Christmas 2017

Thankful that God sent his son to be born as our Savior! Grateful that we were able to spend this Christmas with family and that my parents live close enough to us that we are able to do that.  

I am reminded of those special people who are no longer with us.

I miss my brother so much. He was such a huge personality and he leaves a massive void in our lives. He now celebrates with the Father in heaven. This photo was the last Christmas we spent together four years ago.

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This Christmas I also missed my sister-in-law, Melissa. We don’t get to see each other very much but she is still part of our family and I love her very much. #sistersforlife 

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And then there’s grandma! She was a strong woman who loved the Lord. She also is in heaven. Two years ago we went to Ohio for Christmas to be with Bernie’s family and to spend time with grandma. (It was Bernie’s idea!) I am so glad we did that because she died the following March. 

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It has been a great day! I hope your Christmas was just as wonderful!

 

Thanksgiving 2017

We drove to Ohio for Thanksgiving to be with the Dake/Marshall clan. It is a long drive especially when you have a crazy anxious 70lb German Shepherd in the back seat coupled with standstill traffic! Yikes! 

We had a great time being together for the few days we were there. When you are there for just a short time you try to do everything you can in a little bit of time you have. 

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Thanksgiving 2017

Bruce, Noah, Doris, Ron, Becky, Bernie, Laura & Luger

 

Wednesday was a great evening spent with Bernie’s siblings, nieces, nephew and grandniece! Our niece Liz and her husband Eric revealed to us that they were having a boy and his name is going to be Nolan Ellis! 

 

We had a lovely Thanksgiving meal served by the hostess of the century...Doris (Mom Dake) with a surprise for Dad...a graham cracker cream pie from his favorite place in Hornell NY. Bruce, Bernie’s brother, was very thoughtful and went out of the way to pick it up. It was a great surprise and we were all able to share it. ;)

Our niece Jen brought over the newest “grand pup” so that Luger could meet him and have a play date. Luger was very good with him and Aspen wasn’t so sure. But someday in the very near future, Aspen will be bigger than Luger. It was so much fun for me. German Shepherd pups are my fav! 

 

We spent half the day in Wooster, first at Sure House coffee with the family. I loved this place! Quant, modern, great coffee and AMAZING #cretzels They are a croissant pretzel filled with chocolate or cinnamon sugar. Oh my! I need to learn how to make those! Later that afternoon we had lunch with our friends Brett & Jessica and their family at Gouda Bar & Grill. Great time catching up. Thankful they had some time to spend with us because they are Salvation Army officers in Ashland OH. 

Saturday we left to go back home. We drove all they way taking turns driving. Grateful that we beat the holiday traffic. 

All in all a great time with family.

P.S. Thanks for the venison Ed! ;)

P.S.S. I missed my family!

#ATLUTD Unite & Conquer

Last night we went with a few friends to the Atlanta United MLS Soccer match at the new Mercedes-Benz Stadium. The stadium is gorgeous and offers an amazing fan experience. 

Unfortunately, the boys in red and gold lost but we have already qualified for the MLS Cup Playoffs in their inaugural season! So exciting! Next year we will have to go to more games!

Eatonton, Georgia

I’m a city girl at heart. I didn’t grow up in a big city but having lived in Washington DC and Atlanta, I have enjoyed all that a big city has to offer.

Yesterday we travel 90 minutes east of Atlanta to Eatonton on Lake Oconee for a beautiful wedding. When we were driving to the church, we drove through the center of town where there was a huge festival happening on a perfect day. The church was exactly what I expected.

It was great spending time with friends celebrating love.

 

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laurajdake  

laurajdake  

Luger

This boy has my heart.

He is a strong being...physically and in will but on the other hand can be the sweetest boy. Wanting to be in the same chair as you on your lap. Let me remind you he is at least 75lbs but I don't care! 😘

I have to admit that I could have given up on him many times in the being training phase of life because he tests my patience to the very limit. I can't compare him to Osa. They are on complete opposites of the spectrum.

After being gone for 13 or so days we have a new bond. Maybe he's just growing up and moving out of puppy stage but I'll take it!

📸 : lauradake

📸 : lauradake

The Journey

We just spent 10 days at the beautiful Salvation Army's Camp Hoblitzelle in Texas.

📸: laurajdake

📸: laurajdake

The Bible leaders for the week were Captains Andy & Abby Miller. Our theme was, The Journey. 

We have to own that the journey is not your own.
Captain Andy Miller III

God has a marvelous path or journey for our lives. Life happens and sometimes we get detoured from the path He has planned for us but He is with us guiding us. We have to listen to His voice. Many times we listen to our heart because it makes us feel good at the time. Captains Miller said this, Our hearts lean toward sin. Following your heart has lead couples to adultery and has led people right out of the church. We need to have a pure heart. 

The theme verse was found in Philippians. I love the translation they used. The Voice. The creator of the universe, the God who knew me at the very existence of my being, the God who created me, created a journey for me. Nothing comes as a surprise to Him. I love capturing images with my camera. I think telling a story with images comes so much easier to me than writing words on a page but I love how this translation paints this image. God, the creator, will not stop in mid-design but He is constantly perfecting me. 

I thank God for the opportunities he has provided for me. I'm grateful for the friends and family I have that keep me accountable.

I am confident that the Creator, who has begun such a great work among you,
will not stop in mid-design but will keep perfecting you...
Philippians 1:6 The Voice

 

 

The Gunshow Experience

I love when we get to spend time with our friends Jeff and Sheena. Besides having a great time together we love "good" food and the dining experience. We went to a restaurant that has been on my list for some time now called Gunshow

Chef Kevin Gillespie’s restaurant, Gunshow, offers a bold, new take on the traditional dining experience. Inspired by Brazilian churrascaria-style dining and Chinese dim sum, Kevin combined the two for a decidedly fun and delicious result. Dishes are presented on rolling carts and trays to diners at their tables where they can then choose what to order. Pricing is a la carte.

The menu changes constantly and the kitchen is highly visible. You can watch the chefs at work creating art on a plate.

Here are photos of some of the food we had. We had our favorites! the Crispy Beef Short Rib, Onion & Cheese Tart, Handmade Tortellini and the Roaster Diver Scallops. Of course we had to try dessert, so we had Banana Pudding. My least favorite and it confirmed that I don't really like them were the Oysters.

📸  Laura Dake (photos 1-4)
📸  Sheena Marquis (photos 5-7)