April 3, 2015

Happy Easter

March 16, 2015

Spring Fever and Health Update

Today it's been 4 weeks since my surgery! It's been a rough road from time to time but I'm getting better every day. I wish I could personally thank each and every one of you that sent prayers my way....they were truly felt and appreciated. My husband has been an outstanding caregiver, but ya'll, the man can't cook or clean! I'm going to engage a cleaning company to help me for about a month.
 
I know in some parts of the country it's still frigid cold and snow still on the ground but it's been absolutely gorgeous here for the past few days. We have our windows opened up and last night we grilled out....just sitting outside in the sunshine does my soul good.

I do want to make one comment about my health situation. A good blog friend was kind enough to mention that I was having surgery on her blog and someone made a comment that it all seemed so "mysterious". I have chosen not to share publicly what type of surgery I had as it was not life or death (or cancer) but still was considered major surgery which will require a few months of recovery. So I was a bit taken aback by that comment....all my blog friend asked for was prayers and thoughts being sent my way. Maybe I'm being too sensitive about the comment but it just hit me the wrong way. Oh well, I hope this clears up any "mystery" about my health issues.

Again, thank you all from the bottom of my heart for your prayers.

February 22, 2015

Taking a Little Break

Well, looking at my last few months it looks like I've already been taking a break and truthfully I have. We had a grandson born on 12/21 and I spent several weeks helping my daughter with him....then I got sick, husband got sick and I visit with my mom in her nursing home on an almost daily basis. Not making excuses but that's just how things are going at this stage of my life and I wouldn't trade it for the world.

I'm having major surgery tomorrow (2/23/15) and I will be out of commission for several weeks. I don't want to feel pressured to blog if I don't feel up to it so for now I'm going to just take it easy and get well.

If you feel inclined, I would really appreciate you saying a prayer for me tomorrow around 10:45 a.m. that everything goes well and my recovery is as smooth as possible. See you all later!

February 14, 2015













January 10, 2015

Baby Love

Some of you may know that we were blessed with our 5th grandchild on December 21st. Our daughter, who has 10 year old boy/girl twins, gave birth on December 21st and we are all thrilled with the new family addition.

The photographer used by the hospital took the most amazing photos and let me tell you, these photos aren't like the ones I'm familiar with taken of newborns.  We had an awesome photographer and she and I have become "real life" friends after she helped me with some hiccups on downloading the pictures to my computer (after purchasing them of course)! I hope you will indulge me as I share some special moments from the session at the hospital.


My daughter had the cutest shirts made for the kids...they sometimes call her other son "Big Man" so naturally the baby had to be "Little Man".


He was a big baby...9 lbs. 4 oz!   And a lot of hair (just like his mama had)





The photographer was so sweet to Taylor who wanted to be all up in the action (she is an awesome big sister).   She told Taylor to make a "heart" with her hand around the baby's feet.



This one says it all....she loves her new baby brother so much!

(All photos by Corinne at Little Lavender Studios)

After the photographer came to my house to help me with the pictures, she told me she and her husband are building a house and wants me to help her decorate!   I think we are going to get along just fine and have a good time.  

Hope you all are staying warm this cold weekend!


January 4, 2015

Painted Baskets

You might say I've always had a love affair with baskets. I've collected them and used them in many ways over the years. Here is a project a did a few years ago and thought it was worth sharing it again.

Before Pinterest, I bought tons of decorating magazines. I always had problems storing them because I didn't want to part with my favorites. I found these great baskets at Lowes that were the perfect size to store magazines in but I wanted to dress them up a bit.

 I bought two Allen + Roth baskets and Valspar’s Churchill Hotel Vanilla spray paint


 I measured the height of my basket and it was 7” so I taped off the in the middle so I had about 3 1/2” above and below the tape. 

After spray painting the BOTTOM half of the basket I ended up with this....





I love how they turned out!

These baskets gave me a way to store some of my favorite magazines while looking pretty at the same time.

Of course, these are just a couple of the many baskets I have and ways I use them around my home.   I'll be back soon to share some of the ways I use baskets around my house.






December 31, 2014

December 22, 2014

The Sweetest Thing and Merry Christmas!

Oh the plans I had for sharing the remainder of my so-called "Christmas tour" of the rest of the house....but a phone call at 2:30 a.m. Sunday morning cancelled out all my well meaning plans. My daughter, who was due to have her baby on December 30th, called to say they were on the way to the hospital! After getting her settled in her birthing suite, and after a bit of concern it might be a false alarm, baby boy soon made it known he was ready to enter this world. So....at 6:44 a.m. he did!



  He's a big boy....9 pounds 4 ounces!  




 And a head full of hair (like his mama had)!   We couldn't be more thrilled!  

Is there anything sweeter?

Mama and baby are doing great!  

