The Mimi Rose Chair

I have a confession.  I’ve been hiding one section of the nursery update from you.  This photo explains why:


My glider doesn’t match. It doesn’t match because It. Is. Maroon.

Recovering this chair is the project that I never got around to before Sweet P was born…or after.  All Mamas have one (or more) of those projects.  It’s allowed. No, REQUIRED.

But, we like to look on the bright side on this blog, so here are some good things about NOT having a perfectly new, soft and cozy, white cotton covered glider:

1. Babies spit up. A LOT.

2. Colors really don’t make a chair more comfortable.

3. A $60 estate sale find that once belonged to someone who was practically a grandmother to you is much more comfortable and comforting to feed and rock your sweet baby in than the $1500 Pottery Barn model.                          

5. Knowing that this grandmother figure spent hours praying in that chair (often for you and your family) increases its value tenfold.

4. Amen.

This glider belonged to my Mimi Rose.


A woman who loved me like a granddaughter – so much so that I didn’t realized she wasn’t my grandmother until I was about 5 or 6 years old.

A woman of great faith who prayed me six long hours home from college every Christmas break and countless times in between – and before and after for that matter.

A woman of great strength – coupled with a good dose of stubbornness – which really is the best kind of woman, don’t you think?

A woman who, though she’s gone from this earth, reminds me daily of the power of Love poured out freely and abundantly.

It is only fitting to name the chair after her:  The Mimi Rose Chair.


My Mama recently helped me to craft a makeshift slipcover for the Mimi Rose Chair out of a white matelasse blanket.   With this white cover, the chair now matches the room, but retains its comfortable, well-worn shape that cradles me and my babies when we rock and read, bringing old memories of comfort and warmth and creating new memories of the same.

I’m not sure what it is about chairs and what makes me love them so much.  Perhaps it’s the fact that they cradle and keep us, supporting us when we feel too burdened to take another step. As a mother, I can think of no better chair for this purpose, for this journey is hard and long, and often I feel burdened beyond what I can bear.  But, the Mimi Rose Chair reminds me that I am loved, that I am supported, that there is rest and peace and calm.

I may never get around to recovering it, and I’m okay with that.


Featured Vendor: Ebenezer Estate Sales

The second in our series of featured vendors is of a different variety than the typical flea market or antique shop. Estate sales excite us so because of their intensity and the promise of a new crop of treasures. Because we lead such busy lives, it is often hard to keep up with when these are taking place in our area, but today’s feature makes this easy through their Facebook page, where posts and photos of upcoming sales tease and excite us! Ebenezer Estate Sales always promises to have a fabulous sale, filled with any and everything you could imagine–they are like garage sales on steroids! Here are some of our treasures from their last sale:

I love the kitchen scale I found to add to my growing collection and the sturdy brown basket provides perfect storage for paper and other art supplies for my children. Megan was especially excited about her matching floral chairs find! She’s been looking for a matching set of vintage chairs for her living room for quite some time now. These were not exactly what she had in mind, but as life often teaches us, sometimes the best things come to us that way. As you can see, they work beautifully, providing excellent design appeal with their fun and vibrant pattern and color.




Even I found a chair to work perfectly in my son’s room. At fifty bucks, this one was a steal:


Here’s Ebenezer’s history and mission:


This business is run by Debi Lee Upshaw of Alexandria, Louisiana. I have a dedicated staff of workers that I LOVE and could not do without! My sweet family has been on board to help since our first sale back in 1992 (Jacob and Hannah were 10 and 9 years old respectively). Grammaw and Paw Paw and Aunt Debbie have been loads of help too! We are from Central Louisiana but we have conducted sales in West Monroe, Nachitoches, Lecompte, Louisiana, as well as Jacksonville, Florida.


Ebenezer Estate Sales began in June of 1992. We are now operating in our 20th year!!! I began as an avid estate sale fan and regularly attended every estate sale I could find. I was a “picker” for local antique shops in the early 90’s. Then a friend asked if I could help her liquidate the contents of her father’s home. I had been to enough sales to know what I thought worked and what didn’t so I told her I would sure try! From that experience I began putting sales together for folks and got jobs from “word of mouth” advertising alone. I later decided to get my occupational license and the rest is history.

Sometimes the most successful and wonderful businesses get started that way!!

Each time we visit a new home liquidation, we always reflect on the sense of sadness we get, rummaging through someone’s life. There is a sacredness about an estate sale, a sense of closeness to a life you know nothing about, but also an idea that you can take their things and bring them new life and a new beginning. We try never to forget this as we scoop up our new treasures; they have a story to tell and we are honored to let our homes continue to tell these stories.

