Friday, June 22, 2012

The Firzt Ski Trip

Smart's post made me reminisce about Mr A and my first ski trip. This was written April 2007.
I shall do a brief recap on our ski adventure. This was the first time the two of us have ventured to a ski destination together. Hubster is an athlete and a competitor. He is not competitive in personal things, but in sport like endeavors. If he is skiing, he is competing against himself to be better than he was the last time he skiied/snowboarded.
I ski for fun. I like the feel of the snow, and I like the gliding feeling. I like the atmosphere and I love the food avaible in the Rockies. As we discovered in pre-marital, hubster is a doer and I am a thinker. These traits transferred to our skiing. I will ponder the various ways to get down the mountain and he will go down the mountain.
So the doer and the thinker skiied together and I will begin at the end. As I waited for the snowmobile to come and get me off the mountain, hubster told me next ski season we will take regular trips to the mountain, he will ski - he has been loving snowboarding for a couple years now- and we will ensure my ski skills will improve.
Prior to hitting the slopes I told hubster that he should not ski with me. I told him that my siblings and cousins tend to leave me before lunch and I’m left to ski alone. I told him that I ski slow and that I didn’t want to ruin his fun by having him ski slow with me.
Hubster told me he’d have more fun skiing slow with me, than skiing fast by himself. He got his snowboard and I got my skis and we got on the lift to the bunny slope. My sister saw us and told me to go and sign up for the lessons. Hubster told her he was going to instruct me. She looked skeptical, but of course she had seen me ski, he hadn’t.
My excuse- The last time I skiied I took some terrible tumbles down a blue. I realized that I could have broken my neck or other bones and that left me with a twinge of fear.
After a few runs hubster looked at me with amazement in his eyes. He said, “it’s as if you are a beginner.” Then he gave me the, “it’s like riding a bike” speech.
At one point my sis skiied past us and said, “if you fall the only thing that will happen is you will hit the snow.” Hubster was on a snowboard so I couldn’t mimic excellent in giving verbal ski instructions. I told him that we should market his services. He skiied prior to going to college, but in college he took a ski class and was doing jumps and spins by the end of the course.
My skills were rapidly improving, I was conquering my fear and skiing with ease. One of the women begin yelling at hubster on the mountain. She told him he was just like a man telling me all I have to do is do it.
After quite few more bunny slope runs and me convincing hubster I was ready to tackle the bigger mountain, we moved to the green. Green is basically level 1. Blue would be 2. It’s my belief that the green in Aspen would be a blue in Tahoe. Hubster agrees although he says the mountain we skiied on was like paradise because the snow was so smooth and soft.
Things started out well on the blue mislabelled as a green. Hubster snowboarded while I skiied and he gave me encouragement and tips. Then it began snowing. Then it began snowing harder, then the turns got sharper and the mountains got steeper and I got slower.
At one point I thought it might be a blizzard (I’m hoping you’ve picked up that I’m dramatic), the slopes seemed to turn icey instead of powder like and I was out of my comfort zone. I began to snow plow and hubster was not pleased with my regression. I asked hubster to call a snowmobile for me the next time we saw a ski instructor.
Hubster complied. As we sat there waiting for my ride, I decided to continue skiing. Hubster refused to allow it and told me to wait for the snowmobile.
So I caught a ride and that ride was terryfying. The guy seemed to take the steepest route and went about 80 mph (not an exaggeration). A little while later hubster boarded down and we headed in to rest. It was nearly 4 p.m and time to end anyway. F
For some crazy reason, I truly enjoyed that entire experience. Hubster was super exasperated, he was frustrated, and I thought he might have a stroke trying to instruct me. He was also determined to help me improve and he would not ski away from me.
I felt slightly bad that he couldn’t zip down and around the mountains like he wanted, although he got to do it the next day, but when we were done, I was able to reflect on the care and concern my sweetums displayed. He was protective yet committed to the mission at hand- improving my skills.
I did give brief thought to falling on top of hubster and pummeling him into the snow for his displays of frustration but I will definitely ski with him again. We also reaffirmed our understanding that once our children arrive, I will be the one to say “oh sweetie, you are progressing so well” and hubster will be the one to say “do it better.” Of course I know our kids will probably value a compliment from him more than from me, sorta like Simon Cowell and Paula Abdul.
So my ski fantasy came true and it was as beautiful as I’d believed it could be.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Kids are expensive

I stopped by Kmart across from the Grove this week and saw lots and lots of teens in groups. By group I mean 10+.
I think that many teens unsupervised is bound to lead to bad decisions.
All the kids were some form of brown. I have yet to see congregations of white teens or Asians.
I realized school is out. The kiddie park is now full of big kids, TR is usually in Oakland before schools in L.A. Let out, so I wasn't fully aware of what happens to our park in the summer time. I did know big kids came during Easter break, so I should have known.
I was recently looking at science camps in the Bay and discovered that a 3 hour, 5 day program would be $250 for TR. Lunch/snacks were not included. I decided t buy a family membership to the science academy and attend the science workshops at the academy. It's cheaper and we can all benefit for a full year.
I am sure camps, programs and activities get more costly the more time spent in those activities.
i wonder if these kids are in packs because of financial limitations? Perhaps the parents don't mind their kids hanging out by malls.
I think should be allowed some independence but I would think they would want a real activity. I remember being a teen and malls were not on our list of places to go. We were having pool parties and grillingbht dogs and skinless chicken breasts at the park.
I am pretty certain malls did not see us during the summer months.
It's expensive to raise well rounded and exposed kids. By expensive, I mean you either have the money or time.
They really appreciate and benefit from the exposure so it's a cost worth taking on.

