Gus may appear to be a little short on brain cells at times, but I’ve always suspected that he had some secret powers. My suspicions were confirmed the other day when I saw Gus’s shadow. He was lounging in his … Continue reading
Certain things can’t be rushed. One of those things is creating a piece of art. I purchased a large canvas for my living room shortly after I moved to Tennessee with the intention of painting a scene from my family’s … Continue reading
When I was in Burkesville the weekend before last, trying to do some super sneaky research for my barn quilt square, I asked Papa if there were any old cast iron skillets that I could have. He had mentioned that there might be some in the basement that had come from my great grandparents’ house. We went down to the basement to investigate.
Well, find a cast iron skillet we did not. But, we did unearth a bunch of really old stuff.
This is an old hand plane that must have been my great grandfather Daddy Barnie’s. Papa mentioned that my Dad would probably really like to have this since he is into woodworking.
I’m not really sure how old this is, but I think it’s hilarious. I need to find out the scoop on this “antique.”
Some of my dad’s old trophies.
8-Track tapes. This form of technology was phased out before I existed.
This here was Papa’s pointer when he was in the army, training soldiers at Fort Chaffee in Arkansas. Apparently, if you were in charge, you had a pointer, but not just any pointer. The body of this pointer is made from a hackberry branch that had been overtaken by a vine, thus leaving it grooved in a spiral shape. The ends are a bullet and a casing from a 50 caliber machine gun. I would take that pointer pretty seriously if I were you.
This little contraption is a butter churn. Mama Bersie, Papa’s mother, made all of her own butter. Often, it was Papa’s duty to churn the butter, a job he says he did not much care for.
Papa’s report card from a few years back. Looks like he was a good student.
Papa pulled out Mama Bersie’s trunk and showed me some really neat and REALLY old treasures.
Mama Bersie’s first watch. This must be at least 75 years old.
Letters that Papa wrote to Mama Bersie and Daddy Barnie while he was in college at the University of Kentucky. I will have to read these someday.
Wrigley’s Juicy Fruit gum that Daddy Barnie gave to Mama Bersie when they were “courting.” This stuff is older than Papa. I wonder if it still has any flavor…
Papa’s housing fee at UK for the semester: $51.00. I’m not sure that would cover one night of housing in a dorm these days.
Tuition certainly has gone up over the past 61 years. There are very few textbooks these days that cost as little as $61.50
This is what Papa really wanted to show me. It’s Mama Bersie’s blue silk wedding dress from over 80 years ago, ordered from the Sears catalog. Papa requested that if/when each of us granddaughters gets married that we sew a little piece of Mama Bersie’s dress into ours. Not only would that be a great treasure on such a special day, but it would be something old, something borrowed, and something blue. I suppose if we were to sew it into our dresses in a functional way, such as a pocket, it could also be something new, too.
This book belonged to Papa’s uncle Nile, who I believe would have been my great great Uncle.
So I went home without a skillet, but Papa cooked up quite a family history lesson for me.
Y’all come back,
I decided to make my grandparents a barn quilt square for their anniversary gift. I had always been intrigued by these and thought this would be a nice gift considering my grandparents are nearly impossible to shop for and love … Continue reading
This year marks my Granny and Papa’s 80th birthdays and 60th wedding anniversary. A celebration was most definitely in order. We put together an “open house” type party at their church and served cake and punch.
The happy couple in front of the treats.
Aunt Vickie had the cake and cupcakes made. They were beautiful and delicious.
As we were setting up for the party, we had a bit of an incident. I was in the kitchen with Lauren and Aunt Vickie and I was looking for a lighter to light candles in the function hall. I opened the drawer on the left to find a lighter for the candles. As I opened the drawer, a mouse popped out and ran into the back of the cabinet. Cousin Lauren, Aunt Vickie and I shrieked as I nearly jumped out of my skin and back about 5 feet. I don’t remember how it happened in my state of shock, but the drawer was then somehow closed. Aunt Vickie, Cousin Lauren and I agreed that we had not hallucinated, that the tissue paper in the drawer had been shredded by the little creature, and that we would pull it together and carry on with the festivities after this traumatic event. That is all I would like to say about that.
All we could find to light the candles was a box of small matches. I wasn’t about to open any more drawers in the kitchen. I already said enough about that.
We nominated Uncle Brian to light the candles since he seemed to have more of a handle on how not to burn himself instead of the candle.
Caramelized mums. Approximately 9 minutes after poor Uncle Brian lit all 24 candles, we had to blow them out so we didn’t burn the place down. So much for the ambiance.
Aunt Vickie had a beautiful throw made with pictures of Granny and Papa when they were first “courting” and married. I know they will treasure it.
Nobody wanted to sit at the tables until cake was served. We had a full perimeter.
Before we served the cake, my dad thanked everyone for coming and decided to ask Granny and Papa a few questions about getting married. My Mom had been asking them about it before everyone arrived and we all thought the stories were worth sharing because my grandparents actually eloped.
