Saturday, October 31, 2009

This is How We Look Everyday

Me, an angel; London, the embodiment of freedom; McAllister, defender of the free world; Daisy, green happiness.Happy Halloween.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Welcome Back Whiting

I took a class at FIT (Fashion Institue of Technology) this fall, Fashion Styling 101. Very, very interesting class. Inspiring on some levels. I was such a geek and in my attempt to make up for many, many skipped classes at BYU 18 years ago, really took this class seriously. For our final we had to style outfits based on a theme. Instead of doing glam-rock or Boho-chic as my inspiration, I did 'The White Shirt' (which incidentally was the subject of a real editorial in a fashion mag or something just recently, so I wasn't way off). I then pushed it one step further and styled for... what are those things called?... oh yeah, children.

My instructor said, [by styling for children's fashion] "You just beat out all your competition." I was really proud of the results. My concept was for a fake kids magazine (since 'Cookie' has folded), taking one white shirt for girls, one for boys, and styling it in a playful and then dress-up way. The message was wallet-friendly versatility.

Results:I have no idea if this class will ever prove useful. It was just fun to push myself in ways I haven't. With all that I've been doing personally (Jason says this is my year to 'dapple'), I've felt more balanced and happy and yes, busy. But somehow in ways I can't explain it feels worth it. My favorite quote is from George Eliot, "It's never too late to be who you might have been."

I hope I am setting an example for my kids as they see me taking classes or working part-time or dreaming up new ideas. Because we're always talking about it, I hope that they can see it is never too late or you are never too set in your ways to try something new, do something scary or unfamiliar, or to add something new to who you are. Never too late.

Monday, October 12, 2009

You Know You've Been In the City Too Long...

...When on the road to apple picking, London (and her friend Julia) squeal,
"oooh! Look! Look!!!!!......... LEAVES!!!!"
I'm not exaggerating. That's exactly what they said. Regular, un-potted, side-of-the-road, New Jersey trees. They even took tons of pictures as proof, but they didn't turn out because I was driving.

I let them bring home 40 pounds of apples to make up for it.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Whiting Social High Season, a.k.a. SEPTEMBER

Having all three kids' birthdays in September shows us:
A)We like going broke in the Fall
B)We only have sex in December
or my vote,
C) We're crazy.

We had all 3 birthday parties in the apartment, which proved to be just fine. The kids had a blast.
Tass' Birthday was a Lego Party, so he got a Lego cake (you can't see it, but there is candy legos surrounding it). He played lots of great games with his pals, while Jason attempts to keep the noise down to a dull roar proved futile:The next (yes NEXT!) day was Daisy's. She had a Princess party and mom made her a crown cake with Jolly Ranchers as the jewels and ring pops as the diamonds on top for embellishment:

London had a Beach party, with the girls decorating flip-flops and eating fruit-kabobs. Her cake was made with Nilla Wafers sand and cool umbrellas:
I love my kids' parties. I know that the window is very small to celebrate the event of a birthday; by the time they hit their teens the magic will be gone. So I go all out and make it through the commotion. I never, never regret the 2am cake frosting sessions or the invitation designing. To quote a movie, I'm just so glad I had my kids! :)

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

No More Deer In Headlights...

This school year felt much different. We weren't new anymore, we were in, registered, and expected. London started 4th grade, McAllister started 2nd, both with new teachers (who they will be keeping for next year as well; this school has teachers with a class in a 2-year loop- guess that's why it's name is The Independence School, even though it just goes by P.S.234).at our kitchen elevator. I think this is going to be a tradition!
our school yard. I think it is the prettiest school in the city.

Kids were happy, excited and calm to be starting. And Daisy was going to the same preschool, Barclay Street School, and excited too:happy Daisy on her first day a week later

Monday, September 7, 2009

How Did You Spend Your Summer Vacation?

It's October. So here's the short version in pictures:
Vacationed in Texas with the cousins. My kids got 2 whole weeks of Pool Time. (Moving to NY is going to keep my kids' skin young and un-sun-damaged, I guess).
toured the MoMa with London. She really loved it and got used to the nudity. Great teaching moment about how beautiful our bodies are, and that your little heart will feel funny if it's not appropriate, or grateful if it is.Enjoyed a visit from Grandma. She did GREAT cruising around the streets with us.
Said goodbye to dear friends Craig and Mary (our 'First Friends in The City') as they moved to greener (or was it sunnier?) pastures in San Diego
Saw Anne Hathaway in Twelfth Night in Central Park's 'Shakespeare In The Park' Series with Jason's cousin-sister Lori Whiting Mortensen. Loved how people thought we ourselves were cousins b/c we resembled each other.speaking of Lori, her daughters Lucy and Sarah were welcome visitors while they lived in NYC for 2 months. Daisy and Lucy were kindred spirits and played for hours
Working at J.Crew's exclusive jewelry gallery on Prince Street in SoHo, we participated in Vogue Magazine's FASHION'S NIGHT OUT. A huge success surrounding our jewelry: a "Meet The Designer Night". What a great idea! ;)

