Saturday, February 28, 2009

It's Sharona's Birthday ...

So we are celebrating. This is a small tribute to my mom on her (shh...62nd) birthday:

62 things to love about Sharry (in no particular order)

1. she makes an amazing oreo smush
2. her ability to laugh out loud at movies so the whole house can hear her
3. her Halloween decorations... and dinner
4. when she used to take me to get smiley face cookies after half day kindergarten
5. her willingness to volunteer as troop leader, room mother, PTO president, and more...
6. her mommy twinness
7. taking walks with her on warm evenings
8. her ability to laugh off constant jokes from her husband and children
9. how she can talk to anyone and everyone she meets
10. her incredible public speaking skills
11. her smile
12. her love for children
13. the way she goes out of her way for others
14. her desire to hang out with her daughters even if it means going to a country music concert
15. her Christmas village
16. her passion for Kirkwood
17. the pride she takes in her children's accomplishments
18. her thumb twirling
19. her fake cry she does when she is upset she is missing out on something
20. her commitment to her friendships, new and old
21. her love for towers of redi whip on her ice cream
22. all the times she played taxi for me and all my friends
23. her love for her dog, Molly
24. her innocent inability to reverse a car
25. when she says, "I don't believe that" or "That's not true" about something her kids tell her
26. her appreciation for everything people give her
27. the fact that it is 2009 and she still scrubs the floor on her hands and knees
28. her ability to make ALL of her children believe the leprechaun took baths on St. Patty's Day
29. her laugh
30. her love for Webster
31. her desire to always make sure everyone is happy (her kids and grand kids)
32. her ability to throw great parties with perfect decorations, food, and favors
33. when she tells me I need to learn to do the same :)
34. her love and commitment to dad
35. the fact that she reheats her coffee everyday and probably only brews 1 fresh pot a week
36. her genuinely finding me funny
37. all the mini field trips she took me on
38. being home every day I got home from school
39. calling me into school... only when I was sick of course
40. when she randomly falls asleep and then swears, "I was just resting my eyes"
41. being able to tell how long she was on the phone by the doodles on the paper
42. her love for all things blue
43. her ability to throw a party and give gifts for EVERY holiday
44. all her many holiday flags
45. the cards she gives
46. her phone messages on my birthday
47. how hard she works to give the very best gifts
48. her collection of sweaters, sometimes in the same color and style
49. her adorable attempt at becoming tech savvy
50. her knowledge of all things children
51. all the hours she has spent giving to her kids
52. her appreciation for her large family
53. her desire to watch movies and inability to stay awake for them
54. her willingness to go to the ice cream shop with me anytime
55. the love she sends with me when I travel
56. her appreciation for the simple things
57. her shoulders swaying during songs she likes
58. her support of my endeavors
59. her sincere concern when I do ridiculous or crazy things
60. the way she still yells, "KATE" when I say or do something wrong
61. her huge heart for others
62. just because she is Sharona and the best mom ever.

Love you, Mom. Hope you had the best birthday.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Random Fact February: Hiatus

I tried to stick to my guns and give you faithful blog readers all kinds of good Katie randomness. But, I would be terribly mistaken to withhold the following story from you. 
At 9:00 am we gathered at MBU to head out for our first competition of the season. We were eager to get started and had a fun drive ahead. The girls were on their best behavior only requesting two restroom breaks from St. Louis to Sewanee, TN. We played our first game at University of the South. 
Let me digress for a second and say the campus: beautiful. I am pretty sure every girl on my team wants to transfer. 
Anyway, it rained all day today in Chattanooga. We stepped on to a sloppy field with just enough time for our thirty minute warm up. The girls really did fight their little hearts out, but we ended up losing 22-7. It was honestly a good fight. The team we played was incredible and way bigger in numbers. (this isn't a huge feat). 
After the game there were lots of upset girls. Defense worked their tails off, but the scoreboard didn't show that. I tried to pull out all the stops and give all the encouragement I could, but I'm only one gal. We headed up to the vans with tears and sour moods. As my van reversed up the gravel drive I made some smart comment, "and then we got stuck in the mud..." 
"Hey, coach... umm, we are stuck". Yep, that's right, my friends, the other van was quite stuck in the mud. We pushed. We added gravel. We added limbs. All to no avail. Please enjoy the pics below. 

