Sunday, January 29, 2017

A SUNDAY THOUGHT: LIVING

A few Saturday mornings ago, I was doing the stuff most working moms probably do on Saturday mornings: breakfast, cleaning, and laundry. Thanks to my little Bluetooth speaker, I was enjoying my music in the midst of my work.

That's when I heard the prettiest song. The tune was vaguely familiar, but I'd never really heard the words.

I rushed right over to my phone and looked at my Spotify app to see what the song was. The name of the song was Untitled Hymn. I immediately looked it up on YouTube so I could listen again. You may know it. Come to find out, it's about ten years old.

As I listened again, I could hardly finish breakfast. I was so overcome by the song and the journey of life it takes the listener through.


When you have time, I hope you'll listen for yourself. Here is a link to the video. 


Come unto me, 
all that labor
 and are heavy laden, 
and I will give you rest. 

Matthew 11:28

Enjoy your Sunday.

Kathryn

Friday, January 27, 2017

THE HUNT FOR THE PERFECT (NOT WHITE) TRIM PAINT

CHAPTER ONE

A few months ago, I decided it was time to freshen up the trim in our house. It has survived three kids and two pets, and it's just not in the best shape. Read more about my starting point here. In my mind I thought I was ready to take the plunge and go all white in our bedroom--walls, trim, bedding--the whole shebang. I bought a couple of paint samples and painted several spots throughout our room and bathroom.


I stared at it for several weeks, maybe even a couple of months. In the morning the color would look one shade, mid-afternoon a different shade, and then in the evening, still another shade. I just couldn't get comfortable with it. And, going from off-white trim to white trim would be a huge undertaking.

I chickened out.

I went to the paint store and bought touch up paint to cover all the spots on the wall where I had been sampling the white. Sand Fossil, a Pittsburgh Paints color, is our wall color. I actually really like it. No matter the time of day, or the amount of light in the room, it looks right. It's a great neutral.



While there, the sales guy and I had a discussion about the trim. I explained how beat up mine was, that it was a creamy color, and that I was having trouble matching it. He suggested I simply try the lightest color on the sample card--Milk Paint.


I know what you're thinking... "Why didn't she think of that?" I quickly agreed with the helpful paint associate and couldn't wait to get home. Had I (he) done it? Was the search over? Had I (he) matched the trim color? Would the scars left by all those children, animals, and Miss Clairol soon be exiting the building? I brought home a quart...

Y'all, it was an almost perfect match. The search was over.

CHAPTER TWO

We had a snow day.


Not only did I try a new recipe on our day off, but I opened the paint. I decided to start in the kitchen--the pantry. The busiest spot in the house. It looked terrible--faded paint, stains, finger prints.  (I had already taken the knobs off before I thought to snap a picture.)




Would you believe I got teary and a little sentimental about that worn spot? There were once some sweet, tiny fingers that helped fade those doors.


I painted the doors and the surrounding trim. The color is perfect. Our kitchen is a pale, golden yellow color called Barley. It's a Benjamin Moore paint. So not only does the Milk Paint look good with the neutral family of colors, but also with the yellow. Now I'm ready to take on the rest of the house. :-)


So ends the story of the hunt for the matching trim paint... If you're looking for a not-white (but looks white) color as well, this one might work for you, too.

Happy Weekend!

Kathryn

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

SNOW DAY SNOW FLAKE COOKIES

Today I'm sharing a cookie recipe that I made on our first snow day of the year. Hard to believe that was just last week. This week we are averaging highs in the seventies! But, this is Alabama-nothing surprises us.

My youngest son's girlfriend came over one night during the holidays with a plate full of these cookies. They are tea cake (short bread) cookies. I had gobbled down about three of them before she set the plate down on the counter. They are my favorite. Her mom Cindy was sweet enough to share the family recipe with me, passed down from her great-great grandmother. They were so good that I asked for permission to share the recipe with you as well. Luckily, I got the go ahead.   


Ingredients:

1 cup of shortening
2 1/2 cups of sugar
1 teaspoon of vanilla
4 eggs
5 cups of self-rising flour 

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly spray a cookie sheet. Mix first 4 ingredients together. 


Add the flour. Once the batter is all mixed, sprinkle more flour on a clean counter surface. Take a handful of dough, flour a rolling pin, roll out, and cut the cookie dough into desired shapes. Roll the dough until it's 1/8 inch thick. Sprinkle as much flour as you need on your surface, your hands, or the pin to keep the dough from sticking. 