Long Walks, Short Walks

I love living in a neighborhood where walking is an option.

Mr. A took the kids on a bike ride to the village this week. The kids loved it!  He usually lets them ride to the park or a nearby church parking lot.  This week t hey got to cross streets and they went at least a mile.

I hope when we move there are places to walk. 

In the past I have walked the kids to the dentist, mainly because my car locked me out once and the other time my car was in the shop.  I think I walked there once just because but its great to have options.

While TR was in GA, Mr A took QT on the bus and they went to the Counter for lunch and then walked to the salon where I was getting my hair done.  Since that day, QT wants to ride the bus. 

The city is a great place.  It's costly but for me the options to walk, bus or drive justify the cost.

I am in the mood to post and my salon has wireless. More later........ maybe.

Monday, June 18, 2012

The Mission

Mr. A has accepted that managing my business will be a daily task. For whatever reason he was hesitant, but I needed the help- badly. He is a great business manager. Now that he is involved in managing, he understands why I was so overwhelmed. It is not possible for ME to run my business, work for my business and manage the details. Mr. A created a client tracker and has it color coded by the stage of the case. So we can see who is active, what stage of activity, who has payment, who payment has been received, who is inactive and what level of inactivity. Looking at the snapshot of my business made me realize that I am doing great! I am super motivated about building my reputation in the bay. The other attorney said she can do 2-3 new cases a week. We are trying to hire another attorney becaustrees more staff, the more clients I can help. My goal is to manage the practice and not do the day to day client work. I want to focus on litigation and build my creds as a civil rights attorney. I need to be prepared for the day when laws change and my practice area fades away. I have not figured out what my plans B and C are. I have ideas running around my head but I have not yet decided what my next passion/purpose might be. Mr A spoke with an attorney, who thought my business might be some type of MLM or pyramid scheme. I wasn't trying to sell anything, or tell her what she had to purchase, so I think that is funny. I guess work from home, set your own hours, make nice money, does seem too good to be true or like a gimmick. Whatever. This is L.A. so being wary is a part of big city precautions. But it is interesting because that was the first time I ever considered what my work might sound like to a stranger. I am wary too. I won't divulge ever piece of my practice be ause it has taken time to build.

Friday, June 15, 2012


The Family

At church a few Sunday's ago the pastor told Mr A that he loves our family. The man next to the pastor said, "me too." Usually people tell me, I have a beautiful family, they smile, they ask questions, show interest. Our kids are always busy but fortunately they are not too off the chain.
When TR was a baby I posted a video of Mr A balancing my infant in his palm.
He did the same with QT. Now the kids stand in his palms and balance. That always draws a lot of interest and questions. I was watching an old clip of Bruce Jenner and he was doing something similar with his kids.
I think one reason the kids are so athletic is because Mr. A had them building their core straight out of the womb. It is amazing to witness the difference a strong core makes.
For the most part when people tell me how beautiful my family is, I think they appreciate how Mr A interacts with the kids. He is clearly a hands on daddy. The stuff he does with the kids takes time, so it's apparent he commits the time.
Fortunately for me, Mr A shares full parenting responsibilities. Because he woks outside the home, I do have to handle bathroom duty more.
I think fatherhood is a major task.
Shout out to all the fathers who accept the challenge of fatherhood and who are so reliable and consistent that your kids take you for granted. When your kids take you for granted it's because you've always been there and they expect you to continue.

Monday, June 11, 2012

The Ballerina

This weekend, TR had her first ballet recital on a stage and in front of an audience. She was great and she loved it. She completed the entire dance correctly and using the proper form. She is a natural dancer, though I have no idea where the ability comes from. Maybe the combo of athletic genes helps but I was pretty bad at modern dance.
At the end of the dance after the kids were to blow kisses, TR blew her kiss, turned to the audience and waved goodbye. Then she did her tip toe dance off stage as was instructed.
She loves an audience. So I have decided to put her in a fancy ballet school when we move. I love her current ballet teacher and TR loves her more. The teacher works as a professional dancer on Glee, choreographs for dance reality shows and works with the competitive dancers who attend the dance school.
I have enjoyed her current school because it's relaxed, fun for kids and TR has learned correct positions and loves ballet.
It will be rough to send her to a school where parents cannot observe. I can peek through the tiny window in the door, but I enjoy watching my kiddies do their activities and learn.
We have found a swim school, gymnastics studio and I have a lead on a few parks where the same nannies bring the same kids each day. I realize life in the bay will be different. We won't be in the heart of the city nestled in a small community within a big city. We may not be able to walk to a park full of kids and nannies, or to a village like Larchmont.
We will be close to family and that is more valuable than what we are giving up. TR is still talking about her cousins on her Georgia visit. In the Bay their life will be full of family and folks who treat them like they are someone special (they are). My family has spent years developing the family name s o they might as well get some of the benefit.
We have done well here in L.A. My business can go on without my being here and I can build in the bay. If we do it right, if we move back, it will be to Bel Air or Hancock Park. I will come back here if we can return as true multi-millionaires. I just have to defeat this procrastination spirit.
I will keep you posted on that battle.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Swim Test

TR passed her swim test last month and now gets to practice swimming 15 yards across the pool.

