Thursday, June 27, 2013

Visiting Ash- June 2013

We spent the weekend visiting Ash, and we had a super busy fun three days of action. Friday we got there a little later than expected because James was not being super cooperative, but thanks to some creative GPS routes we managed to avoid rush-hour-Friday-in-the-summer traffic which is unimaginably bad. We made it to Ash's in record time. Ash made us dinner and then we went to check out the summer concert in her town.

Visiting Ash- June 201
Me and Ash at the outside concert

Visiting Ash- June 201
James dancing and having fun running through the crowds

Saturday morning, Kevin got up for a short hike that was on the other side of the Hudson River as the one he did on Father's Day.  All of us spent the afternoon at the Warwick Valley Winery & Distillery. I went back in November for Girls' Weekend, but since it was the winter it was less crowded so we stayed inside, did a tasting, and listened to some music. The atmosphere in the summer is totally different-- like going to an entirely new place. You can order drinks and food outside or inside, the music is set up outside, and there are people celebrating summer all over the winery. James had fun too, but he got so unbelievably dirty rolling around in the dirt.

Visiting Ash- June 2013
Sangria with Ash- yum!

Visiting Ash- June 2013
Kevin and James cheers beer and orange juice.

Visiting Ash- June 2013
Backlit timer photo, oh well, still cute.

Visiting Ash- June 2013
Family photo in front of the vineyard

Visiting Ash- June 2013
James and Ash are besties. Not so with Harley, Ash's cat.

In the evening, Ash and I were free for some girls time, and her town has one of the few historical drive-in theaters left in the country. Kevin and I have been to another one in Wellfleet, but I thought it would be fun to check this one out. People actually get out of their cars here, and Ash and I parked backwards so we could open the trunk area of her car. We had the brilliant idea of going to a double-header and picked possibly the two worst (or best depending on your view) comedies possible: This is the End, and The Internship. Sometimes we had to laugh despite ourselves. My favorite line delivered by Jonah Hill playing Jonah Hill, "Something not that chill happened last night."

Warwick Valley Winery- June 2013
Warwick Drive-in

Ash and I got in late from the movies, and James had a lot of trouble sleeping that night so Sunday we were all exhausted. But that didn't deter us from our plans to see Storm King Art Center in Mountainville, New York. James has never had so many tantrums over such a large and beautiful area of land with so many inspiring art works. James must hate nature, freedom, and art. But don't worry, he looks super happy and art-absorbing in the photos.

Storm King Art Center 2013
James heading towards "Mozart's Birthday" by Mark di Suvero

Storm King Art Center 2013
Interacting with art, yo.

Storm King Art Center 2013
Ash, James, and I walking past the circuitous Storm King Wall

Storm King Art Center 2013
Ring it, James.

The first time I visited Storm King I was on an enrichment trip in middle school, maybe in 1993. I loved it. I was still young enough that the whole place felt like an imagination playground. Some of my favorite works there are the same works I first saw that day. I went back in 2005, after Cate and Matt's wedding nearby. This time there were a number of new pieces along with my old favorite ones that stood out. For example, "Three-Legged Buddha," was created in 2007 and installed in Storm King in 2010. The new artworks really change the terrain and the experience of visiting and make me want to visit more often.

Storm King Art Center 2013
"Three-Legged Buddha," by Chinese artist Zhang Huan(partially concealed here)

Storm King Art Center 2013
Kevin, James, and Ash on the observation deck

Storm King Art Center 2013
"Suspended" by Menashe Kadishman

Then we got a little silly...

Storm King Art Center 2013
Me: Copying Sleeping Boy I by Thomas Houseago, 2012
James: I don't sleep! I photo-bomb!
Storm King Art Center 2013
This is how it feels when we don't sleep.

Storm King Art Center 2013
Sitting in Isamu Noguchi's "Momo Taro"

Storm King Art Center 2013
"Pollito" relives his hatching.

Ash, thanks for an awesome visit full great memories! I will remember it for both of us, or you can re-read the blog post sometime... if you remember to do so.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Isaac Turns Five 2013!

Isaac is one of my friend-babies that was born in the pre-blog era so he didn't have a post to celebrate his arrival in the world. I can't believe he's already turned 5! I still remember me and Kevin rushing over to meet him for the first time, and how awkward I felt holding a baby back then. He's had numerous celebrations this week with his school, his family, and even with some special sushi, but here's one more little guy. You're every bit as awesome as your mother says you are!

Dennis Family 2008
Isaac born!

Visiting the Dennis Family 2008
Meeting Isaac, August 2008

Dennis Family 2010
Meeting his sister Eleanor, 2010

Rachel's 30th Birthday 2010
Helping Rachel with her 30 birthday candles, 2010

James's 1st Birthday Party 2012
At James's first birthday, 2012

Bronx Zoo 2012
Family photo at the Bronx Zoo 2012

Bronx Zoo 2012
Close-up of Isaac 2012

It's been too long since I saw you last! For your birthday, maybe I can take some more cute photos of you and your family next time I see you.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Nana Drops In- June 2013

We visited Ash this weekend, and while we were there Nana came over to visit briefly. Ash even made her a mango rum drink! Look how nice the photos came out.

