Shan

Published on HuffPost and Okefenokee Living Magazine and other publications, Shan is a Family Travel Journalist and lover of all things 'calm & cozy home.'

She shares travel reviews & insider secrets that Women REALLY want to know about southern family destinations and creating cozy homes they can't wait to go home to.

Her hope is that overwhelmed women feel like family travel and cozy home gurus in their own right.

☕️ It's THE REAL DEAL around here ☕️

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Happy Fall, Y’all from The How-to Guru – 2013 Edition

Don’t you just adore this time of year? It makes me so happy that I want to tell everyone I see, Happy Fall, Y’all!  I believe that people love this time of year not only for the cooler, crisp days and the sound of crunchy leaves under our feet as we stroll through outdoor places, I think it’s so much more than that.  As you know, I love to motivate busy women.  Here are my reasons:

Happy Fall, Y'all pumpkins in a wagon

  • Orange is such a happy color
  • fall fashion is so much more fun
  • an excuse to cozy up to a flickering fireplace
  • it’s a time to relax and take a breather in front of those fireplaces
  • the yummy smells that autumn’s baked goods and warm beverages bring
  • watching fall football on the tube with football party food are the very best
  • the silly spookiness that Halloween brings to those who love to be spooked

I think it’s obvious that it’s my favorite season of the year these days. I mean, what’s not to love?!  It’s just fun!

Visiting the College Kiddo

Although we don’t get to see our oldest as much as we would like, it is a joy to visit him and his gorgeous surroundings.  I’m straight-up jealous, especially this time of year.  Even though I’m terrified of heights, I still love to visit the North Georgia mountains in the fall.  It makes me want to say, “Happy Fall, Y’all” to everyone I see.

Awesome views of the Georgia Mountains

North Georgia Tubing

North Georgia Shopping in Dahlonega, Georgia

 

Love these little roadside places

 

Hansel & Gretel = yummy treats!

 

My Heart!

Busy School Days

Since the new school year started, our days are breezing by very quickly and going quite well.   Princess has a full load of cool subjects including Greek, Physical Science, Spanish, Ancient Bible/World History, and Music to go along with Reading, Writing, and Math & P.E.

Tower of Babel

Alongside her buds (in two different) Co-Op classes, she has American Sign Language, Journalism, 4-H, Bible Study, and Careers Class to name a few.  She also stays busy with the Chess Team, Youth Drama Team, Youth Choir, Violin Lessons, and a cooking/decorating group at church

American Sign Language Clas

Career Day at the Hospital

 

Dessert Time for Women’s Ministry Event

It’s Huntin’ Season

Superman and Princess are spending a lot of time in the woods to make memories and to ensure that we can fill up that freezer with venison.  We are well on the way of getting enough meat for the winter.  Hallelujah!

Tell me in the comments what makes you want to say Happy Fall, Y’all!

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Shan
Shan

Published on HuffPost and Okefenokee Living Magazine and other publications, Shan is a Family Travel Journalist and lover of all things ‘calm & cozy home.’

She shares travel reviews & insider secrets that Women REALLY want to know about southern family destinations and creating cozy homes they can’t wait to go home to.

Her hope is that overwhelmed women feel like family travel and cozy home gurus in their own right.

☕️ It’s THE REAL DEAL around here ☕️

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Did You Know About All Of These Coastal Georgia Islands?

I adore showcasing the best places to visit in Georgia.   Recently I’ve been in awe of the Coastal Georgia island that I knew virtually nothing about until recently.  Were they mentioned in eighth grade Georgia History class and I just missed it?  Either way, I’m bringing to light these neat islands in case you were in the dark about them too.

Some of the most uniquely, beautiful parts of our state are still a mystery to most of the world – especially those who are too busy to explore the state in which we live.  I used to be that person, to caught up in work and my own little world that I didn’t look around and see the beauty around me.  These days, I am travel writing every chance I get to share Georgia (and the rest of the South) with everyone.