The video is of her swim test.  QT wants to take the test but he doesn't like to back float, so when they drop him in the deep water, I'm not sure how he'll respond. The test to advance requires the kids to go into the back float, since that is the survival method.

His instructor says QT is an advanced swimmer.  He likes to swim eyes first which is something most kids his age do not like. He dives for toys, swims underwater, kicks and is fearless. He will back float but he does not like it.


Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Chatter and patter

I love the sound of my kiddies walking. It alerts me that it's time to start the day. Hardwood floors are great. The kids come and get in our bed most mornings. It gets crowded but I enjoy my babies being there. I love how Mr A wrestles with the kids and they squeal and giggle before he leaves.
On the mornings they do not wake before he leaves I prepare for trouble. They want to hug their daddy. Yesterday, QT sang, "daddy is my hero, my daddy, my daddy.". I picked a great daddy for my kiddies. He is a bit more strict than I prefer but I am a lot more lenient than he prefers so I guess that will give the kids balance.
I don't have the heart to enforce punishments. I realize this has backfired on me and I have to do extra to get the kids to listen. At this point I do the June Cleaver and say, I will tell their father. However I am working to change this and ensure my kiddies listen to me without the extras.
It's a little easier to be firm with a baby than to start being firm with little kids. They learn quick whether you will follow through with what you have stated of if they can cry and keep asking and you will give in.
Lesson learned: babies are con artists, don't be fooled.
Yesterday TR told me that when she was in Atlanta, a red baby kept biting her. I had no idea what she was talking about. I asked my mom and she said it was probably my cousin's baby. TR kept picking up the almost 2 year old and dropping him. I don't know if she dropped him because he bit her or if he bit her as she dropped him. My sister sent a photo and the baby was wearing all red. I guess that is why he was " a red baby".
Talking to kids is always interesting. They are usually saying something real even if it sounds made up.
TR went to her dress rehearsal recital practice this weekend. There were two little kids behind us who I thought I recognized but since the kids did not speak, I figured they just looked like park kids. Then the little girl started saying she wants to go to TR's house. The girl pronounced her name like the Latina ladies at the park, so my ears didn't really tune in. The mom repeated okay, the girl said again she wants to go to TR's house. The mom's voice was confused as she kept repeating the name.
I turned and asked if the little girl was Kaia. She was. I told the mom our kids play together at the park and she was saying TR, who was walking in front of her. So the kids just got together and looked at each other. They play hard every day. I have no idea why they did not speak.
I have no idea how to function without a nanny. Y'all say a prayer that when we move and it's time for the kids to return from summer with their granny, that we have a great nanny and kids to play with.
Does anyone know where I can read a Tyler Tale? I miss the updates.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

The chauffeur

On Friday I took the kids to TR's gymnastic class. She just turned four but she stays traveling, so Friday was a makeup class. She has been back from Georgia nearly a week and is just now telling me the various thins she did. This morning she told me how much fun she had with my mom's cousin Lisa.
When Lisa was a child my mother kept her in the car driving her around. When we were kids, Lisa kept us in the car driving us around and doing fun activities. She was in her early twenties and in college when we were in elementary do it was lots of fun.
When Lisa got married and pregnant, I was 11. I tried to spend every weekend at her house. When the baby arrived I tried to move in. Only now do I realize I was giving her breaks. I would come over to play with the baby on the weekend and she and her husband would disappear upstairs. How I wish we had a baby/kid loving pre-teen cousin who invited themselves over every weekend.
I always have fun when I take the kids out by myself. They are entertaining. We have interesting conversations and we run out of time before we run out of things to do or places to go. With kids everything is an adventure.
After gymnastics we got a bite to eat and went to the dance store for ballet gear. TR has a ballet recital approaching. This is her 2nd recital but her first one on a stage in front of a bunch of parents.
The dance store was great fun. By the time we got home QT was asleep. I made a light snack and we took naps to prepare for the kids' swim class. TR can actually swim. I know she has been taking lessons, but it was amazing to see her get in the big pool, swim across, turn to a back float and turn back to finish her swim.
Yesterday was her first lesson in the higher level, so while I had seen her practice those skills, yesterday was the first time I saw her actually put them together and swim from or end to the next.
Random question. If I am sitting in a chair watching the gymnastics floor, why would a person stand directly in front of me. Not to mention, I am on the edge of the studio and parents are not allowed in the space the view blocker was in. Did he really think that he found the best spot in a room full of observers?