Her love is like
an island in life's ocean,
vast and wide
A peaceful, quiet shelter
From the wind, the rain, the tide.
Tis bound on the north by Hope,
By Patience on the West,
By tender Counsel on the South
And on the East by Rest.
Above it like a beacon light
Shine Faith, and Truth, and Prayer;
And thro' the changing scenes of life
I find a haven there.
- author unknown
With mother's day approaching I thought it would be appropriate to write a quick tribute to all of you mothers out there. While I am not a mother myself, I am blessed to come from a line of wonderful women who have made wonderful mothers. In addition to my own loving mother, I grew up experiencing the mothering love of grandmothers, aunts and cousins, even teachers and employers, all who helped shape me, and all who helped "mother" me into who I am today.
All mothers are a powerful influence on their children in different ways. Some with a soft and quiet strength, some with loud and boisterous ways of filling life with so much fun. Most all have the heart of a mighty warrior, ready to go to battle for their children, through prayer, sacrifice and an unfailing love outmatched only by our heavenly father. I found a sweet poem that sums up all that a mother should be.
In growing older you realize that moms are not only for teaching life skills, washing clothes, and cooking supper. They are your place of refuge, your one true, unfailing friend. If you are lucky enough to still have your mom or grandma, make it a point to let her know how special she is! I know that there are some of you out there that may not have been blessed with a caring mother like the one described above. If the story of your life is not so happy, take heart in knowing that the legacy of women in your family can start over with you! There are many mother substitutes that would be overjoyed to pour their love and knowledge into you. We women would be nothing if not for the strong women that went before us, let's make sure they know how thankful we are for them this Mother's Day!
And now for the shameless plug! Need some gift ideas for Mom? We've got some great options in the store, including this sweet Mother's Day Gift Package compiled of a few of our favorites from Rifle Paper Company and Pre de Provance. Our first five customers to order a mothers day gift will recieve a Free mother's day card by Rifle Paper Company. Just let us know in the notes that you are purchasing for your mom! Happy shopping and Happy Mother's Day!
As you probably know by now, my husband’s family grows muscadines, America’s native grape and “Superfruit of the South!” If you didn’t know, be sure to read my blog posts, Muscadines, Grandma, and a Husband or Faithful in the Little Things. If you’ve read these, you’ll know muscadines are so inherently southern and have been such a large part of my life. The first role muscadines played for me as an adult was actually at my wedding. We wove muscadine vines into an arch to use as a backdrop for our vows, and we served Muscadine Punch.
Chris and I got married on Memorial Day weekend, which signals the end of spring and the start of summer. I don’t know about where you live, but around here, temperatures are already rising into the upper 80s and low 90s. We had a very mild winter, but it’s as if we’ve skipped spring altogether and headed right into summer weather!
Of course, this is not only the season for weddings, but also showers, Mother's Day gatherings, and graduation parties, not to mention impromptu cookouts and porch parties. And, here in the South, although you can of course serve sweet tea and lemonade, no gathering is complete without some sort of punch! Muscadine Punch is so easy, you can pour it up at the last minute! Just combine one bottle (750ml) of Muscadine Juice with a 2-liter bottle of ginger ale and add ice. My mother-in-law made ice rings with pansies for our wedding reception, or you can also float pieces of fruit to dress it up.
If your soiree is more appropriate for a sangria, we also have a Muscadine Sangria Recipe Card! Visit our Recipe Archive to print your copy.
We served Muscadine Sangria at a Ladies’ Night Out event we hosted recently, and everyone had a fit over it! I'm sure your guests will, too!
On the last Beech Street Bungalow update, I shared our progress in the kitchen. Since then, we are excited to say that we have moved in! This means we are living in a construction zone, but it is so nice to finally have our own little nest.
We had quite a time drawing up our master bathroom, but I had no trouble at all dreaming it up. When you get down to the nitty gritty of planing out a solid floor plan, you realize that the space you thought was plenty of room for a toilet turns out to only be half of the space you need. The area for the bathroom we were working with was limited in order to avoid relocating an exterior door. The space was also made a bit tricky due to the location of a window, keeping the brick along the bottom left wall, and including a bathroom door (original re-located glass french doors to be exact) and closet door. After hours upon hours of trying different layouts, we finally agreed on one we thought would work.
Now, the fun part. Remember all that dreaming I was doing before the drawing got in the way? Back to that. I loved the look of the subway tile with the dark grout. I thought it was so classic, yet edgy! I also loved the gold hardware and fixtures. Phillip wouldn't let me use gold in the kitchen (he thought it was a bit trendy), so he compromised with the master bath. Here were my pinterest inspirations for the look I was going for in our bathroom.
You may not know this about me, but I'm pretty crafty. When we talked about doing a tile shower, I was like, "Yeah, I can do that." So confident, and so mistaken. Luckily, my Dad has tiled a shower or two in the past, so he agreed to help me! With a handy-dandy tile book, his past experience, and my determination - we tiled our shower. Let me just tell you, it was miserable.
