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Friday Five: Daffodils, Birthday Sweets, Clothes, a Recipe, & Cheese Faces, Oh My!

1. Daffodil Pictures.

Every year I take pictures of my kid(s) in a daffodil field of an old family friend that lives near my family’s farm. Looking through the pictures {click here to go down memory lane yourself} is very bittersweet–watching your babies grow is such a gift, but what I wouldn’t give to hold each one–tiny and squishy again–for just a few minutes more.


2. C.’s 37th.

We celebrated C.’s birthday last weekend. Aqua Terra and creme brûlée. Bowling and Mexican and chocolate cheesecake. Hals and triple chocolate cake. A giant banana-chocolate chip bread {recipe found here}.

Poor guy, I don’t think he was shown enough love for his birthday…or got enough sweets, HA!!! 😉

3. Swirly Cinnamon Roll Cake.

Speaking of sweet things, y’all, you have GOT to try this new recipe. I made it this past week for a work treat {always a risk trying a new recipe for other people!} and it was GOOD.

Click on this link for a printable Swirly Cinnamon Roll Cake recipe (4×6″ size)!

4. This top…for less than $15!

The other day I was in JC Penney of all places with MM {she was Pinkalicious for book character day and we were looking for a pink dress} and I found this top (I’m wearing a medium). I wore it to C.’s birthday dinner the other night and I am in love with it. It’s currently $19.99 {with an extra 25% off with code: 8FORYOU (30% off if you have a JCPenney card)}. C. couldn’t believe it was such a cheap top–it REALLY is well made and cute in person!

Jeans (which look funny around the ankles here, but I promise they are a normal bootcut) here. Similar leopard print heels here.

5. ‘Cheese!’ face.

One of my favorite stages of childhood is when they start mimicking you or doing what you ask. This is Lala’s ‘Say Cheese!’ face. He’s so sweet I could eat him up with a spoon I tell you!

Hope you all have a great weekend! We’ve got my father-in-law’s birthday and that’s about it. I’ve been battling sinus crud the past week so I’m happy for a weekend at home hopefully filled with lots of sleep (and no pollen!).



Things I’m Loving {Friday Five}, #2

Can I just get an ‘amen’ that the weekdays following a three-day weekend are sooooooo much longer than a normal week?

Glad we agree.

But there’s always something I’m loving, or five. 😉 And here they are in no particular order on this fabulous Friday morning:

  1. Easy shredded chicken!

Shredding cooked chicken {it can be poached or baked or sautéed} in my mixer is a beautiful thing. Dump it in there fully cooked, turn the mixer on {with paddle attachment} and in a couple of minutes it’s all shredded perfectly. Makes my heart sing–no more burned fingers trying to cut it up or shredding it by hand while it’s still warm!

january 6. 7. mm birthday sleepover. snow day. comfy yoga pants outfit_0039_edited-1

2. My six favorite cookbooks right now!

I keep them on my counter & the pages are stained and dog eared & there are notes in the margins ’cause these are that good. {If I had to pick my #1 favorite it would be this one (I even made cupcakes from it today!).} I’m going to do a review on each one (eventually) and post some pics of my favorite recipes inside each. Just wait ’til you see the cake I made for New Years Day from the cookbook on the far right!
From left to right: The Southern BakerThe Back in the Day Bakery Cookbook {it’s a bakery in Savannah and is DELICIOUS and is a Savannah must-do!}, Back in the Day Bakery: Made with Love (less than $14!),  The Southern Cake Book, Slow Dough, Real Bread, and Marbled, Swirled, and Layered.

january 1. 4.croissants. products i love. laundry helper_0025_edited-1

3. My new Clarisonic Cashmere brush head!

january 1. 4.croissants. products i love. laundry helper_0011_edited-1

I’ve been using this puppy for a couple of months now (I use my Clarisonic Mia {that I’ve had for a looooong time now} at night before I go to bed. Note: I do NOT use the cleansing oil with my Clarisonic even though they’re pictured next to each other–it just fit on the tray, HA!–I use that in the mornings. I use the cleanser in the container to the left with my Clarisonic) and I’m in love. I’ve always liked the sensitive brush head (thanks rosacea for the sensitive skin!), but this new one is a dream. It still exfoliates, but it’s!so!soft! you could even use it on your eyelids!  If it’s time for you to get a new brush on your Clarisonic–they recommend every three months though I usually hold out for six since I use it just once a day–you NEED to try the cashmere brush head. Oh la la!