Typical female athletes... totally unaffected by potential tragedy at hand
The stuck van and girls coming up with various plans

The final solution: 
Sewanee Police
"Looks like you girls done got yoself stuck in tha mud"... in his thickest most precious southern/country accent. 
Here's the Sewanee police officer in the mobap van
while all the girls posed in front of his car. 

And the final solution: The girls ended up pushing while he accelerated. I wish I would have had my camera ready. The cheering and elation was incredible. The van was free. A beautiful team bonding moment. I wish I could say I orchestrated this, but I didn't. I can, however, say it broke the ice and helped ease the tension from an otherwise intense game.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Who needs friends..

...when you have four great sisters? 

Seriously, I have the best friends in the world, but sometimes am amazed by how lucky I am to have four great sisters. Let's rewind like seven years. 

I didn't always have this attitude. I used to be quite spoiled ahem ... I think some would disagree with the choice of the word "used" in this sentence, but I digress. When it was time for me to go off to college I picked many a 40,000 dollar schools that I thought were perfect matches for me. They may have been, but they weren't for my budget. I quickly became quite frustrated with the other five siblings that were putting a huge damper on my college choices. I mean really, Sharon and Terry, six?! It didn't even cross my mind that I was the youngest and thus should have been the recipient of such resentment. But, anyway. I used to think very selfishly about all the great things we could afford if there were just say, two of us. On top of this was the fact that I am the youngest. I always received the crap (and still do). I was the immature, bratty, loud, spoiled little sister. 

But I think I've grown out of all of that. (I wonder if the other five agree). And I've come to the point of having great relationships with my siblings. Sometimes I joke about how I can receive 17 (no joke... 17!) emails during one two hour work meeting ALL from my siblings. I joke about how often they call and how I could be busy every night of the week with just family activities. But I truly love it. I love the little things like guacamole after the kids are in bed, shopping trips, long phone conversations, adult egg hunts, concerts, and ridiculous bouts of laughter. And the not so little things like babies, weddings, birthday celebrations, and good ole family time. 

Seriously, being one of six is the best. Sometimes I really think I could make it through life with just my family... 

don't worry though, friends, I know you are the best. 

ps... that was February Fun Number Four

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

February Fun Numero Tres

To Some it's coincidence. To me, God orchestrated. 

It's been cool to see, to say the least. I feel like I always have a plan for how things should or could go. 
God always has a different plan. For that I am sure.. and grateful. I will spare you all the details, but let me give you a couple big ones. 

My career: 
I went to college to be an elementary school teacher. I quickly realized that wasn't right for me and switched to middle school ed. I was very happy there for most of my schooling. However, during student teaching I began to doubt teaching. I filled out the REAP application online and received a couple bites from school districts. After three interviews I got a job in one particular school district and began my career as an 8th grade english teacher. 
WORST YEAR EVER! seriously it was hard. I cried, I was tired, I flat out hated my job. I had problems with coworkers, kids, administration, you name it. After a conversation with my principal I turned in my letter of resignation before Spring Break... and sobbed. I had NO idea what I would do with my life. I kept coaching because that is what I loved. I didn't love teaching and was now on a search for a job. Two years later: I am happier than I have ever been. Had I had a good first year teaching I would probably still be there and I would be missing out on the greatest job ever. 

My current place of residence: 
I was supposed to move to Colorado in July. The apartment was set. Moving truck was ready. I only stayed for a job that was offered at the last minute. There have been many things to stay for besides just my sweet job. My dad had open heart surgery two weeks after I was going to move. I couldn't imagine being two states away for that. My sister got married, my other sister had a baby, my brother will be getting married, and another sister is having a baby. This would have been a horrible time to be two states away. That's all I really wanted, but I am glad I didn't get it. 

