Archive for the ‘Fun & Entertainment’ Category

My mother-in-law weighs in on Hawaii Five-O

by Kanesha

My husband, his twin brother, and their older sister were born in Hawaii. My husband lived there until he was about eight-years-old and then he moved back to the mainland with his mom (my *mother-in-law) and his siblings.

During our courtship and marriage, I have been fascinated about this part of my hubby’s life. A big contribution to this fascination is the way my mother-in-law becomes all dreamy eyed and animated when she talked about her life in Hawaii.

When I found out CBS was remaking Hawaii Five-O, I had to know what my mother-in-law thought about this. She did not hesitate to share her perspective.

[Summary of the contemporary version.]

K:            Did you know they were remaking Hawaii Five-O?

MIL:            The question is why?????? No I didn’t.


K:             OK, I have more nosey questions. How long did you live in Hawaii?

MIL:            12+ years

K:            What made you decide to move there?

MIL:            Too long of an answer and too involved etc.

K:            [giggle] Would you ever move back?

MIL:            No, unless to outer island.  Also [I] would need much more disposable income because toooooo far away from everyone. That was a reason for moving back; the age of my grandmother, [my] kids didn’t know their grandparents.  I don’t even need to visit again. Never really felt I was in the tourist role. Too many changes last time.

K:            ¡Viva multigenerational living! Did you watch the original Hawaii Five-O?

MIL:            Of course.  Don (the father K’s hubby) was even in a couple of episodes as an extra. We did those sessions like you-all (meaning Kanesha and her girlfriends) do the Oscars!  It was always fun trying to figure out where they were.


K:            Who were your favorite characters?

MIL:            The Hawaiian guy of course.

K:            [bigger giggle] Did you ever see the original being filmed while you were living in Hawaii?

MIL:            No.

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Blue Bloods – a multigenerational show to watch


Tom Selleck and me, circa 2003


Television is not a huge priority in our house – we only have one.  I do not watch a lot shows; Mad Men and Parenthood are at the top of my list and of course, my alma mater’s football games.  I am NOT a fan of most reality TV shows.  I would rather be subjected to bodily injury than watch any of the Real Housewives series.  But, one new Fall show got my attention for two reasons: it is a show about a multigenerational family and it stars Tom Selleck.   

Many of my friends will recall my flat-out obsession with Tom Selleck when he starred in Magnum, P.I.  (Perhaps this is a better memory for me than them?  I can almost make out the eye-rolling as I write this.)  And later, when I was in college (as luck would have it, it was the same university from which he graduated) I met him several times when he attended alumni events – moments I will never forget.  And no – my dear college friends – no need to re-live my insanity at the alumni volleyball game that occurred the same day of  his birthday – a fact that no one knew but me… 

So when I heard about Blue Bloods – well, you can imagine that there was no way I was going to miss it.  I liked it – but not for the reason that you might think.   

It was an interesting storyline – family of police officers, with Tom Selleck the Chief of Police in NY.  He has four adult children, one son having recently been killed in the line of duty.  His only daughter is a district attorney.   Two other sons are on the police force. 

But it was the family-themed, (do not read this as poltically conversative please…) many generations close together every day, that got me.  And in particular, the family dinner with 4, count them 4, generations sitting down to a meal on a Sunday night that was eerily familiar.  

Does this sound like any dinner you have had with family before?…Lots of people in the kitchen, differing opinions among the adult kids and some snipping among parents, children and even grandchildren.  People up and down from the table, one person leaving early, and at some point, alcohol was located and consumed to provide some relief. 

Sounds about right….  Families are complex and people disagree and things can get a bit, shall we say, testy.  But family is non-negotiable in my book and for them it seems, too.  

Blue Bloods has been added to my TV list – and apparently, I am not the only one who liked the show – it reeled in the viewers on Friday night.  Tom Selleck is a big draw for me but it was really fun to watch the family dynamics and see how often I said, “I get that….”

Our lovely multigenerational Sunday morning

by Kanesha

On Sunday, I woke up and the three-year-old had crawled into bed with me. He was demanding we get downstairs for breakfast and to see grandma (my mother-in-law). I could not be annoyed with him, even though I thought about it, because it was already 8:00 a.m.

