Tuesday, August 26, 2014

I thought I saw...

I thought I saw her as a little baby today. For a split second,  I thought I saw a sweet 4 pound baby cuddled in a blanket in my bed. Snug as a bug in a rug.

I thought I saw my baby taking her very first steps today.  My heart almost burst with pride.

I thought I saw a little white haired, pig-tailed toddler today... with so much excitement in her eyes that it became infectious to everyone around her.

What I really saw today was my sweet 5 year old little girl starting Kindergarten.

Today I saw my sweet Bug walking hand in hand with her Daddy.  In one hand he held her pink lunch box and in the other he held on tight to our baby.  We both knew that she was steps away from becoming a big girl.

Today I saw my 2 pound 15 ounce angel become a Kindergartner.  How did that happen?  When did she grow up?

Today my heart exploded with pride and joy thinking about the person my baby is growing up to be.

She nervously walked into her Kindergarten classroom today... the classroom where she will learn, meet new friends, and grow even more.  She cried a little.  I cried when I got in the Vol-Hoe.

I felt like my heart breaking into a million pieces.  Only after I had a good cry did I realize my heart was not breaking.  My heart was so happy it was about to burst out of my chest.

I am so lucky.

{shoes} Dansko (linked to similar style)
{backpack} Pottery Barn Kids
{lunch bag} Pottery Barn Kids

Monday, August 25, 2014

Summer Ends.

I have been missing for a few days.

We were soaking up the last days of summer.

We went to the pool.

We went to the lake.

We went to the beach.

We went to lunch.

We went school shopping.

We went on family date night.

We all hated to see summer go.

This sounds terrible but this is the first summer I have NOT wanted my kids to go back to school.   In years past, I counted down the days until summer vacation was over.

We have really enjoyed this summer together.  The girls are older which makes things more enjoyable.  Pool trips are longer than 30 minutes.  Trips out to the beach last longer than 30 minutes.  Some days they were just content on laying around watching movies.

We are already ready for next summer :-)


Caroline started 3rd grade today.  Yes, you heard me.  3rd grade!

This is a big year for Caroline.  This is the first year of the dreaded EOGs.

So far she LOVES school.

She loves her teacher.  Her friends are in her class.  She is very excited about the new year and all of the new changes.

I just can't get over the fact that I have a 3rd grader.

She will do wonderful this year and we are already so proud of all of her accomplishments.

{shirt} Old Navy
{skinnies} Gap Kids
{shoes} Jack Rogers
{backpack} LL Bean pattern: Starry Night
{lunch bag} LL Bean

Friday, August 15, 2014

Dates and donuts...

You guys know how special date nights are to me.  Last weekend we got TWO!  That's pretty much a whole weekend of dating my husband.  Yay us!

My wonderful inlaws took the girls on a little trip to visit their Great Grandad.  They left Friday night and were so excited to go.

It was a spur of the moment decision for them to go so Beau and I didn't have any plans.

We caught up on DVRed shows and Beau grilled steaks.

He is the master of grilling a steak.  That man has a talent.  He can grill the most perfect piece of beef.  From his seasonings to his grillwork, the steak ends up amazing.  Like melt-in-your-mouth amazing.  I just threw together salads and fresh potatoes using stuff from our families gardens.

It was a lazy night and it was perfect.

Saturday morning I got to spend a little time with my sister who was home from the Big City.  She moved to the Big City at the beginning of the summer and hasn't been able to come home very much.  It was nice to have her back for a weekend.

I also got to run to my best friend's new house and help her unpack and bounce around decorating ideas.  Best friend time is always fun.

After a day to myself, I started missing the girls but we had planned a fun date night and the girls were off shopping with Grandmom and Poppy.  Emma was in Heaven.  The girls loves to stop.

Mom, Dad, Sister, Sister's boyfriend, Beau and I went to Chef & the Farmer for dinner.

As you know, I love food.  I love the presentation of food.  I love restaurants and their ambiance.  Chef & the Farmer never disappoints.

We had the flash fried collards as an appetizer.  They are strings of beautifully green collard greens that have be flashed fried to crispy perfection topped with just the right amount of coarse sea salt.

