Not Exactly the View We Were Going For

Saturday we were at Boy Three’s football game when Luke hurried out of the press box saying something about a brush fire behind the new house and that he had to go, call me later, bye.  What I thought I heard was “a fire was near the trees” and even though he hurried off it never registered to me that it was anything to be overly concerned about.  There were several acres of trees between us and anyone who would have been burning so it never occurred to me it would ever endanger our new neighborhood.  Luke is more of the over-reactor in our marriage when a crisis first presents itself while I prefer to dwell in the bliss also known as Denial.  It works for us. 

About an hour passed and Luke never called so I called him.  Me: “Everything okay?”  Him:  “It’s not out yet but I’ll need call you later, bye.”   Hang up.  I was a little perturbed with his being so short with me but didn’t have enough energy to invest in a full on mad.  So, I resumed my life which at the moment consisted of making my stinky football player bathe before we went to some friends’ house to watch Alabama embarass the Gators.  But I get ahead of myself.

Another hour passed, no call, and Luke is supposed to go to the friends’ with us.  I didn’t necessarily want to get hung up on again so I decided to drive over to the other house to find out why he was taking so long.  What I didn’t expect to see was our road lined in fire trucks and fire IN THE BACK YARD.  What I had heard as ‘a brush fire near the trees’ was really ‘it is burning to the tops of the trees’.  Yeah, if I’d heard that right the first time I wouldn’t have been so calm.  I parked near the road, ran to find Luke and he said, “See why I didn’t call you back?”  Why, yes.  Yes, I do.   Luke assured me what I was in current freak-out mode over was nothing compared to the enormity of what had already been contained.  See how that worked?  He was calm and it was my turn to lose it. 

Did I mention how that works for us? 

It’s normally at this point in a post when I’m trying to think of something somewhat funny to say or a tidy way to wrap up.  It wasn’t funny.  It’s not tidy.  The “little brush fire” burned 17 acres and necessitated 3 different fire departments and U.S. Forestry be called to the scene.  There is no more eery feeling than seeing fire trucks hose down your house and remaining on stand by just in case the fire jumps the break and decides to reduce life to ashes.  Let me be clear, I was worried about our home but we aren’t living in it yet.  Had it burned, it would have been devastating but not in the way it would have affected our precious neighbors.  I am so incredibly grateful that the Lord preserved all of our homes but especially theirs.  Especially theirs.

I am also so very thankful for our volunteer first-responders (many of whom are members of our church and/or dear friends in the community) who drop everything to run to our aid.  I’m afraid to begin naming names because it would kill me to forget someone but you guys know who you are.  Please hear with all the sincerity I own:  THANK YOU.  We take for granted the knowledge and skill required for what you do.  We take for granted that there is no ‘little’ fire to you.  You are endangered every single time without a dime to show for it.  How blessed we are to live in a civilized nation where we can call three little numbers and be confident that help is on its way.     

So, no.  A charred forest wasn’t exactly the scenery we had hoped for.  But sometimes the view isn’t so much about what you are looking at but rather what it has opened your eyes to see. 

Lamentations 3:21-23

21 Yet this I call to mind
       and therefore I have hope:

 22Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed,
       for his compassions never fail.

 23 They are new every morning;
       great is your faithfulness.

I Was Inspired by the Color

So Tera was the latest to be kicked off Design Star and frankly, I was glad considering she dissed on Stacey’s adorable painted chair that took girlfriend a sweet forever to complete because she couldn’t decide which color looked better.  Stacey is my kind of girl.  Tera tanked when she was supposed to translate an urban outfit into room decor.  Rather than create an edgy look, she took the blue and yellow of the clothing and slapped it on the walls and curtains.  Tera darlin’, that’s exactly what I would have done which confirms you really aren’t ready for your own show.   

So, are y’all following Design Star?  Have a favorite yet?  Maybe it’s just me but so far there aren’t any standouts.  It’s much easier for me to pick out who I don’t like vs. who I do which means Nina has got to go.  I’m having a hard time seeing why the judges seem to like her style.  My 7-year-old can scribble on a wall.

