December 31, 2015

Happy New Year and A Year In Review

Well, 2015 is almost in the books and it has been a good year. There have been some times that I wasn't real happy about but I can honestly say "it was a very good year."

As I reflect back over 2015, I'd like to share a few thoughts. We started out (well really it started on 12/21/14) with our newest addition to the family....our 5th grandchild and 3rd grandson.


Weighing in a 9 lb. 4 oz. he was a big boy!   His big sister (shown above) has become his 2nd momma....she has been such a big help to her momma.    

And a year later at our family Christmas get together at the lake

January saw some good news and bad news:   Our son got a huge promotion but it meant they would be living further away from us.    For the past 10+ years they have lived in Birmingham which was only a little over an hour away but they would now be living about 3 hours away.    Of course, it could be a lot worse, like a plane ride away as he reminds me, but still....not as easy to visit like before.    They found a gorgeous home in a wonderful neighborhood with the perfect back yard...and the beach about 30 minutes away too!

This is the view from the 2nd den (yes they have 2!) the gazebo is fully fitted out with a great sound system and TV.....perfect for watching the kids in the pool and enjoying time outside .

My granddaughter said they will just have a stay-cation at their home....they have everything right in their own backyard!

February I had some fairly major surgery and the next few months were spent getting back on my feet.     

Early spring an old friend from school and I started putting the finishing touches on our class reunion that was to be held in May.    I won't say how many years but it's been a while!    I attended a very small private school and we only had about 25 in our graduating class.    I think 3 are deceased, some didn't attend the reunion, but the ones that did had a great time.    We combined our class with the class below us and the class above us so we had about 100 people there.    I know that sounds insane when some schools graduate upwards of 500 students that that wasn't the case for us.

That's me on the end in black and friend that I worked on the reunion with is also in black and white!   It was a good thing we had name badges....that's all I'm going to say!   Funny of the guys is a local dentist that my daughter goes to!

Not much exciting happened during the summer.   We spent some time at the lake but most of our time was at home.    I spend a lot of time at my mom's nursing home with her, they play bingo 3 times a week and she wants me to play too.    Since she's been at the nursing home, a little over a year now, I've got to know a lot of the residents and they seem to expect me there too!    I help some of the residents that don't see well, don't hear well, and some that just don't have the capacity anymore to know their numbers and/or letters.    It's very humbling to me and honestly I can say they do more for me than I could ever do for them.    When she's not playing bingo, we sit outside on the huge porch or in the "living room" as momma calls it and she shares about old times and people that have passed in and out of her life.    She will be 96 in June and I treasure every single moment with her.   But don't let her age fool you....she is very much in the present and knows exactly what is going on!    In fact, when I have my monthly meeting with her social worker and/or nurse, they just laugh and say sign the sheet of paper showing she has nothing wrong with her that needs attention.

Of course, fall bring football season.   I can't say it was our best year but I love my Auburn Tigers!
Soon enough it was Thanksgiving.    My ex-mother in law passed away the day before Thanksgiving.    There is a long story of our relationship but its not worth going into.   Suffice it to say that I made my peace with her a while back and last summer at the twins' birthday party my former husband brought her.    Strangely enough she spent most of the day with me talking and recalling old times!    I wasn't sure what to expect when I went to her funeral but I really felt like I needed to go.    I saw some folks I hadn't seen in 30 years and it was closure for me with some of them that welcomed me with hugs and open arms.    Our divorce was very nasty (thankfully my ex and I get along great now) so I didn't know what to expect but I'm glad I went.    My ex recently told me he was glad I came.

We had our annual family Christmas get together at the lake.   

My grandson (in white and red) and my sister's grandson in red shirt and jeans....can you believe these two are a year apart?   My sister's grandson will be 2 on January 4th and Ryder was 1 on December 21st!   But they had a big time playing....this summer they will have a lot of fun at the lake!

This wasn't at the lake but at Ryder's birthday party....he is a carbon copy of his daddy!

