Thursday, October 31, 2013

costume parade

Happy Halloweenie! This is only a partially recycled post, one that I believe is obligatory. Last year I organized a fairly awesome chronology of  the Halloween costumes my  kids have sported over the years, but I left you hanging by asking "what will tonight bring?" Today we solve the mystery of 2012, sort of. And even offer a bonus glimpse of what's cooking for tonight!


Ghosts of (some) Halloweens Past

It's times like this when I wish I was more like Ellie, with her neatly categorized photo albums available within arm's reach. My electronic photos are pretty well organized, at least since 2005 or so. But this morning's search for a legacy of Halloween fodder produced just one random early photo in an old flickr (formerly kodak gallery, formerly ofoto) album.

Look at my baby boy dressed up as enthusiastic elephant.  

Awwwww! Efalant.

Now imagine the next few years as a blur of cuteness in the form of Simba, a cougar, and various unfortunate disney characterizations... oh wait... Buzz and Woody:

2002? I'm pretty sure it wasn't even Halloween, but AWWWWWWW.

and then
2003 or 2004. The belly. the mugs. I die.
probably 2005 - Mimi made these costumes for them!
2006 - my girl had to decide between a white or a black unitard for this outfit. Once she chose, she announced to anyone who asked that she was dressed as "a black rock star."

2007. Inexplicable green hair.

2008 - commence dark years. Note the recycled cheerleader costume from last year!

2009. Awww? He won a trophy for that shit.

2010: fave.

2011- really pretty awesome. I spent an inordinate amount of time on her shoes, which you can't even see.
What will tonight bring????


Here is what that night brought:
2012. Now all your questions are answered?

Bonus... a preview of half the gang's getups for tonight's adventures:

rocking 2013, superhero style!
I've got to leave you with another cliffhanger...what will the boy be? Will he be anything at all? Check back in 2014

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

You get what you need

So last week I was waxing poetic about how great it would be to have a son. And I'm sure it would be. I meant every word I wrote. And I am sticking to them.

But, the impetus for the post were the lovely, lovey, gushy words of affection that my friends' boys were bestowing upon them. I mean, really, really good stuff.

But low and behold, look what my oldest, yes, the pre-teen (with sub-par English skills) handed to me this very weekend. (Thank you cosmic waitress, I didn't even ask for it directly and you still delivered!)

It just may be the nicest note someone has ever written me, with the exception of perhaps, Sebastian.
And the mixing up of the homophone makes it all that much more endearing. (And also makes me wonder whether I should consult my feet or my collar bones for questions that keep me up at night.)
But seriously, an intelligetnt sole soul? It doesn't get much better than that.
Just one (more) example that we all get what we need ;)

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

The Full Boogsie

When Jacquie's kids were wee -- 750 years ago, by her calculations -- and Mistah and I used to spend months at a time visiting that patient and gracious family, Jacquie would pitch her baby girl into our bed in the mornings, so she -- Jacquie -- could get another hour of sleep or take a shower or get ready for work, because all her little infant daughter wanted to do at 5 or 6 in the morning, wide awake, was play.

One early morning, after a particularly difficult night, as she threw her pink-footsie-pj'd-baby our way, Jacquie said, "She. Is a Little Pink Booger."

And thus . . . 

. . . Ms. Boogsie was born.

You of course know Ms. Boogsie. Mistah and I had her all to ourselves for a couple of days this past summer.

She's all grown up now, though. Sigh.


Fast forward 750 11 years. Our friend Kim was planning to stop by our house with her wee baby girl on Saturday and texted me, "Me and the Boogz are on our way."

The Boogz!

We have been lucky enough in our lives to have the acquaintance of Ms. Boogsie. And now? The Boogz too?!

The Boogz arrived and she is, as my Dad would say, a perfect little package.

Her mom's not half bad either.

We had a lovely interlude on the deck, on yet another gorgeous October 2013 day . . .

. . . and we loved getting to get to know our newest, youngest, littlest, pink-clad Boogz-girl.

Of course, we couldn't help but think about those long-ago days with the original little pink-clad Boogsie Senior.