The story goes that Granny and Papa were out and about in Burkesville on a Saturday night as was typical. Granny’s parents had even seen them around town and were pleased to see that they were having a good time (little did they know what was cooking…). Granny and Papa knew of a minister in the county who would marry them so they took two of their friends as witnesses and had the minister marry them that evening.
My dad asked Granny to talk about what the minister said at the wedding and Granny said she can’t remember because she was just focused on saying “I do.”
My dad then asked how much the wedding cost, to which Papa replied that it was “very expensive.” The minister didn’t officially charge anything to marry them but apparently would take $10. Papa has decided that that $10 was “money well spent.”
Given that my Papa was such an obedient son and respectful person, it’s still hard for all of us to believe that they eloped. When asked whose idea it was to elope, Papa pointed at Granny and everybody just laughed.
The story gets even more interesting because they kept their marriage a secret for 6 weeks. One day my Papa walked into Granny’s parent’s house to see Granny and Mammie, Granny’s mother, confronted him, saying she knew he would put off telling them as long as he could (evidently, Granny had spilled the beans but neglected to let Papa know that the secret was out). Papa said he didn’t know if he should “faint or go blind.”
It was great to hear them tell those stories. I hadn’t even heard some of the details before.
And then it was time to eat and visit!
Quite a turnout as you can tell by the cake. And Granny was worried no one would come.
I was in charge of cutting this cake. Didn’t I do a beautiful job?
Granny and Papa and their boys, Uncle Brian and my dad.
Granny and Papa and the full squad: sons, daughters-in-law, and grandbabies (3 out of 4).
Only 3 of the 4 grandchildren have been at each their 40th, 50th and 60th anniversaries. At the 40th, Kristen wasn’t born yet, at the 50th, I had just started high school and couldn’t miss that much school to travel from Boston to Kentucky. And during the 60th, my sister, Eugene, was missing because she is currently studying abroad. Let the record show that cousin Lauren has perfect attendance.
Apparently, we were in need of some bossing. It was her party after all.
She realized I had caught her in the act.
This is so adorable, I can’t stand it.
This is equally adorable. Clearly, if there’s one thing my family knows how to do, it’s how to laugh.
The party was full of reunion of old friends and extended family, storytelling, and laughter. Granny and Papa seemed to have a great time and really enjoyed seeing everybody who came.
Congratulations on 80 years of life and 60 years of life together, Granny and Papa! We all love you very much.
Y’all give each other some sugar,
Things of which I never tire:
4) Floor plans
6) Family and close friends
8) Sitting on a porch
9) The unconditional love of my little furballs
10) Mexican food
In an ideal moment, I would be sitting on a porch of a home I designed the floor plan of, with family and friends, furballs at my feet, eating Mexican food followed by something chocolate, while laughing in a fabulous pair of shoes, pondering the great mystery that is life, as the sun sets.
Y’all keep it real,
This cat is something else.
I point the camera at her and tell her to “Say ‘Cheeeeeese’” and this is what I get from Scarlett.
I say “Smile, little muffin-pants!” and this is what I get.
Maybe she thought I was calling her fat? I said muffin-pants, not muffin-top. There’s a big difference.
“Fat?… I’m just furry..…in all the wrong places.”
Gus walks by and cuts the tension with his tail.
“Is that a bowl of unattended salmon?”
This is her best angle. Please notice that it is a headshot only.
“I wonder if I could reach that bug on the ceiling….”
“Oh, hi. I wasn’t plotting anything mischievous; I swear,” (whiskers crossed).
“Are you calling me a liar? First I’m fat and now I’m a liar?…. Oh no you diiii-in’t.”
She’s about to go all Jerry Springer on me.
Y’all come back,
A gigantic thank you to the Unconfirmed Bachelorette for nominating me for the One Lovely Blog and Inspiring Blog awards. You’re too kind. 🙂
In accepting this award, it is my pleasure to complete the following:
- Link back to the blogger who nominated me.
- Post the blog award image on my page.
- Tell 7 facts about myself.
- Nominate 15 other blogs and let the nominees know they been chosen.
7 things about me:
- I realized at age 19 on an amusement park ride that I am somewhat claustrophobic.
- I don’t have a favorite color as I prefer different colors in different contexts. As a designer, I’d like to think I could make any color appealing with the right companions. Except mauve. I really don’t like mauve in any situation.
- I’ve never broken a bone.
- I love wholesale clubs. Especially ones that carry 5lb bags of Ghirardelli 60% cocoa bittersweet chocolate chips.
- There was a period in my life when I shopped almost exclusively at Gap Boys. Thank goodness that phase is over.
- On a semi-regular basis, I have dreams (nightmares) that I am late for high-school lacrosse practice and don’t have athletic clothing, a lacrosse stick, a mouth guard, goggles or my locker combination. I don’t know what this means, but I’m sure it’s serious.
- Two of my favorite TEE-vee shows are Reba and Dexter, which could not be more opposite. I think that just about sums me up.
