October is for Apple Picking

•October 14, 2017 • Leave a Comment

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Here’s a good place to start: we’ve all been doing a ton of reading!  Too many good books come out in the fall.  The new Rick Riordan got passed around at astonishing speed at our house, and then there was this: the release of the new Dog Man book.  Yes, it’s a little young for them, and we probably would have skipped it, but they each got a signed copy when we went to hear Dav Pilkey speak with Weird Al and Jamie Lee Curtis.

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It was a really interesting and fun afternoon, especially because we went with a gang of good friends who are all readers.  And they got to add to their special signed copy stash.

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I just like this: portrait of an artist as a young lady.  Actually, she’s dressed literary here.  She tore through the new Magnus Chase and was mad that she has no pink shirts, so she couldn’t dress like Alex Fierro, her favorite character in the book.  So she’s dressed as Blitzen.

Then we went apple picking!  Here’s a slide show of the hotel and swimming, apple picking and walking the hotel dog with our friends, Molly & Fiona.

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Chuck was in DC this week, so he missed the weekend apple pick and then we had to fill the week with friends, since they missed their daddy.  We had Penelope come over to make a haunted gingerbread house:


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and another

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And then we finished up the week with the Harvest Dance at school and cupcakes with friends after.  Just like at the dance, the girls went to one spot:

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And the boys to another:

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And now everyone is lounging in PJs as we laze our way into a weekend…


Hamilton!!!!!!! (There aren’t enough exclamation marks in the world to convey the excitement.)

•September 29, 2017 • Leave a Comment

We took the kids to Hamilton Wednesday night, which is really the impetus for this catch up.  Because the looks of sheer joy were something we had to remember and share.  I’ve never seen them so excited.  Or happy!  It was just a blissful evening from start to finish, with them hanging on their seats, laughing and crying all night.  I also don’t think Chuck and I have ever had more fun.  Ever.

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And then here’s the catch up of the very few random pictures I remembered to take in September!  There’s a little of everything from a Dodgers game, extra beach day, birthday parties, soccer game, Molly trying on her Halloween wig, roller derby with friends, ice cream after school…

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And now we are nominally caught up and ready for all the October and Halloween happenings.  This weekend Jacob is in Big Bear with his buddies and Molly has her best preschool friend over for a sleepover, so they are in friend heaven!

Tales of 2 5th Grade Somethings

•August 25, 2017 • Leave a Comment

5th Grade!  Can you believe it?  But actually, you have to wait for it.  First we have to do those precious last 2 weeks of summer…


Beach!  We finally got to hit the beach a few times.  And some things never change – Jacob always digs a pit, Molly always finds a way to make him crazy.


Molly and her friend Emma give us a teen preview of heading to the beach.


Summer of course means ice cream, or in this case, rose shaped gelato for the youngest Roses.


Summer also means shows at the Ford – this year we all learned some hip-hop moves.


Yes, it was about as funny as it sounds.


It also means crazy tv show premieres – this one came with an open candy bar screening and then a reception with all kinds of OZ themed goodies and stations.


It also includes visits to at least one museum: in this case the Paul Simon exhibit at the Skirball.  Molly loved all the sounds of silence…


While Jacob promptly found the place where you could watch SNL uninterrupted.


There was also (always!) Shakespeare in the park:


Photo bombing, Jacob style:


And visits to the shore:


Oh, one more thing – soccer tryouts!


And now we get up to first day of school!

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And at school, eclipse viewing!


And lastly, just to catch up, here’s a trip we took yesterday to FIDM for the Emmy nominated costume exhibit that Molly and her friend Emma couldn’t wait to go to… tonight was Jacob’s turn to pick, so we are about to head out to the Dodgers Friday night fireworks game!

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Yep, More Slideshows – The July Editions

•August 5, 2017 • Leave a Comment

Somehow, we go back to school in a week.  The past month has been a whirlwind, mostly of Portland, but then crazy busy as we got home and had to catch up with friends (and doctors, and getting ready for school 5th grade!!).  Before they are 10 1/2 (which is tomorrow!), I figured a summer picture dump was in order.

So let’s start with catching up with LA, before we left for Portland.

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So much going on here: camp shirts for a field trip, 4th of July, Kidspace and spending the night in Pasadena (pools!!), Hollywood Bowl (Harry Potter), Shakespeare in Topanga (Midsummer Nights Dream), art museums (crazy Snow White wood art) and pool time with besties before taking off…

Then we have Portland.  I figured I’d better split this into 3 parts.  Part one is Brasada, the ranch Mum and Jim took us to outside Bend, where we swam, lazed, grilled, fished, horseback rode, relaxed, walked, tried to creep up on rabbits, also saw giant jack rabbits and jackalopes, ate and generally had a blast amid the spectacular dessert scenery.


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If you start with the picture with the kids walking into the the building to check in, it’s in order, so you can get a sense of what we did…

Then we got back to Portland and Dan, Juliet & Joseph came to visit.  That was wonderful.  I miss the kids getting to know the whole huge family I adore.  And we took a day trip to Cannon Beach, which was the only time I took pictures.

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In general, I was woefully neglectful with the pics.  I didn’t get any of the kids with Cory!  But he and Tina are coming to visit in January on their way to Thailand, so we will make sure to get some then…

So, back to Portland, for Pickles (the baseball team), science experiments, kiddie pool cool offs, grilling, mini golfing, arm wrestling and just spending as much time with family as possible.

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It was a great visit.  And now, onto the next great adventure: 5th grade!

