Wednesday, July 30, 2008

More Organizing

Pretty busy around here. Our exciting company from afar arrives tomorrow and the kids are just about jumping out of their skin. All I have to do is mention it and Dabney starts hopping, literally. We had a great day of fellowship here on Sunday, a sort of preview of some of the wonderful things to come. We had over a family of 11, my brother and sister, and another friend of ours. Thankfully the weather was beautiful and we enjoyed the outdoors most of the day.

Lately I've been cleaning everything. I even cleaned out the garage on Friday and Saturday and I must say it looks pretty great. I think the key to garage cleaning is using the vertical space available, namely, wall space. That night I also gathered all of our electric tools, hand tools, hardware, miscellaneous screws, anchors, nails, nuts and bolts and sorted, consolidated and organized them into a tool organizer Tim bought a while ago but never had time to put together. That project took quite a while and the aid of a good movie rolling while I worked helped the job considerably.

As you can also tell, I also re-painted our living room. The blue just outstayed it's welcome. When we first moved into our home, I tried to find a paint color for every room, and I did. Now that I'm a more mature homeowner (Ha!) I'm understanding more and more the power of a great neutral. A neutral that doesn't show up the other furnishings and accents in the room. A tone that warms the room but doesn't hog attention. I've explained my love of mis-tints from the hardware store before, so I guess it's no surprise that on my latest trip to Lowes I found a gallon of interior satin in a really nice neutral, so I figured for $3.49 (!) I couldn't go wrong.

So, yesterday I painted, and today is cleaning. Cleaning with a capital C. Why? Because the people who taught me to clean are coming to stay at my house. Last night I vacuumed in betweeen the sectional pieces and I found 3 crayons, 4 pens, a ruler, a postcard, 2 matchbox cars, $0.03 in change, $0.32 in play money and 9 (!) glue sticks. Believe it or not I clean within the couch quite regularly, but that was just crazy. And aren't I supposed to find at least 1 real dollar in the couch? What's up with that?

I'd better get going, the smudges on the doors from little fingers are calling me to clean them next.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

House Bits

So you already know that I clip coupons and save the advertisements that come in the Sunday paper. But, I was having trouble keeping all these things neatly put away. After all, if you aren't clipping your coupons immediately, they have to go somewhere and after my resolution to be more organized, I thought and thought and finally I came up with the above idea. I'm really not sure why I hadn't thought of it before. So find yourself a pretty magazine file and never wonder where you placed your sale papers and uncut coupons again.

Last week I went to Hobby Lobby for a few things, then came across the clearance aisle and found everything int the aisle 90% off. Yes, 90%. This frame was a great color, but it was being clearanced because some mysterious embellishment had fallen off and only the glue mark was left. I found myself some black taffeta ribbon, tied a bow to match the proportion and whipped out my handy glue gun, which I've had since high school. Add a wedding picture and it's good to go.

Notice anything?


I keep forgetting to post this picture, but I think the fringe looks really great with our new curtains.

After My Own Heart

Dabney wanted to decorate one of Joshua's cupcakes, so after I finished a few I handed her an extra cupcake (or "pupcake" as David calls them) and the piping bag and showed her how to hold it and squeeze. Halfway through her first cupcake, she giggled and exclaimed, "I love this!"

Monday, July 28, 2008

Joshua's First Birthday Pictures

We kind of assumed that he wanted macaroni and hot dogs as his birthday dinner.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Happy 1st Birthday Sweet Joshua

My dear little man, today you turn 1 year old. One year ago this afternoon, God brought you forth guided by His tender hands into your daddy's and my arms but you had been in our hearts long before we saw your sweet face. We are so thankful that God gave you to us. We rejoice in your sweet smile and your jolly disposition. We already see evidence of God's grace in your life~ your tolerance of and love for your brother and sister, your rapt attention for your daddy at family worship, and even for your little "amen" echoed at our table. God has blessed us so greatly with you, Little Man. We love how you can blow on your own food and how you bob and dance when you hear music and how you go nuts when you hear Daddy's key in the door in the afternoons. I love how Dabney and David make you laugh, your blond hair and green eyes, your love for exploring outside, and how you snuggle so sweetly at bedtime, then lay your drowsy head down on your blanket and drift off to sleep without a word.

We love you so much Sweet Josh and we are thankful for you. We are grateful to call you our son. Our prayer is that you will grow to be a godly man, tender to God's Word and a loving and dedicated father and husband. Happy Birthday Joshua! We can't wait to see what God will do with your life in the coming years. May God richly bless you, Sweetheart.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Because I'm Allergic to Posting Without Kid Pictures

Dabney calls her outfit the "cherry suit".

Extended Family Vacation

Not "family vacation- extended", but as in "extended-family vacation". Once again our kind God has been utterly merciful to our family. I haven't been to the south to visit my grandparents since we surprised them at the family reunion back in 2004. That means that Dabney was a 6 month old baby then and now they haven't even met David and Joshua. And even when we did visit in 2004, we didn't visit their homes~ it was a week long beach trip, which was a blast, by the way. But this year? This year, I get to show my husband and children where I've spent countless summers in the past, a place where generations of my family have been born and raised and married and died. A place where my cousins or other relatives live on almost every street in town. A place where my grandparents took my mother home from the hospital to a tiny little house by the railroad tracks. Where my grandmother's ancient pecan tree and grapevines shed a bounty every year. My grandpa's beloved farm house with the creaky steps in the middle of acres and acres of and corn and cows. The dirt roads I used to run down in my bare feet. The sandy soil gets in my toes and in my hair. The cicadas hum all summer long. The town is in my blood. I've lived in a few places in my life, but this town is always the same. That wonderful slow, humid life where you've known your neighbors and their parents for generations. I love coming to this town. I miss it when I'm not there. I try not to be jealous of my cousins and my aunts and uncles because they are raising their children in a place where our ancestors lived down the road and raised my grandparents. I have to be content right now, but I wish we lived closer to my history.

But praise God I get to visit.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Organizing Progress = Very Happy Husband

I spy a clicker bucket. (And yes, I plan on putting candles in those really cool candlesticks~ I only need to find 2 more sizes of 4" wide yellow candles.)

I'd like to show you all of the random spots throughout the house where I've created lovely empty space where stuff used to sit, but that would be boring. But please, for my sake, know that I did in fact create empty space and stuff no longer sits there.

I also took all of this out of Dabney's dresser...

and now her dresser drawers look like this.

Welcome to our crawlspace where the clothes that my children have outgrown live. I organized down there this week too but I don't like to stay very long because Shelob lives down there too.

This is what Josh did while I worked on the pantry.

The Pantry

I thought I'd take this opportunity to show you what I've been up to lately. The short answer is that I've been organizing my home. I've been trying to accomplish this for a few years now, finding a basket for this and a place for that, however, I am not a natural born organizer. Now I love organized things but I have to work really hard to find a place for everything and make sure it stays there. I really admire those who can organize things well, and so does my husband~ which is reason #1 why I need to be a better organizer. So this week, I've tried to take the bull by the horns and just dive right in. With a family of 5, things are constantly needed to be tidied and re-organized so I thought I'd document my progress here to remind me how things should look. Tim thought it would be a good idea and so here it is.

Let's start with the pantry. I have a more extensive pantry in the basement, but I keep all the staples up near the kitchen. This isn't a huge pantry, so I really have to use the space wisely. I didn't have to do too much to the pantry to keep it uncluttered this week, but I vacuumed the shelves and took a few things that I don't need too often (like red wine vinegar)back down to the basement.

The little baskets on either side of this shelf hold little bottles and packets and other things that would otherwise float around the pantry and clutter up the space.

Gettin' low on oatmeal.

The blue and white bins are actually trashcans that I bought clean and new, but I keep potatoes in one and onions in the other, so onion skins and potato dirt don't get the space all dirty. All my tupperware is kept in the large blue bin.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Summer Breakfast

Sweet cantaloupe is the breakfast of choice for our little sweetie. It looks like he will be our first Giedd baby ever to have 2 teeth cut before his 1st birthday. Despite his grin, he's been pretty grumpy lately, which is uncharacteristic of Baby Josh. The cantaloupe is a good choice for soothing aching gums. But think of it Gramma, by the time you see him, he'll have two beautiful, razor-sharp, little pearly white bottom teeth!

Friday, July 11, 2008

My Mom's Cookbook Calls These

Russian Tea Cakes, but Dabney renamed them Pecan Cookies.
(And FYI, it's "pea-can" not "pea-khan")

Here's Martha's recipe:


Makes 24 cookies.

  • 1 cup pecan halves
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar


  1. In a food processor, pulse pecans, flour, granulated sugar, cinnamon, and salt until mixture resembles coarse meal; add butter and pulse until a dough forms. Shape dough into a disk, and wrap tightly in plastic; refrigerate until firm, 30 to 60 minutes.
  2. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Pinch off and roll dough into balls, each equal to 1 level tablespoon. Space 1 1/2 inches apart on two large baking sheets. Bake, switching sheets from top to bottom halfway through, until cookies are just golden around edges, 20 to 25 minutes.
  3. Cool 5 minutes on sheets; transfer to a rack to cool completely. Place confectioners' sugar in a bowl. Roll cookies in sugar twice to coat thoroughly, tapping off excess.

Crafty Friday

We really enjoy Fridays around here. I try to make it a fun day by having the big ones do something creative-or help me do something creative-to end out the work week. It's usually baking (for Bible study) or sewing, but recently Dabney got her hands on a watercolor set and has been painting ever since. Yesterday I framed and hung one of her "originals" and she is just loving being an artist.

He fell asleep mid-crawl the other day.

Also this week I've been making my favorite summertime ice cream cupcakes in anticipation of hospitality. They take a few steps with baking and freezing in between, so I can take my time across a few days.

Also, check out my newest window mis-treatments! I'm quite pleased with how they turned out~ and the master bathroom window treatment was free~remember my old homemade roman shade from the master bedroom? Yep. Looks a lot better now, huh?

I finally decided on curtains for the living room. Like them? I'm ordering tassel fringe for the new living room curtains today or tomorrow. And don't get used to the blue walls. But, that's another post.
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