Thursday, August 28, 2008

Short-lived Soccer Mom

Okay, so soccer was a bust. Luke seemed to hate every minute of it even though all the other kids were out there kicking the ball and following their coach's instructions. Luke whined and hung on to Chuck's pantleg the whole time. He said, "I don't like soccer." over and over again. Plus, even when he was participating he wouldn't put the ball down and kick it. We got one really good kick somewhere close to the end (in the wrong direction of course), but Luke is pretty much disenchanted with the game of soccer. Sadly, he is following in his mother's footsteps - I dispise the sport. He'll be riding the pine just like me. At least he looked cute in his little soccer practice outfit. He's such a big boy now!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Private Parts Update

Oh yes, Chuck informed me that Luke announced on their way home from school last night that he could feel the "heartbeat" in his penis again. Seriously, how much of this is he saying at school?!?

And then Evie asked Chuck if he has big "nubbles." Yes, no, ignore the question? What's the correct answer?

Soccer Mom

Luke starts soccer practice today, so I am now officially a Soccer Mom. Please congratulate me on achieving this status.

He is so excited. He is wearing his little soccer practice outfit that I bought at Target. He's totally Beckham'ed out and ready to dig in the dirt and chase butterflies at his first practice tonight. He also gets to wear shin guards and bring his very own soccer ball (size 3). Did anyone know that soccer balls come in sizes? I had no idea, but I guess the sizes start at 3.

I never played sports as a kid so all this is new to me. I'm very excited that Luke is getting to play sports. I think I somehow missed a basic tenant of understanding competitive sports. To me, you go out there, have fun, and win or lose, you go home and get on with your life. Apparently, this is not the case. I know people who are competitive in every aspect of their life, whereas I'm more of a live and let live kinda girl. If someone bills more hours than me at work or makes more money than me, but they worked harder for it, then eh, who cares. If someone else kicks butt at golf , I think that's great and I just move on with my score of 120, pop another beer, and call it a day.

My friend Ginny, on the other hand, is super competitive about Trivial Pursuit and I think all board games in general. I just sit back and watch her control the game. Doesn't bother me in the least, and in fact, I find it rather amusing as I continue to sip my adult beverage of choice. ( I wonder if it would be less amusing without an alcoholic beverage - nah, probably not - she's freakin' hilarious). I think it's okay to be competitive when you're good at something (which Ginny is nauseatingly good at TP - no wonder she went ivy league for a while), but could you imagine someone who is horrendous at a sport or activity trying to be killer competitive? That would drive me crazy! For example, parents who boast about their mediocre kids as if they are the next Leonardo Di Vinci or Michael Jordan. Seriously, someone out there has to have an admittedly stupid kid or an ugly baby. (Not mine, of course, they're perfect in every way!) Why do parents feel the need to one-up each other. Two of Luke's friends are reading already - Luke is not and I wouldn't even try to say he is even close. One of Evie's friends can recite the Declaration of Independence flawlessly - Evie cannot. (Just kidding, but most of them do speak more clearly than she does, but c'est la vie). Some parents then say, well, my kid can't read but he has great hand-eye coordination. C'mon, give me a break.

Sorry, I went off on a tangent there. Luke's little soccer team is all boys. I really thought it would be co-ed at this age, but I obviously don't know a lot about sports, as evidenced above. Unfortunately, all of Luke's games are on Saturdays this fall so we won't be making it to many of the Aggie games and Chuck will be missing several of Luke's soccer games. No one seems bothered by this, so I haven't gotten my panties in a twist about any of it. We'll definitely miss Chuck when he's at the games, but each year I grow more and more accustomed to his A&M football addiction. I'm just counting on Chuck to be around when the baby is delivered or when I'm dilated 3 centimeters and the doctor says point blank to Chuck, "You should not go out of town." Luckily, it looks like we will be able to attend two games this year: one this weekend and one in November. That should be plenty for this prego Soccer Mom.

Yet another tangent, sorry. Well, I'll try to get pics of Luke in his soccer stuff and post them soon so you can see how much he looks like a real soccer player.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Private parts

Okay, it's been quite a while since my last post and I've pretty much been in a bad mood the whole time (save and except my anniversary celebration with Chuck Saturday night), so you all probably didn't want a post from me anyway.

