Monday, October 27, 2014

My (Hopefully) Dream Kitchen

So, I showed you the current progress on our kitchen.  I'm now going to show you some elements that I really hope will be in here after we're done with it.  I have expensive taste on a tight budget, so I'm not expecting every picture I show you to be in here.  But, I'm going to try my best to get everything I want, no matter how long it takes.  (Hopefully not very long, because I'm wildly impatient.)

I was watching an episode of I Hate My Kitchen and they showed this amazing beautiful turquoise sink.  Let me show you.
Can we all just collectively sigh over this?  The actual color is Palermo Blue and it's by Kohler.  On the episode, the sink was......$1,800!  For the sink!!!  I searched online and it's currently not available, but the price on it was $1,300.  I'll just have to dream about this sink.

After my friend, Rachel, moved into her new house, I helped her turn her dining room chandelier into a mason jar chandelier.  We replaced the globes on the chandelier with turquoise mason jars and it was awesome.  I searched Pinterest for DIY mason jar chandeliers and I found this guy.  With STEPS!  I've already looked into making it.  There's some funky things going on with our current ceiling that are driving me crazy and this would help a lot.  I found comparable ones on Etsy for at least $250 and with the project list and costs on the link, it would cost around $100 to DIY.

I love color, and with all the wood, I think I need a good counterbalance.  I found this picture on Pinterest and with my mom's help, we're going to do separate colors on our uppers and lowers, like this.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Getting To Know Me...

Today, I'm joining a link-up with the Texas Women Bloggers.  It's a really amazing network I'm lucky to be a part of and they want us to tell a little more about ourselves to help spread the word of our blog.  I love questions or finish-the-sentence so I'm ready to do this.

1. What is your name, blog title, and URL link?
   - I'm  Casey, I blog at A Girl & Merle and you can find me at

2. How did you come up with your blog’s title?
   - I didn't want to do this question.  My title involved my dog, Merle, who recently passed away.
3. How long have you been blogging?
   -I've been blogging over a year now.  I used to blog at Real Suburbia but I recently switched to AG&M.
4. When we visit your blog, what can we expect to discover?
   - My musings on life, being a boy mom and our current house renovation.
5. Share the link to your favorite or most popular blog post(s).
  -I've only had this blog this month, but so far my most popular is Hello October.
6. What are three goals you have for your blog next year?
   - I would love to network more.  Do a giveaway with some of my favorite gals.  Manage Twitter better?
7. Tell us about your family. Are you married or in a relationship? Do you have kids? If so, how many and how old are they? Do you have pets? You know, the usual stuff.
   -  I'm in a relationship with the guy I had a crush on in high school.  I have one boy, Wilder who's almost three.  He has two other sons that I spend a lot of time with, too.  No pets as you can see in question two but hopefully that will change soon.
8. What part of Texas do you call home?
   -A tiny little one stop light town in North Texas, an hour north of Fort Worth.
9. How do you make a living?
   -I'm lucky enough to be a stay at home mom.  I keep that guy living.
10. Have you attended blog conferences or social events in the past? If this is your first time, what are you most nervous about?
   -I've been to a few meetups and hosted one myself with my friends Stephanie and Adrian in Waco this February.  It was such an fun experience.  I would love to do it more.  I'm nervous about making a good impression and making new friends.  I always think I pale in comparison to most.
11. What are you looking forward to the most at the TWB dinner event?
   -Food and meeting the women who run the blogs I follow.
12. Finally, share your social media links so we can connect online!
   - You can find me here?
      - Instagram: @agirlandmerle
      - Pinterest: @caseylee610
      - Twitter:  still @realsuburbia

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

I Hate My Kitchen, but I'm Starting To Love It

Sorry, I've been MIA.  I'm trying to get out of the no dog funk and it's hard.  Really hard.

I'm going to show you our kitchen in its current progress.  And you can't judge me.  Because we're doing it all ourselves.  Slowly but surely.  Our house is almost 100 years old.  I've painted the living room.  A nice greystone, my painter mother would say, and then the wall of paneling in here, I painted a navy blue.  The fireplace bricks were an odd color so I painted those white.  I left all the built ins and trim how they were since almost all the trim throughout the house matches.  I painted the dining room a shade darker, our bedroom is grey with maroon accents.

