Faithful.

Last July my sweet husband and I were interviewed by the local paper about our coffee cart!

It was a simple little article, really sweet and to the point about what we do and when we would open for business.

Our friends shared the article, blessing us and hoping to promote our adventure…

Within a few days of the article being released, days before even opening for business, we got an email.

“Hi my name is Dolly, I am mutual friends with one of your friends in Nashville and I saw the article she shared of your business.  I was wondering if I could go ahead and book you for my wedding next June.”

IMG_3658How on earth are we already getting event requests…. Do we even do events??

We decided to calculate the costs, figure out travel fees, and find a time to meet Dolly and her soon-to-be for a tasting.

It was a hit! IMG_6311So we marked our calendars for June 18, 2016 and proceeded with our new business in town!

Sure enough, time has flown by  and we came upon June 18th faster than we realized.

We loaded the truck, booked an AirBnB and hit the road!

We got up early the next morning for this fabulous brunch wedding at The Ruby.

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IMG_6287Let me tell y’all, Dolly was truly one of those brides that glowed. 

It was so sweet to see how joyful and emotional she was to finally marry Ty.

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#DollyTysTheKnotIMG_3662Everyone at this wedding was truly honored to be there, the bike made everyone ask the same question we always get “Can you actually ride this thing or… like… what?” we love telling people that we are hardcore and ride this thing around like it’s no big deal.

This fella was adorable and won me over in his bow tie + converse convo… #nashville.IMG_6281IMG_6283He was ready for his debut before I even took my camera out! What a man.

The lines of people wanting Cold Brew with their Chicken n Waffles was unbelievable… it felt like opening day of business all over again!

IMG_6274 IMG_6294I realized this past weekend, that the faithfulness of the Lord is not limited to my standards or understanding.

When we started our business, it was booming with lines for lots of coffee every day.

When winter months came, we had less business because of weather and transitioned our license to events only.

It was as if the Lord set it up before we realized it… with sweet Dolly & Ty.

We thought that selling coffee on the street would be our way of selling…

But the Lord knew more.

He loved us enough to partner with us before we knew we needed partnership.

Our business has been crazy blessed, a crazy adventure, and we hope the crazy never goes away.

God is crazy faithful, Y’all… somedays I’m humbled that He still picks me to love on and bless.

Dolly & Ty, it was a real treasure meeting you and watching you start a new life together, thank you for having us and asking us WAY in advance, congratulations to you both!

Celebrate Your City.

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I am a Montgomery, Alabama Native, born and raised in this South-Alabama-City.

I grew up going on field trips to all the historic sites and I know all the best hole-in-the-wall restaurants.

I know at least twelve people when I walk through Target, Publix, or Winn Dixie and “am sure to tell my mama hello.”

I know all the back ways, quickest ways, and every way to get anywhere in this Capitol City… I even memorized the whole “You have to get over two full lanes when you merge from Mulberry onto 85″… so annoying, I know you natives get it.

But

Somedays I forget that my sweet Husband has been here a whopping 8 years (the longest he’s lived anywhere is his life) and doesn’t know the ins and outs like I do.

IMG_6227He has heard me talk about every restaurant, field trip, person, place and THING that I love about where I live and never had the chance to experience those places…well not all of them.

Throughout college the two of us would talk about the exciting things for him to see and explore… and the Planetarium was on that list.

I know, seems a little quirky, but YALL, there are only 5 planetariums in Alabama and we are one of them! 

We spent 4 years missing every opportunity to explore this city we call home, and it’s time the Bell’s shake things up a bit!

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Saturday morning, while sipping coffee and praising Jesus for the weekend, Cody Bell said, “Hey, so I checked online and today…2 P.M. showing at the Planetarium… Let’s go!”

… so we did …

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🙂

It took me BACK.  It  has been at LEAST 15 years since I have been in that crazy building and we had so much fun! IMG_3472

We walked through the black light hallway of history (and Mr. Bell read every. single. fact.) before finding our seats

There were visitors from Nebraska exploring our city and celebrating outer space buying, wizard hats from the gift shop and laughing, grandparents brought their grand-kiddos to see the show, and a sweet mother/daughter pair were patiently waiting when Cody and I finally seated ourselves.

We took a seat in our “lean back” chairs to stare into “outer space” and watched the show.

Although a slightly kid-oriented presentation, it was so fun… also…

confirmed: Pluto is indeed a PLANET.

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We left the theatre and “walked the planets”

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Cody Bell still got a kick out of Uranus, not caring one bit about maturity in that moment. #gold.

