Tuesday, November 30, 2010


Several weeks ago my computer crashed due to an outdated program on my desktop and kindly gifted me with the blue screen of death. If you have no idea what this is than consider that a VERY good thing. Once the problem was corrected (God bless, Google!!), I found I had lost two beloveds... my iTunes playlists (which I am still holding hope for) and my favorite picture editing software. I was frustrated... concerned...quite frankly, not thankful.

I do have another (supposedly better) picture editing program but taking the time to learn how to use it is just not on my Tuesday to-do list. So... here you have it. Our red-eyed, unedited, photo list of random things we are thankful for. You see, we ARE thankful for all blessings...big and small.

For FANCEE dinners...

costume theaters...
and castles of tree and bark.
For pie night baking...

rolls for the taking...

for favorites at the park.

We give thanks for the slides...

for daddy rides...

Christmas trees all a-glow...
For snuggle bugs and cousin love...
And of course... as always... for Bevo.
Sending holiday love to each of your homes!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Shutterfly Christmas Cards

I really do believe that giving and receiving Christmas Card's might be one of my most FAVORITE parts of the holiday season. I know it seems silly but I love running to the mailbox to find more than just bills and ads waiting to say hello to me. Now, that my kiddos pretty much bring in the mail each day--- I know that holiday cards will be that much more exciting! Hooray fun mail.

There are have been a few years that the Christmas cards just didn't go out. The year that Gabey was born was a little financially taxing and so we decided to cut cost and just send his birth announcement in Feb.... still fun mail to send out but sort of lacking in all the holiday goodness!

I was SO excited when I found out that Shutterfly was offering 50 free holiday cards to bloggers. You can find more information and sign up here! I am going to be honest... I have never ordered my cards from shutterfly and I have to tell you I might have been missing out! There are SO many cute cards to choose from! Here are a few of my favorites... and by a few, know that this means about 60 more I love as well. For more card options... you should check out this link!

Now to find the perfect picture!

Hooray for holiday fun!!

The Thanksgiving Practice

This year, we took the whole practice makes perfect thing in a different direction. Hint: think food.

Thanksgiving is like the FEAST of the WORLD... an eating championship of sorts, no? Well, I don't know about you but I really just don't feel very comfortable heading to a championship without a little practice. You know... to stretch your stomach and all.

Behold... the FIRST (quite hopefully annual) Thanksgiving Practice! This year, we decided to host a thanksgiving potluck with some friends here in Austin in efforts to gear up for the big week of eating to come. And who am I kidding, it was SO much fun to finally get to use all that fun gear we registered for 6 years ago. Electric turkey carver--- that thing is AWESOME! We had such a great intimate group this year and I really believe that it was the perfect start to a fun new tradition!

Turkey Day decor? Check.

Table full of food? Check.
Quality feasting and visiting? Check.

Happy kid table? Check.

A night to remember? BIG check! (sorry we missed a couple in this picture!)
And I have to say that having practiced now, I definitely feel more confident in my eating abilities for the week. Baby Lucy does too.

Warrior Dash!

It is a muddy, fierce, warrior-like trek. Clearly marked only for the mighty. Which--- in the case of my OB ---does not include pregnant women. We are our own type of mighty, I guess.

This weekend, we headed out east to cheer on our AWESOME neighbors as they competed in the Central Texas warrior dash. This course looked so much fun. In the 5K, competitors climb walls, cross rivers, climb through mud and jump over fire... in the end you are hosed down cattle call style. Afterwards, you can feast on turkey legs, beer and dance to some good ole' rock... a perfect combination for warriors.

We couldn't be more proud of our "warriors"... they did have quite the fan club!

Please note, that not one person in this race started off with a brown shirt.
Warrior Dash 2011...count us in!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Park Project

We are just about daily park goers here. In a world of analogies, Mays:Parks is like Crack:Addict. Okay, so perhaps not the most PC analogy but whatev'--- you get my point.