Coastal Georgia

Of the 100 miles of coastline that stretches along Coastal Georgia, from St. Marys to Savannah, there are eight barrier islands.  Eight!  Most of us locals are really only familiar with the three developed ones that are accessible by road:  Tybee/Little Tybee, Jekyll, and St. Simons/Little St. Simons.  The other five are the ones that I’m dying to investigate:

  • Cumberland/Little Cumberland Island
  • Sapelo/Blackbeard Island
  • St. Catherines Island
  • Ossabaw Island
  • Wassaw Island

Did you know about these?  Well, let’s check them out, shall we?!

Cumberland Island/Little Cumberland Island

OK, this is one of the barrier islands not accessible by car that I did know about.  I was blessed to tag along with my another family’s best vacation spots to Cumberland as a young girl.  I went back to Cumberland Island Georgia with the family and a handful of friends and I feel even deeper in love.  On the latter trip, we all stayed at a nearby St Marys RV campground, and simply caught the ferry to ride over to Cumberland Island for the day.

 

 

 

 

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Shan
Shan

Published on HuffPost and Okefenokee Living Magazine and other publications, Shan is a Family Travel Journalist and lover of all things ‘calm & cozy home.’

She shares travel reviews & insider secrets that Women REALLY want to know about southern family destinations and creating cozy homes they can’t wait to go home to.

Her hope is that overwhelmed women feel like family travel and cozy home gurus in their own right.

☕️ It’s THE REAL DEAL around here ☕️

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Jekyll Island Adventures with 100 of My Closest Friends {Video}

Remember me saying, “Don’t tell anyone about my secret island?  I just don’t want the word to get out too much, that’s all.  It’s where Superman and I first met and where we now discover Jekyll Island adventures every time we get the chance.

jekyll bike ridingREVISE

Annual Jekyll Island Adventures

This wonderful getaway has become an annual trip for my family and close to 100 friends from our hometown.  Several years ago we decided to camp at Jekyll Island Campground during the Labor Day weekend with friends.  It has grown to 100 folks.  The camping lifestyle lends itself to bonds of friendship that last a lifetime.  In order to not disillusion anyone, your southern word for the day is glamping. Just wanted to be clear and not cause the misunderstanding that I was sleeping in a tent. Oh no, sister.

Glamping: verb, going camping, but with glamour. — or glamorous camping

Friday and Saturday are spent drinking lots o’ coffee, riding bikes, cruisin’ on golf carts, and hanging out on the nearby Driftwood Beach with friends. I enjoy so much just strolling along this picturesque beach while photographing the laid-back activity and God’s sunset.  It gives you a glimpse of why the string of Georgia’s Sea Islands are called the Golden Isles.

Sunday is a great day of worship at Jekyll Baptist Church and a fun day strolling with my buds through the Jekyll Island Historic District shops and Millionaire’s Village.  Update:  An entire shopping village has been built right in the center of the island (connected to the new convention center) and they are fabulous.  There are shops and restaurants that are very nice.

Jekyll Island Fun

I’ll end with a sneak peek into our adventures of buffet-style dinners, driving to worship via golf carts & our famous golf cart, night rides. Jekyll Island Georgia truly is one of my favorite places on earth.

Finding the right hotel just got a whole lot easier - HotelsCombined.com
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Follow:
Shan
Shan

Published on HuffPost and Okefenokee Living Magazine and other publications, Shan is a Family Travel Journalist and lover of all things ‘calm & cozy home.’

She shares travel reviews & insider secrets that Women REALLY want to know about southern family destinations and creating cozy homes they can’t wait to go home to.

Her hope is that overwhelmed women feel like family travel and cozy home gurus in their own right.

☕️ It’s THE REAL DEAL around here ☕️

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Summer, Oh Glorious Summer

It’s summer…glorious summer, Y’all!

I am trying my best to get projects accomplished on my long to-do list but to also be flexible enough to carve out enjoyable time with my family. That’s what summer is all about, right?