And then there was the kitchen.
Let me explain what's happening here.  I ripped up the linoleum, and all this adhesive was stuck to the floor.  So that's what you see there.  There was hideous paneling on the wall.  We ripped them off and found planks running behind it.  We also uncovered a transom above the door.  There was sheet rock flush with the cabinets so when we beat through it, we found they just framed all around the cabinets and hid all that space on top of the cabinets.  There was also a drop ceiling I ripped down in the very beginning.   The drop ceiling was hiding florescent lights you can kind of see up there.  Oh, and a sea foam green ceiling.  I painted the backsplash with chalkboard paint because it was what I was able to do at the time, but now I hate it.  And I hate the golden oak cabinets.

I have the floor bought, we're just waiting on all the demo before we install it.  We've sanded that far wall.  Here let me show you.  What you should know is that the walls were also covered in cheesecloth and wallpaper which is what they did a long time ago.  AND it was all stuck up with nails.  Tiny little nails, hammered all over the walls.

Here you can tell the difference after sanding.  You can follow my progress on Instagram @agirlandmerle.  I've had followers raving over the planks which totally helps me feel better about leaving them exposed.  I'll be doing some more shopping on Friday and tomorrow, I'll show you what I want it to look like in the end.  Which hopefully will be in the near future.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Goodbye Merle

Tragically, two days ago in a chain of events no one could have predicted, my Merle got out and was hit by a truck and killed.  Our neighbor's son came to tell me and I got to sit out there with him and hold him and talk to him until he finally died.

He was my fresh start and he's gone much too soon.  I lost Arnold on Memorial Day and now Merle.  It never gets easier for me.  After Tj got home, I ran to the shower and sat in there and cried.  This isn't the way things are supposed to happen.  That's what we're supposed to say right? It's hard getting used to a dogless house.  If I dropped an ice cube, he would chase in there and steal it.  If I didn't want my crust, I would give it to him.  If I had to use the bathroom, he would follow me in there.  He would bump around under the bed at night and I would be content knowing he was there.  Now, I have to stop myself from calling out to him.

I stayed at home the past two days just dealing with it.  Tj and I have talked about another dog in the future, there are always going to be dogs who need a home.  My blog will stay the same.  He gave me the hope to start over and I'll carry that with the blog.  It'll just be a little harder to look at for a while.

To everyone who reached out on Instagram, I appreciate it more than you know.

Merly, I'll see you at the Rainbow Bridge.  Until then...

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

In Other Words...

I have patiently waiting for day 15.  Favorite Quote and Why.

I love quotes.  I love quotes so much that I have three tattooed on me.  "Out the ash I rise with my red hair and eat men like air."  "She is hotter than a thousands suns, an elegant whirlwind of golden-red.  A ginger tempest."  "It seems my soul is a gypsy."

  It's honestly so hard to actually narrow down a favorite quote.  As an avid reader, I come across so many lines that really speak to me.   Then, one night scrolling through Pinterest, I came across something along the lines of "15 YA Books To Read Before The Movies".  There I found The Fault In Our Stars, which killed me.  I cried through the whole book and then through the movie.  I loved John Green so much and he had so many good lines that I immediately bought Paper Towns, which I loved almost as much.  Looking For Alaska is next on my list.

I said all of this, leading you to believe that my favorite quote is a John Green quote.  It's not.  Before The Fault In Our Stars, I read The Perks Of Being A Wallflower.  This book fit squarely into my soul like a puzzle piece.  I loved EVERYTHING about how Stephen Chbosky wrote this book. I started crying in the first few pages because it felt like I was writing it.  It, to me, is a true coming of age novel and is so spot on, on how it feels to feel like you're going through life unnoticed.  And then I read this line.
I read it, and immediately shut off my Kindle and cried.  I cried because the line is perfection.  It completely encompasses this emotion that everyone has felt but hadn't been actually able to say.  I have lived this two sentences so often in my life.  And I am still trying to figure it out.  Charlie is a piece of me, well written into an amazing book.  I made Jamie read it and she had every reaction I did.  I even loved the movie which is rare.