Hubby was already up and moving around (can you see why I considered becoming annoyed?) and he was in a cooking mood. He coaxed me out of bed with the promise of apple cinnamon French toast, bacon, and strong coffee. Say no more, I was up!

After the lovely, non-healthy, and super delicious breakfast, the four of us (our daughter was sleeping over at a friend’s house) sat at the kitchen table, started talking about our super busy Saturday events, and  began working on our individual projects.

I was preparing goodie bags for my girlfriends. We had plans to watch the Desperate Housewives premiere. Yes, it’s low-brow TV watching and it gave us yet another reason to have a party on a Sunday night.

I purchased apple themed goodies to put into the bags. Simple and fun.

My son wanted to “help” me prepare the bags, so I set him up with his own project.

I showed my little guy how to use the hole punch. His hands aren’t quite strong enough to work the hole punch alone, but he was very determined.

Our local library had a used book sale on Saturday. All children’s and teen books were $.50. FANTASTIC!

My daughter and I had a great time digging through all the books. We picked up some picture books for my mother-in-law. She likes to make origami boxes with the picture book pages.

Hubby was doing some travel planning and pretty much just surfing the web. He would look up every now-and-then and offer us some positive feedback on our various projects. Yes, he’s the family cheerleader.

After about 90 minutes, the multigenerational project session came to an end.

My mother-in-law had created a super cute origami box.

My mother-in-law promised my son he could have the box if he helped clean up his project area.

He promptly used the box for his current beloved toy.

I finished the embellishments on my goodie bags. I was looking forward to the fun time I would have later on that evening.

It was a nice and relaxing start to a fun Sunday. It doesn’t get much better than this.

Raising Hope = multigenerational dysfunction

by Kanesha

The fall 2010 TV line-up is underway and our DVR is being put to work.

I was so excited for all the new shows and returning favorites that I made a viewing matrix for this week. (I know, judge me!)

We do not watch a huge amount of television (no, I’m not going to define huge), but we do like to watch some shows as an entire multigenerational family (e.g. Dancing With the Stars).

Tonight, my nuclear family and I decided to watch Raising Hope (FOX). I’m a fan of Greg Garcia and I enjoyed his work with My Name is Earl.


I was not at all prepared for what I saw. When I was wishing for more multigenerational themed TV shows, I wasn’t exactly talking about this.

The Chance family is a multigenerational family with a whole lot of crazy going on. (See show’s summary.)

As I watched the zany, jaw dropping, and wacky interactions of this family unfold, I laughed hysterically. Yes, I was totally into the potty humor and tasteless jokes of this sitcom.


I guess you must have a good and sometimes obtuse sense of humor when you live in a multigenerational household.

As Jimmy’s grandmother, “Maw Maw” (Cloris Leachman), walks around in her bra, smoking a cigarette, yelling at her dead husband, and going in and out of lucidity, I inserted myself into this lunacy and imagined Maw Maw being my mother-in-law. What in the world would I do with my real mother-in-law if she was, in reality, that nutty?


Then there is the grandmother to Hope (Jimmy’s mother), Virginia Chance (Martha Plimpton).


Her smoking, trash talking, and tossing baby Hope around in the backseat would have me loosing my mind. I’m not sure if I would prefer Virginia or Maw Maw being my mother-in-law. Either way, I would have to drink heavily all day, install a nanny cam, and perhaps consider a divorce.

My multigenerational reality vs. Multigenerational chaos with the Chance family

When I went back to work after being on family leave, my little guy refused to take the bottle. Here my mother-in-law was living with us for only a month, still in transitional mode, and her three-month-old grandson would not take the bottle. I wonder if Jimmy Chance’s rubber glove method would have worked better than the cry your head off hysterically until you finally yield to taking expressed milk in a bottle.


Then there was the time when my mother-in-law took my son to infant swim class. She received the “polite” stares and eyes that were secretly asking, “What’s this white lady doing with this little brown baby?” Someone even asked my mother-in-law from what country had her son (my hubby) gotten this baby. I’m glad my mother-in-law ignored those people, focused on singing Wheels on the Bus with her grandson, and didn’t have to explain anything about being in the penitentiary and not knowing the song’s words.

I’m especially glad my mother-in-law has never puked on my son due to a toxic and poopy diaper. There my mother-in-law was yesterday, at the recreation center, meeting her trainer for the first time. My son was in childcare and just as the training session was to begin, the childcare folks informed my mother-in-law that her grandson pooped in his pants, and yet, she did not puke. My mother-in-law handled the situation like a pro. She cleaned him up, sent him back to play time (albeit commando) and finished up her workout with the trainer.


I’m not sure how long we will stick with this show. I suppose we’ll watch until it’s just too ridiculous to maintain our TV watching dignity. I definitely don’t have any plans to encourage my mother-in-law to watch it. She would be overly irritated on so many levels (the top issue being the portrayal of Cloris Leachman as a mature woman).

What’s on your must see list for the fall TV lineup?

Reflections on summer travel and fun – multigenerational style

by Kanesha

When Friday came around, I was absolutely thrilled!

Hubby was back from work travel, my daughter was heading to a sleepover, my mother-in-law was going for a night on the town, I had a dinner date with a great girlfriend, and I was actually looking forward to tackling my mega home-chore list.

(Oh, the little guy was hanging out with hubby on Friday – boys’ night!)

When Saturday morning came around, it was raining a bit and overcast. Forget about that mega home-chore list. It was time for some scrapbooking.

I love taking pictures. I enjoy sorting and categorizing them. I especially love putting the pictures in a scrapbook and retelling a story and reliving those fun moments. (This is a common interest my mother-in-law and I share.) And that’s how Saturday and today went as I scrapbooked.

Here is a glimpse into some of the summer memories of our multigenerational vacation time.

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it’s a full nest talks with Chef Clifford Rome

As I’ve mentioned before, multigenerational living comes with a lot of perks.

Crafting and cooking are always at the top of our list.

Check out Kanesha’s radio chat with Chef Clifford Rome and Rashanah on WVON 1690 AM.

This is the lime-infused coconut pound cake Rashanah mentioned in the interview. No calories at all – ok, there are, but who’s counting?

The recipe for this cake can be found in:


My mother-in-law made flan the other night and in my opinion, she makes the BEST flan I’ve ever tasted. She added some fresh peaches to it – since peaches are in season.

Hubby made some marinated chicken kabobs the other weekend and we all devoured them. He marinated the chicken in fresh lemon juice and prime-rib rub from the Savory Spice Shop.

Everyone in our multigenerational household has a “couture” apron – designed and  sewn by my mother-in-law.

Here I am, in my apron (sans pearls), making sugar cookies for girls’ night out. I used a cookie cutter shaped like a martini glass.

My 11-year-old, the aspiring pastry chef, was in the kitchen baking up something delectable. She has a matching head scarf to go with her apron.

My mother-in-law wanted a new t-shirt and so she whipped one up for herself. She also made the beads for her necklace.

Emmy Awards 2010 – all primetime multigenerational families should win

The wings represent the muse of art; the atom the electron of science.

by Kanesha

It’s Sunday – my favorite day of the week.

Sundays are for family fun and girls’ night out. The bonus for this Sunday is that the primetime Emmy awards will be on. I have to confess, I love awards shows, and yes, I like to watch the ENTIRE thing.

I print out the ballot, mark the potential winners, and then keep score while I watch the show.

While I was going through the complete 2010 nomination list, I was picking out shows and series that had multigenerational themes.

I selected these five shows:

Mad Men (I'm hoping Sal will be back this season)

Julianna Margulies is amazing

Modern Family (Phil is my favorite. Their multigenerational family trip to Hawaii reminded me of our multigenerational trip to Paris. Awesome chaos!)

Big Love (I'm overly fascinated by this family)

I don't watch this one - but they are for sure multigenerational

If anyone else is paying attention to this year’s Emmys, did I miss any other

“mutigenerational-esque” shows on that huge nomination list?

And I as continued to think about multigenerational families being portrayed on television, I came up with these shows – which I loved or just shook my head at:

All in the Family


Judging Amy

Who's The Boss?

King of Queens

The Waltons

The Golden Girls

Who is your favorite multigenerational family in hollywood land (past or present)?