Friday, I got fed up with work and took off early after a hearing in federal court in which I won the hearing, but felt like an idiot in the end. Long, boring story over $5.43. That night, I wanted to do something fun for the kids so I decided that we should venture out to the Rainforest Cafe. Great idea, right? I thought the kids would love all the decorations and moving animals, but no, instead Luke sat with his hands over his ears the whole time (eating his hot dogs without his hands like a dog) and Evie cried every time the animals started going. The only high point of the dinner was when this teenager made these amazing balloon animals. Luke got a cricket and Evie got a butterfly. Pretty pathetic Friday night, right?

Saturday, I took the kids to the park. They had a great time and I felt good being able to do something fun for them since they clearly did not enjoy the Rainforest Cafe. Then we went shopping at Target. I've totally got red-basket-fever! Love the place. We stocked up on some items for the new College Station Estate (aka the redneck trailer). As mentioned above, Chuck and I spent the evening celebrating our anniversary over fondue. Yum.

But, Sunday, while boring, had some interesting highlights. We decided to spend Sunday driving around looking for where we want to move. We hit Aledo first (way out West and too far from anything, but great schools and good homes for the value). Well, we were in the car and decided to stop at our local Jack in the Box for drinks all around before setting out on our long expedition. (Good idea, except when you have a two year old who isn't stellar at holding it when she has to go potty). So we're pulling into the drive through and I'm asking the kids what they want to drink. Luke, like his Daddy, wanted diet coke. To convince us, he explained that "Caffiene makes me sleepy. I like caffiene. If I have caffiene it will help me sleep." He had a lot of conviction in this belief, much to our surprise. I said, "We'll see." We ordered him a small diet coke (which we all know is probably more than a can of coke). He drank almost the entire thing. Just like his Daddy.

Later that day, we are driving along a country road, fairly quiet, looking at houses when Luke (out of nowhere) announces with wonder, "Mommy, my penis is beeping!" My eyes widen in shock. Chuck cracks a smile and shakes his head silently. I bite the inside of my mouth to keep my laughter in check and then responded, "Just leave it alone, honey, and it will stop." Now clearly we all know his private part isn't beeping, but Luke has always had a problem distinguishing between beeping and blinking and one can only assume that he understands it to mean something that happens in a repeated fashion. I'm sure you can all guess (as we did) what he was trying to tell me. This is not the first time he has discussed his privates with me or anyone else. He has also asked Chuck what happened to Evie's penis. "Did it fall off?" To which Chuck responded, "No it didn't fall off. Evie never had one. Girls don't have penises." This was profound.

Days later, while we were socializing with other parents at Central Market, Luke announced to his little friend Savannah that he has a penis and asked her if she has a penis. (Must be a slow learner). Savannah then ran to her mommy and asked, "Do I have a penis." Thanks Luke, for introducing the topic of sex education for Savannah's parents. I'm sure they were just waiting for the opportune moment to explain the differences between boys and girls. Poor Savannah. Chuck and I grimaced, buried our heads and hoped Savannah's poor parents didn't kill us. I apologized profusely and told them that he has been asking about it since he is fascinated by his own private part and intrigued in the differences between himself and Evie.

For me, this is all new. My brothers were both quite older than me and we never bathed together. Luke and Evie, on the other hand, are very close in age and so we still bathe them together in spite of the differences in their anatomy. I guess we'll need to start curbing that. But, the dealings of Luke and his new found glory has been an eye opening experience for me.

In the morning, Luke will announce proudly in a wondrous voice, "Mommy, my penis is big!" To which I respond, "yes, just leave it alone and it will go back to normal." Then, on occasion, he will start hitting it. I have no idea why. I've asked Chuck and he has no idea why either. I have to tell him to stop and that it will go away. I'm totally at a loss as to how to handle this. Chuck says I should ignore it and not comment on anything that has to do with my child's private parts, but clearly I can't have him walking around at school after nap time hitting his penis. What is the solution? Chuck's suggested tactic seems wrong to me. (Sorry, Chuck). I believe in being forthright and honest and calling his penis by its proper name, but I'm not sure what else I can do to derail his fascination with it. Then again, perhaps that is just the difference between boys and girls, and a fascination with private parts is just a guy thing to do. As I've said before, it is like he's already a 15 year old boy. Luckily, it is all innocent and not constant. Anyone else know what to do?

