• Just Life

    New (and Old) Friends.

    Next to Marc, I’ve been friends with Francie longer than anyone else. We met the day I started my first job out of college (the one I retired from 27 years later). It was a very small company (I was employee number 34; she says she was 33) and we soon became co-workers and great friends. She and her husband Dale have celebrated many happy occasions with us – our wedding, the births of two daughters and the wedding of one. They relocated to Portland, Oregon in 1996 so we don’t get to see each other very often, but it doesn’t seem to matter. She’s the kind of friend I…

  • Just Life

    First Impressions.

    I actually made it in 35 minutes – even with a missed turn! The house is really wonderful (this was my first time seeing it in person). I can see them living there for years … which is how long it might take Katie to recover from the move. and the unpacking. Here we are mid-morning. By lunchtime we had most of the kitchen unpacked and put away. We spent the early afternoon on the pantry (sorry, no photos). I didn’t think it was all quite ready for “after” photos, but still, feels like we made a ton of progress. When I saw the Think Write Thursday topic this week…

  • Just Life

    Happy Birthday.

    …to Katie! Her arrival … way back in 1987 … changed us from a couple to a family. February, 1987 And since I last shared birthday wishes to her on this blog (for her 25th), she’s gotten married and made a family of her own. photo credit Rylie Hitchner Best wishes, Katie for a beautiful day and a wonderful year. We love you!

  • Just Life

    Throwback Thursday | These Two.

    From Thanksgiving, 1998. I found the top photo earlier this week and thought about how nice it was going to be this year to have these two together again in the kitchen (with me!) Not that there’s much cooking left to do – but I know we’ll be gathered around the counter eating snacks … and then of course cleaning up! It wasn’t until this morning, when I scanned that photo, that I realized the one below (previously shared here) was taken the same day.  These two clean up nicely don’t they? I love that we’re together for this holiday weekend. I wonder if they’ll let me recreate these two…

  • Just Life

    Throwback Thursday | Reflected.

    My mind is full of Matthew today. This morning’s Bible study went well, but leading a lesson is always exhausting. and then there’s the hurricane. My mom is in the Tropical Storm Warning zone, far enough from the coast that she’s staying put. My brother drove down this morning so she’s got company. I had lunch today with a friend who evacuated from the South Carolina coast. Many of my friends are hosting evacuees from Florida, Georgia and South Carolina. At this point, it’s hard to imagine it can be as bad as they’re forecasting (and we’re only hoping it’s not worse). So in light of all that – I…

  • Books

    Stories in Black and White.

    We had a family gathering yesterday afternoon to celebrate my nephew heading off to graduate school next week. Of course it was really just a wonderful excuse to get everyone together – good food, good drinks, good times. I took a dozen photos with my phone (and experienced a bit of camera envy – Katie has a new Canon 6D and my sister has a new Olympus mirrorless that’s about the same weight as my iPhone and takes way better photos…) and was mostly disappointed in all of them. Lighting, outfits, food, … ugh.  But then I added a black and white filter. and saw two of the stories shine…

  • Just Life

    A Morning in the Garden.

    Katie gave me my Mother’s Day treat on Friday – she, Charlie and I visited the Atlanta Botanical Garden and then went out for lunch. It was a delightful way to kickoff Mother’s Day weekend! I had visited the Garden once before in 2004, but it was for a work meeting and I remember it was a gray rainy day…not at all like this visit. The latest Chihuly exhibit has just opened. I’m glad that means we have plenty of time for a few more visits (the Gardens at Night sounds like a fun – and beautiful – way to spend a later summer evening). The pieces are quite simply stunning. It…

  • Just Life

    Throwback Thursday | Mere-et-Filles.

    photo that was part of the first blog banner – which sadly, I can’t locate This blog had a birthday last week. Yep, my very first post was Sunday, February 18, 2007. Time flies and all that… but whoa, it’s hard to believe I’ve been at this for over nine years. It’s fun to revisit those early archives and remember what life was like.  I was working for Hewitt, with thoughts of “retirement” but no definite plans. Katie was a sophomore at Georgia Tech and Sara was a freshman in high school. Marc was working hard and playing golf (that’s one thing that hasn’t changed!) We had a big lovable…

  • Just Life

    Tuesday with Charlie | Capturing the Moment.

    …Charlie and I met up with Katie this afternoon at Avalon. We grabbed a blanket and sat down in the courtyard. The last time I was outside in the afternoon (without sweating) was in Madison…at the beginning of July. Of course it’s not going to last – yes it is August…in Atlanta – but wow, this weather is glorious! And oh my is Charlie having fun moving around! Katie took the camera first and then I did. It’s always hard to “capture the moment”, but getting the good ones, with an almost one year old, yeah… he’s off in a million directions and when we’re looking here, he wants to…

  • Just Life

    Throwback Thursday | Great Grandparents.

    …Katie was the first grandchild for both Marc’s and my family. When she was born, all four of her grandparents were living, along with four great grandparents on my side and two on Marc’s. Of course she met the grandparents right away and over the course of her first few years, met all the great’s, too. This photo is from her first meeting with my dad’s parents; they visited us in April, 1987 when Katie was about two months old. Charlie has four grandparents (all of whom he’s met!) and five great’s. I’m really excited he’s going to meet the first two of them next week when my parents come…