Sunday, September 26, 2010


When people ask me to describe Julia, it is difficult to capture her personality without meeting her.  One of her funniest qualities is her curiousity.  In a 10 minute span she will spend 8 minutes attempting to figure out where she is, who is involved, and what she wants to do and the next 2 minutes jumping in with both feet.  She notices things that I would never take a second look at and gives me a whole different perspective on the day to day events in my life.
While we were on vacation in Maine we had a few wonderful days of doing absolutely nothing (which was a breath of fresh air with our busy schedules).  On one of the days we walked through the town of Freeport, which is a cute little town with a whole lot of great shopping.  As we walked along Julia held her daddy's hand and very intentionally stopped at the flower pots, leaned over and smelled each one.  The irony of parenting just makes me laugh.  From the moment that I became a mother everything occurs on an altered timeframe.  Most of the time it a heart racing pace, which explains why I am often walking out the door with various garments out of place, shoveling something quick into my mouth, and/or having to hang up the phone mid-conversation to respond to a potential crisis.  This same child that has thrust me into fast forward has also taught me to stop. 
In our world today stillness isn't valued, but I believe that the desire for is innately within each of us. Despite the fact that Julia runs from one task to the next, says no one moment and then changes her mind the next and wants to rip off her clothing because it holds her back, I believe that she's got it right.  She appreciates the beauty in each and every part of God's creation.  Today she was blowing kisses at a stink bug, yesterday she was examining an acorn like a doctor- dissecting each of its features.  The greatest gift in all of this is that I get to share it with her.  She teaches me so much about the world around us and the way we were created to experience it.
"Be still and know that I am God" - Psalm 46:10
Side note - These pictures were taken when we were out for a walk by the water.  I didn't realize that my camera was on a manual setting from the day before.  I shot these few and then fixed the setting, but I keep coming back to these photos.  There is way to much light exposure, but that is the fun of them.  I actually edited them in a sepia tone and ordered a few for our walls. 

Friday, September 10, 2010

So long summer.

Each year we exit summer with a trip to Maine during the week of labor day.  We pack up our car with a stock of fruit for snacking, we hoist the windows open and wear out the last of our summer gear - somehow the world is transformed during the week we are away.  We return ready to pull out our sweaters, make a great batch of soup and sit fireside (well, maybe not quite yet, but I did seek out a wonderful bowl of chicken and rice soup today). 
I love this transforrmation.  Somehow, I am never quite ready for it, but there is excitement in the air.  This is my favorite time of the year.  It's no spring, but there is new a newness the first signs of fall. The smell of new leather as the kids return back to school, cider donuts and mums popping up all around,  wrapping your hands around a hot coffee mug, the air brisk enough to make you add an extra layer...fall is the great excuse for coziness.
So tomorrow we exit Maine - the world of daily lobster dinners, days of doing nothing, and sitting seaside in our sweaters to return home.  Summer has somehow packed up and left us this week.  The freshness of summer is traded in for the crispness of fall.
So long summer.  It was a good one.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Kitchen design

Right this very moment we are the proud owners of 3 refrigerators.  Let me preface this by stating that my last (and only) refrigerator purchase was a miniature fridge that I took with me to Messiah College over a decade ago.  We accumulated our second refrigerator shortly after Julia was born - even though she wasn't eating people food yet, it gave me peace of mind to know that we were all set for the teenage years.  Our third brand new addition came along last week and is sitting in our living room (yes, living room) as our centerpiece.  It is a lovely sight.  It will be on display for the next 6 weeks (possibly most likely more) until it finds its final home in our new kitchen.  Then we are back down to 2 - for good. Unless the Messiah College fridge comes back for a reprise. 
I thought that I would post some of our kitchen ideas.  I am always on the hunt for new ones, so if you have any input I would be more than happy to hear it.  Our theme has taken on a farmhouse/retro type feel.  If you ask Charles, he will say it's farmhouse - the words that involve anything that may suggest contemporary are too frightning for him.  The 1960's are the new 2010's!  So we are going with a robin's egg blue color with white cabinets, dark granite countertops, and black hardware on the cabinets. 
Here is the color palate that we' have mind for the paint:
The picture below is sort of the vision we have for our cabinets and the flow of things.  The green would obviously be blue:

I love thinking about the big picture, but I am more excited about the little details.  We are building the cabinets around the refrigerator and have this idea for the side panel.  I am a sucker for chalkboards.  When we decided on our new kitchen, the placement of the chalkboard was my first thought.
Our sink will be one of the main focal points of the kitchen - square under the window as you walk into our kitchen.  Aside from the chalkboard, this apronfront farmhouse sink is one of my favorite pieces.  We have already ordered our sink in the color "sea salt" - a white base with very subtle flecks of blue.  You can kind of see the sink to the left in this picture:
We will probably go with white subway tile for the backsplash, but I love this: 
(This is still a contender as long as the colors flow well)
And finally, we will be knocking out part of our wall to open things up into our dining room and living room.  I have fallen in love with the color and style of this picture.  I love everything about this look (even the GROCERY sign in the background).  These stools just make me want to take a seat and order a rootbeer float...unfortunately, we will probably go with more functional stools. 
And so it begins in less than 2 weeks! 
***A little warning to all of our friends and neighbors, if you live within a 10 mile radius, we just might be showing up at your house around dinner time in the next few months :)***
Julia will work for food.