Saturday, August 16, 2014

Go forth and create!

Hi blog readers and folks that continue to be art supporters,

As summer comes to a close and school restarts, I'm taking this moment to create a post of gratitude, a memento of my favorite summer moments.  I am compelled to share a glimpse at the art, the trips, the family love that happened, that touched me in some way.

Here's some art progress in my series:

My life is not cryptically sophisticated, as what is in vogue for the artiste, but philosophically, I'm on a quest for "simplicity on the other side of complexity" 

Here are some art that came across my path that beckoned my attention:
Queen Mother of Reality by Althamer in Socrates Sculpture Park Queens, NY
So appropriate for how I often feel--"pieced together"
A sculpture in San Francisco that beckons homeless people.  Vaillancourt Fountain, San Francisco, California. Built by Armand Vaillancourt. This sculpture imparts a feeling of going nowhere 

Both sculpture above expresses hopelessness. Why is that the subject of so many artist?...It's not the whole truth. So, I look into other forms of artwork. Here's fresh Flower arrangement by Polly Joseph in Joseph Farm Charlottesville, VA.  I love the way this lady arranges flowers (this is but a small example of what I saw)

The explorations that came to be: 
Mini-sailing and fishing trips 
Learning about boats, particularly the Balcutha, San Francisco

Checking out the Manhattan sailing scene and recalling the old days, the Manhattan highlife

From the city jungle to the country jungle: in a rusted old truck where currently a 5 ft long black snake resides

And of course, random fields of sunflowers blooming required random car stops

A little glimpse of my inner family for whom I am most grateful for:
As always Noah is the highlight of summer, and my life.  My fav moments are with him

And there were some heart warming procession that brought tears to my eyes
And portentous signs of blessings and love in the air
We paused in a corner of a rock and swam by a river 

And a here's some honesty.  Summer days had me dealing with obstinate, cluelessly stubborn people, one in particular.  I thought it appropriate to end the photo sharing with a nod to a goat-like friend, an acknowledgement that my life is far from perfect.  (You know who you are and what a pain you've been.) But nonetheless, life wouldn't be the same without you.

A treasure trove of memories, and time flies (but I'm not sure if time exists--discuss).
I attest to the truth that we shape our world how we like and we choose to create feelings moment by moment.  This is an active endeavor.
In the beginning and as the lore goes, the Creator said:  "go forth and *create"!

*multiply in some translations 

Friday, August 1, 2014

My two cents worth on visiting NYC with kids!

I lived in New York City for five years and moved out around a time period that coincided with becoming a mom. Having this firsthand knowledge of New York City was immensely helpful to my visit as a mother of a toddler. Yet, I still hesitated and was nervous about a visit. There are many challenges involved to a NYC trip.
So if you're planning to visit, here's a few tips to consider for new parents. It's not easy but overall it's doable and still fun.

1. Be prepared for schedule changes for your child. For example, if your child has nap time at 2 pm, chances are, when you are sightseeing, you'll forget the time, or may not make it back to your hotel for naptime. In terms of naptime, with appropriate planning, there are ways to ensure that your child still gets one. Visit places that are conducive to naptime in the stroller. Like Central Park, or the Hammock Grove in Governor's Island (only open during summertime).

2. Trains, trains, trains are absolutely fascinating to kids. But make sure you have a good stroller that is easy to fold, lightweight and able to handle potholes, uneven side walk, and the unexpected. It has to fold easily and be lightweight, because believe me you'll be folding and unfolding frequently and going up and down flights of stairs in order to get to the subway. (You can use the elevators, but some subway lines are ill-equipped or have stinky, nasty elevators).

This is a photo Noah in Central Park.  Coincidentally, this also shows the umbrella stroller I brought along.  It was rather "the mode" in NC to use this super cheap stroller because it's very lightweight and easy to fold and dare I say, disposable.  But it looked too cheap in Fifth Avenue and the wheels were simply inadequate and infuriating! 

3. NYC is a convergence of sexy people who do their utmost best to avoid having kids. Hey, you've seen the show Sex and the City. I did my best to look for family friendly restaurants in Manhattan. Even the restaurant Alice's Tea Cup is frequented by single ladies looking to have that dainty afternoon cup of tea, and I felt that they were ill-prepared for the unexpected behaviors of a toddler.
Your best bet for eating out? Rooftop barbecue!!

You'll most likely see spectacular sunsets too!! 

4. So you've heard of FAO Schwartz? How every kid deserves to grow up in FAO Schwartz.  Yabba, yabba.  It's really the place where kids throw tantrums if they don't get what they want. So be prepared to spend some $$. 

5. There are lots of parks, lots of friends, and lots of germs.  Bring your moist wipes and alcohol-based antibacterial hand cleansers, you will need it.
6. Also, take a look at Noah's backpack which conveniently doubles as a hiding spot for his leash.  Say what you will about leashes for kids, but when you're in the city and you have a kid who is not afraid to explore without you, that leash is a handy tool to keep him nearby while your busy folding the stroller, or hunting your pockets for that metrocard that you're sure you placed in a safe and accessible spot! 

I won't bore you with my opinion of best places to visit because there are other blogs and trusted websites that serve that purpose.

So, what are you waiting for? Pack your bags and take a bite out of The Big Apple!!