Thursday, July 31


For your blogging pleasure, I am pleased to introduce So Stacie a blog authored by our favorite "Miss Osborn." You'll want to check in often because Stacie has alot to write about as she plans her June wedding. Blog on Stacie!

Dish It Out

Here are the pics from our trip to the pottery painting studio.

Wednesday, July 30

Do I Really Know You?

How did anyone stay in touch 20 years ago? Everything I know about everyone comes from the internet. Between MySpace, blogs, FaceBook, and reunion sites there isn't anyone you can't track down. I've recently found some of the kids I went to kidergarten with. It's crazy to think we all started with Mrs. Prebble in the prefab. We all learned our letters from the "letter people", we all went on to Leeper Middle, and none of us thought it was strange that our mascot was a red and white zebra. But here we are 25 years later scattered throughout the world and I read blogs and realize that although I've "known" these people for more than 25 years I really know nothing about them. That tells me something. I should take more time to learn about people. I should listen when I hear. Everyone has a story. They aren't all like mine but they are all worth hearing.

Sunday, July 27

Wedding Crashers

On our Uptown tour Saturday we walked into a wedding set up in the Bank of America atrium. Without getting too close for comfort, I just had to snap a few pics. I don't know who this bride is but she has beautiful taste. The flowers were the brightest colors of pinks and oranges and yellows. So summer. So pretty. And this cake....oh I love this cake. From a distance it looked like it was just decorated with the usual swirls but a closer look reveals all these words and phrases that are no doubt meaningful to the couple.

I should have gotten a closer picture of the flowers. Absolutely beautiful. I'm assuming some of those flowers will go on top of that cake.
Maybe we should go to uptown more often on Saturday evenings. Maybe we should dress up. Maybe we should bring a gift and see if we can stick around for awhile. With a cake and flowers like these, I would have loved to have seen her bridesmaids dresses.

Kendra & the Girls

I've said it before and I'll say it again, visiting us is no easy task. And let me tell you, it takes a brave and strong woman to fly (stand by!) with 2 little ones. Thanks so much for coming Kendra! I know that it was a huge deal and it means so much to us that you came down. It was a great time.

Thursday, July 24

I Love a Full House

The house is full tonight. Just a couple hours ago Ashley and I picked up Kendra and the girls from Charlotte Intl. It's a little tricky to show off Charlotte in the dark. Not that you can ever see much beyond the trees but that is especially true at night. But Ashley and I tried. We tried to tell the story of why this is the Queen City but we found we really don't know. We'll do better (or fake it better) tomorrow.

For now all is quiet in our little bed and breakfast. All 5 kiddos are in their beds and a few may actually be asleep. Spicy has stopped running the halls like he is on some heavy uppers. Kendra is getting some rest so she will be raring to go in the morning. First on the list of places to see- Dunkin Donuts. We may get wild and follow it up with a leisure day at the pool. Is there a better place for two lifelong friends to catch up than by the baby pool?

Monday, July 21

Finally, the Curtains

After the Spicy detour (posted below) I am ready to post pictures of our bedroom curtains. Normally curtains are not a big deal but we have lived in this house for 2 and a half years. And for 2 and a half years we have had empty curtain rods in our bedroom. I am slightly picky and also slightly frugal so I never seemed to find curtains that suited both my tastes and my budget. Last night I was browsing my favorite French store, Tar-get for some back to school deals and remembered an ad in their circular for curtains. Sure enough. They match our decor. They aren't a boring valance. I like them. And (most importantly) they were CHEAP!
So there you go. After 2 and a half years, we are finally moved in- complete with curtains.

The Poser

I did not get online to post about Spicy. I was going to show pictures of our new curtains...and I still will later but this was too cute. Spicy saw me get the camera and went nuts!!! He jumped on me, in front of me, on the bed. He just kept posing for me. When I wasn't snapping his picture, he'd jump on me and then go pose again. And with his bad teeth (bless his heart) he looks like he is smiling. Is it me or does he also look very proud of himself?! You can see by the different rooms we were in that this continued on for sometime. Finally I had to put the camera away and tell him, "no more pictures Spicy!"
And he likes to look at the picture after it's taken.
He is just too cute. And he knows it.

Thursday, July 17

The Boys are Back in town

The boys are back in town. October 30th. Tickets on sale in less than 12 hours. Ready. Set. Scream! Maci is just as excited as I am. She looked at pictures and said, "Well. They're not kids anymore." Neither am I Maci. Neither am I.

