Thursday, November 28, 2013

traditions and remembering

I love Thanksgiving.  Its my favorite holiday, really.  Great food and family and the excitement of Christmas just around the corner.

I was thinking today about how things have changed and thinking about my past Thanksgivings.

Perhaps one of my fondest was in 2002 or 2004.  I cannot remember exactly.  I was a young newlywed and pretty carefree.  I was working for dad, of course and spent a lot of time with my grandma.  We were on a cooking kick (well she was always on a cooking kick) and had plans for a big Thanksgiving.  We had the newest Southern Living at our fingertips and had studied it thoroughly.

We brined our turkey the day before.  We prepared our traditional cranberry salad together and spent the Wednesday before Thanksgiving laughing and chatting in the kitchen.  I will be forever grateful for that day.

That night I came home, did my usual treadmill run and made my first ever batch of dressing and pumpkin roll.  I was up until 2 or 3 and didn't care.

We had the best Thanksgiving.  We took extra pains setting the table.  We put the turkey on a big platter, placed it in the middle of the table and surrounded it with the dressing balls I had made.  We drew names for Christmas, squealing at the delight of getting a female name or groaning in agony of what to get the men in our family.  I might have drawn my own name and sneaked it to my grandma.  We were all smiles, all thankful, all blessed.

All I can think now is why didn't I get a picture?
Maybe if I document it here I'll never forget it...though likely I never will.

Fast forward to present day.

And some things never change.  I'm still making pumpkin rolls and just got my fourth out of the oven.  I took a break to come upstairs and let Carsyn splash around in my tub while I sat at my computer.  I had planned on doing a little pre Black Friday online shopping, but my mind wandered to Thanksgiving past.

I'm so very thankful.  And it never hits me until I get a chance to think.  To really think.

I'm thankful my pops gave me the day off to cook with my littles.

I'm thankful that I get to spend tomorrow with my In-laws who comprise of the sweetest individuals I'm blessed to call family.

I'm thankful for a husband that prepared my favorite Margherita pizza for dinner.

I'm thankful I made it through the day with one very mild toddler tantrum.

I'm thankful my sweet boy is feeling better and hanging with big sister on the sofa.

I'm thankful for sweet friends I can always chat with about little things..(wink, wink-you know who you are).

I'm thankful for leggings which I will promptly rock all weekend.

And..I'm thankful this sweet, perfect baby girl (aka my niece, Emersyn Kingsley) finally made her debut!

Monday, November 25, 2013

weekend recap

Did y'all have a nice pre- Turkey day weekend or were you running around like mad getting ready?

In my recent cooking madness one thing has not changed.  I do not cook on Fridays.  I did last Friday but not doing that again any time soon.  Doesn't the thoughts of Friday night pizza make you all happy and tingly?

Just me? ...Ok.

 Carsyn and I were in much need of a girl's day so we went for a mani date on Saturday.

She loves getting her nails done and I really should take her more often.

We went to my MIL's Sunday for my SIL's birthday dinner.  We had fried chicken and the works. If I didn't already tell you, my MIL is the best cook. Confession- W used to tell me no matter what after each meal it just wasn't his mom's.  And after eating her food I completely understand!

I wore this Matilda Jane dress for the first time and got so many compliments.  I had no intention of buying it until my TK showed up at my house wearing it.  (My apologies to my mom and sister who wish chevron would die).

Carsyn and Hank were busy being their little rambunctious and demanding selves-We had such fun!

I'm off to visit my new niece!!  Hope you're having a great Monday!

Friday, November 22, 2013

Five on Friday!

I don't care if Monday's blue
Tuesday's grey and Wednesday too
Thursday I don't care about you
Its Friday I'm in love..

thank you to the Cure for those awesome lyrics I sing to myself every Friday

Really. I love you Friday. Fridays hold so much promise, don't you think?

The promise of a weekend.. Pizza on Friday night..

