2191 posts categorized "Family"

Celebrating Mommy Ann

Todd family everyone Mommy Ann's memorial

In November my beloved grandmother died. To all of her grandchildren, and greats, she was called Mommy Ann.

Mommy Ann framed photo

It was weird, and hard, losing my last grandparent because I think my subconscious had decided she would always be there: doing puzzles, looking impossibly stylish, cooking dinner with a Tom Collins in hand. When you think of those old-school beauties who walked through life with (seemingly) effortless class, that was Mommy Ann. 


To celebrate, my aunt set up a beautiful party at her house in Cincinnati where we all ate, drank, chatted & were merry & were sad. Georgia put together a slide show that was unbearable to watch, but in the good way. How can someone feel so close and be gone? It's still hard sometimes.

Ella piano

As I walked around the party, catching up with cousins & aunts (there are males in this family, they're just...rare), I kept remarking to myself how much I liked everyone. Not just because they're family, but genuine appreciation for how much I wanted to keep hanging out. And how I kind of wish we hadn't all scattered to the four winds ;)

Molly Georgia pregnant

Here are a few pictures from our weekend, if you'd like to see, and I hope you're doing well. xo

Hope Aurelia angry face

Here's a picture with Aurelia - we were making angry faces at each other, because, at three and a half, she was over it

Zoe June

Ella Truett Henry gun fight

The kiddos celebrated Mommy Ann by...being kids.

Two Friday Favorites

Friday links - Manger

I do have a bit of Friday links for you!

One, the GORGEOUS picture above which is, of course, from one of my favorite blogs, Manger. I follow both Mimi & her uber-talented husband on instagram. His photography is so worth the endorphin release :)

Then, randomly, how great do these Swedish dishcloths look? I'm on a bit of a tear to reduce plastic + ugly things in our home, and these fit the bill nicely. 

And, lastly, I've been thinking a lot about parenting this week. I know the young parents in the world right now are overwhelmed and inundated with too much information, but this short article was calming & helpful for me to define ways of being firm + loving. (Otherwise my general advice to new parents is to NOT GOOGLE, or follow parenting click-bait)

Ok, I lied, one more. I love this post from Bunmi Laditan for some comic relief (shout out to Clyde for posting on FB)

Also - for more up-to-date posts, I often post to instagram if you'd like to follow. 

(photo credit from, duh, Manger)

A blogging break

GDI - blog break

I'm sure you've noticed my inability to post very often these days. I feel kind of uninspired, and I don't want to just plop any old thing onto the screen in order to post. So, I'm going to take a break. Recharge, hopefully come back in a week or two refreshed and inspired :)

In the meantime, I'd love to link to my favorite posts from GDI for your perusing pleasure. xoxo

A super yummy chocolate cake.

A tiny but impactful home improvement tip.

Baby June dances.

A fun place to eat here in Columbia.

One of my absolute favorite kid books.

Our kitchen renovation reveal & the break-down.

A bright red lipstick for fall.

Camping in teepees.

How to make pumpkin spice latte at home.

Ways to unknot your busy life.

Why cooking at home is so great.

Where to find some lovely art.

Movie nights.

The sweetest baby in the world turns four.

While my wild-man turns seven.

Just for fun, pregnancy pictures with Truett.

Planning a Christmas party.

Winter soups.

Love you guys. xoxo

(image via)

Hurricane Matthew & other updates

GDI - June tree

Yesterday we got a voicemail saying school is cancelled for the next three days. I was a little confused - because hurricane Matthew isn't really supposed to hit Columbia all that hard - but then I heard it's because we are re-directing our school busses to Charleston for an evacuation. I think everyone is still reeling from last year's 1,000 year flood

My plans are as follows: Halloween crafts, movie night at our friend's house, & lots of cooking. Come on by, if you're looking for something to do.

Also, I'll be posting more regularly to instagram, so follow along if you'd like. 

Also, also, I'm almost done with this book: Eligible (it's a modern retelling of Jane Austen's Pride & Prejudice) and it is soooo much fun. Can't put it down. 

