Thursday, December 31, 2009

125 Years of Good Housekeeping

So while I was browsing on Amazon a few weeks ago, I came across the $5 magazine subscriptions and got a year long subscription for Good Housekeeping and Southern Living. Well my first GH came in the mail yesterday and I was so excited.

This year is the 125th birthday of GH and I loved reading the editor's letter in this addition. I love that when Clark W. Bryan published the first edition of GH, his mission was to have a family journal to "produce and perpetuate perfection as it may be obtained in the household." And today, the mission has changed a, GH strives to perpetuate a happy life, not a perfect one! I love that simply because it doesn't have to be perfect, to be wonderful.

In each addition, GH is taking a piece from the past 125 years, and reprinting it. I laugh because some things do seem to be a bit outdated, but some, are just a true today as they were back then. In 1885, GH printed a "Chapter of Household Don'ts" goes like this:

Don't stand when you can sit just as well.
Don't put off the mending from week to week.
Don't you know that vinegar will clean the isinglass in the stove doors?
Don't you know your floor oil clothes can be washed in buttermilk or kerosene?
Don't give little children two languages to learn, first baby-talk, then afterward true pronunciation.
Don't hesitate to place a piece of zinc on the live coals in the stove; it will clean out the stove pipe.
Don't throw away nice woolen stockings when the feet are worn out, but cut them down for the children.
Don't fail to clean and tidy in every nook and corner but Don't be a slave to a shining stove or carpet!
Don't do unnecessary work because your grandmother did. There was not half so much to be done in her day.

I hope that in this upcoming year, your life will be wonderful, not perfect; and that you don't become a slave to your shining stove and carpet!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Tickets for Tots

I saw this video this morning and LOVE this program - turning something bad into good.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Christmas Tour of Homes

Christmas Tour of Homes with The Nester

The Nester is hosting the Christmas Tour of Homes today.

I LOVE this time of year - the sights, the smells, the memories, the SHOPPING! I love it all! I would be more than happy to have my house decorated for Christmas year round, if Brant would let me !

But here are a few of my favorite decorations.

My mantle...I made this garland last year (read about it here) with inspiration from Nester.

This is one of my absolute favorite decorations!

I love this bowl because I can change out the ribbons depending on the season!

Our tree!

Here are a few of my favorite ornaments.

Merry Christmas!!!!


Well Brant's birthday was the day before Thanksgiving and all he wanted was the Beatles Rock that's exactly what he got! We had so much fun all day long pretending that we were the Beatles!!!! Here are a few pictures from our debut performance!

This is Brant's nephew, Aeson. He had quite a performance himself on the guitar!

Brant's sister Kristie and mom, Judy. I just love my in-laws!

We had a fabulous Thanksgiving! I made my first turkey - IN THE CROCKPOT!!! I actually just did a turkey breast because there were only 5 adults, and it really turned out GREAT! It was so easy, and was DELICIOUS!

Here is a picture of our table - full of tasty food!

One of my favorite desserts is my mom's pumpkin roll, so she gave me the recipe and it turned out perfect!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

A Christmas Poem

I received this today and just thought I would share it with you.

The embers glowed softly, and in their dim light,
I gazed round the room and I cherished the sight.

My wife was asleep, her head on my chest,
My daughter beside me, angelic in rest.

Outside the snow fell, a blanket of white,
Transforming the yard to a winter delight.

The sparkling lights in the tree I believe,
Completed the magic that was Christmas Eve.

My eyelids were heavy, my breathing was deep,
Secure and surrounded by love I would sleep.

In perfect contentment, or so it would seem,
So I slumbered, perhaps I started to dream.
The sound wasn't loud, and it wasn't too near,
But I opened my eyes when it tickled my ear.

Perhaps just a cough, I didn't quite know,
Then the sure sound of footsteps outside in the snow.
My soul gave a tremble, I struggled to hear,
And I crept to the door just to see who was near.

Standing out in the cold and the dark of the night,
A lone figure stood, his face weary and tight.

A soldier, I puzzled, some twenty years old,
Perhaps a Marine, huddled here in the cold.

Alone in the dark, he looked up and smiled,
Standing watch over me, and my wife and my child.

"What are you doing?" I asked without fear,
"Come in this moment, it's freezing out here!

Put down your pack, brush the snow from your sleeve,
You should be at home on a cold Christmas Eve!"

For barely a moment I saw his eyes shift,
Away from the cold and the snow blown in drifts,

To the window that danced with a warm fire's light
Then he sighed and he said "Its really all right,

I'm out here by choice. I'm here every night."
"It's my duty to stand at the front of the line,
That separates you from the darkest of times.

