Where The Pumpkins Are

October 23, 2013 at 11:45 pm | Posted in Bun, Giggles, Lollipop, Photo Tuesday | 18 Comments
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Which one should we choose?

Wearing sandals in October.

Weighty pumpkins.

Wheeeeee!

Wonderstruck.

“Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns.” — George Eliot

Are you wedded to autumn like Eliot (and me) or to another season? Have you made your annual pumpkin-patch pilgrimage yet? Are your Halloween costumes ready to go??

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W is for wheeeeee! and wonderstruck and wedded to autumn. See more W’s at Jenny’s.

Jenny Matlock

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My Mixed Bag

April 30, 2013 at 10:30 pm | Posted in Family, Photo Tuesday | 20 Comments
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“Camping:  The art of getting closer to nature while getting farther away from the nearest cold beverage, hot shower and flush toilet.” — Unknown

Camping is a mixed bag for me. Or should I say, a mixed sleeping bag?

I don’t like bugs. Or sweat. Or dirt. Or marshmallows. But my family does. So I go. Twice a year, as per a verbal agreement between my husband and me, I drag myself into the woods, along with three kids, a gigantic dog, an even more gigantic tent, sleeping bags, air mattresses, firewood, s’more fixin’s, peanut butter and jelly fixin’s, water shoes for 5, hiking shoes for 5, stuffed animals for way more than 5, camp dishes and utensils, paper towels, toilet paper, a hefty supply of hand sanitizer, and a thousand other things.

We spend the weekend killing mosquitoes, peeing in bushes, toasting droopy hamburger buns over a campfire that blows smoke in our faces, and getting dirt wedged semi-permanently into our fingernails and toenails. But we also fall asleep to a cricket concert and wake up to an avian serenade. We pick dandelions and track ladybugs. And with sticky, grape-juice-colored fingers, we steer matchbox cars through sand pits and stick tunnels.

So I go. And it’s worth it. Despite the 27 loads of burr-laden laundry that always come home with us.

Does your family camp? Got any favorite ghost stories? And marshmallows — yea or nay?

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“X” is for miXed bag … See more Xs at Jenny’s on Thursday.

Jenny Matlock

Unsolved Histories

April 11, 2013 at 5:16 am | Posted in Lollipop, Photo Tuesday | 13 Comments
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“Have patience with everything that remains unsolved in your heart. Live in the question.” — Rainer Maria Rilke

What questions are you living in? How important are the answers? And don’t you wish they made grown-up-sized rocking horses?

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“U” is for unsolved … See more Us at Jenny’s.

Jenny Matlock

The Beautiful Stuff

March 27, 2013 at 7:15 pm | Posted in Bun, Giggles, Photo Tuesday | 19 Comments
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“We are cups, constantly and quietly being filled. The trick is, knowing how to tip ourselves over and let the beautiful stuff out.” — Ray Bradbury

What beautiful stuff do you see around you? What’s your best Easter egg hiding place? And what do you like to find inside those pastel plastic shells?

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“S” is for “the beautiful stuff” … See more Ss at Jenny’s.

Jenny Matlock

All Quiet

March 15, 2013 at 4:45 am | Posted in Bun, Family, Giggles, Photo Tuesday | 11 Comments
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“Never be afraid to sit awhile and think.” — Lorraine Hansberry

What historical sites (like Fort Sumter in 1, 2, and 4 above) give you pause? Are the clover blooming where you are? And why is it that a Batman shirt makes almost everything better?

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“Q” is for all quiet … See more Qs at Jenny’s.

Jenny Matlock

Places You’ve Never Been

March 7, 2013 at 7:48 pm | Posted in Bun, Lollipop, Photo Tuesday | 17 Comments
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Prepared.

Poised.

Prickly pear.

Precipice.

And just for fun …

Potty training!

“Each moment is a place you’ve never been.” — Mark Strand

What moments filled the first of your March days? Do you hike in magenta butterfly wings and a pink Panama hat? And don’t you wish you had some aqua choo-choo undies?

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“P” is for prickly pear and potty training and places you’ve never been … See more Ps at Jenny’s.

Jenny Matlock

Joyful Noises

February 21, 2013 at 4:55 am | Posted in Bun, Giggles, Photo Tuesday | 18 Comments
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“Boy, n.: a noise with dirt on it.” — Not Your Average Dictionary

What are your favorite noises? How much dirt do your children acquire daily? And how many rocks have been through your wash cycle?

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“N” is for noise … See more Ns at Jenny’s.

Jenny Matlock

Hello, Yellow

November 21, 2012 at 12:34 am | Posted in Bun, Giggles, Lollipop, Photo Tuesday | 6 Comments
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“How wonderful yellow is. It stands for the sun.” — Vincent van Gogh

We celebrated the end of a week of sore throats on Sunday by emptying our pockets of cough-drop wrappers and hanging up our scarves. We headed for a farm about an hour outside of town and spent the afternoon wandering in a corn maze, playing in the sand, climbing hay bales, hula-hooping, and swinging from live oaks. The hours squinting, sweating, and laughing in the Indian-summer sun reminded me why I love this place I’ve called home for a decade. In other ways, I felt a keen yearning for Romania, with its billowing fields and village cottages surrounded by hand-baled haystacks. At the end, I was grateful for a few simple hours with my family, no matter where our dot blinked on the GPS.

Is it sun or scarves where you are? Have you ever navigated a corn maze? And how long can you hula-hoop?

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See more yellow at Beth’s.

Patch Work

October 30, 2012 at 12:12 am | Posted in Bun, Giggles, Lollipop, Photo Tuesday | 15 Comments
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“The thankful receiver bears a plentiful harvest.” — William Blake

We visited the neighborhood nursery earlier this week. It was 80-something degrees and so humid I could practically hear monkeys in our urban rainforest. Or maybe it was just my kiddos. They hopped and raced and hollered through the carving pumpkins, the pie pumpkins, the miniature pumpkins, the corn-cob bin, the mums, the petunias, and the rock samples. I hurried after them, clutching my camera strap and trying not to sweat on my lenses. After exactly 27 minutes, I was exhausted. I loaded up the van with my rosy-cheeked lovelies and our carefully chosen fruit — did you know pumpkins were berries? — and counted my blessings. Including air-conditioning.

What blessings are you counting this autumn? Have you made the annual pumpkin-patch pilgrimage yet? And are you still running the AC??

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See more fruits and vegetables at Beth’s.

Chilly Chili Bang Bang

October 17, 2012 at 12:02 am | Posted in Bun, Photo Tuesday | 16 Comments
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“I would rather sit on a pumpkin, and have it all to myself, than be crowded on a velvet cushion.” ― Henry David Thoreau

It’s going to be 90 degrees tomorrow. The only way I know it’s fall is by the sheer number of acorns that tumble out of little pockets during my washing machine’s spin cycle. The sweaters and scarves are waiting, waiting, waiting in blue plastic bins on my bedroom floor. The AC chugs along every day, ready for its annual hiatus.

But there are pumpkins. And candy-laden grocery store aisles. And squirrels feasting under the oaks that stretch their thick, gnarled muscles over my driveway. And, so, we hope. For chili ingredients ready to be crock-potted. For hot showers and hot cocoa. For fuzzy socks. For fall, in all its smoky, crunchy, orange glory.

How do you know it’s fall where you are? What color are your favorite pair of fuzzy socks? And what kind of Halloween candy will you be buying? Trading? Eating??

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See more fall at Beth’s.

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