Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Busy List

Today wasn't supposed to be this busy:

Dr.'s appt
Carpet cleaners
File something in court
Soccer practice
First Cub Scout meeting
Sleep - I'm already looking forward to it.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Stairs and Fever

Luke and Chuck went to the football game Friday night - where Big Chocolate's team got killed. Poor guys. They had a nice time.

I stayed home with Evie who had a fever of 103.5. It was so sad. Apparently she caught a virus that manifested itself in her throat and lymph nodes. She was completely well within 24 hours, so that was a relief. I'm pretty sure she caught it from one of those disgusting grocery store carts where the kids get to sit in a play car attache to the front of the cart. Those things are just crawling with germs.

Other than that, George fell down the stairs - yet another incident that will preclude my title as Mother of the Year. Poor baby. He's just getting too quick for us. You can see the stair mark on his face here. It looks terrible, but it had completely faded within 24 hours and you can't even see it now.

Nothing else of interest going on with the crazy family. Just trying to keep on going and keep on living.

Friday, August 27, 2010

High School Football

We are planning to attend Big Chocolate's first game tonight, if everything works out okay. Luke is really excited about it, so I think we'll make an effort to be there.

Here are some pictures from the school website of Meet the Team Night. I think the ones with Luke and Big Chocolate are just adorable!

And Chuck on the sidelines.

And the rest of us in the stands.

Who in the world was taking these pictures?!

Note to self: Look totally prego here; must stick to diet.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Spell Check

I just received an email from my son's elementary school inviting all parents to a meeting with the principal and vice principal. The subject line stated, "Youn are invited."

I'm so pleased these are the people in charge of my son's education.

Okay, a little harsh on my part. I'm sure it was just a typo.

Fat Sucker

I'm wearing a shirt with an inside fat sucker that is supposed to "shape" my fat into an aesthetically pleasing look; however, instead of camouflaging my fat rolls it emphasizes them by cutting into my baby-used belly. Ugh. I should really consider working out regularly.

Here's what it looks like on the model:

Look! Even she has a little bulge!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010


He's a cutie.

One day I'm going to post a video of him being bad, but for now you can all believe that he is this cute all the time.

Movie Quote 69

I don't really expect you all to know this based on this one word, but I've only ever heard this word in one movie. And I'll give you a hint that it is a kids movie. Good luck!


Tuesday, August 24, 2010

News with Me (kinda boring)

Yesterday was our 13th wedding anniversary. It was wonderful! Absolutely wonderful. I think it was one of our best anniversaries in several years. We often have bad luck when we go out to celebrate. For example, I feel sick, or the food is bad, or I eat too much, or whatever. Last night, was absolutely delightful. Plus, I'm enjoying this spectacular flower arrangement all week at work.

In other news, my mother and two nieces have been staying with us since Thursday to help out with the kids and to visit, which is great, but makes for a full household especially after the air conditioning unit that cools my room and George's room went out Friday night. It is approximately 95 degrees in those two rooms. The rest of the house is on another a/c unit - thank Heaven. Therefore, Chuck and I have been sleeping on our couches in the living room. George slept in Luke and Evie's room with my mom and two nieces, and Luke and Evie slept in sleeping bags on the floor. It's been crazy. I try to only go in my bedroom to shower, brush my teeth and grab clothes. It's ridiculously hot. For the past few days I've slept on the couches and thought how peculiar my life is. *sigh* The a/c should be fixed today and the family left this morning, so the house should be back to normal. It was nice having them here, but the broken a/c unit threw a kink in my plans.

In other good news, a cold front is blowing through and dropping the temperature into the high 80s for today. For the past 24 days we have had 23 days of temperatures over 100 degrees. Disgusting. We are all so happy to have a break from the unbearable heat.

Monday, August 23, 2010

First Grade

Luke started first grade today. He was a little nervous when I dropped him off, but I love his teacher already and I only just met her yesterday. I'm looking forward to a full and productive year.

He doesn't like taking pictures.

Everyone should know Luke's collegiate affiliation.

The sun is freakin' bright and hot.
The high is 105 degrees today.

Look at how huge his backpack is!

There are two kids named Luke and one kid named
Lucas in his class. Ridiculous!

Luke's teacher.
This is her 30th year as a teacher.

Oh my God, my son is in first grade.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Big Chocolate & Little Chocolate

Lots of Pictures in this Post!

First, let me state that my kid is a weenie. Ugh! We got there and all he could do was hide behind my legs. He wouldn't say hi or anything. He finally started to say hello after I threatened to take away his Star Wars shoes that I just bought him. I don't feel guilty at all for threatening him because he was being a rude little stinker. Once he said hello and started talking to Big Chocolate (whose name is Dominique), things got a little better.

Luke got Dominique's number on his hand so Dominique could find him. He looks thrilled, right?