As for Evie, we have a similar problem with her nipples. For a while, every time she took off her shirt or dress she would reach for her nipples, rub them and say proudly, "Nubbles!" Her attention to her "nubbles" has waned a bit, but I feel like I should really emphasize that there is a time and place to discuss your private parts. This feeling, of course, is in direct contradiction to my feeling that you should be open and honest about your kids' bodies and sex. Similarly, I don't think the Ken doll should be anatomically correct or that toy horses should be anatomically correct. Who knows what the right answer is?

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Hallelujah

This is one of my favorite songs to hear during the day. It makes me pause from what I'm doing and enjoy a few moments of beautiful music (although I really have no idea what the lyrics mean). Hope you enjoy it. Oh, I totally forgot, a version of this was on Shrek too, so unless you've been living under a rock for the past 10 years, you've heard it before.

video

Here are the lyrics.

"Hallelujah" by Leonard Cohen
Now I've heard there was a secret chord
That David played, and it pleased the Lord
But you don't really care for music, do you?
It goes like this
The fourth, the fifth
The minor fall, the major lift
The baffled king composing Hallelujah
Hallelujah
Hallelujah
Hallelujah
Hallelujah
Your faith was strong but you needed proof
You saw her bathing on the roof
Her beauty and the moonlight overthrew you
She tied you
To a kitchen chair
She broke your throne, and she cut your hair
And from your lips she drew the Hallelujah
Baby I have been here before
I know this room,
I've walked this floor
I used to live alone before I knew you.
I've seen your flag on the marble arch
Love is not a victory march
It's a cold and it's a broken Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
There was a time you let me know
What's real and going on below
But now you never show it to me, do you?
And remember when I moved in you
The holy dove was moving too
And every breath we drew was Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
You say I took the name in vain
I don't even know the name
But if I did, well really, what's it to you?
There's a blaze of light
In every word
It doesn't matter which you heard
The holy or the broken Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
I did my best, it wasn't much
I couldn't feel, so I tried to touch
I've told the truth, I didn't come to fool you
And even though
It all went wrong
I'll stand before the Lord of Song
With nothing on my tongue but Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah
I'm sure there is a great interpretation out there if I had the time to read an interpretation. Here's a link to one person's very, very loooooonnngggg interpretation (which I did not read, so I can't vouch for the credibility of it): http://www.lyricinterpretations.com/lookat.php/bands/Leonard-Cohen/67c57b8873adc2d

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Queen of my double wide trailer . . .

Yup, that's me, only it's a single wide! Chuck and Tim are buying a single wide trailer down in College Station, Texas so that the kids and I (and Tim's wife and family) will have a place to crash on game weekends. I am surprisingly excited and proud of this.
Yes, it's a little white trash, yes, it has a red wood deck, and yes, it is located in a trailer park. I LOVE it!
Chuck and Tim are going to check it out tonight and possibly consumate the deal. I can't tell you how great this is, particularly the timing since the first game is the weekend after next. For years, we have always stayed at a hotel at an outrageous price (about $300 or more a weekend).
Before we had kids, it was really no big deal. I would either hang out late drinking with the guys and then we would share a room and crash (before tim got married). During law school, I would retire early and do my studying in the room. Once Tim got married, we started getting separate rooms, but still, it all worked out just fine. And then we had Luke, and my entire experience went to hell in a handbasket. I still went to the games and I still had a pretty good time, but there was the problem of nap time and where the baby would sleep. A year and a half later, we had the same issues. I had pretty much figured it out and spent the evening back at the hotel. I would put the kids down in the room and then I would sneak into the bathroom and close the door almost all the way and then sit on the cold, hard toilet seat and read a book until I was confident the kids had fallen asleep. Once they were asleep, I would drag a chair over to the light coming from the bathroom and get slightly more comfortable to read until I was ready to go to bed. Then Chuck would wander in sometime late at night and stumble into bed.


