Thursday, August 25, 2011

Translation Please


To my uneducated ears, those sounds are merely adorable, however perhaps they have greater meaning...


"Hurry up with the food! Speaking of food I have noticed that the milk has been tasting faintly of Cabernet. Don't you know that I'm a whiskey guy? I am. Please adjust accordingly. Also, I have to inform you that I am not crazy about your musical selections. Dan Zanes? Andy Z? And worse yet, Daddy sometimes forces us all to listen to the Decemberists. No, I prefer the jazz standards. Duke Ellington, Miles Davis, Billie Holiday. And do tell, what on earth is up with those two noisy brutes you have running around here, half naked most of the time? Where did you find those barbarians? Someone needs to teach those boys some manners! And pardon me, but that was not gas! I was in fact smiling. God only knows why."

Cute huh?

Friday, August 19, 2011

Rainbow Children

Rainbow children, rainbow children

go where you're going to, do what you're going to do

our love will guide you through.

These are the words that we sang to our children as they received their "diplomas" today. Dressed in tye-died t-shirts that they made for the occasion, each child was presented with a piece of paper and a giant sunflower as we marked the transition from preschool to kindergarten. It does sound a little ridiculous, and yet I got teary eyed as I watched the procession.

Zack's moving on to kindergarten is not what tugs at my heartstrings, in all honesty he could have made that transition last year. Rather it is leaving the community that we have built at the JCC over the past two years. When we first arrived in Berkeley, my first order of business was to secure a preschool for Zachary. I looked at several and settled on the Jewish Community Center of Berkeley. It wasn't the prettiest or the most sophisticated, but it was very warm. I am so glad that we made that decision, it has had a significant impact on our lives. Friendships have been formed for both Zachary and myself. I have met genuine, giving people who have offered endless support and generosity over the past two years. These are people I saw on a weekly if not daily basis. I know that some of these relationships will not withstand the distance that separate schools will impose upon us, but I am hopeful that some of these relationships will last.

Today, as I watched Zachary interact with his buddies, so happy and comfortable, I felt a mixture of pride, happiness and worry. Will he be able to recreate these friendships in kindergarten? Will he continue to be this successful in a more challenging environment?

And like the words of the song-

Rainbow children, rainbow children,

go where you're going to

do what you're going to do,

our love will guide you through.

Zachary, I will be there for you always, supporting who you are and what you want to do. I believe in you. I believe that you are smart, funny and lovable. Whatever happens, I hope that my faith in you and love for you will in fact, guide you through.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Moving On

Zachary is "graduating" from preschool on Friday. The JCC is making quite the to-do over the mini-milestone. There will be a ceremony with music, stories and food. Of course daddy and I will attend, camera in hand, practice I suppose for the future rites of passages that await us.

If Zack were to give a speech at his preschool graduation:

"Fellow students, respected professors and mentors, friends, family, it is an honor to be celebrating this momentous occasion with you. Today marks an end of an era, two years of education, friendships, self discovery and snacks. I have learned so much during my time at the JCC. The alphabet, the days of the week, the months of the year, how to write my name and the dangers of shoving beads up my nose.

We have had our ups (remember the rocking Purim carnival of 2010?) and our downs (can you say sugar-free vegan muffins for "Sophie's" birthday treat?), and through it all we have stuck together. (Except for all of the times Lev told me I wasn't invited to his birthday party after various playground scuffles).

These have been good years, and they will not be forgotten. Today we say goodbye, and move in separate directions, on to our assigned public schools where we will be challenged in new ways. We are moving on to kindergarten. Kindergarten. It sounds a little scary doesn't it? Longer days, bigger classes, higher expectations. Free choice will be limited to thirty minutes a day. No longer will we be free to play super-hero vs. Spongebob and pick our noses for 4 hours a day. We are facing hard-cold reality. Homework. Desks. Backpacks.

But I am pressing forward with the confidence that I will someday learn how to tie these new shoes my mom bought for me, and that if I keep eating grow-big food I will be strong enough for the major leagues very soon.