GDI - pride & prejudice

(image credit dramafever)

Our trip up to Virginia

GDI - pebbly beach Colonial Beach VA

Our trip up to Virginia this weekend was a whirlwind - fun and busy & beautiful :) Our dear friend Sarah was married in an historic church and the reception was held on her family's farm. It was lovely, all of it.

Here are a random assortment of photos, with the little stories behind each. Hope you had a good weekend, too.

Our hotel was a short drive from Colonial Beach, Virginia, a tiny town with a few cute restaurants and a pebbly beach. We spent an hour talking and picking out the prettiest pebbles. Well, no, that's not true. I picked out pebbles while Bud mostly tried to see how many he could stack on top of one another. I think his toppled at six.

GDI - lovely pink pebbles

You can't really tell in this picture, but I found about a million beautiful rose quartz.

GDI - gin & tonic in basket

This was my emergency prep basket: ingredients for a gin & tonic at the hotel.

GDI - Bud Steamers

We ate dinner at possibly the cheesiest restaurant on the planet. Here's Bud hamming it up with a stuffed potato skin.

GDI - note to T&J&G

During our afternoon in Colonial Beach, we found a pretty little restaurant near the beach where they put brown butcher paper on the tables. I took a moment to write my kids a note & post to instagram, where I knew Georgia would see it.

GDI - pastries Mosaic

Coffee shop near Georgia's house in DC. Obligatory photo of goodies. We shared two chocolate croissants.

GDI - travel coffee for ants

An espresso and a sparkling water.

GDI - S & S wedding church

The church - built in the 1700's. No electricity, oil burning lamps, just perfect.

GDI - wedding reception

A picture from the reception.

Congratulations Sarah & Scott!! xoxo

Friday tidbits

GDI - butterfly bush Friday tidbits

What are you up to this Friday? The kids had a short school day because of storm Hermine, so Bud & I decided to keep them out for the whole day rather than drive in this rain. Right now they're screeching over Legos, but eh, it's cozy & fun being at home all day. 

Let's do some links & hope you have a cozy weekend, too.

I liked these back-to-school rituals over at Cup of Jo. Baking a cake the night before? Brilliant. Also - have you tried Boxed? I haven't but would love to hear how people like it.

Georgia brought me back a bottle of Jo Malone Lime & Basil lotion from London, and I really like the scent. I put the perfume on my covet list (I'm always on the hunt for a lovely new perfume).

Preventing cancer from a whole-body approach.

MM.LaFleur sounds like the coolest brand for simple, beautiful women's clothes. I'd love to see a casual line.

A good quote for a tough day.

A Harry Potter festival in October

This white beans with spinach & sausage recipe looks good for a cozy fall evening.

Why you should put a table in your front yard. I love this idea. Here's a pretty one.

Balance, haha.

Beautiful pictures of Scotland. Sigh.

(the photo above is from my instagram account, which you can follow if you'd like)

The last few pictures from Nashville

GDI - Hattie B's Hot chicken

Friday late we got back from our trip to Nashville. The drive home felt like it took forever - we hit some bad patches of traffic & didn't get home until close to eight - but we've spent the weekend getting our heads back in the game of real-life.

GDI - June & Truett

On one of the days we were there, we drove into the city & hit up Hattie B's Hot Chicken, this odd little studio (Isle of Printing) that I basically thought I was breaking into (the sign on his door says employees only, it's a joke, he said (what? artists.)) & a charming wine shop, Woodland Wine Merchant where I found beautiful glasses, small batch gin & tonic, & two bottles of rosé that I've already shared with friends :) They were delicious.

GDI - gin & tonic

We also found Antique Archeology, the brick and mortar store front for the show American Pickers. It's full of treasures they've found on the road - including a dress Loretta Lynn performed in! - and some things you can actually buy.

GDI - June microphone

Here are a few pictures, if you'd like to see. xoxo

GDI - manatee sign

GDI - moth

GDI - Nashville prints

GDI - old motorcycle

GDI - wine glasses rose

GDI - Woodland Wine Merchant

Also - if you're looking for a guide book with just the right amount of advice, these Wildsam field guides are portable, pretty & pithy. 

PS - the Nashville house tour. We found it on Airbnb and loved it!