Last year, a good friend of ours (Mark) offered to let us use his trailer so that the kids and I could retire whenever we got too hot or tired or the kids needed a nap. (Naps present a problem of their own since the kids tend to nap during the 2:00 football games, so when everyone is out at the tailgate, I usually had to be back at the hotel with the napping children or else trying to figure out how to handle the cranky kids since they couldn't nap). Mark was so sympathetic to my needs and so we happily accepted their offer to stay at the trailer, and it has been one of the most delightful surprises in the last few years. Mark originally bought the trailer when his son was attending A&M and that is where his son stayed. Now, Mark and his friends use it on game weekends, among other times. It is clean, well kept, and comfortable. It has two bedrooms and two pull out couches. It has two bathrooms and a fully functioning kitchen. Now, I was able to put the kids down to bed, pop a bottle of wine, snack on some food, and sit in the living room and actually watch the game I was missing! It was perfect. Plus, we were able to have both families stay there without much fuss.


Well, recently the trailer next to Mark's came up for sale and we are so excited about the prospect of having our very own trailer where we can stay every game weekend. No maintenance, no hassle. I love it! I can keep some clothes and toiletries there. I can have all the amenities of home and not have to pack everything up every weekend. Here's a picture of my potentially new trailer with the redwood deck.

To Chuck and Tim: Thanks a million for making football season easy on your families.

Old picture, but one of my favorites

I came across this picture today and saved it as my desktop background. It is an old picture but it always brings a smile to my face. This is a picture of Evie at her 2 year check up with our favorite pediatrician, Dr. Murphy. He has a little toy doctor kit in the exam room and Evie decided to try on everything. Chuck was with her and took this picture with his phone. She's such a cutie pie!

Almost a full year has passed. This is what she looked like last night:


We were playing around before bedtime, which would explain why they were both still awake when Chuck and I went to bed at 10:30 last night.


Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Mom Brand Jeans

So, I am a mom now and my figure has never returned to what it was before I gave birth. I know I'm not alone in this situation, but somehow I feel completely isolated in this depressing state. I know too many moms who went directly back to their petite little bodies right after popping out a kid or two. Well, I was able to get into some things right after the birth of my children, but there are other items of clothing that I have completely given up on, including swimsuits and jeans.

Now, I know I'm not fat or obese, so don't go chastizing me for complaining about that. I know I don't look like Roseanne Barr or Kirsti Alley (pre or post Jenny Craig); however, I'm certainly not the moderately toned person that I used to be. And the frutstrating part about it is that I think Moms, in general, work harder (physically) than others. No, we don't have time to spend hours at the gym (unless a woman's husband supports her when she stays at home and sends the kids with the Nanny, or the like), but we Moms spend nights picking up toys endlessly, picking up children constantly, hauling two year olds or younger in our arms through grocery stores as we maneuver a full cart flawlessly through the aisles, throwing baseballs, chasing children, swinging them around, hauling lunches, backpacks, blankets, diaper bags, etc. all around (sometimes wearing heels, no less). I would think all these daily activities would shape a mom back up, maybe not into the shape of a supermodel, but at least not flabby everywhere. Instead, I fit back into most clothes, but not in the way I'd like. Plus, going shopping sucks, especially for jeans and swimsuits.

Almost two years ago I decided I needed some new jeans, so I went to Gap (where I always went before having kids) and I tried on my size - no luck and depressingly so. My thighs were too big for the legs and my waist was too small, still flabby, but too small to match the size of my thighs. Sadly, I couldn't suck in my thighs so I was stuck. I tried on a bigger size - no luck. I tried on a different style - that was worse. I pinched, and squeezed, and kicked off every pair of jeans in frustration. I got in my car, slammed the door and drove across the parking lot to Talbots where I promptley found a stretchy pair of jeans that fit over my unruly thighs, hips, and bottom. I walked out to the cashier, paid for the unsexy new jeans, and showed up at home in my Mom Brand Jeans, where I then confessed that I had lost all hope and that I intended to just eat whatever I wanted from then on since there was clearly no point in diet or exercise. Today, I loathe my Mom Brand Jeans from Talbots. I must reclaim myself - after I pop out George, of course.

