Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Today you are one

Hazel, today, you are one. It's hard to believe it has already been a whole year, but at the same time, its hard to remember you not being here, as you fit so perfectly into our family. You are oh so serious, but at the same time, the most joyful little person. Its hard to ever be sad when you crawl (well, now walk) up and lay your head in my lap and smile with that amazing Hazel smile. You are so sweet, but already show signs of being fiercely independent and are not afraid to tell Matilda when she is upsetting you. I think you may have inherited your mama's temper.

At one, you love eating real food - none of that pureed stuff. You love reading books, and playing with whatever your big sis is playing with at any particular time; you love clementines, cheese, lima beans, and of course bananas. You are so used to playing with children Matilda's age, that when you see another child your own age, you get SO excited. You hate having your diaper changed, and getting dressed. You adore bath time with Matilda and just splash away every time you get in there. You have so much hair and its possible I put it in pig tails the other day for the very first time. you started really walking just last week, a full month before your sister did. You love everyone, and I love that trait about you. I hope it never goes away, and that you never have a reason to not trust people. The world can be a beautiful place, and I know it needs more people like you in it.

Sweet Hazel, one year ago today, you came into our lives and changed them for the better. You are already the best little sister and playmate to Til, and I cannot wait to see your relationship grow. A sister is the best friend, believe me, I know. I have the best sister in the world, and I can only hope that you and Matilda will one day grow into the best of friends and confidants.

Happy birthday beautiful girl.

Friday, November 22, 2013


image found here

I stumbled across this photo on one of my pinterest boards tonight, and it spoke to me like nothing else. Things have been hard lately y'all. Every day is a constant struggle, and my only thought is that I need grace. I need it for myself. I need to show it to others. This quote doesn't speak directly of grace, but I feel that when you have grace and can show it to others, you are able to live without hate, without whim, without jealousy and without fear. 

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Family Supper

"What happens during meals shapes a large part of our memories. As we grow older we forget many things, but we mostly remember the Thanksgiving or Christmas dinners in our families. We remember them with joy and gratitude or with sadness and anger. They remind us of the peace that existed in our homes or the conflicts that never seemed to get resolved. These special moments around the table stand out as vivid reminders of the quality of our lives together.
Today fast-food services and TV dinners have made common meals less and less central. But what will there be to remember when we no longer come together around the table to share a meal? Maybe we will have fewer painful memories, but will we have any joyful ones? Can we make the table a hospitable place, inviting us to kindness, gentleness, joy, and peace and creating beautiful memories?”
- Henri Nouwen
I stumbled upon this quote, and couldn't agree with it more. Some of my best childhood memories revolve around a supper table filled with loved ones. We always ate together as a family, and I'm so thankful my parents enforced that. It is something that is becoming almost a rarity these days, which is so sad because it is a time that we can just sit and eat and talk and catch up with our families. I love the blog and book Dinner: A Love Story because it talks about how to make dinner a family affair. I'm guilty of often eating in front of the television, but i'm wanting to change that. TV dinners should be a treat, not an every day occurrence, at least in our house. 
I think that my generation is realizing how absent we are becoming from the supper table. With iPhones, and iPads and every other gadget imaginable, its hard to really be present unless we make a concerted effort to do it. I think it has a lot to do with my love for the Kinfolk gatherings and Sunday Suppers (who is currently looking for a studio and event assistant - my dream job!) and all of the other fun dinner party pop-ups that are occurring. 
What is supper like at your house? Do you eat together as a family or with loved ones/roomates? I would love to know how you make it work! 
*print via Oh My Deer - one i've wanted for my kitchen for some time!

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Lentil Soup

Today was the first day that it truly felt like fall has arrived in Tennessee and I couldn't be more excited about my favorite time of year. I got a pumpkin spice latte, did a little grocery shopping with Hazel and came home and promptly made this soup. It's a delicious and simple soup, that can be put together and on the table in under 45 minutes. Enjoy!

Lentil Soup (adapted from this recipe)

4 cloves of garlic
1 yellow onion
4-5 carrots
4 stalks celery
3-4 T olive oil or ghee
1 T cumin
2 cups lentils
2 quarts chicken stock
1 bay leaf
1 t oregano
salt & pepper to taste

In a dutch oven or soup pot, cook unpeeled garlic for a couple of minutes on each side until toasted. While this is cooking, chop onion, carrots and celery. Remove garlic from pot, and set aside to cool. Add olive oil or ghee, and cook chopped veggies until soft and starting to brown. Peel and chop the garlic, add it back to pot with the cumin and lentils and let cook for about 30 seconds, stirring constantly. 

