The Squeaky Wheel!

February 16, 2017 by

  Remember how I said that I needed to post more pictures of Violet (5)? Well, this post is it! Do you see that first picture? She always wants to pose with her hands just like that – cradled under her chin. I do not know why! It makes me laugh every time. ūüôā         Violet is a funny, sweet, GOOD girl. Evan and I¬†say that if our family is¬†like the TV show “The Munsters” – Violet¬†is “Marilyn Munseter” – you know, the normal one of the family. ūüôā That’s Marilyn Munster in the¬†polka dot dress below:     Coincidentally, Violet has been obsessed with polka dots since the summer and wants to wear only polka dots! Hrmmmm… ūüôā Anyhoo – I love all the girls (obviously) – they are all...

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Neighborhood Cruising!

February 8, 2017 by

  I’m happy to report that Ginger (7) and I went for a bike ride just the two of us this past weekend. ¬†As much as I love having little babies and toddlers, I’m finding that as these kids grow, they just get more and more fun. ūüôā This was Paprika’s bike that we bought at Goodwill for $10 (believe it or not!) – and now it fits Ginger just fine. ¬†I’ve been taking bike rides with Paprika (10) for awhile now – but since Ginger just learned, we decided to cruise around just the two of us. ¬†We had so much fun. Riding bikes with Paprika is also fun…however, Paprika likes to ride¬†as slow as molasses. ¬†She goes at such a snail’s pace, you almost fall off the bike if you’re following her....

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Bookin’ It!

February 2, 2017 by

  Oh my gosh – well, let’s see what’s happened recently. A week ago today, I published another romance novel of mine. ¬†That makes five romance novels that have been published since April 2016, plus a box set – and to say I’ve been keeping myself busy is an understatement! ¬†It’s like living a double life. Ha! This last book I wrote was a steamy vampire romance (haha) – and it is doing very well (for me). ¬†It seems like each book finds a wider audience, and this book has taken off modestly¬†and was in the top 500 books on all of Amazon last week. ¬†It’s also being sold at Barnes and Noble, iBooks, etc. ¬†I think it has about 140 reviews right now on Amazon – just in the first week!    ...

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Happy New Year! 2017 Edition

January 2, 2017 by

  Happy New Year! It’s back to reality tomorrow for our family – literally! Evan goes back to work on The Bachelor bright and early tomorrow morning (Tuesday). He’s been home from work¬†off and on this past week, which has been great. I love having him around a little more – but television doesn’t really stop, even for the holidays. ūüôā We had a great little New Year’s Eve party here. Well, it was actually Evan’s birthday party – so we celebrated that, mostly! The girls and I made a birthday cake:     Here’s the finished product. ūüôā     A good time was had by all:     Did you make New Year’s resolutions? This year, I did not! Remember how I said awhile back that I was going to wean Ellie...

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Christmas 2016!

December 29, 2016 by

  We had ourselves a Merry Little Christmas. ūüôā ¬†As you know, I like to have a relaxed holiday. ¬†I don’t like to be stressed or in a bad mood, or running around like a crazy person during the holidays. LOL! ¬†I feel like every year, I figure out a little better how to accomplish that. This year, I kept things very simple. ¬†I did all my shopping online, ordered a pre-prepared Christmas dinner from the grocery store (Whole Foods), and did not send out Christmas cards! ¬†I really do love sending out Christmas cards (and especially love receiving them) – but this year, I just didn’t have it in me to do the cards. For Christmas presents, Evan and I waited until the last minute to wrap. ¬†That was a big undertaking –...

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Hi There!

December 16, 2016 by

  Hello,¬†there! ¬†I hope you are having a happy December. ¬†We have been up to so much – trips to the Science Museum, the Harry Potter Party at Barnes and Noble, and a bunch of other things I can’t think of at the moment. ¬†Ha! We’ve been getting quite a lot of rain lately. ¬†This is the playground (park) where we go often. ¬†It was flooded!     Thankfully, the swings were still dry. Ha!     Our old McDonald’s got a make-over. ¬†We kind of missed the old, retro decor. ¬†But the new decor is nice, too. ūüôā     Paprika and I have been to a bunch of movies. ¬†We usually have a Tuesday night date after her violin lesson. ¬†We go to the late show and have the theater all to...

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Attitude of Gratitude – Thanksgiving 2016!...

November 30, 2016 by

  Did you have a good Thanksgiving? ¬†We did! ¬†Evan finished Dancing With The Stars on Tuesday of Thanksgiving week – and so he was home for most of the weekend. ¬†Bliss! ¬†He is working on a movie and The Bachelor – so his time home was short-lived, but it was great while it lasted. ūüôā We spent time together as a family. ¬†We went to the park on Thanksgiving Day, and ordered in a traditional Thanksgiving meal from Whole Foods. ¬†We do that because the kids don’t like Thanksgiving foods¬†and I don’t like to cook! ¬†Haha. No really, I do like to cook – ¬†I just have other things I like to do a lot¬†more. ūüôā     This season of DWTS was really intense (they always are!) – so we were especially...

