“A moment lasts all of a second, but the memory lives on forever.”

August and Everything After September 2, 2011

Filed under: Fairchild Family Fun,Jennifer,Jenuine Memories,Tradition — memorykeepersisters @ 5:12 pm

I haven’t written in a while because I have been too darn busy! Which is a shame because I do enjoy detailing the minutia of my everyday life. Let me recap August, I had an awesome birthday celebration with my family in Little Rock, we went to the painted pig, ate at U.S. Pizza, then had a Fairchild Family auto curse, it was great. School started up and I love it. Being a teacher is so rewarding, nothing compares to it.

And then the month of August ended with my church dedication.  My church First Baptist Church of Hicks (Hicks is a community located just outside of Ashdown almost near Wilton, if you aren’t familiar with Ashdown, then none of this makes sense), recently rebuilt our sanctuary. Our preacher no longer has to be blinded by the sun when he preaches.  Our carpeting is no longer blood red, it’s a beautiful blue. Our pews don’t have child scribbles anymore (although I found that cute). Everything is new and wonderful. Its bigger, it looks nice, but best of all, its debt free and in this economy that’s  saying something. I started going to church here in 2007 and it’s been a wonderful experience for me.  I feel a sense of community and family that I haven’t felt in a long time.

My parents didn’t go to church until I was 4. My mother  was invited to church by her supervisor at the Highway Department, Sam Huckabee.  He is still a great example of the Christian faith to me. He went to a church named Oak Grove United Methodist Church in a little community outside of Hope (If you aren’t familiar with Hope, well then…) .  It was a new experience for me. My mother didn’t grow up in the church. She was very well educated in the Bible and went to churches on occasion growing up but my Pepaw and Granny didn’t attend church. When Pepaw was young he was  involved in his Methodist church but something happened and it soured him off organized religion. He read his Bible, he watched preachers on TV and he read from Bible dictionaries and books.  My granny didn’t go to church, her parents were busy with their restaurant and there was no day of rest for her.  In my opinion she was very spiritual. She believed that if you did good things, good things would happen. She often shared with me that God did things that were beyond our understanding and that God had a plan for her and for me.  After we started attending church, my Granny was baptized and later became involved in a Methodist church in Texarkana.

I often think about this, Sam Huckabee’s one act of kindness to my mother saved my entire family.  I was baptized at 5 and later again at 32. My brother and sister were raised in church. My granny was baptized when my little brother was baptized.  My sister was the first baptism in St. John’s United Methodist Church. Our family was able to endure all of the heartache of losing our grandparents, and later our mother because we had faith in God.  And we may have never known this had we never been invited to church.

My preacher Bro.Bobby Fischer made this very clear at our dedication. The church is not the building.  The church is the people. And it doesn’t matter where your church is, or what it looks like. The important thing is that you are a community of believers all striving for the same goal: To bring others to Jesus.  I don’t know what you believe but if you are looking for something to help you and you have tried everything else, look for a church. The people inside aren’t perfect, in fact they are broken just like you and me. And if you find a church that believes in love for  ALL people, then you will have peace.

I hope you had a great August. I can’t believe its September already! Woo Pig Sooie!



Triple F to the D August 8, 2011

Filed under: A little bit crazy,Fairchild Family Fun,J.Fairchild Photography,Jodie,Tradition — memorykeepersisters @ 3:05 pm

Our family has a fun tradition of having “Fairchild Family Fun Days” or as my brother has dubbed it “Triple F to the D!”.

FFFD is a day where the whole family gets together to do something fun. Sometimes its just going to a movie and eating dinner, other times it has been going to museums. This past Saturday we went to The Painted Pig here in Little Rock and painted pottery together. It was a lot of fun! We ended up spending almost three hours there painting our day away.

Dad Painted a coffee mug, and of course in typical dad style he put everyones name on it, even our dog Lexie (his furry child).

Dads Mug

Other side of the Mug

The bottom (8-15-71 is my parents anniversary, the day the family began, and 8-6-11 is the day the mug was made) Too cute!

Jamie and Brandi each painted wine goblets and a really cool Razorback Tile.

Jamie and Brandi's tile

I also painted a Razorback plate. (Can you tell our family is ready for football season?)

My Plate

Jen painted a Jenuine Memories plate to display on her tables when she goes to craft fairs.

Jens Plate

We also did something really special. We made a family plate. I think it turned out great and I can’t wait to see it once it has been fired and glazed.  Of course, when there is pitter patter of baby feet we can always add a saucer or two with feet prints on it 🙂

Family Plate 🙂

Overall it was a really good family fun day, even though “the curse” had struck again, i guess that’s a different post for a different day!



