’12 January

I’m home for the month. .and a Happy New Year!

Marija had an out-of-town…

January 29

Marija had an out-of-town relative drop by unexpectedly Monday night. He’s a second cousin whose family left Croatia 40-50 years ago to live in Argentina. They haven’t seen each other in 47 years!

Here’s what Marija wrote: “His name is Lobel. His mother and I are first cousins-two sister’s children. Lobel, is my second cousin. His mother/ Danica, passed away a few years ago 🙁 It was his mother’s 83rd birthday last Monday. His mother left Croatia when I was a little girl. Her father lived in Argentina, and she came to live with him. She met Croatian man and had 2 sons with him. Lobel and his brother were born in Argentina and for the first and only time I saw them in Croatia when they were little boys. Lobel, 6 years old at the time and younger brother. His business partner’s name is Martin.”

In the morning I…

January 28

In the morning I went with Steve and Celina to the Farmer’s Market which was fun, to wander the aisles with a Professional chef (you go Celina).

Then I went with Ken to the matinee of the Cirque du Soleil Michael Jackson show at the Staples Center. It was a huge show in a huge venue with some serious highlights and some times that really lagged.

Views from the lounge at the Ritz Carlton! That’s the Hollywood sign in the upper left.

These are all phone photos btw, since no cameras are allowed at the concert.

Another one. We…

Another one. We came back here after the show for a beer, then strolled around LA Live looking for a place to eat that was not the R$tz Carlton but not as noisy as an airport landing strip. Unavailable.

We ended up eating…

We ended up eating at The Tavern next door to The Pantry and enjoyed it very much, followed by a walk to The Standard hotel a few blocks away.

The roof lounge at The Standard. Whooo. There’s a lot more to it than what you see here. This place was totally hipster cool (maybe not, maybe it just seemed that way to me…). And although there was no one who looked even remotly like us I loved it and didn’t feel the least unwelcome.

Big day with the…

January 27

Big day with the kids today while D&A were out. Our most exciting adventure was a long and lively walk to the Galleria where we admired the fountains, hopped along on the colored tiles, and ate ice cream.

Then we made our way back stopping often for various entertainments. Rocks, sticks, leaves, no dogs this time which is very odd, running up and down ramps and lawn hills, putting things in Granny’s pockets like she was a kangaroo

Not Nancy A, not…

January 26

Not Nancy A, not Nancy D, but ‘Young Nancy’ came with me and Sharon today for a march at the Pepperdine track and a tour of the campus including the chapel and the museum, followed by lunch with the kids in the student cafeteria.

The Pacific Standard Time show is gone from the museum now and what they have was quite wonderful, the best I’ve ever seen there – ‘The Epic and the Exotic 19th-century Academic Realism from the Dahesh Museum of Art.’ The Dahesh is under renovation so they were able to get great stuff.

Handsome fellow isn’t he….

Handsome fellow isn’t he. He was one of the objects chosen by our guide for the highlights tour. She said it was J Paul Getty’s favorite piece.

It’s called The Lansdowne Herakles because Lord Lansdowne, Getty’s ideal of what an art collector should be, once owned this statue and displayed him in his house in London.

And then we had…

And then we had another chance to sing. I’m quite sure Lilly would be pleased to sing Happy Birthday to you too.

Hello sweeties! Here’s…

January 21

Hello sweeties! Here’s to dinner and a great visit with Anya (I knew her before she was born) and Anya’s family, young and adorable Sophie and less young but equally adorable John. Thank you!

Our Bon Voyage Breakfast,…

January 20

Our Bon Voyage Breakfast, Nancy took this picture. There I was far in front of everyone else with my giant mutant head which I had to smallen up, and my just out of the shower hair and etc etc but oh well. Muriel and Michi look adorable!


Oh ladies, so shy,…

January 19

Oh ladies, so shy, so demure…actually, not. Nancy and Michi came down from Santa Barbara to enjoy Bright Lights Big City. Muriel tended to their every need and I got to jump in for the fun!

What’s been going on…

January 17

What’s been going on around here since last Tuesday. They are moving along at a nice clip and should be finished by Friday.

The front looks a little stark with the wisteria down but both sides have got good trunks and old roots so I’m hopeful that it’ll be back, but I wonder if I’ll miss a season of blooms since every year we get the flowers for one month – March.

