Hi y’all! I’m Gretchen Pierce and I’m so excited to be a new contributor for Austin Moms Blog. Here’s a little bit about me and my fam:

Despite my (over)use of the word y’all, I was actually born in St. Paul, Minnesota and moved to northern Virginia when I was 12. At the time, my older sister and I were anxious about moving and didn’t know what the “South” would be like, but we lived right outside Washington, D.C. and soon realized that area is hardly southern and practically its own state. After going to college in Williamsburg, Virginia and moving back up to the D.C. area for six years after that, my husband and I relocated to Austin in 2014 and couldn’t be happier to be living in the south/southwest/awesomeness that is Austin and the Lone Star state.

And speaking of my husband, we met in college; I was a junior, Ryan was the “older” man getting his master’s in accounting. We had been dating almost three years when my apartment flooded and I showed up at his door late at night with my salvaged belongings in tow. And that’s the romantic story of how we decided to move in together! Luckily it worked out for the best, and five years and 12 Pinterest boards later we had the wedding of our dreams in an 18th-century barn in Virginia.

wedding photo
Our 2013 wedding

We fell in love with the Hill Country and the laid-back vibe of Austin after spending vacations together with my husband’s family in Wimberley, Texas. The first couple of years after our move we had a blast exploring our neighborhood, biking to ACL, and having too many margaritas and bowls of queso at Matt’s El Rancho’s bar near our house. We already had one fur baby, a poodle chihuahua named Gracie, and after our move we adopted Hank, who looks like the cutest parts of an Ewok, a Furby, and a Gremlin.

two dogs sitting on couch
Our fur babies, Gracie and Hank

Our lives changed completely when we welcomed our son Shepherd in December of 2016—we get a table at Matt’s El Rancho instead of sitting at the bar, for one. And for two, we get to be parents to the sweetest, most hilarious little boy and discover the world through his eyes as he grows. It’s the coolest, most exhausting, best thing we’ve ever done.

Pre-baby I worked in communications at UT Austin but left right before my son was born. The transition to full-time mom has been harder than I thought it would be (shocker), and I would be lying if I said there weren’t days when I didn’t question my decision. But there are also many days that I feel incredibly lucky to have this time with him, to be able to sing to him before every nap and comfort him after every fall…of which there are many nowadays.

Some other non-mom things about me: I use an excessive amount of post-it notes. I used to do gymnastics and figure skating as a kid/teen and now I play tennis. My ideal afternoon would probably be spent on a lake, at a winery or at Target. My all-time favorite TV shows are Friday Night Lights, Mad Men and Parks & Rec, but I also have an unhealthy number of reality shows on my DVR at any given time. I love trying new restaurants but have only become a passable cook since having my son. (My Crock Pot is my best friend.)

Writing has always been a big part of my life and career, so I’m excited to write about the ups and downs of motherhood on the Austin Moms Blog. One thing I’ve learned since becoming a mom is that no one really knows what they’re doing, myself especially, but we’re all doing the best we can to raise good humans. I’m thankful for this opportunity to share my experiences as I muddle through and try to do just that.

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