Posted on: Tuesday, December 31, 2013

January. baby teeth removal. spring semester. great wolf lodge weekend retreat. February. school school and more school. Darwin and Huxley's 2nd birthday. March. spring break in Boston. new Justin Timberlake album. 2 year anniversary. Kyle reenlisted. April. West explosion. Boston bombing. Kyle's accident. finishing spring semester. May. data collection in Dallas. The Office series finale. Baltimore. Washington, DC. Arrested Development returns. June. Kyle deploys. baby birds. farmers market. friends. July. 25th birthday. adopted Luna. IKEA trips. kayaking in Bastrop. Blues on the Green in Austin. August. concert in Boston. friends. school starts. September. conference in Austin. back to school picnic. Maroon 5 and Kelly Clarkson concert in Dallas. DC trip reunion. October. hunger conference. Baylor tailgate and homecoming. Color me Rad 5K. November. DC reunion. lots of school work. Kyle returned. Thanksgiving. mom and brother visit. December. school ends. presentation to HOTCOG. Christmas in Texas. Camping for NYE.

- S

Another Year

Posted on: Monday, December 30, 2013

This year I...

I learned that every month, every day can be a struggle for me. Happiness, real, genuine, internally-driven happiness, has not come naturally to me for many years now, and I struggle to find and cultivate it. Some days are better than others of course, some days are very dark. On average, on a scale of 1 :( to 10 :) I'd say I'm a 4.

I learned that there is so much that we think but do not say. I voice probably 30 to 40 percent of my thoughts and feelings, even to the people I am closest to. We are like icebergs, aren't we. I think this is probably both good and bad, and what makes social work so difficult sometimes.

I learned a lot about hunger in America, and policy, and community organizing, and federal benefits, and social work. I became comfortable leading groups and holding individual therapy sessions with kiddos and adults at the mental health hospital I worked at. I attended a couple conferences and I still love to learn.

I learned what it takes to start to love a place- a town, a city, a state, a region. This summer gave me the perfect opportunity for this. I finally had some time to get to know Waco a bit, and when you learn a place though exploring its faults and challenges and thinking of ways to improve upon them, the love comes so readily and unexpectedly. It also helps when you get to a point where you don't need a GPS to drive anywhere/everywhere.

I learned that friendship can be found in unexpected places from unexpected persons. And it doesn't have to be more complicated than that.

I learned that it is much easier to act on caring for others than yourself.

I remembered that I need the outdoor air.

I decided to be tougher. I found being warm to be both the easiest thing and the most difficult thing at times.

I got to lead often.

I learned that to believe what others tell me about myself, I have to first believe it for myself.

I learned that I need more people in my life than only my husband (and that's OK).

I realized that Snapchat is actually awesome and not stupid and pointless like I thought when I was first introduced to it.

I learned (in theory) how to kill a chicken from my Kenyan friend.

I got to take trips to Boston (twice) and DC and remembered how much I love travel and that I should try to do more of it. Also my love and appreciation for metro systems in big cities was solidified.

I drove many many miles.

I learned that not all small dogs are yippy and annoying.

I still have issues with my hair.

- S


Posted on: Sunday, December 29, 2013

^^doing some work at Panera, hockey, Luna selfie, at the park^^
^^winter, Hux and Walking Dead, last minute gift prep, bff^^
^^holiday flowers from grandparents, best professor, there goes my engagement ring, Christmas caramel^^
^^holiday cards, Georgetown Cupcakes, Sadie, rice krispies^^
^^neighborhood decor, Loons holiday greeting, Christmas sangria, pretty pup^^
^^cat in a box, tonks, tea, huxtable^^
^^precious loon goon, cocoa plus Baileys, Rifle Paper Co love, Madewell love^^

- S


Posted on: Thursday, December 26, 2013

Here's a quick look at our Christmas (and Eve)! Kyle had the 24th and 25th off, so we just hung around at home for the most part, watching some holiday films, going for a night neighborhood walk to see all the lights (Temple, TX showed up with the lights), forcing Luna into a Santa hat ever so briefly, you know. We skyped/facetimed with our families which was nice. I made a super festive sangria that I wish more people were around to drink because what's left is still just sitting in a punch bowl on the kitchen table.

- S

Holiday Baking

Posted on: Monday, December 23, 2013

Since it's just Kyle and I here in Texas for the holidays, I didn't see the need to do much baking, but as I do rather enjoy baking for others (I baked almost more Sundays than not, this semester, making treats to bring in for classmates), I decided to make a little something for our neighbors on both sides. We don't know them very well, but they both have several kids that play around our house and we chat with them when we're in the backyard with Luna (one child thought Luna was my name for several months). I decided to make these salted honey Rice Krispies treats; I figured kids love rice krispies treats (right?), and these have a little twist on them. The recipe is from here.  Kyle even likes them, so it worked out that there's a few extra for us. I'm not sure this actually counts as baking, but it was fun nonetheless!

- From the desk of Mrs. M

2013 Holiday Card

Just sharing a look at the Christmas cards we sent out this year. I love anything and all things from Rifle Paper Co., so I knew well in advance of the season where I would be ordering cards from this year. I picked these two and they are just beautiful and simple. I like that they have more generalized, uplifting messages rather than a specific holiday greeting. We also wrote a letter to update folks on what we've been up to (as a social worker I am mostly paranoid that most people think that all social workers do is take children away from families); apparently Kyle and I haven't done anything cool together this year, so, oops on that. 

- From the desk of Mrs. M

Holiday Cupcakes

Posted on: Sunday, December 22, 2013

My sister (aka the cupcake fairy), who is a manager at Georgetown Cupcake in Boston as you may recall, sent us some holiday cupcakes. They are so pretty, so yes this post is just pictures of some cupcakes. Enjoy. 

- From the desk of Mrs. M
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