Tuesday, December 13, 2011


I talked it up for a couple of days....we are going to go meet Santa. She was excited. She woke up talking about "santa claus." I got her all dolled up and headed to the mall. She was good right up to the point of actually seeing santa and then she clamped on to me like a crab and wanted nothing to do with santa. So, the only picture I got of her with santa is with me in it too. Boo! Maybe next year. So, we came home and took a couple of pics in front of our tree.

Spartan Nation

Since June, we have been immersed in select ball. We are now in the "off season"....time off all the way until January. Ha! We just came off a huge win so of course I want to brag about that but more importantly I want to hold on to my memories and thoughts about these times. I received a comment from an old high school friend who have kids older than me. He was sharing with me about how much he missed watching his boys play at this age. It made me want to freeze this time, tuck it away nicely and have it forever. Thus, I blog it.

Select ball is a whole new world for us. MSW did not play select...it was Pearsall, folks and select ball has really just emerged the last few years. When Cade was invited to try-out we were a little skeptical but alot excited. Caden was born one day before the age cut-off so he plays with boys a year older than him. Good for his development but at 6 and 7, a year makes a big difference. We were worried about him making the team but thought it would be great experience, none the less. We were so proud of him to make the team of 12. And so the adventure began...

From the long, hot practices twice a week this summer to the first tournament where they could not even hit the ball into the outfield. We did not know any of the boys before he made the team. None of them go to his school and none had been on his previous MPLL tams. There was an awkwardness at the beginning. The boys getting to know each other and the parents figuring each other out. I remember one practice early on in which they picked two boys to pick their teams for a scrimmage. Caden was the last boy picked. I wanted to go get him and take him home. But, I sat there and watched my boy move on un-phased by it and play his heart out and show those boys just because he was one of the smallest he could still play.

We played a few local, summer tournaments and by the second tournament we were placing and then winning. The boys came together in an amazing way, the parents bonded and we became the San Antonio Spartans. By early fall, we took the show on the road. Winning San Marcos, then the State tournament and finally the World Series. What a ride for these boys!

We've had some bumps in the road. A coaching change, some cuts, some adds...through it all we've remained respectful, united and standing for the ethics we've had all along. Our boys are not flashy, the coaches don't yell or belittle, the boys are always, always expected to be respectful of everyone and most of all reminded it is a game and to have fun. Oh we have seen some teams. From the $200,000 custom painted team tour bus, to the teams decked out from head to toe in the most expensive, matching gear. We see the teams that make their kids run for an hour after a loss to the coaches and parents that yell so terribly that I would call it verbal abuse. The teams that travel with sound systems so that each players theme song is played as they take the plate. Oh it is a totally different world from Little League. The level of competition is unbelievable. These little guys can play.

So this past weekend it did not surprise me a bit that the SA Spartans played their little hearts out (going unbeaten, I must say), had a complete blast and showed everyone what playing with class looks like! After leaving SA at 5 am, playing 3 games on Saturday we all went back to the hotel and let the boys cut loose. We let them swim in the indoor pool for hours. The parents sat around laughing and telling stories while the boys acted like boys just as they should. I love that no one looses site of the fact that it is just a game and they are little boys that should just be having fun. Nobody mentioned that a World Series Championship was on the line the next day or put pressure on the boys to settle down, or focus or go to sleep. We all know what has been instilled in these kids. We all know that them having fun together is much more important than anything else and we all have complete confidence in our boys to take the field the next day and give it their all. And, that is exactly what they did. The friendships and life lessons they are learning from this experience is priceless. The memories they are gaining is far better than any championship ring or trophy they can put in their room. I really hope we can keep this train rolling for their childhood.

If I ever wonder if all the time and money we spend is worth it...look at that face! Pure joy after the State win. The boys in the background are not our team...just so happens that Austin has a Spartans team with the same uniforms.

Your 2011 Winter World Series Champions!!! These are some of the best kids around. They all have amazing personalities.

His first ring!

So proud of our boy! It was cold, cold, cold but so worth it! You can't take away the experience of watching your son play a game he loves so much and winning it all. Our hearts swell!

Saturday, December 3, 2011


Testing from my new MacBook Pro.....let's see if this has solved all my PC issues I was having.

