Thursday, August 29, 2013

Throwback Thursday :: An Unexpected Gift

Originally posted 07/12/11


I inherited my grandma's antiques
when she passed away 6 years ago.
I love seeing her china cabinet in my dining room
or admiring her lovely buffet in my kitchen.

Other treasures that graced her home
now grace mine.


What I treasure the most is the way
that my house smells
like my Mammaw's home.

No one else can smell it but me.

When I walk in the
front door of my home,

the scent that I smelled all
throughout childhood fills my senses.


French fries frying on the stove,
hushpuppies popping in oil in a skillet,

the smell of the many meals that
she prepared can still
 be smelled on her old antiques.


I love that I have this
unexpected gift in my home.
I love that the memories
of all of those meals made with care
linger here.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

A Cautionary Tale

We had the rainiest summer in Georgia. I mean, it rained for days upon days for weeks on end. The streets got soggy and we had some local flooding. A good friend of mine went on a long summer trip and when she returned home, her basement was under 4 inches of water.

It was like a bad dream. Her kids' rooms were down there and almost everything that they owned was drenched in the flood. The worst part of it all was that they didn't have flood insurance.

I felt so bad for them when I found out that the flood had caused $70,000 worth of damage to their home. They've had to move and declare bankruptcy. Needless to day, they're kicking themselves for not finding good insurance. All that they had to do was a little research to find coverage for water damage and leak restoration. I know that would've loved to have been able to keep their home.

 It was a hard lesson to learn, I'm sure.

I'm passing this cautionary tale on to my readers because no one should have to give up their home and belongings because of a flood.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

The Happiness Project :: Week 26

Sometimes a girl just needs to put
on her dancing shoes and
go out for a night on the town with her friends.

  photo 0e76fbaa-ad8f-4575-8fa6-80df833d126f_zps7667488b.jpg 

We found ourselves at this fun local bar called 8-E's.
The decor is covered in 80's memorbillia
and the DJ only plays tunes from the 1980's.

  photo 5708221a-3df7-4d87-9bb1-308859cee3ff_zps5a962c6f.jpg

We had sooo much fun dancing unabashedly
and busting out all of our old moves.
That's my friends recreating the fight scene
from the Beat It video up there.

We laughed and danced like crazy
then laughed some more.

It was such a great night.
Letting loose on the dance floor
 is good for the soul.


Want to join me in my quest
to scout out happiness for a whole year?
Simply post a photo of something that
makes you wildly happy and tell us all about it.
Then, steal my button and include it in your post.
Don't forget to link up to Mr. Linky.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Throwback Thursday :: Filthy Little Boys

Originally posted 08/03/11

I'm realizing that my days around here seem to run together.
Ordinary moments unfold around me daily
and I need to stop and relish in them.
One day, my boys will be out living life
and I will miss these everyday experiences.

So, I am taking the time to document
the simple moments that pass between us.
I'm calling this little collection of memories...

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My life is full of all the nasty little
things that little boys are into.


Like grubby fingers balancing
a new best friend.


Tonka trucks parked atop mounds of red Georgia clay.


Dust covered little legs and socks.


A tortured bathmat covered in mud.

I will forever cherish
the memories
of my dirty little boys playing outside.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

The Latest Painting on The Fridge Gallery

The other day Koen came home from school
and seemed a bit sad.

I asked him what was wrong and 
he told me that he'd painted a picture
of his mommy while he was at school
but that he couldn't bring it home
because the paint was drying.

He REALLY wanted to give me the painting.

The next day I reminded him to grab it
and he looked even sadder and told me
that he couldn't bring it home because the
teacher was going to display them on the wall.

Then he cried a little.

His sweet teacher saw his tears
and told him that he could take it home 
if he wanted to.

Then she told me that the instructions
were to paint a self portrait
but Koen insisted on painting me.

Be still my mama heart!

He proudly handed it to me
and said
"See on top, mama. That's your hair bun."
"See your smiling lips?"

Oh, this little boy slays me all the time.

Now the painting is hung
in the highest place of honor in our home,
the fridge.

I smile every single time that I pass by it.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

The Happiness Project :: Week 25

A new soccer season has started
and the excitement in the air around here
has been at astronomical levels.

This is Koen's first season
and after spending so much time
on the sidelines watching his big brother play
throughout his young life,
he is super stoked
to be on a team.

Last night was his first practice
and it was so much fun
to watch him kick the ball around.

Of course, the boys practices and games 
are scheduled at the same time on different fields
so I will be doing a lot of running
 back and forth to watch them play.

But it will be worth it.
I think this is going to be a great season.


