good guy

I found this in a box of old photos at my house the other day...

This is my "Paw-paw", C.R. McIntyre.
He was very funny {with a dry wit -- the best kind!}, and smart.  
Common sense was doled out in a heaping portion when his mold was made.

People sometimes commented that he resembled Lyndon B. Johnson.
I've heard that when he and my Granny visited Niagara Falls one year that fellow tourists came up to him, thinking he was actually the former president.

Anyway, I just wanted to share this photo because I like everything about it.
The composition is perfect in my eyes.
The dog looking off to the distance.
The camera in Paw-paw's hands.
Written on the back is "Mother's Day 1963", which leads me to believe they were either on their way to or coming from church... hence the suit.

I'm so glad to have this image, to see him much younger than I remember him to be.  Photos... real, paper photos... are a treasure.


the 4 1 1

One of the coolest things about life is that we never stop learning. 
I don't mean in the deep, metaphorical sense of growing older and becoming wiser through our experiences.  I just mean that we continue to gather new information, be it important or not.  Our brains are an amazing gift!

It doesn't even have to be knowledge we seek out.
I learn new things all the time just from news blips I hear on the radio or through casual conversations with other people.

So, I thought of a few things I've learned recently that are oh-so-random that I'll share with you.  Remember, key word:  RANDOM.  And to accompany this newly acquired knowledge, I'm including some equally random photos I found scrolling through my phone.  Don't try to make sense of them... just snapped along the walk of life.  {See?  That just triggered 'Walk of Life' by Dire Straits.  Good song, right?}

+ The president of Nigeria is a man named Goodluck Jonathan.  I kept hearing his name in the news, but I never listened past his name to know why he was being discussed so much.  And I thought that couldn't actually be someone's real name, RIGHT?  Maybe it was just how you pronounced it phonetically, kind of like when your Sunday school teacher taught you to sing 'Angels We Have Heard on High'... and "Gloria, in excelsis Deo" was sung "in egg shells seas Day-o".  NOPE.  That's his real name, and it's got meaning behind it.

+ I always assumed the Poconos was a tropical island somewhere in the Caribbean.  NOPE.  It's a mountain region in northeastern Pennsylvania.  It should be embarrassing enough that I didn't know that at all, being a natural born citizen of the US of A.  But the way I found out the truth was from an episode of 'The Office' when Pam and Roy spent a long weekend in the Poconos.  Way more embarrassing.

+ Until this past summer, I assumed that charcoal used for grilling was some kind of mineral derived from the earth.  NOPE.  As all of you probably know, it's just scrap wood that's been cooked.  All righty.  {Even more interesting, though, is Henry Ford's involvement in basically creating the entire charcoal industry... look it up!}

OK, that's all I can really think of right now.  I've embarrassed my family enough for one post, anyway.  

I'll leave you with the below image... 

{Read this next part like REM's 'Losing My Religion'} -- That's me in the bedpost, that's me in the bed-POST, giving you the peace sign.

Yeah, I know.  WEIRDO.  But, God made me that way.  :)

Happy Friday Eve!


show and tell

Since my busier-than-usual work schedule the last few months kept me from regularly posting here, I guess it would only make sense to share a little bit of what I was working on during that time.

One of my projects was a clubhouse/amenity space for a student housing development, similar to what I've previously shared here, but this time I was working with an existing, older property.  That means I have BEFORE AND AFTER PHOTOS!

I'm not going to provide much commentary, since the photos will do a lot of the talking.  However, I think it's a good idea to give the following disclaimers to help you navigate this post:
  • Because this was an existing property that was in fairly good shape, the "work with what you have" mantra applied throughout the project, both in construction and budget.  That means only minor demolition was exercised and most of the design changes were strictly cosmetic.
  • The main objective was to breathe new life into the overall space while making it a place residents {mostly college students} would want to spend time.  Basically, I infused some youth!
  • These are by no means professional photographs, and there was still a bit of construction work to be done in some of the spaces when my portion of the installation was complete... just keep that in mind. 

OK, let's get into it...



My goal in this area was to make those large orange beams disappear, throw in a lot more color, and to get rid of the Boca Raton dual ceiling fan.






This was a spa-type room in the existing property, but we transformed it into the computer lab.  



The new countertops/supports were not installed in here at the time these photos were taken.



You'll see the computers were located in this room originally, but we decided to move them out and make this a more relaxed, fun space where residents could hang out.


So... 1,250 pictures later, that's about it!  

If you have an eagle eye {pun intended}, you'll pick up on a lot of this decor and paraphernalia to be geared toward Auburn.  That's where this property is located, and it is also my alma mater.  We always try to incorporate a lot of local flavor in each property we do, but it's easier to do that when you are already familiar with the area and the school's traditions!  This was a fun one for me.

If you have any questions or want to know where I bought any particular items, just leave a comment.  I'll be happy to answer!


turning the page

Here we are now, full force into 2015.  Fifteen days in, to be exact.
Are you a resolution person?  How's that working out in these first two weeks?
I don't make formal resolutions, but I always welcome the fresh start of a new year.
It's kind of like recalibrating your brain, I think.
A chance to start over or just adopt an improved outlook on life.

I snapped this photo one day last week during my waning vacation, as the late afternoon sun was coming in my window...

