Monday, March 31, 2008

Yeah!! FOO FIGHTERS!! Woooooo-ooo!

Oh man! Oh. MAN!! I'm groggy tired and concert sweaty. Foo Fighters put on an awesome show in Vancouver, BC last night. AWESOME! Measly words aren't capturing my emphatic exclamations! Two plus hours of enthusiastic, crowd-engaging musicianship. As Dave (Grohl, lead singer/guitarist. Former drummer for Nirvana) said, getting the crowd all amped up: This is gonna be a different kind of Foo show. And how! They played old stuff (they've been around 12 years, so their music was with me all thru my 20s). They played new stuff. They played an acoustic set. They played "balls-out wall of guitars rock n' roll" to use Dave's terms. The acoustic set, which was on a small round stage at the other end of the intimate 16,000 seat coliseum, had four additional Foos playing including a percussionist who played a rockin' triangle solo. Yes, a tinkly triangle, ringing out from the mic, in an inspired little ditty of a solo.
Dave is an energetic showman, running all over the stage, down a long catwalk and back, all while rockin' out on a guitar. He talked with the audience a few times, so comfortable on stage and with himself he could've been in a coffee shop. He is very effective at getting large amounts of people to loose their friggin' minds. It was so loud. The music and the fans. When they were playing hardest, the little hairs inside my sinuses were vibrating. But then, there'll be a song where it's just Dave on an acoustic guitar and it's so pure and hushed and beautiful. Now THAT'S what I call a good performers! We laughed. We sang. We stood up and cheered. We clapped to the beat. We rocked our asses off!
Our seats were perfect--a bit to the side of the stage, up a bit so we weren't distracted by all the other concert-goers in our line of vision. I could see his strangely white teeth catch the light on occasion as he grinned (he's really very goofy and funny) or snarled in his Rock Star way. The other guys, Taylor Hawkins (drums), Nate Mendel (bass), and Chris Shiflett (guitars) each proved to be incredibly creative and uber-talented at what they do.
By the end, Jerry and I were exhausted from the rockin' out, the emotional nostalgic trip, stimulus and mass energy (i.e. the energy of being with thousands of people, sharing a similar charged experience). Never mind that it was 11:30 p.m. when they finished their encore. Waaaaaay past our bedtimes. We got home around 1:00 a.m. Poor Jerry had to get up at 5:00 a.m. to go to work and THEN had school afterward. He just got home at 9:45 p.m. But he said it was all worth it to see these guys. I agree. My body is still buzzing from the experience and my brain is still playing their songs. We will definitely be spending some good money to see them again.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Our First Egg Hunt

Happy Easter Everyone!

We had so much fun at an egg hunt yesterday. Thank you to our hostesses for a wonderful party. The weather even held out long enough!
I'm showing Eva how this whole egg hunt thing works. She picked it up right away.

Eva practicing how to pull herself up to stand.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Bus, Mama! BUS!!

Ready for school!

Eva started taking the bus to/from preschool yesterday and LOVES it. L.O.V.E.S. it. The little yellow bus comes to our driveway and I help her get on and the driver, Stephanie, helps her into her car seat (a school district car seat already attached to the seat). Cooper was over this morning and we three stood outside to wait for the bus. When Eva saw it coming down the street, she shrieked, "BUS! MAMA! BUS! BUS!" and wiggled and jumped up and down (in her own way, without her feet leaving the ground). She pulled me down the driveway. She and Cooper stood at the bottom of the stairs and Stephanie said, "C'mon, Cooper. Go up the steps and hang on to the rail". He just stood there holding my hand. He was very cool about riding the bus. Eva nudged him out of the way and started to climb the stairs all by herself, radioing in on another friend who was already on the bus and calling her name. It's quite possibly the most exciting thing to happen to her. She talked about it all day yesterday and will today, too, I'm sure. Stephanie said yesterday that Eva jabbered all the way home. She's so silly and funny and I love her so much. My big girl.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

A New House!

Thank you to Grandma and Eric for the fab new playhouse. Eva can't get enough of going inside, closing the door, knocking on the door, "Allo? Alloooo?" (she's French), coming out, chasing Jerry round and round and round, peek-a-booing over the top, putting baby to bed inside. It's true what they say about the kid's favorite part of a gift being the box it came in.

Viva Las Vegas!

