7 Feb

I’m always a proud mom, but today…well today was pretty special. Pierce had his first Tae Kwon Do belt test. And he NAILED IT!!!


Not only was he awarded his double yellow belt, but he was also surprised with an award for his leadership skills and the tremendous progress he’s made since his first class – back in November.


His fan club was there in full force to support him…mom, dad, sister, Nini, Uncle Thomas….and even his best friend from school came out (in the snow) to cheer him on.


We are so proud of this guy. But what really makes this day so special is to see how proud he is of himself. We celebrated with pizza, ice cream and a new Rescue Bot Transformer. Love this kid!

Baby’s 1st birthday

14 Jan

Even when I take a moment to sit and reflect on the last year, I still can’t wrap my head around the fact that it’s been a whole year since this moment.


Hooooowwww?? It feels impossible that a year can go so quickly. Even when our life today is so different than it was on this day last year, it still escapes me how I can have a daughter who is one. Today I called a handful of schools to enroll her in for fall. How is this possible?!? I’m filled with that all too familiar bittersweet mixture of joy and sadness. Joy watching my baby girl grow up, amazing us every day…and the nagging sadness that it’s all passing far too quickly.

We had a small family celebration at home, allowing big brother to decorate the cupcakes and hang (his handmade) decorations.


She loves cake, no surprise there! She loves almost all food and will out eat her brother at almost every meal.


She just kept shoveling it in! And I just kept letting her. She was so happy!


Addi likes: dancing, the dog, bath time – or any body of water, laughing, eating, giving kisses, and anything that belongs to her brother/or anything her brother is doing

Addi dislikes: re-fried beans

Happy birthday my sweet Addison, our little miracle baby who was totally worth the wait.

Winter is finally here

10 Jan

Today I came across these old pictures on facebook, posted back in October. I laughed at us.

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We had only been living here a few weeks and look at us…so bundled up! The temps were probably in the high 60’s but we were freezing, lol. I wore that exact outfit today – the high was 23. And if you notice, everyone but us is wearing a short sleeve t-shirt! Just gave me a good laugh, that’s all.

We had more snow come through yesterday, which made for quite an exciting morning. Even though we have a service for plowing the driveway I volunteered to shovel it myself to burn a few extra calories


And…BOOYAH! Here are a couple before/after pics. It took me 90 minutes to clear our (long ass) driveway….not to mention like 4 phone calls to my mother-in-law to be sure I was doing it right :)

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Once Pierce got home after school, he “helped” clear the sidewalk to the front door. He loved shoveling the snow almost more than sledding. I couldn’t drag him away from the shovel


I had to take a quick picture of our house in the snow because it’s still a little surreal to me this is my life. After the morning blizzard finished, the afternoon sun came out and it was a gorgeous day!


Here are the kids enjoying the snow…

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It’s 17 degrees here right now, with a wind chill of 2. Our sunny beach days in Penang feel like a distant memory. I see my son’s Crocs in his closet every day and laugh that those used to be the only shoes he owned.

Breaking news: I drove in snow today

6 Jan

In my former life this type of weather would have shut down the city and we would’ve stayed home all day. Let’s be honest, Austinites can’t even drive in rain! Obviously not the case up here. My son had school today (and we had mandatory errands to run after school like renew his passport) so I had no choice but to leave the house and try out my snow legs.

This is our driveway. I nervously watched the snow accumulate as I waited for school to end.


I know…I know…it’s like hardly any snow. And those of you who have lived in cold climates (my husband included) are laughing at this “breaking news”. But for this Texas girl it was a big step. I have a snow setting on my AWD vehicle – no I didn’t use it today – but it made me realize I have no idea what I’m doing in the snow. Thank god the snow plow/sand truck drove by just as I was pulling out. I followed his trail the whole way :)

Go me! I did it! And with the weather forecast, I’ll be doing it again (and again, and again) very soon. Wish me luck!


Christmas in St. Thomas

31 Dec

This year we spent Christmas on the beach in St. Thomas, Virgin Islands. A beautiful, fun, enjoyable week with the family, ending in gorgeous sunsets like this one each day…


We quickly fell back into the old routine…our water baby splashed away while Pierce built massive sand castles on the beach

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We took a catamaran tour out to Turtle Cove to snorkel with the turtles. Amazing! (Photo cred to Pierce for some of the turtle pics)

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The boys enjoying the catamaran cruise


We took the cable cars up to Paradise Point to enjoy a Bushwacker and the beautiful view



We did a night Kayak Tour…think glass bottom boat, but in your own kayak! The kids loved it

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The whole family, enjoying Christmas together…


Santa put in some over time this year, hauling presents to St. Thomas and then back home again. But it paid off, the kids were thrilled on Christmas morning

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And the presents that Santa couldn’t fit in his sleigh were waiting for them at home…

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Merry Christmas, and Happy New Year from our family to yours!! xx


The verdict is in

8 Dec

Holy crap it’s been 3 months since my last blog. It’s not for lack of material…it’s just that…we’ve been super busy! I absolutely underestimated how big of a move this would be for us – and it’s been consuming me for months. I only just now have a house that is livable – and I owe 100% of that to my parents who came to visit for a month so that I could get the house together. It’s getting there though. And everything else is falling into place here on our little island.

