“Be Warm Inside and Out”


Dear Reader:

downloadWhile reading May 31’s Simple Abundance narrative for today I grew excited. It was all about creating homes filled with whimsy, wit, and childlike dreams of fantasy. Author, Breathnach, used artist/illustrator, Mary Engelbreit’s home as an example.

download (1)Engelbreit found some old children’s book classics belonging to her mother and grandmother and decided to begin her collection and decorating renovation (of her “Letter Cottage“) with that starting point.

Actress Candice Bergen once told an interviewer (who commented on how cozy her house was) that “she liked houses to be cozy, comfortable, and personal…not cluttered, but filled with interesting objects and toys and as many jokes as I can get away with.”

download (2)

My favorite HGTV series is Fixer-Upper starring Chip and Joanna (Jo) Gaines from Waco, Texas. They make their living selling rather broken down homes to customers for a low price and then turning them into whimsical homes of beauty with personal mementos created by Jo for the new homeowners.

By now I have seen just about all the episodes….so I turn it on (on Tuesdays) and look for new episodes. One that really touched me was this pitiful little looking home with just a few hundred square feet in it that the Gaines miraculously turned into this adorable cottage.

When Chip brought their four children in to see mama (as he always does) before Jo pulls an ‘all-nighter’ to surprise the homeowners the next day…the youngest little girl started squealing and clapping her hands….it looked like a fairy cottage she screamed in delight…this is my favorite home of all. The tiniest house that the Gaines had ever renovated and the favorite of all the children.

I do get tickled when I watch first time house-buyer episodes. They always say something like “We want a house with character.” What they don’t realize is that the home can only have “character” if they, themselves, have it within them.

I love it when the grandchildren come to visit and one or another claps his/her hands excitedly to be here at Boo Boo’s….they all love climbing the steps leading up and down to the sunken den and kitchen while exploring through boxes of “junk” and (old Hess trucks) in magic closets that I keep put up for them.

*If children love your home…and feel comfortable in it….I, personally, think we have won the highest “seal of approval.”

Mary E. keeps her trademark black and white checked borders and bold red cherries mixed in with other colorful patterns. Hand-painted touches abound on stair railings, furniture, and floors. Across her living room heart she’s painted her personal philosophy of life: “Be warm inside and out.” 












So until tomorrow…like Duke Ellington sang: “It don’t mean a thing if it ain’t got that swing.”  Let our lives be seen through other’s eyes as a touch of adulthood mixed with a “Peter Pan” flair.(After all don’t we all stay God’s Children, no matter our age?)

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

*While walking around the garden yesterday and remembering the importance of Memorial Day I “shot” a photo of a red hibiscus bloom, a white gardenia bloom, and a blue hydrangea. FullSizeRenderIMG_1741 (1)FullSizeRender

IMG_0865*Happy First Memorial Day our sweet Caleb! A lot of people made a huge sacrifice for you to grow up in a country where freedom is considered a birthright! One day you will understand the significance of this sacrifice. But for now….just enjoy your first Memorial Day!




*Congratulations to my daughter-in-love Mollie for making Senior Consultant in her first month selling safe beauty products with no harmful chemicals-Beauty Counter Momma. This message appeared on Facebook yesterday..

 Mollie just got this notice from her supervisor with Beauty Counter.
It gives me great excitement to announce that Mollie just reached Senior Consultant in her first month of being a part of Beautycounter!!! Congratulations!!!!

You all are so lucky to have her as your guide towards safer and healthier beauty! Keep on reaching for the stars Mollie! You are amazing!

IMG_1719Do check Mollie out on her webpage: Beautycountermomma.

*Because my skin so sensitive to break-outs from the sun…I ordered the healthy sun screen and lotion. It’s a nice feeling to feel confident in the safety of a skin product.

About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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2 Responses to “Be Warm Inside and Out”

  1. Ging Edwards says:

    Loved seeing you yesterday for a few minutes. Our grandbabies go straight upstairs to where all the toys are stored and pull out all the boy toys and improvise. They used the ninja turtle car and put their mommy duck and children in it from the fisher price barn…and they fight over the one glittery car that Paul and Blake had in their matchbox cars
    ..it is so fun to watch…


  2. Becky Dingle says:

    The past becomes the delight of the present when it comes toys🚀


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