Our Weekend

How can the weekend is over already?!? Sigh, so its back to work for us. BUT we have an exciting couple of weekends coming up because Aedan is going to be turning 1 in just 2 weeks!!!

More on that later, for now, back to our weekend.

On Friday the weather was gorgeous. Aedan and I played outside for about 45 minutes before his afternoon nap. I have to say this little car that he got from my parents is perfect for playing outside. He can push it all he wants, up and down the sidewalk, I can guide his pushing without having to bend down and when he decides to plop down because he is tired, I can just put him in and push him back home.

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When Jon got home that evening, we decided to head over to Mighty Fine for some burgers and milkshakes. We eat pretty healthy during the week, but sometimes you just need a good burger and fries. After dinner we went over to Buy Buy Baby to look around at carriers. Aedan is getting too big for our Baby Bjorn and we want something with a back carry option. While we were there, Aedan got to test out some toys. First he pushed a big car around, and then played with some stuffed animals. But then he ran across this Melissa & Doug Piano. Oh my goodness, I wasn’t sure we would be able to pull him away to leave. He was so excited about it. We decided we had found the perfect birthday gift. Since I didn’t have a coupon with me, I decided I would come back and get it later, but then I found it on Amazon for $20 less, not bad! It arrives on Tuesday, and I am not sure Jon or I will be able to wait until the 13th to give it to Aedan. :)

On Saturday morning, I got up bright and early to go to a neighborhood boot camp. It was great and I am still so sore now. We spent the rest of the day just relaxing around the house.

Sunday, we got up and headed to our favorite breakfast spot (Dan’s). Aedan enjoyed eating my pancakes and eggs and drumming on the table with the straws from our waitress.

Sunday afternoon we headed over to a park I heard about from one of the girls at my boot camp. It’s pretty close to our house and it was perfect. There was even a little playscape that was perfect for Aedan to crawl around on. The park has a wadding pool that is open in the summer. I am so excited to have somewhere close by to take Aedan swimming. In Plano I was a little spoiled by the City’s Parks and Recreation department. There are tons of very nice pools to go to up there. In Austin there are pools all around, but they are not nearly the same as the ones I am used to. At least this wadding pool will be fun for us this summer when it is over 100 outside!

Happy Monday everyone!

-Lauren-

Changes Part Three

Ready for the end of the story (for now)? Okay, here we go.

So like I said before my friend and I were all ready to start up our own company. We had met with an attorney as well as an accountant. We were all set and I was beginning to feel more comfortable with everything. We could totally do this. We are both good at our jobs and we felt like we could figure out the business stuff as we went along (we have lots of support/knowledge from significant others and friends).

Then earlier this week I got an email from my friend saying that she had received some unexpected news and that we needed to talk. Hmm. It did not sound good.

The next day we talked and she let me know that she had heard back from a company in Colorado that she had sent her resume to months ago (way back when we first found out the director of the small company was leaving). She had sent it in before we knew if we were going to be taking on the company.

Anyway, this company is great and offered her a really awesome deal. Plus she will be moving back to Colorado where her family is. It is going to be a great move for her and I could not be happier for her to have this opportunity.

So, where does that leave me? Well I am going to start my own LLC. Jon and I talked about it and I feel like I need to take advantage of this opportunity. I am nervous about handling the business side of things by myself, but I love what I do and it’s looking like I am already going to be full as far as my client load. You can’t beat starting a new company and already having clients, right?

I am thankful I have such a supportive husband and supportive friends. Jon and I are meeting with another accountant early next week to get things rolling. I am still a little overwhelmed, but I know that everything will work out. I think writing these last few posts has reminded me even more that I am doing what I am meant to do and God is ultimately in control.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future”.  -Jeremiah 29:11

Hopefully in the next few weeks I will be able to share my company name (once I decide on one) as well as my very own website. :)

For not it is time to enjoy a weekend with my two favorite boys and favorite puppy.

-Lauren-

Changes Part Two

Okay where did I leave off…Oh that’s right, I was working as a lead therapist for the small company. It was perfect. I was going to school and working on my masters. In order to sit for the BCBA exam  I needed to complete 1500 therapy hours and meet with a current BCBA for mentorship at least once every two weeks. The owner of the small company supervised my therapy hours and we met on a regular basis through my two years in grad school. I learned all about doing assessments, writing programs and reports and everything else that comes along with supervising home therapy.

