Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Knock Knock!

A few weeks ago I came down with a pretty nasty cold. I felt terrible, looked terrible, and wasn't motivated to do anything. In an attempt to kick it, I slept one full afternoon and into the night and woke up on a Saturday morning feeling a tiny bit better. I forced myself to get out of bed, shower and run an errand since I'd been stuck in the house sick for almost three days. After returning home from the store, I made myself lunch and plopped down on the couch to eat. Terry had taken Grace and Ava up the street to get the mail, when I heard the door bell ring. I got up to get it and then basically stopped dead in my tracks when I saw who was waiting for me on the other side of my front door.

THREE LITTLE SNEAKY LADIES! Tracie, Brittany and Lindsay drove down to see me and our new home for the first time since we'd moved! Terry was outside with them and I soon realized they had been in cohorts for days planning the Secret Trip. All illness that was left in my body, vanished, although it took a bit for the cold medicine affect to dissipate but I really was so happy to see them!

They came without their kiddos because we had been planning on them arriving a few weeks later with all of the kids to have another visit. So it was just us and my girls!

Pool time quickly commenced...

Errbody say HOLLA!

Discussing "The Races"

Britt and Lindz compete. It was hilarious fo sho.

For dinner we decided to get ready and hit up a yummy Mexican restaurant down the street. We stopped into a QUIET country bar on the way home, then called it quits and hit the hay.

My how times have changed for us old ladies!!!

I am so very lucky to have such fun, spontaneous, and thoughtful friends in my life.

LOVE you gals!

Till Next Time! Tee Hee!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Mother Nature Can KISS IT!

Houston was PELTED with rain last Wednesday and Thursday. It POURED for EIGHT HOURS STRAIGHT the first day and most of the day, the next...and in the end, out of all of Houston - the NW area topped the charts at almost 14 inches within 48 hours.

The clouds cleared, the sun began to shine, and after being stuck inside all day I ventured out about 3pm Thursday to run an errand. I turned out of my subdivision and was hit by a ton of backed up traffic, everyone attempting to "turn around, don't drown".

I turned around, went home, pulled into the garage and went inside.

Two hours later IT started.

We live at the end of a very long street, in a cul-de-sac. Terry called me outside, and we, along with our neighbors noticed flood water creeping its way up our street, at the far end.

We took the kids down the street to our stop sign to take a closer look and had to stop.
We were shocked to see what was happening.

Checking it out any way they can...              

I rounded the corner. This is the main thoroughfare and our street. (on left)

Standing on the island, watching it creep.

Water front prop, yo!

Within a couple of hours, street was covered.
Curbs covered.
Sidewalks covered.
Front grass covered.

Before it crept over our front grass and sidewalk.

From our yard and vantage point, this is where it peaked.

Watching it happen, was unnerving. To say the least. Obviously, we had no idea when it would stop rising. It turns out, every single street in our small subdivision was consumed with water. No one got out Thursday, and few got in. We watched as several canoes ventured out and surveyed the flood. The water began to recede at 9am Friday morning. Not a lot of shut-eye for us in the neighborhood that night.

Our street was lucky, several near us ended up with water inside of their homes.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Home Is Where The Heart Is

It's been four weeks and two days since our little family said good-bye to Austin and hello to Houston. We're a little bit in the outskirts...but when you're in such a large city, the 'out skirts' ain't really that far out!

So many things have changed and naturally I'm all over the map and back and forth with excitement for our new start and new friends but then missing my family and friends back home like crazy.
Barely a month in, I think it's fair to say those are normal feelings...

Our first stop was the aquarium, we had a fab time. Super fun!

Lunch with some big ol fish!

