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October Round Up


October Round Up

For 11  years (11 years!) I’ve sat down at my computer to upload photos to this blog. Clearly, it has been harder to find the time to ‘sit’ much less try to upload the scare photos I manage to take with my Canon. Isn’t there an app for that?! um, hello Garrett. Yes- finally I can upload photos from my camera directly to this tiny little corner of the world. That may be both a curse and a blessing to my tween/teen girls. Sorry Britton and Kenley!

I feel like a weight has been lifted off my shoulder- a weight commonly known as Mom Guilt.

Seriously working on trying to let some of that go– and have been making tiny steps in the right direction. Now if I could only learn to say “no” to obligations making more whitespace in my life– I may actually regain flush colored skin under my eyes as opposed to the gray ash that permanently circles under my eyes. Pray, pray, pray my stress, anxiety and worry away.

Looking back, it’s no wonder I’m so flipping tired all the time. As October winds down, I was able to recap some of what has been filling our days this month.

Raynes turned 6 this month and for his birthday we took him on a trip- all by himself. He played the part of only child (which may have been a gift by itself). Had almost forgotten what it was like to have just one child– and the joy of being able to witness a child’s excitement as they experience things for the first time.

FSU Football season is in full swing. Don’t even get me started.

Mom was one of the distinguished story tellers at the annual Dove Tales event benefitting Lee’s Place which provides counseling to children and families who have experienced loss or trauma.  Not surprisingly, Mom knocked it out of the park with his Meme-isms.


My friend snapped this gem at the lower school pep rally yesterday. That’s my boy! We are so proud.


More Dove Tales with this sass-o-frass sister of mine.


It’s not very often almost every day that I get a snapshot of me and my boy. Homecoming Parade – Alumni float.

Cheerleading for football season has wrapped of but I first forced her to let me take one last photo. Kenley will likely make me pull this off once she catches wind of it– hopefully she thinks blogs passé and won’t notice.


This month Raynes learned to read and how to ride his bike without training wheels. All in the same week!



This may be my favorite. Britton really wanted to have her hair “done” at the salon for the Homecoming dance. Priceless.



October is crazy busy. I had to check to see what the date was on this photo- this seems like forever ago. Just posin’ in the kitchen- you know, hanging out with my too young off the shoulder top on.


Life may be crazy but a sense of humor goes a long way. Luckily my third born seems to have one. Good thing, since this was the only candle we could find for his cake.


Happy Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day should be once a month, in case anyone wants to know what I think on the matter. Bi-weekly preferable.   We are going to spend the day tomorrow on the boat on a little island just off the coast. Hoping for some relaxing, resting, peace (and calm seas).  Aunt Britty and her crew will join us as our mama is away for a bit.

Here is to a wonderful and happy mother’s day to the amazing mama’s in my life.





Looking back via grateful simplicity



Reasons to Celebrate via grateful simplicity


Welcome to the World, Catie T yler

happy birthday to you via grateful simplicity


Goodbye, #GrowingUpOnGlenmoreDrive


happy birthday to you via grateful simplicity


Over the river and through the woods via grateful simplicity

Claire Ellen via grateful simplicity



Spring Break

Spring Break felt more like Winter Break this year which didn’t keep us from doing anything except perhaps swimming. And come to think of it, it may not have stopped a couple of my younger kids either. We headed to 30A for the weeks which draws families from all over the southeast– appealing to all ages, in our case ages 5 to 41. A win-win.  Sassy joined us for the later half of the week and showed me the best place to buy wine, order pasta, and served as stand-in second parent while Mike left to head back to the office.   I could get used to beach life fo’ sure.


Spring Break via grateful simplicity

Spring Break via grateful simplicity

Spring Break via grateful simplicity


Spring Break via grateful simplicity


Spring Break via grateful simplicity

Spring Break via grateful simplicity

Spring Break via grateful simplicity


Spring Break via grateful simplicity

a brief stay by Mr. R-- work tends to take over his social life a bit these days

a brief stay by Mr. R– work tends to take over his social life a bit these days


New Life

Easter Sunday is highly celebrated and typically entails a worship service, lunch/brunch and some serious egg hunting.  Sadly, the Easter Bunny brings a little gift or two to the kiddos as well. This year was no exception. In fact, it was a seemingly fitting timing reminding us the resurrection and new life which always brings us hope. And for that we are most grateful.

