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Monday, January 31, 2011

.....Miss Julie.......!!!!!

Kris' Boat
About 4 years ago we owned a small place on Lay Lake back in Okomo Marina.  It was a fantastic place for the family to go and relax and play during the spring and summer.  It was not uncommon for us to have 10 or 15 people over to share in BBQ and boating. 
One summer weekend, one of my dearest frinds, Big Kris Wiygul came by with is girlfriend Julie.  Kris had a HUGE Baja Cuddy.  This thing was fantastic....Beautiful and Very Fast!!!!  Andrew absolutely loved it.  Kris, Andrew and I took it down river at full throttle as Andrew smiled and giggled while asking as many questions as he possibly could as the boat raced down the river at 70MPH.

Miss Julie
 We get back to my slip and we tied off the boat.  We were hot and decided to go inside the house to cool off for a bit.  About 30 mins later we decided to head back outside and see what everyone was up to.  Kristi was laying out on the pier and Miss Julie was laying out on the bow of Kris' boat.  Keep in mind, this boat is HUGE and absolutely gorgeous.....Andrew walks down the pier and stands next to the boat and starts looking at Julie as she is sunning in her bikini.  He stood there for a few seconds and said..............."Miss Julie....You Make This Boat Look GooooooooD!!!!!"
None of us were standing....Kris and I hit the pier laughing....

That's My Boy!!!!!

I Love You Boy,

Big Daddy

De-Planting Shrubs!!!

This story was posted on facebook by Gail Martin McDonald.  She is Kristi's Aunt.  I never heard this one and laughed.  Thank you for the story..................

Just looked at mine and Rex's wedding pictures. Ten years ago in March. Nancy brought Andrew over here to GA to our wedding. He was about 4 years old I guess. I had just moved into my new house a couple of months before the wedding. Al...l the shrubbery had not been planted too long because everything was still new. Andrew found it very easy to pull the shrubs out of the ground because the dirt was still very soft so......he pulled up all the shrubs up around the house!!! My son-n-laws, Jeff and Kevin, spent the afternoon replanting the shrubbery!!! I have some great pictures!!!

The Trampoline

I was reading the funny story about Andrew cooking pizza and pulling the oven door off to my middle daughter Jaimie. She chimed in that she had an "Andrew Story" and so we thought we'd share. Kristi and I were very close and our youngests, Ally and Emily were friends too. This meant that we would pop over sometimes and hang out a bit. This particular day Jaimie, Kaitlin and Andrew were jumping on their trampoline. It had seen lots of use and the netting had some holes in it. At some point in the jumping Andrew ordered the girls to look away. They did, but being interested, Jaimie took a peek back at Andrew to see what he was doing. What a suprise! Jaimie turned to see Andrew peeing off the trampoline, out of one of the holes in the screen. Not having brothers did nothing to prepare Jaimie for this sight and she quickly turned her head. You could NEVER anticipate Andrew!

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Stitch Splitting Laughter!!!!!

Just a few minutes ago a good friend of mine sent me a picture he stumbled across from our football banquet which took place last year at Helena Middle School.  My 120# football team was celebrating our 2nd Place season while eating and watching video.  Well....Andrew, as you can see from this picture was the center of attention as he so loved to be at any function we attended. 
One of our players, Devan "DeWalk" Walker, had injured himself durning a bicycle accident prior to the 2009 football season.  He cut his head very badly which required a few nights in the hospital and a lengthy recovery process.  Thankfully Devan made a full recovery and was able to play the entire football season.  God Blessed Him.
I tell you that story to complete the first one.  The boys are all sitting around the table listening to Andrew tell stories and make jokes.  No one can remember exactly what Andrew was saying but Bret Walton told his dad, Frank, that Andrew made Devan laugh so hard that the large scar he had on his head split open and he started bleeding.....I am actually laughing as I am typing this...Not at Devan but.....well.....yes at Devan.  I love Devan dearly but he is laughing too......Im still laughing.....

