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Tomorrow, I will be leading a Summer Solstice Festival at the Somerville Growing Center, starting at 4 p.m. We’ll be doing sun-painting again if the weather is good.

Here’s the skinny on the overall project:
A series of family-friendly festivals celebrating the turning of the wheel of the year. Through song, story, art and play we will explore the changing seasons and our changing selves. You are encouraged to bring a potluck contribution and, if you are able, a small donation to help cover costs. Sponsored by Viriditas, a Boston-area Reclaiming group.

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When I posted my list of May events, I should have included this one, which I am leading at The Growing Center tomorrow at 4 p.m.:

Wheel of the Year Festival: Beltaine
A series of family-friendly festivals celebrating the turning of the wheel of the year. Through song, story, art and play we will explore the changing seasons and our changing selves. You are encouraged to bring a potluck contribution and, if you are able, a small donation to help cover costs. Sponsored by Viriditas, a Boston-area Reclaiming group.



Candy!, originally uploaded by MzMuze.

We’re not big Easter celebrators in my house, but we do love any excuse for a party. Today, courtesy of our friends and family, we had the most conventional Easter I can recall since my own childhood living with my Catholic grandparents.

Our day started with church, followed by an easter egg hunt in the churchyard. Then we went to Nana’s for brunch, which featured amazng homemade beer bread and cinnamon fruit salad.

Along the way, the kids ate probably a six-month-supply of candy. Serena especially was more than a little excited to discover the existance of jelly beans.

Hope you all had as lovely a day!

Rio, to her goddess-mama: “You know what? One of the things of me celebrating Chanukah is me showing you our Christmas tree.”

EDIT: also, to warm my heart, she did the candle-lighting and prayers with her goddess mama and closed by saying, ‘Blessed be’

“Does Santa have elves? I mean, are they real?”

“I have never visited Santa, but it’s my understanding that he really has elves.”

“Right. Because if he didn’t have elves, who would make the presents. Does he make them? Does someone else? He must have elves.”

“Right.”

“In the movie, he has elves. I just wonder if they are real. In life.”

Last night, I went out with my best friend. We strolled around Davis Sq. and I bought a few stocking stuffers and brainstormed about holiday gifts. I very much wanted to give something memorable and lasting, but not physical. Something that could strengthen us as a couple, but that’s not just about food and sex.

Finally, I hit upon The Perfect Gift. loves live music, and he thrives on social justice activism. I’d find a Thing related to activist music, and take him to it. Maybe a concert, maybe an open jam session. Something. Something where he could enjoy the event itself and also make connections with activists and musicians, to start rebuilding his own social sphere around the things he loves.

So this morning I sent an e-mail to a friend who I thought might know what I was looking for. Sure enough, the Thing exists. A network of activist musicians. And they had a big concert. Tonight.

Thank you, Universe, for answering my wish. I just got home, and am waiting for , who took the T (not as fast as my mad biking skilz). The concert was great, but not as great as just being with him. It feels like it’s been months since I even saw this man, despite the fact that we share a house and a bed.

A house and bed we are not sharing with our beautiful children tonight. I am probably a bad mama for sending two sickish, cranky kids off to Nana’s house for the weekend. I definitely get no daughter points for not telling my mom the girls had been sick before she picked them up. But I’m not sorry. I will be a better mother, daughter and all-around fabulous human being tomorrow for having had twelve uninterrupted hours to be myself and enjoy my partner.

(this is the e-mail I just sent to my mother. I think I may, after five years, have found a way to talk to her about kids and gifts that will not cause a big fight between us and will not result in my sneakily throwing out a metric ton of broken made-in-china crap three weeks after Christmas. I hope. I pray.)

Hey Mom, 

If you happen to talk to Santa, please let him know that Rio is wearing a size 5-6 (err on the side of the 6 if he has to choose), and that Serena is wearing either 2T or 3T clothes. They are skinny chicks, but they have loooong limbs. They share a dislike of jeans or any stiff fabric, and a love of butterflies. 

Some things the girls are really into these days are: 
– trips to the library
– having lunch with someone special
– being invited to sleepovers
– the Boston Children’s Museum
– arts and crafts (especially watercolor painting)
– being outdoors in the cold and losing their mittens! 
– reading (especially books with pictures of animals, family photo albums, and fairy tales)
– playing music

Santa might want to know that we no longer have a working television (nor do we want one!). So if the girls find any DVDs under the tree, they will have to keep them at Nana’s. Our house may collapse under the weight of toys we already own, so please ask him to go easy on us with those (especially the beeping blinking ones). Simple baby dolls and doll clothes, on the other hand, seem to be in hot demand, as are sturdy dollhouse things.

Thanks, 
The Mommy Elf

I’ve come to expect Christmas to be a time of intense social stress, and to find myself the day after the event with a pile of credit card bills and a larger pile of noisy, expensive plastic crap cluttering up my house.

I don’t normally like being on the giving or receiving end of expensive gifts, and I really don’t like getting a huge pile of little stuff I would never buy because it’s stuff I don’t like or want me or my kids to have.

This year, however, the loot was good. I feel like a happy pirate.

Rio got a doll she LOVES and has not been separated from since it came out of the box. Plus everything else. I mean, everything. Happily, an everything that included no plastic toys at all.

I got a noisy, expensive plastic toy. My fetch has not been this psyched about a holiday gift since I was about Rio sized.

Martin got a set of guitar strings from my folks (who run a music store) and a Fender Stratocaster to go with them. Anyone coming to the fondue party is strongly encouraged to bring any instruments that play well with a Fender Strat. He may have put it down by then, but I kind of doubt it.

And in the most-lifechanging gift of all, Serena cut her first tooth!

Flickr Photos

A little bird told me…

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