The Year of 2020

The year of 2020 was trying for most. For us personally, it was a year of trials and tribulations, but really overall, for us, we can’t complain. We maintained an income, a roof over our heads, food on our table, supported local businesses the best that we could, and we never ran out of toilet paper. The things we could complain about are trivial, so we won’t even go there.

We wanted to share a happy memory and photo from each month of 2020, and we sincerely hope everyone has something positive to remember as well. We have to say, after reviewing our year of 2020 in our photo cache, it was so hard to choose just one moment or photo for each month, but here it is....


January was a month of unawareness of what was to come for the rest of the year. We went about our daily lives with not a care in the world. Flash was finishing up law school, Mookie was going to work like normal, and Mairin was finishing her Freshman year of high school. We spent the New Year at Biltmore Estate in Asheville, NC and did a long hike in the rain.

Flash, Mookie, and Mairin adventured to Biltmore Estate for a long weekend of touring the estate and some hiking.
January 2020 at Biltmore Estate


February, we attended a car show with family and friends, Flash and Mairin went skiing, we did some hiking in the Great Smokey Mountains, and we had some visitors from our "hometown" of Swansboro, North Carolina... on that same day, we had SNOW, and it was beautiful! Around this time was also when we all started hearing the infamous word, COVID-19.

Harold and Tracy made an impromptu visit!  We miss our North Carolina family!
February 2020 at Pie Bar

MARCH 2020

March of 2020, things took a turn in our world. We celebrated Flash's birthday outside at Reformation Brewery with cupcakes and beer... seriously, what is better than that?! Mookie had surgery. We had a major leak in the upstairs of our home and found our hot water heater had been catching on fire intermittently in our basement causing disarray in our home for an extended period of time with the unknown of COVID-19. In the end, everything turned out okay, but the unknown is always a little scary (both water heater and pandemic!).

March of 2020 birthday cupcakes for Flash

APRIL 2020

April brought us more unknown, more quarantine, but also more thought about how we could help our community during this difficult time. Mairin thought it would be a fun community service project in our neighborhood to do some sidewalk chalk art on frequented paths to hopefully lift some spirits. So Mairin and Mookie did just that. Their art stretched for over a mile, and they were recognized in the neighborhood magazine... no one knew it was them, but the photos were included, and they were appreciated. Some neighbors even added to the art along the path and in other areas of the neighborhood. Our family colored Easter eggs, took groceries to our grandparents and visited through the storm door, celebrated our Penny's first birthday, and went on a lot of long walks outside.

April of 2020 Inspiring Sidewalk Chalk

MAY 2020

With school ending early for Flash and Mairin, May allowed for more family time, gardening on our deck, social distanced outside movies with family by the fire pit, kayaking and canoeing Lake Allatoona, to go beers outside at Reformation Brewery, a 12 mile hike on the Appalachian Trail, and a camping trip at Amicalola Falls that inspired us to buy an RV (we had been talking about it for at least the past 10 years!). We also had a mini celebration for mini Flash's (Mairin's) birthday! Alas, the upstairs of our house was finally repaired!

May of 2020 Amicalola Falls

JUNE 2020

June brought more kayaking (literally, we bought another kayak because we ALL love to go). Flash and Mairin enjoyed jumping off the bridge into the water at Olde Rope Mill Park (at their own risk). We had baby birds in a nest on our deck that we were able to watch from birth to take off. We made mojitos with our home grown mint. We celebrated Mom and Dad's 50th anniversary on a much smaller scale than we wanted to, and celebrated Flash's graduation for Georgia State School of Law also on a much smaller scale.

June of 2020 Flash Graduates Law School

JULY 2020

July 2020 rang in with the 4th of July in our cul-de-sac of neighbors at a safe distance, and then transported to the movie theater parking lot close to home to set off our own fireworks display. We took BBQ to the grandparents so they could also enjoy in some of the festivities. More biking, kayaking, and a trip to the beach with close friends (no public access!) in Alabama.