The greatest thing about maternity clothes, is that everything stretches everywhere. God bless spandex and polyester. Until I get the go ahead from the Doctor after I give birth, I'm enjoying the fact that there are no panty hose cutting into my flabby tummy, no taut seams on my pants, and no reason to suck in.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Harry Potter Outrage!!

I can't believe this! Warner Brothers has changed the release date of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince from Nov. 21 2008 to July 17, 2009!!!! Read the story at the following link: http://movies.msn.com/movies/article.aspx/?news=327249&GT1=28101

I can't believe they would release the trailer and then pull the movie release. This sucks! Is anyone else pissed off about this? Maybe I'm the only Potter-obsessed-30-year-old.

George the Forgotten One

I can't believe I'm already half way through this pregnancy. Chuck and I are starting to feel a little guilty about the fact that we just haven't spent much time focusing on George and the expectation of George. Really, we spend our days working and parenting and only on occasion do we really talk about or contemplate George, how big he is, where he will sleep, do we need anything for him, etc. Instead we focus on getting lunches ready, doing laundry, kissing boo boos, and how crappy it is that I can't drink (man, I miss the wine). So, poor little George is really getting the shaft here. This weekend, we briefly hit the crazy tax-free weekend mall and while I was in the Children's Place picking up a load of socks for luke and evie, I saw a sweet little blue onsie size 0-3 mos. that says "Tough Guy" on the front and I picked it up for my new little one. Chuck's comment was, don't go overdoing it on purchases for George - we have plenty of clothes and people always buy you stuff. To which I responded that people DO NOT buy you stuff for the third baby (and really shouldn't for the second, except that our second was a different sex than the first so it made for a good excuse).

At this point there is really no reason for buying new baby clothes for the little boy except to replace any of the clothes that Luke ruined by spitting up and drooling, but seriously, it's not like George is going to reject Luke's clothes because they're so last season. Anyway, I bought something for the little one which tends to make the whole situation much more real. Now, I need to contemplate decorating his room. I haven't broken it to Chuck yet, but I fully intend to buy new bedding for George. When Luke was born we bought pretty neutral bedding and said, "This is great because we can use it for the next kid" Of course, freako-hormonal-me went out and insisted on buying something girly for my precious Evie six weeks before she was born. I didn't think she should be treated like a second-class citizen just because she came second. And so, while I don't believe the whole "second-class-citizen" thing holds water, I'll admit that I just want to buy new bedding for this next one. I tend to like things to match.

The biggest hitch in the plan is that I have no idea where we will be when this little baby will be born. I'm intending to actually put a sign in front of my house next week, but who knows how long it will take to actually sell the house. It could be 2 weeks, it could be a year. So, instead, we're in a holding pattern until we get an offer or figure out that no one wants our house, which is currently my fear.

Yesterday, Chuck and I drove around a couple of neighborhoods looking for a new place to live (yes, we like to put the cart before the horse sometimes). There is this gorgeous new neighborhood in West Fort Worth that we really shouldn't even consider but, ugh - it is tooo beautiful!!!! It is called Montserrat. It's located on a cliff that has a pretty good view of downtown Fort Worth on one side and a sprawling view of land on the other. Very pretty (for Fort Worth). I fell in love instantly and we found this great house that has the perfect room for a Nanny (not that the nanny thing is set in stone yet). Ahh, so we really enjoyed looking at all the possibilities that are open to really rich people in Montserrat. Next weekend, I intend to set my focus on more realistic homes in Arlington and Grapevine. Of course, if we bought the cheapest house in Montserrat then we could go hang at our neighbor's kick-ass multi-million dollar houses. Right now, we're pretty much surrounded by old people so we can't hang out at their million dollar houses, but in Montserrat, there are tons of young rich people so we might have a better chance there. But then again, we'd be pressured to send our kids to some snooty private school and I'm not really on board for that.

Okay, enough chit chat - must get to work.

Friday, August 15, 2008

It's a . . .

