Thursday, April 24, 2014

The Murphy Chronicles: 17/52

I'm excited to report that spring has finally arrived in my neighborhood! It's a wonderful time of year...bushes bursting with colorful flowers, green everywhere, gentle breezes, and 70 degree sunshine. The beauty of spring brings a welcome distraction to the tough parts of life lately. 

Murphy was not amused that I went flower hunting without him...

Thursday, April 17, 2014

The Murphy Chronicles: 13/52, 14/52, 15/52, 16/52

Well, life happened, and I've fallen shamefully behind on the Murphy chronicles. Only a couple pics are recent. Since I haven't felt like touching my camera for the past few weeks, I dug into the Murphy Archives for a couple throwbacks. Enjoy!

Murphy and my mom's dog, Baby, relaxing together a couple weeks ago. So zen.

Murphy getting his pose on for his 6th birthday last August.

Murphy making a mad dash during playtime in December 2012.

Excuse the crap-quality iPhone pic but I had to share. Last night Murphy deployed Operation Puppy Eyes in an attempt to receive some delicious crackers. He wins every time.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

This Time Last Year

This time last year my Grandpa was still alive. April 15 is his birthday, and this will be my family's first without him. This time last year I couldn't come to town to celebrate in person, but the rest of the family took him to dinner and shared cake and presents at home. I sent him a photo album with pictures of our recent beach trip, shared just weeks before. This time last year I had no idea that one week later he would be diagnosed with a brain tumor and gone just two weeks after that. This time last year I had no idea what the next 365 days would bring. I miss him every day, and smile often when I think of the many memories we shared in our 31 years together. I feel honored to have had such a strong, funny, loyal, and loving man in my life. 

Thursday, March 20, 2014

The Murphy Chronicles: 12/52

Murphy got his green on this St. Patrick's Day! He doesn't enjoy wearing a handkerchief and made multiple attempts to vigorously roll it off. Finally, he accepted it and went to strut his stuff in the neighborhood. He got lots of compliments. Such a handsome leprechaun!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Floral Mood

I bought these yellow roses on a whim one day when it was rainy and cold and their beautiful shade of yellow caught my eye. They were closed up tight, just little yellow buds. Over the next few days they began blossoming and, oh my, were they beautiful! Two weeks later I still have a few wilted stragglers left. But in their beautifully blossomed prime, they brought some serious warmth to many days and a put a smile on my face. They also reminded me of my Mammol; the yellow rose is the symbolic flower of sorority she belongs to. I tend to choose wildflowers or lilies, but these inspired me to "get my rose on" more often!

Thursday, March 13, 2014

The Murphy Chronicles: 11/52

Murphy gets VIP service when it's cold. Before we head to work on chilly winter mornings, I toss his blanket in the dryer and wrap him up in the car. Don't judge, it's heartbreaking to watch that little dude shiver! This series of sleepy photos is his morning ritual. Once I start driving, he snuggles under that blanket and doesn't emerge until our final turn into the office parking lot. I'm amazed how he knows, but he KNOWS when we're there. Even without looking. Excuse the grainy photos. My iPhone camera is having serious problems! Can't wait until upgrade time.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

The Murphy Chronicles 10/52

Figured I'd jump on the Throwback Thursday bandwagon this week. This is a photo of Murphy from 2007, around 4 months old, just days after he came into our lives. The eyes, the ears, the nose, that adorable lip! He's pure cuteness. Lucky for him, he grew into those eyes. I've been in puppy love with this guy since the moment I met him!

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

The Tiny Boss

Adventures are everywhere! Last weekend I headed home to visit family and got into all sorts of strange. First, we decided to visit a "huge home shopping overflow sale" that was advertised in the newspaper but actually ended up being a giant junk sale. As my Mammol said, we were "underwhelmed." Don't get me wrong, I'm a fan of GOOD junk (antiques, consignment, etc.) but this was painful. Torn Clark shoes, Birkenstocks decorated with Micky & Minnie, random kitchen cookware that looked used, and boxes of thing-a-ma-jigs that no one in this world could need or want. The electronic candle with a water feature as the wick really took the cake for me. 