How cute are these things?! They're  my fav.
So, right off the bat...barely a week in, my mom, sister and youngest neice came for a visit. I was so excited to have them here, not only to catch up after six days of not seeing each other - ha - but they were a HUGE help organizing the house. They both have a nack for design and decoration and really helped add the finishing touches to a lot of areas. We took a stroll by our neighborhood park to check out the lake and ducks.
Ava and Grace loved having little Claire here and they were connected at the hip the entire time. :)

 The next week our buddy Jarrod flew in from Nashville and stayed a few days, and shizzam, those boys knocked out all kinds of manly projects. They were up in tiny crawl spaces, on the tops of ladders, in palm trees... they got SO MUCH DONE. Thank you so much Jarrod!!

From bare to BAM!
T's workshop came a long way!

Later that weekend my brother popped in on his way back home from a fishing trip and it felt really great having him here. He's coming back very soon to visit. AREN'T YOU CHRIS.... :) :)

We are thrilled to be here, and everyday we get something else done to make this house our home.
Ava and Grace are so happy, and we simply couldn't ask for more.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

The Dreaded Four Letter Word


I threw around a few four letter words of my own, after finding out the girls had it.

The girl's woke us up giddy as can be on Christmas morning, and after ripping through presents and piddling around I sat the girls down to fix their hair for a visit to my sister's house later in the day. Grace had been scratching at her head for days and days, at that point, but honestly after peeking in her hair I figured dry skin and winter weather were to blame. It wasn't until I pulled up Ava's hair when I noticed a cluster of small red dots at the nape of her neck.  I took a closer look, then promptly shit my pants.

Christmas morning.


Two children.


To make a very long story (what? I'm dramatic?) short... Terry saved us. He stripped every body's sheets, bagged clothes, pillows, stuffed animals, disinfected, washed at least 15  loads of laundry over the next several days, and didn't blink when I had a complete breakdown filled with tears, snot, and whining to my sister on the phone.

I remember standing in long lines with other kids in my class having our hair picked through by the nurse in elementary school. I never had it as a kid. I knew lice were gross, but really never knew what to expect if I were to see any. I imagined them as minuscule, itty bitty bugs things stuck to strands of hair. I know that is true.  But what is also true, MORE IMPORTANTLY, is the fact that I forgot those minuscule, itty bitty bug things stuck to strands of hair were PUT THERE BY THEIR PARENTS. And holy shit, I saw some major parental activity in Ava's hair.

Bugs and I don't mix y'all, and bugs and HAIR and I definitely don't mix.
Hence the aforementioned breakdown.

This is where the breakdown began. Not really knowing what I was looking for, I noticed a dark spot on Ava's scalp and stuck my finger next to it to give me a better sense of what it was and the FUCKING THING SCURRIED AWAY FROM MY FINGER.

Now, as the mother of the child whose head I'm inspecting, at this point I should have remained calm, dealing with a fellow drama queen - but I couldn't help it and panicked - which did NOTHING TO HELP THE SITUATION. Once Ava realized there were 'bugs' in her hair... um... well..Merry Christmas to all and to all nightmare for the next days to come.

Are you itching yet??

I'm itching.

I hope it's only phantom itching. Because if I get lice, I will shave my head. There is no way I can go to sleep at night knowing these little see through, pointy headed bastards are crawling all over the place, obviously partying it up in my hair celebrating their own Christmas... AND OURS... because they took our Christmas celebrations away.

Soooo, no leaving the house on Christmas Day. Which the girls were THRILLED about!

And no visit to my Aunts Ranch the next day. Which the girls were THRILLED about!

Oh, and happy vacation for Terry! Hey honey, we need more laundry detergent.

Apparently, without our knowledge, Grace suffered through the lice. We caught hers at the very tail end. Ava needed the NIX stuff, and that did a lot of damage to their population. Within 48 hours, it was pretty much under control and we were back to normal life.

I have pictures, wanna see!?

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Tour de Austin

Terry's childhood buddy and his family stopped into Austin on their way back to Ohio after taking a cruise around the Caribbean for Christmas break. We wanted to ensure their day was packed full fun and hit up some of Austin's  must-see spots.

We started our day off right and ate a healthy portion of Round Rock Donuts before hitting up the Capitol. Mexican for lunch and smiles for the rest of the afternoon!