I Love You Boy....

Big Daddy

One Of Many Taco Bell Jokes

This is by far my favorite Taco Bell joke from Andrew:

"You're a true redneck if you think Taco Bell is a Mexican telephone company!"

Andrew, you always made people smile. We look back at our memories and you still make us smile and enjoy a bit of laughter today. You are always in our hearts, in our prayers, and on our minds.

We love you Andrew!!


IT'S SNOWING!!!!!!!!!!

One snow day, I was on facebook talking to my friend who now lives in Dothan. I was telling her about the snow we were having. All of a sudden, I hear the facebook message sound. Assuming it was from my friend, I see that i had recieved a message from Andrew. I click on it and in all caps he wrote, "IT'S SNOWING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" I sigh and type back, "Yes Andrew, I know."
"R U GOING TO GO PLAY???" he had asked. "In a few minutes." I had said.

After a few minutes of not getting a message I had asked, "Andrew, what r u doing?" I remember him saying something like "just got dressed for the snow" something like that. Then he told me that he was going to go have fun in the snow before it melted.

The next day or so, I got a message from Andrew and he had told me to look at his profile. So I did and started to laugh. Andrew had a picture of him in shorts, a t-shirt, barefooted, sitting in a beach chair. I laughed harder and harder when I realized he was "sun-bathing". "What do you think?" he'd asked. "I think you're crazy." he agreed with me. Now that I look back on that day, I realized that he wasn't crazy, he was just being Andrew Steven Raley(:

I Love You Andrew!!!


Idea Stealer!!!!

Andrew and I were in 5th grade when this happened. It's not an "Andrew Scheme" this is just funny to me. Well one day in 5th grade, it was hat day on this particular day. My class, Andrew's class, and a few other classes were outside on the playground. Andrew and I were standing near the slide with a few other people. Like always, Andrew was cracking jokes.

The wind started to pick up and Andrew's Helena Football hat flew off his head. It rolled around in the dirt and Andrew ran to get it. "Oh crap, it's got dirt all over it!" Andrew complained. He brushed the hat off and put it on backwards. He put his bangs through the hole. (that's in the back of hats)

I began to look at the way he had his bangs situated. I thought it was a cool idea and did the same thing with my hat and bangs. While Andrew was telling a story that I knew, he turned to me and said, "Kaitlyn, you remember don't you? Wait a second... hey, you stole my hat idea!" I laughed a little and he said, "Kaitlyn, you're an idea stealer!" I laughed a little more and asked, "I'm a what?" "You heard me, you're an idea stealer! An idea stealer is someone who steals someone else's ideas. You stole my hat idea!" "Did not, i thought it looked cool so I did the same thing with my hat and bangs." "SEE!!!! You just admitted you copied me!! IDEA STEALER!! IDEA STEALER!! KAITLYN'S AN IDEA STEALER!!!"

So Andrew keeps screaming that out for a little while longer. Then he walks up to one of the teachers, points at me, and said, "Kaitlyn stole my idea!" I was laughing along with a few other kids at him. I guess he was having himself a "2 year old" day! Haha(:

I miss you Andrew!!

Idea Stealer!

