Marrying Colors


I didn’t always like green and pink together.


I remember when we were house hunting thirteen years ago and we walked into a home with pink wall to wall carpet and green walls. We were young and could not see past the sunset shaggy forrest of bad taste.

We probably missed out on a good house.

But you live and you learn.


So I was surprised when I pulled this sweater (from Anthropologie and sold out last year, but I think this ruffle hem sweater is pretty, too) and these pants together out of the closet. Yes, surprised. What? Do you go into the closet knowing what happy clothing marriage you will be officiating each day? Well, I usually don’t. It is usually a whirlwind outfit elopement around here.

And, oh my goodness, I have loved my Citizens Of Humanity velveteen pants since I purchased them last year (sold out, but available in a different color here). They are the prettiest pink. They used to be a bit looser. But ’tis the way it is. My mouth likes to be married to chocolate.


There are some marital colors I have never disliked together.

Them being chocolatey brown and golden caramel.


Treats would not look as precious and delicious if they were green or pink.

Or would they?

Never mind. I would probably still crave it. And marry it.

I do.


What are your favorite color pairings? Do they ever stray to another color? I wore my green sweater earlier in the week with some black pants. Shhhh. It wasn’t a big deal. No need to tell my pink pants. They’re trying to support my chocolate habit. They have enough on their plate mate.

Goldilocks And The Hundred Bears


When I was eight years old, my dad built my sister and I a treehouse. It was not in the trees, but rather situated between two of them.


Up until that point, I would sit in a little bench in a berry tree nearby and ration my fruit roll up all day.


I assume that the larger handprint on the left is mine and the smaller one (but inserted with much more might and gusto) on the right is my sister’s. Those handprints speak volumes about our childhood personalities viewed from the wisdom of many years later.


I thought it fitting to wear my Anthropologie Zola Shift Dress for a trip up memory lane, so to speak. This dress is from the summer of 2013. I cannot find a similar bear dress, but I think this dress looks like a similar cut and it even has an animal print.


Whilst I never ate porridge in the treehouse. Nor did I ever sleep there, I have many fond memories of this small domain.


My dad carpeted the top and inserted an antique school desk inside so that we could play school as that was my favorite thing to do.


I like to think I was a very fair teacher. Although my sister would probably say differently.


There used to be a pail that could be raised and lowered to the ground with a pulley system. It disappeared long ago. It was my favorite part of the structure.


And although this tree house was not built in the trees. And it did not boast a secret trap door like my imagination longed for, I do declare:

“This treehouse was just right.”

Did you have a treehouse or playhouse when you were little? Have you visited it as an adult? Is it still standing?

P.S. * I shared this on The Pleated Poppy!



My grandma, Mary Lee, passed away one year ago today. She would have loved my blog (it would have tickled her to know I was writing again). And it hurts everyday that she never got to see it come to fruition. We shared the same style and sense of humor. She taught me to cook at the age of eight, gifting me with a cookbook just like the one she was given as a child. And, boy, could she cook!

There were always goodies to be had at Grandma’s. Always. She could make anything.

She lived up the road from us. And for those of you unfamiliar with my father’s house (and why would you not be), this was about a quarter of a mile away.

Both of my parents worked and so Grandma was the one who would watch us when we got home from school. My sister and I were the oldest grandchildren and we selfishly had her all to ourselves for many years.

Grandma found most things funny. And she had a laugh to prove it. Big open-mouthed and loud with delight. She never held back. Her laugh would tumble out to tackle you with its hearty, “Ha! Ha!” She was the only person I have ever met who actually made those words when she was laughing. Nobody was immune to it. Nor to the twinkle of mischief she would sprout in her eyes.

One thing Grandma was known for was taking horrible pictures. It’s true. Her mouth was always twitching. Waiting to erupt into laughter. This resulted in almost every picture she ever took ending in a crooked half smile. And then the giggles would burst forth and more pictures would have to be taken. I think this is the very reason she refused to ever get a “real” camera. Within her cluttered purse there was always one or two disposable yellow contraptions. I never can see one and not think of her.

She made my childhood an adventure.

There was not a play I did not see, a museum we did not wander, or a summer day not spent swimming. Afterwards we would indulge in grape juice and sliced cheese. And nothing ever did taste as good as that.

