So many fun things to watch!

Well, it may not feel like fall. But at least we know it is because our shows are coming back!
I have to say, I thought The Office premiere last week was very so-so. That show works better in 1/2 hour format (and I guess I'm more of a 30 Rock fan). But I still enjoy a completely awkward and maddening Michael Scott.
So what am I looking forward to this week??

Wed 10/1 - Pushing Daisies premiere. I tried to watch this last season and never really got hooked. But I LOVE the costume and set design and Casey's dad does all the Special FX for it, so I'll be tuning in!
Wed 10/1 - Project Runway. This week's episode looks SO good. Tears and tears a streaming down. Oh Kenley. Love a little Bravo reality drama.
NOTE: Bravo is airing almost the entire season of PR today, leading up to tonight's episode. So if you've missed any or want to check it out, set your DVR to Bravo!
Wed 10/1 - Friday Night Lights. HOOORAY! Casey and I love this show. But there's a catch here. The show only airs on Directv, channel 101 and it's UNCUT (no commercials). I guess it's a promotion with Directv. Good thing we're on the Directv boat. If you don't have Directv, I think you have to wait till January for the NBC airing. Crazy!
Thurs 10/2 - NO Office this week. And 30 Rock doesn't start till 10/30. Ho-hum. Guess I'll check out the Vice Presidential debate.
Fri 10/3 - I thought I'd be watching Friday Night Lights. Maybe we'll save the Wed episode for this night.
Sat 10/4, Sun 10/5 - LDS General Conference. Three cheers for the BYU channel and Tivo. We can watch it when our kids take a nap.

and in the near future....
Sun 11/23 - 24! Jack is back! And this season looks a little different. The preview shows all sorts interesting shots. A detour from the constant CTU set and Ventura county footage. Can't wait!

Anyone know when LOST starts....?


Okay, so...
ever since (finally) joining facebook last week, I have NOT been able to get on the website EVER AGAIN. It's completely annoying. Our internet is working fine. Other websites are fine. But for six days straight I can't get on facebook. The website tries to load and load and finally times out.
In the mean time my email inbox is filling up with invites from so-and-so that I knew 10 years ago and messages on my wall. I thank you for your generosity. But I wish I could cancel my account. Oh wait, I can't get on the site to do that.
Has anyone else had problems?
I don't even really care about Facebook (like I need one more online thing. I can barely keep up with the blogging) but it is driving me craaaaaazy.
Casey's tried logging in on his laptop also and can't get on.
6 days and running. Grrrrrrr

both families

We got to hang out with both families this weekend. What a treat!
On Saturday, we saw the Willards. Owen sat on the trike for the first time:
On Sunday, we played on the bed:
Then we went to the Suman side for birthday dinner. This time we were celebrating uncle Rich and my brother-in-law Bryan's birthdays.

Lucy enjoys a good umbrella:
Ava and the orange cone came to join her:
Jeremy is the best at making Owen laugh. It's real cute:
The birthday boy was getting call after call after call:
Camille and Jeremy enjoying our mexican dinner:
Owen got some Papa time:
And Gram time too:
Lucy's been very into birthdays lately and clearly exclaimed, "Happy Birthday Rich!"
We all gathered for a group shot:And there's no way to capture this ambiance...But when 9pm rolled around, Eric dimmed the lights, stuck colored balloons in all he recessed lights, my mom turned on Snoop and old DeeLite music, and the two little girls danced and danced for about an hour:
It's so cute to see them interacting more with each other as they grow older.
What a nice finish to the evening!
We're so lucky to have both families near by.


little friends

A normal afternoon around the house:

And a typical evening, right before bed:


Outside our front door this morning we saw this:
There was a mirror image rainbow above it too. So beautiful. It was Lucy's first sighting and she thought it was great. Hooray for the cooler weather!


A day in Nursery

Lucy's starting to understand the past tense and often we talk about what we just did and how much fun it was.
Today after church I asked "what did you do in your class?"
Her response, "hmmm. We sang songs on the blanket! Played with toys. And pooped!"
At least she has priorities.


The Brilliance of The Karate Kid, by the Mr.

Dana and I just watched The Karate Kid, a brilliant movie for so many reasons:
• Mr. Miyagi, one of the greatest mythical characters of all time (how good is this guy at karate, if he can wipe out 5 Kobra Kai black belts in 30 seconds? Is there anything higher than black belt?)
• Johnny, the ultimate 80’s movie bad guy. And his awesome pompador haircut.
• Daniel’s mother, with that great New Jersey accent and that beater station wagon. She makes a mysterious exit from the plot about halfway through the film though, only to make a token appearance at the All Valley Karate Tournament.
• An evil Vietnam War vet-turned Sensei, who is basically the anti-Miyagi. I think he may have been a take on the Rambo character, only he really is a bad guy who turns teenagers into bad guys.
• “Fear does not exist in this dojo, does it?” “NO, SENSEI!!”
• “You’re the best, around! And nothing’s ever gonna let you down!”
• “Johnny, get him a body bag!” (on that note, I challenge any of our readers to visit this site for longer than 30 seconds and tell me you don’t start to get creeped out: http://gethimabodybag.ytmnd.com/)
• The entire tournament, culminating with that Crane Technique kick to Johnny’s face. The director pulled out all the stops in that final scene, including Mr. Miyagi’s magical healing powers and the evil sensei’s schemes. The payoff at the end was great.

