Tiny Tales Thursday...

After Radley's communion, our church hosted a reception for all the kiddos. Jenni (I think) asked Radley what he thought...

"Well, and this is just MY opinion, it kind of just tasted like a stale cracker. But that's just MY opinion."



You're gonna miss this...

As any parent knows and understand - we are going to miss things. Working parent or not, we just can't be at every thing all the time, even if we wanted to. We just can't. 

And it sucks. And it's hard. And you always feel like you're failing at something. Motherhood, friendship, work, whatever it is you are giving up... you feel like you fail. This month is just crazy at work for me - I have worked every Saturday in April and I LOVE it, I really do. My students do great work and we have so much fun and I am so energized by watching them shine.

But I miss moments like this. 

I miss seeing her smile while Daddy is next to her coaching her on.

And maybe sneaking a tickle in?

And y'all - it's ok. This is your permission slip to live and go and do and be something else. It's okay to miss stuff. Will they notice? Absolutely - but y'all... what a great opportunity to talk to our kids about responsibility, passion, friendship, commitment, loyalty... it's AMAZING to be the parent that isn't in the lead all the time. 

Let them see that life is full of hard choices and big decisions. Let them see us manage a heavy load. Let them understand that is okay to ask for help. Let them work through disappointment now when it's mommy missing a soccer game so when it's a bigger moment they have a starting ground to leap from. 

Let them see you "pass the ball" when someone else is calling for it. Let them see that accepting help from others is just as important as offering help. 

And here's the thing... sometimes we drop the ball. Big. We let that sucker just fly right out of our hands into a the land of the unknown. It's as if the damn thing has been coated in Vaseline and we can't keep it to save our soul. 

And that when they do drop that ball, we will be right there behind them, ready to help them pick it up. 

As much as this season of life is crazy and hectic and scattered and messy... I will miss this. Because the truth is, I already do. But, I am thankful, grateful, and joy-filled to know that my people are there to help. 

And a big shout out to Holly who saw that I was missing something and made sure I still felt like I was there. I promise to do the same, friends!


First communion...

Sunday came bright and EARLY after a long (and extremely AWESOME) Saturday, but these three were still all smiles and so excited for the big day ahead. I love how excited that the girls have been about Radley's big day at church (even if Emmy was a bit confused). 

Gigi and Pops were obviously there to celebrate... 

and We5Kings couldn't have been prouder of our big kid. 

He has seriously grown not just physically, but has really become a great big kid. He is thoughtful, he is kind, he is inquisitive. He says the best prayers - he includes God in his thoughts and he asks for His presence in his life. He is such a joy to raise and we are so honored to be his parents. 

We arrive at church in time to snap some pics before grabbing our seats (because we needed two rows) and dropping him off. 

Since mass is a sacred ritual, they asked parents to refrain from pictures and I was so upset. BUT they asked for one volunteer to take pictures so parents could still have memories of the morning and not be a huge distraction throughout. I happily offered my meager skills and ended up being so nervous! I couldn't use flash and as much as I try to use manual settings, I'm just not very skilled, but I did manage to capture some memories of the morning. 

After the Gospel, Father gave perhaps his best homily I have heard. He asked the children what their favorite picture of themselves has been - to really think about that picture and what made that moment so special. He then shared his favorite picture and I think every person in church figured it would be a picture of him at his first communion. We were wrong - he pulled out a picture of himself with Mother Teresa


I just teared up at the beauty of it. Catholic or not, you can't deny the beauty that this woman represents in her love for Christ. And he met her. He spent time with her. GAH! I can't even imagine. 

He challenged us all to live our lives filled with Christ - and that when you do, your love will glow from within. You will spread joy to others. You will also grow with Jesus and in that growth become His hands and feet, heart and soul and a shepard of His works. 

I, selfishly, loved the front row seat into their experience. They all took this morning so seriously and being able to capture these moments (even if a bit grainy) was such an honor. 

Being Catholic can be frustrating - I will be the first to admit that my beliefs are challenged and I get frustrated with how unwelcoming we can seem. But I could never deny the beauty and holiness in our practice of worship. The reverence of kneeling and the recognition of His sacrifice for us. 

