Saturday, May 30, 2009


Fact: A small house becomes huge the week your kids are at camp. A huge house gets really small the day your kids come home with a mountain of laundry.
I'm just sayin'. . .

Friday, May 29, 2009

Just Call Me a Hag. . .

It's official. I am now a hag. . . rather, I am now officially an EHAG. What a thrill to be included among such a talented group of artists. I've never been so happy to be called a hag in my life, and it didn't even require growing a wart on my nose, or learning to cackle.

Check it out!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Sail On

More of these coming soon.

Same craft-time. Same craft-channel.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Lest We Forget

We cherish too, the Poppy red
That grows on fields where valor led,
It seems to signal to the skies
That blood of heroes never dies.
~Moina Michael

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Sometimes I'd Like to Live on Memory Lane

I've been a little nostalgic lately. Sometimes "life" just seems to catch up and pass me!
Last week our oldest child graduated from college and moved to NY, ready to tackle the world --he left with a trunk full of clothes, his guitar, his ipod, a AAA card, and a piece of my heart. This week we are also preparing to usher our middlest daughter into adulthood -- we'll watch her graduate from high school and then she too will soon enter the "grown up" ranks of the college scene. These events, along with Mother's Day and my birthday tomorrow (as well as those pesky fluctuating hormones that we women contend with all the time) have converged into something akin to a perfect storm of nostalgia.

So I have been looking at old pictures, reminiscing about life and children, and thinking about some of my earliest days as a new mom. I was like so many others, a bit unsure and nervous, and sometimes things were not very easy, or very calm. But motherhood has been a real blessing and it has also provided ample opportunities to learn things like the fine art of keeping my mouth shut diplomacy. Living in a small community in rural Georgia, I had many experiences with receiving“helpful advice” from well-intentioned(?) busy-bodies experts where I had a chance to put my new found skills into practice. This one involved our firstborn, and it left me speechless. . . and a little wiser.

Our son was born in the middle of July and, except for doctor visits, I still had not ventured out in public with him--and it was nearing the end of August. It wasn't because I was afraid or worried someone might breathe on him or give him a cold; it wasn't even because I was still recovering from a C-section. It was mostly because of the pregnancy "left-overs" that made all of my clothes obscenely too tight. "How on earth did my thighs gain baby weight??" I wondered, "These are my legs, for goodness sake; there wasn't even any baby there!" Honestly, there was just no way I was sporting those new "bundles of joy" in public until they were a more manageable size. I was not, I repeat, not wearing maternity clothes after the fact. No way.

So after a few weeks of exercise and a bit of discipline at the dinner table (and a huge dose of reality which eventually led to a trip to the mall for larger clothes) I decided it was time to show off my sweet, sweet little first born. He was ready to meet the world even if my thighs weren't. We took the little guy to church for his first official outing. After the service my husband and I made our way outside and walked toward the car with Little One safely buckled in his carrier, eyes shielded from the sun. Mind you, it was probably 98 degrees in the Georgia heat by this time of day. However one of the little old ladies stopped us and scolded me for not having our baby’s feet covered with a blanket. "He'll catch his death from a cold," she warned emphatically and quickly threw a blanket over him, head to toe. Cover his feet? What?! Oh my goodness, I had no idea exposed feet. . . in August. . . in Georgia could be life-threatening. How did I miss that little tidbit of advice in the mountain of baby books I'd devoured during pregnancy. I smiled apologetically and walked on. Just as we reached our car another woman stopped to admire our new little one, and she too had a word of wisdom to impart, “Take this blanket off that baby," she chastised, "Don’t you know it’s almost 100 degrees out here!?” What was a new mom to do?

Now that I am closing in on the other side of child-rearing I have a better perspective. (And so far, my offspring have managed to grow up in spite of me.) For the most part, over the years, I relied on common sense, my Mom’s experienced wisdom, selective memory loss, thousands of band-aids, lots of prayer, and a ton of Dr. Dobson books; and I also bit my tongue more times than I can remember.

And now it's my turn to impart some words of wisdom to you newbie moms out there--you may not believe this right now while you are in the midst of cleaning vom off your lap, or digging cheerios out of the crevices of your car, or throwing away your toothbrush because you discovered your toddler cleaning the toilet with it, or staying up until 3AM supervising ten giggling 8 year olds at a slumber party, or wiping away the tears of your broken-hearted little league player, or riding white-knuckled in a car with a 15 year old kid and her newly issued learner's permit, or typing a term paper 6 hours before it's due. Just remember. . . those sweet little babies do grow up. And they do learn to dress themselves (feet covered or not.) And they do learn to say please and thank you. And they do (sometimes) learn to pick up after themselves. And they do learn to drive and to type their own papers. And they do graduate. And they do make you proud. And they do go on to make a life for themselves! So heed this advice: do not under any circumstances look at old baby pictures of your children, especially during the week when they are graduating and leaving the nest. It will rip out your heart. I won't even mention what happens when you watch old home movies of the little critters. . . My advice, take it or leave it. :)

Friday, May 15, 2009

Springtime Haiku

Spring is in the air.
It can't get any better.
And it's Friday! Woot.*
*apologies to English teachers everywhere. ~cn

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Drive-by Post

Whoever coined the phrase, "It'll all come out in the wash," never laundered an ipod left in her daughter's pocket. Um, it doesn't. . .