I want to be responsible for a few chosen words that hit someone in the exact way it's supposed to.  What's your favorite quote?

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

The Funny Thing Is..

Monday's prompt was Your Favorite Fall Recipe and really, I don't have seasonal recipes.  I'll make soup if it's 100 degrees out.  I did find a cider recipe on Pinterest the other day where you cook 1/3 of brown sugar and heavy cream together and then add four cups of cider and cook it through until it's warm and it was amazing.  I topped it with homemade whipped cream and caramel syrup and it tasted like apple pie in a mug.  And I don't even like apple pie.

Helene in Between Blogtober
Today's prompt is Your Funniest Childhood Memory.
 I'm a pretty funny gal.  Not to toot my own horn or anything.  While my childhood was scattered with moments that were not so funny, I remember laughing a lot.  I don't know if I could pick one funny memory to define my childhood.

One of my mom's friends gave us a baby wild hog once.  We named her Chloe and she was our pet pig.  She thought she was a dog and one time she knocked over a can of Surge, drank it and went crazy.  It was pretty hysterical, and probably was a testament to what was actually in Surge.  When Jamie and I were like...5 we drug all our dad's tools out and tried to take our swing set apart.  He didn't think that was too funny.  One time, I was like dead sick and I fell asleep in the recliner with toilet paper shoved up both nostrils, snoring my face off.  That's more mortifying but is that funny?

I'm kind of glad I can't really single out one memory.  We just laughed a lot and we still do.  Usually because of me.  I think I should feel some kind of pressure to be funny, but most of the time, it's purely accidental.  I like making people laugh.  Guffaw.  Chortle.  Chuckle.  I think a good belly laugh can cure a multitude of ails.  I do remember one time, we got off the bus and walked into the house.  Our aunt Sondy was living with us at the time and we were all hollering for my mom and Sondy because we couldn't find them.  Jamie, Tonee (my little sister) and I walked into her bedroom and my mom and Sondy came barreling out of the closet with pantyhose over their heads screaming.  Jamie didn't stop running until she hit the pasture.  Tonee and I were screaming on the front porch.  They thought it was the funniest thing in the world.  Us, not so much.  I brought that memory up to my mom the other day and she still laughed until she cried.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

The Thing About Advice...

Ok, so for Day 12, I'm supposed to tell you The Best Advice I've Been Given.

Helene in Between Blogtober
As dorky as this sounds, one of the best pieces of advice was given to me by my twin sister, Jamie.   She moved an hour away from me when we first graduated and I had never driven to where she lived and I was always scared I would take the wrong road or end up on the freeway.  She told me, "Casey, don't freak out if you take the wrong exit.  For every exit onto the highway, there is an exit off."  Now, after that, I used to work in Irving by the airport in the heart of traffic jam city + ongoing construction.  I lived and drove all around Austin.  But every time I take the wrong exit, I hear Jamie telling me that.

But in all reality, the two best pieces of advice came from my mumsy.  Duh.

Always be observant of your surroundings!  Any time we were going to do something remotely new, she would tell us this.  When we decided to go to Vegas, she preached it.  It was her mantra.  That along with, "Casey! Did you ever watch CSI?!  It's in Las Vegas!"  I think it's why I remember my way to places so well, because I'm always watching what's around me so I know if anything looks familiar.

After I had Wilder, I was for sure I wouldn't need help.  And she told me, "There's going to be a point where you are at your wits' end and you're going to need help.  Ask for help.  I'm only a phone call away."  In my head, I was all, "Psh, whatever Darla, I got this down."  And then, when Wilder was three weeks old, I had sauerkraut at lunch.  Wilder subsequently had the worst case of colic I had witnessed in my three weeks of motherhood.  By the time 5 AM rolled around, I had called my mom and was begging for help.  She was awake and came right over. 

What's the best advice you've received?

