Category Archives: Oreo

Happy Adoption Day to our Mutt!

Seven years ago today we adopted this pup. He has been our only child for such a long time and sometime in the next couple of weeks his whole world is going to be rocked. But until then, we’re going to give him as much extra attention and love as we can. 🙂

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Oh sweet mutt, you have been such a big part of our lives these past seven years. Happy birthday/adoption day, Oreo!

Love Rach



Probably my favorite thing lately has been how Baby Girl’s nursery has come together. It is just absolutely my favorite room in our home. We still have a few more things to work on in there before it’s finished, but we’re nearly there. It is such a sweet little space. 🙂

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Speaking of baby things… Christopher’s co-workers had a baby shower for us this week. It was so sweet of them to do all of this for us! Christopher is obviously well loved at his office! I mean, no surprise there since he is awesome and all. But still, it was sweet seeing how excited his co-workers were for him to become a dad! 🙂


Speaking of Christopher… he got an espresso maker and has been perfecting the art of his coffee making skills. Well, the art and science. It’s both for him. Figuring out the perfect grind for each different type of coffee bean, just how firmly to tamp it, and just how exactly to froth the milk are just a few of the things. I kind of love that he is such a coffee snob, though. It’s adorable.

High Valley

Speaking of things I love… we got to see High Valley in concert again! We first heard of High Valley when we saw them open at a Lonestar concert back in 2012. We fell in love with their music and became huge fans of their work. Then last year they came to Memphis again and not only did we get to hear them play at a small venue where we sat FRONT ROW, but we also got to meet them and chat a bit which was awesome! Then this year they returned to Memphis again and we got to chat with them after the concert and NO JOKE, they said they remembered us from last year because it was such a small venue. They asked us about our baby and shared with us about their own kids and it was just all awesome. I’m just choosing to believe that they don’t tell all their fans that they remember them, haha! It was an awesome night, though!

Oreo Yoga

Speaking of awesome… While I do my prenatal yoga, Oreo does his couch yoga. He cracks me up with the positions I find him in sometimes!

Happy Friday, friends!
Love Rach


Recent Happenings

Happy Friday, friends! Just wanted to share a few recent things.

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I started nannying Mallory when she was 9 weeks old and this week she graduated preschool. Believe me, her mom and I both cried happy tears when we realized how perfectly my due date lined up with Mallory beginning kindergarten. Speaking of tears… I totally cried during her little graduation ceremony. She is such a big girl!

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Oreo doesn’t know it yet, but his world is going to be rocked this summer. We’re trying to give him a little extra loving lately. 🙂

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We’ve continued to work on projects around the house. Most of which aren’t that exciting to photograph. And really this one isn’t that exciting to look at either, but I’m so pleased with the change that I wanted to share. 😉 Ever since we bought this house, our entryway has looked pretty rough. No matter how much it is cleaned, it always looks dirty (even immediately after cleaning). Turns out that it was because whoever put the floor in, used the wrong kind of sealer on it. So we removed the sealer, cleaned the floor really well, used Grout Renew to fix the hideous grout, and then put down the proper sealer on it. It was a TON of work, but absolutely worth it in the end! Eventually we might replace the slate with a brick entryway because we think it would look better with the look of the house, but for now this is a major improvement! 🙂

fridge baby shower invites

Aaaaand finally, baby showers! Our very first one is this weekend and the next will be in a couple of weeks. It’s hard to believe that they are here already. We’ve been receiving gifts in the mail over the past couple of weeks and every one of them brings me to tears. We have been just amazed at the sweetness and generosity of friends and family! Also on the fridge – that “Mom-to-be” card was from my sister, Holly, in honor of Mother’s Day. Whew, there were definitely tears as I read her sweet, encouraging words. Definitely feeling the love and I’m so excited to celebrate Baby Girl with family and friends this weekend!

Love Rach


Life is still flying by at break-neck speed. Mostly because we got back from Europe just in time for photography busy season. I have to say, though, I have done a pretty stellar job  with self care this holiday season compared to last year. I have been much better about not overbooking myself (even if it meant that I had to refer clients to other photographers) and much better about not letting go of the things that I know are good for me. I still start every morning with quiet time, yoga, and then an hour at the gym. Last year I skipped the gym a lot during this time of year and it definitely left me feeling sluggish. So I told myself this year that I’d do a better job. And I have!