So thank you all for the past two years. I wish you luck as you embark on your new adventures!

Can someone please give my mommy a tissue? She must have something in her eye."

Sunday, August 14, 2011

August 14, 1999. (Warning: Mushy)

August 14, 1999.

Just shy of my 25th birthday, I put on a white dress and pledged "I do" in front of a crowd of 135 friends and family. It was a beautiful hot summer day in Madison, Wisconsin when I married my college sweetheart. We met early freshman year. We started dating in October, 1992 and we never broke up, not even for a day.

I did not go to the university to meet a husband. I had a few boyfriends in high school, but had never been particularly popular, I didn't believe that boys liked me all that much. About 15 minutes into my first "house party" I learned that I was wrong, yet I pushed all of the coveted male attention aside once I met "Dave" in a cramped dorm room of Ogg Hall. I was on a date with one of Dave's friends, John, a rather attractive, cocky freshman who appeared to have very little interest in me once our date began. Dave and I spent most of the evening chatting and eventually flirting over a sundae at the now defunct Ella's Deli on State Street. There was an awkward moment at the end of the evening where I stood with John and Dave and one of them had to walk me home. John was chivalrous and took me home from our date, but not before I gave Dave my phone number. It took him a week to call back, but it was worth it.

"Is Rachel there?" a male voice said on the other end of line. "That's me" I answered.

"I don't know if you remember me" Dave said. "But I am your future husband."

He was joking at that time, but it was a lovely prophecy, and here we are in 2011, with three boys, a dog and two cats between us.

I am amazed every day that it happened like it did. So young. So random. So meant-to-be. Our courtship was a mix of frat parties, study dates and cross-country road trips. By the time we graduated I had no doubt in my mind that Dave and I were "forever."

Relative to our ages we have already been together "forever", but I know that there is so much more to look forward to. Our boys will grow up, we will have new adventures, and we will do it all together.

Happy Anniversary David.


Your wife.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Random Thursday Thoughts

Random Thursday Thoughts....

1) Damn my lousy Internet connection. Just lost an entire Getrealmama Post. Must have been the best one ever....for sure.

2) Can my overachieving Facebook friends please cool it for a little while? You are making me feel pretty darn lazy. An example post: "9.5 mile run this morning before Extreme Spinning! Rewarding myself with an egg white omelet! Yum!" Please. How can I respond? "Ran 2.4 miles last Saturday. Now eating a bagel with full fat cream cheese and a latte....

3) Birthdays. Love them or hate them? I have always been a lover of the birthday celebration, but as I am getting closer and closer to 40, they are taking on a new meaning. I'll be 37 soon and I can't decide whether to live it up or pout in solitude.

4) The big 20 year high-school reunion is coming up, in theory. My class doesn't seem to have it together to plan anything. Our ten year equated to a bowl of chips, a cash bar and less than a fourth of our class showed up. Needless to say it was a bit of a let-down. Now it looks as if the twenty year is going to be a kegger/potluck at a local park. I am being deprived of my God-given right to spend the next six months working out so I can squeeze into a hot little black dress and "wow" all of my classmates who took me for a homely, awkward teen and never invited me to their parties. THIS IS MY CHANCE to look sophisticated and beautiful while sipping martinis and showing off my crazy dance moves. Instead we we are going to a park? I'll bet the kids will even be invited. Boo.

5) We have fleas. That's right fleas. My pets have fleas. I have fleas. At least they are eating me alive. And I am too tired to do anything about it. Solving the flea problem is just too much work.

Yeah. I suck.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011


This child is hungry.

The other one won't stop throwing his food.

The baby just cries.

This child wants to "super jump" into the pool.

The other one is cold.

This child lost his neon orange Hot Wheel car.

The other one won't wear his shoes.

This child spilled his apple juice.

The other one peed his pants.

The baby just cries.

This one says he hates me.

The other one must be carried everywhere he goes.

This one likes the playground.

The other one is bored.

The baby just cries.

This MAMA went a little crazy on "vacation,"

and now she needs a break!