The film does have its funny oddities as well:

• The entire cast of high school-aged actors are clearly all in their 20’s. I think Hollywood has gotten better about this in the past 20 years.
• The fact that Mr. Miyagi is apparently a horrible employee. This isn’t originally my idea, I listened to a Sports Guy podcast on ESPN where they mentioned it. The pool is in horrible shape, and Miyagi’s in his workshop shaping banzai trees. And then you go to Miyagi’s house, and the place is spotless. Tarnishes the Miyagi mystique a bit, if you ask me. But the pool shot was funny.
• A screwy timeline. Miyagi doesn’t begin teaching karate to Daniel until the beginning of November, because it’s the school’s Halloween party where Miyagi defends Daniel from a 5-on-1 attack. The All Valley Karate Tournament takes place on December 19, so Daniel basically learns a high level of karate in 6 weeks. We think he did most of his training during the Thanksgiving break, because that’s where he came to Miyagi’s house for several days in a row and spiffed the place up in order to learn karate. By my estimation, Daniel spends at least 4 of those weeks learning to defense and balance. Then for two weeks he finalizes the basics, learns to punch, and picks up the Crane Technique (which I saw a kid try in a fight in grade school once, but to no avail. “If do right, no can defend,” says Miyagi).

In closing, I’d like to mention something that my friend Brett and I talked about a lot in college: you can literally watch this movie from the perspective that it’s about Johnny and not about Daniel. Johnny is starting his senior year, has all sorts of plans to make it go well, has lots of friends, etc. Then some kid moves in from Jersey, starts hitting on his girlfriend, and acts like he knows karate. Watch the movie again sometime, and tell me that Daniel isn’t provoking a lot of those confrontations with the Kobra Kai, especially at the Halloween party. But by the end of the film, it’s Johnny that wants to present the All Valley trophy to Daniel in a gesture of true sportsmanship. Johnny learns a valuable lesson. Daniel learns that you can cram a few karate lessons in over the course of six weeks and beat a bunch of guys that have probably been training for over a decade. But hey, I still love Karate Kid. It’s a top 5 sports movie.


Flashback Friday - Casey with hair

It's been a while since I did a flashback. And since Collette (my inspiration) has been doing hers for a year straight, I realized...I am a slacker. So we're back. And with a great one. Casey and his good friend Brett:
I don't have all the details of where they are, how old they are, etc. I'll have to ask Casey later. I'm going to guess it's a Willard family fishing outing to Lee's Ferry?
But most importantly...How young does Brett look?? And how great is Casey's hair??! It's a little ridiculous looking, but he's totally cute to me. And he still owns that shirt. It's the camping/fishing/outdoors shirt.
Bottom line: Honey you look great either way, with or without hair (or a scowl).


"Arrrrr deee-deedee"

The theme of Library Storytime was....Pirates! Lucy was thrilled. Three little pirates, done swabbing the deck:
(Instead of saying "Arrr me matey", Lucy's taken to saying
"Arrr deee-deedee". We couldn't snap a picture without her saying it)

And she continued to wear her hat all day long and into the night.
Here she is at 9pm:


lunch today

Pumpkin Pie with too much cool whip (and a bite already missing).
Hooray for the Fall Season!


Hanging on the porch

These two have been friends for a while.
Though the hair has grown longer, some things never change.

June 2007:
Last Saturday, Sept 2008:
Cute cute little girls.


Two versions

Living in the suburbs.
Living in the City.
I finally finished two takes on the Sugar City Village Frock. I love it when a project comes together! More info here.


High-Stakes Musical Chairs

A brief commentary on our financial crisis, by the Mr.

Dana and I got married at the height of the housing boom in 2004. Immediately, we explored the possibility of buying a home before it was too late. After looking at the numbers closely, and in spite our dual incomes, we decided it would be foolish to buy something we might have a hard time paying for. On top of that, we were worried that Southern California was experiencing a bubble, in which case we’d be buying a property that would turn upside-down on us. Left and right, houses and condos continued to sell as if there was a 21st century land rush taking place.
Condos were going for a half a million, starter homes for ¾ of a million. “For Sale” signs were being taken down faster than it took to put them up. You literally couldn’t save money fast enough to keep up with appreciation. For a while, we felt like the train had left town without us.

