Posts Tagged ‘adventures’


. . . we were younger, thinner, had way more energy, and I can’t even go into how our hair has changed. We wandered around the then Reedy River Park with our friend Chris and took a few photos to commemorate our engagement. Fast forward ten years, three kids, the house, the job, the mini-van, yaddy yadda, and we found ourselves once again in the same (barely) park, commemorating our togetherness. It was such an interesting project, trying to recreate the energy (did I mention that we had more energy back then? Sheesh!), the DRAMA, the anticipation, the “oh, don’t you wish you had a love like us”-ness of our engagement. I look at those two crazy in love kids and think about all the things they’ve got ahead. So many memories I’d love to re-live, and so many I wish they never had to go through. I think back on choices, think back on places and people that will cross those paths. I get a little melancholy.


I’m a nostalgic person by nature, dwelling more on the past, painting it up all nice and then looking at the future with a weird combo of idealism and fear, often having to remind myself that this moment is what is important. Living in the moment isn’t my strong suit. When I first saw these comparisons, I have to admit that I struggled a little. It’s easy to see what’s lost (or gained I might say in both our cases!) It’s easy to long for certain parts of the past that we’ll never have again. Do any of you get all mopey sentimental like that? That also happens when I go on a college campus. I get all reminiscent about my younger days as if they were so great. Why do that? Where’s my living in the moment?





Then I saw the “out takes,” the shots taken when weren’t trying to be melodramatic, desperate-in-love twenty year olds again (which, I must add for the sake of my younger friends, there’s not a thing in the world wrong with being melodramatic, desperate in love and twenty all at the same time, so you go right on with your far off looks, retro filtered photos and vintage threads. I am with you!)

Anyway, it’s in the “oops! I wasn’t ready!” shots that I see it.



There’s my moment.


There’s my right now.

There’s my breath catching, tearing up “wow, honey, can you believe all that God has brought us through and yet here we are with our arms around each other in this old park, still working through each day together? Isn’t God amazingly kind to us?”

What a happy anniversary it turned out to be! 

Oh, I guess I already posted this one. Well, we weren’t pretending in this one!


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Andy recently took Liam, Gillian and me with him on one of his work trips to Raleigh. After already traveling for two weeks in a row we decided it was worth the extra effort to be together and packed up all our school stuff, sent Squire to kick it with his Nali and Grandad, and went on a road trip. Raleigh has tons of great museums and the BEST children’s museum I’ve been to yet (even better than Greenville’s I think). It sort of turned into museum week actually, with The North Carolina Museum of Art–they had a Rembrandt exhibit that was amazing–on Tuesday, The North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences on Wednesday (the spider), and Marbles, the Children’s Museum on Thursday.  Gillian has declared every day since that she is too exhausted to do school, then when I tell her we aren’t having school she runs outside to play. Anyone else reminded of a certain Silverstein poem? Anyway, here are a few (okay, a lot) of pictures from our week of adventures.

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Went up to Shelby to hang out with my folks. I LOVE that they’re close enough now for us to just run up for a day or two whenever we want! Although I thought maybe they’d get less candy doing a trunk or treat than they would visiting a hundred houses. WRONG! Them folks at Landmark Baptist Chruch ain’t stingy with their candy. The last week has been a chorus of “can we have some candy?” It’s gone into the basket for school rewards by now. We’ll see if it doesn’t all get tossed out this year. Candy overload or no, I always love seeing them get dressed up. Gillian was a blonde version of Silvermist, Liam, was a prince (although he was adamant about the fact that it wasn’t Prince Charming-Thanks to Shrek), and Eliot, won the non-existent costume award as my little panhandler (thank you Pinterest).



Peter Pan

The kid’s birthdays just came and went. Instead of parties this year, Liam suggested tickets to see Cathy Rigby is Peter Pan at the Peace Center. My heart leaps with joy at his interest in theater, as it simultaneously cringes over a typically self absorbed hobby. Believe me I know and I struggle with whether or not to try and shield him from some of the identity issues that go with it. Anyway, this show was very special for me, so much that you have to believe me when I tell you it was his idea. I was in this show with SCCT eight years ago and we actually got to perform it in the Peace Center concert hall. The music, the dancing, the FLYING, were all pretty sentimental. Then of course, I haven’t been in a show for about four years now and I miss it–sometimes a lot. Thanks however to Liam’s unrestrained squeals of laughter, I wasn’t too melancholy and was able to have a really good time with the kidlets and Bean. Cathy Rigby tore it up, we had incredible seats and the kids were little angels. So thankful, although a little sad that Andy couldn’t be there.



Saturday my husband gave me a HUGE gift–a day to myself. A whole day to do whatever I pleased. Of course, I didn’t spend it by myself, I gathered up a couple of my awesome gal pals and headed off to Asheville for Christmas shopping, coffee chugging, yummy organic eating, fall weather enjoying, dread maintaining and lots of girl talk. It was a day full of plenty, full of reminders, full of restful meandering down streets, stopping in wherever our little hearts desired. It was a day full of laughter over random and creepy street performers, Tab and Lacey putting beads on my dreads in the middle of Trade street, obsessively searching out the elusive Virtue boutique, one of us who was really bossy, and Tab almost stealing leggings from Urban Outfitters (if you can imagine!). It was a day void of dishes, squabbles or diapers–all gifts in themselves, but nevertheless nice to have a break from.

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Remember being a teenager and doing something just a little bit dangerous, a little bit bit forbidden? I’m not talking about something sinful or illegal, just something your parents probably wouldn’t let you do because something COULD happen, or because  (own it moms and dads both new and old) it just might have made them look bad? The excitement, the “oh, what if we get caught” feeling,  the freaky sensation that when something goes a little wrong it’s some sort of sign from God that you’re doing something REALLY bad? I had just such an evening the other night with my friend Tab.

We were out in good ol’ TR (that’s Traveler’s Rest, SC for you non-locals) visiting another friend from our shepherding group. Earlier that day we’d been driving through there on our way home from Hendersonville and I missed my turn back toward G-ville. When I turned  around at a gas station, we noticed an abandoned building with TONS of pallets piled all around. Both of us being addicted to Pinterest right now gasped audibly and immediately began to visualize all of the pallet projects we’d recently pinned. We looked at each other excitedly, both obviously salivating. We made all the necessary justifications about the abandoned building and how the pallets clearly couldn’t have been wanted, so it wasn’t really stealing and on and on, planning to come back that night and swipe a few.

That night we ended up leaving our friend’s house much later than planned and it was after midnight by the time we pulled up to the abandoned building and the treasure trove of precious pallets. Now I could have been a better friend when Tab mentioned that it probably wasn’t too terribly safe to be doing this in the middle of the night, but I’ve never had a really good grasp of real and present danger, so instead I was the “oh, don’t be such a ninny” friend who pushes everyone into trouble, and I was driving, so poor Tab had no choice!

It’s so funny how during the day it seamed like a harmless and simple boarded up building, merely a backdrop for the stuff of a DIY girl’s dreams. At night however, the place became this menacing hideout for all manner of unsavory characters, the woods behind loomed ferociously, surely housing poised and violent mountain men, and the gas station lights shone, seemingly fully lit, yet not a soul was anywhere to be seen. Our nervous giggles and racing hearts had started up several miles back. (I’m trying to not think about how unexciting this makes my life sound). Now, I don’t want to throw Tab under the bus, but she was freaking out a little by this point. I pretended to remain cool and calm, refusing to let irrational fears rob me of my intended reading nook or bookshelves. (Seriously, how CUTE are those?!)

