I’m Heather, a fourth generation Alabamian who has called Orlando, FL home for the past twenty-five years. Welcome to Totally Tailgates – home of Southern Sideline Hospitality!
Marrying my college sweetheart (his nickname is Copa……it’s kind of a long story involving our college buddies….yeah, that kind of story!) and raising our daughter (Cee Cee) have been true blessings in my life.
Copa and I grew up surrounded by football and good food. Our parents collectively attended Big Ten, SEC and Division II schools. We attended Mercer. It’s a smaller, private university in Georgia; we had a wonderful four years together. I rushed and pledged Phi Mu, and am an active alumnae today.
You get it.
So did we!
Football, friends and old-fashioned hospitality just go together.
The genesis of Totally Tailgates was solidified in August of 2014.
At the tender age of 43 (oh yes, I just announced my age!) we became an empty-nesters when our daughter left for college. I knew I needed a creative outlet for the now AMPLE time I had on my hands. (What would we do on the weekends?!?) Sharing our mutual
obsession love for tailgating was a natural fit for us. Plus, we wanted to share with other parents exactly what “sending a child to college” REALLY means.
Also, our daughter had a very positive sorority recruitment at a large, competitive school. She and I have been rush coaching girls ever since. So, a blog combining the best of tailgating foods, fashions and helping you navigate the collegiate experience was funneled into….TOTALLY TAILGATES!
However, Totally Tailgates was put on hold in November of 2014.
That Thanksgiving my mother received what would be her last chemotherapy treatment. Her valiant fight against cancer ended in the early spring of 2015. I cannot recall how many trips to Huntsville, Alabama I made that January & February. God’s sweet mercy reigned down on her one chilly evening and she went home to Him surrounded by friends and family. (This is why I am proponent of the AutoNation Cure Bowl – cancer awareness is a thing for me!)
What began as a creative outlet quickly turned into a passion project. In a few short months I lost my mother and became and empty nester – two life altering events. BUT, with faith, friends & family all is well and we MOVE FORWARD….and boy, are we enjoying Totally Tailgates now!
Copa and I are avid sports enthusiast so come along with us!
We are here to capture every hot wing, game day dress, Derby hat, Masters Southern Pimento Cheese Sandwich, golf tournament cocktail party, Final Four, home run, and how could we forget……NASCAR. (Nothing beats race day at Daytona!) Plus, if your daughter is heading to college and plans to go thru sorority recruitment we have tried & true tips for mamas AND daughters. 🙂
OH…..and we travel.
Not just for tailgates, either! (Although, truth be told, it was pretty cool seeing golf tournament billboards in Beijing!)
Heather, are you a professionally trained cook?
Sure, in the classical Southern sense…..meaning I learned from my mama and from my mama’s mama! No professional training needed, just a lot of “on the job” training. And, I spent many afternoons in my great aunts’ kitchens, too. Best cooks in Calhoun County, Alabama!
Who is your content developer, lead photographer and recipe developer?
Yours truly! Although Copa weighs in with content development suggestions and is lead taste tester.
What camera do you use?
Canon EOS 1100 and my photo editing software is Photoshop Elements 14.
If you could pick just one tailgate food to eat on game day what would it be?
Me: Wings Copa: Hamburgers
What is your one piece of advice to PNMs (Potential New Members) going through sorority rush?
Trust the process! There is a house for every girl and a girl for every house. Stay with it and you will find your sisters.