Christopher snapped this shot of me over Thanksgiving week taking photos of my sister & brother-in-law. Their daughter is helping encourage them to smile. I’m pretty sure I need to hire her full time. 😉

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We actually put up all of our Christmas decorations in early November, but I waited to share this picture until now out of respect for my friends who prefer not to be inundated with all things Christmas before Thanksgiving. 😉 For the record, we love Thanksgiving even though we decorate for Christmas so early. We really just love the whole holiday season – the day after Halloween until January 1st. We love gathering with friends and family, attending parties, listening to festive music, eating delicious food, sharing what we’re thankful for, gift shopping, and exchanging gifts. We do all of those things (including giving gifts) at Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years every year. So this whole season is just wonderful and magical to both of us. We just happen to not like Thanksgiving decor near as much as we love Christmas decor. So we celebrate Thanksgiving with our Christmas tree twinkling brightly. 🙂


In general we eat at either our dining room table or the bar in our kitchen. But if we’re home on a Friday night then we are eating homemade pizza while sitting on the couch. It’s one of our favorite traditions. Most pizza nights, Oreo sits on the floor and looks at us with big puppy eyes or occasionally he just lays in his bed and sighs a lot. Anything to let us know that he’s desperately starving. This past Friday, though, he took things to new heights. He jumped up on the couch and literally laid on Christopher. I’m pretty sure he was thinking, “maybe they can’t see me on the floor. Surely he’ll feed me now!” That dog is a mess!


To celebrate Brodie’s birthday we did our first escape room this past week! We just barely escaped with 2 minutes and 38 seconds left, but we had fun!


And on Saturday night we attended an International Night of Worship. We found out about it through World Relief which is a refugee resettlement organization that we volunteer with. It was incredible! There were people from all parts of Asia, Africa, and South America. There were even a handful of people from Italy, Canada, and Australia. As well as people born & raised in the States. Songs were sung in different languages, scriptures were read in different languages, and prayers were said in different languages. It was truly incredible to come together with people from all corners of the Earth and worship God together.

Lots more to look forward to in the weeks ahead! I just love this time of year! 🙂
Love Rach

Highlights Lately

When we got home from Europe we hit the ground running. So in an effort to keep this post from getting super long, I’m going to attempt to share the main high lights.

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One of the funniest things about family photo sessions is when all the adults behind me are trying to get a kid to look and smile (the long ponytail is me). The busiest time of the year for me with photography is September-December. So we came home and BOOM! Busy season! Plus we photographed the wedding a few days before we left the country so I had a ton of editing to catch up on already! But thankfully I love what I do so while it’s busy, it’s a fun busy! 🙂

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I love Gilmore Girls! My roommate in college turned me onto it and I have loved it ever since. I absolutely teared up watching the trailer that they just released! Anyway, when I heard that a couple of Memphis coffee shops were going to be “Luke’s for the day” on October 5th I just KNEW I had to go! I went to one close to our house first thing in the morning with Christopher and then I went again later that same morning with a friend. Oh my gracious, we had a great time! And when the theme song came on, you better believe we were singing it! 🙂

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Back story for those who don’t know about Christopher’s dad. Since his dad can’t travel to Memphis, we took the walk to their town! Some of their friends from church even joined us on the walk which was sweet. We are so thankful for the community that surrounds them since we aren’t there to help out on a day-to-day basis.

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The Fast & Furriest 5k! Except that Oreo was not the fastest or the furriest and he definitely didn’t do the 5k. 😉 They also have a 1 mile fun walk and that’s all we did this day because we had a time crunch (see below) and since it took Oreo THIRTY-TWO minutes to walk a mile (no joke)… we were glad we had opted out of the 5k this time. He just loves to stop and sniff all.the.things. Ha!

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Immediately after the 5k we ran home to drop Oreo off and change our clothes so that we could meet Christopher’s coworkers for a company wide picnic at the zoo. Isn’t this mug they gave us adorable?! 🙂 We had a wonderful time!

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We love the neighborhood where we live. Neighborhood block parties with live music are just one of many reasons we love it here! 🙂

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Just this past week we got to hear Bob Goff (who wrote Love Does) speak. He was fantastic. Refreshingly funny and inspiring at the same time. If you haven’t read his book, give it a read!


Over the weekend we voted! Early voting is where it’s at, my friends. There was literally no line at all. We walked in, we voted, and we left all in less than 8 minutes.

Since this post is super long already I’m going to put all of our Halloween things in a separate post later this week. Happy Halloween/Monday/start-to-your-week, my friends!

Have you done any fun walks or races lately?
Are you excited for Gilmore Girls?
Have you read Love Does?

Love Rach

Oreo’s Worst Birthday Weekend Ever

{I wanted to post something light hearted today because life itself has not been light hearted lately. There is a lot of hurt in this world. I grieve the loss of lives both here and abroad. So today, I charge you: love one another.}

This past weekend we celebrated 6 years since we brought Oreo home from the Humane Shelter where I volunteered. Unfortunately his birthday weekend was the first time we had available to take him to the vet to be treated for yet another ear infection. You guys, this poor pup hates the vet. So so much. He kept looking at us with this face of utter betrayal the whole time we were there. In fact, if he were to keep a diary, this is what it would’ve said this weekend:

Oreo’s Doggy Diary

Friday, July 8th, 2016

Dear Diary, You will never believe what mom and dad did to me! They took me to the vet (knowing how much I hate that place) and forced me to under-go a nail trim, blood draw from my jugular, sedation, and horrible goo in my ears that made it impossible for me to hear! And did I mention that the horrible lady in scrubs put a thermometer in an unmentionable place and HELD IT THERE for hours?! Well, it felt like hours. Maybe it was just one minute. But I digress. The point is, I was utterly betrayed by these people who claim to love me. Now they are giving me bad tasting medicine that makes me SO thirsty that I have to go potty all the time. They say something about a bilateral ear infection and that I’ll feel better soon, but I just don’t know what to think.