At 1,550 feet deep, the capitol well provides some YUMMY COLD water!

Two sets of 'two peas in a pod'.

Who says no to a cupcake?! Not us.

The guys at the fire station were SUPER friendly!

Of course Terry jumped onto the back...

They became fast friends!

Don't Mess with Austinites and their company...


The day couldn't have been any more beautiful!

Until next time!

Mark and Amy, we had a great time with all of you, and hope to see you all this summer!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Don't Be Shy! Come On, It's Tee Tee Time!

This year is the very first year I've shopped almost completely online for Christmas presents. Amazon has delivered nearly every single present under my tree. This morning while on their site searching for things having to do with 'travel', I somehow stumbled upon... um... this Christmas must-have:

Big deal.

So it's just a PERSONAL URINAL.

Except it's also just a PERSONAL URINAL.

And the pictures of the product are the best part.

Here's my favorite:

Look! It's easy and durable enough for even a humongous horse to pee into it from nearly a foot away!

Then all you have to do is pray all that horse pee has turned into gel, and flip it upside down to see if it worked!

How can this company even market this like it's a serious item?? I read a few of the reviews and a lady that drives almost 70 miles to and from work bought hers because she "doesn't have time to pull off the highway and walk into a restroom."

She states she "simply unrolls, positions it, and goes!"

Well, VIOLA!!

This shit must be easy!

So the next time I'm driving to grandma's house with the girls, there's no need to pull over when I feel the urge. I can simply focus on the road while I dig through my purse, find my urinal, take out the lip stick tube that fell inside of it, unroll it, drive with my knee while I pull off my jeans, wiggle down my underwear, take both hands off the wheel to place my trusty personal urinal against my body and then ....AHHHHH.

That IS easy! And SO SAFE!

And then of course, hurry to pull everything back into place before a semi-truck driver pulls up next to me and wonders what the hell I've been up to.

In my opinion, there are only two types of people on this planet that could POSSIBLY need a plastic bag urinal. Those that are bedridden and don't have the means to get up and travel to the potty, or bat-shit crazy lady astronauts involved in a fatal attraction with a co-worker astronaut. And that bat-shit crazy lady astronaut missed her chance when she decided to drive cross country with an adult diaper on, when CLEARLY, the perfect choice would have been the Personal Urinal.

It's so much more dignified than a diaper.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Whoo Whoo

Things that Gracie says that ARE acceptable:

"Cream of the week." (cream of wheat)
"Vegetavle. (vegetable)
"Vestival." (festival)

Things that Gracie says that are NOT acceptable:

"Whatever. I'm wearing mascara today."
"I'm being Nikki Minaj when I grow up!"
"Look at my bras! My husband is trying to get me."


While shopping for Christmas presents (that aren't for her...)

Mommy! Look! Can you buy this tea set for me!?

Honey, no. We're only here to buy things for other people.

Gracie: *with her arms crossed and now yelling as loud as humanly possible*


So, she's basically a Screech Owl. All compact and and cute with those beautiful, enormous eyes. And if provoked, scratches off your face with some big-ass claws you never knew were inside those tiny, furry feet.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Winter | 2011

Two and a half years ago I averaged almost 20 blog posts a month.

Fast forward to today ~ I'm barely pushing 1. Yeesh.

I was on a roll back then. I couldnt help but stumble upon something crazy or hilarious that happened to me or around me. I miss the days when I sat in front of my monitor and typed up a quirky story quickly and effortlessly. It must be the older and more active my girls become, the harder it is for me to take time, or justify my time, sitting in front of my monitor blabbing on and on.

Hopefully this post will be the first of a whole lot more. Whether you like it or not.

In full Kara style, what better way to kick off a blogging frenzy than with PICTURES!

Of kids!

And their parents!

Thank you Samantha Tran for a fun photo filled morning!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Brave Little Bean

My dad and I were shopping at Highland Mall (most likely for Umbro shorts and Swatch watches) when we came upon The Piercing Pagoda kiosk. My dad had the 'okay' from my mom to let me do what I'd been wanting forever. 

