Tag Archives: knoxville

caution … wet paint

“every child is an artist, the problem is staying an artist when you grow up” – pablo picasso


we happily began {what i am referring to as} our “southern summer tour” at the lake in tennessee this past week. it was a perfect way to jump feet first into a break from scheduled activities.

each summer, my sister-in-law and i create a themed photo shoot involving our four kiddos and enlist the talents of jennifer crook photography to perfectly capture each tyke’s personality. this year while assessing the ages {and energy levels} of the group we chose to host a paint party. this will probably go down in history as one of my most favorite days!

i have to admit that i have snagged these photos from jennifer’s blog because i couldn’t wait a second longer to share her lovely work!

to see our photo shoot from last year click here!














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southern drawl

jenna hancock is the creative genius behind this hilarious collection of paintings that give praise to the southern drawl. being from the south, it is safe to say that i have heard the voices of rhonda, peg, patricia, papaw {featured below} a time … or maybe two. thank you jennie andrews for introducing me to this southern goodness. god bless the south!







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down home

we celebrated our grandfather’s birthday on the farm while in tennessee for thanksgiving. i love the freedom that the farm gives our little ones {therefore allowing time for the “bigger ones” to catch up}. the farm will forever be one of my most favorite places to escape from the real world and just be!

the guest of honor – mr. mcbeth {deda} sprouse – celebrating his 92nd birthday. i just love this man!!

i had to laugh when i saw this photo {i had no idea that this was happening}  . . . but i must admit sneaking a handful of frosting from the cake does not surprise me with this cousin threesome.

hazel + sophie are now bound and determined to get a {real life} pony for christmas. they believe that “one this size” will fit perfectly in our humble abode … not sure my brooklyn neighbors would agree.

all photos provided by missy shofner sprouse

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fairy dust and make believe

sophie lost her very first tooth today at school. i have to admit, the tooth was so wiggly this morning that i tried to keep her home {just} until it fell out but to no avail … i missed it. just one more example staring me in the face that my little girl is growing up.

this is the first of many milestones in my daughter’s life and i wanted to make sure that this day would be a vivid memory for her – one that she would look back on with a sparkle in her eyes remembering that for a moment make-believe was tangible and real.

sophie was practically born in our {once} store abode – a home furnishings store in downtown knoxville – and because of it, she loves all things involving money, receipts, etc. … at least i would like to think that abode had something to do with her early love for business. i discovered legendary letters on etsy and knew that i had found the perfect way to convince sophie that indeed the tooth fairy was real  – – not that she needed a lot of convincing. we received (3) small manilla envelopes, (3) thank you envelopes to place the money inside and (3) personalized receipts.

i decided to take it a step further … just because … and created a personalized tooth fairy that was all her own. i stumbled upon the fairy name generator, a magical website that creates a fairy based on the first and last name of a child. sophie’s fairy is feather rainbowwand … she is absolutely lovely!

i am enamoured by make-believe and how small sparks of mystery can ignite so much creativity within one’s spirit and hope that my girls never become “too old” to revel in make-believe.

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coney island

sophie celebrated her 5th birthday in knoxville directly before moving to the “big apple”. among her many birthday gifts was the book i live in brooklyn given by her friends, elliot and audie tatler. this book was given in hopes that it would help ease the transition from knoxville to brooklyn and these little ladies could not have been more on point! both sophie + hazel have become completely obsessed with this book and use it as their guide for life as a brooklyn kid.

in the book, the little girl michelle, who lives in carroll gardens tells of her love for taking the f train to coney island with her family. together they enjoy the beach and all that coney island has to offer. upon moving to park slope, we quickly discovered that the f train services our subway stop so of course coney island quickly became the topic of conversation.

we {finally} spent a saturday at the -beloved- coney island {only 25 minutes from our home.} sophie + hazel rode a plethora of nostalgic kiddie rides and were then treated to a nathan’s hotdog for lunch. the boardwalk was not as booming as it is in the summer and i immensely enjoyed being able to leisurely walk while the girls ran ahead of us without a care in the world. it was a crazy juxtaposition to stand on the boardwalk with the sand + ocean to our left and the manhattan skyline to our right.

coney island in the fall is a great {and inexpensive} way to escape city life – even if for a short while. to learn more about what coney island has to offer be sure to check out their website.

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wish i may . . . wish i might

one of the biggest gifts i could ever  hope to give our children is the ability to dream {without any inhibitions} and to have the confidence {or maybe naivety} to grab hold – with both hands – the risks that life throws their way.

our transition from point a {knoxville} to point b {brooklyn} has looked more like a grouping of constellations rather than a linear destination. as a gal that takes pride in being somewhat of a misfit, i have rather enjoyed the tangents and stops along the way. each {pit stop} has helped us realize the importance of holding things a bit more loosely while loving as hard as we can!

my wish is that one day sophie + hazel will look back on their childhood with fond {adventurous} memories and a solid foundation that the world is their oyster.

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so {here} we are

i am a dreamer. there i said it  – i love {at times} escaping reality to imagine the fullness of what this life has to offer me.

a {dreamer} by definition is: a person given to fanciful speculations and enthusiasms with little regard for what is actually possible.

and so begins my story . . .

i am a southern girl who has admittedly lusted for the glamour of big city living without ever thinking that this desire would one day become a reality – – especially now with two young gals by my side – sophie {5} and hazel {3}.

my husband, matt recently took a position working in his company’s manhattan office {much more than a stone’s throw away from our previous home of knoxville, tn} – – but we are embracing this move with complete confidence that we are right where we need to be … together!

as we say good-bye to a city full of dear friends, family and comforts we are overwhelmed by the realization that each person and experience perfectly molded and prepared us for one of the biggest adventures this family of four could have ever imagined. and so begins the tale of the city sprouse {thank you rachel wood turner for naming this blog for me} with all of the joys + trials that come along with big city living.

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Our Landlocked Life

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