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Almost Thanksgiving!

November 21, 2016 by

  How is it already late November? ¬†This Thursday is Thanksgiving! Evan will finish¬†Dancing With the Stars on Tuesday. ¬†I’m excited about that because he hasn’t had a day off since the election (Nov. 8th) and he’s been working about 100 hours/week. ¬†So on Wednesday, he’ll be home for the day. ¬†Yay! ¬†He’ll be home until the weekend – but then he starts working on Bachelor (Bachelor Nick) – so I’m going to enjoy the time he’s home because it’s such a rare/nice treat. Paprika (10) made this for Mermaid Linden this week. ¬†Paprika misses Mermaid Linden so much that she cries herself to sleep sometimes (really and truly). ¬†So, I’m going to have to figure out a way for Paprika to see her again…somehow!     I’ve been taking the girls to the...

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Lindsey Stirling Concert!

November 17, 2016 by

  Paprika’s favorite musician¬†is Lindsey Stirling. ¬†If you don’t know who she is – she’s a violinist who plays kind of rock/contemporary violin. ¬†The reason Paprika (10) loves the violin so much (and begged to take lessons) is because of her. ¬†Paprika loves Lindsey’s¬†music – and she will dance for hours to her songs.     I heard that Lindsey Stirling was playing at the Dolby Theater in Hollywood (where the Oscars are held) – so I got tickets for Paprika¬†to go. ¬†It was her first “rock” concert – and she was excited! Opening Act:     I got 6th Row Center Tix – so not front row, but good! ¬†Evan took Paprika¬†to the concert – and I stayed home with the little sisters.     I didn’t know it when I bought the...

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Violet is 5!

November 13, 2016 by

  Miss Violet turned FIVE years old this week! ¬†Oh my goodness, where is the time going?! Violet¬†is by far the easiest of the girls – always happy, sweet, smart, polite, funny, good natured, and positive. ¬†She never throws a fit or a tantrum. ¬†She eats a bunch of different types of foods (an oddity in our house) – and she even loves exotic cuisine! ¬†She is creative, artistic, hardworking, a team player, athletic, smart as a whip, good at math, piano, violin, and reading! ¬†I could go on. ¬†(I am her mom – so I know I’m biased). If I only had Violet, I would think I was the best mom in the whole world! LOL ¬†For whatever reason, she is always sunny and a pure joy to be around. ¬†I honestly know...

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Something Happy!

November 11, 2016 by

  (Above: ¬†Before they left for the show on Halloween – Ellie stayed home with me!)   What a week…I don’t even know where to begin. ¬†I’ll start by writing about something happy…Halloween! We had a great one this year. ¬†Evan took the three big sisters to Dancing With The Stars for their Halloween show. ¬†It was Paprika’s third or fourth time going – but it was the first time for Ginger (7) and Violet (4). This next picture is outside the Bungalow where Evan spends about 100 hours/week! ¬†The girls got to meet all of Evan’s co-workers and hang out in the Editing Suites before the show…     It’s always great¬†to go to the show with Evan because they got to meet the cast members, dancers, and talk to Tom Bergeron (the...

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Seeing Angels!

October 29, 2016 by

  Something very strange has been happening lately. It’s happened a few times, and I didn’t want to make a big deal about it, in case I was making it up or imagining it.     But it keeps happening. I’ll just say it. The first time this happened, I was in the bedroom with Ellie (21 months), changing her diaper. She pointed over my shoulder and smiled a big smile of recognition. Sissies! she exclaimed and pointed at the thin air behind my head. I looked back – there was nothing I could see there. No shadows, or anything like that. I went back to changing her diaper, and she really tried to get my attention. She kept pointing and saying “Sissies” (how she says sisters). Then, she got very calm (highly unusual...

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Halloween Costume Previews!

October 28, 2016 by

  Happy Weekend! It’s almost Halloween. It’s finally starting to feel a little bit like Fall here. The girls are SO excited about their costumes this year. Paprika (10) made her own costume. She’s going as Kubo from the movie Kubo and the Two Strings (her favorite movie). She made the whole costume herself with Evan’s help. ¬†I searched online to see if I could buy a ready-made Kubo costume, but I couldn’t find one! ¬†It turns out that making the costume has been a lot of fun for Paprika, and a lot less expensive, too! For the jacket, Evan and Paprika spray painted gold onto a red jacket with the cardboard stencil of a beetle they made. ¬†I got the red jacket on Ebay¬†(of course).     They also made a shamisen (traditional...

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The Science Center!

