Multi-Platinum Artist Fabolous Is All About The Stepping Stones in his hometown of Brooklyn

Ask any Brooklynite what’s the best thing about their borough and they’ll likely say, “EVERYTHING!”

We at  crownheightsmom will have to agree. In fact, no matter the season something fun is always  happening across the borough of Brooklyn.

Annual events from the  Cherry Blossom Sakura Matsuri Festival  at  the Brooklyn Botanic Garden  to the highly in demand monthly Target  First Saturdays at the Brooklyn Museum of Art   are the most talked about but on any given day there is always  something happening here. In fact, when it comes to putting its culture on display  Brooklyn hands down seems to be doing it best.

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 Japanese Culture at Sakura Matsuri Cherry Blossom Festival  at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden

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A Traditional Geisha at the Sakura Matsuri Festival at BBG in 2016

That’s why  when we found out about  the  second annual  Central Brooklyn Arts  & Culture Weekend  which took place June 10th and 11th along the famed Eastern Parkway we had to go. It was a  fun weekend spent out with the kids and was celebrated with a movie night  happening on Saturday  and an outdoors street festival showcasing the best of the borough’s foods, arts,  crafts,  culture and contributors occurring on Sunday.

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A Flyer of the 2-day event celebrating Central Brooklyn

At the outdoor street festival  on June 11 the festivities kicked off with Borough President, Eric Adams   honoring   two outstanding talents from Brooklyn — multi platinum MC and Hip-Hop artist, John “Fabolous” Jackson and the late, world renowned abstract artist and Neo-Expressionist Jean-Michel Basquiat, (whose  family represented for him).

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Rapper Fabolous receives the Key to Brooklyn from Borough President Eric Adams

Both Fab and Basquiat(posthumously) were  awarded   with the “Keys to Brooklyn” and  bestowed with individual stepping  stones inscribed with their names  and placed within the  Brooklyn Botanic Garden’s famed Celebrity Path.  The two sons of Brooklyn are now counted along the celebrity walkway amongst 160 others famous Brooklynites  past and present including  poets, performers,  artists, and athletes who lived or were born in the borough and  all made outstanding contributions to  the borough.

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Fabolous strikes a pose with Borough President Eric Adams next to his inscribed stepping stone in the Celebrity Path at the Brooklyn Botanic Garden

 

The outdoor street festival  saw  locals, families  and visiting tourists  coming out to  rejoice in the arts, foods and culture along Eastern Parkway .

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Brooklyn residents check out the vendors along Eastern Parkway

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Seafood lovers were all about getting their  boxed food at Catch It

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The Brooklyn Museum brought its arts outdoors while a balloon vendor brings smiles to faces

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It was all about the sweet kernels at Kettle Korn

My 9-year old son had a blast checking out the vendors and the performances as well as  tasting some of the delicious food options on sale. He definitely liked the roasted corn which he eagerly covered in butter and a hefty shaking of parmesan cheese. So delicious.

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There is nothing better than sinking your teeth into a sweet roasted corn on the cob

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Brooklynites grabbed  Smooth smoothies as they walked the path along Eastern Parkway

The high 80’s temperature definitely led to a beautiful day outdoors with attendees  enjoying and basking in the  music, dance and theatrical plays  happening on the main stage set up at the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Arch at Grand Army Plaza. The breeze and water spraying from the fountain made for a refreshing feel.

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Those  walking  along the Eastern Parkway corridor beginning at Flatbush Avenue and heading towards  Washington Avenue got to choose from an array of vendors offering food, drink as well as the purchase crafts and fashionable items from jewelry to kids clothing.

 

Lots of activities were  available and  included fun games, bouncy houses  and  arts and crafts for the kids, a  dance party and theatrical performances  courtesy of  the Prospect Park Zoo, the Jewish Children’s Museum, the Brooklyn Children’s Museum and the New York Aquarium

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A band performs on the main stage at Grand Army Plaza

 

The 2-day cultural arts inspired events were brought together and presented by Brooklyn Borough President, Eric L. Adams in partnership with One Brooklyn Fund, Inc.,  All in all it was fun for the entire family.

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The office of Brooklyn’s Borough President, Eric Adams out  on the Parkway

 

With smiles on our faces we left  the festival  eagerly looking forward to next year’s celebration .

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Enjoying the day with my son

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Crownheightsmom Media CEO, Debra Lewis-Boothman’s outdoor street festival fashion included an african head-wrap and  a blush silk romper paired with hightop Converse sneakers.

 

If you also attended  this event please share your thoughts about the  weekend in our comments section below.

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EMOTIONS GONE WILD? NOT REALLY! JOY AND SADNESS GET TO WORK HARMONIOUSLY TO SAVE THE DAY IN PIXAR’S ‘INSIDE OUT’…….by Debra Lewis-Boothman

The emotional character  from Pixar's "Inside Out"

Anger (voice of Lewis Black), Fear (voice of Bill Hader), Joy (Amy Poehler), Disgust (voice of Mindy Kaling) and Sadness (Phyllis Smith)

While sitting inside the Dolby Screening Room at a recent MOMS screening of Disney  Pixar’s animated  movie ‘Inside Out‘ three pairs of eyes looked over at me to see if I was crying. I had taken my 9-year old daughter, Kameko,  my 7-year old son  Kai and  his friend Lexi Anne  also 7,  along to the screening.

Three cute NYC kids attending Pixar's 'Inside Out'

Lexi Anne 7, Kai 7 and Kameko 9 are over-the-moon happy after seeing the MOMS’ screening of “Inside Out”at the Dolby Screening Room on June 12

At a particular point in the movie Kai and Lexi Anne began whispering to each .I then noticed that they were staring intently at me to see if I had tears streaming down.  I quickly said  before they could  say anything, “Hey, guys  are those tears I see in YOUR eyes? ” They  each quickly  replied  “No”, with Kai admitting soon after with, “Oh just a little. That was a sad part.”  I in turn replied, “Yes that was a sad part and I did cry just  a little.”  My daughter Kameko hearing our whispers  chose then to announce matter-of-factly,  with Kai in the background nodding,  “Mommy cries a lot at  movies. She likes to let her  feelings out. She also cried  during  [Rihanna’s movie] Home, and at [ Michael Rapaport’s] Little Boy.

” Shhh, don’t tell anyone, I say to Kameko as Lexi Anne looks on and a mom  sitting in earshot  turns around and  smiles at me.

I learned then that kids are always  paying full  attention  and  especially taking in  our  emotions. Yup,  my kids are definitely  paying attention to mine.Which gets me back to Inside Out.

Screeing Pixar's 'Inside Out" at  NYC's Dolby Screening Room

Kameko, LexiAnne and Kai catching up on kids stuff before watching Inside Out at the Dolby Screening Room on June 12

I truly enjoyed this film  and so did the  kids. They have already asked to see it again  and I have promised a movie night  over the summer break. I  definitely see it becoming one of  our Pixar family faves the same way,  Toy Story and  Wall-E has become.  I also already know that this movie  including   all  its   merchandising products will be on their Xmas lists this year.

About the movie if you haven’t seen it  yet. The movie  centers around  pre-teen Riley, an 11-year-old girl  who is uprooted from  her Midwest home and  life as she knows it -to  now reside in the urban city  landscape of San Francisco  when her dad takes a new job  transplanting the family almost 2,000 miles away.

For Riley this couldn’t come at a worst life stage- the pre-teen years – a ball of emotions . Her  feelings of being taken away  from life-long friends, from ice-hockey games on the lake — to now being the new kid having  to make  new friends  and at a new school .Overwhelming? To her , it’s  the end of the world.

But  this is where it gets interestingYes , Inside Out is about  11-year-old  Riley, but behind the  scenes the real stars that take center stage are her emotions that are wrecking havoc in her brain — enter the five brightly colored characters  that represent  joy, sadness, anger, fear and disgust . Riley’s emotions.

Disgust, Fear, Joy, Sadness and Anger are 'Inside Out' star emotions

These  five conflicting emotions literally take over the pre-teen’s   life as she attempts to try to fit in to her new surroundings but her emotional “headquarters ” where these five characters reside  is  full of non stop activity.  Joy ( voice of  Poehler ) the mother hen, leader and voice of reason  tries to keep Riley happy  and positive  while the other emotions  each vying to be the “top-dog emotion ” to dominate Riley’s inner life, they just seem to complicate matters  sending everything into a tailspin and  lending to a movie that is  laugh-out-loud, funny, exciting, colorful and splashed with traces of  sadness  mixed in.

It will definitely  be a walk down  childhood’s memory lane and filled with nostalgia for most adults .

Seeming to be at  the forefront though is the  message that sadness and joy can  work hand in hand for an  outcome of happiness and  good. In reality,  we do  go through sadness or loss in order to encounter happiness at the end of the rainbow. This message though,  might go over kids’ heads  as they are watching the movie with it brightly colored and cute as ever characters. So the take-away lesson  of,  “it may take sadness before you get happy” may be a bit too much for them to take in –older ones will get it – but  this  is one  of the messages I found  to  be recurring.

Actor Bill Hader talks to The MOMS about  loving 'Bing Bong"

Bill Hader (Fear) popped in for a super fast chat with the MOMS.

Stopping by just before the  start   of the screening for a quick Q&A with  the MOMS’ co-creators, Denise Albert and Melissa Musen Gerstein  was actor   Bill Hader. The actor  plays the voice of Fear in the movie.

Bill Hader is that Guy! He is Fear--some

Bill Hader tell PEOPLE Magazine he “kinda stalked” Pixar execs to play the role of FEAR

Speaking to the  kids Hader  says , “When you see Fear come in , thats my voice, ” adding  “Do you know that this ( movie)  is from the same guys that made “Toy Story ” and “Monsters Inc” and “Up?”

On how he snagged  his  role  Hader  recently told PEOPLE he “stalked” Pixar  execs . He did say at the screening, “I was such a fan of  Pixar [their] movies that I went to where they worked and I asked, ‘Can you please put me in one if your movies’.  I wouldn’t leave  and now because of my persistence, I play Fear in the movie.”

The actor also told the kids that he’s done some other well known kid movies. ” I have been in  “Cloudy and  a Chance of Meatballs,” I played Lachlan,” he says.

On his favorite character in  the  movie  and no,  it is not his character! Hader declares,  “My favorite character is a character  by the name of Bing Bong.”   Adds the former SNL star,  “When Bing Bong shows up just brace yourselves. He’s the  best character in the movie!”

Actor Richard Kind plays Bing Bong who cries candy tears.

Actor Bill Hader says he is a huge fan of Bing Bong played by actor Richard Kind.

The movie took a few years to make .  ” It took five years . I’m not kidding,  says Hader of the  making of Inside Out.  Adds Hader, “Back in 2011, I went to Pixar and I started recording with Amy Poehler who plays Joy  and Mindy Palin who play Disgust and  others. So five years  of recording.  That’s how long it takes to make one of these movies.”

To finally see it  Hader says, “It is a beautiful, beautiful film and we are so happy.”  Say  the  father of three,  “The  cast and film-makers all got to see the finished product three months ago. We all went to Skywalker Ranch, that’s George Lucas’ ranch where all the  Star Wars stuff is.  We  got to watch the movie in a  room(screening room)  like this and we were laughing and crying.”

Yes the movie will make you laugh and  cry.

I recommend that  families go together to see Inside Out. I loved that the movie in a special way lets   both children and adults know feelings of   joy, sadness, anger disgust, or even fear do work harmoniously  together inside of us .

The kids gives their ratings. Inside Out  gets  5 out of 5 POPCORN STARS!  imgres. imgresimgresimgresimgres

The kids summed up their feelings in this  pic below:

'LOVE it" -How kids feel about 'Inside Out.'

The kids say this pic represents their feeling about ‘Inside Out.’ They “LOVED” it!

Also read  what they  had to say about  the movie  below:

I loved that sadness and joy worked as a team even though they are opposites— KAMEKO, 9

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Anger always made me laugh…KAI, 7

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I loved that Joy was alway happy and never gave up on Riley and holding on to her happy memories.–KAMEKO, 9

Joy  is always happy. I like when people are happy. LEXI ANNE, 7

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Even though Sadness is always sad, she has courage.–KAI, 7

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It was a very emotional movie and it was about emotions.  It actually made me feel sad at some places.—-KAI, 7

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 My favorite part of the movie was when Riley was a little girl and she had an imaginary friend named Bing Bong.   I liked how Riley made up a song about her imaginary friend.—LEXI  ANNE, 7

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Bing Bong is Riley’s imaginary friend from her early childhood. He’s a mix of an elephant, a cat, cotton candy and can squeal like a dolphin.

The Lyrics to Riley’s  and Bing Bong’s  song….

Who’s your friend who likes to play?

Bing Bong, Bing Bong

His rocket makes you want to yell hooray

Bing Bong, Bing Bong

Who’s the best at every way, and wants to sing this song to say

Bing Bong, Bing BONG!

Check out the trailer below and go see ‘Inside Out’ at your  nearest movie theater in your city ,See Fandango for listings

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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MAGNOLIA GROWS IN BROOKLYN……CROWN HEIGHTS TO BE EXACT! by Debra Lewis-Boothman

FRIDAY’ S CUTE PIC OF THE DAY on  crownheightsmom goes to Magnolia, the heart-stopping, cute-as-ever little 20-month old happy tyke  who along with her BABY  stopped me in my tracks on Eastern Parkway in Crown Heights, Brooklyn on Thursday afternoon.

20-month old Magnolia

20-month old Magnolia

Meet MAGNOLIA . She literally brought the sun out today. In fact I think   her  cuteness is the  reason  the expected  snow storm for  Thursday went bye-bye!

I spotted the lil darling taking her baby out for a walk on Eastern Parkway. Along for the stroll was mum Natalie and dad Matthew. The  9-year Brooklyn residents  have been residing in Crown Heights for the past  three years.  Before  Magnolia came along the gorgeous couple  were  living in Do-or-die Bed-Sty!…

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Brooklyn is fast becoming the NYC borough young families are looking to start and raise their families.

Brooklyn is fast becoming that borough  young families are flocking to. Crown Heights, Prospect Heights, Lefferts Gardens and Flatbush are the  new favorite areas for new renters and buyers. Don’t get me wrong there is still interest  in Fort Green, Bedford Stuyvesant, Ditmas Park, Sunset Park,  Park Slope and Boroum Hill areas .

Why the Crown Heights draw ? It  has Prospect Park, the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens, the Brooklyn Museum of Art, Grand Army Plaza Library and the Brooklyn Children’s Museum  all at ones doorstep.

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Brooklyn Children’s Museum

Prospect Park

Prospect Park

Brooklyn Museum of Art

Brooklyn Museum of Art

japanese Garden  at Brooklyn's Botanical Gardens

japanese Garden at Brooklyn’s Botanical Gardens

Let’s not even begin to talk  culture. Brooklyn  is  a gumbo pot of cultures. It is the  epitome of what New York stands for.  For young families moving to Crown Heights you can walk down the  street and bump into someone from every caribbean island known to man, meet young hip  fashionable Hasidics, or a Korean  grocer   selling  the freshest fruits and vegetables this side of Chinatown, or even talk politics with the Yemen corner store owner . The cultures  my friend in Brooklyn are  infinite .

So as our little cutie pie Magnolia continues on her walk  here’s to wishing her a wonderful year and  hoping when she hits  her 2 year mark  on May 19 that she  stays as  sweet as ever for mummy and daddy .

Enjoy your walk  little Magnolia and take in all that your wonderful neighborhood has to offer. Soak it up!

Magnolia alongside mum and dad

Magnolia alongside mum and dad

PATRICK GALLAGHER MAKES GIBBERISH COOL IN NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM 3 by Debra Lewis-Boothman

Hunna Nanga Dagga Doo……Oooh Chuu Kakasss Oola Mamm Chu Pa Kasss! Gibberish anyone?

Not up on the new lingo? Need help learning but don’t know whom to call. No worries just ask actor Patrick Gallagher currently on the big screen in Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb.


“I have been in all[Night at the Museum] and the best thing is I get to invent a language,” actor Patrick Gallagher shared with families during a MOMS screening of the third installment of the kid favorite film franchise on December 18 in New York City. Gallagher who plays Attila The Hun in the previous two installments dons the costume in what seems to be the movies’ final lap.  Fans of the actor can also see him grace the small screen  on the Jan 5 episode of NCIS-Los Angeles. He sat for questions from MOMS hosts Denise Albert and Melissa Musen Gerstein including  kids in the audience.

Actor Patrick Gallagher is in great company with the MOMS Denise[L] and Melissa[R] at the Crosby Street  Hotel's screening Room Dec 18

Actor Patrick Gallagher is in great company with the MOMS Denise[L] and Melissa[R] at the Crosby Street Hotel’s screening Room Dec 18

“It’s all made up,” he shares of the gibberish he has made cool with kids since donning the  Hun costume eight years ago. Adding his highlights of working on the film franchise includes the location shoots that has taken the Canadian to sets in New York, Washington DC and London. Although he says there are “a lot of long days and my costume is kinda hot,” he doesn’t mind it because as he tells a little tyke in the audience who asks how it feels to be in a movie,”Its very cool to be in a movie especially a movie this big.”

On returning for his third time around on  the Night at the Museum. “I feel lucky to be in the movie,” he says of the role he has played alongside Ben Stiller, Ricky Gervais and the late Robin Williams since 2006. The movie is one of Williams’ final major movie roles before his death this past August.

Seeing Williams at his best in the role of Teddy Roosevelt made viewers miss him and cherish his memory and laughs that much more .

Gallagher  and Williams with their stunt doubles  during filming...( courtesy of Gallagher's public FB )

Gallagher and Williams with their stunt doubles during filming…( courtesy of Gallagher’s public FB )

Gallagher does have one character with whom as he puts it, “has bodily functions that happen on my shoulder a lot.”  That would be Dexter the monkey whom he adds is also ” getting a little big headed, a little diva but is amazing and amazing to watch.”

Go on out and catch the movie this holiday season. As well as  pick up the previous two  installments .

RATING: BY KIDS ONLY: On a scale of 1-5  Popcorn Stars for keeping kids engaged and  loving the franchise. Night at the Museum: Secret of The Tomb earns 4  Popcorn Stars. Note this rating is per my 8-year old daughter Kameko.

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Catch Night at the Museum at your local movie theater.

HOLY SCHMOKE! I KISSED A DOG AND I LIKED IT ………by Debra Lewis-Boothman

I am in Love  and man, oh mannn,  have I fallen hard!

Yup, ya heard me right. There is a  new man in  my life . He is such a puppy so maybe  it’s puppy love.

I don’t know.  All I know is that I just love everything about him.

I was thinking that it’s his cuteness because he  takes full advantage of  this factor and it renders me  useless. But, he is learning that  the cute face isn’t working for him all of the time .

It is hard not to love him. He  has all the lovable qualities a girl wants. He’s loyal.  Yes, ladies I said loyal. You can  trust him- although I wouldn’t trust him near my plate of food  because boy can he eat!

He’s soft and warm all over which  is great for hugs . He gives wet kisses and  you can even play with his ears, with permission of course!

Meet my new love.  He goes by the name of Hiro aka Hirothewolf.

I got nothing  but love for you Hiro!

I got nothing but love for you Hiro!

The love affair. It started in late May and has since grown in leaps and bounds just like he has too.  In fact too quickly if you ask me. I still yearn for the return of his puppy stage.

We immediately melted. Hiro at 4 weeks

First Day home May 2014

We all immediately melted at the little cotton fluff. At 4-weeks

Melted my heart.

Someone’s getting bigger and cuter

Keeping him healthy and his coat thick and white as snow. Daily brushing, massages and hugs  and of course food and water. Kudos goes to  Trader Joes because they carry a wonderful  dog food brand that’s healthy and affordable. Top this off with raw  veggies and fruits  like carrots, bananas and peeled apples from the farmers market .

Trader Joe's natural brand

Trader Joe’s natural brand

carrots

carrots

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carrots

His  love is infectious. Just ask the kids.He does everything they do…..like  skateboarding.. He’s even in the Dillon Cooper  music video KNUCKLE UP.

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Kids and their puppy

Kids and their puppy

Protector always

Protector always

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The playful puppy

An unconditional  love between us that  will go on and on.

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Always the protector.

Always on the lookout

Always on the lookout to protect us

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Hiro has swagg. He’s a G!