Fun! We build…

January 17

Fun! We build towers and then we knock them down and then we build them again. When Rome got home from school we were so busy I never got another picture. Looking back I see that I haven’t got one of Rome all month, a situation that must be remedied!

2011 movies I’ve seen…

January 15

2011 movies I’ve seen and can recommend highly: The Artist; The Descendants; Moneyball; Hugo; Midnight in Paris; Le Havre, all entirely charming.
Movies I’ve seen that have something to notice: The Iron Lady; J Edgar; A Dangerous Method.
Movies I want to see: The Ides of March; My Week With Marilyn; A Separation; Beginners; hoping to find the foreign movies, shorts, and documentaries.

The rest of them – Shame, War House, Carnage, The Help, etc. I’m thinking I could watch on my computer.

Thanks to Sharon for having me and Nancy over to watch the show!

Len, fresh of Rosie…

January 14

Len, fresh of Rosie and Len, has been teaching photography for decades now and he built a photobooth for the wedding reception. You stand in front of this backdrop, press the click-switch with your foot and…

…voila, a photo. …

…voila, a photo. Ahhh, studio lighting, got’ta love it. Good job Len! Copied off the internet.

Finally I finished reading…

January 13

Finally I finished reading ‘The Three Musketeers’. Finally. It seems like I’ve been reading this book for months. I just downloaded another Sarah Vowell choice, ‘Assassination Vacation’, since the last book of hers that I read (‘Unfamiliar Fishes’) was my favorite book in ages.

I’ve not yet mentioned the three painters who have been here working on the outside of all the buildings since Tuesday. They show up every morning on time, work until when they’ve said they’re going to leave, clean up after themselves, and don’t play the radio. A person can’t hope for much more than that.

I also saw the surprisingly pretty good ‘The Iron Lady’ with Nancy and Sharon. We all liked it and are rooting for Meryl who was wonderful.

Oh look, a new…

Oh look, a new Cirque du Soleil is coming to town.

Sharon and I did our walk today and we went all the way into Venice and back for the first time in a while. Hurray. Now I’m taking a rest.

Look what Rome MADE!…

January 11

Look what Rome MADE! They’re called Pocket Pals. She made first one for Lilly and one for herself and I wanted one SOOO badly she made me one too. Thank you Rome!

Are these not the cutest cutest things you ever ever saw?!

Our walk today took…

Our walk today took us to learn about welding, like a giant glue gun shooting out a hot shower of sparks and blinding light. We, among other things, found piles of red leaves, talked to neighbors and dogs, and hopped over cracks in the sidewalk. We also admired things that were the color orange.

Made me laugh. …

January 10

Made me laugh. Here’s Cool Car Cook come to pick me up in a Chevy Aveo. There had to be a story! (The car’s in the shop…could’a guessed.)

Merlyn retired recently and since Hilda is still at the grindstone and occasionally out of town we meet for lunch from time to time. Fun!

I arrived a little…

January 9

I arrived a little early, before Ann and Dan came, and I was just sitting there, speaking a little in sushi bar Japanese, imagining the meal to come, and realizing once again, as always, that being able to eat Japanese food is an unreserved blessing for which one must pay dearly.

At long last all…

January 8

At long last all my domestic rubble is now shuffled off to its assigned building – between the abode, the garage, and the studio. It all took for … Ever.

A few chores to go, like actually organizing the rubble, and the painters are coming Tuesday to do the whole outs$de.

Celina and her friend…

January 7, evening

Celina and her friend Dawn invited me to join them for a Girls Night Out dinner at Celina’s restaurant ‘Cooks County’. YES! Celina went through her culinary program and got a job at this hip and trendy packed to the gills new restaurant. We got the best table in the corner because Celina made the reservation.

Here we are about to enjoy four of the six desserts made by Celina each day. They change the dessert menu every week (and the dinner menu every day) so not a spare second to be bored.

(Sticky Date Pudding w/tangerines and brown sugar ice cream; Dulce de Leche Terrine w/macadamia nut crunch and alfajores; Meyer Lemon Pop Tart w/huckleberry compote and lemon curd ice cream; Beignets au Chocolat w/dessert honey and chocolate sherbet)

It’s hard to imagine…

It’s hard to imagine a better job right out of culinary school (unless it was closer to home of course). Celina and the pastry chef make everything. The usual schedule: the boss creates a new recipe and they test it together. Then Celina makes the breads and desserts during the day and the boss does the plating up at dinner.

(What we shared: their signature Pretzels w/mustard dipping sauce; Chicken liver crostini w/pickled persimmons; Fried cardoons w/parmesan, sage and aioli; Roasted beets w/’two year’ avocado, grapefruit and watercress; Steamed local mussels w/roasted tomato, garlic, white wine, and grilled bread; Hand cut tagliatelle w/slow braised oxtail ragu, sweet onions, and parmesan)

Les is in town…

January 7, afternoon

Les is in town for a few days from Boston. Hi Les! We had a snack at the Promenade then went for a stroll…

Walking from my house…

January 6

Walking from my house to do a chore outing, right there on my corner was a posse of paparazzi waiting for some poor celebrity to come out of the pre-school with their little kid in tow, rushing to their waiting black suv, one in the long line of black suvs that line up every afternoon.

Then I went with Muriel to see ‘Hugo’ which was quite good but I’m still not convinced that 3D has reached a making-it-better place yet.

Nancy is back from…

January 4

Nancy is back from her six week tour to visit family Back East. We had a lovely catch-up and a tasty repast. Welcome Home Nancy!

Then I went for a Pacific Standard Time Museum Tour with Katie in Pasadena. First stop: Pacific Asia Museum, a gorgeous venue and previously the site of the Pasadena Art Museum. Their PST show is ’46 N. Los Robles: A History of the Pasadena Art Museum’.

Unrelated to PST the…

Unrelated to PST the focus of the Pacific Asia Museum is art from Asia…and they have a cool room with dress-up costumes for kids representing stops along The Silk Road. Oh the kids would enjoy this as would the adults for a great PHOTO-OP. Katie agreed to take the part.

A reflection in one…

A reflection in one of the pools in the handsome patio.

Below is a copy-paste of some of the artists represented here and a small representation of the hundreds of PST artists:

Peter Alexander, John Altoon, Alexander Archipenko, Walter Askin, Larry Bell, Wallace Berman, William Brice, Hans Burkhardt, Vija Celmins, John Chamberlain, Joseph Cornell, Richard Diebenkorn, Marcel Duchamp, Leonard Edmondson, Lyonel Feininger, Llyn Foulkes, George Herms, Robert Irwin, Alexei Jawlensky, Ynez Johnston, Wassily Kandinsky, Craig Kauffman, Ed Kienholz, Paul Klee, John Mason, Claes Oldenburg, Ken Price, Edward Ruscha, Kurt Schwitters, Edmund Teske, Peter Voulkos, Andy Warhol, Emerson Woelffer.

Next stop, and right…

Next stop, and right next door, is the Pasadena Museum of California Art. This is a view from their roof.

‘Beneath the Surface: NASA’s Juno Mission to Jupiter’ was a very cool installation that closes on the 8th, and maybe our favorite thing all day? We also enjoyed ‘Love Never Fails: the Art of Edouard and Luvena Vysekal’ and a lot of crazy sculpter by Roland Reiss from the ’70s and ’80s.

And lastly, we drove…

And lastly, we drove a few blocks to the Armory Center for the Arts where ‘Speaking in Tongues: Wallace Berman and Robert Heinecken, 1961-1976’ was on view.

None of these shows was worth a special long-distance trip I think, but seeing them all at once was a nice chunk.

Rome and Angela had…

January 3

Rome and Angela had a play date at the American Girl Doll Store so Lilly and I messed around including going to the store to buy a snack in the fruit and veg department. This is what Lilly chose.

I spent the afternoon/evening…

January 2

I spent the afternoon/evening with Jonathan and Judy who are leaving tomorrow to go back to Israel, and they’re taking baby Yossef-Shalom with them.

Oh nooo. Who knows when I’ll get to hold him again. Ben and Bonnie will probably visit there next. And then it’ll be OUR turn for them to come here!

New Year’s Day at…

January 1

New Year’s Day at Sharon’s but no parade so we watched a little football instead and took a New Year’s Day walk in the glorious bright clear shine of a 78 degree California New Year’s Day.

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