Birthday pictures for my baby


And in case anyone is wondering, that term is fully sanctioned. Sylvie very proudly proclaims herself the baby. (Usually daddy's baby and not mommy's baby, but that's just splitting hairs.) The whole photo shoot is over here. Mostly good, not spectacular. The photographer kept telling her to act sassy like Hannah Montana and I just had to interrupt to tell her that my innocent four year old (or my seven year old for that matter) doesn't know anything about Hannah Montana.

I am insane


So my boss just accepted an offer at a sister college for a Dean position (kudos again Matt). I won't be serving as Acting Director again since I am a thousand miles away, but I have agreed to increase my time from 20 to 30 hours a week until a replacement is found. The way things normally work at GCC, this is going to take several months (several months being an euphemism for virtually forever, perhaps the next ice age). I'm quite sure I'm crazy. A glutton for punishment. Certifiably insane.

First Day of School!


Pretty much considered a national holiday in our house by parents and kids alike. Tessa was thrilled beyond words. And even after she got home yesterday she declared it to be the absolute best day of her entire life. I remember second grade, it was great, but I think Tessa has a special brand of enthusiasm for school. Sylvie is off to half day pre-K this year and is (for at least right now) totally excited to be going to school every day. She seemed a little miffed that she couldn't play on the baby playground at school, but other than that was pleased with the experience. And getting her out of bed and ready was easier than it was yesterday. That must be a good sign.

Trees, glorious trees


I got sick of my second hand enjoyment of Austin's trails and decided to get out myself today and enjoy the green. One of Dave's favorite running spots is the Barton Creek Trail about 10 minutes from our house, right in the middle of Austin. It was glorious. So much green and lots and lots of shade. I've got more pics over here if you're starved for visions of greenery, but mostly it's just shot after shot of trees. I can't get enough of these gnarly oaks. My pics are not very artistic and always a pale reproduction of the real thing, but I enjoyed taking them.

Am I too old to be nervous for school to start?


Went to "meet your teacher" at Tessa's new school today. It was a little intimidating (for me) to see how big and massive the school is. I'm really pleased with her teacher, the classroom, the school facilities, etc. But it really was just overwhelming. The whole school was encouraged to come during the two hour window of the event and we had to park a block away even though we came on the early side. There are almost 900 students in this K-5 elementary! Hugeness! I'm sure I will have complaints to post next week about the pick up / drop off process. There's no way that's going to go smoothly.



Snow Snow by Orhan Pamuk

My review

rating: 4 of 5 stars
I give this book four stars even though I only enjoyed three. There's definitely way more in this novel than I was able to appreciate. It's thick and nuanced and has much to offer. Lots of beauty. Lots of truth.

View all my reviews.

Three cheers for variable weather


It was 75 degrees today! What other excuse do you need to go to the park? It was a little rainy, but that just adds to the fun. Our HOA swimming pool and park is just a walk down the street and across the greenbelt.

Tessa thinks any day she can use her precious umbrella is a good day.

Flip flops in the rain: smart idea or no?

Here's where Tessa slipped on the wet playground equipment. I had warned her about it not five seconds beforehand.

Here's where Tessa sulked about said fall and the subsequent photograph her mother took.

The are such beauties. I've got more shots on our smugmug site. Hey Audra, can you still see Tessa's scar? No, I'm not trying to make you feel guilty :)

There is a ginormous tree right by the park with a big huge swing hanging in the branches. I have no idea how they got the rope up there, but my girls love it.

Good afternoon.

Temple trip


We made it down to San Antonio to attend our new temple. It was a beautiful drive and not a whole lot longer in the car than driving to the Mesa temple while we were in Phoenix. It's one of the newer, smaller temples but still amazingly beautiful. There is fantastic stained glass all over, my favorite showing the Tree of Life. Good day.

Just stuff


Not much going on here on the home front. We sent my mom and sister home last week so the house is feeling a little more empty than usual. Thank goodness school starts in two weeks. My poor girls are on the fast track to crazy boredom. I registered Tessa today and hopefully I'll get Sylvie's pre-school squared away by the end of the week. It's going to be super strange having them both gone for at least some of the day. What ever shall I do with myself? (The answer is work of course.) It's been pretty hot here the last while so even evening outings aren't very enticing. But at least all those years in Phoenix primed me to grasp the fact that things don't cool down in September like a normal person would expect. I'll be patient.

I'm hoping to finish (or begin maybe?) our bedroom by the end of September. I've got plans in mind, but the ceilings are high so I'm not feeling very motivated to paint. I'm going to try my hardest to pick a soft color which seems to be way harder for me than should be normal. The last of the boxes are stacked in my room now - they seem to travel from spare corner to spare corner - so I'll have to finally figure those out too. Mostly decorative stuff that I don't have the energy to place. The whole downstairs is still pretty empty and will most likely stay that way for some time. Perhaps I'll become a minimalist.

Party time


Yes, I am behind. No fantastic excuses to offer. But let me recap Sylvie's party on Saturday.

This was her first friend birthday party. We had four kids over for the four year old girl. The theme, at the request of the birthday girl, was the Backyardigan's TV show. The kids colored, had balloon fights, watched the Volcano Sisters episode (which made me miss Ryan - we hope you're well), had pizza and ice cream cake. Sylvie was a little grumpy and vetoed the other game ideas, she just wanted to open presents and play. The other kids seemed fine with that. They were a pretty low key bunch and it was a good time all around.