Friday, October 10, 2014

Gingers For President

This prompt makes me a little queasy.

Helene in Between Blogtober

If I Were President...
Look.  Let's face it.  I'm just not equipped to be president.  The thought of some really outlandish scenario that would in turn lead me to be president makes me sweat profusely.  I'm a Gemini.  I'm too wishy washy to be president.  Any immediate idea I would have to rectify any current problem would probably set off a chain of events might really screw things up.

I don't discuss politics.  I just don't.  I did vote in the last election.  I didn't brag about it.  I won't discuss it with anyone.  If people bitch and complain about anything politcal, I just stay polite and don't mention anything.  My thought is, once people get riled up over a hot topic, someone is bound and determined to say something disrespectful to someone in the room, or just say something stupid or ignorant in general.  And I try to avoid doing both of those things.

Can you imagine how stressful being president is?  I wouldn't assume to judge anyone in that position.  I wouldn't assume I could do a better job than the current president, regardless of what "information" you want to throw at me.  I think if the people who bitched about politics put as much energy into doing good deeds or supporting a good cause, the whole country and world would be a better place.  Instead, we want to point fingers and look at every bad thing that's happened and not give ANY credit to anything good that has come out of ANY president, Republican or Democrat.  Instead, we want to sit on our asses and talk about all the "bad laws" being passed, but never get up off our asses to vote and make our voices heard.  You can't hold everyone else accountable and not hold yourself accountable.  OF COURSE, you could always have better or worse presidents.  We could have a dramatic shift and fall under a dictatorship.  It's this strange case of people always thinking things can get so much worse, instead of thinking how things could get so much better.

I write all this, not expecting to have meant to say so much.  And what it boils down to, is:

If by chance, I happened to be the President, I would immediately resign and hand the job off to someone more suitable than a Ginger in the middle of nowhere Texas who has a dog named Merle she sometimes calls Meryl.  With the exception that NATURAL Gingers receive free sunblock and skin cancer screenings.  Well, how about free cancer screenings for everyone really...

I Never Thought Blogging Would...

I never thought blogging would lead to so many people.  In real life or on the interwebs.  Honestly, the blogs I read and the people I follow, secretly, I'm begging to be their friend.  I relate to the ones I read and follow and when you read a sentence they wrote or see a picture they posted that resonates in you, you want to get to know that person more.

I think I've always written better than I've spoken.  Even with my high school crush (awww yeah), I had the courage to pass him notes but never really speak to him.  Most people hide behind their words but mine really show who I am.  In blogging, you find people who can appreciate that.  They share that same passion.  I was always teased in school for my love of reading and writing and in the blogosphere, that is the norm.  I've never had a core group of women who I wasn't related to.  I feel like I have that now, just in the one year I've been blogging. 

Blogging has taught me so much about myself, it's made me more confident, more courageous when it comes to trying new things and meeting new people.  I think some people think that "likes and comments" on blogs and posts is a little narcissistic, I don't.  I think every little blip that someone takes the time to click or show, means they get what you're saying.  They care about what you care about.  I never thought blogging would create a network that I would be so lucky to be a part of.
Helene in Between Blogtober

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Arrr'nt You Glad It's Almost Halloween?

I have to pick: My Best/Worst Halloween

Helene in Between Blogtober

Ok, so Halloween used to not be a big deal for me because I just didn't like dressing up.  But when I had Wilder, I knew I was going to dress up with him his first year.  The best thing about Halloween with kids is that you get to learn their personalities and what they like so you know how to dress them up.  His first year, we were pirates.
We didn't trick or treat since Wilder was only 10 months old but we handed out candy in our subdivision and Wilder got to see all the cool costumes and we totally overbought candy so we were a really popular house.

His second year, he was Mike Wazowski.  We went to a local community gathering and Wilder loved it.  But his costume was a little warm and it was hot that day so we didn't force his hood on him.  He got to play games and run around.
This year he's gonna be Luigi and his dad is going to be Mario and they'll probably go back to the community gathering.  It sucks, because you don't ever think about splitting up holidays but I'll take what I can get.