Jerry and I escaped to Vegas for a long weekend (without Eva!) and had a wonderful time. It had its moments, sure, but I won't go into them here. I could easily get used to not cooking, cleaning, changing diapers and all that other daily drudgery I mindlessly perform. It was heavenly to lay in the sun and read my chick lit book by the pool. I loved going shopping, just Jerry and me, like we used to. Laughing, picking out clothes for each other, sharing a dressing room and coming out looking fabulous. OK, I know that sounds like I was shopping with my best girlfriend, and it would be pretty much the same if I was, and that's the point. Jerry and I got to hang out like best friends, which is something we don't do nearly enough anymore.
A major highlight was seeing Cirque du Soleil: Beatles LOVE. Oh. my. gawd. That was A-MAZ-ING. The athleticism, artistic expression via modern dance, visually expressed creativity. I want to do that. I want to be strong enough and fearless enough to swing and contort on ropes dangling from 30 feet up. I want to be able to move my body in ways that communicate what my heart speaks. The sound system for the show was superb, too. There were even speakers in the head rest of every seat! This show was crammed full of creative expression; a feast for the senses. There were even bits where the performance came into the audience--a performer flying right over your head, confetti exploding onto everyone, a HUGE silken parachute spread over everyone's heads (it was theatre-in-the-round seating). The mondo margarita in the souvenir glass didn't hurt either.
After the show, while hovering behind my father-in-law at a slot machine, giving him good gambling juju (I'm bored by gambling but have a knack for bringing good luck to others by pushing the buttons on their machines) I nudged something with my foot. Hm, what's this? A $100 chip on the floor! Woo-hoo! That paid for the two pair of badass jeans I bought with Jerry earlier in the day. (I'm wearing them in the above picture). I cashed in my chip for a crisp $100 bill and put it in my wallet (and in the bank when I got home). I took a lot of crap from my in-laws because I wouldn't throw it into a machine and possibly double my money--or lose it all, from my standpoint. I didn't have to do a damn thing or lose any money to get that $100. That's a pretty good profit, if you ask me!
How did Miss Eva fare, you ask? Man, she was fine (which I knew she would be; it was me I was worried about). She had a sleepover at Cooper's Friday night, my mom and Eric came Saturday and Sunday and Eva went back to Cooper's Sunday night till we got home Monday afternoon. She wasn't nearly as excited to see us as I thought she should be. Oh well. She's a big girl now, so...
I'm relieved that everything went smoothly for us and for Eva and her keepers. And I'm glad to be back home, even though there's laundry, dishes, grocery shopping, bills, vacuuming...

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

My Time

A few people have asked me recently, "So, what do you do when Eva's at school?" Well, I do whatever I want. Whatever I want. I don't stay home very much. I do things that I can't do with her or are easier when I'm by myself. This week, I explored hilly, dippy, woody trails that are too bumpy/narrow/steep for her stroller (e.g. Arroyo Park, Whatcom Falls Park). I run or walk until the songs from Signing Time stop playing in my head to the beat of my footfalls. I go until I get into a zone and then I keep going. I don't listen to music so I'm alone (alone!) with my own thoughts. I compose essays in my mind, like this one. I notice the shiny green buds on the trees and hear the birdies calling to each other in the canopy over my head and know that spring is coming.
Today's trail was great--knotted with roots and rocks, hills and dips, curving around trees. A natural trail. Not some smoothed out, gravel-packed, wide boulevard of a maintained trail. Those are great for strollers but when I'm alone, I want to get off the trail and onto something more exciting. This trail had a long sweeping railroad tie staircase that was fun to run down and leap up a couple times. And a smooth blue-green pond that fell over a waterfall. There were trees everywhere and duck pairs hanging out in the morning sun. Ah, deep breath. On a narrow bridge over the waterfall, I meditated and stretched for a bit. The sun warmed my back and relaxed my muscles. The rush of water drowned out any white noise of civilization and the swirls and bubbles focused my vision to the Now.
Then, I hopped and walked briskly back down the trail, up the stairs and walked as fast as I could back to the trail head. There, I met an elderly Russian gentleman whose truck broke down (his radiator, I think). I offered him my cell phone but he said, in choppy thick English that he didn't know how to use one and needed a tow truck. So I phoned a couple places and got him a tow truck with only 10 minutes to wait. He was so grateful when he cupped my hand between both of his strong old man hands. His voice wavered a bit as he said, "Thank you. Bless you." over and over. It feels so good to do something for someone when my only reward is this fuzzy feeling.
So this is what I do when Eva is at school. I also take a shower, eat bread with peanut butter and honey and drink a cup of milk after getting sweaty. I write. I don't do chores (though I organize them in my head) or run errands or talk on the phone. I don't get on the computer or idly flip through a magazine or do other time-sucking things. I do this: sit on the back deck and write and soak up the sun (in jeans and a sweatshirt--it's not spring yet!)