1.23.2017

InstaKings...

Raise your hand if you're surprised I am posting this two weeks after my last week's view of our life through my phone. Oh, not surprised? I am not shocked that you are not shocked. 

We have an activity Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday evenings so I'm always prepped with snacks. I ask the kiddos in the morning what they want to eat and Emersyn caught me off guard and asked for Cheerios then she went and grabbed one of our old snack bowls from when they were eating rice cereal and I saw an 18 month old toddler for a split second. 


Every now and then they both sneak in my room - be still my heart with the sweetest little girls in the softest big bed. 


This kid turned into a giant overnight. He is the kindest, sweetest, smartest, guy I know and I am so very glad that he's mine. He had a big UIL event a couple of weeks ago and made a goal to just place. 


We headed up to the awards ceremony and although he didn't get the results he worked so hard for, he left with a pretty valuable new lesson


My mom dropped off some of my old dance costumes and to say that these two were excited is an understatement. Emersyn couldn't get over that I "showed my belly" in PUBLIC when I was a little girl. Needless to say, she wears this all the time. 


Anyone else do this? I actually had this polish on for a month before it started chipping, but once it happens there is really no point. Five minutes later, these were polish free. 


Don't you just love church marquees? I saw this one at a stop light last week and loved it. 

"What steps are you taking right now to develop the kind of character that will outlive you?"

Think about that... what are we doing now, tomorrow, next week, next year... to write our story that will be told for years after we are gone? What are we teaching our children? How do we interact with strangers? Are we setting a Christ-like example for others? 



One of the steps I am taking is to crusade on behalf of all women that do believe that leggings are, in fact, pants. They are y'all. They have legs and a waist... pants. 
#justcoveryourbits


When we were snapping this pic for our annual day bowling, I couldn't help but think that this is our circus and these are our monkeys. ;)


If you missed my post about Fed+Fit's Mongolian Beef, please go check it out.

BEST.MEAL.EVERRRRRRRR.


Some days I just sit and ask myself what am I doing? Am I a good mom - some days, am I even a an OKAY mom? And some days I'm going through homework folders and discover that I may be doing okay afterall. 

Translation: My mom is awesome. She is an Aggie. She has two brothers. She loves her family and her mom and dad. 

I love you, too, Emersyn.


That part of homework is fun - most of the other stuff is completely overrated. Jenn and I send random texts to confirm our hatred for this weekly time sucker. Her response is brilliant. 



And if that isn't enough to love her, she sent me a RANDOM care package FILLED with Trader Joe's goodies JUST BECAUSE. I hit the jackpot with her as a soul sister/blog bestie/internet friend turned sister wife. 



Speaking of jackpots - run to Target y'all. These darling FOOD FREE Valentine's are in the dollar spot right now. Huge selection so your chances of picking the same aren't too high, but you know what, I don't even care if we get duplicates because they are so cute. 


Rad went with dinosaurs and the girls picked erasers. (And yes, we are already done - that never happens. I'm usually scrambling at the end...this is all because of Target!!)


HobLob also got some major bonus points this week. This is one of my favorite quotes and this print was on sale for $20 - couldn't pass it up. I put it on our mantle so we see it each and every day as a great reminder for us be good and believe in the good.


And that's us in an instant!


1.19.2017

Words from Ruby...

Sometimes I take for granted that my physical working space puts me in contact with amazing human beings. On any given day our campus hosts dignitaries and diplomats, academics and award winners, and a number of humans so smart that my brain can't actually accept what they have accomplished.

Today was no exception. A student committee within our office hosted their annual MLK Breakfast that honors the legacy of a man who fought to show that love is the only power strong enough to drive out hate. The guests for this event have been amazing civil rights activists like Harry Belafonte and Diane Nash and this year they hosted Ruby Bridges.

Don't recognize her name? You may recognize her by this famous Normal Rockwell painting...


Ruby Bridges. A six-year old girl that became the face of the American story of integration. A story about hope. A story about a different future. A story about progression. A story about the America that really is for "WE the people".

I have rarely been so moved to be in the presence of another human. To hear her story and to watch the reaction of 750 others as she told it was a gift. She explains it quite simply - she was six years old and "just going to school." She didn't know why these men had picked her up for her new school but once they rounded the corner and she saw all these people "acting crazy and waving their hands" it hit her... she was in a Mardi Gras parade because being from New Orleans it was a reasonable explanation to all the ruckus around her.

