Drum roll please…I can finally post the last part of my ‘Favorite Things’ because #4 arrived in the mail from my parents’ house in Texarkana, TX on Saturday. Not sure what took it so long getting here, but it just prolonged the suspense! Looking back at the other posts, coupled with this one, I didn’t want these to be in any particular order (i.e. #1 is my most favorite and #15 my least favorite of the favorites). So, take these as the last 5 rather than the top 5. With one exception. #1. It’s legit my favorite.
Here goes! Enjoy!
5. Official University of Alabama Football Jersey
#22 Mark Ingram the 75th winner of the Heisman Trophy and the first from the University of Alabama.
I am a proud graduate of the University of Alabama. How I ended up there is not that exciting of a story but it was the perfect place for me for college. I loved every minute of my 3 1/2 years there. I grew up in Texas so I have long known a Southerners love for football. I grew up in a household with a father that loves the Arkansas Razorbacks and loathes the University of Texas (the hatred dates back to when both schools were in the Southwestern Conference, which also included Baylor University, my parents’ alma mater, though football is not Baylor’s forte). Slightly unrelated, I’m convinced by dad cannot fully enjoy himself when he comes to visit us solely because he knows that UT’s campus is a few miles away. Ha! Anyway, I have always loved SEC football (and yes, it is the best conference in the nation), but I didn’t understand love for football until I went to Alabama. Those people know their football. When I went to school there, I didn’t bleed Crimson, didn’t know the fight song, didn’t know the players for that matter…4 minutes in Bryant-Denny Stadium changed that. You can’t help but be a fan. The school spirit and love for Alabama’s deep football tradition is contagious. That was all it took. A dear friend that I met in my first weeks at Alabama sat with me during the first game and taught me the fight song and at the end of my first game I was screaming “Rammer Jammer”.
The official jersey of the 2010 BCS National Championship
Yes, I'm legit. Merry Christmas to me from Mr. Fancy Pants! The best gift EVER!
Needless to say, I was thrilled that Alabama made it to the National Championship last season and probably would’ve given my first born child for the chance to go to the game had I had the opportunity! Not really, but I would’ve thought about it. Mr. Fancy Pants gave me this official National Championship jersey for Christmas last year before the game. I think I was one of 2 people in Austin, TX cheering on the Crimson Tide on the evening of the game (the other being my roommate from my freshman year of college who also lives in Austin). This fantastic jersey is Mark Ingram’s number, 22. Ingram was the 75th winner of the Heisman Trophy and the first winner ever from the University of Alabama. I watched his acceptance speech in Mighty Fine Burgers in Austin, TX and yes, I cried. The rest of the restaurant was mad–in their burnt orange.
No offense to any of my UT fan friends (Mr. Fancy Pants and I actually are Texas fans, we are from Texas you know–except when they play Alabama), but it was a great year to be an Alabama fan. And I’m so happy to have this jersey to commemorate it! Roll Tide Roll!
4. Wood carving of our initials inspired by our “save the dates”
Mr. and Mrs. Fancy Pants' Save the Dates
One of my favorite things about Mr. Fancy Pants and my wedding was our Save the Dates. Our dear friend, Beverly Hayman-Polen (a fellow graphic design student at Mississippi State with Mr. Fancy Pants) designed our lovely Save the Dates for us. Bev now lives in Jackson, MS with her husband Neil and is the Artistic Director for Libby Story & Company. She is amazingly talented and creative and I love what she came up with for us. As you can tell from the picture, she drew a tree on right side of the card with a heart including our initials. Hanging from the branch was a little brown bag that held two cards, one with the wedding date information, the other with the hotel information. We got so many compliments on these and with good reason–just look at how amazing they are!!! Check out Bev’s website!
Cards that fit inside the bag on our Save the Dates
Save the Dates designed by Beverly Hayman-Polen
What makes these even more special to Mr. Fancy Pants and I is a gift that was given to us by Dr. Randy Brown. Dr. B is Mr. Fancy Pant’s best friend Ryan’s dad. Mr. Fancy Pants and Ryan grew up together and were pretty much inseparable for the majority of their adolescent life. Some of my best memories are with those two kiddos. William and Ryan were Eagle Scouts together, and Dr. B was Troop 16’s leader (not sure the “official name” though I probably should know). Dr. B and his wife are very special people to Mr. Fancy Pants and I and also to Mr. Fancy Pants’s whole family. They through a party for us and some of our friends before we got married and that night Dr. B gave us this wood carving that he did for us–inspired by our Save the Dates.
