About Me

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Welcome to my blog. I'm a Mississippi country girl transplanted to Grapevine, TX. I have been blessed with a great husband, and my kiddos, Aleck and Ella. When I'm not eating bon bons on the couch, I am my kid's room mom, PTA member, Sunday School teacher, taxi driver, amateur photographer and personal chef. When I'm not doing those things, I'm running a small jewelry business, 2nd Amendment Jewelry (www.2ndamendmentjewelry.com), that I started with my twin sister, Glenda. It's a crazy and busy life, but I wouldn't trade it for anything in this world. I am so thankful for all the blessings in my life!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Best Aunt of the Year Award

Aunt Glenda painted Ella’s toenails and fingernails.  I’m embarrassed to say that this is the first time that Ella has had painted nails.  She loved it so much that she went through three different colors this week.  I have a feeling that my princess is going to be asking for mommy to paint her nails when we get home.




Ella got muddy, twice, at Mammaw’s house and had to wear Aleck’s extra clothes the rest of the day.  I can’t believe my little princess was willing to wear a t-shirt and baggy shorts, but it didn’t phase her.DSC_0197DSC_0200DSC_0206

We took these pictures in the wisteria across the road from Aunt Glenda’s house.  When “Aunt Genda” is around, Ella doesn’t want much to do with Mommy.  I love how these two girls love each other!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Donuts with Pappaw

We spent almost two weeks in Starkville for an extended spring break.  Most every morning, we stopped at Shipley’s Donuts for breakfast on our way to Mammaw and Pappaw’s house.  This morning, Pappaw needed a copy of a deed, so he met us for donuts and then we went to the courthouse.


We had to skip Shipley’s the last few days of our visit following a potty accident at the donut shop one morning.  Ella dressed herself that morning.   I forgot to make sure she had on a pullup.  There wasn’t a cloud in the sky, yet Ella insisted on wearing her rain boots.  Luckily, her rubber boots caught most of the tee tee. 

I sure hope the nice folks at Shipley’s will have forgotten about us before our next visit to Starkvegas.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Tree Planting with Pappaw

Dad planted acorns from saw tooth oak trees a few years ago.  He has watered and babied those plants on the back porch for the last couple of years.  Deer love to eat the acorns, so Dad transplants the trees when they are big enough.   We planted the trees near the spot that Glenda and Pat have picked out to build their next house.  DSC_0494

After I stepped into an ant hill, Aleck wasn’t about to venture into the tall grass, so he played with his transformers while Glenda and Dad planted trees.DSC_0455_edited-1DSC_0484_edited-1DSC_0428_edited-1DSC_0464_edited-1DSC_0473_edited-1DSC_0531 copy

Sweet memories!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Happy St. Patrick’s Day


Ella brought a shamrock made from her handprints home from school.  Such a clever idea!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Deeds, Surveys and Easements

Several of my siblings and I went together and bought a sixty acre parcel of land last year.  The land is a few miles from my parents home.  It’s really too low to build, but it’s great for hunting and cutting timber.  In fifteen years, we should make our money back from cutting timber.  My dad bought the same parcel of land back in 1993 and then sold it to his friend Jack.  A few years later, Jack sold the land to Dad’s friend, Andy.  Last October, we bought the land back from Andy. 

Dad still owns fifty acres near our property.  He calls his land the cotton picker, because an old broken down cotton picker has been on the property for decades. Our property is just separated by a small strip of land owned by a different landowner, so the hunters in the family have a larger piece of land for hunting. 

The land deal has proven to be more complicated than we could have ever imagined.  Curry, the guy that owns the strip of land between my dad’s land and our land is claiming a section of land that belongs to us.  I made five trips to the courthouse pulling deeds and maps.  My first trip to the courthouse, I had no clue what I was doing.  By the end of the week, I could walk straight into the records room and pull the section book, which referred me to the appropriate book to find the deed.  I am so thankful for Glenda because she watched the kids while Dad and I spent two days at the courthouse and riding across the land on four wheelers.

tract 4

With Tom’s help, I learned to plot a fairly complicated land description from a warranty deed.  I plotted the land descriptions and overlaid our map over Curry’s map to trace how much he is infringing on our property.  I went back to prior deeds to verify that Dad held the clear title back in 1993, not the adjacent land owner.    Dad and I met with Rogers, the lawyer that was involved in all the land transactions back in 1993 and 1995.  Rogers said he couldn’t help us because he also represented the other party in the previous transactions.  On our last trip to the courthouse, we got a copy of the current tax map and we were relieved to see that the map had been corrected to show our property line corrected.  Our next step is to negotiate a property easement that doesn’t require us to travel up a creek bed to get to our land.  My next trip home, Dad and I will make another trip to a lawyer’s office, hopefully to get closure on the whole situation.