October 23, 2016 by

  Last week, we went to the Los Angeles Science Center. ¬†It’s in Downtown LA, and it’s one of my favorite museums. ¬†It’s free, enormous, and usually empty. ¬†The best combo! ūüôā This is the Apollo Command Module:     Ellie (20 months) had her run of the place!     We saw the Endeavour! ¬†It’s always wonderful to see it up close and in-person. ¬†It was actually almost empty in the hangar, but this big group walked in front of us… ¬†About a moment later, the crowd dissipated and it was almost like we were alone! ¬†The space shuttle is so enormous – it’s hard to capture that in a photo.     Paprika (10) and Violet (7) love the hurricane simulator. ¬†You can tell that Violet particularly loved it! ūüôā    ...

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My Bossy Dolly: 20 Months!

October 21, 2016 by

    Little Miss Ellie Belly is 20 months old! ¬†Here’s a little bit of what she’s up to lately:     Ellie is really her own person now – she has very strong opinions about things, and she’s not afraid to voice them. ¬†She loves pretty clothes (LOVES them) – and she loves being included. ¬†She gets very mad if her sisters get to go somewhere and she has to stay home.     For example, her three big sisters are going to Dancing With The Stars for their Halloween show, and Ellie already understands that she’s not going! ¬†(She’s far too young for the audience – even getting Violet tickets was a stretch).     Anyhoo – this points to the fact that she understands everything, even if she can’t verbalize it...

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Fun Times Afoot!

October 5, 2016 by

  A few exciting developments afoot! ūüôā Violet’s violin (1/4 size) came in the mail today. ¬†She was so excited, she had to start playing it right away, even though her first lesson isn’t until tomorrow!     Paprika (10) has a one hour violin lesson at our house each week with a fabulous, sweet and patient violin teacher named Margo. ¬†One hour is the¬†minimum amount of time Margo¬†will do for an in-home visit – and it’s a little long for Paprika. ¬†So, I’m going to split the lesson 40/20.     Violet (4) will get the first 20 minutes, and Paprika (10) will get the last 40 minutes! I’ve been trying to get in the picture more with the girls. This is me and Ginger (7) out for a walk earlier this week....

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Little Adventures!

September 26, 2016 by

  The beaches are totally empty now that it’s late September. ¬†The weather is still hot – and it’s almost surreal to have the whole beach to ourselves while everyone else is in school! ¬†It’s definitely one of the perks of homeschooling.     The girls really love being at home. ¬†On most days lately, we’ve been staying home and doing school work. ¬†We do a lot of playing the backyard, making food in the kitchen, reading books, and playing pretend. ¬†Using their imaginations is one of the biggest subjects in our homeschool! ¬†Ha!     Even though we’re mostly homebodies lately, Violet (4) had been asking to go to the beach for awhile. ¬†So,¬†I decided to take the girls for a day at the beach last Thursday. ¬†It was so refreshing to have...

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Jelly Belly is 19 Months!

September 18, 2016 by

  Miss Ellie Belly is 19 months old now! ¬†She’s at such a fun age (I really mean that). ¬†Everything in her life is BIG – it’s either huge smiles or dramatic tears. ¬†No in-between. ūüôā Thankfully, she is a very happy, sweet baby 99% of the time. ¬†One of her favorite things to do is ride around the neighborhood in her car. ¬†I usually walk with her for at least an hour/day. ¬†Not so much now because of my broken toe. ¬†But that’s slowly getting better¬†and she loves riding in the car so much, I’ll deal with the pain of walking! Ellie is obsessed with wearing this helmet when she rides in the car. ¬†It’s because she watches her sisters riding bikes, and she wants to be just like them!     She...

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Oh No, My Toe!

September 14, 2016 by

  Now that Bachelor In Paradise is finished for the season, Mr. M has moved on to working at Dancing With The Stars.¬† The schedule for DWTS is different (bc it’s a live show) – so Mr. M had his day off this week (his “weekend”) on Tuesday. Violet really wanted to go to Mulligan’s Family Fun Center for the day. ¬†We hadn’t been in months, and all the girls really love it there. ¬†They have go-karts, mini-golf, paddle boats…that kind of stuff. The place is always packed on the weekends. ¬†But…because we homeschool, we don’t have to go on the weekends. ¬†We can go on a random Tuesday afternoon, when everyone else is at school! ¬†Yay! ¬†This is what the parking lot looked like today:     I think the¬†other cars in the...

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Well, Hello September!

September 8, 2016 by

  In case you’re wondering, I didn’t fall off the face of the planet. ūüôā Two weeks is the longest I’ve gone without blogging ever (or at least since I started this blog 10+ years ago!) I don’t want to let that happen again. We do SO MANY things that now I feel like I have to play catch-up. ¬†So this week, I’ll probably do a few more blog posts than usual. Get ready. ¬†Ha!     Today was MY BIRTHDAY! Yay! I really love my birthdays and getting older. It’s just wonderful all the wisdom and self-confidence that comes with age. I wouldn’t change it for anything. I’m excited about the years to come (if I’m lucky enough to get years to come). Life is truly a wonderful gift – and I’m so...

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