Thursday, July 25, 2013

Things I Love Thursday // 7.25.13

  • Our pool! We have been out to the pool every day this week with plans to go back for a couple hours tomorrow as well. Surviving summertime in Charlotte requires pool access (at least for these west-coaters, it does!)
  • The hysterical line of greeting cards I discovered this afternoon at Green with Envy made by Frank & Funny. These are cards written by stand-up comedians and I restrained myself by only purchasing five! 
  • The barre classes I've been taking (and being SORE again)
  • The fact that my girls love nature, bugs, creatures, getting dirty, etcetera. In fact, P is often referred to as "Buggy Louise" and here is her little swimming pool-puckered hand holding one of her latest "finds" (a CICADA). These are the lovely insects that "sing" in choruses of thousands out here in the south, this time of year. In fact, the moment Greg got us home from the airport after our Oregon vacation, I stepped out of the car to a sticky, warm night and asked, "What is that noise??" 
  • Grits. Specifically addicted to the Geechie Boy Mill grits that our babysitter/house-sitter just brought back for us from Edisto Island, South Carolina. I'm not sure if I especially love her or hate her for recommending that instead of cooking them in 3 cups of water, I substitute 2 cups of cream! 
  • Listening to my Bachelorette CD in the car (only when the girls are NOT with me). Memories...! 
  • The new plan I've adopted of having the girls take turns once a week to plan and cook (with my help) the dinner of their choice. It was Geneva's turn at it first this week. She made one of her favorites, Weeknight Bolognese and it was absolutely delicious. I loved watching her enjoy how much the rest of us enjoyed her cooking.
  • The new Deer sweater I just nabbed at the Anniversary Sale. Now bring on Fall! (Just kidding, I'm not quite ready yet.)
  • Signing the girls up for a French cooking class at Whole Foods. Who knew?? I'll be sure to let y'all know how it goes. I have high hopes.
  • Finding thoughtful little surprises hidden in my note paper. :) 
  • The fact that I took the girls to the library this week for what I thought was an arts and crafts session that turned out to be a simple "Story Time" with some music and silly dancing mixed in. The reason I ended up LOVING this outing was because my 8YO still had a blast and it was nice to see that she wasn't "too big" to thoroughly enjoy her time with much younger children.
  • Air conditioning. Seriously.
  • Discovering and enjoying new places in Charlotte with an old friend (An afternoon (morning or evening) with you, Miss Jillian, is always a pleasure!) 

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Our Journey in Typography

This is a little house project that I managed to pull together right before our big trip to the Pacific Northwest. I'd been thinking about how to acknowledge and pay tribute to the wonderful places we've lived over the past 15 years, in particular. I found these great typography prints on Etsy and all of a sudden my idea was up and running. (Y'all are aware that the only running I ever to is the figurative type; yes?)

After I saw the typography maps, I knew I wanted white frames. Unfortunately, the maps I ordered did not come in standard photo sizes. Thankfully, they were a standard document size. I knew if I found a diploma or certificate frame it would work beautifully. Obviously, from the pictures below, you can see that for the price I wanted to spend (not much!) I could only find brown frames. But you know me... a little can of spray paint and a dry afternoon were all I needed to achieve my desired "look."
While perusing my choices of frames, I came across this style of a "floating" document within the glass enclosure. Because the white boarder on each map was so crisply defined, I thought the wall color peeking through from behind would add another layer to the overall look without being too busy.
One of the best things about the artist that produced the images is that you can choose to customize your prints in a wide variety of colors. Initially, I had chosen three barfy lighter shades of these general colors. Thankfully, they send electronic proofs of your choices before actually printing. I immediately changed all the colors and I'm so happy with the result. [Note to self: Pastel is NOT your thing.]
California had to be in yellow, Oregon in green, and North Carolina in "Carolina blue." I can't help but wonder what the next state/color might be to add to our collection... Not to suggest that I am anywhere near being able to seriously consider another relocation anytime soon!
From the California map, I love: Golden State, Napa, Wine, Sacramento, Sunshine...
From the Oregon map, I love: Rain, Portland, Tillamook Cheese, Willamette Valley, Sisters, Mt. Hood, No Sales Tax...
From the North Carolina map, I love: Y'all, Asheville, Accents, Charlotte, Great Smokey Mountains, Biscuits...
(Apparently, I'm a fan of food.)
NOTE: I am acutely aware that these prints do not hang in a linearly accurate representation of our lives. The A-Type side of me is really trying to just let it go... The more creative side of my personality won out this time because aesthetically, it really does look best like this. :)