In Dallas, I had a fellow park going addict, Caroline, to keep me company on all of our hunts for the best new exciting park. I know that she would LOVE project park too. The other day, I came across this blog where various writers review different Austin topics. My favorite (and by favorite of course I mean super-jealous-totally-could-have-stolen-this-project-with-perhaps-the-help-of-one-Caroline favorite) section is the series where this one writer reviews the parks all over the Austin area. It is broken up by area of town and includes pictures and practical other tidbits of info--- like if there are bathrooms, best place to park, time of most shade. AMAZING. So far, she has reviewed what appears to be like 30 parks maybe? Ahh, project park. We are frequenting ALL of them... well, most of them. The ones that she gave a negative review of we tend to not visit because she does make some keen observations and valid points.

Here is the specific link to the park review. You sort of have to play with the website a little to get the full feel for it. Hopefully, it will help your little Austinites find all sorts of new adventures. Caroline! You totally need to do this for Dallas--- I could be an assistant ghost writer :)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


It is one of my favorite times--- Festival season! Now, in Austin it seems there is a festival every weekend... which I love. With that said, my most favorite festivals tend to be around the holidays because you don your winter apparel (or in our case--- anything non-flip flop) and head outside for some twinkly lights and hot apple cider. Yum!

Oh...and of course cotton candy the size of your head.

Throw in a miniature pony in addition to all the festival goodness
and you have some VERY happy Mays.

Gearing up for Sights and Sounds in SM and then of course the Zilker tree! If you live in the area, be sure to check them out!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Be a coach

When I think of mandatory staff training session on a Saturday morning, "fun" is really not the first thought to pop into my non-caffeinated little head. I think I had a few more choice phrases. The cool 46 degree weather that met me at the front door and promised to be a GORGEOUS morning did little to improve my mood.

But I went. Because I mentioned the whole mandatory thing right???? And I have authority issues and am the ever student... so you bet I was there.

Let me tell you. One of the BEST stinkin' development sessions I have been to in a looooonnnggg time. We were such an interactive group that they even rewarded us with breakfast tacos. In case you didn't know this, the way to my heart just might be through a breakfast taco with salsa on the side. Mmmm. All kidding aside, this information was incredible. The theme of the whole presentation was to focus on "Healing without Harm" or in the contexts of healthcare...what you need to do to not kill your patients. Important stuff. I am a lover of conferences. I love presenting, get giddy in the audience and let's face it--- I am that annoying girl sitting next to you that actually participates and shamefully cries during the little video snippets. Pregnancy hormones? Nope... I was like this back in my good ole' life with margaritas days too. Remember, I'm a feeler folks'?

One of my most favorite things about a good conference is when the material is applicable to life in general and the presenters play off that. In fact, it might be safe to say that I actually feel like a better parent based off the information I was presented today as a clinical technician. This whole 5:1 ratio of positive feedback to negative--- um, yes please.

Now one of the concepts I was MOST impressed with was this whole idea of being a coach in life. Supporting the people in my everyday life be it colleagues, my children or just strangers. Because in a hard situation--- it can mean the difference between success and failure... and in the world of healthcare, life and death. One of the examples they gave to drive this point home was this video from youtube. Not a new video and perhaps you have seen it. What an incredible moment of a stranger reaching out to help someone and result in an effect that was far more positive than ever thought possible. And just a second too late, could have had a very tragic end.

And yes, my deskmate almost hugged me after this one because I was one weepy rotund lady. Got to love it when a good life moment touches your heart. And because this is my sappy blog--- I am choosing to share it with you.

So, pause the music on my side (if you haven't already) and enjoy.

In my world of parenting, healthcare, friendship and family--- I can only hope that I can learn to better become a coach.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Think Pink

So, I have been an absent blogger. A very absent blogger. I know what you are thinking ... this pregnancy getting me down...taking its toll on my energy levels... leaving little time to fit in non-essentials in my day like blog writing... no?

