LOOK HOW EASY TO USE!!! Time lapse video

in this video you watch for a little over one minute and we finish an accent table in under 25 minutes!! Rethunk Junk by Laura Furniture Paint is so fast and easy to use – we wanted you to see it in action! =D we used Gray Mist on this piece – prepped, painted two coats, distressed, changed out the hardware and ended up with a very classy little accent table!

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this table was completed in under 25 minutes - watch the time lapse video

this table was completed in under 25 minutes – watch the time lapse video


what is the deal with Georgia that we do not have “spring”??? it is APRIL! not july – april! and already, i cannot believe how uncomfortably hot it is!!! we go straight from winter to summer around here. i am so very grateful that i was born during a period on the planet when there is AIR CONDITIONING!!! but it can still get extremely hot…..and no one likes that feeling! so my children and spouse have come up with some rather unconventional ways to keep cool…..let us share……

this is kinda like the david letterman show Top Ten lists…… (only we just have five – not ten – aren’t you grateful??)

dysfunctional ways the whitlow family has found to “beat the heat”….

#5….inflatable baby pools that fill with grass and bugs the first time you step into them…and are never ever clean again! But everyone has those, you say….well…yes….but WE refuse to empty and refill ours so we now have a little side business breeding exotic mosquitoes and 7-10 million tadpoles!

#4…..homemade slip n slides….made from heavy duty trash bags pieced together and strewn across the yard coated with vegetable oil (at this point we have already spent more than an actual daggum slip and slide would cost). the hose spraying on the trash bags does nothing to help with the pain caused by the fact that the homemade slip n slide was “installed” over sticks, tree roots, rocks and the ocassional thorn. ouch!

#3…..homemade popsicles (cause who could afford real popsicles but the very wealthy, right???) made from fruit juice so they are now healthy (uh….the bottle says only 10% real juice – the rest is sugar…cause only the very wealthy can afford 100% juice, right????) and made in tupperware containers (cause – again – only the very wealthy can afford the ice cube trays or the little popsicle containers at the dollar store, right????) and then when they are ready….the tupperware containers must be “cracked” off of the sugary juice homemade popsicles before they can be eaten …..a real mess!!!

#2…..i have found that all of my children got togther, (first clue there is a problem! ha!) and discussed options….and have removed the air vent covers in their rooms to allow for more air flow….what???? what on earth makes them think that AIR cannot get thru the vents???? it’s AIR!!!!!! bad idea, huh? well….it gets worse….because now they sneak into each other’s rooms and “block” their siblings vents (THAT’S where all the towels in the house have gone!!!) to increase their own air flow!! our own little middle east crisis going on!

#1 would have to be tom’s suggestion on our honeymoon…..the first night on our honeymoon in florida (think intense heat and RIDICULOUS humidity!!) the air conditioning in the condo goes out. cannot be fixed till morning. how the heck are we supposed to sleep? (and i know what you’re thinking…wait laura…it’s your honeymoon….should you even BE sleeping? hahaha) anywho….tom has a plan. he suggests that we take the sheets off the bed….put them in the tub and run cool water on them and then wrap up in the refreshingly cool sheets. being newly married i believed my man knew everything (THAT has long since passed – tee hee). so i agree. whew! what a relief! what a comfortable and fabulous feeling. wrapped in the cool sheets, laying in bed finally resting from the “activities of the day” – tee hee ….wait…..uh…..this “refreshing” feeling lasted about 3 minutes. then the sheets started – of course – HEATING UP! we are now wrapped up in simmering sheets like a couple of steaming burritos. i have rarely been as uncomfortable!!!

so….as you can see… we need the following…..money for a real swimming pool….money for a real slip and slide…..money for real popsicles….money for new air vent covers…and money for a Do-Over Honeymoon. i’d say quite a few of you need to be buying some paint and some furniture!!!

fabulous dresser tutorial!

so here we go….. let’s go from this…..you know you can find something similar to work with….and feel free to change color schemes to work with your space….to this!!!

before being Rethunk!

before being Rethunk!

AFTER being Rethunk!

AFTER being Rethunk!

let’s prep this puppy! spray on the prep – let it sit for a few minutes (just long enough to have a light snack – haha) and then wipe dry with a soft cloth. THIS is why we prep! gets rid of any oils and greases and dirt on the piece and now you’re ready to paint!!

Prep it!

Prep it!

i used Linen on this piece – shake shake shake the paint and then apply it with a quality brush. (no foam brushes or chip brushes – but nothing expensive is necessary) here’s what my drawers looked like after the first coat. aim a fan at it and you’ll be dry and ready for the second coat in no time!

one coat...

one coat…

i cut squares of scrapbook paper that i liked for the center of these drawers. using mod podge, i glued them on. i don’t worry about wrinkles too much – or even cutting the exact size – you’ll see why in a bit… you can see wrinkles in this very photo!

using mod podge

using mod podge

when it’s dry….i distressed the drawer – i use the sander (electric sander) to “trim” the edges – which is why i don’t worry about cutting the exact size. and i even sand the paper itself where any wrinkles are.



now we glaze! apply our Dark Glaze with a brush (see how it looks like i ruined the drawer??) you need enough to work with….then use a damp cloth (wring it out really well) to blend/erase till you get the look you want. super easy!! i glazed over the paper – and then glazed the whole dresser.

glaze step 1

glaze step 1

glaze step 2

glaze step 2

now let’s tackle the top of the dresser – i used our Stain Top. this is one coat of our Stain Top brushed on. look at the difference!

before Stain Top

before Stain Top

after Stain Top

after Stain Top

one coat of our Tuff Top on the top to seal and protect and you can step back and admire your masterpiece!!!

AFTER being Rethunk!

AFTER being Rethunk!



There are new furniture paint lines popping up, what seems like almost daily! I paint a LOT of furniture. For the last five years I’ve painted over 1,000 pieces of furniture a year – by hand. There’s a lot I don’t know….but I DO know paint! I’ve used almost every line out there….and there are some great options available….but there are some things to look closely at before you choose a line…..I’m gonna share my vast knowledge here. =D

Most people assume the new products that come out are chalk paint…..no sanding and no priming necessary. This is NOT the case! There’s quite a bit of fine print on each product line label that you really need to read before choosing a line.

In the spirit of full disclosure, I should tell you that here at Rethunk Junk, we have our own line of furniture paint that we have worked hard to make fabulous. It IS fabulous. We LOVE it! It’s NOT a chalk paint – no powder base to it at all. This sets us apart in some wonderful ways. I would never ever trash another product line – but it’s time for us to explain exactly how fabulous Rethunk Junk Furniture Paint is, and why we formulated our own products!

Here are the questions we’re asked most often….

1. Can I really start my project without sanding?? I wish people would actually read the fine print on other paint lines. They say no sanding and no priming – and then have a whole page of instructions on what grit sandpaper to use when you “don’t sand”…and what the best primer is for the “no priming” step. Really?? With Rethunk Junk paint, we have a cleaning product for you to use (the Prep) and you actually DON”T sand and you DON”T prime!!! You “Prep” and paint.