Want to join me in my quest
to scout out happiness for a whole year?
Simply post a photo of something that
makes you wildly happy and tell us all about it.
Then, steal my button and include it in your post.
Don't forget to link up to Mr. Linky.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Me on a Rainy Monday Morning

The boys are in school this rainy morning.
It's just me in the house
and I am totally recreating
my favorite scene from the most awesome show
My So Called Life.

There is loud music
and I'm dancing
like a crazy person.

Jumping on the furniture,
singing into my brush.

All over my house
It's just me and my jazz hands.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Throwback Thursday :: The Moment I've Been Waiting For

Originally posted 01/20/10

When I was twenty-something years old, I found these vintage juice glasses at an Antique Market in Madison, Georgia. I couldn't pass them up and I bought them with the intention that one day my children would drink Orange Juice from them. I perched them lovingly on the windowsill in the kitchen and would admire the sunlight shining through them and daydream about my future.

Over the years, whenever I moved into a new place, I would unwrap each one and as I placed them in the window of my new kitchen I would say out loud "Now, I'm home." They moved with me six times and I've broken a few but they sit over my sink to this day. I love these little juice glasses because they were bought with love. They symbolize all that I've achieved and all that I longed for many years. I have a little family just like I wished for in my morning ritual.

I had yet to serve Griffin any juice in them because he is a rambunctious scamp and I didn't want him to break them. The other day, he asked me about the little glasses in the windowsill. "Can I hold one?" he asked me. He studied each of them as they sat atop the window to decide which one he wanted to inspect. I gingerly handed him the one with the tiger on it and he studied it like a five year old would, with a bit of wonder in his eyes.

"Can I drink from it?" he asked me.
"I thought you'd never ask." I told him.

I washed it and rewashed it and washed it again. As I filled it up with juice, my heart swelled a bit. He gently lifted it to his lips and took a sweet sip. After all of the daydreams and wishing and praying for my future, there he was.

Finally, my kiddo drank from my beloved cup.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

I'm going into hiding...

{image found here}

I've unplugged the phone and my Neko Case playlist is blarring.
The house is empty.
It's just me and my thoughts.

I'm writing Chapter 15 of my story
and I'm in the drudges.

So, I'll see you after I've written at least 1000 words.
If you don't hear from me by Friday
send help.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

52 Weeks of Happiness :: Week 24

Yesterday was the first day of school round these parts.
I love the excitement of a new school year starting.

Even the preparations are fun.
When I was a little girl I adored going to the store
and buying my school supplies.

I still feel that little burst of joy
when we fight all the crowds 
and buy up pencils and folders and all
the other stuff on their list.

It makes me happy to take
the obligatory first day of school picture,
where everyone is squeaky clean
and full of anticipation
for what the day will bring their way.

The goodbye kisses are the sweetest
and then coming home to an empty house
after a long crazy summer
is just the best.

The first day of school is a beautiful thing.

I'd love for you to read 
my post from yesterday
that I wrote during
those first moments of reflection
after dropping them off at school.

It came from the heart.


Want to join me in my quest
to scout out happiness for a whole year?
Simply post a photo of something that
makes you wildly happy and tell us all about it.
Then, steal my button and include it in your post.
Don't forget to link up to Mr. Linky.

Monday, August 12, 2013

My Empty Skirt

I can't tell you how many times this summer that I'd be in the kitchen making pancakes for breakfast when the boys would come barrelling into the room wielding plastic swords. An eruption of squeals and laughter trailed behind them as they dashed toward one another in battle.

My head would spin and I'd shout "No running in the kitchen, settle down!" as they bumped into me and I'd dodge the splashing pancake batter from the jostled bowl. My heart would beat faster, my frustration rising. Can't a woman make breakfast in peace?

Without fail, Koen would dive under my long dress, as I'm known to wear in the heat of summer. It just so happens to make the perfect shelter for a 4-year-old boy hiding from his big brother. The folds of fabric always take him in and without fail, he'd wrap his little body around my leg, giggling and shouting "Protect me, mom!"

My long skirt billowed over him and Griffin always darted for him. Grabbing the fabric and pushing me around in the process "Get out of there, Scallywag!" he'd yell. Then they'd fight under me. Plastic swords shaking my skirt like curtains on a stage. Jostled and exasperated from the long summer days, I'd fuss to no end and scoot them out of the room.

It happened just this morning. As I made breakfast for their first day of school but today was different. In my heart, I know that the days of my dress providing shelter are numbered around here. Even though these kids make my blood pressure sky rocket, it's an honor to be here to witness the everlasting battles that are waged from under my dress.

They feel safe there, with me towering over them.

Now they are at school and the house is quiet. My skirt is empty and I can't wait for them to come home, grab their swords, and dive back in.


