Play for Teens and InBetweens and Adults Too

When was the last time you stopped to play? Do you play anymore? I still play nearly every day but for not enough time, that’s for sure. I’m still goofy, but probably not as goofy as I used to be. ūüėČ

Being creative and playing are so important for all of us, yet somehow we forget when we get all grown up and stuff. This life stuff and school stuff puts so many demands on us. Let us never forget to let out the steam and to lighten up.

I got to thinking about this topic while we discussed and I defended the craziness of the Stanford (Marching) Band (SMB) at dinner last night. If you’ve ever seen the SMB, you’ll know what I’m talking about. ¬†They are just plain silly and playful and are the mirror opposite of what their school represents. They are the epitome of yin and yang. ¬†They don’t follow the normal rules. Actually, they were behaving badly and have been recently banned from performing at away games for this upcoming season for violating school policies. I’m all for fun and games and being silly and lightening up a bit, but I do still believe in being respectful and following the rules. Here are a couple of links to stories about the history of the irreverence of the band and the recent trouble they’ve gotten into:

Scatter Band 

Stanford Band Behaving Badly

Lsjumb_scatteringSource: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Lsjumb_scattering.jpg

Another playful thing that people are talking about are coloring books for adults.

Have you heard about this latest rage? Well, I don’t know if it’s a rage, but “The Secret Garden” is on the Amazon best seller list lately, so there must be a demand for tehse adult coloring pages. ¬†We need time to relax and make pretty things just because we can. ¬†I love it and even have one, with new markers too, thanks to my sister! ¬†I think we need to get off our electronic devices too and play and color again.

Here’s a link to a recent story about adult coloring books:

Adult Coloring Books

Another¬†connection I noticed¬†recently is that¬†adults who are needing to and wanting to celebrate life and to go outside and play at places such as the¬†recent Bay to Breakers race in San Francisco. Grown people are dressing up and laughing and playing and talking to strangers, dressed up strangely themselves, and they’re happy and maybe drunk too. But they need to go outside and dress up and run and to laugh with their friends. ¬† Here is a link to the wikipedia about the infamous race:

Bay to Breakers

I thought I was done with my list but two more ideas popped up and these are the Muddy Buddy races and Burning Man. Adults are needing to play in the dirt and sunshine with their friends and they want to be out in nature, dressing up and being free to celebrate living with no expectations of who they are supposed to be, for a weekend in the dessert.  This is fascinating to me.

Here is a link to a Muddy Buddy Race:  Muddy Buddy

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photo credit: IMG_1526 via photopin (license)

And here is one to Burning Man:  Burning Man

Dillon Bracken attends the Burning Man 2014 "Caravansary" arts and music festival in the Black Rock Desert of Nevada, August 30, 2014. Over 65,000 people from all over the world have gathered at the sold out festival to spend a week in the remote desert cut off from much of the outside world to experience art, music and the unique community that develops. REUTERS/Jim Urquhart (UNITED STATES - Tags: SOCIETY) FOR USE WITH BURNING MAN RELATED REPORTING ONLY. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. NO THIRD PARTY SALES. NOT FOR USE BY REUTERS THIRD PARTY DISTRIBUTORS

Dillon Bracken attends the Burning Man 2014 “Caravansary” arts and music festival in the Black Rock Desert of Nevada, August 30, 2014. Over 65,000 people from all over the world have gathered at the sold out festival to spend a week in the remote desert cut off from much of the outside world to experience art, music and the unique community that develops. REUTERS/Jim Urquhart (UNITED STATES – Tags: SOCIETY) FOR USE WITH BURNING MAN RELATED REPORTING ONLY. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. NO THIRD PARTY SALES. NOT FOR USE BY REUTERS THIRD PARTY DISTRIBUTORS ¬†Source: http://burningman.org/

Have you been to any of these events or colored in a book lately? What do you like to do to play and feel alive?

Play is good.

Life is good.

nAMaste BEloveRs  xoxo

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

My little leprechaun set a trap last night, hoping to catch his sneaky little friend. He placed a gold coin inside to lure him in, but this year the leprechaun wasn’t fooled and never attempted to go in. He just left shiny foil wrapped chocolate coins outside the ladder and left fun toys.