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Things I Love Thursday // 7.18.13

  • HOME: With the Jones Team back together again
  • Traveling with these monkeys. My-oh-my how times have changed...
  • My pillows
  • The One and Only Ivan
  • Richard Parker. I really missed this fuzzy, 17-pound, ball of love! 
  • The prospect of seeing both of my brothers in the same place at the same time next month
  • Thinking about all the fun we had these last three weeks in Oregon and how I plan to share our adventures with you here
  • My new purse from Madewell because it is as attractive as it is functional
  • Listening to Ella Enchanted with the girls and loving it just as much as they did
  • My new Portland Oregon Chef's Table cookbook, a most thoughtful gift from my girlfriend Gretchen: I look forward to review some recipes for y'all!

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Things I Love About Our Sunriver Annual Trip // 7.11.13

We just wrapped up our 5th annual reunion vacation with our "California Peeps" at Sunriver Resort in Central Oregon. It was the best year yet. I'm devoting this edition of "TILT" to the best loves and moments of that trip. 

• Lining up the kids from oldest to youngest and seeing how much they've grown. They didn't need any help from the parents to get in order this year. 
• The amazing houses we always seem to find that accommodate all 16 of us so comfortably. This years took the cake and we've already booked for next year!
• Goggle-smashed faces from hours at the pool
• The Hibiscus margaritas at Hola! Mexican restaurant 
• Moms' day at Sage Springs Spa
• Collaborative art projects 
• Fort Funnigan 
• Adults only dinner night out 
• Lazy afternoon naps
• Napping, poolside
• Hearing the husbands' college stories for the umpteenth time (honestly, still so funny)
• Leisurely reading
• Friendship 
• Rhythm on the Range night
• Oregon Summer sunshine
• The 100% children-directed and children-produced Annual Talent Show
• Putting the kids to bed and staying up late on the porch sipping, laughing, and debating with some of the best people in our lives
• Fishing the Deschutes for Geneva's birthday celebration
• "Kid Soup" (a bunch of adorable rugrats in a hot tub wearing goggles and acting like it's a swimming pool)
• The faces everyone made (especially my husband and Rusty) after trying tequila-soaked pineapple wedges
• Listening to the kids sing what becomes the theme song for that years trip: Cups, Pitch Perfect's "When I'm Gone"
• Enjoying communal dinners (always delicious) with this view
• Picking up where we left off
• Spending time with these women
• Stepping out the side door to play tennis with my hubby
• Slumber party-style sleeping
• Riding bikes in groups of 12-16
• Eating like I'm on vacation
Cheers to memory-making, friendship, and the love that grows year after year!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Fishing Expedition | Cave Junction

One of the highlights of our visit with my Dad and Mom was taking the kids out fishing on lake Selmac. It was a gorgeous morning and they even caught a few!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Things I Love Thursday // 7.4.13

• Freedom

• My hubby's arrival to the west coast

• Embarking on the Sunriver portion of our trip and the anticipation of spending the next week with great friends

• This picture of Geneva fishing with my dad
• Old barns

• Pilcro Stet Denim Roll-Up shorts (at Anthropologie) 
• Summertime in Oregon

• My little nature girl 
• Technology 

• Wildflowers

• Teaching the kids to make friendship bracelets

• These 
• My new photo app: BeautifulMess

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Getting Crafty | Stepping Stones

Stepping stones for Grandma's garden, each imprinted with a footprint and handprint of the grand kids. Make a pattern:
Set out the molds:
Mix the cement:
Stick your feet and hands in:
Decorate with glass and beads:
Let your creation dry: