Thursday, July 24, 2014

Wordless Wednesday (just a day late)




Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Smoky Mountains

We ran away to East Tennessee for a very busy weekend. It was both personal and business. We were able to visit with both sets of Brian's grandparents, as well as his brother, nieces, parents, aunt and uncle. We were there less than 72 hours but managed to fit in alot of catching up, 1 presentation of 180 Church, 2 sermons, a trip to Lake Holston, and 17 hours of driving.

Just a few pictures - it was so busy that I did not pull out the camera nearly often enough.

Kids piled on Uncle Jon to watch some late-night TV.

We spent about 6 hours Saturday at Lake Holston. It rained the first couple of hours, but then turned into a beautiful cool day.


East Tennessee is just breathtakingly beautiful (although I do miss some signs of civilization occasionally - like driving for several hours one way with no Starbucks or anything other than the occasional fast food restaurant).

Brian trying to grill hotdogs in the cold rain.

Kids played soccer for hours after the rain stopped.

They kept losing the ball down the mountain.



I loved this rusty old bridge.

And just a couple with my big girl camera.



There was alot of this happening: sitting, listening, talking.


On the ride home from church Sunday - she was worn. out.

We left the kids in Kingsport with Gram and Gramps for the week where they will be camping with cousins. Rory could not get us out the door fast enough yesterday, which cracks me up. She sure does like a little bit of independence! We managed to stretch a 5 hour trip into about 8.5 with some shopping and then an early dinner at The Pharmacy Burger. We've been wanting to eat there for several months now, but there never seems to be time. It was delicious!

Our week without the kids is incredibly full, so I imagine the time will fly by. Brian is back to school pretty much full-time this week. July 22 seems awfully early, right? Hoping to sneak in some dates while they're gone in between events, though!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014


Camden turned 11 years old today. Let's go ahead and get the required "how did he grow up so fast?" out of the way. 

This kid is starting to get legitimately funny. Not the funny where it's humorous because he's still learning or little and cute. No, he's got his own sense of humor and sarcasm these days.

He's one of those kids that succeeds at whatever he does (which is probably to his detriment at times since it makes him not have to try hard at anything). I can't wait to see what he settles on and gets really great at as he grows.

His 3 favorite pastimes are reading, playing Legos, and singing. In no particular order.

He's the kid that never seems like he's paying attention, but then can recite back word for word what was just said. Annoying, right? :) And don't even get me started on how he can recite movie lyrics or book paragraphs.

He comes through with a deep thought at the best times.

He still is a cuddler (a.k.a. super handsy with no sense of personal space whatsoever), and I worry all the time that I'm scarring him for life when I ask for a little breathing room.

He outgrew Gymboree this summer. Yes, this is devastating.

He is easily going to surpass me in height this year.

We are so lucky to call him ours.


Monday, July 14, 2014

Weekend Ramblings

Our weekend was full of all kinds of good things starting with shopping for a new kitchen table. I'm happy to report that we found exactly what we were looking for at our very first stop, and some nice Amish man somewhere in Kentucky is currently building us one as I type. Okay, I don't know if he's started yet, but we ordered one anyway. :)

Friday night the kids went to a school event (kind of like a parent's night out), and if their sweat level when we picked them up was any indication of how much fun they had, then it was a good time.

Meanwhile, Brian and I decided last minute to throw a movie into out date night. The only thing we remotely wanted to see was Edge of Tomorrow, and I have to say that I was very pleasantly surprised at how good it was. Definitely sci-fi, but not cheesy and an entertaining way to pass 2 hours. We did a little browsing at Anthropologie, ran into a fellow blogger (who happens to see the same oncologist as I do), then supper at The Cookery.


Brian and the kids left Saturday morning for a canoe trip. I offered to take one for the team and go along, but (thank goodness) they are 3-person canoes and there was no room for this nature-hating (according to the kids) mama.


I met my friend Tina at Phat Bites, and the food was as good as I remembered from back in January. The nearly 3-hour chat was a great way to spend the afternoon (as opposed to sweating in a canoe). :)


Sunday was church and all the busyness that comes with 4 hours worth of serving people. Brian and Camden spent several hours packing for Camden's annual birthday camping trip, while Rory and I kept Addison company.

They gave pretend pedicures.

Rory is just a tad ticklish.


Played a little music.





We read lots and lots of Fancy Nancy books. I am not having to work very hard to turn Addison into a girly girl. This video cracks me up.

It is possible that I introduced Rory to double-stuff oreos and milk this morning. Yes, for breakfast. We can't let the boys have ALL the fun.




So the boys are off adventuring again (it seems like this has happened alot this summer, but it's only twice) while the girls are keeping the home fires burning. Rory is currently watching hair videos (this is her new favorite pasttime; I just don't let her do it often) while I blog and hopefully get some scrapping done. The thunderstorms this morning made it seem like the perfect day to do absolutely nothing.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Around Here

around here . . . 
more cucumbers than I know what to do with. My vote is to only keep the perfect ones, but Brian has a very hard time throwing away veggies (even the not-so-good ones) from his precious garden.

around here . . . 
late nights leading to sleeping in. For the kids anyway. I am having the hardest time sleeping this summer. Almost to the point where I want to call my doctor and ask if we can change out my sleeping meds.

around here . . . 
overflowing library basket.

around here . . . 
lots of piano playing. From me and not Camden, surprisingly enough. While he hasn't been nearly as thrilled (or consistent with his practice as I thought he would be), I've been playing for nearly an hour every day for the last 3 weeks.

around here . . . 
fruit faces.

around here . . . 
Rory quoting Ruth 1:16 to Camden, "where you go, I will go." He finds it a little creepy.

around here . . . 
reading this book out loud to the kids. I am a tad embarrassed to admit this is the 4th book we've started so far this summer . . . and we haven't finished a single one. I think we're going to make it through this one.

around here . . . 
we're on the hunt for a farm table/trestle table. We sold our table and 8 chairs just this morning, so we better get serious about looking. Rory said, "no offense, but I sure hope these people don't like it." It's going to be living room eating for us until we find something!

around here . . . 
date night tonight for the adults! Why, yes, we are celebrating our anniversary almost 2 months late. Better late than never, right?

Happy Friday!


Wednesday, July 09, 2014

Lots of Pages

Project Life Week 26a

Project Life Week 26b


Tuesday, July 08, 2014

Tried It, Liked It

A few things I've cooked/baked this summer that have made their way onto my Tried It, Liked It Pinterest board:

Banana Crumb Muffins - I left out the creamer because I didn't have any, but these were really good. Not too sweet, but that crumb topping made them perfect!

Pioneer Woman Caramelized Onion & Prosciutto Pizza - I might need a whole board just for my pizza recipes; definitely one of our favorite things to eat, and this one was delicious!


Iced Coffee - I've tried several recipes out this summer. This was the best concoction so far although I'd probably leave out the cinnamon next time.

Cucumber, Avocado, and Feta Salad - made this at lunch today, and it was amazing! I would have never really thought of this combo.

Grilled Ginger-Sesame Chicken Salad - YUM (I did not have hoisin or sesame seeds and it was great without them)

Blueberry Arugula Salad - I made a version of this: almonds instead of walnuts and drizzled honey and lemon juice on top with the blueberries, spinach, sliced sweet peppers, and feta. Surprisingly good!


On my list to make soon: