Easter, Passover, Grandparents and More!

•April 29, 2015 • Leave a Comment

Chuck is in Montreal shooting his TV show (!!), the kids are a month away from finishing second grade (!!), Jacob is getting glasses, and things in general are busy and crazy, which is to say usual…

I owe so many pictures, but have been swamped (again, usual) so here’s a whole bunch of pictures.  We’re getting glasses for Jacob this week, so I will at least try to get some pictures of that soon!  I tried to do these in order, and put a little caption with each… but they keep changing how slideshows work, so tell me if anything doesn’t make sense!

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Just a big old picture dump…

•March 27, 2015 • Leave a Comment

Between Chuck working around the clock and me trying to keep up with work and school and get a tiny bit ahead so I don’t have to work through all of Spring Break next week, it’s been an insane month.  So I’ve neglected updates of pictures of the kids.  As grandparents have let me know.  Mostly it’s because I’ve just been snapping low res low light stuff on my crappy phone, and forgetting to download it.  So while the kids watch Get Smart with Chick right now, that’s what I’m doing.  And between Jim and I, hopefully we’ll get some fun and good stuff next week, too.

photo(6)So first we have Art Show at school.  They did a clay section.

photo(7)Continuing the art theme, Molly did a painting badge for Girl Scouts.  This is the day they did abstract art.  Now Molly wants to be a famous abstract artist when she grows up.photo(8)Speaking of Girl Scouts, we went to a UCLA Gymnastics meet where the Girl Scouts got to parade.  Jacob and I ate hot dogs and watched.  Molly and her friend Mahalia paraded.

FullSizeRenderThis is cameraman Jacob filming a scene for his filmmaking class.

photo(9)While Mol takes Flower Arranging.


And another later scene fromt he new Zombie movie they’re making now…  Jacob is Zombie tie-dye in the back row.

Jenis_0006And Mol loves flower arranging and we took a friend for a birthday present.  Here’s Molly’s arrangement.  In her Canada cutie shirt that Chuck got her when he was in Montreal.  They are VERY excited about Daddy’s show shooting there.


Going to the opera.  We saw the LA Opera production of Barber of Seville.  All 3 hours.  It was amazing and the kids loved it.

marchmj_0093There was a preshow for kids…


Which Molly took part in.


And Jacob watched.


Then Jeff visited and we went to the Pier to win minions.  Daddy and Jeff each won one, which made for two happy kids.

photo(1)And we did a late celebration of my birthday spending the day at the pier in Malibu.


And finally, the school had a March-A-Thon as a fundraiser.  Here they are stretching with their Kinder teacher before running.  Well, Jacob is.


Molly was goofing with a friend.

marchmj_0044Jacob ran all 30 laps (well, ran/walked) which was 7 1/2 miles!

marchmj_0067Molly zipped along and then cute out at 13.  Still pretty good.  Then she helped me hand out snacks and cheer friends on.

marchmj_0052And just to end with pics I took yesterday for work of kids enjoying ice cream at the newest place in town (it’s amazing – the first LA outpost of a Jeni’s).  Thought it might be on interest to see how big they seem to look right this very minute.


Molly is giving the side eye to her friend Ava.  I think she had designs on her cone, too.

Jenis_0043And now we’re on Spring Break, which covers Passover and Easter, so I will definitely have the camera out!

Now We Are 8

•February 15, 2015 • Leave a Comment

Eight!  Holy cow.  I can’t believe it.  But I love it.  It seems (so far) to be the perfect balance of insightful little beings that say amazing things and snuggle monkeys who still adore their parents.  So we’re prediction a good year.  We sure kicked it off in style.


The weekend before their actual birthday, Molly had her celebration… a two night sleep sleepover with her friend August.  First was dress up, then the next morning the girls had me do their hair to match.


And we played all morning and after lunch went to make candy bars.


While the bars were setting, the girls tried on lipsticks.

turning8_0153And then picked up their bars.  They thought they did a spectacular job.  I’m just glad they were happy, as I don’t think gummy bears, Nutella, peppermint and cookie dough all together is a flavor the world is clamoring for, but they loved them.


Movie time at the El Capitan.  Got to meet Tinkerbell, too.turning8_0108

Then they built lego cars for a car convention when we got home.


After a sushi dinner out, we opened presents at home.


And watched Annie and slept in tents.


Then…  actual birthday day was the next Friday.  And any good birthday starts with a donut.




It happened to be the day we had a parent teacher conference – they are brilliant, in case you were wondering – which also means it was book fair day at school.  So after great conferences, they got to pick out a book, which they read all the way to the car.


After dinner (stuffed shells and cloud cake was their pick), it was present time.


Needless to say, that was a very happy part of the day.


Very happy.


And then we lost Molly to her books.


And Jacob to his Legos.


Moll models her new nightie and robe.photo(6)

And the next morning started Jacob’s sleepover extravaganza.  We picked up 3 friends and hit sushi.


And they all ate until they were so full they said they couldn’t ride in the car until they ran off some of the sushi…  Apparently, if you’re an 8 year old boy, the best way to work off lunch is tackling each other.


Next stop, Chuck E. Cheese.


Then home for Nerf wars.  Darth Vader showed up.


And the boys all attacked him with their new nerf clone shooters.


Then after hours of running and attacking, it was time for pizza and clone wars tv show.


The next morning they had Princess Leia buns and bacon and ate themselves silly until everyone went home and Jacob and Chuck went to play golf.  Meanwhile, Molly and I went to see Swan Lake.  After all that (awesome, but exhausting) boy energy, that was a delight for both of us.

photoAnd that was the birthday!

And now here are all the pictures we remembered to take from the two birthday weekends.  CLICK HERE to see the slideshow.

This long weekend is pretty busy, and I will update with pictures from Jacob doing a fencing demonstration and Harlem Globetrotters, too!  Speaking of which, we had a Girl Scout cookie booth early this morning, so Molly and I need to nap (or maybe read, but rest is the key!) before we head to the Globetrotters, so that’s my update for the afternoon!

Wow! It’s been a while. Here’s the Holidays in a nutshell.

•January 17, 2015 • Leave a Comment

Yikes!  Between Hanukkah, getting sick (me and Mol), Christmas, a trip to Portland, New Years, and getting back to school, we haven’t had a free minute to upload pictures.  On the downside, we haven’t even had much time to take that many.  But still, not that many with all that activity is a few, so settle in.  This one will get long…


So, right before the holidays, we went to this really cool flower arranging place where the kids made these amazing flower arrangements.  I have to include some pics because the bright colors matched the bright faces.

fleurish_0008They were both so deliberate with the flowers they chose and then the arrangements they made.  No surprise, Jacob loved the tools best.


Then, we had the annual cookie party.  Unfortunately, Molly got sick and I got very few pictures.  But Jacob helped out a lot, making a Krispy Treat tree…

fleurish_0047Next was the holiday concert at school.  Needless to say, they were adorable, gorgeous and brought tears to my eyes.  I also video taped it, and one of these days we’ll get that uploaded, too.christmas14_0189

Hanukkah was the first holiday this year, so here is a slideshow with a few pictures from the first and last nights. (Click on an image to launch the mini slide show.)

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After Hanukkah comes Christmas, with a Christmas Eve dinner at Miceli’s, , new Christmas pjs, anticipation and staring at the presents under the tree, letters to Santa and Christmas morning… you can see Molly and Jaocb with their favorite presents.  Molly adores the book El Deafo, and read it through over and over and over.  Jacob got Legos.  And more Legos. And he was a very happy boy. (Again, slide show, launch it by licking on any picture.)

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Before heading to Portland, we had one more family outing, to the Getty and out for lobster.


Getty boy.

holiday2014_0099Getty girl. (Posing.)

holiday2014_0077Getty monster (Daddy).

holiday2014_0102Getty duo. (Posing.)

holiday2014_0119And Molly’s first lobster.  Jacob was true to form, and stuck with hot dogs.

Then Portland!  You can see in this last slide show their second Christmas, adoring and adores uncles, aunt and grandparents, a sampling of the fun that was had by all (story time, hot dog contest and crazy dress up).