Glorious Summer Memorable 7 Blessings:

  1. It’s sweet summertime and I’m trying to use my spare time to purge clean out, organize what’s left and re-purpose some old furniture.  After bringing all the extra furniture and whatnots back from our several-month stay in Charleston.
  2. I’m happy spending lots of time in the kitchen with our baby steps to a healthier living quest where I’m adding yummy dishes to our healthy meals list.  I conquered a new recipe this past week {homemade chicken enchiladas w/whole wheat tortillas} and made several homemade staples.
  3. Having fun keeping my Princess occupied with intentional activities so our summer doesn’t slip away…chores, bible devo together, games, crafts, fellowship with friends, blessing others and lots of reading the classics.
  4. We are making an intentional effort to spend time with special families this summer.  In the past, I would let all types of excuses hold me back.  We’ve already enjoyed being invited to Sunday lunch with two amazing families and been a part of several play dates with fun friends.
  5. Princess and I have spent lots of time outdoors tending to her germinating vegetable seeds and to my roses.  We may turn out to be true, Southern Women Gardeners, after all.
  6. Besides his monthly training commitment, Captain has to serve two weeks of each summer at a military base nearby. We’ve been able to spend small snippets of time with him and we’ll take every single minute we can.
  7. It’s hard to explain but I felt God’s hand over our family the entire Father’s Day weekend.  On Saturday, we traveled to take my Father-in-Love out to eat.  It was a special time.

 

Sunday, Captain was able to stick around to be with his Dad for Father’s Day so we had the privilege of going to our home church together for the first time in a long while.  The Father’s Day message was fantastic and the worship music was over-the-top.  Sooo blessed with this glorious summer.

Current Bookshelf

Superman is reading Lead Your Family Like Jesus: Powerful Parenting Principles from the Creator of Families.  This is a masterpiece by one of my favorite authors {and 2 additional authors}, Tricia Goyer.  I was privileged to serve on Tricia’s Launch Team for this book and received the book from Tyndale House Publishers for that purpose.  It’s Amazing.

The captain is reading a book that Tyndale House Publishers sent me to review.  I can’t write a review {and it won’t be for sale} until July but it will be worth waiting for.  All I can tell you is that every young man you know needs to read it. “Where Chivalry is redefined & the discovery of a personal code of honor can be found in an unjust world.”


I’m reading the classic, Pride and Prejudice (Great Illustrated Classics) by Jane Austen to my girl.  I can’t say enough about this set of books called Great Illustrated Classics.  We have several and they are amazing!  She and I recently watched the movie, Emma, and she fell in love with the era of European life in the 1800s, just like me.  


Did I mention how much I love my life?

I’d love to hear how your family is spending the glorious summer?

 

Follow:
Shan
Shan

Published on HuffPost and Okefenokee Living Magazine and other publications, Shan is a Family Travel Journalist and lover of all things ‘calm & cozy home.’

She shares travel reviews & insider secrets that Women REALLY want to know about southern family destinations and creating cozy homes they can’t wait to go home to.

Her hope is that overwhelmed women feel like family travel and cozy home gurus in their own right.

☕️ It’s THE REAL DEAL around here ☕️

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Thankful For Memorable Memorial Day 2013 In The South

This Memorial Day 2013, I’m here to challenge you to enjoy this day, and teach the next generation about the importance of Memorial Day.  Just be intentional!

Memorial Day 2013 Challenge - enjoy your freedoms and teach young people about those who died for our liberty!

Not prepared this holiday to do much?  It’s OK, just plan to make July the 4th a learning experience this year.  It will be here soon, and if nothing else, you could read your kids a couple of books about the original soldiers of the Revolutionary War

You know, the original ones who first gave us a chance at this free life we have in America?!  There are so many fascinating stories like the ones about General George Washington, Johnny Tremain, Paul Revere’s Ride, and more.

Memorial Day 2013

So what did we end up doing to commemorate this meaningful holiday?  Thanks for asking!  We did a lot …..

Memorial Day 2013 Challenge - enjoy your freedoms and teach young people about those who died for our liberty!