When I graduated in December of 09, I started to help with more things like interviewing new therapists and training them for new and current clients. I would have started to supervise cases in January then but I looked like this.

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We decided it was pointless for me to begin supervising cases when I would just be leaving for maternity leave in just over a month. So I pretty much took February off. I was too big to do therapy comfortably and there was not point it start supervision.

So fast forward to June. Oh did I mention that the director of the small company had a baby just 4 weeks after I had Aedan. 4 weeks to the day. Pretty crazy right? Ya, I am pretty sure our clients thought so too. Anyway, in June we both decided it was time to get back to work. I was so fortunate to find a great sitter to watch Aedan while I went to work.

I started off with one client and it was perfect. Aedan only had to go to the sitters house for a few hours each week. It was a great way to ease back into work. In August I started to buckle down and study for my upcoming BCBA exam. During this time we didn’t get any new clients, which worried both of us. Running one case was just not enough. Well looking back, I am not sure how I would have handled doing initial assessments and reports while trying to study and take care of Aedan. And won’t you know, literally the week after I took my exam, we got three calls from potential clients interested in starting services.

In the beginning of November I found out I passed my test. I also found out that the director of the company was thinking about moving back to California. All of her family was there and now that she had a baby, she really wanted to be closer to family, which I completely understood. One of my good friends was finishing up the graduate program and was going to begin supervising with us in January. Again it seemed like everything was lining up perfectly. There were enough cases for two people but not three, so with the director leaving, my friend and I could step in and take on the work load.

Originally we were going to buy the company from the director. But after lots of discussions, we just could not come up with an arrangement that made everyone happy. Plus it is difficult to transfer things like tax id numbers and such that are associated with the company since they are also associated with SSNs.

It was looking like my friend and I would just start up our own company and hopefully the clients would follow. I was nervous. I love love love what I do, but I am not a business person. I never had any desire to help run a company. But I didn’t have a lot of other options. I wasn’t interested in working full time with Aedan so young, and I absolutely love that I have a flexible schedule. So I decided to jump in with both feet. My friend and I were going to be partners and everything was going to work out again.

Well, not quite…stay tuned for part three.

-Lauren-

Changes Part One

A few weeks ago I mentioned that there were some changes going on a work and things were a little stressful. Well they got a little more stressful and now that things have settled I thought I would share/document them for myself.

Before I start talking about where I am now with my job, I want to start by sharing how I got to this point. Since I am going to start at the beginning, I think I will break this up into 2-3 posts, so here is Part One:

In 2005 I was a junior in college at the University of Texas at Dallas. I was majoring in Speech Pathology and Audiology. I knew that I wanted to work with children, but other than that I didn’t have firm plans for my future career. Over spring break I met Jon and you can read about it here.

Fast forward to my senior year. Jon and I were still dating long distance, and getting pretty tired of the drive up and down i35. One afternoon I got an email from a professor that was only supposed to be sent to graduate students. It was a job opportunity as a school shadow for a little guy on the autism spectrum as his preschool. I was very interested in getting some new experiences so I responded, not really thinking anything would come from it since the mother was looking for a graduate student.

Well, the mom decided to take a chance with me and during my last year at UTD, I worked a a school shadow for her 3 year old son. Honestly looking back, I was okay at the job but I had no training so I am sure I could have done better. 

When I graduated in May of 2006, I was pretty tired of school and not interested in starting graduate school right away. I also knew I wanted to move to Austin. So I started looking for jobs and after lots of searching I came across a company that provided home applied behavior analysis therapy and school shadowing for children on the autism spectrum. I applied and got the job. A few weeks later I was sitting in Austin going through training to become a behavioral therapist.

For the next two years I worked for this company and got lots of good training and experience. During this time, I had made the decision that this was the population of children that I wanted to work with. I decided I was ready to go back to grad school and get my masters in special education with an emphasis in autism/ABA. Oh and Jon and I got married. :) However I had some issues with how the company treated its employees and once a favorite supervisor left, I knew it was time to find another job.

As it turned out, I didn’t have to look far. The very same supervisor that had hired me 2 years prior and then moved away, came back to Austin and opened her own company. Everything very much just fell perfectly into place and I began working with her as a lead therapist.

