Mamma Jamma Ride 2011: No More Excuses!

I have always been a huge fan of the Texas Mamma Jamma Ride but have never actually participated in it. Somehow, the ride date has always conflicted with my family’s schedule or that was the excuse I liked to use.  This year I, the SuburbanistaTX, am going to ride in the 2011 Mamma Jamma Ride. Yep. I just put it out there for the world wide web to see. Whew! That feels pretty good.

Truthfully, its been a few years since I’ve done any sort of endurance bike ride and I’m a little nervous. In fact, the last event I rode in was before my daughter (now almost 5) was born. I still ride my bike, but usually its with the kids or for transportation within my own neighborhood.

The beauty of the Mamma Jamma ride is that they offer training rides so that you can really be prepared and hopefully make a few new friends along. I’m going to try my first one this weekend. Feel free to join me. Information about the training rides can be found on the Mamma Jamma website:

Please check out the website. Read about where the money that is raised goes. I’m certain that you, too, will want to help support this ride. If you would like to ride with me, let’s form a team. Team SuburbanistaTX! Email me at

So, now the only I thing I have left to do is get on my bike and ride. Easier said than done sometimes but this year it’s going to happen!



Posted in Fitness, Philanthropy | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Getting Better.

Well, hello again! It’s been a while, hasn’t it?  I stepped away from the life of the SuburbanistaTX while I tackled some pesky headaches. It turns out that sometimes exercise and eating right just isn’t enough to manage the stress of life as a busy, sleep deprived mom.  Sometimes you need a little outside help.

In my case, the help turned out to be a Chinese doctor (or as I call him – the Miracle Worker) who goes by the name of “Dr. Joe”.

5 months ago I started getting headaches. Not just simple tension headaches,  migraine-like headaches that would not go away.  I tried everything to get rid of them – every  OTC medication on the market, tons of water, going to bed early, and dietary restrictions. I gave up coffee. I even stopped drinking gasp alcohol! Nothing worked.

I had my brain scanned – fun! I was poked and prodded with pins and needles. My dentist checked my teeth. I had and eyes thoroughly examined. I logged every minute of pain, tracked every change in mood, climate and sleep pattern.

Nothing. That is what my new neurologist and my old internist came up with. Nothing. I am a woman who has never been seriously ill. I have given birth to two babies without an epidural. I have never had headaches before five months ago.  I’ve been struggling with a never-ending, skull-splitting pain that refuses to budge and the fancy doctors can’t find a damn thing wrong with me.

Western medicine failed me, so in utter desperation, I turned East.  Far East. Like, ninth generation Chinese Medical Doctor from main land China with a list of credentials so impressive I almost bowed when I met him, East.

Dr. Joe’s diagnosis – I’ve been too stressed and too sleep deprived for too long. His remedy? Acupuncture. Herbs.  Stay calm. Seems pretty simple. So why did I have to spend hundreds of dollars and countless hours in various doctors offices to figure this out?

My friends have been asking me what I am so stressed out about. Good question. I don’t know. I think it might have more to do with my high-strung, mega-watt personality than a specific event. My own personality might actually be, well, not so good for me.  Also, my insomnia, which I assumed all mothers suffered from, might be a little worse than I realized.  My body had had enough and started screaming at me. I had no choice but to listen.

Now, I’m slowing things down. Putting my phone away. Shutting off my laptop. I’m back on my yoga mat,. I take herbs daily. I visit Dr. Joe when I feel my stress levels starting to rise. I stay in the present as often as possible. I am finally on the mend but I must work at it all day, every day. I don’t really mind, though, because I can finally think clearly again.

So, my question is, can one stay calm and rooted in the present while having a presence the social media world? I guess I will soon find out….

If you would like more information about Dr. Joe, please email me directly at

Posted in Family, Fitness | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Steeping Room is Full of Goodness!

The world is full of GOOD people. It just so happens that two of them work at the Steeping Room in The Domain. If you haven’t been to the Steeping Room yet, you are missing out. The Steeping Room, located at The Domain between the always-busy Apple Store and the underwhelming, but ever-present Starbucks, is a treat not to be missed. A tea house unlike what most of us have come to expect, you will see no raised pinkies here! What you will find is an amazing place to escape and unwind, right in the heart of some of the best shopping in Austin!  Even if you have labeled yourself a “coffee person”, you will fall in love with the Steeping Room’s casual elegance, chic ambiance, delicious food, delightful teas and most importantly – fantastic service!

A few weeks ago, a girlfriend and I decided to sneak away from our kids and spend a few hours of peace and pleasure at The Steeping Room. Its the kind of place that feels luxurious and decadent, yet comfortable and soothing all at the same time.  Though the day was lovely, we decided to sit at our favorite table inside, next to the window. We were lucky enough to have Jonathan be our server for our outing. With his well-informed guidance and charming demeanor, we meandered our way through two pots of tea, an order of spring rolls, a yummy tomato bisque and, my favorite Rosemary Cheddar scones!

