Summer in Michigan

For about a week Emily and I are up in Leland, Michigan with Charley, visiting Emily’s parents. The highs here are in the 70s, which is a very welcome change from the 100+ degree heat in Austin. We flew in to Traverse City yesterday, then drove up to Leland which is on a small strip of land between Lake Michigan and Lake Leelanau. It’s such a narrow strip of land that we can walk to both lakes from the house. We walked to the Lake Michigan side last night, and the water is pretty cold (about the same as Barton Spring I think), but I waded in a little bit.

Leland is a very small town, and I think a lot of our time is going to be spent relaxing, playing games at the house and going to the lakes. It should be a pretty good week.


Shopping with a baby

Going to the grocery store (or any store for that matter) is definitely more challenging with a baby.

Now that Charley is a little older we’ve been taking her out with us more and we’ve noticed a disturbing thing: she LOVES the mall. Of course, I’m sure it’s just that her little sponge-brain enjoys all the people-watching she can do there, but I don’t want to start a trend with her where mall=entertainment. I mean, if a few years she’s going to want to buy shit while she’s there, right? And she’s going to use my or Emily’s money until she’s old enough to get a job and pull her own weight in this family—and that won’t be until she’s 8 or 9.

Out for the weekend

So, this weekend we spent out-and-about in Austin. Saturday we left the little one with her grandmother and met up with Travis and Karla for a lat lunch. We went to El Chile, which was nice since it’s been probably a couple months since Emily and I have been there. I had one of their micheladas, which is a giant schooner of beer with a spicy concoction around the rim. Karla went with the Prickly Pear margarita and Trav picked a top shelf rocks rita. Karla’s looked the best, so of course I had to take a pic:

Prickly Pear Margarita

After El Chile, we picked up the little one from grandma’s, made a quick pit-stop at the house, then headed to Mozart’s for some coffee. The sun was going down and it was getting chilly, so we had our coffee, talked a little, then headed home. Here’s a view from the deck at Mozart’s:

 Mozart's Deck

Sunday was the last Sunday of the month and that meant it was time for the Silkenson family lunch at Central Market. Actually, the event is “sponsored” by my grandmother on my mom’s side, and my cousins from that side of the family usually come too, so I don’t really think it’s fair to attach the Silkenson name to it–let’s just call it a family lunch. Anyway, it was fun as usual. Emily and I took Charley and my brother Seneca and his wife brought their two kids: Hayden and Bailey. My brother Bala and his wife Amber weren’t able to make it, but they usually show up with their son Zayd.

(EDIT: My brother and his wife Molly were there too. He pointed this out to me via twitter and I think his feelings were a little hurt that I left him out of this post.)

Carting the little one around to so many places definitely makes things more complicated than when it was just me and Emily, but she makes up for it with her cuteness.

Job hunting

Admittedly, I took some time off from the job hunt after the little one was born on December 5 last year. However, in the recent weeks I’ve been feeling the pressing urge to start working. After all, I did go to law school and pass the bar, the least I could do is actually practice law.

So I’ve applied to a couple DWI firms here in Austin, but no response. I talked to a friend from law school who works in Houston now, and she said her firm’s San Antonio office might be hiring and that I should send her my resume. Her firm does mostly civil work, but the partner that heads up the SA office still does some criminal defense work (for members of the military–he’s ex-JAG), so I’m a little excited about that. Plus, they seem to hire a lot of St. Mary’s graduates.

The only part I’m not exactly thrilled about is that we’d have to move to San Antonio. It would be one thing if I were single and only renting here in Austin, but I have a wife, kid and house. Not only would it be a big ordeal to move, but we’d have to sell the house and likely buy a house in San Antonio (I doubt we’d rent). I know people do it all the time, but staying in Austin would be so much easier. Plus, I just like Austin better.

It’s not that I dislike San Antonio really. My three years there for law school were fun and interesting, but it just doesn’t have the same feel as Austin. Most of Emily’s family and my family live in the Austin area too, and by leaving we’d be giving up quite a few built-in babysitters–especially my mother-in-law who’s taken care of the little one on short notice several times already.

If it comes down to it, I think we’d all move down to San Antonio. You’ve got to go where the work is, and I’d really like to be bringing in a paycheck soon …

Another picture of Charley

Okay, so I know my last post was a picture of Charley too, but this one is so damn cute that I have to post it:


I got lucky and captured her mid-smile with my cameraphone.

Charley Pic

I sent this picture of Charley to my friend Andria (see her blog at, but I think it’s such a cute one that I’m posting it here too.

Oh, and if you’re wondering what her shirt says… “Does this diaper make my butt look big?”


Went for a walk tonight

Emily and I took Charley on a walk tonight with Travis and Karla. We went from the house down to the capital and back (Emily tells me it’s about 3 miles). It was in the 70s today, but we went just after the sun went down so it was cooling off a bit. Charley was in her Bumble Ride, but we had a couple blankets to cover her up with.

I keep telling myself I’m going to post more. It’s a really good way to document the important things in my life, and so far I’ve kinda been slacking. Case-in-point: Charley is my new daughter and she’s 8-weeks-old now and this is my first post about her. Pretty pathetic.

It’s Halloween and I don’t wanna answer the door

Well, it’s Halloween and my first such holiday in an actual house as opposed to an apartment…and where am I but upstairs in my office on the internet. It’s not that I have anything against the cute neighbor kids in their ghosts costumes, in fact I’ll soon be a parent of one of those very such kids. I’m just lazy.

Emily must share my laziness because she just came in and told me she turned the porch light off. And wouldn’t you know it, the doorbell hasn’t rung once tonight.


So another birthday has come and gone…I am now 33.

Emily is back at work this week, so I hung out with my friends Paul and Matt for a little while yesterday. This is Matt.

Then Paul and I went down to the Springs for a couple hours. It was really nice to be down there on a weekday afternoon and avoid all the weekend swimmers. When we first walked in I immediately noticed how quiet it was. It was cloudy for most of the time, but we did get a little sun for a while.

I also had a last-minute get-together last night at Phil’s Icehouse with my family and a few friends that could make it. Andria (whose name I had originally spelled “Andrea” but she didn’t tell me!), a friend from law school, stopped by with her dog Ace. The weather was nice and it was good to see everyone, but as I get older birthdays seem more and more just like any regular day of the week. I’m not sure if this has to do with getting older, or just the fact that I don’t really do big celebrations anymore.

Alaska vacation

I took the Texas Bar Exam on July 29, 30 and 31, 2008. Then my generous in-laws took me and my wife on a two-week trip to Alaska. Some pictures from the trip can be seen here. A couple samples are below:

Alaska Glacier