Monday, June 28, 2010

Because I'm a follower...

Ruthanne and Melissa did this on their blog and I loved it.

Something about this made me feel like I was 15 again.

Laying across my bed filling out a questionnaire in Teen magazine.

A can of Rave and a denim Trapper Keeper on my dresser.

Checking the time on my Swatch watch.

Kirk Cameron and Jon Bon Jovi flashing their dimples from my walls.

All that was missing was this question..."Who do you have a crush on right now and do they know it?"

And my favorite Guess jeans with a tight roll.

Plus I'm a sucker for a post that I can just write and not have to edit pictures for. I'm lazy like that sometimes.

Anyhoo...if you decide to have a little fun with it yourself on your own blog, be sure to post the link in your comment so I can come over and learn a bit more about you!


What color are your socks right now? It is Hot as Hades here in TN. Socks are being used as torture devices in the local prisons I do believe. If not they should would make me think twice. Just sayin.

What are you listening to right now? Nothing! My baby and my husband just left for camp today and this house is eerily quiet. Can't remember the last time I heard the clock ticking and the air conditioner running. I hate it. Plus I'm left here with a teenager and a tween. I'm skeered.

What was the last thing you ate? Nutrigrain bar..blueberry.

Can you drive a stick? First thing I learned to drive on.

Last person you spoke to on the phone? My husband

How old are you today? 34. I think.

What is your favorite sport to watch on TV? Used to hate sports...but I married a boy from Philly and he and Hockey were a package it appealed to the ADD side of me. Go Preds!

What is your favorite drink? water with lemon

Favorite food? carbs

What is the last movie you watched? Grown Ups. If raunchy humor is your thing, save yourself $50 and just watch Saturday Night Live.

Favorite day of the year? Christmas

How do you vent anger? I clean. Weird. I know.

What was your favorite toy as a child? Grew up on farm so animals were my toys...a horse named Sundown.

Favorite Season? Used to be Winter but since becoming a Homeschooler I love my summers! Still loath the heat though.

Cherries or Blueberries? Only if they are Bing.

When was the last time you cried? Watching Toy Story 3. It was not pretty. Think snot. Lots of snot. I'm not handling this whole "growing up" thing very well.

What is on the floor of your closet right now? Weights

What are you most afraid of? Failing my children...and airplanes flying over my head.

Plain, cheese, or spicy hamburgers? Cheese please.

Favorite dog breed? Standard Poodles...we have two and I can't say enough about these dogs.

Favorite day of the week? Saturday

How many states have you lived in? You may want to grab a coffee...Alabama, Tennessee, Mississippi, Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania. No we are not a military family.

Diamonds or pearls? Not to sound redundant but if given a choice I'd take a new lens.

What is your favorite flower? Tulips

Did you get an H1N1 vaccine? Nope. Even though my son had it. I would not get this or any other flu shot.

"My every mortal breath, is Grace and nothing less"

Friday, June 25, 2010

Georgia on My Mind

Georgia O'Keeffe that is.

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I got this idea here and here a couple of weeks we did what most homeschoolers do...we headed to the library to dig up as much info on Mrs. Okeeffe as we possibly could.

This lady is very must read about her. The kids and I love her approach to drawing larger than life flowers and such. And her lack of concern for perfection or impressing others gives me an immense respect for her as an artist. She just wanted to put onto canvas the beauty she saw in the world around her...exactly the way she saw it.

Once we had learned a bit about the artist and her style of painting, we took to the garage for a little Art time...and a little shade. It's hot as Hades right now in Tennessee folks.

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No, that is not a closet you see in our garage (we do not keep camping chairs in our closets)'s a storm shelter. We live in Tennessee (the new Tornado Alley) remember?

1. I had the kids draw their flower with pencil...making sure that the flower came "off" the paper. I just told them that the petals should touch all four sides of their paper.

2. They traced all their pencil markings with a black Sharpie.

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3. Then they painted.

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4. I told them to think of what color they wanted the background to be and do that first so that their petals would stand out more making them easier to paint.

Some took my advice.

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Some did not.

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Others got so excited about Mrs. Okeefe's painting style that they created a piece of art that would make even Mrs. Georgia herself smile I do believe.

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It also created the need for a little help from mom or we would have been finishing this up around Christmas.

Just a warning...tweens and teenagers may or may not be quite as into this as one might hope...seems hormones zap their creative juices or something.

