How to have the best Sunday in L.A., according to the beloved Sheryl Lee Ralph and fam
In Sunday Funday, L.A. people give us a play-by-play of their ideal Sunday around town. Find ideas and inspiration on where to go, what to eat and how to enjoy life on the weekends.
When Sheryl Lee Ralph floated across the L.A. Live stage to accept her first Emmy for her performance in ABC’s “Abbott Elementary,” her two children, Etienne and Ivy Coco Maurice, exploded in excitement, yelling “Yes mommy!” from the audience. Their heartfelt reaction was captured in a viral video that’s been viewed more than 1 million times.
“I told people, ‘If that was your mother that won an Emmy, you would be reacting the same exact way,’” said Etienne, reflecting on the memorable evening.
That night was just one of several moments in which Ralph and her adult children have shown the world how much they love and support one another. Etienne — a filmmaker who also helps his mother with content creation — posted videos of Ralph receiving flowers from celebrities like Beyoncé and Oprah Winfrey after her Emmy win. And Ivy Coco — a fashion stylist and designer who selects her mother’s looks — shared a video of Ralph being honored with the Order of Jamaica in October.
“Family for me is everything,” said Ralph, adding that she appreciates being able to work with her children. “I don’t have to drag them along in life. They’re literally carrying themselves and at times helping me — also while making me crazy — but it’s a good thing.”
Family is “the foundation of who we are,” Ivy Coco added.
It’s also not uncommon for Ralph — who recently was nominated for a Golden Globe — to show up to Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area, where Etienne, Ivy Coco and their cousin Marley Ralph host a donation-based yoga class called BreatheGood every Sunday, courtesy of their nonprofit WalkGood L.A., which advocates for racial equity through the arts, health and wellness.
“The times that she is free, she will join us for WalkGood because everybody always enjoys seeing our mother at the park,” said Etienne, who founded the organization in 2020. His sister serves as vice president.
Planning your weekend?
Stay up to date on the best things to do, see and eat in L.A.
Spending Sundays together has been a priority for their family since Etienne, 31, and Ivy Coco, 27, were young. Although their schedules have gotten more demanding, they try to hang out at least a couple of Sundays each month, they said.
The family’s Sunday gatherings haven’t changed much from when Etienne and Ivy Coco were kids. Here’s a rundown of how they would spend their ideal Sunday together in L.A. This breakdown has been edited for length and clarity.
8:30 a.m.: Yoga in the park with WalkGood L.A.
Ivy Coco Maurice: We start our Sundays off with our yoga experience known as BreatheGood. We’re prepped and ready at Kenneth Hahn park by 8:30 a.m. at the latest every Sunday and we begin our flow at 10 a.m. It lasts an hour.
Sheryl Lee Ralph: What I find so fascinating is that for the past two years, you’ve got young people of color coming to do something so healing and so wonderful together. That’s the sort of thing that they just don’t take enough time to do. Folks doing great things for themselves before the tragedies, before the hurts, but to keep themselves on a great path.
Etienne Maurice: I never thought that I would still be doing WalkGood L.A. It wasn’t until the first year when I realized when we kept going that there was something special about us gathering and us healing in solidarity through yoga classes. But what’s kept me going has been my family. What’s kept me going is that there is a community of young Angelenos that rely on WalkGood so that they can have a great start to their week, and that’s a huge responsibility that I don’t take lightly.
For the record:
11:08 a.m. Dec. 19, 2022An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that WalkGood LA’s film festival will launch in Feburary. It will begin in March.
We’re expanding our efforts with WalkGood, and in March we’ll be starting our quarterly film festival for underrepresented filmmakers called FilmGood.
The ‘Abbott Elementary’ star opens up about her ‘rough’ path as a Black woman in show business — and now, at 65, enjoying the view from the top.
1:30 p.m.: Time for brunch
SLR: If I’m doing WalkGood, by the time they get back, it’s time to go get brunch at some place like My 2 Cents L.A., Met Him at a Bar or Met Her at a Bar, CJ’s Cafe or right here in the kitchen at home. Etienne still makes the best crepes. Ivy Coco makes the best anything she puts her mind to and Miss Mae, our home engineer, makes the most incredible Jamaican food. People always say to me, “Where do you all go for Jamaican food?” I say, “Ah mi yard! In ah mi kitchen!” Everybody orders whatever it is they want because we love a full table.
EM: When I’m at CJ’s Cafe, I always order the strawberry mango smoothie with the catfish and grits. At My 2 Cents, I normally get their lemonade with catfish, collard greens and their sweet potato hash.
SLR: Brunch can last for hours. I think very often people cheat themselves out of the time to be with family and friends. Don’t make it short time spent together. Use the time.
4:30 p.m.: Off to the movies
SLR: Oh my gosh, yes! That’s where we would get a good shop on.
EM: The Beverly Center was like the place. I remember when Mommy was on “Moesha,” she would always bump into her castmates at the Beverly Center, like we’d always see Brandy and Marcus T. Paulk. I remember that was really, really fun.
On Sundays, author Roxane Gay explores her favorite L.A. book shops, art galleries and movie theater with comfy seats.
6:30 p.m.: Channel Marlon Brando while getting ice cream
SLR: We love finding great places in L.A. for ice cream. Love it! We like going to Mashti Malone’s. It’s so interesting because it’s one of those places that’s got such great ice cream, and I’m like, “You mean to tell me not everybody knows about this place?”
ICM: A lot of people don’t know about Mashti Malone’s and the legacy that it has. It’s been family-owned for years.
SLR: You can get things like lavender ice cream.
ICM: And ask for the ice chips on top! They’re so good.
EM: I love their mango ice cream, their raspberry sorbet and their waffle cones. And I just like the fact that it was a delicacy that Marlon Brando used to frequent and so when I go there, I like to feel the spirit of one of the greatest actors of all time.
7 p.m.: Wind down
SLM: Around this time usually, I’ve got to get ready for work. I’ve got 5 a.m. calls, which means that I’ve got to be in bed by 8 p.m. or 8:30 p.m. Anything after that, I get sort of messed up.
EM: I go home after ice cream and then I’ll probably be watching “Reasonable Doubt.”
ICM: Honestly I’m doing nothing. I’m just like chillin’ and lying in bed, probably on my phone.
It's a date
Get our L.A. Goes Out newsletter, with the week's best events, to help you explore and experience our city.
You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times.