We had a low key Christmas.   Christmas Day my sister and her husband met my husband and I at the nursing home to spend time with our mom.    Then we 4 went to Waffle House for supper!    How classy can you get (LOL)!   They're going back to Hawaii in October and invited us to go but we don't have Hawaii on our bucket list.....we haven't made up our minds whether or not we'll go.    We usually take a tropical vacation in February since my husband owns a landscape business and it's hard for him to get away from spring to winter....thus we go somewhere warm in the dead of winter!    

Yesterday my granddaughter Taylor and I had one of our "special days" together.....I'll take all I can get since she's 11 going on 15 and the time will get here soon enough that it's not "cool" to hang with Mimi!    We went to a movie then Starbucks for hot chocolate.    She had a gift card I had given her and she wanted to use it to buy her own drink.    She had another gift card to Zaxby's so she wanted to go there and get lunch.    I offered to buy her hot chocolate and lunch but she wanted to use her cards.      After I took her back to her mom's office, she told me she had one of the best days ever.    Now that my friends is priceless!

Well, I can't believe there were no decorating posts mentioned.   Maybe that's because nothing much got done.    I shared earlier this fall that the hall bathroom and one guestroom were getting done.....that's still on hold as I'm undecided on bathroom paint color and waiting on our handyman to put up a plank wall in the guest room.    I really hope both of those projects get done soon!

As 2015 draws to a close, I realize how blessed and thankful I am.    I have a wonderful husband, good kids who have great spouses and kids, and my 95 year old mom.     I have everything I need (my husband says I don't have everything I "want" - LOL) but really, I count my blessings every day.    

I also want to than everyone that visits my blog, although this year I have blogged much, much less than in the almost 8 years I've blogged!    I can't promise that 2016 will be better but I hope I can get back to blogging on a more regular basis.

Hope you all have a safe and happy New Year!

December 24, 2015

It's A Christmas Miracle!

Yes, it's a miracle that I'm getting a post up at last!    I got a new laptop back in September and have had nothing but problems with it ever since......a large part of the reason I haven't been able to blog.

I hope you and yours have a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

November 25, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving 2015

Hope you have a wonderful and blessed Thanksgiving Day with your family, friends and loved ones!    

October 31, 2015

A Few Fall Touches Around the House

I love fall!   I think it's one of the most gorgeous times of the year.   Of course, I will probably say that about Spring too!    I don't go "all out" with any of my seasonal decorating anymore but use pretty much the same things every year now.     I used to be a "more is more" kinda girl but each year I find the "less is more" philosophy works better for me now.

With that being said, I'm happy to share some fall touches around my house.    We'll start in the sunroom.    I don't know why I don't share this room, because it's one of my favorite rooms in the house.    It has been a "holding zone" for holdovers from my mom's house when we moved her to assisted living, then from assisted living to a nursing home.    But I'm slowing working my way through either storing or disposing of them.

I ordered this colorful, soft throw from Amazon of all places.   The pillow is from Society 6 she has some beautiful things in her Etsy shop.    I have my eye on several items for the upcoming holiday season.      When the throw arrived, I loved how it looked with the pillow.

Can we talk a minute about my thrift store wicker trunk?   It was priced at $25 (which I would have gladly paid) but asked the shop owner if she'd take $20 and to my surprise she did!   Right now it's storing extra throw pillows and a blanket.   It was in near perfect condition and had no musty smell.    I really wanted to use it and the end of our sofa in the den for a place to put a drink or remote control but according to my husband it was too big (and it really was) so I put it here in the sunroom for a coffee table.    I love it in here!

A few years ago I decided to paint a faux pumpkin turquoise since I use that as an accent color in a couple of rooms in the house.    It got a lot of attention!    Here in the sunroom I just put it on the distressed little table next to the leather chair.

My daughter was telling me she heard that if you put a turquoise pumpkin outside your door for trick or treaters it will let the parents/kids know  that you are handing out non-food treats in recognition of food allergies.   Here's an interesting article about it.    Good to know.

I've been busy working on cleaning up areas outside....pressure washing mainly.    Our deck is in sad shape and my husband wants to tear it out and replace it but I don't know when that will happen.     So I just pressure washed the patio outside the sunroom and a small area outside the laundry room.     I'm hoping Thanksgiving day will be nice and sunny so some of us can eat just never know here in the South what it's going to do this time of the year.    So I'm trying to keep it simple outside with just a few things.