Baby! The kids want to tell you, so you can click on either one and find out what we're having:


video


As promised to Lisa, here's a belly shot:


video

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Late Night Lawyer

Another late night. I've got Norah Jones, depo prep, and orange juice to keep me company. Too bad there's no vodka in the orange juice. Oh, and there are still at least five other lawyers here (out of 28 total lawyers).

Listen closely, little children: Don't go to law school. You'll die a miserable, mean person, even if you thought practicing law was about helping people. Atticus Finch is dead.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Hat Day


Luke and Evie decided to try on hats. Luke is wearing the hat that came with his stuffed dalmation that wears a fireman costume. Evie, not to be left out, found the nearest hat for pictures which was Luke's A&M ballcap. Luke was cracking me up. I don't know how long he wandered around the house like this.

Mom = Fat

Is it a bad sign when even your maternity clothes don't fit?

Monday, August 11, 2008

Late Onset Selective Deafness

I am disappointed to report that my children are experiencing Late Onset Selective Deafness - a malady affecting millions of children around the world, and now it has struck the Berend household. It is tragic and painful only to those who the children cannot seem to hear.

It has been progressing slowly over the last few months to a full case of Selective deafness. At first I only had to repeat things once or twice to get their attention, but now I have to screech unattractively at the top of my lungs to get anything done. For example, this morning I tell Luke, "Luke, please go put on your shoes." He continues to play with his car as I finish making his lunch - the deafness is clearly affecting his ability to hear my request. So, again, I say, "Luke, I asked to you put on your shoes." This time I watched him continue to play without a flinch or reaction to my voice - and I decide he really has lost his hearing. Otherwise, wouldn't he have at least looked at me and then decided to ignore me as he continued to play with his toys? Again, but a little louder this time as I stretch my head forward and look at him intently as if my laser-mom vision will spark his attention, "Luke, I'm only going to ask you one more time to put your shoes on." This time, he slightly reacts by pausing with his car, yet he continues to play as he makes his quiet vvroom-vroom noises. I wait only a half minute and then realize that the deafness is no longer partial but complete, and I screech in frustration at an escalated pitch and fervor: "LUKE! PUT YOUR SHOES ON NOW!!!" I expect him to jump and start crying because he is in trouble for not having heard me the first few times, but instead he looks up and says in a whine, "I've just got to finish playing with my car." Now, I realize he is not only deaf but quite possibly mentally challenged because there can be no doubt to anyone ages 1 to 101 that I am beyond the patience of asking him to put on his shoes. It was crystal clear that my last statement was a COMMAND - one that a 5 star general would utter resulting in chaotic running in the barracks as the troops rush to get their shoes on. Instead, my slow child decides to respond as if I had merely suggested that now would be a good time to put his shoes on. To my frustration I have to actually respond since he hasn't taken his hand off his car even though he has now heard me, looked at me, and responded. So make the evilest eyes I can manage by squinting, I lean my head forward, clench my teeth together and growl each word succinctly, "Get - your - shoes - on - nowwwwwww!" Usually this elicits Luke to throw down his car and run toward his shoes sobbing that "You're not being very nice to me!" But instead, this morning, he stops in his tracks still holding the car, and looks at me as he asks curiously, as if he is perplexed, "Why are you talking like that, Mommy?" Obviously, he now thinks I'm the mentally challenged individual in the room.

I couldn't help it but I turned my head and giggled because I realized how stupid I must have looked and clearly I wasn't creating the menacing, strict effect I was looking for. So instead, now having gotten his attention, I say in a calm voice (still stern of course) "Luke, you need to get your shoes on now or I'm leaving without you." He hops over to his shoes as he says cheerfully, "Okay!" I grit my teeth, take a deep breath, and chuckle to myself in frustration. Little did I know, I was about to repeat the entire thing with both of them as I hustled them to the front door (my arms full of lunches, brief case, purse, blankets and keys) and told them to get into the car.

So, I've decided my children are without a doubt suffering from Late Onset Selective Deafness. Now I'm trying to decide who needs to see a doctor: Should Evie and Luke see and audiologist or should I see a therapist?