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And finally we got home and went back to school… One last thing.  That book Molly adores that she got for Christmas?  The author came to a local bookstore this week, and we got to go hear her talk and then Mol got her copy signed.  She was rapturous.  It was so delightful to see.

photo(1)That’s Molly with her hero, Cece Bell.

photo(2)And that’s her getting her book signed (it says “WOW!  Molly, you’re amazing.  xo, Cece”).  She adores it.

And now we have a long weekend with a party and football and then a day off!  All before we plunge into birthday planning…  :)

Happy New Year!

A Little Pre Christmas Action

•December 13, 2014 • Leave a Comment

We’ve been Christmas-ing and Vacationing since a week before Thanksgiving, so it’s been crazy.  I’ll do a quick overview to catch up.

The week of Thanksgiving we had off from school, so we kicked it off by going to the “tree” lighting in Beverly Hills.  Where else does Santa arrive by rappelling down the side of a fancy hotel before the ice skating, singing, fireworks show to countdown to light the Baccarat Crystal chandeliers that line Rodeo Drive?  Where you stand by Mel Gibson (shirt unbuttoned and gold chained) and Dawson?  Which was all very funny and a bit cheesy, but since it ended with snowfall and then the kids tossing up the “snow” in the air and playing for ages, it made for a memorable night.


Here you can see them throwing it in the air.


We also took advantage of the decked streets to take a few pictures.


And I took some end of year pictures of the kids with Daddy.


Both of ’em!


Then that week we had playdates, and Daddy day at the car show (kids were in heaven for this yearly excursion) and Thanksgiving (for which I have zero pictures, but it was a lovely day where we took and bike and hike and then had friends over for a low key dinner and cricket catching party, because we have a cricket farm in the back yard and the friend we had to diner has lizards… of course!).  Then early the next morning we headed for a weekend in La Jolla!  I’m going to insert a quick slide show filled with pictures of us on our rooftop breakfast and at the cove playing.  It was a gorgeous 80 degree weekend and it’s our favorite family getaway.

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Then!  We got home and got up to go to the opera.  I thought the kids would maybe last halfway through, with me bribing them with treats to make it to intermission.  But it turns out that they loved it (Florencia en el Amazonas), and we stayed for the whole thing AND went to the kids post show where we played with props, learned about butterflies in the Amazon, had snacks and even met the stars of the opera.  Molly was second in line to meet the star of the opera and she was so shy and delighted to have her sign her program.


But she was too shy to pose for a picture with her.  Not Jacob, who charmed the diva completely.


Then the week as school flew by, and we were ready to take another long weekend – for work!  I was invited to La Costa to judge a gingerbread contest, so we decided to make a weekend of it and use the spa as a jumping off spot to surprise the kids with a trip to Legoland.  They had a wonderful time feeling very important at the gingerbread judging, ceremony, and then just a blast taking over the place and playing tennis, swimming in as many pools as they could (I think we made it to three pools, one splash pad and two jacuzzis in their quest to try them all…) and making s’mores to watch the truly terrible and fun Peter Pan from our hotel beds.  I think they didn’t want to leave, but once we got to Legoland, all else was forgotten.

Too many pics to do anything but another slideshow:

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We got home last Saturday night quite late and had a birthday party Sunday morning then went tree getting Sunday night.  Because we had a ton to do this week to get ready for our cookie party, which is tomorrow.  Oh, we also snuck Disney on Ice in this week.  And today we took a baking break to see the LA Ballet’s Nutcracker with Mol’s Girl Scout troop.  That was fantastic, and worth the fact that we had to stay up a bit late to get our gingerbread house decorated AND watch the beginning of The Sound of Music, which we’d been planning on all week.  Whew!  But I had to catch up before I take pics of the kids and all their friends tomorrow.  And their awesome gingerbread house that they decorated themselves – not to mention the rice krispy tree they made…  So, last pics are with the Nutcracker today:




Happy Holidays!  We will try and post sooner, but our next update may be a Hanukkah/Christmas post…

(WordPress is playing with formatting, so I can’t publish pics bigger, but you can always click on them to see them larger.  And I’m trying out the embedded slideshow…)

Halloween and Bel Air

•November 9, 2014 • Leave a Comment

Yikes!  I see this being a pattern…  as the kids get older, I post less and less.  Less time.  Less picture taking as we are able to be more active together.