Friday, January 28, 2011


About 3 years ago we all went down to Gulf Shores for a relaxing week of Beach Life. Andrew and Matthew's primary goal is to feed the seagulls. We get everything in the condo, get changed into our bathing suits and head down to the beach. Andrew decided he needed to take the 2 pound bag of Cheetos with him for a mid afternoon snack.We got down to the beach, chairs and towels all in place and Kristi decided we should take a walk down the beach. So, off we go. Matthew and Emily are walking and playing along the breaking surf and Andrew is about 20 feet behind with this HUGE bag of Cheetos under his arm, eating away. I was wondering how long it would take....About 3 minutes....before he spotted a seagull. Up went a hand full of Cheetos. Soon there were about 15 of them hovering above his head in the breeze. Im not quite sure how they do it but they called in a bunch of buddies and the 15 birds turned into 5 more every time Andrew is tossed up a fist full. The next thing you know there are 40 or so and Andrew having to duck every time he throws. I would guess he has pitched about a good pound of snacks by this time and the seagulls are in Heaven. Here is where it gets funny.....Our friendly seaguls got brave and were hovering and swooping right at Andrew's fist every time he would throw....This kinda freaked him out so he started running towards us laughing...the mistake he made was by THROWING handfulls of Cheetos at the Dive Bombing Seagulls while he was running and screaming...."GET AWAY"......The more he threw the more they chased. He was frantically trying to scare them away with their dinner. As he continues throwing he sprints toward Kristi and me and yells...."THEY KEEP COMING"....We are laughing so hard we cannot talk or help...All we could get out was...."DROP IT"...

Thankfully he ran out of Cheetos and Andrew was finally safe. Once he realized what had happened, He was laying on the beach laughing at himself....

I Love You Boy,

Big Daddy


All of us in Helena who have had kids who have gone through or who are attending Helena Elementary School. All of you know of the carpool line which runs through the back of the school. morning when Andrew was in the 2nd or 3rd grade, Kristi had an experience with Andrew that leveled not only her with laughter but the Teachers who were standing in the car rider line.
Most of you know that Kristi teaches group exercise for the YMCA and has for many years. Her exercise classes are mostly very early in the morning. She would come home after class, pick the kids up and head off to school. Winter months and sweaty cloths can make for a very cold experience and Kristi is one of the coldest natured people I know. Anyway.....know all of this....Kristi picked Andrew and Matthew up one cold morning and headed off to Helena Elementary. And per normal, had the front and rear heat on FULL BLAST. I am talking CONVECTION OVEN type heat. She was totally comfortable. The kids, on the other hand, were hustled out the door, and already a little warm from the running around they did in the morning time.
They arrive at school all safe and sound and Kristi eases down the car pool line. She arrived at the warmly bundled teachers who so kindly greet every parent and student by opening the kids door and saying "Good Morning". WEll.....After baking all of the way down HWY 261 and cooking in the car pool line....Andrew, very quickly, jumped out of the truck as soon as the teacher opened his door. He took about two steps back and took his left arm and wiped his sleeve across his forehead in a very dramatic fashion. (Keep in mind, his Sunday School class has been introducing the concept of Hell to these young kids and his perception of the evil place came out on this day). After the brow wiping, Andrew, in his little Southern Voice clearly stated......"Whhhewww, IT IS HOTTER THAN THE HELL IN THERE"........Kristi crawled under the front seat of the car as she laughed and the Teachers were howling....

I Love You Boy!!!

Big Daddy

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Hmmmm ..... Nails and Tires

We had been in our new house about a week, and Christain and Hayley wanted me to go get there swingset from my brothers house (he had been keeping it over there while we were in the apartment). I went over to Steves house to get his trailer, and we headed over to my brothers.

We got back to my house, backed the trailer in the yard. I went and got a box of 3" framing nails and a hammer, and started putting the swingset back together. It didn't take long, I had about 1/2 of the swingset back together when I heard "Hey Mr. Bobby, whatcha buildin?". I told Andrew, I was putting the swingset back together so Christain and Hayley could swing. Of course Andrew asked if I had another hammer, which I didn't, so he started looking around, while I proceeded with what I was doing.

I kinda saw Andrew walking around but didn't pay that much attention, until I went back to get some more nails. I looked in the box, and noticed that there were quite a few nails missing, so I started looking on the ground. found some here and there, and mentioned to Andrew, don't drop allot of nails on the ground, they might get stuck in a tire, Looking back that was more of an idea, than a warning

I kept on working on the swingset, and just happened to see Andrew do a quick look around, and then bend down and put something near one of the tires on the trailer. I didnt think much about it, then I saw him do the same thing, but to the tire on my truck. I kept hammering, and figured I would see what it was before I moved anything.