It's ok.

Trust me.

They still enjoy the time together.

My 14 year old even asked what we were gonna do next time.

And a quick Note to Self: Art time should be covered in a time of prayer in my house...seriously.

For some reason it brings out the crank in my kids.

After a little whining about the heat...a smidge of bickering over whose paint was whose...and a dab of "mine looks horrible mom"...we managed to learn a bit of History...appreciate a little art, and dare I say...have a little fun.

Presto...we had our very own Georgia O'Keeffe paintings!

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Mine is at the top. I'm afraid I may have enjoyed this more than the kids. Very relaxing.There is just something about having Crayola products around...brings out the kid in me.

On a side note:
Notice those beautiful braces on that beautiful gal up there? They did not hold my girl back for a second even! Not even that horrific Herbst! She has miraculously (even the doc was amazed) managed to have all of this placed in her mouth without skipping a beat. I'm talking NO WAX even! I gave her Motrin one time and that was it. On her first day even, she managed to learn how to eat Goldfish and Chewy cookies. She is my strong willed determined child. She is my hero.

She still cannot chew for the next 6 weeks or so but I don't think she even notices to be honest.

Thanks so much for your prayers...they were felt...even by her. And they work praise God!

"My every mortal breath, is Grace and nothing less"

Thursday, June 24, 2010

"A" is for Aidan

When I think of "A"...I think of my Aidan.







Head on over to The Homeschool Post and join in on the fun of their "A B See Photo Meme".

I'm also linking up here:
Sweet Shot Day

"My every mortal breath, is Grace and nothing less"

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Skimming the Surface

I love this boy. Ahem..young man. So much I wish it were a criminal offense for kids to move away from home. Ever.

And he's kinda swell to look at too. I spend at least 3 hours a day doing so.

I would hate to say that he is beautiful...because I'm quite sure he would twitch if he heard me refer to him that way. And twitching can be hazardous for teenagers...well with earbuds and wires and all. But by George he is just that.



I'm linking up with Darcy's my desperate attempt to stay in contact with her. I'm just no good without you Darcy.
Sweet Shot Day

And with Emily
tuesdays unwrapped at cats

"My every mortal breath, is Grace and nothing less"

Monday, June 21, 2010


In the morning I will take this beautiful girl to the Orthodontist...

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and she will come home with this Barbaric contraption in her mouth.


It's called a Herbst Appliance. If you've never heard of one, don't worry...neither had I. They tell me that it is a fairly new appliance. I am not sure I believe them though. Looks more like a medieval torture device than something I would want cemented into my beautiful girl's mouth to me.

In short, this is the new "head gear" of the Orthodontic world. You all remember headgear right?


Sorry folks but this is where I learned about headgear...and lots of other stuff I had no business
knowing at 12.

Speaking of Anthony Michael Hall...have you seen him lately? Dude is buff!

What were we talking about?

Oh yeah, Herbst.

This appliance is supposed to correct her overbite by positioning the bottom jaw forward and therefore training the bone to grow out.

To make matters worse, this sweet beautiful girl will also be getting braces...all in one horrible cemented swoop. We have been warned that this will not be pleasant by any means. She will have excessive drooling, difficulty talking, and aching in her jaw. And that's just the Herbst. Braces have their own set of pains to deal with. There is also the matter of those horrifying bolts on all four corners of the appliance. They can cause very painful sores if not properly covered with wax at all times. And even that is no guarantee we are told.

The worst part to me is the fact that her back teeth, used for chewing and grinding, will not meet up for a while. Which means she can only have soft foods. We all know how that is...tell us we can't have something and it will become the one thing we crave! I know this will be the frustrating part for her. It was for Tyler during the adjustment phase of his braces...and he only had braces. She also cannot have ice cream or anything that is extreme cold. It could crack the cement. This will be her lot in life for the next 18-24 months.

We are told that every child and every mouth is different and that only time will tell how well she will adjust. I don't do well with uncertainty. Especially when it comes to my children. It requires the one thing that does not come very easy for

Faith...that God is who He says He is and that He will have my sweet girl in his arms the entire 2 hour visit and all the time she is adjusting afterward. That He will ease her pain and help her feel at peace with her limitations. It makes so much sense in my heart...I believe it there in the depths. But for some ridiculous reason I can't make my brain follow suit sometimes.

