Last day of first grade.

Yesterday was the last day of first grade. When I went to pick up the kids, Oliver and Millie’s teacher was walking them to the car, crying with Millie. One of the hard parts about going to a school where the teachers are coming from a foreign country is that they can’t stay forever. So I wasn’t able to get a picture with the boys with each of their teachers, but it’s okay. I’ll survive without having every single aspect of their lives documented.

Last day (standing the same order in both pics):


and first day:


Want to see more last days? Here you go.

Excuse me while I hyperventilate

Today is the last day of first grade. Um, excuse me? How did that happen, exactly? Well, those official “end of the year” pics will be coming later, so I can get photos of the boys with their teachers. But we had an end of the year play date after school yesterday with Miles’s class, and I got some nice pics of the boys. If I may say so myself.

and then Miles got in another tree by himself and the light was so pretty and I couldn’t resist.

This one’s my favorite. How lucky am I to have three that are this adorable?


The boys with Miss Claire, who taught Linus in PreK-4, Oliver in Kindergarten, and Miles in first grade. I’m not sure how I’m going to cope with not having her as one of our teachers!


Oh, Ollie and his weird smile. I think he’s really self-conscious because he hasn’t lost either of his front teeth yet.

Things I’m loving right now

Just want to share the love.

The boys are so, so messy at eating. The floor under the kitchen table is constantly covered in a layer of crumbs. Instead of getting a dog, I picked up this stick vac. I’m not about to spend hundreds of dollars on a Dyson, but this one is great! It’s cordless (first priority), has attachments for getting nooks and crannies (and stairs, which also constantly need vacuuming) and you can pull out the handheld part.

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Sadly, not my kitchen nor my hair.

Next up: these sandals. George and I are going to be doing a lot of walking and hiking when we go to England and I wanted something that would be comfy, but that I’d wear again. Now, my toes will probably freeze, but oh well. You can’t win ’em all. I took them on a 3.5 mile walk this morning and no blisters or anything.

I can’t believe I bought Tevas.


The Lose It app. I did WW for a while, and I got sick of paying so much for it when it wasn’t doing me much good (I’ll blame them, shall I?) I thought it would be a nice change of pace to just count calories. It’s interesting to see what percentage of my calories end up being carbs/fat/protein. Let’s just say I am working on lowering the carb percentage by a bit and raising the protein. Bring on the almonds!

It also syncs with Runkeeper, which I use to keep track of exercise, and my fitbit. Fun!


What I really like about it is that you can scan foods and it actually has them in their database. Even totally random stuff from Costco like…


These delicious wontons. Buy them now. So yum. I just heat them up in chicken broth or throw them in the microwave. I’m sure they’re even tastier fried, but I haven’t tried that yet.

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My awesome job. Do you love WordPress and helping people? Then come work with me!

The unofficial start of summer!

We were bored last weekend and the weather was nice enough, so I decided it was time to join the pool for the summer. I also wanted to make sure the boys got some swimming in before they head to the beach with Grandee and Larry in a couple of weeks.

As usual, I pulled out my trusty waterproof camera and got some fun pics!

It was also notable because it was my first time swimming post-Lasik! Pretty awesome not to have to worry about wearing contacts.

Emily is 8!

Today is Emily’s birthday! Two days after her cousin, and the day after, well, never mind. The boys adore Emily, and they had such a great time running around with her when we visited for her First Communion.

Emily was such a beautiful baby, with her blonde hair, blue eyes and big cheeks. She is, let’s just say, a lot like my sister, personality-wise. Very…dramatic.

Happy birthday, my sweet girl! I love you so much!

My dad’s golf tournament

Seventeen years ago today, my dad passed away. He was an avid golfer (if “avid” means “obsessed”) and after his death, his company started a golf tournament in his memory.

Not too long ago, an article was written about the man behind the name of the golf tournament. (Oh, and the title only works if you mispronounce Mather. It should be may-ther, but whatever.) And the pictures are just random ones I like of us.

Golf Tournament History That ‘Mathers’

APRIL 14, 2015

If you work for Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana, find yourself on a golf course on a windless day and notice your ball rolling further than it has any right to, you can probably “thank” John Mather for it.

8672665646_bf8a7e3a3f_oMather, whom the annual John Mather Memorial BCBSLA Golf Tournament is named after, was a premiere golfer, a tech enthusiast, a jokester and just a good guy, according to his former coworkers. He lugged around a golf bag on the green and one of the briefcase-sized, monochrome Kaypro computers at work. A man not shy about his rotund figure, he would hop down the stairs like a kid in an attempt to make the building shake.

Mather passed away suddenly in 1998 from a heart attack. At the time, he held the titles of vice president of accounting and controller. These lofty positions he held, in addition to his CPA, he earned with hardly more than a high school diploma and a bit of grandfathering.

“Was John different? Absolutely,” says Darrell Langlois, vice president of Corporate Integrity. “John was not your typical executive. He was more an everyday man.”

Financial Analysis Manager Susan Fisher worked with Mather and describes him as being soft-spoken, quiet and having a good sense of humor.

She remembers that one time during the holiday season, Mather’s secretary was upset because she couldn’t afford to get each of her two boys a new bicycle for Christmas. Mather heard of the situation, and not long after, the secretary received a call from the Capitol Schwinn Cyclery to come pick up her bikes.

