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Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy Birthday Byron




My husband is pretty much amazing.....For HIS 44th birthday instead of spending the day doing whatever he wanted.....he took me to see the Rockettes (yes the radio city Rockettes) he then took me to a delicious Italin lunch and then to RunTex to get fitted for running shoes....




We then went home took the babysitter home and then spent the evening at our friends Scott and Kasey's house for a fun New Year's Eve party.




It was a very fun day for me, I just hope Byron had as much fun!!! I love you Honey!

Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas Celebrations





































Well it was another great christmas for the Morgan family. We started our celebration by taking the boys to a close by nieghborhood to see Santa and make sure he knew what Phoenix wanted for Christmas.




Christmas Evewe spent with our great friends Todd and Katie. We decided it would be nice to do some sort of service for christmas, so we took cookies to the nursing home where Byron's mother's God Mother lives and past them out to the residents. We also sang carols for a while. It seemed to bring some smiles and a little joy to the residents. After our visit to the nursing home we went back to our house and ate some delicious potatoe corn chowder out of bread bowls ( thanks again Katie ) and we drank some wassel......for those of you that have never had wassel....make some, it is amazing!!! We finished off the night with caroling with a couple families and hot cocoa at our bishops house.



Christmas morning we got up and opened presents with the boys...Phoenix got a work bench with all the tools, a fisher price town (zion's too) a new suit,and light up socks from the neighbor that he LOVES!!Phoenix also got thre only thing he had asked Santa for......that right you guessed it folks....a Chia Pet! He was soooo excited.




Zion got a fisher price farm, some clothes and also light up socks. Both boys and byron and I got new Pjs thanks to Aunt Katie and Uncle Todd.



Byron surprised me with season passes to all the broadway cross America shows coming to the Bass Cancert Hall!! I am sooo excited. He also got me some new workout clothes.



I bought Byron a new bag to replace the always talked about "MacGuyver Bag" that he has been carr ying around for years.



Josh, Chrissta and the kids came over late morning with prinut in hand ( Yummy!! Thanks Chriss) we hung out, ate a delicious dinner and played lots of fun games on the Wii. We loved having them here.
Sorry we did not get Christmas cards sent out....we are going to send them out with Byron's graduation annoucements in a month or so.




video

Friday, December 5, 2008

Talking About Death

I read and article in USA Today is past Monday while I was in Houston which detailed how to make easier one of life's hardest discussions: talking about how you want to die. The site is called Engage With Grace: The One Slide Project (engagewithgrace.org).

As I get older and have gone from no glasses, to bifocals, to multi-focal lens replacement (maybe next year), my family and I have started to prepare for the my transition beyond the veil.

Tara and I have a will, but like most it has not been updated since we have had children.
So as you all are getting ready to make you New Year's Resolutions, please make sure that you have a will in place (especially if you have kids) and, if you are getting ready for surgery, make sure that you have an advance directive in place.

The end is coming we all need to be prepared!

Going to the Workshop







Byron and I decided to take Phoenix to Build a Bear Workshop Friday night. He had never been there and we thought he would really like it. He chose to build a monkey and name him Curious George.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

The Doctor is in the house!

Margaret Y. Morgan, Dr. Byron Lynn Morgan, and Tara Amanda Morgan, November 14, 2008.
The new Doctor Byron Lynn Morgan with committee members: (L-R) Co-Chair Dr. Larry Price, Co-Chair, Dr. Brian Miller, and Dr. Judy Allen on November 14, 2008.


An emotional mother crying tears of joy for her only son after being addressed as Doctor Morgan for the first time.

Friday, November 28, 2008

18th Annual Austin Turkey Trot
















Byron and I decided this year in our attempt to change our lives and become more healthy that we would participate in the Turkey Trot downtown Austin. Byron ran the 5 mile run and the boys and I walked the 1 mile route. We even ran into Todd and Katie and their friends at the end of the race. After the race Byron and I and the boys had Thanksgiving dinner at Marie Callendars.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Zion's 1st Birthday Cake Video

Everyone was finally well enough to celebrate Zion's 1st B-day! Tara made birthday cupcakes and Zion got to dig in to his very own! Yummy!!!
video

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Happy Birthday Zion
















I can't believe that it has already been a year since Little Zion joined our family. He is an awesome baby and we are so thankful for him.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Oh What A Feeling...........

