Our friends Donna and George brought their daughters down from Boston to visit this weekend. Smokey and Emma were immediately terrified, with good reason, since at one point I walked into the bedroom to find Avery, the four year old, pressing down on Smokey with both hands. She looked up at me and said, "Can you help me? I'm trying to teach him to stand." The girls are ridiculously cute and smart. Lael, the seven year old, learned how to do Sudoku and play Yahtzee while she was here. As I'm the one who taught her, I can definitely vouch for her extreme intelligence. I mean, the kid learned Sudoku while we were sitting in a Starbucks chatting, and she finished the entire puzzle from the New York Post before we got home. Both Lael and Avery were so excited to be here that they basically ran around declaring how excited they were to be here, how much they loved me and Rob, and how New York was the coolest place ever. It was like being the most important person in the world for two days. At one point, Donna laughed and said, "It's a shame they're not having any fun." "I know," I said. "They're behaving like prisoners." The four year old looked at us. "We are having fun," she announced. "And you're being facetious."