Saturday, June 25, 2011

The Company We Keep

I am madly in love with the way my house looks. I don't say this to brag: I am just amazed how the removal of one wall has changed the total energy of the kitchen and living space.

I've had weekend of family. JB bought the wine and plenty of milk. She made potato salad and I made shrimp jambalaya and before that garlic bread and before that red velvet cupcakes with cream cheese frosting. I spent three hours in grocery stores, $ 175 worth of food to feed a household of twelve people over three days. JB's sister from Colorado and her family arrived Saturday afternoon and then JB's niece from Tucson and now Boston and then Jess and Mike and Mr. Ryan and No Longer Baby Drew.

JB and I spruced up the house and fired up the gas grill. Salmon and Swordfish and skewered scallops.
Nothing makes me happier than having Jess and Mike and Mr. Ryan and Drew here overnight.

There should be a picture of my Jess here too, but I will just say she is almost 8 months pregnant and radiates both beauty and fatigue.

Company is a good motivator. JB and I finally got a few things painted, hung, organized.

By my friend Gordon

JB cut flowers from our yard

And we faced and figured out how we would sleep twelve people in our six room ranch. We had an outdoor backup plan :^)

And in the end, we had a great time. Our families come together like this rarely, every few years or so. This is the cost of mobility: sometimes I wish it were not so easily to transplant roots.

The weekend is not yet over: some of us are still here, still eating, still sipping cappuccinos, still sitting chattilly and then quietly together, now waiting for a fireworks show from the park next door. As I type this, I wonder if my mundane family weekend is of interest to anyone outside my family. I often wonder this about my blog; then I remember how much I enjoy the snapshots of daily life from so many visitors and friends I've come to know.

So this is my weekend, in the company I keep.




  1. Why, KJ, I so enjoyed your photos of your home and guests.

  2. Your home is looking lovely,love the painting and the family gathering. Your world looks good!

  3. i think it's a wonderful thing to love your home, and i'm glad that the changes you made please you so, the photo looks great!

    it's hard to believe that jess is already 8 months along, not much longer now till one more joins your family (good you like to cook, wait till the boys grow up! oh my!)
    a lovely weekend all around!

  4. Sounds like a marvelous time, and I need to enlarge the WINE PHOTO to see what we have there! ;-D *ahem*
    The house *is* beautiful and love the tent in the back yard! With protective alligator, of course!
    That is one of the things of modern times; how we all are spread across not only this continent, but the world too, and families gather so infrequently. My kin are states away and I am an old fart and don't travel....
    I'll live vicariously through your post instead!


  5. You had me at the wine. Smoking Loon, Toasted Head (LOVE their Chardonnay). Very good taste. And the house looks lovely too :)

    Open living spaces have such great energy.

  6. I totally know how you feel about your house. Since we did our renovations last summer I feel I have a brand new home and LOVE my FLOORS!!!! and new furniture too, but mostly the floors. ;-)
    and I understand the love of family and so appreciate your desire to share yours. Mine were together this past weekend for my 70th bD and post it I did!!! So there! come see when you get some down time. Hugs, Lynn to both of you/all of you!

  7. I just knew it would be magical!!

    I love the table now that the bolts have made their late arrival ;)

    Everything looks wonderful, really.
    I love the photo of daddy and the boys.♥

    Looks like a perfect weekend with bragging rights, for sure.


  8. A lovely lovely way to spend the time..Your house looks beautiful too..Hugs,Cat

  9. snow, thank you. i send you the warmest wishes and hopes. xoxo

    angela, thank you. i think it's a difficult time in the world at large, so making my interior world easier and more pleasing has to help.

    lori, i can't wait to meet this new baby. it is an amazing experience to know someone from day one. i feel so fortunate to get to do it yet another time. and lori, i don't know why i know like to cook and feel i CAN cook, but i'm glad ♥

  10. live vicariously with your usual vigor, anne! i am not a good traveler either. i have to take deep breathes and push myself.

    ww, i will pass your compliment on to JB wine selector. :^) you made me laugh mentioning an open living space: this house has tiny cape cod style rooms but one damn wall came down and now three tiny teeny rooms look like one. i feel like a genius :^) ps ♥

    i'm coming lynn!! happy happy birthday. just think of all those years ahead with no more appetite for bs!!! :^)

    thank you my dear lo. it's been a good time for sure. the bedroom scene was a riotous puzzle. what i worried most about was how we would all manage to take showers on sunday morning and hahaha, i don't think even one of us did!!!!!

    cat, thank you. hugs to you too xoxo

  11. No wonder you're proud of your house, it is indeed very cosy and welcoming.

  12. Its always fun to hear about family gatherings and home touches. Sounds like a great weekend and your house looks beautiful.

  13. Oh it all sounds fabulous, how lucky you are! My family is wide spread now days, both here and in Australia and the UK and also various parts of USA...and no-one really wants to visit us at the moment either because of the all the earthquakes, but surely they can't last forever so am looking forward to the future when we gather again around our pizza oven outdooors and spread food and wine over the picnic table in the yard and just 'be'. xx

  14. the whole shindig sounds wonderful - to me there is nothing better than having a house full of family. that's what houses are for - right?

    good luck to Jess - are you gonna be there to take care of the little ones when they go to hospital? I can't imagine juggling two kids, a new baby, a house etc. wowee!!

  15. hells! ♥♥♥♥

    thank you suki. i'm glad to know my family stuff is not boring ♥

    sag, widespread for sure! gosh i hope things settle down for you. what a year you've had. xoxox

    mim, yes, we plan to help 'there' for the first month, but now i'm thinking even before that. add two demanding jobs to that mix. (meet me at the alamo for mexican) :^)

  16. KJ, This is my first visit here and I like what I see. (I dropped over from Lori's blog). We share a love of family and sharing our lives with the people who matter most. Your home has a warmth to it and is full of personality! Love the outdoor solution too. I'll be back!

  17. wow KJ.. u do have a LOVELY house.. it looks picture perfect :-) in every sense of the word.. i LOVE this house.

  18. Suddenly, I am having a great deal of problems with google. I've made three comments on this post, and I don't see one anywhere!

    I love your home, the kids, the all looks very warm and welcoming, as are you, kj.

    You'll be a grandmother again, soon! Give my best to won't be long now!! xx

  19. You're right to love it - the place looks fantastic.