Lazy Saturday mornings with unlimited trips to the trusty Keurig and cartoons with snuggles..

Saturday sofa lounging watching football and eating junk food..

The promise of making it to church on time Sunday morning followed by a Sunday afternoon nap.

Ok. I digress. I'm linking up for Five on Friday with these fun girls.


These Hunter boots. Swoon.  This gorgeous Momma was rocking them last night and convinced me I needed them stat.  Who wants to hunt them down for me?


Miss Priss.  Seriously, do not let the innocent face fool you. She has been hell on heels all week long.  Cuing her inner Pistol Annie or whatever.  Super dramatic..."I need my Cinderella dress on RIGHT NOW." "I don't want socks.  I HATE socks."  Good thing she's adorable and asks to hug it out minutes after her tantrums.


Are you tired of me blowing up your Insta with food pics?  Someone said I was on a cooking kick lately and I laughed.  W cooks Mondays and Tuesdays usually.  I cook Wednesdays and Thursdays and try to fix a nice meal we can all sit at the table and eat.  Last night's was a clear winner.  Recipes found below.

Smashed Potatoes

Broccoli Casserole

Ritz Cracker Chicken


Still searching for that perfect holiday gift for the special lady in your life?  Got a hearty budget?  Hook her up with this LV bag.  My girl, Shasta modeled the pink version this week if you need more proof.


I've got my winter essentials lined up on my vanity.  I have been loving the Josie Maran Argan Oil for a while now.  I promise its a great addition to your skincare ritual.  Every winter I get out the La Mer too.  My super dry skin needs it desperately.  My Holiday budget does not like it one bit.  Anyone have a great alternative?

Happy Happy Friday friends!!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013


Oh, Hanky, where do I start?  You are 16 months old big boy!

I often chant "Momma's boy, Momma's boy!" And it's so true. You love your momma. But then again, you love everyone.

Happy doesn't even begin to describe you. You are just the jolliest fella ever. You laugh and cackle and wake up with the biggest grin on your face. Oh, don't get me wrong... You have a temper when things don't go your way but usually we give you your beloved blankie and all is good again.

You love to play outside and just be a boy.  Roll in mulch, run as fast as possible, eat rocks, and push trucks.


You play hard and sleep hard.  You currently sleep form 9 til 9 and take a long 2-3 hour nap around 2:00.  The hours you are awake you are never still and always climbing.

You still love to go and clap your little hands when we say "bye bye."  You love to wear shoes and even put your legs and arms up in the air to get dressed.  Its all because you think it means you're going outside.

Your favorite word is still "Dat!"  You point at something you want and repeat "dat "dat" "DAT!" until you get it.  It works.  Other words you say are mom, dad, hi, bye, uh-oh, Ro(for Rosie), nite-nite, out, Pops, Mad(for Maddox), juice, and milk.  I'm surprised you don't say french fries, or ketchup because I'd have to say that's your favorite.

You weigh 26 lbs and are 32 inches tall.  According to the Doc that puts you in the 75th percentile for weight.  He predicts you're going to be husky.

Hank, you bring joy to our lives we could never have imagined.  Love you baby boy!

Monday, November 18, 2013

weekend recap

I don't think I've done a weekend recap in a while.  And I think I might be the only one who enjoys them as I like to look back and see what the kids were up to, but that's ok, right?

If you follow me on Insta its likely you will not see anything new...sorry about that.

Friday I stayed home from work, and its rare I do that, so I took advantage and threw a turkey breast in the crockpot.

My grandmother used to make this recipe from Southern Living.  She knew turkey and dressing was my favorite dinner and this was a quick and easy way to surprise me.

The turkey actually comes out really moist, but I've yet to get the dressing right.  Parts of it are crumbly while others are quite moist and tasty.

Saturday morning we got dressed up in our festive gear for the Holly Day Market.