8672669486_8bdcef68ea_oMather never took credit for the act of charity, but Fisher still believes him responsible, because he was just that kind of guy.

Fisher explains that Mather was known to eat with the same group of guys almost every day. So commonplace were he and his troupe that they held an unspoken reservation over a particular lunch table in the cafeteria. Fisher and her coworkers, as a prank, decided to disrupt the state of lunchroom affairs. They sat at Mather’s table, leaving him and his comrades in a stupor over their broken routine.

Mather got his revenge the next day, when Fisher and her coworkers found a sign on the table that exclaimed it was reserved for grumpy old men.

Fraud Analyst Theresa Vu migrated to the States in 1975 at the age of 19 and started working for the company in 1977. She credits Mather for encouraging her to pursue her U.S. citizenship.

She remembers a time when she and some of her coworkers heard the Italian model Fabio Lanzoni, known for his butter commercials, romance novel cover modeling and bird strikes, was going to be visiting the old Godchaux’s department store in downtown Baton Rouge.

Having never seen Fabio before, Vu asked Mather if she could take an extended lunch break. Mather, agreeing to the request, wondered aloud, while patting his belly, why she needed to see Fabio when “Flabio” was right there. Not long after, Vu and her coworkers pasted a photo of Mather’s head on a picture of Fabio and gave it to him.

8780466061_02e9e8f8c1_oMather held onto that picture, and it was found in his desk after his passing.

Greg Hanly, regional director of Group Sales and former golf tournament coordinator, was a good friend of Mather and actually had the (relative) pleasure of golfing with him.

“[He] was famous for leaving little surprises in each of our golf bags when we weren’t looking,” Hanly writes. “After several weeks you would begin to notice that your clubs were not fitting properly in your bag, and when you dumped your bag out to see what the problem was, you would discover an assortment of items such as candy wrappers, bottle caps, partially eaten cheeseburgers, etc.”

On the course—pranks aside— Mather was an excellent golfer, regularly shooting in the 70s.

“He was the lifeblood of our Sunday group,” Hanly writes.

Actuarial System Engineer Lee Lawrence, current tournament coordinator, joined the company just before Mather passed. He didn’t have the chance to know Mather very well, but he still recalls with a smile one thing Mather told him. His shoes were ugly.

That article captures my dad’s personality – goofy, kind, incredibly generous, and again, goofy – better than anything I could have written myself.

120 months!

Ten years ago today, my first niece Eleanor was born, and I never thought I’d love another child as much as I loved her. I really worried that my own children wouldn’t measure up. Well, you know, I do love my boys a lot, and my Emily and Andrew, of course. But Ellie will always hold a very very special place in my heart.

Happy birthday, sweet girl! I love you so much!

Power Rangers Megaforce: Showdown {world premiere}


an original motion picture event…

Written and directed by Linus…

who also stars, alongside his brothers Oliver and Miles…


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I actually had more fun than I expected “helping out,” (i.e., doing all camerawork and post-production and dealing with temperamental artists) and I was impressed with how much work the boys put into it.

Watch out, Sundance!

Dancing man

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Last night Miles’s class participated in a dance competition through a local program called Mindsteppers. I can’t share most of the photos and videos I took because of privacy issues, but I do have to share this adorable one of Miles and his swing dance partner.


Miles insisted on staying the entire time, and good thing, because they took home the gold!

At one point, a class was dancing to Uptown Funk and Oliver and Linus couldn’t not dance. It was simply not possible.

Friday five

Five things for today:

– Miles has a dance competition tonight. I don’t know what’s going to kill me first, this or the movie we’re working on. (Coming soon…very soon.) I’m not sure if I’m going to see the tango for the first time, but if it’s anywhere near as cute as the merengue or the swing, I’m doomed.

– I’ve been having pain in my achilles’ tendon for a couple of months now, and I finally made an appointment with an orthopedist to get it checked out. It turns out I have, as I suspected, achilles’ tendinitis, so I’ll be starting physical therapy next week to get that worked on. I was oddly proud when the doctor told me I had the tightest achilles’ tendon he’d felt all day! (How many achilles’ tendons does he feel in a day? A lot, I guess. He is the practice’s ankle expert, after all.)

I can’t run until it’s not pissed off at me anymore, so now I go to the gym and die of boredom on the bike or elliptical instead. I know lots of people think treadmills are boring, but you can run or walk or do intervals or go fast but on a bike or elliptical, you just…ride a bike or do whatever it’s called on an elliptical.

– A couple of weeks ago, when we came back from DC, I started a rotation on a new team. It’s really cool to learn a different side of things from what I’m used to. And on that note, if you have a passion for WordPress and helping people, we’re hiring.

Screenshot 2015-05-15 10.45.56– Yesterday was George’s birthday and at his request, even though it’s spring in Louisiana, I made beef and barley stew. I have to say, it was incredibly delicious. I used this recipe from Williams-Sonoma, but subbed out beef broth for all of the water, I used bone-in short ribs for most of the meat (took the bones out at the very end) and threw in a parmesan rind. Oh, and a dollop of red wine. I was using all of the tricks I could think of, and they worked. Man, it was good.

That’s four. Hmm. Here are some random photos, then.