It goes without being said that the next few weeks will be a whirlwind for me....once my daughter goes home I will be helping out for 2-3 weeks at her house.   So this will probably be my last post for the rest of this year.   

Thank you all who follow along on my little blog that I have so neglected this past year, but nevertheless I really do appreciate everyone who leaves such nice comments and e-mails.    I'd love to promise things will be better in 2015 but we shall see.

I hope you all have a wonderful and blessed Christmas.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

December 16, 2014

Christmas Tour 2014 (Part 1)

Christmas is in full swing around blogland and while I don't have an "official" home blog tour I'd love to share with you some of the little touches I've done this year.

For the past few years we haven't even put up a tree! Now before you give me the ol' "stink eye" let me explain....we don't have anyone here for Christmas and we have a lot going on with family. We have our big family Christmas at the lake with my sister, all her kids and grandkids, and all our kids and grandkids. We go to my daughter's on Christmas morning to see what Santa brought the twins and then on the 26th we travel out of town to my son's to spend time with he and his family. Also, my in-laws are out of town and we have to find time to go there as well. Somewhere during all of this hustle and bustle, I visit with my mom just about every day at her nursing home. And I get the itch to take down everything on the 26th...sometimes on Christmas Day night! Just want a clean pallet to start the New Year...can anyone relate?! And of course, this year, we will be welcoming grandbaby #5 on December 30th! I plan on spending about 3 weeks at my daughter's after the baby comes home to help her and also chauffeur the twins back and forth to school and their activities since she won't be able to drive for a little while.

Okay, on with the tour. We'll start outside. 



This year I chose to use traditional colors of reds, greens and plaids both inside and outside.    I have always loved putting wreaths on my windows and this year I added a little strip of ribbon at the bottom of the wreath as well.




(Please excuse the cords under the bench...I should have hid them better...oh well....this is real life people)!

This was a quick and easy way to add holiday cheer to the outside.   The wreaths are el-cheapos and I used velvet bows you can find just about anywhere (bows are from last year).   Once I hung the wreath on the window I simply cut a piece of ribbon to cover the windowpane above the wreath and a separate one below the wreath....hope that makes sense.    Then I put tape on the back of the ribbon to attach it to the window.   Next year I might switch and use plaid ribbon and bows.



I ordered the black and white buffalo check throw on the bench....who doesn't love buffalo checks?   I added some pillows, and a garland.   







 The stamped jute banner on the wreath was another project from last year.   I stamped the words "Joyeux Noel" onto a piece of jute, punched holes in the ends and tied it onto the wreath.    
  

I bought two arborvitaes a while back to replace my Kimberly Queen ferns that stay on the porch from early spring until they die a natural death from the heat (plus I get tired of watering them)!   I placed faux wreaths around them and LOVE how this turned out!   I originally planned on putting the arborvitaes in my window box but liked the way this turned out much better. (Yes, that is a huge crack you see on my porch caused by some tree roots....the trees are going to be removed, the porch completely re-done and some much needed front yard landscaping added....all in good time)!


We have up lights highlighting the windows and door at night....it looks very pretty.   I'll try and get a picture of it and post that later.

Now let's go inside to the foyer.

This year I found myself drawn to a woodland theme....with lots of deer and plaid!   




I used this same log slice, book bundles and round bread board as part of my fall vignette so all I did was add the little deer and bottle brush tree and a burlap wrapped pre-lit tree from Wal Mart.   



The dining room is done very simply by adding faux branches, sugar pine cones and another deer to my dough bowl.    


Since taking over my mom's finances and applying for Medicaid for her, the table is usually full of paperwork, etc. that I've been working on since AUGUST (!) and you can see a checkbook in the background....again, just didn't want to commit myself to full out decorating this year....I was lucky to get this much done!

I'll be back later this week (hopefully) to share my den and kitchen.    I hope you'll join me then!

We had our annual family Christmas get together at the lake this past weekend and had such a good time being together with everyone.   

 My sister and I decorate the mantel and add a "skinny" Christmas tree.  


We bring little gifts for all the grandkids just so they will have something under the tree to play with that day.   


My brother-in-law had a warm fire going all day....the weather was gorgeous but it was cold outside!




Looking down toward the dock....my brother in law recently had over 20 trees cut down on the property!   Someone is coming to grind the stumps down later.







Its hard to believe when the water's up we can put 2 pontoon boats here!


This is the side where the kids swim.

Every year we do something different for the food.   This year we did bar-b-que, baked beans, cole slaw, marinated vegetable salad (recipe below), chips and all the fixins'.    I think last year we did spaghetti; another year we did 3 different soups and we've also done a traditional Christmas turkey and dressing.   

Here's Taylor holding her little cousin...practicing for her own baby brother that will be here on December 30th!


My daughter Shannon threatened me with bodily harm if I showed her face but here she is just a few weeks ago from giving birth to our grandbaby #5!    We are so excited and can hardly wait to see and love on this angel!

