Category: Travel

Aline Visits {2014}

Last summer, my sweet aunt Aline came to visit us from Israel.

I blogged about our Vegas trip, but never got a chance to post about the fun time we had in Cali.

As soon as my aunt landed she was on a mission to find her favorite celebrity, Kiefer Sutherland. We didn’t spot him in the airport, but did I take her to see his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.  IMG_0502

We walked around some more. IMG_0500Then we made our way to the Grove for lunch and some window shopping.IMG_0542 IMG_0546Back home Sarah wanted to play hair dresser with Aline. IMG_0554 IMG_0558The next day we went to see the Hollywood letters. IMG_0582  IMG_0588Then we ended our afternoon with a walk on Rodeo and ice cream at Sprinkles.IMG_0597 Thank you Aline for coming to visit us! Please come back again soon!!

Florida Vacation {2014}

Every year Sarah and I fly to Florida to visit my parents, sisters, grandparents, uncles, aunts, cousins and many other family members that still live there. I also have childhood friends that I meet up with when I visit.

I always have a long list of things to do and people to see.

However, this trip was a bit different. We had about 6 big occasions to attend. First my baby sister was graduating from college. Then my cousin was getting married. We also celebrated Chanukah somewhere in between. Throw in there toddler naps and much needed time for me to relax while pregnant.

Let’s just say we were busy, like really busy.

Here is a snapshot of week 1:IMG_3902IMG_0617IMG_3949IMG_3966IMG_4076IMG_4093IMG_4131

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Week 2:IMG_4138IMG_4150IMG_4165IMG_4259IMG_4285IMG_4296IMG_4299IMG_4349IMG_433610365865_10100910339235005_2410281480235458612_nIMG_4356We had so much fun in Florida! Busy, but lot’s of fun. As usual I didn’t get to see everyone I wanted to and do everything I wanted to do, but I always leave Florida with a huge smile on my face and this time Sarah joined me.IMG_4381

Until next year…

Tiffany’s Wedding Week: The Wedding

After a week of hair, make up, heels and lot’s of parties, like the Hinna and Mikavh, my baby cousin, Tiffany got married!! Not only was this a special occasion for our family, but it was also Sarah’s first time as a flower girl.

The bride and her flower girl.

IMG_4217Instead of the traditional flower basket, Tiffany wanted Sarah to hold a sign that read, “Here comes your bride”. 10395831_10152944537801257_1804078420204475891_nSarah loved the honor and couldn’t wait to walk down the aisle.

Sarah got all dressed up for the special occasion. She had her hair curled at my mom’s salon and even got to wear red lipstick!

IMG_4219She loved it!

My cousins daughter, Daniella also walked down the aisle with Sarah. Here are the girls having a dance party before they head down the aisle. IMG_4220IMG_4221They were so cute together! IMG_4227My sister was also part of the bridal party. Here is my sister and Sarah.IMG_4282Trying to keep two toddlers in line while everyone was starting to make their way down the aisle was quite a challenge. IMG_4228They just wanted to dance and move around. After the last couple left the room I walked out with both girls and walked them to their starting point. They both stood their for a minute as everyone was staring at the two cute girls. It looked like a great time for the photographer to get some good shots. Unfortunately, my cousin has not yet received her wedding photos. The following pictures were taken with friends and family members phone. IMG_427610176127_10205527151007508_7865141323379732528_nThey both made their way down the aisle and went to their chairs. I quickly ran up the side to meet Sarah.

We watched as the bride and groom walked down the aisle into the chupah.IMG_4231IMG_4236Not even 5 minutes into the ceremony Sarah said she needed to pee. So we took a couple of pictures and headed back to the bridal room.IMG_4238I tried watching the ceremony from the room, but Sarah wanted to play.IMG_4242Finally inside the gorgeous ballroom!IMG_4256Sarah had so much fun!IMG_4248IMG_4246She was a little dancing queen. I however was exhausted. After a week of celebrations that included many salon trips and multiple nights in stilettos, I was done. I sat the majority of the night and took pictures of Sarah enjoying herself.

IMG_4251IMG_4252Then came the delicious dessert table! Yum was I in heaven!!IMG_4268My cousins and I are very close. We grew up together so it’s always fun when we are able to share in each others special occasions. One of my favorite pictures, it this picture of all of my cousins (on my dad’s side) with our grandpa. The cousins

“Cousins are childhood playmates who grow up to be forever friends.” – Anonymous

Mazal tov Tiffany and Oren! Wishing you a lifetime of happiness!!

Tiffany’s Wedding Week: Mikvah Party

Before heading down the aisle most Jewish brides have the custom to go to the Mikvah.

A mikvah is a body of water where a woman purifies her self prior to getting married. A mikvah is also used to cleanse your body after your monthly cycle. You can read more about it here.

As a Sephardic Jew we take it one step further and have a Mikvah Party.  

I also had my own mikvah party prior to getting married.

IMG_3431 - groupTo continue Tiffany’s Wedding Week of fun we headed to the Mikvah to help Tiffany celebrate. IMG_4121IMG_4123

Tiffany’s mom, sisters, aunts and cousins.

IMG_4280 - groupAfter dipping in the Mikvah, Tiffany back out to her family and guests. We through candy and chocolate at her as a sign of a sweet future. Sarah was our special helper and picked up all the sweet treats.IMG_4129Living on the west coast I miss out a lot on family activates so it means a lot when I can participate in such special occasions.

Tiffany’s Wedding Week: Hinna

While in Florida, my family and I attended my cousin, Tiffany’s Hinna party.

IMG_4064A Hinna is a Moroccan style party before the wedding. It’s quite a party! From beautiful colors to Moroccan music. It’s a non-stop party for the bride and groom’s family and friends. Here is the tent where the bride and groom will later sit.

IMG_410610865942_10152915320678749_4916974595271489719_o(pictures are from my uncle’s company, Amazing Events.)

The table decoration were gorgeous as well!

IMG_4058Close family members and the bridal party dress in bright colored cafatn’s during a special ceremony. We also wore gold chain headwraps on our heads that I bought from Claire’s. Here are my mom, sisters and Sarah.

IMG_4076They didn’t have a caftan in Sarah’s size so we improvised and wrapped a wrap that had gold coins.

IMG_4086Me and my Sarah.IMG_4081Here is the beautiful bride and groom in their carriers. To the right is a picture of them with their Henna. More about it here. 10300265_10152944548956257_5409277539686983050_nSarah and I got some henna too.

IMG_4087My sister, Oshrat and I with our hennas.IMG_4089Sarah had so much fun! She loved playing in the “house” with her cousin Daniella. IMG_4042IMG_4044I’ll blog about the wedding in the next few days…

Oshrat’s Visit {2014}

I love it when my family comes to visit!

Last month my sister, Oshrat came to visit.

It’s so fun when my sister comes to visit! We get to do a whole bunch of things I wouldn’t normally do.

Here are some of the highlights:

While Sarah was at school one morning we went out for breakfast, got mani’s and just hung out.

breakfast

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Later that day I took her to my mommy group event, Halloween Pictures.

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For dinner we invited my sister’s high school friend (who lives nearby) and made this scrumptious dinner.

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The next evening we took a ceramic painting class. We both picked out a chip and dip plate to paint.

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The following day we headed to the Pumpkin Patch.

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Before dropping her off at the airport, Oshrat and I went to our first LA Galaxy game. We sat in the busy LARS section, but had lot’s of fun! I even caught a scarf!

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Thank you Oshrat for all the fun memories! I hope you had as much fun as we did. Love you!

Vegas {2014}

Being a stay at home mom I don’t get a lot of time to myself. So for the past few years, I’ve gone away for a day or two during the summer.

The first year my sister and I went on a sisters only trip to Palm Springs.

The following year a few of my mama friends and I went on a girls trip to Manhattan Beach.

This year I met up with my mom and aunt for a girls trip to Vegas!!
IMG_0818Even though it was a different Vegas experience for me, I had lots of fun! I had all these fantasizes before we left that I would lay poolside with a drink, wake up late and even go to sleep late. None of that happened, but that’s ok. Instead I got to spend time with two amazing women who I love and adore.

I also took a 45 minute flight to Vegas. In the past we’ve driven to Vegas or flown to Vegas from Florida. That was quick and easy!

I was kid free for 3 days! It was nice to be responsible for only me. I ate when I was hungry, went to the bathroom uninterrupted and focused when speaking to adults. It was great! Although I missed my Sarah and hubby when I got back. However I didn’t miss all the home responsibilities!! PS Thanks to my hubby and MIL for watching Sarah while I was gone.

I also got to sit in the airport while we waited to board (something I don’t do when flying with Sarah).

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Although it was sweltering hot most of the time we still did everything we had planned to do.

The first day was spent traveling to Vegas and walking around our hotel, Luxor. I checked out the Bodies exhibit while my aunt went to the Titanic exhibit.

Since I probably wont be able to visit the birth place of all FOUR of my grandparents any time in the near future I was really excited to check out this Egyptian themed hotel.

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The second day started out really early. Our alarm was set for 5:30 am so we could take the 6am shuttle for our day of adventures. Both my mom and aunt organized a trip for us to visit the Hoover Dam and The Grand Canyon. I’ve always wanted to see both, but I had no idea how far each destination would be. It took us an hour to get to the Hoover Dam and then another 4 hours to reach the Grand Canyon in Arizona.

The Hoover Dam was really cool! We drove over the bridge where we went from Nevada to Arizona.

picstitchIt wasn’t like you see in the movies, but it was cool to be in two states at the same time.

After a few pictures, our shuttle parked on the Arizona side so that we could see this beautiful structure.

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We stopped many times through out the trip to eat, use the bathroom and to get fuel. One of our rest stops was Route 66. Some of you might know it as the most famous road in America, originally ran from Chicago, Illinois, through Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona before ending at Santa Monica, California. As a mom of a 3 year old toddler, all I could think about was the scene in one of Sarah’s favorite movies, Cars! I imagined her jumping up and down with excitement as she saw where Mater and Lighting were from. After visiting the gift shop I bought her a few souvenirs.

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The final stop for the day was the Grand Canyon. I’ve seen the pictures and I’ve watched the educational movies in school, but walking towards the rail to view the enormous mountain was absolutely breathtaking! The colors, the size and the stillness was all so beautiful. To think g-d and water created this was super crazy! After we took a few pictures we walked around some more.

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I kept finding myself just starring. I silently stood there and took it all in. I was so happy to be there. Just standing there, taking it all in.

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A few minutes later it started to rain. We headed for shelter and put on our ponchos (given by the tour guide) and continued to walk around some more.

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It rained on and off for a few more minutes. After it stopped raining the canyon looked even more picturesque! We enjoyed our view for a little longer and then headed back to our shuttle.

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The drive back was long. Less stops, more rain and a super crazy wind storm.

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We finally got dropped off at our hotel around 9pm. We headed to our room changed and made our way to view the strip at night.

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After a few minutes on the strip and some cranky moments we headed back to our room for some much needed sleep.

The third and final day started with a delicious breakfast at our hotel cafe. I had this delicious Strawberry Shortcake French Toast with strawberry purée. Yum!!

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After breakfast we headed to the strip again. We walked through the hotels, saw some interesting characters including Sarah’s favorite Minions, met Johnny Depp, bought some loose tea and ate lunch.

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To give my aunt the full strip experience, we walked from the Luxor hotel ALL THE WAY to the Wynn hotel. If you know anything about Vegas you know how far that is.  Not only did we walk 4 miles in 109 degree heat, we walked back another 4 miles to get back to our hotel!! Needless to say our legs and backs were in a lot of pain when we arrived at the hotel. Therefore we just sat for a full hour and enjoyed our last drink together.

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Thank you Aline and mama for such a great trip! I might have been cranky at times, but know that I really enjoyed spending 3 uninterrupted days with you. Thank you for the adventures! Love you!!

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