Saturday, May 31, 2014

Ashley’s Pack the Pantry Shower


My friend Ashley got married last weekend and my friends Becky, Jessica, and I hosted a pack the pantry shower for her. The concept of a pack the pantry shower is for everyone to bring items for the new couple’s pantry including kitchen items, spices, cleaning supplies, etc. She was the recipient of tons of great stuff for their house and we had a blast with our friends and her families.


I grabbed these oak leaf (cone) hydrangeas from the yard to use as a centerpiece. Y’all, take this little piece of advice: dip your fresh cut flowers in a little bit of water to knock the sugar ants off. We were chasing ants off the table the whole time. I only realized that getting rid of the problem would have been that simple AFTER the fact.




We have a small group of girls that see each other sporadically. I’d love to say we get together more often, but with babies, husbands, work, and school, it’s not as often as I’d like. We grew up together in elementary school and church and graduated nearly 10 (!) years ago. I am glad I am surrounded by such wonderful friends.


Friday, May 30, 2014

Wyatt Cook: Country Boy

I think one of the single best things we could have done for Wyatt was moving out to the country. I loved living in town when I grew up but Wy is such an explorer and all boy. There are so many opportunities for him to find fun and learn about the outdoors. Lately, he has found a turtle shell that we cleaned up and shellac-ed:
Played on the road equipment they’re using to fix our dirt road:
Stopped to smell the roses (literally):
Dug in the dirt with May and June and played in the creek with them:
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And has been an all-around ham. This dirty face picture is one my sister Sami snapped of him the other day.
He has a pair of cheap aviators we picked up at some dollar store. He came into the kitchen the other day and told me to take his picture because he looks like Eric Church (the country singer).
I love this picture. I came across this little garden snail when we were outside and promptly got down on my belly to get a close-up of it. I called Wyatt over to see it and he didn’t know what I was pointing at and accidentally stepped on it. I hate that he missed seeing it!

Friday, May 16, 2014

Wide-open Weekend

Last weekend was non-stop busy and fun. I started out on Friday with Sami and Wyatt at the local splash pad. This is such a great asset for Ashburn and Turner County. Wyatt tackled the climbing wall for the first time and did great too!
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Wyatt spent time Saturday morning playing in the new sand box while Justin laid the new camper flooring. Jake even managed to bury Wyatt.
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Justin and I bought this adorable bird feeder at—where else?—our favorite local thrift store. It was $6. I got it filled up and Justin hung it up on our pergola. I can’t wait to see if the birds like it.
Wyatt managed to grab up all three kittens and asked me to snap a quick picture.
While we took the camper to Justin’s parents’ house to finish up the detail work on the floor, Justin and his daddy made me this awesome blanket ladder. I have been looking for an old beat up wooden ladder to hang our throw blankets on and haven’t found exactly what I’m looking for. They made this one and all that’s left for me to do is paint it and distress it a bit. It is perfect!
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We visited both of our mamas on Mother’s Day and finished up the weekend swimming at Mama and Daddy’s house.
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Somewhere amidst the chaos, I managed to wash my new bright skirt with our bath towels and completely ruined two {formerly} white towels, Justin’s khakis, and one of Wyatt’s polo shirts. That sucked.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Leadership Crisp

Justin and I went to the graduation dinner for Leadership Crisp last Thursday. I am so proud that he is getting involved in Cordele since that’s where he works. He spent an entire year with these folks learning about the assets and opportunities Cordele and Crisp County have to offer.

Again, it would have made sense for me to snap a picture of the two of us, but I am still not that good at remembering!



Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Mama’s ABAC Graduation

Thursday was a huge day for our family: we welcomed the fourth member of our family to join the ranks of college graduates. My mama graduated with a Bachelor’s degree with an emphasis on business and economic development from Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College magna cum laude.
I love this shot of Wyatt kissing Mimi in her graduation regalia. It seems like only yesterday (but it was really three years ago) that she was rearranging her final exams to accommodate his birth.

