August-December
Once again we’ve arrived at the end of the year, 2007! Seems that this year just blew by in record time. We’ve done quite a bit since the last post on this site. Here’s a recap:

Steve has been working & enjoying his new job at FedEx Services (no, he’s not driving truck…though his dad did drive for Standard Oil way back when he was a child!) He’s learning how the software systems come together as well as their unique methods of software development. He’s constantly learning and being challenged with the project management position. Steve will be turning 41 January 25th…boo hoo, no more 40 years old!

Leslie is home with Amelia everyday except Thursdays. She has been teaching Amelia to read and hopefully, Amelia will be reading simple words by her birthday. Leslie’s also been volunteering her many talents at several locations: our church, Lakewood Baptist, Fayette Cares here in Somerville, TN. She’s also helping out Pastor Howard with Compassion in the Streets ministry. She’s been doing everything from administrative work to creating a booklet to help unemployed people find resources with work. There’s never a dull moment in her life!

Amelia has been doing great! She’s always learning and she speaks really well for not being 4 years old. She’s a good little helper who has her mama’s administrative skills. Amelia has a birthday coming up on January 30th. We haven’t decided what theme to have for her birthday. She loves the Disney princesses (specifically Cinderella). Our thought is that she would have a princess birthday.

The family has done some traveling. We went to Athens, GA to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Leslie’s grandfather, Ben T. Epps, who was the first in flight in the state of Georgia. This was a big deal! It was a black tie event. We were all gussied up looked great. We have included some pictures of us and the Epps clan. Steve had never visited Athens, so this was entirely new to him. He loved the town and the University Campus. Wish we could have explored more than we did. There were some great shops downtown, including a microbrewery (Steve’s a beer snob! Leslie’s a coffee snob so we’re even!).

We also went down to Orlando, FL and enjoyed a week of Disney World over the Thanksgiving break. We were planning to do this next summer, but a fortunate turn of events took place: Leslie’s brother, David, has a timeshare in Orlando but was unable to go down. Asking us if we wouldn’t mind taking the spot so he wouldn’t lose his points…we couldn’t pass that one up. So, Amelia got to visit Mickey and the gang. We had a great time of fun and adventure!

Enjoy the pics! Hope y’all had a great 2007 and we wish you many blessings for 2008!
July
Well, we are back and settled in from our great week and a half in Minnesota, North & South Dakota! There are plenty of pictures that will be posted shortly. Our vacation started flying from Memphis, TN to Minneapolis, MN. From there we drove through Sioux Falls, SD and up to De Smet, SD where Laura Ingalls Wilder has a homestead. Amelia loved all the horses and things there. The next day we went from De Smet to Mitchell, SD where we got to see the Corn Palace. We didn’t realize that the Corn Palace has been around since the 1800’s. Life was not complete until we got to see the Palace. Just a little fact I figured out: The James River runs from Jamestown, ND all the way through Mitchell, SD. What a small world!

From Mitchell we stopped at Wall, SD and then all the way to Keystone, SD where we stayed for two nights. In case you don’t know, Keystone primarily exists because of Mt. Rushmore and all of its trappings. We had a great time there. After a long day in a tour bus, getting to see Mt Rushmore up close and then off to the Crazy Horse monument, we asked Amelia what she liked best, and she said “the speghetti” which she enjoyed at the buffet (included with the tour)! It’s amazing what kids find most enjoyable!

After leaving Keystone (and not having cellular coverage for 2 days), Steve got a call from a hiring manager at FedEx and was extended an offer for employment! He has since accepted the offer and will be staring on Monday, August 6th. The position will be working as a Project Manager for a software test team at the FedEx Services departments. Pretty exciting!!

Then we were off to Jamestown, ND where we stayed for around 5 days where we enjoyed time with family & friends. We even had a family reunion which included relatives Steve hadn’t seen in 20 years! We had a great time and hope to be back in 2009 for another reunion.