I went running with our friend Katie, who is 8 months pregnant and I just had to let everyone in the that I just finished running the longest distance I have ever run in my life: 6.4 miles in 1:14 and I feel gr8t!!!

This means that I am ready for the 5 miles Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving Day and it looks like I am going to start looking for a 10K to run in during the next month or so.

Thanks again, Katie.

Byron Lynn

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Second Chances: Blessings from Above (3 Months)

3 Months into my surgery, and I was finally able to break the 220 barrier. As of this past Sunday I weighed 218, which is a total of 38.6 pounds since the 12th of August.

The weight loss has really slowed down in past month, but my energy level has increased 10-fold. I am running at least 2.5 miles almost every day and I have plans to run a 5-mile race on Thanksgiving day.

My measurements now are: Neck 16 3/4, Arms (L) 13 3/4 (R) 14 1/2, Chest 46, Waist 40, Hips 43 3/4, Thigh 27, Calves (L) 16 3/4 (R) 16 1/2. This means is the past month, I have lost two inches on my waist.

Tara has even been bitten by the running bug and is going to run with me in the Resolution 5K on the 1st of January which happens to be in our neighborhood.

Will report again in two months.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

One Voice - One Vote

Oh what a feeling......a feeling of joy about the American process of democracy......why:

because once again power will shift in the United Stats without one drop of blood being shed,

because even though my vote was part of a losing effort in Texas, the candidate that I backed will call his home 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, and

because most of all that now when I tell my two beautiful boys that they can grow up to be anything that they want, even the highest public office in the land will no longer be a pipe dream.

Much Love & Respect,

Byron Lynn

P.S. Just to let you know, the color of my skin precludes me from membership at the country club in my hometown.......who would have guessed, a black man can be elected president, but can't join the country club in Corsicana, Texas.....things that make you go hmmmmm!

P.S.S. For all of you Republican homers......who do you think let this country fall into the financial tailspin which we have not seen since the likes of the great depression.

P.S.S.S. Don't hate the player, hate the game.....Peace Out

Monday, November 3, 2008

My First 5K (aka Run Forrest Run)

Well, I finally did it.......I ran my first 5k since I was about 15 years old.....for those of you who know me that has been a pretty long time.

It was a beautiful morning yesterday and we had about 10 people who came out for the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Walk Run. Our team, Bobcats for Breast Cancer, raised money to support my friend Elisa who has breast cancer. One of my other good friends, Tiffany had a team "Michelle's Angels" to support her sister (Michelle Bynum) who has breast cancer and you can see their photo: http://www.komenaustin.org/site/PageServer

I ran in the timed 5k and I finished in 35 minutes and 41 seconds. I finished 83 out of 95 for my age division. It was a pretty hilly course so I felt good that I was able to finish without slowing down or stopping. The picture below is of me with my friend Kasey Ann who ran the 5k with me.

So now that I have established a baseline it is time to kick it up a notch. I will be walking in a 5k with Phoenix (40lbs) in the backpack and pushing Zion in the jogger on the 15th of November and on the morning on the 16th I will be running in another 5k with my friend Todd.

Short term goals include running at least one five 5k every other month, running a 5k with my wife sometime in the month of December and in the next three or four months to run a 10k, with the eventual goal of running in a half-marathon. (Our friend Katie thinks I should be able to do 13 miles by this spring.....we will see).

Trip to Zilker Park with B-Square




Tara will be updating this post soon.

Trunk or Treat and Halloween
















Tara will be updating this post soon.

