Schipul Flocks to The Houston Zoo’s Beastly Brunch

A Wonderful, Wild Sunday

Cocktails?   Brunch?   A live DJ? Awesome animals?   Yes, please!   This was the set-up for the Houston Zoo’s Beastly Brunch held on Sunday and it was marvelous.   The Beastly Brunch and other such events at the Zoo are held by Flock – The Houston Zoo’s Young Supporters Group who do their best to promote public awareness and interest in The Houston Zoo with events such as this one.

Houston Zoo Beastly Brunch Food

Party Animals

The   DJ and the reflection pool created a perfect atmosphere for a Sunday brunch and the weather was superb!   Cocktail bars, coffee and Sprinkles cupcakes were set up and down the length of the reflection pool with tasty buffet of bruchy eats at the end for everyone to enjoy.   My coffee was followed by a bloody mary, a mimosa, croissants, various quiches, fruit and cupcakes… that’s right; cupcakes and mimosas at the zoo with a herd of Houston’s animal lovers.     Bliss.

Houston Zoo Beastly Brunch DJ

Cuddly Critters!

Not only did The Houston Zoo provide an amazing morning of mingling and gnarly nibbles, but they also brought out some adorable critters!   I got to meet a chinchilla and a very tiny owl.     I’m a sucker for fuzzy and tiny creatures and these guys were just too much cute to handle.

Schipul At The Houston Zoo

It was a great day…

The Beastly Brunch lasted from 12pm-2pm; so afterward we walked off all the deliciousness with a stroll through the zoo, which is always a delight, waved goodbye to our new animal friends and headed home (sleepy, but excited for the next event at The Houston Zoo).

Houston Zoo Beastly Brunch Owl

Kudos to Flock!   Want to Join them?

Flock is a group of 21 and up professionals who devote themselves to the growth and success of The Houston Zoo with unique, exciting and educational events throughout the year.   It’s easy to join Flock and a membership carries with it awesome privileges including entry to some fantastic shin-digs and exclusive volunteer opportunities.

Thanks, Sponsors!

Also, thank you to the sponsors of The Houston Zoo’s Beastly Brunch!   Food, atmosphere and beverages were also provided by the following:

St Arnolds BrewerySprinkles Cupcakes

Yelp HoustonMomentum Audi

All photos taken by our own Katrina Esco.

Houston Zoo Beastly Brunch Yelp

Live Everyday Like It Is PlasmaCar Race Day

PlasmaCar Race Day
Z-Man Ready for Race Day

My son Z-Man turns 7 today. SEVEN! Time moves so quickly with little ones. One of my goals in life is to stay as present as possible, to absorb each moment of life as it happens’ especially when it comes to family… especially when it comes to my guys.PlasmaCar Race DayZ-Man is such a great inspiration for living in the moment. He still lives in a world where magic happens’ where Santa is real. He is just now sorting out that Scooby-Doo is imagined and MythBusters is true.

Z-Man lives his life fully present and in the NOW. Things that are sad saturate him’ and then in 10 minutes’ something that’s funny tickles him to his funny bone. He lives with excitement for almost everything (the only thing that deflates his sails is putting away clean clothes.) He races to get the mail, zooms to brush teeth, zips out the door to go ride his bike. Everything is adventure’ everything is worth getting exciting about.

PlasmaCar Race Day
PlasmaCar Race Day

We have a Thanksgiving Day Tradition here at the Schipul Office. We munch, we mingle, we visit with family, and then… we race. We race PlasmaCars in the parking garage… younger and older… we race. And Z-Man, bless him, he believes we race every day. He has asked me at dinner, ‘Did you race the cars today?” He gets super excited when he comes to visit me at work and asks me every time, ‘Where are the racing cars?” As many times as I tell him we only race on Thanksgiving’ he has believed we race all the time.

Today… today is the day… today we race! And Z-Man has finally gotten it down that we don’t race every day. So today, he thinks we are racing just for his birthday! He popped his head into our dark room this morning before 5AM and quietly snuck back to his bed only to happily emerge at 6:23 exclaiming, ‘Today is my BIRTHDAY!”

Z-Man Racing

And I am inspired… what would it be like to live my life with that much excitement- to cherish each moment and the magic in it.

Z-Man teaches to me to live each day like its PlasmaCar Race Day.

Happy Birthday Son… you are blessing and a treasure and a joy.
My life is richer because you are in it.

We Turned 13 & Kris Got Lost

Happy 13th Birthday, Schipul.

The Schipulite’s celebrated the 13th anniversary of   Schipul!

We appreciate the opportunity to work with wonderful clients who make each year possible.

It was a grand time with great friends, photos and fun. It ended with an office email about a sketchy looking fridge, large print books for Ed, and the million dollar question:

“Oh, and P.S. Has anyone seen Kris lately?”

We’ve posted photos from the party on flickr and facebook.

Check them out, tag your friends, tag yourself, fan the page and send us a shout!

And we found Kris.

An Update on Kris…

Kris Kristofferson was last seen Thursday afternoon, headed to the Schipul 13th Anniversary celebration at Churrascos.

Long story short: he got tipsy and went home with someone…we suspect.

Since then, the scoundrel, has been backseat surfing the cars of certain Schipulites, and getting friendly with house pets….

He sauntered in this morning, and is on party probation until further notice.

Welcome back Kris, and a BIG BIG thank you to our clients for another great year!

Friday Fun Posts: No Barriers Bash

Imagine a place where you never hear “you can’t” – a place totally focused on learning what you CAN do…

Imagine you live life with a challenging illness or special needs… you get told “you can’t” a lot.

