STORIES

BROOKLYN BOTANIC GARDEN IN CROWN HEIGHTS KNOWS HOW TO THROW ONE HECK OF A FROLIC!

It was lots of  skipping, jumping, frolicking and dancing with the  Mark Lamb Dance company amongst real life  butterflies and Spring flowers this past weekend if  you were in Brooklyn  and  experienced the  Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s FROLIC festival and  grand opening of  its  new  Discovery Garden.

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Talk about a whale of a good time! My kids and I have not had this much fun discovering, smelling, touching  and cavorting through the many gardens within the Garden as we did on Saturday. What a thrill!  Making this Frolic even more special was the numerous activities and events  planned around the new Discovery Garden’s grand opening  located  just inside of the Flatbush Avenue entrance.

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The new Discovery Garden is a child’s outdoor dream of discovery —-designed by the award-winning firm Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates.  It encourages children to touch, examine  and explore nature through hands-on experiences. From toddler to adult  one can investigate plants and animals to uncover their mysteries or learn about the Garden  and plant wildlife at many of the  fun  hand-on exhibits  while also exploring the  meadow,  marsh, or  the woodlands habitats throughout the Gardens.

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Activities across  the Garden that kept the kids excited included  crafting their own butterfly  antennae,  going on a  wondrous sonic scavenger hunt with stops in Brazil, India,  Indonesia, West Africa  and Australia. We then  pranced across   the  Cherry Esplanade and bumped into all sorts of  out-of-this-world  larger than life  moths and dragonflies  all members of  a clutch of fantastical creatures courtesy of Ralph Lee’s Mettawee River Theater Company who seamlessly cavorted  amongst the Garden goers  and through the  bare cherry blossom trees and pathways.  The  excitement  and looks of awe on people’s faces was addicting..

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Dixieland Jazz by the Shinbone Alley Stilt Band
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Salieu Suso play the West African Kora
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The kids encounter a cool unearthly being from Mettawee River Theater Company
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A fun creatures encounter
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In awe of this creature
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My favorite encounter witha creature courtesy of the Mettawee River Theater Company
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The only short break -less than 5 minutes— the kids took
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This giant puppet creature lead the parade through the Botanic Garden

 

Go visit The Brooklyn Botanical Garden and check out the Discovery Garden. Hours:  Tue- Fri :8am-6pm ;  Sat and  Sun: 10am-6pm ; Mondays: Closed

 

WHY IT’S ALL RELATIVE FOR AUTHOR A.J. JACOBS WHO’S BRINGING THE MOTHER OF ALL FAMILY REUNIONS TO NYC………By Debra Lewis-Boothman

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Have you ever sat down and tried to  put your family tree together? You know,  sit  with pen and paper in hand,  draw a tree  and  branch by branch add individual family members . Not easy is it? In fact, it’s  quite laborious.  I have tried a few times and always end up quitting because it is just too tedious of a task,  usually ending  in frustration  because I  have again left off  family member names I knew nothing of until pointed out , by one of my elder relatives.

With genealogy websites like Ancestry.com, My Heritage.com and  Geni readily available  for anyone to start their own  family tree the once tedious task of creating a  family tree has become a lighter one which can now be  shared  and built upon by family members  spread across the globe .

With everyone on earth  now 4 degrees of separation thanks to Facebook and social media  Author A.J.  Jacobs  sees us all as being related to each other  in some way . The aim of his Global Family Reunion ?   To  connect  the human race. Why?,  We Are all Family!

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Global Family Reunion founder A.J Jacobs[L] with singer John Legend [R]

The TED Talks speaker  with over 18K Twitter followers and TED views of  over a million  is the founder of the Global Family Reunion. He  is also the best-selling author of  The Know-It-All, The Year of Living Biblically  and Drop Dead Healthy and is an  editor at large at Esquire and a NPR commentator. Crownheightsmom sought out AJ after hearing that  he is planning the MOTHER OF ALL FAMILY REUNIONS in  New  York on June 6  Crownheightsmom needed to know just how he is going to  pull it all off and more so where is he going to fit all  of  his darn family members. I mean seriously he has invited YOU and  seven billion members of the human family.  AJ says,  “Those with a proven connection to the world’s biggest family tree (currently at 77 million people) get a bracelet and take part of the largest family photo in history.”

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Jacobs (L) with his new found relative and cousin, actor, Daniel Radcliffe (R)

It has gotten easier with DNA testing and the  internet to connect to long lost family members. AJ’s Global Family Reunion will  be one more opportunity to connect .  Global Family Reunions  will be happening all over the world simultaneously and across the US at places like the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah, the Clayton Library Center in Houston, Texas, Allen County Public Library in Wayne, Indiana and the Midwest Genealogy Center in Independence, Missouri

Added to  this global excitement  are  invited celebrities and experts helping to  pull it all off. So expect  to see  featured talks and presentations by known figures  including filmmaker Morgan Spurlock, magician, David Blaine,Former President, George H.W. Bush and Barbara Bush (via video), Comedy Central star Nick Kroll, NPR host Ophira Eisenberg and former Obama administration member Cass Sunstein and more.