Before I left Sunday morning, Mom threw a little Mardi Gras celebration with homemade beignets, mimosas, flowers, and jazz music. The beignets were absolutely delicious; Cafe du Monde would be proud! Shortly after the party started, I noticed a little dog running up and down the sidewalk, barking at mom's dogs, and backing into the road every few moments. Panic set in. I ran outside and thankfully the pup came right to me. He had on a collar with a phone number. The owner didn't answer, so I left a message and crossed my fingers for a reunion. For the next two hours this stray, Andy, the fuzzy little pup in the photo above, managed to start a massive hump fest among himself, my mom's two westies, my Boston Terrier, and my friend's dog. There was barking, running, playing in the rain & mud...pure canine delight...complemented by lots of laughing and failed discipline attempts on the human end of this charade. By the time the owner came to pick Andy up, this 8-pound seemingly-innocent pup managed to take charge of the entire pack. What an entertaining weekend!

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Early Spring

Bits of spring are popping up everywhere in my neighborhood. Crocus, crepe myrtle, and daffodil dot the gray and brown crusted winter landscape. It's like seeing old friends! Welcome back spring!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Tiny Valentine

This year I had a teeny tiny Valentine. Samuel, my best friend Jessica's son, is stuck in NICU until he's strong enough to come home. We met up for a girl's weekend filled with baby time, good food, and the usual goofy girl-time antics. Sam has such a sweet and calm disposition. He looks intently at this mama, through long lush (enviable) eyelashes, and raises his tiny barely-there eyebrows when she talks to him. He doesn't seem to mind the camera, which is a good thing, since "Auntie" Val plans to take thousands of photos of Sam and his twin sister Cora for years to come!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

The Murphy Chronicles: 7/52 (Special Report: Snow Day 2014)

Guess what Murphy?

It's snowing!

And it's time for your walk!

"Aww come on, don't make me! I can hold it for DAYS!"

Time to break out the ugly old winter boots!

Come on out Murphy, it's not so bad!

Oh my, how handsome you look in the snow! It really sets off your luscious black fur!

Look at Murphy frolic! (AKA: making a mad dash for home)


Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Flip Flops to Freezing in Two Days

Winter storm number two is hitting the South! Beautiful soft snowflakes are dancing in the sky. There's something electric in the air when a big storm is coming. Everyone is rushing around, making store runs, picking up kids, and cancelling events; people in the South tend to freak out more than those in the North. Makes me feel like getting cozy at home with a book, hot tea, and a fire, and watching the flakes fall. Speaking of snow, can you believe it was almost 70 degrees in Charlotte Saturday!? I started an exciting new photography project with a local blogger. Check out The Style Heist to see my first assignment!

Just one more New Orleans photo. Proof that I did, in fact, share a Huge Ass Beer with my grandmother and mom on Bourbon Street. What an awesome memory! 

Thursday, February 6, 2014

The Murphy Chronicles: 6/52

And this, my friends, is Murphy at work. I'm so fortunate to have the privilege of bringing him with me. It brightens my day to hear his tiny snore, or crawl under the desk for some lovin', or just look at his cute little face. Everyone should be able to have dogs at work! He makes my coworkers smile and keeps me in the habit of getting up and walking outside every so often. This photo is a perfect example of how he spends most of the day: snuggled on his dog bed and wrapped in a blanket beneath my desk. We have this ritual where he'll scratch on the blanket and give me puppy eyes. That means, "Wrap me up woman!" 

On a side note, the blog just passed 50,000 views! On March 30 it will be four years old (whoa time flies). I started it as a way to keep in touch with family and friends, and while I've had my ups and downs with consistent posting, it continues to keep me creatively motivated. Here's to a great fourth year of blogging!

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Drop Me Off In New Orleans!

New Orleans is hands down one of my favorite cities. The French Quarter is so alive: jazz music on every block, various scents wafting through the air (from fried seafood to, well, not-so-nice smells), people from all over the world, incredible food, gorgeous wrought iron accents on ancient architecture, and a deep rich history woven throughout. On this trip I got to spend a couple days with my mom and grandmother; even shared a "huge ass beer" with them on Bourbon Street! I also discovered the best shrimp po boy I have ever had...even better than the famed Johnny's Po-Boys! Housed in the back of a tiny ecclectic bar (Erin Rose), Killer Po-Boys packs some serious flavor. Sauteed shrimp, grated carrots, pickled radish, cilantro, and special sauce made for one bad ass po-boy. Don't let the location deter you! Laissez les bon temps rouler!

There's always room for beignets and cafe au lait at Cafe du Monde!
Pretty sure this is Stalebread Scottie and His Gang

No trip to NOLA is complete without a Kermit Ruffins concert. We saw him at the Blue Nile on Frenchmen. Best show yet!

Thursday, January 30, 2014