California trip, continued.

We spent much of the week hanging out with family. One day we went to Hakone Gardens, a Japanese garden in Saratoga (where my sister got married) to walk around the gardens and feed the fish. Then we went out for Mexican food in Los Altos.

Lucy and my parents

Lila at lunch

Lila had lots of fun hanging out with Uncle Simon (the baby whisperer) during the week, and playing with Jack, my parents’ dog.

Lucy was at my parents’ house almost every day, so she and Lila had lots of time to hang out.

While we were in California, Lila went on a swing for the first time – she loved it!

Later in the week we went to Happy Hollow (a children’s zoo) with my parents, my sister Becky, her husband Dave, Lucy and Simon.

Lucy and Simon at Happy Hollow

Lucy trying to brush one of the goats

One afternoon, Eric, Lila and I went for a hike. Eric wore Lila in the babycarrier on his back, and she fell asleep for most of it.

Toward the end of the week, Eric went over to Becky and Dave’s to help Dave with some landscaping in the backyard in preparation for Lucy’s birthday party that weekend. I was able to meet up with my old friends, Gina and Dawn, and meet Dawn’s new baby, Holly. Holly was so wee! I can’t believe Lila was ever that small!

Holly

Lila, dressed to go out for lunch.

Even more photos of our trip in the next post!

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Visiting California!

In June, Lila took her first airplane flight to California (with Eric and I) to visit our family out there. We had such a great time staying with my parents and spending lots of time with my siblings. Lila loved everybody, and especially her cousin, Lucy. They were so sweet together!

Lila and Lucy with Uncle Simon

Lila and Lucy with Uncle Simon

We arrived late on a Friday night, so our first real day in town was a Saturday. Of course the first thing on the agenda was a trip to our favorite pizza place, Cicero’s! (Lila is wearing a Cicero’s onesie in the above photos). On Sunday, my friend Fin and her husband, Mike, hosted a BBQ at their new house. It was so nice to see some of my oldest friends, and it was great to see our kids together!

Erika and Lila

Tristin’s daughter, Riley

Fin’s son, Evan

Eating mum mums at Fin’s

My oldest friends: Kathy, Fin, Tristin, Mary, Erika and me

Lila was not a fan of the kiddie pool 🙂

In the sunshine at Fin’s

On Monday, Eric, Lila and I drove over to Santa Cruz. I wanted to show them my favorite town! We went downtown and walked around, drove around the campus at UC Santa Cruz so Eric could see where I worked at Shakespeare Santa Cruz, had burgers at a new burger place, drove by the lighthouse, and went to Natural Bridges Beach. Lila saw the Pacific Ocean for the first time!

Lila at lunch in Santa Cruz

At the beach

Eric and Lila at Natural Bridges

With Lila at the beach

Lila loves the beach!

More of our trip photos to be continued next post!

Playing catch up

Between our trip to California and going back to work full time (yep, that’s right – I’m taking over for someone at “Rock of Ages” Broadway), its been a while since I posted! So get ready for a succession of catch-up entries. First up, some photos from the beginning of June:

This week…

It rained a lot.

Lila has gotten really good at sitting. She loves sitting and playing with her toys.

I love our mornings. Lila plays, I catch up on blogs and email.

Lila’s crib gymnastics have been getting rather spectacular as of late. I found her down the other end of the crib the other morning, covered in toys.

We had a fun Memorial Day weekend. We went to a party at the Beer Garden in Astoria on Saturday, a BBQ in Long Island City on Sunday, and then grilled in the driveway with Nana and Pops (Eric’s parents) on Monday. Good times.

Eric seeded the lawns and our rose bush bloomed!

Lila is now also eating the following new foods: carrots, zucchini, peaches, apples, bananas. Yum!

Lila and Eric are still enjoying their “Top Gear” marathons.

Mostly we’re just having a good time hanging out, going for walks & running errands.

Happy times over here!

Six months old!

Lila, I can’t believe you have been with us for half a year now! The time has flown by SO fast!

This month was huge in terms of development. You moved into your own room and sleep in your own big girl crib – no more rock ‘n’ play! We did a few nights of sleep training, which you caught on to really quickly. You go to sleep in your bed no problem now. I am still feeding you once or twice over night, but that’s okay – I kind of like our time together nursing. Your naps are kind of hit or miss, but we can usually get you to sleep in the stroller or the car if you aren’t feeling the napping in the crib thing.

