Wednesday, October 29, 2008

live and learn - the after party and asheville

day 1
day 2
day 3
days 4 and 5

alice was awesome enough to host a live and learn after party at her house, complete with a sleepover!! how cool is that?? everyone brought drinks and snacks and plenty of enthusiasm and conversation. kass had left the picnic earlier to get home before dark so wouldn't be joining us for the party, then she decided after all to drive back with pax and dave (it had been just her and jayd at the conference together). yeah!! so much went on, there was some limboing, card playing, ATC making and birthday wishing...and of course, eating, drinking and talking...and laughing...and crying. it was beautiful.

we stayed up super late and then woke up super early to the sounds of what seemed to be about 15 washing machines going in the attic. WTF? the roof people had come early! ah well, at least we were able to get an early start on the day. we hadn't planned to stay but when a trip into asheville was planned, we decided to go along. plus, lunch was needed before heading home. so we went in 2 cars...all together we had quite a crew, even though silas, jake, jared, and scott stayed behind with alice for a video game party. there was me, scotty, ren, samuel, sadie, sierra, rachel, george, and that everyone?? i think so. we met up with rue, jon, dagny, and rowan at the woolworth walk art mall. we ate at the diner in there and then went on a walk-about around asheville. at some point (it is all very fuzzy really) we were joined by austin, taylor, and karina (who we will have the pleasure of hosting at our house starting tonight and through to the ARGH gathering). we wore ourselves out with walking around, shopping, high fiving and making up stuff about monet and got very hungry and decided we needed to get back to alice's house for some delicious little caesar's pizza before heading back home. speaking of those pizzas. i took the boxes home so alice wouldn't have to worry about taking them for recycling...well, i finally took them to recycling...YESTERDAY!! OMG. anyway. as ren said, the after party and asheville trip could be a book by itself...i don't have it in me today to write a book, so i hope the pictures will do. i thought i'd not make myself nuts putting pictures into blogger because it makes my head here are my final trip pix in slide form, enjoy!!

ALL my L&L pix:

Monday, October 27, 2008

live and learn - days 4 and 5

okay, it's been nearly 2 months since live and learn and i've put off finishing up our story for too long. i almost said 'screw it' but then realized that i'd really like to have the memories down for myself so if you don't want to read about any 2 month old events just stop reading now.

day 1
day 2
day 3

day 4 - saturday

i'm looking back on what i wrote for day 3 and i'm starting to think i may have had day 3 and 4 mixed up because it might've been saturday that we did the new games funshop with jess (because i'm looking at the itinerary to help me remember stuff and it has the new games on saturday morning...oh my, the memory sure ain't what it used to be). anyway. i'm pretty sure it was saturday morning that scotty and i could not get sadie and silas up for breakfast. we left the 2-way radio next to sadie's bed and went down to eat. this made me a little nervous because i felt like if sadie woke up and we were gone she might freak out. but i also knew that with the dark dark room and the quiet and the lack of sleep all week, she would sleep deeply for a very long time. and that they both needed it. so we let them sleep, and they did. we ate and then filled some to-go boxes for them and brought them back to the room. i do not know where i went at this point since i seem to have my days mixed up. i know i missed brenna's talk that morning but got there in time for cameron's. maybe i was abducted by aliens. scotty stayed in the room (i.e. went back to sleep) with the kids until they got up. while i was thoroughly enjoying cameron's talk as well as the round table with both cameron and brenna afterwards. i took only 2 pictures on saturday. usually pictures help me put the pieces together. oh well. i know that scotty spent a lot of time in the room on saturday playing uno with sadie.

so after lunch, i went to ronnie maier's talk on 'enjoying teens' which i was really enjoying when someone (i think it was mindy) came and told me that silas was hurt and he needed me. i ran over to the lobby to find him sitting in a chair holding his hand surrounded by lots of friends. a nice little healing circle. he had gotten his hand shut in a door and it was hurting pretty badly. he seemed better just knowing i was finally there for him. but i did a little bit of energy tapping on him and helped him visualize healing anyway. he still has a place on his fingernail where the bruise is growing out.

these were taken just before we went to supper that night:

most of the day is a blur up until the masquerade ball. which i chose not to dress up for, because i'm not a costumey dress up kind of person. i did wear my yoga clothes because it would be comfortable to dance in and i borrowed one of mindy's very cool belly dancing skirts. yeah me, i was officially dressed up! thanks mindy! we hurried over to lee hall for the ginormous picture taking on the steps. crazy, absolutely crazy. almost nowhere to sit. i found a spot in front of alex and literally sat on his feet. sorry alex!! it was fun seeing all the amazing costumes and trying to figure out who was who.

