We had our first official family beach vacation earlier this week on Long Beach Island, New Jersey. Overall it was a nice time, great to get away and not be sucked in by my computer. There were some trying moments and general things we learned from the trip but I am glad we went. Originally, we were looking to rent a house for a week but it didn’t work out so we found a room at the Sea Spray Motel. It turned out to be more money but with the heated pool option, it was worth it.

We got there around 2:30ish and after a few minute wait, our room was ready. Once Sienna woke up from her afternoon nap, we jumped into the pool! It was nice to be able to get in right away without shivering from the cold water. For dinner, we went to Fred’s Beach Haven and while the food wasn’t terrible, we didn’t have a desire to get back there again. The evening was a little bit challenging as we were not used to being all together in one small room. Her pack and play fit nicely next to the bed and it took her about half an hour before she finally fell asleep while we quietly read our books on the bed. (I noticed that each night, she fell asleep at 8:30 no matter what time we put her down.)
Monday morning was the beach! (Of course, after having a delicious breakfast at The Chicken or the Egg where our faith in good dining on LBI has been restored) Besides a quick toe dip in the sands of Coney Island, this is Sienna’s first time on the beach. At first it seemed she did not like the sand but quickly took a liking to it. The water was COLD!!! I did not expect it to be so cold! So Yves and Sienna developed a quick game of “run away from the water” in between making sandcastles.

Beach Fun at LBI from Lisa on Vimeo.

So one of the things we learned not to do on vacation next time is change up Sienna’s routine. There were a few days before vacation where it was hard for us to get her to take her morning nap. I knew the time was going to come where her morning nap was going to end and thought it was now. So we decided to forego her morning nap and just put her down right after lunch a little earlier. It seemed to work out ok at first but then she just seemed to be more irritable later in the day. Another thing we learned is not to do too much. Monday and Tuesday we’d go to the beach in the morning and then the pool in the afternoon. I think that might be too much for her especially since we usually only have one outing on a regular day.
I had her pool seat on the side of the crib on top of the luggage rack and found her sleeping on it!

Lunch on Monday, we just walked over to the local deli, Black Dog Cafe where Yves got a delicious sandwich (we went back there again on Wednesday). Dinner, we decided to try “LBI’s best thin crust pizza” at O’Malley’s Pizza and Grille although I was skeptical about how good an Irish person can make a pizza. HAHA It was not bad! Yves thought it was okay but he has such high thin crust pizza standards!

Tuesday afternoon, we checked out the playground that was a block away from the hotel. They had some nice slides and there was no one there! It was nice to be able to go down the slide and not have to wait for the other kids to use it. Although Sienna did have to wait for her daddy to finish using the slide. HAHAlbislideblog.jpg
Too bad the sun was blinding when you come out of the slide! And of course we got some ice cream afterwards!
For dinner Tuesday night we went to Panzone’s for some pasta and discovered Sienna’s like for spaghetti! The food was pretty good even though the waiter screwed up my order.

Spaghetti! from Lisa on Vimeo.

Wednesday we had breakfast at Uncle Will’s pancake house. It was yummy! You can see what we got by the pictures and this time we learned not to order Sienna her own dish since she only takes a couple of bites from it!
After giving her her morning nap this time (!) we went back into the pool for the last time where we encountered admirers of Sienna. They were totally enamored by her and would not stop following her around the pool! It was cute at first but they were totally violating personal space and it was getting annoying. Their dad finally told them to ease off after we had to tell the girls to give us our space!
We decided to head back home after the pool on Wednesday instead of Thursday morning. We did feel a little cramped in the room but mostly because we haven’t gotten a good nights sleep since the bed was just horrible. For some reason, the mattress was higher in the middle so the sides were kind of sloped down. So we figured there wasn’t any point in staying another night since we were leaving early in the morning anyway.

Loco for Gocco!!

gocco1, originally uploaded by luluvision.

On the 9th, I took a Gocco class at Etsy labs with Carrie. Gocco is a little screenprinting machine from Japan and I’ve wanted one since college. Somehow I managed to always talk myself out of getting one. Then Gocco seemed to be all around me! Tammy’s friend Stephanie got one and made Tammy’s baby shower invites and Carrie had e-mailed me someone’s blog of gocco’d wedding invites (and it looks like lots of people do this!) Then I saw that Etsy labs were holding Gocco classes, I thought it would be fun to take a craft class and I’ve been meaning to check out Etsy labs for awhile.

Of course I started preparing my image earlier that morning. I had in mind to make ‘mom’ cards to give out to other moms to contact me for playdates. I definitely wanted an image of Sienna on it! Since Yves did not have access to a laser printer at the time, I had to get a photo copy because the image had to contain carbon.

The class was only 1.5 hours and it flew by! What fun it was!!! Had I given myself more time to prepare the image, I might have been more happy with it. But I noticed some tweaks I would have liked to make. Every Monday, Etsy has craft night and if you bring your own supplies (bulbs, screens, inks), you can use their gocco machine!

gocco2, originally uploaded by luluvision.


gocco3, originally uploaded by luluvision.


gocco4, originally uploaded by luluvision.


gocco5, originally uploaded by luluvision.