If you would like to visit Ebenezer’s next sale, where we PROMISE you will find something you can’t live without, just like their Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/EbenezerEstateSales. Tell ’em Brandie and Megan sent you!!



The Dreams Within Those Pages

“I would be most content if my children would grow up to be the kind of people who think decorating consists mostly of building enough bookshelves.” –Anna Quindlen

As a teacher with an upcoming week-long break for Thanksgiving, the thing I am most looking forward to is reading. This may seem ironic, seeing that I am an English teacher and the majority of what I do at work is teach literature and poetry, most days reviewing the same piece five times a day with my five classes of junior English. Though I do utterly adore those days when I can discuss Atticus Finch to no end or repeatedly debate the mental state and motivation of J. Alfred Prufrock, there is something about picking up a book into which I have not yet dove; it is like getting on a plane to fly to a place never visited–the anticipation and excitement of the unknown leaves me in a state of complete bliss. Will this be one that I will read again and again and maybe even incorporate into my curriculum? Or will it be a doozie? Either way, following its end, I will have something to say, questions to ask and debate, and some poor soul that crosses my path soonest to my finishing will find themselves privy to the discussion of my most recent adventure. Besides my mother (and long before my infatuation with music), books were my first love. I am enamored by the way words can be put together to cause an emotion that goes beyond this world, whether it be the gut-wrenching pain of an unrequited love poem or the indescribable hope that comes from a novel which delves into the human existence in a way that reminds the heart of its original intention. I have been smitten with libraries from the time I first set foot into one and there is nothing that makes me happier than seeing my own children reading. 

My love for all things old began as a direct result of my love for the written word. I remember reading the Little House on the Prairie series as a young child and being utterly smitten with the old way of doing things and the way that simple things brought the family some of their happiest moments and memories. Blankets were warmer because of the love that went into stitching them. The big pot that lay over the fire symbolized survival. I lived there on that prairie with the Ingalls family–I would completely leave my own world and enter theirs each time I opened a volume. So it should come as no surprise that books are a major part of my decorating style. There are several books in every room, though I only own one bookcase, which I purchased a few years back in Canton, Texas. 


The books I use to decorate with are, of course, old and most of them are from the library at my school. One day our librarian approached me, saying she new I liked old books and asking if I would be interested in looking through several boxes filled with old books she was throwing out, which were no longer needed there. I told her I absolutely did not want to look through them because I would take them ALL. Two strong boys and several trips to my truck later, the grin on my face was a dead giveaway that I had struck gold. I couldn’t wait to get home that afternoon and sort through them, inhaling, in spades, that sweet scent which book pages emit. They found homes on the aforementioned bookcase, on a shelf above the shelf which hold our most-used dishes on my kitchen wall, on small shelves and desks in my childrens’ rooms, and a few here and there as place holders and pretties in the dining and living rooms: 




I especially covet old children’s books. Making me absolutely giddy, grandmother recently gave me her set of Childcraft children’s books, which I would enjoy each time I went to her house as a child. These remind me of my first love and I have always found the simple, vivid illustrations to be the embodiment of happiness. I buy these treasures almost every time I come across them. At the most recent estate sale Megan and I attended, I found these beauties. I especially love the pale blue one about language:


I am not sure if I will simply display these in my son’s room or use them as artwork, as I did in my bathroom a couple of years ago:


Finding some of your favorite pages and adding them to simple frames (most of these are from Goodwill and given a quick coat of spray paint) is a cheap, wondrous, and sometimes eclectic way to fill the walls of your home. I have also done this with a favorite poem or two, which adds a dramatic and romantic element to any wall space.

Making the most of the way your home FEELS is a simple matter of filling it with those things which take you back to a place of joy. My home is stuffed with artifacts that, for whatever reason, take me back to my childhood, which was a carefree time of wonderment and magic. These things, therefore, bring me a little piece of that time and make my present, which is often stressful and busy, encompass a little bit of that freedom I found all those years ago. They also remind me of my main purpose, which is to ensure that my children will some day look back on this time in their lives as magical, as well. We read and we wonder and we dream and we ask questions. We turn the dining room into a far away kingdom, filled with castles and dragons, using a few old sheets and our imaginations, which are extra BIG because of the stories we enjoy each night. I hope they will find hope and promise in times of trials when they think about characters like Laura Ingalls. I hope they will find warmth in a Frost poem and the memory of snuggling up in one of their great-grandmother’s old quilts some winter long ago. And, like Anna Quindlen, whose quote graced the start of this blog, I hope bookshelves are their main concern when they someday find a new home and that they will remember their first home and all of the books there and their crazy momma and her crazy love for reading. And I hope they smile a little when they think about the possibilities in those books–decorating possibilities, sure, but mostly the possibilities in the dreams held within those pages and, hopefully, their hearts.