Saturday, October 17, 2015

Sydney is here!

Hello world. Meet Sydney Marion, born earlier this week and weighing in at ~8lbs.  Mom and Dad are the prototype cliche's and could not be more in love.

Sydney got her name about 6 months ago.  Joe & I were browsing through baby names in search of something meaningful and unique.  When we happened across Sydney, we both instantly liked it.  Then the more we thought about it, the more we realized how significant the name was for us.

Back in late 2013, Joe was deciding whether or not he would take a VSP (volunteer separation package) at his work.  In addition to being afforded a great opportunity to do something new and leave with a nice payout, Joe was also nearly guaranteed a new job in Sydney, Australia via an old coworker.  At the time, I was not feeling particularly great about work and was ready to make a drastic change.  We decided to go for it - Joe would quit his job, and we'd start making headway towards getting to Sydney.

Long story short, things didn't work out as planned.  Timing on the new job for Joe didn't work, I decided I wanted to stay at my job for the time being, and even though we both wanted to move to a new city, really our lives felt like we were on hold as we plotted what we wanted to do next.  Fast forward to our trip to Italy, we decided to try for a kid, and shortly thereafter things started falling into place to re-start our lives in Austin with our little girl.

Thus... we chose to name our girl Sydney because we didn't end up going to Sydney, and instead Sydney came to us.  It represents our shared dream in a new life, and honestly couldn't be a more perfect fit.  We chose her middle name in honor of my grandmother (on my mom's side), as she was one of my favorite people in the world and instrumental in making so many of my dreams come true.

Welcome to the world, Sydney! Our hearts are so full.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

The past 9 months...

A few snaps from the past 9 months...

When announced to Joe's parents, we hid our sonogram in one of our pictures. This proved to be the least effective way of announcing our pregnancy, as Joe's mom thought the picture was of me as a baby.  Oh well, we tried!
See her hiding in there?
I remember taking this picture around 12 weeks and feeling huge! Ha. ha. ha. 
Our first family picture, at the wedding.
This was when Lauren spotted us taking the picture... and thus I got surprise her big time!
Six months... baby is showing up.
Hi Mom & Dad!
7 months... right before we moved out of the house.
8 months, snapping a pic for Angie explaining how huge I'd become.
Baby Party!
Reading to baby girl...
9 months, another snap for Angie - almost there!
And now she is 40 weeks, 2 days.  You can come out any time, Baby W!!!

My Dream Robot Wedding!

This April, I had my dream wedding! Joe & I originally considered getting married in San Sebastian, Spain... but that was going to be too complicated for our friends and families.  Then we considered eloping in Australia, but that trip got knocked out once we found out about Baby W.  Then I became convinced that I wanted to get married in our backyard.  Everything pretty much fell into place when we found our house, as I felt it had the perfect backyard for a wedding. In fact, I even wrote a letter to the homeowners about how we would be getting married there and raising our first child. They loved it!

Since I took March and April off from BCG, Joe and I used those months to move into the new house, get his house ready to sell, bring Rachel to Austin to plan the wedding, and get our backyard ready for guests. (Seriously, how lucky am I that one of my best friends is a professional wedding planner? She seriously saved us, and by that I mean did everything.) We definitely ran into some issues, including: 1) our septic system was broken and couldn't handle 100+ guests, 2) our backyard was in shambles, 3) our pool filter broke and turned the pool murky green, 4) April was incredibly rainy, and we really didn't have a rained out backup plan, and 5) while minor and certainly not a deal breaker, I went through 3 different dresses as my body kept changing. I found a dress to wear ~2 weeks before the wedding.

However, all of those issues worked themselves out. (For the record, there was no way we could have done it without my parents, Joe's parents, and Rachel. Hands down would not have happened.) Our house/yard came into decent enough shape and the weather was miraculously gorgeous for 24 hours.

The wedding theme: robots, of course. Seriously, we incorporated robots into all of our decorations, invitations, wedding cake topper, etc. This really came as a surprise to no one.  But the icing on the proverbial cake was Joe's best friend Frank, who agreed to officiate the wedding... as a robot.  And now... pictures!
The day was gorgeous!
My mom took care of the flowers, all placed in vases with robot charms. Wedding theme colors: purple and peacock blue. Again, not a surprise to anyone.
I had plenty of decorations on hand - no need to buy additional robots.
Our cake toppers (traveling robots, in purple) came from Etsy, and my dear friend Meredith provided the cake. It was perfect!
The backyard setup (again thanks to Rachel) worked out perfectly. I loved having everyone hanging out in the backyard all evening.
Joe & I  walked down the "aisle" to Mr. Roboto.  I imagine people were a bit surprised, but again not entirely shocked.
I honestly couldn't stop laughing the whole ceremony, especially knowing what was about to come...
Once the words to the song started... out came Frank! He danced his way down the aisle, and everyone laughed and cheered. Video can be found here.
His entire ceremony was hilarious.  He started with the marriage ceremony from the Princess Bride, and made tons of jokes throughout.  He had everyone laughing and entertained - Joe and I most of all.
Frank also managed the perfect combination of jokes plus sincerity.  I love this picture. 
After Rudy's BBQ, plenty of Deschutes beer, and lots of hanging out, our dads and best friend toasted us. Then Joe gave a great toast and we cut the cake.  Other than that, there wasn't much else except having a good time with everyone. Like I said, it was perfect.
Thanks Carlos / Tresal Photography for all the fabulous pictures!

Like I said, it was perfect!!

Friday, October 09, 2015

US Travels - 2015

Time to catch up on 2015 travels!

March - Chicago for the International Home & Housewares show. How lucky am I to get to travel with these handsome men? The hardest part was keeping my pregnancy silent from my dad. I'm really surprised he didn't catch on that I wasn't drinking beer or coffee.
June - New York City.  Was able to combine a work trip with vacation, complete with a Yankees game, a long visit to the Met, and a Broadway show. In other words, both Joe and I were happy.  Until Angie pointed out that Baby W's first baseball game was at Yankee Stadium. I'm not sure I have ever laughed as hard as when I saw Joe's expression. (Sorry Joe!)
July - Boston.  Not to fear, we saw the Yankees again, but this time it was at Fenway Park.  I was able to combine a work trip with vacation, and as an added bonus Joe's parents came to Boston too.  They explored the city by day and met up with me at night.  It worked out really well, plus I know the W's loved being back in Boston together.

July - We took a bus from Boston to Portland, Maine, and spent a few days taking in the sites and eating all the clams and lobster we could find. I was definitely starting to feel my pregnancy on this trip... I would get worn out pretty quickly and was happy this was not a very intense trip.

August - Atlanta. I convinced Joe to come with me on another work trip so that we could spend 24 hours with Tal and Jenna.  I had such a great time with them, and Jenna spent a whole morning going through my baby registry, showing us what we needed/didn't need, and providing great parenting tips.  It's so fun to see Jenna and Tal as parents, and take lessons from them.  Also, we got to see Mo Willems show at the High Museum - and I'm pretty much obsessed now. 

I traveled a bit more for work this year, but by the end of August I was done with flying. Joe & I once again made great use of the Southwest Companion Pass.  On our last flight, we looked at the map and ultimately decided that Portland (OR) is the only other city we're missing on our list of places to go together.  It's strange that we won't make it to Europe this year - which will be the first time in 5 years - but other things are worth it. There are plenty more adventures to come!