Mama has been a true role model. I heard it this way one time, “I used to have a drug problem when I was younger; my mama drug me all over the place to get things done.” It’s true. My sisters and I were always with her as she volunteered, served on boards and committees, and worked around ball schedules, church functions, and Girl Scout meetings. We were often “volun-told” to help out with her activities and that is what inspired me to work on my own degree in economic development at Georgia Southern.
I am sure there are wonderful opportunities in store for her. I can’t wait to see what’s next.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014


My mom and dad are both from very large families. It is so hard for everyone to get together and we are all increasingly busy. Coupled with the fact that we moved 16 hours away when I was 6 years old, it is not uncommon to only see family members at weddings and funerals. I am thankful that we have a good many of Justin’s family members as well as my grandmother and three of my dad’s siblings that live down here.
I appreciate the time that everyone puts forth to get together. I don’t make the effort I should to see other family members, especially the ones that live back in New Jersey. I want to work on that. Justin and I have been plotting to get back up there some time in the next year or so.
Sami got these pictures at Wyatt’s birthday party. Ironically, the family members that are always around (our parents, sisters, brothers-in-law, niece, and nephews) didn’t make it into any pictures.
I have made a pretty good effort to get the Cook men together at family gatherings to get multi-generational photos done, but I always forget things like Wyatt with his Mimi and Pop or his Grandma and Pa. Have mercy if I ever get my act together and actually get a picture of Justin, Wyatt, and me all together for one of these major events.
Four generations of Cook men (L-R): Wyatt, Justin, Justin’s first cousin once removed Gene, Sheldon, and on the front row Justin’s great-uncle Glynn, whom our road is named after and whom we bought our house from. Gene and his wife Laverne came down from Fort Valley and Uncle Glynn is our next door neighbor (over the creek and through the woods).
Gene and his wife Laverne catered our rehearsal dinner with the best barbeque and brunswick stew. He even shares some secret family recipes for his award winning food with Justin from time to time.
In case anyone is wondering, this is what Wyatt will look like as a 30-something and as a 50-something.
Mrs. Desiree and Mr. Sheldon brought Granny from the nursing home, which made Wyatt tickled pink.
Aunt CAT (which is redundant because CAT stands for Crazy Aunt Terri) loves on Wyatt and she even managed to spell his name right for the card. Inside joke: She would write “SarHa” on all of my birthday cards even until I was married. We love her for it and our jokes are all in good fun.
Wyatt with Nanny, his great-grandmother. I am so glad Nanny was able to make it to the party. She doesn’t get out very much anymore because she just turned 89 and it meant a lot that she was able to come help celebrate.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Pop Up Camper, Part 4

Here is what our pop up camper looked like when we first got it. Admittedly, this was before I swept it out and cleaned out all of the random stuff stuck everywhere so it’s not a perfect before shot.


Justin has been a busy bee the past week. We picked out a nice gray (I wanted greige, but this one lacks the warmth I was gunning for, but it works) paint and he gave it a thorough few coats after shoring up the cabinets with a  few extra screws and even replacing one completely.


We thought we would get lucky and find some laminate wood flooring at our favorite local thrift shop, but we didn’t. Instead, we chose one of the cheapest tongue and groove options at Lowe’s. It is Style Selections Laminate in Toffee Oak. We bought two boxes for $44. A few times while Justin was cutting and laying the floor we were concerned that we would need another box. We got lucky and two boxes worked perfectly. With a little quarter-round molding, we were able to come in with this quick update for right at $75. It makes a huge difference! I plan to use drop cloths to recover the curtains for about $35.

I am so lucky to have a husband that can do all of this on his own. It is really an asset for home improvement projects. With the exception of two drawers he forgot to paint, I didn’t have a hand in any of this work except for picking out materials. He really is a catch!




Friday, May 9, 2014

May randoms

I got these funky straw glasses at the Junkman’s Daughter’s Brother in Athens for Wyatt. He is pretty impressed with them.
Our neighbor, Mrs. Sara is so sweet and loves Wyatt. She was going to miss his birthday party for her class reunion so she made a special trip to drop off his birthday present a few days early. He got a gun with suction cup bullets and an adorable t-shirt. Of course Justin and Wyatt pretended to shoot each other. Justin stuck this one on Wy’s head and had him tell me he got shot.
Our baby birds in the garage have hatched. They sure are a noisy bunch!
I got this adorable Vera Brag in the black and white Night and Day print for only $1 at a yard sale. I brightened it up with a quick wash in the washing machine after I took the cardboard insert out.
My amaryllis is finally blooming.
Animals of all kinds love climbing up in this funky tree in our yard!
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