But when Jamie and I were kids, I remember Jamie wanted to be Snow White so bad.  And my mom colored her red hair with black shoe polish to make it look more authentic and that took FOREVER to wash it.

Got any better stories for me?? 

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Dear 37 year old Casey

Today, I'm supposed to write a letter to myself in 10 years.  This shall be interesting.

Helene in Between Blogtober
Dear Casey,
     I'm sure you're probably panicking for a number of reasons.  You're almost forty, your son is going through puberty (eek, this thought scares me to my very core) and you're just a panicker.  Maybe in ten years, you won't panic so much.
The forty thing shouldn't scare you.  If you're aging according to plan, you probably look barely 30.  Hopefully.  Please don't cut your hair.  Even if Jamie says long hair doesn't look good on a 40 year old.  Please find a style and stick to it.  And hopefully we've kept some weight off.  Even if you've had a second baby.  If you didn't have a second baby, I hope you went to school and you have a career that you always wanted.  But really, I hope this blogging thing has made you famous and your career is just living your every day life.

Remember the day, October 6, when you heard your mom talking to her friend on the phone and she said that you're a good mom, whether you're divorced or not.  I know you have these moments in your life when people have said things to you that really stuck in your mind, and hearing that really made a difference because sometimes you don't think you're doing a good job.  You can raise a child strong in himself and knows the difference between right and wrong because that's how mom raised me, even if I did stumble a few times along the way.

In ten years, maybe you'll have yourself figured out.  Maybe you'll have written a novel.  You will be multifaceted.  Maybe you're married again, this time you did it right and you learned from the first one.  You better have seen Maine and decided to stay there.  You'll see your family grow, you will be proud and all the things you think define you now, won't leave a tiny little scratch on who you are in ten years.

Chin up darling, no one likes it when your mascara runs.


Monday, October 6, 2014

Vacation All I Ever Wanted

Is that song stuck in your head now?  I hope it is.  Because it's stuck in mine.  Today's prompt is: Best/Worst Vacation.

Helene in Between Blogtober
I don't really have a worst vacation so my best would be the time Jamie and I went to Vegas.  It was my anniversary trip to go see Garth Brooks' show at the Wynn right before his run ended.  It was our first time on a plane, our first everything really.  We walked for miles in Vegas up and down the strip.  We saw Spider-Man, Mickey and Minnie Mouse, Elvis and Edward Scissorhands.  We were actually more a spectacle than all the other weird stuff in there. Drunk people on Fremont Street kept asking if we were twins.

We spontaneously decided to zipline across Fremont Street.  Jamie talked me into riding one of the Stratosphere rides.  We found a murder mystery dinner that Jamie got pulled into and I totally suspected she was in on the whole thing, and she slapped me real hard.  In public.  We had a fancy dinner at the top of a hotel at a restaurant called Alize, where Jamie experienced duck for the first time, and I, lamb.  Such an amazing meal.  Then we hoofed it back to the Wynn to see Garth.  We even had a taxi driver that looked like Stephen King.  You know, we never gambled once.  We splurged on getting our hair done and ordering room service once we got back from crying our faces off over Garth.

Garth Brooks was an experience I'll never ever forget and I'm so thankful Clint gave me that gift.  Jamie and I initially had seats away from each other but the woman sitting next to her had a panic attack and I was able to steal her seat and move back so we could soak the whole thing in together.

We're the kind of people when we've had our fill, we're ready to go home and this was my first time to be away from Wilder.  We had the best time, not a bad word about it.  Except, Jamie got allergies badly as soon as we landed in Nevada and she snored the whole freaking time and I almost slept in the bath tub.  But it was worth it. 

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Bucket Lists and Blogging

I realize I didn't post yesterday, but in my defense, we are currently in the middle of a kitchen over hall and we didn't have Wi-fi.  You can see a few shots of our progress on my Instagram @agirlandmerle and tell me what you think.  Neither of us have done anything like this, but Tj doesn't doubt me and we trust each others' opinions so it works well for us.