But when the pictures come, they’re worth the wait!  And I’ve got Halloween pictures and a fun outing pics, and some from a birthday party they went to that were too adorable to ignore.  So here we go:


That’s the Ninja Twins on Halloween.  We went to a friends house, where the kids met two friends – Jacob had to trick or treat with his friend Asher, as they were both Ninja’s, and so Molly needed a buddy, and they had a great time.


Molly Ninja.


Jacob Ninja.

Earlier in the day, they had their school parade.  See if you can find the ninja and the princess (she had a costume change for school…).


I have to go back a weekend earlier, and share a couple of pictures from a birthday party of one of their close friends, because it was so darn cute.  They had old fashioned games, like the egg race


And tug of war


Neither  of which Mol wanted to take part in.  But when it came to whacking things (for sugar), she was all in:


So was Jacob.


And one last pic, before I get to yesterday’s pictures.  Jacob has been building up a storm lately.  Molly had her first sleepover at someone elses house on Friday night.  So Jacob got to be a spoiled only child, and we took him out for sushi and let him pick a movie to watch.  Star Wars, Episode 2, of course.  So then he built and photographed this amazing command bridge for the clones.

bel air_0000

And then Molly came home and knocked it down.

Anyway, after that all happened, we went to this really cool cooking class in the kitchen with the executive chef at the Bel Air Hotel.  It was amazing.  Like really amazing.   Here’s the kids, making pasta and apple pie. First, toques and aprons.


Then, cooking. Make the pasta dough:


Then knead it.


Then watch it go through the press.


Then you have to clean up (this shot is so you can see the amazing kitchen):


And we also strolled the grounds, and saw the swans.

bel air_0025

Molly was far more into letting us take pictures of her.

bel air_0032

Jacob let us take one.

bel air_0036

Then he went into hiding.

bel air_0062But Molly is always up for a picture with her Daddy:

bel air_0052

And sometimes even her Mommy.

bel air_0044That was a day none of us will forget anytime soon!

Programming note: you can click on any of the images to see them bigger!

More Halloween Parties Than You Can Imagine

•October 5, 2014 • Leave a Comment

NoAnd it’s only the first weekend of October.  I can’t believe I started off a September post about the heat.  We’re on our third heat wave where the temps hit 100, with another one predicted for next weekend.  This is getting ridiculous, and couldn’t feel less like fall.  Luckily, everything else is conspiring to get us as “in the mood for Halloween and Harvest” as possible with an un-godly number of Halloween and pumpkin outings to kick off the month. (You can click on any of these images to see them bigger.)

No, seriously.  We went to Mickey’s concert, and started the day with ice cream sodas at the soda fountain.  Then we went to a pumpkin patch, rose a train, panned for gold, hit the hay maze, drove tractors, ate cotton candy, rose paddle boats and rented a surrey, and got our first pumpkin of the season.  Then we went to a Pottery Barn party at a hotel, and consumed more sugar that I thought possible and decorated super cute pumpkins.  The the BEST of all parties was a Disney one complete with a fashion show and a warehouse full of all the new Disney ones, where the kids got to pick out any costumes they wanted.  You can see what they picked.  You can also see Molly taking the catwalk, shyly and proudly and most unlike herself (but oh so cute!).  And finally, a couple of pics of Jacob’s new soccer team.  He’s kicking ass this year!  Well, he’s kicking the ball, which is a huge jump forward from last year and has us all thrilled.  Oh!  And they managed to squeeze in their first not at our house sleepover – which went very well (and let us go see “Gone Girl” and grab sushi, so the experience was enjoyed by all).

Last note is that we also had their Parent Teacher conference and it will surprise no one to learn that the kids are top of their class, well behaved and beloved by all.  :)  Proud parent moment, had to include that little bit.  Chess club and cooking class has also started, so that explains where all our time in going – yet somehow we’re managing to squeeze in watching this heart stopping Dodger series.  Game three tomorrow, so we’ll probably let the kids stay up a little late, even if it’s a school night!


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