{This picture makes me realize I need to do a skincare regime post soon!}

4. 100th Day of School for MM!

january 19. old lady. cupcakes_0010_edited-1

On the 100th day of school she is allowed to get out of dress code (hooray!) and dress as a 100 year old person (hip hip hooray!). And this year’s outfit is on point. Dress, cardigan, knee highs, heels, & {the most amazing} sunglasses found at Goodwill by Moseby and I this week. Walker from one great-grandmother, purse {with Kleenex sticking out of the top} from another great-grandmother. Sassiness? All her own.

Oh, and her face? That’s what she thinks old people look like, HA!
5. Click Magazine

If you like photography, you’ll love this magazine. I devour each issue–I love the talk about lenses, photography styles, external hard drives, etc. Last month there was an article by a photographer who takes pictures {mainly of her kids} just because she enjoys it. She doesn’t get paid–she just does it because it brings her joy. And it spoke right at me because (as of now–because never say never, right?) I have no interest in “professional photography”–I’ve always done it because I love it and it makes me happy. Something about this woman’s article gave me permission to just enjoy it. I think I may take some more classes {I haven’t taken any in 7 or 8 years} this summer when I’m off just for fun.

And that’s my Friday Five for you! Hope you all have a wonderful weekend–we’re having four of MM’s friends over to eat hibachi, go to a movie, and spend the night tonight. Pray for me! We were supposed to go two weeks ago, but it was snowed out (high that day: 32, today’s high: 72). #southernwinter


A Year in Review {2012 Edition}

One from each month.  Let’s do this.

January. The beginning of ballet for my newly turned three year old.  I went to Moseby’s ultrasound.  Lots of nervous waiting and preparing.


February. Our family gained a son. I really still can’t put it into words what his birth was like…or the love we feel for his birth family…or the wonderful thing open adoption is. I’m literally speechless.

day 1 through 3_0039

March. That surreal period after a baby is born. That sleep-deprived time where everything is new and feels like a dream.

kissing her new baby brother

April. Getting more out in the world. Warm days, egg hunts, Easter, baby chicks in their Easter baskets, a new {to us} playground at our house.

easter egg hunt.easter chicks_0023

May. My grandmother’s 80th birthday and Moseby’s personality started to come out. And that personality? Happy-go-lucky and easy to smile. A pure joy.

may 23. happy baby. new bike_0035

June. We went to the beach, Moseby’s adoption was finalized, and he was Baptized.

after moseby's adoption finalization {he's legally a cooper now!}

July. My camera broke. It was hot. We canned a ton.

july 30. rental camera_0003

August. School began again for me. Moseby learned to sit up on his own at five months, he turned six months at the end of the month. MM began gymnastics.

may 25. 26. artist. six month birthday_0001

September. MM began three-day {half-day} preschool. Moseby started crawling.

september 2. before church. red and blue_0012

October. LOTS of parties, and sewing, and trick-or-treating. A fantastic bat and a happy pirate {sorry, but I’m posting two for this month}.

october 27. leaves. fall festival_0002

october 31. trick or treating_0014

November. It finally became cooler as our family geared up for Christmas tree season.

november 22. thanksgiving_0006

December. What a whirlwind of a month! Parties {three at our house alone!}, school play, church pageant, Nutcracker. A train ride with Santa. A visit with Moseby’s birth family. My 32nd birthday. The list could go on and on.

december 16. christmas play angel_0008

I’m excited at what the next year holds.  I can’t imagine it will be any more exciting than 2012, but who knows, God might just surprise us.  😉



I found a few pictures this week of a little girl, some eighty years ago, taken on our street.

