I’m thinking…

…about sunsetting the blog season of my life.  It has been a great way to document what I knew I wouldn’t scrapbook about.  It has been a great way to get things down that I wanted to remember or just needed to get out.  But lately I find myself feeling more private, wanting to protect my adolescent children’s privacy and so busy that the deeper thoughts of life haven’t been coming to me as frequently. 

It’s a busy season.  Three children at three schools and lots of sports, practices and appointments.  Homework fills our evenings and quite frankly when it all calms down I want to lay in bed and talk with my children.  I want to throw them in the car and go on an adventure or even just to get gas for the car.  I don’t want to sit at the computer and type which is what I do for 20 hours a week for my job.  Sometimes I feel like I live in the 10 square feet of my house where the computer sits.  I want to get out; not blog.

So there they are.  The reasons why I think this little corner of the internet will become stagnant.  I will send it all over to blurb.com and print it out and love it, read it from time to time and be happy for the experience.  But then I will get up, walk outside, hang out with my family and enjoy every last minute of it.

March 8, 2011 at 8:23 pm 1 comment

Apparently I’m…

…homeschooling.  That’s right.  Homeschooling.



Oh, wait.  I’m not really homeschooling.  That’s right….it’s just another snow day (for less than an inch of snow) since Christmas break.  So let’s see; of 15 possible days of school in January there have been 6 or 7 actual school days.  So really, I kind of am homeschooling wouldn’t you say?

January 26, 2011 at 6:12 pm 1 comment

Did you really think…

…I wouldn’t mention it?  Of course I would (between squeels and cartwheels).


(source…and story in case you’ve been living under a rock the past 24 hours)

January 18, 2011 at 7:46 pm Leave a comment

Ready to…

…get ‘er done!  (I’ve lived in Tennessee too long, it’s official)

Before the end of this month (meaning  in the next two weeks) I will:

  • find and schedule appointments for Tim and I with a new dentist
  • find and schedule appointments for K and I with a new eye doctor
  • make paper hearts with K
  • make a Valentine’s garland
  • take Floyd to the groomer
  • lose 3 pounds (by continuing my new exercise regime)
  • mail my sisters their gifts (which would have been done last week had a certain little dog who needs to be groomed not run across the top of them with his muddy paws)
  • watch my son (who placed 2nd at regionals…wrestling) compete in the state team competition
  • purchase a new camera lens and take pictures again…so tired of not being able to take a picture that isn’t with a zoom lens

I have found that making a list of my ‘wants’ and scheduling time to do them just like I schedule calls for work, grocery shopping, etc. is helping me get back in the swing of being creative and exercising again (a promise I made to myself right before Christmas).  Some may say it’s rigid but I say it works for me.

January 17, 2011 at 7:29 pm Leave a comment

Right now…

(No, his hair isn’t dirty, it’s wet.)


  • Is truly a teenager, doesn’t like to be told anything and I need to choose my words and time carefully.
  • Is so sweet to his little sister in the quiet, normal moments of the day that it melts me.
  • Makes running look so easy.
  • Can’t wait for track season to start.
  • Has found his way in high school.
  • Is the first to show his face when I call for help.
  • Still stops me dead in my tracks when I see how his physique has changed/notice how handsome he is…and forget about the smile.  That smile slays me.


  • Is a wrestler.  He loves it.  Fearless.  Works hard.  About 15 pounds lighter.
  • Breezes through school.
  • Is learning to use his self control a little more each day.
  • Is still the Chicken Whisperer and is known to sleep with a particular dog named Sutter in his bed just about every night.
  • Helps me remove dead animals, bugs, etc. from my path.
  • Helps me rearrange furniture and come up with new decorating ideas.
  • Is such a great communicator.  We know exactly what his days look like every.single.day and I love it.


  • Has really long legs but is still barely bigger than a minute.
  • Is learning how to come back with some really good one-liners.
  • Loves nothing more than to be socializing.
  • Would play board games all.day.long if she could find someone to sit with her that long.
  • Is smart and still learning to apply herself to things.
  • Is empathetic, sensitive and cares a lot for those who are sick, underprivileged or struggling in any way.
  • Is known to drag a certain dog named Sutter around the house so he will sleep in her bed.
  • Reminds me what an honor it is to be someone’s parent.


  • Still works harder than anyone else I’ve ever known.
  • Is going growing through a 2-year Bible study with a group of men, 4 months in.
  • Continues to amaze me with his ability to accept and love me exactly as I am, at all times.
  • Has a very willing, open heart.
  • Won’t waste his time on things he considers to be….uh….a bunch of crap.
  • Has done an amazing job on his professional challenges this year.
  • Will be happy when he sees I wrote about him (wink-wink).
  • Is the man I love with all my heart and would choose all over again.


