Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Christmas 2013 | Part Two

For the second part of our week-long Christmas extravaganza, we headed down to Austin to celebrate with my family. And our first stop was the Dart Bowl for Bonnie's annual bowling birthday party. 

It was Ava's first time trying her hand at bowling. She was a natural. 

Ava also thoroughly enjoyed trying out the Dart Bowl's famous nachos and tacos. I love this picture of Ava, her Grampsie, and her breakfast taco.


The next morning, we had our "Christmas morning" at my Mom and Jimmy's house. Ava was completely spoiled, and the highlight was her new play kitchen. 




Nello also gave her a UT sweatshirt to balance out all the TCU-purple :). 


Next, it was time to head over to my Dad and Rhonda's house for more gift opening and a fabulous Christmas dinner. 




How flippin cute is the fur vest that Ava got from her Aunt RaRa?!


Not pictured (because it was delivered directly to our house), is the wonderful new art table that Ava got from her Grampsie and Nana. She loves it!

After we put Ava to bed, we hung out for a while, enjoyed some adult beverages (minus yours truly), and played a little Cards Against Humanity…because nothing says Christmas like "a party game for horrible people."

My cousin Tate, aka "Uncle Rico" to Ava, even joined the fun. 



Despite the fact that I was sick during the whole trip, we had such a great time. Ava even stayed for a couple extra days after Josh and I headed back to Dallas, so she got in some extra time with the fam…and was spoiled even more. 


And the added bonus of our trip to Austin…I got to enjoy a fun girls' night out with Lauren and see her new bling in person. I am so happy for her and Jacob! 


With that, I am finally done with our Christmas posts. And seeing as how it is almost February, it's about time. 

Friday, January 24, 2014

Second Sunday Brunch Bunch: Nova

I am going to take a break between the two Christmas posts to reminisce about our delicious January  brunch. This month, we visited Novaa fun little restaurant tucked away in Oak Cliff. 



It was a beautiful day, albeit a little chilly, so we sat on the large, covered patio. 

Due to the lovely baby boy currently growing in my belly, I was not able to partake in the cocktails. But Laura and Jill enjoyed some for me. 

Laura ordered this beautiful and refreshing specialty cocktail (I cannot for the life of me remember what it was called)... 


And Jill stuck with the classic mimosas...


Jill also ordered the meal that she had been craving ever since her last visit…Chilaquiles Rojos, which are made up of "eggs over easy, bacon, pepperjack, red bean puree, tortilla strips, house made queso fresco, and roasted tomato salsa." It was just delicious as she had remembered, but she cautioned that those jalepenos are no joke. 


Laura and I couldn't make up our minds between the Texas Size BLT and the French Toast Casserole, so we split them. 

The BLT was suuuuper heavy on the bacon, which is never a bad thing. The seasoned fries were excellent as well. 


However, the French Toast Casserole was clearly the winner. The casserole was very reminiscent of bread pudding, and it was so, so good. And the strawberry syrup and sweet goat cheese "icing" really put it over the top. 


It was the kind of dish that dreams are made of. You better believe that I will be back. 


Monday, January 20, 2014

Christmas 2013 | Part One

I realize that I am posting our Christmas pics in mid-January, but I was super sick (and pregnant) all through the holidays…so I'm giving myself a pass on this one. And the holidays were a complete blur. A magical, fun-filled blur. 

We started off the holidays in Dallas with Josh's family, and it was our first time to spend Christmas in Dallas. It was a little strange to not be in Austin, but it was also really nice to wake up in our own home on Christmas morning.

Since Santa would be visiting, we clearly had to make him some cookies on Christmas Eve. 


Love this little flour-covered booty :). 


Despite the fact that the cookies looked so beautiful going in the oven...


The end result was a complete Christmas cookie fail...


But Ava was happy to decorate them nonetheless. 

She ultimately decided that the best decoration was icing handprints. 


Mmmmm. 


We also got in the holiday spirit with this heavenly smelling stovetop potpourri. It seriously makes the entire house smell just like Christmas. 


Ava got to open a couple gifts on Christmas Eve…an adorable dollhouse from Grammie and Papa, and her traditional Christmas pajamas from me and Josh. 





Once Ava went to sleep, the adults enjoyed appetizers followed by a fabulous meal (if I do say so myself).
I also achieved baking redemption thanks to The Pioneer Woman's pecan pie. It never fails. 



Santa must have heard about the delicious, icing-handprint cookies at our house, because he certainly spoiled our sweet little girl. 




Watching Ava's reaction as she came around the corner and saw all the presents was one of the coolest things ever...Christmas is exponentially more special when you have a child who is old enough to experience the magic. 


Ava loved opening every single present, and really got the hang of ripping through the paper. 




Just as we suspected, her new baby doll (who has since been named "Lila") was the biggest hit. 



I can't tell you how much fun it was to see the joy on her face all morning. 



After our nap time, it was time to head to the Lockwood's house for Christmas dinner.

The cousins thoroughly enjoyed their meal at the kid's table. 


And they had so much fun playing (and opening more gifts) all night. 

After a couple days relaxing at home, it was time to head to Austin for another round of Christmas festivities.


Saturday, January 11, 2014

Daycare Christmas Party

The week before Christmas, we attended a party at Ava's school. While I was very excited to see her during the middle of a work day, I was even more excited about her class performance.

Since some kids at the school only go part-time, they hosted the party/performance both Thursday and Friday, and I had heard wonderful things about Ava's singing and dancing on Thursday. But, of course,  once she saw Josh and I walk in the room on Friday, there would be no singing and dancing from our little one. Rather, she refused to get off my lap during the performance. But what can you do?!

She did have fun putting together her choo-choo train ornament though.


And was very proud to show the finished product to Ms. Paula.


Santa even joined the party! Just like last year, I was really hoping for a screaming-toddler Santa picture. But alas, Ava loves jolly ole St. Nick. Even when he doesn't quite look like the real thing...


In fact, Ava was one of the only students who was willing to sit on his lap. 



Despite the fact that I didn't get to see Ava sing "Feliz Navidad," it was a wonderful party. And we got to check a Santa visit off our holiday list. 




About Me

My name is Catherine, but most of my friends call me Cat. I was born and raised in Austin, went to TCU, and ended up in Dallas for law school (where Josh and I met). I decided that being an attorney was not my cup of tea and pursued a career in legal marketing instead. I am now a mother of two attempting to balance family with a full-time job, which is always an adventure. I love: my sweet babies, handsome husband, very large family, and fabulous friends; trying new restaurants; wine; TCU football; holidays; cooking; pajamas; La Croix; reading; coffee; podcasts; Central Market; carbs; the beach; mani/pedis; Anthropologie; binge-worthy TV shows; trivia; French 75s; Pinterest; cheese boards; The Ticket; dancing; Sprinkles cupcakes; The Texas Rangers; fresh flowers; thunderstorms; naps; Tex-Mex; the Texas Hill Country; porch-sitting; ranch dressing; throwing parties; and my job. I hate: working-mom guilt; snakes; heights; waking up early; ignorant people; stomach bugs; paper cuts; green fruit; bad hair days; snoring; the sound of people eating (Misophonia); Miracle Whip; scary movies; bad drivers; pulpy OJ; trimming baby fingernails; and working out. I think that sums it up.

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