Carsyn begs to have her picture taken about 100 times a day.  And then proceeds to scream "Cheese!"  Its pretty funny but her face in most pictures just kills me.  At least she's exuberant, right?

(I swear some day I will get a good picture of the kids together!)

I always enjoy the Market and this year I picked out a few stones I'd like to add to my Heather Moore necklace.  Carsyn visited Santa and it was too cute.  I had not planned on her loving the big guy so much!  I can't wait to share those pictures with you.

(no comment needed on the cheese face)

Saturday evening I hung out with my sister and got some things ready for her baby girl's arrival.

We had a really low key Sunday at home.  The full moon just makes my kids bounce of walls and Hank was grouchy because he had a tummy ache so it was a really long day.

I got a few Christmas gifts ordered though-Including this activity table for Hank-yay!

Carsyn and I laid on the sofa together and watched movies.  She's been requesting a top knot lately and I have to say, it looks pretty darn cute.

Hope y'all are having a great start to the week!

Friday, November 15, 2013


Yay!! Finally got my 5 on Friday up..on Friday!


We made the trip to Nashville last week to see these guys and do a little shopping..

I know I'm biased, but aren't they the sweetest little troop?  

Rosie made the trek with us and I'm just ever so grateful to have her as my runaround partner.


Jcrew new arrivals are here and my favorite thing might be this llama sweater.  Seriously, is it not the cutest?


W and I have been eating a lot of turkey lately and I was looking for something different for dinner one night when I stumbled upon Ree's Sloppy Joe recipe.  I figured if ever there were a Sloppy Joe recipe that would work for turkey hers would be it.

I served them with hash brown casserole and a big, fat pickle.  Go make these tonight.  I promise you'll never buy the canned stuff again.


Ricarda and I are planning a cookie party for our girls and I just don't think it would be complete without a Hot Cocoa Bar.  

What do you think?


Speaking of our girls, how cute were they at Kasyn's birthday party? I mean, does Kyria's outfit come in my size?

Monday, November 11, 2013


I'm watching MMCH for the 8000 time and a topless 3 year old is bouncing off the walls.  Its after midnight and though I vowed to get the kids in bed earlier when we "fell back" I find myself failing miserably. Its ok though.  Hanky is usually in bed by 9:30 and Carsyn is a nice little companion.  I figured I'd take this time to write a quick note on where my heart is these days.

Carsyn just spilled her milk for the second time today after Hank dumped his out countless times.  I've cleaned more spills and wiped more tails today then I care to admit.  I poured a glass of wine at 11:30 and vowed Carsyn would be in bed and I'd catch up on some PLL on Netflix.  I was wrong.  After a quick 11:00 bath Carsyn was determined to watch Mickey and sometimes its easier to give in than argue.

So she's all set in the playroom with a fresh glass of milk and I'm in the living room picking up when I hear her scream she's spilled milk everywhere.  I swear this kid loses it when she gets messy. Maybe that explains why she's going through a topless and wanting to sleep naked phase? Anyway, in a rush I knock over my wine...she's crying, I'm crying and then I just have to laugh.

Today has been one of those rare Saturdays with nothing to do.  The rush of the holiday season is upon us and I know the next few months we'll be super busy.  And we like being busy.  In fact Carsyn asks me every day when we get up where we're going.  She started asking Thursday what we were doing Saturday.  Poor Hank even brings me his shoes now to put on and goes and stands by the door.

I told Carsyn we were not going anywhere Saturday- We were going to watch Peter Pan and make cupcakes.  And we did.  We stayed in our pjs, well me in my pjs, Hank in a diaper, and Carsyn in a strawberry shortcake dress.  We played with every toy in the house.  It was utter chaos.

Or as W would say pure pandemonium.  I started asking when bedtime was at 8, I think.  And here I am hours later.  Spilled milk has been swiped up, snoozing babes are in their rooms and I'm staring at a blinking cursor. Just like always once the kiddos are in bed I start missing them.