That bob haircut.  That smile.  Those sparkling eyes.  That teddy bear.  Something about them was so familiar, you know?

vintage baby

vintage baby3

vintage baby2

I found this lovely little vintage frock {for $12!} from the 1930s on Etsy, the bracelet my mom got as a gift in the first grade. And something about those little things on my old soul of a daughter just took me back to a different time–I could almost hear the train pulling up to the depot right down the street, the sounds of hooves from the horses bringing in the cotton to sell, the laughter of children playing. Almost.

st mary and martha_0004
My silly clogging girl {oh yes, she begins clogging lessons in two weeks–and she loves to show off her moves!}


Halloween Costumes and Such

MM’s favorite book is Corduroy.  She loves it.  I MEAN LOVES IT.  We read it every single night multiple times and then she “reads” it back to me.  Her favorite line is where the watchman says, ‘What are you doing here?’ and uses her “Da-Da voice” when she says it.  She just laughs and laughs.

I asked her randomly if she wanted to be Corduroy for Halloween and she enthusiastically said yes.  She talks about the bright green overalls, the mismatched buttons, the bright purple patch for the pocket.  And oh, those ears–she can’t wait to wear those ears.

Yesterday it changed though when we checked out a Halloween book from the library which she had my grandmother read to her over and over.

And that prompted her to start this conversation with me this morning:

Her: My don’t want to be to Corduroy for ‘Aloween.  Now I be scary ghost or witch!

Me: I thought you loved Corduroy.  We like to be nice things at Halloween, not scary or mean.

Her: It okay, Mommy.  I scare people, but then I give them high five and hug them.  See?  It okay.

Wow, I’m already having to debate clothing choices with my two-year old.  I thought I had at least ten more years before that!

She’s also been on a kick lately to take pictures.  And since my camera is on it’s last leg, after all {it’s seven years old and has taken over 35,000 pictures–poor old girl}, I have to be careful.  So we use the tripod and all she does is push the button.  We catch pictures of us dressed as twins, her request yesterday.

twins. playing_0001

And random photographs like this one.  I didn’t even know she took it.  Part of me wanted to hide it {oh, that hair alone!}, but part of me really wanted to study it.  To catch a glimpse of a me that isn’t peering straight into a camera lens and smiling.  So that’s what I look like on lazy, drizzly summer mornings.  I am a thirty year old wife and mother, crazy hair and puffy eyes and all–and I finally saw the real me–captured by a two-year old.

i am 30

{In other news, I’ve been on the phone with everyone I can about the site problem.  Seems it’s not malware at all, but an issue with an old Google program that is somehow in the “bones” {theme} of my site that’s now re-routing visitors to the now de-funked site.  So basically, I’m still working on it.}


A Quickie

More to come later on our Easter (egg hunt-birthday parties, easter baskets, and easter dresses, oh my!), but for now here is a picture of Gaby, my grandmother’s 15-year old cat that I entered in I Heart Face’s latest contest.  We’re #8 on the list…go take a look at the other animal cuties if you get a chance.

gaby, my grandmother's cat

i heart faces


No Doubt About It, She Gets It Honest

Before I begin, I just have to thank everyone who purchased a dish drying mat yesterday.  We sold/have orders for 28 of them.  If you do the math you’ll realize that’s $700.  WOW.  $700.  I am utterly speechless.  In the last two weeks I’ve made over $1,000 with my sewing to go towards our adoption.  I am in awe.  I am so lucky to have such good friends.  Thank you all.  God is so good and I truly appreciate your generosity.

sewing march first week craigs list new goat_0033

Last week we went to visit our newest goat.  It’s a fainting goat kid and not yet weaned, but we were all just dying to see it.