2. Will it cover in one coat?
You can always quit after one coat….if that’s the look you want. =D Lots of lines that advertise one coat will cover and then they have fine print about the dry time before you start your second coat. With Rethunk Junk paint we tell you up front – it’s gonna take two coats. You want your piece to be beautiful? Two coats.

3. What’s the dry time with your products?
There are more than a few paint lines out there that require 12 to 24 hours dry time before you can add a 2nd coat, before you can wax, before you can glaze and before you can touch it. Not the case with Rethunk Junk paint! There is no way on earth I could paint 1,000 plus pieces of furniture per year (and be the incredible spouse and mother and upstanding citizen I am) if our paint didn’t dry quick as a wink. Turn on a fan – and you can get your piece dry in 20-30 minutes tops! This is also what allows us to teach a paint class in two hours; you paint a piece of furniture in our class and you take it home completed. Most other paint lines allow you to complete an 8 inch piece of molding! They can’t offer the furniture option because there isn’t enough time to complete it! Unless you bring jammmies!

4. Do I have to wax my piece?
Um…..we would like to respectfully scream NO!!! One of the main reasons we were driven to develop Rethunk Junk paint was the issue of waxing. We have learned, after years of trying all options out there, that waxing is very labor intensive – no fun at all – and does not stay on your piece if you actually want to do something crazy like USE your piece. Our paint actually has sealer in it, so you can paint and be DONE!!! Want the look of waxing? We GLAZE our pieces. Super easy – super fast – and super beautiful! Our Rethunk Junk glaze also contains sealer, so you ‘re sealing as you glaze. We also offer a product that allows you to mix a custom glaze with any of our 20 paint colors! Additionally, we offer a commercial grade polyurethane for sealing high use pieces.

5. What about all the special effects products? Crackle? Dust? Plaster? Etc.
We have purposely kept our Rethunk Junk line fast and simple! Want those looks? Grab the product at a craft store and go for it. Rethunk Junk products are compatible with those, but remember, if it takes them 2 hours to demo that technique on a small piece of molding, how long will it take you to get that look on a piece of furniture? That being said, you can get some fabulous looks with our paint line!!

6. How safe are your products?
We have giggled at the “safe” products being marketed out there that recommend specific types of face masks, gloves and actually warn users the risk of respiratory issues. They also tell you to make sure you’re working in a well ventilated area. Why such a warning? It’s kinda scary. Rethunk Junk products have virtually no odor at all, and are completely safe to use. They are all water based! My kids swear one of our colors tastes like egg nog. (yes – they tasted it! I wouldn’t say they are perfectly fine – but I am quite sure they were a little off BEFORE the taste test -!)

7. What brushes should I use?
We just recommend that you use a nice quality brush. We offer non-expensive options. Using a good brush will bring about a fabulous finished piece.

Bottom line? We LOVE to paint – we want you to LOVE to paint. We want your experience to be a positive one. So whether you choose our Rethunk Junk product line (great choice) or another one, please read ALL the fine print and make sure you’re getting what you THINK you’re getting!

My Christmas Advice…..

Merry Christmas? More like Manic Christmas!

My best advice this Christmas season? Don’t try and plan any warm fuzzy loving events with all five children the day school ends and finals are over. Foolishly, I planned a trip to hobgood park to see the light display for the Friday evening that school ended. Foolishly.
Here was my dream…..
offspring holding hands –
spontaneously singing Christmas carols (possibly even in harmony) –
caring enough to coordinate outfits incase a photo op arose,
laughing with each other as they discussed special family memories
seizing the moment to tell tom and I how wonderful we are at parenting
randomly hugging each other as love overflowed and Christmas spirit reigned supreme

would you like to know what actually happened????

First of all….yes – daggum it – I SHALL be using names – they should all be called to repentance.

We start the evening with Tom setting the tone… “since I have to pay ten dollars per head for us to experience this special night, each of us will be staying till the park closes or we have counted each and every one of the lights – whichever comes first!” **heavy sigh**

Followed closely on the heels of that announcement, Lindsey starts complaining about being cold. “I hope it’s warmer outside than it is in this house. This is ridiculous – it’s almost abusive how cold you keep the house!” Tom responds with “I can’t pay the heat bill when I have to pay 10 dollars a head for you to see lights!!” So we go thru all the closets and pull out sweaters/jackets/scarves/hats/coats/gloves etc till we have her so layered she looks as big as me! Ha!

Next fiasco is loading into the van. Will they EVER be old enough that they just calmly load in with no arguments about seating or who touches who?????

We’re off ! I decide what we need is some Christmas music and start up my playlist! David archuletta singing The First Noel. Groans from everyone in the back seat. Fine! I switch to my favorite accapella group (Pentatonix) singing Silent Night. More groans. Whatever.

First stop is Racetrac for hot chocolate. I could spend thirty minutes on this trip alone but let me hit the high points…..
“Matt got a large! I didn’t know we could get a large! No one told me we could get a large!” “Lindsey is drinking the flavor shots straight! That’s nasty! Someone tell her to stop it!” “Emma just knocked over the marshmallows! Someone better tell the manager!” “Dad got soda??? I thought we had to get hot chocolate! I didn’t know we could get soda!” “matt gets gum??? No one told me we could get gum! Can I get a candy bar? I don’t like gum. Why is Matt the favorite???” let me just say I came very close to sneaking out to the van and driving off. We’re close enough they can walk home!

Finally we get to Hobgood Park. Fabulous, I think to myself. I have chosen something very exciting and popular. Lots of people here to enjoy it – must be a real hit! Everyone else? “where the crud are we gonna park??? I’ll be too tired by the time we walk to the thing to actually walk thru it! I’m gonna freeze! We have to spend the whole evening in the “elements”??? this thing is being held OUTSIDE? In DECEMBER? Look at the lines!” no way to drive off without them as they are all still in the van at this point. **heavy sigh**

So we get out: (kids thoughts being shared aloud) “How the heck far away did you park? Are we ever gonna even get there? Is there some kind of shuttle we could take? Why didn’t you just use one of the empty handicap spaces?? Might as well have walked from home!! And we’re doing all this trudging thru the horrific cold to get in THAT LINE??” tom reaches for my hand and I think – how romantic! At least SOMEONE is feeling what I had dreamed of….and then he says to me….. “dang woman – can you hurry up already? The kids are almost done with the whole park! Come on!” **heavy sigh**

So we get out: (my quiet moment of contemplation) “The path to the light show is even lit up and festive! How very thoughtful! Look at all the people here feeling the Christmas spirit. How lovely! We aren’t even quite there yet and the lights look stunning! How exciting! We are getting ready to truly enter a winter wonderland!”

This is where things start to actually change. Despite themselves, my children start feeling happy. They start interacting with each other in pleasant ways. They only grumble a wee bit as I load them all up on a sleigh for the first photo op of the night. They don’t grumble at all as I have them stick their heads into elf cut outs for the second of many more photo ops. By the time we hit the “light maze” they have cheerfully divided into teams, several of them holding hands, as they dash off to beat Tom and I. Tom reaches for my hand – and I realize as I look at him – THIS time he has reached out because he really loves me. I hear giggles and realize it’s my own children. Then the family memories part starts as they begin remembering other years, other lights, other times spent together. Lindsey is no longer cold. Megan is no longer crabby. Katie is no longer thinking about her Spanish grade. Matt is no longer too tired to walk another step. Emma is no longer mad that she didn’t get new jammies for PJ day at school. Tom is no longer thinking about how much the evening cost him. And i am near tears as I realize that despite all the pressures of daily life…..i have a wonderful family – and we truly love each other. Merry Christmas after all!!!

Will it ever just be easy????

Some days here at Rethunk Junk Enterprises things go really smoothly. And then….there are the other 363 days of the year. Ha! So at my husbands insistence….let me preface this little blog-o-sharing with the following facts….

1. Apple just recently launched their new “apple maps app” that didn’t get you to your destination and actually relocated the Washington monument…among other issues.
2. NASA has had quite a few issues….including a Mars orbiter built in 1999. Lockheed Martin engineers used the ENGLISH system of measurement while the rest of the team used METRIC. Consequently the orbiter was lost in space and cost NASA $125 million!

So now that we have established that there are other companies out there that have some occasional struggles…..let me share a little about our last week. We had the wonderful opportunity to participate in the Atlanta Home Show this last weekend. Fabulous! Well it came up kind of suddenly so we had to meet a few deadlines. Let’s start with assignment number one. I informed my ever so helpful spouse that what we really needed was a slide show of our paint line and the before and after shots showing what amazing transformations could be achieved with said products. Simple, right? So I go on our Facebook page and ask everyone to send me some pictures of their fabulous pieces. (let me just say that this is the part of the process that went amazingly well….i got sooooo many beautiful pictures and am so grateful to everyone who took the time to send those!!!) so I work for a while and put together a top notch impressive as all get out power point slide show for the Home Show. I hand my lap top to my spouse and say ‘Ta Da!” and wait for the praise to start rolling my way. Um. Nope. What I get is this…. “How long did you work on this thing? Wish you had asked me….you know the TV won’t be able to read a Power Point. This won’t work at all.” Ok. I’m sure he’s right. Computer stuff is not my forte’. So….still cheerful…I ask what we can do to remedy the wee issue. “I know” (I say) “ let’s put it on a flash drive and put that in the tv” (I’m such a problem solver!) well….somehow when OUR family copies a power point from my computer to a flash drive it makes two copies of each photo….one that is stunning and one that is a gray screen with a bunch of nonsense lettering on it. Hmmmmm…..not good. Not good at all. So….we copy the power point from my computer (a blessing from the heavens MAC) to the family computer (a lesser blessing ordinary laptop) and THEN copy it to a flash drive. This somehow gets rid of the extra copy of the photo. GREAT! I thinkg we are done…..i will return to the end of this little project near the end of my rant….i mean blog.

Project number 2 is to complete some brochures we can pass out to the hundreds upon thousands of people who will be awestruck by our product and want more information. Again….i got this! I had previously spent a mere three weeks solid designing a tri fold brochure that was average at best – ha! But I was proud of it. Well…..it was not acceptable to my spouse because – horror of all horrors – I had put a green background on it – and we all know that there is no way in heaven to run a profitable business if you carelessly toss money away on things like ink for the printer. (notice that I referenced ink for the computer – already knowing that my ever cost conscious husband would never even CONSIDER springing for professional printing services). Well…this time I sweetly told him where to put the brochure so he could most definitely locate it at a later time – and assigned him to take care of reworking it. (translation….i am done!) well…..he does rework it….THE MORNING OF THE SHOW…. (although I gotta admit he comes up with something pretty cool – a little WHITE on the background but cool) ha! and starts the printing process. I am suppose to be delivering these as he puts the paper in the printer. So I am NOT amused as the printer starts making a strange noise and refuses to print. REALLY????? Long story short (are you thinking “too late for that!”?) my brochures will not print.

So …. The morning of the Atlanta Home Show here is what I deliver to Julie…..

Eight brochures. Yes eight. I told her to just pick eight wealthy artistic influential looking people and pass them out.

And a flash drive….to go in a tv we took over….that has no remote. Her instructions are to push all the buttons on the side until she figures out which one will start the slide show. And then since we have no clue how to loop the thing…she will indeed have to restart it every 8 minutes or so during the 10 hours of the show. That’s only 75 times she will need to hit the buttons and find out which one (without a remote) will start the show. She is extremely bright so I am guessing by about start number 43 she will know EXACTLY which buttons to push.


No….none of this cost us $125 million like the NASA mistake….. and unlike the Apple Maps flop, millions of people will not know about our little issues…..but I wonder……will it ever be easy and smooth???? Ever?????

gonna do it again………..

Gonna do it again……

Not sure why….not sure how I got roped into this….but I’m gonna travel again for work. Last trip was to Utah…this one is to texas. Stressed about this trip. Why you ask???? Well by all means….let me share…..

Got the clothes thing covered. Im not even close to being “well dressed” or even “looking normal”. But I am not traveling in the buff…and I do have my company logo slapped across my ample bosom most of the time. Kinda like my own personal billboard – ha! So I feel prepared in that area. No….this time the stress is the actual travel part of the trip. By way of explanation, let me share a couple of details from the Utah trip….

Trip out…..
GA to change planes stop…..
We are 45 minutes late. FOURTY FIVE MINUTES!!! Now this is huge, as I have found a comfortable place to sit near the gate, where rushing and pushing is not necessary. And I have timed the bathroom trips very carefully. I could feasibly make a trip now….but cannot give up this seat….and so a FOURTY FIVE minute delay is a big deal to my bladder. A BIG deal. I had it all planned to drag all my carryon stuff into the restroom at the change planes stop. Now things are getting dicey. They finally announce the reason for the delay. The flight attendant for our flight slept in. yes. You read that right. The flight attendant for our flight SLEPT IN! I have very little patience for this, as I myself was on 75 heading for the airport before 5am!! Sleeping Beauty comes dashing in to board the plane after her 45 minutes of extra slumber with her hair wet and flying around her head and one shoe on. Not impressive. So now all the rest of us can board and the trip begins.

Let me stop for a moment here and give you my best flying tip. After booking the ticket, when your husband is not looking, pay that extra 20 bucks to board before others. Zone 1 boarding I think they call it. Why? That way I can get on the plane BEFORE almost everyone else. First class is always first, but I’m next. The advantage is that I can shove my things in the over head bin without shoving my other “things” in someones face. I can grease up and slide into my seat with a bit of privacy. No one is watching as I loosen the seatbelt to the very longest length. By the time the other passengers get back to where I am, I am all situated as if I am a normal traveler. WELL worth the 20 bucks!!

