Thursday, October 31, 2013

Random Fun

I will get to Halloween over the weekend, but in the meantime, here are some random photos from the second half of our month!
Violet is on the brink of potty training.  Hopefully.

Our first matching outfits as mother and daughter.

Preciousness on a walk around the neighborhood.

Train table is still on active duty.

Nothing better than crawling up on Daddy's lap for some Berenstain Bears.

The spaghetti did her in.  This is literally the first time she has ever fallen asleep at the table - even back when she was a baby.

Baseball girl!!  

Football boy!!

It was Boss's Day so we decorated Jerry's office before he came in one day.

He loved it!
Then I got back to my office and found what my staff did!   Balloons, signs, a free massage, a free pedicure, candy - oh my!

Miss Viley got pink eye in both of her eyes, but look at all the stickers the doctor gave her!

We practiced eyedrops with Rapunzel to see if maybe we could avoid tantrums.  Brian and I clearly forgot who we are dealing with here.  Points for trying, though, right?

I had a meeting with Holly Warlick (and the Sheriff, KPD chief, UTPD chief, and a million other important people).  I promise I acted totally professional in the meeting, but afterwards, I snuck out my camera to take a pic of our million National Championship trophies.  They are so big and shiny in person!

We are building a new residence hall, so we took a hard hat tour.  It was fun and should be a great new place for our students to live!  (and possibly the new location of my office as well)
October was a pretty busy month, and I still need to post all of our Memphis photos.  Happy Halloween!

Monday, October 14, 2013

Fall Festival

Jeremy's school had its annual Fall Festival this week, and being the good father that he is, Brian worked with the PTA to help organize and set up the event.  He moved and assembled heavy tables, put up the parking signs, helped with the bake sale, made friends, basically became the next PTA president, etc.

I managed to show up and not ruin anything.

Seriously, Brian was stopped multiple times by multiple moms to chat and help out. I had conversations with the dads about the Cardinal's game the night before.  I think we are living a little bit backwards.

Anyhoo, it was a fun event and the kids had a blast - and both were remarkably well behaved the entire time.

inflatables everywhere!

scared of the inflatables everywhere - making a run for it!

look, sis, inflatables are not scary!  Its a castle - like your mother ship calling you home!

oh, ok!  I am not scared anymore, I am a police man!

Look at me!  I am tiny and fast!

pumpkin bowling

once the fear was over, we could not get them off those darn inflatables

Daddy had to bring out the big guns 
frozen yogurt in the cafeteria

fun with the dolphin mascot "Finley" - more terror from Vi

but she LOVES pumpkins - because to her any moment, one of them could turn into a coach to take her to the ball in a sparkly gown - seriously - she asked multiple times when this would occur

Here comes her prince!

no fair is complete without snow cones!
We had a great time, the PTA raised a lot of money, and the kids were so good (I have to repeat it since I am still so excited).  Happy Fall!!

Friday, October 11, 2013


Because sometimes you just need a laughing girl, crazy hair, and a beloved pink blanket to help you make it through the day.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013


Our department hosted the annual state conference this year for Housing staffs in Tennessee: TACUHO (Tennessee Association of College and University Housing Officers).  In general, I am more involved in our regional conference and publications (SEAHO, which is 10 states), but since we were hosting the event this year at UT, I joined the Host Committee and helped plan our conference.  It just took place these past few days, and I think we did a pretty decent job.

Tennessee is an odd little mix of a few large public schools and a bunch of small private schools.  It is really difficult to get the small privates involved, and it is equally hard to plan programs and events that would appeal to both a large public and a small private.  I was put in charge of programs, so the staff I worked with put in extra time making calls to all of our contacts across the state begging for program submissions.  We ended up with the most programs ever in TACUHO with 27! I had to add more rooms to accommodate all the great proposals we received.  It was great to see the regular faces from Maryville College, UTC, MTSU, ETSU, Memphis, Austin Peay, and UTM taking part, but I was really happy to see some not-so-common players come to the table this year: Belmont, Lee, King, Vanderbilt, etc.  I made calls to some people I know in Housing at Rhodes, Sewanee, and others to no avail, but maybe next year.