Although I have always known, as I look back at how everything fell into place, from receiving an email only meant for grad students to finding a job in Austin and then having the option to continue to do what I loved for a smaller company, it is obvious that God’s hand was orchestrating it all. As I think back about the times where there was drama (like when I left the large company – lots.of.drama!) it is comforting to see that everything worked out. It gives me confidence that yet again, everything will fall into place.

Stay tuned for Changes Part Two.

-Lauren-

Our Weekend

Since it was Jon’s birthday weekend, we had some fun things planned.

On Friday, Jon’s niece came over to babysit and Jon and I went out to dinner. We ate at our favorite Mexican food restaurant, Curras. They have avocado margaritas which are so good. Neither of us had been there since before Aedan was born, so it was definitely time to enjoy our favorite meals there.

After dinner, we decided to go do a little shopping. Since it was Jon’s birthday he got to pick the store and we ended up at REI. Jon got a new pocket knife and I got this cute little cup.

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So fun. I am loving iced Chai tea lattes right now and this will be perfect for me to take my latte to go or just to the living room. :)

On Saturday Jon, Aedan and I headed to Chuck E Cheese for my friend Lauren’s son’s birthday party. It was crazy but very fun. Aedan did really well and got to try cheese pizza for the first time, it was a hit. When Chucky came out to sing happy birthday to the birthday kids, I was sure Aedan would lose it, but he just gave him angry eye brows.

When we got home Jon’s mom and one of Aedan’s cousins came over to hang out. Jon’s mom brought everyone gifts. Jon got a soccer ball and some other soccer accessories and I got a Paula Deen candle (it smells so good and has pretty much been burning ever since).  She brought this new toy for Aedan and he LOVES it.

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Jon’s mom babysat for us on Saturday night. I know, we got to go out two nights in a row, which has not happened since before Aedan. Jon and I headed downtown and met up with some good friends at Silhouette for sushi. It was the first time I have actually been to a sushi restaurant and it was very tasty. After dinner a few of us headed over to the Ginger Man for some good beer. It was a fun night and we enjoyed hang out with our friends and Aedan had fun hanging out with his Grandma and cousin.

On Sunday we went over to Jon’s grandparent’s house for lunch and had a nice visit. Aedan was into everything, including some indoor potted plants, but had lots of fun. We all came home and took a long afternoon nap – the perfect way to end the weekend.

Last night during our evening walk, we talked about starting up our family picnics again since the weather is so nice.

-Lauren-

Happy Birthday Jon!!

Today is Jon’s 30th birthday!! He never reads this blog. He jokes that sometimes his friends know what’s going on with us before he does since they keep up with my blog and he doesn’t :)

Even though he doesn’t read it, I thought I’d tell you guys a little about him and why I love him so much.

  • He is such a wonderful provider. He has the best work ethic of anyone I know and he always keeps his word.
  • He is loving and and supportive and always willing to help.
  • He is so good with kids and amazing with Aedan. He will work a long day at work and immediately start playing with Aedan when he gets home. Melt my heart.
  • He is super cute and has a great smile. He is funny and can always make me laugh.
  • He loves to be outside and Hiro loves the trail runs they do together at the greenbelt.
  • He loves music and playing the guitar, something I know he will teach Aedan someday.
  • He is vary athletic and can play pretty much any sport, but loves soccer, another thing I know he will be teaching Aedan.
  • He is truly my best friend and am so blessed to have such an amazing husband.

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Happy Birthday Jon! I love you!!

-Lauren-

Eleven Months!

I can.not.believe.I am writing this post! In just a few short weeks, but little baby will be 1 year old! Oh my goodness.