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The leprechaun also made quite a mess of our house, turning the cushions on their sides, placing chairs on the table and bananas on top of the glass cabinets. He barricaded Charlie’s room and had Charlie up by 6 am to let us know that he was no longer at our house.

I love his spirit and excitement for the holidays. He brought his leprechaun hat and clover necklace to school today and wore a green shirt. I love this almost middle schooler, and just really admire his enthusiasm and way of celebrating life.

I made the traditional corned beef and cabbage and boiled potatoes that I make once every year on this date. Jeff and I shared a stout beer and celebrated a quick family dinner before going on with our nightly duties.

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

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Wishing you the luck of the Irish and may all your dreams come true.

Life is good.

Being a Kid

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It was 90 degrees here today and it was still warm at 7pm. Charlie has been wanting to stop and check out a local park that was remodeled while we were overseas, and so we did tonight.

I liked it because the weather was so gorgeous and because I haven’t hung out in a park with a kid in a long time. I mean we went to a park in Thousand Oaks recently, but not to play on the playground. We went there for the open space and to be out in nature.

It was strange approaching the park for a couple reasons. First, it was very crowded and the crowd was very diverse. Secondly, Charlie was one of the older kids and there weren’t any other kids his age. Third, so many parents were hovering over their children, when they were capable of exploring on their own. And finally, being there brought back¬†memories of hanging out in parks with mainly Juliana and Christian. ¬†It used to be our weekly routine, at least twice a week. Tonight I was very aware of time passing again and was thankful that I still had a “little” one to connect me to the past and to the present and I enjoyed every minute. Well, not every minute. There were a couple of irritating and gross things… but since this is a positive living blog, I’ll leave out those details! ūüėČ

I love kids. I loved watching my own and I loved watching the others playing and exploring and just being kids. Here are a few of my favorite moments from today.

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How was your day?  What made you smile?

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Playing

How often do you really get to play? And I don’t mean on your computer.

Do you play with your pet? Your kids? Your friends? Your partner?

How do you play?

Today I played in the kitchen making a new recipe I found on the internet. I had some red lentils and wanted to make soup out of them. Here is the mix of spices swirled slightly before heating to release their essence and aroma.

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The soup turned out ok and will be a healthy quick meal to enjoy the rest of the week. I also made chicken enchiladas for dinner tonight while the kitchen was already dirty. Having dinner ready early before the kids came home gave me more time to play when they came home.

We had homework club at my house today with 7 kids participating, including all three of mine. Juliana helped by making fresh chocolate chip cookies and CJ helped Jessie with her homework until he started on his. We listened to and sang and lip synced to the Frozen soundtrack before getting started to amp up the energy a bit after being in school all day. We were all laughing and singing, playing and working together. Too bad I didn’t take a picture.

I challenged the kids to focus and get their work done in 45 minutes and told them I’d go outside and play with them if they stayed on task. They won the challenge and we moved outside and played tag, dodgeball tag and Mother May I? I think I had just as much fun as the kids. I loved their creativity and laughing along with them as we played.

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Did you notice the Dutch flags flying in the backyard? I put them up for Halloween and liked them so much I never took them down.

On the way to drop off the kids, Charlie and I had a half hour to spare. I keep tennis gear in the car and saw the lights were on at the local courts AND a court was available. Charlie and I decided to spontaneously play together and had a blast. He’s really good and told me he wants to be on a tennis team too! I’m so excited about that.

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Today was so much fun and I shared this story to hopefully encourage you to play too. It’s great to be a kid!

PLaY.

Day 117: Zwarte Piet Came to Our House!!

Zwarte Piet came to our house last night. I have no idea how he got in, but magically he did! I bet he used the golden key that the mayor gave Sinterklaas. ¬†He must have known that Charlie had written a letter and left out treats for Sinterklaas’ horse.

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Boy, was Charlie surprised to come downstairs to find that Zwarte Piet had left pepper noten and candy in our Dutch Wooden Shoes!  

He was so thrilled that after school today, he wrote a thank you note and left more food for the horse, hoping that he’ll come again.

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