Sunday, November 27, 2011


Two weeks....I can do this. One more week (4 days) of lecture, five final exams and then a month of vacation during the Christmas season! I cannot wait. Life continues to be moving swiftly. Such a beautiful time in our lives yet so, so busy.

A big contributor to our crazy schedule is Cade's baseball. His select team has done amazingly well for their first season! Last week they won the Super Series State Championship!! I never thought that I would be traveling, staying in hotels to watch my 7 year old win a state championship! There really are no words to watch your child achieve that doing something he loves so much. We've made some amazing friends through the Spartans and we really are blessed to share this experience with wonderful people. Next weekend the SA Spartans are headed to the Super Series World Series. They have only been together since June so this is pretty incredible! This will be the last tournament for the Fall. I cannot even imagine how crazy the Spring will be with the heavy season for select ball and a competitive Spring at Little League too. I just think we are busy right now.

I have once again taken on too much. I know this about myself yet I just don't know how to turn down an opportunity. I have been asked to join the Honor's Academy and soon will be advising a case load of honor students and teaching in the Honor's program. An amazing opportunity....but more work. I have taken on way too much photography business lately. I just can't miss out on meeting a new family! I am going to have to slow it down...right after the wedding I shoot on New Year's Eve....I can't believe I signed that contract! It has been interesting trying to schedule shoots around everything else but I've done so and unintentionally 2011 will probably go down as my most profitable yet...which is bad, bad for my CPA husband. My business is supposed to help our taxes and show a loss. I am about to have to purchase a new Macbook Pro and some lenses for some write-offs...darn the bad luck ;).

Camy is as precious as ever. She is talking so much and everyday presents us with a new phrase. She is "my best girl" and my constant shadow. I thank God everyday for the gift of my camy girl.

Michael is doing well in his new position. He is learning the ropes of the banking realm and has been wined and dined by most banks already. He just finished up year end close and just needs to finish up the yearly audit and things will look a little easier for him after the holidays. It stinks that this is his busiest time of year but just the way it goes. We spent two weeks trying to figure out how to go on a trip for a few days in December. Pathetically, we could not come up with a string of days we could be away during December. We will try again in May.

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving. I really enjoyed the days with my family. We even finished all our Christmas decorating! Can't wait for the best time of the year!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

The Dossier

I have not blogged in ages and for that I am regretful. We've been living life, fully....in the fast lane....and while I am making the memories there is just not time to document those memories. There are pictures and come February there will be a retreat and I will scrap those memories appropriately. That makes it ok for me.

However, today is such a significant day in my professional life...anti-climatic in many ways....not something to pop a cork for (yet) but after 6 years of working on it, the final day deserves a blog, at least.

It takes 6 years of tenure-track teaching, hours of service, publications, peer reviews, classroom observations, chair evaluations, student evaluations, justification upon justification to even apply. Today I turned in my Tenure Dossier. All 762 pages. I should have taken a picture of it, huh?!?! I said a little prayer and placed (more like dropped) it on my Chair's desk. It is out of my hands now. It will travel its way through the Chair, Tenure Committee, Dean, Vice-President, President and finally the Board. Let's hope it's approved. I won't know until late summer/early fall if I have been granted tenure. For us in academia tenure is a big deal, huge in fact.

Wouldn't you know that the year I am up for tenure is the year the Board decides to review the worth of it. Yeah...fun! As an officer of the Faculty Senate, I have given that my best fight. We've stood strong on the issue and as of now, it remains in tact. Maybe I just got in under the wire?

So here we go, waiting on that decision that is months away.

Sunday, August 21, 2011


No pics yet because my camera is packed and ready to head out to Cade's baseball tournament in a little while and then I will do one big photo dump onto the computer....

"So busy"...that is just an understatement around here. Always on the go and our days beautifully filled with activities and friends. I went back to work on Monday. It was fine. I am still working hard on a good balance and was able to keep it up all week despite my extra duties since being elected as a Faculty Senator and Secretary of the Senate.

Tomorrow will bring excitement as Caden will begin 2nd grade! How in the world did that happen????? We met his teacher last week and she seems really great. We sweetened her up with a Crayola Wreath so hopefully that will keep her sweet with my boy. ;) Cade is excited about school beginning and was lucky enough to get one of his best friends in his class so all is good in his little world.

I get to met all my students tomorrow and Tuesday. I will be teaching 19 hours....yikes!!! 3 different courses....some Internet, some flex....those overloads are just too hard to turn down! Extra $$$$$$$$ for play is always good stuff. Feel free to remind me of that when I am knee-deep into it all!

Camy Lizzy spent a couple days at Ms. Laura's last week and did just fine. She was so tired when I picked her up from all the playing...the sad thing is that I picked her up right after nap time so sister is playing hard! On the 3rd day, she was a little mad at me because I think it was starting to sink in that this would be a regular thing and not just a random treat of playing with her friends. poor love....

Busy day that I need to get started. Cade and MSW are already 40 minutes into the first ball game of the day. That was a little early and a very long day for us girls so we will make the 2nd game here in a little while. Tonight we will have our annual "Back to School" dinner. As always, the school-boy, Cade picked the menu...cheese enchiladas, Spanish rice and beans. This year's theme is "Give your best."

Clothes are lined out, bags are packed, lunches will be made, attitudes directed....tomorrow begins a new chapter!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

The funk and the fix

It started....the slide into a funk. Maybe it is this relentless heat, maybe it is the inevitable thought of going back to work, maybe it is the guilt of being a little excited about going back to work (what a dichotomy), maybe it is a product of being stuck inside all day because of the heat...whoops, I already mentioned the heat. Whatever the precursor to my funk, that slide became a fall when Camy fell (literally) Saturday night. A hard hit to the pavement. A joyous game of ball in the front yard that was transformed instantly to a trip to the ER. A big bump to her forehead that no doubt needed a dose of Humate-P. However, the bump paled in comparison to the hell she went through trying to get in her Humate-P. As Cade would say, "Curse you Von Willebrand's!"

We go to the ER at Santa Rosa because this is the hospital that houses her treatment center and where all her records reside (and arguably the best children's ER in the city and I hate that I have to know that ). It is in the heart of downtown SA. We are blessed to be served here so graciously. No wait....straight in...they know she is Type III the second they type in her name. We also skip any skepticism of child abuse ( a very touchy subject for this mama that I will touch on in a minute). Straight back to start her IV...7 nurses, 2 hours, and 5 pokes later. Finally the IV was in and Humate-P was administered. You know it is bad when they call in the airlife nurse because "they start IV's in helicopters" denies trying to start her IV because they can't see a 'good' vein! I cannot even remotely describe the hell that Michael and I go through during this process....much less our baby girl. It rips my heart into tiny shreds that are trampled over and over again. She yells Mama, mama over and over....I feel the burning in my stomach. I want to rip her away from them and run. But, we are at mercy to their training and this drug. Michael gets mad and protective and his so-out-of-character reaction shakes me even more. WE DON'T HANDLE THIS WELL and need to get so much better because ultimately Camy reads our stress and reacts accordingly.

She is such a hard stick. We keep thinking her veins will get more visible but we just aren't there yet. And they think that we will be able to do this to our daughter one day.... A CT scan was ordered to check for bleeding. At this point sweet girl would not let go of me. If you ever need tips on how to hold a 30lb baby while you squat over a toilet to pee just let me know....I can do that! Luckily, they were totally fine with me going up to CT with her. I had to laugh when the tech had me put on a protective vest...really? You do realize I am going in this tube with her because she is not going to let go of me. Sure enough...in we went! It was the first CT scan for us both. By the grace of God, no bleeding. We were clear to go. Scared....but released to go home.

You don't go through those experiences and not continue to reel from them. I let my mind go to the what-if's, I get absolutely pissed that a bump that would be a bag of ice for most kiddos turns into a ER, IV, CT scan for my daughter and then comes the sadness. I feel so sad that she has to deal with this bleeding disorder. I feel guilt...I should be able to save her from each fall and we can't deny that it is hereditary. I don't sleep that night...the thoughts swirling around.