Well, I am going to let you in on a shameful little secret. I feel really good right now minus the random kicks and need to pee at a moments notice. Babyland is very happy. I'll get back to that. The shameful truth behind my bad blogging ways is Hunger Games. Darn you, Hunger Games. My book club read this book back when I was in that superfun pukey stage and I just couldn't do it--- clearly my loss. So, when I finally delved in the book last Saturday who knew that just 5 days later I would have read THE ENTIRE TRILOGY. Now, I am dying to talk about it and very likely will be scheduling a VERY delayed book conference with my Dallas gals. 5 days + 3 books = crazy lady dreams. It is over. And while I am silently mourning the loss of great mental escape that only a great book can bring (the readers out there know EXACTLY what I mean) I definitely have more time on my hands for important things. Like parenting. And showering. And you know, enjoying other things in my day... like fun little photo sessions.

Meeting Molly and Gabriel was incredible because we had NO idea who we were meeting until the moment they arrived. My favorite part was the months leading up to delivery when EVERYONE we came in contact had their own expert opinion on the gender of our child. Sometimes exact same reasons for different genders. It was comedy at its finest and it was really fun.

But, you see... we like to change things up every now and again. Through the months of this pregnancy, it has become abundantly clear how much Molly and Gabriel would be more a part of the process of preparing for baby if they could have more tangible expectations of who our new little arrival would be-- gender and all. So, we tried something new.

Today was our anatomy sonogram. And while we didn't get the best pictures, we were so excited to see a sleepy, HEALTHY, curled up little nugget with Molly's long feet and Gabriel's identical sleeping positions... and yes, giant cheeks too. What we were even more excited about was our ability to finally put a name with this sweet baby growing inside of me. I have to say, it feels pretty wonderful.

Baby Lucy, we can't wait for April to get here!!!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Good Humor

Oh, Parenting. You never fail to give me a little chuckle. If life was about making great first impressions than it might not be a good idea to take your kids with you... they sort of tell it like is in more ways than not. The one day that you wear a shirt that is perhaps a little low cut for your taste (the joys of laundry day)... you bet this is the day you are climbed up like a tree in a mean game of chase ... um yeah, by the neckline of your shirt. See, kids keep it real.

The best thing is that there is sort of a commune of fellow "over-exposed" parents in this world and it is like you become instant allies in awkward social situations. All I can say is, THANK GOODNESS. It is always a little nice to have a chuckle at another's expense (knowing full well it could be you any second). Like today for instance....

This afternoon we escaped down the street to the "chick-fil-a playground". It seems that my children consistently pick the coldest, dreariest day to become crazy monsters of the house.... at least at Chick-Fil-a my couch is no longer the trampoline. Whew. Gauging by the number of kids at Chick-Fil-a I am guessing that this whole house monster thing is more of an epidemic.

Enter comical relief.

I am sitting next to a 6'4'' Dad who is there with his three sons all under 4 years. Instant respect. It seems in all the chaos of kids, his 18 month old managed to scale to the highest point of the enclosed structure and became too scared to come down. So you do what we all do... send the other one up to get them... yes, big might end up dragging little down the slide but let's face it... this really could happen on a daily basis. In fact, the could is much more of a likely in our household. I always support an underdog and in this case that 18 month old gave his big brother a piece of his mind... and remained totally and completely lodged at the top. So you empathize. Perhaps, share your story... all the while stifling a smile of an all too familiar scene. It turns out that scaling a playground is a lot more difficult when you are 6'4''. This poor guy. Slow, steady and mortified the entire way up. Slowly we trickled out because of tired kiddos and by the time we left he was still at the top, pleading with his 18 month old to let go and come down. When I left they were discussing some ice cream incentives. Which I am confident worked... at some point or another :)

And while you are humbled on a daily basis in this world of parenting, the afternoons that I can curl up on the couch with my two house monsters and watch Toy Story 3 over hot chocolate seem to make it all worth it.