Monday, January 31, 2011

Moxie Girls: Evie and Brooke

Evie was invited to her friend Brooke's birthday this weekend. Brooke is Evie's friend from soccer and they get along so well! Evie was so excited about the birthday party that she kept asking when it would be time to go. The party didn't start until 2:00 on Saturday, but Evie was ready to go at 8:00 a.m. While Evie counted the hours and minutes until the party, Chuck ran to Target to pick up a gift for Brooke. He brought home two Moxie Girlz (just little barbie-sized dolls) and asked me to wrap them. I pulled the dolls out of the bag in front of Evie and said, "Awwweee! That's so sweet! You got girls that look like Evie and Brooke!"

I laid these two dolls (in the packages, of course) on the table while I pulled out the gift bag and tissue paper. Evie came over to inspect the gift and asked, "Which one do I look like, Mommy?"

I lifted my eyebrows and smiled before I let out a defeated sigh . . . at least she's pretty.

Luke is Cute

Apparently, Luke was quite sad to know that George is getting a lot of face time on the Professional Mother blog simply because George is really cute right now. Luke asked Chuck to tell me that he is cute too and is worthy of being on the blog. He told Chuck to tell me that I should take a picture of Luke when he first goes to sleep because he is really cute then, but he's not as cute when he wakes up.

Every night before bed, Chuck and I kiss our sleeping babies on the head before we go to bed. They are always adorable. Always. But, every time I try to capture a picture of them sleeping, the picture never turns out. As we kissed Luke's head last night, Chuck conveyed Luke's message. After sighing and rolling my eyes, I pulled out my iPhone, flipped on the light (Luke was whipped so he kept sleeping), and I took this very adorable picture of my first-born baby.

I love him so much.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Pink Nails & Green Hair

He's such a manly man, but he's also VERY two and he insisted -- INSISTED -- that I paint his nails after I finished painting Evie's nails pink.

He looked at me and said, "Nails!"

I was very pleased to do his nails, so I hauled him into my lap and proceeded to trim and clean his nails. He waited patiently for a full 10 seconds before pushing himself of my lap, looking me in the eye, and saying, "No. Nails!"

Me, "Okay. I was doing your nails. Come here."

George, "No! Nails!"

He turned around and picked up the bottle of pink nail polish and handed it to me.

I said, "No, that's for girls, not boys." I took it from him and set it back on the table.

He looked at me like I didn't understand the English language and raised his voice to say, "Nails!" He turned around again and picked up the nail polish and handed it to me. I took it and set it back down and tried to start filing his nails.

Again, "No. Nails." Now he was practically wailing in frustration.

Despite the fact that Chuck was sure to give me hell, I totally gave in. I picked up the nail polish and hoisted him onto my lap where I proceeded to paint his nails pink, against Evie's protests. She soon started laughing. George was perfectly content and pleased that I finally understood what he was asking for. And he sat very patiently while he held out each foot and hand to be painted.

It is funny to see him running around with pink nails.

This morning I removed the pink polish from his nails and he wailed, mad at me for taking away his pink nails. Luckily, he's such a manly man, I don't think we have anything to worry about when it comes to him being effeminate - not that I would really worry too much about it if he was effeminate.
To top it all off, on our way to school yesterday I noticed that he had at some point found a green marker and colored on his head. So really, the pink nails just set off the green hair.
I honestly would cherish and adore my children no matter what, including green hair and pink nail polish.

Friday, January 28, 2011

It's the Weekend

I've been busy. Could you tell? Tonight I had a date with three little ones. They were pretty good, although George is really become a full-fledged two-year old. Pretty damn annoying. I've finally got them in bed, Chuck is at a business dinner, Rosie is packing for her week-long ski trip, and I'm organizing the Fat Olympics and watching Stranger Than Fiction with a glass of wine. It's absolutely wonderful!

I hope to have some cute pics to share soon, but for now, I'm trying to just breathe.

Hope you all have fantastically perfect weekend!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Tortilla Soup - Yum!