So that's it. Great summer, on to fall at a breakneck speed!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

London's Lemonade Stand

This is deserving of its own post. All summer long London had been asking and asking if she could do a lemonade stand. I'd put her off and put her off until the last week of summer vacation. We gathered the supplies at the store, pulled out the kids' play table to the sidwalk, and she sold lemonade at 50cents a cup. Her business plan included selling her hand-crocheted bracelts, and selling blow-pops. She hired McAllister to do security ("Make sure no one steals our stuff, Tass!") and hired Daisy to do publicity ("You yell, Lemonade! Lemonade!" - which she did with almost too much vigor).
btw, the little white box on the table she made out of paper, and says 'TIPS please pay gratuity'
this cop stopped and said she had to buy lemonade, she has 2 young children of her own. Yes, that is a line behind her!It was a huge success. New Yorkers are the finest, kindest people in the world. People were so impressed (and truly wanted the lemonade), that after 45 minutes both huge pitchers were empty and she was $25 richer (never mind the overhead costs). She paid Tass his $1.50 (even though he was so shy he hid under the table and ate lollipops most of the time), and Daisy her 50 cents (even though her unabashed yelling was worth more than that), and put the rest in her wallet.

She's saving for an iTouch.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Camps, or 'How to Survive Summer in NYC'

Camps are huge here: Day camps, Sleep-Away camps, camps for a week, camps 6 weeks long. We could only afford one week. :) London and Tass went to ice skating and sports camps, respectively. They were held at Chelsea Piers. During that week Daisy and I went to Times Square (blech, but she loved it) M&M's world, Central Park's marionette show (which was too freaky for words, think 'Poltergeist'- we left early), Crepes in the Lower East Side, and Target in New Jersey-- ROAD TRIP!Lon finished her week with an ice show to Wicked's 'Popular'. It was cute.
All of this doesn't replace the pool. Of all the things I miss in the suburbs, the one I can't get over is Rolling Hills Swim Club.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Taking New York by Storm- or at least, a happy drizzle

We have been having a blast since school let out, playdates and meet-ups, and of course, our own Four-Person Posse, doing touristy things. The weather has been in the high 70s for the most part, which is such a bonus when the pool isn't an option. It's been a good summer so far, much better than the boredom I was dreading.

I don't love zoos, but my kids had a blast with their Skidmore pals:
AMERICAN NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM (The part the tourists don't know about!)
Wonderful, huge fountains (a.k.a. 'city kids' pools)! Met up with my great friends and stayed the whole afternoon:
Daisy, Lucy, Parker:
TOP OF THE ROCK (30 Rockefeller Center)
Fun, Fast Elevator. Beautiful, peaceful view. I think the city looks just as pretty on the ground as from the 'air'. But my kids were over it in 10 minutes, especially since I had no quarters for the view finders:
CRUMBS BAKERY at Bryant Park
(Magnolia or Billly's has the best cupcakes, New Yorkers are currently obsessed with any good or crazy cupcake, so there are bakeries everywhere):
MERRY GO ROUND at Bryant Park:

NYC PUBLIC LIBRARY (you know, the ones with the lions out front)
Had the best children's selection, here's McAllister reading one of his books:

(I make my kids thank Jackie O every time I walk through the Grand Terminal - she saved it from being torn down):
This is a little-known fairground at the bottom of CP that is held inside the walls of Wollman Rink. We got all-you-can-ride passes and knocked ourselves out for 3 1/2 hours. Daisy was fearless, she went on every single ride:
More to come, I promise...

Monday, July 6, 2009

Before and After...gulp

First Day of School, September 2008:
McAllister just turned 6, London was turning 8; Daisy was turning 3
What a difference a (school) year makes; June 2009:
They look rougher around the edges than they are- they are still their very tender sweet selves.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Showing Off New York City...

...hard to do if it rains the entire time, if you have an aversion to grime, second-hand smoke, or the f-bomb, or if you have to sleep on an air mattress with street noises in the background. But my parents were troopers and enjoyed themselves anyway:

Friday, June 19, 2009

It's No Question, We are Mets Fans

New Stadiums this year, for both the Yankees and Mets. McAllister, as part of the Downtown Little League, got to go on the new Mets' field at CitiField during the National Anthem. My parents were in town, so we all went and had a blast. I thought McAllister's attention span would fade, but he was in it to the end and was bummed when we finally left after the 7th inning. We did the kids' play area before hand, enjoyed a great view (even if they were the nosebleed section), and enjoyed the fantastic weather (one of the few dry evenings in June this year). 

McAllister at the kids' field, showing off his skills.
Daisy in our seats (with McAllister's team on the field below):
Tass and PaPa:

Lita in the seats:
Uncle Matt and London: