Monday, August 17, 2015

Free Festivals and Free Fails

This time of year there are free festivals galore, and not just ones with free admission. This summer, we have enjoyed free snacks, face painting, giveaways like cups/pens/books/frisbees, performances (we just saw a fun live action Scooby Doo skit), bounce houses, crafts (my daughter and her friend made tambourines last night) and games. Sometimes, like pictured here, they worth braving the heat for. Maybe worth traveling for if you live in a small town that doesn't do much. 


Nickelodeon's Day of Play: Not everything turns out as well as organizations hope, but bless them for trying. Our town tried to pull together an event for Nickelodeon's World Wide Day of Play. They just made 4 little game stations in a park, including a slime making station.They even had a few prizes to give away. What they didn't expect was every daycare and camp and family in town to show up. The lines to the stations took hours to process. My husband took our daughter, and they stood in line at the slime making booth for an hour, and then the organizers said, "too bad, we're shutting down." Hey, it happens. You run out of stuff. You run out of time! A lot of kids didn't get to do anything or take home anything. Standing in a line for hours is the opposite of play, and enough to make your run back to your digital entertainment. My husband had the wits to take our kid to see "Pixels" and eat popcorn straight from the fail, which they both loved. 

Musher Seminar:This isn't a festival, but it was a freebie fail. I saw one of our local libraries was having a dog musher to speak so I signed up Super D and her friend. (They are both around 8.) I thought they would both like to see the dogs if nothing else. We get into the library's performance room and other than a couple of  librarians

 and one old man, there are no other attendees. I looked around for the musher, but she wasn't present. The girls looked eager to leave from the get go. But before we could sneak out, the librarian faced a camera on us, the musher appeared on a big screen via Skype, and we were trapped for hours. We were the only audience so I felt we couldn't leave. The musher was just talking directly to us, answering our questions and asking some. The girls kept begging to go, saying "This is boring," and "I'm hungry" a little too loudly. I hushed them, pleaded with them out the side of my mouth and after 2 and a half hours of  them squirming and stifling tears, I had to let them go. I didn't know if I should treat the seminar like a phone call, and say, "Sorry, I have to go now" to the musher. I opted to inch out of the screen, and then break into  run when I got close to the door. Because I'm cool like that.

They can't all be winners, but it's good for us to get out there and try. Even feeling real boredom and disappointment is better than being in a digital coma!

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Good Changes

(Clink Photo to be taken to artist's original)

Before you send the dogs out looking for my carcass, let me just clarify one thing, I'm not dead; I'm employed. I looked for months, had a few interviews, and the rejection was starting to wear on me. Luckily, I had been warned by locals that it takes months. A kind friend hooked me up with a job at her synagogue as a secretary. And, since I apparently know nothing about Judaism, it has been a cultural adventure. I'm enjoying learning new words, customs, foods and history. In other words, totally geeking out!

New beginnings mean leaving things behind. I had to quit my little bookstore job that I'd had for two years and very much liked. My husband had an even bigger goodbye with his job. He wound up his Army career after 6 years in favor of nursing school. With no more wars to go to, they stuck him behind a desk. He joined the military to avoid desk jobs. "What's a soldier without a war?" he said. He's joined the National Guard to keep some military ties, but his focus will be on school for the next few years. I'll miss being a military spouse. I actually loved moving every few years! (Don't think I didn't try to convince him to stay in out of my own selfish desire to live in Hawaii or Italy.)

Super D is starting 3rd grade at the same school she went to last year. She has never gotten to go to the same school two years in a row so she's stoked to be seeing all her friends again. She's also bumping up the number of dance classes she's taking. Ballet, Acro and lyrical. This is the longest Super D's ever stuck with something so we're all thrilled she's found something that lights her up.

Now that we are all a little busier, weekends mean more than ever. We have to concentrate our real living into two days a week.  I will do my best to capture and share our mini adventures. We have two really good ones coming up! So exciting!