Ah, yes. Part 2 of homecoming weekend. I had to spend the whole first post about it being a sappy mess. So, now it’s time for a slightly less sappy mess!
Tennessee will always hold significance for us as a family, and especially for us as a couple. As broke newlyweds, we spent the first couple years of marriage there- years full of challenge and struggle that grew us up a lot in a relatively short time.
But there was good in the midst of the challenge, along with some good people.
We got to see some of those people this weekend, starting out Saturday morning, when we headed to The Coffee Company in Elizabethton for brunch/lunch (whichever meal you think scones and cinnamon rolls and coffee most appropriate). Not only is this place beautiful, it’s historic, and most importantly- produces the most delicious baked goods and coffee in the state.
It’s also an extra-special place because Ryan’s and my first official date took place here, up in the front section by the windows. (Sigh! Gazes off into the distance… then remembers to mention that my incredibly talented friend, Kara drew everything on that sign. I mean, I want that hanging in my house!!!) My first job in our married life was here, too! So much coffee… so many muffins… That part I definitely miss.
Scone, your grace? Like I said, all the baked goods are exceptional. They’re all made from scratch by a German lady named Irene, whose sister, Ursula (who goes by “Uschi”… or “Ooshi” if spelled phonetically. Um, I don’t know how to spell it) works in the kitchen there as well. I have rarely seen Irene anything but happy and busy about her baking station. One time, however, I accidentally dropped a muffin or something onto these blueberry bar things, which Irene had newly placed into the fridge, and I experienced her short, German wrath. I thought I was the most passionate person I knew about baked goods… I was wrong.
We ran into two different people from youth groups we used to pastor- darling Anne was one such wonderful person! (Another was our friend, Shannon, who was actually working at the Coffee Co. that day, and with whom we neglected to take a picture! What is wrong with us?!)
And it just wouldn’t be East Tennessee without shops like this one, which find the spelling of words to be a subjective thing. (However, according to this site, there is some debate over collectible vs. collectable. So, well played, Country at Heart, well played.)
Later that afternoon, we got to hang out and watch the parade which takes place on the main road running through campus.
Dahling Heather, who is valiantly attempting to cuddle Lucy, who just really wanted to pick up all the leaves and inspect them thoroughly.
So, the highlight of the parade was our college president, Dr. Bill Greer, who rode a real live buffalo. Can I be the only person who dubbed him “Buffalo Bill” in my mind? Surely not…
The weekend was full of wonderful moments of recognition, old friends with new babies, professors who remain their delightful, quirky selves, great conversation with the dearest of friends, and even a late night drinking water and eating half price appetizers at Applebees (a collegiate experience if ever there was one).
Thanks for being so wonderful, Milligan! Here’s to another 150 years.