I had the Bourbon Braised Pork Shoulder Lasagna complete with a little sweet potato and marshmallow dollop on top and a side of country ham cabbage.  I have had this dish before and it was just as I remembered... delicious!  Beau had a New York Strip Filet on top of stewed tomatoes.  It was served with a delicious little potato bacon cake that was awesome.

Dinner was filled with good food (obviously), wine and mixed drinks, talks and laughter.

Date night number 2 was a success!

After dinner we finally picked up our babies.  It was so good to see them.  Date weekend was amazing and I enjoyed every second of it.  The best part?  The girls brought home half of a donut from Anne's Donuts.  It was almost as amazing as date weekend!  Seriously.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Saturday, August 9, 2014


People have asked me before about where I am from.  For a long time, I didn't share much about the place I grew up.

There was a time that I wanted out of here.  I thought I would leave and never come back.  At the young age of 15, I also said I would never have children... you see how that worked out, right?

With time and age I have learned that growing up in a small town is a beautiful thing.

There are no words for the feeling you have when watching your children grow up in the same town you were raised in.  Surrounded my family and friends, you learn that it truly does take a village to raise a child.

My children are growing up and learning so many things that seem so insignificant to them now but will one day mean the world.

They will grow up waving at complete strangers that pass on the street because... well... it is the nice thing to do.  We wave at everybody.

They will grow up knowing a good majority of the people in our town.  We will grocery shop and have to stop 4 times to talk to someone we know.

They will grow up saying mam and sir, please and thank you, and know that tea should only be sweet.

They will grow up watching crops grow and be harvested.  They will know farmers and the amount of work it takes to put food on the table.

They will be raised as Godly children and hopefully be thankful for the little things.

They will grow up knowing that you buy the best meat at the Piggly Wiggly and the Food Lion deli biscuits are pieces of heaven sent here to earth.

They will grow up learning to drive a tractor or lawn mower before a car and know what stop signs they can avoid by using a dirt path.

They will know that Wednesday and Saturday are barbecue days and that Mr. Sam's gas station has the best hot dogs around.

They will grow up eating fresh tomatoes out of Jay and Poppy's gardens every summer and collard greens from the roadside stand every winter.

They will probably grow up and hate this place.  They will have big dreams to move away and never return.  And that might happen.  But my hope is that they see how lucky they are one day.  How lucky they are to grow up in such a beautiful, amazing place.

The town we grew up in may just be a map dot to some, but to us it is a lifetime of beautiful memories.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Wine for trade

I came upon an idea a few weeks ago.

We had a sleepover.

Normally this goes very well. Not so much this time.

Big decided to break rules that she knew shouldn't be broken (e.g. throwing a metal bracelet against the ceiling over and over again, kicking the wall, screaming over and over, throwing a pillow at her chandelier).

They're just children. I know they are going to be rambunctious but come on.  Causing harm to my house, Big?

Also, there was an UNO fight.  There were tears.  It was a nightmare.

Don't forget the bickering and screams of "I'M NEVER COMING TO YOUR HOUSE AGAIN!"  It was a nightmare.

This whole situation got me thinking.

What if when your child has a sleep over, you give the sleepover mom a bottle of wine?

Fair trade?  I think so.

Let's think about this.  If you go to dinner at someone's house, you bring a bottle of wine as a token of your appreciation.

If you visit a friend for a Real Housewives party, you throw together a tray of hors d'oeuvres to share and bring a bottle of wine.  It is a "thank you for inviting me over to watch trashy TV with you".

Why can't the same be done with sleepovers?

It is an easy way of saying, "Thanks for having my child over last night.  She was probably a nutjob.  Here is a bottle of wine for your troubles."

Nothing says thank you like a bottle of wine.

Now, who wants to send their kid over for a sleepover?  I'm running low on wine.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Relaxing today.

So last week was pretty much hell.

Business was crazy, children were crazy, I was crazy.

I am also in desperate need of a date night with Beau.

It has been weeks since we have gone to dinner... alone.

So blogging was put in hold last week.

I am currently sitting under the umbrella watching my children and a friend splash around the pool.  I remembered to blog so I pushed aside my US Weekly and whipped out my phone.

I will play catch up for the rest of the week.  I already have the next two days written and scheduled.

For now, I am going to return to my magazine while Dave Matthews sings sweet words in my ears.