Okay, I don't normally post recipes, because well, I don't normally cook. But . . . I made some tortilla soup from this recipe on my friend's blog (Summer Dish) and it was DELISH! I thought it might be too much tomato, but it was perfect - not even too spicy at all! I had two bowls of it last night and I'm having another hearty serving for lunch today, and there's still plenty to go around! So, I've posted the recipe here from Summer's blog and I hope you'll go visit her adorable blog. One of her THREE sons plays soccer with Luke so we've been lucky to get to know her and her family.

Also, here are some precious pics of my littlest one. I think he looks like he's in a commercial for Activia. Enjoy!

Unfortunately, all he ate was the hotdog. *sigh*

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

I must post more pictures of George. He's getting cuter by the minute!

Monday, January 24, 2011

The Fat Olympics

Fat Olympics (Chuck's choice - not mine) will begin February 1.

If you are interested in participating, please let me know by this Friday, January 28. I will send out pertinent information to all the participants on Friday by email, so if I don't have your email, send it to me ASAP at theberends at msn dot com.

I will also post important information on the Fat Olympics blog.

(Don't worry! No one's weight will be posted!)

The purpose of the Fat Olympics blog is to just not take up too much room on The Professional Mother space.

Make sure you have access to a scale - the same scale for every weigh in. The rules are that you can do anything you want to do to lose weight EXCEPT surgery. The entry fee is $30 which I will collect and hold for the winner. (Don't worry - you can totally trust me -- wink, wink.)

So far we have 10 or 11 participants, so we will definitely be on teams which will be randomly chosen (teams required for 10 or more participants).


I spent the weekend at a wedding at the Ritz-Carlton in New Orleans. Let me tell you how ready I was to come home, but NOT ready to go back to work. My babies stayed at home with my mom, and I missed them like crazy! It's amazing how little it takes for me to miss them.With that said, I don't think they missed me that much. Grandma spoils them rotten - which is her right to do as a grandmother.

I'll try to post some highlights from our trip soon! Unfortunately I forgot my camera, so all we have are iPhone pictures. Still, the sights were fantastic, the music was delightful, and the food was phenomenal! Loved every bite I ate!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Cross Those Eyes

This really is what we do at home. It's so normal and yet so crazy.

Chuck and I tried to teach the kids how to cross their eyes. Correct me if I'm wrong, but don't most parents scold their children and say, "If you keep making that face, it might freeze that way!"

Oh well, it was amusing to watch them give it a go.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Ultimate Valentine's Day Gift

I CANNOT stop laughing about this PSA.

Chuck, this is EXACTLY what I want for Valentine's Day!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Where is he?

Chuck had a basketball tonight so he didn't get home when he normally would. I was sitting at home with the kids and after the point in time when he would normally arrive, I wondered out loud, "Hmm. I wonder what happened to Daddy?"

Evie responded (with what sounded like hopefulness in her voice), "I know! Maybe he's in jail or he died or something."

She looked so proud of having come up with an answer to my question, but all I could ask was, "WHAT did you say?"

She repeated it with a grin.

I responded, "Well, I hope not, but I guess anything is possible."

Chuck arrived at 8:00. Whew.

What Name Shall I Give Thee? Awe, just call me "Fattie"

I've decided to start/organize a biggest loser contest. If you want to join in, the entry fee will probably be around $25 or $30. It will begin February 1 and run for SIX weeks. At the end of six weeks, the winner will be whoever lost the most percentage of weight.

Possible names:

Beach Blanket Biggies

Bet Your A$$

Weighting it Out

Or any other clever suggestions you may have for the contest.

Let me know if you're interested by contacting me at (and here's where I reveal my last name as if all of you didn't already know): theberends at msn dot com.

Occular Circles

Last fall I suffered from allergies - apparently. So, I went to see an allergist in early December. Turns out I'm allergic to cats, dogs, horses, grasses, and cockroaches - weird. While I was at the office, I was in a great mood because I was in the glow of the Christmas spirit. I had started out my day with a Peppermint Mocha from Starbucks and I was feeling very content with the world.

Yesterday I received my medical report from the allergist. It is just for my records and to share with my general practitioner. I was saddened to read the following:

"In general, this is a well-developed, well-nourished, 33-year old female in no acute distress."

