Sunday, November 30, 2008

Los Angeles Moms Blog Launch Party

As some of you may know, I am a contributor to the Los Angeles Moms Blog. We recently had our launch party at M Bar in Hollywood. Our blog slogan is "Yes They're Real" (not that common in LA ;) What a blast it was to finally meet some of my fellow mom bloggers in real life. As I was in charge of our gift bags, I had spent most of the previous two weeks working with our sponsors. The result was the most amazing array and variety of items any mom could want. You wanna know what was in the bag? Check out my Thank You Post on the LA Moms Blog.

GM was the party's official sponsor and they kindly provided me a Chevy Traverse to test drive the previous week. On the day of the event, they sent me a Traverse with a driver to chauffeur me and all our gift bags to Hollywood. When we arrived at M Bar, we were dropped off on the red carpet where we made our way through the papparazzi and were interviewed. Once inside we had cocktails and the opportunity to mingle with our fellow mom bloggers and invited guests including Dr. Linda Li of "Dr. 90210", Heather McDonald of "Chelsea Lately" and Daphne Brogdon of "Trading Spaces". We next sat down to dinner, whereby I took the opportunity to get up and work my way around the room to chat with several moms including Lolita Carrico of Modern Mom, Jessica Gottlieb and Florinda Pendley Vasquez .

Immediately following dinner, another mom, Amy Anderson took the stage and emceed an all mom comedy show. I think most of us laughed so hard because we could relate to all the crazy, embarrassing, unbelievable and true stories the mom-comics entertained us with. Alas, the party was over before any of us wanted it to be. We all headed out telling each other how much we wished we had gotten more time to talk. Everyone was absolutely thrilled with their gift bags and blown away by how much fun stuff was inside. I hopped back in my Traverse and away from the bright lights of Hollywood looking forward to the next gathering of all my Mommy Blogger buddies. [Check out all the pictures and more stories from our launch party here.]

My Chevy Traverse Hollywood Test Drive

General Motors kindly lent me their new crossover, the 8-passenger Chevrolet Traverse to take on a one week test drive. I've just begun to re-emerge from the haze of having two babies within 19 months and get back a little bit of my old life. That life included living in West Hollywood and driving a cool car. I now live in the suburbs and drive a really practical car. The first night I had the Traverse, I headed off to a screening of a friend's film at a theater on the Sunset Strip. I left my husband in charge of the babies, and ran out the door towards my new Chevy. I backed out of the driveway and pointed the car in the direction of my old life. My first car was a Chevrolet with red velour interior and an 8-track player. How I loved that car!

I zipped up to Hollywood in the Traverse. Great visibility and handling. I loved the XM radio and the vast array of channels offered. I pulled easily into a parking space and hooked up with my tragically hip friend Matt just in time for the movie to start. As we were walking out of the theater, my college buddy Camille texted me: "Do u want 2 goto a party in the Hills?" It was already past my bedtime, and I considered bailing out. But then thought: my old self would totally go. So I texted back: "pick u up in 10 min". Matt was up for it too, but in totally LA fashion, he wanted to go in his own car. So we caravaned to Camille's place. Via the built-in Bluetooth I was able to converse hands free with Matt. Camille jumped in and pulled out a scrap of paper with the address. "Whose house is it?" I asked. "I don't know, some movie producer. My friend Tatiana said it's going to be a great party, she can't go because she just got a face peel and she looks scary and is staying home." Camille replied. "Oh...Ok" I said. I pushed the OnStar button and within seconds had turn by turn directions to the producer's house.

The OnStar totally saved us as we twisted our way up into the hills, Matt following closely. The streets kept changing names and I got more and more disoriented in the dark with all the hairpin turns. We pulled up to the gated driveway and were greeted by a valet parking attendant. I actually felt very cool in my Traverse. Into the party we went. Huge swimming pool, massive Spanish style house. We made our way through the Hollywood scene before us. I saw a few familiar faces and did the whole big smile with the "Hi, how are you?!" as we worked our way to the bar. Finally, we secured beverages and headed to the patio to take in the amazing view. On the way, I overhead someone introducing their friend. The friend had the same name as my baby daughter, a fairly unusual name that is unisex. I stopped and said, "Oh, my gosh! My baby has the same name as you!" Totally-hot-guy-with-the-same-name-as-my-daughter looks at me, smiles and says, "Right on!" Um, hello, I'm a dork, I think to myself. Why did I have to say something as lame as that? I slinked off to a far corner of the patio, determined to get my game back on.

