Friday, September 5, 2014

I had a "Scene" mom makeover

For my daughter's tenth birthday, she wanted to give me a makeover. A "scene" makeover, to look like her big sister, who introduced our family to the scene/emo look. Do you know what that is? For you visual folks, I'll show you:

Scene girls wear lots of dark eye makeup, have perfect eyebrows, and dyed hair that is layered and teased. They wear fun accessories, like bows and Hello Kitty, and lots of black, preferably band "merch" purchased from Hot Topic. Facial piercings are common. And selfies with dorky faces are essential. Here is my oldest, who I think it the prettiest of all the scene girls:

Now, here is what I look like:

I don't wear eye makeup, or much black, and I wear my hair in a bun every single day. I do have my septum pierced but I haven't worn jewelry in it for years. My eyebrows are decent. I like to smile pleasantly and I shop at Anthropologie.

But I am one of those mom's that really likes to make my kids happy on their birthdays (possibly to make up for being such a shit to them the rest of the year.) If the birthday girl wanted me to be a Scene Mom and parade me around Oaks Amusement Park for her enjoyment, then I would step up.

This required some pre-planning. First, I went to Hot Topic (duh) and bought a band shirt, and then went straight home to cut it up. Then I bought a neon green tank top to wear underneath. I also bought some gel eyeliner and dug an old piece of nose jewelry out of my jewelry box. Finally, I procured a pair of Converse sneakers (scene kids wear Converse and emo kids wear Vans, I have been told.)

The night before, I stayed up late and practiced how to make a nice cat eye with my gel liner. I also read on wikiHow about how to be a "good" scene girl. I learned that it's more than a look, it is about attitude as well. So while make-up and hair choices are flexible, and scene girls should be well-groomed at all times, they also exude confidence but not bitchiness (I kept thinking that these instructions had the air of those vintage "how to" etiquette books for teens....only extremely modernized.) It dawned on me my oldest has been nailing this scene thing right under my nose for over a year and I never really noticed past the "look": she always comes out of her bedroom very put together, clean, smelling nice and with an air of authority. She looks intimidating on the surface but when someone is brave enough to compliment her, she responds with sweetness. She calls her friends "betches" and flips off the camera but when she talks to little kids she says "awwww" and "thank you, sweetie" and even sometimes leaves the house dressed as Pokemon's Pikachu. She has embraced a sub-culture that really reflects the duality of adolescence: one foot in the adult world and one in childhood. I felt like doing this helped me understand her better...ironic that the wishes of my middle child helped me understand my oldest child better.

So, on the big day, I let the girls help me with my hair and make-up. The biggest challenge was my hair since I wasn't willing to cut it (I have my limits) but they showed me how to part it just right, to comb it over and have it cover one of my eyes (hey, I already have amblyopia!) and loaned me some band bracelets. I felt like a completely different person, like I was in costume. In fact, someone came by the shop while we were doing the makeover to introduce me to their new girlfriend and I immediately explained, "I don't normally look like this!!"

First, I took the oh-so-important selfie while touching my hair:
Don't be basic, betches.

Then, it was time for the big reveal:

Then, we hit Oaks Park:

Do they even know what that means...? Who cares, I'm a cool and confident scene mom.

The Scrambler is HELLA!

The report: My hair was a pain in the ass, it was too hot for black skinny jeans, and I felt like a nanny, not a mom, the entire time since all the make-up took ten years off. But it was FUN. The best part was how much of a kick the kids got out of it. I think the effort I put into it made them feel understood and seen and respected. It was totally worth it. And, the best BEST part was that the birthday girl was happy.

Saturday, November 30, 2013


It's the last day and I got nothing but 13% on my phone battery and no charger, a hot hand on my leg, a craving for chocolate, and a Seinfeld episode on deck.

I do have this a pretty little list of 30 blog posts all crammed into one November heading.

Which feels pretty ok. I like some things I wrote that I would not have written otherwise. I make no promises beyond this point, I will be focusing on new challenges--like running again. Maybe. I won't commit to anything until I'm good and ready.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Emily D.