Lots of gossiping, sipping,  laughing, eating, and plenty of people watching later, it was time for us to step back into our Mommy clothes and get back to work. One of my Mommy  tasks for the day was to purchase a $300 gift certificate for my son’s Kindergarten teacher. The cash I had collected from the other parents was in an envelope in my purse. Or was it? When I got to my destination, I was horrified to discover the envelope was gone!!! Frantically, I picked up my phone and made a desperate call to The Steeping Room.

“Yes, we have your envelope. It’s in our register. We will hang on to it for as long as you need us too, ” the manager, Kay, told me. Thank you! Thanks you! Thank you!

I raced back to the Steeping Room to find that Jonathan was still working. After thanking him repeatedly for finding my envelope, I tried to offer him cash from my own wallet, which he graciously refused to accept. What a  guy! I walked out of the Steeping Room for the second time that day, this time with two bags of loose-leaf tea in my hands and a renewed sense of faith in mankind.

The Steeping Room at The Domain is located at 11410 Century Oaks Terrace Suite 112. More information about The Steeping Room at the Domain can be found at Stop in. Ask for Jonathan. He is extremely knowledgable,  charming, and kind.  You will not be disappointed. Oh, and please tip him well. He deserves it!

Posted in Family, Philanthropy | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

A Rae of Light! Makeup for Women Who Don’t Wear Makeup!

I have always loved clothes. I have always loved shoes. I love always loved handbags. I have NOT always loved makeup. I don’t know why. I just never felt like myself in makeup. Oh, I have tried all of the brands Allure magazine has told me to buy. It has never looked quite right. Don’t get me wrong, make up is great.  I love the way to looks on other people. It simply doesn’t look right on me.

My biggest problem with makeup is that I’m an active woman. I like to be able to go from sassy dress and stilettos to walking my dog around Lady Bird Lake in 10 minutes flat. I’m a “change my clothes in the back seat of my car because I just got off the lake” sort of gal. A face slathered in fake looking makeup makes this a bit of a challenge.

Last year I stopped by the Rae Cosmetics Studio (which just so happens to be across the way from my favorite Urban Betty Salon) on the quest for mascara that wouldn’t give me raccoon eyes after ten minutes of wear. While perusing the studio, I learned that the Rae Cosmetics was mineral based makeup line loaded with good things like chemical-free sunscreen, anti-oxidants, and moisturizers. It is also heat, humidity and sweat resistant, which is perfect for Austin’s hot and often humid climate. Before I knew it, I had a bag full of new makeup including their fabulous Lush Silk Mascara and my new favorite Climate Control Mineral Tint.  Rae Cosmetics has given me whole new makeup attitude!

A year later, I am still wearing Rae Cosmetics. It’s great stuff.  I put it on in the morning, it stays on all day, it feels great, and I still look like me  - only better! I can officially say that I  love makeup especially Rae Cosmetics.

Rae Cosmetics has a great studio at 1206 W. 38th Street, Suite #1206. Make an appointment for a makeover or just pop in and check it out. If you are an active woman, you will love this stuff! Heck, even if your idea of “active” is power shopping at the Domain, you will be amazed with their products. Rae Cosmetics can be purchased at their studio, spas and salons throughout Austin and online

Posted in Fashion, Fitness | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Me? Meet with a Personal Shopper? You bet!

Today I did something I never thought I would do. I met with a personal shopper at J Crew. Now, working with a personal shopper is not typically my thing. It all seemed a bit too hoity-toity for me. Plus, I’d like to think that I have enough personal style not to need anyone’s assistance. The lure of 20 percent off all my purchases was too much for me to resist – especially since I already had a list of fall items I was planning to buy anyway.

I hesitate to admit this out loud, but the entire experience was FANTASTIC! In fact, it was one of the most relaxing and pampering experience I have had in a very long time. Lauren Mueller, the Personal Shopper at the J Crew in the Domain, made it all so easy. Lauren and I talked a little on the phone a few days before my appointment to discuss sizes, style, and what I might need for fall. She was charming and easy to talk with and by the time we hung up, I was excited to see what she would pick out for me.

The day of my appointment, I dropped my daughter off at preschool and practically skipped over to the Domain. I arrived a few minutes early to pre-shop and was quickly reminded of the pure joy of shopping alone. I strolled through the store looking at any and every garment that caught my eye, not worrrying about where my children were or what their grubby little hands were touching. When Lauren arrived, she handed me a most delicious iced green tea from the Steeping Room and at that moment, I knew we would be friends (if only for our hour long appointment).

Lauren and I spent our time together efficiently building my fall wardrobe. She made great suggestions, was not pushy or aggressive and helped me make smart, yet fashionable decisions. I walked away only spending what I was comfortable with and had a bag full of pieces that I loved.

If you have a J Crew card, consultation with a personal shopper is absolutely free. It might sounds slightly pretentious and crazy, but its actually a lot of fun and well worth it.  In fact, having someone help you shop is down right pampering. Its like going to the spa – except you put clothes on rather than take them off. I can’t wait until I can do it again. To make an appointment with Lauren, call 512-873-8658 or send her an email at

Posted in Fashion | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment