Our son is now ensconced in life at UCLA and we are back home beginning our new life as empty nesters.
Here's how it all unfolded...
We arrived Thursday afternoon where Christopher was excited to give us the tour of the campus. This was the first time my Mom had ever been to UCLA.
The first group of move-ins took place on Thursday. We were scheduled to move into Dykstra, the oldest and most storied dorm on campus, the next day at noon.
Royce Hall is a building on the campus of the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). Designed by the Los Angeles firm of Allison & Allison (James Edward Allison, 1870-1955, and his brother David Clark Allison, 1881-1962) in the Italian Romanesque Revival style and completed in 1929, it is one of the four original buildings on UCLA's Westwood campus and has come to be the defining image of the university. Named after Josiah Royce, a California-born philosopher who received his bachelor's degree from UC Berkeley in 1875, the building's exterior is modeled after Milan's Basilica of Sant'Ambrogio.
The monument is a must-see for anyone who visits UCLA, especially because of its asymmetrical features.
Can you tell how excited my Mom was to get inside the UCLA store!
It was about at this point that I got a call on my cell phone from local blogger, Hollywood Forever, Kevin, welcoming us to Los Angeles and inviting us over for cocktails which turned out to be a very good thing... (more on that later!)
Next stop though was the UCLA Athletics Hall of Fame.
UCLA continues its tradition into the 21st century as having the most impressive sports history of any college in the nation since 1950.
The trophy room was simply awe inspiring!
There were many displays recounting UCLA's rich athletic and academic history starting with the campus' founding in 1919: the year the "Southern Branch" of the University of California was founded.
This case showed all the famous people who have attended UCLA over the years.
That concluded our tour of the campus and so we began to make our way to The Grafton on Sunset.
If not for Hollywood Forever, Kevin...
(Kevin's cat, Elizabeth Taylor)
only God knows where we might have ended up!
But thanks to my newest blog crush, we ended up in paradise! Kevin rescued us from the freeway from Hell and guided us to his charming abode in West Hollywood promising us ice cold libations upon arrival!
He did not disappoint!
My mom could not stop from comparing his good looks to Richard Gere.
Get ready to be wowed... I certainly was!
You know I'm loving this! Yep, you guessed it... Kevin made it! He's a designer. Let me show you some more fabulous eye candy!
I'm in full "swoon mode" over this vignette.
Where can I get myself a doll head?
There were punches of this gorgeous shade of aqua blue everywhere!
This shot looks right out of a magazine spread if I don't say so myself.
Kevin and I share a fondness for natural history.
A treasure chest and cabinet of curiosities, boy am I feeling giddy!
Hey, where did everybody go?
The kitchen, of course!
I haven't even had a drink yet because I can't stop taking pictures!
It's all so delicious.
I'm even in love with the trash can!
See what I mean about the shades of blue around here?
I think I'm in the laundry/pantry.
The eye candy never ends...
Just when I considered putting away the camera so I could actually converse and make eye contact with my new crush... he offered to take me to the place where he creates.
I couldn't take it anymore and just had to take it all in with my naked eye.
(Check out what Kevin did to transform his shag rug here)
I'm sorry but I finally stopped taking photos and just enjoyed the company of this most talented and charming new friend and fellow blogger.
As you can see, I was not the only one enjoying myself!
Thank you for the tour, the drinks, and a wonderful new friendship! I can't wait to see you again!
Thankfully, our hotel, The Grafton on Sunset Blvd. was not too far from Kevin.
I was taken with how this green canopy really enhanced the entry to the poolside rooms!
My husband loved the headboards!
(Excuse the unmade beds)
Only in LA!
We probably should have tried these as I don't think any of us slept too soundly... too much anticipation of the big day!
We awoke bright and early and headed directly to the Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf in Westwood Village.
The moment of truth... Dykstra Hall.
"First on the Hill!"With ultimate proximity to campus and Westwood Village, Dykstra Hall is named after Clarence Dykstra, former Professor, Provost and Vice President at UCLA. Dr. Dykstra crusaded for student housing. He ended UCLA’s 40-year-status as a commuter college, and on November 19, 1959, though he wasn't alive to see it, the first hall was completed and appropriately named...Dykstra Hall.
The first dormitory in the country to jointly house men and women under one roof, Dykstra Hall has lived up to Clarence’s expectations for fostering cultural and intellectual life.
UCLA students cheered as we drove through!
It was quite a welcome!
It ran like clockwork.
We were provided with carts to transport our belongings up to our floor.
We were the first to get settled.
Chris is in a triple. His other 2 roommates would arrive the following day.
I was pleasantly surprised at how much storage they were provided with. Chris took a top bunk which came with the cupboard storage in the background.
Here he is setting up the all important technology while Mom, Dad & Grandma made his bed and organized his clothing and sundry items.
I'm still amazed at how smoothly it all went!
It looks good now...
I can't wait to see it on Parents Weekend :)
Here is a shot of the hall bath
and the 3rd Floor RA.
Everyone we came in contact with was amazing!
And we only had to make one trip to Target!
We bid him good-bye and left him to get acquainted with his new dorm mates and headed off to explore the gorgeous area around UCLA.
(The owner was a UCLA Alum!)
The next morning we got up early and hit a garage sale in Beverly Hills on our way back to campus.
I scored these dolphins which I thought was very fitting and served to remind me that I'll still have a life when I get home!
We met Chris at the UCLA Store to get some Bear Wear, took him out for breakfast and then went back to Dykstra to meet his new roommates, CeeJay and Ryan and their families.
We all took turns hugging him good-bye and quickly jumped in the car and drove away...
We made it home in time to watch UCLA kill Houston at The Rose Bowl while Chris texted us from the student section.
I'm so happy that my Mom came with us as we will always share this wonderful experience and can now picture him in his new life. It really was a great experience for all of us, one we will never forget!
We were married for 10 years before we had Chris and have raised him for the last 18, almost 19 years, and now we are back to just us again.
A new phase begins...
Thank you for coming along on this journey with me.