Saturday, May 30, 2009

What I Am Reading

Friday, May 29, 2009

Star Trek Movie

We saw the Star Trek movie today and it was excellent!!

Crazy Fun Coming

So sorry I have been neglectful to all my sweet readers who check in every day to check up on me! I have been soooo busy getting reading for this trip, packing, church work, Senior pictures for Sav and going non-stop. 

I told DH I was getting a little nervous because it seemed like my days were coming fast and short and I had so many more things I needed to get done. He reminded me that I felt the same way last year just before we left then too....oh, really? I's good to be reminded of things like that and remember how well they turned out and it calms you down again!

We are going to the beach before the big trip for a couple days to visit with mom and dad and drop off the furry babies, then when we return we will come back to the beach and stay for the rest of the month down there. Anywho...I am having to pack for the beach too.

I am also rethinking some clothes because it might be a little cooler than we thought. I think the secret is layering. It's always cooler in the morning and evening and warms up during the day.

I can not wait to be with these ladies who are going! There are multiple WHOOTS going and getting them all together is going to be SO CRAZY FUNNY AND FUN! I am going to have some great stories to tell you all!!!

Monday, May 25, 2009

In Honor of the Hallford Brothers

My Dad is the youngest of seven brothers. Today I want to honor all of them since it is Memorial Day. Every one of the Hallford brothers has served our country and I am so proud and thankful for them!!

Uncle Jim-Air Force 25 years Served in Alaska, WWII Italy to Berlin

Uncle J.W.-Air Force 25 years  Iwo Jima

Uncle Ed-Army 20 years Ranger/Paratrooper
                   WWII Okinawa, Korean War

Uncle Earl-Air Force Trinidad

Uncle Merl-National Guard and then Army

Uncle L.D.-Air Force 4 years

My Dad (Norman)-Air Force Japan & Korea

Sunday, May 24, 2009

WNBA Nashville Chapter Summer Reading Series

Women's National Book Association, Inc. Nashville chapter continues their annual summer reading lecture series that is always excellent!
"Books Beyond Our Borders:  Reading and Writing about other Cultures"

Summer Reading Series at Lipscomb University begins June 15th

June 15Ali and Nino by Kurban Said, Anchor reprint, c1937, 2000 978 0385720403 $13.95, led by Ed Gleaves
June 22The Wind-up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami, Mariner Books, 1999. 978 0679775430 $15.95, led by Steve Prewitt
June 29Palace Walk (Cairo Trilogy,1) by Naguib Mahfouz, Anchor, 1990. 978 0385264662 $15.95, led by Linda Barnes
No class meeting July 6
July 13The Elegance of the Hedgehog by Muriel Barbery, Europa, 2008. 978 1933372600 $15, led by Kim Reed
July 20The Sound of Language by Amulya Mailadi, Ballentine Books, 2007. 978 0345483164 $13.95, led by Alice Sanford
July 27Interpreter of Maladies by Jhumpa Lahiri, Mariner Books, 1999. 978 0395927205 $14.95, led by Matt Hearn
All sessions will meet in the new A.M. Burton Health Sciences Building (facing Belmont Blvd in circular drive), Lipscomb University, Room 214 from 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. All programs are free and open to the public.
For information call Carolyn Wilson, 615.966.5837 or e-mail Carolyn.Wilson [at]

In Which We Will Visit Mont St Michel and Chateau Chenonceau

Friday, May 22, 2009

Jaynie's Birthday Lunch

Yesterday Savannah and I met Jaynie and Cayla for lunch at Wild Ginger, a new restaurant in our area, to celebrate Jaynie's birthday this Saturday. We always take each other out on our birthdays to places we KNOW that our husbands would rather pass up! I had the best sushi I have ever tasted! It was called the Maui roll and it was delicious! We all had different things that we all loved! Happy Birthday Jaynie!!!

We have been taking pictures of Savannah and Cayla together since they were tiny and they have both grown up into beautiful Christian ladies! Can you tell we are proud?

After lunch, we needed to get Savannah some shoes for the trip. We found her a pair of Privo's 30% off and I also had a 15% off coupon at Belk....I love sales! She couldn't believe how comfy they are! I think everyone on this trip is going to be wearing Privo shoes! 