Anyway, it was a fun event (though a lot of work) and I was happy to see colleagues from across the state that I only see a few times a year.  We had our opening dinner at the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame, all of our programs at the Holiday Inn at World's Fair Park, and our big dinner at Neyland Stadium.  Our keynote speaker was Hallerin Hilton Hill, who is a big deal in Knoxville as a radio host, producer, TV personality, and he teaches at UT.  I had a few meals with him and introduced him at the dinner in Neyland.

The conference finally wrapped up today, and I am exhausted, but it was yet another great event put on by our wonderful staff, so I am a tired, yet happy, camper.  Enjoy some pictures of the conference and the kiddos (who, naturally, were recruited to help with set up and registration).
The logo our students created.  Our theme was "Separately Unique, Together Complete"
Bags from our vendors - we got some amazing free stuff donated by the many contractors we work with (which in Housing means our furniture providers, security systems, flooring, paint, windows, etc)

all the TACUHO schools in the state

Our program booklet

Hallerin Hilton Hill and me after his keynote address in Neyland

Me and Meghan  - the field looks a little shabby after that romp with Georgia

three of our lovely graduate students
Naturally, I took the kids with me to register, since I am so professional
The Holiday Inn in Knoxville boasts the world's largest rubix cube, thanks to the 1982 World's Fair
Playing in the World's Fair Park fountain


Making faces

Hi mom!

Vi cracks me up

These weird chairs were in the hotel lobby by registration, and the kids loved them.  They are like vertical hammocks, so again flaunting my professionalism, I allowed the kids to use them as slides.

I realize this is probably a random post, but I am trying to blog more often, and this is what has been happening in our lives this week.  Hope you all had a great state-wide conference experience as well!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013


So, September happened.

Yeah, I kind of forgot to blog about it, but we were alive and kicking the entire month, I swear.  In an effort to make it up to the 3 remaining readers I have, here are a bunch of pictures of my adorable children as I run down our month in a quick post.
They still love our "big bed" more than anything.  

We went to the birthday party for my friend's son, and she makes me feel inadequate.

Seriously?  She made a freaking dragon cake from scratch.  I hate her.

I babysat Annie and William one weekend - 4 kids is a bit much for me I think.  But, isn't Vi being sweet (for once?).  Annie was sad, so Violet came over and gave her Cinderella - after insisting I put a pink bow in her hair.

Jeremy and William spent the day playing video games, running around like maniacs...

...and taking out their pent-up aggression on each other in various wrestling matches all over the house.

We went to the Lady Vols Soccer game (did you know all the soccer games are free now?  and they have fun bounce houses and stuff for kids - also free) and we ran into our old pal Smokey!

Love my girl.  (I came straight from the office and we are required to wear orange on Fridays).

We hooked up with Mallory and Cage (of the awesome dragon birthday cake) at the game.

This girl is out of control with the princesses.  Out.  Of. Control.  (and on my bed, again)
Brian is amazing at this whole stay at home dad thing and even makes pizza from scratch (dough, sauce, everything) just because - I love him.

I had a parent-teacher conference with Jeremy's kindergarten teacher.  She was amazed at how smart he is and wanted to hear all about how he learned to read.  She is putting him in the accelerated reader program (rare for kids his age) and says he is doing great.  We are still working on handwriting, but it is way better than this photo now, and this was only 3 weeks ago.

Brian and Vi surprised me at lunch one day so we headed to the UT Gardens to see the flowers.  Girl loved pointing out all the colors.

What is that face?  Don't fall for that innocent act.


Happy girls.

Seriously.  90% of the time, this girl is pure rotten evil.  So, she throws in a little perfect cuteness the other 10% to keep us from losing our minds.  

Daddy and Vi decorated the driveway for me one day - fun surprise when I got home from a long day!

Vi has recently discovered her artistic side.  And she has refused naps, so when Brian tried to make her take a nap, she trashed her room and drew all over the wall . She did help me clean it up, though, so I guess that is something.

Sometimes a princess needs a milkshake so bad that she has to plop right down on the kitchen floor to drink Daddy's treat immediately.  
Mario Cart.  That is Jeremy's life right now.  

First french braid!  It lasted 30 minutes!

She loves to cheer for Jeremy when he plays Mario Cart before bed.  He is nice enough to be Peach for her.  If that isn't love, I don't know what is.

And, that was September!  I promise I will do better this month!  I will try to post at least once a week.  We have some fun activities on the horizon for October, so it should be exciting!