Monthly Archives: January 2010

The Five Love Languages are Everywhere (Including No-Pants Subway Rides)

A couple weeks ago I interviewed bestselling author Gary Chapman’s daughter for a magazine article. Shelley Chapman is a doctor here in Greenville. In preparation for the interview I read her dad’s most popular book, The Five Love Languages. In the past two weeks this book seems to be following me everywhere… in magazines I read, blog posts I click on and even in random YouTube videos I watch, like this one. Enjoy the 9th annual No Pants Subway Ride!

And don’t forget to pick up the February issue of Belle to read my article with Shelley Chapman!



Filed under Funny, Writing

The Framing is (Pretty Much) Complete

The framing of our attic is complete… at least I think so. Right now we are waiting for an inspector to show up to approve the work that’s been done. We failed our first framing inspection because the framing around the chimney did not have a two-inch space in between the brick and the wood. It wasn’t that big of a deal though and the contractor fixed it in a few hours.

The Chimney Will Remain Exposed

One of the features I love about this space is that the brick will be exposed. I think it will give it some character. Although the room has so many great angles that it already has a lot of character.

Looking into the Area Where Our Bed Will Be

And of course the room’s other incredible feature will be the walk-in closet. It’s framed in right now so you can see just how big it will be. You’re looking at the door going into the closet. I haven’t had a closet this big since I was in middle school!

Standing Outside the Walk-in Closet

The next step will be getting the drywall installed. If all goes well that will be happening next week. After that we’ll be painting and Tim will be installing the trim. The electrical and HVAC will be wrapped up. We’ll also be moving forward with the bathroom. You can probably tell we aren’t in a big rush, but we’ve been looking everywhere for inspiration. We found this bathroom on a blog that we LOVE. It’s from a home in Virginia.

Our Inspiration Bathroom

The homeowner had a carpenter build vanity and I think it’s gorgeous! It has character and I think Tim is going to try building one, too!

Our Inspiration Vanity from Southern Exposure

I would like ours to have two sinks, but other than that I think it’s great! The gray color would really be perfect for our home and flow well with the scheme of the downstairs. We’re not sure when all this will be wrapped up, but we’re having fun getting there.

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Filed under Home, life

A Delayed Year in Review

I know we’re already two weeks into 2010 but I never properly recounted what an amazing year 2009 was. I like to take a little time to think about the highlights of the year before. And often when I do I’m amazed that I ever have days where I think I have the most boring life ever… and yes I do have those days.

In January I flew out to California to shop for bridesmaid dresses with my best friend Tonya. My other girlfriends Dawn and Melly flew out, too and we had a blast. Then Tonya drove up to another part of California with me to do some research for a book I was writing… a project that was later unfortunately put on hold indefinitely.

The Girls with Tonya's Man Ryan

In February we launched, welcoming the world to send birthday wishes to 100-year-old George Beverly Shea in preparation of the launch of his new book. We even got country star Josh Turner to record a greeting. Tim flew out to Utah with some buddies for a snowboarding trip. I stayed home and made dorky t-shirts for us to wear on Valentine’s Day. So romantic!

Nothing Sexier Than a Man Vacuuming

In March I watched the world’s biggest jerk-face dump his fiance on live TV and ended up getting more than 3000 hits on this little blog in two hours because of a post I wrote about Jason Mesnick. Also in March I was able to see one of my favorite storytellers, Garrison Keillor, live at the Peace Center in Greenville. My favorite moment of the evening was listening to him recite Edgar Allen Poe’s poem Annabel Lee. I also experienced one of the worst hair disasters of my life (except for that perm in 1988) and was a guest on a local radio program where I talked about saving money.

In April I attended some TEA Party rallies, voicing my opinion about the government bail-outs and increased tax burdens. The 25/30 celebration was launched in Florida with my husband’s 25th birthday. We spent a day at Universal Studios and took in a Trace Adkins concert. I sent him on a birthday Easter egg hunt where he discovered at the end that he would be going to Ireland the following weekend. Except that the trip didn’t work out because we were flying standby and the seats were booked. We ended up breaking our backs sodding our yard instead. So we tried again the following weekend… and it worked! We spent three-and-a-half quick, lovely days visiting his family and taking in amazing sites.