  • We slept in a bit & I was greeted by my hubby holding a hot cuppa java for me.  Sorry ladies…he’s taken!  🙂
  • Superman cut grass, bleached my lil shop, the house & then killed weeds.
  • We had several discussions about Memorial Day & why it is special.
  • Princess & I pulled weeds, rode the golf cart, & cleaned the house.
  • We purchased a brand new flag to honor the holiday {it was time for a new one}
  • We visited our local WWII Memorial in our park to read the names one by one.
  • We just had to cool down at our new-ish, local DQ!
  • Princess, our new gardener was dying to plant her new veggie & flower seeds.
  • Hubby cooked a seafood feast & we enjoyed it fully!
  • We sat on the front porch to enjoy our fresh yard work &  the cool, southern breeze.
  • Watched an episode of Andy Griffith on Netflix that we {somehow} had not seen before.
  • Reminded our young soldier son how proud we are of him for serving his country.

Memorial Day 2013 Challenge - enjoy your freedoms and teach young people about those who died for our liberty!

Memorial Day 2013 Challenge - enjoy your freedoms and teach young people about those who died for our liberty!

 

Memorial Day 2013 Challenge - enjoy your freedoms and teach young people about those who died for our liberty!

Memorial Day 2013 Challenge - enjoy your freedoms and teach young people about those who died for our liberty!

What a great day full of wonderful memories, family time, good food and hard work.  I’m so very thankful for the men that died so that we could enjoy freedom in this country.  Thank you Lord for this life!

Memorial Day 2013 Challenge - enjoy your freedoms and teach young people about those who died for our liberty!

What did you do for Memorial Day 2013?

 

Follow:
Shan
Shan

Published on HuffPost and Okefenokee Living Magazine and other publications, Shan is a Family Travel Journalist and lover of all things ‘calm & cozy home.’

She shares travel reviews & insider secrets that Women REALLY want to know about southern family destinations and creating cozy homes they can’t wait to go home to.

Her hope is that overwhelmed women feel like family travel and cozy home gurus in their own right.

☕️ It’s THE REAL DEAL around here ☕️

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Our Seven-Month Charleston South Carolina Vacation




Several friends and readers are curious about our Charleston South Carolina vacation (Superman’s job – hopefully temporary in S.C.), and have been asking to see pictures and video of our adventures.  We still have our home in Georgia because we feel like the Lord will not keep us here in Charleston permanently.  I’ll show you, my wife friends, around our apartment and a few Charleston things to do like Sullivan’s Island and the Isle of Palms.

our extended Charleston South Carolina vacation - apartment and beaches

We started out this past Saturday by heading over to not one, but two of Charleston’s beaches. Yes, it was pretty breezy (OK, I was freezing), but you do all sorts of things for your family, right?  Probably my favorite, most interesting event of the day was watching a couple fellas kite surf. I had never seen this in person.  We were amazed at how huge the kites were and how heavy they looked (don’t worry, there’s video footage below).

We just had to try out a new frozen yogurt shop, Yobe, on the way back.  Yummy!  Even though it was my Saturday splurge day,  I ended up choosing healthier flavors that were full of protein, and sprinkled a little granola on top.  We loved it.

Sunday morning, we set out to find a Charleston church to visit that we hadn’t visited yet.  We loved the warmth of the people from the greeter at the door to the sweet ladies sitting near us at this particular one.  Many of the members went out of their way to make us feel welcome.  It was wonderful to worship among strangers where we had one common goal in mind ~ to give praise where praise is due!  Time will tell in where God wants our Charleston church home to be.

watch our apartment & beach adventures
Concerning Superman’s work situation, we aren’t for certain what the future holds, but we know who holds the future. For us, that means that we’re praying that we get to permanently reside back in our small town USA (a.k.a. Mayberry), but we’re totally open to where God wants us to be.

our extended Charleston South Carolina vacation - apartment and beaches

So what do you think of our Charleston, South Carolina vacation?

 

Follow:
Shan
Shan

Published on HuffPost and Okefenokee Living Magazine and other publications, Shan is a Family Travel Journalist and lover of all things ‘calm & cozy home.’

She shares travel reviews & insider secrets that Women REALLY want to know about southern family destinations and creating cozy homes they can’t wait to go home to.

Her hope is that overwhelmed women feel like family travel and cozy home gurus in their own right.

☕️ It’s THE REAL DEAL around here ☕️

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