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Aedan, here is what you have been up to these days:

  • You weigh 22lbs and a few ounces and I think you are between 29-30 inches tall (we had an appointment today, and they had you stand up like a big kid to get measured, so I’m not sure you were standing completely straight).
  • You wear size 3 diapers during the day and size 4 overnights. You still wear size 12mo or size 12-18mo (you have since about 8 months, I think).
  • You sleep from about 7:30pm-7:30am every night and usually take a 1.5 morning nap and a 2 hour afternoon nap.
  • You are still taking 4 bottle a day, but I think we are close to dropping the late afternoon bottle and just making it a snack after naptime.
  • You are eating more and more finger foods. You love to have toast with your oatmeal for breakfast and grilled cheese or quesadillas for lunch. Oh and you love sliced bananas (you hated them when I used to mash them) and fresh blue berries. You will pretty much try anything and are a great eater. However, you have learned that it is fun to throw your food off your highchair and watch Hiro eat it. We are working on this, because while I am sure it is so fun, it is not something mommy likes. :)
  • You are pulling up and cruising on everything you can get your hands on. I’m pretty sure if you could stand up 24/7 you would be thrilled. Today, your sitter told me you were pushing a 2 year old around in a cozy coupe car.
  • You have become quite a handful when it is time for a diaper change/getting dressed. Most of the time I feel like I am trying to rope a calf or something.
  • You are learning what “no” means, but to you it doesn’t always mean you need to stop doing something, apparently it is more of a slow down or glance up.
  • You love to take toys out of your toy basket and some of your favorites are your trucks and balls or cups, oh and of course your beloved wooden spoon.
  • You are so good at running errands and love to sit in the cart, smiling at anyone who will give you some attention. It amazes me that you are so happy with everyone all of a sudden. When you were younger you didn’t even like it when new people came over to the house let alone hold you.
  • You love love love music. You will rock or shake your head when you hear something you like. You discovered the piano at your Nonnie and Pops house this last weekend and LOVED it!
  • You “talk” all the time, and while you can say mama, you prefer to say dada. You are saying new sounds just about everyday and today you have been saying “yes” all day long.
  • You love to rough house with your daddy and laugh at Hiro.
  • You have started to get pretty good at throwing tennis balls and bouncy balls, maybe you will be a baseball player like your Pop?

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Aedan, you are so much fun. Each month just keeps getting better and better. We love you so much!

-Lauren-

Things We Love Part Eleven

I cannot believe I am writing part eleven of this series. For the last few weeks Jon and I both keep saying we can’t believe Aedan is almost 1 year old!

I have mentioned before that Aedan used to like carrying his spoon around with him. imageWell for Christmas, one of Jon’s stocking gifts was a set of wooden spoons/spatulas (he is the cook in the family after all). When Jon opened the set, he handed Aedan one of the wooden spoons. From then on it has been his all time favorite toy. I mean, he will pull toys out of his toy basket and throw them aside until he find his spoon. He will even carry it around when he is riding in his Baby Bjorn carrier. Over the weekend, we stopped at a pretty hippy smoothie place (Jon’s smoothie came with hemp granola) in town after going to the park and Aedan carried his spoon in with him. There was a guy inside with dreadlocks and those crazy toe shoes who thought Aedan was cool for having the spoon.

So our first item is non other than Aedan’s wooden spoon, that we call Excalibur.

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As Aedan gets closer to a year, we are working on transitioning from a bottle to a sippy cup and soon from formula to milk. Aedan is great at drinking water from his straw sippy, but when I put formula in it, he takes one sip and looks at me like I am crazy. I saw these Nuby bottles on this cute blog and thought they would be perfect. I picked up a couple of Buy Buy Baby and we love them. They have handles just like a sippy cup, and they come with two types of nipples. One is like a bottle nipple, but it doesn’t leak when Aedan shacks or throws the cup (which is a frequent occurrence). The second is more like a sippy cup nipple which we will switch to soon.

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When Aedan was younger I never really bothered putting shoes on him. Now that he is on the move and literally everywhere, shoes are more important. When it is cold I put him in his fleece booties from Old Navy, but since we have had a few warm days, we have been loving a pair of slip on tennis shoes a good friend gave me. They are also from Old Navy, but I can’t find them on the site, so this is close to what they look like, except Aedan’s are just blue. Although I think these little Lover Boy ones are adorable, I may just be ordering some soon. These shoes are so easy to put on and they stay on really well.

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Blocks are another toy that has become a hit around our house. Jon’s sister got Aedan a set of alphabet foam blocks and a set of wooden alphabet blocks for Christmas. As soon as Jon or I start to build a tower, Aedan stops what he is doing and rushes over to smash it. He thinks it is hilarious (which might be something we will need to work on before he goes to preschool).

