Saturday, August 25, 2012

Won’t You Be My Neighbor

Most days after I enter the house or before I leave, I open the front closet, and switch my shoes and jacket.
I feel like Mr. Rogers. I love having a closet in the foyer.
When Mr A and I got married we moved into a cute house outside L.A. It was maybe 15 miles from the side if L.A. I love.
I told Mr A I wanted to start married life somewhere small and fun. A condo or apartment in L.A. Mr A wanted to remain in a house.
We moved to a small cute apartment on the side of L.A. I loved. It was fun and within easy access of the types of things we enjoy.
I am enjoying being back in a house. I did not appreciate front closets, yards, and driveways until I had kids. Now I appreciate family rooms, fireplaces, living Rooms, dining rooms and even all the work to keep a house comfortable. My kids seem to prefer the house as well.
I enjoyed our L.A lifestyle but as the kids get older our lifestyle must adjust. I am enjoying the parenting experience, so it's a nice and exciting adjustment.
I feel our path has worked well for us.
Sometimes I look at other folks lives and those lives seem so exciting. Then people will tell me their impression of our life and I think we are just busy living. My hope is to be able to have more days like today. Mr A is doing guy stuff and the kids are asleep.
I have some moments to relax and reflect. I also has time to watch Cosby episodes. I love the Cosby show, especially as I age. I prefer when Denise wash the show but I will watch the later shows, before Theo went to college.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Bay Days

TR told me that she and QT love living in Oakland and love their house! She said they like Oakland better than L.A. because of the house.
I would have thought they preferred living in L.A., and playing at the park. TR told me she misses having a nanny. I think her nanny is ready to come, but she wants full time pay although she will be living with us rent free.
TR says she wants any nanny, it does not have to be the L.A. Nanny. I am interviewing someoe on Friday. We shall see.
Knowing my kiddies are happy about the move inspires me. Our expenses have increased drastically and it's worth it, because my kiddes prefer here.
TR gets to spend the night with my mom. She gets to watch movies, eat popcorn, paint her nails and try on stilettos with my sister. QT gets to sit on the sideline at football games and go on the field. At public school football, the coaches kids were not allowed on the sideline or the field.
I prefer this because it was work managing two kids in the stands, all by myself. Mr A puts the kids on his shoulders and they help coach.
QT loves football. TR has her Pom poms and loves to cheer.
QT is 2.5 and yesterday at Open Gym, the coaches said he can do the 3-4 year old class. His age is fored to be in the parent and me class, but they said he listens well and can advance to the older class. That is great because the parent-tot class did baby gymnastics.
QT is good at gymnastics but he does not love it like his sister. I doubt he will want to be competitive. He is on the shy side unlike TR who loves to have all eyes on her.
We went to the Farmer's Market last week and she asked the musician if she could play ER flute and sing. He gave her the mic and she played and sang a song she had composed. She does not have a shy bone.
QT has an amazing arm. The first time he kiddie bowled he got over 100 and won out of the kids. Mr. A won out of the adults.
I made the kids start using wide, plastic utensils with round tips because QT's aim was so good as a baby. I feared if he threw a fork he would blind TR. He threw a spoon at her and did not miss.
It's amazing how delusional people can be. Sometimes people will not give individuals credit for hard work. They prefer to think someone handed them what they work hard for. I guess that is why Obama told folks, "you did not build that". Whenever we have bills to pay, no one helps us and if it does not get paid, we will be shut off or sued. I wish I had the contact info for the people who give me the resources to build what I am not building.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Saturday

