Sunday, January 25, 2015

The Stacks that touch the sky

Don't you just love GoodReads?  

Carey's bookshelf: read

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

We put the H in Haslam

Today is a very important day for my husband and me.  It was 30 years ago that we took our vows, and we have enjoyed a great marriage for all that time.  Sometimes, we look at each other and say "we've got it good" and usually followed by a kiss or warm hug.

Yeah, I know it's mushy and we're a couple of sentimental souls.  But we truly love each other and find a level of devotion that means everything to us.  

Whenever there is an occasion to give each other greeting cards, we go for the sweet sentiments that hit the right note - and I have a darling card to give Jody that expresses my admiration for him.

Gift giving is something that we keep simple and thoughtful.  I wanted to find a gift for Jody that would represent the importance of our life together (tall order!)  After a few failed attempts at crafting something framed with dates or photos etc I came across a wonderful idea:

I had Screaming Horse Ironworks create a large metal "H"  to symbolize our anniversary.  One of the most meaningful things that Jody gave me 30 years ago was my name! Haslam.  And although we have a few items of jewelry and other notions here and there that honor the H, I felt this was a bold statement.

I demonstrates my pride in having my husbands name and I hope to always bring honor to it.  If he loves it (and I think he will)  I want to hang it in our living room where we can admire it for another 30 years.

Special thanks to Screaming Horse Ironworks for it's fulfillment of this custom item.  It may be small, but it be powerful.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Why Men Don't Want Monograms

The popularity of monograms is nothing short of a firestorm in my circle of friends.  We can't get enough of the stylized, versatile tagging of our possessions!  The bright colors and the unusual placement of the logo-like symbol are a big part of the appeal of monograms.  The possibilities are endless.

I found that when you want to monogram everything, you assume everyone must want to follow this trend...  not so fast.  Men don't want it.  They bristle at the thought of flashing a monogram as if you asked them to wear panties!  A few exceptions were noted in the 'research' for this article:  men are probably ok with monogram on their toolbox.

Interesting that the monogram fashion was embraced by men in the past.  Shirt cuffs and collars were often customized with initials as a practical way to get your dress shirts back from the cleaners.  A small embroidery of 2 or 3 letters in a simple yet distinctive design of the characters was typical.

Do men see this as snobby or pretentious? yes.  Would they monogram if it were subtle or in a hidden place? no, it defeats the purpose of screaming for attention. Even if the average man embraced the flourished, elaborate designs and bright colors, the flamboyant nature of monograms is it's downfall.

So when did men fall out of love with monograms? Probably about the same time that women fell in head first. Maybe we overdid it (we often do).  But, we are not done yet...

My latest acquisition is a large, silver vinyl 'grammie' for my SUV, provided by InitialIt4Me on etsy.  For less than $10 I go this beautiful, custom embellishment delivered.  Placement, is of course, everything (ha) so I elected to use the drivers side third window. Since my Edge of the Wildwood vinyl sticker is on the rear window/top in a shiny silver, I wanted to match it in color.

It's so nice to be able to spot my Mariner in a parking lot, and it makes me smile to have my lovely logo so proudly displayed.  Men may regard it as juvenile and over-the-top, but I adore it.

More to consider:  chevron or polka dots?  That's a whole other can of worms!

Saturday, August 09, 2014


Like a massive zombie apocalypse, the zumba dancers are coming! Now that I've started zumbing, it's impossible to stop (unless I'm injured).  Other zumbers are zumbing and the soundtrack is so cool, just mindlessly follow the steps and zumbe along!

I can tell when we've all zumbed enough, because we sweat alot and breathe hard. Also, our feet are fully zumb and heavy.  And our water bottles are empty.

The dancing fitness program is actually called ZUMBA, and it means 'work hard' and we do.  The hot dance beats get stuck in your head for days.  Our instructors are peppy and adorabz.

After taking Zumba classes for a year, I'm fully hooked on it. Great dance moves and calorie-burning cardio workout.  Every size and shape can join in, and our group has a wide range of age, too.  Some Zumba classes are designed for younger dancers,  or mature dancers.  But most groups will accommodate anyone that wants to try.

Your 1st class might seem awkward and nearly impossible to finish, but take a back row place and watch the instructor as much as you can.  Practice your steps, and next time it will be much easier.

I was lucky enough to take Step Aerobics classes for years, and I took alot of Jazzercise, too.  So it didn't take as much brain power for me to learn new choreography and foot work.  Maybe you have some experience with cheerleading, dance or floor aerobics?  It will make Zumba a snap to catch on.  

I hope to share more of my fitness life with the good folks that visit my blog, it's a big part of my day-to-day and a positive message that I like to put out there:)


Saturday, August 02, 2014

Pressing Wildflowers is Wonderful

Welcome to the sunny August days and the warm summer nights!  Are you a blogger, too? Join in the month long celebration of creation going on at 'August heART' (Click on the logo > > >

In case you didn't already know how simple and delightful dried flowers can be, let's share a quickie project!

1. Collect some flowers.
2. Spread flowers on a sheet of waxed paper
3. Cover with another sheet of waxed paper
4. Cover with paper towel
5. Iron them on a medium setting and take your time

How easy is that?

I love sharing these hydrangea blooms in the August heART blog party!!!

You just pressed some wildflowers.


Wednesday, July 30, 2014

DIY Lace Window Project

Pretty lace pieces installed into each window pane for privacy!  So simple and so sweet, I will encourage you to give it a try.  You'll need 

  • LACE
  • IRON

Iron the lace material until flat and smooth.  
Pin down the lace after you iron it, so it won't slip while you're cutting.

Measure up those window panes (or use a cardboard cut to fit) and carefully cut lace into sheets.   

Mix 2 tsp of cornstarch with 2 tsp water, then slowly add 1 cup heated water to activate the cornstarch. Allow mixture to cool.  Spread a coat of mixture on window glass  with paint brush (be ready with towel to wipe away drips).  Install a sheet of lace and apply another coating of the cornstarch-water.

Best thing about this project: it removes with warm water!  

If you make a mistake, just start over.

Here are wildwood's tips for the Lace Window Project:

  • Keep the lace sheets pinned down so you can install them in the same sequence
(keeps the pattern of the lace consistent)

  • Use a drop-cloth or some towels and just let it drip and be messy

This window project gives us just enough privacy...

    ...and it's very appealing from the outside, too.  The lace still allows my cats to enjoy their sun-puddle naps, too.

Do you have some tips for this project? Leave a comment and let us know.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

recipe Banana Pudding

Creamy, Sweet and Mighty Delicious Banana Pudding recipe straight from my Mama's kitchen:

1/3 c. plain flour
dash salt 2 1/2 c. milk
1 - 14oz. can Sweetened Condensed Milk
3 extra large eggs
3 c. sliced bananas
45  Nilla Wafers
1/4 c. sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract

  • Preheat oven 325
  • Mix flour and salt in large saucepan
  • over MED/LOW stove top heat add milk and eggs yolks slowly, stir constantly until thick (6-7 minutes, max)
  • remove from heat and allow to cool, cover mixture with clear plastic wrap touching the surface to avoid clumps forming.
  • after cooling, stir in vanilla extract
  • cover the bottom and sides of a 2 qt casserole dish with wafers + layers of banana
  • pour 1/3 of pudding mixture into casserole dish, and create another wafer + banana and top with remaining pudding
  • whip egg whites and sugar until the topping holds small peaks and add to dish with choppy surface
  • bake pudding at 325 for 25 minutes
  • cool, chill, serve

From our "Family Favorites" recipe book

Friday, July 25, 2014

Storyteller Mallory Cemetery

Tucked away in a small, quiet spot in Cools Springs is Mallory Cemetery. Without the historical road marker, I would've missed it completely.  Behind the Academy Sports store and between the Science center is a shady spot and a double thick stone wall that protects several gravestones.

The historical marker tells of a Virginia family that served in the Revolutionary War and relocated to this land in Tennessee in 1812.  There is also a connection to the great Crockett clan of  local fame, as Sarah Crockett was married to John Mallory. 

If I were feeling especially adventurous (and with the proper footwear), I would scaled the massive stone armory and take rubbings on each headstone.  I would also pick up a lot of trash and debris.

 The picnic tables nearby and the parking spaces that are very close make it easy to enjoy.

Related Posts with Thumbnails