New Life via grateful simplicity


These two tend to be hot and cold. Best friends yet competitive – mostly of their grandparent’s time and affection. Okay, more Raynes than Whit. Case in point– “Pops” picked up Raynes early from Preschool today — because at age 5 he has a serious case of senioritis. As to not hurt Whit’s feelings, who attends the same preschool in the adjacent classroom, I walked down to get Raynes and bring him to a second location where Pops could secretly pick him up so that Whit wouldn’t feel excluded (Whit recently had his own Pops-oh-so-fun day). What does Raynes do? Announces to me, as we are awaiting Pop’s big blue truck to round the bend, “I told Whit that Pops was picking me up and he cried.” He may or may not have said it with a little twinkle in his eye. Little meany. His parents better kick it up a notch at home.

Some bunny is serious about their egg hunting

Some bunny is serious about their egg huntin


New Life via grateful simplicity

One guess as to who would’ve given these already wild boys more sugar… Hint: Begins with an “s” and ends with a “y”


Wherever she goes, they go…


New Life via grateful simplicity

Sylvia Landrum

I had all but given up… keeping up with this ol’ blog. With the arrival of Instagram, snap chat, Insta stories and facebook, a blog seems somewhat antiquated. But then my 13 year old asks me, ‘When are you going to renew your blog?’  to which I ignore. Then my mom, then my other daughter.. And finally, Mr. R who says, ‘just renew it already. You will be sorry if you don’t.’  They are probably right– while these posts are more like ramblings than anything, the intent has remained constant over the past 11 years since inception. Keeping memories for prosperity.

So here we are.

And in light of recent events, it seems more important now than ever.

The last time I posted was on March 21, 2017.

That night, Mom had an impromptu dinner at her house for my never ending birthday.  We had our extended family with usual odd family discussions of bathroom habits, fashion, and on this particular evening– family genealogy.   Mom didn’t even complain about the mess all the little people left behind when I called to thank her.

Everything in our house changed the next day.

Britton was home sick and I had a doctor’s appointment that morning (welcome to 40).  Around lunch time Britton called me asking for Panera for lunch. Feeling guilty that she was home sick for a second day (the girl doesn’t like missing school) had me leave the office once again, telling my co-worker I wouldn’t be more than 20 minutes, to run through the Panera drive through for her chicken noodle soup.  One the way home I saw our yardman at the neighbors house which reminded me I needed to give him a check.  I parked my car, ran quickly inside, put Britton’s Panera bag on the counter, called up to her, and dashed back to Meme’s suite to give her the check for the yardman. She always likes a good task. I immediately knew something was wrong when I walked into her living room. The TV wasn’t on and she was slouched on the couch.  Always one to ‘pop up’ as to not catch her snoozing, Meme would never remain lying at the sound of her French doors clicking opening. As soon as I saw her I knew she was having a stroke.

I ran to the kitchen, grabbed the land line dialing 911- and instructed Britton to call my mom and tell her that I was calling the ambulance.

It turned out to be a catastrophic stroke. She passed away exactly fourteen days later.  Meme would have been 91 on April 19th.  We had reservations at Sea Island, where she has spent the better part of 60 years visiting, to celebrate her birthday.  We are all adjusting to our new normal- my children included.  Everyone mourns different, and has a different mourning maturity. We miss her very much – along with her organic food she would sneak into my pantry, trash bags she liked to stick up on, and the not-so-gentle reminders of, “Garrett did you feed Poochie yet?” everyday. Sylvia was one of a kind and will leave us telling her stories for a long, long time.  My cousin Heather said it best, “…. maybe feeling well and making memories to the very end is life’s ideal path.”

I couldn’t agree more.

Looking back via grateful simplicity