You started eating solid foods this month, too. So far you have had: whole grain rice cereal, oatmeal, prunes, avocado, sweet potatoes, pears and Baby Mum-Mums. Your favorites are oatmeal, sweet potatoes and pears. You’re not so into the avocado, but mama hopes you change your mind about that. You also learned how to drink through a straw!

You are sitting unsupported for longer and longer periods of time. You can roll on to your tummy and back again. You love your playmat, your jumperoo, the bath and “Top Gear”. You also think mama is a pretty hilarious songstress.

This month you went to your first Broadway League softball game, you visited the Lion Brand Yarn Studio, you celebrated your cousin PR’s birthday, hung out at the Astoria beer garden with Mama and went to see her old neighborhood, you went to an Arbor Day Festival, hung out lots with Nana, learned that you could belly laugh, blow raspberries, and discovered that pulling the kitty’s tail is pretty fun.

We are looking forward to taking you on your first plane ride this next month to visit all your family in California!

We love you, Lila Girl!

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New food round-up!

So far Lila has tried whole grain rice cereal, oatmeal, prunes, avocado, sweet potatoes and Baby Mum-Mums. She LOVES oatmeal. She is not so crazy about avocado – we’ll try that one again in a couple of weeks! In the meantime I have prepared a couple of other purees for her – pears, peas and zucchini. She’ll be trying them all over the next couple of weeks. I also want her to try bananas. Today Lila also drank water through a straw all by herself!

New York-iversary

Saturday marked my ten year anniversary of living in New York City. I arrived here on April 28, 2002 after a four day Amtrak ride from California. I moved into an apartment in Astoria, Queens with my dear friend Christopher (a friend from college). That apartment was passed through friends for about ten years, so many different roommates came and went. This apartment was also the place where I stayed when I visited NYC for the first time in 1998.

I lived in Astoria for two years before moving into Manhattan, and I treasure the time I spent there. So many good times, so many dreams becoming a reality, so much ambition and enthusiasm.

When I thought about what I wanted to do to celebrate 10 years in New York, I knew I wanted to go back to my old neighborhood and remember just how special those first years were here. It was the perfect way to commemorate the last decade. I just felt so LUCKY all day, to have experienced all that I have since arriving in 2002 and to still be working here in this amazing city.

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Ten Years Ago

Ten years ago I moved to New York City. I had no job and about $2000 to my name, but I had a place to live, good friends, and big dreams. That first summer I worked on my first Broadway show, spent every night under the stars (and with the stars) doing Shakespeare in Central Park, and I started my own theater company with four dear friends. I haven’t looked back since. I’m so glad I came.

Taking the train to NYC from California

Michele on the train to NYC

Arriving at Penn Station - April 28, 2002.

First day as a New Yorker.

The living room of my first NYC apartment (in Astoria), decorated for my birthday.

My beloved Christopher and Steven. Christopher was my roommate for the first two years I lived in NYC.

Christopher and Steven, Summer of 2002.

Two more dear friends from those early NYC days - Michael and Ryan, on a cruise around the Hudson.

With Steven at Coney Island.

With my gay husband, Christopher, at an opening night of Shakespeare in the Park.

One of my first two jobs in the city, working as a PA on "Twelfth Night" at Shakespeare in the Park.

Oh New York, I love you so.

First solid food!

Yesterday Lila had her first “solid” food (“solid” is a very loose term, as it was mostly breast milk mixed with a tiny bit of rice cereal). We used Earth’s Best Whole Grain Rice Cereal. Our pediatrician recommends starting with rice cereal and then after a couple of days moving on to oatmeal, and then alternating until the box of rice cereal runs out. After that we can stick to just oatmeal. This month of rice cereal and oatmeal is mainly just to “practice eating”. Next month we start with all the fun stuff – fruits and veggies! I love our pediatrician’s take on solid foods – she advocates babies eating a mix of purees and food in its natural form (i.e. a stalk of broccoli, etc.). She wants us to be creative and adventurous to promote the same qualities in Lila’s feelings for food. Our pediatrician is also big on feeding your child foods that you eat, especially ones that are native to your culture – if you eat curry, then feed your kid curry. Lila loved the cereal – I’m so excited to start adding other foods to her diet!