i was so excited about the dance. i'd been looking forward to this for months!! really. how often do we parent types get to go dancing?? there is something about dancing with a crowd that just feeds your energy. it was wonderful. the dj was a little confused about our group though. he kept playing unusual things like a barney video up on the big screen and the theme from scooby doo. finally, i went up to ask him if he was going to play more dance/contemporary music and he said he thought he'd wait until the kids went to bed. huh? what, these kids? no, that's not gonna happen mr. dj man. so once he was clued in, he started playing more dance music. we gave him lots of requests throughout the night. he was pretty cool. sadie finally came out of her shell and started really jamming with me, it was awesome to see! there was even a little karaoke time. jess, ren, kass and i went up and did "like a virgin"...i can't believe i actually got them up there with me to do that one. turned out though that the words part of the karaoke weren't working so we just sang along with the words needed. we rocked. and the dj gave me a cool super star wand. i love dancing around like crazy, i really do. that is generally what you get to see out of me. but when they started playing "bohemian rhapsody" well i went into my own world, not something i generally do in public. i missed out on the big group jam but i was having my own jam over in the corner, queen does that to me, brings out my lyrical side. sadie had requested "hey there delilah" and he finally played it as the last song. i remember hearing some groans from the teens but they got over that quickly enough and everyone joined in singing. the song cut off towards the end for some reason but we all just kept singing. it was really awesome. it was all just really awesome!

i know i've left a lot of details out in all my posts. i know i forgot to mention that tyler played in the talent show and lots of stuff about the funshops and different people we met and things we did. it feels a lot like skimming the surface. and that's okay, the heart of it is still with me, the general feel, the atmosphere. that stuff can't be put into words anyway. well, not by me.

day 5 - sunday

the last day!! oh man, we were really tired but not at all ready for this thing to end. we got up sooo early to get the room packed up so that we could check out after breakfast. i can't believe we got it all done. i think i miss the communal breakfasts more than anything. something about getting up first thing in the morning and seeing so many friends and getting to eat with them and talk and rub the stardust out of our eyes just wonderful...i went to kelly lovejoy's 'conference planning for goddesses' talk while scotty loaded the car and took back the keys. it was really eye-opening to hear her talk about what it really takes to do these conferences. samuel had been putting ideas in my head about taking over the conference planning since this was the last one and he really wanted there to be more. i had told him that is not something i felt i could do. listening to kelly's talk confirmed that for me. way too much time involved...and being organized...oh my. she is definitely a conference planning guru.
but i cannot leave out that she mentioned many people that she would not have been able to do any of this without...pam genant and kathryn baptista being 2 i can remember off the top of my head. scotty joined me and sadie at some point during the talk. oh yeah, and sadie fell asleep on my monster bag lap too. she was so exhausted!then there was scott noelle's 'pleasure principle' talk, he is really an inspiring guy. it was the first talk all week where i found the courage to speak out loud when someone in the crowd asked a question. afterward, the guy who asked the question actually came up and thanked me for my input. that felt really great. i normally can't speak when people are looking at me, i go all red and fumble my words. something must have intervened because it was real important to him that he got what i had to say. scott had done a wild and crazy dance during the talent show, that is the sort of thing he inspires...just letting go and getting in touch with that part of yourself. the part that wants to break out and just flail around like mad. his book is pretty amazing as well. gives you a lot to think about as a parent. as a person.

kelly gave some emotional closing remarks and was then joined onstage by all the presenters. there weren't many dry eyes for that.i was so ready for lunch at this point!! but i went to get scott's book first and we talked to a few people before heading over to eat. here's a great shot of a really genuinely happy scotty and broc.after lunch, there were some extra activities that i had not signed us up for so we hung out in front of and in the lobby for awhile and then got our stuff together that we would need for the post-conference picnic.kass, eli and i were talking when it was time to head down to the picnic. it was at this point i think i started to not know what was going on around me. i drove the car down while everyone else walked. here is our car in the wrong parking area, i moved the car twice before i got to the right spot. but i wanted to take some pix of the graffitied car before i the time i got to the picnic area i realized i probably should not have been driving. i kept wanting to cry and i knew it didn't make any sense. scotty got our blanket laid out and i sat down and just stared. here is one of the great things about having a partner that knows you so well. he took one look at me and knew exactly what was going on. my sugar had dropped seriously low at this point and he gave me some chocolate from the car. i started to perk up within a few minutes, i ate some pretzels and had some very zingy ginger ale that alex shared with us. it was a beautiful day for the picnic!! AND some nitro ice cream!!a few of the girls hanging out...the girl in the middle, in the purple conference shirt, was my fairy godchild, brai!! mindy getting directions to alice's house for the after party.
i love this picture of alex and mindy...ya know, there aren't many 13 year old boys that i think are as sweet as samuel but alex is definitely one of them!!
it was such a nice day that the kids decided to go swimming in the lake. i do believe that was not allowed, but i can't remember if the sign said 'no swimming' or 'no fishing'...LOL!! although, after karina gave us a big scare, kelly got everyone out of the water. it was decided that there was a little too much fatigue for kids to be swimming in a lake.