No one had to ask or beg or implore me,
I'm proud to stand here like my fathers before me.
My Gramps died at ' Pearl on a day in December,"
Then he sighed, "That's a Christmas 'Gram always remembers."
"My dad stood his watch in the jungles of ' Nam ',
And now it is my turn and so, here I am.

I've not seen my own son in more than a while,
But my wife sends me pictures, he's sure got her smile."

Then he bent and he carefully pulled from his bag,
The red, white, and blue... an American flag.

"I can live through the cold and the being alone,
Away from my family, my house and my home.

I can stand at my post through the rain and the sleet,
I can sleep in a foxhole with little to eat.

I can carry the weight of killing another,
Or lay down my life with my sister and brother...
Who stand at the front against any and all,
To ensure for all time that this flag will not fall."
"So go back inside," he said, "harbor no fright,
Your family is waiting and I'll be all right."

"But isn't there something I can do, at the least,
"Give you money," I asked, "or prepare you a feast?

It seems all too little for all that you've done,
For being away from your wife and your son."

Then his eye welled a tear that held no regret,
"Just tell us you love us, and never forget.
To fight for our rights back at home while we're gone,
To stand your own watch, no matter how long.
For when we come home, either standing or dead,
To know you remember we fought and we bled.
Is payment enough, and with that we will trust,
That we mattered to you as you mattered to us."

I pray that this holiday season, we remember those who have fought for us, who have died for us, and who have given up everything that had so that we can have the freedom to celebrate the birth of our savior.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

A Sleepless Night

Last night was NO fun!
This baby went missing!

We searched for HOURS! My sister and mom both came to help us look for him, as well as our dear friends the Bennetts! We drove up and down every street calling his name hoping he would come running out, but he never did. We walked through the golf course hoping that maybe he was playing with the ducks, but he wasn't. I went to the elementary and middle schools in our neighborhood thinking that he had gone to meet some new friends, but he hadn't. My cell phone number is on his tags, so we just knew the phone would ring, but it never did.

So last night I went to bed in tears because my baby Dax was missing. Brant and I prayed desperately that someone would find him.

Then this morning around 5:00, my phone rang. It was Caylan from across the street....Lloyd was leaving to go to work and guess who found his way back home and was asleep in my front yard......DAX!

He was soaking wet (because it was drizzling all night long), thirsty and exhausted, but he was home! So we dried him off, gave him some food and water, then all curled up together right here!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Holiday Wish List

I don't know about you, but the holidays fast approaching, I have been making my Christmas wish list! Along with gift cards to my favorite decorating stores like HomeGoods, Kirklands and Hobby Lobby, I want these!!!

We have a great outdoor table and chair set, but it is bar height, not great for simply outdoor enjoyment (unless you are eating and the table is high enough that Dax c
an't get your food!) So, I was thinking it would great to have some outdoor rockers! And when I get those rockers, it might get chilly in the evenings, so I think that this beautiful outdoor fire pit would be a GREAT addition to our outdoor space!Then, I was online at Wilson's leather and saw this beautiful coat!!!! I think it would enjoy having a space in my closet, don't you?

And maybe this one too!!!!!

Then, I have decided that I would really love a clock radio docking system for my Iphone. I use my Iphone as my alarm clock, but sometimes I forget to charge it. I think life would be much simpler with something like this!

So what's on your list??????

Thursday, December 3, 2009


Yes, I am actually alive! Things in our world have happened in a whirlwind lately.

First, we had a fabulous Thanksgiving! Brant's family came to our house and we certainly had a blast. I cooked my first turkey IN THE CROCKPOT! I knew I wouldn't need a full turkey, so I got just the breast. It turned out WONDERFULLY! I would do it again in a heartbeat! My camera is being silly right now, so I promise to post pictures as soon as I can!

Now, for the fun stuff...I've been decorating!!!!

I finally finished the decorating project in my kitchen. My Aunt Laurie gave me the ides over a year ago, but I finally did it! Since I love coffee, I hung a few shelves on the big wall in the breakfast room and put books about coffee on them. Then I found this FABULOUS "Coffee" metal sign at Kirklands for only $30! It totally completed the look!

I was able to get all of these shelves at Hobby Lobby when they were half price, and bought almost all of the books at Half Price books, so this entire wall probably only cost around $60! That's a bargain if you ask me!

Next, Brant and I have wanted new living room furniture for awhile. We liked what we had, but it was a hand-me-down from Sister, and we really wanted something that we LOVED! So, Roome to GO was having a huge sale that included a free 40" HDTV with a full living room purchase, so we went for it!

