Tuesday, December 13, 2005
This week we are taking Coolidge to get his photo taken with Santa at Macy's. I am excited to see how he responds this time around. They have a whole winter land that the kids get to interact with before they see Santa.
We also have a celebration with the Harbus family this Friday. Every year Ellen and Fred take us to dinner and celebrate the holiday season. We look forward to it and Coolidge just likes any excuse to see Carolyn and play with her horses.
The Abel-Bey gang is coming over for an early Christmas celebration this Saturday. We are pretending it is Christmas with dinner and gifts because we will soon be leaving for Seattle. Coolidge can't wait for Adrian to come over and open gifts.
We celebrated Edie's 3 rd birthday this last Sunday. It was a lot of fun to have all the kids together to play and sing songs. Happy Birthday Edie, We love you. Edie will be joining Coolidge to see Santa. It will be Edie's first time to check out the Macy's winter land.
Last but by far not least, Happy Birthday to my Best Friend Aj. Her birthday is tomorrow December 14th. We love you and miss you like crazy. Can't wait for you to come to NYC.
Sunday, November 27, 2005
Happy Thanksgiving to all. We had a wonderful time at Maureen and Allan's house. As usual they had a wonderful spread of food along with great people to chat with. It was a long weekend for me. It was great to spend time hanging with my family and getting some baking and cooking in. I made an apple pie and have to say it turned out amazing. I also got some Christmas shopping in and finally was able to buy some gifts. We are spending the holiday in Seattle this year. It is going to be great to spend Christmas and the New Year with my family. Coolidge is really starting to understand Christmas this year and can't wait to see Grandma's big tree.
We have a tree in our lobby that Coolidge can't pass without touching and talking about each of the ornaments. It will be a lot of fun to see him react to all the traditions we have been doing with him over the past Christmas holidays. He is already enjoying the baking. Here is a photo of him helping me peel the apples. My sister gave me a great device for Christmas last year that peels, cores and slices the apple all at once. It helps making apple pie or apple sauce a breeze.
We also had our friends over for a breakfast playdate. It was great to get the gang together. Since Fall began we have all been very busy and not been able to get all the kids together to play and interact. So I hosted a breakfast and it was a blast. It is something I hope we can do once a month.
Tuesday, November 15, 2005
I also wanted to share with the girls who read my blog what I learned on Oprah. If you watched it you know how liberated I feel. She dedicated a whole show to help woman with their bras and jeans. I guess that 8 out of 10 woman wear the wrong bra size and bra for their body. I am guilty and do it because I hate the size that I am. After watching the show I am no longer going to be a bra victim and have any more back fat. She said that by wearing the wrong size bra, you make the back pull up causing the bra to make rolls on your back. I hate that. If you are not sure or haven't been fitted for a bra in the last 5 years, you should get fitted. She also tackled the jean problem. The one tip I learned the most was that you should fit your jeans to your butt and thighs, everything else can be tailored. She also said if you are under 5'4 you should not wear boot cut because it makes your legs look short. And that pointy shoes with your jeans make you legs look longer. There is even more but I would go on too long. One piece of advice I thought for all woman is that you should try on at least 10 to 20 pairs of jeans to find the right pair for you. I love it.
Ben and I went to see the movie Jarhead last Friday. Both of us seem to really like it. It was nice to see a war film through the eyes of one soldier. I knew a guy in the same war and I remember his letters and his stories from his experience and it was quite similar. It was quite entertaining and I give it 3 stars.
Wednesday, November 09, 2005
I have a new discovery I want to share with you. I watched Oprah and they were discussing Global warming. I don't' know if you caught this episode but it was quite interesting. Some of the tips they had were things I didn't know much about. The one that is impressed me the most was the lightbulbs they recommend using. They said, " According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), if every American household replaced 5 of their current light bulbs with 5 compact fluorescent light bulbs, it would save as much energy as if we took 8 million cars of the roads." Not to say that didn't impress me but what really got me was they said you will save 65% on your electricity bill at the least. I don't know about you but I could use the savings. I guess the light bulbs are about $10 each but in the long run saves you more money. If you know anything about them I would love to hear it. I personally have never used them but am looking into it.
We saw the movie "Lords of Dogtown." We enjoyed it and recommended it to some of our netflix friends. It is great to see how Skateboarding became so popular and who was responsible. I felt it was well done and entertaining. I give it 3 stars.