I loved seeing them unprompted clasp hands and recite the Our Father and prepare for what comes next. 

They did have a professional photographer on hand to capture the kiddos taking communion, so I was stationed at the challis as they accepted the wine. Radley **maybe** got a splash on his lips but he definitely avoided taking any drink - and I understand. I was in college before I did this weekly. 

We ended the morning with a sweet reception hosted by our Women's Guild. Father came by between masses to offer his congrats and take pics with the kiddos. 

We are so lucky to have so many people love and support the kids on these special occasions. Both of Radley's godparents were there, Cristina and Kailyn, the Munsons and even Jenni and Karli made the early morning drive to celebrate. Now that's love. 

Such a special day for him.

And no better way to celebrate than over delicious food with the best framily around. 


Let's Talk: Hair + Makeup

I'm pretty excited about today's "let's talk" subject - notsomuch because I have lots to share but hopefully lots to LEARN. Now, grab a glass of wine, cup of joe or a tall sweet tea... I think Andrea and Erika would love that you get comfortable during the conversation. 

I do have a few tricks of the trade to share with you but don't get your hopes up too high because heaven only knows that my "beauty regime" is more like the lack there of. Basically I have two FAVORITE things when it comes to my favorite products/routine, but two is basically one and one is such a lonely number that I had to beef it up. 

So here goes.

I know nothing really about make-up. I do know that I occasionally wear more than mascara and lip gloss and that sometimes I do an okay job. But the truth is, it's because I follow the instructions. 

No, really...

I love the Urban Decay line because they all come with easy-to-follow instructions complete with pictures. Basically amazing. I mean... I do my own make-up for events and I'm not embarrassed. ;)

**I did NOT do my own hair.**

But after all that make-up comes on, I need it off. I'm a nightly face-washer. Sometimes if I accidentally fall asleep, I will magically wake up in the middle of the night to wash my face. And, don't be overwhelmed by my fancy cleanser of choice, but Dove soap is the best. I have used this and only this to wash my face since my first trip to the dermatologist in the 7th grade. It works for me, it works for my kids. It's lovely. I sometimes spice it up and buy the pink bar, but that's just when I'm feeling crazy. 

My favorite face washing combo is a $4 buf-puf and some Dove. I use warm water, lather the buffer pad and gently scrub. My face loves it and so does my wallet.

While this technically has nothing to do with hair+make-up, I still want to share because we have to stick together y'all. I am a tried and true bath girl. I love baths - even over showers. I know that's weird to some people, but I love them. The hotter the better. All I need is a glass of ice water, a book and a few towels for my head. 

One of my favorite things to do is soak in some Skin So Soft. I LOVE this stuff. It smells delightful and it really does leave your skin SOOOOOOOO soft. And, it keeps mosquitoes away! Find yourself an Avon lady and order some SSS. 

(Do Avon ladies still exist? And does the fact I know about them put me in the category of old lady?)

Brace yourselves. This is my favorite favorite of all four. I'm gonna have to share a tiny bit of information so don't get freaked out. 

Hi. My name is Katy. And I have hairy legs. 

(Oh... did they mean hair on your head?) 
(I'm kidding, I'll get to that.)

Whew. That was scary. And hard. But it's true. I'm Sicilian and no matter what I do, my legs stay smooth for about 4 seconds and then I can physically feel the dang stubble start to grow. I also seem to acquire chill bumps as if I was standing on Antartica itself which is the most annoying thing in the world. 

 I wasn't allowed to shave my legs until I was in junior high, which was TORTURE (its true, Mom). I actually snuck and shaved them once and my VBFF TOLD on me (thanks, Jenni). It was horrible. But, then in the 7th grade I got my very own razor for Christmas and I have been trying to perfect the PERFECT shave since then.

And I have done it.

Conditioner (any kind) + Venus Olay razor = Perfection.

Seriously. I happened upon this combo accidentally a coupe of years ago when I ran out of shaving cream and then I was so angry because I had been wasting money on shaving cream for a decade. You just need conditioner!! (And don't be too impressed by that White Rain above - it's hard being so fancy.) (Also, one bottle lasts for a YEAR!)