So often I think I am in control...(which is ultimately an issue of fear but that's a whole 'nother post for a whole 'nother day) ...that I can keep them safe and free from pain. Then something like a Herbst appliance comes along and yanks my pretty little perfectly controlled rug out from under my feet and I am reminded that I am nothing. I can do nothing. I am only put here to point them to Him. Only He can protect them. Ease their pain. Bring them comfort. Calm their fears. Not me.

The funny, amazing, marvelous thing about my God is that the very thing He is sometimes asking of us...that thing that feels like it just might break us in two...stretching us to the limits of our human strength or capacity to the very thing that He uses to bring us to that place that brings us the most peace...pulls us closer to His side...grows us... a place of knowing that ultimately He is in control and that we do not have to be. A place where we loosen our grip and hands begin to let go...the place where He longs for us to just stay a while...surrender.

So even though it's late...and I'm deliriously rambling about Sixteen Candles and Anthony Michael Hall's steroid induced extreme makeover...I would love to know that just one of you even is saying a prayer for Maggie tomorrow. And maybe even one for me. I tend to get cranky when my kids are in pain and I feel helpless to comfort them. Don't ask why..I have no idea. Not something I'm proud of but just the same it's something I struggle with. I am already feeling apprehensive tonight. Trying really hard to just lay it down. So please pray that I would be given an inner strength and peace that I know I cannot pull off on my own. It is my desire to be a calm loving source of comfort and strength for her through this. Even when my "Oh you have a problem? Here let me fix it" button has been disabled.

I thank you in advance. This blog once started as a way to rattle off my mindless ramblings and keep family up to has since grown into a sweet community of support that I am genuinely grateful for.

And if you actually made it to the end of this long winded late night rambling post, please know that you are in good company....with my mom.

"My every mortal breath, is Grace and nothing less"

Saturday, June 19, 2010


These two are my favorite.

Thank you Adam for being so fun to share life with.

And for making our kids your hobby.

You are truly a wonderful dad and I love you for it.


And to my daddy.

You will always be daddy to me.

No matter how old I am.

You are one of the most humble and sweet people I know.

Just not the most reliable tire swing hanger upper. :-)

I love you anyway.


"My every mortal breath, is Grace and nothing less"

Friday, June 18, 2010


beach '09

We have a date.

A hot date.

No children allowed.

No curfew.


Eye gazing.

Holding hands.



No interruptions.

His hand on the small of my back.


Laughter like only he can evoke.

Lots of PDA.

Marriage is so much fun. ;-)

What is your favorite thing to do on date night?

If you cannot answer this question it may be an indication that date night is long overdue and you need to call a sitter and go flirt with your man! :-)

"My every mortal breath, is Grace and nothing less"

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Tan Lines


I'm linking up here today:

Sweet Shot Day

"My every mortal breath, is Grace and nothing less"

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

School's Out For Summer


This week I am participating in The Homeschool Village Blog Fair. If you have not heard of this wonderful Homeschool community here in the blogosphere, then allow me to introduce you.

This week's topic:

What do you - homeschool mom - do to get refreshed for the next school year?

This question used to be hard to answer...simply because I had no idea how to relax. Sure I said I would take a break. We put away the curriculum. I stopped quizzing multiplication facts and state capitals.

But in all my spare time I was either selling last years books on ebay or scouring for the best deals on the curriculum we would need in the Fall. Or I was allowing myself to be consumed with guilt over what we didn't accomplish or complete.

Next thing I knew, summer was gone. And it was time to start it all over again. So much precious time.


This year we listened to Todd Wilson speak at our Curriculum Fair and it was like God himself cupped my face in his hands and whispered peace into my soul.

"Take a summer vacation!!!! Do not even think about school for a substantial set aside amount of time this summer. No looking back with regret over what you didn't finish. No researching curriculum for the upcoming year. And for goodness NOT make your kids write reports about everything fun they do. You need a break from thinking like a teacher and your kids need you to JUST BE THEIR MOM!"

If Todd's words weren't enough to free me up, my husband looked at me and said "this is what I want you to do this summer" When God speaks, He speaks loud. And it's sometimes a good way of course.

I'm telling you...the choir of angels were singing folks.

And I'm quite sure Todd just earned himself a sweet reward in Heaven for speaking that kind of truth and peace into the hearts of OCD/Perfectionist Homeschool moms like myself. I'm thinking it may be a sweet new RV.

So let's pose the question one more time.

What do you - homeschool mom - do to get refreshed for the next school year?