Wednesday, July 16


It has come to my attention that many folks here in North Carolina do not know what "Ro-Tel" is. Maybe we just aren't close enough to Texas. But in our kitchen, RoTel is a staple like milk ,butter, cream of chicken, and pork n beans. I use it in everything from chili to dips to a wide variety of mexican dishes. You also get a lot of bang for your buck here because 1 can adds a big punch to your dish. Rotel comes in a mild, regular, and hot. And just so you know, hot is hot. Mild is weenie. Stick to regular your first time and then if you can handle the heat, crank it up a notch to the hot. The basic ingredients are diced tomatoes and green chilies but there are some secret seasonings in there as well. It is best to buy Rotel in quantities of 3 or 4 because once you start this relationship it will quickly blossom to an all out love affair.

Rotel will be an ingredient in the mexi dips and chips that I am taking to QT this week...along with cream cheese, sausage, and my favorite fake cheese- velveeta. It is highly important for me to use seasoned items like rotel because I have that self imposed 4 ingredient maximum in most of my dishes. (Not lazy. Just effecient.)

So come on Charlotteans, now is the time to dive into the spice. Pick up some ro-tel and toss it in your meal tonight. Oh, and if you have a great rotel recipe...please share!

Tuesday, July 15

Summer Treats

At the risk of overdoing the food theme is another little summer treat to whip up. After Harry (aka HarryBob) made some fabulous iced coffee for us, Brad and I have been working on our own recipe. Admittedly, I have not yet recovered from my Quick Trip addiction.
I'm still crisscrossing the world- or at least Charlotte- in search of a frozen cappuccino that is just as good as QTs while also being QT affordable. Starbucks is decent but I have to be having a major caffeine fit before I will agree to pay their prices. All of that to say this-

Brew some coffee. Strong. While it is still hot, add the sugar. Cool the coffee in the fridge for an hour or so...however long it takes. Fill your blender with a little ice- or if you have a fancy fridge, use the crushed ice button. If you don't have the fancy fridge (like me) then go back to putting regular ice in the blender and crush it. Add your coffee and a whish of milk. Blend. Ta-da. Cheap yet tasty iced coffee. Lots of foam too. And to all my IBS friends- you know who you are- a little iced coffee is awesome for the digestive system. It just has a way to get you going.

And Another Thing

Another thing I learned at the beach is how yummy southern squash and onions can be. Last night I made my own...melt some butter and then saute a vidalia onion with thinly sliced squash. I'm not sure mine was as good as Ashley's but it was gooood. Now if only I could master gravy...

Friday, July 11

B-day Shout Out for Jana

Happy Birthday Jana! I hope if you've learned anything from me it's that you should actually be celebrating this birthday all weekend long. Call it Janaukah. Tell Matt it is a family tradition. I hope you also know that isn't truly the only thing I hope you've ever learned from me! I love you hippy chick. I miss you like crazy.

Wednesday, July 9

Stinky Congratulations

Miss Osborn- affectionately known as "Osborn" around here is engaged. While we are very excited for her and wish her and Scott all the best, the news wasn't taken well by all the Horner kids. Andy's response, "Awww man, that stinks. I was gonna marry her." He thought on this for quite some time and decided he needed to talk to Osborn himself. So he gave her a call and told her how stinky this news was. When he got off the phone he continued to give it some thought and said, "Man I should've alreday married her." Poor kid. Heartbroken at age 4.

Congratulations Stacie! We are very very happy for you...well most of us are anyway.

Monday, July 7

Sunset Beach 08

Things I Learned on Summer Vacation

In Random Order

*I still love being at the beach. Truly love it.
*Sea gulls have this incredible food sensor. Then they call their friends. Then they attack. Then children cry. Then picnicing on the beach loses a little something.
*Low tide is the best time to go shelling.
*Low tide is quickly followed by a rising tide. Keep that in mind while venturing out for shells.
*Never squat when tinkling in the ocean.
*Crabs attack. And leave marks.
*Too much laughing in the waves will cause choking.
*It is 1.25 miles from the last beach access to the house. Long walk when you need the bathroom.
*1.25 miles is a relatively short bike ride. No one steals an ugly bike.
*Swimsuits aren't made for bike riding.
*Everyone has the same video access code so it IS ok to share it with the person in front of you. (whew)
*Ashley makes good gravy. Really good gravy.
*Good news- Brad and Joe make a winning grilling team.
*Good news- Brad and Joe make a losing SkipBo team. Oh wait, I already knew that one.
*Ashley gets sentimental late at night and just randomly on the beach.
*Sand dunes get hot. Very hot.
*Spray on sunscreen rocks. Solarcaine is great for the spots you miss.
*Those living things in shells stink to high heaven when they die.
*Never use regular sunscreen on your face. Never.
*Roasting marshmallows must become a vacation tradition.
*A family of 9 will go through 50 bags of chips, 3 loaves of bread, 2 cases of water, and countless rolls of toilet paper.
*One week isn't near long enough when you are vacationing with your best friends.

Saturday, July 5

Back Too Soon

We are back from the beach. There are many pictures to post and adventures to share. But not tonight folks...tonight is for rest and recovery. Those Brownies are a fun family to hang with.