Mumford & Sons on their Delta Tour

When I became a Mumford & Sons fan, Chuck and I were in the midst of trying to move back to Tennessee after living in Texas for two years. He was already back home, but the boys and I were stuck in Amarillo waiting for our house to sell. I don’t remember the exact phone call, but at some point in the fall of 2010, Chuck told me about a song he’d heard on the radio, and he thought I’d like it. As soon as I listened to “Little Lion Man,” I was hooked.

I wore out Sigh No More immediately, and, after moving back to East Tennessee in March 2011, Chuck and I drove to Asheville in June 2011 to see the band in concert. We were blown away by their energy on stage. They sounded exactly as they did on the album, which is always a sure sign of a good artist.

When Babel was released in 2012, it was a fast favorite. The band went on their Gentlemen of the Road tour in 2013, and I drove down to Atlanta with Karin to see them a second time. The band went in a new direction with Wilder Mind, which I didn’t mind, and when Delta came out last year, they did it again with another new sound. No matter what they do, I love it. (I feel the same way about The Killers, the other band I’ll always pay to see.)

We headed to Nashville Friday afternoon in time to grab dinner and drinks before sunset.

It was windy on that rooftop bar, so when I tried to take our photo, a gust of wind rolled through at the exact moment the camera snapped, whisking away the menu. I couldn’t have staged a better photo if I tried. This image captures our marriage perfectly – Chuck is calm and collected. I am freaking out. It’s all about balance.

This was the view across from our hotel, which was nicely situated next to Bridgestone Arena. I stared at the museum for several minutes before realizing the reflection showed piano keys in the design.

But onto the most important news: The concert. It was a low-frills show, a centered stage with modest lights. That didn’t bother me because I don’t go to see the band. I mainly want to hear them. Minus one song (which isn’t really a song but instead a recitation of Paradise Lost), I loved everything I heard. I sang and jumped and clapped and smiled. It was marvelous.

The only song I captured fully on my cell phone was their cover of “Hurt” – which I anticipated them playing since I’ve been following their set lists the entire tour. Originally a Nine Inch Nails song, which is great on its own, Johnny Cash also covered the song on American IV: The Man Comes Around.

To hear Marcus sing it gives me chills.

T’was a perfect night with my favorite guy.

Blog Challenge Day 22: 10 songs

Name my 10 favorite songs.

These are in no specific order, and I’m forgoing an explanation of why they are a favorite. I’ll just say that some songs are favorites because they represent a soundtrack to a particular time in my life, and some are favorites because the lyrics and music are perfectly married.

(I linked every song to a YouTube video and did well to avoid links with ads.)

  1. “Across the Great Divide” by Nanci Griffith (originally a Kate Wolf song)
  2. “Sigh No More” by Mumford & Sons
  3. “Good Ole Boys Like Me” by Don Williams

    Don Williams

  4. “Good to be Home” by The Everybodyfields
  5. “When It’s All Been Said and Done” by Robin Mark
  6. “When You Were Young” by The Killers
  7. “A Sorta Fairytale” by Tori Amos
  8. “Dixieland Delight” by Alabama
  9. “Silver Stallion” by The Highwaymen
  10. “The Space Between” by Dave Matthews Band

Insert panic here

Suddenly we’re at the end of October. As I type, my bacon and goat cheese grits aren’t sitting well as my stomach is turning inside itself with worry. I have six weeks left in the semester, which means I have six weeks to finish the novel, edit it, design the front and back matter, write a synopsis, and complete a fifteen-page companion paper to introduce the project, explain my process, and cite sources of influence.

I also have to complete four big assignments for Genre Writing, homeschool the kids, do a few photos shoots, and say hi to Chuck every once in a while.

There’s a temptation to pull back and say no to certain things, but that’s really hard to do when you love everything you’re doing. I mean, when I’m taking photos like this, I don’t want to say no:

DSC_0275 low res w

(By the way, if any of you know to whom this sweet baby belongs, DO NOT talk about this photo to the baby’s grandmother, unless you want to spoil her Christmas present surprise.) Continue reading “Insert panic here”

Darn you, Chick-Fil-A

This does not help my homeschooling efforts:

Eat Mor ChikinObviously, Jackson got sidetracked during his math assignment yesterday. He recently obtained a little Chick-Fil-A cow (which he has wanted for, oh, five years) and the stuffed animal just happens to be carrying a misspelled advertisement. I think the sneaky cows are funny and all, but the misspellings really bug me.

(I’m also annoyed by business names that are intentionally misspelled because the business owners thought it would be cute or creative. “Kiddie Kare” is a great example.)