Translation, "This is a fat, old lady, who clearly isn't sick."

He goes on to write, "Inspection of the face reveals dark ocular circles."

Translation, "She has dark circles under her eyes and must be exhausted."

I stopped reading there after I asked Chuck, "What do you think dark ocular circles are?"

He thought I was reading something for work and answered, "Circles under your eyes" while he continued to watch tv. I guess he saw my face fall because he then asked, "What are you reading?"

I responded, "My allergist's medical report on me."

He said with surprise, "Oh, it's you?! Oh, sweetie . . . "

I shrugged my shoulders and began contemplating which type of eye cream I should start using and whether I should start sleeping more.

Thanks Dr. T.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Biggest Loser

I want to start or join a Biggest Loser contest. My friends are participating in a Biggest Loser contest through their church - but they live two hours away. Does anyone have any suggestions?

I'd love to do it with some friends, but how do you approach your friends about joining a contest to lose weight? Seems like some friends may not take it very well and would probably be offended. Hmm.

Monday, January 17, 2011

I'm famous.

Okay, I'm totally bragging here, but check this out - I made someone else's blog! Yeah, I'm awesome.

So here it is from my dear friend Angie who is an excellent writer.

She posted on her blog Professional Motherhood. CLICK HERE to see.

And she had a guest post on the blog called Work, Wife, Mom . . . Life. CLICK HERE to see it.

Friday, January 14, 2011

What a Wonderful Day.

Can't keep the news to myself -- my friends Caroline and Ryan just made partner at their law firm!


Cozumel 2011

As promised, here are pictures from the trip.
Absolutely gorgeous.

My kids sitting at a bar.
This is Coconut's.
It was a great place with a dog, a cat, chickens, and two parrots.
The kids were fascinated.

There were lots of funny signs like this around the bar.

We spent some time on the beach and in the sand.
Heaven for the kids.

Look at this little tushie!

They also spent some time in the hotel pool.
It was cold so they were the only ones in it.

She was adorable all weekend!
I took a turn wearing her crown.

Then I took a picture of Chuck.

We went out to dinner the last night where I drunkenly dined on lobster and a drink called Sexy Chocolate. I was definitely in over my head on this and ended the night with hiccups and passed out in my bed. Ugh. But the whole family enjoyed the evening.

Chuck's Mom, Sister, and Sister's Husband.
(aka: Daphne, Trish, and Thom).

My son's ridiculously long tongue.

Just fun.

My Sexy Chocolate.

And on our last day, we went to see some Mayan ruins.
This is far from my cup of tea.

But, Chuck's dad loves it.

The kids enjoyed seeing the iguanas which were everywhere.

It's like an Eye Spy book.
See if you can spot the iguanas in these pics:

And after our trip to the ruins, we rushed to the airport so we could return to the freezing weather at home. Still, we had a really nice time with lots of delicious food.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

People are Crazy

God is great, beer is good, and people are crazy.

Heard this song this morning, and it always makes me smile.

Hope you all have a wonderful day!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Mexico and a Tattoo

Miss me yet???

Yeah, well I was having some fun in Cozumel with Chuck, Luke, Evie, and the in-laws. It was beautiful, but I'm exhausted and definitely glad to be back in my own bed.

Here we are hanging out at the World's Smallest Hard Rock Cafe.

View from our hotel room. Gorgeous.

I'll have more pictures later.

Today's highlight is Rosie's BIRTHDAY!
Dear Rosie turns 20 years old today.

We plan to go out to dinner with her and her family. It should be fun. Rosie's parents got her a tattoo for her birthday. Yeah, I'm not kidding!

Here's a picture.

They are clearly the coolest parents ever!!!

They have been enjoying their trip to Fort Worth, except for the ridiculously cold weather. Poor people. Who would have thought that they would come to Texas and see snow?!

Still, they've been to the stockyards and other tourist attractions.

I took them out to Reata last Thursday and Vince tried calf fries even after I told him what they were. For those of you that don't know, calf fries are calf testicles fried up. It's disgusting but doesn't taste nearly as bad as it sounds. In fact, Vince seemed rather surprised by the taste.