So yeah, I was all, “oh Tab, stop worrying, it’s no big deal.” Then my car started making this weird noise. Out of no where, the breaks or something start screeching. Tab’s like, “it’s a sign Beth!” I didn’t listen. I pulled up to a pile of pallets, already rehearsing my speech to the police officer that I was now imagining pulling up any moment. “Honestly officer, I was just going to take a couple for some home decorating! Have you ever heard of Pinterest, Sir?” Then my flashlight wouldn’t turn on. “Another sign!” from Tab. I still didn’t listen. I was determined to get my pallets! I grabbed hold of one and tipped it up to carry it to my van. Of course . . . bugs! There goes my cool. There goes my resolve. (hm, let’s see, what’s more dangerous, creepy people or creepy bugs? Here’s where I join Tab under the proverbial bus.) Stinking bugs! So much for my tough guy act.  I can’t put those in my car! Jump back in the van. Maybe there’s a cleaner pile on the other side. Tab’s like, “really!? are we still here?!”

So we pulled around and I was about to try again when we glanced up at the gas station. The EMPTY gas station. The “we were 100% certain there wasn’t a single person there” gas station. There was this motorcycle sitting there at the door–with no one on it. Just sitting there. Tab’s like, “I KNOW that wasn’t there a few minutes ago,” but we hadn’t heard it pull up at all. It was one of those moments when those little alarm bells that have been slightly tinkling for a while start ringing out in earnest. It was totally creepy. “Okay, let’s go” I say and Tab’s like, “finally!” We were well into Greer before the creepy feeling went away and the remorse set in at not getting our pallets. Oh, but it was so much fun for this mommy of three, so often house bound, whose most adventuresome days are made up of killing spiders in the bathroom and chasing the toddler who got out of the back yard gate yet again.

Maybe you’re thinking it serves us right for planning to “steal” pallets that weren’t ours to take. Maybe you’re thinking “what’s the big deal?” Maybe you’re thinking I need to carry a gun in my car (Dad). I’m thinking that I’m totally thankful for unexpected adventures, for moments that make me feel young again, and for awesome friends to share them with.  . . . . . And I’m still looking for pallets.

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Hello, Goodbye

Agh!  I just got back from the Worship God Conference up in MD and have TONS to talk about!!!! I guess I’ll have plenty of time to write and edit my post about it though, because tech-free week started really about twenty-eight minutes ago. (Not off to a very good start, am I?) I just couldn’t disappear for ANOTHER week without some explanation. So, goodbye blog, goodbye Facebook, goodbye Words with Friends, goodbye Netflix, goodbye (this I think is the most painful) PINTEREST, etc., etc.. Here’s to getting more sleep, doing more reading, writing more, making more stuff, spending more time playing games with my kidlets, and prepping for the school year!

BTW, it’s likely that I will feel ridiculously cut off from the world this week, so if you have my number and feel inclined to call and see how the week’s going, there’s a good chance you’ll end up being my hero that day.

And one more thing . . . .

It’s funny how once you tell yourself that you aren’t going to tweet or use Facebook, countless wonderful statuses come flooding to mind.

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I Went Up To The Mountains . . . . .

We just got back from a little jaunt to the mountains with Ando’s family. Even though we’re all pretty close geographically, we sort of run in different directions and don’t get much time together all at once. It’s so frustrating knowing that the business of our lives gets in the way of family relationships, well, ALL relationships for that matter, but we don’t seem to find a way to slow it down. *Sigh* But that’s a post for another day. Today’s post is about the treasured time we DID get with our family and to show off a few pics from our weekend. It was far from relaxing with our two infants, one toddler, two pre-schoolers and our recent little K-5 grad, but how many sweet moments we saw with these precious small ones! Learning the new ones (sweet, sweet Micaiah and I had lots of getting to know you cuddles), experiencing their giggles for the first time, seeing cousins bond, and watching beautiful mamas who not long ago weren’t mamas, celebrating birthdays, taking mounds of pictures, playing games and eating-oh the eating! So many gifts! Here is a conglomeration of  a few memorable moments in which I just happened to have my camera nearby. I was going to caption them all, but that was getting tedious and you guys are smart enough to figure out what’s what-oh, except for the picture of me in the hat. That was an early birthday present that we got in Asheville on the way home-for the dreads of course!