Sunday, November 06, 2005
Monday, October 31, 2005
Happy Halloween to all. This was Coolidge's third Halloween. He seems to enjoy it more and more every year. He is very interested in spiders and all sorts of critters so I found it to be very fitting that he was a spider for Halloween. Thank you to Henry( his cousin) for letting him borrow it. We went to a Halloween festival where he painted pumpkins, masks, made cookies and had his face painted.
We were invited to our friends house for trick or treating today. Coolidge met all of his friends to run up and down the hallways and knock on doors for some yummy candy. He did the same thing last year. It was great to see how different the kids were this year. Watching Coolidge enjoy all the fun of Halloween has made me feel like a kid all over again. It was my first year experiencing city trick or treating. We went into different shops where Coolidge went up to employees and said trick or treat. Each store had a bowl of candy that they had set aside to give kids candy. Very different from Seattle. Ben went to a Halloween party yesterday. He had the perfect costume of a Buddhist monk. I didn't get a photo but when my friends give me theirs I will post it.
We tried to watch some scary movies this weekend but failed. We watched the movie "White Noise." It was an interesting idea but the story was put together poorly. They made it very difficult to get close to the characters. It isn't something I recommend seeing.
Wednesday, October 26, 2005
Wednesday, October 19, 2005
Last Sunday we went up to Bear Mountain to celebrate Oktoberfest. We drove up the palisades with no music just the sound of the car and the view of the leaves turning brown. It has to be one of the best drives during the fall season. We met up with our friends Tawyna, Emil and their kids Nicholas and Catalina. Emil's parents also joined us for some beer and German food. Ben said it was the best Oktoberfest beer that he has ever had. It was hosted by Becks. I wasn't too impressed with the German food but I am not a huge fan of that type of cuisine. The surroundings were amazing. I have been wanting to go up their for a very long time. If it wasn't so windy we would have stayed even longer. Coolidge had a great time. His favorite part was the merry go round.
I don't foresee myself going back for another Oktoberfest but we will go back for other reasons. It is a beautiful state park and only about 45 minutes to 1 hour out of the city. It looks like it is a lot of fun in the summer. I was hoping to find a place to pick pumpkins along the way but we had no such luck. I guess we will have to buy one in the city like every year.
Thursday, October 13, 2005
We are praying it will let up soon because we are planning to head out to Jersey for Oktoberfest this Saturday. We are planning to go to the festival with a couple of friends and their kids. There's nothing like hanging out with good friends, drinking beer and good food. I will let you know how it goes.
Last weekend we had our apartment painted. It is amazing how wonderful it looks. It was quite a hectic day because it was raining, very humid and hot. We spent the day shopping, visiting Gay and Adrian and then a birthday party for Jonah, Coolidge's buddy. When we got home I expected it to smell something fierce but it actually didn't smell much at all. Now we are slowly putting the place back together and getting quite creative with our photos and art.
We attempted to see three movies this weekend. The first was Amityville horror (the remake). It was God awful and had to turn it off after about 20 minutes. We then put in Cursed. This is when I felt cursed of the bad movies. It was so awful I had to laugh and turn it off. We then watched some Dave Chappell. If you haven't seen any of his shows you should check them out. He is one of the funniest comedians out there right now. On Saturday we put in a movie recommended by Christie. It was called Saints and Soldiers. I can't really say this one was bad or good. It dragged in the beginning and I was too tired to make myself get involved so I just shut it off . I have no movies to recommend this time around.
I have a song that I am have been devouring and want to share it with you all. It is from a singer I never thought I would like because she comes from American Idol. Kelly Klarkson has a song called "Since you've been gone". If you haven't heard the song you must check it out and if you have and love it, let me hear a yahoo!
Recipe: I have a new chicken recipe to share. It is very easy and delicious.
Take 4 chicken breast and marinate them in 3 tbls olive oil, 1 tbls Dijon mustard, chopped garlic and a few sprigs of thyme. Put it all in a plastic bag and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or a whole day. The longer you marinate it the better. Then you grill it for about 6 minutes on each side depending on how thick the breast is. I use my grill pan so you get that barbecue look and carmelization. Let me know what you think.
Tuesday, October 04, 2005
We have some new exciting things happening with us. Coolidge has two new teeth coming in on the bottom. He kept complaining when he was eating. I thought it was because he bit the inside of his mouth. While I was brushing his teeth I saw what was giving him all the pain. He is still a tough one to figure out. As you can see in the picture he has one shoe on. He loves to kick them off and forget trying to get it back on.