Goodbye cardboard!! Although the kids loved playing with the boxes, I am so happy to see them gone. Buh bye.


Pierce started (and finished) his first season of soccer, is doing great in his new school, taking Tae Kwon Do, and most recently is obsessed with rock-n-roll. Top 40 in the car is no longer acceptable. Sorry Miley & Taylor :( Long forgotten is Milo and 100Plus, but he still asks about his friends in Penang and wonders if they’ll be able to come visit. He’s 4 and has international friends, lucky him.

Addison (almost 11 months now) is a happy little thing, always smiling and laughing. She is finally taking a bottle at night, loves to dance and blow kisses, but most of all she loves anything Pierce likes or does. She is oblivious to the move, lucky her.

Justin loves his job and is staying super busy. Traveling a lot. Gets to spend a lot of time in the city, lucky him.

So as for me…things are good here. Really really good. We like it even more than I thought we would, and I am happy with how everything has just kinda fallen into place the last few months. I do miss Penang and feel homesick now and then. But Huntington is great. The people are nice. I’m slowly making friends, and finding my groove. The weather is AMAZING! I’ll be “over it” eventually (or so I’m told) but for now I am loving the cold weather. It has snowed here twice…although I’m pretty sure the locals don’t even count it. But when the flurries came down on Thanksgiving Day the whole family was outside, ready to build a snowman lol! Prior to buying the house I was on a pretty good schedule of working out and was feeling good, but that all went to hell the last 2 months. I plan to get back on track soon and have high hopes of training for some races…but I’m trying not to be too hard on myself. It’ll happen. Mostly, I am just enjoying the time I have with the kids and love that I get to be a stay at home mom. Lucky me.

Getting settled

7 Sep

Wow time is flying! We’ve been on Long Island for almost 3 weeks now but feels like we’ve accomplished so much already. Justin had a great first week at Estee Lauder, Pierce started school, Justin bought a car (and I test drove one for me), we put an offer on a house, enjoyed a few beach days, spent a day in Manhattan, unpacked our air shipment from Malaysia, and (finally) got to spend time with my brother.

Here is Pierce on the first day of Pre-K at his new school. They had half-days last week to get the kids acclimated, but he will start full days this week 8:30-1:30. I’m going to miss my little guy…that’s a LONG day!

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Our beach babe, loving the sand…

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Pierce loved everything about New York City. The train, the skyscrapers, the park, the hot dogs. He asked if we could move there, and live inside the Statue of Liberty. He spent almost 6 hours in Central Park, most of it with our friends who were visiting from Penang (small world, indeed).


Addi loved playing in the park too. She will pull up on anything now, and loves to climb. God help us – she is already trying to climb out of her crib. I don’t need a second child to break a collar bone falling out of the crib! She is now standing on her own for a second or two before sitting again, and she can even go back and forth between the sofa and the coffee table. She’ll be 8 months next week. Pierce at her age was only just now getting on his hands and knees. Sheesh, she is keeping me busy. She also just cut her 3rd and 4th teeth – her top incisor teeth. Those really suck.

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The kids were super happy to get our air shipment (full of toys) from Penang. However, as usual the boxes are always more fun than the actual toys :)

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For some reason, seeing the license plates on Justin’s car makes it feel official. We are New Yorkers

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My brother, who lives in Manhattan, was ironically in Texas when we first arrived so we finally were able to meet up this weekend and hang out at his beach house in Fire Island. Pierce loved riding the ferry out there, building sand castles with uncle Thomas, and digging for crabs.


After two straight weeks of hard core house hunting we think we found a winner! Our attorneys are talking and working through the details (its required in NY to have a real estate attorneys write and negotiate the contract) and we hope to close by October. Fingers crossed!! We decided to buy in Huntington which is where Pierce’s school is. It’s 50 minutes by train from Manhattan, 5 minutes to the beach, and a wonderful Long Island community. So ready to move out of this apartment, take all of our stuff out of storage, settle into a real home, and welcome our dog Queso back.

Excited for things to come…


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