The ‘wanderlust’ category

Voting for Live Music Experiences

June 16th, 2019

Week 24: The 2019 Voting with My Dollar Project

Day 8: Summer vacation with 4-year-olds

On day 2 of summer vacation, Phoebe came storming upstairs, mad at Daddy because he didn’t help her with her swing trick fast enough, and asked me through a red teary face, apropos of nothing, “Will you ever die?”

I moved next to her on the bed, held her paw, and said as earnestly as I could “Not for a very long time.” She responded with “Will you drink lots of water?” Okay fine, you got me, kid. But to be fair, it’s because of her and her sister that I never have a chance to drink water.

Four is a great age for adorable ad lib comments. Four, in fact, is that age when all the other twin moms told me I would go from “Holy shit, what have I done” to “Aw, I hope they never grow up.” I’d say, to be fair, we’re somewhere in the middle right now. I am still intensely sleep-deprived and desperate for me time, but also get great joy out of them sometimes.

However, trying to go out of town with the family is still a dicey affair. I used to really love camping, and I see other families doing it — even families with twins the same age as my kids — but the idea of roughing it with my kids in the wilderness sends chills through my soul. I can hardly keep an eye on them at the farmers market, never mind in the woods.

Screen Shot 2019-06-16 at 8.44.55 AM

Yesterday we tried to go on a simple hike on a well-marked, wide trail here in the southern Catskills, where we’ve come to spend the weekend. My daughters found this activity “boring” and insisted on trying to scale off-trail, very steep, moss-covered, probably also tick-covered boulders with a sheer drop to the “widest part of the Delaware River,” according to the literature. Alternately, they fought over who had picked more wildflowers and, more importantly, the “better” wildflowers. And finally, they took turns begging daddy for a shoulder ride and sulking if they were not the current recipient of the shoulder ride.

The “hike” culminated with me resignedly agreeing that they could dip their feet in the Delaware River before we got back in the car. Unfortunately, I did not realize that the muddy-looking beach was, in fact, deep, deep mud. Before the kindly park ranger had time to run down from his booth and stop us, the girls had each lost a sneaker in the goop and gotten filthy. Before we got back in the car, we had to take a grass bath and change all our clothes. And Jon had to hike back up the trail to a place he could rinse off their sneakers in clean water.

We’re staying at an Airbnb, a very posh converted barn with a full kitchen and two adult beds. It has a shower and a pedestal sink but no bathtub. It has a coffee maker but no coffee grinder, so we had to grind the beans we brought in the blender. It has shitty internet and a DVD player. This is my idea of “roughing it” at this point in my daughters’ upbringing.

The main reason we came here was to go to a music festival called Mountain Jam.

I get these ideas.

I always hated music festivals before I had kids, but I have a new appreciation for them now. If you can play it right, bringing your kids to a place where thousands of people have come together to celebrate music is a pretty sweet concept. And what better place than the Bethel Woods Performing Arts Center on the site of the original Woodstock music festival? The juju!

Of course, I always forget that music festivals are also full of wasted people and adult men in tie-dyes who offer your kids lollipops. And that my kids, in particular, are way more interested in rolling down hills and climbing concrete structures than in sitting attentively while a bluegrass musician plays brilliantly. We do this a few times a year and rarely listen to much music.

Still, it’s worth it. (I think?)

On our walk in the woods yesterday, before we headed to the festival, we passed some Boy Scouts camping. “What are they doing?” Eliza asked me.

I said, “They’re camping. It’s super fun. We’ll do it when you’re twenty.”

What I’m eating:

Coffee ground in an old blender a this Airbnb. I always forget to pack a grinder, and unfortunately, despite basically being poor, my husband and I exist far to the right on this scale:

Follow this guy

What I’m watching:

God I loved Rocketman.

What I’m reading:

I haven’t read a novel in far too long, but this one is next on my list:

Fleishman Is In Trouble

What I’m listening to:

So far at this music festival I have gotten to pay attention to about a half hour of Allison Krauss, plus one single Mandolin Orange song after we ran a mile through the parking lot to get to the festival. Hoping good thoughts for the Avett Brothers later today.

What I’m working on:

This week I wrote 9 technology glossary terms, an ebook, 4 blog posts, 2 customer case studies, several client emails, and much, much more. Sometimes I feel personally responsible for the information landfill that is the internet.

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