Thursday, January 8, 2015


I'm not too keen on New Year's Resolutions. 

Something about the promise to fix a bad habit always seems like I am preemptively setting myself up for failure. Hi, my name is Julie and I have very little self-confidence and quite poor follow through.


I always tend to make smallish resolutions but focus on them more as "goals" for this next year---gives me a little wiggle room to back out or get distracted for a couple months. Ahem, much like the blog this past year... 

My general theme of the goal is to focus on improving the attitude of some part of my bubble in efforts to better see the beauty on life happening around me. 

This year, my goal...resolve if you will (cringe)... is to be better present in my life. Instead of waiting around to be in a better state of mind or wait for a free second to be able to do something different--- I just allow myself a little intentional focus, whatever the mood or moment, to better see the bigger picture. 


It was chilly and I was cranky. My dog is on the fritz right now, I had a meeting with Molly's teacher early afternoon and my coffee was not waking me up in the way I needed it too. I had big plans to take RG to the vet this morning, definitely needed to shower earlier but --- instead I cued up the ole spotify, poured another cup o' wake-me-up and allowed myself to be still and present for a couple minutes more. You know what? 

Turns out there was more than just my bad attitude happening around me. 

And the rest of the day pretty much followed suit.

A busy night of boy scouts for Gabe and Kelly (in which details aren't always communicated and time tables rarely matriculate into anything predictable) actually resulted in a couch date with my favorite sisters and fabulously girly movie.

All the hermit time my grouchy attitude demanded, meant that my dog was surrounded all day by her pack and she actually decided to not run away for the day. As an added bonus, it seems that NW Austin has run out of fireworks. Finally. Poor scaredy dog.

There is always the great clean up that immediately follows bed routine (necessary because I have a BUNCH of people that live with me). Nothing remotely relaxing about turning to chores after getting all the tiny tyrants in bed. However, cleaning up meant that I was the one who got to stumble upon this little gem. My couch has monster hats, hand drawn maps of our neighborhood and pine wood derby cars on it. All because I have a Gabe in my life. What a great little reminder for me.

And the cold draft coming in at me through the open door to our garage??? The immediate reminder that my husband is painting drawers in the cold for me so that I can move our big girls in to one room together in the next couple days. 

Date nights aren't what they used to be these days. We are tired. It is cold. It is Thursday. Buuuuuut... that doesn't mean they don't happen over Chinese food and old comedy shows. Turns out laughter and egg rolls can make for a great end of day date.

Some days are so outwardly gritty... and yet being present for the bigger picture... there is nowhere else I'd rather be.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

5 Months!

Today we were all sitting in the middle of a car wash at Rudy's. Lucy was singing jingle bells full volume (can't let go of Christmas), Molly was playing her new recorder in the car... while trapped in the carwash (never again) and Gabriel was trying to tell me some facinating story about President Hoover from the back seat. I didn't know what was a worse fate... 5 more seconds in the car or scalding myself with hot soapy water by jumping out the driver door.

Do you know what you were doing through all this insanity joy? You were sleeping.

Kid. You are present for my soul.

Calm, smiley, giggly Annie. Did we hit the jackpot or WHAT?

Big month for you, Nanners. 

You pretty much learned all of the basic concepts associated with first grade math. You still get a little hung up on the minute hand. Don't you worry... I am fairly confident you will lock it down this month. 

Tummy time woes? Man... that was so last month. What a roly-poly tummy time champion you have become!

You are full of all kinds of tricks, Annie.

Last month you totally found your hands and now reach of everything. Claire is so excited about that milestone. Apparently, your cousin has the best.ear.ever.

Oh heeeeeeyyyyy there hand...

You also stumbled across the greatness of your thumb and became quite the thumb sucker for about a week. 


Goodbye, thumb. Hello, toe.

You sure are cute but dang, this whole toe sucking thing is pretty gross. 

I am a little concerned for you because in 24 days you will no longer be able to reach your toes. I keep trying to tell you but I don't think you believe that the surgery is ACTUALLY happening.

You are really quite the propped sitter these days. That is, unless your toes are exposed. Then it is more of a how fast can I nose-dive and get to that delicious big toe.

It's pretty.

Not really. But you know what was pretty for reals?!?! You at Christmas Mass. You took a little snooze through most of it, laughed with Aunt Katy a bit and went after Nonnie's necklace for a while. All in all, quality church-going.

Oh, five months. You are delicious.

 Gearing up for a chilly start to this next month of fun.

 Stay warm, friends!!

Thursday, January 1, 2015


May the start of something new, always welcome me with laughter, friendship and a breezy sky... but if it doesn't at first... please help me remember that one day, with time, it will. 
 January 2014

May I always be grateful for an unexpected preview of warmth-- especially when it tiptoes through a cold, grey sky just to say hello.
 February 2014

May I never again let guilt overshadow my care of self. Even the greatest of Moms need some space to remember all the things that make them great.
March 2014

May love always candidly sneak up on me, capture at my heart and take my breath away.
April 2014

May I always be the type of Mom that stops the car, lets her kids get naked and run through a fountain that glows. 
May 2014

May I always appreciate the beauty of a beach nap with someone I love.
 June 2014

May I always remember that I am mighty in spirit...
 July 2014

and stronger in numbers.
 August 2014

May the feeling of home always rise up to meet me...

September 2014

And keep me firmly grounded in love.
October 2014

Sometimes, it just may be that breaking the rules and going outside of my own timetables...
 November 2014

can quite possibly make way for the perfect balance of sparkle in my life.
 December 2014

2014. I didn't want you. You threw me a change up right when I was so weary from loss. How little I knew of the love that you could bring me? For all the challenges of 2015 to come... may I never forget that.

Happy New Year.