Monthly Archives: July 2008

“You could make that” “Oh…could I?”


My sweet, talented, amazingly wonderful mother used to look at things and instinctively know how to do it herself.  In addition to teaching 3rd grade, church youth group, adult Sunday School, and heading up the Junior Miss Pageant, in her spare time she was very VERY crafty.  She made this:

And she made this cute wooden personalized purse for her mom/my Mimi:

And when her grandchildren were born, she made them each a quilt.  Here’s the BabyKid’s:

(Don’t tell the first 3, but they got better each time…on this one the bear’s eyes are buttons from a dress that I wore as a little girl.  I mean COME ON!!!!  How cool is that?)

Then after my dad died in 2000, she made a quilt out of his shirts.  Go on and get yourself some Kleenex:

I know.  It is a TREASURE.  She finished it in 2002 with the last of her strength as she was going through chemo & radiation for a brain tumor.  She died a year later in October 2003.  Heavy Sigh.

**By the way, he didn’t have shirts that were red & flowerdy or yellow polka dots…the non-manly pieces are just accent fabrics.  I just thought you should know that.  He would appreciate me making that clear.**

So even though MY MOM could “make that” and she assumed that I could “make that,” I usually didn’t believe her.  My retort, sometimes verbal, was always, “No, YOU could make that.”  Well, much to my surprise, I have found myself becoming my mother (not such a bad thing in many ways) and have recently heard myself saying to myself before I can stop myself, “OOOOhh, I bet I could make one of those…D’OH!  I did it again!”  Here are some things that made me say that recently:

This is a 2 Corinthians 13 bracelet.  Love is patient (bead for patient) Love is Kind (bead for kind)  cute, huh?

This is a bag I got at a conference.  I have seen people here with ones made out of towels.  Hmmmmmm…

flip flop wreath

flip flop wreath

And THIS is a darling wreath on my neighbor’s door.  I haven’t met them yet, so this photo was a “drive by.”

So what do YOU like to make?  Tell me about your craftiness!  (Recipes count too).



I’m not sure why, but my newest post “Cuzzin Time at Grandview” ended up  waaaaay up there in the top right ABOUT corner (?)  Go ahead and click up there to read it cause I don’t know what I did, much less how to undo it.  What EVER!



For years and years and years (even before I knew them, but all throughout my 20+ years with the family) my Parents In Law have talked about making a home on the Blue Ridge Parkway in NC.  Well, somehow, someway, by the grace of God and their attention to detail, that dream has now become a reality.  Still serving in the ministry after 45 years, Grand and G-Daddy have made their very first permanent home, and it is a doozy!  I feel so privileged to be able to benefit from their years of planning and vision.  All of us are sharing in their well-earned and much deserved joy as they open their gorgeous home to us for the first of many fun family memories.  It’s like we could almost visibly see the hand of God moving as they were transitioning from south FL to western NC the very same weeks we were packing up our MI home for the VA coast.  It is an easy 6 hour drive to them from both Atlanta and Virginia Beach that all agree is worth every minute of “stoptouchingme!”

GDaddy & Grand on Bald Mountain, NC

GDaddy & Grand on Bald Mountain, NC

We had a wonderful time not only with the Grands, but also with our Atlanta Cuzzins.  (The Houston contingent was sorely missed)


Here’s what greets you when you enter the front door:

Two levels of Bee-EEE-AAAAA-UUUUUUUUtifulness meets the eye immediately everywhich direction you care to turn.  Check out the stacked stone fireplace:

Walk straight through to the kitchen, AKA:  Grand’s Domain of Yummy Goodness.  See the giant chocolate chip cookie bar?  Can you smell the fudge sauce?  Behold the fresh lemon pie! 

Q: How’s that pie like my hand?

(It’s got “ma rang” on it.)   I don’t quite fit in here, but they love me anyway.  See how gracious they are?

If you can pull yourself away from the kitchen sweets & smells, you can meander on out to the screened-in porch where it is a perfect 70something degrees and breezy.