I spray painted an old urn I had flat black and set it on top of this old capital (capitol?).....I used a berry wreath and a white spray painted faux pumpkin.    I love how easy this was.   

 (I should have pressure washed the's been outside for over 20 years and it needs a "bath"!)

The pumpkin isn't that glaring white....I didn't notice how bright it looked until I downloaded these must have been the glare from the sun.    Kinda ghostly looking!!

Last year I saw these pillows on another blog (don't remember which one) where you spray painted your design on burlap.    I got a leaf and pumpkin felt thingies at the Dollar Tree.   I just placed them down on my burlap and sprayed all around them with orange spray paint.     Then my sewing machine broke and I didn't finish making them until this past fall when I decided to get the machine fixed.   

In the den I always do the same thing on my mantel....I didn't replace anything but worked around what stays up there year round.    That way I don't have to remember where I put the things I removed or how it looked (LOL)!    I just added the fall garland and the burlap "Fall" banner I made a few years ago and some white twinkle lights.  

As far as the galvanized bucket, I just used some things I pulled out of my fall bins that I didn't know what to do with.    (BTW, I have waaaay too much fall stuff, don't use but about 1/3rd of it....I keep telling myself I'm going to edit and get rid of the majority of it but so far I haven't done that).     So before packing it all back up I decided to use some "leftovers" in the bucket.    I placed a cardboard box in the bottom to elevate everything and just wrapped the garlands around the outside, then filled in with the two pumpkins and some other branches and things.    I love how it turned out!

On the coffee table I used a candle ring on top of an urn and added a silver pumpkin.    I added a little orange pumpkin too....I like how the orange and turquoise look together.    You can see how I made over this old wooden tray here by adding the typewriter burlap fabric.  (Please ignore the fan in the next's still hot here people!)

On the sideboard behind the sofa I just used a boxwood wreath with a ceremic pumpkin..

Next time I'll share the kitchen and dining room.    

Hope everyone has a safe Halloween and DON'T FORGET TO TURN BACK YOUR CLOCKS TONIGHT!

October 21, 2015

A Hodgepodge of Stuff!

Hello? Anyone still out there? I think it's pretty obvious that this blog is way down the list of priorities at this season of my life. I won't bore you with the same old excuses, suffice it to say that I spend a lot of time with my 95 year old mom at her nursing home, as well as family here and out of town. I have good intentions to post more often, just doesn't seem to happen.

Moving on.....last January my son received an awesome job promotion but he had to take it right away. It was with his same company but it meant moving from Birmingham (which was a little over a hour away from our home) to the Daphne/Spanish Fort area, about 3 hours away! BUT he could not pass up the opportunity so they moved. Let me state here that I couldn't be any more proud of him. He works hard and deserves all the accolades he's getting. They bought a beautiful home with wonderful landscaping and a pool! Plus they are only about 45 minutes from the beach....doesn't get any better than that now does it?

Here are a few photos I took back in August when we went down for our grandchildrens' joint birthdays. They are 5 years and 5 days apart so so far, my DIL has just had a joint birthday party for them. I imagine that will quickly come to an end soon as my granddaughter will be 11 next summer and won't want her little brother "bothering the big girls" least that's what she told me!

 Here's my little grandson "posing" in front of his baby picture.   He's so silly!
(#hurryuptakingmypicture #fakesmile #iwanttogoplay!)

Their backyard is spectacular!   The house belonged to a doctor and they had extensive landscaping put in as they hosted a backyard wedding.   This is looking out from inside toward the gazebo.   It has a TV, ceiling fan, and a sound system....we really loved sitting out here at night and watching the kids swim.

My daughter in law has done a great job getting the house unpacked and set up.   She and I are working on ideas for the den and my grandson's room.   My son has put her on a "budget" but I think that will have to change (LOL)!   But I have to give my daughter in law credit, she's really trying to stick with it, within reason.    We'll see how that turns out!    We're planning on giving them a housewarming gift so that can hopefully get her started on her vision.

