Banking Better


We switched banks. That seems like a blog-worthy topic, right? Have you been or will you be affect by the recent increase in checking account fees among the major US banks? Jason and I had three checking accounts at one of the big corporate banks (I don’t want to slam them as it’s been industry-wide policy) and with the increased fees that are starting next month we were going to be paying around $45 a month just to have three checking accounts with debit cards. Whoa! So not worth it. I suggested we start carrying cash only and get pistols but Jason found a better solution. We have a small local bank chain called Avenue. We have been so pleased with their great customer service and of course, the lack of fees! They have a really cool vibe since they started out as a musicians’ bank. Beyond the pretty hummingbird logo, they have a city loft style lobby with free snacks and drinks and a guitar set up, ready to be played while we wait. But we never have to wait because their customer service is that good.

A great company is worthy of a blog post, I say. If you’re in Nashville, we highly recommend Avenue Bank. Switching banks is a big ole’ pain in the butt—it took us 6 weeks to get everything migrated to the next account—but worth it.

Phone Photo Friday


Thank you, Design Mom!


I was beyond humbled when Gabrielle asked if she could interview me and feature our kids room in her Living With Kids series on Design Mom. I’ve been a daily reader of her blog for years and have gleaned a ton of inspiration from her and her beautiful family. I even won a giveaway for goodies from Petit Collage through her blog and got the alphabet poster that hangs in our nursery. So click on over there and check it out!

Eames Inspired Modern Rocker


Recently, I told you about our new rocking chair. Since a few people asked about it, I wanted to share that it’s now on sale for just $107 with free shipping. The price seems to change frequently on this for some reason but I’m not sure I’ve seen it this low.

Baxton Studio Letterio White Cradle Chair

Also, I just signed up to be an Affiliate since I shop on Amazon all.the.time. If you’ve been thinking about buying this Baxton Studio rocker, I hope you’ll consider doing so through the link above. (I get a small kick back from Amazon.)

Dream Home Inspiration: Exterior


Jason and I have been dreaming big lately… dreaming about houses. I’m not ready to tell you why yet.

Here are some inspiring images I’ve found.

Check my Pinterest page for sources.

Beautiful Fall


I love this time of year in Nashville. Summer is hands-down my favorite but the start of fall with lower humidity and cooler nights is usually a welcome change. Most days it’s sunny with highs in the 70s and temps dipping down into the 40s overnight. I decided to snap a few pictures of some beauty in our garden before the overnight frosts start. Check out how tall our banana tree got this year! The leaves don’t survive the winter so it starts out as a stump each spring.

It’s been warm enough that some plants are flowering a second time this year, including our pink roses, orange zinnias and yellow canna lilies.

I love the furry fronds on the end of our pampas grass.

Our black bamboo has really filled in this year. If you’re not familiar with growing bamboo, the saying is “first year sleep, second year creep, third year leap.” This has definitely been a leap year for it.

Jason is considering moving this agave to a pot through the winter. Juuuust to be sure it doesn’t die if we have several cold days in a row.

What is your favorite season?

Phone Photo Friday


3 months and 1 month


It’s been a month since Precious*  was placed with us and she’s now 3 months old. (*not her real name, thank God.) It’s amazing to see how much she has changed in 1 month! Here are some things she’s doing now that she wasn’t doing a month ago:

• squealing

• conversing with “goos” (she’ll go back and forth with us for a while)

• holding her head up steadily

• rotating 90 degrees in her crib overnight

• sucking her thumb, usually her right thumb

• smiling at us from several feet away

• tracking us as we walk around the room

• saying “gee!” when she’s hungry

• sleeping all the way through the night (she hasn’t woken up for an early morning—5 or 6am—feeding in over a week)

• rolling over on to her side

• staying awake for a couple hours at a time

Precious is a wonderful baby. We couldn’t be more thrilled with her. Jason and I even think her sneezes (she sounds like she’s saying “achoogie”) and her rare cries (we call her “goat baby” because she as a vibrato) are the cutest things in the world. She is so easy-going. We give her a last bottle around 10pm (occasionally waking her up to do so) and she sleeps until 8:30 or 9am. When she wakes up she sucks on her hands and whines and complains a little bit but doesn’t cry. Once we finally get in to get her up, she’s all smiles…in no rush to eat. It seems like she just wakes up and she gets bored. Everywhere we take Precious people comment on how beautiful, happy or easy-going she is. She’s often sleeping through errands in her car seat or in a Moby wrap. She’s been to my office to hang out with me three times and all three times she’s had her big daily blow-out and stunk up the place. But she’s so adorable, no one can hold it against her. She’s being treated for thrush (which she had when she came to us) so we’re currently not using any pacifiers, sterilizing bottles everyday, and she’s on 2 medications. It’s a bit of an inconvenience but it’s clearing up well. Precious is such a joy to us. It’s truly a gift to get to be her mommy.

Weekend in the Smokies


Sorry for disappearing for a few days. Plates are spinning around here. Still. (And Merry-Go-Rounds.) Instead of formulating a thoughtful blog post, here is a recap of our weekend. Thursday afternoon Jason and Precious picked me up from work, we dropped off Lucy at his parent’s house, and we headed over to Pigeon Forge, TN where we stayed until Sunday night. Jason was playing a marathon weekend with Guy Penrod at Dollywood—3 concerts a day for 3 days in a row—and all the wives and children came along. There were 6 families in our party; 12 adults and 18 kids…most of which are Guy’s. They are such a fun and sweet bunch of people. Precious was definitely the center of attention through most of the weekend with everyone oohing and ahhing about how beautiful and easy-going she is. Seriously, she was a travel champ! One of Guy’s sons said, “I hope I have a baby just like her when I’m older” and insisted that she was THE most beautiful baby in the world. Another one of his boys said, “I can’t wait until I have my own baby someday,” while he was feeding her a bottle for me. She got so much love this weekend.

We also ate lot of good food. Uncle Guy got to snuggle Precious to sleep before the food came out at Cracker Barrel one night.

The shows at Dollywood were fun. Precious and I watched about half of them. Sometimes she watched, sometimes she slept on my lap, and sometimes she napped down in the dressing room.

We watched one of the shows from backstage while she was sleeping in a Moby wrap.

Speaking of Moby wrap, Jason was talked into trying it on while we were walking around going on rides. We got a pretty cute family picture of the three of us… I wish I could show you the whole picture. Maybe someday.

Speaking of someday… please continue praying about Precious’ situation. We are still uncertain about whether or not we will be given the first choice of adoption for her. There is someone else in the picture who is not legally kin but has a relationship with two of Precious’ half siblings. We’re basically competing with her—which is awkward—and we won’t know more until we have another team meeting and then ultimately a judge makes a decision…in a couple months? Then the earliest the adoption would be finalized would be in March or April. Either way she will be going to a good place but we’re crazy about her and would hate to let her go. Not without a fight, you can be sure.

Phone Photo Friday