Best weekend ever...

The weekends just keep getting better around here. Mine started on Friday with a quick day trip to Austin with my mom and Landry (blogger fail with no pics). We went to the Country Living road show and scored our {best} purchase of the weekend... 

Then Saturday the rest of the gang joined us for dinner that included the {best} weather and the {best} dining companions...

We came up with the {best} idea to eat...

And managed to fine the {best} bites in that big pile...

Landry had the {best} dreams on the patio...

And I gave thanks for the {best} family...

including the {best} husband...

We saw the {best} smiles...

and enjoyed the {best} treats...

Today we celebrated the birthday of the {best} dad...

And the kids even wore the colors of the {best} team of the SEC...
(besides the Aggies of course)

And after all that fun, it ended up with the {best} naps. 

Working 9-5...

Last Wednesday I snuck away from the kiddos to celebrate the end of another year advising MSC FISH.  I know my job seems confusing to most people, so in a nutshell, I am responsible for assisting college students in their personal and leadership development. 

And at the end of each year, when we are all reflecting on the amazing things they have accomplished, I realize that they have taught me just as much as I hope to have taught them. 

These young adults are who I pray that my children grow up to become. 

I am honored to help them for a short time on their journey...

and can't wait to see what their next adventure brings. 


Tiny Tales Thursday...

I'm a lucky girl.

My husband changes diapers, takes the kids to school, puts Emmy's hair in a pony tail and wakes up in the middle of the night every time I do. He cooks dinner, cleans the bathroom, and doesn't get angry about my online shopping habit. He helps and even when he's not doing something exactly how I would - he's at least trying. (He's also pretty easy on the eyes). :)

However, he could work on the listening. I can tell him a million times to make sure to rinse a pot that we just boiled pasta in before letting it sit. Or ask him to grab something out of the top of the closet before he leaves only to be climbing up a shelf 30 minutes later once I realize what I need is still where I last found it.

We have a long running "Katy is smart/knows everything/is never wrong" debate. Fortunately I am right, so I'm winning. :)

Well, last weekend we had a ridiculous amount of bananas that needed to be turned into bread last weekend before they were thrown in the pit of no return/compost. Ryan volunteered to make 3 batches. I quietly watched him as he got down too many pots, pans, bowls, measuring cups, etc. I mean, he was doing it, so he could do it how he liked.

I may have thrown my 2 cents in every now and then but for the most part he was on his own.

He finished preparation and was off to baking when I realized he had put all 3 loaves in the same oven. At different times. I tried to explain that this would affect how each would bake and he simply replied with "just turn the heat up".

Two of them finished and he was placing the on a cooling rack. He was maybe doing this the hard way but I just watched and let him continue with what he was doing. Once he realized that he should have thought a little bit more rather than proceeding he mumbled, I quipped back and Radley was taking it all in.

All of a sudden he pipes up:

"Mommy must have gone to smart school when she was little. Daddy did not."

Gosh. I love that kid!



We all have them.


Sometimes they are met. Sometimes they are not. And sometimes, when all the stars aline in the sky, they are EXCEEDED.

I think about all the expectations I set for people, myself included, and then think about how often they are actually met, much less exceeded. I can admit that I always  frequently often may sometimes set ridiculously high moderate challenging expectations, but I also believe that people (myself included) rise to the occasion. However (and that is a big however).... WHY do I need to put that much pressure on anyone?

For example:
1. I expect the golden rule. I expect people to be kind, generous, thoughtful and giving. I expect people to go out of their way for others.
2. I expect my students to do things for themselves. (luckily, they pretty much exceed my expectations on a regular basis).
3. I expect my children to behave. (HA!)
4. I expect my waistline to shrink on its own because I'm nursing. (Double HA!)
5. I expect myself to plan fabulous parties, keep up with 3 kids, a full-time job, a husband, a blog, friends, family, church, oh...and myself. (Triple HA!)
6. I expect Ryan to know my every thought and be able to react before I tell him something.

And before you start rolling your eyes and call me every name in the book, think about what YOU expect out of others and yourself.

Then pause.

Then breathe.

Then, ask yourself, "Why?"

Why do we expect so much from others? From ourselves? I defend the thought that people rise to the occasion, but if it's going to always drive you crazy when they don't... then is it okay to let up? Is it okay to lower expectations just to keep yourself from going crazy? Part of me says "yes - it is ok" but a bigger part of me screams, "NO!!"

