Monday, October 30, 2006

Where Credit Is Due

This post by the YarnHarlot sums up a state of mind/way of being that I feel really speaks more about women in general than just those who knit. In this great post, Stephanie says about her community of knitters:

"This desire to make everything we do seem easy, our uncomfortableness with the recognition of our talents, it's a unique approach. Do you think this is something other people do with their skills? Do lawyers say "It was nothing"? Nope. They say "That's $250 an hour. It took me a long time to learn how to do this."

I really feel that this attitude/mentality can be applied to a majority of women in most areas of their lives. When someone says to me "your kids are so polite" I never say "Why Thank you, they are, but you know I've had to work really, really hard at it and go half out of my mind teaching them the same lessons over and over until they stuck. " No, instead I say "yeah, I guess I got lucky..." Why do I do this? I do it so that the person with the less polite child doesn't think I am being proud. I do it because I don't want to seem arrogant. I do it because that is what I am supposed to say.

I know women who have this same "it was nothing" attitude about the wonderful meals they slave over, burn, try again and finally get right, the homes they restore, clean, decorate and care for endlessly; the children they raise and discipline, clothe and carpool; the marriages they fight for, the love they tend to again, again, learning and growing and giving and accepting; the million jobs they perform everyday, and the careers they have worked hard to gain and to keep and to move up in.
Women don't always know their own worth, and they don't always take the credit for the things they have learned and accomplished - especially in the artistic & domestic arenas... For many of us we try to make it all look easy or at the very least, we act as if any good thing is some sort of happy accident, instead of what it might just be - the payoff for a lot of hard work and sacrifice. Sometimes we are so busy trying to justify our choices that we don't give ourselves or our lives the respect they are due.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Family Portrait

I've never been a big one for the typical family portrait. The Sears Special with matching sweaters, your Sunday best. Or the cool artsy studio sessions - everyone in white, against a black background, looking manicured and perfectly cute in every way. I am a little too artsy for the first option and a little too thrifty for the second, but still, a family need's an offcial portrait or 2 over the course of a lifetime to say "We are us and this how we do it."
So, in order to find a way to capture us and our us-ness, I enliseted the help of Jemimah.
Today was one of those many, many days when I abuse a family member and take advantage of their talents. My sweet sister trudged with the boys and I out to an overgrown field with some abandoned train cars and she took our beautiful and honest family portraits for us. These are just a few of my many favorites...

Friday, October 27, 2006

Cheap Frills

Some of you know my love of a good buy or free trash - whichever comes first. I apply this theory to all areas of my life - design and holidays are no exception. To me, thrifty and lovely go hand-in-hand. Here are a few of my latest treasures.

Pic 1: This yummy Halloween paper garland has a wonderful handmade/vintage look. It's simple,
festive and inexpensive at only $3 at Target .

Pic 2: This lamp base was free off the side of the road. The lamp shade is vintage and was purchased for $5 at an antique store. The flower is a pin off an old hat. Most lamps and chairs remind me of people. This one reminds me of Anne of Green Gables when she goes to teach in Avonlea - don't you think?

Pic 3: Waiting, waiting. These whimiscal Christmas trees (bought at 1/2 price!) are biding their time in my office, waiting to be adorned with all sorts of trinkets. Soon they will go to the shoppe and spread their holiday cheereryone to ev.

Windy Day and Other Thoughts

Today is a windy windy day. The previous 2 days were spent with running from house to car, from car to house trying to not get too too wet in all the rain. Now today, the sun has come out but it is windy and blustery and the whole world feels as if it is going to topple over and roll clumsily down the side walk like an empty trash can.

This morning I had great intentions of 1) Cleaning the House, 2)Not leaving the house at all and 3) Doing Something Crafty and Creative.

But instead I 1) Went and saw my new gal pal Rhonda's fab home in the country and wrestled Miles away from her swimming pool 2) Went to lunch with my Sweetie at Cafe Prego and wrestled Miles into the booth 3) Walked around the house overwhelmed by messes, such as the Great Salt Spill of Friday I have pictured here.

I know there are people out there who like to clean their houses. Who have schedules and plans and daily list. I am not one of those people. I also know that there are people who can craft around their children, who even, perhaps craft with their children. Again, I am not one of those people. When I craft and create I want to go to my own world and play - I don't want to have to monitor Who Took Whose Paints and Please Stop Throwing the Glitter At The Dog.
Good thing these kids of mine are so darn cute, otherwise I might not survive all the harsh realities of domestic life.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Claim to Fame

Nathan's only claim to fame (besides being married to me) is his lifelong friendship with the famous Jody Evans of TNT's Nashville Star and the Kappa Ki's Late Night at Ouachita. For all those die-hard fans out there of Jody and the crew, you can now find good ole' home movies of them playing on YouTube. If I was more tech savvy I would attempt to upload all the ones Nathan's parents have of them playing talent shows in high school and frat parties in college. Videos from back when Jeanetta 's hair was shorter than either of the boys, and before Jody had a stylist, and Nathan had chest hair. But for now, I'm just waiting for Jody to hit it big so I can sell all the pictures I have of him to OK! and In Touch Magazine and pay off those silly student loans and buy this couch from IKEA so I can be sittin' pretty too.

Monday, October 23, 2006


Lately, inspiration has been slow to come. Well slow and crowded out by all the other stuff in life. Stuff like work and bills and sickness and calendars. I feel like my mind has been in a fog since the summer and I am ready to break free. Now that the cool weather is here to stay (cross your fingers) maybe I can unpack all the creative boxes in my brain and heart, and find some time to play and craft....
I am also in creative limbo because what I really want to do is to get excited about Christmas, but in an effort to stay focused, I am putting off Christmas thoughts till after our Halloween Hoopla next week. I have pledged, "No new Christmas magazines till Nov 1!" Oh, the insanity!