And…oh….the….view!  Be still my heart:

Saturday evening when we got there it was a tad hazy, but GDaddy says that on clear days you can see 80 miles out.  The altitude here is 4000 feet. 

marching upward to Zion

marching upward to Zion

HELLOOOOoooooooo down there!  

HERE’S what it looked like at sunrise on Sunday am:

I mean, come ON.  That is one GOOOOOOD God! 

He makes everything glorious. 

He makes EVERYthing glorious.  He makes EVERYTHING GLORIOUS! 

(and YOU are His!  What does that make YOU?  I’m just sayin’…)

On with the tour.  The master suite is to the left of the kitchen, past the stairs going to the lower level.

  To the right of the bedroom is a sitting room for Grand:

  To the left of the bed is a massive bathroom with Water Closet, Walk Around Shower and a make up area.  Check out the unique coolness factor of these flower shaped rugs:

Yes, that’s my camera-loving son again (wondering why in the world I would take pictures without him in them).  He totally would have sat down and acted like he was putting on his grandmother’s make-up.


INSIDE the bathroom!  What a concept!

INSIDE the bathroom! What a concept!

How do you like it so far?  AWE.  SOME.  N’est ce pas?  But wait, there’s more….

We are Family


I come to you LIVE from Raleigh, NC a mere 4 hours west & south, according to LaShonda, our newest family member & extremely helpful GPS.  HOW have we LIVED without you, LaShonda?  Our family is at last COMPLETE!  Fun was had by all on the drive and now it’s time to swim.  Hubby will be joining us in a few hours around the time the Hotlanta Cuzzins appear.  We are all excited to see Sr. Cuz play in a soccer tournament.  Oldest is quite excited to watch the rising sophomore GIRLZ play as well.  For multiple reasons.

Then post-game we will frolic on across NC to West Jefferson for some quality time with the Grandparents in their new mountain-top abode.  You can BET pictures will be forthcoming.  Have a great weekend, all ye in cyber land!

Surfin USA


I had some profound moments of thought at the beach recently.  It is, right now and for the foreseeable future above and beyond the temperature for mere lolling & reading on the shore.  Yes, indeedy, the time has come, and is here that calls for more than periodic cooling off measures at least every 20 minutes.  In case ya’ll (that’s right…I said “Y’all” just like I grew up doin’) haven’t been to the beach in a while, the kind of cooling off I’m speaking of entails knee deep splashing and, later in the day, wet hair.  Therefore, it is just as much fun to go on and get (or “git”) all the way in and have some fun for a while.  This I had already determined to do a few days ago, so I had bravely brought along one of our boogie boards for some pseudo-surfing.  Now, I don’t know much about actual surfing, but I do know the one cardinal law is to Be Particular.  As in, don’t paddle out 1/2 way and turn around for any old puny or ill-timed wave…wait for a Good One.  This useful rule can carry over into SOOOO many areas of one’s life, hence the afore-mentioned profound thoughts while pseudo surfing.  As I paddled to & fro and kicked around to find and stay in a potentially worthy spot to catch a tasty wave (Spicoli?  Where’d you come from?) I thought about waiting.  Specifically, how I am right now, even as I wait for a Wave of Significance, also find myself waiting in life for the next LifeWave…of parenting through the teen years, of beginning and developing a new career at 40, (what’s that?  you can’t believe I’m 40?  why thank you eversokindly!) and waiting for a new wave of friendships & loyalties, and experiences and memories.  How very good and faithful God is to remind me through His creation that waiting is not horrible but can be pleasingly restful and provide those quiet waters we are so longing for during hurricane season.  Even when we think we are overdue for a Good Wave.  Enjoy the wait and, when the time & the wave comes, Hang Ten Honey!