All this to say that half my faith and belief are based on the fact that I know God has orchestrated my life. It's not all about good things happening for me. It's about the "Lord knowing the plans he has for me to prosper and not to harm, to give a hope and a future". 
The road has not been easy, but the destination is worth it. I believe I am still going down that road, but I am thankful for the many amazing and gratifying rest stops I have seen along the road. 

Random Fact February: Numero Dos

I am a terrible driver. I think I just had this revelation. If I drive your children around or anything I promise they are safe. I don't get in accidents or anything. However, lately I have noticed more and more drivers staring at me as they pass my car. They usually aren't smiling and waving. Usually they are scowling and shaking their head. I don't mean to be a horrible driver, I just get easily distracted. But I want you all to know I am working really hard on it. I am even going to stop texting and checking my email while I drive. Now how's that for commitment.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Random Fact February

Nope, you're not confused. February is darn close to over - which is a VERY good thing seeing as it's my least favorite month and I am terribly over on my text messages. However, I keep thinking of random short thoughts. So, that is just what you will get. From now until Saturday I will bless you every single day with a random thing I am thinking or ... well who knows, just something random. 

Sometimes I don't understand how people can't figure out what they are passionate about. I am passionate about so many things. My life is driven by passion which probably explains why I am usually a very happy person. Among my passions are: 

*Different cultures. I love to see how people are different in different parts of the world, country, state, and even community. I think it's the greatest. 

*Kids. I absolutely can't wait to have kids of my own. I have recently become more fascinated with actually having kids, but would be fine with adopting as well. I just know that I want kids of my own someday. 

*My Faith. I love church, small group, worship, and fellowship. I love to talk to people about what I got out of my church. I love to see my faith in action. I think it's cool to see how God has orchestrated everything in my life. 

*Sports/Health. I love an active life. I love to see people accomplish their dreams and reach their goals. I cry every time I run a half marathon. It's not a huge feat for me, but I am just so happy for all the people that trained so hard to complete that extraordinary accomplishment. 

I could go on and on about my passions. Some can be shallow while others are more thoughtful. I am grateful God blessed me with an immense sense of passion for many things in life. 

Thursday, February 19, 2009


I'll leave that for you to decide. Let me just say that I love this kid. And I love photography. 

Look at how cute she sleeps
She sleeps with her head on her hand... love
one sweet little yawn 
I'm sure I did something to make her mad
I'm seriously this excited
And my favorite part... her sweet little feet

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Just Another Day in Paradise

Let me preface this entry with two things: 
1. I really do absolutely love my job. I love the good, bad, and ugly of it. We are in season now, so days are a lot busier (and longer). There is more player drama to deal with and more planning involved. It isn't quite as simple as I may once have portrayed. 
2. At lunch today they were discussing how close we are to April 1st. Apparently April Fool's Day is a large holiday in these parts... good to know. 

With that being said, I went back to the gym for a little indoor practice this afternoon. The temps were dropping and the wind was howling, so I moved practice indoors to make sure it was productive. Apparently everyone else had that idea and when I arrived at the gym there was the track team, men's lacrosse, and jv and varsity volleyball. After our practice would be varsity basketball. Busy day to say the least. 

Quick sidenote: I have gotten reprimanded for two things this year. 1. Tracking dirt into the gym and 2. Not giving my players enough water. 

Back to the story: 

One of the office assistants came down in the middle of practice to inform me that it was my responsibility to clean up the leaves in the hallway upstairs. I quickly pointed out the other teams in the gym and questioned why my ten girls were responsible for the mess... in a very polite way of course :) She didn't really react, but just went back upstairs. What followed, you ask? 

"Make sure your girls clean up your mess" 
"Just a reminder, I saw your team in the gym earlier... make sure u keep that side clean and get ur girls water bottles so they can get watered" 
"Make sure the facility is clean when you finish working out" 
"You better keep those leaves and dirt out" 
"Don't forget to vacuum when you girls are done" 
"Can you make sure you clean up the facility when you are done AND make sure you girls get enough water" 
"Hey can you come in tomorrow and clean all the leaves out of the hallway. It's a mess..." 

Those are just some of the texts I received while finishing practice. Funny co-workers I tell you. I was flipping out at first when I thought they were serious. When I realized they were joking I felt bad because the volleyball coach so graciously vacuumed the hall. 
But when I returned to my office... 
Just a sweet reminder/icing on the cake! 

