Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Patents and Pink Puffy Hearts

While I continue to adjust to my medication and drown in incompetent rage every time I obsessively check the news, let's take a moment to talk about James.

We'll start with Father's Day this past Sunday. He is a wonderful dad and works hard and thinks a lot about how to be a good one. When we got Landon's daily writing journal at the end of the year it was so fun to read all his thoughts and stories over the last year, but most fun was to see how prominently James was featured. As Landon wrote on one day, "My dad is important to me because he is my best friend." He also wrote a lot about swimming and how having James as a coach makes it so fun for him. And James is a phenomenal coach- hard and tough, but always trying to make swimming more accessible and fun. Possibly the thing I love most about the swim school is that he gets to coach all of our kids three times a week. It's been such a blessing for all four of them (and me!).

We managed to make Father's Day James's perfect day. Not too fancy, not too planned, and not too expensive- just him doing his favorite things with his favorite people. He woke up early and went to swim practice. Five minutes after he got back we were off to his favorite brunch buffet full of delicious foods and as many plates as he could eat. (That is many, many plates.)

Post-brunch he got to take a nap while I taught barre (oy, never do that after a brunch buffet) and the kids played semi-quietly. Post-nap was a movie! In a theater! His favorite thing! I'm just in it for the popcorn and candy, but James eschews both those things and is just there for "the movie watching experience." We saw The Incredibles 2 and we LOVED it. So cute and so fun, and I didn't take any pictures because that's how James would want it.

[No pictures.]

We got home and he ran to the grocery store (not very Father's Day-ish, we do have some time constraints) while I baked his cake (funfetti with dark chocolate icing!) and his pizza that was his whole present.

Oh yes, deep dish pizza shipped to Texas on dry ice from Giordano's in Chicago. And it was SO. GOOD.

In the words of James, it was just as good as the restaurant. It was the perfect present. He doesn't like when we spend money on him, but food is his one indulgence.

That night as we sat cuddled on the couch he said, "thank you for the perfect day." I've decided we're just going to do it all again next year and all the years ahead.

Then on Monday he was interviewed for an article in the Fort Worth paper for his work as President of the Fort Worth Drowning Prevention Coalition! It's a cause he's passionate about and a role that demands a lot of his time, but I'm so proud of the work he does with the Coalition. After the article was published our local Fox station asked for a TV interview.

That aired last night at 9 and 10 p.m. in Fort Worth and apparently again in Austin this morning! (And possibly elsewhere.)

We let the kids stay up to watch it and while you can watch the actual video here, you can see our version where I'm sitting too far away from the TV and you mostly hear Cora yelling, "That's Daddy! How did you get in that show Daddy?!!" in my ear.

And THEN also yesterday- his patent arrived in the mail!!! Almost exactly three years after he invented The Brick, founded Fike Swim, and started a retail swim products business out of our house, he has his patent!

It's so shiny and pretty. I'm not even sure where it's going to go yet. I did a USPTO search just to see his name pop up and I nearly cried. Fike Swim is his baby and now his baby is official and protected and has a shiny ribbon.

We're so proud of him. I'm SO proud of him. When I met my goal of someday dating a UT Swimmer on my first day of college, I never imagined that my adult life would STILL revolve so much around swimming, but it's a huge part of who he is and I love so much that he's been able to combine his passions for swimming, coaching, inventing, selling, and business and entrepreneurship (and spending time with our kids!) all together in this life we're living together nearly 17 years later.

I love him so much and can't wait for the inevitable fancy date night to celebrate our first patent! (Because two of my passions he's come to share are fancy date nights and finding reasons to celebrate things. Cheers!)


  1. I love your version of the news reel. So sweet.

  2. This is so great! Huge Congratulations! I love Cora's little voice. :)

  3. Congratulations! Such a sweet day!

  4. Amazing accomplishment! Congratulations to all!! And that sweet little voice watching was so cute! : )

  5. Congratulations on the patent, and the news story! Fun reasons to celebrate :)