Finally have my ears pierced. 

He held my hand while the marker was dotted on each ear, and within seconds it was all over. He then took me into the food court and bought me a strawberry/banana smoothie, my favorite. We hung around the mall for a while, and I remember walking through Dillard's, my dad stopping here and there to check out the leather furniture. I still smell the leather of the couches, and the aromas of shampoo and hairspray permeating outside of Visible Changes as we walked out of the mall to head home.

I was eight years-old.

I will never forget that afternoon. The earrings my dad chose were little gold knots. I would give anything to have those, my very first pair of real earrings.

Today is another one of those memorable days. 

The day Ava had her ears pierced.

Instead of a half baked teenager working at a mall kiosk, my sister Dana was the one to do the honors for Ava today. I couldn't have asked for anyone more special. Knowing that Ava talks incessantly about nothing, and cant control her laughter when she's nervous, her Aunt Nanna calmly and clearly explained what she was about to do, and what to expect after it was over.

The tears came to my eyes the moment the first one was pierced. Ava, completely shocked, stared directly into my sisters face anticipating  her response... and when Dana gave her a big smile, Ava knew it was going to be alright. After a quick and happy high-five, the other ear was next.  Boom. She barely felt it. Ava counted aloud to ten, then let out a deep breath, smiled, and ran to the bathroom for a look in the mirror.

I can only hope Ava remembers this day, this special event in her young life.

The day when her Aunt Nanna came over and pierced her ears when she was six years-old.

 And gave to her, her very first pair of real earrings.

Thursday, October 13, 2011


Ava, today you turned SIX years old. Your little sister gave you a huge Happy Birthday Hug first thing in the morning. She mentioned you even looked bigger today. You told her, "Of course, it's because I'm six!"

We love you so much!

~Mom & Dad

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Drum Roll Please

I have absolutely no musical talent what so ever. Sure, I might have been in a music class or the choir in middle school, but I'm pretty sure it was because all of the other electives were filled and they only needed that special someone with zero talent who was okay with settling for tapping on a glockenspiel during the gifted children's performances.

That special someone was me. And I was the BOMB at the glockenspiel.

I'm not afraid to belt out some soulful Adele in my car and sing some serious Rhianna in the shower, but as far as natural music talent goes... I got nothin'.

Terry on the other hand comes from quite the musically talented family, his sister and all of his brothers' are all experts at singing or playing an array of instruments, or both. Terry taught himself himself how to play the drums when he was a kid, and he recently set up a small portion of his drum kit in Grace's room so the girls could play around when they have their friends over. Ava took quite the liking to them and Terry has been giving her lessons.

She's picked it up in a hurry.... and then there's Grace.
Grace would rather sing a jumbled up version of the alphabet, turrets style.

Drum Roll Please from Kara on Vimeo.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Come On. Gimme An 'A' For Effort

So this is the first 'full week' of Kinder for Ava and things are going swimmingly. I love that term. Swimmingly. It reminds me of 'Dory' in Finding Nemo. She was so cute. And she couldn't help but loose track of her thoughts.


Oh. Ava... yes.

It's great. Ava LOVES school.

With one ever-so-gentle arm touch in the morning, she scares the shit out of me yelling, "Is it school?!" and then leaps out of bed and is dressed and making her own breakfast in like 6 seconds flat. It's crazy, the amount of drive this kid has, in kindergarten, of all things.

I can hear her in ten years, waking up all, "Are the SAT's today?!?!? AWESOME, I GOTSTA GO!"

Boy, she and I really couldn't be any different.

OK, so Her Teacher. She's super sweet.

I thought I'd start off on the right foot by volunteering for Tuesday Folders...Workroom Helper... and various other light duties that keep me involved in the Going's On, but far, far away from The Crazies. (You know who they are. Those Other Mom's.)

