I’m not a particularly crafty person for someone who designs and has to be creative for a living. Who knows…maybe that’s why. I sort of admire those moms who totally get their craft on and embark on huge art projects with their kids, but I’m not that mom. It kind of sucks for my kids since they’re all about the craft, but one thing I do like to do is cut out paper snowflakes every year. This year we made them out of the paper scraps that we use for our deluxe gift boxes. I’ve been saving these strips of paper without knowing what to do with them, but it’s perfect for snowflakes and this year’s batch might be my favorite yet. Mia totally got the hang of it this year and had the best idea to cut hearts into them (can you see them in the second to last snowflake above?). Oh, and yeah, I do realize that snowflakes have 6 points and mine have 8. But whatever.
So you know how you come across a song that you haven’t heard in awhile and it brings you back in time? It’s been happening to me a lot lately. I found an old Old Dinosaur Jr. CD that fell behind the stereo the other day. I hadn’t thought about them in years, but I put Green Mind in the CD player and I was back in 1991. I was staying at the brother of a friend’s house in Amherst Massachusetts and it was on heavy rotation. I think it might have even been a tape (yes kids, tape, as in cassette player). It was Spring, maybe April, and the weather was nice. This is what I associate Green Mind with – blue skies in Amherst. Other than that, I don’t remember why or what I did in Amherst or how I got there. The only thing I really remember is hitchhiking back to New York with that friend, listening to that tape. We caught a ride with a guy who drove a red sports car and he dropped us off in the Bronx on the very last subway stop on the 2 line. We took the subway all the way down to Brooklyn.
A song that I had totally forgotten about came on Pandora the other day and I had to just stop what I was doing and listen. So “Muzzle” by the Smashing Pumpkins doesn’t illicit a specific memory, but something about that song just reminds me of being young in that youth anthem sort of way. The Pumpkins were HUGE in the 90s, do you remember? I was living in Portland when that album came out, but thinking about the band took me back to 1991 again when I wore down their first album, Gish, on my Walkman because I played the tape so much. I was staying in Ohio for a few months before I moved to Washington and it just reminds me of that time and specifically, for whatever reason, the maroon carpet in the University common lounge room in the town I was staying in. Funny how you associate random things to music. The Beastie Boys’ Hello Nasty will always remind me of soldering in the physical computing lab up on the 4th floor of the Tisch Building where I went to grad school at NYU.
And so…this is the music that’s been keeping me going these days. Lately it’s been all about 90s rock. It’s been comforting and familiar.
Speaking of the Smashing Pumpkins, do you know who’s still awesome? James Iha, that’s who. I think he was the first Asian American rock star to come on the mainstream radar. I mean there still aren’t a lot of them – a bunch of hapas out there (Karen O from the Yeah Yeah Yeahs is half Korean) – but not back in the early 90s, no. And he’s back in A Perfect Circle who reunited, yay! Although I swear every band has reunited and is on tour. Sadly, it seems like the only way to make money as a musician these days. What are you guys listening to?
Posted by Jenna | 15 Comments
I’m all Halloween’d out even before Halloween. This is what happens when Halloween lands on a Sunday. It’s non-stop Halloween and sugar and candy all weekend long. Saturday was back to back parties starting at 10:30 in the morning and going till 4:30 in the afternoon. That’s 6 HOURS of Halloween pumpkin painting, pizza eating, cookie decorating, ghost making, costume parading, and candy hoarding. And will you take a look at this cookie decorating party? My neighbor went all out. There were more kinds of frosting and sprinkles and candy here than I’ve ever seen on a single table. I think this is even out Martha-Stewarting Martha Stewart. Their whole house looked like Halloween. Aside from a few pumpkins here and there, we’ve got nothing at our house. It never really occurred to me to put up bats or pumpkin lights for the kids, duh. I mean look at those popcorn hands. Candy corn for the nails and popcorn stuffed into rubber latex gloves. Genius. Between this party and last week’s Alice’s tea party that the girls were invited to (which I will tell you all about later), the pressure is on for Claudine’s birthday week. I’m not usually one to fall for this kind of pressure, but damn. Suddenly I’m feeling a little bit inadequate.
Posted by Jenna | 5 Comments
You want to know the best thing about living across the street from an urban park? You can literally roll out of bed and bounce to events like this annual fall festival that happens every year. No brainer for a way to spend a pretty sunday afternoon. Hit up the farmer’s market at the end of the block and you’ve taken care of groceries for that night’s dinner plus apples for a pie. Who needs a back yard?
Ok, before you all start thinking we’re living the perfect urban life, I should say that the pony ride was a measly 1 lap around the grassy square, that bringing farm animals in for a temporary petting zoo feels a bit depressing for the animals, and we dealt with 1 ridiculously grumpy child for half the activities. Plus the playground is going to be torn up soon and in construction for 12-18 MONTHS as the second phase of the block long park renovation. We’ll be living next to a construction site for awhile. So, um, yeah.
Posted by Jenna | 7 Comments
First of all, can I just complain about how sore I am? I am presently laying down on the couch with back pain, shoulder pain and sciatic nerve pain in my legs after 2 days of pushing that stroller through the snow and hauling some gift boxes and marshmallows to the Gifted Market this morning (yeah, I know, but believe it or not, marshmallows are heavier than you think). With my bad back, I’m not really supposed to pick up and carry anything over 10 lbs because it will trigger back and sciatic nerve pain, but sometimes that can’t be avoided.
So day 2 of the Gifted Market is complete. People, it’s not that I don’t love you, but I’m not really cut out for the vendor thing. Physically it’s hard on my back to be standing and sitting in 1 place for 9 hours and I wish I was more exuberant and bubbly, but I’m just too tired. There’s certainly an art to being a good sales person. I don’t think I have it, but sometimes you gotta pitch in for the team. Mark’s back on duty tomorrow and we’ll both be there on the last day. In the meantime, I’ll be putting on my mom hat all day tomorrow. Maybe we’ll even make more paper snowflakes.
Posted by Jenna | 9 Comments
…we didn’t need to. Old Navy sponsored an “urban” pumpkin patch and brought it to us. We didn’t end up going pumpkin picking this year due to various work things and inclement weather, so I was happy and curious to go to this event held in the cobblestoned streets of the Meat Packing District, right across the street from Pastis (and yes, I was jealous of every brunch goer there that morning). Held under huge tents because of the drizzle, the pumpkin patch was quirky and cheeky in an Old Navy way (lots of creepy store mannequins in the patch and a “petting zoo” of costumed mannequin dogs). With a $5 per family entrance fee with proceeds donated to the Food Bank of New York City, you could eat as much candy, chocolate, popcorn, cotton candy (the kids’ first taste of the stuff), apples, pears and drinks as you wanted (I totally fueled my craving for Reeses Peanut Butter Cups and shoved some in my bag for later too). And the pumpkins? Free. The girls painted theirs up in thick layers of paint which would have taken forever to dry so we left ours there and took 2 new ones to decorate back home. See those all red ones? Claudine had a Richard Dreyfuss moment and got into a red groove when she painted 2 all red, monochromatic pumpkins. All in all, a really fun event in a charming downtown location, waaay too much sugar, and all for a good cause.
Posted by Jenna | 13 Comments