Monday, April 29, 2013

Aveda's Catwalk for Water Fashion Show

Yesterday was filled with a lot of 'Hurry Up and Wait'.  When we were extras in Grace Unplugged, the director and producer must have said that 30 times.  "The entertainment industry is a lot of hurry up and wait"  I guess that's true for models as well.  :)

The kids and I headed to Esther's, making a stop to get gas and pick a few things up from the store.  Mostly protein bars because I knew Brit wouldn't want to eat a big meal but would need something shoved in her face periodically throughout the day.  We made it to their house and left Dakota with Ben and Matt.  Dakota was so happy to be spending a whole day with Ben!

It stormed all day and I was glad Esther was driving!  Brit does NOT like the rain, but she handled that pretty well.  Esther also pointed out that it was keeping Jake's allergies at bay.

We arrived on time, found out where we needed to be, and waited around for a while.

Then they took Brit to get her hair and makeup done, which wasn't completed then.  They tweaked her until nearly the last minute :)

They got started on Chan's hair and soon they did a run through on the runway.  I'm glad they did that, showed each model where to walk and pose and whatnot.  I'm sure it relieved some nerves.  When we got back to our room, all of Chan's pretty curls had fallen out.  She then had a team of people working on her hair!  Three curling irons going at once!

Brit got dressed WAY TOO early in my opinion.  Especially since she really couldn't sit in her costume, or take it off and had hours to wait before the show started. 
Making faces at Jake!

Showing off the snazzy earrings.

Her outfit!  All of the costumes were made with trash and recycled materials.  That's a bathmat corseted together with a fiber optic cable.  The skirt was made of paper and plastic garbage bags and the train was paper, plastic grocery bags and wine bottle corks.

Brit's hair wasn't what they had envisioned so the instructor, John, got a hold of her head.

Brit LOVED how it turned out!

Beautiful girls

Then they put fake lashes on Brit.  That's the first time she had ever worn fake lashes and she really liked them.  Carly, who was super sweet and made of awesome told her she could keep them :)

They had taken Jake off at some point and was gone a long time.  Esther went to check on him and he was just sitting and waiting.  They waited until the end to get him ready, but boy was he ready!  I don't have any pictures of him or them all together...but Esther does!  Go look HERE!

And then it was time to go!  I hugged my girl and kissed her check (lightly on both things as not to mess up the dress or makeup:) and told her to have fun!  Esther and I made our way to the auditorium.  There were more people in there than I thought there would be and all of the close seats were full.  Then this woman got up and moved to another seat, leaving me a spot on the front row!  Esther decided to stand to take photos.

They all did SO well!  I didn't take any photos, but once again, HERE are Esther's.  It's really great having a photographer as one of my best friends :)  When Brit took the runway, I totally got teary eyed.  She looked amazing and confident and I knew how much that moment meant to her.

The only photo I snapped.

After it was all said and done, Aveda Birmingham raised over their $11,000 goal and just tickets sales for last night's event totaled over $1,000.  All the money raised goes to their partners to help protect clean water.  Woot!

After photos and hugs and changing clothes, we headed on home, making a stop at the Waffle House with the kids still in make up and big hair.  They got a lot of attention!  Our...hmm...he was our waiter and chef and cashier...that guy...yeah, he was awesome!  We chatted and laughed with him.  He also scored extra points because he thought Brit and I were sisters :)  Esther introduced me to Diet Coke with vanilla flavoring.  She changed my life.

This sign was hanging at Waffle House.  It's all jacked up!  :)

Eep!  Awesome day!

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Tigers for Tomorrow

We had made plans a couple months ago to go on a field trip to Tigers for Tomorrow with one of the homeschool groups.  We were really looking forward to this trip, especially since Karen and Keilee were going as well.  Unfortunately, some things came up right at the last minute and they were unable to go :(
It's a good hour and a half + from here and I think we all wished it had fallen on a different day just because this week has been so busy!