So we start 45 minutes late….and when we land (at the change planes spot) they announce we will be sitting on the plane for another 20 minutes or so. (remember the bladder??) reason for this delay? The crew who slide the bridge over that connects the plane to the terminal so we can deplane without the help of a tarzan type swinging vine…those people are late. Really! So now my bladder is not even remotely the issue….i have a connection to make. And unless it is the very next gate over, that just aint gonna happen! I dash off the plane and ask the nearest employee where my gate is. Well it might as well have been already in Utah! I look at my clock and realize I have like 4 minutes.. you realize what this means…..this means I have to run. And just let me say, “the girls” don’t like it when I run. Not at all. Dang it. I grab my bags and my purse and strap them around my neck in a lame attempt to corral “the girls” and take off. I am running top speed (and despite what you see in the movies NO ONE really does this) bags and girls flopping all over the place. I am breathless….start coughing uncontrollably… and finally reach my gate. Where everyone is sitting calmly. As I try to understand this situation, it dawns on me….Um….yes….there is a time difference and I am an hour early. Heavy sigh….
Ok – better this than missing the connection. So I uncorral “the girls”, apologize to them for the unnecessary abuse, and take care of the bathroom trip. After a quick call to tom to assure him I am having the time of my life, I find a seat close to the gate so no rushing or pushing is required and sit. Would like to eat, but worry that with only 35 minutes left now, by the time I find a spot to buy food and get back, my good seat will definitely be gone. No worries….i can live off what is stored in my hips for quite some time. Well….as boarding time approaches, they announce – yes – you guessed it – there will be a delay. We will be waiting at least another 45 minutes because – you aren’t even gonna believe this….the PILOT is running late. Can NO ONE on this particular airline get to work on time???? (notice I did not name American Airlines on purpose so as not to defame them in any way.) well we finally board and start the longer portion of the trip. I am next to the window….and there is a man in the seat next to me. Seems relatively normal…..until….about 20 minutes into the flight. At this point, I kid you not, he makes an animal-like sound that indicates that he is more than a little uncomfortable…and then he stands up. You would really have to be there to believe this….but then, in the aisle of the plane…he starts a calisthenics routine. I kid you not!!! He is stretching, bending, twisting, reaching, flexing, wiggling, writhing, – and all the while he is moaning like he’s in extreme pain. After about 4 minutes of this, he sighs, sits down, and looks over and smiles at me. I am sure I look stunned and confused at best – and he says cheerfully, “flying is so uncomfortable don’t you think?” (my thoughts? Well yes sir. As you do your workout routine in the aisle, as you groan like you’re near death, as you toss your leg up on the seat and I fear your pants will rip, um yes – flying does indeed become very very uncomfortable!!!) Instead of verbalizing a response I give him a very wary smile and look out the window. Alas, this routine of his occurs three more times before we land. Extremely strange!!!!

And then……I have never been more grateful…..we land! I am safely in Utah. No permanent damage done…..other than a deeply intensely strong dislike for the whole travel experience. So as I prepare to “take off” for Texas this week….i am wondering if there are places that offer therapy for issues like mine. Also wondering if there are places like some dentist offices where they will sedate you during the procedure. I could get very excited about the prospect of being drugged…..very excited!

clothes shopping…..YUCK!

I have a trip coming up at the end of August. It is not a family vacation type trip – it is a business trip. There are several issues I have with this trip…..
1. Who the heck will be painting while I am gone?
2. How will things run smoothly at home and at work without my guidance and influence?
3. Will my sweet children even be able to function without my ever reassuring presence?
And most importantly……

So in an attempt to remedy the important thing on that list….I went shopping yesterday for some new clothes. Wow. What an experience. Yes….it has been some time since I have been to the mall (unless you count the food court – haha)….my usual wardrobe consists of a black t-shirt and a black pair of pants….covered with paint….serves me well….and I can grab a replacement t-shirt or pair of pants at Target (capitalized out of respect and love) anytime I am there doing my other shopping. REAL clothes have not been on the agenda for a while. But I figure I can’t go to Utah looking homeless….so off to the mall.

FIRST….let me say that I know I am overweight. I know – because I own a full length mirror – that there are some things that should NEVER EVER be made in my size. EVER! But I also know….that just because I enjoy the occasional pound of M&M’s doesn’t mean I have lost all touch with reality. Doesn’t mean that all clothes in my size have to be the shape of a Hefty trash bag with a pattern so wild and distracting that you can’t even look directly at me! I see things in the “other” sections of the mall that I know good and well would look FABULOUS blown up to my size. WHY doesn’t any one else see this???? So I have to wade thru all the insane prints – crazy shapes and silhouettes – to find something neutral and understated to wear.

Luckily I took reinforcements….a friend went with me. It was a smart decision – I could judge how far off track I was by her laughter – her inability to speak – or her race to the floor to bring back something ELSE for me to try.

So I’m all over the black pants I find at the first stop – way in my comfort zone – it’s like work clothes without the work on them. =D I can even handle the black shirt we found. Then we start entering some scary territory….

First she starts holding up COLOR. WHAT THE? Has anyone ever mentioned orange being slimming?? No! Has anyone ever truly blended into the background (like I want to do) in CHARTRUSE??? No! After I firmly establish the color issue…..she boldly jumps into PATTERNS!!! Is she insane????? Actually has the gall to hold up a shirt with an entire village printed on the front of it. Yes…”it takes a village”….but not splashed across my boobs!!! Animals cavorting across my ample bosom? I think not!

Once I get her to focus on neutrals and solids, the only things really left to focus on are fabric and fit. I think I’m safe and what does she do?? She heads for JEANS! Let me just say I have not tried to pour my sad booty into a pair of blue jeans since….well…since it was ok to call them blue jeans! But as she pointed out….”if you get the dark ones, that’s almost all you’ll ever need! You can dress them up or down! “ Right! Apparently if I toss on a t-shirt with them I can hang out in the seediest parts of Atlanta and fit right in….BUT….add some earrings and just the right pumps and I’m ready for a night at Carnegie hall! So – like a dork – I take a pair of jeans to the dressing room.

For those of you who – like me – have not sported denim during this decade….I would like to offer a few suggestions….
1. shave. Yep…. Shave. 6 months of leg hair can – in fact – create quite a drag when trying to shimmy into a pair of jeans. Who knew?
2. FYI….skinny jeans do NOT make you look skinny….the deal is you already have to be a size 3
3. “jeggings” – a member of the jean family, are one of those things that should not be manufactured past a certain size!
4. Although comfortable – and I must say it appealed to me – apparently an elastic waist is not something good.
5. My last tip? Find a dressing room without a mirror! I could not find one – but had no trouble covering the entire mirror in my dressing room with one of the pairs of jeans I took back to try on!

I left the store after purchasing a very classy dark pair of boot cut jeans – which according to my friend – will indeed change my life! I was also roped into purchasing a pair of “trousers”. Not pants – not jeans – not khakis – “trousers”! These I will be wearing topless as I have no shirts to pair with them. The bright side is I imagine we will appeal to a whole new customer base! Those either running a brothel, selling weight loss medications or performing breast reduction procedures!!!

