Dagny and I were driving home from Marin the other day and I took a wrong turn (I blame the GPS) and we ended up on the ultimate scenic route with the most amazing views of the Golden Gate Bridge. Today the Golden Gate turns 75. She looks pretty great for her age, don't you think?
Dagny took these photos with my phone from the moving car proving
that you can't take a bad picture of something that beautiful
I love living in this digital age. Access to email, info, friends, books, music... I carry it around everywhere I go and it is a wonderful thing. I know there was a time in my life when I listened to cassette tapes and phones had cords, but I hardly remember it. I'm sure that when I used to wait in line somewhere I actually had to just wait in line (or maybe even talk to the people around me) with no iPhone to entertain me. All of my lovely little gadgets have changed my life and they have changed the world. We can now communicate constantly but also not at all. With our eyes glued to our screens we often miss out on what is happening around us in real time. The other day I was at this outdoor shopping mall and I sat down for a minute near the duck pond and watched the little kids feeding the ducks. The kids were adorable, it was idyllic. It reminded me of when I used to bring my little ones to that same pond. I turned to the woman next to me to tell her how cute her little girl was and that's when I noticed that every single mother there was looking at her phone. Not a single one of them was watching their kids. They weren't not watching them to the point of neglect, the kids weren't in danger, the moms were just missing out on what was happening right in front of them. Those kids were running, playing, laughing, and being as cute as could be. What Facebook status or email or tweet could possible be more interesting than that? This is where my motherly advice comes in - PUT DOWN YOUR PHONE, YOU ARE MISSSING ALL THE GOOD STUFF!
The day before Mother's Day Dagny and I were in Marin and we stopped at a fondue restaurant on our way home. We thought fondue sounded like fun (it is) but what we didn't know was how expensive and romantic the restaurant was. Once we were inside we realised we were in over our heads, the place was all dim lighting and secluded alcove seating. It was very obvious this was not an everyday kind of place, it looked like everyone there was on a date. We decided to just go with it and when the waiter asked what we were celebrating Dagny told him Mother's Day. Happy Mother's Day to me! After we shared the four course fondue experience Dagny and I decided that fondue is the greatest thing ever and that eating fondue should be our new Mother's Day tradition.
I will admit that I am not an easy person to buy presents for and surprising me is not an easy thing to do. Yet with all that Steve still managed to surprise me on Mother's Day. I was not expecting nor did I even have an inkling that he had bought me this
Steve hates Apple and all their products (he is a PC, not a Mac) yet he went into the heart of the evil empire (the Apple Store) and bought me a new iMac. If that's not love, I don't know what is.
When Dagny was about 4 she announced to me that my services would no longer be needed at story time, from now on she would do the reading. I think her exact works were, "Mommy, you don't need to read to Dane anymore, that is my job now." She took her job very seriously, and she read to him everyday for years and years. She read him all her favorite books; Curious George, Clifford, Berenstein Bears, Madeline, Dr. Seuss... but her all-time favorite book was Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak and she read it to Dane everyday. I had been reading that book to them all their lives,Max and the Wild Things were a part of us.
reading with Grandpa
(Dane with his Wild Things toys in his lap)
Just about every afternoon at that point in the day when a mother has had just about enough and starts looking at the clock to see when Daddy will be home, we would have a wild rumpus. Dagny and Dane would yell, "And now, let the wild rumpus start!" Sofa cushions and toys would fly through the air, then came the dancing and jumping, singing and running, climbing, laughter, and general mayhem. All the things a good rumpus should have. Let me just say, some of the fondest memories I have of those years are joining in the rumpus with my Wild Things.
Dagny and Dane could start a wild rumpus anywhere
At the Metreon in San Francisco they used to have this AMAZING Wild Things play space. I can't even begin to adequately describe it's awesomeness, it was truly magical. Once you stepped in you were completely immersed in the world of the Wild Things, and like the book it was just the right amount of frightening and wondrous. We used to go there a lot, and we always marveled about how lucky we were that a place like that existed.
Where The Wild Things Are is not the only Maurice Sendak book that we loved, we were amused by In The Night Kitchen and appropriately scared by Outside Over There and completely enchanted by his illustrations for the Little Bear books. I consider Maurice Sendak one of the most important children's authors of all time. He changed children's literature, and he changed our lives. Mr. Sendak died today, and I would just like to say thank you. Thank you for sharing your imagination and for teaching us how to be wild.
They say that soccer is a gentelman's sport played by hooligans and that rugby is a hooligan's sport played by gentlemen. As violent as rugby is (and it is violent) I have to agree that it is played by gentlemen. The rugby teams foster a sense of community on and off the field. They play against each other, but ultimately they are all rugby players. Dane loved playing rugby, everything about it. He came home from his very first practice and said that it was the most fun he had ever had. I certainly had fun watching him play. His games were all over the Bay Area so we ended up in some new and interesting places, every weekend was an adventure. I watched the games with both excitement and terror. Every play has the potential for injury, (and we saw plenty of injuries; broken fingers, broken legs, bloody noses, concussions..) Dane managed to make it though the season with only minor cuts and bruises so I was lucky to have slightly more excitement than terror. Rugby is an awesome sport, fun to watch and fun to play. Can't wait for next season.