Spring Craziness

Spring has finally arrived complete with (now predictably) warm weather, blooming flowers, and tax refunds! Everyone is waking up from the prevailing sleepy mood of cold, wet weather, and the neighborhood is a flurry of activity! Ok well, our house has been a flurry of activity. See this past weekend we combined two things that should never be combined if you want to wake up refreshed each morning: a new puppy and a building project. The original plan was to pick up baby Roxi on Sunday afternoon, after we finished building the fence, but with it being Easter, we had to pick her up on Friday instead. That meant my weekend looked something like this:

  • Friday 8 am, Trey’s parents arrive and hole digging begins
  • 11 holes later I leave with noticeably larger triceps to pick up Roxi
  • 2 hours there, 2 hours back
  • 4:30 pm, Roxi meets the Halls on their way out the door
  • Crate training (aka puppy screaming her head off) begins while I try to make dinner
  • 7 pm, Cole play  gently  with puppy training begins
  • 8pm, give up on training, feed the animals, head towards bed
  • night filled with puppy cries, potty trips (3), and cleaning
  • Saturday 10 am, my parents arrive and fence building begins
  • afternoon filled with fence building, potty trips, and puppy cries (no more messes!)
  • 7:45 pm, it’s dark and only the gates aren’t completely finished
  • 9 pm, pizza guy arrives
  • 10 pm, bed
  • night filled with puppy cries and potty trips (4)
  • Sunday 9 am, last potty trip, begin getting ready for church
  • 11 am, church
  • 3 pm, my parents head home, gate finishing begins
  • 4 pm, the fence is done! Cole gets his first fenced in frisbee toss and the humans pass out in front of the tv
  • 10 pm, bed
  • night filled with fewer puppy cries and potty trips (2!)


Valentine’s Day Weekend

Trey and I decided that instead of celebrating Valentine’s Day on Valentine’s Day (because really, who wants to celebrate on a Thursday?), we would take the weekend and celebrate at the lake! It was really nice to get away for awhile and just be with each other. The lake doesn’t have internet, which is my biggest distraction, or a beautiful reef tank, which is Trey’s, so it’s really the perfect place to reconnect.

And what’s more romantic than cuddling inside during a freak hail storm? We did brave the cold long enough to let Cole play around in it, though, since this will probably be the closest thing to snow he sees this winter.

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Then the next day dawned sunny and beautiful as if nothing had happened. Oh and if you’re tired of seeing pictures of Cole man, you can blame Dana and Britt for the sudden influx. They both do gorgeous pet photography and I didn’t want Cole to get jealous ;-)

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“Goose poop! Goose poop! Pleeeease let me have the goose poop! Nomm nomm nommm!”

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Superbowl Monday!

Man what a great weekend! It started off Saturday morning with pancakes, a visit from Trey’s parents and a 100 year old armoire. I wanted to call it a wardrobe, because A: I can pronounce ”wardrobe” and B: because Belle had a wardrobe and she’s pretty much my favorite Disney princess of all time (Jasmine comes in a close second for having a pet tiger). Of course Belle’s wardrobe probably should have been called an armoire given that she’s French… In any case, Trey’s parents have been helping his grandparents clean out all of their old tobacco barns turned storage units and came across this gorgeous piece.


Trey’s dad was itching to fix it up and did all of the work in about two days (I wish I had a before picture to show you everything he did!). They also showed us some old pictures, maps, and WWI training manuals that they found. It was so cool reading the language in the old books, and seeing four digit phone numbers on a map of Summerville.  Thank you, Nana & Grandaddy!

Building on an awesome Saturday, yesterday was the Superbowl! A full afternoon devoted to football, friends, and delicious food! Food may be my favorite part of the Superbowl simply because it’s always good. Sometimes the game is a blow out, sometimes the commercials aren’t funny, but wings, beer, mini sausages and food made with bacon & cheese are always delicious! This year I tried out a Pinterest recipe for Loaded Potato and Buffalo Chicken Casserole and even remembered to snap a picture with Trey’s phone before everyone devoured it :-)

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I substituted two teaspoons of chili powder for the six tablespoons of hot sauce to take out some of the kick, and it came out quite delicious. You could probably make it without the chicken as well for a great side dish.

So what ‘s your favorite part of the Superbowl?


Happy Birthday Dear Fur-Butt!

Today is Cole’s birthday! In celebration of such a momentous occasion, I went through some old photos and picked out the ones that seemed to best sum up Cole’s first year of life (and to prove that he wasn’t always a humongous monster ;-) )

This is Cole’s first photo shoot, when he and Trey visited me in Columbia. Wasn’t he adorable?


and already learning basic commands =)



One of his first trips to Smoaks (aka paradise) when he learned how to swim.



His first trip to Atlanta, when he met Ivan.



Going to the lake. The other paradise =)



The dog park makes for a well behaved pooch.


His day at the doctor, poor thing ;-)


His first Christmas and his daily spot in my office, keeping it safe from any invading songbirds.


Cole, you’re a terror, but you always keep our dinner time stories fresh. Here’s to another year of slobbery kisses, piles of fur, and always remembering to enjoy the weekends!


Making Things Grow: Update

About two months ago the herbs that Trey bought for me sprouted. Since that day, they and I have come a long way: I read about how easy it is to over water them, how they need crazy amounts of sun, how they’re one of the hardest thing to grow indoors (figures), and I watched over them meticulously for any signs of immanent demise.

Indoor Herb Garden

Probably the biggest break though happened last Friday. I’ve been really wary of over watering, waiting for the soil to get dry before watering again, but it took them forever to dry out. Like the first month I think I only watered them once. So then I figured that maybe they needed less water more frequently, but they still weren’t looking very good.