Magician David Blaine  will be a featured speaker
Magician David Blaine will be a featured speaker

The day promises to be fun says the Global Family Reunion’s  website with lots  of activities  including taking the world’s largest family pic, a  talent contest, lots of info and exhibitions about family history and genealogy.and of course with the event being held at  the New York Hall of Science, there will be over 450  interactive museum exhibits.

An Epic Family Festival
Music! Talks! Comedy! Genealogy! Contests! Potato sack races! Crafts! LOTS of celebrity cousins!

CrownHeightsMom talked with A.J about the big day. Below  is what he shared.

CrownHeightsMOM: June 6 is a BIG day for you. I  would love for you to  share a bit about  that date  and the event you are having  called the  Global Family Reunion. What exactly is it ?                                                          A.J. Jacobs: The Family Reunion is a World’s Fair meets a music festival meets a TED conference. It’s fun for every generation. There are more than 50 entertainers and more than 400 activities – music, exhibits, food from around the world, trivia quizzes, scavenger hunts, you name it.

CrownHeightsMOM: Why did you  start the Global Family Reunion?            A.J. Jacobs:  About a year ago, I got a surprise email from a stranger that said, “I am your twelfth cousin.” At first, I figured the guy wanted to me to wire $10,000 to a Nigerian bank. But as it turned out, the man was part of a team of scientists and researchers helping to build a Family Tree of the entire human race. But it’s not even a tree anymore. It’s an Amazonian forest.  The Global Family Tree is now at 270 million people. It’s unprecedented, and I saw this as proof  we are part of something larger than our individual selves. And here’s the cool thing: If you come to the Global Family Reunion, we have a team of genealogists who will try to connect you to the Big Tree so you can see how you’re related to Nelson Mandela and Lady Gaga and everyone in between.

CrownHeightsMOM: Why is such an event important?                                   A.J. Jacobs: For one, all the proceeds after expenses go towards Alzheimer’s research and education. But I also think the event is important, because once we see how we are all connected, hopefully we’ll treat each other with more kindness. Which sounds optimistic, I know.

CrownHeightsMOM: How can families get involved?                                        A.J. Jacobs: They can sign up on our website to volunteer at the event.Of course, I also encourage anyone interested to buy a ticket online or make a donation

CrownHeightsMOM: I  see lots of celebs seem to be involved . Whom exactly will be there?                                                                                             A.J. Jacobs: Presenters will include Morgan Spurlock, David Blaine and Henry Louis Gates. We’ll also have Sister Sledge singing “We Are Family.” And hopefully you’ll be there too!

Dr. Henry Louis Gates a known expert in genealogies will be a featured guest speaker
Dr. Henry Louis Gates a known expert in genealogies will be a featured guest speaker

CrownHeightsMOM: Sooo, after the reunion, then what?                                  A.J. Jacobs: I’d like a nice peaceful break from the madness where I can spend a week or two eating takeout with my wife and watching movies with my kids while not having to worry about getting event permits or lining up vendors. But I also have to finish the manuscript for my next book, It’s All Relative, which is about my journey through all this genealogy research and organizing the Global Family Reunion, so my break will likely be short-lived.

CrownHeightsMOM:  Btw, are you prepared to deal with  the   “drama-filled ” or bad behaved far flung relatives because as you know You know there is bound to be a few in attendance.                                                         A.J Jacobs: I just nod my head, smile, and listen reflectively. That’s about all you can do in those situations.

CrownHeightsMOM: Did you by any chance contact Madea aka Tyler Perry for any tips on throwing a family reunion.                                                A.J Jacobs: : I have not, but that’s a great idea! I wish I had thought of contacting Madea months ago, now.

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CrownHeightsMOM: What will the money raised  go towards?                       A.J. Jacobs: Fighting Alzheimer’s. We’ve partnered with the Cure Alzheimer’s Fund and the Alzheimer’s Association New York Chapter who will use the proceeds for Alzheimer’s research, education.

CrownHeightsMOM: What have you told your wife and kids to expect out of the Reunion?                                                                                                           A.J. Jacobs: I think they can expect a fun, wild, exciting, and educational experience. My 8-year-old said he wants to be head of security, but I’m afraid we’re hiring some bigger people for the job.

CrownHeightsMOM: You chose the New York  Hall of Science,  home of the 1964  World’s Fair  as the location for this event. Is there a significance ?                                                                                                           A.J. Jacobs: It’s a beautiful location with a lot of space, which is hard to find in NYC. And the museum’s  hands-on exhibits are really cool.

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The Unisphere outside the New York Hall Of Science in Queens, New York

 CrownHeightsMOM: You have gotten such a positive  response to this event and so many celebs have come aboard. Why do you think this is?      A.J. Jacobs :I think it’s the ultimate social network. We are all part of the global family, and there’s something appealing about that. Also, they’re my cousins so they have to be enthusiastic.

For more info on author AJ. Jacobs  and to purchase tix to the Global Family Reunion go here ! And of course also check out  more at The New York Hall of Science.

