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Monday, September 15, 2014

Conversations with a four-year-old

Now that he's 4 1/3 years old, Toby desperately wants to act grown-up, but of course he's still so little. He says such nutty, sweet things as he tries to navigate it all. (If only I could freeze him at this age! My nostalgia levels are sky high these days.) For example...

Me: “When Anton gets bigger, you can talk and read together.”
Toby: “When he gets bigger, we can be twins!"

Me: “Sorry I was on my computer this morning. I had a work emergency.”
Toby: “Did the firemen come?!”

Toby: "Mama, how old are you?"
Me: "Thirty five."
Toby: "But that is so many years!!! How can you be that many years?!!"

He has always had an imaginary friend named Dun Dun, but now Toby also has an imaginary wife named Bo and two children—Matt, 6, and Janna, 2. They drive a silver minivan and live in Montclair, New Jersey. They go to dinner with their married friends, Brad and Mary, who have three kids: George, Stella and Paul. The whole thing is hilarious and totally bizarre, and I have no idea where it all came from. We spend a lot of time talking about his family. And he's a really nice dad! He often prefers to push Matt and Janna on the swings than swing himself, so he stands there talking to himself and pushing two empty swings. :)

"Can I sleep in my belly today?" (i.e., take a nap without a shirt)

Anton: "Doggee!"
Us: “Anton, that’s not a dog, that’s a llama.”
Toby: “Like North Carollama?”

He's also trying to figure out how to make jokes. For example, the other day he came up to me at the playground and said, "Hi, Mama, I’m Dr. Person! Dr. Person...Is that funny?"

Toby: "Did I come to your wedding?"
Me: "No, you weren’t born yet. You were almost in my belly, but not quite."
Toby: “So I wasn’t anymore?"

Me, at bedtime: “Would you like a story or a song?”
Toby: "No, Mama. Let's just talk."
Toby, I love you times a million. You'll always be my baby.

What have your kids been talking about recently? What are they into? How old are they? I'd love to hear...

P.S. Conversations with Toby when he was two, three, three-and-a-half and almost four. Plus, dates with your child. (And I cannot wait until little Anton starts talking!!!)

(Top photo from our trip to England)

Friday, September 12, 2014

Have a relaxing weekend.

What are you up to this weekend? We're having friends over tonight for pizza and wine, and I'm getting a haircut tomorrow (and already looking forward to the shampoo head massage:) Also, if you're interested, tickets are now on sale for the New Yorker Festival–featuring so many amazing speakers, including Lena Dunham, Mindy Kaling and Malcolm Gladwell. Hope you have a wonderful weekend, and here are a few links from around the web...

The world's most flattering jeans. Truly. Magic.

What it feels like to watch your child walk away.

Love this deconstructed braid.

Went down a rabbit hole watching Tina Fey's AmEx commercials.

Marriage counseling in the 1950s. (This is CRAZY.)

Cool trick wallpaper.

Awesome animated wedding photos.

Caroline and I eat this every day at 4pm. So good.

What $1500 in rent gets you in eleven U.S. cities.

MIT is hosting a Breast Pump Hackathon. YES!!!!! (Because, seriously.)

What a brave, brave woman. Bravo.

This vacation house hangs off a cliff.

How to graciously say no.

Runway trends: Lip balm and sweaty faces.

Have a good one and take good care. xo

(Photo by Nirav Patel)

Origins giveaway

Now that I'm in my thirties, I definitely pay more attention to anti-aging creams. I once read that having a baby ages you 100 years...and, in my case, it's true. I've always had under-eye wrinkles, but they've become way more noticeable since my little guys were born.

Recently, I've been trying out the Plantscription line from Origins, which is formulated with natural and certified organic ingredients. Their anti-aging Power Serum contains twenty plant extracts sourced from all over the world, as featured in videos from Ghana, Australia and France. It's lovely and really does seem to help reduce lines and wrinkles (thank goodness).

Today, Origins is giving away a basket filled with the entire Plantscription line (worth a whopping $500). You'll get two containers of power serum, plus their night cream, eye cream, face oil, cleanser, SPF 25 cream, treatment lotion and lifting cream. You'll be looking impossibly youthful all fall. :)

To enter, please visit Origins and leave a comment below. One winner will be chosen at random on Monday. Good luck!
(Photos by Yossy Arefi for Cup of Jo. Click here for official rules and legal mumbo jumbo)

Thursday, September 11, 2014

What's wrong with marriage in movies

The other day, I heard an interview with Seth Rogen about how spouses are portrayed in comedies these days. The wife is invariably an uptight nag, while the husband is a big goofy kid.

In first drafts of the recent movie Neighbors, Seth Rogen's character was married to, you guessed it, a nagging wife. But then Rogen's real wife, Lauren Miller, spoke up. As Rogen remembers:

"My wife read the script. She's a writer. She's one of the people who was like, 'This isn't how it would be; like, we get along...I want to have fun, too...'

"And then as we started talking about it, that actually became the most exciting idea of the movie to us, that really we could portray a couple where the wife was just as fun-loving and irresponsible as the guy, and they got along really well. In a comedy, that is almost non-existent: an actual healthy couple that really likes each other...and they're intimate with each other and they're attracted to each other; when they fight, they make up really fast and easily...

"Again, in movies they like to portray marriage as like, 'Oh, the wife and husband are always arguing and bickering'...With me and my wife, the easiest part of my life is my marriage. Like if everything was as smooth and easy and fun as my relationship with my wife then I would have a much easier time getting through the day. We really get along and we like the same stuff."
Bravo, Seth and Lauren! Are you friends with your significant other? Are you guys on the same wavelength? Who is goofier, and who is more responsible?

P.S. 10 favorite romantic comedies, and the movie we watched on our first date.
P.P.S. Aspirin works! Thanks for the sweet comments:)

(Top photo by Nathan)

Summer cold

How are you feeling today? I'm actually typing this with my eyes closed because I have a terrible migraine. I rarely get bad headaches, but this one is throwing me for a loop. (Of course, Anton woke up this morning at 5am and was like this.) Anyway, sending you a big kiss and will try to do another post today but may not make it! xoxo

(Photos by Tamara Lee)

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Renting houses on vacation

This week, the air has felt crisp and cool, and while I'm excited to hunker down and settle into fall, I can't stop daydreaming about traveling. Are any of you sneaking in some last-minute summer trips? Or planning to travel for the holidays? Just for fun, which of these family-friendly Kid & Coe rental houses would you want to stay in...
A four-bedroom (!) apartment in downtown Manhattan with exposed brick and a private roofdeck.
A three-bedroom cabin in Sonoma surrounded by redwoods. You'd hike with foxes, kayak down the river and taste wine at local vineyards.
A bright three-bedroom family home in Paris with skylights and floor-to-ceiling bookcases.
A shabby-chic cottage in Greece with whitewashed walls and three terraces. Wouldn't you love to swim in that private pool?!

Which would you want to stay in? Which suits your personality best? If you're curious, here are all their homes around the world—from San Francisco to Mexico to India.

P.S. The houseboat we rented in Amsterdam and 10 tips for traveling with a baby.

French Apple Tart

What's better than an apple tart? A French apple tart! Today, Clotilde from Chocolate & Zucchini shows us how to bake this classic, elegant dessert...

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

Do or Don’t: Tomboy perfumes

The other night, I met my friend K. at the movies. As we hugged hello outside, I noticed that she smelled incredible—sexy, warm, spicy, subtle. When I asked her about her perfume, she revealed that it was actually this men's cologne. "Strangers stop me on the street to ask what I'm wearing," she added.

It's funny, recently I've noticed that all my friends who smell amazing seem to be wearing masculine scents. My cousin wears sandalwood essential oil. My friend S. wears a cedar cologne. My friend Kendra borrows her husband's smoky, peppery fragrance.

I'm curious: Which perfume are you wearing these days? Would you wear a masculine fragrance? There's something so sexy about them. I think I'm going to pair this citrus musk with sweaters and jeans this fall.

P.S. Wedding overalls.

(Photo by Garance Dore)

Great new movie

Have you guys seen the trailer for Skeleton Twins? Kristen Wiig and Bill Hader play estranged siblings who are forced to spend time together after an unexpected tragedy. The film won won the Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award at Sundance and looks dark and hilarious.

Last night I went down a rabbit hole and read a bunch of interviews about the movie, and here are two fun quotes for you:

Writer/director Craig Johnson: "[Wiig and Hader] are like brother and sister. I just stood in the corner, silent and in awe of these two people when they would just riff back and forth. They would be on set in between takes just going off on bits that were completely improvised, but were just so funny and so quick. It was like they had a shorthand, secret telepathic language with each other. They know each other’s brains so well."

The New York Times: "Weren’t you once fired from a movie theater for spoiling the end of Titanic?"
Bill Hader: "I was tearing tickets for a movie theater in Tempe, Arizona, and this sorority had rented out the whole theater and they were being so rude to me. I was like: 'The boat sinks, Leo dies at the end. You think he’s sleeping, but he’s frozen. And the old lady is Kate Winslet. Enjoy the movie.' "
Thoughts? Will you see it? Mark your calendars: It comes out this Friday, September 12th.

P.S. Mindy Kaling's beautiful friendship advice.
P.P.S. Kristen Wiig is 41, Tina Fey is 44 and Amy Poehler is 42. I used to dread my forties, but not anymore!

Monday, September 08, 2014

Easy school lunches

What do you make for school lunches? Now that Toby's in school, we'll be packing a lunch every day. We got some Lunchbots, which have three or four compartments, and the goal is to fill them up with yummy healthy foods. As the year kicks off, I figured I'd create a big list of lunch ideas to have on hand...
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