It was about as fun as it looks. I was so involved that I totally forgot to take pictures along the way. With only being able to work on it two days out of the week, it took us almost two months to completely finish the shower. Knowing what I know now, I would have chosen a larger tile and built a smaller shower. Haha! It is full of imperfections (as you can imagine), but honestly, I do love our shower.
Here's a look at the bathroom once it was sheetrocked, somewhat painted and tiled.
The bathroom fixtures that I chose were Champagne Bronze by Delta. This is similar to gold, but much softer, giving you the gold look. The hardest thing to pick out for our bathroom was the lights! I knew we would have can lights, but I really wanted sconces on either side of the mirror. Trying to find a sconce that matched the finish of our fixtures was impossible! Finally, I took a chance and just ordered the lights that I liked. When they came in, I realized that they were in fact the wrong color. Roxie suggested spray painting them rather than heading back to my search. This made me nervous, considering how expensive lights are these days, but I finally decided to give it a shot. The closest match in spray paint that I could find was a shade of Rust-Oleum Metallic. I taped up the parts that didn't need to be painted and sprayed away! Below you can see the difference in the Champagne Bronze and the original color of the light fixtures.
I thought that the lights turned out beautifully! It still isn't an exact match, but it is much better than the original finish. We chose to use the same cabinets and counter tops as in the kitchen, so those will look familiar to you.
Now, here is a look at our finished master bathroom! Notice the glass french doors--one set was relocated here from the living room!
I love the paint color for this room, Artistic Taupe by Sherwin Williams. Phillip wasn't sure about it at first, but he loves it now! I think it is the perfect complement to the bright white trim, gold fixtures and hardwood floors.
Here's a closer look at the Champagne Bronze fixtures with our tile and quartz counters.
The hardware on the cabinets was our finishing touch to the master bath.
You probably don't remember, but we decided to push into the hallway in order to add a master closet. This choice made the most sense because all we had to do for it to work was make the opening to the kitchen a bit smaller. Phillip added custom built-ins to maximize our hanging and storage space.
There you have it. Our master bath was a slow process but well worth the wait. The guest bathroom will also have tile, but after this, my tiling days are over! The master bath was a very educational experience for me, and though I joke about it, it is nice to gain a skill like tiling. I am so thankful to be as far along as we are, but I cannot wait for it to be completely finished. We are enjoying life in town, and Breeze sure does love our back yard.
Last week made it an entire year that we have been working on our home. After some reflection, I have realized that I have allowed the last year of my life to revolve around a house. Though it seems (and to some extent is) honorable and good to work so hard towards building a home, I believe that I have allowed this renovation to steal my purpose and joy this past year. Luckily, I have realized the effect it has had on me and have made a decision to now put people first. The house can wait, loving people cannot. Though it seems as if I have fallen short this past year at loving the people around me, I will strive to love them even better than before in the years to come. It is a fine line finding a balance between the responsibilities and stressors of everyday life and living as Jesus calls us to. I am thankful for His grace and all of the support Phillip and I have had throughout this journey. We look forward to the day when our home is used as a tool to love others. Until then, we will make time for the people around us - including each other.
Check out more Beech Street Bungalow renovation stories here!
Here in the South, no Easter meal is complete without deviled eggs. In fact, most meals are not complete without deviled eggs. And, they must be sprinkled with paprika. Growing up, I never saw my mother use paprika for anything other than to garnish deviled eggs and potato salad.
Although I am not much of a fan of deviled eggs - or eggs in general - somehow, I have become the official “deviled-egg maker” for Easter lunch at my grandmother’s. The first time I was asked to bring the deviled eggs, I had never actually made deviled eggs before. Since then, I have not only learned to make traditional deviled eggs, but also some delicious variations. I have even found a deviled egg recipe I like to eat - Blue Cheese and Bacon Deviled Eggs!
I am sharing the recipe with you, just in case you are feeling adventurous and want to try something new for Easter! You find this recipe card, and other delicious recipes, in our recipe archive.
I have also discovered that some people are quite purists when it comes to their deviled eggs. “Why in the world would you put olives on a perfectly good deviled egg?” is a question I have actually had to answer. Alas, I now know to bring two plates of deviled eggs - with labels to warn my brother-in-law, among other purists.
Now I'll share with you my simple Southern classic recipe:
Traditional Southern Deviled Eggs
6 large eggs, hard-boiled and peeled
1/4 cup of mayonnaise
1 1/2 tablespoons pickle relish
1 teaspoon yellow mustard
Cut eggs in half lengthwise. Scoop out yolks into a medium sized bowl. Use a fork to crumble and mash yolks. Add mayonnaise, pickle relish, mustard, and salt and pepper to taste. Stir together. Scoop yolk mixture into empty egg white halves. (For a prettier presentation, use a piping bag and star tip to pipe mixture into egg white halves.) Sprinkle paprika on top.
If you need more southern cooking inspiration for your Easter feast, we reccomend "Dinner on the Grounds" by fellow Georgian, James Farmer. You are sure to find a recipe for the perfect southern dish for your gathering! Pick up one of our cute Easter towels while you are in the store. They make perfect hostess gifts!
Happy Easter Y'all, hope it is a good one!