Wrote on envelopes
In a very thoughtful way
Not the way I would grab a
Receipt or tear up old homework
She pre-cut and had a plan
All ready at her desk
For her
The poet
With her giant pocket sewn into her dress
And a perfect, short pencil
Resting within
And maybe a letter

"...Dickinson was not blindly grabbing scraps in a rush of inspiration, as is most often supposed, but rather reaching for surfaces that were most likely collected and cut in advance, prepared for the velocity of mind."

This is from a review in Poetry magazine by Jen Bervin about the new book called The Gorgeous Nothings: Emily Dickinson's Envelope Poems.

The poems do stand alone but they are fullest in their flapular space, so I won't write one here.
It's on my Powell's wish list, and you should consider it as a gift for any poetry lover in your life...Xo

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Exactly what you'd expect

Not even going to try to be original. This is my gratitude list:

1. My husband who is also my sweetest, most intimate friend. 

2. My body, which, while it doesn't always do what I want it to do, is strong and healthy and gets me through everyday with very little issue.

3. This city, rain or shine, and always discovering new luscious corners.

4. Being able to fill a plate like this. Anyday. Wow. Amazing life.

5. Having the freedom, awareness, and ability to know what special diets my family needs to feel their best and being able to create delicious dishes that make them feel pampered and loved. 

6. Whipped cream, laughter, and this girl:

7. More laughter and also this girl:

8. Finally: technology, poetry, my beautiful home, and my super supportive friends and family. 

So much goodness in my life, it's a little stunning. Hope everyone had a fulfilling and reflective day. Xo

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

November 27: Three pictures with small narratives

Today, I did something I've never done which is get up at the buttcrack of dawn to be there when a very special bakery opened it's doors. Izzy came with me and it was totally worth it: cheesy biscuits, brownies, baguettes, stuffing bread cubes, and rustic dinner rolls....crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside, but all gluten free. New Cascadia Bakery, I think we have a new day-before-thanksgiving tradition....

Ok, Hanukkah, kind of strange being the day before Turkey Day feast but I'll whip up some latkes. This was the first time I've pulled out an Avia recipe since she passed and it got choked up. (I always add an egg to each batch, too...)

Are your kids vaccinated for Google-y Eye Pox??? This boy clearly wasn't....oh no! Turkey and cranberry sauce is the cure, thank goodness. 

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Upon my exit

Upon my exit
I will leave behind
A mound of pistachio shells
And empty wine bottles
A tube of exquisite lip balm
A dirty minivan
An unborn breeding of potential
Talent and feature sewn into three bodies
And personal values up for grabs in the
Distracted atmosphere
A storm of whirling dervishes
And a man
A freshly broken and wonderful man
And a half of a king bed
Covered in neutral cotton

A thousand walks
and thousand fucks untaken
Ten thousand dishes unbaked and unwashed
And a millions precious kisses unplanted

Monday, November 25, 2013

I heart: Possessions

I'll just go ahead and admit it. Beautiful things give me pleasure. Clothing, shoes, furniture, jewelry, household items, and art. If it pleases my eye, it delights me. A sign hung in the house of Payson's father-in-law "Beware of your possession, for they may possess you" or something to that effect. Today, I my iPhone was stolen from the bathroom of the library; I misplaced it there and remembered 10 minutes later, but it was gone and for the next hour no one turned it in. Perhaps it is only lost. I am not upset by this, it is only a phone with some convenient information. It is not those possessions that sway me. It is the ones of rarity and beauty, and while my phone in some ways is beautiful it is far from rare. From Blake's side of the family we have many family heirlooms--jewelry and art, that not only is lovely but collectable, and also has sentiment. We will simultaneously enjoy and carry the burden of these possessions until we pass it on to out children. Which generation will finally say "enough!" and send it all to Goodwill? Now I am chained to my laptop and want to be in bed with my husband, so I will leave this as a half-developed idea, and just end, without pictures to prove it, that I love love love beautiful things but I do not believe they possess me. Finding the beauty in people always comes first.