I love me some work shananigans. Is this still initiation for the new girl or what? 

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

She's Arrived

Here's February 15 in numbers: 

11 people hung out in the waiting room. The time of wait varied from 3-8 hours. 
10 am was when the first waiters arrived
9 snacks were purchased from the vending machines throughout the day
8 cans of chili cooking in the crock pot at home
7 hours of epidural pain relief before she arrived 
6 Aunts
5: 45 when she finally arrived 
4 Rau Grandbabies 
3 members NOW in the Emerson family 
2 Phone calls from the waiting room to a friend who happens to be a labor/delivery nurse who could answer our questions 
And 1 Precious New Niece

the first look at baby Claire and Kara
first time to hold her
the Rau girls 
The 3 Emersons

Baby Claire Marie Emerson 
7 pounds 4 ounces, 20 1/2 inches long 
February 15, 2009 at 5:45 pm 

I'm pretty sure I'm already obsessed with her. 

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Lots O' Family Goodness

The plans for the weekend were to head out of town. It's been a few weeks since I saw my sweet friend, Leslie, and her precious little man, JD. She said he's growing and I don't love that.... at least not without me nearby to see him daily. I had planned to be free from Saturday at 3:00 until campus visit day on Monday morning. I was going to use every spare minute to head to Cape Girardeau.

But, as always, when you have 16 people in your family, plans changed.

Friday night was family dinner and sister, Fee Fee's birthday. I split my time between the family and a babysitting job. I, of course, returned to my parent's because my sister was there without her husband and she couldn't bear to be alone. In the am, Dad kindly agreed to prepare his famous Saturday morning breakfast for us: a Rau family tradition dating back to sometime in the 70's. After minutes of bellowing he came bounding down the stairs ready to prepare heart-shaped waffles. Delicious, as always.

After working from 10-3, I returned to my parent's house. I decided to put off my trip departure until later in the evening since my friends with boys were spending Valentine's Day with those particular individuals. I, however, thoroughly enjoyed my Valentine's dinner with mom, dad, Steph, and Dave. I sure did fall in love with the delicious deep dish pizza at A'mis in Rock Hill. Not exactly your romantic candlelit Valentine's Day, but that would have been a bit awkward as the fifth wheel.

And when we got home we got the text, "Doc told me to go to the hospital". So, the trip was cancelled altogether. Kara is in labor and we are watching Nascar (not by choice), eating chilli, and waiting for the news. I am pretty sure baby Claire will be here by dinnertime. (I sure hope so, I am way over hanging out with my narcoleptic sister and pretending to enjoy "tea" with a mini teacup and saucer).

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Neither 2 or 92...

It's 8:02 and I am in bed. 
Going to sleep. 
And I am not 2 or 92. 
I'm just tired. 
Cause someone thinks lacrosse should be played in a gym at 5 in the blasted morning. 
You can call mama and say, "Goodnight" at nine, okay, dad. 
I think you are right; she will still be up. 

And ps... all five girls (tammy, steph, amy, kara, and I) and mom got tickets to Sugarland and Keith Urban. I am pumped. I pretty much love those two bands and my sisters and mom are pretty great too. 

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Dear God, Can we do lightning round please?

It's Tuesday. Staff meeting day. Usually dreaded, but not this time. Nope. This time I couldn't wait for staff meeting, and for one reason only: Lightning Round. 

def. Lightning Round: A time during staff meeting where each member of the athletics department speaks for about one minute about his or her program. Most of the coaches talk about recruiting numbers and wins. 

Not this kid. I usually mumble through it hoping and praying that no more questions get asked. Recruiting numbers aren't something I am eager to talk about in staff meeting. Wins... welp, no season yet really. 
Today was different because I had something to share. Something I was proud of: our clinic. So, during my turn in lightning round I told everyone that we had 70 girls for our clinic, we raised money, and our season starts February 27th. 

