Friday, August 10, 2018

SLOANE TURNS SIX!





In a stunning turn of events (it always does feel stunning), my baby turned SIX! We think she is fabulous. She is smart, determined, caring, and makes me laugh all the time. Her thoughtfulness and creativity astounds me and I'm floored at how well she cares for her sister. I miss her when I'm not around her, and love doing things with her by my side.  What a glorious six years it has been with my girl Sloane!

For her party this year, we combined forces with two other lovely girls who have August birthdays - Loah who was turning six and Eden who was turning five - and had a joint birthday party!  It was fun, easy. and we avoided making people come to three separate birthday parties....and the girls loved it! Shout out to Mignon who made the girls these darling cupcakes and my cousin Lois, who helped put up all those streamers. I included a video I took with my phone of some of the festivities below if you want to see!







Triple birthday party ! from Christine Lu on Vimeo.






WHAT I'M READING V.34





1. You Think It, I'll Say It by Curtis Sittenfeld 

I read her book, "Prep" a while ago, liked it okay, but I like this collection of short stories so much better! The stories are delectable, because she has a way of getting inside the character's mind to reveal all the inner thoughts of a person, including the embarrassing and vulnerable, and couch it in observations that are humorous and comment on topics like motherhood, women friendship, and politics. 

2.  The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead 

We read this one in our book club last month, and it was a difficult read because of the subject matter, but I appreciated the sharp and skillful writing and the conversation we were able to have about it.  Whitehead writes in a way that is reminiscent of trauma - swift and descriptive, almost emotion, but in a way that is powerful exactly because of the delivery.  I wondered what additional stories there were to tell about the Underground Railroad, but Whitehead as a specific agenda. Underneath the stories of the horrors of slavery, he writes about the ways in which black history has been taken over by white narrators and about how the power belongs to the one who is able to tell the story, on their terms. 

3. The Girl Who Never Read Noam Chomsky.

 I loved this one. I was instantly captivated by the sharp turns her writing to describe the most ordinary and mundane. It was refreshing. I was deeply intrigued about a quarter through the book, I couldn’t put it down after the halfway mark, and I cried reading the chapter called "The end of forever."  It is sort of a self-absorbed book, almost like a journal turned novel - if you know what I mean by that, but I didn't tire of it, and was deeply satisfied by the whole thing. It takes you through the adult life of a woman, through her relationships, doubts, career, etc. and one of those books that make me want to journal more.  A sample of the writing: "What she loved most about sitting at the coffee shop was not the coffee or the shop but the brief, listless feeling it gave her of having her life together. She could sit beside the richness and warmth and see herself as something so divinely competent. This is what it is to be an independent person, and she’d take a sip. This is what it is to be a cosmopolitan person, and she’d take a sip. So easily could she lose herself in the sense." 

4. A Gentleman of Moscow by Amor Towles

Another book club read ! It was a delicious read - I recommend this book if you love food, drink, and historical fiction. It tells the story of a man - Count Rostov - who is sentenced to house arrest in 1922 (for writing a poem!) in The Metropol Hotel in Moscow, Russia.  It's a lovely, sweeping read, and I underlined so many passages because of the lovely writing that described the pleasures of life. Count Rostov, although imprisoned in the hotel, enjoys the finer things and makes a whole world for himself within that hotel, making lifelong friendships and even a career as a waiter.  The descriptions are elegant and clear, and the sentences are not overworked. Towles wrote another book called, "Rules of Civility" that I'm looking forward to reading because of how much I liked this one. 



Friday, August 3, 2018

WEEKEND ROADTRIP TO NYC & DAD'S BIRTHDAY - VIDEO



As a follow-up to my previous post with photos from our 24 hours in NYC, here's a little video I made with clips I took on my phone that weekend!

ROAD TRIP TO NYC



A weekend trip up to Silver Spring to see my parents after they flew in from Korea turned into an impromptu road trip to NYC for 24 hours, and while it was sort of a crazy trip to take with two little ones in tow, I was all in! It was to be just me and the girls up to Silver Spring, and after dinner and a night at my sister's, we would continue on to NYC with my parents.  I knew it would be fine because I could split the driving with my parents, both of them are pros at navigating NYC, and I knew the girls would do well in the car because of their excitement.  We went up primarily because my mom wanted to go see Adrian Piper's exhibit at MOMA, and we would also stay with my other sister and celebrate my dad's birthday up there as well. I think a big part of the girls' excitement had to do with the fact that they had just gotten sleeping bags from Karen and they were eager to try them out.  They had their bags packed and sleeping bags slung over their shoulders, ready to go long before I ushered them out. 

We were only in NYC for 24 hours, but we got to spend a whole afternoon at MOMA, and then an entire evening at my sister's place, following by church and bagels on Sunday morning. Here are a whole bunch of pictures to commemorate! 




















































Monday, July 23, 2018

VISIT TO THE ZOO AND LOGAN TURNS THREE!





It's now been only three weeks since we went to the zoo for Logan's birthday, and already she is telling everyone she isn't three anymore - she's five! Ha. That sums up the sort of zest Logan lives with these days - excited, impatient, and willing to go after what she wants. 

We had been talking about going to the zoo for Logan's birthday for months, so even though it was going to be a gazillion degrees on our designated day, we made it happen. Logan had been telling everyone we were going to the zoo when she turns three, so to the zoo we went. (The other thing that she has been asking for and telling everyone about, is how she is going to start gymnastics when she is three, just like Sloane!) 

Ken's mom and dad came up for the day to join us, and yes it ended up being incredibly hot, but it was worth it for how earnestly both Logan and Sloane observed the animals.  Sloane declared her new favorite animal was the tiger and Logan declared hers was the giraffe (which they got to feed!) and the lion.  They wanted to try to see every single animal (Logan was especially excited about seeing the crocodile) and we managed to almost do just that, despite the heat.  




She has been practicing how to do this with her fingers for months! 


Our expert map reader. 













After the zoo, Ken's dad made us a meal of delicious beef noodle soup, and we sang her happy birthday over a s'mores brownie cake that I improvised at the last minute. I knew she was going to be getting cupcakes a few days later for her friends party (at her request) so I made do with what we had. Besides, she loves singing happy birthday and blowing out candles, so the more birthday rounds the better! More is more, according to Lola Lu. 




Since July is such a flurry of activity and birthdays already, I thought we might able to sneak by having a friend party for Logan and keep it to a family celebration, but Logan insisted that she have all her daycare friends over for her birthday! Apparently, after we agreed and sent out birthday cards, she followed up with her friends everyday to ask if they were coming to her party. Ha!