Grandma Rose’s Visit

•September 23, 2015 • Leave a Comment

Well, that was perfect timing!  Grandma Rose’s visit happened to coincide with getting new instruments, first soccer game and bridging to Girl Scouts.  I wish I could say we planned that, but it just happened.  What we all could have done without was the extreme heat, but on the other hand, it gave us excuses for multiple ice cream outings, so at the end of the day, who’s complaining?  (Ok, me, but still…)

Grandma Rose came in Thursday and we met her at the airport afterschool, then zipped home to dinner, Get Smart and lots of hugs.  Then Friday the kids had school, but came home with their new instruments:

Grandma Rose_0165Then Jacob ran off and Molly posed, playing.

Grandma Rose_0168

I know I’m biased, but I think they both have real talent (after one lesson, could I sound more like a Mom?) and they played with the instruments all weekend.

Saturday morning we had breakfast, and everyone played games

Grandma Rose_0103

(James Bond Monopoly) And word puzzles…

Grandma Rose_0098And here we tried to get them to look at the camera:

Grandma Rose_0100Until it was time for Jacob’s first soccer game.  His team is he Warriors, and the uniforms are awesome.

Grandma Rose_0110Yes, those are biking gloves.  Yes, it was almost 100 degrees and he’s wearing gloves, an undershirt and the socks pulled up like thigh highs.  Yes, he almost got heat stroke and realized that those weren’t the best choices, and sometimes Mommy might have a point.

Grandma Rose_0120Molly isn’t so much the soccer fan.

Grandma Rose_0119She’s more a lay in the grass and snack or read fan.

Grandma Rose_0135Ice cream!  Had trouble getting them to look at the camera at the same time.  Too busy eating…

Grandma Rose_0134But got a cute one of Molly and her Daddy.

Grandma Rose_0146

And one hot boy very intent on his ice cream.

Grandma Rose_0153Then we went to dinner at Miceli’s, which everyone enjoys, always.  Sunday was Girl Scout bridging from Brownies to Juniors.

Grandma Rose_0030Waiting…

Grandma Rose_0036Doing a poem about crossing…

Grandma Rose_0060And literally crossing the bridge!

Grandma Rose_0027Jacob was just there for the pizza.  :)

Monday the kids had to go to school, but when they got home we went for more ice cream (had to get Grandma Rose her coffee ice cream- the place we went Sunday didn’t have it!) and souvenir shopping.  Then dinner, a movie and bed and it was already time for Grandma to leave early the next morning.  Another wonderful, packed, and too short visit…

And today (Yom Kippur) we had the day off, so we went to the El Capitan to see Aladdin as a treat for a very brave little girl who had her first Orthodontist appointment today.  Relief: nothing to do but monitor it for the time being.  So Molly and I are making dinner while Jacob and Chuck are at soccer practice…  and another busy weekend coming up, one packed with sleepovers, so we have kids in a high state of anticipation!

August in Pictures

•August 29, 2015 • Leave a Comment

Third grade!  Orchestra starting, wonderful new teachers, trying to cram a whole summer of fun in LA into three short weeks, and oh so happy Daddy is home to stay…  So much has happened since we got home from our whirlwind summer of travel that I haven’t had a chance to update anything, so here goes with another month’s worth of pictures in one dump.  :)iphone aug15_0101We couldn’t wait to get to the beach once we got home!

iphone aug15_0102And we took the kids to the Minion movie for their half birthday “Yes Day”, which was actually a huge sacrifice on my part, and I really can’t stand those yellow creatures.  This display was in the lobby.

iphone aug15_0056I love Molly’s expression – she looks like she was yelling at Snoopy.  Actually, she was turning from me because she didn’t want her picture taken.

iphone aug15_0057It was the summer of Shakespeare.  We saw Romeo and Juliet. (which both kids loved the first half, and Jacob just didn’t watch the second half- he went to roll down the hill, but Molly was in tears and yelled, “This is so sad.  It’s a horrible, horrible play!”  But she loved it.) Then Molly and I saw Much Ado About Nothing.

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And the kids and I went to see Harry Potter Hamlet, which they both adored.  We were actually going to go again today, but it was 95 degrees, and it turns out our love of Shakespeare does in fact have a limit.  That limit is sitting mid day in the broiling shadeless park.  But this is Molly’s shining face as the show was about to start:

iphone aug15_0061It was a pretty great show.

iphone aug15_0064And we hiked up to a natural fed lake in the mountains for an ice cold dip on a super hot day.

iphone aug15_0024

We also went to the Hollywood Bowl for a rehearsal, and got to hear the Bugs Bunny show, which was a treat.  While we were there we got tickets to the closing night, to take the kids to their first evening at the bowl.  I can’t wait!  (Partly because the B-52s and Psychedelic Furs are playing, along with the LA Phil and fireworks!) We spent a day wandering Venice and I just liked this image of them in a tee pee on Abbot Kinney.

iphone aug15_0049And as part of the Shakespeare kick, we watched the movie of Much Ado, and it put us grownups in the mood for an Italian villa, so we took a trip the next day to the Getty.  This one is a slide show, so click through.  Molly was obsessed with picking all the grapes.

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And then it’s time for back to school!

First day:

photoClose up on the teeth:

photo(1)And a single of Mol:


And one of Jacob:

photo(2)Finally… they’re in school and orchestra is starting!  So they had to pick instruments.  Jacob decided on violin, and Molly wants the clarinet.  I was hesitant – I have reed issues.  So we took her to a clarinet store to try it out, and she’s in love.



IMG_2901We can’t say no to that face, so those are the instruments for the year.  Plus soccer and fencing for Jacob, tennis and Girl Scouts for Molly, and after school classes (we’ll see what they get into!) and we have a very full fall.  Not to mention highly anticipated visits from Grandma Rose, Aunt Debbie, an apple picking adventure all planned and a certain show debuting in November…  what wonderful things we have to look forward to, all in the upcoming months!

Trip #3: Visiting Daddy on Set in Montreal

•July 26, 2015 • Leave a Comment

This was one exciting trip for us all.  It was amazing to see how the show that all came out of Chuck’s head has taken over Montreal.  Literally-it was so cool because there were signs everywhere to basecamp, set, and closing off the roads for the production.  It was cool to meet the unbelievably nice cast and crew who were uniformly kind and wonderful to the kids (ok, not entirely uniformly, because while everyone went out of their way to be nice to the kids and talk to and engage them, none were as amazingly friendly and kind and engaging as Cary Elwes, who is a fencing hero to Jacob and took tons of his own time to really play with and listen to him and I will never forget how happy that made Jacob).  And amazing for the kids (and me!) to see Daddy at work.

AOMSet2aThis was our first visit to set, as they were shooting an Iraq war flashback.  It was so cool.  Ask the kids about the explosives… they’ll happily tell you stories.  Scarily, Molly will also tell you how much she enjoyed meeting all the “army men.”  She has no idea why that gives her parent’s pause.


Then we visited the “Davenport mansion” (that will make sense when you see the show, in November, on Crackle…) which was a stunning estate outside the city.  Stunning!

IMG_0079Jacob was rather entranced by the huge cameras.  This one was part of the “behind the scenes” documentary stuff that was getting shot.  The guy shooting that footage was so kind, letting Jacob have free reign with the camera.

IMG_0085Molly was SO happy to be with her daddy again.

IMG_0086There’s a lot of downtime on a set, so Mol read.

IMG_0089And Jacob showed Cary pictures of himself fencing on my phone.

IMG_0091And then engaged him in a match.  Made his summer.

IMG_0101Did I mention, nicest man ever?

photoSomeone lost a tooth.  After a day playing video games at the exhibit at the Science Center.  That was a day that made him VERY happy.

Mont Royal ParcWe did manage to squeeze in a little off-set time in with Daddy, too.  This is at Mont Royal Parc.

Montreal VistaAnd this is at the vista at the top of the park.