Saturday, July 9th, 2016

Dear Diary, ever since I started taking this medicine I am just so sleepy all the time. I can hear when mom whistles and other high pitched noises, but everything else is so distant and foggy. I’m glad to have mom and dad snuggle with me so much while I don’t feel good. I have more to say, but… zzzzz…..

Sunday, July 10th, 2016

Dear Diary, I can hear again today! My ears still feel a little funny with that goo in there, but at least I can hear mommy and daddy talking to me. I have missed hearing what a good boy I am all the time. I’m still sleepy and thirsty all the time, but I am starting to feel like myself again. Dad took some pictures of me and mom today. I think she wanted me to sit and smile for the camera, but I had trouble focusing through the drug haze. Thankfully she was pretty understanding about it. In other news, mom & dad gave me a new chew toy today for my birthday and it was SO delicious! I wanted to chew on it longer, but the sleep just keeps taking over…

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{Oreo is rocking the Gentle Leader in these photos in case you are curious about the strap on his face}

In the six years he has lived with this, this is definitely the worst birthday weekend he’s had. Usually the day is filled with things he loves (lots of treats, walks, and snuggles), but he was just so worn out on Sunday that we just let him sleep. Thankfully he seems to have forgiven us for Friday. He’ll be done with the steroids (that make him sleepy & thirsty) by the end of the week and we’ll be glad for that for his sake! We had allergy testing done (hence all the blood they took from my poor baby) so we are definitely curious to find out those results. We’re hoping his allergies are really easily remedied because this yearly ear infection business has to stop (last year he had an eardrum rupture because he was shaking his head so much from the ear infection). Next week we’ll make up for his bad weekend and do some things he loves for a belated birthday celebration! 🙂

Love Rach

Turns out not all dogs know how to swim (and other weekend happenings)

Thursday night we discovered that our upstairs A/C was leaking through our ceiling. We immediately shut off the unit and first thing Friday morning called our home warranty people. The earliest they could send someone out would be Tuesday. You guys, the heat index in Memphis has been 100+ all week (one day it was 118!). This is not the time for us to lose air conditioning for (a minimum of) five days. So my very handy husband got busy Googling. Between that and texting a friend who knows more about this stuff than we do, he felt pretty good about fixing this himself. And sure enough… he did!

ac leak.jpg{in that middle photo, Oreo is barking at the ceiling because he hated hearing the leaking sound}

The leak is fixed, the A/C unit is back on and running again, and currently we’re letting the ceiling finish drying out (we have a high powered blower that’s been blowing on it for 2 days) before we go about fixing the damage. I’m so glad he was able to fix this over the weekend so we have the A/C back! Definitely a huge blessing. It’s times like these that I’m reminded how grateful I am that he’s so handy with house stuff!

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Since it has been so hot lately, this weekend was the perfect pool weekend! We even got carry out sushi from our favorite spot and ate by the pool. We swam and played and soaked up the sun (while reading up on the Greece portion of our Europe trip – so exciting!). Considering all the hard work we were doing at home (to fix the A/C issues) this was an awesome way to spend the hottest parts of both Saturday and Sunday!

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Oreo came with us to the pool on Sunday afternoon and it was the best thing ever! Our dog haaaaates water. I can’t even tell you how much he despises being wet. He fell in a lake once and I think that really scared him so he has hated water ever since. Bath time is just horrible for him. Anyway, after a LOT of coaxing (using a toy he REALLY wanted) we convinced him to get in the pool. Before yesterday I thought that all dogs instinctively knew how to swim, but it turns out that our pup needed a little help. He started thrashing around and SINKING when he first got in. So Christopher put his hand under Oreo’s belly to support him in the water so his legs could kick smoothly (like you do with little kids when teaching them to swim) and then walked around the pool with him so Oreo could learn the motions of swimming. It was the most precious thing. And hilarious as well. Once Oreo got the hang of it and could swim on his own, he actually seemed to enjoy chasing the ball around the pool (or maybe he really hated that game, but was just SUPER determined to get the ball, ha!).  Anyway, it was pretty much the best Father’s Day ever (I told Christopher he was getting lots of quality time with his “son” because we are so those pet owners who refer to ourselves as “mom & dad” to our dog).

So despite the initial scare of potentially terrible A/C problems, it turned into a pretty awesome weekend. Christopher feels super accomplished (as he should!). He fixed our A/C, started fixing the ceiling (as much as he can so far), and he taught our dog to swim! 🙂

Have you ever had an A/C leak like that? (if so, any advice on repairing the ceiling? we will be researching that this week)

If you have a pet does he or she like water?

Love Rach