Growing up on a honey farm offered treats most kids never have. A snack would be a spoonful of fresh honey. She kept vials of pollen in jars nestled between a crazy supply of miniature salt and pepper shakers, and if we were good, we could have a teeny tiny bit on a spoon. Pollen. It tastes like dried-honey-powdered-sugar-mixed-with-sunshine-and-earth.

And because of her, I know this.

And because of her, I crave this.

She grew butterflies from cocoons, ordered long before the fancy kits my children would become accustomed to. She raised silk worms just so we could watch them grow and weave their threads all over her containers. The surfaces in her home were always littered with science projects. Jars filled with seashells, rocks or bugs. Even her piano was not immune to the biological mayhem.

And brainteasers. There was not a brainteaser that my grandma did not own. She always wanted our minds to be working. Learning. Puzzling something out. My son loved to go there and sit on her floor, playing with her collection of devices. It was no wonder she raised three valedictorians.

Grandma sewed most of our clothes growing up. Once there were many grandchildren and she could not sew it all, each of us was given one special pair of pajamas to be cherished instead.

In the summertime, she would take me with her to the fabric store to pick out a pattern and material. I would work on a new sewing project during every summer break. Although, I cannot remember finishing a single one (shocking). I did, however, learn some rudimentary sewing skills that I still use to this day.

Every night for her ended in a relaxing bath. She slept with piles of books in her bed. Not next to, but in. Because she never knew which land she might want to visit. Or which story she wished to attend.

The woman was not all sugar. She was spice, too. Feisty as there ever was. But in a good way. In a way that we all wish we could be.

If you went to out to dinner with Grandma, you knew you would always get dessert. Sometimes before dinner. But you would always get it, because it was her favorite.

Grandma loved long chains of jewelry (although you would just as often find her wearing a project crafted from her grandchildren). She wore maxis long before everyone else. Her style was cheerful, bright, and flowy. Grandma loved clothes and the more wild the pattern, the better. And hidden either in the pattern of her clothes or the jewelry adorning her limbs, was always a bee.

That woman was up for anything. She got her ears pierced for the first time when we did. During the time “Dirty Dancing” was all the rage, she took me to see the musical tour starring many of the dancers and dances from the movie…And she loved it.

She followed Kris Kristofferson with a passion. And she would dance anywhere. And I mean anywhere. Because she loved music. My own children would never have spent the last nine years playing piano if I had not grown up with her robustly pounding the keys and laughing with each note.

Grandma was free. She held no barriers as to thoughts about what was wrong with people. She simply took everyone as they were. There was no topic of conversation that she would not discuss and chuckle about. Because to her every question was, are you happy?

And if not, what are you going to do to fix it?

And you knew you could fix it. You could be happy. Because Grandma always believed it to be true.

She was the word, capable. At the very same time she was the word, fun.

And always was she a walking, breathing compilation of the definition, “interesting.” Her childhood was hard. Her life not easy. And yet, no one would ever know it. Because that did not define her. Her home was as modest as it gets, and yet, it was the home of a queen. My grandmother had suffered every loss a human being can suffer. But she was the epitome of survival. Strength. The matriarch. The family heart. She was never bogged down with society’s judgements or riddles or rules. She would laugh because today was the only day that mattered.

Grandma loved the beach. Every summer as a child, we would stay for a week with her on the shore. Those are still some of my best memories. Every vacation I take as an adult, I try to compare to those weeks. But how could they? With Grandma in the next bed, the window wide open so we could hear the waves crashing while we slept. Each morning woken to the joyful sound of laughter. Her toes being the first to rush into the sea.

“I’m just tickled,” was her catch-phrase. And I would be hard pressed to come up with a better line than that to describe her.

My grandma had my mother at the age of twenty one, and my mother had me at twenty one, and because I had my daughter at twenty two, I was blessed with many memories with my grandma. As were my lucky, lucky children.

Because my grandma, she was life. Never has there been a person who lived ever single day to the fullest. Who delighted in everything.

She would butter a biscuit and then shove the whole darn thing in her mouth. Because, you know, life was about indulging. And enjoying.

Every moment was special.

And as much as I am trying. Trying. Trying. To explain every piece of her. Every moment. To weave her soul back to me through my words.

I can’t.

My grandma.

She was butter.

She was laughter.

She was cinnamon.

She was rain.

She was and always will be pollen.

And I miss her.