We are hosting Thanksgiving here at our house this year and my husband knows I want to re-do his bathroom before then.    I'm going back and forth on the wall color....something white but not stark white.    I'd love to have plank walls in there but that ain't happening!    So I'm going to use beadboard wallpaper instead.   Basically, I want a farmhouse feel to it.    It's been the same color for almost 10 years now, which is a miracle!    Here are some of my inspiration photos from my Pinterest board:

What's not to love about this bathroom (above).   If I could start from scratch, I'd try and duplicate this the sink!

This bathroom belongs to my sweet friend Diana at Our Vintage Home Love.   She is crazy talented.  


The vanity in the bathroom is wood stained with a marble top.   It's pretty scratched up so I plan on painting it a pretty gray.....something similar to this one.

I think out of all the photos I have pinned, this one is my favorite.   See those plank walls?    Love!    She gives the paint colors and I've got samples of them.    My bathroom mirror is almost identical to this one.   I even ordered the same light fixture.    But then the question is what to do about the vanity?   If I paint the beadboard wall white and the other 3 walls in the light gray, what do I do about the vanity?   I don't want it to be the same color as the gray wall.  Do I paint it a darker gray or what?  I have two different "shower" curtains to consider.    I don't use shower curtains, but full length curtains as that gives me more of a choice and the length I like.    I have a pretty gray linen and a solid white....not sure which one I'll use.

The other room on my to do list is my daughter's old bedroom.   I will get a plank wall in there....behind the bed.   I've ordered a gray upholstered headboard and the whole room will be a pretty white color.    Again, using whites and grays in there to tie in with the bathroom which is right next to the bedroom.

The other night my husband surprised me by saying he'd talked with our handy man and asked him to come by as soon as he could so that he could start work on the guest room.     He wants me to show the guy what I want so that we can get started on the planks.   I don't expect to have both rooms done by Thanksgiving but I'm so happy that it will get done sooner than later.    At least the bathroom will be done....fingers crossed!

Well, that about wraps it up for now.    Oh, one more thing.    If you read my blog you know that my daughter has 11 year old boy/girl twins.    Then last December they had a little "surprise"....another little boy!   We're having such a good time having another little baby in the family.    He's getting so big and is just about to walk.

This is one of my favorite pictures of Taylor and her baby brother taken at the hospital after he was born....she is such a good little helper

And now 10 months later.....

#ilovemybrother #ilovebeingabigsister #ilookjustlikemydaddy

Hope you all have a wonderful week!   

September 30, 2015

Prayers for Elijah

I try and keep this blog a happy place but there's something on my heart I need to share. I recently found out little 10 year old Elijah Aschbrenner was diagnosed with Epitheliod Sarcoma cancer in May 2014.   I don't pretend to know or understand what that is but there is no good cancer.

This precious young man is the son of a girl my son knew and dated in high school.   His mama was one of my "favorite" girlfriends my son dated but their relationship never progressed beyond friendship.

There is a Facebook page devoted to little Elijah and if you have the time please visit it and offer your prayerful support for this sweet boy and his family. I also understand that his story was featured on the Today show this week (I think Monday) and that Cam Newton, my favorite Auburn quarterback (now playing for the Carolina Panthers) made a special visit to Elijah.

Please remember this precious family in your thoughts and prayers.  

September 29, 2015

Computer Problems

Well, it's been a while since my last post.   My computer died and I had to get a new one.   I had to get all my photos from the old computer transferred to the new one, plus I'm still trying to learn how to use Windows 10.   

Going through some of my old photos, I found this picture from a few years ago of our twin grandchildren....hard to believe they are 11 years old now! 

 I have done a project or two and will be sharing that along with my fall decorating soon.    Please don't give up on me yet!    

August 20, 2015

Crazy about Clothes - A Walk Down Memory Lane

Well, half the month of August is gone and I, for one, am anxious for fall and all the lovely things it brings....especially cooler temps! Here in Alabama we won't really get that until mid-October!

Today I'm going back in time and talk to ya'll a little bit about my obsession with clothes. Yes, I LOVE all things decorating but I have a love for clothes too! I think I can attribute it to the fact that my mama made most of our clothing growing up. She was an expert seamstress and we always had lots of pretty things. HOWEVER, when you are "coming of age" in the 60's (just dated myself there) and you see all the latest styles from London, you don't want your mama making your clothes!

