Babba’s away and I’ve been recovering from an infection so Mishy and I have been laying low these last couple of days and having a wonderful time doing nothing. On Tuesday, we went to Whole Foods for lunch and to buy Mishy ghee. She loves butter – it’s fat for her brain as it develops , yet she’s lactose intolerant. Whole Foods carries organic ghee, which is both lactose and casien free. After shopping, we sat and ate lunch at Whole Foods in one of their booths. Well, I sat as Mishy played peek-a-boo with a man sitting behind us. I love how she makes friends so easily and effortlessly. Every once in a while, she checked in on me, as any friend would do, and then resumed her game – until it was time for him to go. She waved good bye, he wave back. She hugged me and then started to play with someone else at Whole Foods, sensing I needed a bit more time to chew on my salad. I bought a huge salad at the salad bar because my eyes continue to be bigger than my stomach.

Mishy watching Christopher Hawkley Rollers at The Victorian during the Food Trucks weekly event

In the evening, we headed to the Santa Monica Gourmet Food Trucks on Main Street. The food trucks are there every Tuesday evening from 5:30PM-9:30PM at the same location as the Sunday Farmers Market near Ocean Park Blvd. We’ve been going there as a family since December and I wasn’t quite sure how it would be with just the two of us. We don’t really go for the food anymore, some weeks the selection at the trucks offers delicious and healthy food and some weeks, it is rather difficult to find anything we want to eat. An association of 120 food trucks randomly picks which six to eight trucks will be there that week. Some food trucks we love? Soule Food for their shrimp toastie and lamb gyro, Nom Nom Truck for their banh mi, Let’s Be Frank for their healthy hot dogs – they do exist and are delicious, if not expensive for hot dogs at $5.50 per dog. What brings us to the weekly Food Trucks, if not for the food? Mishy’s told me she has a boyfriend and his name is Christopher of Christopher Hawkley Rollers – who plays outside at The Victorian from about 6-8PM and then inside, starting at 9PM. Mishy says she wants to join his band and travel with him.

Christopher Hawkley Rollers

Before we left for the Food Truck, Mishy quickly changed her clothes and made sure she was wearing the shirt she painted at her birthday party – “So he’ll know who I am.” She had worn that same shirt the last time she saw him during her birthday week when he sang Happy Birthday three times and she couldn’t stop smiling. I felt like I was watching my girlfriend get ready for a night out on the town, except, my girlfriend has to sit in a car seat for safety and the law. When we got to the food trucks, there was no parking available in three surrounding parking lots. I asked Mishy if we could go back home and walk back in the stroller – it’s a 30 minute walk. She assured me we’ll find parking. As soon as she said those words, we did. I love how reassuring she is.

Mishy dancing with the shirt she painted

At the food trucks location, she immediately wanted to see Christopher. He was playing and she beamed when he welcomed her and said he missed her. She asked me to ask him where he had been last week – out of town – and also tell him she missed him too. She started to dance. I love watching her dance. The freedom of her moves and expression. Her joy at feeling the music. She invited me to dance and I did, but I became self conscious and started taking pictures. She let me be. (It’s funny. I dance all the time with her when we’re at children’s concerts, but when it’s sort of for adults – I have the thought in my head that I should be dancing better. I’ll get over it. One day. Perhaps it’s because I took too many structure dance classes when I was growing up.)

Mishy asked him to sing one of her favorite songs from his Comes Around Again CD, Home. He did and she was so excited, she laughed and jumped in one spot during the song. Anyone may get this CD at the Food Trucks by donation. He gave it to her for her birthday present and she makes us play it in the car all the time.

I love this picture of Mishy dancing

Once his set was over, she said she was hungry and we went to grab some food. While we stood in line, Mishy and I talked to two other girlfriends – two young women originally from Minnesota, who now make the Westside of Los Angeles their home. They have been friends since they were 6 years old. I’m hoping when Mishy’s older, we still can be friends and hang out at the food trucks. I will understand if she rather be with other friends she’s made, though.

For the rest of the days when Babba was away, we went horseback riding at Silver Horse Healing Ranch, toddler yoga at Kids Revolving Yoga, and grabbed absolutely healthy and delicious food at Fig during their Fig at Five promotion. On Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, from 5-6PM, all the food on their menu is half the price and you can order the food to pick up. Fig in Santa Monica is located inside the Fairview Hotel on Wilshire and if you want to pick up your meal, just call, order your meal, ask them when it will be ready – usually 15 minutes after you order and then while you are in your car on the way, let them know you’re on your way and they will deliver your meal to your car with even compostable cutlery. Don’t forget to tip well.

We picked up our food and headed to Douglas Park, where we sat and watched the ducks and played in the playground while eating roasted tomato soup, braised chestnuts, miso eggplant, scallops, and pastaless lasagna. We had plenty of left overs, which Babba enjoyed when he returned.

While I really liked being with Mishy and she with me, she told me on the eve of Babba’s return that her favorite time is when we are all together. “Me, Babba, Kitty, Momma – a family – all the family.”


Santa Monica Food Trucks

Tuesday from 5:30PM-9:30PM at The Victorian on Main Street. Their are many public parking lots in the area as well as meter parking on the street.

Christopher Hawkley Rollers

Silver Horse Healing Ranch

Kids Revolving Yoga – tell Tiffany, M.J. sent you. She might give you a special rate. I believe 3 yoga classes for $25.

Fig Restaurant

Bonus Photos:

Here are some photos of times we were at the Food Trucks with one of Mishy’s friend, John Cariani.

John carrying Mishy at the parking lot of The Food Trucks

Mishy and John running at The Food Trucks

Still running.

Ordering at No Tomatoes!

Silver Horse Healing Ranch

December 25, 2010

Mishy looking at Silver, the director of Silver Horse Healing Ranch. Yes, the ranch is named after Silver.

We’ve been going to the Silver Horse Healing Ranch in Topanga for 6 months. Mishy loves it there. She takes part in two group lessons twice a month with other children, which I’ve organized. The lessons are for children starting at age 2.5 years old. The children have a gentle ride – either around the stable or on a trail – depending on the child’s age and ability. The parents are able to walk alongside the horse or stay by the stables and talk to the other parents, or take pictures. After the horseback ride, the children may brush, massage, and groom the horses. Once that is completed, the children lead a horse with a rope, usually Silver –  and learn other natural horsemanship skills such as how to tie a horse to a fence or tree or feed Silver her food of beet leaves. Finally, the horses are given snacks of carrots and apples. We have learned it’s important to be aware of the hierarchy of the horses at the ranch. Each herd has a social order and the horses higher up on the hierarchy must be given carrots first – Sara explains this prior to the children feeding the horses. She also shows us how safely to feed them.

Riding Laydee - her first time on a draft horse.

The Silver Horse Healing Ranch is a horse rescue ranch with a focus on natural horsemanship skills – which means the horses are not asked to do anything they do not want to do/makes them uncomfortable. The owner of the ranch is Sara Vaughan who has been teaching natural horsemanship skills for 12 plus years. Our classes are two hours long which leaves plenty of time to enjoy the ambiance of the ranch. (At one point, there was a compostable toilet and yurt.) She is available for group or private lessons. She does have a focus on children with high functioning people with Autism and others on that spectrum. If you are interested in participating in group lessons for your child – please write on the comments section of this post and I will get back to you. If you are a member of any yahoo groups I am on, you may also write me on them as well – NaturalParentingLA. (I have been trying to organize a class for children with autism for some time and would love to make this happen. Mishy does not have autism. I have just witnessed how special and healing the ranch is for children with high functioning autism.) I do not work for Sara Vaughan or Silver Horse Healing Ranch. I truly like what they are doing at the ranch so I happily arrange group lessons for children. (Sara mentioned I have tripled her children’s program.)

Making food for Silver


Silver Horse Healing Ranch

They are on Youtube as well: – an introduction to the ranch – a demo with Diva – Laydee with Amber, a teenager with special needs – introducing Courtney – a person of special needs