As she filled us in on that lonely year of school - a classroom of just her and her teacher - a school where she could hear children but didn't really see them - a school where she had to eat in her class instead of in the cafeteria with others - I just kept wondering how she did it. How did she, at 6, carry on?

Faith. Her answer was faith. Faith in him. Faith in humanity. Faith in the good of others. Her message was to keep moving forward. To love more than hate,  even when it's hard. Even when it's unfair. Even when you don't want to do it - love. Each and every day. Spread the message that only light can drive out the dark.

She also made sure to talk about her parents' decision to allow her to be part of this movement. They wanted better for her - and I couldn't help but cry because I paused and had to really think about it. Would I...no, COULD I.... send my child past a mob of angry, hate-filled people to make a difference for others? Could I do that?

She spoke of her teacher, Mrs. Henry, and the profound impact she had on her life even though she taught her for only one year. She travelled from Boston just to teach her because no one at the school would agree to the task. They are still in contact today.

So many pieces of that puzzle came together to form her story.

As the literally dawning of a new day in American history approaches I really had to pause and give thanks for her message. Her presence on this campus was not a coincidence...no...that was a divine plan. Those people in that room needed to hear her words. I needed to hear them. I needed to be challenged to understand that one person does not get to write our story. We are all responsible to move forward. We are all responsible to love.

As parents - we teach our kids to face that hard knowing they have a soft place to land in our arms.
As educators - we support our students and meet them where they are. We listen and guide and advocate for them.
As children - we love.

To love is our duty.  Each of us. Whether you are 6, 16, 60 .... whether you agree or not. Not just when it's easy but especially when it's hard. Not because it's the only thing to do simply because it's the right thing to do. Not because you want a better life for yourself but to demand a better life for others.

President Obama wrote us all a letter today. In it he says...

I've seen you, the American people, in all your decency, determination, good humor, and kindness. And in your daily acts of citizenship, I've seen our future unfolding. 

All of us, regardless of party, should throw ourselves into that work - the joyous work of citizenship. Not just when there's an election, not just when our own narrow interest is at stake, but over the full span of a lifetime. 


...

America is not the project of any one person. The single most powerful word in our democracy is the word 'We.' 'We the people.' 'We shall overcome.'


We.

We the people. You and me. Our children. The people that don't look like us. Or think like us. Our friends and neighbors. And people we've never met.

We shall love.

I'm ready. Are you?

Tiny Tales Thursday...

We kind of hit the jackpot when it comes to first borns. That Radley King is kind, intelligent, gracious, forgiving, loving, inquisitive, tenacious, athletic, and just fun to be around. There isn't much to complain about with this one.

Except.

Y'all.

He doesn't eat spaghetti. As in the nectar of my motherland. Not even my momma's spaghetti gravy (which if you've been around here a hot minute, you know is what we call "sauce").

She has fed 1000s of people this gravy.
The entire RHS varsity football team in 1994.
All 100 people that attended our rehearsal dinner. (Yeah - we had a big wedding).
She even made it for UPS drivers one year at the request of Ryan.

People love this stuff. We should bottle it and make millions because EVERYONE loves this stuff except my son.

He doesn't like spaghetti.

But he will eat pesto and goat cheese tortellini. Or prosciutto and mozzarella. Or half a dozen fried eggs with Frank's lathered on top. Or sushi. And my sauteed mushrooms.

But he doesn't like spaghetti.

Or french fries.

I mean - WHAT?!?

How is he even a child?

And his favorite food is any type of Asian cuisine - specifically Pei Wei. He loves everything about any dish he's tried. So he was so dang excited about dinner on Monday. We were trying our hand at making Fed+Fit's Mongolian Beef - my choice for Chinese every single time - and I have to say... WE HIT IT OUT OF THE PARK!!


My iPhone picture doesn't even begin to do it justice. This dish was super fun (and easy) to make, full of flavor (and NONE of the bad stuff) and most importantly loved by every member of We5Kings. So... click on that little link above and make plans to make this soon. And also every night because so dang good!!! (Also, I am purposefully not posting the recipe here because you need to do yourself a favor and be a regular at her site!!)

In the meantime, I'll be eating gravy with a straw and hoarding all the french fries.