We meandered over and literally played on the Playground at Oak Park, the original park of Montgomery County.

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I swear just looking at sand on that slide took me back to long lines of waiting and the sound of sand rubbing between my tennies and a metal slide… you all know what I’m talking about. 

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I’m also just as awkward today as I was 15 years ago and there ain’t no shame in my game, swinging is still so freeing and fun!

You’re welcome for the pigeon-toed swing pump pic.

Last stop of the day…. Cuisine Style Express.

IMG_6260The Bells don’t add a lot of sugar to our eating habits, but we missed national donut day because the only place we desire donuts from ran out… so we just celebrated the day after.

Yes, this little asian cuisine restaurant has the best donuts in town.

They do NOT disappoint.

Made fresh every day and worth the “cheat day” (and personally, the belly-ache).

Pick a topping, any topping.

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Favorite cookie, cereal, syrup, sprinkle.. you name it, they add it. #amaze.

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It is so interesting to me the way we remove ourselves from our own city when we live there.

We complain that nothing good is happening, claiming that it’s boring, and we spend our time discussing the flaws rather than adventuring the fun.

Montgomery is a quaint, quirky, fun, city.

Filled with crazy good food, awesome parks, and incredible people doing really incredible things.

Let’s support what’s happening, so that more will happen.

I mean, our donuts were .55 a piece… I think we can manage.

Take a look around, Montgomery, you live in a Capitol Cool place. 🙂

Let’s Celebrate!

 

Valiant Wednesday: Mr. Doaty

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“At my old school I was bad. I would talk back and give attitude to my teachers.  But now, that I’m here, I don’t do that.”

I stared back at Markez, the scholar that I tutor, with intention, focusing on what he was sharing.

I replied,

“Well why do you think you are respectful to everyone in charge at Valiant Cross?”

“You know, I don’t know” he replied, “I think mainly it’s because they respect me, but they also give me reason to respect them.  Like, Mr. Doaty, even though he isn’t my teacher, he is always showing us how to behave, how to dress, how to speak to people with respect so that others will respect us too. Like recently, he cut his hair short, and it looks really nice.”

IMG_5188My heart smiled a big grin when I heard such innocent and honest words spoken about such a sweet friend.

Jamal Doaty works with me at Common Ground Montgomery, but has a huge hand in the work and efforts happening at Valiant Cross Academy.

This guy is relentless in his consistency with the boys.

Every morning, Jamal or “Mr. Doaty” drives around the neighborhood, picking up the boys for school and in the afternoon he takes them home. He works along side Shane Parks, the teacher over the after school program at Valiant Cross.

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He and Shane are like a power house with the boys.

While tutoring you can hear the two of them saying “20 more minutes guys”, “y’all got this”, “keep working hard!”

The two of them always dress to impress, with neck ties and suit jackets. Giving the boys around them even more understanding of professional attire.

They may not notice that they are even sharing those small details with the scholars, but from the outside looking in, it is noticed and highly valued.

Mr. Doaty has shared on multiple occasions with me about his respect and gratitude for Mr. Parks.  “I absolutely could not do what I do without his help and effort. He is truly amazing at what he does.”

IMG_5186Mr. Doaty not only invests his time at Valiant Cross, he also works with boys that are in other public schools in the city.  Weekly, he makes trips to the schools to do remediation work with the the kids there, doing one on one activity, not only improving their education, but showing them consistent relationships.
IMG_5179“Hey Markez, I heard you like Ninja turtles!” I said one day after talking with Mr. Doaty at work.

Markez grinned, “Mr. Doaty told you that, didn’t he?”

“Yeah, he did!” I replied.

“Mr. Doaty knows everything. It’s like I don’t even have to tell him and he knows. He just gets it, you know? “

IMG_5193Of course he does.

Of course Mr. Doaty gets it.

He is always there, he is always encouraging.

Even in the places where it is challenging to help and mentor young boys, Doaty always shows up.

Listening to the scholars has been a major source in learning about Mr. Doaty and all that he does for them.

He doesn’t come with a bag full of presents and games to play.

He doesn’t have a perfect code to relate to the students he works with.

He just simply has a heart that is unwilling to miss out on the opportunity to help advance these kids to their fullest potential.

He is willing to push through the days that seem mundane or frustrating because he cares for the well being of the students.

Mr. Doaty “gets it” because he lives it.

Thanks, Doaty for all you do, it is noticed, it is valued, and it is completely worth it.