I’m going to have to admit that my shopping friend dresses really well herself – was INCREDIBLY patient with my freakish needs and issues – and oddly enough – no one in my family became physically ill when I got home and tried things on for them.

I’m really hoping for that same luck when I get to Utah!!!!!


so for several years now my son matthew has been requesting a snow cone machine. (couple side notes here…. it brings great joy to my life to announce on the WORLD WIDE WEB that my 14 year old SON wants a snow cone machine….fabulously effective way to completely humiliate him – wouldn’t you say? good thing his friends have no interest whatsoever in my blog! and secondly….it is a tad bit embarrassing to say that he has wanted a snow cone machine for two years and we have not “sprung” for one until now….but anywho….)

so we bring home the aforementioned box of excitement and the family is all atwitter. =D we are planning on how fabulously refreshing the snow cones will be.
we are discussing flavors…
and we are already stressing about what we’re going to do when summer is over and they don’t sell the syrup anymore since it’s a seasonal item.

now….a NORMAL family would unbox the party-starting appliance and plug her in – drop in some ice…and let the good times roll!! ice comes shooting out of the little “ice-shooting-out-hole” – fills the cup – pour the syrup on and voila! happiness in a cup!!! but alas,….we are not even CLOSE to being a normal family. so here’s how OUR scenario plays out.

we unbox the party-starting appliance and plug her in. while trying not to drool on the machine, we drop in some ice…and let the good times roll!

we repeatedly push the button but nothing. we all take turns pushing the button…as if the family member before us had a learning disability and was not pushing the button correctly. “here – let ME try” is a phrase that was yelled in our kitchen approximately 327 times in a matter of about 3 minutes. finally tom – head of the home (not) – fixer of all that is broken(not) – appliance guru (not) comes to the rescue. he looks over our snow cone machine…and as we all stand around watching….announces that it is broken. wow. ok. uh….a COUPLE of us had actually already figured this much out. (how? you ask? well as we pushed the button and no ice came out – no motor started – those of us who are really gifted just assumed there was an issue) so what did my man do???? he FIXED IT!!! here….in full color photos….is how he fixed it!

here is the “right outta the box” shot…..

out of the box

here we have a shot of the tools necessary to make OURS work…. note the addition of a PAINTBRUSH???? and a plastic fork…..

necessary tools

and finally…. – the contraption in action =D

this is how you do it

at this point most families would return the machine. not us. at this point all the families who did not return the machine would have decided to “go out” for icees or slushies. not us. we need a snow cone….and we need it NOW!!!!

so as tom explains to us all….this is how you do it…..(if i could set this post to music that’s the song i would play….”this is how you do it”….remember that one? does that date me or what??) so he says – this is no big deal….the little spot on top that pushes down the thing that starts the motor is broken (sometimes he’s so technical i have a hard time understanding – ba ha ha) so – says tom – you just push the button down with this fork – and at the same time you hold the paintbrush here and push it down – and that leaves your other hand free to hold a cup! no big deal! RIGHT!! it’s worse than handling chop stix… trying to push both a paint brush and a plastic fork into two tiny holes …with equal pressure…..and only using one hand!?!? – very frustrating….and i get so hacked off because as i focus on the ninja fork/paintbrush move, i move my cup and spill any ice that slowly drizzles out. it’s CRAZY DYSFUNCTION! why can’t we just purchase a snow cone machine that works????????????? REALLY???????

dream on…..

So again – I’m going to assume this particular “issue” I’m going to address runs in the family. TOM’S side of course! After 3 short years (can you hear the sarcasm??) we have finally decided to carve out the time and finances to fix up the fixer upper house we purchased. It’s way past time to turn our house into a HOME! Click this link to see before and after pictures of what we have accomplished. Haven’t gotten Southern Living interested yet – ha! – but it’s making us very happy!


Well….the fabulous contractors we have working with us on this little project start rather early. In fact, they are kind enough that they drive up around 7am (yuck) and sit in their truck and wait to come in till 8ish. I’m quite certain that hour is spent chatting about how incredibly blessed they feel to be able to work with a family like ours – to be able to spend time around us – to be able to work on a house like ours…. Ha! I imagine the truth would be that between bites of sausage biscuits, they talk about how blessed WE are to have them fixing up something that most people would have set fire to long ago!

Anywho…..they started some work in the kids rooms this morning. Tiny details like WALLS. So the kids had to vacate their rooms at the UNEARTLY hour of 8:30! Oh – the abuse! This is what I found when I went into our front room. They had indeed left their rooms. But instead of fixing breakfast – or starting chores (yes I continue to live in a little dream world) or even flipping on the TV …..i found matthew (the blue blob) and Katie (the gray blob) trying to get in another hour or so of sleep. REALLY? Who DOES that? How can one sleep when one should be insanely excited that one’s room is finally being fixed/built/finished….????
matt blob

katie blob

And then I remembered my own dear spouse….and his ability to SLEEP during the most inappropriate of times. Example you ask?? Happy to oblige! May 9th 1987 pops to mind. Why? Well that’s our wedding day! I arrive early for the occasion – time to floof my hair (it was the 80’s) – add a skooch more blue eyeshadow (it was the 80’s) – button the 1,273 buttons on the back of my wedding dress (had to get help with that one) – and time to take a few deep breaths and enjoy the feeling that I was about to start the happiest time of my life. Well….literally that happy time was supposed to start at 10:00. So imagine my surprise at 9:30 when I discovered Tom was not there. Imagine my stress at 9:45 when I discovered still no Tom. Imagine my panic at 10:00 when I had no groom present. And imagine my rage at 10:15 when I was still alone. Standing in my dress with my 1,273 buttons all buttoned, with my perfectly floofed hair and 17 layers of blue eyeshadow – deep breaths long gone – I was READY TO FREAKIN GET MARRIED!


Much like my thoughts this morning….i am thinking – how in the WORLD can anyone sleep when they should be as excited as Tom should be right now? How do you SLEEP when you’re about to marry the love of your life – or get a wall??? Ha!
At about 10:17, when I was instructing one of my sisters to just “go out there and pick me someone single and handsome cuz I AM getting married today”, Tom comes careening around the corner, breathless, tux flapping in the breeze, barefoot, forgot his socks, rental shoes in one hand, and ….i am livid!!!! For about a millisecond. And then I look at his amazing blue eyes, reach up and pat down his fabulous hair, he smiles at me, and I am completely and totally in love. He is forgiven. And I don’t even need any deep breaths to enjoy the feeling that I am most certainly about to start the happiest time of my life!

on to the house……

They never cease to amaze me! My fabulous offspring – in what I’m sure is an attempt to please and dazzle me – never disappoint me with new topics to blog about.

We have established that the van is an issue in almost every way possible. But alas – it still drives – so our plan – being who we are – is to run that puppy into the ground…..translation?? I will not have a new vehicle until something happens to that dumb thing and it no longer runs. So since we can’t work on that – and we always gotta have a project going we have now moved on to the house. I have shared very little about the house…..suffice it to say we purchased a “fixer upper” about two years ago with the best of intentions…a plan to have no house payment (goal met) a plan to have neighbors who could handle a dresser in the driveway every now and then (goal met) a plan to be close to Woodstock Market (goal met) and a plan to turn this house into something fabulous! (goal not met in any way shape or form) it seems that life/business/cash flow/lack of sense etc have all gotten in the way…..so there is still MUCH to fix up! Let’s just sum up by saying that the van and the house get along very nicely with each other!

Well I get a fantastically exciting call that my sister is coming in town from KY. She has four adorable kids and so doesn’t get to come visit often and has not seen our new “abode”. She also happens to be insanely put together – very very pretty – super organized – a wonderful mom – and has an eye for decorating that I would kill for. Her house should truly be on the cover of Southern Living, House Beautiful, Cottage Chic – any of the above…..while mine is a better fit for Trash Not Treasure or Wrecks R Us. Anywho….the upside of this (besides being able to spend time with my sister!!!) is that a visitor will motivate my dear spouse. We have three days till the visit. In fact – we have less than that because we also have company coming on Monday night. So….i’m thinking – YEA! New windows! (our current windows were manufactured in 1923 and one is held together by cardboard and packing tape.) or maybe YEA! Let’s hang the light fixture in the bedroom where the electrical cord is just dangling down begging for a light. Or even YEA! A new paint job in the hallway where in an attempt to help with the home improvement projects my children have peeled the old paint off in various animal shapes and nature designs. BUT NO!!

What does he decide is top priority??? Let’s see…..we have lived here two years now…..and TODAY……TODAY is the only day on this calendar year that he can start the bathroom remodel we discussed eons ago. The one where we reconfigure both bathrooms so tom and I have more room and the kids a wee bit less and both spaces are nicer and more beauteous. WHAT???? REALLY????? Ok. Sure. In the next 48 hours lets tear out two walls, install a new tub, a new shower, move the washer and dryer downstairs, run electricity and plumbing to them, replumb the bathrooms, paint, install new flooring, replace both vanities and relocate both toilets…..just to hit the high points. I about HIT THE ROOF!! (that also needs to be repaired)

I will say that this is going to require a part two…..or three or twelve…..but thus far – the only thing I got going for me is that I DID get my man to agree to replace the windows……which – finally – ties back into how helpful my children are with blog topics…..
They are standing in the construction dumpster in the driveway (now how many of you can say THAT??) and tearing apart the old windows. (cuz if you crush it up you can get so much more in the dumpster thus making it a better bargain!) and tom comes out and tells them they really do need safety glasses for a job like that! When he comes back out – this is what he finds. My children have donned affordable – economical – and ever so imaginative USELESS goggles. Yes – they have each tied a piece of Saran Wrap around their eyeballs. I cant even express the pride…… my thought is they better stuff some in their ears too as I express to my beloved – once again – my feelings about beginning this bathroom overhaul! ……… to be continued……

Communication???? Part Two

husband wife

so in Part One of this post, we covered the fact that our van had some issues with the key…..after serious and ever so effective communication with my dear other half, i spent 11 months licking my van key so it would go in the ignition and then – when that no longer worked – i was instructed by my beloved spouse to just never remove the key from the ignition – so i spent every day carrying around any and all valuables since the van could not be locked. i looked like some kind of homeless pack rat. finally – since the “communication” was less that stellar – the Lord intervened….heard and answered my prayers… and the whole ignition thing bit the dust and had to be replaced. (for more details feel free to read “communication part one” if you have no life and nothing else to do!) haha
so here i am – rejoicing that the ignition column has to be totally replaced in my van thrilled that we will be heading to the repair shop and getting this issue under control!
so….in an attempt to “communicate” with my spouse, i ask what day he would like my assistance getting the van to the shop. i will – i promise reverently – drop any and every thing i am doing to help! well…..he informs me he will “keep me posted”. ok. super. how can that be anything but lovely news??? well….as luck would have it – “keep me posted” ACTUALLY means….”i never have any intention of taking the van to a reputable repair shop as i feel quite certain i can fix this myself because i am a man and all men are capable of auto mechanic repair work as it is part of our DNA makeup.” so….he does indeed attempt this repair job himself. i find myself shocked, overjoyed, and a wee bit apprehensive as i jump in the van on the day after the repair job. i place the newly acquired key in the ignition…trembling with excitement….and it goes in smoothly!!! as my anticipation builds to an almost feverish pitch, i turn this new key….and viola! the van starts! i am amazed and thrilled! i am a normal woman! well – ok – that’s stretching things a bit….but seriously!!! you have no clue how fabulous it was! those of you who have never had to lick your vehicle keys will never know the blessing of just starting your car! so i decide this happy little occasion calls for a celebration! my party of choice? a trip to walmart! (my life is one thrill ride after another – don’t even TRY to keep up!) so i get to walmart – and like every other shopper…i jump out with key in hand – and lock my van! how freeing!!!! no need to gather everything in it and carry it with me for security purposes – it’s just me and my key bopping into walmart (oh – and tom’s credit card – heehee) so i finish my shopping and head back to my dream van (the ability to start it like a normal person makes all the dents and lack of a radio and blah blah blah MUCH less noticeable!) i stick my key in the van to unlock it…. and turn it…..and…..what on earth??????
the alarm (now why on earth does THAT still work???) starts going off! those things are LOUD! and no one ever runs over to help you – or offers to call the police – all they do is look at you like “how annoying! could you get that thing turned off cause its REALLY irritating!” so i notice – gratefully – that my window is down just enough for me to wedge my heifer sized arm in and unlock the door. whew! er….well…no. that did not help. alarm is still blaring and people are still looking at me like I’m a dork. id love to be able to inform them all that i MARRIED a dork – THAT’S the problem – but i am busy trying to get the alarm to shut off as quickly as humanly possible! so…..
in an attempt to “communicate” with my spouse – i call him and yell as loud as i can to be heard over the blare of the alarm that the alarm is going off and i can’t stop it. he of course can’t hear me cause the alarm is going off and i can’t stop it. he actually has the GALL to say to me – “honey – turn off the car alarm so i can hear you”. REALLY???? REALLY????? i swear there are seriously times when i feel quite certain a jury made up of other women….anywho…
i scream kindly that i cannot turn off the alarm – which incidentally happens to be the very reason for the call…and THAT’S when he tells me. THAT’S when he chooses to share the details of the repair job. here’s what i get, as i stand in the parking lot of walmart, with my alarm going off at 12 thousand decibels and a major migraine coming on….

oh….sweetie….you didn’t take the key out did you?

well flippitydodah YES Tom! i did indeed take the key out! that was the whole point of the repair process was it not?????

no – it was not laura – the repair was so you didn’t have to lick the key. and you CAN take the key out – but you shouldn’t have locked it.

WHY… in the name of all that is right and good… NOT sweetie?

well….they key in the ignition does not actually work in the door. i had to sorta do my own thing with the repair job. the key that works the door is taped under the dashboard – but won’t work in the ignition. it’s there incase we ever need to lock the van but it won’t start the van – the key you have in your hand will start the van but doesn’t actually work correctly in the door. in fact, to be precise – the whole other ignition happens to be duct taped to the underside of the steering column because i had to have it there so the sensor would allow…..

WHAT? i interrupt….WHAT?? WHAT????? if i were a cussing woman this would be the time. the original faulty ignition is taped under my van so that….so that the key can be near the sensor and – WHY DO WE DO THINGS THIS WAY???? and he didn’t SHARE this little nugget with me earlier????
deep cleansing breath….

so….i say to him more calmly than he deserves….dear special special spouse of mine….how should i handle this situation with the alarm? as i cannot get to the correct key to stop it? because my heifer sized arm will not reach all the way down under the steering column…

well….you could cut the cord going to the alarm.

oh! brilliant! let me just whip out my bolt cutters – pop the hood of the van – and cut the exact cord running to the alarm real quick. sorry to have bothered you ! should have thought of that LONG ago!

that was not said aloud….what i opted for instead was a long withering cold silence on my end of the phone….which my other half picked up on REAL quick.

guess that’s not a very viable option, is it sweetie?

um no tom …..it’s really not.

well….then come on back to Market (Woodstock Market – where our home base is – if you haven’t checked it out yet what’s wrong with you? hahaha) and i’ll fix it for you.

perfect! love of my life. are you asking me to drive from here to there WHILE THE ALARM CONTINUES TO BLARE??????

well….yes laura – you messed things up with the keys

WHAT???? hold it right there buddy!!! i am completely done with the “in an attempt to communicate with my spouse” garbage. this is lunacy! i messed things up with the keys????????? i will be there in a moment – you will hear me LONG before you see me – and i’m NOT referring to the alarm! be thinking up your apology – and it needs to include cash, jewelry, and slave type service!!

so yes….i do indeed get in my van – alarm blasting – and drive – alarm blasting – down bells ferry and 92 – alarm blasting – till i get back to Market – alarm blasting. i especially enjoyed the stop lights. just try – if you will – to envision looking cheerful – innocent – and a bit confused even – as you sit at the light and YOUR VEHICLE is the one creating all the noise pollution. do you look straight ahead? smile and apologize? cry a little? look around like it’s someone else’s car? had i the time and a pen i would have scribbled a sign announcing “i married a dork – nuff said!” and i feel certain most people would have had compassion….but there was no time for that.

i rolled into Market – and shortly thereafter the cord to the alarm was indeed disabled. and let me just say that it is only my deep irrational love for my spouse, my incredible self control, and my immensely righteous nature that kept me from disabling something else! =D

oh – the joys of communication!!!…….

Communication??? Part One

This is PART ONE of a two part blog – there was just so much dysfunction i worried it was too overwhelming for one post. haha
van keyI know communication can be tricky. communication with a friend or loved one can be even trickier Communication in a marriage can be downright impossible. I know that the two of you who read my blog are aware that our family seems to be “vehicularly challenged”. Well for today’s purposes we are going to focus on the van…..
Seems that the 1723 honda oddssey vans (yes – im pretty sure that’s what year ours is) had some kind of issue with the ignition. Inserting the key into the ignition begins to be a problem at some point on this particular model. In an attempt to “communicate” with my spouse, I point out that not being able to put the key into the hole in the van that allows me to start the dang thing, could, indeed, become quite bothersome, to say the least. Well, being the family we are, we do absolutely nothing about this little “issue” until the key does become quite difficult to insert into the ignition. In an attempt to “communicate” with my spouse, I request a trip to the service department of several reputable repair places. He, of course, has other plans. I am now instructed to LICK the key before I put it in the ignition. Yes – you read that correctly. My dear other half has deduced that the problem might possibly be lubrication, so I am to LICK my key before trying to start the van. Oh! And turning it over and around might help too. So now I need to be in the van about 45 minutes before I need it to actually start….and I sit there….hoping no one on the face of the earth is looking as I lick and turn and lick and flip and lick and rotate our key. Well despite the fact that I am as patient as Job (just ask anyone in my family) this gets dysfunctional pretty quickly. In an attempt to “communicate” with my spouse, I tell him he is a dork and ask him to follow me to the nearest repair place. He, of course, has other plans. NOW, we are going to just always leave the key in the ignition. Never take it out. Ever. Well….ok. I realize most of you are thinking, “laura! You have snagged yourself a genious! Tom is nothing short of gifted with his problem solving skills!” and I would have to agree that tom is nothing. Bah ha ha. Let’s just consider this one little hiccup in the plan. I am 20 minus 3 plus 17 minus 4 plus 18 years old. (I’m hoping most of you will not even begin to take the time to do the math there…..) and have been driving for more than a few years. I have this nutty little ritual where I stop the vehicle, put it in park, turn the key off, and…. You guessed it…. take it out. Call me crazy…..but its true. So after trying really hard, there does come a day when I automatically go thru that little ritual and end up sitting in the Target parking lot with the van key in my hand. Oh crud. Now what???? I lick and swirl, and drool and turn and rotate and smear…..for about an hour and nope….that key ain’t going in the ignition. Not happening. So….. In an attempt to “communicate” with my spouse, I take several deep cleansing breaths and call him. “sweetheart?” I say….. “I seem to have a little problem with the van…..” “what???? You didn’t take the key out did you???? It’s such an easy fix laura! Why did you take the key out????? Great – now I have to come fix this and ……(heavy sigh on his part) Fine….i’ll be there in a bit” ok. Initially, I feel just awful. But then as I sit there waiting…..i begin to think things thru….and realize I have married a dingleberry and no other woman on the planet spent two months sucking on her van keys, and then another month leaving them in the vehicle and carrying around anything of any value since the vehicle could not be locked. No…..this was dysfunction at it’s best. Etc etc etc so by the time “my beloved” arrives to assist….i have worked myself into a little fit.
Well….as it turns out – the key cannot be licked enough to make it work this time so the whole ignition thingy on the steering column has to be replaced. In an attempt to “communicate” with my spouse, I thank him for repairing the issue a mere 11 months after it started…..and then focus on being excited that we are no longer dealing with key issues!……
Alas…..i was wrong…..
(to be continued…….)

camping? no thank you!