Wood carving by Dr. B inspired by our Save the Dates
Detail of the intricate wood carving
This beautiful piece of art now hangs in our home. It is a constant reminder of our engagement, wedding, and of a very special man. I know I’ve written about this before, but it doesn’t get more personal or special than a gift that comes from the heart. Dr. B’s wood working is incredible and we’re honored to have such a personal piece made by him to keep forever!
The back of Dr. B's wood carving-a sweet note to us.
3. Acapulco dishes
Acapulco dish collection
I know I’ve already posted once about these dishes (to refresh your memory, click here), however, these are some of my favorite things. My mother, grandmother, and I all share a collection of this lovely china made by Villeroy & Boch. When Mr. Fancy Pants and I got married, I told him that I wasn’t going to be those women who has 16 sets of dishes. Sadly, I am well on my way. Entertaining people in our home has quickly become one of my favorite things to do, and I can honestly say that I utilize all of the dishes and serving pieces that we got for wedding gifts (not because they’re needed when entertaining, but because I’m determined to prove to Mr. Fancy Pants that they aren’t a waste of space!)
My Acapulco collection, however, are and will always be my favorite pieces. They’re unique and colorful and I love my family’s history with them. They might fall into that category of “what’s beautiful to one is dreadful to another”, but to my Mom, my Mimi, and I, they’re perfectly lovely.
Acapulco bowls & salad plates
2. Family pictures
Wall of Family Photos (Bryants, Sarretts, Woods, Marshes, Brabhams)
I apologize for the quality of these pictures–I’m no photographer and it’s hard to photograph photographs without getting a flash on the glass. I failed. Ha!
This has been one of my favorite projects that I’ve worked on since Mr. Fancy Pants and I got married. My mom had done this in my childhood home and I thought I’d incorporate it into our home as well. I have collected pictures from William’s and my families, printed them all in black and white, and hung them all together on our guest room wall. I love the reminder of where we came from and some of the faces on the wall are people that Mr. Fancy Pants and I miss everyday–it’s nice to have a reminder. I also love the obvious joining of our two families through these old photographs. Believe it or not, these have been a huge conversation piece for us. I thought that they’d be generally overlooked by our friends, as most don’t care to hear stories of other people’s families, but they’ve been the topic of conversation during several parties we’ve had here at the apartment. It’s funny to hear the comments people make–they’re all generally the same which we find comical. The first is always about the uncanny resemblance that William has to his maternal grandfather (pictured with his wife, bottom row in the middle). My other favorite comment was by one of my girl friends. She said, “Who is this handsome man?”. It was a picture of my mom’s father who I never met. And yes, he was handsome–my mom looks just like him!
Detail shot of the left side of the wall
Detail shot of the right side of the wall
I love this idea–everyone has these old pictures of their family stuck in drawers and hidden in rooms where people never go–why not put them where people can see them? I’d like to think that Mr. Fancy Pants and my family members would be honored to be making their debut in our home!
1. Avey Tare
Meet Mr. Avey Tare
And finally, my #1 favorite thing…granted he’s not really a thing but he’s still my favorite and it’s my list of favorite things so here he is! The kittiest of kitties…Avey Tare!
He’s pretty much the most handsome cat ever. Avey has more personality than we know what to do with. He’s nice to most people…with the exception of Mr. Fancy Pants’ brother Stephen, my dad, our friend Micah, and a few others. We have no explanation to his reasoning as it appears his least favorite people are some of our favorites. He just has bad taste apparently. He loves ice cream, treats, hair rubber bands, and laying on his back with his paws and legs spread out for long periods of time. We got him in November of 2006 and he lived with Mr. Fancy Pants in Starkville, MS during college. It was here that he met two of his favorite people in the world, Landon and Julia. Landon taught him some pretty cool tricks which makes him even more special. While he lived with William and Landon, he had a tendency to tinkle on things: beds, couches, chairs, etc. It was a bad time in the lives of all involved. We think it was his equivalent of bed wetting. Also, when he had surgery and became a little less of a man, if you know what I mean, he got an infection which also lead to some really nasty things. All of this earned him the nick name of Mr. Avey Bottom. Luckily after moving to Austin he’s turned a new leaf and is back to his crazy steller self minus the peeing on things that aren’t his litter box. Basically he’s the coolest ever. If you’ve never met him, well you’re missing out.
This is what Mr. Fancy Pants and I call "airing it out". He does this a lot. He's not what you would call a shy being.
Avey getting ready for work. He's not good at his job. He never brings home money--if he's making it, we're not sure what he does with it because he never pays rent.
Avey at Halloween. He was a jester. He loved his costume.
Avey at Christmas with his festive holiday collar.
I’ll leave you with this last image. I hope you enjoyed my favorite things!
Here are my two favorite boys.
Mr. Fancy Pants and Avey Tare at the park. Yes, the cat is on a least. He needs his exercise.