craftiness, design ideas, home

New Roman Shades At Last!

July 20, 2015

Hello, dear readers. I know, it’s been a while, but we have been soaking up summer days here, and I have loved every last unscheduled minute. You feelin’ me? No early morning school deliveries. No sports or band practice deliveries. No deliveries of any sort. Nothin’. Nada. Zilch. Except for the eight zillion “Could you take me to so-and-so’s house today?” deliveries. But those are generally later in the day, once I’ve had my morning coffee and have changed into actual clothing rather than climbing into my car in pajammies. Don’t judge.

Anyway, we did take a fantastic trip to Washington DC and Philadelphia, so we have been out and about, but we have also spent lots and lots of glorious time just chilling at home. Because we’ve been so chill around here, I’ve not had a whole lot to tell you about…until now. In fact, lovelies, I may need a high five, because after having the fabric for about 5 months, I actually made roman shades for my kitchen. That’s right, it only took me five months to get my fanny in gear and crank them out. Here I am in action, y’all.



That’s right. A glue gun. The fact is, these shades don’t have a single stitch in them. How you ask? Check out my tutorial here.


Here they are in situ. (That’s just fancy talk for “actually installed above the windows in my kitchen)



It didn’t take long, and it is not a difficult project, but I found myself putting it off time and time again. You know, five months is a long time, so maybe I don’t deserve a high five after all. However, if you have a spare, I’d sure take it.

What have you accomplished this summer, dear readers?

stuff I like, style, travel

Vacation Style: the Dress

June 18, 2015

Our crew just got back from an all-out nerd-fest vacation in and around our nation’s capital, and y’all, it was hot. As Eugene Morris Jerome says in Biloxi Blues, it was, like, Africa hot. And I’m not going to lie, I’ve never been more grateful for a slew of museums to pop in and out of. Air conditioned museums, people. And for clothing that allowed cool breezes all up in there.

Is fashion the end-all, be-all of my life? No, but I do appreciate cute duds that are weather appropriate. And folks, in this case, it is hands down the dress. That’s right. The only garment with a built in ventilation system. And if you choose wisely, there is very little fabric actually touching you. Optimal for those times that you are sweating like a proverbial hog and don’t want things to get too clingy. As a bonus, dresses are easy. Like, you just slide it on. Nothing to match. Nothing to tuck in. Just slide into your slides, slip on your sunnies, and go! Need a little inspiration? Here are a few I found to get you started…



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Now go forth and conquor the heat, friends, in well-ventilated style!

stuff I like

Stuff…and a Few Things: Spring Survival

May 18, 2015

What a wild and wacky Spring it has been here in West Texas. Tornados, hail, and lots of rain. Lots and lots of glorious rain. So, while we get weather warnings more often than usual, you won’t hear me complaining as I delight in the lush green of my yard.

And while I’m not complaining, that moisture comes with a few things, namely mosquitos. They aren’t out in full force yet, but the early birds have started to congregate. And those little critters love me. And my Dude. Suffice it to say that we are both very, very sweet. Or something. Do they like you, too? Of course our first line of defense is not to be bitten in the first place (hello, OFF!) but I have yet to go through a summer unscathed. So, treatment is the name of the game and I’ve found nothing  that beats the healing powers of this:

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It’s pure magic, folks, and you can get it here.

While we’re on the subject of histimines, let’s talk about pollen. And eyeballs. And me wanting to scratch mine right out. You, too? The funny thing is that my nose and sinuses are quite happy. I’ve already got enough drugs running through my system, so I wanted to avoid an allergy pill if most of me was faring pretty well. I’ve tried at least 8 kinds of  drops, but I’ve finally found the holy eyedrop grail.

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Once in the morning, once before bed, and I’m all set. Really, life is so much better when you can a) see b) not have to tell all of America that you are not crying and c) not scratch your eyeballs out. Amen. Easily found at the Walmarts or your favorite drug store.

Finally, hydration. I’ve always struggled with making sure I drink enough water throughout the day, especially during my teaching years when you can’t exactly saunter to the loo any time you’d like. With a recent trip to the ER for yet another kidney stone, I was reminded that it’s more important than ever to keep things moving along. I’d like to avoid all the nasty sweeteners out there in diet drinks, nor do I want to quaff a week’s worth of sugar in a day. And let’s face it, there is only so much plain ol’ water one can take. What’s a girl to do? Behold, Sonic Strawberry Water. *angels singing*

IMG_0174 44 ounces of filtered water laced with sweetened, squished up strawberries, and the best ice on the planet. I know, it does have sugar in it, but just a little. In fact, this entire vat of hydrating goodness is only 70 calories. 70. And no nasty sweeteners. And you wanna know something else? This beauty will only set you back $.54. And that’s not even during happy hour, y’all! Bottoms up!