Anyway, I’m still zombified after Tuesday’s whirlwind trip to Atlanta to see Mumford and Sons. I didn’t get home until 3:30 a.m., which meant I crawled into bed at 4 a.m. The boys were up by 9 and I trudged out of the bedroom a little after, so most of yesterday occurred in a fog. Sweet weekend, come soon.

Even with a smarty pants phone, the video isn’t fantastic. But I’ll still share:



The Marvelous Mumford and Sons… Again

I squealed like a teenage girl. It was fantastic.

The whole process of getting tickets to a Mumford concert is complicated. You have to apply to be considered to purchase tickets. I’d been rejected twice already, so when I received an invitation to purchase tickets for the Atlanta concert, I had no pause. Two tickets. Immediately. Yes, please.

My original date for the evening, the hubs, had a work conflict, so Karin was my concert buddy for Atlanta. We met up with Corey and Gwen, along with another great couple, grabbed dinner, and found a spot on the grass in Centennial Olympic Park for The Full English tour.

camera_20130910195749591 camera_20130910195942070Chuck and I have seen Mumford and Sons before in June 2011. At that time, they were just breaking big numbers and developing an enormous fan base at rapid speed. That meant our concert venue was a bit smaller and better controlled. Last night’s concert was outdoor and housed a thousand layers of sweaty people. Don’t get me wrong – it was spectacular. But, if you’re even a touch claustrophobic or are sensitive to cigarette smoke (or other smoke) or prefer not to have cheap beer spilled on your feet, then perhaps an outdoor concert isn’t for you.

But this was Mumford and Sons, so none of that mattered.

20130910_210953 camera_20130910210924313 camera_20130910210828291The most puzzling part of the night was this couple: camera_20130910223757551 copyThey took the grassy spot in front of our blankets, right behind two garbage cans, laid down in a drunken stupor, and slept through the entire concert. Even after the final song concluded (The Cave), and we began to walk out of the park, they continued to lay there. For minute we wondered if we should wake them up and tell them to go home, but… we didn’t.

Follett Killers Mumford Marvel

September is going to be a very good month, and not just because Jeremy turns nine. (Nine!)

First, Winter of the World – Ken Follett (about whom you’ve heard me babble for a while now) is releasing his second novel in the Century Trilogy on September 18. It’ll be another 900-something page book that will have me in a trance for two weeks as I scurry to complete it. Like everything else he writes, I anticipate it becoming a favorite.

Then, The Killers release Battle Born on the 24th. Their first single is already available online and it has a classic Killers sound. That’s a good sign. In fact, I’m singing along to it right now.

Finally, September 25 will be doubly wonderful because The Avengers comes out on DVD (family movie night!) and Mumford and Sons releases Babel. I never, ever tire of Mumford. Ever.

All of this book-movie-music goodness makes me giddy. I could dance a jig right now in my jammies, I’m so excited.

To top it off, football season will be underway in a week, and we’re all pretty darn excited about that. Look how cute this boy is in a Smokey toboggan. I see a Christmas gift in this photo.

Blogging Sabbatical

For the next couple of weeks, blogging here will be quite scarce. I might post a photo or two, but mostly I’ll be taking an internet and blog break. I need it. We all need it. (But how I will live without Pinterest for two weeks is beyond me.)

In the mean time, here is a too-long video of the boys dancing (and my awful singing) to Go To Sleep by the Avett Brothers.  (Here’s a video of Mumford and Sons covering the song at the concert we attended in June.)

Gotta love Jeremy’s costume – a Thomas the Tank Engine robe, a faux suede cowboy hat and his Harry Potter wand.

See you in August.

Escape to Asheville

It was a long overdue escape from all kinds of stress and change, and even though it was just a quick two-day jaunt over the hill to Asheville, it was a total blast.

When I got wind that Mumford and Sons was headed our roundabout direction, I quick-texted Chuck to see if he wanted to go (as if I didn’t already know he’d say yes). Within a minute of tickets going on sale, I purchased a pair and thus began the anticipation of seeing one of our most favorite bands.

Originally, we were just going to drive our car. And then we decided to rent something practical to keep our recently repaired transmission in tact. And then Chuck came home with this:

Continue reading “Escape to Asheville”

The Marvelous Mumford and Sons


If we’re friends on Facebook then you know we escaped to Asheville yesterday for a Mumford & Sons concert. It was fantastic. Banjos, fiddles, cellos, guitars, keyboards, horns and trombones – all fantastic. They’ll be touring the US for the rest of the month, but alas – all concerts are sold out. (We bought our tickets about 45 seconds after they went on sale in April.)

Here’s a video of them singing The Cave (courtesy of arsenic131 via You Tube):


More photos and such to come tomorrow. Right now we have to slip back into parenthood and get these rambunctious boys to bed.