While we were browsing the make-up counter, we ran into my sister-in-law Julie D and sweet baby Jax! He has grown once again and we got LOTS of 'sugar'! They were hitting the sales too!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

I just LOVE our Farmers Market! the Factory in Franklin

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Packing for Paris

Savannah and I are determined to carry on our bags on our trip to France. Ten days and two of them are travel days. I think we can do it! Last year there were lots of stairs to drag our luggage up and down and my wrist got worn out! So LIGHT is the word we are aiming for!

We are rolling our clothes very tight and since it is not winter time, they should not take as much room. We are sharing cosmetics, toothpaste, hair dryer, etc.... I'll try and take a picture when I have finished packing. We have our suitcases on the guest bedroom bed and are taking things in there as they become found and clean. Today we got Sav a little light weight rain jacket at REI that fits in a little bag. I had gotten one when we went to Mohegan Island, Maine and I was glad to have the hood in the mist and rain. 

Also have packed:  ear plugs, medicines (Tylenol, Advil, benadryl, Imodium Ad, anti-nausea, eye drops), money belt, a small mag-lite flashlight, door alarm, adaptors, about 4 1-gallon size freezer bags (always good in case something gets wet or might leak), 4 1-pint freezer bags (for travel size stuff), camera, extra batteries and 1 compact umbrella. 

Each of our bags has a big Nike duffel bag in the bottom of our suitcase so we can put clothes in it if we need to bring home souvenirs. My duffel was a life saver for my mom when Air France lost her suitcase in Italy two years ago and we had to get her all new clothes. She still misses some of her good clothes that were lost....but she was a trooper and it ended up being an incredible trip of a lifetime together!

More to come...

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Yes, I am reading this book and actually learning quite a few things about us women over 40!

For Love of the Library

When I visit a friend or walk into a persons home, I always love to look at the books on their bookshelves. What authors tend to be their favorites? Do they collect a certain genre? What are they reading right now? Are they old books? Fiction? Biographies?

I like to visit the library and check out the new title sections, visit the local independent book store and read the staff favorites and what the local book clubs are reading this month. When Leslie (my sister) visits, we always ask what the other is reading for fun and what our book groups are reading.

Book blogging is fun, but nothing beats word of mouth and the expression on a persons face when they are telling you about a book they just read that has possibly changed their life! 

A home library is a way to see into a persons heart. You can tell a lot about a person by the books on their shelves or even the cook books in their kitchen. 

What does your library say about you?

photo 1-George Vanderbilt's library at the Biltmore House, Asheville, North Carolina
photo 2-the Reading Room at the British Museum, London, England
photo 3- the Bibliotheque Nationale de France, Paris, France

Monday, May 18, 2009

I enjoy reading bits from Arts & Letters Daily.

Bonjour France

19 Days

Sunday, May 17, 2009

New Preston/Child Book

Cemetery Dance came in the mail this week and I will be trying to find the time to sit down and escape with the Preston/Child writing duo. This series is extremely well written and is always an adventure with an intelligent mystery thrown in! I truly feel like I know these characters well and am happy to catch up with them again!
This one is for Mom....just back from church and DH snapped it.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Recharged at Retreat

I just returned from a wonderful, renewing, uplifting, Spiritual retreat! There were around 35-40 ladies from all ages and walks of life. Beautiful singing....great fellowship...great food...great lessons learned!

Last night Shana spoke about unburdening our handbag (our life) of needless things and Carol spoke this morning on filling our handbag (our lives) with the gifts (fruits) of the Holy Spirit. It was just what I needed and I feel like my batteries are recharged and ready to go again. My compass has been readjusted!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

The Faux Look of Books

Okay, I know I have enough books in my house to have books on every wall, but this look of tromp l'oeil books wallpaper is just too fabulous!  I love the look of the faux bookshelves sagging under the weight of the books!

I first spotted two of the photos on Lisa Borgnes Giramonti's blog. This is her actual dining room with guests over for dinner. It makes me want to paint my trim a dark color. The coziness of the book wallpaper is charming and does not take up as much space as real book shelves and books would.

The other photos are ones I found on the internet. The photo with the red chair is at a Parisian hotel and designed by Christian Lacroix. The top photo is a Brunswig & Fils wallpaper accented with chicken wire and I love the second photo with its hidden papered door!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Time to Freshen Up My Porch

I am determined to fix up my front porch this Spring! It seems like I add one thing new once a year and that is it. One year, added pillows, another year, added rugs, another year, added a lantern. Boring.

I want to be able to play board games outside, sit and swing and for it to feel like an extension of my home. It is pretty windy out there, so I will probably add some of the outdoor curtains to cut a little off and to quiet the neighbors air conditioning noise.