Imagine a place where they don’t say you can’t do that… only… let’s find a way so you CAN do that.

From giant swings to giant turtles… to canoes… to tree houses… to finding gold… there is a place that is solely focused on helping people learn what they CAN do… for people of all ages and abilities.   Camp For All is a  unique, state of the art facility that  is totally barrier free, not just accessible.

Camp For All is a unique camping and retreat facility that works in collaboration with other non-profits to provide life changing programs for children and adults with challenging illnesses and special needs.   Campers of all ages and abilities gain self-confidence and independence while having fun, learning new skills and  bonding with others who share their challenges in a safe and understanding environment.

Campers learn what they can do at Camp For All, not what they can’t do.  For the first time, they are surrounded by others with the same challenges and the feeling of loneliness goes away.  Surrounded by understanding and acceptance and immersed in the Camp For All activities and positive environment, they have an opportunity to focus on the joy of life.  That feeling of independence and confidence goes home with them.  And regardless of how much longer they have to live, they are not just survivors, they have become strong survivors.

This unique barrier-free organization has partnered up with one of our favorite Houston based suppliers of libations, St. Arnold’s Brewery, to throw a party! A party to raise funds to help children and adults with cancer, HIV, epilepsy, spina bifida, sickle cell, burns and so much more have a chance to DISCOVER LIFE!!

Camp For All - No Barriers Bash
Camp For All - No Barriers Bash

The No Barriers Bash is coming up on:

  • Saturday, September 18, 2010
  • At Saint Arnold Brewing Company
  • From 7:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m.
Enjoy delicious bbq and unlimited drinks as you mix, mingle and have fun. Emory Quinn will take the stage for a concert you will not want to miss!!
Join us for a super fun way to support a super organization!

Learn About Bullying at the Children’s Museum

If your a parent getting ready to send your kids back to school, the Children’s Museum is hosting a free 3-day boot camp dedicated to educating kids and adults about bullying. Anti-bullying training sessions will be held during the day, and local law enforcement and internet experts will teach parents valuable computer safety skills. While the event is free it’s import to register at the museum in order to ensure placement, spots are going fast! You can register for the August 12-14 sessions by picking up passes at the Children’s Museum from noon until 4 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 7 or Sunday, Aug. 8th. You can find more information at KPRC Local 2.

The YMCA Kicks Off Operation Backpack

Operation Backpack helps collect backpacks filled with school supplies for children in-need.

This week marked the start of the YMCA of Greater Houston‘s school supply drive, “Operation Backpack.”

Having the right tools is a big part of being successful. The YMCA is working to give back to the Houston community and help children in-need ease into the new school year with a new backpack and school supplies. The goal is to reach 40,000 backpacks by Aug. 15.

How Does Operation Backpack Work

  • Operation Backpack works just as you’ve probably imagined. Using a   list of recommended school supplies (available on the YMCA’s website), donors will:
  • Purchase a new backpack for a child in elementary or middle school.
  • Buy school supplies and put them in the backpack.
  • Write a note of encouragement to the child and put in the backpack.
  • Drop off the backpack at any Houston YMCA or participating business, church, or organization drop-off location between now and Aug. 15th.

Donate Online

Another great way to participate in Operation Backpack is to make an online donation.

The online donations will go towards a $50 school supply shopping spree hosted by the YMCA. Donors can give a general gift or make a donation to a YMCA location of choice.

Be A Drop-Off LocationOperatoin Backpack'sgoal is to fill 40,000 backpacks for children in need.

Operation Backpack will run from now through Aug. 15, so there’s still time to sign-up to be a drop-off location. It’s a perfect way help make donating to the program convenient and easy for people in your area. Just fill out the sign-up form on the YMCA’s Operation Backpack site and submit it.

For additional information or to find a YMCA near you, contact the YMCA of Greater Houston at 713-659-5566 or contact:

Elida Chavez

Association Advancement Department


We’re happy to help as well. Feel free to contact us at or 281-497-6567.

We Saw a Lady Walking a Cheetah

Of all the things I imagined seeing this weekend, a   cheetah on a leash taking a leisurely stroll through the Houston Zoo was NOT on the list. But that’s the kind of thing that happens during Photo Day at the Houston Zoo.

Photo Day is a series of 6 outings during which photographers and photography enthusiasts can visit the Houston Zoo and take pictures of the animals. Fellow Schipulite Derek Key (@dereskey) and I had the opportunity to attend Saturday’s photo day…and that’s how we saw the cheetah.

Our Day…in Photos

The animals are likely to be active during the earliest part of the day, especially in the summer…in Houston. So for Photo Day, the zoo opens two hours early (at 7am) and lets photo enthusiasts catch the early risers. I’ve been to the Houston   Zoo countless times, but this is the first time I saw so many of the big cats and rare birds.

The lions roamed their pen long enough for photo ops…

We watched the reptiles have breakfast, which is creepy and AWESOME

We found out what a Cassowary is…

and finally, we discovered that the meerkats draw quite a crowd!

Have an Awesome Time AND Help the Zoo

Since the Houston Zoo is a non-profit organization it relies heavily on membership and attendance for support. While Photo Day is open to both the public and zoo membership holders, the   zoo features   special events   just for members, including Zoobilee and special Member Mornings.

In addition to cool member activities, the zoo is also involved in conservation efforts like the Lone Star State Projects and fundraising to for treatments that help prevent elephant herpes.

Be sure to check out the Houston Zoo’s Flickr photo stream, and upload photos of your zoo visits!