I am not a camper.  I have never been a camper.  I will never be a camper.   I am not even especially “outdoorsy”.  I seem to attract all bugs within a 10 mile radius.  I have decided I am particularly tasty  to mosquitoes and any other insect that bites.  I have also decided that I feel quite certain the Lord did not send me here during the pioneer era for a reason.   Initially I thought that reason was His great love for me…..but my family has corrected me and informs me that it is His great love for the pioneers.  Apparently my family is under the impression that I could possibly, occasionally, softly and in an understated manner complain or fuss just a wee bit about conditions on the trail.  Whatever.    Haha

Here’s a little summary of my last camping experience.   I will admit I believe I was sent here during the time when there was electricity for a reason!  Although I look homeless at Market when I’m working, I will have to say I am a fan of blow dryers, flat irons, heat, air conditioning, microwaves, refrigerators, hot tubs, and all things electrical that make life easier.  So I really prefer NOT to do the “roughing it” thing when camping.   I was asked to be a chaperone at a church girls camp retreat.  (whose idea of a joke was this? I know not!)  anywho….the camp was very rustic.   Each cabin had 6 bunks – (a slab of wood hanging somewhere off the wall) – and that was basically it.   Well – I found out there was electricity in one of the buildings on the property – so BAM!  I’m in business!   I show up with an 80 foot extension cord, a multi prong adapter, a mattress, a night light, two oscillating fans, and my blow dryer (just to hit the high points).  While everyone else was digging “latrine” troughs (nightmare! I will hike as long as it takes to get to the actual bathrooms on the property!!), I dug a shallow line to bury my extension cord from the main lodge thing to my cabin.   BINGO!   I am in the cabin plugging in my fans and putting my mattress on my bunk…and i turn around and notice about elevendytwelveteen girls trying to get in the cabin to room with me.    Never one to have much self esteem, I am flattered beyond belief.   Um….until I see all elevendytwelveteen sets of eyes focused on my fans.   Oh well….whatever it takes to have friends!   Last order of business was to find the ice machine on the property (these places always have one somewhere) and fill my cooler so my diet coke is nice and refreshing.   NOW…..we’re ready to camp.   this is the look I was going for – didn’t QUITE hit it – but came closer than anyone else at the campsite – THIS is camping!!!



Before you make fun….let me just share this.  I have come to the conclusion that even campers do not like to camp!!!     Really!    Two honest to goodness examples……

Tom was training to be a scout leader (years ago) and they scheduled a cold weather campout.   Teaching the kids how to deal with the elements.   Well…..it was cancelled two days before.   WHY?   The forecast called for SNOW!   True story!

This past week my own dear scout who LOVES to camp – was scheduled to go on the wilderness survival campout.   Talked for weeks about trapping his own food (translation – he’s gonna have to live on the 2 granola bars I sneek into his pockets)    about starting his own fires (I got a lighter im putting down his sock)    about identifying safe roots and berries to eat (can you say “fruit snacks” in his sleeping bag?)    he had big plans!!   Well…..it was cancelled two days before.   WHY?   The wilderness survival campout could not be held due to the threat of rain in the forecast.   RAIN!  True story!

See?   don’t let em fool ya – Even campers do not like to camp!



ice storm 2014

So there really isn’t any way to truly capture how absurd the following event was without a video to accompany it…but I have decided to try anyway.


We had an ice storm – CNN used the words catastrophic and crippling to describe conditions – here in Atlanta on Wednesday.   But did that stop tom and I from trying to get to Market to work?   Uh….nope.    here is how the trip from the front door to the van went…..


There are 5 steps from our front door down to the sidewalk.   All 5 covered with ice.   Solid ice.   Tom decides to go first to warm up the van.   He slips on the first step  – so to stop his fall – he grabs onto the stair rail – which did no good as it is solid ice.   Somehow he makes it to the sidewalk – ours happens to be slanted downhill from the house to the driveway – so he yells at the top of his lungs for all of us to come look.   The entire family gathers at a window and we all watch tom stand in a position similar to that of a ballerina… and see him slide towards the van.

We all agree it was something much like this photo.


Well he rams into the van – I mean reaches his destination… and after a few minutes comes back inside for reinforcements.   So megan and I follow.   I have a center of gravity located very near my rear end and all the grace of an elephant so I am terrified of falling.   No worries!  I grab our container of Morton Salt and follow along.   I am expecting to sprinkle the salt and watch as the ice evaporates into thin air…much like a fancy magic trick.    Well….i have decided that what they sell at home depot must not be the same formula I enjoy on my baked potato.  I knew it was bigger chunks….maybe I needed sea salt?  But this stuff was doing nothing.   In fact, as tom backed down each step chipping away at the ice with my KITCHEN SPATULA, I followed closely tossing little handfuls of salt – which did nothing but blow into his eyes and wreak havoc with his chipping methods.   At almost the same exact moment that I am asking that he be careful with my $50 Pampered Chef KITCHEN SPATULA, I hear a crack as the handle breaks off.   Really?   Not to be deterred, he continues to the SECOND STEP (no we are not making progress quickly) and clears another 2 inch square which I quickly and efficiently sprinkle with salt.   Megan is behind me cracking up and about to fall on me she is laughing so hard.   I am not seeing much humor in the whole situation, but carry on.  What else could I do?


So about 4 hours and 32 minutes later (but who’s counting?) we reach the van.  I am out of salt, the KITCHEN SPATULA handle is nowhere to be found, no one feels like being a ballerina anymore, and megan is still laughing like a lunatic.   Tom starts his ever so efficient chipping method with my KITCHEN SPATULA on the windshield and I am starting to think I will never get to Market.  So  I get in the van.  Boom.  Done.   I am ready to go.   The van heat will melt the ice on the windshield.  No more goofing off – let’s get this road on the street.   Well….as I watch tom still chipping, I feel a bit like I should help….but as I have already planted my center of gravity firmly in the van….i do what I can without getting out….i turn on the windshield wipers.  They – of course – are frozen in place and do not move.  So megan takes my KITCHEN SPATULA and vows to “get em loose!”.   Tom sits down in the van and I swear – before he can shut the door – megan does indeed “get em loose” – they swing up and sling ice and snow all over toms head and face and lap.  At this point I join megan in laughing my head off  – what else could I do?

So….although I would like to sell every stick of furniture and every quart of paint I own, I would recommend you wait till things thaw a bit.   BUT….after that happens….i will need every last one of you to shop as I now have to replace all of my salt and…..my KITCHEN SPATULA!!!!


armoire close up

Antique Sheet Music Organizer

antique sheet music organizer

Awesome Bar

bar front with light back bar


Dresser and Mirror

dresser and mirror linen

Dresser and Mirror painted with Linen!

East Lake Bed and Bench

eastlake bed and bench

Fabulous China Cabinet

fabulous china cabinet

Fabulous china cabinet with great detail!

Four Poster Bed

four poster bed in linen

Four poster bed painted with Linen!

Church Pew Bench

front pew

Great church pew bench.

Full/Queen Headboard

fullqueen linen headboard

Full/Queen headboard painted with Linen.

Curved Front Dresser

gray mist and cotton curved front dresser

Amazing curved front dresser painted with Gray Mist and Cotton.

Hymn Book Recycled

hymn book recycled

Iron Bed

iron bed with painted posts

Iron bed with painted posts.

Kids Table and Chair Set

kids table and chair set

Kids Table

kids table!

Ombre Desk

ombre desk in gray tones

Ombre desk in the gray tones…great piece!