Around here

Saturday, April 18, 2015
This post is one of those all over the place random updates of life in our house right now and it is long.  But these are little things that I want to remember...

I am not one to typically binge watch TV at all.  I don't have big blocks of time between work and home life.  However, last week my sister told me about this show called Married at First Sight.  Four experts look at extensive data and match three couples.  The first time they meet is at their wedding.  They have a wedding, a reception,  honeymoon, move in together and try to make it work. It is absolutely fascinating.

MAFS Cover

I have had my PhD in marriage and family communication for 22 years.  I taught for many years at the college level on gender and communication, relational communication, marriage and family.  Now, I am in private practice helping engaged and married couples navigate the challenges of their relationships.  So, this show is made for me.  I LOVE it.  Season 2 is currently airing but I loved it so much I bought Season 1 on Amazon to watch (Married at First Sight Season 1).  And I watched almost the whole season this week in every spare second I had.

I seriously cannot recommend this show enough if you like relationships like I do.  I absolutely LOVE my job.  I love helping people figure out how to be better partners to one another and this show hi-lights the ups and downs that we all have in marriage.  It focuses on the most important thing though...the commitment to keep doing the WORK.  I see that over and over in my office.  The couples who do the work, make it.  The couples who don't are miserable.  I have said it a million times on this blog but Love is a decision and an action every single day.  And it is interesting to watch that play out on this docu-series as well.


Now I am watching Married at First- The First Year.  These episodes follow the couples from the 6 month though 1 year phase for the couples that stayed together.  It is on demand in some places.

My work is really good.  I try to maintain a pretty small practice so that I can still have time to exercise, meet a friend for lunch once in a while and be involved at the kids' schools.  But it is so hard to find that perfect balance.  Some weeks, I have just a few clients and some weeks I am crazy busy (like this week).  I am really trying to work more because I love it so much but juggling everything part time can be stressful at times.  As many of you know, you often end up feeling like you aren't doing anything as well as you'd like to.  And every time I meet with clients, I am reminded of ways that I can be a better Mom and wife too (which is a good thing).  If you need marriage/parenting/life coaching, feel free to reach out to me (  I do phone or Skype appointments if you are not in the Houston area.

Will is taking he ACT again today.  It will be the last time he takes it.  He already has a great score but he wanted to take it one more time just to see if he could get another point or two for scholarships. This summer he will take a workshop for writing his college essays and in the Fall he will apply to the colleges of his choice.  I really cannot believe we are at this point in life with him.  The other day, we got the tuition bill for his senior year and there was a cap and gown/gradutaion fee!  I admit that I teared up when I read that.  He turns 18 in June.  My first born son becomes a legal adult.  I know people say it all the time but it really has gone by so fast. I am SO proud of the man he is becoming.

I know a lot of young women without kids or Moms with very young kids read this blog.  Cherish the moments at each and every stage of childhood because they are so fleeting.  Even the tough stages will be ones you look back at with a smile, I promise.

Kate is getting ready to make her first holy communion and she is SO excited.  She really embraces her faith and takes it quite seriously.  A few weeks ago in Sunday school, she learned about Saint Maximilian Kolbe.  He was a Polish man who became a Franciscan priest and gave his life for another man in a Auschwitz.  Kate became so fascinated with his life.  So, when she had to pick an important figure in history to do a report about, she chose him.  Kate attends a public school so her classmates are researching figures like Abe Lincoln, Elvis Presley, Harriet Tubman etc.  But Kate really wanted to do her report on this not very well known Saint (Mother Theresa was her second choice).  I am so grateful for a loving teacher who is encouraging Kate to follow her heart and her faith.  The biography we are reading (together) is WAY above her level of comprehension.  Heck, it is difficult for me and Dave in some parts. But she is really committed to learning as much she can about this incredible Christian man.


When I thanked Kate's teacher for being supportive she said she was not surprised at all that Kate chose a Saint.  She said, "Kate is so Catholic. I see it in her everyday the way she acts, they way she answers questions, the way she got so excited when we learned about Mother Theresa."  Her comment made my heart leap with joy because to me your faith is not something you simply believe but it is the way you act toward others.

One more little update on Katie Ru.  This girl is obsessed with crafting.  She makes these little boxes out of cardstock.  I wish I had photos of some of the more unique ones she has made.  In her spare time, she looks up knitting patterns and these box patterns and she crafts and crafts and crafts. She will literally spend an entire Saturday making stuff.  All she wants for her birthday is crafting supplies:) I love the coupons at Hobby Lobby and Michaels:)




Harry is finishing up 8th grade!  He has about a month left of middle school and then graduation.  YEAH!  So far, I think the middle school years are the toughest years of growing up. It is such a difficult time for kids and their parents. Sixth grade was incredibly difficult for Harry (and me) and you could not pay me all the money in the world to do middle school again right now (glad Kate has a few years!)  This year has been great though and I know he has mixed feeling about starting all over at a new school.  I think he is nervous yet excited.  Harry is finishing middle school with straight A's and straight E's for all three years!  And he has taken several advanced classes.  This year he has 10th grade geometry (in 8th grade) and high school Spanish and Journalism.  If he were going to public school, he would be entering with 5-6 high school credits already.

