TEB's gonna be a PHD

Mr. Tate "smarty pants" Barrett is officially on the road to getting his doctorate in Environmental Science. Don't feel confused, it was somewhat of a surprise to us too. You see about a year ago, we decided to leave our dear friends, and shoebox of an apartment, in the great city of Houston. Why? To move to Waco for Tate to go to graduate school. Two years, that was the plan. Two very temporary years in Waco...or so we thought. 

As Tate successfully made it through his first year, immersed in air samples and grant proposals, he found out he loved every crazy, busy moment saving the planet. And not so surprisingly, Baylor loved him too, duh, it was a mutual relationship. As Spring semester was getting started, his graduate advisor strongly encouraged him to apply to the Ph.D. program, known as the TIEEES program. Whhhhat? Someone tell her this was not the original plan. We are supposed to be halfway done by now. 

As Tate was being encouraged to stay and do research on black carbon a little longer {P.S. I have recently learned " a little longer" is the equivalent to 4 years.}, I was taking Wrigley for walks along the Brazos and praying that God would change my heart if this is where he wanted us to be. I was so happy for his opportunity, but a little hesitant about deterring from the Plan. The more we thought about it, the more it seemed like we were being blessed with a gift we just couldn't turn down. We found out Tate was being offered a full ride scholarship for 4-5 years {but we are really shooting for 4}, including a stipend and a Research Assistant position, not to mention, Tate would be getting a higher education in something he is truly passionate about. However, there were only two available spots in the program.

Amidst the craziness, he was quickly accepted! Way to go TEB future Ph.D.! We are proud of you, say, we are proud of you, HEY HEY HEY! The Lord is faithful, as He has not only given us a wonderful opportunity, but is slowly changing my heart with every step of the process as well. Tate will officially switch tracks from Masters to P.h.d. student this Fall, continuing his research on the "effects of black carbon and particulate matter on the global climate system" or in regular peoples' terms-- Is that black stuff gonna melt the ice? 


**TIEEES Balderdash Challenge: Whoever can come up with their best version of what you think TIEEES stands for wins! Ready, set, go...



This week is TAAS TAKS STAAR testing. As you know, testing can be a little daunting for some. Well, that's the understatement of the century around these parts. In a half day of testing, the following things occurred on just my campus alone:

-Got my hair pulled/ripped out by 8:45 AM.
-A kid had a nose bleed. A big nose bleed that was
categorized as a "free bleed."
-A 4th grader threw up...on the test booklet.
-We had another puker.
-Oh, and a kid got scared and literally ran away...
out of the classroom, down the hall and out of the school.

I know at this point you are probably worried about our state's standardized test results, I know me too, but let me assure you-- the testing carried on regardless. That thing doesn't halt for trivial things such as loss of hair, profuse bleeding, puke, or runaway juveniles. THE STAAR WILL PREVAIL {insert evil laugh here}! 

People often say to me, "Oh, you get to do Speech Therapy with elementary school kids? You must play games all day and have so much fun!" To that, I rub my newly found bald spot and say, "Puhhhhlease."  


this weekend

This past weekend was fun. Really fun! As usual, when in Allen, we crammed a lot into just a few days. We went to a Mavs game, ate good meals and saw friends. The guys went on a 112 mile bike ride {the full distance of Ironman bike course} while my mom and I got manis/pedis, shopped, and went to Jess' bridal shower. Oh, also on the weekend agenda-

Dad got an awesome helmet tan


Wrigley got glasses! 

Believe it or not, those are the best {and only} pictures I took throughout the entire weekend. Luckily for everyone they are amazing and beyond post worthy. 


a lot of changes

Today after a stressful session teaching same/different with those pesky Venn Diagrams, I had a conversation with a particular 4th grader about having a positive attitude during speech. "We all have to do things we don't want to, but you get to choose if you will do it with a stinky attitude or a positive attitude. It's your decision." Clear enough, right? Wrong. While explaining how eye-rolling and huffing/puffing is disrespectful {and more importantly will not earn him a coveted "super straw"}, he informed me that he "is just going through a LOT of changes right now". I stopped mid-sentence, first in confusion and then hesitating before asking the next question cautiously, "What... kind... of changes?" He told me, accompanied by one of his signature eye-rolls, "Well, I'm just changing a LOT right now. You see, I am only TWO years away from becoming a teenager. That's why I am changing so much." 


Likewise, the Barrett household has "just been going through a LOT of changes" right now in the past 3 years. Yesterday marked the anniversary of our 3 year engagement. It was merely 3 years ago yesterday that Tate asked me to marry him. I don't know why he wanted to claim me after only 6 short months, but I'm sure glad he did! And change has been inevitable ever since... accompanied by a few eye-rolls every now and again, I'm sure. 

