Sometimes, in my idiocy, I forget that I'm married to a Southern man. And sometimes, in the hustle, I forget that a piece of our soul is missing. A piece of our soul is in the South still.
My husband's mother, father, brother, and sister (and their families), along with grandparents, nieces, nephews, aunts, and uncles still live where Elliotts have lived for hundreds of years. The Elliotts still live very close to where the clan landed originally from Scotland, having remained there for almost as far back as we can trace.
Stuart is a piece of that history. The memories of schools and churches attended, street signs with familiar names, decades of history with friends. The importance of this is not lost of me, and yet, it's not often that we get to interact with that history – now living thousands of miles from those roots.
This past week, Stuart and I had the joy of returning to his “home” to visit with family and friends. Though the trip was quick, the fellowship was sweet, and the rain was heavy and smelt of Georgia. This is a place we both love deeply and are grateful, in our own ways, to call home.
What I cannot capture in words (I'm going to blame jet lag for my inability to string a significant amount of sentences together), I captured in photographs. Come along for trip, won't you?
15 years ago, Stuart and I happened to bump into each other in a bar. It was an inconsequential night in both of our lives, until it happened to become the most important of all of them. It was only six short months later that Stuart decided to give up his life in the South – his home, his heritage, his friends, community, family, and that beautiful red Georgia clay. He walked away from it all without complaint to be with me here in Washington.
At the time, he didn't know that we would sprout up a clutch of children, start a homestead, and run a Cooking Community for work. Neither of us had any idea what was in store, but we were ambitious, foolishly captivated with one another, and willing to ebb and flow in whatever way we needed to be together.
There are no regrets, but there are wonderful times of reflection and love for the piece of our soul that comes alive when we are here.
Thank you for reflecting the beauty of the place I’ve just recently called home. The South is an underdog, and so beautiful.
I grew up in the suburbs outside of Chicago and then randomly fell in love with a boy from the South. Have been here in Alabama for over 16 years now and wouldn’t wish it any other way. I don’t mind people’s misconceptions about here, at least it keeps it from getting too crowded 😉
I love seeing these photos. Being from Tennessee I, of course, think there is no better place to live than the South! Screen porches, sweet tea, and the food!!!!! So, so good!
The way you photograph people…. There’s something so magical about it!
Such a beautiful reflection of your adventures! Born and raised in South Carolina, my appreciation for the South runs deep.
You very beautifully captured the pace of life—especially the antique mall. Our family is from close to Rutledge (Monroe) and we lived there for many years before moving to the Northeast. On a different note, I love watching your channel, reading the blog and listening to homemaker chic. Thank you for creating beautiful, inspiring content, Shaye! I have been holding near to my heart what you told your children about arguing (Christ didn’t die for that toy) and being in the thick of mothering three boys, 4 and under, I have to remind myself that about many things these days. Blessings to you!
Love [Back] From Scotland!
“‘The town of Elliot was their antiquitie,
Which stands in Angus, at the foot of Glenshie;
With brave King Robert Bruce they hither came;
Which is three hundred and eighty years agone;
In West Teviotdale* these gentlemen did dwell, (*An old way of describing Liddesdale) They were twelve great families, I hear my goodsir tell;
Their chief was a Baron of renown,
Designed Reid-heugh, which is now called Lariston.'”