The last pictures from our trip to Williamsburg

GDI - June in tree CW

Change of plans. I'd intended on posting the pictures I took at the asylum yesterday, but I realized I'd like to do more research into the asylum's history before I post the article. 

That, combined with the fact that I'd never posted our last vacation pictures, and I thought I'd do that today & share the asylum pictures next week, once I've had time to do more research. 

GDI - CW Mama bear shirt

Georgia brought us these t shirts. Best shirt ever.

GDI - CW workout goat

I worked out twice while on vacation, and so I had to document my workout. I call it Live Working Out. Here's a show about rogue goats I am not kidding.

GDI - chapel in Jamestown

Most of the rest of these photos are from a trip Truett & I took to Jamestown. It was SO HOT, and a little kitschy, but it did spark a lot of good conversation, especially since it was just the two of us.

GDI - hoop game Jamestown

GDI - dug out canoe Jtown

GDI - musket CW Jamestown

There was one rooster that was missing quite a few feathers on his head. I remarked to Truett that chickens will sometimes do that - bully each other. I think it was a mistake because days later he wanted to know why Jamestown hadn't removed that chicken to a safer place. Obv this guy below was not bullied.

GDI - rooster Jamestown

A ship's bust.

GDI - Truett Jamestown ship mast

GDI - totem pole Jtown

Truett tried on armor. Back in the day you could not leave the settlement without wearing full armor. 

GDI - Truett armor

An image from my dad's birthday party. We made a huge dinner: fried chicken, cornbread, biscuits, beans, mashed potatoes, and two big cakes for dessert from this bakery.

GDI - dad's birthday party CW

And this. These two. Cutchin & Truett, who have been best buddies since before they can even remember. 

GDI - cousins CW

Happy hangover day

GDI - 4th of July

Whew. What a fun day. We spent our afternoon up at the park with neighbors while the kids splashed around at the splash pad. Then we came home & did fireworks. I drank way too much wine. It was a good day. Hope yours was too, & Happy belated 4th!

GDI - Truee & Maggie

Truett with one of his very first friends, our neighbor Maggie.

Friday tidbits

GDI - CW kids on ferry

Good Friday morning! These summer days all blur together since there is little difference between a summertime weekday & a summertime weekend day. Much like being a parent, it's all smooshed together - the work & the fun :)

Here are some fun links for your weekend & I'll also finish posting travel pictures next week. We had the most glorious vacation in Williamsburg and I am just sad it's over. Ah well. It's nice to be home, too.

I love this idea for allowance.

Adnan's getting a new trial!

Are you short on cash? Do you still want a pretty home? A dozen DIYs to brighten your home. I especially love the textile wall hanging.

If you're curious, this is where we stayed while in Williamsburg and I would highly recommend it.

Sleeping with your babies in Thailand because DUH.

Two paths to business success. 💕

What is lightning? Asked by Truett, answered by the almighty internet.

Glamping in Mexico. Yes, please.

Paste this infographic in your laundry room.

I'm on the hunt for a beautiful keepsake box. This one is lovely. Or, I might just re-purpose one of my dad's cigar boxes.

I have not only watched this fifty times, I keep pressing the 40 - 45 seconds for my kids. Over & over. I need it saved on my phone.

After our vacation, I'm dying for a main floor laundry. Probably not in this house, but maybe a goal for the next.

I bought this skirt in cream and love it. You can add just about any shirt and it's perfect for beach, date night, or hollering at your kids that you cannot be expected to entertain them all summer ;)

I'm in a cooking rut, especially when it comes to feeding the kids. I'll be hitting this list up often this summer.

Lastly, I give you quotes by Truett as I try to blog.

What would happen if a Cheetah married a lion? You'd get a spotted lion that could run as fast 70 mph.

What do you think you would call it? A cheeto.

What if a lamp and a bed married? You'd get a light up bed.

Can you read to me?

Then he slammed the vacuum cleaner head against the window where I'm working and hollered from outside CAN YOU READ TO ME?

xoxo see you next week.

PS - kids on the ferry from Jamestown.

About Me

My Photo Hi! I'm Hope. Welcome to my website all about: style, food, travel & parenting. I live in Columbia, SC with my husband and two bebes.