Number 70

Number 70

Dominique is huge. Without a doubt. He's a very big guy and so super sweet. We started to break Luke's shell when I told Luke to tell D what grade he was in. Luke said "First." into the back of my legs. I asked Luke, "What grade do you think D is in?" Luke answered, "Seventh?"

Me, "Seventh?!" D laughed and all the other football players around laughed. "I think he's probably not in seventh grade.
Let's ask him what grade he's in."

Turns out he's in 12th. Luke was blown away! D was super sweet to Luke, even though Luke was struggling to put aside his shy nature. We pretty much got there. I hope Luke will be more comfortable next time.

Dominique broke the ice by picking up Luke.

Dominique is a University of Texas Fan.
Luke is a die-hard Texas A&M fan.

Luke, being a stinker, got a talking to.

I brought along my 15-year old niece and my 19-year old au pair to draw attention to ourselves. Well done me.
They were so patient.

Dominique got a panther paw on his arm.
Luke declined.

Luke's favorite friend Matthew was there too.

Luke ran around with Dominique.
What a patient guy.

We finally went to the stands to watch the events.

This was Meet the Team night, which is actually meet the band, the band director, the varsity cheerleaders, the JV cheerleaders, the freshman cheerleaders, the cheerleader coach, the freshman football players, the JV football players, the coaches, the trainers, the mascot, the assistant coaches, and then . . . finally . . . the varsity football players. Holy crap!

Luke and Big Chocolate walked out onto the field (at last) through a big blown up Panther head and they got, without a doubt, the biggest cheers. Big Chocolate is definitely the favorite player.

I keep suggesting that we should call Luke "Little Chocolate" but he insists that he doesn't look like chocolate. I personally think he looks like white chocolate, but he won't have it. I think it's cute.

So, that's it. A somewhat successful Meet the Team Night.
It was pretty fun!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Champagne & Hotdogs

Happy Champagne Thursday, y'all! I'm about to head home. Grab some champagne. Cook up some hotdogs to go with my champagne (don't make fun). Greet my Mom (aka Shazza) and my nieces who are visiting my crazy family. Then we're off to meet the football team and Big Chocolate! I'll share the results tomorrow.

Rosie Update

Rosie is doing great! She has already been out with some other au pairs in the area and had fun. She also joined a gym this week with another au pair that lives close by. Hats off to her!

So far, she is still VERY quiet. She's seen us engage in joking, pillow fighting, dancing, singing, working out, the Brazilian Butt Lift, etc. I'm not sure what else we can do to bring her out of her shell. She's also seen more than half our family naked - all under the age of 6, but still that's something, right? On some level she's got to be thinking, "Damn, I've got a handle on all the crazies in this house."

The low point for her has been cockroaches. No idea why they decided to come out of the woodwork for her, but they are here. We even called the exterminator out for a re-treat on the house - focused mainly on her room and bathroom. Hopefully that will take care of the problem. She is so heebie-jeebie about it too. It's almost comical. One day this week I came home to find a glass bowl on the ground in the formal living room with a nasty cockroach dead on its back inside. I dutifully took care of it, while the "kids" watched. Pretty funny and gross at the same time.

Rosie tends to be cold in spite of the heat. She often wears a light sweater and jeans when she is inside. Lindsey did the same thing. Apparently it takes a while to get used to the air conditioning ("aircon") that we blast all day here in Texas. She enjoys drinking tea and beer - not together. She has eaten everything I've made for her. What a trooper.

She gives the kids a bath every other day. She bears the disgustingness of George's poop fairly well. She has taken the kids to the park, the museum, and out shopping. She has been swimming with the kids, and has already prepared them to start back to school by helping them with homework. In the picture below, I came home and she had just finished giving George a bath and he was sitting on this rocking horse buck naked saying, "Rock, rock, rock" as he rocked back and forth and grinned at both of us. I tried to get my camera to take a picture, but I wasn't fast enough. There was too much to risk by letting him continue running around naked so he has a diaper on in this picture.

So far, so good. The kids are also just great with her, except for the occasional backtalk, which Chuck and I are working on. I told her, however, that she's going to have to put her own foot down because if she doesn't they will walk all over her when Chuck and I aren't around. I hope she puts them in their place. I'd hate to hear that she secretly hates my kids because they are being brats. George has been sick for the past couple weeks so she hasn't really seen much of his good side, but it is starting to come back as he gets well. Like most men, George is very cranky when he's sick.

Her driving, I assume, has improved. She's driving daily now. She's really getting to know her way around, and I love that she's meeting friends out and about already.

It's been very interesting at the house because as much as she is an au pair, just like Lindsey, she has a very different personality from Lindsey. It's been fun. I hope it will continue to be fun throughout the year.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Parenting Today

Thanks for all the comments yesterday, but I don't want you all to think that I posted that so that you would all sing my praises about how great a mother I am. No, no need to worry about that. I know that I'm not going to be Mother of the Year, but I actually do believe that, for now at least, I am a good mom. Really. But, it doesn't hurt to hear it from all of you "unbiased" outsiders! Thanks.