Oh, and none of the people that make these things know who I am or that I love them. I just dig their stuff. And wanted you, dear readers, to know their life-saving (or at least comfort-inducing) magic. Happy Spring, friends!


family, home, memories, ridiculousness

Thoughts on Motherhood: I’m CRUSHING It

May 10, 2015

The flowers, the hand-made little gifts, the breakfast in bed…all magical. All designed to make you feel like the most appreciated woman on Earth. And who’s to say we don’t deserve it? Perhaps your own kid. Leave it to a child to pull no punches. That’s right, behold these gems from one of my (unnamed) offspring from years-gone-by.

The cover. Balloons, a Dutch Maid hat, a random Gingerbread Man, and Jester’s shoes. And I bow and arrow, I think. So sweet.

IMG_0113 Next, one of my favorite things to do…


…kissing Daddy. Could be worse.

Then, this.


Apparently I love to just lounge around and read magazines. When I’m not kissing Daddy, that is.

Wait! There’s more!


When I’m not lounging and smooching, I like to put on make-up.

And the mothering piece-de-resistance…


You sad, little kid? Go to your room! The one with bars on the window. And the exposed electical outlet. And keep it down, would you? I’m trying to read magazines and put on make-up!

Feeling like your mothering skills are sub-par? I thought about offering a seminar to young mothers, but seeing that I’m totally crushing this mothering thing, I wouldn’t want any of you to feel less-than by comparison. So, just come by some time, and we’ll have a nice long chat on my porch over some sweet tea. And don’t worry, I’ll have some bourbon at the ready. For us both.




family, memories

The Day My Legs Spoke to Me

April 12, 2015

It was a lovely afternoon. Sun shining, clothes laundered and folded, kitchen scrubbed, and me propping my feet up feeling mighty satisfied. Then I looked down and my legs. My pasty, jiggly, bruised, veiny legs. Before I could even filter my words, I found myself actually uttering the words I’ve thought countless times.

“You uuuugly.” And then it happened.

‘Scuse me?

Um, who was that?

It’s us, braniac. Your legs. You know, the ones that have carried you around for nearly your whole life.

Uhh, you heard that?

Of course we did. Both when it comes out of your mouth and every time it whizzes through your head. Every. Time.

Uuuhhh, well…I mean….

Yes, we are looking a bit worse for wear these days. And our joints? A bit cranky. And we hate that for you. Really. We do. But let me ask you something. Is there anything about us that makes you smile? Makes you proud?


Anything. Really. Throw us a bone, will ya?

Well, there was that one time my little brother and I decided it would be a good idea to poke a possum with a stick. I never knew you could whisk me into the house and behind my mother’s skirts so quickly.

Nice start. Anything else?

Hmmm. We used to really cut a rug together. Pirouettes, Thriller, the running man, dancing like a maniac in the kitchen with my kids. That’s always brought me great joy, even if I looked like a complete dork doing it. No comments, please.

Not even one teeny weeny one?


Oh, ok.

And how about the time we were at that SWAT Team hostage situation in Houston. You ooched my 17 year-old-self right under that KPRC news van before I could say, “Does fresh asphalt stain Laura Ashley dresses???” Thanks. Like, really.

Our pleasure. Really.

Then there was the time I thought you were going to give out on me, not wanting to see my dad all wired and tubed up post-heart surgery. A slight buckle, but you shored me right up and marched me right in there.

We did. It was a sweet moment we’ll never forget.

Down the aisle, to my love. And into the hospital, to welcome my babies. To far-flung places, helping me discover who I am. Over the mommy years, running, playing, skipping, skiing, hiking. All right next to my people. Making memories. Having fun.


Do you remember all those miles and miles of training we put in? Running a half-marathon before I turned 40. Turns out you went above and beyond and we did two. Couldn’t have done it without you.

Perhaps not, Einstein. But seriously, we still remember the tears of joy. And maybe a bit of pain.

Let me ask you something else. What would you say if you heard your kids talking to another person the way you talk to us? And not just my buddy and me, but the whole package. 


I know. You wouldn’t stand for it. We know that you try to be a loving, kind person to those around you, but guess what? We are someone, too. We are YOU. And we LOVE you. Even on our crankiest days, we want good things for you. We ALL do. Right, batwing arms? Jiggly mommy belly? Squishy fanny?

Call me crazy, but they all answered. In unison. In love. Right there on my sofa. I heard it y’all. Really. Have I been kinder to my body since our little chat? Well, I’m still working on that. In the mean time I am learning to see all of my parts as me. And not in a way that defines who I am by the way that they look, or even perform (heaven help me). Me. My story. My memories. The memories of the people I love. May I learn to be more kind. Both to others and to myself. And may I learn to never EVER post pictures of my legs again. Amen.