A June of Slideshows

•June 22, 2017 • Leave a Comment

I feel like I spend more time apologizing for my lousy updating than anything!  But if we don’t do a rush of pics, there will be nothing this month.  So I figure I’ll update the past month with a series of three topical slideshows, with notes.

Here goes slide show #1.  It’s of the end of school.  It includes the orchestra concert (they’re all in black and white!), the school Mission Project presentation (I think a doctoral dissertation is less stressful), awards ceremony and last day of school at the park with friends…

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Next up we have Daddy time.  June is Daddy month, which starts with his birthday and moves on to Father’s Day.  So you’ll see our trip up the coast in a rented convertible, presents (and Jacob trying on Daddy’s new leather jacket), playing ping pong, the car show, lunch out… and finally, this wasn’t on either day, but was a Daddy celebration, you can see the kids on a golf cart on the back lot of Universal when we visited Chuck’s new office.  Amazing and impressive and loads of fun.

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And the last slideshow is of the summer fun.  It’s a bit insane, and I don’t even have pictures of the berry picking and jamming day!  But you can get a snippet with a fencing tourney on the last day, baseball trophy day, Girl Scout outings (to the movies for Independence Badges, and to work at a food pantry for the homeless) Knott’s Berry Farm’s Ghost Town adventure, Harry Potter at Universal Studios, the USA Sumo Tournament, a Dodger game, Adventure Playground (that’s the rafting adventure)…

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Can you believe we’re less than two weeks into summer vacation???


School is almost out…

•May 22, 2017 • 1 Comment

And we’re packing in ALL the activities we can – so that we can get to summer and do all the activities all the time?  I don’t know what the rush seems to be, but we are jam packed full morning to night every single day.  So, without further ado:

First, I promised the video of the kids doing Hamilton.  Here it is:

Then, we have had a flurry of school activities and work, including finishing up the epic Mission projects, and a school open house/science fair night.


Jacob and his group did a project on bridges and suspension and weight bearing.  They had to construct a problem for the parents with questions and a trial and error period, leading us through what worked and why.  It was great.


Molly and her group did mountain erosion.  They were both brilliant.


Jacob got his retainer.  He made me take a picture with it in on his first night so he could see it.  I did, but reminded him that mirrors also work…


Mother’s Day was a gorgeous picnic at the polo match.  This is the relaxing shot.


This is the calmly beating each other’s heads in picture.


And this is back to lovey-dovey.


Here is Molly on her first camping trip.


It was with most of her Girl Scout troop.  Sadly, we got rained out from the second night.


But we got a good first full day in of setting up tents, playing by the river, telling ghost stories and roasting assorted goodies over the camp fire.

We went to the Ice Cream Museum with a bunch of friends.  The kids had an amazing, sugar fueled blast.

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Yes, that’s a pool filled with sprinkles.  And black ice cream.  And a room of bananas.  And mint growing in cacao nibs.  And a whole room of giant gummy bears.  And one of melting Popsicle.  And it ended with ice cream and pink pancake sandwiches.  It was nuts.

Finally, one more slide show of the Natural History Museum’s Bug Fair this weekend.  Where they got caterpillars, watched a butterfly hatch (that’s the shots of them looking up in wonder), held silkworms and tarantulas and had butterflies land on them, and just had a fascinating time.

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And I think we’re caught up again!  This weekend is Memorial Day weekend, and we have a few things planned (like going to Topanga Days to see Das Kummerspek – a Bowie cover band we all love), but mostly need to chill and get ready for the last few weeks of school!

Baseball, Horses, Hamilton & Getty

•April 30, 2017 • 1 Comment

That title is about as descriptive as I can make it, and if I added tennis, fencing & instruments, it would pretty tell you what we’ve been up to every waking minute.  But I only have pics of the 4 things in the title, so here we go!


Let’s start chronologically.  Which means Jacob’s first game as a starting pitcher.  Well!  He did great, but I lost five years of my life.  That was the most tense game I’ve ever been to.


He also got in a great hit, and then at yesterday’s game, he got a double that was two (game winning) RBIs.  So!  Baseball is off to a great start.


He also just hangs with his bros in the dugout…

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On to the talent show, and our little Hamilton & Madison.  They did Cabinet Battle #1 (I have no idea why they picked it!) with two friends.  They were amazing!  Video coming soon (as soon as we figure out how to get it off the video camera, which we never use anymore and have forgotten how…)


I missed yesterday’s baseball game because Molly and I went horseback riding with Girl Scouts.  Here’s Mol, with her horse, Fiona.


The girls also learned to muck stalls, saddle and groom.


And today we spent a spectacular day at the Getty Villa.  They were doing a Roman Holiday program, so we got to make perfume, have our fortunes told in entrails and see a show.  Plus just enjoy the beauty.  The kids were ADORABLE, and loving.  I put two almost identical shots in this slideshow because I couldn’t stand how cute they were and I couldn’t choose…

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Molly, as you can tell, has been bit by the theatrical bug, and she pretended to be Gregory Peck with the truth telling face, and then Cleopatra (she couldn’t find a snake, so she’s getting attacked by the closest thing she could find: a dragon).

Chuck will upload the Hamilton performance, and I’ll put it here, ASAP.  Next weekend, I take Molly camping with Girl Scouts and Chuck and Jacob have their boys time, which I’ve heard they’ve already planned and includes a movie we don’t want to see, burgers (Molly & I both don’t like), video games (ditto) and sushi & mini-golf (which we actually enjoy)…  So everyone should have fun, though I can’t promise pictures!