Yes, KariAnne, There is a Pottery Barn

Yes, KariAnne, There is a Pottery Barn

 

front-door-decorating-ideas-how-to

If you live in a small town where everyone knows your name and your business and your monogram and how many wreaths you use to decorate the front door of a gatehouse….

…this story is for you.

When we first moved to the country and bought the farmhouse. everyone immediately made that farmhouse their business.

They would drive by the house slowly and stare, just to make sure they didn’t miss anything.  They’d look at the trails of wallpaper scraps and the new porch and the new front door and the old kitchen cabinets on the lawn and the piles of lumber from all the parts of walls we took down….

….and talk about it over dinner.

And when I went to a party or baseball game or the gas station or the school….someone would inevitably stop me and the question would always be the same.

“What are y’all doing to that farmhouse?”Continue reading


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It All Begins With One

It All Begins With One

 

monogram-ornament-diy

When I was younger, I went on a tour of an underground cave.

After all, my father was a geologist and he considered underground caves and igneous and metamorphic rocks and shale and limestone outcroppings by the side of the road part of our basic education.

There’s nothing like being interrupted in the middle of a the Bangels song on your Sony Walkman to stop and listen to an enthusiastic lecture from your father on sedimentary rock formations.

Seriously.

If you are a sassy teenager with aqua net hair and stirrup pants, when you’ve seen one outcropping of sedimentary rock…..

…you’ve seen them all.Continue reading


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Happy Thanksgiving from the Newest Member of the Family

Happy Thanksgiving from the Newest Member of the Family

 
IHappy Thanksgiving to you

About a week ago a tiny set of furry paws with bright sparkling brown eyes showed up on the steps of the gatehouse.

We don’t really know where how he got there.

Maybe he had gotten lost and separated from his mother.

Maybe someone dropped him off.

Maybe he was at the end of a long journey.

None of that mattered to us….

….we were just happy that he was there.
Continue reading


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Who More Than Self Their Country Loved

Who More Than Self Their Country Loved

 

burlap-fourth-of-july-project

Have you ever listened to the third verse of America the Beautiful?

It’s the one after the purple mountains majesty and the fruited plain and the pilgrim feet.

It’s the amazing one.

And it’s my favorite:

“O beautiful for heroes proved in liberating strife

Who more than self their country loved

And mercy more than life.”

Stop for a moment and take those words in.

The poignant truth written in every line….

….”who more than self their country loved”.

Those incredible brave men and women who sacrificed so much.

Soldiers and sailors and airmen and marines that faced almost insurmountable odds and overwhelming challenges…..

…..so that you and I could laugh and live in a land where freedom reigns.Continue reading


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I Will Be Here

I Will Be Here

fall-home-tour-apples

If you have ever watched and waited for months or years for someone you love to come home….

….this story is for you.

The other day tucked away in a corner of our attic….in a box labeled “Navy” ….I found a stack of cassette tapes.

Remember those?

The tapes were bundled up together with frayed rubber bands next to some pictures, a few medals and a white stuffed bear wearing a patriotic hat with a banner that said, “I love my sailor.”

A box of nothing.

And a box of everything.

Continue reading


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Going to the Chapel With Superman

Going to the Chapel With Superman

 
Finding Home Syrup - Thistlewood Farms - The Chapel Market

This weekend at The Chapel Market was amazing.

If you were there and I met you….just know that I adore you.

It was even better than last year.

And so much easier.

Because this year I brought an assistant who was faster than a speeding bullet and more powerful than a locomotive and who could leap tall buildings with a single bound….

….my oldest son Denton.

Thistlewood Farms - The Chapel Market Photo

Here’s superman in all his glory.

He unloaded the car and set up the tables and put together the Christmas tree and hung the baskets and cut out tags and carried boxes and stacked t-shirts and drew on chalkboard trees….

…and promptly developed an entire inventory system for us in a matter of minutes.

And made everyone’s day just a little brighter with that smile.Continue reading


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The Smile of a Rock Star (and a Free Printable)

The Smile of a Rock Star (and a Free Printable)

 

rock star girls

Most mornings I wake up all the sleepy heads in the house and sing “Rise and Shine”….

…..and tell them they are rock stars.

Just in case they forgot from the day before.

Just in case they were wondering.

Most of the time they simply roll their eyes and sigh and ignore me….

….but I know they hear it.

rock stars

I think I started the whole rock star thing when fourth grade began getting a little tough….which turned into an even tougher fifth grade and now we are knee-deep in sixth grade….

….the very toughest of all.

Navigating sixth grade is kind of like Survivor where they put you on the island with a piece of flint and a few sticks and leave you to figure the rest out.Continue reading


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The Thankful Tree and a Giveaway

The Thankful Tree and a Giveaway

This post and giveaway are brought to you by Birch Lane.

Thanksgiving Tree

One of my favorite books is The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein.

If you’ve read it….you are nodding right about now.

If you haven’t I’ll totally Reader’s Digest it for you.

It’s about a tree who loves a little boy with all her heart.  When he is young he plays under the tree and swings from the branches and eats buckets of apples.  And as he grows older he sells the apples from the tree and uses her branches to make a house and her trunk to make a boat to sail away and explore the world.

And when he is older and his travels are done, he sits on the stump and rests…..

….and returns to the tree that he loves.

“And the tree was happy.”

Continue reading


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