Add broth, bay leaf and oregano and bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until lentils are soft, about 30 minutes. Remove bay leaf, season with salt & pepper and enjoy!! Tastes extra yummy with crusty bread on the side. 

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Fall Bucket List

What's on yours?

image found via Pinterest / Tumblr 


Today, I am choosing happiness. Things have been a little rough around here these past few months, but I am being reminded over and over again that God is with me through it all. An instagram photo, a sweet little cactus from my sister, a friend coming over and folding clothes with me - all of these things are little reminders to me that I am loved and He will hold me through the hardest times and through the best times. Today I am choosing to look at the positive, regardless of my current circumstances. What about you? 

Hebrews 10:23 - Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.

1. An adorable cactus from my sister
2. Homemade veggie fried rice with the most perfect condiment in the world - siracha
3. Sister swings

Thursday, September 26, 2013

A Favorite Quote

“I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where. I love you simply, without problems or pride: I love you in this way because I do not know any other way of loving but this, in which there is no I or you, so intimate that your hand upon my chest is my hand, so intimate that when I fall asleep your eyes close.” 

― Pablo Neruda100 Love Sonnets

Wednesday, September 25, 2013


1. Hanging out with Pop
2. Peach preserves I made with my Granny
3. Wearing Pop's glasses and reading his magazine in his favorite chair
4. Pushing Hazel at the park
5. Coffee milk
6. Picnics. Matilda's (and my) favorite
7. Happy girl
8. Digging in dirt always
9. She is happiest when she is free to crawl and move

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

What Made Her Strong

I saw this tonight on Lindsay's instagram feed and had to repost it here. This is who I want to be. I don't want to be someone who speaks harsh words - I want to be the kind of person who speaks happiness and joy into people's lives. This is my challenge to myself to learn how to bite my tongue (or my fingers when it comes to text messages and emails), count to 10, and respond in grace. 

::I found the photo on pinterest, but couldn't find the original source - would love to credit if someone knows where it is from

Monday, September 23, 2013

White Bean Soup

I found this recipe on pinterest just recently, and adapted it based on what I had on hand. It turned out delicious, and something I will definitely make again. 

1 lb dried navy beans, soaked overnight
Enough veggie stock to cover, 6-8 cups
8 carrots, sliced
1 onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 bay leaf
1 t oregano
1 T parsley
1 T olive oil
salt & pepper to taste

Add oil to pot, and cook onions and carrots until onions become translucent. Add garlic and cook for additional minute, being careful not to burn. Add beans & veggie stock, plus the rest of the spices. Cook for 2-3 hours, and add salt & pepper at the end.

I served mine with some southern style mustard greens (cooked and cooked and cooked some more with a little bit of salt pork) and some cornbread. 


Saturday, September 21, 2013

Hello Fall

Y'all. I love fall. 

(Yes, i'm one of those people blogging about their love for fall.)

It has always been my favorite season, mostly because I can finally be outside without sweating, because I HATE sweating. Oh so much. And because I know it is leading into cooler weather. Give me 40-50 degree dreary days and I am a happy woman. 

Also, there's all that yummy pumpkin stuff EVERYWHERE. We won't even talk about how much money I've spent on Pumpkin Spice Lattes at Starbucks already. 

We decided to have a little fall dinner, complete with chocolate cake, because Matilda requested it. She was so cute when she asked that I couldn't not give in, especially since I thought it was a great idea too. 

Even Hazel agreed. She also loved her very first taste of roast. 

Monday, September 16, 2013

First Day of Homeschool

We started some preschool at home last week, and had so much fun on our first day. The beauty of homeschooling is that the world is literally our classroom, so we took our classroom to my parents backyard and spent the morning swimming, and then doing some nature study once Hazel went down for a nap. 

Matilda and I walked around my parents backyard and picked flowers, leaves and herbs and then brought them all together and discussed their similarities and differences, what they felt like and smelled like. It was so much fun just picking her little brain, and seeing what she came up with. I love that I have the ability to teach her and shape her world. 

We are starting to go through this book this week, and I'm hoping she will enjoy it. She has been talking nonstop about learning to read and doing school. I love how excited she is, and I hope that attitude continues. 

Any tips on homeschooling from those of you who have been doing this awhile? I would love to hear/read your suggestions! 

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Splash Pad Fun

As happy as I am about cooler weather and scarves and boots and pumpkins and snuggling under covers on cold mornings, I will miss this. I took these on the last day of splash pad season, when we went on labor day with our favorite Wilson family. 

I don't know that a week went by this summer that we didn't spend at least one day splashing around, eating snacks, and getting to play with our friends. 

I definitely don't want to rush fall and winter, but I look forward to the first day that the splash pad reopens next summer.