Trip to the Pumpkin Patch
















Tara will be updating this post soon.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Ramblings from the Road

So I have been in Houston since Sunday afternoon, and after some fanfare, I was able to secure a room with a microwave and a fridge. Somehow I keep wondering if the hotel clerk knew that the new room was right outside a street light which never turns off.

Monday was a good day. I went running for my lunch hour and I ran 3.14 miles in 40 minutes. I felt really good because I wasn't sure if I would be able to make it for the entire 5K which is coming in about a week and a half. I can tell my body is getting stronger and stronger by the day....what a gift from God!

Monday afternoon to blow sometime I went to see the new Max Payne movie. It was pretty good....plus I got to see Marky Mark from the Funky Bunch. Later that evening I watched some network TV/Monday night football and read Twilight during the commercials. I only have about 25 pages to go and plan on finishing on Tuesday night. Keep going back and forth on whether I am going to continue reading the saga. I have had the book "Mindset" by Carol Dweck in my car which I have started twice that I want to complete before I start reading anything else.

This afternoon I took my lunch late and went for another run. Today I only ran for 2.25 miles in 25 minutes and then I walked and sprinted the rest of the way back to the office and capped it off with some jumping jacks and push ups.

Things are looking on the positive for my dissertation. I only have a few more changes before I submit to the committee member who put the kibosh on my October defense. Hopefully I will be able to defend sometime in November, but that means that actual graduation will be put off until next May. There may be a silver lining in that thundercloud, but I will address this in a later post.

Later today, I plan on going to see Quarantine and then to the hotel to watch Fringe.

After three hotel stays in the past 30 days I am convinced that the home away from home illusion that a hotel offers just doesn't cut coming home to a loving wife and children who tell daddy that they love him........I can't wait to get home.

Peace Out,

BLM

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Second Chances: Blessings from Above (2 Months)

Yesterday was the 60th day since my surgery and my weight (221.2) was down a total of 35.4 pounds. The size 42 pants that I am wearing are starting to fit big and hopefully in the next few weeks, I will be down to a size 40. Tara reports that the famous Dr. Oz from the Oprah show says that the sign of a healthy male is a size 36 waist. Since I last reported to you, I have lost a total of 5 pounds which is about a pound a week. My current goal was to lose a total of 50 pounds by the end of the year so I have about as many weeks as pounds to lose. During the past four weeks, my weight actually went up a pound or two as I started working out more and eating more. In my mind, I wasn't making the positive gains I wanted even though the dietitian told me that my weight loss would slow down to about a pound a week. On a more positive note, my doctor reported back that my Hb1ac was a 6.0 which is at the upper end of the normal range without any medications, so it seems my diabetes is in check and my blood sugars should decrease with every three month checkup.

In addition to everything else I am normally involved with during the past five weeks the Texas gulf coast was hit with hurricane Ike. During that time I was called up to work with special medical needs persons at the evacuee center at the Austin Convention Center and I also worked several shifts at the State Operations Center. I learned a lot about how the state operates during a disaster, plus it tested my resolve and my eating habits during 12 to 15 shifts. Then three weeks ago my supervisor called me and asked if I would travel to Houston to supervise the Medically Dependent Children's Program unit there like the one that I supervise here in Austin. I have been traveling to Houston every other week from Sunday through Wednesday to supervise 15 nurses and case managers. During those times, I tend to eat a bit more and exercise a little less. Plus I found out last week that my dissertation defense is on hold, so that depressed me a little, which meant I put more food in my mouth than needed. This tells me, I still need my group therapy sessions to work on my eating disorder: emotional eating.

Resolved to get back on a track, when I returned from Houston this past Wednesday, I hit the gym even harder than normal. Then this past Friday I decided to step it up even more in my preparation to run in the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure (5k) (http://www.komenaustin.org/site/PageServer) the first weekend in November and the Step Out: Walk to Fight Diabetes 5k (http://main.diabetes.org/site/TR?pg=personal&fr_id=5429&px=4380465) on the 15th of November. Something happened to me this week, and on Friday I took a class a the gym and I felt so good that in the afternoon after work, I ran a mile and a half. Then on Saturday morning, my fraternity brother, Scott Rasmussen and I ran for two miles, walked a mile and then ran/walked for another mile. After our run he gave me a new Nike Sportsband and so I wanted to see how it worked. On Saturday afternoon I ran for a mile and walked another mile. During my run I lost the receiver to the Sportsband and then we promptly went to the store to purchase another because I felt bad to lose a gift not 12 hours after it was given.