Helene in Between Blogtober

I missed Sunday's prompt which was: Your Fall Bucket List

I know, it's your basic white girl bucket list, but I love this time of year and I try to do all these things when I can.  I do live for seasonal TV specials, and It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown! is one of my all time favorites.  I just love pumpkins.  I currently have seven pumpkin nicknacks in our living room.  Side note: technically, I didn't miss a day, as I am writing this Sunday night.
Monday's prompt is: 10 Things You'd Tell Yourself When You First Started Blogging.

Ok, I love this one.  Here goes...
  1. At least one person out there can relate to you.  I learned this when I posted about my divorce.
  2. It will indulge your inner pen pal.  I loved pen-pals in grade school and between all the social media that you get involved with, you can talk to people all over the country.
  3. It will be very cathartic.  From divorce to weight loss, I've been able to share some stories I would be too scared to talk about in person.
  4. Don't worry what other people think.  When I first started, I was constantly doing link ups and crafting/DIY to be able to join link ups, that I got burned out fast.  I wanted to blog for myself and forcing all these daily chores didn't help me do that.
  5. Be honest.  I wrote on Real Suburbia about how I used to hide in my bathroom and binge on Taco Bell.  Because that sh** really happened.
  6. Practice your selfies.  I will freely admit that I am one of those girls who takes at least seven pictures before I find one that I can kind of work with.  Know your angles.
  7. Give credit where it's due.  Using other people's pins or pictures can be a little tricky.  I used a marshmallow recipe I found on Pinterest and linked back to the original post and she immediately thanked me and was glad I used her recipe.  I didn't step on any toes.  Whew.
  8. Go on your own.  I'm bad about not having faith in myself.  When I lost Sarah, I immediately replaced her with Jamie.  I just didn't think I could do it alone.  But I can, obvi.
  9. You don't have to have a Twitter.  I'll admit, Twitter is still confusing to me.  I don't like it and when I switched to AG&M, I ditched it.  I have enough going on.
  10. You will make the most tremendous friends you would have never gotten a chance to meet.  I have so many friends via social media, but I've gotten to meet some in real life, and....I'm tearing up just thinking about it.  I met Adrian, who is the most true blue friend.  She's everything my life was lacking and she filled this positive void that I didn't even know I had.  Stephanie, who I got to experience her first pregnancy with, even though my life kind of got in the way.  Laurie and Jess from Ruthie & Rose, who have checked on me and supported me and talked me into my first pair of Tory Burch shoes.  The expanse of a blogging network has been so instrumental in giving me an outlet and a place to rest my words and experiences.  And as a last bullet point, You Will Not Regret Blogging.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Shake It Like A Polaroid Pick-cha

Currently, one of Wilder's favorite songs is Hey Ya by Outkast.  Don't give him any grief, alright?  I know he's a little behind on the times.  But when the "shake it" part comes on, the fool dances just like me.  And my life makes all the sense in the world, so I'll play it six times in a row if he asks me to.  I also made him listen to Fergie's London Bridge today.  He had this mean mugging look on his face as he bobbed his head.  He's all me, that boy.

Helene in Between Blogtober

Have y'all been checking out Helene's and Taylor's posts?  I love all the different answers.  You know how I love a segue into my prompt for the day, so all that paragraph up there leads to is this:  Favorite Photo You Posted On Instagram.

I'm a bit of an Instagram fanatic, you can find me on there @agirlandmerle.  When I first joined Instagram, I followed every celebrity I could.  After Real Suburbia started, I decided to start over and follow bloggers and a few boutiques instead, so I could form a sense of community.  Plus, I just love the filters.  I can't help it.  My favorite filter is Amaro.  It's hard for me to pick a favorite picture because I take so many, but I'll try and narrow it down.

Ok, so let me preface this.  It was almost a year ago, so Wilder was almost two.  His hair was in his eyes and I thought, "I'll just snip around the back while he's watching TV."  Which turned into, "I'll just trim around the front so it's not in his eyes..."  Which led to, "Oh my God, what have I done?!"