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On Another Note

Today I turned 31. It didn’t start well with Gillian running into the room making a gagging noise, and asking for a puking bowl. She did make it to the toilet in time and it turns out she wasn’t sick, just being Gillian and throwing up because she hadn’t done it in a few months. That’s just Gill.  Not an optimistic start to the day, but turned out lovely, thanks to Ando. My breakfast in bed wasn’t completely ruined by the retching four year old, and the kids behaved remarkably well all day. What a wonderful present! Then Andy took me out for Indian Food and presented me with tickets to the VIP Gala for THIS and $ to spend there!!!! He done good. *Sigh* So blessed.



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My last post talked a little bit about the whys of the dreads, but a lot of people are asking me some hows and whens, so I thought I’d post a little bit about the whole process. Well, mostly just the pics. If you want to know how to make them, check this out, and if you’re wanting to know if I can keep them clean (short answer is “yes!”), go here.


Started off the day at 7:30 am with clean, dry hair. I’ve been thinking about a funky short cut, so I’m prepared to have it all chopped if the dreads go badly or I hate them or whatever. Bye bye hairbrush!

MARIA (MY “OFFICIAL” STYLIST) SEPARATING MY HAIR INTO 49 LITTLE PONYTAILS (There’s not really any significance to the 49, that’s just what we ended up with.)

1ST SHIFT: These most awesome gal pals worked from 9:00-12:30. I’m so thankful for all of them and their help. I can’t imagine how long it would have taken without them.

I Took a break at 12:30 to feed my children, which is just about all the attention they got from me Thursday, the poor dears, with the exception of a couple of diaper changes for Eliot. Daddy took them out for dinner while I teased and palm rolled, teased and palm rolled, teased and palm rolled, teased, and . . . . . you get the picture. I could tell it was going too slow though and I desperately started calling everyone I could think of to help. The problem is, a large majority of my friends have a hoard of children to tend to, and can’t just up and head over to my house at the last minute.

2ND SHIFT: Eight o’clock rolled around and was still barely half way done. Jody and Lynn sailed in and saved the day, working on it for about three hours. True friends? I think yes.  It was about this time that the style was starting to take shape and I was getting pumped. They were coming out much longer than I’d expected, which was very cool. The time had come to break out the Bob Marley.


NIGHT SHIFT: Sadly, my stalwart recruits had to go home. We still had a long way to go and it was just me and Andy, teasing and palm rolling, teasing and palm rolling . . . . see, the process isn’t  really all that exciting.

Eventually, my arms gave out and he was on his own. The last four belong to him alone. Now isn’t that love? What I lucky woman I am. We waxed and palm rolled the last dread right around 2:30 am. You’re probably wondering how in the world it can take so long. It took an average of 18 minutes per lock to backcomb the hair tightly enough to for it to lock up. We were both exhausted by the end, but a short burst of energy followed as we took some pics and stood back to let it sink in that I had actually just spent about 14 hours (not counting break time) tangling and gooping up my hair on purpose! Knotty Boy (people who make dread stuff) does have a removal kit, so I might not have to do the chop when the time comes, but it looks like it will take me just about as long to get them out. SIGH. I’m not going to think about that right now, I’m too psyched about my locks! I do plan to keep them for at least 6 months though, just to give them time to start growing well on their own. We’ll see after that. Hopefully in 6 months I’ll have me some killer dreads that won’t be going anywhere!

   That’s about it. I’m having a blast with them already. Liam says “they’re better than your first hair.” He’s such a supportive little guy! 🙂 Gilly’s not sure. One minute she says they’re beautiful, the next she says she liked my old hair better, so who knows. Eliot likes to pull them.

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