Nana Visits- June 2013
Smooshy faces

Nana Visits- June 2013
Kisses from Nana

Nana Visits- June 2013
Returning the kisses

Nana Visits- June 2013
And a big hug!

Friday, June 21, 2013

Christina and Dan's 5th Wedding Anniversary 2013

Happy 5th Anniversary to Dan and Christina! Dan and Christina met in 2005, and things got serious right away. I could tell from the way Christina talked about him that she really liked him, but more than that, I could tell I really liked him. He treated Christina the way every woman wants to be treated, and you could tell how much he loved her. I didn't meet him until 2007 when I had dinner with both them in New York. He was very quiet and seemed to be the yin to her yang. Christina is not quiet. She is the life of the party and a force of laughter and positivity. At their wedding though, it occurred to me that I might not have Dan totally figured out, and he was actually even more like Christina than I might have suspected. He partied like a man who knew he had a lot to celebrate.

Christina and Dan- the real deal

Christina's mom and bridesmaid Pam helping her get ready

The ceremony and reception was at a pretty hotel in New Jersey. Christina's bridesmaids were her two best friends from childhood Nikki and Pam, and her two teenage cousins. Dan's groomsmen were his two best friends from Texas.

Christina's dad walking her down the aisle

View from the back of the ceremony- Most of the GW gang is in the back row

Married and about to start partying!

Super awesome wedding party

The cocktail hour was super fancy with multiple signature cocktails and a monogrammed ice luge for chilling the cocktails, but also mainly for decorative purposes. The reception was even nicer with monogram lights, beautiful centerpieces, a gorgeous cake, and a band that was not afraid to play Gnarls Barkley.

Martini luge

First dance

Dan about to reveal his true self

Our table- look how seriously amazing that centerpiece is

Cutting the beautiful cake

One of the best parts of the wedding was the guest list. I am super close with my college friends, and we try to get together as a group at least once a year. But individually we see each other a lot more than that even though we're split up between New York and DC. More than that though, I love Christina's parents. They're the kind of parents that are just constantly supportive of Christina. I have never heard her complain about them in the slightest way in the 16 years I've known her, and I have a long memory. Christina's friends from growing up are great people, and I feel like I've gotten to know them better over the years. And her coworkers are New York City school teachers so that automatically makes them both best people and the hardest mofos you will ever meet. Suffice to say, people partied hard at this wedding. And there was a photo booth to prove it. I will spare you the worst of the evidence from the photo booth.

McLeod Wedding 2008
With some of my best friends in the whole world

Christina's proud parents

This party don't stop.

McLeod Wedding 2008
This is many of my favorite people in the world in one 
photo booth- I am in there too, being trampled

Proof that I was in there

Five years later they seem happier than they did on their wedding day - which is saying a lot. This is due in part to the fact that they now have a perfect little son Hudson who is now 16 months old and walking. It's worth adding that in addition to being awesome at marriage, they are great parents. Congratulations!

Bronx Zoo 2012
Dan, Hudson, and Christina in May 2012

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Father's Day 2013

We had a fun little Father's Day here. I let Kevin sleep in and made breakfast for the boys. Kevin was awoken by the fire alarm signalling that I was burning said breakfast. Such is life. It was still tasty. James got Kevin a Father's Day card and a t-shirt to commemorate their first trip together to Montauk in 2011. Then Kevin went off for a hike, and some much needed leisure and nature time. Someone on the trail, probably noting the look of blissful freedom on Kevin's face, wished him a Happy Father's Day. He was home early enough to enjoy a Red Sox game from start to finish, and we capped off the evening with Thai food and Mad Men. A very good day!

Father's Day 2013
Father's Day breakfast

Father's Day 2013
Stealing Dada's water

Thank you, Dada.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Cate and Matt Visit 2013

We were lucky that Matt's good friend from school was getting married on Long Island. We got a quick visit with their family! We have haven't seen Cate, Matt, Phoebe, and Vivi since last summer, and we even got to see Cate's mom Gay who we haven't seen for almost 3 years now. We met them in Ronkonkoma and got some medium-crust pizza (is that a thing?) which is a different than the New York-style pizza in my part Long Island. Then we got some ice cream at the slowest Friendly in America.

Lefebvres- June 2013
The Clous and the Faves

Lefebvres- June 2013
Accessorizing Grandma Gay

It was wonderful seeing everyone and the children have gotten so much bigger and lovelier in the last year. Phoebe vogued for my photos, and I am obsessed with Vivi's red curly hair. I have requested that James marry her so that I can have red-haired grandchildren. He's taken my request under advisement, but hasn't made any promises.

Lefebvres- June 2013
Vivi and James peaking out the windows

Lefebvres- June 2013

Lefebvres- June 2013
Phoebe vogues

Lefebvres- June 2013
Pointing out the moon to Grandma- in the daytime!

Lefebvres- June 2013
Ice cream makes all women happy

Lefebvres- June 2013 
Either extreme joy or a "slush rush"

Lefebvres- June 2013
James says to stop pressuring him for grandkids, He's only 2.
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