Ikea Red Hook

Last Monday was an overcast and muggy day so I decided we should go check out the new Ikea in Red Hook! It would give Sienna a chance to run around a little bit and have lunch in the same place! I also wanted to check out some table and chairs for her. The children’s furniture is so colorful! My only issue is that I would prefer to be able to get in and out of a chair on her own so she doesn’t end up toppling over like she does with the beach chair we got for her. I guess she is still a bit on the small side as all the chairs were a little too high for her. I know I just need to wait a couple of months and she’ll probably fit them fine! We had lunch at the Ikea restaurant and this is actually the first time that I’ve had their meatballs! They were quite tasty and such a bargain! Sienna’s kid’s meal was just $1.99! The fries were so yummy that I ended up eating all her fries but gave her some of my mashed potatoes. I also ended up buying the colorful plastic utensils and small bowls.
It was funny to have her eating a meatball on her own and see her people watching. It was really kid friendly there with some play areas all around the store and family bathrooms and stuff. Ikea Red Hook was a bit of a pain to get to only because they are doing construction on Hamilton Avenue right under the overpass. So I don’t know how often we would go.

People Watching in Ikea from Lisa on Vimeo.

Independence Day Dumplings!


For Independence Day, we decided to go into Chinatown for a dumpling lunch since it has been awhile. We went to our usual place right next door to the Chinatown Ice Cream Factory on Bayard Street and I can’t remember the name! The food wasn’t as good as it used to be but still tasty nonetheless. The train ride over was a bit of an adventure since Sienna wanted to explore the train but we didn’t really let her, much to her dismay!

We went to J&R first so Yves can pick up new headphones and walked through City Hall Park. Sienna liked the fountain.
After lunch we got ice cream next door (pretty expensive especially since it’s Chinatown!) and went over to the park.

Walking Down the Slide from Lisa on Vimeo.


More Grilling!

Sienna is ready for grilling!

Saturday we had a BBQ and we were ready to invite more people and have different foods to grill. I was actually concerned about inviting too many people and that actually worked against me because it was a low turnout due to everyone’s busy summer plans. But Richard came!! He brought along his boyfriend Billy and dog Casey, which Skippy took an instant liking to….all afternoon! Yup, looks like Skippy fell in love (or lust) and would not stop humping poor Casey, which confirms my belief that Skippy swings both ways. It got to the point where we had to separate Skippy several times!

Anyway, they also brought a wonderful fruit salad and sangria! Brenda came and brought ice cream sandwiches. I saved myself some trouble and bought pre-made beef burgers and chicken burgers. I was at this supermarket in a predominately Italian ‘hood and they had all sorts of pre-made burgers with stuff in them and kabobs and such. I could have easily gone crazy! I also bought hot dogs and made pasta salad. Joy, in true Joy fashion, showed up a couple of hours late with her lime marinated chicken, after we all ate! I even called her to make sure she didn’t get run over by a bus. Guess that is the mom in me now! (Me and Joy ended up cooking the chicken later on for a late night snack. Late for me cuz it was 9pm!) Even if the low turnout we had such a nice time and the weather was fabulous! Wonderful breezes and not humid.

Sienna such a party animal!


Friday was my birthday. If you don’t know how old I am, you don’t need to know. 🙂 My parents were taking me out for dim sum so Yves left work early to meet us in Sunset Park. We tried a new place on 65th street, where the building used to house a Saturn dealership! I think the name was East Garden. Overall, it wasn’t bad but I prefer the new place we went to for Mother’s day instead. Afterwards, we went back to the house and had strawberry birthday cake. YUM!

A dim sum family portrait
Sienna loved the don tat!



Last Wednesday, I met up with 2 moms (Dana/James and Ashley/Caroline from the Brooklyn Moms meetup) at the Prospect Park Zoo. Sienna hasn’t been there since last summer and in the baby bjorn so it was fun to see her reaction now. She was walking all over the place and started getting upset when I tried to prevent from going certain places, like closer to the kangaroos! This probably would have been an ideal place to bring the “leash.” She enjoyed the petting zoo area in the barn and was laughing when I was feeding the alpacas. I was trying to get her to feed them too but she got a little scared. Plus her little hands can only hold one or two morsels of the food so the animals weren’t interested in her offerings! LOL


Catch Up

Last Sunday my parents came over and we started cleaning out the garage. I can’t believe how much stuff we had in there! We threw away a lot of stuff but there is still more stuff to throw. Besides a dot matrix printer, an old PC and printer but a box of my old electronic games such as Speak and Spell, Simon, Fabulous Fred and Wildfire (as well as 2 of my old barbie dolls and a barbie doll photo studio!)! Sienna grabbed the Speak and Spell right away so we brought it upstairs and tried it out.


And here are some other misc. pictures from the past week.


And Tuesday I went to get my hair colored so we first had dim sum with my parents and then they took her to the park. Here is dad feeding Sienna with a chopstick!

Wearing Grandpa’s hat!

Meet Zack!

Last weekend we went to visit new parents Mark and Tammy. They are holding up very well despite the lack of sleep! Little Zack is adorable!! And so small! And so precious! We can barely remember when Sienna was that small. Life truly is a miracle. Sienna was well behaved around the baby and didn’t trash their not yet baby proofed apartment! I know the next time I see Zack, he is going to look different!