June, 2013 Archive

Our House

by Bryan Friedman in Daddy's Corner

You may have noticed that Born Friedman has been sort of quiet for a while. This is mainly because we’ve been *super* busy with selling our house, buying a new one, and getting ready for the move. Well, tonight is our last night in our Simi Valley place and tomorrow night we go to sleep in our new house across town in Newbury Park (or Thousand Oaks, depending on who you ask).

I’ve been pretty good about not getting too emotional with everything so far, but it’s kind of all hitting me now. I’ve been in this house nine years, so there are a lot of memories here — especially in the last five years with Alison (and Princeton), and even more so in the past two with Madelyn.

So while I don’t have time to write a whole long post to give a proper tribute to what has been a great place to live for nearly a third of my life, I thought I’d at least end our run here on Country Club Drive with a retrospective list of past posts featuring our Wood Ranch palace prominently…and this is just in the past two-and-a-half years!

Princeton’s Welcome Home Bath

Alison Decides on Nursery Room Paint Colors

Bryan Adds Storage Units to Garage

Madelyn’s Nursery in Detail

All of Madelyn’s “Monthiversaries” in the Original Nursery

Happy New Year 2012 from Madelyn’s Nursery

Chanukah at the House

Princeton and Madelyn Bond All Over the House

Bryan Makes Valentine’s Dinner

Passover Seder at the House

Mother’s Day at the House and Pool

Madelyn Stands All Over the House

Mommy Kills a Spider in Madelyn’s Room

Madelyn Watches Sesame Street

Madelyn’s First Birthday Party at the Park

We List the House for Sale

She sure was a good house...

She sure was a good house…

  1. Ryan P
    7/1/2013 12:15 AM

    Yes, she certainly was a good house. I spent only 3 years there myself, but definately some fond memories. I’m sure she will make the next family just as happy as she made us all.

Live and In the Fur

It was almost like a scene out of a Beatles documentary: pop culture icons performing for a crowd of screaming, hysterical fans.

Except instead of Paul and the gang, it was Elmo and the gang. And the screaming was out of sheer excitement, hunger, doodie diapers, and overdue naps. But still! Lots of screaming ensued. Madelyn was no exception.

We took Madelyn to see “Sesame Street Live” and I have to admit, I was just as excited as she was, if not more.


We bought our tickets months ago and spared no expense. For a pretty penny, I got the VIP package that entitled us to front row seats AND a meet and greet with Elmo “and friends TBD” before the show. Hey, I really love my kid (read: I’m a sucker). And at $80 a seat (one of which she hardly sat in… that was some expensive floor she stood on), I had high hopes that this would be the best day of Madelyn’s life. Ever.

Don’t get me wrong. Hope does not equal expectation. I actually had NO expectations of how the morning at the show would go. I just hoped it would blow her mind, and I think it did, but not in the way that grown ups react.

When we first arrived at the theater at 9:30 a.m., we were escorted to a private conference room where a small group — maybe 12 other families/suckers?? — gathered to get the pre-meet and greet instructions from Elmo’s detail team: no sticky hands, Elmo doesn’t talk so he can “save his voice for the show,” and a warning to the kidlets that the characters they see on TV will be GIANT. Then, in sauntered in Elmo and friends/one friend, Ernie, and they took their seat a la Santa and the Easter Bunny so families could shove their children on them one by one for photo opportunities.

Madelyn saw them come in and she gasped in shock. “WHAT?! They jumped out of my TV?” Then she got excited. Then she saw the two other families ahead of us get to meet Elmo and she wanted in on that RIGHT. NOW. She did not understand the concept of waiting for a turn (she’s only 21 months, people!) and threw a fit just before it actually was her turn. Yes, we were THOSE people. Ugh. So embarrassing. Then, nanoseconds later, it really WAS her turn, but she was too pissed off from the nanoseconds prior to really soak it up/appreciate/love me forever.

So, there she is, meeting her American idols and seeing Elmo live in the fur, and she has her damn fingers in her mouth as she recovers from a tantrum.




I did notice that all day, she had her fingers in her mouth, which she never does, and I decided it was due to nerves and overstimulation. So basically, “Sesame Street Live” was three hours of $240 emotional and mental abuse.

It was really awkward how overcome with emotion Madelyn was — it was like a glimpse into teenage-hood which was, like, really scary — and when things get awkward, I talk a lot. So I leaned over to Elmo and said, “Sorry about my crying kid. I’m sure you’re used to it, but still.” And he didn’t say anything (because, remember, he was “saving his voice for the show”), so when people, or life-size non-puppeted puppets, don’t respond to me, I keep talking. So I added, “Great job, by the way! I’ve been in your fur before. I totally get it.” I think that probably sounded really creepy, but it was an attempt to bond. You know, mascot to mascot. Life lesson: never assume other furry characters know about your furry past.

After she met real, live, life-size Elmo and Ernie, we went downstairs to where the general public/non-suckers were gathering to play with character cut outs that make noise and a mini pre-show with the characters. Madelyn continued to be in awe and tried to figure out exactly what was happening.

It was fun watching her prance from fake character to fake character and recognize them. She squealed in delight and totally didn’t even care when an older boy pushed her out of the way so he could get in on some cardboard Elmo love. Kids. Psshhh.





About 45 minutes later, it was show time!

I have to admit, I choked up a little bit upon entering the house of the theater. This was Madelyn’s first show — a musical, too! — and I hope it’ll be the first of many that captivate and enthrall her. I plan on enjoying many more theater experiences with her and wouldn’t argue at all if she wanted to join the ranks of her parents to participate on stage, too!

She sat in her seat for the opening number and that’s pretty much it. It was actually funny to see her try to stay put on the flip-up seat because she was pretty light and it didn’t lay 100% flat. After the opening number — which she thoroughly enjoyed in awe — she either danced in the aisle of our row, sat on our laps, or had a meltdown (only 2.5 meltdowns!) because we couldn’t get her water bottle or a snack out fast enough from the bag.




I also almost got sent to theater patron jail as I took video of Madelyn enjoying the show. Apparently, you can’t take video of your toddler having a milestone moment, and the senior citizen usher who takes her volunteer job very seriously waved her naughty finger at me and mouthed “NO VIDEO,” a charade that was performed with such passion that I thought she might throw her walker at me. Sorry, Usher Lady.

While Madelyn didn’t wrap her arms around me, snuggle up, and utter the words, “Thank you for the most magical day of my life, beautiful Mother!” I would say that the show experience was a success. I highly recommend “Sesame Street Live” to every family with kids who love those adorable characters and iconic songs. It was a really great show and I was thoroughly entertained, so I don’t really care if my toddler, a member of the target audience, swooned or not; I thought it was terrific. Standing O fo sho. I would totally take M again and I think she’ll love it even more when she’s a smidge older.

So thankful to have had this experience with my little lovebug!

  1. Mimi
    6/5/2013 11:40 PM

    I love these pictures & the video. What a great 1st musical theatre experience for Madelyn. She looked like she thoroughly enjoyed the show. Another fun milestone memory! Before you know it, Madelyn will be sitting in a theatre in the Great White Way—what show will it be?!