We are also having our place painted this weekend. It has been a lot of trouble but we are finally having it done. I am so excited to have nice clean walls once again. There is a black stain behind our television that has been haunting me for over a year.
Our digital camera has expired. Little by little it has failed. We no longer can take video and use flash. We are on the look out for a new one. Does anybody have any advice for us? Do you have a camera that you love and recommend? Do you know of one we should absolutely stay away from? We can use any help at all.
We saw couple of movies this weekend. The first was, Rabbit Proof Fence. It is a very sad movie about how the aborigines were treated from 1930 to 1970 by the British. It is definitely something to see. It is a true story based on a book written by the granddaughter of the main character in the movie. Her strength should be an inspiration to all. The second movie was Coach Carter. It was a big surprise to both Ben and me. We both had low expectations but enjoyed it thoroughly. It too was based on a true story about a basketball coach who takes a team that is failing in basketball and in the classroom to victory in many ways. It is refreshing to see people stand strong for what they believe in no matter what people say or do. Both movies deserve 3 stars and are recommended by me.
Tuesday, September 27, 2005
Fall is here and the weather has finally chilled down. Ben and Coolidge have been exploring Central park near our home area. Here is a photo of Coolidge climbing on the rocks near a small waterfall. He loves to explore and find sticks. He always finds a way to surprise me with something new. For the first time on Saturday he said, "I love you." To some of you that might not be that big of a deal, but to me it was more powerful than any emotion I have ever felt.
Great new find:
We had a nice relaxing weekend. Ben and I went out to dinner Friday night. We checked out a nice little Italian restaurant that we have tried to get into a number of times. For you New Yorkers it is called Celeste. It is very authentic and not too expensive. I would rate it 3 1/2 stars and will definitely check it out again.
We saw 2 movies during our chill out weekend. We saw 2 fluff movies, Guess who and The wedding date. Both were average at best. If I had to choose one to recommend, I would say see Guess who. It is about a black woman who is in love with a white man and brings him home to meet her family. The reason I don't like it is because they took every scenario that an interracial couple goes through and put it into one story. I liked it because I can relate to some of the issues. Some very funny parts but not completed realistic.
I made a stew that was delicious and want to share it with you. If you don't have a crock pot you probably don't want to write this one down.
1. Flour/salt and pepper stew beef. Brown in oil. 2. Place meat, potato chunks, celery slices, carrot slices or baby carrots, onions and garlic in the crock pot. Add 1/2 cup of beef broth and tomato juice. I use the juice of stewed tomatoes and some of the tomatoes. Also add 1 teaspoon oregano. You can add whatever vegetables you want. I cook on high for 5 hours.
I don't know if anyone has used the recipes I put on here but if you have please let me know what you think. I love to share recipes that I find and are in love with. I love to get ideas so don't be shy.
Wednesday, September 21, 2005
this weekend we enjoyed some of the great things the city has to offer. We went to a street fair and the strolled up central park to our home. For the first time I am researching just what the city has to offer for families. Especially things that are cheap or free. If any of you New Yorkers know of any ideas that I don't I would love to hear it. My aunt Shannon got married to Richard this weekend. My sister and mom said it was a beautiful wedding. I wish I could have been there with them. I guess that is a price I pay to live so far away. We wish her all the best.
We saw the movie Crash over the weekend. It was basically about Racial issues that many different people have in there life and some how they were all related to one another. It wasn't a great movie but worth seeing. There were times when I thought it might get pretty cheesy and without a doubt they added a twist that helped keep me watching. I guess I would give it 3 stars.
There are some new shows that I am checking out and just absolutely love. Lost being the number one. It is a nail biter and keeps you wondering every episode. If you like sci fi thrillers you will love it as much as I do. If you are just starting to watch it I suggest renting last season before. I am also watching Breaking Bonaduci. It is a reality show about Danny Bonaduci's life. It is one of the best reality shows I have seen. You might think it is way to intense but I think it is something we all can relate to in one way or another.
I am going to end it with my favorite recipe that I just found this week.
Spinach with Corn and Tomatoes
1. in a large saucepan, heat 2 teaspoons olive oil over medium-high heat. Add 1 package (10 ounces) frozen corn kernels, thawed; cook until warmed through, 1 to 2 minutes. 2 Add 4 cups baby spinach (about 5 ounces), finely sliced; cook until wilted, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved; cook until softened, 1 to 2 minutes. 3 Season with 1 teaspoon coarse salt and 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper. Serve warm, cold, or at room temperature.