When my daddy was in the military and we lived on base my mama and her best friend took up sewing for their girls. Mama and Mrs. "D" wanted the best sewing machine available at the time....which for them was a Pfaff. Even back then they cost quite a bit but somehow mama convinced my daddy it was worth it and so he broke down and bought her served her through 3 girls and 2 granddaughters and others she sewed for until it finally quit.....all in all she had that sewing machine about 40 years! I'd say she got her money's worth, wouldn't you?

Okay, back the the clothes story. I don't think the "homemade" clothes bothered me much until my junior and senior years in high school. I had a good friend (in fact the one that I worked with on our recent class reunion) that NEVER wore the same outfit twice all during high school! Now that's a feat! I also remember going to another friend's house just before school started for our senior year to see her new back-to-school outfits. One that I remember was a gorgeous plaid skirt with matching sweater. Back then we'd wear that kind of outfit with knee socks and loafers. Another friend, who's mother sewed professionaly, had traveled to Mexico during that summer and I remember she told me she lost 13 dresses coming back to the United States! 13! Wow...her mom had really been busy sewing!

Then during my senior year I met some girls from another school that I became friendly with. There was one girl who's daddy was a big time lawyer in her town. I used to go to her house to get ready for our Friday night dates and her closet was full of new things with tags still on them! That really impressed my little 17 year old self and I wanted to fill my closet with the same thing! (Shallow I know but at 17 I didn't think anything was wrong with that).

So, the summer before I was a senior, I "worked" for my daddy. That is to say, he basically paid me to show up a few hours each day to answer the phone. I saved a good bit of my paychecks that summer in anticipation of buying myself a new wardrobe for my senior year. My mom's best friend was a Jackie Kennedy type....she dressed very well and had great taste.

 Back in those days, when you shopped at certain stores, there were chairs and/or sofas for others to sit on while you tried on clothes and the clerks brought things to you in the dressing room. You could even take things home "on approval" and bring back anything you didn't keep. Anyway, I asked my mom's friend to go shopping with me for my back to school clothes. 

Let me stop here and say during that time we dressed quite a bit more "formally" if you will than today's students. In fact, it wasn't until the year after I graduated that students were allowed to wear pants (not jeans) to school. So what you bought was a lot different from today's attire.

So Mrs. "M" and I took off on a shopping spree that netted me what I thought was the "coolest" wardrobe.   Oh my, what an experience that was.....I was in heaven!    I can't remember all I bought but one thing was a "coat dress"....who remembers those?   It was an A line dress (almost identical to the creme one above) with a matching coat.    Another one was a cute little burgundy "swing" dress with large white collar and cuffs....I was stylin' ya'll!    

 Oh, and short, yes, they were short!    I bet I got 5-6 outfits that day.    Then, to top it off, my daddy gave me my very own credit card to my favorite store!  


Of course, all the charges were reviewed when the bill came in and I got put on "credit card restriction" more than once.    I didn't go hog-wild but I did use it from time to time.

But the best part came during homecoming and prom season.   Every year my mama had made my homecoming "formal" and prom dresses.    That year I talked my daddy into buying me my first "store bought" formals.    The homecoming dress was a gorgeous white lace number that I loved.   

We wore long white gloves and matching heels.    Man, I thought I was "the bomb" back then.

For prom I wore a knee length dress in a pretty soft aqua shade that had "streamers" (instead of the fringe like below).   I wore it to my prom and again at another school with the boy I was dating then, who was crowned prom King!     

Oh, a funny story about prom night.    Sometimes we would wear hairpieces or "falls" to enhance your hairstyle.   The night of my prom I had my hair pulled back on the sides and added a little piece to the crown that was curls....cute.    A bunch of us were in someone's parents' stationwagon (classy I know) and one of the guys thought it would be cute to pull off my hairpiece!    Luckily he gave it right back and I just put it back on my head!    Good times I tell ya!

To this day I love to see clothes hanging up in my closet with tags.   Guess I never got over that obsession.    Right now if I go to my closet I have a few things with tags still on them (sorry not sorry)!

I bet some of you have a few "tagged" items in your closets too!

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