest incorporated town. It is also where Tom and Huck was filmed. Lowe Mill is a beautiful old textile warehouse that has been converted into an Art Entertainment center. It is the largest independent center for the arts in America with over 120 artists.
Then we came home and changed and went to dinner at world famous Big Bob Gibson’s. Afterwards we had planned to swim at their hotel pool but there was a huge lacrosse tournament in town and it was packed. So we decided to go to the Drive-In in a nearby city. Grace and Lilah had never been.
On the way the girls serenaded us with old Miley Cyrus songs. It was awesome!
It was such a great night, the girls in the back of the SUV and Jess and I sitting in chairs all watching Home under the Alabama skies.
We got home and made plans to go to our church the next morning. I was so excited about this because Jess has been watching online for several years. Unfortunately our preacher and his wife were on vacation but it was still amazing having them there. Afterwards we went to Cracker Barrel for lunch.
Then we went to Ava Maria Grotto. This is an amazing little place in Cullman, Al. From their website:
Known throughout the world as “Jerusalem in Miniature,” is a beautifully landscaped, four-acre park designed to provide a natural setting for the 125 miniature reproductions of some of the most famous historic buildings and shrines of the world. The masterpieces of stone and concrete are the lifetime work of Brother Joseph Zoettl, a Benedictine monk of St. Bernard Abbey. Begun as a hobby, with various materials he could find, and infinite patience and a remarkable sense of symmetry and proportion, Brother Joseph re-created some of the greatest edifices of all time.
Even though it was very hot, even by our Alabama standards, we had a great time.
Selfie at Ava Maria Grotto
All too quickly it was time to head back. They needed to get on the road to get back to Tennessee before dark. We had the most amazing time. They were on vacation but it was truly like a vacation to us. We crammed so much into 2 days. Yes I wish we had more time, but it was a beautiful adventure with 2 homeschool Moms that met online and their 3 amazing daughters.
Thank you Jess, Grace and Lilah for taking time to come visit us. We loved every single minute of it.
Selfie before leaving: (until next time)
Homeschool and Homeschooling Friends Rock!
“There is magic in long-distance friendships. They let you relate to other human beings in a way that goes beyond being physically together and is often more profound.” ~Diana Cortes