Monday, May 11, 2009

Mother's Day Weekend

This was my kind of Mother's Day. It really began on Saturday with our oldest son's graduation from the University of Georgia. Such a wonderful accomplishment, although I'm pretty sure it was only last week that he was in kindergarten. Anyway, on Sunday after church, the new college grad came over and our family ordered Chinese take-out to eat at home. (I'm just as happy with this plan as going to a fancy restaurant.) It was a fun day just sitting around, laughing and laughing. We also watched The Sandlot, a movie my kids grew up watching; we reminisced and laughed and laughed some more. Then my unofficial Mother's Day gift was presented with great pomp and circumstance, amid raucous hoots and guffaws. The Grad gave it to me in homage to my blog post/tribute to a famous has-been rock star. Some of you may remember this post too. It's the most ridiculous video I've seen in a long while. . . the stuff of nightmares.

Seems the Grad discovered this "treasure" at a local thrift store and instantly knew I needed it for my nightmares CD collection. (Incidentally, yes, he found it while shopping at a thrift store; what a smart shopper-- that business degree is already proving to be a wise investment. :) The super-wide shoulders and color of the suit is classic 80's, but what's up with the no-shirt look?? We listened to some of this "vintage" CD and I'm fairly certain it was not nominated for a Grammy, even if it was recorded in the 80's.

As I said before, someone should have definitely hassled the Hoff. . . I'm just sayin'. . .

Wednesday, May 6, 2009


One of my favorite blogs, Catching Fireflies, is having a giveaway. They're giving away 10 lovely pearl necklaces and the way to enter is simple. Just go to Catching Fireflies' BLOG POST and answer the question:

What pearls of wisdom has your mother passed on to you, or what pearls of wisdom do you hope to pass on to your children?
Hurry over to THEIR BLOG by Thursday, May 7 (no registration or sign-up required.) On Friday they will choose their favorite wisdom comment and then post the 10 pearls of wisdom winners on the blog that afternoon.

If you have time, it would be fun if you'd share your pearls here too. For the record, my mom did not teach me to knit, or sew, or swim. But she did instill in me a sense of right and wrong, of perserverance, of fairness, of faith, and of duty. She also has given me advice about cooking, child-rearing (yes, even potty training), and sometimes even decorating. She's been a rock when I needed strength, a shoulder when I needed to cry, and an ear when I needed to sound off. My mother has been, and continues to be, a treasured blessing and I consider her my very best friend.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Live and learn, right??

Today was my first local craft/art show in several years and I looked forward to a great weekend of selling, selling, selling. My "chickens" were already counted, and I was dreaming about what I would buy, buy, buy with the proceeds. Well, sell-out, this was not. Try. . . wash out.
Here's how the whole sad, soggy tale went down:
As many of you know, I've been really busy with "life" lately, and was behind in my projects. I had already committed to this show and more importantly, had already paid my fee, so I stayed up late for the past few nights frantically trying to catch up. For the life of me I'll never figure out why I always back myself into these impossible corners. Anyway, this morning I got up at 5 AM to do a million last minute things before the show and then my daughter and I headed out on a sunny Saturday to set up my booth. We were running late and most everyone was already set up when we got there, which was a bit embarrassing. My space was smaller than I wanted (the larger spaces had already sold and I was left with one of the smaller ones) and my tent was too large, so we just set up with no cover, and crossed our fingers. After all, there was only a 20% chance of rain. No sooner had I slathered on a half bottle of sunscreen, when I noticed one little dark cloud in the distance. Not to worry, I thought, Al Roker knows his stuff. An hour later, seriously, one rain drop fell then . . . BOOM! instant cloud burst soaking me and most of my stuff within a matter of seconds. I'm not sure if you know this, but water and papier mache figurines do not get along. So I threw what I could into one of my plastic bins and waited for my daughter to bring the car, trying to block the rain with my body. I'm sure I must have looked quite ridiculous: there I was standing spread-eagle over my precious labors of love, trying to be as wide as possible-- and I had on a white t-shirt. White! Let's just say that some of the people in Athens saw way more than they bargained for today. We loaded up the car in the pouring rain and left. It rained off and on all day (thanks a lot Al) so I guess I made the right decision to leave.

So what have I learned today? I learned that it is always a good idea to bring a tarp, to plan ahead, to pay the extra $25 for a larger space, and to remember that a 20% chance of rain in Georgia in the springtime really means 100%. I also learned not to wear a white shirt, and to never, ever count my chickens before they're hatched, especially when it might rain.

Friday, May 1, 2009

A Rose By Any Other Name. . .

[Editor's note: H1N1. . . Swine flu. . . porcine-created disaster. Whatever, you call it, things are beginning to get ugly. I read this article today in our local paper, and it made me a little uneasy; but for different reasons than you may think. Being in middle school is hard enough these days, and I'm not sure just who overreacted the most: the mom, the 13 year old kid with the mask, the teachers, the other students, the pig? It makes today, "May Day" have an entirely new meaning. Puh-lease!! Maybe the world should take a collective time-out.
Common sense, people. Common sense. Everyone, please just take a deep (filtered ;) breath, wash your hands frequently, and get a grip. Then wash your hands again.]


Student sent home for keeping flu mask on
By Associated Press Athens Banner-Herald Story updated at 10:35 pm on 4/30/2009

COVINGTON - A seventh-grader who wore a mask given to him by his mother to guard against swine flu was sent home from from school after he refused to remove it.
Newton County school system spokeswoman Sherri V. said the 13-year-old created a disturbance when he arrived with the mask on Thursday and rumors began to spread that he had the virus.
V. said people started to panic and get scared.
The student's mother, Angela C. of Covington, said she plans to send him to school today wearing the mask. "We should all have a right to protect ourselves," she said.
C. said her 11-year-old son wore a mask to elementary school and was not told to remove it. (You can find the original article here.)

P.S. I'm busy preparing for my show this weekend in Athens, but just had to pop in a second. Have a happy, panic-free May Day.
Now where's my Purell.