ACTOR KEVIN JAMES REVEALS THAT HE IS AFRAID OF HORSES, LOVES CHOCOLATE DONUTS AND HOLDS TWO GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS by Debra Lewis-Boothman

ACTOR KEVIN JAMES REVEALS THAT HE IS AFRAID OF HORSES, LOVES CHOCOLATE DONUTS AND HOLDS TWO GUINNESS WORLD  RECORDS by Debra Lewis-Boothman

ACTOR KEVIN JAMES REVEALS THAT HE IS AFRAID OF HORSES, LOVES CHOCOLATE DONUTS AND HOLDS TWO GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS by Debra Lewis-Boothman.

ACTOR KEVIN JAMES REVEALS THAT HE IS AFRAID OF HORSES, LOVES CHOCOLATE DONUTS AND HOLDS TWO GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS by Debra Lewis-Boothman

ACTOR KEVIN JAMES REVEALS THAT HE IS AFRAID OF HORSES, LOVES CHOCOLATE DONUTS AND HOLDS TWO GUINNESS WORLD  RECORDS by Debra Lewis-Boothman
Actor Kevin James leads  over 100 on Segways to two Guinness World Book records making history
Actor Kevin James leads crownheightsmoms and over 100 on Segways to set two Guinness World Records .

 

Actor Kevin James loves to horse around and  make people laugh but when it comes to being next to  the real thing  James is  not laughing. In fact the actor  and star of the film Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 which segwayed into our hearts in April and  continues to dominate the box office is should we say, a little shy of  horses.  “I am afraid of horses,” the actor recently told a group of mom bloggers when he sat down  to chat with the MOMS co-creators Denise Albert and Melissa  Gerstein . Adds the actor,  about the hilarious scene where he is kicked by a horse  into a car. “It is called green screen! If a horse kicked me like that in real life, I would be  in real bad shape. ” Says James,   “I was supposed to slap it on the butt, but I  was afraid it would really kick me .I was really nervous about that scene.”

Paul Blart :Mall Cop 2  is still in theaters  and it’s doing  not too shabby at the box office either. In fact it has  garnered  over $52 mil in domestic  ticket sales so far according to Box Office Mojo.. The movie  is funny and my 7 and 9 year olds and their friends love it . Out of  5 popcorn stars they give Paul Blart : Mall Cop 2 the maximum 5 stars.

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On filming the second installment of the Mall Cop  franchise James says, “This one is a lot funnier and everybody  was funnier. Adds the actor, “The comedy looks  a lot better  and is certainly shot a lot better because the budget was a little bigger ,which was good to have  and we shot in a better environment,that  was beautiful.”

Crownheightsmom.com  caught up with  the actor at a recent MOMS sit-down just days after joining him  and over 100 security guards  perched atop Segways to make Guinness  World  Records history

 

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crownheightsmom strikes a pose alongside volunteers John and Jim

Talk about history making and an exciting day that I will remember forever. It included  learning to ride a Segway,  free Paul Blart Mall Cop 2 movie loot  that included  tee shirts,, rain ponchos,tattoos for the  kids and  face painting, free hot dogs and drinks  and all this just before hitting the red carpet  for a world premier screening .

Knowing that I  am was included amongst the more than 100 participants, most, like myself, first time  Segway  riders who were given lessons that morning by certified Segway trainers before going on to  make history on the largest 2-Wheeled Electric Personal Vehicle or Segway is just an amazing feeling. To have  set not one, but two new GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS, is just -.

Getting my lesson  from my trainer.
Getting my lesson in from my trainer.

 

Guinness Book World Records official
Guinness Book World Records official

 

MOMS co-creator Denise Albert is now a pro on a Segway
MOMS co-creator Denise Albert is now a pro on a Segway
Geri listening intently
Geraldine Buchanan Rogers listens to her trainer  intently.
Alexa getting the hang of it
Alexa getting the hang of it as her trainer looks on.
Security guards are fast learners
Security guards are fast learners.
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Gagnine (schoolyardstyle.com) striking a pose as she takes lessons

 

Watchout here comes two arresting officers
Watchout here comes two arresting officers

After setting  the GUINNESS WORLD RECORDS the actor then  joined us  in setting another personal record for Most People Simultaneously Performing a 360-Degree Turn on 2-Wheeled Electric Personal Vehicles or Segways.

Actor Kevin James leads  over 100 on Segways to two Guinness World Book records making history
Actor Kevin James,  MOMS co-creator Denise Albert (far right) and over 100 Segway riders  earn  two Guinness World Book records .

 

Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2, opened nationwide April 17 . It  picked up from where the original Mall Cop left off  with Blart on vacation in Vegas with his teenage daughter just before she’s set to head  off to college. The proud security guard who has kept our  malls safe  for over six years finds himself jumping into action doing what he knows best, keeping everyone safe-even while on vacation. For Blart, safety is never on holiday! Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 is directed by Andy Fickman.

 

Kevin James  sat down with The MOMS. Here is what he had to share ——————-

On  the original installment of Mall Cop  says the  actor. “It holds a tender  position in my heart.”

On how he got started in acting : “I  was in the Montreal Comedy Festival and  people from NBC saw me  and liked me  . I signed a development deal to try and get my own sitcom  and that’s when it started. I was about about 25, 26, around there and that i show it started.