Friday, August 8, 2008

Billable Hours and Happy Hours

Where did yesterday go? It has been such a crazy week!

We still don't have the Expedition back so Chuck and I are carpooling to work. It actually works out pretty well because he helps get the kids ready and forces us to be out of the house by 7:30, then he drops me off first (because it takes too long to drop me off after we take the kids to school), then he takes the kids to school, and drives to work. In the evenings he retraces his steps by picking up the kids and then picking me up. It's been great for my hours at work. In at 7:35, out at 6:20. What a great week! But, I'm basically stranded here without a car so what else am I going to do? My billables are really up this week too since it has been a crazy week of depos; I've already billed 39.3 hours, and I have a full day to go before the weekend. I try to bill about 40 hours a week, but it doesn't always happen. Of course, my friend Caroline is preparing for trial so she probably is already up to 45 or 50 hours and plans to work all weekend. Those are the times that create a month of billing over 200 hours. I think last time she prepared for trial she had a month where she billed about 300 hours (she had to have worked every day of the month for at least 10 hours! (Usually, if you bill 180 you've had a solid month, so that should put it in perspective). Enough about billing - the bane of my existence.

I find it intersting that "billable hours" (which I hate) and "happy hours" (which I love) sound so similar and share the word hours. Curious. Plus, there is no way to mix the two events, at least not at my firm.

Speaking of happy hours, the lady attorneys in my office (all of which are associates - there is only one female shareholder and she doesn't really hang with us) have a monthly happy hour at someone's house. Last night was my turn to host and everyone got to see all the changes we've made to the house. We had so much fun gossiping about everything - family, friends, my kids (no one else has any), work, etc. It's a great time to catch up with one another and to vent any frustrations we may be having at work and in life in general. Last night I had a meat and cheese tray, crackers, bread, olives, fruit salad, cheesecake and WINE. Yum- I love finger foods. Wish I could have enjoyed the wine. It was fun and it was great to catch up with everyone. I work with such a great group of ladies. There are seven of us now, but we're adding two more next month. We'll have to ease the newbies into our craziness.

Gotta get to work.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Coloring Book for Lawyers

Okay, you must look at this if you are a lawyer because it is too funny! I couldn't figure out how to post it on the blog, so I just have a link to the coloring book. I first saw it several years ago, but someone sent it to me again today and it cracked me up yet again. I showed this to Chuck once and he didn't think it was as funny as I do so it must be funnier to lawyers.

Here's the link: http://officespam.chattablogs.com/archives/2006/08/coloring-book-for-lawyers.html


Oh how I long for one of those little pink pills!

By the way, my phone has 33 buttons (not counting the numbers), but I only use three. Maybe if I used more of the buttons I would be a better lawyer?

A cool 84.

I wasn't wrong! I'm in a splendid mood and it is all because of Edouard which has made it overcast and 84 degrees! It is pure bliss. I swear I should move to Seattle; I love this weather! Too bad Seattle would put me even further from my family and h-town friends.

The hectic lifestyle we are living continues to worsen. Our latest bad news includes the fact that we have to replace the transmission on our 2004 Expedition. It sucks! So, at the moment, we are carpooling which isn't as easy as it used to be when Chuck and I both worked downtown. Now, the kids and I are still downtown, but Chuck is 20 minutes away in North Richland Hills. It isn't bad compared to some of you all who commute in Houston or Dallas, but it has pretty much screwed up our routine. Hopefully, we'll have the Expedition back tomorrow or the next day, after we pay the $2,300 bill, of course.

I am just thankful that our health and safety continue to be secure. Plus, we are looking forward to adding the new little tyke to the family. We'll find out what we're having next Thursday, so stay tuned!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

It's twins!

No, not for me (I think). Has anyone noticed how many people are having twins these days? Forget fertility drugs (which I'm all for), I just think it is starting to get a little creepy. (Sorry Kari - your twins will be perfect and not creepy, oh, and I love all the twins I know - even dated a twin once).

