What's New? 2005-08-01

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What's New? 2005-08-01

 Sunday 14 August 2005
  Today we celebrate Lila's fourth birthday. Traditionally, it's at our house. Isaac penned a welcome note which he taped to our front gate: Welcome! Happy Birth Day Lila's Fun Party

Isaac's sign for Lila's b'day

Rose lords over the kitchen, with mother-in-law (left) and guest (right). She laid out quite a spread: the dishwasher is covered with treats, more is on the stove (behind Rose's arm).

kitchen scene

Other guests, including Dziadziu and Felicia, are in the eating nook. I was making pop after pot of coffee.

in the nook

The birthday girl with two-tier chocolate birthday cake in the background.

the birthday girl

The presents must be opened, preferably with ones peers, and with lots of noise and commentary.

opening gifts

Dziadziu and brother-in-law Adam discuss Dad's new digital camera, a 6 megapixel Casio.

discussing digital cameras

Rose's sister, Mindy, and her family. Baby Jessica is doing the infantryman's crawl, Matthew is cruising.

the malkins

More presents, more peers, more noise, more commentary.

opening more presents

Dziadziu's gift of a big pink bicycle is very much appreciated.

new bicycle

We wanted to return to Café Le Bon Gateau in the Castro to once again enjoy magician David Miller, so we herded the remaining guests out of the house and down the hill to arrive just in time. This birthday party just goes on and on.

magic show
 Saturday 13 August 2005

Today someone is old enough to get two vitamins at breakfast just like her big brother, something towards which she's been looking for a long, long time.

old enough for two vitamins

Family friend Gabriel Morales sends his greetings from his place in Miami, Florida. I love that our kids are growing up in a world of VoIP and video-phones. They understand that night and day are shifted because Gabriel is several time zones away. A few nights ago I was chatting with Gabriel when Lila came in with her bedtime books. Gabriel watched over our shoulders as she climbed into my lap; I read the book to both of them. She was tickled that someone so far away could get a bedtime reading so easily. (I'm not sure who was yawning more, Lila or Gabriel.)

Gabriel says hello

It's time for Ed's Huckleberry Hike (also mentioned in 1998 and 2000). That's Ed at left, in the blue shirt.

setting up ice cream makers

Isaac is the engine; Ed adds salt and ice to chill the cream. These old-fashioned ice cream makers aren't easy to turn, by the way.

Isaac cranking salt and ice

What big brother can do little sister says she can do too. So here I am, spotting Lila whilst she makes another batch. She just doesn't give up.

Lila cranks too

Isaac explains how the salt and ice get extra cold.

Isaac perseveres

In the meantime, Rose discovers a baby and helps to take care of it while its twin is looked after.

Rose found a baby
 Friday 12 August 2005
  Ed, who leads the Huckleberry Hick (come back tomorrow for details) is the one responsible for our kids being exposed to German polka. The kids never forget. When I put the kids' favorite polka song - Zosia - loudly through the Harmon Kardon speakers attached to the PowerBook I hear:

Lila: The computer is making the plants outside dance. They're dancing the polka together.


We head out to NoName Sushi on Church Street. I'm struck by some of the grafitti in the bathroom.

bathroom grafitti

bathroom grafitti

bathroom grafitti
 Wednesday 10 August 2005
  Chiam Vital, a long-time friend of Rose's, invites us to A La Turka (in the Tenderloin) for lunch. We get a table at the back of the restaurant...

A La Turca

... here's the view of our party (back, left) and the kitchen and display cases. The food looks so good. It's very hard deciding what to get. We share several things, and they're all good. We will return!

A La Turca

That evening Isaac, umm, horses around with the lettuce in his veggie-burger.

Isaac's dinner veggieburger
 Sunday 7 August 2005
  Isaac and Rose are out and about, shopping this evening. Lila has been feeling a bit under the weather, but perks up after dinner, when she sells me on the idea of heading out to the Castro for dessert(s). Her first request is a visit to Hot Cookie, for an M&M-encrusted chocolate chip cookie. That's her:

Hot Cookie

Our next stop is the Gelateria Naia, open for less than twenty-four hours. We used to make a special stop at their Berkeley branch on our BART days; now we have one a few hundred feet from the house. Lila enjoys sampling a good number of flavors.

Gelateria Naia

On the way back home, after crossing Castro Street, we come by Café Le Bon Gateau, from which I usually telecommute. What's that treasure chest doing in the window, in place of the table at which I usually sit?