And, now, for my nominees:
A lot of the blogs I like have the same theme that I do. I wonder: Do I like these blogs because I like the theme? Or do I like these blogs because the writers like the same things that I do and therefore I feel a connection? Seriously, like half of the blogs I nominate have the “forever” theme. It’s so warm and nostalgic. So informal and yet tidy looking. It’s how I like things to be.
Y’all hurry back,
I had another one of those serendipitous shopping moments last week. I think, after a while of coming up empty-handed and discouraged, you build up good shopping karma and exactly what you have been looking for everywhere appears right before your eyes. I had this moment in Bed Bath and Beyond. I had looked a couple months back and there was nothing that excited me as I searched for drapery panels for my main living area. My ceilings are 9 feet tall so I needed 108” length panels because I wanted them to puddle slightly at the bottom. You almost never see this length available in the store. Normally they have the 84” and 95” stocked and then the “extended lengths” are available for order online.
Having given up on finding something readymade in the textured woven oatmeal-ish genre, I looked into custom drapes, which would likely be 3-4 times as expensive and take 3-4 times as long to arrive. I just wasn’t sure I wanted to spend that kind of money on drapes for an apartment that is likely temporary and full of abnormally large windows. I also wasn’t sure I would have a use for 7 long panels of something very specific. And I’m impatient.
My solution to this whole dilemma was to ignore it for a while.
It was very effective. Except when I was in my apartment and able to see my naked windows.
Then, one fateful day last week, I stepped foot in Bed Bath and Beyond for the first time in months with low expectations and a glimmer of hope. I didn’t even grab a cart or a basket as I sped toward the drapery department. I walked through the first isle and saw nothing but dreadful polyester in 84” length panels. I headed down the second isle, sure that my drapeless fate was sealed. I reached the end of the isle and saw some drapes that had a nice, chunky woven texture like I had been searching for. And they even had a color that could work: a sandy, oatmeal-y, taupe-ish color. I figured I would have to order them online, but as I pulled back the sample curtain, there lay at least a dozen of the panels in the color I wanted in 108” length! I nearly fainted. Then the adrenaline kicked in and I sprinted (almost) around to the front of the store to grab a cart. I tore around the corner on two wheels in the direction of the drapery section. Thankfully, no one had scooped up all of the panels in the 13.4 seconds I was gone. I quickly pulled out 7 packages and violently threw them into my cart like I was on Supermarket Sweep and headed for the registers.
I only had 1 coupon with me and it was for 20% off one full-priced item. The nice lady at the register asked me if I had any more because I could “save a bundle.” I had had other coupons, but they had expired and I was pretty sure I’d recycled them already. One lady behind me in line had a handful of coupons and offered me a couple of hers. It was so sweet of her but I told her I couldn’t take her coupons from her. The cashier said if I found any more coupons that I should come back and get my receipt adjusted. Wouldn’t you know that I dug around in my car for my coupon folder (I have to have this otherwise I always leave my coupons either a) in my house or b) in a different purse that I am not carrying that day) and found a coupon for 20% off my ENTIRE PURCHASE (read: $84 plus tax in savings). The only issue was that the coupon had expired at the end of July and it was now the first week of September. I know some stores will still take coupons after they have “expired” so I went back into the store and played dumb like I couldn’t read the large print indicating that my coupon had expired on 7/31/12.
It surely was a fateful day because instead of the surly, gum-chewing 20-something woman at customer service, I was called over for service at the register of a nice young man. I gave him the coupon and my receipt from earlier in the day, telling him that I had found my 20% off my ENTIRE PURCHASE coupon I had meant to bring in when I made my purchase. No problem. He was going to take care of that for me right away. And he did.
And I got exactly the drapes I had been looking for, for ¼ the price I had considered spending, in the correct length and color, AND I was able to drive straight home and put them up in 30 minutes.
To say I was/am pleased would hardly cover it.
To say Gus and Scarlet are pleased would hardly cover it. Though it took them weeks to warm up to their new, plush cat beds, they took to the drapes immediately, even before I had them hung on the rods.
If you need me at any point in time for the next few years of my life, I will be lint-rolling and vacuuming these drapes.
But at least I have drapes.
I mean, Scarlett has drapes.
If you need Scarlett, she’ll be snuggling with/guarding the drapes.
Y’all come back,
I caught Gus snuggling with my zebra flats the other day.
He was determined to rest his chin on them no matter how much of his dignity it cost him.
It appears he’s having a bit of an identity crisis. I think he thinks he’s a Zebra.
Same colors. Wrong pattern. Sorry, Gus.
He’s not taking this talk very well.
It’s turned his world upside down.
He’s not giving up so easily. He has claimed these shoes as his own.
Scarlett can’t stand to be associated with this nonsense.
She does, however, think that her natural habitat is a cardboard box. I don’t know what to make of this.
You two are a rare breed.
But you make me laugh.
Y’all come back,