When it was time to go MM ran around getting all her essentials–her sippy cup, her potty seat, her purse, her cell phone {my mom’s old non-working phone}, and her camera {a point-and-shoot film camera from high school}.

You know, just the basic necessities.

Anyway, once we got to the other farm it became clear to me that MM is honestly a “mini me”.  She barely looked at the goat before whipping out her camera phone and taking a quick pic.

sewing march first week craigs list new goat_0037

She needed a brush to go visit the new goat apparently. Duh.

And then out came the big guns.

sewing march first week craigs list new goat_0038

Look how it’s turned around backwards. Preciousness.

She just stood there for five minutes clicking away. She loves her new goat, Thursday {yes, that’s its name}, and all she wanted to do was take pictures of it.

sewing march first week craigs list new goat_0040

To bad the camera didn’t have any film in it!

…I really need to get her her own little digital camera.  I bet she’d get some interesting shots!


’10 in 12

Bits and pieces of our year.  Tiny glimpses of our lives.

{I’m not going to lie–this was very hard for me to do.  You know how I love excess.}


what's in the bottom of the bowl?

checking out their new digs

'there he is! there is that horrible monster!'

put the cement chunks into bucket

looking for the goats

tight squeeze

making homemade bruschetta

he loves being scratched under the chin!

embroidery goats tractor staycation_0007

vivi sneaking a peak

getting the lot set up


Ahhhh, That’s Better

I could post about how I turned thirty today.  But that’s no fun.  So instead I’m going to post pictures of Mary Margaret and Santa, take #3…or is it #4?  Who knows!

birthday rhodes hall santa_0018

Today we went to Rhodes Hall in Atlanta like we did last year.  For $35 you get a picture with Santa and are able to spend up to fifteen minutes by yourself with the big guy, refreshments, live music, and arts and crafts.  For an additional $10 you get to bring your camera and video camera to record it all.  I think it’s a relaxing, non-threatening, and all-around great environment for the kids plus it’s in a beautiful location and it benefits a fabulous organization that is very special to me.

Last year this is what MM thought of Santa.

santa 09

{I love how she’s her serious little self here, but also holding his finger.  This is her personality demonstrated perfectly.}

This year she spent about five solid minutes on Santa’s knee without offering to move.  She didn’t give him too many smiles, but she did play with his jingle bell necklace and tell him what she wanted for Christmas  {a doll}.  She even told him thank you when he gave her a candy cane.  I was very proud of her for sitting there all by herself.

birthday rhodes hall santa_0007

birthday rhodes hall santa_0009


birthday rhodes hall santa_0012

{There was one posed one they took that will end up on our Christmas cards, but I just had to share with you these candids ones I took.}

Going to see Santa at Rhodes Hall has quickly became a holiday tradition for our family.



What I love the most about my blog is that I can post about whatever I want.  I can post the pictures that I think are the best and write about what is important to me.

thanksgiving outtakes_0004

And for every picture I post there are ten to twenty that don’t make the cut.  And ten to twenty more that instantly get deleted from my camera when I look at them in the viewfinder.  One day–when memory card space is not a problem–I’ll save all my photos I take {honestly around 100 in thirty minutes when MM is going full speed} and post some of them because they are truly hilarious…and probably mortifying to the subject.

thanksgiving outtakes_0009

I did find some outtakes from Thanksgiving that actually made it to my camera from my computer {which is rare!} and I want to show just how silly…or bad…or blurry…or perhaps, embarrassing…some of my picture-taking skills are.

thanksgiving outtakes_0005

You can see why these didn’t make the cut, can’t you?  That’s why I get to decide what to put on here and you don’t have to see my outtakes every time!  Quality, not quantity is my motto.  And while some are funny {We see you riding MM’s pony, Aunt Jenna!}, does anyone really want a picture of them taking a big bite of food on the internet?  Uhm, no.

thanksgiving outtakes_0007

And that’s the beauty of a blog and posting what you want when you want to.  Because it’s yours and you can do whatever you want.

thanksgiving outtakes_0010

The End.


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