Sunday we all feel like we have been hit by a ton of bricks. Sissy is clingy and fussy and has every right to be so. My neck is stiff, I'm quiet and I just want to crawl up into a ball and cry. MSW can't look at baby girl and not feel like he should have been able to stop her fall, he's mad she has this disorder. Caden is confused...a little frustrated as he knows we won't be playing a game of ball again that was so much fun before the fall.

I spent 5 years with the title of Counselor behind my name. It does nothing to change our feelings, only allows me to put labels or stages on what we are feeling. The truth is one that stings my tongue to say...Von Willebrand's absolutely affects our baby girl but it also impacts us all. Not everyday, not all the time but when it does it takes the wind out of us all.

New month, new week, fresh start....I can hope, right? But nope my funk hangs on to Monday. I clean, I cook, I rock babies and sit in the driveway working three digit math problems with doodle. But deep down I still fell my gut stirring. Snap out I tell myself! Despite a nasty bruise, she is fine. You are so lucky. She is good. The self-talk goes no where.

This is absolutely frustrating for me. I treat this stuff....I talk people from this all the time. I have a Master's Degree saying I can fix this stuff. I am no help to myself.

Tuesday...new day. We already had an annual appointment for Camy with her Hematologist so this will serve as an annual and a post-follow-up to her fall. We usually go on Thursdays....Tuesdays are also clinic days for the oncology kids. HEART WRENCHING! Very sick, precious children. A great kick to my gut. How lucky am I to be here checking out a bump to the head? I only weep for these beautiful, bald-headed babies. Check-up goes great! We see the physical therapist, dentist, hematologist, HTC nurse and social worker. She blows them all away.....don't come back for a year!!! Also, obtained a letter to carry with us into the ER (which there will be no more visits ;)) that directs on how to stick her and with what gauge of needle....doctor's orders. And don't think for a second this mama does not have the names of who and who not to let touch her!

We've stayed close to home and I cannot deny that it is in large part to my baby's big bruise. Which brings up the other side to this coin. A large percentage of VWD children are reported as abused by someone who is unfamiliar with VWD. There is not a time that you will not find a bruise on Camy. Sometimes I know how they happened, most the time not. It is part of the disorder. It is the biggest everyday struggle that I deal with. I cringe every morning that I see a new bruise on her. She is unphased by them....but I know each and everyone. I'm told one day we won't even notice them....yaright!

While I would much rather have someone who suspects abuse call and be wrong, it puts the ball in a whole different park when it is your child. I am no stranger to calling CPS so I am in no way passing judgment on anyone who calls CPS, in fact, applaud that child advocacy. However, the thought of someone looking at her and thinking that crushes me. We are protected in so many ways. Anyone who keeps Camy (Laura, Church, Gym, etc...) have been trained and informed of her condition and to expect bruises on her. Any possible CPS call would be fielded by her social worker and HTC nurse which would absolutely shield us from any harmful questions. That's not really it... People look at her bruises....I see it. I don't want her for a second to become self conscious of those bruises. The comments...well, she doesn't need to hear it.

Finally, today...the fog lifted. Nothing particular, I guess. I'm blessed with a fairly consistent mood and she came back today. We threw caution to any stares or looks and headed to watch the Smurfs...in the 3D, no less. Camy's first movie and she did great. Caden said it was the coolest thing he's ever done! We picked up mimi and ampa from the airport and they loved on her and did not linger at all on her bruise. We got back into rhythm and all feels right again. Will there be more bumps (literally and figuretively)? Undoubtedly. More trials? Without a doubt. Times for no reason or with reason we feel in a funk? Absolutely.

I blog today to share some real, raw and unfiltered emotions. We all carry so many responsibilities, burdens and for many of us moms, we serve as the hub of the family and don't allow or forgive ourselves for the funk periods we sometimes feel. I'm here to say they happen....they are normal....and you just gotta let yourself feel and move through it. Early on during Camdyn's diagnosis wise advise was given to me....let yourself grieve for your daughter. I did not get it at first and I'm still learning but I get it more and more each day. I would not let myself "feel" in the beginning because it felt so selfish and self-serving. It was not me I needed to help, it was my daughter! But I get it a little more today and I can be sad about what she has to endure and until I let myself feel that...we all get nowhere or better. I have learned when to tell my husband that I am sad for Camdyn and just want to feel that today and him understanding that and not feeling responsible for improving my mood.