For example,
Lisa Marie Presley just announced that she is expecting twins. Angelina Jolie just gave birth to twins. JLo just had twins. Rebecca Romijn is expecting twins. And the list goes on and on: Marcia Cross (twin girls), Julia Roberts (boy & girl), Patrick Dempsey (twin boys), Mia Hamm (twin girls), P-Diddy (twin girls), Denzel Washington (boy & girl), Melissa Etheridge (boy & girl). Creepy? I think so, just a little. Pretty soon, to Jack's great delight, the world will be filled with twins and their "psychic connections." Just kidding, but it does make you wonder . . .

Still, the explanation that I've read in the news sounds plausible enough: (1) women are waiting to start families combined with the fact that women over the age of 35 are more likely to ovulate two eggs at one time - hence twins; and (2) increased fertilization drugs. Both reasons I fully support, so I guess I can't complain about the abundance of twins. Really, just an observation.

1 out of 24

I've seen the kids for approximately one hour in the last 24, and that was while we were rushing around getting clothes on, lunches packed, and generally preparing for the day. I got home at 9:00 last night and tucked the little tykes into bed, even though they were not acting tired in the least. Chuck had already put them to bed, but they were still wide awake when I got home. Evie had to tell me how daddy was not feeling good and Luke got two glasses of water before bed. Then Evie decided she needed to go potty - no luck. Then I had to get the pets out of the room, give hugs and kisses, and turn on a music box. They're demanding sometimes but I'm more tolerant when I've missed their whole day. Then I tucked them in and told them I had to go to bed too.

I grabbed a bowl of Lucky Charms, crawled into bed, read one chapter in a cheap romance novel to get my head cleared, and then fell asleep at 10:00 p.m. I didn't get up until 7:00 a.m. I was whipped! Now I'm back at work and looking forward to another long evening of depo prep. Oh, the joys of being a litigation attorney.

I know all working moms have their late-night commitments or the equivalent. I really miss my babies today and wish I could go get them early today. However, our fun will have to wait until depos are over and my deadlines are met.

Luckily, Edouard will be dropping some rain on us tomorrow. I'm certain the relief from the freakin' sunshine and heat will brighten my mood considerably.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Crocs: An Abomination of Society?

I just purchased three pairs of crocs for the kids today and then as I was navigating back to my homepage I saw an article about Crocs called "Make. It. Stop." The gist of the article is that Crocs are ugly and only dorks wear them. My thanks to Newsweek for calling a majority of Americans dorks, including my children.

http://www.newsweek.com/id/150240/page/1

Our kids are required to wear Crocs (name brand or generic) or slippers at their daycare when they are inside. Luke's generic brand pair from Target is falling apart so I promised him the other day that I would get him some A&M Crocs. This morning I found out that Evie is moving up to a big kids class so she'll need a pair too, so I ordered her some Cinderella Crocs. I hope they fit. I dropped approximately $35.00 per pair. Ouch. I think they're $10 at Target. Nonetheless, there is nothing that could have made me feel better about a $100 purchase than this Newsweek article telling me what dorks my kids will be for wearing these newly ordered shoes.

As I head into the weekend, I want to wish the best to little J.P.! Happy first birthday, buddy! Wish we could be there! Maybe I'll send you a pair of crocs for your birthday since you should be walking soon! And to Ashley, I hope Maggie isn't making you too uncomfortable with all this heat. I hate to miss fun baby stuff and yummy shower food, but I'm out this weekend. Hope you don't encounter too much traffic on your way to Houston.

Keep cool!

Sweet and Sassy

Another trip to Sweet and Sassy for the kids (mostly for Luke). His hair is sooooo long! I love the surfer look but it was seriously too long so we went in and actually got it cut this time. Here are some pictures documenting our excursion to the store filled with glitter and all things for girls. Not a soccer ball in sight! By the way, got Luke signed up for soccer - finally!

Luke's hair before (plus a little spaghetti):


Luke getting his hair cut:

Evie and Mom before Evie's haircut (watching Luke) (she doesn't usually look this goofy):



Evie after a wash (what a brave girl - she's never had her hair washed at the salon before):



Evie getting her hair cut:

The dejected haircut victims:


All in all, it was a success. Notice how Luke is exhibiting his typical "boy" behavior - it is like he's already 15! We spent the next hour shopping while Chuck was at Coach's night.