Fall Memories

It’s been a gorgeous fall…



It’s been a busy Fall…

I made a quick visit to Arlington to see my parents and brother…

My friend and I took a weekend trip to New York to see our kids…IMG_9191

I’m always amazed at how much Morningside Heights has changed since I was a graduate student. It’s a little disconcerting, (but awesome)! that there’s a farmer’s market right on Broadway.


The Guggenheim has always been my favorite New York museum. The scale of it is just right for an afternoon visit…But first we had to wait in a line that literally went around the block for Pay What You Wish admission.

We caught a two-day art installation projected onto the side of Rockefeller Center by neo-conceptual artist Jenny Holzer.IMG_9234

Kehinde Wiley’s “Rumors of War” statue has just moved to its permanent home in Richmond, Virginia at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, but we got a sneak peak while it was still in the middle of Times Square:


Back home…OKAX4117

I tried (and tried and tried) to convince my husband that the perfect I-survived-cancer, 50th birthday gift would be a puppy…IMG_9263


Will he cave?


“Heart of stone”

For now I’ll have to settle for visiting my friend’s adorable new pup.

I took the kids to see Adam Silver talk about The Business of Sports…

My book group buddies and I went to Pennsylvania for the weekend. We sat by a campfire, made terrariums, and befriended the local fauna.

A weekend visit from a dear friend and a trip to Carter Mountain apple orchard inspired two more trips to pick the most delicious Fuji apples!IMG_9351

We went through shocking quantities of Fujis this Fall..

IMG_9501IMG_9500IMG_9497IMG_9533Working on college applications and the dreaded FAFSA…


We’re always running a little behind…hence my daughter’s Halloween party in November:

A too-short but sweet visit from my California girls:


Signing off for now. Hope to be back in this space a little more regularly.

Halloween Costumes 2017

Halloween is kind of a big deal in my office…


Hey, wait a minute…this IS my circus, and those ARE my monkeys!

You know what’s amazing about this costume?

IMG_1681Cheap jowl lift!

Céleste & I went back to our old neighborhood to go to a four-house party with her friends.



When we got back home, I just couldn’t resist putting the costumes on the dogs one last time. IMG_5805

They are so over it.

Halloween Party

Now that our youngest is 12 and in 7th grade, we deemed this to be the year that she should stop trick-or-treating. It’s become a tradition in our household to ease the pain of aging out of trick-or-treating by throwing a Halloween party for the big kid, and it was my daughter’s turn this year!

I was a witch on a flaming broomstick, and I don’t mean that I was wearing a costume…From 6 am until 6 pm when the party finally started, I snapped out orders to my cowering family as we raced around trying to get the house decorated and ready.





We made sure the kids would not be deprived of candy even if they were too old to go trick-or-treating!



No guts, no glory.




Glow ring toss


Tarantula Toss

My daughter pointed out my nail-studded sign to her friends and said in her snarkiest voice: “My mother is extremely proud of her little pun.”


Nail Salon with press on stickers

But I got the last laugh when she opened up the little pumpkin to the right and jumped when she saw what was inside…


Finger bubbles!





Popcorn hands with candy corn nails


I vant to suck your bloooooood!

Our 15 year old invited a few of his friends too. They played an epic game of Manhunt in the backyard, but probably the biggest hit of the party was playing with the dry ice.


We transformed our breakfast room into a photo booth and stocked it with lots of props and costumes. Even our poor, long-suffering dogs (I mean panda and bee) got into the act!


Happy Halloween!

Weekend Snapshots 30


I think it’s important to always look professional for work…

You never know who might drop in…

My 13-year-old had some friends over for a Halloween party later that evening…


On Saturday morning my husband was acting really fishy. My daughter came down the stairs in her pjs and plopped herself next to me.

“Dad sent me down to keep you company.”

“Why?” I asked her with narrowed eyes, “Does he not want me to come upstairs?”

She grinned and shrugged her shoulders. Very suspicious.

He came down himself and started putting away the laundry that I had just folded and placed on the back of the couch.

Now I knew something was up. It takes at least a full day of nagging to get my family to take their laundry and put it away.

Next he started to take away the empty laundry basket.

“Hey! I need that!”

“I was going to put it away for you…”


“But I need it for the next load of laundry that’s in the dryer now.”

“OK,” he said reluctantly and put the laundry basket back down on the floor.

Fishy. Very fishy.

And then the doorbell rang.

And then these lovely friends came in bearing flowers, gifts, and scrumptious foods and drink:

It was a surprise housewarming brunch! My husband had managed to keep the secret for weeks, even when I announced that I’d be taking the kids to Arlington this weekend.

“You can’t leave that weekend!” he had blurted in a panic. “I have to check the calendar…I think I have something going on.”

I remember feeling a little miffed at the time. “You don’t have to come,” I said. “The kids are out of school on Monday and Tuesday and I’m taking those days off work. We have trick-or-treating on Saturday, and then we’ll leave Sunday morning.”

As soon as he heard that I was leaving after Saturday, he dropped it. Poor, poor, long-suffering man.

How awesome is that? If I had known about the housewarming, I’d have spent hours, maybe even days cleaning and stressing out. Fortunately, I had done some tidying up after the boys’ party the night before.

Later that day, we went back to our old neighborhood with our last trick-or-treater. For the second year in a row she dressed up with a friend. They were Calvin and Hobbes…


We drove up to Arlington on Sunday morning.

The kids had fun checking out the new foot massager my sister got for my parents:

My sister (Sissy to me, Auntie Sissy to my kids) had come up with a surprise for the kids. As we rounded them up to take them to the undisclosed location, they kept venturing guesses as to where we were heading.

“Oh, I know where we’re going,” the fifteen year old said. “You’re taking us to a mountaintop to sacrifice us, right?”


Well, since the surprise was ruined, we took them to a trampoline park instead. While they waited for their time slot, they practiced their driving skills.

This boy…

is about to get his learner’s permit. Be afraid. Be very afraid.

Actually, he was a genius driver compared to these two:

But that’s not saying much.




We carved out our pumpkins tonight. My oldest son is going to take his in to carve at school tomorrow. For the first time ever, the two younger children carved their own pumpkins all by themselves.

Someone was totally grossed out by the pumpkin guts…

FINALLY! I’ve waited YEARS for someone else to have to deal with the pumpkin dismemberment!

My son’s pumpkin:

My daughter’s pumpkin:

My son thought his sister’s pumpkin resembled someone we know…

Happy Halloween!

The Queen Bee

Of the countless photos I’ve taken over the past fourteen years that we’ve been celebrating Halloween, I think these are my favorite:

I may like the next two even better…

“Sure, go ahead and dress me up in a tutu and tiara if you must,” my daughter seems to be saying in these photos, “I’m still going to be this girl!”


In which I demonstrate through a series of images that I never know when to stop:

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