Here's a good recipe I got at a church dinner a few years ago.

Marinated Vegetable Salad

  • 1 - 11 oz. can white shoepeg corn
  • 1 - 16 oz. can French green beans
  • 1 - 16 oz. can green peas
  • 1 Medium onion (finely chopped)
  • 1/4 cup celery (finely chopped)
  • 1/4 cup bell pepper (finely chopped)
  • 1/4 cup diced pimento
Drain vegetables and mix all ingredients
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
Mix all together and heat until sugar dissolves.  Pour over vegetable mixture and keep in refrigerator overnight.

At Publix I found this mixture of onion, celery and green peppers already chopped up....I think it's called the trinity mixture?   Anyway, that's what I used instead of chopping up everything (lazy).

I can't believe December is half-way over....Christmas will be here and gone before we know it!

























November 25, 2014

Thanksgiving

This is the week our nation pauses to gather with family and friends to give thanks for our many blessings.


In all honesty, we should count our blessings every single day.  

Our community suffered an unimaginable loss this past weekend.    Three 16 year olds and a sheriff's deputy tragically loss their lives Sunday night in an automobile accident.    I can hardly wrap my mind around the pain the families are going through and will continue to go through for a long time. 


As you sit around your Thanksgiving table on Thursday, please remember these families and the grief they are enduring at this time. 

Wishing you and your loved ones a blessed Thanksgiving Day.






November 4, 2014

This and That and How Did It Get To Be November?!

I think November snuck up on a lot of us....seems like summer just ended! The older I get the faster time seems to go. It will be Christmas in just a little over two months!

I spend a lot of time with my mom at her nursing home. She has really settled in there and has her schedule of "events" she attends every day. She marks off the days on her calendar and knows what activities are planned and of course, what time to eat! It does my heart good to see her in such good spirits and happy again. Her health and physical abilities have greatly improved in the two months she's been there....it confirms to me that I made the right decision to move her there. Last Friday the staff all dressed up in Halloween costumes and had a bake sale. Mama was right in the thick of everything! I love going to the activities room with her and have met some of the sweetest residents there...one of the gentlemen there, who is 90 years old, loves me because I tell him he doesn't look a day over 83! He saves a place for me at bingo! There is another man there, the husband of a resident who has Alzheimers who visits with her every day. He is so precious to her, sits with her and holds her hand, brushes her hair and you can tell he just loves her so much. Yesterday he told me the end is near as she hasn't eaten or drank anything in 3 days and the doctor says it wouldn't do any good to put her in the hospital....so sad for him, they've been married 44 years.

I've been patiently waiting all summer to have some things done around the house. Our hall bathroom and my daughter's old bedroom are getting a facelift. I've already got all the things for the bedroom makeover but just not quite sure what I'm going to do in the bathroom. I ordered a grey tufted headboard for the bedroom; the wall behind the headboard will be planked and the room painted out in a pretty white. I plan on doing an industrial look in there....similar to what Joanna Gaines does on Fixer Upper (which, by the way, I'm watching a marathon on HGTV right now)! The bathroom will be similar. My husband is not on board for planking any walls in the bathroom so I'm thinking of doing some beadboard wallpaper instead. Instead of getting big gifts for my birthday or Christmas, I always like to have things done around the house.

This past Sunday eight of my daughter's friends gave her a wonderful baby shower. If you don't already know, my daughter has 10 year old boy/girl twins. The week they turned 10 (May 21st) she found out she was expecting again!


 This was taken at 10 weeks

 
"Big sister" Taylor is thrilled!

 In August she had a gender reveal party and she's having another boy! 







The due date is January 3rd but the plan is to induce her the 30th or 31st of December...the doctor says that shouldn't be a problem but by the looks of her, I'm not sure she'll even make it that long!


Here is the group of friends that put together such a sweet baby shower....these ladies and their husbands are all friends of my daughter and her husband and all the kids are about the same ages...they go to school and church together....I love all these "ladies"! 


My granddaughters wanted to pose like "teenagers"....look at the height difference between Taylor and McKinley and they are only a year apart!   They didn't plan their outfits either...most of the girls had on some kind of chevron print and boots!





 Can you tell which team "most" of us are for?   My SIL is a huge Alabama fan and I think Taylor wrote this on the diaper....not sure how he'll react to the little Auburn onsie but Shannon said she's going to put it on the baby anyway!


I just had to take this one of these girls....daughter in the middle, cousin Christie on the floor and long time good friend Shana on the chair arm.   Of course, Christie and Shannon grew up together and Shana and Shannon have been friends since 4th grade!   It's so funny for me to see these "girls" all grown up with children of their own since I still think of them as little girls themselves.

Well, my washing machine just died!   Guess we'll be buying a new one tonight....hate it when that happens!



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