This is easy.

I'm going to put the enemy under my feet when fear/worry/doubt/perfectionism/control start to creep in.

And enjoy the precious view from their level as simply "mom".

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"So don't worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today's trouble is enough for today. Matthew 6:34

Be sure to visit Layton Family Joy to see how other moms are getting their "relax" on this summer.

"My every mortal breath, is Grace and nothing less"

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Family Pictures

Am I the only one that dreads them?

The only one that has to call a family meeting to lay down the law before attempting this dreadful feat?

The only one that threatens to beat my kids within an inch of their lives and send them to bed with "no supper" if they give me cheesy grins?

Please tell me I'm not alone here.

Without fail...

One kid is not smiling.

Another is whining.

The timer doesn't work.

The tripod sinks into the sand.

Photographing one child while the other two proceed to roll down the sand dunes.

"Sit next to your sister and do NOT move...and you better smile!"..through gritted teeth.

"Ok guys...SMILE!"...translation: Please just pretend to look happy for the love of Pete!

And of course my personal favorite..."Mooooom, are we done yet?!?!"...five minutes into it.

This year was no different. Only this time it was my hair that quickly became my worst enemy. I knew I didn't want the ocean in our background...too much hassle keeping the horizon straight on a tripod...but the wind was going against my part this year. I know. Tragic.

Every time the timer would go off a big chunk of bangs would fly into my face. I was almost in tears. Almost. That is until my 14 year old said, "Mom, I think I saw a ponytail holder over there somewhere in the sand."

Now, here is the part where logic would make you say. "Ewww, gross...please tell me you did NOT put that in your hair!"

Listen folks, when trying to get a family portrait, logic is no where to be found. only random ponytail holders...thank the Lord!

If wearing ponytail holders, that once adorned the heads of complete strangers, were to become an Olympic sport...I'd be Mary Lou Retton. Minus the Russian coach and all.

Seems I walked away unscathed.

Sometimes you just have to live dangerously.

It is so worth the risk.












I'm linking up to these blogs today:

Sweet Shot Day

tuesdays unwrapped at cats

"My every mortal breath, is Grace and nothing less"

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Double Digits

There isn't much more I could say to sum up my Maggie that this post does not already say. Oh sure, a lot has changed in a year...she is about a foot taller, has become my pedicure partner, will be sporting a mouthful of braces this time next week, and is "visibly" becoming a young lady. Did I mention her daddy is not taking this well? Me either.

In the end though, she is still just the same sweet precious Maggie that she was a year ago. Only more beautiful...inside and out.

Happy Birthday Magpie!

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"My every mortal breath, is Grace and nothing less"

Friday, June 4, 2010

"Sittin on the Dock of the Bay"...

Otis Redding must have visited Dewey Destin's (click the link to read the history) at some point. I just know it. It is just one of the many reasons we love this place and come back year after year. (It has absolutely nothing to do with The Donut Hole no matter what you may hear.) One of the many places you can tap into the rich history of "The World's Luckiest Fishing Village". It is a little hole in the wall, succulent seafood filled shack, that sits on the bay...literally. I'm talkin water lapping under your feet. And I'm talking shack.

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This is the view as you walk up. See that cream colored building on your left? Umm, those would be the restrooms. And they are somewhat floating. No seriously, you may wanna take a Dramamine before going in there.

Notice the pier that leads to the bay. Nothing special right? Wait for it.

A bit of magic takes place when the sun goes down.

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This would be where you eat the succulent seafood. And speaking of eating...we did our fair share. I've got an extra belly roll to prove it. Again, in no way associated with The Donut Hole.

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We basically stepped up to the window and said "Um yes, we will have everything on your menu that has the word "crab" in it...thankyouverymuch."

The crab legs will make you wanna slap your momma. So if you bring your momma, do her a favor and keep a safe distance.

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After dinner we hung around to check out the views from the pier. And I decided to come out from behind the camera for a minute and let my 14 year old step behind it.

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While exploring around the docks, we stumbled upon what must have been a Hermit Crab retirement community of sorts. I think we blew their cover. They are not hermits at all. They are just little con artists with exoskeletons.

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Maggie and Aidan decided to take a few back to the condo. Of course they forgot about them and so they have gone on to a better place. A place where no shell will ever be be too small.

And then...

The magic.

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"Wastin' Time"...

"My every mortal breath, is Grace and nothing less"

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