Monday, January 19, 2015

Free Admission to LACMA Today for Martin Luther King Jr. Day

"I Had a Dream" by Edward Biberman at LACMA (Photo credit: Instagram/lacma -- @danielleroberta)
In honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day today, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art -- aka LACMA -- is offering visitors free admission.

As part of its Free Holiday Monday program, sponsored by Target, the museum invites families to come by and check out its exhibits, particularly the newly opened exhibition "Faces of America: LACMA Collects," featuring the above painting of the late MLK Jr. by Edward Biberman.

Parents can even get timed tickets for their kiddos to visit the Boone Children's Gallery. The timed tickets are for 30 minutes and are available on a first-come, first-served basis.

LACMA is open today from 11 a.m.-5 p.m.

Enjoy your holiday!

5905 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90036

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Coming Attraction: 'Odd Squad' Saves the World + Twitter Party

It's time for Agents Otto and Olive to save the world, and kids are going to love it!

On Monday, January 19, be sure to tune in to "Odd Squad" on PBS Kids for a special event from the math-tastic show. "Odd Squad Saves the World" will feature an hour-long episode with four different stories. The special event also kicks off a week of new episodes.

Included in the special will be:

"Rise of the Hydraclops" -- In order to save the world, Agents Olive and Otto must find a treasure chest that Otto buried.

CC, Will and I were able to catch a sneak peek of the episode, and both of them squealed with delight when they saw the Hydraclops emerging from the ocean. Definitely a fun story line!

"Dance Like Nobody's Watching" -- When the alarm system at Headquarters is triggered, Olive, Otto, Ms. O and Oscar must avoid a series of booby traps so that they can turn it off.

"Recipe for Disaster" -- Otto and Olive explain to Ms. O how a case went wrong, each in their own way.

"O Is Not for Old" -- The "Odd Squad" agents throw a surprise party for Ms. O.

Included in our sneak peek package was a couple of Odd Squad T-shirts that are brilliantly designed to look like suits worn by agents. CC couldn't wait to put hers on -- and, of course, I had to tweet it out.

So cute!

And if you're free on Thursday, January 15 from 10 a.m.-11 a.m. PT, be sure to join the "Odd Squad Saves the World" Twitter party. The show's creators, Tim McKeon and Adam Peltzman, plus series producer Paul Siefken of The Fred Rogers Company will tweet with you about "odd" tips and tricks to save the day for your fam.

Use #OddSquadPBS to join the conversation!


Friday, January 2, 2015

Coming Attraction: 'Downton Abbey' Season 5 Premiere on PBS #DowntonPBS

While I'm definitely more of a coffee person, I'll be raising a teacup today in anticipation of the "Downton Abbey" season 5 premiere on Masterpiece on PBS!

We left season 4 with Carson and Mrs. Hughes looking out into that great ocean while *gasp* holding hands! And which man will Lady Mary choose?

And where exactly does George Clooney fit into this season?

We'll find out on Sunday, January 4 (9 p.m. PT), when season 5 kicks off. It's been way too long!

If you need a quick refresher on last season, head over to PBS to "binge watch" before the premiere.


Tom Branson (Allen Leech) and Lady Mary (Michelle Dockery) get serious on "Downton Abbey." (Photo courtesy of (c) Nick Briggs/Carnival Film & Television)

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy 2015!

Ian took this great pic of CC, and his mom added the New Year's message! Have a good one!
Happy 2015!

Hope you had a wonderful night last night. Did you watch fireworks? The ball drop?

We've been cozying up at home, because we're all a little under the weather after a trip to Las Vegas earlier this week. (More on that later!) So, basically, we've been taking it easy. But, mulled wine has been on the menu!

I know how crazy the holidays can get -- I'm still reeling from how busy December was for us -- and that can mean missing out on some cool SoCal activities.

Here's a list of fun, family-friendly things to do in and around L.A. in case you missed them while you were wrapping presents and planning family trips:

* Holidays at Disneyland (through January 6)

* Grinchmas at Universal Studios Hollywood (through January 4)

* L.A. Zoo Lights (through January 4)

* The Chill at the Queen Mary (through January 11)

* "Sleeping Beauty and Her Winter Knight" at the Pasadena Playhouse (through January 4)


Wednesday, December 31, 2014

So Long, 2014!