This whole discussion, however, brought to mind a conversation I had with another attorney at my law firm. He and his wife got married slightly later in life (still of child bearing age and all that). They had their first child (a son) two weeks after I had Luke. They had a daughter about six months after I had Evie. They didn't rise to the challenge of having a third -- pansies. In fact, the husband looked a little ill when I announced that we were having a third. Anyhow, when they got married and had their son, the wife was working as a nurse anesthetist. This is a serious job that takes a lot of education and training. She's a "Professional Mother" in every sense of the term. But, she decided to stay at home with her kids after they had their daughter. Respectable. A choice that most women would love.

So the husband and I were chatting at work the other day and I mentioned that I don't know how his wife manages it. I'm not sure I'm cut out to be a stay at home mom when the kids aren't of an age to go play by themselves for a while or head off to school for at least a few hours. I can't imagine being a mom for 24 hours a day 7 days a week. It just makes my mind spin and I feel like I would turn into a monster mom that is constantly yelling and harping. Seriously. Yowser! That's a lot of time with the kids. However, I know that there are tons of people (a lot of friends of mine included) who would be in absolute heaven if they had the opportunity to stay at home with their kids.

Anyway, he mentioned that we are essentially the first generation of parents that feel the need to stay at home with our children and teach them and entertain them all. day. long. He's right. In addition, yesterday Angela (a very sweet blogger friend) mentioned that our parents' generation was really focused on putting food on the table, keeping the kids clothed, and making sure there was a roof over their kids' heads. They are both right.

When I was a kid, I spent HOURS away from the house - playing outside or spending the day with friends. Then, I would show up for dinner. I rode my bike to school or walked there and back by myself. I played in the street that I lived on. I would spend hours playing with the neighbor's kids. I would ride my bike all over the neighborhood. I was not in my mother's constant presence. I turned out fine. My mom, a blessed mother of six, is still sane - for the most part. So why, then, do the parents of this generation feel the need to be with their children 24-7?

I don't have the answer, but I will tell you that I do not imagine that my kids will be allowed to roam the streets the way I did. I just feel like it is too dangerous. I didn't feel like I was in any danger growing up, but the world feels different as an adult. I can't explain it.

The point is that the pressures of being a SAHM are so much greater than they used to be. Now, you not only have to feed, clothe, and shelter your children, but you are also directly responsible for ensuring that they excel academically and extracurricularly (not a word, but cut me some slack). We have to make sure that kids have every opportunity to shine. For example, this year, Luke is playing soccer, joining cub scouts, adopting a football player, going to birthday parties, and going to church school. This year, Evie is playing soccer, going to art class, going to a pre-kindergarten program, going to birthday parties, and going to church school. These two children are almost more over-scheduled than I am. Am I doing the right thing? Should they have all these opportunities? If not, what should I cut out of their schedules?

In case I haven't already mentioned it, parenting is difficult. And I say that knowing full well that parenting these perfectly healthy children is a gift from God.

Okay, I'm done with my preaching and ranting this morning. You guys have a great day. Let me know if you have any insight on this matter.

Until then, here are some pictures to brighten your day and mine.

Next time I'll get some pictures of the older kids. They are uninterested in having their pictures taken, but I love telling them they have to do something "because I said so", so we'll get some pictures no matter what.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

I work.

Yes, I work.

No, I do not make it to all the school events.

Yes, I have an au pair / nanny.

No, I am not rich.

Yes, I love my children.

No, I will never be Mother Of The Year.

What drove all this home today? Well, I went into Luke's school to drop off a copy of his birth certificate and his immunization record (no, they weren't included in all the papers I took a picture of the other day), and the office personnel (the Carpool Nazi with the bullhorn who is actually a nice guy) asked me if I was new.

I said, "No. "

Carpool Guy, "Really?"

Me, "Really."

Carpool Guy, "Who is your kid?"

Me, "My son is Luke B***"

Carpool Guy, "What grade is he in?"

Me, "He's going into first grade. He was in Ms. A's kindergarten class last year. . . . He was tardy a lot?" I waited for recognition.

Carpool Guy, "Hmm."

I felt the need to defend myself, "Um, well, I have a nanny who does pick up . . ."

Carpool Guy, "Oh, okay." Doubt flickered in his eyes.

Guilt settled in my chest.

I work. I do well at both my jobs: attorney and mother. I do not excel spectacularly at either. I recognize the sacrifices that I make so that I can do both. Still, it hurts just a little when things like this happen. And the sad part of it is that I didn't do anything wrong. There are no ill effects of my son having an au pair. There are no ill effects of the Carpool Guy not knowing who I am. But it drives home the fact that other mothers are more present in their children's lives. I'm not. I am at peace with that, except on these rare occasions where I feel like someone may have judged me inadequate.

I remind myself that I am not inadequate.

I am a good mom.

I swear.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Nap time

He really didn't want to take a nap, but it was inevitable.