Solar Beat


If our solar system made music, this is what it would sound like. Maybe. I like it though. I find it very relaxing to listen to and mesmerizing!

Click here to see it in action.


Man Gifts: Greenhouse & Smoker


I’m having [another] crazy busy week between work & freelance. Blah, blah, blah, everyone is busy… I know! I’m sorry for the lame excuse for light blogging. Here are a couple of quick photos of some new things around the ol’ mid-century modern ranch.

My parents and I bought Jason a greenhouse a couple weeks ago. He was quite surprised to see it out on the back patio when we woke up on his birthday. It’s out in the yard now ready to over-winter some of Jason’s tender tropicals.

This was like a birthday present from God for Jason. He’s been wanting a smoker for years but they’re pretty expensive ($150-250 for a big one like this) and no one ever seems to sell used ones on craigslist. We were riding our bikes home from a coffee shop run a few days after J’s bday and guess what our neighbors were selling at their yard sale? For $20! It needs cleaned up/fixed up but Jason can’t wait to use it… rack of ribs, smoked salmon, jerky …

Back to Back


Remember ask a kid when you would stand back to back with your friends to compare height? That’s what I feel like I’m doing with our Japanese Flowering Plum tree and our banana tree. They’re planted close together and they’re really competing for height this year.

The interesting thing about this competition is that the banana tree dies back to the ground every year. After 6 months or so it’s about the same height as our 3 year old plum tree (which is also growing quite fast).

Phone Photo Friday


“Are those ‘fall’ leaves or just dead from the heat leaves?” my friend Brienne asked. True, it was in the 90’s when I took this photo yesterday ont he first day of fall. But cold weather will be here soon enough and I, for one, am enjoying this little burst of record heat.

First Day of Fall: Almost scarf weather!


Despite the calendar saying it’s the first day of Autumn, it’s still in the 90s for a few more days here in Nashville. (I’m not complaining; I love the heat!) However, fall is here and scarf weather is on it’s way! My patient and gracious mother taught me how to knit on Sunday afternoon. She had to fix, unknit and reknit for me many times but I’m happy to report that after 4 days, I’m getting it!

My scarf is now 4″ long! Only 43″ more to go! At this pace, I should be done around the beginning of November. Just in time!

Remember, I’m using this pattern from Pickles.

Wise Words


“Fear is what keeps people from being truly creative.” – Jason Ahlbrandt

Poster Portrait


I wrote about Jason’s great-grandpa Carl back in July after our trip to Naples and our visit to the lot where his house used to stand. We both really loved this portrait of him. His horned-rim glasses, his raised eyebrows, the pencil behind his ear, the stubby cigar he’s smoking, the strap across this shoulder … it’s all part of the story of this character that I only know about through second-hand stories. Jason considers Carl to be an inspiration for various reason (explained more in the original post) and he wanted a poster of this portrait to hang in his studio as a reminder of his great-grandpa and as a reminder that if we keep working hard maybe we’ll get that mid-century modern beach house in Naples we’re dreaming of…

Anyway, I just wanted to share this really good deal I found. This 20″ x 30″ photo poster was only $7.28 ($17.12 with shipping) through Vivyx with their first time customers special offer! Most other sites are sound $21-30 for a poster this size. Score! Plus we found a frame for it at Michael that was originally $29.99 but was on sale for 40% off plus another 25% off with coupon. Came to around $12. Bonus!

A Sneak Peek of our Next Renovation


Jason building a wall in his studio:

Me providing moral support (I’m very good at that):

Phone Photo Friday


Lots of stripes in the laundry pile!

Happy Birthday to my Best Friend!


My favorite person in the world, my dearest husband Jason, turns 28 today! Happy birthday, Love! This has been a great year, hasn’t it? I’m looking forward to the next year of your life and I feel so blessed to be your wife. It’s my great privilege to walk along side you, laugh with you, cry with you, sweat with you, get splinters with you and have slumber parties in the living room every weekend (staying up too late watching 30 Rock, eating pizza and drinking root beer floats) with you. You are my heart!

This picture of you is, hands down, my favorite from this year. A boyish side of you came alive while we were in Naples. I loved watching you explore the beach looking for sea creatures and the way you lit up when you found those conch shells. You are creative, adventurous, strong, gentle, thoughtful, patient, caring, passionate, smart and faithful. I love everything about you!

Here’s to many more vacations to warm sunny places and the dream of a mid-century beach house in Naples!

Happy birthday, Jason!