I think where I struggle the most, is when to choose door A and door B. I am in the middle of planning Emersyn's 2nd birthday party. It is going to be "tutu" adorable and fun. I have big plans...BIG plans. I already have it laid out in my head. Adorable decorations, yummy cake, fun games, creative invitations, etc. My best friend/arch nemesis Pinterest with the added bonus of crafty blogs of SAHMs/She-ras are sure to aid in my insanity preparation, right?

I mean, if Martha Stewart can make invitations out of leaves, twigs, cinnamon sticks, homemade ink and hot glue, then why can't I?


I seriously almost drove myself crazy yesterday thinking of her invitations. Door A. They were going to be handmade, one-of-a-kind, miniature tutus that each guest would swoon over for days on end throw in the trash after marking the party date down in their calendars.

Then. The HMMomma gave me some tough love. Door B. It's an invitation. For a two year old. 15 people are invited. Send an email. :)

But I couldn't let up. As soon as the kiddos were in bed I went back to the dining room table/craft area and forced my vision to work. I could buy bigger envelopes. I could hot glue lace to elastic. I could...

I could just stop.

And breathe.

And recognize that my expectations for myself may need to lighten up.

So. I did what any wanna-be-craft-genius does and went straight to Etsy. Found a perfectly adorable invitation template for $15 and bought it. (I did second guess the decision, but Ryan assured me it was ok). I even went so far as to make Cindy send me the following text:

You love your kids.
Take a break.
Pay $15 for cute invites that people are going to throw away.
Spend the time you save playing with your kids.

And so I did.

And while, I have no idea where this post is going or what it was really supposed to accomplish. I hope that it motivates you to keep your expectations high, such as...

1. Expect yourself to love your God.
2. Expect yourself to give everything to your husband and kids.
3. Expect yourself to give yourself a break.
4. Expect yourself to breathe. To do nothing for 15 whole minutes.
5. Expect yourself to be kind to others. (That golden rule really is important...and, well, HMMomma and I kinda live by the motto "INTH" (it's not that hard). It's NOT that hard to be nice. It's NOT that hard to be thoughtful. It's NOT that hard to apologize. It's NOT that hard to say thank you. It's NOT that hard to... but that's a different blog post)
6. Expect someone to someday exceed any expectation you could ever set.
7. And expect Door B to be just as amazing as anything behind Door A ever could be.


Sunday Funday...

Sunday was a storybook ending for a storybook weekend. The Kings and the HMMs met back up on campus for Kyle Field Day. 

We were all very excited. Well, maybe not all of us...

KFD is the major even that the student organization I advise hosts each year. It is open to anyone to attend and offers various activities for people to participate in that give back to local community agencies. They also have free food, games, prizes and well...tons of fun!

And did I mention that it's on Kyle Field? :)

It could not have been a more beautiful day for this! The big kids had so much fun running around - especially Radley. He LOVES "the big guys" - also known as the college students I work with each day.

I love how "easy" this is for Cindy and me now. When it was just Radley and Caroline we had to "time" our day. We had to arrive at a certain time, leave at a certain time, etc... all to fit with their schedules. Now, we are much more go-with-the-flow and somehow the kids all survive. 

::Insert snarky "I told you so" comment from a few of my nearest and dearest::

I love how much focus Radley has. He can sit and do an activity for as long as it takes to complete. He wanted to paint a flower on this pot that was being used at Camp For All. He painted each little petal with as much care and precision as you can imagine. 

This one on the other hand slapped some paint on there and went straight for the reward of the popsicle. 

Josh and Anna painted a yellow flower, too. 
(I think Caro was more on the same wave length as Emmy with the popsicle)

Next it was off to the trashcans that were being given to local elementary schools for recycle bins.

Emmy took a break from all that service to work on her tan. 
I am so jealous of her complexion. 

She also took the time to check on her baby sister. 

And Radley was getting lessons on how to kick a field goal...which is just about the only position I see him playing in football. 

Then it was time for some live music by the one and only Charlie Gore, one of my former students and soon-to-be-famous singer/songwriter. Remember that name, people. He's going to be big! 

