Monday, December 19, 2016

Pre-Christmas Update

Ho ho ho!  We're npot exactly sure how much Raylan understands about Christmas, but he's definitely learned to yell, "Ho ho ho!" while pointing at Santa decorations and the Christmas tree.  After this weekend, I think he is beginning to associate the idea of "loot" with Christmas as well.
We've had a good, but busy week and weekend.
On Wednesday night my parents took care of Raylan.  They were nice enough to get us tickets to see A Christmas Carol at Zach Theatre, so we had a date night on Wednesday, going out for Thai food and then going to see a musical at Zach.  The play was fun!  There was a lot of singing and dancing. Very festive, lively, and jolly.  We had a good time.
Thanks, Mom and Dad!

Amy and I doing grown up couple stuff!
During the day on Thursday we had our annual office holiday luncheon.  On Thursday night I had Veterans Court, and then afterward Amy was kind enough to watch Raylan so I could swing by my office holiday party at El Mercado.  It was fun.  I had a drink or two and got caught up with some friends.  It's good to occasionally see people from work outside of the courthouse.
As my first boss, Pat, used to say, the holiday parties sort of help grease the wheels of justice,
You know what really lends gravitas to an office discussion about trial
strategy and tactics?  Tiny hats and antlers.
On Thursday my parents also were at our house when their Christmas present for Raylan was delivered- a fort/playscape.
The thing is pretty awesome.
When I was a kid my dad built us a fort by hand that was really cool.  It had a rope ladder, a swing, a sliding pole, and a wooden ladder.  It was the bees knees.
But nowadays there are these companies that build playscapes professionally.  And they're crazy.
Growing up, I wouldn't have imagined such a thing outside of a neighborhood park.
Fort Raylan
Due to work schedules, we didn't really get to take Raylan out to play on it until we got off work on Friday, but when we did, he seemed to really take to it right away.
He declared it his "house", spent a lot of time climbing around on it, and immediately demanded some swing time.
He got to play on it on Saturday morning as well, and each time he went out to play on it he got a little more adventurous with climbing up and down on the thing.

"Dad, can you believe this?"
Mom, Dad, and Ryan all stopped by on Saturday afternoon, and by then Raylan was pretty comfortable climbing all the way up the ladder into the top part himself (although we stood close behind him to catch him in case his confidence outpaced his ability).

"You're mostly  doing it right, Uncle Ryan."
It was really nice to have the family stop by on Saturday.  Sadly, Jamie was feeling a little under the weather.  Mom and Dad stayed for dinner (Amy made some delicious tortilla soup), but Ryan just hung out for a little bit before heading home to spend time with Jamie.
Raylan got to open some presents from our family, and he seemed really excited about the whole Christmas thing.  He got books, cars, a basketball goal, and some cool plush butterflies that are now hanging from the ceiling in his room ("Buttahflies!  In da sky!!"- thanks Uncle Ryan and Aunt Jamie!)

Yup.  Shorts!  December 17th and about 80 degrees.
But still merry and bright...

"You mean to tell me that all these wrapped boxes contain PRESENTS?!?!"

"You can't put me to bed as long as I'm sitting on Poppa!!!"
So we had a really nice time doing a little pre-Christmas with Raylan and my family.  We'll be in town for actual Christmas, so it was really fun to have a small little get-together beforehand (which wasn't really formally planned, actually- it all just sort of fell nicely into place).
So it was like 80 degrees and humid on Saturday.
On Sunday we woke up and it was about 28 degrees.
Being the intrepid weekenders that we are, we bundled up, anyway, and went to Kerbey Lane for breakfast.

That hat may be designed for a toddler, but Amy makes it work.
Despite the literally freezing temperatures on Sunday, we still managed to get Raylan outside to play on his new fort.
We also went to Target and ran some other errands.

"As soon as I can find my hands I'm gonna try that swing..."
There was exercise, a family shopping trip walking down to Central Market, and various odds, ends, and chores.

Eventually on a cold, winter day, one of your inside activities
is gonna end up being a game of
"Silly face- silly noise".
The rules are incredibly complex.