I think this was actually the last time the sun has come out in Alabama.
It has been so gray, cold, and foggy this week... FOR REAL.
Anyway, I think this photo is a good representation of how I always feel about a new year... the light is possibility filtering in, opportunity on the horizon.  A clean slate.

Like I said, I don't have any set resolutions, but there are a couple of things I usually do to usher in a new year.  One is acquiring a new daily calendar, just like I wrote about in this post.  The other is to get a ledger like this one:

On the outside, it looks like a spiffy biography of Johnny Cash.  But the inside quickly squelches that notion... it's just a cash ledger to help me keep my finances organized.  One of these books will usually last me two years.  I know there are at least a hundred computer programs that are outstanding and easy to use for such organization, but I'm old-school in this area {and let's face it, most areas}.  There's something about putting pencil to paper every week that makes me take a long, hard look at how I'm spending my money and where I could save more.  Now, I'm not saying I always heed the wisdom of the pencil, but I do find this method to keep me in line most days.

If I were to make one resolution, it'd probably be in the area of photography.  Not resolving to be a better photographer -- but just to get out and take more photos, period.  My sister-in-law & brother gave me this beautiful new camera strap for my birthday:

Isn't it so cool?!  I am loving it already.  Taking photographs is one of my favorite things to do, but I don't aim {or claim!} to be an expert at it, just as I've written about before here.  For me, striving for that expertise takes all the fun out of the true enjoyment I get from capturing images.  This blog just gives me a place to share me eye's view, good or bad!

And, of course, the start of a new year usually fires me up to go through all my closets and purge all the non-necessities and to get better organized.  So when I saw this clip of Jerry Seinfeld on 'The Tonight Show' a few weeks ago, I thought it tied in nicely with this characteristic of a new year...

:: yo, subscribers -- embedded video here ::

{In case you're confused, he's referring in the beginning to everyone in the audience being given a TV}

This is soooo true and funny... we just have so much junk.

Time to get started on those closets.



Before I fully dive into 2015 with new posts, I thought I'd tie up 2014 with some photos that didn't make the cut, so to speak, on the blog.  Just like this recap I did last year, these photographs don't hold any rhyme or reason... I just like them!

+ in bloom +

+ airport breakfast +

+ coming all together +

+ snow drift +

+ angry laundry +

+ cool cat +

+ happy boy +

+ church and sky +

+ warm fuzzies +

+ light show +

+ art or office? +

+ home +

On to the new...


here I go again

Well... hello, 2015!

I'm eager to catch up on my blog and want to get back to regularly posting this year.  I'm sitting on my sofa next to the crackling fire {read: a WoodWick candle}, so this cold Saturday is a great time to jump back in!

I managed to accomplish exactly what I set out to do in my last post of 2014, which was to maintain a level of relaxation just one notch above "comatose" during the holidays.  I think the Christmas tree lights did it.  COMPLETE. HYPNOSIS.

I spent over a week at home, and it was really nice to unplug and enjoy time with my family.  Peace and quite reaches a whole new level in my small hometown.  This has become more evident to me since I live in a true city now where there is a huge hospital a mile away in each direction of my house.  I hear sirens ALL THE TIME here, but I guess I'd learned to tune them out... until I got back from my parents' house.  There's something to be said for living in the country!  {What makes this thought funny to me, is that the small hospital in my hometown is LESS than a mile from my parent's house, but I never heard a siren the whole time I was home.  But if we had heard one, you'd better believe we would have been informed through the grapevine who was in that ambulance and what their condition was in no time.  Cue the "Cheers" theme song...}

Oh, you want to see pictures from my Christmas break?  Pssshhht.  When I say I relaxed, that means barely a photo was snapped {unfortunately}.  

The state of relaxation got ugly, y'all.


Yeah, I wore old-school sweat pants with the elastic leg hole.  What of it?
And I only put these shoes on to take the garbage out... then promptly came back inside and slid down in the recliner and covered up with a down blanket to watch yet another episode of 'Fixer Upper'.  Pretty sure the tally of trips outside of the house during that week was a grand total of TWO.  {To be fair, it was pouring rain and/or gray & cloudy the whole time I was home -- basically a license for laziness.}

When I wasn't watching Joanna and Chip revive another awesome house on TV, I was reading this book:

Interesting read on how MTV got its grassroots start and its effect on our culture.  Love it or hate it, there's no denying its influence.  I could write a whole post on my memories of MTV when it really only played music videos... maybe I will one day.  {Full disclosure: my brother gave me this book a few years ago, and I am just now reading it.  It's a really thick book, OKAYYYY?!}

To redeem myself a little, I did have the clarity of mind to snap a couple of photos prior to the Great Hibernation of 2014 that maybe capture some Christmas spirit:

A couple of my good friends stopped by one weekend morning for a short visit, so I fixed some goodies... but why didn't I take a photo of the actual people?  {I never do!  Maybe that should be a new year's resolution...}

And this is my favorite Christmas ornament.  It's personalized on the back with my name & the year 1985 in my mom's handwriting.  I just love the simple design and the colorful scarf.  And I really love when ornaments are just memories hanging on a tree.

These last two photos are best described as the Christmas aftermath, snapped as I was putting away my decorations after New Year's Day:

As much as I jest about being lazy and not doing a whole lot during the holidays, I do think we forget sometimes how important true rest really is for our overall health.  It's not being lazy... it's taking care of yourself.  We all need to do that!

H A P P Y   N E W   Y E A R   ! ! !