Who am I? August 1, 2011

Filed under: A little bit crazy,Jennifer,Jenuine Memories,Tradition — memorykeepersisters @ 5:45 pm

This post is going to be kind of weird….so bear with me.

Sometimes I feel as though I have no ethnic identity. I have no country of origin. My people and me come from nowhere.  Some people have coat of arms in their living room. They wear kiss me “I’m Irish” buttons, they refer to themselves as Dutch. But for me and my family we were just white people.  Maybe it was a failure on my grandparents to educate me. My grandparents did not live in the past. My Pepaw loved new technology and things.  He would try to repair things to save a dime, but if he knew there was something out there better, he wanted to get it. Color tvs, microwaves, and gadgets , he was a big fan of newer and better. He didn’t live in the past. My granny would occasionally talk about the days when her and her parents (she was an only child) were living on the oil field. And she told me she was born in a tent in Oklahoma, but other than that, I have no idea where I am from.

When you grow up in Arkansas, just being from Arkansas is your identity.  Back in the days when the internet was just sprouting, I remember telling people from other countries that I was in Arkansas and immediately they would spout off something along the lines of “you wear shoes?” or “Are you a hill billy?” Arkansan is an ethnic identity in itself and one I have never been ashamed of.  But I wish I were something more. I wish I had special holidays or ate special foods.

When I was younger I wanted to be something more than just a “white person” . I would often look at the stars and pretend that one of them was my true homeland and that someday I would return. But now as an adult, I figure I just might as well create an ethnicity. I don’t plan on having kids, so what if I am a weird old lady who thinks she is from a star.

So I have decided that since my last name is Fairchild, I have British/Anglo-Saxon roots on my father’s side. And on my mother’s side I am Bohemian. I am using that term because one time my mother used it to refer to her favorite Aunt. She said that she was an artist, that she was “Bohemian”.  I think she probably meant “like a hippie” or just an “artistic type” but that image stuck in my mind.(She loved her great-aunt and said I was like her but that is a different post for a different day.)  And my Granny would always say that her parents were “oil field gypsies” before they got into the restaurant biz. So maybe that is what I am!

It would explain a lot! For some reason I am attracted to old things, and I absolutely adore old blankets and all my walls are covered with every type of art imaginable. I love the UK and Liverpool, and Wales, and princes and princesses. And the Beatles! And have you seen my earring collection!  I love cheap jewelry and I can’t resist the dollar store. And gypsy tricks, I have pulled a few. I used to trick my sister into doing housework all the time growing up! So maybe that would also explain some of my recent cards:

Victorian Mixed Media

France Mixed Media Butterflies

I just like the way it looks, old, yet regal.  It reminds me of my mother’s “people”, (a collection of plates featuring the same relaxing couple).  And it reminds me of the elegance of the people of old Britain and France. And its different. And maybe that is what I am Different. Not Caucasian, or Dutch or French or British. Just Different.


Ode to Daddy June 19, 2011

Filed under: Fairchild Family Fun,Jennifer,Jodie,Tradition — memorykeepersisters @ 1:56 am

It’s Father’s day and like I tell everyone, my dad is pretty awesome.  While most folks out there are buying their dad monstrous hardware like drills and hammers, or letting their dad lounge on the couch and drink beer, our dad is content just being with us. Not to say we didn’t get him ANYTHING but, our dad has always been our Dad. Our dad never went out with the guys or spent early mornings in deer stands. Our dad put his family first. Our dad didn’t spend evenings working late in the office. Our dad worked hard, but he also worked hard to get home and stay with us. Not that we appreciated it at the time. We were typical kids. Looking back though, I realize what a sacrifice he made to take care of us and to make sure that we had everything that we needed, and wanted for that matter. Our dad spoiled us rotten!!!  (And he still does) Here is my list of ways that dad spoiled me (This is not an exhaustive list, that would fill a book here are just a few ways):

1. Susprise

2. Laundry (well into my mid twenties and out of college)

3.  Driving to Arkadelphia to fix my “broken” car, (out of gas)

4. Making another trip to Arkadelphia to fix my “broken” car (parked on slope)

5. Cleaning my room for most of the time that I lived at home.

Happy Father’s day Daddy, I hope you know that we love and appreciate you! -Jen

“Pop”, “Poppa Diddy Pop”, and “Daddy”. I have many nicknames for my father but as of late I am able to add “biggest supporter” and “greatest fan”. Being the baby of the family has its perks and just like Big Sister, I too, have a list of ways my dad has spoiled me:

1.Susprises. For those of you that aren’t aware, a “susprise” is something you get from the store that wasn’t on the original list. It’s a special treat, it’s a susprise!

