We all know its February…the month of lllllooooovvvvvveeee…. (as my 7 year old self would say). I thought about this months post… did I want to write about St Valentine. Did I want to talk about romantic restaurants, or romantic settings? Did I want to write about chocolate? The answer…Nope. Nope I did not. But I’m one to waste a good theme. So this month I want to talk about a few things I love.
Now before we dig too deep let me go ahead and get this out of the way… I lllllloooooovvvvveeee my family. I mean like REALLY love my family. I could probably devote an entire blog just on how much I love them. But that seems little out of place for a design blog, so I’ll stick to that subject matter. My daughter’s laughter literally brings me to tears…like “I’m-laughing-so-hard-I’m-either-gonna-pee-or-cry-kinda-of-tears.” Her giggle should be used in peace treaty discussions. It’s amazing.
And my husband’s smile? LIGHTS up a room! His eyes twinkle like he’s up to no good (which he is probably isn’t) and then he smiles and my heart skips a beat. Literally the first time we met, he smiled and I was done.
Ok mushy family stuff out of the way, let’s talk my favorite “things”
First up Farmhouses. Particularly forgotten ones. If you stopped by this page before you might have seen my Farmhouse Blog. If not, I invite you to check it out…driving along a country road or flying down the interstate and seeing the remnants of a beautiful farmhouse in the middle of a pasture. Or hidden in the woods. Gets my imagination stirring. Who lived there? What did they farm or raise? Was it a big family squeezed in a tiny 2 room house? Or were they more affluent and had room to spread out. Once when I was little girl, my parents and I were walking in woods by our home. We wandered into a big open field with 4 large Oaks trees centered in it. No apparent roads or paths led to the field, but there it was pristine and untouched. Housed in the shadows on the mammoth oaks were the ruins of an old homestead and 2 grave stones. It was fascinating. It was beautiful. It was mystery.
As I’m writing this I realized that I’ve already mentioned two more of my favorite things; long walks in the woods and things you see while driving on a road trip. There is nothing more invigorating to me than walking through the woods, especially in the fall. The trees are a bright myriad of color and the forest floor is slightly damp, absorbing the sound of your boots on the already fallen leaves. There is a stillness in the wood that makes me slow down. Pause. Breathe. Selah.
Road trips have similar affect on me. Imagine with me…you are buckled in. On your way to Birmingham (as I was earlier this week) or Winston-Salem or wherever…The journey just long enough to pack snacks. You set your cruise control and drive. Long stretches of forest, farm land, abandoned rural towns somehow forgotten since the freeway came through…these images, these views, these vistas all frozen in time somehow. You speeding down the highway, catch little glimpses and moments of these scenes. Gems. Brief moments that let your imagination wander as you move down the highway. I often find myself making up stories. Imagining that I see fairies or tree elves or ghosts of times gone by waving me onto my destination.
Speaking of abandoned towns…you know those flea markets you always see advertised along the side of the road and think…I should check that out someday…but never do? Well I love them! I used to do the same thing. But then for my 39th birthday, my Mama said, “get some rest tonight, cause tomorrow we’re heading to Pickens…huh? Where? Pickins Flea Market. Y’ALL! Word cannot adequately express the adventure that the Pickens Flea Market is. Everything from eggs to chickens, puppies to okra, antiques to farm equipment can be found here. Want to sit for awhile and rest? Why not enjoy a little entertainment while you rest up? They have everything and it is a treat just to wader in and out of the aisles of vendors selling their goods.
It has occurred to me while writing this entry that I have written about experiences, memories, and dreams. Seems to me that my favorite things are wrapped up not in the “things” themselves, but what they represent. At the afore mention flea market, I picked up an antique olive jar, apple box, and wire basket. Nothing unique or interesting in of themselves, but they tell me that they have stories connected with them. And for me their story continues with the memory that when I purchased them I was with my Mama and My Aunt Mel on my 39 birthday. The sun was hot, but the breeze cool. The puppies licked my knuckles; The bass player from the band plucked a tune only learned from life and experience. The crowds milled about conversing with friends, looking for good deals, and just needing to commune with other patrons.
It is beautiful this life moving about you. Stories discovered in middle of a mundane road trip, or stumbled upon in the middle of the woods. Stories about who have come before us, lend us clues about where we are going.
The things I love can be found in the laughter of my daughter, the smile in my husbands eyes, or the quiet hush of the autumn wood… what about you? What do you love? Why?