Happy Birthday, Rosie!
I'm glad you got to spend it with your family!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Rosie Has Visitors!

Rosie's parents are coming to visit TODAY! I can't believe it! We're super excited. I hope I can at least give them a warm Texas welcome. They are so sweet and raised a super sweet girl too (even if she is really, really quiet around us - although I'm sure it is hard to get a word in around us). Anyway, they're going to be here this afternoon and I'm planning to take them to our totally Texas restaurant - Reata. It's delicious and has a real Texas feel. Plus, with the Cotton Bowl going on, I'm hoping that it won't be too crowded.

Rosie looks just like her mom. Both parents seem so kind, thoughtful and relaxed. Her dad used to be a body builder - which I think is hilarious for some reason. They are a very handsome couple and I can't wait to share more details about their visit once they get here.

With all that said, I'm really embarrassed because I'm in the middle of pulling down all our Christmas decorations so there are boxes stacked around the house. Plus, there is a hole in our wall upstairs where the plumber had to get to in order to fix a leak. We had a rat (and it's family) move into our house last month when it got cold and we've killed them all finally, but now there are dead rats in our walls - disgusting - and random flies around the house. Our heaters (both of them) went out last month, but now they are fixed. Our ice maker doesn't work - so we've adopted the European way of drinking water - sans ice. There's more, but I'll spare you all the details. Suffice it to say, I feel like I'm in the midst of the Money Pit - a movie we watched last night just to make us feel better about the state of our house. But, frankly, I'm tired of dealing with the house and a little worried that Rosie's parents are going to get here, take one look at the house, and go upstairs so they can pack her bags and take her home. I hope that doesn't happen.

Hopefully, they will see that she seems to be enjoying Texas for the most part.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

It's a little creepy.

Does anyone else out there think that it is weird that dead birds are falling out of the sky? Just wondering.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Movie Quote 76

Got a movie quote from my friend Krista, and Chuck and I are stumped. So I'm sending it out to all of you to see if anyone else can get it. It sounds familiar, but I'm still drawing a blank. Here it is:

At precisely 8:32-ish . . .

Tuesday, January 4, 2011


I have to tell you, I'm just not feelin' it these days. Back at work after the holidays and I have the post-holiday blues. All the twinkle lights have been put away (except the ones at my house because I'm too lazy), all the pretty red bows and Christmas trees have disappeared.

I love the holidays. Everyone seems a little happier, a little friendlier, and a little more lighthearted. I'd like to have that back, but instead, I'm gearing myself up for 11 months of the grind.

My sister Mary once asked me with exasperation in her voice, "Why do you like Christmas so much?" Well, there is a pretty simple answer to that.

The thing is that I am the youngest of six children. And I'm the youngest by a big margin. My oldest sister, Cathy, is 14 years older than me and my brother Tom, who is the next to youngest, is 7 years older than me. Joan, Mike, and Mary all range somewhere in between Cathy and Tom. So, when I was little, the only times I remember all of us being together was for Christmas and similar holidays because when I was only 3 years old, my sister Cathy had already moved out of the house to attend college. So, for me, Christmas is really, really about having my family all together. I don't remember experiencing an entire family gathering before the age of 4. In fact, my first Christmas memories consist of counting down the days and weeks until my sister Cathy came home from college for Christmas break. I remember knowing that she would get home after the pink candle in the advent wreath was lit. So, there you go. I love Christmas and I love seeing my family.

Last weekend, I was blessed to be able to celebrate Christmas with my entire family at my mom's house in Houston. It was crowded, loud, and chaotic . . . and I loved it. The hardest part was watching the families leave one by one after what seemed to me to be a very short visit. Still, it was wonderful to be together and I guess I need to come to grips with the fact that it will never ever be like it was in the past where everyone slept under the same roof and we all woke up to eat breakfast together. Those days are over, and for me, really didn't exist. Still, I am rewarded in other ways - like having five fantastic surrogate parental figures who love and doted on me. I'm grateful for that.

Hope the rest of you are in better spirits.