I got done with the swingset, and went to check and see what Andrew had been doing. Well it turns out he had propped up nails behind and in front of every tire, all 4 tires on my truck, and all 4 tires on Steves tandem trailer. I was a little shocked, a little irritated and I didn't know what to think, Leslie had come outside, I showed her, and she was shocked too. I yelled at Andrew and he ran over, and I asked him if he put the nails under the tires, he said "Yes Sir", I asked why? "I don't know" he replied. I said, you realize this is your dads trailer, and he will get pretty mad if he gets 4 flat tires, he said "Yes Sir" and walked off.

A few minutes later Steve walked over, and asked how the swingset was coming along, I said good, and told him about the nails and Andrew. He said "I will take care of this, where is he?" We looked around the yard, then Leslie said "there he is, walking around upstairs in the house". from this point on its a blank, I remember Steve apologizing and us laughing at the same time...


About 8.5 years ago we lived in a home in Alabaster. It was a nice little house we bought as a fix-me-up. Kristi and I worked on this house day and night for about 6 months to get it to where we liked it. The finishing touches to the home was..."NEW CARPET" know where I am going with this one.

Andrew would have been about 3.5 and Matthew still in diapers. The boys were back in Matthew's room playing. I would say, 15 or 20 mins. Reading books and playing with trucks, you know, normal little kid stuff.
Kristi popped up and went into Matthew's room to check on them......"OH MY GOSH....ANDREW, WHAT DID YOU DO?"....She was furious. I ran into the room to see what all of the stink was about and saw the "Magic Marker Race Track" that happend to be so neatly drawn on Kristi's Brand New Carpet. And yes, Andrew was sitting in the middle of it playing NASCAR. I can honestly say that in the 20 plus years I have known Kristi, I have never seen her that mad. So I picked Matthew up and escorted Andrew out of the room and into the den. There was about 15 minutes of silence in the air as my sweet Kristi gathered herself.
About that time, Matthew dropped a bomb in his diaper. I got up, grabbed a new diaper and began the cleaning process. I pulled the soiled item off of him and started laughing...I said, "Kristi...Look!"......Andrew had taken the same "Magic Marker" and ever so carefully, colored in Matthew's belly button. He obviously did this during his NASCAR designing period.

She and I laid on the floor and laughed for about 10 minutes and then started the ink removal from our son....

I Love You Andrew....

Big Daddy

… Man, This stuff is Really Sticky

We have lived across the street from Andrew for 6 years, and some of the things he could come up with never ceased to amaze me. Most people know that we have a pool in the backyard, and Andrew, Matthew and Emily are over often during the summer to go swimming.

Now Andrew can best be described with one word, motion, he never stopped, he was like a glimmer, you would see a flash or glimmer go by, and say “what / who was that”…. oh that was just Andrew. He would move from one thing to the next, and then something else. He reminded me of Scrat, the squirrel from Ice Age….

When he would get focused on something, that was all he would work on, until it got boring, then he would move to something else.

Well apparently this day, swimming got boring and Andrew went looking. I don’t thing anyone noticed, there were kids running around the pool, and parents talking, so Andrew walked off from the pool and went to find something more interesting.

No telling how much time later, I was walking around the pool, and noticed Andrew was sitting on the end of the slide, and he kept putting his hands on his stomach, and pulling them off, and it was making that sound, like when you walk on a sticky floor.

I asked Andrew “what are you doing?” and he replied “nothing Mr. Bobby”. I asked, what is all over your hands and stomach? He replied, “Oh, I found one of those sticky mouse traps in your garage, and put the glue on my stomach…man this stuff is really sticky”.

He got that glue from the top of the slide to the bottom, and it took hours scrubbing it off with soft scrub and comet. Looking back it was funny, but at the time, you could have fried an egg on my forehead.

This is just one of the many stories about Andrew that I have and will never forget, They started about the 2nd day we went to our house while it was being built, until the start of the Christmas Parade this year, when he asked me “ Mr. Bobby, you think I could stand on your running boards during the parade? I can hold on to this handle right here, my daddy won’t care ”… No Andrew, that’s not a good Idea...

