Thursday, May 26, 2011

May 27, 2011

Wedding - May 27, 1971

It's been 40 years today since our wedding day.  Wow - hard to believe.

I am always quick to tell anyone who will listen that marrying Barry was the best decision I ever made in my life.  He's a wonderful husband.  The best I can imagine.

Linden High School Senior Prom, 1967

I'm a lucky lady to have such happiness all these years.

Monday, May 23, 2011

L.A. Rapture Weekend

Barry and I just got back from a great weekend in California.  The primary reason for going was to see my daughter and son-in-law, but we did so much more than that.

We stayed at the beautiful Fairmont Miramar Hotel in Santa Monica that was landscaped to the hilt.  We so enjoyed the sunny, breezy weather and being next door to the Pacific Ocean.  There were many other treats associated with this trip.  Besides spending time with Emily and Isac, we got to see our beloved former next door neighbors from Atlanta who were also in Santa Monica, as well as a number of Emily's friends who we adore.  Of course, what would a trip to L.A. be without spending quality time with our grand-dog, The Baroness?  As you can see from the picture below, she was absolutely thrilled to see us.

The Baroness in excitement mode

We had great food at every restaurant that we went to, but the stand out memorable meal was the tasting menu at Providence.  This was a special occasion meal as we celebrated Emily and Isac's fifth anniversary on Friday night.  Wow.  The food kept coming and coming and it was a real treat to enjoy so many different tastes.  And the presentation - wow.  

Tuna Tartar at Providence

Besides socializing and eating, we started our search for a retirement condo.  It will probably take us a while to find just the right thing, but no rush.  I do love the beach and the weather there can't be beat.

We were astounded by a wonderful exhibit at The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA called "Art in the Streets."  It's a huge exhibit on street art that I can't say enough good things about.  We had to leave to go to the airport after over two hours there, and we didn't feel like we had enough time.  It's there until 8/8/11 and if your travels take you to LA, see it.  It gives you a whole new appreciation of street art - beautifully curated, beautifully done.  I can't do it justice - you gotta see it.  Here are a few pictures I took at the exhibit.

A very fun trip, and, as an extra bonus, the world didn't end.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

On Mother's Day.

With Sunday being Mother's Day, I naturally started thinking about what being a mother means and how it changes as your "child/ren" become adults.

When a baby is born, it's dependent on its parents for absolutely everything.  But, as time goes on, if a parent is fortunate, that very same baby becomes a totally independent human being who no longer "needs" its parents for day to day living.

I've been thinking about what exactly is the role of a parent of an adult.  I've wondered if there are any  actual duties to fulfill as the parent of a totally independent adult.  If there are grandchildren, the parent can take on the role of babysitter/grandparent (no hint intended, Em), but, otherwise, can it be possible that the parent is superfluous - just another relative who requires an occasional phone call or email to avoid feeling guilty?

There are potential roles that the parent of an adult can fill:  advice giver, sympathetic listener, or career cheerleader, but, honestly, couldn't a friend fill these roles as well? Then there are the annoying roles that a parent can fulfill like being able to push buttons that no friend could ever push or being the archivist of embarrassing childhood memories for the adult child, as in "have I ever mentioned that my daughter was so frightened by the movie ET that she probably still hasn't been able to watch it to this day?"

The one role that a mother will always be best at is loving her child, no matter what, with no strings attached, regardless of the age of the child.  Unconditional love is not easy to find in this world, and that is a mother's love, regardless of the rockiness of the relationship.  When I lost my parents, I realized that there are so few people in your life that just love you with all their hearts and that parents, at any age, are two of those people who are irreplaceable.

A big shout out to my wonderful daughter who makes mothering an adult so easy.  She is very independent, and I'm proud of that.  When I look back on my mothering skills, I definitely would not have won any awards.  My daughter was a latch-key child who would call me at work to tell me she was OK after coming home to an empty house after elementary school.  She somehow weathered this poor parenting to become a talented, hardworking, and loving adult. 

So as I ponder my role as a mother of an adult, I thank her for the joy that she has brought to my life and wish all of you a Happy Mother's Day.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Election Day - Denver Style

Tuesday, May 3, is Election Day in Denver.  The former mayor of Denver, John Hickenlooper, became the Governor of Colorado in January, and a temporary mayor has been in charge of the city since then.

I've voted for 40 years in at least a half dozen states, using old-fashioned voting booths with levers, poking holes in the ballots with a small sharp tool, and, most recently, using touch screen computerized ballots.  But, yet again, I've been surprised here.  

For this election (and I'm not sure if it's this way for every election since this is the first since we've moved here), we received ballots in the mail that look like this:

The voter is given the option of mailing back the ballot or dropping it off at a number of designated locations.  There are even some drive-through spots listed.  There was no information on actual polling places.

According to the instructions, you can use pencil or pen, black or blue, and you are supposed to connect the arrow next to the person who you want to vote for, as shown below:

Of course, I started obsessing over how thick the line should be, how many times to go over the line, just to be sure that the vote would be obvious.

Then, after you've drawn your lines, the ballot gets put in a "secrecy sleeve" and then an envelope that you sign, swearing that you're an eligible voter.

The envelope can be dropped off by anyone at one of the many designated drop-off spots.

Maybe it's because I'm from New Jersey, where election fraud is an art form, but does this seem a bit too nonchalant to anyone else?  Or can you imagine how this would have played in Palm Beach County, Florida in 2000?