Sunday, May 18, 2014


At the cabin a few weeks ago, I took some updated photos of the camper at her new semi-permanent home.  We now use her as our guest quarters when we run out of room in the spacious cabin. It is quite possible that she may never travel the highways and the by-ways again.

You may remember what she looked like when we found her a few years ago.  You can click on the Vintage Camper tab above to read all about the renovation.
vintage camper
Originally, I hung the curtains with twine, but that did not work so well.  
I am so much happier with real curtain rods.  They look a lot neater.

Out the door, there is a nice view of the trail and the creek and grandson Jett riding by.
This is how close it is to the cabin. 
So if you come to visit, you may get to spend the night in the Little Camper on the Trail. Wouldn't that be grand?

Friday, May 16, 2014


Every now and then I hit upon something that changes my life, and I just want to share it with everybody.  Well, actually, whether I want to share my latest something or not is beside the point since everyone keeps coming up to me wanting to talk about it.  I am serious.  I even had a lady approach me at a rest stop in the bathroom. She was on her way to D.C., but I digress.
See my hairdo in the photo below.  Yes, I know that I am standing next to the Sidewalk Prophets, but try to focus on the hair.  You are going to want to know how to do this to your own hair this summer, because it is going to save you oodles of time and make you lots of friends. Proof of that is in the photo below.  It does appear like we are discussing my hair, doesn't it?
I could make a YouTube video showing you how easy it is, but there are a gazillion already made.  I really like the one below because, unlike most, it is only two minutes long.  A YouTube video on a two-minute process should not be eight minutes long, and it certainly should not contain annoying music.  I digress again.

I would suggest you use a headband with those gripper things on one side to prevent sliding.  I got mine at Walmart, but I think there are some at the Dollar Tree.
The great thing about this hairstyle is that if you invest the two minutes on day one, you are set for three days.  I put mine up on the day I wash my hair.  Sometimes it is still pretty wet, sometimes it is almost dry.  I do not put any product in it.
Then I sleep on it that night.   The next day and the day after are my curly days.  I love my curly days.
Now, my hair was a bit frizzier this time than usual, but I think it was because I put it up pretty wet and pretty tight; and I took it out the night before at the Sidewalk Prophet concert to show someone how to do it.  I was kind of in a hurry, so I just shoved it back in the headband.  I do use some hairspray on my curly days, but I don't think it would matter much.  Those curls last!

Just look at them peeking around the side.  I told you:  easy, peasy. 

Wednesday, May 14, 2014


As I write this, it has been 679 days since the accident that rocked our world and changed our lives.

People told me then that some things would get easier--like breathing.

And they were right.  I can now go days without panic attacks and fighting back the tears.  I can now close my eyes to rest and not have to visit that place--most of the time.

As I wrote about in a previous post, good things do indeed happen after such a tragedy; but they never, ever will make the tragedy worth it.  They will, however, make the tragedy more bearable.

The Sidewalk Prophets never set out to make our personal tragedy more bearable.  When they wrote and recorded the song, "Live Like That," they surely did not have our family in mind.  But God has a way of weaving lives together as He sees the big picture.

In the chaos that followed the accident, I have no idea the exact moment that the song we would sing on the way to school many mornings became our theme song--our hope to hold on to.  But it did.  And just like that we became connected to a band--a small group of followers serving the Lord through words and music.

We never imagined that we would be invited to attend one of their concerts in Knoxville a few months after the boys' deaths.  I would not be honest if I did not say that it was a bit awkward as we toured their bus.  Reconciling the moment with the reason for the moment was no small feat.  There was no separating the two because without one there would not have been the other.  I admit that I was personally too raw to thoroughly "enjoy" our brief encounter with the guys, but God still used it as a salve to add another layer of healing.

And when the band played "Live Like That" a short time later; and Dave (intentionally or not) looked me in the eyes, God again reminded me that He was not leaving me or forsaking me. 

Our family has faced many, many moments of hurt over the last 679 days; and there have been many times I wished that I had had the freedom to momentarily exact my own kind of justice through words or actions or both.  But then I would remember that I have committed to LIVE LIKE THAT.

Today, we once again will have the opportunity to meet with the Sidewalk Prophets since they are holding a concert right here in our own little part of the world.  This very moment I am feeling anxious; and a part of me wants to just crawl back into my bed, because once again, I have some reconciling to do.  

But isn't that the whole point of the Gospel?  Reconciliation. It has never been easy.  It comes at a very great price.  

To God be the glory.