The other night over pesto chicken pasta {one of the many things we have learned to cook together} on our back patio {while fending off a certain, droopy-eyed golden retriever}, Tate and I played a fun game. We had to name 3 ways we had changed in the past 3 years due to one another's influence. It could be anything- personality changes, routine changes, likes/dislikes, etc. After little thought the verdict was: 

1. I cuss less often.
2. I am more particular about food. 
{false. very false, if you know Tate, you will agree}
After further questioning, he rephrased by saying, 
"Well, I am more particular about the finer things." 
{oooook, Mr. Fancy Pants. I've created a monster}
3. No response.
{Typical. At least we know some things haven't changed.}

1. I cuss more often. And by more often, I mean ever.
2. I am on time more often. 
{also false. If you know me, you will agree.} 
I quickly retracted that statement after laughter from both parties
3. I am more laid back about the little things.

Well done. Here's to three damn {that's from the post-Tate Danielle} good years together! Can't wait to see how much more changin' is to come for Mr. Fancy Pants and Mrs. Potty Mouth Barrett. I love you and appreciate you more everyday! 

Also- yesterday was Dr. Robby Barrett's birthday! Happy b-day Rob-o! I hope your day was filled with your favorite things including Long John Silver's, The Ghost of Mr. Chicken and roller coasters. 

meet tigley

Wrigley and Tillie got to spend some quality cousin time this weekend {that is if "quality time" consists of Tillie running away while Wrigley follows her around the house, breathing on her neck}. Tye and Katie went out of town so we got to dog sit for a few days. Let me tell you, we were excited but Wrigley was FREAKING OUT!! On the other hand, Tillie was a little leery at first, but warmed up to the idea. We went on walks, played in the backyard, and had a cookout {where Wrigs showed off her skill of licking the air 2 inches away from the food so that she technically isn't touching the chicken, but still annoying everyone at the same time}. Look at Wrigley smiling in this pic; I told you she was excited. 

Although cousins, these puppies couldn't be more different {I know weird right, because they are related and all}. Tillie is chill while Wrigs is a wild woman, Tillie is content while Wrigley is nosey, Tillie is fast and agile while Wrigs is fatigued after a jog to the mailbox, Tillie is humble while Wrigley struts her stuff proudly, Tillie is a rule-follower {determined to walk on the sidewalks only} while Wrigley must be restrained on a Gentleleader. Tigley is a great combo of both extremes. Just look at the evidence below-- one is just happy to be getting out of the house, while the other is definitely scheming. And Tate looks thrilled to be on puppy patrol. Despite this picture, everyone had a great weekend! Can I get a "woof" for some cousin love? 


tall texan: part deux

What do these things have in common:
triathletes, men in Texas flag t-shirts, guns, pink snorkels, strippers
They can all be found at the Tall Texan triathlon 70.3! 

We had so much fun at last year's race, we made the trek back to Boerne, Texas for another exciting weekend of swimming, biking, running and antique shopping. The only difference between this year and last was that Tate was on the "disabled list" so he couldn't run and the man shooting the "start gun" left his Texas flag t-shirt at home. Double bummer.

thousands dozens of triathletes at the swim start waiting for the fog to clear

typical. Tate talking strategy and Dad focusing

and they're off

luckily, pink snorkel made another appearance 

well, that's always a comforting sight

trying to resist those {wetsuit} strippers 
ladies- no means no.
"kinda dizzy" while running to the transition area

wild bill out and about

starting the 56-mile bike. it was a rough ride from what I heard 
consisting of cattle guards, lost water bottles and "loose livestock."

touching sight: the tri dualthete cheering on triathletes

go dad! you're almost there...er...halfway there. 6 more miles to go!

the 2nd place athlete in his age division and his #1 fan


Way to go guys! Next race: Ironman Texas 140.6 May 19, 2012


oddly normal things triathletes say

It's Ironman training season! While my favorite two triathletes were feasting on a breakfast of bananas, yogurt and goo, I was lucky enough to overhear their interesting conversation. Well, to be fair, "interesting" is a relative term considering what is strange to me is normal, even necessary information to them. I mean just think of the unbalanced training session you could have if one training partner ate a red apple while the other consumed a green one unknowingly. Oh the madness! While preparing for their 75-mile bike ride, the following odd normal things were overheard:

"Oh no {in a very serious tone}. My nutrition didn't come with a scooper!"

"Are you telling me I have to trim my leg hair before using my KT tape? I didn't even bring a trimmer!"

"How many scoops are you using?"

"How many water bottles are you taking?"

"What flavor goos are you using?"

"Are you having a red apple or a green apple?"

"I'll bring an extra Island Nectar goo for you to try."

"I like the tropical flavored goo. It tastes...{thinking for the perfect adjective}...banana-like. It doesn't have an overpowering flavor. It's kinda sweet. You'll like it."

"Sooo, are you going to finish off your second bottle as you are riding up to the finish or midway through?"

"See, {showing me his Nike pouch proudly} this is the 1-bottle fanny pack. What's the zipper for? My bubble gum."