"When's your first game?" the AD responded. When is my blasted first game?! I told him, but I was none too happy about it. Did he not hear me talk about my clinic. 
Later in staff meeting: 
"Katie, what did we talk about earlier this week?" the Ad.
"Umm, that I work here and should clean up any messes I see". 

That's it people. This girl had a fabulously successful recruiting clinic and all we could talk about is how I should be cleaning up dirt my team didn't track into the gym. So, I left the staff meeting with my head hanging, and promptly walked to the Ad's office. I knocked on the door frame and peaked in. After he invited me in I told him about our 70 girl clinic and all the money we raised and the girls who decided to come visit campus. 

His response? 

That's all he said, and all he needed to say. I got my praise I shouldn't need but thought I deserved. 
I walked outside on this beautiful 70 degree February day and heel clicked my giddy little self right across that quad. 

Monday, February 9, 2009

"Katie, are you crying?"

No, I'm not crying.. I'm just stressed. And try as I might to get kids to love MoBap, sometimes I hit a wall. And a wall I believe I've hit... until Saturday. 
My team hosted a preseason clinic. On that beautiful 60 degree February day we headed to a stuffy indoor field praying all the way that we would have enough girls show up to pay for the facilities. And boy were our prayers answered. We had 41 girls show up for the first clinic, and 30 for the second. The grand total of 71 girls earned us a whopping $1300 for our spring break trip. That's gas money peeps. (and perhaps the ultimate road trip t-shirt). And on top of it all, it was fun. And on top of that, I had two recruit contacts. Now how about that for a successful clinic. I think so. 

Sunday, February 8, 2009


Apparently Lizzie turning 25 is a good reason to celebrate for a week and a half. Seriously, this girl had the birthday week unlike anything I've seen since I was 16 years old. Sweet Melissa planned a surprise party that was shockingly pulled off without a glitch. Lizzie is usually good at spoiling any surprise, but not this time. It was a delightful evening complete with Lizzie's closest family, friends, and work buddies. It was seriously so great. 
Lizzie, Me, and Mel at Hacienda
Liz and her work friends
Liz and Tom (her husband)

Friday, February 6, 2009

10 Reasons I feel Blessed Today!

I keep thinking, "I am so blessed". It's a theme of my last day, week, month, well six months really. God is good to me. I tell people this often, but felt like today I would just sit and make a list of things that truly make me feel blessed.  

In no particular order: 

1. My family lives so close to me. Those who don't make an effort to be around as often as possible. I never have to go an extended period of time without seeing my sisters, neices, nephew, mom, dad, or brother. My grandma and one Rau family also live close. I enjoy all the time I spend with these people and really feel blessed by the time we have together. I know not everyone gets that. 

2. The weather today is beautiful! I will be able to run and practice outside for the next week... for that I am super thankful. 

3. Weird to post on public blog: I have no debt to my name. No college loans, car is paid off, no house, no credit card...ect. I feel like this is pretty incredible for a 25 year old with a college degree. I thank God everyday for allowing this to happen, for scholarships and decisions that I didn't always want to make. 

4. My health. I love running and doing anything active. I am grateful that I am capable of doing these things. 

5. My friends. I have some of the most incredible friends in the world. They get me. They let me talk... usually too much. They are a blast to be around. They are easy to give to without feeling obligated.  

6. My lacrosse teams. Both Kirkwood and MoBap. I feel like people have really had to take a chance on me for both of these positions. I love the girls on both teams and feel spoiled to have been given the chance to coach them. 

7. My job. It's sweet. I'm spoiled. Enough said. 

8. My faith and those that have encouraged me in that. 

9. Friends that are far away. For two reasons: 1. Sweet Trips 2. It doesn't seem like the distance or time spent apart ever matters. 

10. Spring being just around the corner. 

Monday, February 2, 2009

Welcome Sweet JD!

He's just precious. I am so excited about him and for Leslie. I would do just about anything to live closer to this sweet little duo. I guess that just means more visits to Cape. Without further ado, let me introduce you to John David Hazelwood. He's my college roommate's little man and he is precious. 

Roommates and the little guy 
This was candid... no joke
Tiny... 5 pounds 6 ounces
Leslie and JD holding hands