2. I swear I didn’t clean my own room until I was in high school. It was awesome!

3. Getting to call him and say “hey, my car makes a “wherrush roorrrhhh” noise, what is it and can you fix it?” and he always knows and helps me fix it!

4. I come home to visit at least once  a month and it’s great because I know that at least one morning, if not both, I get to wake up to a home made breakfast. (the older two don’t get to experience this often so I rub it in as much as I can!)

5. Showing me his humor. It may seem strange to read that as something he has done to “spoil” me but he is a funny guy and it’s great to joke around with him.

Happy Fathers day big guy! We love you!!




Ode to Bubba June 6, 2011

Some children are born into families and can’t recall a time of ever being truly alone. Older brothers and sisters were a routine pest and a necessary bane to existence. Some born so close together they scarce can remember the days of solitude or life without their kindred souls.  Not for me though, I was almost seven before my baby brother entered my life.  And life hasn’t been the same ever and I am truly grateful for that.

Now at 6, I was blessed to not know the mechanics of how my brother got into my mother’s belly. But I knew enough to know that it was a magical time. In October of 1981, we went to Shreveport’s Red River Revel, an annual arts and crafts fair and in a pharmacy there my mother purchased a pregnancy kit. The November before a couple in my church and close friends of my parents (Bryon and Janice Mann) had a baby boy. And my dad told my mother in church that he wanted one of those. So just like any other toy or thing that I wanted I assumed my parents went and got him for me.  So I announced to the entire first grade the Monday after that weekend that my parents went to Shreveport and got me a baby brother.

I think I must have tormented my poor first grade teacher and looking back I now realize why she kept telling me not to declare that I was having a brother, that it easily could be a sister. And that my brother would be born in the summer and NOT anytime soon. Although I was insistent from October on that it would be just any day now and I would not be an only child. And that no matter what anyone said, I was having a brother. At my mother’s shower I recall telling people that we would have no need for anything pink.  “Just throw it in the trash mama! You are having a boy!”

Jamie’s due date was June 4. His name was Jamie, you would think short for James,  but nope! He was named after Jamie Frame, a very handsome character from the soap opera Another World. From the end of May until June 3, I watched Jamie Frame and mother’s swollen belly hoping soon that at least one Jamie would be in my house.  And on June 3 we ate Mexican food and drove over every railroad track in town. After all we were hoping that he would arrive on time.

The Fairchild Kids, September 1988

Sure enough I can remember this as plain as if it were yesterday and not 29 years ago. The next day Mama was straightening the bed in the bedroom and I was getting ready to ride with Ms. Dena to go to Vacation Bible school. Mama told me that today was the day I would be getting a baby brother and sure enough I did.  He was one of the best presents my parents ever gave me.  After that day I was never alone. I had someone out there to be my little brother. Someone for me to love, protect and care for. He grew up to be one of the few people that I can honestly trust.  He’s not my baby anymore, he’s got his own life and wife now. But secretly I am hoping soon that maybe they will head to Shreveport, and get me a niece or nephew.  Come on, I am not getting any younger!


Being the youngest of three children, I can truly say I was blessed with two siblings that I could look up to. Most of my childhood was spent acting like a tough little tomboy because I wanted to be just like my big brother. I spent hours on my bike riding around with Jamie and his friends and I loved every minute of it. Even as we grew older, I still found myself emulating my older brother; he’s funny and smart and genuinely one of the nicest people i’ve ever had the pleasure of knowing.  On Saturday we had a birthday cookout at his house and looking around the table seeing his friends and family and his beautiful home and wife, I couldn’t be more proud of him. Love you bubba! Happy Birthday!



Arkansas Adventures! May 21, 2011

Filed under: A little bit crazy,Fairchild Family Fun,Jennifer,Jenuine Memories,Tradition — memorykeepersisters @ 3:36 pm

I can’t read a map. I admit it. I can’t even really use GPS, its too much like a map. My mind is purely linguistic, so the lines and symbols try to arrange themselves in logical sense, but my word filled mind can’t comprehend what the map is telling me.  I can’t turn it into a story or a plot, so it’s useless to me. How do I find my way around a strange place? I make another person tell me the directions. Then my mind can associate a turn here and a turn there with a gesture or a phrase. Getting lost is a fact of life for me. I am used to getting lost, it’s annoying sure, but I don’t get scared or afraid.  My lack of trepidation comes from the way our mother approached getting lost. She was NEVER lost, she was having an “Adventure”.