It's the first performance here by magician David Miller, which hasn't yet started. We settle in. Isaac and Rose race from the completion of their chores and arrive just as the show starts. It's not a show for kids, but they love it all. Missing the patter about Lucrezia Borgia doesn't bother them.

David Miler Magic

At 21:00 I thought the kids would be ready for bed, but I was wrong. They were ready for some Escape From New York pizza, a few stores away. A few slices, a stroll up the hill, and we are soooooo ready for bed.

Escape From New York pizza
 Saturday 6 August 2005
  Recently Isaac bought a Crayola Crayon Maker machine, which has provided him with unbeliavable amounts of pleasure. We're all amazed. He also likes being a tour guide for his little sister, giving Lila a bit of patter as they recycle bits of used crayons and new wax. He's pointing to yesterday's batch; today's seems to be much lighter than what you see in his hand.

Isaac's crayon maker
 Friday 5 August 2005
  Lately I've been MetroBlogging San Francisco, today we had a get-together for our virtual band of scriveners. We met at the House of Shields bar, on New Montgomery. This is the scene at the bar, where the jazz band is much too loud for any conversation.

sf.metblogs.com get-together

We head outside, where it's a geek-fest, what with PDAs, high-definition videocameras, Digital Cameras and cell phones and wristwatches...

sf.metblogs.com get-together

Hungry, we head down the street to the Q-Cup Crêpery, where the chicken kari age (lightly fried) is absolutely delicious!

sf.metblogs.com get-together
 Thursday 4 August 2005
  Lila: Plants fell. Rocks tumbled. Grass plants between them. (As she's riding her trike around the Randall Museum / Corona Heights Park area.)

Lila: Wheee, this is fun, she muttered. (As she's riding down the hill on her tricycle, all by herself.)

Reading time in the afternoon, with Lila pulling up a folding chair and doing the sports fan pose. (Yes, the camera is blurry. A bit of dust is interfering with the focus mechanism.)

reading time
 Wednesday 3 August 2005
  Today is free day, and so we - and a bunch of friends - head out towards the ocean, to the San Francisco Zoo. Here's the main entrance:

San Francisco Zoo entrance

This is the support building for the newly-built African Savanna display. The gardens are delightful, soothing to the soul. Wild and tamed at the same time.

San Francisco Zoo savanna bldg

A panoramic view from the viewing area in the middle of the savannah (as I was taught to spell it).

San Francisco Zoo savanna

Here's my attempt to get a nifty desktop picture: zebra in the moment.

San Francisco Zoo zebra

Here's one of the meerkat on setry duty. I love watching their colonies in action.

San Francisco Zoo meerkat

Here's the family enjoying the meerkats: Lila (climbing), Isaac (perched), Opa Emil (background), Rose (foreground).

Opa Emil + the family
 Monday 1 August 2005
  For some bizarre reason the not-for-profit - Juma Ventures - that was doing the Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream parlor in the Castro went away. Better for us, a good gelateria is taking its place. We used to make a point of visiting the Gelateria Naia in Berkeley whenever we BARTed around; now we have one a few hundred feet from our place.

Here are the newly-arrived freezers, being loaded from the truck

Naia gelato freezer arrives on Castro St.

Here's the family running into Zante Pizza & Indian Food, near the southern edge of San Francisco.

Zante Pizza awning

A panoramic view of the kitchen side of things...

Zante Pizza kitchen side

...and another of the dining area.

Zante Pizza dining side

Lila shows off her Burning Man Kidsville tattoo, which is having a longer ride on her than we would have expected: this is about a week or so.

Lila's Burning Man tattoo

My candy-holic daughter's real love at Zante (which is the name of a town, rather than of a person, so it's never properly called Zante's) is the fennel candy, which she would happy down by the pound. She has a ritual of traipsing from the food to the candy (on the counter by the cash register), pulling over a bar stool, climbing up, getting a palm-full, and coming back to eat the candy with the pizza.

Lila & fennel candy

We like the staff of Zante, and they're seemingly fond of us. Here the kids help in smashing down the cardboard boxes whilst the others peel the eggplants they'd been cooking as we arrived. Isaac was asked to help work the veggies, but the lure of stomping on cardboard was too much of a lure for him.

Zante Pizza crushing boxes, making eggplant

A late lunch / early dinner done, we head over to the near-by Mitchell's Ice Cream. Try the mango, the macapuno, and Isaac's favorite, the ube.

Michell's Ice Cream

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