This week he finishes up his lacrosse season at his school too.  He has been a key player all three years. The lacrosse program had lapsed at his middle school and a Dad got it going again 3 years ago--  just as Harry entered middle school. Harry stepped in and started as a team captain and he has been a captain all 3 years.  He is hoping to play high school lacrosse too.  

Also, I am not sure if you noticed but Harry and a HUGE growth spurt (easter pics here).  Harry has always been below the 5th percentile in height and weight and he has had health issues too~ I mean his WHOLE life.  Some years he was not even on the charts.  At his check up a few weeks ago, he was in the 11t percentile for weight and the 13th percentile for height.  That is HUGE for him.  His pediatrician (the one who was there on the day he was born) was so happy.  And so were we.

For the last 3 years, Harry and I have volunteered in the school store every Wednesday morning at his middle school  It was an awesome experience. And it is something that just he and I shared.  I cannot put into words how much I am going to miss those Wednesday mornings with him (and the other Mom and son we have worked with for the last year and half).  I am going to get a photo of us together in the next week or two of us in the school store because I really want to always remember those times.

Of course, I don't have photos of the boys because truth be told, they are rarely around these days.  They're always off with friends (which I guess is good).

Okay, that is my long update about me and the peanuts.    I also want to share a discount code with y'all.  I got an email that it is friends and family weekend at Loft.

I have my eye on these...


And finally, don't forget about the Lilly Pulitzer launch tomorrow at Target!  Everything looks so cute!  You can actually heart or favorite things and then when the sales launches and midnight or 1 am you can check out faster.  Click below to see the whole collection and heart items.

I have my expectations set very low because I think it is all going to sell out quickly.  


  1. I have heard about this show, but haven't had time to watch it! I suppose it isn't any crazier than bachelor, but I am not such a big fan of the idea that they get married and some couples will obviously get divorced. I guess only time would prove if the rates of divorce are higher than normal rates. I took my coveanants pretty serious and I believe my husband did too! We are superglued to each other. Gotta work it out!

    1. Kelleyn,

      This show could not be more different from the Bachelor. These people build a relationship but they have to work harder at it because they have made a vow and the marriage is legal. The experts take it very very seriously and so do the participants. I won't give away the details but the divorce rate from this is lower so far! I see people marrying for ALL the wrong reasons these days and what i like about this show (not that it could work for everyone) is that at least the couples are matched for the right reasons.

  2. loved this little update. Especially fun to see Kate's crafts.

    I always keep up with you all by reading your posts - but don't always comment...just so you know!

    love your family and your encouraging spirit! donna

    1. Thank you Donna. You are very kind. I love keeping up with your blog as well:)

  3. I can't remember how I came across the show, but have watched it faithfully. We don't have cable now, but if I wait until the following day, I can watch it on-line. I am anxious to see how this second set of couples turns out.

    1. I know. I got so attached to the first couples (well Jamie and Doug and Courtney and Jason). I find myself getting attached to this season too.

  4. I don't really watch TV except for Downton Abbey, but I stumbled across Call the Midwife, and have since binge watched it. It is SO fantastic, if you haven't seen it. It is about midwives living in a convent in post-WW2 England, and their adventures as they serve a poor section of London. Is Will considering Georgetown? I know he looked at a few colleges on the east coast. Steve went there, and seriously cannot say enough about the education he received there. I know you love Jesuits, as do we...And as you predicted, Lilly is completely sold out in stores and online! boo

    1. I did watch one episode and really liked it. I will try to catch up as I hear very good things about it.

    2. Oh and about Georgetown, I have mentioned it to Will and they had a georgetown alumni Mass recently at his Jesuit school and we were all there but he is not interested.

  5. Sounds like an interesting show! Oh my -- I have found 7th grade (Maddy's grade) to be very difficult in so many ways and while I hate to wish years away, am wishing she was out of elementary school (her Catholic school goes thru 8th grade). Made a quick run to Target this morning and while the racks were nearly empty, I did snag a shift dress for Maddy -- but it may go back! Hope you're having a great Sunday!

    1. yes, 6-7th grade are tough ones. Many parents come to me during those years:)

  6. I've written about the show a few times. I love love love it!!!! I don't watch reality TV and this one has me hooked.

  7. Molly,

    When my sister was telling me about it I thought I remembered reading about it on your blog too. I love it. I want to work for them and be one of the experts!!!! I have met Dr. Pepper at conferences back in the day!!!


  8. I watch the FYI channel a lot and have always seen that married at first sight show I finally watched the first season first episode and I AM HOOKED!!!

    1. Katie, The first season and the follow up show.. Married at First Sight~The first year are SO SO good. The second season is good too but I love the first season.

  9. This past weekend I decided to check out the first episode of season 2 of Married at First Sight and I loved it! I blew through the 11 episodes that have already aired and I'm so eager to keep watching and order the first season on Amazon! Thank you so much for recommending!! Relationships are so interesting! I would love to read more on here about your career on here as a relationship therapist.


Thank you for your kindness.