Monday, January 24, 2011

Best Friend

A very good friend of mine named Denise Miller shared this with me today. Her son, Hunter, was a very close friend of Andrew's.

Denise said.....

I can rememeber Hunter coming home from school and saying "Mom, do u want to know what Andrew did today at school? " Hunter would be laughing so hard telling me.. Hunter loved him so dearly. Hunter could not have asked for a better best friend in the world...

The Storm

I remember coaching Andrew on my offensive line for the Helena Wildcats a few years back. Little did I know that coaching that one year gave me many memories of a great kid I will never forget. For that and other reasons I am grateful. One very hot summer day we were near the end of practice working on routine drills. The humidity was so bad that our shirts stuck to our bodies. It was miserable but I remember feeling sorry for the kids dressed in full pads. I was standing there watching the defensive unit walking through drills when Andrew started walking onto the field heading for my direction. Andrew was where he was not supposed to be and heading for trouble with the coaches but I was interested in what Andrew had to say. "Coach!" Andrew spoke up to me as he turned his body in the direction I was facing and looked up into the sky. "Looks like we've got a bad Thunder Storm coming!" I looked above Andrew into the sky and saw a few clouds, but nothing to worry about. Andrew then said, "You know lightening is dangerous, it can kill people!" He then added, "I think we should call practice!" I just laughed, and asked Andrew if he was tired and then promised him it would be over soon and sent him back to the other linesmen. 

"Coach Craig....PULL ME OUT"

This story took place a few years ago at the Helena Sports Complex. One of our local Boy Scout Troops had just installed a large patch of bermuda grass right at the fence entrance of the complex. Well.....It rained a bunch that week, durning baseball season and as you would expect, the new sod was a marsh pit.
We were leaving the complex after a baseball game one night and Andrew shot out of the gate real fast to beat Matthew to the truck so he could lay claim to "Shotgun". This was a constant battle between them and Andrew was definately going to win it on that night. So...we hung around for a few minutes talking to everyone just as I like to do and we decided to head on out the gate. As expected, Andrew was the center of attention. He had decided to test out the freshly planted sod. Keeping in mind, the mistake was made by me when we got to the field...."Andrew...Do Not Get Near That Sod. It Is Very Wet and Very Muddy". Well, 2 hours later the thought was to much for him to pass up. As I walked through the fence there was a group of kids and adults standing around laughing and I saw Coach Craig Knight standing there looking down at the newly planted sod. My stomach tightened as I knew what was possible. I then hear Andrew...."Hey Coach Craig" In his Southern Drawl...."PULL ME OUT"....Well....Andrew had jumped off into the new sod and SANK TO HIS THIGHS IN THE MUD!!!!!! He had a grin on his face from ear to ear. Craig grabbed one hand, I grabbed the other and we pulled him out. Yes....His shoes are still planted about 3 feet in the ground. This is where they are to this day.
I made him ride home in the back of the truck, laughing all of the way. We arrived home and Andrew popped out of the truck and ran over and hosed himself off. He looked over at me and said..."Thanks for pulling me out Big Daddy...I should have listened to you"

I Love You Boy!!!!

Big Daddy

Thursday, January 6, 2011


Andrew was about 11 years old when this happened......
I was sitting in my chair one night and Andrew was in the kitchen cooking.....Yes Cooking a pizza. He put the pizza in the oven and came back into the den. Our den and kitchen are open to one another but are divided by an open counter top so I did not have a direct line of sight to the oven. Well....Andrew went back into the kitchen to check on the pizza and came walking back out into the dining area, which is open to the den and said....."Hey Big Daddy, Is This Supposed to Happen".....He came walking around the corner holding the door to the oven like a barbell in the curling position, with this IM IN TROUBLE look on his face.........I fell out laughing. There was nothing I could say....!!!