While I despise myself for saying this, I love the art of buying. I love the hunt, I love the selection process, and I love having something new. That said, I don’t buy anything unless I am obsessed with it. And as a former retailer, I’ve become my own worst nightmare as someone who waits for sales. One of my favorite kids stores is Trico Field, a high-end boutique with all Japanese brands (nope, the sales people barely speak English.) And when I saw they were half off, I made my play, knowing that a tee for a baby can easily be ninety bucks. (What?) Too gun shy to drop a wad on an army jacket with patchwork and a tulle polka-doted tutu (Tokyo street style, anyone?) I left with rose colored stripy leggings in a size 7, two sizes larger than my eldest. But below, an example of the ragingly awesome pieces you can score (if only one to two times a year.)
When your first three Face Book status updates in a row are new baby announcements, you know you’re in the zone. It’s that block of time where everyone around you is simultaneously expanding and decompressing. Which means, so many gifts, so little time. The Times blog gave me this fun wrapping idea (use art scraps, kid’s scribbles, basically left-over-anything,) instead of trad paper. I especially like stuffing some little things into a mason or weck jar. And to all of this I say…Welcome Aria, Phoenix and Violet! Great name picks, y’all.
My oldest daughter is at the brink of learning how to read and spell, though I don’t believe her generation will need to know how to write. Someone told me that they no longer teach cursive in school which is simply c-c-c-razy. I give this little Atsuyo et Akiko name bracelet to both boys and girls as gifts as they’re gender neutral and fun for all. If they don’t want to sport their name, they can pick their favorite word to wear instead. And the little star and heart beads will remind them of their favorite screen icons.
I’m at that age where friends are hosting amazing birthday parties and dinners for turning a major number that’s not 30 but not quite 40. Can you guess it? So along with a baby’s being born every day and a kid’s having a party every weekend, there is a friend turning a major number constantly. So by my calculation, that’s about five gifts a week. My go-tos for grown-ups are the Comme des Garcons zip pouch, a giant lightweight scarf, or a chic coffee table book. Hard, if you aren’t fully down with the friend’s interests but always loved by the recipient, nonetheless. I knew about Linda McCartney’s Life In Photographs book but when I saw it in person, I was captivated. Not that I’m a Beatles Super Fan or anything, but flipping through the beautiful images made me realize that I’m more of a fan than I even knew. Which means that most people are, too. I dub this my next gift for my next friend turning a major number. Which is Saturday!
In our house we are preparing for “Consolidation Day,” the day when we move our two older girls into the same room. They’ve been having sleep overs every night in anticipation of the merger because they know in a few months they will get a bunk bed. In the meantime, Gemma’s bed will be moved into Rafi’s room, (because Rafi is the type of kid who will torture us nightly if we take her out of her crib pre-maturely.) But really what “Consolidation” is, is a selfish act to get the baby out of our room and into her nursery, so we can sleep train her and I can drive again without feeling like I shouldn’t be on the road. We wanted to have something exciting for the girls for “Consolidation” and this major Guidecraft art table is just that. They already spend hours together doing art and we thought this would be a great “welcome to sharing a room” moment. It’s got all the fixins for hours of drawing and coloring and stenciling and stickering and hopefully we will discover all sorts of other activities that we can do, assuming I can stay awake to do them.
We really go big on birthday gifts around here, opting out of Hannukkah/Christmas, Valentines and occasionally the Anniversary (Not. Cool.) But this past birthday I was super psyched to be surprised with a gorgeous Jemma Wynne bracelet from my “Ultimate Dream Board” (meaning, Pinterest) which immediately made me feel undeserving, guilty and full of doubting myself as a human being. Which prompted me to replay all of the times I held down the fort during work commitments, golf tourneys, business trips and m’ personal fave, the annual Electric Daisy Carnival in Las Vegas, which is fast approaching. You heard me right. I, along with just about every mom I know, deserves a fine piece of jewelry. So let me just swing my hair around and say to you ladies, Because we’re worth it.
The other day as I was resting on Gem’s bed, I opened my eyes to two little faces singing, “Shy Shyyy! Shy Shyyy!” Hush hush, eye to eye? I had no idea what they were talking about. And when I saw them look at each other and giggle, I realized it was an inside joke. They boxed me out. What struck me was how these two girls now have a real relationship, one of which I am no longer a part. To celebrate that (and yes, to also prepare for their moving into the same room,) we’ve been doing all activities-even the smallest ones-together. Below, one of our favorite evening rituals: pomegranate juice star wands, which we “tuck into bed” (yup, the freezer) and wake up to the next morning. Hush, huuuuusssshhhhhh!