Hiking in Northern Ireland

In May our friends gave us a joint birthday party at our favorite restaurant, The Lazy Goat. We took a road trip to New York City, stopping in DC along the way to take in a chocolate fashion show and visit our friend Jennie. In New York we saw Robin Williams at a taping of The David Letterman Show, went running the full length of Manhattan, and went rowing in Central Park. I happened to tell The David Letterman Show about my brush with fame in 1997 when I was on a Richard Simmon’s infomercial and they wanted to put the video on air, but I couldn’t find it. Oh well. We ate amazing food, watched Cirque du Soleil in a real tent and went to lots of flea markets where I spotted design star Eddie Ross. And I turned 30. It rocked.

A Picture From My 30th Birthday

Also in May we sold our sweet Mini and ended up with a luxurious Audi for less than the cost of our scooter. I appeared on a segment on WYFF called Blog Talk. We also left a disposable camera in downtown Greenville to see what would happen… cheap entertainment at its best

Our "New" Car

In June we did summery things like have a yard sale, buy patio furniture and lounge on the beach at Lake Lure, North Carolina. I did some more decorating around the house and cheered my husband on as he decided to go for an 18 mile jog one Saturday after watching the movie Ultramarathon Man. I also through a backyard baby shower for our neighbors.

In July we went on what was perhaps our longest road trip ever. We drove from Greenville, SC to Denver, CO for the International Christian Retail Show. It was a great week and I met a lot of neat people. Plus we were able to take in some sites in Denver including the Botanic Gardens.

Simple and Beautiful

In August we followed up one long road trip with another one. This time we headed to Iowa for Tonya and Ryan’s wedding. It was an amazing week of fun and friends. We got to go jet skiing, relax and see our awesome friends get married. I also got to show Tim around my college town of Ames and see the dumpy house where I lived. After that relaxing weekend I embarked on organizing Greenville’s first Twestival, a global event to raise money for charity that was pulled together in just three weeks.

Our Friend Tyler was One of the Models

In September we headed to Charleston to celebrate two years of marriage. We rented an apartment above an art studio that came with two beach cruisers which we rode all around town. We came back and put on the Twestival, raising a bunch of money for the Miracle Hill Boys’ Shelter. Local clothing stores outfit models in pieces from their stores along with items from the Miracle Hill Thrift Store. Vespa also featured photos from our last big charity event, 2 Wheels 4 Water, on their Facebook page for thousands of fans to see. In September I also found Ruby. She can in front of my scooter as I was riding up to Walgreens.

Ruby Joined Our Family

In October my sister came for a visit. We carved pumpkins, went hiking and took her to Charleston. Tim and I also did more projects around the house including painting our porch. Our friend JJ pressure washed everything for us, too. We hosted a Halloween dinner party with a few other couples. Tim also ran a half marathon in Greenville and I loved cheering him on!

Tim Nearing the Finish Line

In November we finally started converting our attic into a master suite, work that helped us discover some treasures in our attic including 100-year-old stamps and newspaper molds from The Greenville News. I also taught a coupon class at my church, helping 20 people learn how they can use coupons to give more to local shelters and food banks. I also got word that a national magazine was interested in one of my articles.

Teaching How to Use Coupons to Give More

December was the hardest month of the year. We lost Tim’s Uncle DD. Shortly after that Ruby got out and was killed by a car in front of our house. But we managed to have some wonderful Christmas moments, including our fourth annual visit to Reedy Place, a shelter for chronically homeless people. We also had a great Christmas in the Outer Banks of North Carolina with my family. We got to try hangliding, we went horse back riding on the beach and we rode in a 4-wheel drive SUV on the beach to search for wild ponies. It was a wonderful way to end an incredible year.

Tim and I Looking for Wild Ponies in North Carolina

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Filed under Getaways, Home, life