On his favorite donut.”You can’t look at my body  and ask me if I like donuts. It’s self evident. I like  chocolate filled donuts and cinna-buns  but my favorite donut is the fudge ones with the glaze. Yup, chocolate glazed is my favorite..

On any words not allowed to be uttered by his kids at home. “My kids are still young. They don’t know, so I don’t have  that yet but we keep mine on lockdown pretty much( laughing) they don’t see much people, they don’t get out much.  We give them a little sun for about five minutes a day.(Laughing out loud ).Seriously he adds “They are really good kids. I am blessed  for sure but  it is scary.” All you can do he say is, “Give them the tool to deals with all of that stuff. They will be ok.”

On being kicked into the car by the horse. ” If a horse kicked me like that in real life   I would be  in real bad shape.  It is called green screen.

On how he feels about horses . “There was a horse there (on set) . I am afraid of horses and to be standing behind the horse where  I was supposed to slap the horse on the butt, I  was afraid it would really kick me .I was really nervous about that scene because I did have to slap the butt of a horse.

On parenting advice  he would like to share with other  dads.” Listen to your kids! ..A lot of times you just  kinda  tell them  to listen to the rules . It’s nice for kids if they can  express themselves . Just  listen to them or hear them out . I mean they may not get their way.   Get on their level with them  they appreciate  it. My wife told me  this , you have to listen get on their level let them feel like they are expressing themselves.

On  how  he and his family spend Friday nights he tells Crownheightsmom.com .”We do movie night  as a family on Fridays but we do dinner together every night as long as I am there  and we can do it. We sit down and do it. We stop everything and we eat together .Movie night is a really  fun night . It’s Friday night and everybody gets to stay up late and have  a really  fun night . The girls are really great and want o stay up late, but they always pass out by 9 or 9:30  they never make it . Movie night is  that  thing we do that is very consistent,  we also do ice cream on sunday

Catch Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 at you  local theater

JAPAN DESCENDED UPON BROOKLYN WITH CHERRY BLOSSOMS, TAIKO DRUMMING AND AN URBAN TEA CEREMONY AT THE SAKURA MATSUKI FESTIVAL ……BY Debra Lewis-Boothman

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I was in my mid teens when Sakura Matsuri started at the  Brooklyn Botanic  Gardens. Back then, the faces attending were mostly  of Japanese origin and they   came out in droves  to celebrate the blooming cherry blossom flowers and rejoice in the planned Japanese cultural programs and activities.

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Miu Soda in traditional regal mode

In recent years, the  two-day weekend festival has become more popular  and has grown by  leaps and bounds attracting people of all races, nationalities and cultures. The impact of its popularity is  felt in the buildup of  traffic as more and more people   come to the borough and  as attendees join lines snaking along  Washington and Flatbush avenues .Many come dressed in their favorite  anime costumes or opt to wearing  traditional Japanese kimonos.  The mostly open -air outdoors celebration  gives those attending a taste of Japan with  sword fighting displays, Taiko drumming exhibition, manga artists and much more.

Seeing  such an  assortments of Japanese culture, food and arts made for a  breathtakingly  beautiful afternoon spent amongst the  cherry blossoms.

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For many, myself included,  attending  the annual Sakura Matsuri festival signals,  that  Spring  has finally sprung.

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7-year old Kai amongst the blooming flowers at BBG

One of my very best friends, Asako, hails from Japan. I remember talking to her years ago about  her country’s  most cherished flower and her saying that  in Japan they  have  Sakura Hanami parties  throughout the country . Getting  dressed up  in cultural garb  like a Kimono and  attending Cherry blossom viewing she says is a serious thing there, where the blooming flowers are watched carefully  and celebrated by all.

I am most proud that this festival occurs  in my Crown Heights neighborhood with the BBG being a hop, skip and a jump from my doorsteps.My kids especially got a blast  seeing all  the  beautiful flowers in  bloom in an assortment of colors. Taking in the festival this past weekend was a  joy from seeing the many families in attendance to  seeing the  festival goers decked out in  traditional Kimonos and others in their  favorite Japanese inspired costumes. The $25 admittance fee definitely  was worth every penny .

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Hip hopping with the one and only Akim Funk Buddha and Chihiro ‘Cute Beat’

Crownheightmom.com is definitely looking forward to next year’s  festival.

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Kameko takes a rest while taking in the colorful flowers
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An attendee at the Cherry Blossom festival
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The Taiko drums were played loudly and beautifully
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The Japanese Hill and Pond Garden

EXCLUSIVE: BOBBI KRISTINA BROWN AWAKENS FROM HER COMA, RESPONSIVE TO VOICES BUT STILL UNABLE TO SPEAK, SOURCE SAYS

Faith and prayer are the vitamins of the soul; man cannot live in health without them.—-Mahalia Jackson

The power of prayer has a way of granting miracles.  Thus the case of Bobbi Kristina Brown.

Bobbi Kristina Brown
Bobbi Kristina Brown

Bobbi Kristina Brown has  awakened  from the coma  she’s  been in for over a month and a half a source close to her family tells crownheightsmom.com exclusively.

“Bobbi Kristina  is out of the coma” says a source close to the 22-year old’s  family . “She  is opening  her eyes but isn’t talking yet,”  adds the source.

For  family and friends  of the aspiring singer and especially for her father R&B singer  Bobby Brown this  must come as  the best news  since that fateful Jan. 31, 2015  day when Bobbi Kristina  was found unresponsive  in the Roswell, Georgia home she shared with boyfriend Nick Gordon. She was found  unconscious and in a bathtub – eerily similar to how  her mother Whitney Houston had died in 2012.

R&B singer Bobby Brown
R&B singer Bobby Brown

“Krissi awakened about two weeks ago,” says the  source close to her family. Could Bobby Brown have  hinted  at  this news  in a March 3 press release his lawyer sent out saying, “We thank everyone that supports Bobbi Kristina and God is hearing our prayers.”

One can  imagine how  thankful Bobby Brown must be feeling. The singer  has continuously asked for  prayers  for his daughter Bobbi Kristina and as the  weeks have gone by and   we have  seen the pictures of his daily trips to and  from  the  hospital  to be at her bedside. He has been a dad who is enduring what happened to his daughter  publicly while  asking for privacy from the press as he continues trying to hold it all together for himself and his family  while  the  criminal investigation  continues  into how his daughter  ended up in the condition she’s in . Most parents  would prefer to  never go through a situation like this, but if they had to be in  a situation like this they would prefer  to go through it  privately. It is good to see that the R&B star  has held firm to his faith to pull him through and to see that in some ways these prayers are being answered. Crownheightsmom reached out to Bobby Brown’s camp for a response  and was told  to refer to what  Bobby has said  in his press releases, saying, “We continue to request privacy in regards to my daughter’s medical condition.  We thank everyone that supports Bobbi Kristina and God is hearing our prayers.”

 

Bobbi Kristina Brown and her mother Whitney Houston
Bobbi Kristina Brown and her mother Whitney Houston

Not out of the woods though progressing slowly . “She is not recognizing people’s faces but she has eye movement and  is responsive to voices and touch,”  the  source tells crownheightsmom exclusively. This progress, says the source, is what prompted the family to  move her from Emory Hospital to a specialized facility,  still in Georgia, that can better treat her.

Visitors to see Bobbi Kristina since her improvement have included her grandmother Cissy Houston,  81  who arrived about a week ago  to visit  her  granddaughter says the  source.  Cissy  last visited  in early February.  As of this writing  Cissy is reported to have returned  to her home in New Jersey .

Bobbi Kristina and her grandmother Cissy Houston
Bobbi Kristina and her grandmother Cissy Houston

It definitely feels great to hear  promising news about Bobbi Kristina’s  condition and as she progresses we hope to  keep well wishers up to date.

As Bobbi Kristina’s   condition continues to improve the source close to the  family  adds,  ” I would like to  ask people to keep praying for Bobbi Kristina. She still has a long way to go.”

by Debra Lewis-Boothman

CINDERELLA PERFORMED LIKE A QUEEN AT THE BOX OFFICE!…..BY DEBRA LEWIS-BOOTHMAN

CINDERELLA PERFORMED LIKE A QUEEN AT THE BOX OFFICE!…..BY DEBRA LEWIS-BOOTHMAN

cinderella

 

I like the Cinderella movie because it was romantic—–Kameko, 8

Jumping on that iron horse aka a NYC subway train  oftentimes can be a hit or miss  most days, thus  the case last Tuesday when the  kids and I headed from Brooklyn  into the city to catch a screening of the  beauty  of all fairy tales, Cinderella.

Getting to the screening took great effort,  for we almost didn’t make it on time to Times Square’s  Regal E-Walk  Theater   due to an MTA power outage on our subway line. In addition there was a  thundering rainstorm happening but hail, nor rain, could hinder crownheightsmom from getting her kids   to the scheduled 5:15pm  MOMS and Oral-B and Crest sponsored  special Disney Studios screening  of Cinderella which was preceded by  the Frozen movie short  Frozen Fever . The sneak peek, a prime teaser to  the  sequel of  the 2012 worldwide hit.

The gang from Frozen return in Frozen Fever
The gang from Frozen returns in Frozen Fever

 

Stuck underground  on an F train  at York Street  I had to make a decision what  to do. Should we stay or should we go . When the conductor finally announced that all  A, C  and F  trains were going to be at  a standstill and backed up  due to a power outage at the World Trade Center stop in Manhattan.that was it for me.

F train
F train

 

Trying not to panic as the time slipped  closer and closer to the movie start  hour  we are still in Brooklyn  trying to get to Manhattan.  The  kids, especially my 8-year-old daughter  starts  to get  worried we will miss the screening entirely. I ask ‘should we just  go  home, forego the trip to  the city. I  automatically get a resounding “NO”  from them both.”

The glass slippers every little girl dreams about  from her prince
The glass slippers every little girl dreams about

Putting on my supermom hat I took their hands and we  join the mass exodus of straphangers exiting the subway station  to the  street in search of the nearest subway line..  Finding the  R train we jump on with what seems like  hundreds of people .