What do you think? We went with a brown sofa and loveseat, but kept our black recliner and got black cocktail tables and a black coffee table. Granted, the big wall now looks huge and I need a bigger piece of art to hang on the wall...but don't worry, that is soon to come!

I found these FANTASTIC pillows to add some pizazz to the room. I found the rose pillow as Home Goods for only $15 for a set of 2, then the leopard print at Wal Mart for only $10 a piece! I Love them!!!

These are my new lamps. We never had lamps before because the piano was on the long wall, and we didn't want cords draped across the floor to the end tables. But now that the piano is gone and the sofa is on the wall, these add a great touch, don't you think?

Well I hope everyone is having a FABULOUS holiday seasons! I have about half of my shopping done, so I'm off to Canton tomorrow with Jessica to finish up! And yes, we ARE going to Canton, even when the high is only 37!!!!!

By the way, Great Grabbie Designs is going to be offering Holiday blog designs for only $20!!!!!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

The People You Meet on a Plane

Last Wednesday, I flew home from San Diego, CA after a 10 day business trip. Before we ever took off, I noticed that there was a couple behind me that was consumed with grief. Overhearing their phone conversations, I quickly learned that as they were boarding the plane on their way home from a nice, relaxing vacation, they received a phone call telling them their son had been shot in the face and was in critical condition.

Once the plane took off and we were able to move around, I moved into the isle to kneel and talk and pray with this couple. They explained that their son lived in Jackson, TN and that when leaving a job early in the morning, he had been robbed, shot in the face, and left for dead on the sidewalk. A passerby saw him and called 911. When our plane landed, I walked and talked with this sweet couple to the baggage claim. As we waited for a bags, they quickly got out their phones t to make phone calls, only to learn that the surgeons were not going to be able to save their son. For what seemed like an hour, I just embraced this couple. There were no words to say, so I just cried with them and prayed with them.

I was able to email with this sweet family yesterday and learned that on Thursday, their son, Master Sergeant Troy Mitchell, went to his eternal home, leaving behind a wife of 24 years (they would have celebrated their silver anniversary in December), 7 sons ranging in age of 27 to 5, and 3 grandchildren. Troy served in the Marine Corps for 22 years before retiring and creating his own locksmith business.

I tell you this story because today, this family will bury their son, their husband, their father and a dear friend. Please pray for the Mitchell family. I cannot imagine the pain and sorrow that they feel.

If you would like to read more, Troy's obituary can be found here. To read more about the events surrounding this case, you can go to the local Jackson newpaper here and search "Troy Mitchell".

Friday, October 30, 2009

MIA in San Diego!

Hello dear friend! Yes, I'm still alive!!!!! But I have been incredibly busy lately.

Here's what has been going on. If any of you read Sister's blog, then you might know that my grandfather, Poppy, passed away on the 15th. To my sister and I, it was a bit unexpected, but he had battled Alzheimer's disease for 14 years. About 4 years go, our family struggled with the decision top put him in a nursing home, but we knew that Meme could no longer care for Poppy all by herself. It was at that time that he began to forget names, and faces. But through it all, Poppy knew Meme. Even on the day he died, he knew my Meme.

I would be lying to you if I told you that it wasn't difficult to say "goodbye" to him, because it was heart-wrenching, but I knew that he was dancing with his Maker. On the day I wept for my Poppy, he not only knew my Meme, but he knew every single one of us! And that, made me joyful!

That Saturday of his funeral, the 17th, my boss called and asked if I would be interested in coming out to California for some business. After talking it over with Brant, I told him I was on my way. So we drove home Sunday morning from Shreveport, and I hoped on a plane to San Diego. We were staying at the Four Seasons Aviara resort and it was absolutely beautiful. I was there for 10 days, and flew home this past Wednesday. Boy, am I glad to be home, but work is crazy!

Well, I hope to post some more pictures later, but for now, I leave you with this...the view from the back porch of the Four Seasons Aviara, with the beautiful blue ocean in the distance.

Monday, October 5, 2009

What a Weekend

Well, maybe I should say, "What a past 5 days!"

Well Wednesday, Brant came down with the Swine Flu - not fun! So he was out for the rest of the week. But on Thursday, I worked from home because I was going to take him to the dr. But, the dr's office was out of flu tests and won't prescribe you Tamiflu unless you have an underlying medical condition or are under the age of 2 - Brant is neither!
So this weekend, was spent

1) taking care of a sick hubs
2) trying to entertain a sick hubs who has been in the house for over 3 days straight, and who has crazy cabin fever... which includes:
3) going to Canton on Sunday with the pouring down rain
4) convincing the hubs to go to the dr today becasue he is still very sick!