alec and samuel taking a quick break from their very intense discussion to smile for a picture. i think sadie took this. she had my camera for awhile so there are LOTS of pictures of the picnic.
at some point we took our lonely blanket over to join it up with ren's blanket. i think they are going to be having a little romance, we got them together again recently for our full moon circle party. it's a lovely thing. there was this great documentary on the bbc about monet...
and the view that started it all...
the boys showing their new sharpie marker hair.this was just too funny...this little baby was walking around talking on a cell phone, so animated and jabbering away. we couldn't stop laughing. then i remembered i had the camera again...after some serious discussion on where to find some food to eat (is there a chinese take out place? yes, several. well let me hear the names first) before heading to alice's house, we finally got in the car to leave. we had a big crew of tired and hungry kids in tow. we managed to escape with sierra and duncan...mwahahaha. it was decided we would just go find this great little pizza place and eat instead of doing the take out thing. sadie, who doesn't care much for pizza, said she would like to have taco bell. so we went through the taco bell drive-thru. as we were pulling up this group of teens was staring at us. we were like, why are they staring at us?? and then i remembered that our car was all graffitied, they weren't staring, they were reading. so we got some food for sadie (and silas too) and headed to the great little pizza place. it was really good! and we enjoyed having extra kids to eat with too. eating is just more enjoyable in a big group!!then we headed out to alice's house for the after party. and that, my friends, is a whole 'nother story.Share

Saturday, October 25, 2008

pretty kate

we watched the movie danny deckchair again the other night. it is always worth another watch. a really good aussie film. but the movie isn't what i'm writing about really. just that in one part of the movie they play a cover of an old INXS song ("don't change") performed by grinspoon. it got me wanting to listen to their old stuff again. on thursday i pulled out all their tapes and started with their first self-titled album which came out in australia in 1980 and was released everywhere else in 1984. i didn't get the album until probably 88 or 89...but it is one of my favorites, along with kick and listen like thieves. so i'm going down memory lane listening and feeling the need to dance, well yeah of course that can't be helped. later, i decided i needed to listen to kick while taking a shower. this is not an album you can listen to and be still. i was overcome by a frenzied need to jump up and down and play air the shower. crazy. i was listening to "devil inside" when i had this great memory of myself as a teenager. it was a joyous thing. i remember a time in my life when i did not feel the need to think endlessly about what my purpose in life was, or who i was, or where i was going, if i was good enough or anything else. don't get me wrong, i was one of those kids that did think a lot about those sort of things and the whole world and all the deep angsty stuff of being a teen in the late 80s. but i didn't let it eat me up inside like i've been known to do as an adult. as a mother trying to figure out if i'm anything but "just" a mommy underneath it all. of course i am, but so what if i'm not.

so there i was. in the shower dancing to an old INXS tape (no, really you have to actually picture this!!! it's too funny not to). and i had this thought "fuck all this shit...fuck all this fucking shit!!" and i said it out loud a few times and it felt good. i've got to get out of my fucking head, stop thinking so damn much about every little thing. that was when i had this other thought...i wonder if this is how those really bad shower accidents happen, thirty-something person listening to music in the shower from when they were young and crazy and decide to be not-so-young and crazy and jump around and fall and break their head open. it's something to think about.

the dancing (and singing...did i mention singing?) continued in my room, while i imagined making a great little video of myself dancing like a mad woman...and sharing it on my blog. that didn't happen (aren't you lucky?) but it was fun to think about. then i worked on a drawing i had started a few days ago until scotty got home. my head was clearer than it has been in a while. it may not have fixed all the problems of life and the world but it sure made me feel good to just dance like that again. not that i don't dance like that often enough, just not always to stuff that brings back my youth.

excuse me now, i need to go find a dance floor to clear!! there's only one person who will understand that...right?? you know who you are!
years ago at a convention dance

and my apologies to heather who heard this story already last night!!

now, here's an INXS mix i put together, it doesn't have all the great stuff but you can only find so much there...go listen anyway:

Sunday, October 19, 2008

full moon circle

okay, some of my ladies (kass and ren) have put up their posts about our full moon circle i thought i'd better play along too. i'm so behind on so many things i'd like to post about for this summer. oh well. we had an awesome night...and scotty got to come too!!!! there was some great food and drinks, dancing, drumming, singing (in rounds and sometimes even without real words), playing instruments, conversation (lots of that), running around like mad, telling hilarious jokes (especially tyler and jess), LAUGHING like lunatics (especially heather who is always such a wonderful audience for my silliness), and so much more!! so here are some pix to enjoy!! i didn't take too many this time...

jess and kass practicing some zumba moves

chit chat in the kitchen

heather up close bein' freaky

sadie, sierra and dairbhre playing on the 'puter

these 2 guys sayin' "how small can we make our lips look?"
ren and scotty nibblin' with the kids

my ladies in the kitchen gettin' drunk!!

tyler, jayden and rowan lovin' a guinea named tomy

the lovely dave and that lady he likes so much

a bunch of kids putting together this thing called invisible donkey

point and shoot, dave, point and shoot!

hope you enjoyed...