Yesterday was wonderful. It could stand as an example of the perfect day.
In the morning I was tooling around the internet before the boys woke up. I found a very insightfully funny series of posts from a fellow LJer who rather concisely explained Twilight
I know I'm coming late to the bash-Twilight
party, but I found these summaries
of the books in the series, from an LDS dogma perspective, to be spot-on and fun. The link there is image-intensive but the images are what make it that much more entertaining. It made me smile. :) Whether you love the series or hate the series, you'll probably enjoy it. :)
One of the neighborhood parks was hosting a big garage sale for the weekend. For $50, someone could rent a table space. The park was also taking donations to sell for themselves, all proceeds going to park programming and maintenance. I set off early, sweating like mad in the hot, humid, sunny weather we were having after days of rain. Oh man, it was so uncomfortable!
The yard sale was pretty small. The donated items took up about 12 tables and then there were perhaps 4 or 5 individual sellers. At first glance, I thought it was going to be a total wash. But wait! :D One woman, when asked how much she was asking for a Frosty the Snowman
board book said, "Oh, just take it." Another woman had a couple summer outfits in Graeme's size for $2. At the park's tables, I dug through a vat of McDonald's toys to discover a My Little Pony baby (one of the S1s with the printed diaper design) and an old fashioned sheep figure, a quarter bought me both. More donations were being dropped off while I shopped and nothing was priced. A woman was walking around and anytime someone picked something up, she'd say, "Isn't that great? It is brand new! Only 50 cents, you ought to just get it!". I found seven great kitchen linens--two halloween, the rest black or white spangled with silver stars. They were $1 for the lot. I picked up a big paper grocery bag filled with Little People stuff--the construction set, a lot of boulders, construction people, little fork lift, and other construction-y vehicles and they asked $3. (I've been too long away from garage sales--they're so much cheaper than thrift stores around here.) I also got, for $2, a big 70-piece case of Lego Quatro blocks. Carrying it all home was a juggle, but I felt like quite the successful hunter-gatherer providing for my family (or at least its toy room.) :D
While I was hauling this load home in the heat, Daniel and Graeme were playing together at the smaller, shadier park by our house. We met up halfway home and went back for a breakfast of thick slabs of farmer's market sourdough bread with strawberry jam. Mmmm! Graeme mostly ignored breakfast in favor of his new toys. We all sat on the floor together for at least an hour, playing. Such fun. :)
That afternoon, we drove out to the suburbs to attend Tutti Insieme 2009
. It is billed as an interfaith "Celebration of Spirit, Unity, and Harmony" but I would say it had all the appearances of a well-run pagan festival day. The temperature when we arrived was 96 degrees! Whoa, sunny! :) It was gorgeous, though, all laid out at the Arabian Knights Farm, this 10 acre horse farm secretly hiding just down the street from a suburban Whole Foods. Amid the grass and tree shade, there were dozens of vendors set up selling everything from princess dresses for toddlers to voodoo conjure bags. It was awesome. I mean, come on, pagan shopping! Jewelry, herbs, crystals, clothes, candles, soaps, books, and home design. A witchy shopping utopia. :D I bought some crystals, a glorious little green print summery skirt and a big soft handmade goddess doll that Graeme calls "Mama". They were raffling off fantastic gift baskets. (We didn't win, but it was fun to see the glee of the people who did. :D )
The only suggested admission charge for this big event, with its vendors and group rituals, workshops, live music and readers, was to contribute some food item to the free potluck meal. Whoa, that was a surprise, too! The largest barn on the property, a big indoor show arena, had been converted into a giant party space. It had a dance floor and a stage, seating for hundreds of people, and both a regular buffet and a dessert buffet line. It was so impressive! My food offerings were just swallowed up by the bounty on offer there. To have, in these tough times, a feast like that for the entire community to share in, freely and without thought of cost, was the best possible celebration of the Solstice. There was no sign of shortage anywhere. There was plenty, ten and twenty times over, for all to be full.
Graeme was happy, too. He squished through mud and danced over grass. He kept looking around and saying, "Wow!". He collected and sorted through some random twigs, branches, and bark that looked interesting to him and waved hello to all the horses staring out from the shade of their stalls.
After the raffle wrapped up and our cash ran down, we piled our sun-pink selves into the car and drove to a Trader Joe's nearby. It was closed, power outage, so we stopped instead at a Borders bookstore (where Graeme played and I bought some Alaska travel books and a couple tattoo magazines) and then to an organizational store where we stocked up on little plastic totes and bins in an attempt to (re)organize Graeme's many books and toys into something manageable and put-away-able.
Once home, I sorted toys and printed out little tote labels while Daniel made us a surprisingly spectacular dinner of leftover pasta sauce, drained ramen noodles, and toasted sourdough garlic bread. Mmmm.
It was a full, sunny, family-oriented, paganified, shopping victorious perfect, perfect, perfect day.