Thursday, August 8, 2013

Throwback Thursday :: The Art of Distraction

Originally posted 10/20/09

Roger and I have a little flirtation that takes place at the dinner table.
It started years ago when were dating and we still do it to this day.
If one of us is eating something yummy (let's say a plate of greasy ol' fries)
the other will pull the age old trick where you point over their shoulder
and yell something ridiculous like "Oh look, a unicorn!"
The victim unknowingly looks behind them and
then the bandit steals a French fry off of their plate.
I know, it's not exactly high comedy unfolding while we eat dinner
but it's a fun way to say
"I still care enough to steal your food."
We're very romantic.

Well, Griffin has observed this behavior for years
and has become quite the master in the art of distraction.
Even if it's silly, we still look away and let him steal our food.
Yes, we reward any effort toward comedy in our family.
He started out with some basic 4 year old material. Stuff like...

"Look...a pony!"


"Oh's Tom and Jerry!"

Then, his distractions became a little more advanced.
He started serving up things like...

"Look's Elvis!"


"Look over's a Conga line!"

Well, the other day as we ate lunch at our favorite Mexican food Restaurant,
he said something so brilliant that
I just went ahead and gave him
my entire basket of tortilla chips
right on the spot.
He said...

"Look...there's a Pegasus in the salsa!"

My work here is done!

*My super hot husband took the time to create the image of the Pegasus in the Salsa. I love that man of mine!

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

A Little Tour of the Kitchen Salon

I've finally put the finishing touches
on The Kitchen Salon,
you know, the little space where I
cut hair from time to time.

It's such a fun place
that I just have to share the details with you.

I'd like to first draw your attention
to the fact that
the retro haircutting chair
is standing on Dr. Suess books.

My dad bought the chair at the flea market
and it has no risers on the bottom
so I use books to keep if from wobbling.

Prett-y Class-y if you ask me.

  photo 55f30455-b60f-43dc-9b5c-19e2aa31b88e_zps38f1c41f.jpg

I just adore this sweet girl that serves
as my Barbicide jar
and hold my combs and stuff.

Who wants a boring old jar?
I love her!

 photo 4355957c-45a8-457d-9ec1-433d9b8c2751_zps463f09ab.jpg

My bird wall vase serves
as a home for the
egg carton flowers that Koen
made for me for Mother's Day.


 photo 18039ab6-c845-495d-9bf1-d5995008c81d_zps68da7b38.jpg 

I snatched my husband's vintage recipe card
wall hang thingy
and it now holds my business cards.

I love that I married a man
that owns stuff like this.

  photo 7aa3fa4d-829a-4304-927b-34df1730b1ad_zpsf0c03e2e.jpg 

This little fancy framed flower makes
me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

It's a swatch of the wallpaper
that was in the kitchen of my childhood home.

I discovered that I had
saved it in an old journal
and decided to frame it and keep it close.

I love being reminded of home.

  photo 90983fb7-5d02-48db-b2e2-1dd7509a9528_zps62309f98.jpg 

My beloved retro salt and pepper shaker collection
hangs out in the kitchen too.

It cracks me up that the chef
looks like she's shocked
that the little Hispanic couple are kissing.

So, thank you for allowing
me to give you a tour of The Kitchen Salon.
I hope that you enjoyed it.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

The Happiness Project :: Week 23

When we're feeling super indulgent
we all load up in the car 
and eat dinner at Sonic.

Did I mention that eating fast food 
in the car is my guilty pleasure?

We put a movie on our portable DVD player
and let the boys watch it 
while they shove unhealthy greasy food in their faces.

(Griffin wanted me to let you know that he took this photo.
If you look closely, you can see me supervising him handling my beloved camera)


The boys think that it's the
funnest thing in the world
to be allowed to eat junk food
and watch a movie in the car.

It's a simple indulgence 
that doesn't happen often
but when it does,
everyone is happy.


Want to join me in my quest
to scout out happiness for a whole year?
Simply post a photo of something that
makes you wildly happy and tell us all about it.
Then, steal my button and include it in your post.
Don't forget to link up to Mr. Linky.

Friday, August 2, 2013

An Ode to the Pool

If we have a bad case of the grumpers in my house
we just pack up and go to the pool.

Everyone is happy at the pool.
There's no bickering or little people
saying "Mom, I'm bored!"

We go for hours and hours.
The sun kisses our sunscreened skin
and the water catches my kids
when they throw themselves in.

Both of my boys have become
awesome swimmers over the summer
and it's opened a whole new world to us.

We take a bag full of toys
and have epic water gun wars.
We dive after toys as they sink to the bottom.
I pelt water soaked balls at my kids
while they scamper and dodge being hit.

It's all very therapeutic for a ragged mama.

I am so grateful for the swimming pool.
It really has made our summer so much more fun!