Saturday, October 06, 2007

check it out....

this sad little blog that has NEVER been updated or changed will be resting peacefully now.... thank you playfulmama, you were a patient friend.

you can keep reading (all 3 of you) at

Thursday, October 04, 2007

recycle christmas...

in case you do not know, you should be thinking about christmas right now. christmas is in full swing at costco, it's practically nipping at our noses people.

this makes me laugh because ever since i was a little girl, i have thought about christmas in august and september but not enough to actually buy or do anything. it's more of a fantasy of holiday preparation (just the parts i like of course) and then when it actually comes i tell myself i'm too tired and we should keep it simple.

after some mild obsessing over our local thrift stores, i have a brilliant idea. i think we are having a mostly recycled christmas. i say mostly as to not get all into the rules but keep it fun. if there is something new i really want to buy for my loves, i will.

i recently realized my kids do not care if something is new- they are just thrilled with whatever the thing is. this has become so common that i think they are starting to forget things come in packages.
let's face it- when you can get a very new looking kids trek bike (with the agee's sticker) for $25 it's gotta be better than the crappy wal-mart bike i can barely afford right?

or as a kid when you really believe that the green chuck taylor's you found will make you run faster and jump higher all for $5...this is a good life.

every visit is like a treasure hunt and i love finding a good deal. what i realized is that there are plenty of nice things (even formerly expensive) that have barely been used. i like to think of it as the ultimate handy me down from the rich relatives.
it feels much less icky on the consumerism monster end and somewhat green even though we are still label shopping. the kids were into it so i think we are good.

so let the recycle christmas begin...

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

morning regret....

ughhh....have you ever had a conversation where you are absolutely sure you said all the wrong things? i had this very kind last night. i so desperately wanted to relieve the person's pain or find a way out, my power of suggestion was in overdrive. not to mention i barely know the dear soul.

i think this was the time i was supposed to just listen. sometimes you have to let grief or a problem just sit in the air, this is very hard....especially when the person is so dear. if you are reading, so sorry dear friend. i will come to coffee with duct tape over my mouth next time, i swear.....

Friday, September 28, 2007

things i want to remember when i'm old...

1. how lucy called everyone "mami" like a true latin girl.

2. josiah and jack's deep love for neighborhood friends, especially bo.

3. how jorge went to every parent night by himself- everyone probably thought he was the perfect single dad. or maybe the women fantasized that he was a dreamy widower.
anyway, he knows all the homework routines and the soccer schedule.

4. how jack laughed when i chased him. his pitch higher than that of a young school girl. it made me laugh so hard i almost peed my pants every time.

5. how lucy greeted and said goodbye to her brothers and papa.
"bye 'siah, have good day! lub you!"
"hi jackie-boy! how was day?"
at bedtime- "goo-night 'siah, goo-night jackie. lub you. sweet dreams."

6. how horrified we were when josiah came home and said he wanted to join the cub scouts. it was then that i realized just how flaming liberal we truly are.

7. how jackie-boy is almost just like a muppet, how endearing we felt this quality was. how it became increasingly clear he needs ot or something.

8. how josiah rides his bike at every waking chance, how fun it is to ride with him even if it is only in the alley.

9. how many new friends have popped up here and there. people i knew before but suddenly were all around me in new ways.

10. how beautiful the nature was where i lived, how every day there was an opportunity for it to fill my soul.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

3 guys i dig...

here are 3 guys that i have been swoonin' over lately...

1. ira glass - how can you not love the man of this american life ? especially after last week's episode when he actually considers leaving his career to go play professional poker after only playing the game a half a dozen times. i heart ira!
the first act of this episode had me crying the entire way home from the grocery store the other day.

2. jake lyell- jake travels the world as a documentary photographer. his voice brings both compassion and sheds light on the social issues of poverty stricken countries. he just came back from china, you can read all about it here.

3. ron stoppable- kim possible is hands down the best cartoon on t.v., seriously, you will never get sick of this show...every one needs a little ron (and rufus for that matter) in their life. so sad the series recently aired it's finale. good ole' ron saved the world.