Four years later, we’re glad we didn’t fall for the housing craze that was taking place in SoCal. But in the greatest irony I can fathom, we now find ourselves footing the bill for irresponsible lenders and borrowers, as the Fed picks and chooses which firms get tax funds for a bailout. We’re in the middle of a nation-wide Enron-esque crisis, only this time there isn’t a Ken Lay or Jeff Skilling to point the finger to. Congress is pointing to the White House. The White House is pointing to predatory lenders. There are too many guilty parties for the media to latch onto the villains. The answer, as usual, is to lay the burden on the backs of the American tax payer. The music has stopped, and we’re the ones without a chair. And all I can do at this point is kick and scream and stand off to the side while the rest of the players play it out.

To finish on a higher note, those of us that have come out relatively unscathed might see some unique opportunities in the coming years. Our economy isn’t going to collapse, and for at least a few years we should see marked-down prices on homes and stocks. Live within your means, save some money on the side, and keep an eye out for a deal near you. Because we all know that this is never the reality:


Favorite Summer Pics, Ver 2

I looked at the clock last night expecting it to say 9pm. It was 7:30. And it was dark outside. Our summer days have come to a close (though the heat still lingers throughout the day). We sure had some fun and busy times; full of sunshine, family, friends, and dancing of course.
Here are my favorite summer pics:

(surfing pic courtesy of Laura? or Camille?)


Nature's Miracle Food

I came across this billboard the other night and thankfully had my camera with me:I kinda thought that Snickers really satisfied? In my mind I'm picturing this exchange:
Kid is just getting home from school.
Mom: "Hey Mike, what would you like for an after-school snack?"
Kid: "mmmmm. How bout...eggs?!"
Kid gobbles down as many eggs as he can to satisfy those afternoon pains.

Eggs may be the forgotten child of the food chain, but I can think of so many better campaigns than this one (which kinda makes me want to gag).

Now here's a billboard I agree with:


the kid week

This week was another busy one and full of kids. A couple friends have been having health problems so we've been babysitting on and off. I won't lie, it's been a circus here most days. Owen's been sleeping in the bathtub, kids naps have been all over the place, and the house is a disaster but we're SO happy we can help out. Being a mom is hard. And being a sick mom is much much harder. I'm pretty sure my day will come too. So we want to help where we can! And besides, who can resist such cuteness?
Owen and Paige hanging out. She's two months older than him:
Here's what else we've been up to....
On Tuesday, we got out of the house and went to the LA Zoo with friends.
Last time we stood here, I was pregnant with Owen! Times have changed. Lucy looks a little sad here but only because she got sunblock in her eye. Sorry little one.
I love this shot. Four little girls, looking at who knows what, but excited to be looking:The highlight of our outing - the Giraffes. They are by far Lucy's favorite:
We started a Parent Education class again through the city college. Last time we did it, I was also pregnant with Owen and had a rough time going to it. But this time around, I'm hoping for a better experience! I'm already enjoying this fabulous room we meet in. It's so nice and clean and recently remodeled (much better than the funky 70s church we went to before):
Lucy was in heaven with this dollhouse. She must have played with it for the first 45 minutes of class:
More friends came over to play:
Owen spent most of our days roaming the floor (and reminding me that I need to sweep/vacuum every day):Lucy and Ally. Cute little buddies:Lucy and Hannah, eating goldfish, and laughing their cares away:
We went to Karla's on Friday to help with her kids and I couldn't resist taking pictures of Paige. She was too adorable on their front steps (just itching to climb down):
Lucy and Owen spent the time running around the yard and picking up sticks. How great is Owen's hat?
Friday night I got a fabulous break! Casey took Lucy to the Daddy/Daughter Campout. So Owen and I chilled at home and had a very peaceful evening. It was so cute to see them getting ready. Lucy exclaimed over and over, "camping?! camping?!" while jumping up and down and climbing into Casey's truck. Here they are, all ready to go:
She had an okay time there. She didn't quite get what was going on and wouldn't go to bed till Casey did. But they still had fun. Lucy did a lot of coloring:
And....found some "Occagons! S-T-O-P spells, Stop!"
When they got home the next morning (and I was beginning to miss the little girl) Lucy came walking up the stairs with these in hand:
"I got you flowers Mom!" (she's started calling me and Casey Mom and Dad recently - rather than Mommy and Daddy - it's real cute and she sounds so grown up). Thanks for the pretty flowers Lucy (aka, Casey).
On Sunday, Owen wore his first pair of shoes to church, his PediPeds from Grandma Linda. I'm not one to put shoes on a child till they're old enough to warrant it. It's still a little early for Owen but I was scared these he'd already grown out of these. Phew. There's still room to grow! And he got to wear them with his funky boutique pants. I've been thinking about knee pads on pants for a while (ever since Lucy wore out all her pant legs while crawling). So these have inspired me to want to make my own. And besides, the pads are very boyish:

Cute little Owen:
And that's our week! Hope yours went okay as well!