July of 2020 Gulf Shores, Alabama


August 2020 brought us "Thanksgiving." Literally, we celebrated Thanksgiving, turkey and all, with the Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade from 2019 playing in the background. Our oldest daughter came home and Mookie's parents came for a visit. We enjoyed wine at a local winery outdoors, and we truly gave thanks for our family and our health so far this year. And of course, more kayaking and swimming the lake. This month we also picked up our new RV!! Our Lance 1575 has turned out to be a perfect addition to 2020 as it allowed for a little more freedom to travel safely. We took our very first RV trip and stayed at the Murphy/Peace Valley KOA at a site right on the river. It was a learning experience, but also an awesome one that we can't wait to do over and over again.

August of 2020 Chateau Meichtery


September brought us to our second camping trip with our RV. We traveled to Fort McAllister State Park in GA. We made shrimp boil packets on the fire and encountered countless wildlife. We kayaked the intracoastal waterway, watched the sunset, and learned how the sewer for an RV works in a tidal area. We commemorated 9/11 by doing a 6 mile ruck, and remembered the lives lost on that tragic day. We had some brews outside at Reformation Brewery, and we are truly thankful for the small businesses in our area that remain open to safely serve their customers. Also, more kayaking!

September of 2020 "Never Forget 9/11/01"


October 2020 brought us our own little Oktoberfest. We took the RV to the Great Smoky Mountains, and we biked the Cades Cove loop for the first time ever after visiting there by car for many years. It was challenging, but so fun! We hiked another 6 mile stretch of the Appalachian Trail, and we saw the Fall foliage. We spent more time exercising and working out as a family. Socially distanced movie night has become a "thing" in the cul-de-sac, and this month, it was "The Nightmare Before Christmas." More biking this month and a little less kayaking.

October of 2020 The Mountains Are Calling


November brought us to Watkins Mill Bridge State Park in GA with our RV. Who knew there was so much to adventure so close to home?! We did some hiking and biking throughout the park, and explored where the old mill used to reside. In true Mairin fashion, she took Mookie out while bike riding. Don't worry... there were no severe injuries. We attended the limited access to the GA Renaissance Festival; while it was limited to visitors, it was also limited to vendors, but we did get to see our favorite acrobatic entertainers, Barely Balanced. As if 2020 weren't bad enough with all of the restrictions, we discovered a water main leak in our front yard that needed repaired, and at nearly the same time, discovered a cap of missing shingles on our roof. We found we had that entire row of missing shingles as well as significant hail damage done to the roof and some of the new gutters that had been recently installed. Thank goodness for Mairin and her attention to the water mark on the ceiling, or that situation could have been MUCH worse! Mairin received her awards/ribbons for JROTC in a socially distanced ceremony... her first (and last) time physically at school since the beginning of May. We were fortunate enough to travel through Kentucky and stop at Buffalo Trace Distillery (kudos to Buffalo Trace for maximizing safety to their visitors and staff during this time) on our way to Ohio for Thanksgiving. And a little drive down memory lane for Flash and Mookie to snap a photo in front of the church where they were married.

November of 2020 Watkins Mill Bridge State Park


December we took our RV to Cloudland Canyon State Park to celebrate Mookie's birthday... another adventure so close to home! Filet mignon, baked potatoes, steamed baby carrots and the best chocolate cake a husband could get! And don't forget the guacamole... holy moly, Flash's mom makes the best! We received a Blackstone griddle from Mookie's parents for Christmas this year, and this was our first use! It is AMAZING! We also enjoyed some outdoor brews at Reformation Brewery this month, a short Christmas celebration with our oldest in North Dakota, and a private tour of a B-52 took place.

December of 2020 B-52 Tour

Like most we know, the Coronavirus changed the majority of our travel plans for 2020. With Mookie as a healthcare worker, we know the seriousness and severity of living during the pandemic. But it is just that... living. We still have to live. We wear our masks when out. We social distance. We stay in our bubble of people. We know we as a family can overcome the bad with our good.

Like we said, it was so hard to choose just one moment from each month of 2020....

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