So, during Meet The Teacher Night before school started, I signed up to make and bring in gingerbread cookies for a Gingerbread Man Hunt, where the kids go around and search for gingerbread men and it helps familiarize themselves with the layout of the school, and such. My job is to bring a dozen gingerbread 'girls' to school tomorrow so the teacher can hide them in secret spots and and the wee children can look to-and-fro for those pesky, hiding gingerbread men, then eat them all up!

Except for one thing.

The eating them all up part.

You understand it's August right?

And the season for gingerbread cookies was like, EIGHT MONTHS AGO.

And I don't do HOMEMADE STUFF.

So the only thing on the shelf, IN AUGUST, that doesn't involve one of those fancy mixer things (where I'm forced to do it the REAL WAY with flour and baking soda, or is it powder, and all of those other fancy ingredients), was one box of Gingerbread Cookie Mix.

The whole grain kind. Gluten free. No sugar.

Grace watched me mix it all up and said, "Mommy, it looks like sand. With dirt inside, also."

Yes Grace.


And I'm pretty darn sure it tastes like sand with dirt inside, also.

I cannot imagine any five or six year-old liking these things. And I certainly cannot imagine them liking their shapes either, because I made these cookies at 9 o'clock tonight after Ava went to sleep (since it's a surprise) and after a long day, my contacts were all dried out, my rolling pin was barely working trying to roll out basically WHOLE OATS with sand and dirt and water mixed in, it didn't go too well.

So I thought I'd remedy the situation by decorating my newborn gingerbread girls.

Her juvederm injections were clearly done by an unlicensed dermatologist.
What a HACK JOB.

At least she's a blond. That will get her somewhere. And is it just me, or does she have a hernia in need repair, or could that be a cesarean-section that went horribly wrong?

I have a feeling the teacher will keep any future volunteer sign-up sheets far, far away from Ava's Mom.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Newborn To Kindergarten At Warp Speed

Wasn't it just yesterday you had your first birthday?

Look at you now.
You're such a Big Kid.

 You weren't at all afraid on your very first day of Kindergarten.
You kissed your Mom and Dad good-bye and walked away with a smile.

We are proud of you, sweet Ava.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

ACL Live - Miranda Lambert Studio Taping

I received an email from Terry Tuesday morning stating the following:

Nonnie will be over tomorrow night to watch the girls. She'll be over around 5:30.

YOU AND I HAVE PLANS! Attire: Cute dress. We'll be indoors, you'll need to eat something before we go.

Love you,

OMG I love surprises!!!
But the whole 'eat before we go' thing knocked dinner plans out of my thoughts - so... could it be a movie, a play? I had no clue.

My mom and sister knew what he was planning, but of course, kept it to themselves. POOR SPORTS!!

So now it's Wednesday, 5:30pm, and my mom shows up right on time. She sends us off with a smile and
we head toward downtown. I pulled down my passenger side sun visor/mirror and a piece of paper fell into my lap. I opened it up and the first words that caught my eye were: Congratulations and Miranda Lambert. HOLY CRAP!!! WUT!?!?!

He had entered his name into a drawing for stage level passes to the Miranda Lambert live studio taping at Austin City Limits! And won!

While waiting in line to get inside, we ran into our friend Sara and her dad, who also had tix, and they partied/danced/sang right along with us. It was awesome!

Miranda is one helluva firecracker... she's super short, has great legs, wore glittery stiletto's and a leather and lace black mini dress and rocked her little country heart out! Along with a dozen other of her songs, she sang two songs with her new band, Pistol Annie, and of course rocked the house with Hell on Heels. So fun!

The night was a total blast and the four of us ended up with major camera time. Way more than 15 minutes of fame! Ha! I can't wait until the October airing, I'm sure we will laugh the whole time we see ourselves, having a great time dancing like fools and not givin' a damn!

It was a night I won't forget, and I am thankful to have a man in my life that gets such a kick out of surprising me and seeing me happy.

Thanks Honey!!!!