We told Kim that Ms. Boogsie had a great trick when she was wee. If she got really excited -- like, for instance, every time she saw herself in the mirror -- she'd get a maniacal look of glee on her face, and windmill both her arms and both her legs faster than the speed of light, and screech. We called it, of course, doing The Full Boogsie. We finally documented her performance at a hotel room in Austin, while Jacquie was downstairs in a conference:

The Full Boogsie

Kimmie's girl The Boogz is still little, she's still got a couple of months of growing up to do before she reaches the age where she can learn The Full Boogsie.

But I have every confidence The Boogz is going to follow proudly in the illustrious Boogsie footsteps.

Monday, October 28, 2013

what it's all about

On Sunday afternoon I took a walk along the lovely Ocean Beach, and came across this scene:

A woman sitting on a rock holding tightly to a little girl, looking dry and cold while watching a boy joyfully scamper around at the water's edge. He was in a tank top and skivvies, bounding in and out of the retreating waves and clearly getting more and more wet. He was grinning from ear to ear. As I walked by, the woman said: "come on, Mijo... it's getting cold!"  He appeared not to hear her at all.

It reminded me of a day at the beach many years ago, when Ellie and Bill were visiting. The kids must have been tiny since Ellie and Bill haven't visited us in over 750 years. As I recall, this was the very day of their arrival, and we took ourselves directly to the beach, as we are wont to do. Ellie and my Bill and my fine self were lounging and reading and drinking and probably eating pretzel dicks while Mistah Uncle Schlekah Himself took the kids down to this very rock jetty for some photos. It was Fathers Day, a typically overcast June gloomy OB day, so the kids were in clothes rather than bathing suits. Naturally, they returned to me soaked down to the skin.

My boy hadn't a care, but my girl was a bit concerned that I'd be unhappy about her being drenched. As she walked up, she gave me that look of hers and before I could even open my mouth to exclaim or proclaim or whatever I'd have ended up doing, she gestured to indicate her wet bod and wide grin and said: "Uncle Bill said that's what it's all about."

Friday, October 25, 2013

Yes or no? Stay or go?

Here it is almost Halloween! How did it happen? Where did the time go? What happened to summer?!? Somehow time just keeps slipping away, at a faster and faster pace each year. Physically impossible, I know, but perceptually true.

Long gone for me are the days of wishing time would pass so I could go to kindergarten, or get my driver's license, or put my fake ids away when I turned 21. I'd prefer a tick-tock slow down at this point. (Except during some exceptionally boring work days.)

But, I must confess that I am on schedule for the goal that I set on New Year's day this year. The year did not get away from me in this respect. This isn't something that usually happens. Rarely, really. But I had help this year.

This past New Year's day I went to a yoga and goal-setting workshop. It was a valuable 3 hours. In addition to the yoga, which is always helpful, the goal-setting portion of the workshop was insightful. They instructed us to set larger goals, not your typical nit-picky New Year's resolutions. In fact, they even took it farther; we were to put our goals out there for the next three years.

There is wisdom in this, as one goal can build on the next, and the next; or you can work on one area of your life one year, another are during the next, and so on.

This year's goal, 2013, was to find, then create, a new home for me and my girls. We were doing fine in our beater rental in OB as I sat there on January 1st, but it was a transition spot, and I knew we all needed a real home, a place where we could unpack and get comfortable in for the foreseeable future.

I'm feeling pretty confident that I've done this. Yes, it could use some more art on the walls, and yes, there are electrical and heating fixes that still need to be made, but it's home. The house hunting, contact negotiating, mortgage securing bullshit, physical move, and unpacking are behind us.

So, yay for me and my 2013 goal. I rock.

This leads me to my 2014 goal: yoga teacher training. Why teacher training? Am I really ever going to teach yoga? Honestly, I don't know. But I really feel strongly that it's the next logical step in my yoga practice. I toy around in my head with the future possibilities of owning a studio or of supporting myself in a vastly different ex patriot life in Mexico or Costa Rica.

In reality, in the near future, I'd like to teach a class or two a week here while I continue on in this life. The challenge of creating an interesting sequence of poses, putting it together with kick-ass music, and passing on to others all that yoga has provided me with is motivating.

Blah, blah, blah, so I wanna get certified, k?

My hang up, the reason for this post, the problem, is that I want to train under a certain person. She's San Francisco based, which is not totally convenient, but not impossible. I have been trolling her website for months, waiting for her 2014 teacher training to be posted. When, where, how much would it be? Sign me up, sign me up, sign me up.