Then last week my friend came over (Martha, the chef, who has actually grown herbs before) and she said that thorough watering is really important because it makes the roots grow. If they had to reach for the water they would get stronger and be able to support the plant as it grew. Well that makes sense.

So after she left I made sure to water them really thoroughly, and discovered something interesting. The pots didn’t have holes in the bottom! How did I miss that for two months? No clue, but it certainly explained a lot. (Note that Trey bought the herbs as a kit designed for beginners.) So I started drilling holes, or trying to. Turns out its actually pretty difficult to drill through, what I’m presuming are some kind of ceramic, pots without dumping the dirt and plants everywhere. Anyway, I got holes of one kind or another in each of the pots, watered them, and left for the weekend. When we came back, the plants were huge! Ok they probably didn’t grow that much, but there was an obvious difference.

I watered them again today, so here’s to hoping that wasn’t too much…

Sweet Basil

Cilantro & Oregano



Charlotte in 18 hours

To say that yesterday was a blur would be an understatement. I left the house at 7:30 and returned at 2:00. 2:00 this morning.

The blurriness of the day was only enhanced by the weather. See it’s been high 70′s and gorgeous all week, and when I left Charleston yesterday morning it was 65. Charlotte is apparently not close enough to share weather patterns though, because it was 43 and rainy the entire day. The room we met in was also cold, and since I only had a light jacket, I shivered through the entire day.

This morning when I woke up late to the sunshine and another 70 degree day, it was hard to believe that yesterday even happened. But it did happen, and I have the pages (and pages) of notes to prove it.



Right now I’m on the way to Charlotte! Oh wait, what time is this thing supposed to post itself? Oh my bad, right now I’m in Charlotte! Wooooo! I’m at the What’s Next conference by Justin and Mary learning a ton of super awesome stuff, but don’t worry, I have something fun planned for you all while I’m gone: random internet day!  Because it’s Wednesday and laughter is good for you :-)

A day at the spa...


Happy Monday!

Today is the first day of normalcy! I think I must be getting old, because as a kid I never wanted vacation to end. Don’t get me wrong, I still love vacation and the holidays, but there’s something nice about having a schedule. Plus it’s really hard to be productive when your husband is on vacation. Today Trey is back at work; Cole is relearning our schedule, and I’m plugging away at all of the things I didn’t accomplish over the last two weeks. Ahhh sweet normalcy!

But since normalcy doesn’t make for a very exciting blog post, here are a couple pictures from walking around Downtown. Trey, with his “I’m trying to look angry cause I don’t like pictures” face


and Christi, who was a much more willing participant =)




Twenty-thirteen. The year after the “world ended.” The year after college graduation, when my life was no longer laid out before me. The year when anything is possible.

I’ve never really done the whole “new year’s resolution” tradition, partly because I didn’t want to fail and partly because resolution sounded so serious and I could never come up with anything to merit the term. This year, however, new year’s goals have been on my mind a lot. An interesting thing happens when you finish school; you stop having mile markers. No, that’s not true. You still have the first adult job, marriage, the first baby, and the empty nest, but aside from the first two (or the first three for some people), they’re really spread out. In school, every year you’re one grade higher, and that new grade is full of new things to learn and accomplish. I learned the alphabet today! Now we get to read! Then you get to dissect things. Finally you’re taking classes in your major, and then you land your first real job and the rate of cool accomplishments goes way down.

So this year we wrote down goals. Cool things we’d been wanting to do, but had no set plan to accomplish so, in all likelihood, would never be completed. Trey wants to take Cole on a dove hunt. I want to finish my office. We both want to start investing. Of course there are other things on our list as well, but the point is at the end of the year we will be able to look back and see all the things we accomplished, not because some professor assigned it or because it was the next step in a government program, but because we wanted to do it, we made a plan, and we did it.

Of course all of this goal setting and planning for the new year included my business (in fact, most of my goals for the year are business related), and two new things I’m super excited about are my new office (finally un-buried from the moving mess) and Justin & Mary’s What’s Next tour on the 16th. Justin and Mary are two awesome wedding photographers in Connecticut and they’re going on tour this month to teach about business and lighting. I’ve been crazy about them ever since I first discovered their pancake sessions through Abby‘s blog. Talk about a wealth of free information! I’ve learned a ton through their blog and free online conferences and now I can’t wait to actually meet them and start the year off right!


Oh and this is my office in it’s beginning stage (the closet is huge :-D ):


Christmas Eve!!

It’s Christmas Eve! It’s Christmas Eve!!! Sometimes I think that I like Christmas Eve more than Christmas Day because of the anticipation and all of the traditions I associate with it. Growing up, the Christmas Day festivities were usually over by 10 AM, but on Christmas Eve we’d play a ton of Christmas music, put up the tree, drive around looking at lights, and watch the classic How the Grinch Stole Christmas. This year is particularly exciting because I get to teach all of my favorite traditions to Trey and learn some of his.

On the more intimidating side, I also have to learn how to make my family’s traditional recipes. We have three really traditional Christmas recipes: Christmas Bread (my mom was 50 before she was entrusted with that recipe, though, so it’ll probably be awhile before I am allowed to try it ;-) ), Christmas Rolls, and our special sugar cookie recipe. Originally I was going to try to make both the rolls and the cookies, but the directions for both were a little overwhelming (who knew that cookies could be complicated?). Instead, I decided to try the rolls and learn how to make the cookies next year.

Here are all my supplies complete with Spotify set to a Christmas playlist =)

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*Note the package of yeast. This was my first time ever working with yeast and I was super scared it wouldn’t rise.

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But they did rise! They’re not nearly as pretty as my Mom’s or Grandma’s, but they’re still yummy =)

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Do you have any Christmas Eve traditions?

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