Hope no funk is in your future but if you do find yourself in this spot...don't feel guilty or alone...we've all been there. And call me...I'll hold your hand and feel through it with you- gosh, wish I had the insight to have done that myself Saturday night! I might even drag you to a ridiculous 3D movie about little, blue people to snap you out of it!!! Love to all my strong, smart, insightful and amazing mama friends. We rock!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

What I'm loving Wednesday

* I'm loving watching doodle and MSW outside my window as I blog. To no surprise, they are throwing a baseball. I love that they do this every night.

* I'm loving zumba!

* I'm loving that sissy now calls herself, "the baby." Last night when MSW was eating she was wanting bites of his food. If he took a bite instead of giving her one, she would say...the baby?!?! Love that girl.

* I'm loving my lavender bath salt.

Rainy day

Finally...after many days without rain, we had 3 back to back storms. We stopped dinner to run outside and enjoy the rain.

Big brother teaching sissy belle about the rain.

Monkey see...

Monkey do.....

Not rain related but I'm proud of this cute little shirt I made for Camdyn. She is my little assistant!
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Tuesday, July 19, 2011

10 on Tuesday

10 random thoughts....

1. It rained today! We stopped in the middle of dinner to go stand out in it. Camdyn was not sure what to think of it....pictures coming soon.
2. I have been trying all different kinds of classes this summer. Today, I took a ballet class. I consider myself fairly in shape as I run 3-5 miles almost every day. I thought this class would be relaxing and fun. It was fun and more difficult than the butt-kicking kickboxing class I tried last week. There is a good chance I will be walking like a 90 year old woman tomorrow.
3. In preparation of my ballet class, I pulled out my old dance bag from my hope chest. I am confident it had not been opened since my last dance recital in 1994. As I pulled out my pointe shoes and tap shoes the smell of Delia Light's dance studio filled the room.
4. I love pinterest....'nuff said about that.
5. Mrs. Myers has a new scent...Honeysuckle. Can't wait to try it!
6. I'm about half way through the party prep for Camdyn's 2nd Birthday party. Yes, it's not until the end of October but I live for this stuff. Just waiting on the fall boots to hit the shelves at Nordstrom's so that I can do her pictures for her invitations.
7. Caden has his first Select Baseball tournament this weekend...I'm nervous/excited for him....he. of course, is unphased.
8. I want to start a weekly bible study for doodle's friends....very light, fun using our favorite daily verse book. Don't know how to approach parents without seeming fanatical (not sure of their religious affiliations, etc...)
9. I want to be in/start a monthly book club....never been part of one before and I think it would be fun.
10. I have 3 huge blisters on my fingers from hotgluing Crystal's birthday present.....Rita failed me!!!

Florida 2011 Trip

Another amazing trip to Destin.....love, love, love these vacations!




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Summer Afternoons

Sprinklers, green grass, tricycles and cartwheels....all part of our summer afternoons. Little laughs, big smiles and funny little sounds....all part of our summer afternoons. Childhood wonders that I hope they always hold in their hearts.













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Friday, July 15, 2011

him and her....


He is rambunctious, inquisitive, growing, loud, energetic, adventurous, curious, helpful, busy and confident.

She is rambunctious, growing, funny, busy, loves shoes, loves jewlery, curious, learning and sweet.

Different....but more the same. I often think they are the greatest blessing to one another...sometimes :)
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Tuesday, July 12, 2011

TLU Girls' Lake Weekend

I always thank my lucky stars for the wonderful friendships that Texas Lutheran University (TLU) brought me. We were so fortunate to spend the weekend together on Lake LBJ this year. I love that we have created a yearly reunion!

We spent hours on the boat, tubing and some wake boarding (go Nette). We had dinner at a fun little pizza place, we chatted, we sat under the stars, we laughed and laughed and laughed. It was a perfect weekend. These girls are the best!!!















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About Me

Live, Laugh & Love...that's my battle cry! I love this life I've been given & blessed to share it with my handsome hubby, MW, my sweet son, doodle bug, and beautiful sissy belle!