We went on many “adventures” together. As a family we found a new way to get from one end of Hot Springs to another. It was a street named Lupine. I remember this because I associated it with werewolf.  Also, there was a sign that said “Deaf child” so I imagined that the child could not hear the werewolf approaching on Lupine. Next time we started an adventure in Hot Springs, the street names were stored in my memory and we managed not to get lost.

One adventure sticks out in my mind because it was truly scary at some points. It all started in Hot Springs near the Gulpha Gorge. We were going to follow a quick trail that led from one end of the mountain to the other.  My mother was on another one of her diets so she had shakes in an ice chest; my sister was still on a bottle, so she had bottles in the same igloo. It was going to be a quick walk and then a picnic later when we got back, so the rest of the food was still in the car.

The trail started out okay and we walked at a leisurely pace. Nothing seemed out of the ordinary until we realized we had passed the same way twice, hadn’t seen any other hikers in some time, then we made a few turns. And sure enough, we were on an “adventure”. We were lost for hours. Mother had to share one of her shakes with all of us. The sun was going down and we were getting scared. My parents remained calm, but it was starting to show that they had no clue where we were and no way of finding the way out.

Turns out sunset was a good thing. The lights of Hot Springs began to turn on, we followed them,  and we found ourselves on the promenade. Mind you, the car was literally miles away. Our dad had to take a cab and pick us up. There is no way of knowing how many miles we made on our little “adventure”.  I guess that’s why to this day, I am never really lost; I’m just having an adventure. Although with the cost of gas, these little adventures usually end up with me, stopped on the side of the road, calling and asking for directions.

Not Hot Springs by any means, but you get the point!

Speaking of adventures in Arkansas or otherwise, I created these latest cards with the idea of adventure in mind. These are French inspired cards. They remind me of summer in Paris. Although I have never been I imagine that it would be quite the adventure.


Grief Sucks May 12, 2011

Filed under: Death,Grief,Jennifer,Tradition,Uncategorized — memorykeepersisters @ 9:45 pm

I adopted a puppy in March, I didn’t want to, but I had to. In October of 2010, my dog Puddin was killed by a careless driver who didn’t have the common courtesy to stop and let me know.  Over the next few months I grieved over that dog so much that I seriously considered seeking professional help.  Grief is hard.  And what’s worse is that when you grieve no one wants to talk to you about it. Your friends want to talk you out of it. They don’t want to hear about it, they want to steer clear of it. And that is what makes it so much harder.


Even as I am writing this, I worry that I will bum you out and you will stop reading. I lost my mother in 2006 and I have had friends who lost their parents at young ages. Losing a parent, at any age, makes you realize the importance of life and love. It makes you shorten the distance between your friends. It makes you want to hold on to the important people and get rid of all the negative stuff.

But why did I HAVE to adopt a puppy? To put it simply my dog and my cat were grieving and I didn’t know what to do.  Babydoll saw Puddin’s  “accident” somewhere in her she knew he was hurt. But do dogs comprehend death?  I think on some level they must. After my mother passed away you could see the look in Lexie’s eyes (my parents/sister’s beloved dog) and you could tell that she knew someone was missing from her home. After Puddin was gone both my dog and my cat seemed sad. Maybe it was just me and my anamorphic tendencies, but I could feel that they weren’t happy.  Babydoll who would sleep most nights in the den with Puddin, now insisted on sleeping next to me. Luci would come to me and cuddle and would try to wrestle Babydoll.  I couldn’t stand it anymore and so I adopted Cinnamon.

That is what makes humans fortunate, is that we can express our grief. But the unfortunate truth is that as a society, we shun grief. We treat it as if it were taboo. We whisper about our friends, “Oh you know her husband died.” And that is our cue to not mention it. We hide it behind fake smiles. We bury it with the dead. Christians, such as myself, tell ourselves that our family members are not dead, they are waiting for us. But that’s all good and well until you feel lonely.  We watch programs about ghosts. But those ghosts are from the 1900s. Yesterday’s ghosts are waiting until we are old enough not to care about them, not to grieve for them personally.  That’s why you don’t see horror movies about the 1990s. No scary September 11 ghosts. We still grieve, we still care. We are still actively shutting it out of our minds.

I made these last sets of cards with a more serious frame of mind. I thought about how pretty they needed to be. They couldn’t be the happy robots or sockmonkeys. I hope you like them. Remember to take a look at my etsy shop, visit my new website,  and to love your friends and family while you have them.  And when all else fails, go adopt a dog.