Montreal15_0129And this is boat sailing, second favorite activity in town for Jacob (first being the video games).

Montreal15_0125We also did a fair bit of exploring while Chuck was writing.  Like a boat tour…

Montreal15_0190In the Vieux Port


Which both kids enjoyed.


And a visit to the Biodome, where there were sloths

Montreal15_0003And puffins

Montreal15_0053and crocs (real ones, too!)


and hatching chicks

Montreal15_0051And a boat environment.

Montreal15_0050It was amazing.  We also went to the botanical gardens.

Montreal15_0075Where Molly posed.

Montreal15_0064And Jacob took in the art.

Montreal15_0095It was gorgeous.

Aside from all the stories (Molly refusing shyly when Dennis offered to buy her the mansion, both kids refusing to be in an episode, even when Dennis offered to pay them; “I don’t much care for money” Mol said!, Jacob telling everyone out of the side of his mouth that Molly might be the older twin, but he was both bigger AND stronger, and all their palling around with all the cast and crew), that’s pretty much an overview of the trip.  Though, purely for posterity, I have to mention that this was the trip (to be specific, dinner at Le Serpent) that pushed us into the world of fine dining.  We ate at a couple of very nice restaurants, and basically no place had a kids menu (yay! must be an American thing!) and at Le Serpent Molly ordered Duck with hazelnuts and spelt and Jacob had Lobster Risotto with yellow beets and marscarpone and literally licked the plate clean, and Chuck and I realized we can now eat anywhere we want, with the kids.  It doesn’t sound huge, but it felt it.

Jacob took this picture of Molly and Chuck.  She basically didn’t leave his side, and cried all the way to the airport.  Luckily, he’ll be home for good in a few short days.


Trip #2: Portland

•July 26, 2015 • Leave a Comment

Two weeks in Portland is usually a treat of perfect summer weather and a break from the hot LA summer… but while this year was a treat of course, the weather was hot, hot, hot!  For the first 10 days it hovered between 95-100 every single day.  So we did a lot of inside cool things, or rocket blasting in the early morning, or water gun fights in the late afternoon when the back yard was shaded.  Hence, fewer pictures.  But loads of fun and family (a sleepover at Nathan and Lisa’s and getting to check out Cory’s new pad were total highlights) made the heat immaterial.


This is Grandpa Jim’s own rocket from when he was 12.  In perfect condition.  You mix baking soda and vinegar and it powers the rocket to a good 50 foot take off in the air.  Jacob will never forget these morning lift offs with Grandpa.  I don’t think he will either.

Portland15_0120This is one way to cool off!

Portland15_0146Direct hit!

Portland15_0172Molly aims.


And Jacob scores a butt shot.

Portland15_0176I missed this trip to the bird sanctuary, but sent Jacob to document it with my camera.

Portland15_0093He got a lot of cute shots (and a lot more blurry ones…)

Portland15_0022Our to dinner with Uncle Cory, who was so nice to spend so much time ninja wrestling with two tireless monkeys.

Portland15_0186Not sure what was going on here…  :)  Jacob was dressed up for dinner with his new tie, and he slicked down his own hair.  He and Grandpa went shopping while the girls did our own shopping, and they got shorts and a belt, and then Jacob insisted on picking our “tuxedo pants” and a tie, which he proceeded to wear all week in the broiling heat.  He is into being dapper these days.

Portland15_0183That’s all the pictures I took!  It was hot, and I was working.  Jim has a few more, and I’ll post those eventually…Hopefully they include a couple of pictures of Nathan and Lisa who were so wonderful with the kids, and I just never took my camera out!

Trip # 1: Home

•June 28, 2015 • Leave a Comment

This is the summer of travel for us.  It’s a bit happenstance, and a bit on purpose, as with Chuck in Montreal, we needed distractions (and I needed childcare help so I can work) and also it happened to be the Memorial service for Grandma and Grandpa Shagoury.  So Trip #1 was home for me, and boy was it ever.  From the minute we landed in Boston to the airport shops filled with Boston Strong t-shirts (first sniffle of the trip, but definitely not the last) and the first Boston accent (the cop at our gate, saying into his walkie talkie “What you gotta do, is go to Johnny Rockets” which sounded like “jawnie raaackets”) I felt like I was home again.