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Other than these four things, we are still loving everything from last month. I can’t believe next month I will be doing part 12! I’m thinking for that one, I am going to list our top 5 items from Aedan’s entire first year. The things I think have been our best buys.

What about you guys? Any number one baby item that you just couldn’t have lived without during your little one’s first year? Or what about something that you wish you had during that first year?

Happy Weekend!!

-Lauren-

My Little Helper

I was going to post my Things We Love post today, but instead I thought I would show you what it is like to do chores with my little “helper”.

I got the clothes out of the dryer and put them in the basket and Aedan helped me push the basket into the living room. Before I could start folding the clothes, this is what my “helper” did…

He does this every time I try to fold clothes. I think it is too funny when he finds a fuzzy sock and immediately stops and sits down with it. Clearly he still has a thing for soft things.

Oh and props for me for learning how to use my iPhone camera and make my videos fit the screen. :)

-Lauren-

Snow Day in Austin

Just as predicted, as soon as the first icicle/snow flake feel early on Friday morning everything shut down. We got about 1.5-2 inches of snow. I know, I know. You are thinking 2 inches? Seriously. I agree. But it rarely snows in Austin. And there was ice on the roads. We don’t get much snow, but we do tend to get ice a few times a year. While it wasn’t much ice or much snow, everyone took a snow day. Really it is just better for everyone to stay in. Most people around her don’t know how to drive in winter weather.

Jon worked from home and Aedan and I just hung out around the house. After breakfast, I got Aedan dressed and we took him out in the snow to get some pictures before it melted (which happened around 2pm that afternoon).

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He just kind of sat there looking around so I brought him back inside. As soon as I set him down in the entry way, he promptly turned around and crawled right back outside.

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I guess he liked it.

Everything was pretty much gone by yesterday afternoon and today it was back up into the 60s today so it is hard to believe we even had a snow day. It was nice to have a day at home, but after hanging out at the park in the sun today, I think I am officially ready for spring.

-Lauren-

Brr, It’s So Cold!

Remember when I posted about those 75 degree temperatures we had over the weekend? They are long gone. The temperature has been steadily dropping since Monday night and the high today didn’t get above freezing, which for Austin is COLD.

They are calling for sleet/snow tonight/tomorrow morning. They have already starting talking about school delays for the morning and I am pretty sure if there is even an icicle or drop of snow on the road things will start closing down for the day. That’s how we roll in here. We don’t do winter weather.

Regardless of snow or no snow, we are having a stay at home day for tomorrow. We may head out to our first level 3 Gymboree class if it’s not cancelled but other than that we are staying in. Jon is going to be working from home for the first time this year. Yay! I have a few work things to take care of during Aedan’s naps but other than that I am hoping to have a relaxing day.

Oh and speaking of work. I had a team meeting with one of my clients this afternoon and when I was leaving the mom gave me a gift. She said I have been doing a great job and they are really pleased with everything. So nice to hear!

Jon is playing is Xbox which means it’s time for me to go cuddle in bed with Hiro and catch up on some TV shows. I think I may grab a few Thin Mints too! Gotta love those Girl Scout Cookies!

Here is another video of Aedan. Last night Jon and Aedan were playing chase with Hiro. Aedan thought it was too fun.

-Lauren-

The Nemeses

Aedan has never been a fan of loud noises. When he was a newborn, I remember him losing it many times when someone laughed a little too loud or even just sneezed. Seriously, the boy can scream like the best of them, but if someone else makes the noise it’s a no go.

Obviously it comes as no surprise that he is no fan of the vacuum. Usually I vacuum when he is playing in his crib or playing with Daddy, but I have vacuumed while holding him a few times. Which he is okay with, but goodness, after vacuuming the entire house while carrying my 22lb son just about does me in.

We usually keep the vacuum in Aedan’s closet (our house has great walk in closets in every bedroom but no coat/linen closet). A few months ago he followed me into his closet while I was hanging up his clothes. An guess what he saw? It is true, it was the nemeses itself. He was not pleased. Even after we went back to playing, he kept crawling over and glancing in the closet. Can you believe that nemeses never left? I know, neither could Aedan.

So now whenever the vacuum is out, he has to keep a close eye on it. I just had to get a little video clip of it. You know, something to show him when he older to completely embarrass remind him how cute he was at this age.

-Lauren-