Friday, September 21, 2007

the stylist who helped me cut the lawn....

i woke up early last saturday, jorge was recovering from working late and a short trip to buddy's after. i was a little bit pissed actually....see the best part of moving to the city is that you DON'T have to do yard work. you get to plant flowers in boxes and put pretty pots on your steps.
no fuss no muss...but when you move a mile away to the ONLY part of the city that is a little suburbish ,you have a lawn.
it makes no sense but i can't explain it because i don't want weirdos from the internet at my front door so you'll just have to trust me.

we happen to be awful at yardwork , there are just so many other more fun things to do on the weekend. like go out for breakfast at perly's, lounge in bed and read with all the windows open, play mama slam, go exploring at the river, ride bikes, you get the idea.

the problem is it matters in my swanky neighborhood where we continue to look at each other wondering how we got here in the first place. our little house dwelling among the giants around it. so i am the lawn service, the landscaper, the guy with the big blower on his back.
where do you get one of those things anyway?

i am the only hope in my family to get anything like this sort of thing done, the others could care less, they are blowing me kisses while they ride away on their bikes. i'm such a sucker. so in hopes of not being the loser on the street who brings everyone's property value down, i schlep out my sad little push lawn mower every other saturday.

on this particular day i had some trouble getting the mower started, i primed, i pulled, i pulled, i jerked, i pulled, no luck. along comes a lovely gay couple who had given me a very chilly hello the week before. i wasn't offended, i only saw a challenge approaching, i must win these older gay men in their 50's/60's over. the dog too....

me: "oh! i'm so sorry, am i in your way?" (as i quickly move my lawn mower off the side walk)
man#1: (with a heavy german accent) "it's fine, it's fine, don't worry."
man #2: a slight glare my way (i smile back)
they continue on their way, i keep trying to get my mower started.
man #1: "do you need help?"
man#2: slight groan of annoyance
me: "oh, it's fine, i think i can get it but thank you so much!"
man#1: "no, i'm going to help you, you are a girl."

i chuckle...

man#2: "argghhhh, no, we have no time for this! come!"
man#1: "no, we should help her, she's a girl. i will help her."

i was dying inside, they were so funny, the pair. how they openly discussed if they should help me or not and the reason being i'm a girl. his big and strong hands got the mower started in 2 seconds flat and they were on their way.

then i found out this little tid bit today from a neighbor who was longing for a new haircut-
apparently my knight in shining armor's reluctant friend is garren. THE garren of garren's in nyc. i guess they come to relax in richmond on the weekends.
there is no time for helping girls trying to mow their OWN lawns, we must cut jennnifer's, madonna's and gweneth's hair. all for $700 a pop. i liked his no nonsense self...i'm still gonna win his heart, even if he is a grumpy old gay hair stylist! i think i got his kind partner already....

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

lessons in kindness...

Lessons in kindness can be found in the most unexpected places. The teachers are grocery store clerks, baristas and small children. The classrooms are elevators, doctor’s office waiting rooms and even the nascar races. Every time I think I know when or where she will show up, she always surprises me.

I can’t even tell you the boy’s name. We were passing out coupons for big televisions, bonded by hyper materialism and the American dream. How can any person live in this country with out a 52” HD TV?

I don’t even know how we got into the work of kindness, the stream of conversation went from mba’s to his marketing job to job satisfaction….ah yes, job satisfaction which lead to what we really want to do with our lives. His story began…

This guy and a friend started up a non-profit while in college for inner city kids. He started volunteering for the United Way but quickly realized he wanted have a more direct impact. The United Way is all well and good but his ideas were big, he needed to try them out. Ideas like taking 65 kids to MEET Tiger Woods, hauling kids to basketball games and the local jail. The message being you can be the golf pro not just the caddy, you can manage the dome, not just clean it, you can be the police officer, not the thug locked up.

This was mixed with their own curriculum these guys wrote, movie nights at the crappy community center in the hood, pick-up games and help with homework. The pair organized quickly and filed the myriad of papers that is required for the government to deem you legit. They relentlessly invited the local community to give and sucked the non-profit angle dry. All while working (traveling the country at nascar races with a marketing team) and finishing up his mba. He was a clean cut, cute, together African American young man living his own best dream.

I kinda laughed at the universe, she paired us together. Who would expect such a kindness expert to be passing out coupons next to the girl who is only working as a promotional model to pay for the u-pic sunflowers that she is dying to deliver as part of her larger guerilla kindness scheme? I peppered him with questions, never imagining that maybe I could start my own non-profit. Maybe someone will give me money to spread kindness in the world. Is that dream too big, too far from my reach? He made it seem like such a possibility, almost an everyday ordinary option.

I had a feeling he wasn’t ordinary, he was quite amazing actually. But this is what kindness is, it is extraordinary in every form on every level. From delivering hand-picked sunflowers to meeting tiger woods to paying someone’s toll… to the lesson’s learned by the boy whose name I’ll never know.