  • Is going to make 2011 less busy.  Broke my own rule in 2010 and paid for it dearly.
  • Is making time for creativity and exercise again.
  • Has really good people in her life but longing for a church to make home.
  • Was knocked down pretty hard a couple of years back but finds herself ready to stand again, ready to believe in her own heart again.  That heart is forever altered but has healed.
  • Believes 2011 is going to be great for her family.
  • Misses her sisters so much it can make her cry in 2 seconds flat.
  • Laughed so hard (in public) at what her husband was doing a few days ago that tears were rolling down her face.
  • Is really hoping she gets a vacation this year.

January 2, 2011 at 1:56 pm Leave a comment

Who even knew…

…that this existed?  National Mutt Day!  I love it!  Obviously if you know us at all you know we are a dog family.  Our lovely Keturah is 14 years old  and she is a pure bred rottie.  But our other dogs?  Yes, straight up MUTTS.  Who knows for sure (we go off of what the vet and groomer guesses). 

We have a problem though.  We seem to be collecting dogs.  We don’t mean to!  Floyd and Keturah were not mistakes.  We meant to get them.  We sought them out.  Kodiak, well, Kodiak just kind of happened because he had nowhere else to go and we felt sorry for him and we really thought Keturah was in her final months (that was 4 years ago).  Then there is Sutter.  Yes, a fourth.  Welcome to my crazy.  I haven’t discussed him because he hasn’t been around long and I was a little leary of all the judgement we would get.  WE KNOW IT’S CRAZY.  We know, OK?  You don’t have to tell us.  But he found us and we called no less than 15 dog rescues and because of the floods, NO ONE had any room for him.  It is guessed he is a displaced flood dog.  We called the pound.  48 hours is all they would give him before they put him down.  We couldn’t do it.  We just couldn’t.  He is sincerely the sweetest, calmest dog EVER.  So calm that the first week I thought he was boring.

But I digress: National Mutt Day.  I love it.  So in honor of my mutts here I go:

Floyd: oh you are my heart.  We think you’re a Norwich or Caron Terrier or both.  But you sweet thing, when we picked you up from the pound 10 years ago you shook for 2 weeks straight.  You’re the little big man around here and everybody knows it.  You’re my ‘I’ll follow you anywhere’ boy and I love you so much it hurts.

Kodiak: We have no idea what your lineage is: german shepherd, chow, rottie have all been suggested; I would guess at least those and then probably more.  You have so many issues you almost made yourself unlikeable.  But you have arrived.  You’re our needy dog and that is OK.  We need to be sensitive to the fact that you are so sensitive.  Your scratching, your freaking out and your jealousy are actually cute and amusing at this point.  You are my dog that would kill whoever tried to come near me to inflict harm and I love you for it.

Sutter: Good old American plott hound and probably something else is what we’ve heard.  We shouldn’t have you but we’re so glad we do.  You’re the sweetest, most affectionate, loyal dog.  You are agile and fast and we love to watch you run.  But our favorite thing you do is a toss up between pulling our hands to pet you with your paw and howling like the hound dog you are.

Keturah — you’re not a mutt but you are the queen of our hearts.  Please don’t be sad I didn’t include your picture in this post.

December 2, 2010 at 3:01 pm 1 comment

Oh boy…

…I had a lot of steam.  I had a lot of momentum.  I was an organizing, crafting, sewing, working fiend.  I had plans of posts and ideas and creativity coming out my ears.  Then it happened.  My camera lens broke and a smidge of the steam left (I was sooo sad).  Then a girl at work quit and my workload increased.  I slipped back into survival mode.  One day at a time.  It’s working but I really miss my lens and I really want to finish my projects.  For now I will focus on the fact that MazzyBelle is about 1/3 full (and the fact that I get to watch Miss Beautiful Mazzy all day today).  The other items will come, in time.  I am just proud I was able to make a bunch of these lovelies:

And I was glad I came up with a big girl’s version of which I’ve sold 8 already!  So please be patient with me.  If all goes well I’ll be back in that craft room lickity split!

P.S….a few people have asked how I came up with the name MazzyBelle for my Etsy store.  Mazzy is the beautiful baby girl of my friend, Gretchen.  I first made these dresses for Mazzy so when I decided to take everyone’s advice and try selling them, it only seemed fitting I name the store after Miss Mazzy.  Her middle name isn’t Belle but she’s a true southern Belle in my eyes.

November 30, 2010 at 2:44 pm Leave a comment

First tutorial…

…on dark chocolate truffles….mmmmm.