Neighorhood Mojo


We are currently back to our pre-move status as Hang Out House.  3 young ladies the ages of our boys, as well as at least 1 sweet young dude-to-be (at last count) the age of our daughter are engaged in all sorts of DDR/playstation/billiards summer joy.  I have just issued the “one more song then you can come back after dinner” warning.  It’s nice to have some hang-out buds and the tension that was exponentially mounting has been swiftly relieved.  Hallelujah!  I’ll try & skulk around undetected and collect a few candid photos, being the invisible adult that I am when outnumbered by the adolescent community.  Stay tuned.

Midnight Madness


So the very day I got the go-ahead to purchase Guitar Hero III Aerosmith, I hauled bootie over to our Friendly Neighborhood Game Stop.  The super peppy dude…you heard me, I said “super” PEPPY Dude at the checkout effortlessly talked me into pre-ordering NCAA football for $5, also mentioning that there would be a “midnight madness” PARTY for the release.  Woo Hoo!  A Party!!!  My calendar is currently so very empty we are using squares in the month of July for grocery wish lists and notes to self.  Since my offspring are aging almost as fast as I am, with nary a compliment in my immediate future, I thought they might consider me for Coolest Mom Ever if I plunked down an additional $5 for the latest and greatest PS2 entertainment.  (That’s right…we are soooo 2003 with our gaming.  Some technology, and the dollars it takes to procure, we just refuse to progress from).  I mentally envisioned the Madness to include a packed-out Game Stop with trays of cucumber sandwiches, or maybe little weenies in crescent rolls, quite possibly mini “Cokes” of every flavor (we are in the south, after all) and many MANY people behind me in line waiting to get what I was going to have before them.  My boys would look at me so lovingly and gratefully heap praises on me, rising up and calling me blessed even, for being so generous as to bring them along way past midnight to get something that would, no doubt, bring them hours of seated, air-conditioned football bliss.  The girls would have a smashing time at the closest thing to Mardi Gras that they will hopefully ever experience this side of 25.  But it didn’t quite work out like the Game Stop Midnight Madness of my dreams.

Yawning that evening way before 10:00 pm, I began to slink into “what was I thinking” mode, but alas, the Midnight Party Plan had already been announced and prepared for.  The younger kids & parent went on to bed at a decent hour while I sleepdrove my two excited night owl tweens to the “bash.”  The mulititudes I was expecting didn’t quite turn out.  There were maybe 5 other people wandering aimlessly up and down the one aisle from roughly 11:25 when we got there.  These were not normal people.  Even compared to the DMV.  These were Die Hard Gamers and not one other mom-type person was in sight.  Fortunately, there were snacks.  Unfortunately, however, Combos are about my least favorite snack cracker wannabe.  There were no takers on the multitude of Combos so carefully and symmetrically laid out on the counter.  Fortunately, there was also a “game” for “prizes”.  Toss the football through the cut up poster & win a snap on cover for your Wii.  Unfortunately, we were given only 2 tries, so no Automatic 7-ing.  Phooey.  Oldest was having no part of it.  Neither the Girl.  Unfortunately I tried and missed.  Automatic 2 I guess.  But FORTUNATELY there were also other prizes.  Free deoderant samples.  The red one with the ship on it…what is that one again?  English Leather comes to mind, but that’s not it.   VERY unfortunately no one wanted free deoderant samples.  EXTREMELY unfortunately (for us) they really could’ve put them to good use according to PreTeen Daughter who has a shark’s nose for all scents–pleasant and non.  That was one reeking store, according to SharkNose and she was wishing they would ALL take their samples and use them with abandon.  So with no interesting snacks, nothing good to smell and nowhere to run/hide.  What could we do but begin texting each other to pass the time.  This proved to be doubly entertaining for both Daughter and me since Brother had recently lost his phone on the Gryffon at Busch Gardens and was getting more & more irritated by the second as we stood near him snickering and checking our messages.  From each other.  And reporting the time every 30 seconds.

Finally FINALLY the clock struck midnight and we left at once with game in hand to go home to bed.  Brother stayed up until 5:00 in the morning playing an entire season with not so much as a Thank You yawn.  Ah, adolescents in the summer time.  Madness indeed.  Anytime, all the time…it’s not just for midnight anymore.