I have thought about screening a portion of it, like the wooden shutters you see, but am not sure if that will work with the look of the house.  Any ideas? If I did that, I could even put a cot out there for it to be a sleeping porch! Ooooh, sounds fun! I don't think DH will understand it though...I can just hear him now. "A bed? On our porch?" Some things are better left not said and just DO them later. That's 23 years of marriage experience speaking, isn't it ladies.

Maybe a writing desk? A Chandelier? Pipe music outside? The possibilities are endless for a fun porch! Okay, I'm ready!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Happy 1 Year of Blogging to Me!

This past April marked one year of blogging for me. I still enjoy passing on book and travel information and I hope the few who read my blog have enjoyed it too. I have met some incredibly interesting people all over the world! It is wonderful to meet like minded people who love the same things I do. 

I have a friend in the Provence region of France to an editor at the Baltimore Sun newspaper in Maryland. There is a girl I met through my blog that lives here in my city to a friend in Oregon. My mother and father are able to keep up with what is going on in our lives every day, even though they are in another state. I have been sent books and asked to review books. It's truly amazing!

I hope that whoever reads this will continue on with me. I will try to be a bit more regular. I learn something new about the computer all the time, so please be patient with me. If anyone has any suggestions about what they like to read about, be sure to let me know. Comments are always greatly appreciated! 

Monday, May 11, 2009

Italian Joy!

Today two books that I ordered came in and they are GORGEOUS! I learned about the photographer Carla Coulson through Vicki Archer's book My French Life. Ms. Coulson has three books of her own. My Amalfi Coast and Italian Joy are spectacular! I just wanted to jump into the photograph's! Ms. Coulson is also working with Vicki Archer on her next book, which I am greatly anticipating!

"I've always imagined that Heaven 
     would be a library."
                                        -Jorge Borges

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mother's Day to My Mom

The most beautiful woman I know, inside and my mom. You are my treasure! We all love you SOOOOO MUCH!!!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Current Reading

Friday, May 8, 2009

Happy Friday

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Discovering Beverley Nichols

When I was browsing at my local book store, I came across a delightful series written back in the 1930's. Beverley Nichols has been a joyful find! He was the author of many books and plays and writes a delightful series on gardening. Down the Garden Path is the first book, written in 1932.

Last night I was reading in bed and DH wanted to know why I was chuckling. I told him that they sure didn't write books like this anymore! I kept wondering if Cindy or Jodie had read any of these and the anticipation of sharing with them. These are right up "the cracked pot" alley!

They are reprinted in a beautiful hardcover with the original delightful illustrations. I just might ask for another one in the series for Mother's Day!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Welcome Caitlyn!

Welcome Caitlyn May Clark! Born last night to Matt and Dana, weighing a little over 8 lbs.! Mom and baby are doing well. First time grandparents Tom and Jodie are over the moon!

Farmer's Market Time

This is one of my favorite times of the year. We are extremely busy working on different projects here, at church and with school coming to a close. But it also means good things are coming this way! 

Last Saturday the farmer's market opened! Most of you know how much I love the farmer's market here in my little town and the large one in downtown Nashville. I love the fresh food from a farmer's land here in my area. It's a great way to support the farmer's, but also a great way to build your own immune system!

I have been trying to switch over to more organic food lately. It is a little too expensive in the groceries, but since I have to make the trek to Nashville everyday, I am thankful for places like Trader Joe's where I can get the organic milk, eggs, juice, etc... for much less. At the farmer's markets, I am able to buy the organic berries, tomatoes, cantaloupes, greens and much more!

While my parents were here, I fixed them some of the turkey bacon that we have switched over  to instead of the pork bacon. They loved it! When DH says he likes it and won't be going back to the other, you know that's saying a lot! Each baby step helps!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Musee d'Orsay Is On My To Do List

I picked out just a few of the paintings I hope to see at the Musee d'Orsay in Paris. 
Edouard Manet-Berthe Morisot with a bouquet
Jean-Francois Millet-The Angelus
Georges Seurat-The Circus
Vincent Van Gogh-Starry Night
Whistler-Portrait of the Artist's Mother

The d'Orsay sits on the banks of the Seine in the former Orsay railway station. It opened as a museum in 1986. The building in itself will be a joy to see, built for the Universal Exhibition in 1900. Many of the greatest impressionistic paintings are at home here. Morisot, Monet, Cezanne, Gauguin, Toulouse-Lautrec, Renoir, Degas, Cassatt and  many more!