Since today is the Sabbath, we will take it easy and go for a walk this morning with the boys to test out the double stroller that my friends Amy Babbs let us borrow. Since I will be in town this week, I plan on increasing the total amount of exercise I do each day and running a little longer and faster with each of my running sessions. Update: we found the receiver to the Nike Sportsband that I lost on my run yesterday afternoon this morning on our family walk.

I cannot go with out reporting that while I have increased my exercise, Tara has also ramped up both physically and mentally. She has been walking daily with the boys and her friend Kate, and on days that I don't have to teach, we have gone over the the middle school track and run with Phoenix and Zion. Tara's weight is down over 18 pounds since I had my surgery. She also received a 71 on her first test in her Elementary Algebra class in college. She wasn't please with her grade, but I told her now she has a goal to improve upon. Her math classes are getting progressivly more difficult and she is going to have to work harder than she did in the spring semester, but most of all she is sticking with it.

Will report again in 30 days.

Hope all well with all of you in the blogisphere.

Much Love and Respect,

Byron Lynn

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Handbag

If you are feeling lucky today go to http://www.handbagplanet.com and enter to win a free handbag.

These were a few of my favorite things.....






Here are some random pictures of things we did in the last week....Zion got his first haircut(if you can even call it that.) I cut off the dorky looking three curls he had on the crown of his head. Phoenix work on his sweet moves and took a little R and R time in his train table drawer. Zion took a ride on big brother's bike and LOVED it. Phoenix also has been working on his spoon tricks (he saw some kid doing it on a cartoon) and when he succeded this is what he said...."My name is Phoenix, and this is my COOL trick!" He is one funny kid sometimes.

Preschool






Ok,ok I know it has been a while since my last post. We have been keeping busy...Last week was my week to teach Phoenix's preschool class. Wow what energy six little three year olds can have. We had a fun time with all our projects. We learned about the letter "F", the color Brown and triangles.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Second Chances: Blessings from Above (Week 4 & 5)

During week 4, I was able to get down to 228, and as of today I am down to 226 which is a total weight loss of 30.6 pounds in 35 days. It was a little depressing because the weight is not coming off as fast as it was, but I am still making progress. I started to take into account the changes that I had made over the past week or so. I have increased my caloric intake becuase I am acually starting to feel hungry now that I am working out again. I started exercising this past week and in the last five days, I have mowed the yard, taken three exercise classes at the gym, and Tara, the boys, and I went to the middle school to run for 30 minutes. The other issue that I have noticed it the fact that I have not been very regular so I think that this coming week on the advice of Dr. Tara, I am going to start taking some form of fiber on a regular basis.

Waist: 44 (loss of 4 1/2 inches)
Biceps: 15 (loss of 1/2 inch)
Chest: 46 (loss of 3 inches)
Neck: 16 1/4 (loss of 3/4 inches)
Hips: 44 (loss of 3 1/2 inches)
Thighs: 26 (loss of 1 inch)
Calfs: 16 1/8 (loss of 7/8 inches)

A little over 14 total inches lost since the surgery.

The best news to report is that Tara has also been very supportive throughout this entire process, including losing a total of 9 pounds over the past 30 days.


Much Love and Respect,


Byron Lynn

Saturday, September 6, 2008

First Day of Preschool





Do I really have a child old enough to be going to preschool? What is happening? Well as you probably guessed, Phoenix LOVES school. He goes two days a week. He did get a time out on the second day....but he will get used to it all. (We have the Clift family traditional door knob picture too Aunt Brandi.)