Thanks for such a fun day, MSC FISH! 
The Kings look forward to many more years of Kyle Field Day fun!



April 21st is a special day in Aggieland. Not only is it San Jacinto Day but it's also the day that we take the time to remember our fallen Aggies with the celebration of Muster.  Muster is one of the many things that sets Texas A&M a part from any other university. It is a day to remember. A day to reflect. A day to honor. A day to celebrate. It is a day that my Aggie ring shines a little bit brighter.  And it's a day that makes me really want our kids follow in our footsteps and become Aggies, too. 
(but their college choice is up to them...as long as its not Texas Tech. Or maybe Baylor :).)

Well, to make this Muster even more special, it is a day that I have been looking forward to for the past three years. It was the rededication ceremony of our student union, the Memorial Student Center. The MSC is more than just a building, yes...but the "building" part of that name has been closed for three years and it is so incredible AWESOME to see it and how absolutely gorgeous it is! The life that our students will breathe into this building is amazing to witness. It is one of the most treasured traditions on our campus and its our "home" is back open. 

We had a great day on campus walking around enjoying the weather and hanging out with some of my favorites. :) These five people are who I spend time with when I'm away from my family. They are my long nights, grueling days, aha moments, inside jokes and incredible success stories that make all that time away from my family worth it. 

I pray that Radley, Emersyn and Landry grow up to become as driven, dedicated, passionate, giving and selfless as Mike, Collin, Liz, Jessica and Tyler (and many others) are. I really do have a great job!

Muster has two parts. One is to remember our fallen. The other is to remember our days. It is said that if there is any Aggie within 100 miles together they should get together eat a little, {drink a little} and remember their Aggie days. 

Lucky for us, there are Aggies all around. Even better...they are the ones we spent our student days with, too. 

Even better, they enjoy a good beer. 

Being an Aggie is one of the best things that has happened to me. It gave me so much more than an education. It gave me a calling. It brought me friends that are now my family. It made me who I am today.
I thankful for every day I had as a student and the many more that I have had since. 

As we sit and remember, as we say "here" for our fallen like Troy Brown, I know that a day in the future someone will be saying "here" for me. 


Spring sweetness...

Hasn't the weather just been awesome?!?!?

We have enjoyed the long{er} days and leading into the sweet{er} nights.

The kids get home from school, we eat dinner and then we head outside to play and enjoy these few weeks of springy goodness.

It's just been awesome!

Putting smiles on everyone's faces!

From the biggest to the smallest and even the middle, too! ;)

Hope His beauty is all around you!


Tiny Tales Thursday...

Emersyn and Radley were playing in the backyard this weekend and Ryan and I were in the house cleaning up after lunch. (Don't worry - we were watching them) All of a sudden we hear the back door open and Radley request our presence.

Radley: Mommy, Daddy come outside.
Me: Why, buddy?
Radley: pausing for a minute  Uh. Emmy will get scared.

I look outside to see Emmy all the way in the back climbing up the slide exclaiming "Ide! Ide!"

Yeah, Radley...real scared. ;)

We have a slight issue with our backyard flooding. We are at the bottom of a hill so the neighbors directly behind us send water our way every time they turn on their sprinklers. The positive side is that we have to water less - the negative side is that our yard stays a little mushy. We are trying to find a solution but it can't happen fast enough. Ryan was commenting on our yard getting flooded again during a storm when Radley reminded us, "don't worry, Daddy. God promised he wouldn't flood the earth ever again, so our yard will be ok."

What a sweet reminder it was, too.


Impulse buying...

Maternity leave is a huge blessing that gives me the opportunity to stay at home and enjoy one on one time with the new baby. I've been lucky to be able to take 12 weeks with each kid and I get sad thinking about that time ending. 

BUT, as much as I love this quiet time with the precious tiny humans, I also get a little stir crazy staying inside. As a remedy, I have created a routine (I know, you're shocked, right?)  for our weeks that usually involves at least one outing each day. Except for Mondays - those are our pj days. :)

We go for walks, meet up with friends, buy groceries, get our toes done, etc. We also venture into Target and Hobby Lobby quite.a.bit. I try to stay clear of Target unless I actually have items to purchase because I know it will lead into a basket filled with stuff. I am kind of an impulse buyer but if I have a list I can stay on task. I'm pretty sure I really could quit my job if I just never went inside Target, but then what would I do with all that "free" time, right? ;) Ha! 

