One hour a day, for one more year. Making make-believe a priority.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Wii are Family: Happy Father's Day!

I broke down. I did...I bought that sleek black Wii my husband and kids have been salivating over for months as a Father's Day gift. (And now that I'm thinking about it...I never said "no video games" in my rules for play. This counts!)

Watching Patrick and the girls bowl and wake board and golf together in the living room today also reminded me of the hours my dad used to spend with me at Videoville. When I was about eleven, my dad and I did two things together: long jumping and playing video games. He would take me to the high school track and hang out with me for hours as I ran up and down the pavement runway, flinging myself into the dirt pit. He'd bring his tape measure and track my progress. And he took me to Videoville...the little video arcade down the hill where he'd give me quarters all night long and we'd take turns playing Donkey Kong. Those were great times. I wasn't a teenager yet, but I wasn't a kid. And boy did I love hanging with my dad.

Happy Father's Day, Dad...and we can't wait to get you out here to play Wii golf :)

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Pirate Envy

Today I brought Kicky to a girlfriend's house to play and then took Esmee and her girlfriend to a birthday party of one of their classmate's. The theme was "Pirates"...and the house was easy to find because of the 2-story PIRATE SHIP blow-up slidey, jumpy thingy in the front yard. This mother had gone all out. In addition to the treasure map invite, each child got a skull and crossbones bag filled with booty (an eye patch, a bandanna, a skull ring, pirate tattoos, etc...). They had pizza and pinatas (yes, plural -- a pirate and a parrot) as well as a plethora of drinks...including some XXX Jell-O shots for the grown-ups. The kids bounced and ate and the grown-ups bounced ate ate. Afterward, I picked up Kick (who had been slip-and-sliding all day with three of her girlfriends). We had more pizza for dinner as well as strawberry shortcake and now the girls are all curled up on the couch watching a movie before they plan to all squeeze into Esmee's bed.

It is days like these that remind me of the sheer bliss of summertime as a kid. Hanging with your friends, smelling like chlorine, eating pizza three times a day, and so many sunburned shoulders.
And to top it off, I looked at my daily epic To-Do list today and, for the first time in the entire history of me, every box was checked. I even turned down an editing job last week.

Summer, I love you.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Summertime and the Playing is Easy

The playing comes in fits and starts these days (not abandoned but certainly a bit neglected)...and I can't help but wonder if I've been negligent simply because I know summer is coming. It's really coming.

When I was a kid, there was nothing (and I mean nothing) like the end of the school year. It was dramatic...both rife with possibility and imbued with a tremendous sense of closure. (Kicky is clearly having mixed feelings about the end of 2nd grade...she actually cried when she received her final homework packet. I'm assuming she'll get over it.) Because I teach, summer has retained at least most of that original sparkle. I live for summer. I love summer. And somehow, this project has made me even more excited by the prospect of three whole months with no homework.

Here's our summer in a nutshell: School ends. Girls got to Flagstaff for a week (time for Patrick and me to play!). We make a movie in LA. Seriously...who gets to do this?? Then two weeks to spend going to the ocean every day. A cross-country road trip to DC (hoping for some fireflies while we're there). A night in NYC. Then four weeks in Vermont...literally into The Tulgey Wood. Then a road trip back with Summy (my mom)...just us four girls on the road. Frankly, I don't think there's going to be time for any work.

What are you doing this summer?

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Origami, Legos, and Movie Making

We had another very playful weekend over the holiday, when Kai came back to visit. Kai is a filmmaker, and the girls are going to be in her next project. Having her with us has been like having another awesome kid around...a kid who NEVER tires of playing. While she was here, they made movies, spent hours folding little tiny pieces of paper into cranes and pegasuses (pegasi?) and planes. She brought the girls Legos...something we don't have in the Stewart Family Toy Box. It was incredible to me to see the concentration and focus both of them had for this. Kai is using play as an amazing tool to get the girls prepared to act in the film. I feel so lucky that the girls are going to get to be a part of such a terrific, creative endeavor.