Sometimes I think
What will people say of me
When I'm only just a memory
When I'm home where my soul belongs

Was I love
When no one else would show up
Was I Jesus to the least of us
Was my worship more than just a song

I want to live like that
And give it all I have
So that everything I say and do
Points to You

If love is who I am
Then this is where I'll stand
Recklessly abandoned
Never holding back

I want to live like that
I want to live like that

Am I proof
That You are who you say You are
That grace can really change a heart
Do I live like Your love is true

People pass
And even if they don't know my name
Is there evidence that I've been changed
When they see me, do they see You

I want to live like that
And give it all I have
So that everything I say and do
Points to You

If love is who I am
Then this is where I'll stand
Recklessly abandoned
Never holding back

I want to live like that
I want to live like that

I want to show the world the love You gave for me
I'm longing for the world to know the glory of the King

I want to live like that
And give it all I have
So that everything I say and do
Points to You

If love is who I am
Then this is where I'll stand
Recklessly abandoned
Never holding back

I want to live like that
I want to live like that

Wednesday, March 26, 2014


I am finally getting around to taking some photos of the almost completed office.  

Since it is very much a working office, I seriously doubt that it will ever be done to perfection.  I would love to have it look like so many rooms I see that apparently nobody uses, but we run two businesses  in this space as well as sew, craft, iron, and put up guests. It is more important that this room be functional than photo-worthy. 

Sunday, March 23, 2014


When I first started blogging, I did not have a tagline for my blog.  Honestly, I did not even know what a tagline was.  Maybe you still don't know what a tagline is. 

A tagline is a brief description or recurring theme of a blog, typically found under the title.  Taglines have been used in marketing for years because catchy phrases stick with people.

I vaguely remember someone talking about taglines when I attended the first Blissdom way back in 2008. Who knew the importance of such things in the early days of online journaling?   Who knew that one day millions of people would be living vicariously through the lives of everyday people and developing friendships with folks that they most likely will never meet IRL (in real life)?  I sure didn't.

When I started blogging in 2006, I thought my title said it all:  Living Life Creatively.  It would be years before I realized what made my creative different from everybody else’s.  And when I did, I added a tagline. 

In today’s world of social media, where folks flit and fly around looking for a place to land, a tagline may very well be the hook that reels them in. I don't know about you, but I need to land or be reeled in from time to time.

I am sure that some popular blog writers have chosen their taglines carefully with marketing strategies in mind; but at least one may have picked the first thing that popped in her head.  (see below)

I truly am inspired by my fellow bloggers’ taglines; and just to prove it, I have set what I think are some pretty realistic goals based on them.

I would really be thrilled if someone could share her talent by setting my goals to music so that I could remember them when life gets crazy.  It would also make an awesome YouTube video. 

Taglines are a lot like commercial jingles.  Some just have the power to haunt.  You shouldn't underestimate their power.


Click here to read about how my family took a risk and bought a cabin to make a memory.

Click here to read about the vintage camper that we found in a field filled with hay.  No, no, no.  The camper was filled with hay, not the field.   

Monday, March 17, 2014


I wanted to add some texture to a wall in my kitchen that was not in the best of shape.  I bought textured wallpaper from Amazon and cut it into pieces 2.75 by 7.75 inches.

cut bricks
I then dipped each "brick" into a pan of water and stuck it to the wall, making sure that it was level and evenly spaced.  Mine are spaced just a little over 1/4 inch.  Once painted, minor imperfections will not even be noticeable. 
bricks steps 2-3

Sunday, March 16, 2014


So, this may go down in history as the longest and most stressful redecorating project that I have ever attempted.  I wish I knew why.  I just could not make up my mind and kept second guessing every decision.  There are still a few things to do, but the worst is definitely over.  I could not be happier, and I love walking down the stairs in the morning and seeing the wall of nature prints by the artist, Maryjo Koch. 


nature vignette

As much as it pained me, I actually cut the pages from three different books by Maryjo Koch in order to achieve a very cohesive, symmetrical display.  The leaded glass doors  were from my mother's house in Ohio and have been out in the shed begging to come in for some time now.

All of the frames were purchased at Hobby Lobby. The curtains are from Ikea, and this is the fourth go-around with them.  You may remember seeing them in the camper.  You can read about the fireplace makeover here.



I bought this incredible light fixture at Bliss in Market Square in Knoxville just a few days ago.  I usually only get to shop for inspiration there, but this was actually surprisingly affordable!
The crocheted chain pull was also something I brought home from my mother's collection of junk good stuff.  It's just another little "happy" in my kitchen.
The faux brick wall was a fun project that I will write about in detail in my next post.  It is hard to see the effect here.  It is subtle, but I love the texture it adds to the room.


Wednesday, February 05, 2014


It was Thanksgiving, 1980.  I had a three-year-old and a six-week-old baby; and for some strange reason, I volunteered to host Thanksgiving for my husband's family.  Sleep deprived as I was, I don't remember stuffing the turkey.  I don't remember making the pies. However, I do remember going to the library to find a prayer to read before we ate.

I went to the library to find a prayer to read.

That still seems bizarre to me almost 34 years later. How could I not know that I could use my own words to talk to God.