Well, the other day I went into Target, list in hand and did pretty good. I only came out with one impulse buy and I am so glad that I did.

Check out this super fun bath tub I got for $9!

It is awesome. It folds up for the sink and then lays completely flat so you can hang it up to dry. All you soon to be mommy's out there should get one. It makes bathing Landry so much easier. Definitely an impulse buy that was worth it. 

I also ventured into HobLob the other day and walked away with 8 of these...

Sorry about that giant shadow. I took this picture at night.

I don't need them at all. But at $.75 each I couldn't resist. They are place card holders (there is a clip on the back). I am sure that they will get used sooner than later and they are small so storage is no problem. :)

So yes, maternity leave is a giant blessing. I just wish I would be more impulsive about things like running instead of shopping. 

I'm sure Ryan does, too. 


Happy Monthday...

Happy One Month Birthday, Landry!!!

Has it really been one month? You have been the sweetest baby and I do not want you to grow up! 

You are still in NB diapers and NB clothes but you may be our "big" baby and move up soon. {:(} You can wear some 0-3 month clothes and I'm guessing you weigh 9-10lbs and are still about 21 inches long.

You have gotten into a great routine and are just so easy! I still have to wake you up to eat and you usually go back to sleep each time I feed you. Your most awake time is usually between 5-8pm. You eat every 3 hours and I have tried cluster feeding you at night and that seems to be working since you let us sleep between 5-5 1/2 hours each night.
(Fingers crossed that you keep that up). 

 I actually have a confession - I've slept through your last feeding twice and you survived! 

You love running errands and being out and about. It really does get easier with each child - we are so much more relaxed and you just fit right in with our crazy, chaos. 

You are a "smily" baby... I don't think we have seen your first really smile yet but you are sure to give it to us any day now. 

Your siblings just adore you. Radley LOVES that he gets to sit next to you in the car. He helps by finding your paci, patting your tummy and just keeping you happy. He is thankful for you each night in his prayers and makes sure that we have the day all planned each morning he leaves for school. 

 Emmy would hold you all day long if we would let her. If you are crying she will run up to you with and just pat you saying "sh sh sh". She brings you blankets and toys and loves her big sister role. She still thinks your name is "baby" but she does attempt to say "Landry" after we prompt her. 

This first month has been a wonderful blessing our Lovely Landry and we can't wait for all the ones that follow. We LOVE you!!



Perfect. Just perfect. This weekend was really quite simply perfect

We kicked it off on Friday night laying in the driveway with the big kids using the iPad to track the constellations and find planets. Radley was in heaven and Emersyn just laid her head on the pillow and pointed up saying stars. I have a feeling this will become more of a traditional event with Radley's fascination with the planets. 

My parents and MaMaw came in for the day on Saturday to spend time with the kids and Ryan and I were eager to start making our yard come back to life. The weather could not have been better for a day of mowing, planting, cleaning and fixing up everything.

And look who made a special guest appearance...

Our sweet neighbor, Jerry, found him while he was mowing his own yard and the kids were ecstatic. Y'all this may have been the most precious bunny I have ever seen. I almost begged Ryan if we could keep it but I quickly came to my senses. 

The kids were busy playing outside all day and had lot of people meeting their every command need. 

Pops introduced Emmy to the big swing and she liked it a lot. 

Ryan and I had a major clean up project to do moving dirt so its a good thing we had such a great helper.

But he got in some playtime, too.

And that bunny that Jerry found? Well, he must have been the Easter Bunny because look what appeared in our front yard...

Radley could not have been more overjoyed. And GiGi was pretty happy, too.

Sunday was much of the same. We made a trip back to Lowe's and the kids each got to pick out a flower to plant. By the end of the day our front flower bed looked incredible. 

I just love watching everything come to life each spring. Every year I vow to make sure I do a better job of keeping everything alive - maybe this year I will keep it!

The weekend ended with a major milestone...

Landry had her first bottle and inhaled it. 

Radley loved being able to help, too. 

Emmy was more interested in just giving her kisses.

I have a feeling that this is going to be a great season of life for the Kings. It may not always be perfect, and it doesn't need to be... what matters is that it is perfectly written for us.