Never has my inability to make decorating decisions – or any decisions period –  been more heightened than in this whole house building process.  I’ve discovered I’m like Julia Roberts in Runaway Bride when it’s revealed she doesn’t even know how she likes her eggs – she just takes on the favorite of her significant other.  Even in the areas I thought I had strong opinions (i.e. the kitchen cabinets) all it takes is for Luke to say one word about liking something different and I am completely undone and second guessing whether what I like is the right thing. 

For example, I love the buttermilk cabinet look with contrasting island.  He likes the sleeker, more contemporary maples.  How do you marry those two?  Answer: you don’t.  I don’t think? (I told y’all I have no clue what I’m doing.)

So tell me, which of these kitchens would you choose? (In concept, not exact representation and keeping in mind our house is Craftsman-inspired.) Is the contrasting island thing on it’s way out? Have any tips on kitchen design that I need to know before we make our final picks?

island traditional kitchen
traditional kitchen design by chicago architect Becker Architects Limited


Hartung Residence contemporary kitchen
contemporary kitchen design by san francisco architect Mahoney Architects & Interiors

By the way, if you are building or remodeling or just dreaming, check out You can create your own idea books from thousands of beautiful photos for every room in the house. I’m obsessed.

Apparently, It’s Not About Me

There’s a rumor going around that Sunday was Mother’s Day. Luke and the kids took me to lunch and the plans were to go to see Furry Vengeance because Mother’s Day was all about me and I’ve been dying to see a movie about small animals bent on avenging their forest homes. Such an original concept.

The only request I made for the day was that the children not fight. At all. All day. I didn’t whine ‘Yaaaa’ll.  Can you just be good for my sake for one day a year?’ when that didn’t work out so much.   Well,, maybe once.  Or seven times. Truthfully, by the time we had sat through church, eaten our delicious Zaxby’s, and went to the Tractor Supply to buy rabbit food (Socks is still alive!), their threshold of good behavior had been blown off the hinges as evidenced by the fight that knocked half a dozen dog shampoo bottles off a shelf.  That wasn’t embarrassing at all.  With 2 hours left until the movie began, we became concerned about remaining in public lest a security camera capture images of two certain pk’s getting their tails busted. So we took the show to the privacy of the parsonage, put the two certain pk’s on lock down and I slept for the better part of the afternoon. And before you start sending me letters about our parenting skillz or lack thereof, we took them for ice cream later that night so we could make sure they learned their lesson.

Because we are consistent like that.

I don’t know why I expected any special treatment because I was a lousy daughter to my own mother. I did try to call her (Hi, Mom!) but she wasn’t home. I talked to my step mom and I’m hoping Luke called his mother. So, yeah, I’ve got some making up to do. I’m thinking about taking them to see Furry Vengeance.  Or buying them a fern.  A total toss up.

Moving on to Monday, Luke and I went to do some hospital visiting and then looked at flooring for the house. We are only at the foundation stage (finished last week) but if you had any idea how difficult it is for me to make decisions you would understand why we are starting early. It’s much easier for me to decide what I don’t like than what I do. I’m like shopping with Goldilocks’ Three Bears. This floor is too red, this one is too dark, but I can’t settle on one that is just right. There are lots of woods I like, I just can’t commit to the marriage.  I’m leaning toward the hand-scraped look for no other reason than it already looks a little beat up so the family wear and tear will blend right in.

We also went to a cool place called JB Millworks. Awesomeness. They specialize in doors and staircases so believe it or not, because of their fantastic showroom I actually left there feeling like I’d narrowed down what I liked instead of being overwhelmed at options.  I just have to be careful not to look at the massive catalog they gave me or I’ll be back at square one.  Or stair one.  Or whatever.

Okay, it’s late.  A real blogger would be able to be able compose a tidy wrap up and put it to bed.  The only thing going to bed is me.  A quick note:  If you are following along with the Book Discussion, I’m going to finish up the last three weeks on Thursdays rather than Tuesdays.  It just works out better for me that way.

And a girl needs just one thing to be about her, right?

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