After leaving Jamestown, we went to Minneapolis with Karen, Connie, Andrea, Samantha & Kristy and had a great time! We enjoyed going to an awesome water park one day and then Mall of America on our last day.

So, that’s our story for vacation, summer 2007! There’s tons of pictures and we hope you enjoy them. Until next time, have a great rest of the summer!
April-May
Welcome back to our web site. Time just slips away, always amazed at how fast it goes! My guess is that summer will be over in no time! Especially with a vacation just around the corner. We’ll be going to the South Dakota / North Dakota area this summer. We fly into Minneapolis on July 7th & staying at Desmet, SD where we’ll see Laura Ingalls Wilder’s homestead. From there, we’ll drive to Keystone, SD where we’ll stay for two nights, possibly at the President’s View Resort. Keystone, SD is where we will see Mt. Rushmore and other tourist attractions. We hope to have a ton of pictures after this year’s vacation.

If you don’t know the two boys above, these are Leslie’s nephews, Nick & Bryan Utley. They are visiting us from the Nashville, TN area. They have been helping out with many chores around the house. It’s really been a good time having them here. We’ll be taking care of them until we take off for Uncle George’s place for the 4th of July.

Steve & Leslie are doing well. Leslie is working part time; Steve is approaching his first full year at Cook Systems and working with Hilton Hotels & the University of Memphis. The drive into Memphis gets somewhat tiring day after day, but overall it’s really not that bad. Leslie will probably stay part time through the summer.

Take care and have a great summer! Please drop us a line or send an email anytime.
February-March
I finally got around to the web site! Whoo hoo! We’ve been so busy with work and family stuff…sometimes there’s just no time to get caught up on things like this site. Hope you enjoy the new pics. We did get a new camera, which makes things much easier. We had a little point and shoot camera which was “OK” but it really was time to move on to something better.

We wanted to report that Lloyd Utley (Leslie’s dad) is doing well. He had a great checkup the other day so we’re grateful for that. He’s been through a lot these past several months. Please keep him in prayer regarding his cancer and recovery. He always is in good spirits and is loved by many!!

Leslie is doing well with her job. She’s looking to reduce her hours starting in May. This means she’ll have more time with Amelia at home. Speaking of Amelia, she is growing so quickly it’s amazing. She’s talking really well! It’s so funny, you have this little 3 foot tall little munchkin (no offense to the Ooompa Loompas) and she’s just rattling away with conversation.

Steve’s job is going well. Still working with Cook Systems and Hilton Hotels. It’s always a challenge with the students: I had one student who couldn’t follow a simple row / column spreadsheet that said, if this passes a test then do this…yet they are graduating as a double major in Mathematics and Electrical Engineering. Go figure.

It’s Easter weekend! Much to be thankful for. Today is Good Friday and Amelia & Steve went to Church were there were the seven sayings of Jesus on the cross. Really powerful. Please make an effort to visit a local Church that teaches Who Jesus is. There’s an story of a man who does amazing things (and many don’t know about it)!

Well, I’ve talked enough. Enjoy the pics for the past few months. I have a ton of them to sort through. Have a great couple of months.


January

Happy New Years to all those we know & love! Thank you for checking out our website every month! In case you missed some things going with us in 2006…I’ll make mention of a couple of things:

We’re still wanting to have a baby at the Truax home. I know that many of our friends have been praying for us in this area. However, we have yet to be successful in this area! Please keep us in your thoughts & prayers as we continue this effort in 2007.

Leslie & Steve’s job is are going great. We love our new home and the view out the back yard is spectacular. Come visit anytime. There’s a spare bedroom that looks out to the pond, trees, ducks & fountain. It’s truly like a park in our back yard!

We’ll try and update the pictures for this month. We recently made a trip to Chattanooga, TN and had a great time with the Pearsons from Atlanta. Amelia loves choo choo trains (and her cousins), so naturally she had a great time. Hope to post some new pics very soon.