But I have to say that the highlight of the weekend was playing this:

while watching a late-night showing of this:

Now, that is what I call quality time!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Packin' My Bags!

All my bags are packed
I'm ready to go
I'm standin here outside your door
I hate to wake you up to say goodbye...

I'm leavin' on a jet plane.....

.... TO JERUSALEM!!!!!!!!!!

Ok - I'm not really going, but I desperately want to. You see, in our Stepping Up Bible Study, lesson 5 was about this incredible, indescribable city. After going through the lesson, and the history of the city, I'm ready to pack my bags! Wanna go with me? If you don't these are the words from Beth Moore, herself.

No other city is like Jerusalem. It beckons sojourners like no other land, and like no other place I've ever been, it lends a strange sense of "home" even to the visitor casting her first glance. Kay Arthur once told me that the more you go to Jerusalem, the more you want to go. I've found that to be true. I felt the spiritual draw the first time I ever went, but after the second time, I departed with a sense of urgency that I must go again and again.

What do you think it would be like to see this, the Garden Tomb...the place that many scholars believe Jesus was buried in the tomb of Joseph of Arimethea?

Would you sit and wait in the Garden of Gethsemane?

Would you read the Word on the Mount of Olives?

Would you walk down by the Via Delorosa, the path Jesus took to his crucifixion?

Would you look up in grandeur at the city wall?

Would you bring your cares before Him at the Wailing Wall?

I pray that one day, I will make a journey to this Holy City. I'm ready to pack my bags and go to the place where history truly began. Do you want to come with me?

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Scrapbookin' Fool

Yes - that is exactly what I have been lately! Two weekends ago, I LITERALLY spend the ENTIRE weekend on my computer scrapping...I made pages and stuff, but I also made several blog headers for some customers. Here is some of my completed work.

This is for my cousin, Amy. She started a blog so that friends and family can see her PRECIOUS baby girl Izzy growing up!

The Medlocks were the winners of the Great Grabbie Giveaway.

This was a fun header to create. Henry's mom told me that he LOVES trains, so we made sure this header was a reflection of him!

I have also learned some really cool techniques lately and have LOVED getting to use them. In this page here, I was able to take a patterned paper and create the sticker alphabet you see for the title, "Kai". Obviously, Kai is our sweet, sweet cat. These pictures were taken last Sunday, which for those in Texas, know that it was a nasty rainy Sunday. As soon as we came home from church, Brant and I got in some comfy clothes and just laid around the house. Well Kai decided that she should just lay around too...ON Brant that is!

If you're a digital scrapper, what are some of your favorite techniques to use to add definition and depth to your elements?

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

"Because I want you to want Me."

I sat down tonight with every intention of telling you about my emotional breakdown today...I so lovingly call it "Breakdown #1". But every time my hands go to the keys, the words to the song "My Beloved" come to the front of my mind.
"You're my beloved, you're my bride,
To sing over you is my delight,
Come away with me, my love."
Its as if the Lord, himself, is singing to me tonight; telling me to just come away with Him - so sit, and to cry, and to just be.

Tonight, the tears roll down my face and I just need to be with my Father. I need him to hold me, to carry me, to breathe joy into my soul. You see, tonight I just long to be mother, but I feel so defeated.

I have never truly understood the feeling of defeat until recently. I have never understood how you could try, and try, and try your very hardest to do something, but never succeed. When Brant and I first decided to try and have a baby, I was so excited. In my perfect little world, my dearest friends would be planning my baby shower right now, and I would be painting a nursery. I would be going shopping on the weekends with my sister for the perfect "coming home" outfit while Brant was at home trying to put the crib together. You see, there is nothing that I have ever wanted more than to a mom; to rock my little baby to sleep, to feel their skin against mine, to comfort them when the cry.

For the first time tonight, I just let myself cry and lay it all at His feet. For the first time tonight, I have literally asked the Lord out loud why the one thing that I want so badly is the one thing that is so hard to get. And He answered me: "Because I want you to want ME."

Last night, I started a Bible Study with some of the other ladies in my Sunday School Class: Stepping Up - a study of the Pslams of Ascent by Beth Moore. Its a study about going up - about rising up for something greater - about taking a pilgrimage to the next level even when we are weary. And this my friends, is the exact place where I am at.

Tonight, I am weary and defeated. But my Jesus just wants me to love Him and to lay EVERYTHING before His feet. So that is what I will do! Tonight, I will go sit with Him and be with Him and allow Him to breathe joy into my soul because I am a daughter of the King and HE has the PERFECT plan for me. For I know, that one day, maybe soon, maybe not, I will be mother.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Great Walgreens Special

Just thought I would share this great Walgreens special that is going on until Saturday, September 19th!!