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About Me

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My name is Natalie, I’m in my {early} 30s and I live in a large, drafty, ca. 1885 house in my hometown north of  Atlanta.   I married my best friend and love of my life, C., on May 28, 2005.  We were fixed up by a mutual friend when we were in college and of course couldn’t stand each other (he said I was uptight, I said he was a jerk…we were both right).  Eleven months later we met again and became inseparable.  We were engaged within eight months and married with fifteen months.  We enjoy home repair (obviously), laying in the hammock, going to the lake, and eating Mexican at a hole in the wall restaurant near our house.

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On May 17, 2008, we found out that we were pregnant after over a year of trying and after a very turbulent pregnancy of severe gestational diabetes with four insulin shots per day, eleven weeks of bedrest due to preeclampsia, and eclampsia, I delivered a beautiful, healthy baby girl on January 8, 2009.  Her name is Mary Margaret Eleanor and she is my life’s joy.

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She has blessed our life more than I can even begin describe and we began trying to expand our family again in June, 2009.  Unfortunately, after twenty-two months of trying {10 of those with fertility drugs} and a miscarriage we still had no baby.  And that’s when we realized…duh…God’s been trying to tell us something.  Adoption!  I’ve always wanted to–I’m adopted myself–and now that we’ve made the decision our hearts have such a peace about them.  

We met our son’s birth parents in November 2011 and Moseby Davin C. was born on February 26, 2012.  After our infertility struggles he is like our rainbow after a storm.  And boy, is he a cutie patootie!  We feel so blessed that his birth mother chose us to parent her child and we value our open adoption with her.

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My hometown (as seen in a picture from 1921) was named in honor of the owner of the Atlanta Richmond Air Line Railway in order to become a lunch stop between Atlanta and Toccoa in 1873.  Because of the prominent Allen family the town became successful as the largest and most respected tannery in the world between 1872 – 1965.  They made saddles, shoes, glue, and other leather goods out of the three factories in town.  Two of the three remain today and both are on the National Register.

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I’m an elementary school teacher by day and a full-time mom.  For the past couple of years I’ve worked part-time.  What that means is I’m home by 11:30 in time to eat lunch with my girl.  I really cannot thing of a combination I like better–mother AND teacher–and feel so blessed to be able to do both.  I finished my third masters degree (and my last!) on May 1st, 2008.  I have a degree in horticulture with a minor in entomology, a masters in education, another masters in educational leadership, and most recent masters in historic preservation.  If I didn’t have to work I would think about getting my masters in interior design, but I honestly don’t think I could handle doing another one any time soon!

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My husband, C. (seen in the above photograph), and I did a complete rehab of our home in late 2007–all in 48 days.  We, along with some awesome subcontractors and my parents’ 24/7 help, redid the wiring, plumbing, and added HVAC (when we bought the house only four of the fourteen rooms had central heat and there was no AC).  We ripped out dropped ceilings, gutted the kitchen and baths, took down each piece of trim and numbered it, took out nails, hand sanded, machine sanded, primed, painted, and reinstalled it, ripped out paneling, linoleum, and tile, and painted ’til we thought our arms would fall off.  Of course, there’s still stuff to do and we have our one year plan (strip and paint the front porch..which we’re currently doing this fall), five year plan (redo kitchen/sleeping porch, add master bath), ten year plan (take off the vinyl and deal with what’s underneath), etc. and I’m told that with an old house you will never be finished….and that’s exactly why we bought it.

My husband and I have a briard puppy named Vivi who is an absolute mess and a princess persian cat named Coco.  They fill our life with joy…and lots of hair.

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The Actors in Our Old Southern House

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