Last year at this time I was really into scanning collages onto the computer and then making cards out of them. It was a lot of fun and full of the warm fuzzies that come with great inspiration. I am hoping to do some Christmas ones this year for my business and family cards. Maybe if I get started now...
Also I have found the most kindred spirit and creative inspiration from a gal in Portland. She makes me want to be all Rosy like Posie and I am having a hard time doing what needs to be done, and not making fab scallop buntings or flower pins. Maybe in November I can find a weekend to send the boys to the country and I can make big crafty messes with fabric and glue and glitter and not have to worry about it being stepped in by little feet, and spread about by little hands.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Starbucks is a Member of the Family

We love it so much. We take it everywhere. Especially to church.

Today was the best day for it. It was cold and rainy and just right. An Alaska Day (as Wylie calls them) if ever there was one.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

A Thinking Post for Amy on Her Birthday

Amy's birthday is tomorrow and this post if for her. Well, really this link is for her. It is on the Emerging Women's blog, which is this cool spot where a bunch of gals involved or leading emergent churches hang out and post and comment and stuff.
It's pretty much like 50% of the conversations that Amy and I have, only it's on the internet and with spell check, and without the southern twang (I think most of them are Yankees.) Plus there isn't any foul language and that's just not reality. At least not for us.
Anyway, this post, reminds me of our recent conversations surrounding our new church's, and encouraged me, just as Amy always encourages me, that I am not alone or crazy.

Happy birthday friend - I love ya! (Ps - look how long your hair is and little Wylie is - That's what size the babies will be next year by Fair time!)

Monday, October 16, 2006

Site of the Week

Here is a site made for all your shoppers and browsers out there - it's the PersonalShopper. Com website and it is a lot of fun - even if you don't buy a thing! You can create a profile and then use your personal 'deal finder' to find bargains on the types of things that you like. Plus, you can search just your areas of interest, create a wish list and manage your shopping for friends and relatives using the Gift Planner feature.

Mostly they pegged me right on shoes and books and stuff (as you can see by the examples shown here.) Some of the home selections where a little frumpy for me, but I wouldn't expect a computer to understand the true nuances of my Eclectic Vintage Country Chic style, would you?

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

The Gang's (almost) All Here

Remember last Friday when we went to the Pumpkin Patch with our bestest friends?

Here is a pic of all the kiddo's who were there (sans a few who were not feeling social or ready for their close-up.) A few of our gang couldn't make it because of travel or stinky diapers or general tiredness.

In a few weeks it will be time to host our 4th Annual Halloween Party (yes, yes, you are all invited of course.) When we started our annual Halloween hoopla half the kids in this picture weren't even conceived yet. About 1/3 are "Hmm, interesting, there are 2 pink lines on that stick" kids. But like those kids, who we can't dream of being without (though sometimes we wish they would take long vacations to the grandparents house) I can't dream of being without their parents -especially their moms. This year has been one the longest, craziest, bestest, hardest, what-in-the-world-was-that'est kind of years. And without our motley gang to go pumpkin hunting with, or to have summer play dates with and Saturday brunches with and over-the-phone therapy sessions with, I probably wouldn't have survived. Besides the obvious members, this is my family.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Site of the Week

It's October - Breast Cancer Awareness
Month - So Think Pink!

Go to The Breast Cancer Site every day and click on the icon to help provide free mamogram's to women in need.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Lucky Ones

Today we went to the pumpkin patch with our bestest friends, the whole way there we listed to the CD from the Oxford American's Music Issue. Wylie's favorite was Tex Williams "Smoke! Smoke! Smoke! That Cigarette." By the time we headed home after dinner he could sing the chorus.

Also we came home with 5 pumpkins. No 2 look the same. Today was the kind of afternoon that makes your heart explode and your face tired from grinning. It was much needed.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Full to Overflowing

In the spirit of honesty and self-disclosure, I thought I would show a picture of my less than perfectly-clean house. (I could show you worse than this, but this was what I already had in my My Pictures folder and I am too tired to go take more.)

When one does, what I do, for their profession, the pressure to maintain a perfectly clean and perfectly adorned home can sometimes feel a tad overwhelming. For me, seeing my table piled high with things to do and file and read, can cause Bad Mind to set in, causing the devil twins, Shame and Self-Loathing to take over my thoughts. Instead of being grateful that I have a home, let alone a wonderfully beautiful old one, I beat myself up for being less than perfect, less than all-together, less than my ideal self.
In these moments I have to remind myself that the house is a mess is actually a good sign, to some extent, of how full and lovely my life actually is. It is so full it is overflowing. Literally. It is overflowing with my creative, energetic, normal messy kids, my stunningly bountiful work load, and of course my love of TV and watching said TV under the blankets with my sweetie... Which you can see all conspire together to keep things like dishes from being unloaded, and toys from being put away. (BTW, Have you ever noticed that the floors won't mop themselves? Even if you explain that it is Season Premier Week and you can't be bothered????)

But sometimes, even despite my gratefulness and my understanding of why things are like they are, the Stupid Perfect-House-Guilt Monster will rear it's ugly head and I am tempted to sit in a puddle of my own self-pity. So imagine my delight and comfort in finding these 2 post by LobbyLu and Juniper's parents, whose lives are also full to overflowing.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Hope Is...

A 24 hour diner that serves breakfast all night.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

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