Packed  train we jumped into
Packed train we jumped into

We  would take this R  to Canal Street where we transferred  to  the Q Express to 42nd Street Times Square where  the  theater  is located.

 

Regal E-Walk in Times Square NYC
Regal E-Walk in Times Square NYC

.Reaching the Regal E-walk  theater  after 6:30pm we are overjoyed and happy to hear that we didn’t miss the  screening and  that it was going to start at 7pm. With some free time before the screening  I headed  to security  to give my cellphone in as no mobiles phones, or tablets or ipads  of any sort  were allowed into the screening room. . We also  picked up  our  free popcorn and water  from the concession stand and were   just in time to  see the  presentation of the  new Disney Magic Timer app by  co-sponsors Oral-B and Crest  as seen below in this new ad with actress Kristen Bell.

Pics below  from event courtesy of the MOMS

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Crest and Oral-B’s Frozen Fever Toothpaste and Toothbrushes
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The little princesses and princes getto see how the Disney Timer app works…..they will love to brush!
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Crest & Oral -B Frozen Fever dental products are presently available in stores
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Princess Alert: The MOMS co-creators Melissa [L] and Denise [R].

If new live-action remakes of classic fairy tales  are the future for family movies then I want more of them, especially if they are  anything like the new Cinderella movie.

 

-I liked the movie  because it”s  about a girl who was once happy,  then her life became sad when her mommy and daddy died, then  her life  got better and she was happy again.. My favorite part was when she married the prince because it was a happy  ending —-Kai, 7.

 

A whopping $70.05 mil at the box office is what  was raked in by the new Cinderella movie this weekend says Box Office Mojo. The count comes after  receipts were tallied at   3, 845 movie theater locations nationwide  playing the newly  revamped children’s classic. See the US trailer below.

I am really happy I decided to defeat the odds and go to this wonderful remake on March 10 with my two small children. For those parents reading this believe me,  you are in for a great  treat. This release promises a great update to  the  Disney classic most are familiar with  replacing  the cartoon characters for  live action ones who are not only  beautiful but have great screen presence.

 

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Even the wicked stepmother (Cate Blanchett) and her spoiled daughters hold presence on screen.

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My 8 year old daughter and my 7 year old son reviewed the movie. Dressed  up for the occasion Kai  donning a bow tie while Kameko who has outgrown her two Cinderella dresses chose an old Hollywoodesque  style dress for the occasion topped with her  30’s style  netted pillbox hat.

Out of 5 Popcorn Stars……….. Kameko  and Kai  gives  Cinderella  5 STARS  for being romantic and being about love, kindness  and forgiveness.

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Says 8-year old Kameko  .”I thought the Cinderella movie  was very romantic . It was sad to see her parents die though and compared to  the other Cinderella’s  like the cartoon an in the book I have read  they  have never said how her mum and dad died so it was kinda ok to know how that happened in this movie.

 

The happy dance
“We are so happy Mommy. Thanks for taking us to the screening,” as they  break out  in a happy dance.

 

Kameko, 8- I felt that the Prince and Cinderella were a perfect match!

 

The effect of the movie on them.
The effect of the movie on them.

 

Still dancing in the aisles  and singing the catchphrase song  from the movie “Lavender’s Blue” (Dilly, Dilly)  my two little ones and I head out  for home content and happy  after retrieving our cell phones from security. It is now 9:30pm and as we head to the subway we are hoping that the MTA ha,s by this tim,e   gotten the train service in order.

If you too enjoyed Cinderella’s beautiful song  “Lavender’s Blue (Dilly Dilly)”  here it is for you.

By Debra Lewis-Boothman

CROWNHEIGHTSMOM HAS 99 PROBLEMS AND THE SNOW IS NUMBER 1!

CROWNHEIGHTSMOM HAS 99 PROBLEMS  AND THE  SNOW IS NUMBER 1!

“I’m going back to Cali, to Cali, to Cali. I’m going back to Cali—LL CoolJ

 

Fed up with Winter 2015 crownheightsmom  seriously considers  relocating to a warmer homebase! YIKES, Say it ain’t so!

 

Snowy Brooklyn
Snow filled avenue in Crown Heights, Brooklyn

 

Like most New Yorkers presently I’ve had it with the repetitive snowfall after snowfall that’s hit NYC this winter season. Plus, though cushiony I have fallen on my bottom  more times than I can count.  Plus, I can no longer stand the deep freeze temps, the mile high mounds of hard ice  lining the cross-walks and the  muscle power I have exerted towards shoveling and cleaning  snow off the car. It’s more times than I  like .

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Getting the snow off vehicles

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I like snow cones  in the summer . Slush in the wintertime,  I can definitely do without because who knows  what lies within those black cesspool-like puddles.  I can also do without the  slow moving traffic that  turns a normally $12 cab ride  into a $30 snail ride to nowhere.

The dirty , yucky slush
Dirty, yucky slush in the streets of NYC

 

Right about now,  I want Ole’ Man Winter gone.  So go   vamoosh! goodbye!  get outta here, beat it, see ya later and don’t come  back.

