The Best of the Best Flea Market Edition

When I was younger my parents would take me to various flea markets, and I hated it. Nothing interested me, but since I was along for the ride I couldn’t complain. I remember being in middle school and we went to one. We came home with guineas. Not the pigs, but the fowls (birds). The idea was that these birds were going to help with the tick population that we had in our yard. They didn’t last long at our house – the other wildlife we had decided they were good to feast on. And the ticks prevailed.

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During my early twenties I moved out of the house to live with a friend that needed help with bills, and I needed to get out. She was the one that first introduced me to the flea market in Nashville. Prior to this I don’t think I had ever gone to the state fairgrounds. She decided to take me to the “big one in October.” It was a group of us, and it was tons of fun. I got all of my Christmas shopping done on that trip to the flea market. I am one of those that LOVES to get my Christmas shopping done before November 1st if I can help it. Currently I have accomplished that except for Dustin’s immediate family – we get theirs on Black Friday.

This year at seven months pregnant I decided to go again. This has been dubbed the best one to go to if you are going to go to the flea market. There has to be over 500 vendors at this one with them being inside and outside. They pack the grounds. Brittany decided so that we wouldn’t have to walk far up the hill that we would get there when it opened. We got off the interstate around 6:45 AM, and once we got closer it was already backed up a little bit with people trying to get in to park.

Going in I didn’t know what I was looking for or if I was looking for anything at all. Dustin had given me a budget of what I could spend. When we arrived we went to the first set of vendors that were closest to us, it was at that point my bladder decided to stop working for the day. The good news is that Brittany knows where all the bathrooms are located so it wasn’t too terrible.

We make our way through all of the buildings. Brittany had to get some cups made that they do on the spot, but she has it down to a science as to what time she needs to hit them up so the cups will be ready when we leave. 5 hours later we are ready to hit the road. 5 hours later and this pregnant lady was exhausted.

I ended up getting items for dirty Santa that we do with one side of the family. I go back and forth every year with nice house items and funny gifts. This year was the nice house items. One of the ladies I purchased from was super sweet. She was talking to me about the nursery and what I had planned to do with it. We are doing baseball and American flags because well baseball is America’s favorite past time, and we love baseball. She said that when she was able to move into a house she was going to use her late husband’s fireman’s gear and memorabilia to set up a room for her grandsons. (Insert a few waterworks) It’s people like this that make going to the flea market also fun. I love talking to people that are personal, but then again I am super extroverted. Below is what I got for dirty Santa. I may play my cards where I get the TriStar to hang up in our home 🙂

The other things that I purchased was some items to be used for little man’s newborn photography session. I have been going to Pinterest to get some ideas of what I liked. The ones I like use an old coke crate, and I was able to score one of those for fairly cheap. The best purchase of the day was a blanket that we will use for newborn pictures, and also use it as one of his blankets. It has all the old school NFL logos on it, including the Titans who were the Houston Oilers back in the day.

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I made it out of the flea market with a dollar to spare. There are some items I didn’t get pictures of, and the food that I purchased. When we left the amount of people that were there was about the same as the amount of people that were waiting in line on the interstate to go. There is three entrances to get in, and they were all crazy backed up. I am thankful that we got there when we did.

I probably won’t make it back to another flea market until next October. I have basically made this flea market my one and only time to go. The new fairgrounds are undecided since we are getting a MLS stadium at this location, but if you are ever in Nashville when it is time for the “big one in October” I highly recommend going to it. Just remember to get there early.

Postseason

As September was coming to a close, Atlanta was getting closer to clinching a postseason spot. It had been some time since they had made postseason – 2013 to be exact. September 22nd the Braves made it happen, they were the National League East Division Champions.

One item that has been on my bucket list is to make it to a postseason baseball game. In January we went to see the Titans play the Chiefs in the AFC Wildcard game, and that was madness. Since the Braves had finally made it to postseason we decided to go ahead and buy tickets. We weren’t sure if they were going to get home field advantage or not when we ordered them, and we still had plenty of baseball left to play in the regular season.

The Braves end up losing 4 of their last 5 games. Because of the way the standings were they got to play the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NLDS. And LA got home field advantage. The tickets that we purchased were for game two in Atlanta. When you order postseason tickets in advance you have no idea when that game is going to be. You are taking a gamble. With the way the cards fell we ended up getting game four IF there was a game four since it’s the best 3 out of 5.

Games 1 and 2 were in LA. The Braves got outscored 9-0 in those games. Skunked is more like it. They were coming back to Atlanta down 2-0, and it was not looking pretty the way the offense was going as well as the pitching. Game 3 was Sunday night. We ended up going back to Sandersville for the night to watch the game. If the Braves got swept then we would get up early and go back home. If they pulled out a win then we would wait around for the game to start at 430 ET.

Before the game started Dustin said if the Braves could score five runs then they would win. Enter the bottom of the second inning, and Ronald Acuna Jr steps up to the plate with the bases loaded. Low and behold he crushes the ball – grand slam. He becomes the youngest player to hit a grand slam in a postseason game. The Braves end the inning up 5-0. The Dodgers weren’t backing down easily though. They tied it up in the fifth inning. Freddie Freeman steps up to the plate and crushes a homer in the sixth. That was the game winning hit. We’re going to game 4.

 

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Postseason games are different then regular season games. The fans know it, and there is a different feeling in the air. There were people lined up at the gates before the gates even opened.

When the game started out I was nervous, yes I am that nerd that gets nervous about sporting events. The first inning the Dodgers scored, and I thought well here we go again. But the fourth inning Kurt Suzuki came in to pitch hit with the bases loaded, and got not just one RBI but two. The Braves took the lead 2-1. Go a couple of scoreless innings, and then what I didn’t want to happen happened.

The sixth inning the Dodgers get Freese to single to send two runs home. They go back up on top 3-2. Seventh inning Manny Machado hits a three run shot into left field. He sealed the deal for the game. The Dodgers won 6-2. We ended up leaving before the game ended since we knew the Braves wouldn’t be able to come back from the blow of that home run, and we were driving back home that night.

It was awesome getting to experience postseason baseball, but I have to say that the best part was seeing the beauty that God painted for us on our way out.

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There is still more baseball to be played this year, but I am definitely looking forward to seeing what the Braves can do next year.  And hopefully they can go deep in the postseason next year.

Between the Hedges

For years I had heard how awesome, and beautiful it is between the hedges. It’s one of those things you have to experience for yourself. For the most part the fans are fantastic, and the layout of the stadium is great.

Normally when Vanderbilt plays Georgia it is a day game, and when we play there it is homecoming for them. This year was a smidge different since it was a 7:30 kickoff time. Vanderbilt isn’t known for its football team. Actually there are a lot of people that are fans of the SEC that would like for Vanderbilt to not even be in the SEC because they aren’t the best when it comes to football. I have come to terms that if we actually make it to a bowl game then it has been a really good year.

For Georgia’s homecoming it is awesome because they have the alumni cheerleaders that come back, the Red Coats (marching band), and the twirlers. They normally have about 6 former cheerleaders that show up, and they are in their long skirts and their sweaters. It is fantastic! They get out there and do the cheers, and also will dance and it fills my heart because I love old people. The Red Coats and the twirlers get out before the game the game starts and perform. It truly is an experience.

Two years ago, Vanderbilt surprised everyone and actually won in Athens. This year was not the case. We lost 41-13. Next year we get them in Nashville for the first game of the year. I will be cheering for them to beat Alabama when it comes to the SEC Championship game this year.