Nostalgia Stop #1 was Horseneck Beach and a too quick visit with Dad, Mary Ellen and Grandpa Hubbard.  Here’s pictures from that visit, which was amazing.  Dad played games with Jacob endlessly (to his delight) and played with Mol (to hers).  After a visit to the beach to see Grandpa, who is doing incredibly well and was wonderful to see, and a bonus visit with Amy and Pauline (I’ve missed you all!) we got lobster from the fisherman, got strawberries and eggs from the farm, that had loads of animals for us to visit, and then fell asleep watching the Red Sox. (For all these slide shows, you can right click on any image, then select “view image” to see it larger…)

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Then we drove up to Merrymeeting for the Memorial Service.  I’m not sure I have enough distance from it yet to write anything about it, except that it was profoundly touching.  It was so incredible to see all my cousins and aunts and uncles, meet their kids, and realize how very much I miss being with them, and having my kids grow up surrounded by family.  It was hard yet deeply moving to go to Wolfeboro to sort through Grandma and Grandpa’s things.  And the memorial itself I think was a fitting tribute to the brilliant, loving and amazing people that created such a large and loving family.  We had a celebratory dinner Friday night, the memorial service Saturday that we all worked to pull together (though the bulk of the planning was all Paul, Rannah and Ailene) and a Sunday Father’s Day brunch, where all the kids became fast friends and we all just enjoyed and reveled in family.  I’ll end this with Jacob’s words to me, just this morning: “I think when I have a memorial service, I want to do it before I’m dead, so I can be there to hear all the nice things people say about me.  That was really neat.”  (He also added, “And I can find out who is mad at me!” – I don’t know where that came from, as certainly no one was mad at Grandma and Grandpa!)

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But it wasn’t all crazy emotions!  We also (thank you Mum and Jim!) rented a gorgeous cabin on Merrymeeting to stay at and play at inbetween all the events.  We stayed there with Nathan and Lisa and had lots of time for swimming, playing, s’more roasting, canoeing, lobster roll eating and just hanging out, playing games, drinking coffee and talking.

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And lastly, for the kids to have for posterity… here are come pictures of the Memorial gathering that Uncle Skip (it was so wonderful to see him and Ann, looking so wonderful, and Skip reminding us all so very much of Grandpa) took.

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Two weekends in June

•June 7, 2015 • Leave a Comment

Well, last weekend of May, first weekend of June…

First of all!  Schools out for summer, and now we have a couple of third graders.  Insane!IMG_6757These are reading and math awards for the end of the year.  Smart kids!


And a Dodgers game with Daddy, since the last one we went to, he was out of town.  Everyone was decked in their Dodger finest.

Now we’re up to Daddy birthday weekend…

outings_0100Part of what Chuck wanted for his birthday was to get gifts for the kids, so we got Jacob a bike and Molly some new clothes (they’re so them with what they want!).  So the boys took their bikes to CicLAvia


While we played and parks and went shopping.


Then we met up for a sushi lunch.

outings_0124Then the real birthday celebration was this weekend, when we rented a BMW 6 series convertible and did a PCH drive to Malibu.

outings_0079We played at the bluffs


Lunched at the Pier,


and went to Paradise Cove for dinner.

photo(1)We ended the night watching the sunset at point Dume.  No pictures, but pretty spectacular!


Then today we got all dressed up for tea at the Langham.  It was amazing – the tea, and the setting AND the fact that it was a magic tea with strolling magicians.  The kids were enthralled.


Both by the spread

outings_0015And the magic.  And we were sure to take plenty of pictures with Daddy for people who miss each other to look at this summer.

outings_0037And how much do these boys look alike?

outings_0046We found an empty ballroom on the way out, and after the kids were done playing, there was a very sweet Daddy/Daughter dance.

outings_0052What a sweet way to end the weekend…


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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