Overheard In December


As much as you would have thought I would have gotten out in December, the truth is, I just didn’t. And when I did, well, people weren’t talking. They were scrambling. Impatiently waiting. I still managed to overhear some funny things. One of them being from my two year old (three in February) nephew on Christmas Eve when he unwrapped my gift of a big bag of lollipops I had gotten on sale during an after Halloween sale for $1. I knew my sister would not care and I knew he would be so excited.

This is what he said when he unwrapped them:

Big intake of breath. “Lollipops! Just what I always wanted!”

I aim to please. It is fun to be the aunt.


At a local diner with just my husband and I, I heard the following conversation coming from the booth behind my husband:

“Excuse me. What were the eggs I ordered called?”

“Over easy.”

“Okay. That’s what I thought. Now, can you give me the definition of an over easy egg?”

The waitress appeared startled but quickly rattled off, “it is when the whites are firm but the inside is slightly runny when you break it open.”

“Yes. And is this how you always cook your over easy eggs? Do you think they should be dry in the middle? I just want to know for next time. So I can order an egg that is not dry.”

“Sir, I would be happy to take that plate away and bring you an egg cooked to your liking.”

Snort, “No. No. No. I can see you’re busy. I just wanted to know for next time.”

“Are you sure?”

“Yes.” And then the minute the waitress had passed, “You would think for $3, I could get an egg that didn’t taste like toast.”

With no reaction from his wife, he continued. “Seriously. It’s that dry.”

Still no reaction.

“Aw, well, next time, we’ll go to IHOP.”

This is when I turned my listening ears off. I suspect…And this is only a suspicion, his wife all ready had five minutes before.


I heard a wonderful story from a woman at a place I shall not name. My son had just gotten his braces off and she was commenting on his teeth.

She asked him if he wanted to eat an apple. He shyly responded, “no, thank you.” He had eaten a giant breakfast with us earlier in celebration of getting his braces off (funny story to come).

She told him, “the day I got my braces taken off, I walked to my car, and there waiting for me was the sweetest boy holding the shiniest, biggest red apple in his hand.”

Her eyes twinkled and she continued, “he was so sweet. He ended up being the man I married.”

She added, “I knew him for a long time, of course.”

This is where the smart ass that I am added, “Oh, good. He wasn’t just stalking girls in the parking lot at the orthodontist office getting their braces off and luring them with apples.”

Another woman laughed at my “wit.”

She said, “That would be a great way to pick up girls! Just wait at the orthodontist for their braces to come off.”

We both chuckled as we pictured young men stalking shining smiles with gleaming red apples.

Not to diminish the lovely romantic story, I truly did enjoy hearing it. And you could tell that even after all these years, she was still madly in love. Maybe an apple a day keeps…the attorney away? ; )


My friend overheard the following conversation at the discount store. It took place between a mother and her four year old son (who had a darling slight speech impediment).

“What’s your name, honey?”


More urgency.

“Honey! What’s your name?”

The little boy turned to his mother in mortification: “Seiously, Mom? You mean, you fogot my name?”

The mom said aghast, “Johnny! That little girl was asking you your name.” She pointed to a cute little girl a few feet away. “I just wanted you to tell her.”

My friend had a good chuckle over this and so did I. Kids do say the funniest things.


A teenage daughter to her dad at a doctor’s office:

“Dad, that’s not fair.”

The dad responded:

“It’s not supposed to be fair

Do you know what’s at the fair?

Caramel corn and apple pies

And if you are lucky credible rides.”

Yes, credible rides. I wondered if the dad knew he had sort of made an awesome rhyme. I felt sorry for the girl. That dad was so scary intelligent, she would never get away with anything.


We were at the local diner having breakfast (this seems to be a theme) and I overheard the following conversation behind me between a woman in her seventies and a man in his fifties:

“Do you think we should get Gene some shoes for Christmas?”

(Keep in mind, I overheard this on the 27th… Of December).

“I don’t know.

What kind would we get?”

I was thinking of some tennis shoes.”

“Yeah, okay. That sounds good.”


“Just make sure they don’t have velcro.”

“Oh, I know! Gene sure has some velcro issues.”

Velcro issues? Best diagnosis ever. I wish I knew what this was! I am intrigued.


Did you overhear anything good in December? What are your plans for tonight? We always stay home and celebrate in our pajamas. Kathy Griffin and Anderson Cooper anyone?

Can’t wait!

Everybody stay smart and safe out there!