Seriously. Stop reading this and go shave your legs. 

Let me preface this by saying, that although I have been using a curling iron for over two DECADES... I didn't really actually truly learn to curl my hair until I was 25. TWENTY-five. I'm not even exaggerating. I'm just not the hair and make-up kind of girl. I wish I was, but I'm not. BUT...I acquired some accidental knowledge that I feel like I need to share with you. It is my duty as an over-sharer/blogger. (Come in a little closer so I can whisper).

I have found the perfect curl. 

Shall I repeat?


I know! This is huge! And like I said, accidental. I should probably test this hypothesize more than once before making it a fact, but I feel so sure about it that I had to tell you now.


And my definition of "perfect" is a loose curl that LASTS. 
I feel like you need a timeline ...

9pm Monday, April 18: Washed hair, let hair air dry, curled damp hair; could see steam
Tuesday, April 19: Survived down pours and humidity
5:30am Wednesday, April 20: Woke up late, dry shampoo, got dressed and didn't have to curl hair. MAJOR MOM WIN.

Thursday, April 21:  Some people are excited when they PRed a run, or finished that crazy hard WOD, or fit into a pair of pants that haven't seen the light of day since 1999, I'm over here ecstatic that I haven't washed my hair since Monday and managed to make a pony tail look appropriate for work.

I KNOW! I mean, that's crazy talk. I did use hairspray, but I buy $2 Garnier hairspray so I don't think it was that. I think that it was the fact that I curled DAMP hair and it basically steamed my hair dry. 

As I am typing this (11pm on Thursday) my hair still looks like this and I actually brushed it. 

I wash my hair twice a week and rely on this dry shampoo from Target (that's a real fancy place, it's pronounced tar-JAY) but I'm on the hunt for a good one made for brunettes. Suggestions?

So there you have it, my tricks of the trade... go check out some more over with Andrea and Erika now!


Sacraments, soccer, service and cinema...

Saturday was just **slightly** jam-packed but it was all-the-way awesome! 

We started our morning at dress rehearsal for Radley's first communion. He was thrilled to get dressed up two days in a row. ;) I was excited to get to snap a few day of pics early! :)

I also tried to play around with the lighting in the church so I'd be prepped for the big day of picture snapping and happened to catch these sweet girls twirling in their dresses. I LOVE this part of communion. I love that their wedding day won't be the first time they step into a gown that made them feel beautiful. I love that during baptism and communion they are ready to make a commitment to the church and as they grow up, that love will flourish in Him. 

From sacramental prep to the soccer field! We made a quick switch as I headed up to work and Ryan, the kids and my parents headed to watch Rad's last soccer game. They ended the Spring season on top and Rad scored a goal in his final year with CS Soccer Club. 

Next year he's going to start training with a local club organization and he's pretty darn excited about it - I'm a little nervous but if this makes him happy and challenges his skill then I'm all for it!

After lunch, naps and a quick change of clothes, they were on campus with me for my students' biggest event of the year - Kyle Field Day! We were extra excited because after two years away, the event returned to our flagship facility and everyone got to enjoy KYLE FIELD! Miss Reveille was just about to leave as the kiddos arrived - the girls even love this dog. 


I love this day. I love that it takes a year of planning and hard work to bring these tiny pieces together. I love that it promotes a commitment to serve beyond the event. I love that freshmen students at Texas A&M facilitate an event that brings in over 2000 people! And I clearly love that kiddos and their friends get to enjoy every single bit of it. 

If that wasn't enough fun, MSC FISH partnered with A&M's student athletes to make their annual Film on the Field event part of KFD. So as we were cleaning up a day of service, people were getting comfortable on the field for a screening of one of my favorite football movies - Remember the Titans. SO MUCH AWESOME.

The kids were clearly into the movie. 

I can't get over the fact that my job lets my kids hang with some of the most amazing young adults around. I hope they are osmosising (what? It's totally a word.) their awesomeness into their tiny bodies because that would make my job parenting older kids a breeze. 

They {heart} Kyle Field Day. 

And I {heart} them. 

I also loved that night's sleep, but the weekend wasn't over yet...