CC and Will with Santa Claus
I hope everyone had a very Merry Christmas and happy holidays!

It's always a little jarring when the year -- any year -- comes to an end. While thinking about resolutions for 2015 -- spending more time with family, more time with friends, more time going for much-needed walks -- I also want to take in the wonderful year that was 2014.

We did some amazing things, and I know you did, too. Today's a good day to appreciate those amazing times before we forge ahead to make more memories.

Here are a few of our adventures this year:

Chilling out at The Queen Mary

Greeking Out at The Wallis

Heading to Bob Baker's Marionette Theater (Rest in Peace, Bob Baker, who passed away this year.)

A Day the Huntington

Visiting the Big Apple with the Kiddos

Disneyland for the Holidays

And while we had more than our fair share of fun times, we also had to deal with the heartbreak of losing Sassy, our more-than-patient, loving tuxedo cat. She will always be missed.

One last thing I wanted to share was CC's letter to Santa. When I saw it, it made me tear up and remember that it's the meaningful things -- not the presents -- that make Christmas and the holidays so special.

CC's letter to Santa
Hope your 2015 is amazing!

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

The 55th Annual L.A. County Holiday Celebration Kicks Off Today!

Merry Christmas Eve!

The amazing L.A. County Holiday Celebration -- a free Los Angeles tradition -- kicks off this afternoon at 3 p.m. at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion.

It's first come, first served, so grab some lunch and head downtown in order to get your free tickets. Entertainment in the Music Center plaza begins at noon.

CC and I usually catch rehearsals, which are amazing, although sadly we didn't make it this year. Check out previous years' rehearsals here!

If you can't make it downtown, be sure to tune in to the more than 20 music groups, choirs and dance companies on PBS SoCal! You can watch it live or during repeat broadcasts at 9 p.m. tonight and tomorrow at midnight and noon.

Happy holidays!

55th Annual L.A. County Holiday Celebration 
Wednesday, Dec. 24 (3 p.m.-6 p.m.)

Dorothy Chandler Pavilion at the Music Center
135 N. Grand Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90012

Tickets: Free

Monday, December 22, 2014

Grinchmas Arrives at Universal Studios Hollywood

Ian's mom joins us at Universal Studios Hollywood for the "Grinchmas" kick-off!
Universal Studios Hollywood kicked off its annual "Grinchmas" shenanigans earlier this month, complete with Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, the Whos from Whoville and the green Grinch himself.

The celebration continues daily at the park daily through January 4 and features live musical sets from Martha May Who-vier and the Who Dolls, as well as boy band the Wholiday Singers.

Mayor Eric Garcetti joins the Grinch and friends at Grinchmas.
Grinchmas visitors can also decorate their own ornaments and gingerbread cookies, and participate in the "Grow Your Hearts 3 Sizes" campaign by filling out a postcard listing their good deeds and mailing it to the Grinch. In return, Random House Children's Books, the publishers of Dr. Seuss's "How the Grinch Stole Christmas!" will pay it forward by donating a book to a child in need through First Book on behalf of the sender.

How amazing is that?!

And don't forget about the amazing 60-foot tree!

Grinchmas Tree
With a backdrop of sparkling fireworks and a snow-capped Whoville scene, the Grinchmas tree literally lit up the night as the celebration got off to a colorfully animated start.

New Year's Eve News

And if you and the fam are looking for something to do on New Year's Eve, Universal CityWalk will be hosting "New Year's Eve Movie Night" at CityWalk AMC Theatres. The event will feature five iconic Universal Pictures films: "Jurassic Park," "Back to the Future," "E.T. The Extra Terrestrial" and a double feature of "Dracula" and "Frankenstein." There will also be a DJ dance party and all the popcorn you can eat. (Tickets are $25 for adults, $15 for kids. More info here!)

Universal Studios Hollywood Grinchmas
100 Universal City Plaza
Universal City, CA 91608
Through January 4
Tickets: $92 for ages 3+ (see more options here)


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