Hi, Austin Moms! My name is Courtney Branson. I’m a wife, a mom, the oldest of four sisters, a dog-lover, a native Texan, and now a mommy blogger.

I met my husband, Quinn, in 2008 after we awkwardly ran into each other while the Cupid Shuffle was playing at a bar. I taught him the moves and he’s been my awkward dance partner ever since! Over the years, we adopted two rescue pups, Levi and Dylan. Levi is a Yorkie and Dylan is a 60-pound mix of everything. In 2013, we tied the knot and packed our bags for Austin. Despite my small town roots, I’ve longed to be a city gal since elementary school. So when Quinn asked me to move to Austin for a job, I packed our condo before he even signed an offer.

Quinn works at Circuit of The Americas. I know — it’s pretty cool! I work full-time at Square Root, a tech startup in the Clarksville district. I’m the Director of Culture + People, although if you ask my team they’ll say Happiness Captain. I never set out to be in the office culture game, but while I was taking my sweet time deciding between being the next Sally Ride, a roller skating dancer, or a children’s book author – it found me.

I feel similar about being a mom. It wasn’t something I dreamed of or even played pretend as. Yet, in August 2015 a week after her due date, our summer baby, Henley Reese (Hen), was born! Having a daughter has been the biggest joy to our family. We can already tell we’re raising a fellow animal lover. She cuddles and chases her “Bubbas” at each opportunity. In the past year, we also adopted Henry, the beta fish, and about two dozen stuffed animals. It’s quite the crowd in our house. I recently asked Quinn if we could adopt a cat and name her Gemma. He countered with having a second child.

Speaking of second children, we’re not planning to have one. We both have three siblings so it feels weird to think Hen will be an only child, but we’re rolling with it. I’ll never say never because we weren’t planning to have kids at all and after some soul searching, we decided to become parents. Now that we’re doing it, I can’t imagine my life any other way. I’ll be with my daughter doing something that from the outside would have seemed ordinary and boring, like pushing her stroller around the neighborhood, and it’s magical.

Now’s a good time to mention that I’m a total sap. I write in a journal to Hen each week. I post those poems and notes to her on my blog: Lovely Little Blog. From time to time, I also include tales from my job, in particular, my events! Before I had baby Hen, my events were my babies. If you’ve ever heard rumors about outdoor aerialists or contortionist zombies in downtown — it’s fair to say I had something to do with it. In addition to event planning, I love to hula hoop. It’s the only exercise I’ve done since 2011 unless you count chasing Hen around at parent and child gymnastics. I also enjoy reading crime novels, watching reality TV (Quinn’s fault), coloring + crafting with my daughter, and checking out my horoscope.

I’m a Gemini. So I’m both the most energetic person I know and the laziest. Depending on the day, I’m either a perfectionist or a complete free-spirit. I have no in-between mode of operation. My lazy side waited until I was six months pregnant to decide I did, in fact, want to leave our East Austin apartment. Two months later, we made our way to South Austin. Even though I swore I would never live in the suburbs, I now find myself not only in the suburbs, but in a red brick cookie cutter home. I kind of love it, though. Now, it only makes sense to add mommy blogger to the list of things I never thought I’d do, but am doing. I’m excited to join the AMB community and share my experiences in parenthood with you!

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