Ha, well, guess what? The 2014 training, the initial 100-hour portion, is in Bali. Bali!!! She usually holds the winter portion in Mexico. You know, our neighbor directly to the south, a close, quick flight; plus I could even write a great article about it for the Mexico travel magazine I contribute to.

But no, she is taking her first sabbatical ever and moving herself and her two girls to Bali for the majority of  2014.

There she is doing hurdler's pose, in Bali. Taunting me!

Don't get me wrong. I would love to go to Bali. I have never been to Bali. Who would not want to go to Bali?

But Bali? It's so far away, it would add an extra day of travel each way, to a trip that would already take me away from my kids for  more than 10 days. The cost of the airfare to Bali is three times what the cost of a ticket to Mexico would be.

But Bali? With Janet Stone?

I mean, it WAS my 2014 goal, right?

That's what my, fuck-it, you-only-live-once-and-who-knows-for-how-long-that-will-even-be side is saying.

But my more responsible and much less fun side is saying, just push the training back a year, or train with someone here locally, or find some other option, there are always other options; two weeks in Bali is too much, too far, too expensive, too selfish.

No one can make the decision for me, I get this. I need to figure it out in my own head, in my own time. But I'm forcing you to come along with me on this internal debate because it helps me to write things down.

See how selfish I am? (Is that a sign?)

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Art Lovahs

If you drive down this driveway . . .

. . . you know, this driveway . . .

 . . . the one with the Leaves . . .

. . . and the Stones . . .

. . . then at the end you'll find a magical mystical house . . .

 . . . a magical mystical house . . .

 . . . with a really cool garage door . . .

. . . and up there, on the second floor, up in the trees . . .

. . . you'll find an Art Studio . . .

. . . an Art Studio with an Open House . . .

. . . an Art Studio with an Open House with an real-live Artist in Residence.

Of course Dorothy is in Residence; it is, after all, her house.

And, oh the Art we dove into . . .

As New Londoners, we especially loved the lobster.

A couple of old friends made their appearances*, too:

Dorothy's Girl
*Ahem . . .


. . . *You're welcome.

We -- and by "we" I mean "Mistah" -- would have taken a lot more photos of all the art but "we" -- yeah, Mistah -- were too busy taking photos of leaves and stones. Forgive "us".

Dorothy and Gracie -- and Dundee, in the kitchen -- worked their respective three generations of butts off, feeding the likes of us, their fans, bodily and artistically. They threw an amazing afternoon, and were  pooped.

In the meantime, we spent most of the afternoon on the deck, amid the trees . . .

. . . watching the sheets act like birdies in the wind.

And then?

Celebrity guests showed up.

We love the Art, we love the Artist, we love the Art Lovahs.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

bag o tricks

I can't exactly remember the back story, but one day I was somewhere at or near the beach with Beth and at least one of her children, and said child was restless. I sifted through my beach bag for something to give the child, something to entertain and delight or at the very least, quiet the child so that her mother and I could resume whatever it was that we were doing. Let's all just pretend we weren't at a bar, k? K. I recall that the things I pulled out of my bag were hilariously inappropriate for the delight and/or entertainment of a child, but it wasn't a big deal, I just closed it back up and went on with my life.

Until yesterday, when I was trying to enjoy a dull quesadilla (don't EVEN get me started on the endless soft foods tirade. Just don't), but couldn't find any hot sauce. I remembered that day at or near the beach with Beth and said child, and I remembered that one of the inappropriate items I had pulled out of my inner bag to offer the young child was a wee little bottle of tabasco! Best of all, I remembered that the small bag o tricks had been moved out of my larger beach bag and into my larger purse.

This is the bag that was once lived inside my beach bag, and could now be found inside my purse.

The bag of wonders! Let's see what we got, shall we?

The aforementioned tabasco. AAwwww, it's just a baybeeeee!

I dumped it all over my quesadilla before I had the idea to make a blog post out of it.

Bag still weirdly awesome. Adorable tabasco now empty, still wee. Exhibit A

What else is in there?

Exhibit B: a pretty pink razor

Exhibit C: portable charger. Don't listen to Beth when she tells you it is something else

Exhibit D: now we're talkin

Exhibit E: hmm. Technically made for kids, but not strictly for entertainment purposes.
That was all that the bag contained. Seriously. Poor baby girl, such a paltry assortment of playthings. I thought I'd better add something to prevent such a travesty from happening ever again.

Totally ready for next time.