Matt caught up with me and handed me a drink. I was now double fisting my cocktails. I looked down into my two drinks and up at the party. Suddenly, I wanted nothing more than to go home. I left Matt chatting up a cute chick and looked around for Camille. She was nowhere to be found. My mom instinct took over. I texted Matt: "Can u take Camille home?" He responded: "Yes" I next texted Camille: "I'm out--Matt will give u ride." My job done, I wove my way through the throng. Waving at people I knew. Out past the huge swimming pool. Moving faster, past the cabana. Really fast, through the courtyard. Even faster through the Spanish archways, up the driveway, to the gate. It was after midnight and people were still coming into the party. The valet pulled up in my Traverse. I hopped in and instinctively glanced at the empty car seats in the second row. I headed down out of the hills and pointed the Traverse back in the direction of my new life confident that I had the right car to guide me-- no matter what life I wanted to have.

Friday, November 28, 2008

I Love Rick Astley

In my haze of recuperating from the STOMACH BUG FROM HELL yesterday, I had managed to haul my drained body to the family room to watch the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. I latched the baby gates and trapped Chip and Lulu in the room with me. This was going to be a family tradition! Chip and Lulu are babies and don't really focus on tv, so they puttered around with their toys and took turns attacking each other. I sprawled on the floor, semi-comatose, swilling Gatorade hoping to replenish my electrolytes.

Yet another inane puppet encrusted float came into position in front of Macy's, Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends. [Due to the fact that Chip only watches Barney, I have no knowledge of any other kid shows.] The puppets start their cute song when all of a sudden the sound screeches and the opening notes of Rick Astley's 1987 hit Never Gonna Give You Up started playing. I immediately perked up and witnessed the most awesome RickRoll ever! I sprung to my feet, my legs all jittery and achy. I scooped up Lulu and started dancing all over the family room. Sickness lifted away! Watch the RickRoll HERE

See? Wasn't that awesome? I love Rick Astley. I loved him back then. A guy who looks like Howdy Doody but sings like a huge black man. My dear, dear, late friend, Karen , gave me a poster of Rick, as a joke. I actually hung it up in my dorm room, partially obstructed by a heating pipe, as a joke--sort of. I respected Rick. I had wondered what he'd been up to lo these 20 or so years. So glad to see he's still got it together and pulled off the ultimate virtual to reality RickRoll on all of America. Maybe Rick and I could be friends. Wow, wouldn't that be something?

Thursday, November 27, 2008

A Day With No Turkey

Thanksgiving was cancelled today. Well, for us, as this is my blog. There was foreshadowing. At about noon on Monday, Chip said he felt sick. Shortly thereafter he barfed on Lulu. I gotta describe this barf: it was all over her little 10 month old head, like a cap. It dripped down her back. Chip is lying there with barf all over his shirt. Triage? Yes. I ran to the phone as my mother-in-law (MIL) is visiting and had just stepped out to the store. MIL came back and bathed Lulu while I cleaned up Chip and all the BARF. Even after bathing Lulu, both my MIL and I thought she still smelled like barf. Eeeeuw.

Thus the stage was set. This stomach bug has been on my mommy radar. My mommy sites, facebook friends, I knew it was about and it was ugly. The problem with a two year old...He doesn't tell you when he needs to BARF. So six sets of sheets, copious amounts of towels, two mattress pads later.....

4 ay-em yesterday it hit me. I'll spare you the details. Surfer Guy called into work that he'd be late. I was really freaking sick. MIL was busy doing laundry as Chip was continuing to ruin all manners of linens. Then about noon yesterday it hit Surfer Guy. The jig was up. I really don't remember much of the next 24 hours other than MIL saying she thinks we should postpone Thanksgiving. Luckily Lulu and MIL remained unaffected.

This morning we all emerged feeling mostly better and clearly through the worst of it. I'm still tired and drained, but it really was a 24 hr bug for Surfer Guy and myself. A 48 hr bug for Chip. Thanksgiving is still to come, the meal at least. For now I'm so very thankful that we made it through.