We loved it. Let me know what you think.
Tuesday, September 13, 2005
We are experiencing a very long summer. I remember wanting summer to be here because I was tired of the cold weather and now I am dying for it to end. I am over shorts, tank tops and sweating from head to toe. Coolidge on the other hand is loving any weather that allows him to climb all over the jungle gym. As you can see in the photo I put here.
We had a good weekend. We spent most of the day at the Abel-Bey's on Sunday. I was inspired to get my video camera out because I found a video I made in 1998. I was very cool to see how we have all changed and how we are still very much the same. So I video taped Coolidge and Adrian riding their bikes. I can't say I have ever seen Coolidge want to ride his bike that much. The girls are all doing well. Dianne just recently was given permanent teaching certification in NY state and city. Anyone who understands the work that is involved would appreciate how difficult that was for her. We are very proud. Adrian is back in school starting the fourth grade this year. He seems to like his new teacher. He is an amazing kid and has a vocabulary that will knock you off your socks.
Right now we are having our primary elections. I am curious of who will be going up against Bloomberg. I can't say I was a huge fan of Bloomberg especially because he put taxes back on clothes. We'll see.
Films of the week:
We saw a couple of movies this last week. Maestro which was a documentary on two underground clubs in NYC in the 80's. It was pretty horrible. We turned it off pretty early because the cinematography was god awful. Can't say I recommend it. We also saw Hidalgo. It was not great but much better. I have to say it dragged in many places but had some very intense scenes that kept you watching. For those who have kids 5 and older. I would definitely recommend it. It had a very Disney feel to it.
Myth or Fact
I have also been reading the book "You the owners manual. I refer to it whenever I am wondering about my body and just how it works. It is very easy read and informative. I read an interesting fact that I would like to share. I had heard that we only use a small portion of our brain. Well according to this book that is a myth. It says, "Actually you use all of you brain; you just use different parts at different times. If we didn't need all of our brains, evolution would have made sure to develop smaller ones. But of the 100 billion neurons floating around your neurological galaxy, be assured you're using every one of them."
I also have a new link. I have added my brother-in-law, Henry's blog. You should really check it out. He always has some very informative information. It is nice to check him out because he always gives me the republican's point of view.
Sunday, September 04, 2005
So much has happened in one weekend. I found out that my best friend had a new beautiful baby girl her Name is Lily Emiko Cochran she was born on 9/3/05 at 9:44pm and weighs 6lbs 7oz and 19.5 inches long. I am so excited for Aj, Sean and Maya. She came early, what a wonderful surprise.
We also celebrated my grandfathers 80th birthday. They had a nice party for him yesterday. Most of the family was able to attend. I hate to say I was unable to make it. I heard it was wonderful. I am so proud of my grandfather and am looking forward to giving him a birthday hug when I see him.
I also found out that my cousin Cami was proposed to this weekend by her boyfriend, Jason in front of the Jefferson Memorial. I am very excited for them both. And if that wasn't enough I found out that my step brother Jason is engaged to his girlfriend Andy.
What a wonderful weekend. I am so happy to hear such wonderful news and wanted to share it with you all.
Tuesday, August 30, 2005
We went to Coney Island with Gay and Adrian. We swam in the nice calm water while watching the rides on the board walk. From what I hear the board walk is going to be turned into a mini mall so we wanted to check it out before it is all gone. There is nothing like a Nathan's hotdogs with sea water.
I also wanted to let you know that I added a new link >> It is Ben's site for his film Second Banana. I plan to add more links. You should feel free to check out his sight. >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
We also had the girls over for an inside picnic. Gay, Diane and Adrian came over and we had a great time. I made some delicious wraps with a very light salad but full of taste. For desert I made peanut butter jelly bars. I got all of it from the barefoot Contessa. If it is something you like you should definitely copy this recipe and give it a try. We devoured everything. Check out this site to get the Panzanella salad and bars. If you make it be sure to let me know what you think. Sorry no photos, we were having to much fun to remember the camera.
Coolidge and I are becoming regulars at the Natural History Museum. We went again and he loved every minute of it. I am looking into getting a membership for our family. I plan to start taking him every Monday because they offer a class for kids that I feel he would enjoy. It is also great for a rainy day activity.
Looking forward to this Labor day weekend and will post again.