And that was our weekend!  Hope everyone had a good one!
Stay warm (or stay cool if it's 80 outside).  Stay festive!
Ho ho ho!!!

Monday, December 12, 2016


Ho ho ho!  Well, it seem like we're sort of in the full swing of the Christmas season.
On Friday night we didn't do a whole lot, I guess.
I ended up working sort of late for a Friday night.
Then Amy and I both exercised that night.
Not too much to report.

"Dad, either this is a tiny front loader, or these are giant cheerios.  I
haven't decided."

On Saturday Amy got up and went to a hair appointment, and I got up and took Raylan to the mall to have his picture taken with Santa.  We had a scheduled time to see Santa, so that was awesome. Getting Raylan into the right clothes and getting out the door in time to meet the jolly old elf was a bit of a challenge, but we pulled it off.
Mom and Dad called and wanted to come meet us at the mall to see Raylan get his picture taken.

"What are you doing there, buddy?"
"Uh, no, that's not hugging.  Let's go see Santa"

"So much help, Dad.
So.  Much.  Help."
And so the big meet up with Santa took place.
It went swimmingly.
Surely if Dad joins in the picture, that'll calm everything right down...

So that was my first Santa picture experience with Raylan.  By the way, he was laughing and happy from up to 10 seconds before we tried to take the pictures and immediately happy again and asking for a snack about 5 seconds after we took the pictures.  
He might be a wee bit dramatic.
No idea where he gets that.

Thanks to Mom and Dad for coming out for the pictures!

In the afternoon we went to the park.

Saturday night we went to Sophia's Austin Supper Club for dinner with the family.  We got a babysitter and went out for our yearly Italian meal before Christmas with Ryan, Jamie, Mom, and Dad.
It was fun!  The food was really good, and it was nice to hang out with our family.
Amy and I definitely appreciated a chance to have a grown-up evening with our family without having to wrangle a toddler while trying to visit with everyone.

On Sunday we went out for breakfast, ran some errands, and in the afternoon we went to a Christmas party thrown by Amy's co-worker, Tony.
It was a fun event.
Good food and fun people.

Logan, Raylan, and Truett enjoy the party.

Raylan squeezed himself in between some ladies and refused to come out.
The boy is a prodigy when it comes to understanding party dynamics.

Sunday night I had band practice.

And that was it!  Nice weekend!

Monday, December 05, 2016


So, our weekend was pretty good, if a little rainy.
On Friday night we just sort of hung out at the house.  Amy took Raylan for a little bit of outside play time while I watched from the front and back porches (apparently he walked all the way around the block while holding her hand, so that's progress).
Amy and I watched some of Captain America: Civil War. 

"Dad, Mom tells me it's fun to be outside in the cold and rain.  It's fun,
right, Dad?  Where are you going?" 
On Saturday morning we went out for breakfast at Kerbey Lane and ran some errands.

"Where'd that waitress, go?  I think I'm gonna order myself some
On Saturday afternoon Mom and Dad picked up Raylan to keep him over night.
On Saturday night we went out to Austin Karoke for some singing and socializing.
Shelly, Kit, Emily, Joe, Ruben, Miguel, Rosa, and Josh all came out to karaoke.  We had a really good time!
Ruben and Rosa were probably the best singers, but the rest of us killed it with our showmanship!

Amy and Ruben performing "Love is an Open Door".
Without end.

Amy caught between two PERFORMAHS!!

On Sunday we got up sort of late.  I ate Mexican food and Amy worked out.  We went to the grocery store and ran some other errands.
Then Mom and Dad brought Raylan back.  
"I heard you went out singing without me!"
I had band practice Sunday night.  Amy was kind enough to let me sneak out while she was getting Raylan to bed.
Everyone made it to rehearsal.  It was fun!
When I got home we ate some lasagna and watched the season finale of Westworld.
It was good.  That show has a lot of violence and nudity, but it's really thought provoking.  We're both enjoying it.  I hope it continues to be as good during season 2.
And that was the weekend!