I have been making these and selling these for years.   I realize it is a little intimidating to some but beg of you to hang in there, it’s super easy as long as you have the right information.  First, rules on working with chocolate:

  • keep chocolate away from water and wooden spoons
  • to avoid chocolate looking ‘frosted’ or white, melt half the chocolate for dipping completely and then add the other half and stir like crazy.  You can heat it up another 30 seconds at a time in the microwave until smooth but definitely melt the first half and then add the second, you’ll get shiny, beautifuly chocolate everytime.

That’s it.  Really, that’s it.  Now for the recipe which will make 30-33 truffles:

In a microwave melt together:

  • 7 oz. chocolate (you decide, I use dark chocolate)
  • 2 c powdered sugar (I recommend sifting it but you don’t have to)
  • 3/8 c heavy cream (also known as whipping cream)
  • 4 1/2 oz. butter
  • dash of salt

Chocolate melts when stirred so stir, stir, stir!  I usually microwave for one minute, stir and then 30 seconds, stir, 30 seconds…you get the point, right?  When you’re done, it should look like this:

Refrigerate for 2-24 hours (I prefer the 24 hours).  Scoop out with a small cookie scoop.  You can roll them but it’s super messy and I don’t prefer it.

Now is when you want to keep some refrigerated and some out and ready to dip.  Melt your chocolate (I melt two bags = 28 ounces).  This is where you melt the one bag and then add the second (see above) and stir like crazy until it’s all smooth and beautiful.  You can dip them either by using two spoons and passing the truffle back and forth or by using a fork (don’t pierce it, just let the chocolate ooze down the tines).

For the drizzle, melt white chocolate and forget about fancy piping bags, use a ziploc.  I cut a small bit of the corner off and drizzle away.  Make the drizzles go off the truffles, it looks better that way.

Let everything dry and harden and then clean up the edges and package.  You’re ready to make people think you are the queen of all things chocolate; they’ll be so impressed!

Not interested in making truffles yourself?  I opened an Etsy shop!  (gasp, sigh, sweat, breathe)  You can visit it and purchase some there.  www.MazzyBelle.etsy.com

November 23, 2010 at 3:06 pm Leave a comment

Get Closer….

….seriously. Remember?  Today is the day!  Me + a need for dog food = the perfect excuse to go to Target and slip the CD in my cart.  Counting the minutes until I can go….


November 16, 2010 at 7:25 pm Leave a comment

WOW is all I can say…

…I made it through my major goals for last week.  This week’s list is considerably smaller because work is considerably busier.  But let me tell you…this writing down the goals for the week on the calendar is just what this girl needed.  I had been so busy for so long with work that when I wasn’t working, I didn’t know what to do with myself.  I knew there was stuff to do, but I couldn’t think of what is was.  So I wrote a long list in a clear-headed moment and am taking it in bite-size chunks so I don’t overwhelm or exhaust myself.

I had some neglected areas in my home which honestly, I think are better than having neglected people in my home so I’ve given myself some slack for letting it get so bad.  If you don’t know me, you don’t know that the folks at the Good Will drop-off site know me by name.  When I arrive, “Hi Mrs. B, side door or back?” is what they say because they see me twice a month.  I’m not a hoarder, I’m not a pack rat, I purge on a regular basis.  That is why this week was so shocking to me.  Here is last week’s progress around our neck of the woods…

My closet before (don’t judge):

…and after:

Lesson Learned:  I am a blessed girl and I do have plenty to wear.  The amount of scarves and sweaters are proof that from October until April I am never warm.

Spice shelf in cupboard that was a total pain in the butt:

Spice shelf that is now far more functional:

Lesson Learned: turntables (aka lazy susans) are essential for spice cabinets.  Splitting your savory spices from your baking spices in plastic containers is genius (pat yourself on the back) because now when you’re baking you can pull out one container and find what you need instead of rummaging through everything else in the cupboard searching for that elusive cinnamon.  Also?  Your husband?  He needs an intervention.  He is a spice addict and must be put on a buying ban until he uses up what he’s already purchased.

Just for kicks, I threw in the junk drawer in the kitchen as a little bonus:

Playroom closet that was spilling outside of the closet:

(Oh gaaaa….this was absolutely the most overwhelming task I took on)

The bliss that is now:

Lesson learned: if you ever move again, don’t let one box sit unpacked for nearly 5 1/2 years.  Even though you know what is in it and you know you don’t need it for daily life, do yourself a favor and unpack it anyway.  The regular purging you do?  It’s a good thing because this would have been AWFUL had you not been on top of it.  As it is, this led to at least 2 other projects to get the task completed.  It took 7 hours on a Sunday.  7.  Ridiculous.  Don’t do this to yourself again.

Final count for the week: 1 bag and 1 large box of trash.  8 large bags to Good Will.  Approximately $30 for organizational items (kitchen and garage) purchased at Target and Wal-mart.

November 15, 2010 at 7:29 pm 1 comment

Older Posts

Blog Stats

  • 21,746 hits