Yep.  I cut his hair.  It's beautiful, right?  I should not be left to my own devices.  I learned my lesson that day.  And I'll have all the proof to embarrass him when he's older.  Tj would say that I can't use that picture because I've never seen Dumb and Dumber.  I know, I know, I've never seen it. Get off me.  But, in my life, I'll be able to mention to Wilder every so often, "Hey, remember that time I cut your hair? Oh no? Let me show you..."

Does Anyone Remember Laughter??

If you don't get this post title, then you need to drop what you're doing and go watch the movie Almost Famous.  That movie speaks to my friggin' soul, for real.  And it'll make sense when I tell you what today's prompt is.

Helene in Between Blogtober

One Thing You Couldn't Live Without...
Immediately when I read this, I thought, "CHAPSTICK!"  I think I've spent most of my life asking, "hey, do you have some chapstick?" like it's a drug deal or something.  Not that I have nasty, cracked lips, or anything.  I just think my healthy addiction to chapstick helps me in that regard.  I smear that stuff on at night like it's some kind of miracle cream.

Then I thought, "MASCARA!" because if I don't wear it, people ask me if I'm ill.  Consider yourself very lucky if you've seen me without mascara.  If I'm in a last minute dash, I may even swipe on mascara instead of brushing my teeth.  Gross, I know.

But, in all honesty, the one thing I couldn't live without would be laughter.  I know a lot of my life has been spent laughing, and just writing that makes me happy.  Jamie and I are laughter contagious.  If one of us starts laughing, then so does the other.  And it gets obnoxious but we can't stop.  My mother used to yell at us at the table when we were laughing so hard we couldn't eat.  I remember when Wilder was born, I would call my mom every week asking if this was the week he was going to start laughing.  His laugh is perfection.  I think almost any pure laughter is one of the best sounds in the world.  One time, I took Jamie to Shreveport for our birthday.  And we left super early to head home and missed every Starbucks on the way home, and believe me, we don't like to backtrack.  When we hit Decatur, I said, "OK Jamie, I know exactly where this Starbucks is." We were pumped.  Until, our route took us AROUND Decatur instead of through it.  And we started laughing like hyenas until we started crying out of misery.  It was a hot mess, inside that car.  I also try and stop at any photo booth and take pictures (I keep them all stashed in my truck) and every time we sit in one, we start laughing.  Laughter is what I thrive on, I think.  If I can't laugh, something is seriously wrong.

What can't you live without?

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

My Dream Job, Eh?

I'm currently working on a butter yellow infinity scarf and rewatching the first season of The Blacklist.  I'll admit, I did watch the first couple of episodes of Gilmore Girls while drinking coffee with pumpkin cream (because I'm so basic) and then Tj said he was watching it and I thought I would refamiliarize myself with it.

Helene in Between Blogtober

Today's topic is: Your Dream Job When You Were Little/What is it Now?
My dream job has been and always will be a writer.  My mother told me I wrote my first story when I was like 3 or 4 about how I wanted a hippo and I would name him hungry.  Can you guess what game was big around that time?

I remember when I was in 6th grade, my English teacher Mrs. Martz asked my opinion on our next writing assignment.  I was super flattered and I surprisingly, picked nonfiction.  I wrote about my uncle's death.  My mom kept all of my work (until our house burned down) and one year, when I asked for a typewriter, she actually got me one.  I've started countless stories (with the hopes of turning them into books) but I always lose faith in myself and quietly put it away.  I have a current beginnings of something grand, in my eyes, but I've just been staring at it for a while, even with Jamie and Tj encouraging me to keep at it.  Really, just being my own quirky, spunky version of The Pioneer Woman would be my dream.

Yesterday, when I attended boot camp at the local gym, Kim, a woman dear to my heart told me that she had read my blog.  That ALWAYS surprises me.  I feel I always have something to say but no one besides my family would read it.  I feel a bit like Augustus Waters, that my love of writing is just a shout into the void, and when anyone reads it, especially Monday's about my divorce, and people message me and tell me they love what I've written, or they're thinking of me, then I know this blogging thing is a fit for me.  I'll always be a lover of books and writing.  It's something that thrums through my veins.  And I appreciate you.
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