 

Don’t get me wrong. I  love the Wintertime. In fact  my husband will tell you whenever it snows  I am the first one with my hands up to go  out the house to play in it or  grab my Akita Hiro to  head to Prospect Park.

My Japanese Akita lovess the snow
My Japanese Akita loves the snow

 

Dogs plus kids, plus snow equal FUN
Dogs+Kids+Snow=MAD FUN!

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The kids will let you know that  I will grab their  snowboards for them and off we go to have crazy fun but, this love has been tested.  This winter  season in NYC has been a long one with an  endless and relentless  beat down by mother nature.

The kids grabbing their snowboards to enjoy the snowy downhill ride in the backyard of our Poconos home .
The kids grabbing their snowboards to enjoy the snowy downhill ride in the backyard of our Poconos home .

 

There’s nothing more beautiful than looking out your window and seeing  fresh snowflakes falling . Seeing a doe and her family playing  in the  snow- thats the beauty of nature .Living in the suburbs or in the countryside definitely allows you to appreciate the beauty of  a freshly fallen  snow.

A deer family outside our home
A deer family in the country
A friendly deer family
A friendly deer family

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For city folks the beauty of  having it snow week after week wears thin. Not being able to get around as fast as one wants to, amounts to loss of  incoming dollars .

Traffic back-ups and slow moving traffic
Traffic back-ups and slow moving traffic
Late arriving  food trucks the local neighborhood store
Late arriving food trucks the local neighborhood store

In Brooklyn, particularly in my nabe  of Crown Heights we have  been weathering the snowstorms as they come and has dealt with the results of it—-un-shoveled sidewalks, no parking spaces,  traffic congestion, pot holes in the streets and the unseen doggie poo and gosh knows what else mixed in with  the snow alongside  the sidewalks. Trust me,  it  has not been a pretty picture this winter.

Hanging  in the  streets
Hanging in the streets

 

So right now I am praying to the Sun Gods to come . Is it too much to ask for Springtime to arrive NOW and bring on the flowers, the butterflies and the bees.

In Bloom
In Bloom: Springtime is just over the horizon
The bee are ready to pollinate
The bee are ready to pollinate
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Easter egg hunting time is just around the corner

 

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EXCLUSIVE!!!!! Cissy Houston Leaves Bobbi Kristina’s Bedside:Heads Back To New Jersey

Bobby Kristina
Bobby Kristina

Bobbi Kristina Brown  turns 22-years old in  two days.  She  remains on  life support in a medically induced coma  at Georgia’s  Emory University Hospital, 28 days after being found at home  unresponsive in her bathtub.

Last week reports surfaced  that the  21-year old  suffered  a violent seizure  after she was taken out of her medically induced coma by her doctors . She has since been induced to stop the seizures and is  back in a coma
Bobbi Kristina in  March 2014 looking gaunt
Bobbi Kristina in March 2014 looking gaunt
“These seizure are  not new,”  a source close to the families tells crownheightsmom.com exclusively.  “She has been having them,” adds the source.
Daily visits to   the 21-year-old’s bedside  come from  family on both sides – the Browns and the Houstons- including her  father  Bobby Brown  and her grandmother Cissy  Houston, the pair,  whom have not  been seen  together since  Whitney’s  funeral in 2012 .  Cissy, who arrived on Feb 6 had been a constant,  although recently there has not been sightings of her. Cissy reportedly had  been singing to her granddaughter   and even  celebrate  her birthday early with roses .
Bobbi Kristina and her grandmother Cissy Houston
Bobbi Kristina and her grandmother Cissy Houston
Cissy  also only stayed  a week a source close to the Brown and Houston families  reveals to crownheightsmom.com exclusively.  “Cissy left Atlanta on Feb 12. She’s back in New Jersey.” Adds the source, “People  will probably ask,  why isn’t she  still there with her but  Cissy is not that close to her granddaughter plus people must understand she’s  old and this  takes a toll.”Also adds the source, “There is not much  Cissy can do  there, at the end of the day  Bobby is there and any decisions made  regarding Krissi’s health and well-being will come from him.”  
Dionne Warwick
Dionne Warwick

Meanwhile, second  cousin, Dionne Warwick, 74,  has been unable to make it to Atlanta to see Bobbi Kristina .  Says a Houston family source, “Dionne had a fall in January  and hurt her ankle and  is now  back in the hospital,  but just  to  get rehab on the ankle.” Adds the source, “She was admitted because she wouldn’t  keep off her feet.”  Warwick was reported to have fallen in her bathtub   in January. She was just re-admitted to the hospital  recently in order for the rehab and physical therapy to begin and to work..