The books were huge. I bet some books weighed close to twenty pounds.


With measurements in hand, we carried the four wheelers and a GPS down to the property to verify property line boundaries.  We spent two days on the property, because I couldn’t figure out how to use the GPS the first day.


We rode down the creek to get from Dad’s land to ours.


This beaver dam sits in the middle of a pond.


Now the land is used for timber, but at one time it was used to grow cotton.  This is the broken down cotton picker that has been there since before Dad bought the property back in 1993. 


This is one of the shooting houses on the property.  Notice the propane tank under the house for heat.  I remember when Dad used to climb a tree stand to hunt.  My, how times have changed. 

Although the circumstances that led to our time together were a huge pain in the neck, I cherish the memories of hiking through the woods with Dad following me on the four wheeler.  I cherish the endless hours at the kitchen table discussing land deeds and property boundaries.

For me, it’s not really the huge things in life that make it worth living.  It’s not a birthday or a vacation.  It’s the simple pleasures of riding on a four wheeler with your dad, or walking through the woods with your kids hunting for big sticks, or watching the sunset in your sister’s back yard while the kids run around like wild little people.  It’s the sweet smile of your little girl when she walks out of her bedroom first thing in the morning with her favorite blanket and baby doll in her arms.  I’m so thankful for these times.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Campfires and Tinkerbells

The kids and I are in Starkville for spring break.  We spent Sunday night in Shreveport with Aunt Nancy and arrived in Starkville yesterday.  We built a campfire in the front yard and the kids wanted to camp out.  The kids had so much fun gathering wood for the fire.  When the sparks from the fire would fly, the kids would yell, “I see Tinkerbells!”  They would shine their flashlight into the campfire smoke and pretend it was a light saber.

They wanted to camp outside, but with a pond in the front yard,  that meant that Mommy had to camp outside.  In the end, I convinced them to camp in the living room so they could watch Ice Age on the television before they went to sleep.



Saturday, March 3, 2012

Sometimes I Get



In my picture taking adventures, sometimes I get, “I am just so tired I can’t even hold my eyes open.”


Sometimes I get, “Do you really think I’m going to cooperate with this picture taking thing?”


Sometimes I get, “I’m bringing my best smile.  Take the picture already!”


But most of the time,


I get  “I love you, Mommy.”

Irish Festival

The kids and I met Tom at Fair Park for the Irish Festival.  The weather was perfect!


Ella and Aleck had so much fun in the bounce house and on the slide.


They climbed on these benches, and ran up and down the front of this building FOREVER.


I love the lines on this door, and coaxed them into stopping long enough to take a picture.  I love this picture.  I love how Ella is tucked into Aleck’s arm, and Aleck seems protective of his “baby sister, Ella”, which is how he still introduces her.  I love it.


Tom’s band, The North Texas Caledonian Pipes and Drums, played on the main stage.


Aleck was so excited to see his daddy playing on stage.



Another drummer in the making.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Girls and Boys

Ella was making a mess at breakfast this morning.  I told her to stop because I had enough messes to clean up, thank you very much.  Aleck then chimed into the conversation.  It went something like this.


Aleck:  Ella can clean up.  She’s a girl.

Me:  Really?!?  Do you think it is a girl’s job to clean?

Aleck:  Boys go to work.  Girls clean.

Me:  Aleck, do you think when Mommy cleans the house, does the laundry and cooks for you that I’m not working?

About that time, Tom entered the conversation to take the heat off Aleck and we had to get the kids ready for school.


To be continued…

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Funny Faces

I was playing around with my camera today and caught Ella in a playful mood in her pretty “wed dess”.  This has been her favorite dress since Christmas.  She asks for it all the time.  One day, this dress is going to fall off her in shreds.  She wears it that much. 

I hung a white curtain the front foyer, and opened the door for the natural light. When I zoomed in on Ella’s eyes, I realized that you can see the outline of my body in the reflection.  Pretty cool.  I wish I had ironed the curtain, because I hate the wrinkles.  My camera settings were ISO 400, 1/160 sec, f/2.8.  I custom set my white balance using my expodisc.  I love my expodisc!  It’s a little tricky to use with multiple light sources, but with one light source, it’s a cinch.  With an aperture of 2.8,  I expected the background to be blurred enough that the wrinkles wouldn’t show.  At least in the close-ups, there is bokeh and you can’t  really see the wrinkles. 




Lately, Ella is making all these new and wonderful facial expressions. I tried to pick my favorite, but I love them all!