I reflect on the day and even though Carsyn is going through her strong willed phase she's pretty awesome.  Hilarious.  And a complete teenager sometimes with her desire to wear lip gloss and high heels.  Hank is growing so fast and imitating everything big sister does.  He's really started to take an interest in toys now and its so cute.  He still likes to torture Carsyn and steal her Barbies but he also loves anything with wheels.

I catch myself letting them out of my sight for longer moments of time.  Lets forget about earlier tonight when I heard them giggling uncontrollably and Carsyn brought me a pair of scissors proclaiming she probably shouldn't have them.  You're right sister.  Then after handing them over stating I might want to take Hanky's too.  Right again little momma.

But earlier they were pushing trains around the house squealing with delight and I thought about how awesome it was.  Really awesome.  Awesome enough to make me forget about anything that didn't go as planned today.

I am just really enjoying this season of life.  I'd be lying if I said I didn't need more hours in the day to take care of household chores.  Or if I said I didn't wish more often than I'd care to admit for a larger home with more room for toys and a bigger yard to roam.  Or if I can't help but get excited for the day I can cook dinner without little ones wrapped around my legs.

Then I start to think.  Its just a season.

And just like hot summers fade into crisp Falls, life changes and evolves.

There's that newborn season where you know sleep filled nights are ahead and you don't mind that 3 am wake up call.  Or that newborn season when your baby screams and screams and there's nothing you can do and it seems like time is standing still.

Or the toddler season when you rarely sit down and wonder how your legs manage to keep moving.  And then remember its likely due to the 4 cups of coffee you've inhaled that day.

I dread the teenage season most and my heart already aches for missed buzzer beaters, failed pop quizzes, and prom let downs.

The season I'm in now is chaotic and never dull.  But its peaceful at the same time.  I may not be ready for the season ahead but I'm darn sure going to enjoy the one I'm in.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

5 on Friday....

Yep, totally scooting in for Five on Friday....on Saturday. Again.


I'm still rocking out to the new Kings of Leon album on a regular basis.  Beautiful War might be in my top five fave KOL songs of all time.  Its that good.  This album reminds me of their earlier stuff too.  Which I love.  California Waiting anyone...anyone?


Speaking of Leons, Shane's papaw Leon turned 83 recently and we celebrated with him on Sunday.  This might be my favorite picture ever.  There was just so much love that day. Side note- Isn't Leon a great name?  I might should have thrown it in Hank's name. Hansford Mitchell Leon Watts.  Nice.  And if we added my other grandfather it would be Hansford Mitchell Leon Palmer Watts.  Country much? 


I tend to get stabby about respecting the turkey, but I've been Christmas shopping a little early this year.  I may have picked this up for myself.  Oops.


Ok, I'm still respecting the turkey but there's something about this picture that makes me swoon.


Does this little bag evoke the same feeling of joy it does for you as it does for me?  I ran in the Nashville Lululemon store this week while I was in town and scored some things on sale.  I really think my heart may have skipped a beat.

Hope you are having a fabulous weekend friends!

Friday, November 8, 2013

Lets Look at October...

Within 5 minutes of talking with an Apple specialist I'm back up and running-Yay!

Were you tired of my insta and iphone pics?

If so, I'm sorry-they'll be back.

October was such a fun and busy month!

We enjoyed time playing in our playhouse

We hosted a sprinkle at the Greentree Tea Room for my future niece.

(oh..hello pregnant, gorgeous sister..)

It was so much fun and the food was yummy.

Thanks Kristie for the rec!

We ventured to the pumpkin patch..

Sooo..... I remember our pumpkin patch trip last year- Hanky cried a lot-then passed out in the stroller.  I vowed this year it would be different.  And it was.  The kids played, and slid, and ran, and rolled in the hay.  They had a blast.  Until it was time for the chair pic.....

Maybe next year..

And wrapped up the month with trick or treating with Auntie Kris and Uncle Robby-Such a fun tradition.