We've been home 2 weeks straight and are beginning to get into a routine. The biggest challenge right now is the distance we have to travel to do things. In L.A. we were within 5-6 miles of everything we wanted to do. We were about 10 miles from the beach and that trip required planning.
Now we are 10 miles from everything. TR asked my mother why they had to be in the car for so long. She doesn't understand why everywhere we go is far. We were spoiled in L.A. Gas is almost $5, so these miles add up.
In L.A. our activities were 10-15 minute drives. We did things during non-traffic times. Here we are doing 30 minutes to get to gymnastics, ballet and football.
QT and I took Bart to football today. I forgot about the people who make public transit a bit scary. Todday a man did pull ups on the Bart train and air boxed. Then he began sweeping his hand over his back pack. With shaking hands he opened the bag and pulled out snacks.
The views were beautiful today. The blue skies, let the sun warm the bay. A beautiful day in the bay, reminds me why this is a great place to live.
I grew distant from the hood while in L.A. It is beginning to feel normal to me. This is not good! I do not want to be used to women in slippers and head scarves at noon, or men of varying ages, mouths full of gold, driving cars with big rims at high speeds while swerving and blasting horrible bay area rap music. That is not life!
It's important to be exposed, because I want my kids to understand this is not normal. It isn't even poverty. What we see is what happens when there is no vision. This is what happens when families and communities fall apart.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Raising Athletes

Last week TR told me that she loves everything about Oakland but she wanted to return to L.A. for gymnastics. She did not think Oakland had gymnastics.
Today the kids did a trial class at a gymnastics school and it was great. The preschool class did what her advanced class in L.A. did.
TR was invited to join the competitive track. She'll be going 4 hours a week.
Tonight at dinner I asked her if she wanted to do ballet and gymnastics or only gymnastics. She she she wants to do only gymnastics. So I followed up and asked if she wants to stop ballet classes. She told me she would continue ballet if I wanted her to.
So this week will be her last week of ballet, unless she requests to take classes again.
She has asked to do soccer, so we will do gym and soccer for now.
TR is great at gymnastics and she loves it. When she was 2 and people told me how good she was, I thought she was regular. Now I see her and realize she really is a natural. It's amazing.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Visions of homemaking

I have not been able to purchase a glass drink dispenser, that is as sturdy as I want. I may hit pottery barn soon and hope to catch a sale on summer items.
I have a vision of fresh squeezed lemonade, sitting on the table.
Our neighbor has a lemon tree. I hope they offer us access. The tree is so close yet so far. My childood home, had an avocado tree in the house that was behind ours. I did not appreciate avocado back then, but the fruit fell in our yard and gave us shade.
On Sunday I made a glass pitcher of fruit infused water. I used strawberries and blueberries. It was beautiful and refreshing. I read it is a great alternative for kids. They can enjoy the hint of fruit without the sugar. The kids loved it!
After we drank the water, I put sugar on the fruit and put it in the fridge. This morning, it had made a syrup so I put it in the blender, added water to liquefy.
I put the liquid through a sifter to remove the seeds. My homemade fruit juice was yummy. QT loved it. I liked knowing their juice was not packed with artificial colors, flavors, etc. I intend to make fruit juice more often.
I am moving closer to my vision of being a creative homemaker. Our kitchen and dining room are light and airy, so it inspires me.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Get it together

While I know I am great, I desire to be better. I feel like I am existing so far beneath my ability.
I can do better. I WILL do better.
It has become so easy for me to earn money and I feel like I have allowed myself to stagnate and focus on that instead of being better professionally. I love it when I speak with attorneys that know their stuff and are confident in their knowledge.
I just spoke with an opposing counsel and I liked her just because she knew her stuff. I am beginning to think lawyers get nasty when they are not prepared. People have to rest on something, some prepare and others get nasty. Plus lots of lawyers work like indentured servants, so that probably makes them angry.
So I am going to set my office hours. I will work 3 days a week Tuesday-Thursday. I will do make and accept phone calls Tuesday morning and Thursday afternoon. The other hours will be paper pushing. I will work 9 to 4:30 pm.
I have to have balance and stop feeling like home or work is being neglected.
I will also take time each week to focus on a new business.
I will find an assistant and ease my work burden.
I will stop procrastinating. I love my work and once I start I have a hard time pulling myself away.
The American Dream
Apartment living was easy. A house is another full time job, which is needed to fund the bills that come with it.
I love the backyard and all that it offers to my kids but the main reason I need a schedule is because this house is keeping me busy. I see why my mother never its down. If you sit or 10 mins weeds will grow and cobwebs will come.
Maybe this is why people choose town homes with a small yard. If we go bigger I know we will need staff. Or I could just put the kids to work.
Mr A. is outdoors and I hear a broom. He loves the garage. He has a man station set up. A fridge, a big chair and he can spend hours in there.
I asked the wife of Mr. A.'s classmate about her husband and she said he has his man station in the garage. She said she will stick her head in the door and back out. I do the same.
My conclusion: men know wives don't want to hang out in the garage. We will go into man caves but we avoid garages. If they want to be alone, they can go there.
The guys said women have such a place but I can't remember what they said that place was.

Black Women and Hate

I think that black women are very sensitive to racism because most (yes I said most) black women hate other black women and will seek opportunities to be nasty, insulting and deriding.
Black women high five each other for being nasty to other black women.
That is one of the worst parts of blogging and commenting on blogs frequented by black women. Black women look for offense, find the offense and then attack.
We don't seem able to either let stuff go or to not receive negative energy.
I think the nastiness directed toward Gold Medalist Gabby Douglas was just a manifestation of black on black hatred.
Black men and boys gun each other down with weapons. Black women gun each other down with words. I was shocked that people pulled a child into the fray and then claimed that her hair represents us.
Her hair represents us but not her gold medal and olympic achievement.
Black women are the only folks I hear brag about not liking to associate with black women.
Anyway, when we get labelled as sapphire, I wonder why we call it racism when so many of us behave like sapphire.
I am in a bit of a mood today. I am here working and missing a beautiful day outdoors. Business is going well and the only way to keep it that way is to continue to work. My pleasure (lifestyle the money affords) is my pain (the pile of work).
My goal used to be to work enough and make enough money to play but now that I have kids, I want them to be able to play too and that reduces my playtime and increases my work time.
I think I will head out and get sushi, and then return to work. I think it would be easier if I didn't work alone in my office.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Trends

Mr A is managing some rental units and I saw photos of granite countertops. Granite is okay in new builds but I prefer original tile. Back in the old days of building tile was beautiful. I have no idea why slabs of granite became the trend. Isn't granite, the poor man's marble? Our house is plenty big for me and my family of four. I think we are a bit under 1600 sq ft. Maybe it feels large because we just left a 1000 sq ft. apartment. One of our couple friends with no kids, live in a 5 bedroom home that is probably 2500 sq ft. If my four have more than enough space in 1600 sq ft, I think i would need a staff for 2500 sq ft. We use every room but the living room. We spend most of our time in the family room, we have a formal dining room where we eat and we cook in the kitchen. We even use the office and since I work from home, I expect that room to see lots of us. We have already entertained and had plenty of room. The dining room has double doors that open to the back patio, so that expands our entertains space. If we move into a house with more than 2500 sq ft, of living space, I want to have in home employees. I think the next trend will be towards smaller homes that suit the buyers needs. I think the time of excess is over for about 20 years.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Back to the grind

Mr A and I are back from Belize.  It was a great trip!  The food was nothing to blog about, but I think that is what happens when folks spend time under British rule.

The country borders Mexico and Guatemala, and is off the Carribean Sea.  I could order curry as easily as ceviche but my palate was not pleasured.

The people are great, driving around in golf carts was fun, the water activities and the ruins were wonderful and thought provoking and the night sky was majestic.

Mostly Everything was very expensive because they have to import things. I purchased a box of Nerds at a cost of $2 U.S. dollars. I see why people go to Mexico. Mexico is an inexpensive vacation. Belize is pricey.
e took our annual summer trip with Mr. A's West Point classmates. This year 6 classmates attended (2 are married to each other), 2 wives and 2 vacation girlfriends. We had a group of 10. We had the main house which was 4 bedrooms and a second house on the property that was 3 bedrooms.
It was great fun. Traveling with a bunch of West Point grads is different. When folks have military training and war in their back ground, their sense of adventure changes. This was not a lay on the beach vacation. This was a tour the jungle, dive in the blue hole, climb the Mayan ruins, kayak, snorkel, type of vacation.
Now we are back home. I can get into a routine and finish unpacking. I am supposed to interview an assistant today, I need to find a nanny, and there is much to do, to settle in.
TR started ballet last week, but we still need to find swim and gymnastics for both kids. TR has requested soccer, so I need to find a league.
I have taken pretty much the month of July off of work so it is time to go. I am ready. I will keep y'all posted. I still want to post photos. Let us send positive thoughts that it will happen this month.