{A Grateful Heart // Tennessee}

 photo IMG_5930_zpsel6aqtoj.jpg

>> Linking up with Ember Grey for A Grateful Heart <<

Over the weekend Nathan, Mason and I traveled to Tennessee {along with my parents, sister & her family, 2 uncles and some cousins} to surprise my Grandfather for his 75th birthday. It was a short trip filled with lots of driving, but it was worth it. It was so, so good for my soul.  I adore my Grandparents and hate that there is 9 hours that separates us. 

We left Friday morning at 3:30 am. Our plan was to leave while Mason was still asleep so that he would hopefully sleep for the majority of the trip. About that. Yeah. He didn't sleep a wink. He was entirely too excited and decided that 4 hours of sleep was enough for him. Surprised the heck out of me because this child averages 10-14 hours of sleep a night. We were only about 10 minutes from home when I noticed him being a wiggle worm in the back seat. I looked back to see him bright eyed and busy-tailed. I told him he needed to sleep and he says...

"Okay Mama, but I have to tell you something really important before I go to sleep. I saw a meteor in the sky. It was red and it was real and it was AWESOME!!"

haha! Needless to say, he didn't go back to sleep the whole 9 hours of our trip! And he wasn't a walking nightmare, either. We had a really easy drive and arrived at my Aunt & Uncles around 12:30 pm. Then we waited for the rest of the group to arrive so that we could all head over to my Grandparents to surprise my Papa. My aunt and uncle went a few minutes before us so that my aunt could have her camera ready.  My uncle and him were going to be playing a song together at church on Sunday so my uncle started a conversation about that. It worked and didn't raise any suspicions with my Papa.When we all pulled up my Papa was in the garage at his computer station. He heard the commotion and started walking out. My sweet Papa had tears in his eyes. And that hug I have been longing for {over 5 years} was so good for my soul and my heart. I just love him. 

That evening we hung out at my grandparents house. We had about 30-35 people there. And then we all went to supper at a nearby mexican food restaurant. Saturday morning got up and hung out. We ran several errands to get ready for my Grandpa's surprise birthday party. It was held at a nearby church and about 60 friends and family were there.  And to say that my Papa was surprised is an understatement. We had bbq, fellowship and cake. We also took some family pictures. 

 photo 7_zps0b0x7hfg.jpg  photo 20_zpsyr1ixgrt.jpg

After the birthday party we all went back to my aunt & uncles house to visit and hang out. I loved every single second of it. We sat on the deck while the children played on the playset and chased and caught fireflies. Sunday morning it was time to pack up and head home. We said our goodbyes to my aunt and uncle and headed over to see my Grandparents before we hit the road. We were able to spend a good hour with them. We left when they were leaving for church.

I am so grateful for this trip. Grateful for my husband and driving us there 9 hours & 9 hours back. Grateful for my family. Grateful for love, and hugs and photographs and joy.

Also, due to no phone service I was forced into a weekend unplugged and it was refreshing. I am grateful for this as well. I was able to spend quality time with my family without worrying about snapping pictures and Instagramming my weekend. I didn't take many photographs at all, but the memories will be forever in my heart. 

Until next time Tennessee....


  1. so fun! What a great getaway - I love TN too! Glad you got to unplug- thos weekends are always so refreshing

  2. This sounds like a great trip! Unplugging is sometimes a wonderful thing, too.

  3. So sweet that you were able to surprise you Papa!!
    I love that Mason was so excited he didn't sleep during the 9 hour trip. True champ!

  4. Awww how sweet. I bet he was super surprised. First florida, now Tennessee! You are a traveling Mama! Looks like you enjoyed your trip. BTW, I read your Disney posts. I am glad you all had such a good time.

  5. How sweet are you all! I have never been to TN but I just told my sister I think that's where I wanna do her bachelorette party :)

  6. How sweet! What a great black and white picture of him playing the guitar. Definitely a framer! And having that sweet time with your family WHILE being unplugged? Priceless. We are going to the beach next week and I am considering unplugging for the duration (only to check in with my mom at night). It feels so good to be disconnected from social media!

  7. What a fabulous family time!! Five years is a long time to go without seeing sweet family. I am happy to hear that y'all had a wonderful time and I give you major kudos for 9 hours one way in a car!! {fist bumping'!}

  8. Lovely post. I love the pictures.

  9. It's always so refreshing when I unplug! Also, I love Tennessee :)

  10. Awe! Happy belated birthday to your grandpa & what sweet family pics! I'm glad ya'll had a great time.

  11. So cute Mason was so excited!!! My Mason hasn't napped like at all this weekend which is totally abnormal for him but you never know what kids will do when they are excited. Though I need my sleep. So no matter how excited I am, you will find me getting my beauty rest LOL :)

  12. family is the best!! looks so fun ;)


Thanks for the comments! Hope you are having an amazing day!!