I only had Christmas themed cutters like stockings and Santa, so I went with the snow flake cutter. After all, it was a snow day. :-)  If you don't have any cookie cutters, use the end of a cup or glass.


Bake the cookies for 8 - 9 minutes. I halved the recipe to reduce my calorie intake. I knew I would probably eat two or three (or 12!) Unless you have a large group to share with, half made a good amount. 



For an even sweeter sweet, add vanilla icing. Thanks again to my friend Cindy for sharing her family recipe. 

Hope you all are having a great week!

Kathryn

Saturday, January 7, 2017

2016 FAVORITES

Woodbank Lane will soon be celebrating its two-year anniversary. I'm thrilled that more and more of you are liking us on Facebook and following along on Instagram. I love that you're stopping by to read and catch up with the happenings in our neck of the woods. Its not paying the bills, and I won't be retiring from teaching early, but I'm enjoying blogging even more than I expected to. I hope to be around for many more years to come. So a BIG thank you for reading, commenting, and your encouragement along the way. I hope you've found a touch of inspiration and smiled a time or two when you've stopped by.

Before we close the book on 2016, let's take a look back to the most popular posts based on total views and your comments. And if you're new to WBL, this will give you a glimpse of what we talk about around here.

1. Favorite Recipe



2. Favorite Event



3. Favorite Tip



4. Favorite Home Project



5. Favorite Personal Post



6. Favorite Sunday Thought




And that covers the favorites of last year. Here's to this year!

Have a great Saturday!

Kathryn

Thursday, January 5, 2017

A NEW PERSPECTIVE

Happy 2017 to you and yours!

I'm pleased to say I've made it through another Christmas, another birthday, and I've seen another new year roll in this past month. That means it's time for a list of resolutions. Have you made your list yet? Mine is a mile long. I'll probably share it with you before the month is out, but before I do, I want to tell you a story.

Several months ago, my mom and I decided to have a garage sale. I knew I had "stuff" everywhere that hadn't been touched or used in forever, so it was time for it to go. We will have been in our house for about thirteen years this summer, and I hadn't performed a good house cleanse since the move. I started cleaning out packed, catch-all drawers, exploding closets, and cabinets running over with a little bit of everything. We also hit the attic and the outdoor storage room off the garage. It's amazing how quickly you can fill up your space.

I ordered these handy, easy-to-use tags from Amazon to do my pricing and spent the minutes I could spare tagging and pricing my items.


I had a bunch left over and used them to label my Christmas gifts.


My dining room became garage sale central, which drove me crazy! It looked like this for months.


Once it was all collected and priced, I started making trips to my mom's to unload the loot. Lucky for me in many ways, she and my dad are not too far down the road from us. :-)

We set up shop, displayed our goods, sent my daddy to Lowe's for signs to advertise the sale, went to bed (eventually), and hoped all of our preparation would "pay off."

We awoke to a dreary, cold day that required a LARGE cup of coffee to get our motivation flowing. Clearly, the customers believed "the early bird gets the worm" because the minute we put the door up, ready or not, the cars started rolling in.

Both friends and strangers showed up, nicest people ever. One of the strangers, a smiling, chatty, middle-aged lady, unwittingly made me stop and think about my perspective...

She was our best customer. She loved our stuff. She bought a little of everything: clothes, jewelry, and decorations. The pile she had to pay for included things that belonged to my mom and to me. As we were separating the items to determine how much she owed each of us, this is what she said and it stung me.

 "I know this is so much work 
to get all this together, but you have no idea 
how it blesses people."

What? Our old, no-longer-worn clothes, household items, small electronics, shoes, candles, and Christmas decorations could be a blessing to someone? She was right. I had no idea. I hadn't thought of it that way and it never occurred to me that anyone else might think of it that way either. I looked at her for a split second like she had two heads. It caught me so off guard that someone could have that kind of a perspective about a garage sale. 

per-spec-tive - noun - a particular attitude toward or 
way of regarding something; a point of view

In that moment I was quickly reminded that my attitude-my perspective-could probably stand a little tweaking in all situations and is probably one of the most important determinants of any outcome. I can't seem to get that little lady out of my mind. Isn't it funny how God can use the smallest interludes to make the biggest impact on and in our lives?

Having a better attitude and adjusting my perspective daily is definitely on my resolution list for this year thanks to that sweet stranger in my mom's carport on a yucky Saturday back in late November.

I hope 2017 is your best year yet!

Kathryn