Dakota slept for about an hour on the way there, although he'll vehemently deny that if you ask.

We were one of the first ones to get there and the first thing I noticed were the signs saying 'NO PHOTOS' and I momentarily panicked, then read the 'unless you're on a guided tour'...which we were so crisis adverted!  Just be aware of that should you visit on your own.

Begin rant:

"Do NOT be late! We will start on time and without you!" was repeated 50 times on the FB page about this trip.  But of course there were a couple families who were late...and they waited on them to start the tour...over 30 minutes!  Grr...I'm going to complain about many things from yesterday and they ALL have to do with that homeschool group.  This is only our second thing to do with them (although we have some history with Constance) and I can't foresee doing anything else.  Our tour guide told the group many times not to yell or run.  Constance, the leader of the HS group, wanted a group picture and kept YELLING 'I need face!  I need face!  I can't see your faces!" and told us to say (something...don't remember) for the 'smile!' and there were a couple people who made some verbalization.  Then she YELLED "Well, that was the worst thing ever!  I can't HEAR YOU!"  The lady was like "Don't yell...please!"  That's how the group was the entire time.  Several of the mothers were LOUD and very mean and disrespectful to their kids, which I found extremely sad.  And several of the kids were running and pushing each other. was embarrassing.  Brit and Dakota are so well behaved and wanted to be there because they genuinely love animals, especially big cats.  One of the only other teenage girls walked up to Brit and said in the most negative 'I hate life' voice, "Were you dragged to this thing, too?"  Brit was like, "Um, no...I love animals.  Big cats and wolves are my favorites!" and tried to counteract that kid's negativity with as much positive as she could muster.  She tried to steer clear of her after that.  Okay...I think I'm done.
End rant.   I think.  I may come up with something else in a minute.

Here's the group picture I hijacked off the FB page.

Hedgehogs are so freakin' cute!

 This is Pockets.  I think he wanted one of Bobby's fingers!

 They had a lot of cats running around the property.  This is Tom.

Once outside, our guide (never heard her name) introduced us to Alexis, their alligator and after talking about her for a few minutes, we were given an opportunity to touch her.  Dakota opted out of that.

 The Zebra was SO jealous and kept sticking his head over the fence.

Brit and Alexis

Once everyone had gotten there, we went off to meet this two year old Black Bear, Pepper.  Oh my goodness!  He was SO happy and playful and excited to see us!

 Then we were off to see this guy.  He's 28 years old and named Cody.  Cody's kind of catchy don't you think?  :)  He was quite laid back.

This is Yonah.  He's a five year old Grizzly and nowhere near full grown.  He stands now at 6 feet or so.  When he is full grown, he will stand anywhere from 10 to 12 feet.

The top of this fence is 12 feet for reference.  Holy geez!  Can you imagine seeing something THAT large in the woods?  I can and I image I would die.

See that caramely colored tiger?  That's a golden tabby and she's quite special.  Her coloring is extremely rare.  I believe she said there are only 34 like her in the world.

The cougars had just finished eating and wanted to sleep.  Pesky people.

The male decided he would come to the fence and grace us with his presence. 
He's 200 lbs!  (and on a diet...shhhh)

The female is a sleek 90 lbs.

This guy is 11 months old and very talkative.

Black Leopard

African Serval Cat

Black Fox

Wolves!  Brit was in love!

Ha!  The lamb is in a whole other fenced in area, but it looks like this guy is about to score some lunch!

 Burmese python

 Albino Burmese python

Overall, we are really glad we went!  We learned a lot about all of the animals we saw and were made aware of just how low their numbers are.  Scientists have estimated that in 10 years, there will be NO big cats left in the world.  None.

Tigers for Tomorrow is a last stop for these animals, meaning they will live out the rest of their lives here in safety.  They are an awesome nonprofit and all of the proceeds from tours and gift shops purchases go directly to care for the animals.  It's definitely worth a visit! 

Where we've been as a family