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Bobbi Kristina and her cousin Dionne Warwick

 

 A parent will love and protect their  children by all means necessary and Bobby Brown is no stranger to this . In 2011  the R&B singer  when questioned about Bobbi Kristina’s  by PEOPLE responded,  “I am protecting my daughter.” Since his arrival to Atlanta,  Brown  has been a constant at  his daughter’s bedside and even  delayed an upcoming  Australian tour to be by her side. His protectiveness now though many may say has come a little too late. Says a source,  “She needed  that fatherly protection constantly the last three years.”
Bobby is holding out hope for his daughter
Bobby is holding out hope for his daughter
As Bobbi Kristina’s  birthday approaches wishes for her recovery are being posted daily by well wishers on her social media .  Ellin LaVar of LaVar Hair Designs  in Harlem and the longtime hair stylist of  Whitney Houston  says,  “I am speechless and saddened by the circumstances but  I am keeping Bobbi Kristina  and Cissy in my prayers.” Adds LaVar,  “I am praying that God will bring Bobbi Kristina through this difficult situation.”…..by DEBRA LEWIS-BOOTHMAN

HOW NEW KIDS ON THE BLOCK REKINDLED THE LOVE AT AN INTIMATE NYC CONCERT THAT HAD ALL THE RIGHT STUFF…..by Debra Lewis-Boothman

NKOTB
NKOTB

Valentines Day came twice  for me this year.  Well it felt  like it did. Can you  imagine my surprise when I received an invitation from Cottonelle  to join them alongside the  MOMS   to participate in their  #Go Cottonelle Go Commando  launch concert with  the New Kids On The Block  Feb 15 at New York City’s Gramercy Theater. Yes, you heard correctly NKOTB are back!

NKOTB join forces with Cottonelle
NKOTB join forces with Cottonelle

 

I can go into my garage today and pull out  stored   magazine clippings, posters  and memorabilia  of  my boy band love-fest through the years  including those of NKOTB, NEW EDITION, NSYNC‘  BACKSTREET BOYS,  BOYS II MEN  and 98 Degrees . These boys all shared a special place in my heart during my youth, helping to define,  with their music,  who I am today.

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Boy Bands of the 80s and 90s

 

I can remember conversations  in high school  like ‘ Oh my Gawd Jordan’s hair and ‘Oh my gawd….Joey’s voice.’  So to be invited to meet  the KIDS-Donnie, Jordan, Joey, Jonathan, and Danny- shaking hands, exchanging plesantries,  getting hugs and even a compliment from Joe on my metal  spiked  dress was mind blowing. Actually, just  seeing them as grown-ups was surreal enough to  make me feel like I’d  never grown up and was  literally thrown back into  the vortex of the  late 80s fawning over  hot boy band cuties .

Crownheightsmom gets to hang tough with  NKOTB at Gramercy Theater
Crownheightsmom gets to hang tough with NKOTB at Gramercy Theater

 

The boys didn’t disappoint singing many fan favorites that had the ladies swooning.

NKOTB takes over NYC Gramercy Theater for Cottonelle #GoCommando launch concert
The Boys Are Back In Town: NKOTB takes over NYC ‘s Gramercy Theater for Cottonelle #GoCommando launch concert

 

The boys all still  have the right moves . Yes, they can still  bust a move. They each  exude  charisma and  their  voices still make the  girls swoon.   The  now matured “Kids”  are also  very good at  they self described  “soft talk.” .  Yup, you heard  right the boys took  time to   talk to their fans to explain why some of their favorite  songs didnt make it onto albums and to even listen to a fan share  how their music helped saved a friendship .  Soft talk with the boys   feels so good.

The crowd goes wild for NKOTB.
The crowd goes wild for NKOTB.

It was great seeing so many Blockheads fans in  the  house holding it down  for the boys. Fans whom have  stood behinds the Kids since the 80’s. Coming  out in droves to Gramercy Theater defying the negative  degree  temperatures showed the boys that this was true love, and just for them .

Joey and his voice comes into the crowd. He captivates
Joey and his voice comes into the crowd. He captivates

 

There is nothing like taking a ride down memory lane . NKOTB’s   performed “The Right Stuff,”   “My Favorite Girl,”  “I’ll Be Loving You Forever,” and “Over Girl.” Yes the boys reached into the vault performing crowd favorites.

NKOTB Hangin Tough circa 1988
NKOTB Hangin Tough circa 1988

Though now older mature studs the “boys” still exude  adorable boyish qualities. Hello Joe!

The right stuff indeed!
The right stuff indeed!

 

Cottonelle’s #GoCommando photo booth was crazy fun. My sister Sandra and I could not get in enough selfie poses. Posing in the booth with Melissa Musen Gerstein, Brianne Manz and others was crazy fun.   .

Charlie's Angels have nothing on us moms

Charlie’s Angels have nothing on us moms

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Striking up a GoCommando pose with Sandra
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Sharing a pic with my sister in the Cottonelle photo booth

 

Girls having fun!
Girls just want to have fun!

Overall  the NKOTB knocked it out of the ballpark with their concert. I am going to  continue to #GoCommando with Cottonelle . In fact you can head over to the  website if you would like to take the GoCommando challenge.  Grab  Cottonelle at your local supermarket it has Clean Ripple texture to get you clean, giving you all the confidence you need to Go Commando. Dare a friend to Go Commando and Cottonelle will send you and your friend a personalized commando kit with a free sample.

Keep up with NKOTB on their website and on their new reality show Rock This Boat on the TV Guide Channel Network.