Thursday, September 25, 2014

What If...

I am an idea girl. I always have been. "I have an idea!" pretty much every.single.day. I think it's a curse. Sometimes a blessing. A curse because a lot of times the "ideas" drive me nuts because I don't know how to implement them. What good is an idea without the "do" part?

Thankfully I have a very kind husband that lets me unload all my ideas onto him. Not that he is expected to do them, but at least he hears me and I get to let some stuff out of my mind so I can make room for the next batch of ideas.  

Guess what? I had an idea today. It's not a new idea, just a shined up old idea, a forgotten treasure idea.

BACKGROUND:
A common theme in my life lately is recognizing that we need more more more family time. We do a lot, but it is in bursts and crammed in between other commitments. We don't 'slow our roll' enough to really breathe each other in. I want to breathe my family in. I love them! They are my heart and soul and they deserve more attention than quick check-ins and rushed meals together. They deserve my undivided attention and they deserve my celebratory spirit. But the thing is, I am not always good at making space for that kid of attention. MY FAULT! However, what if...

WHAT IF:
What if as a community we realized that there are all kinds of family units that could use a little help and support in making time for what is most important - FAMILY! What if we decided to create holiday moments that celebrate the core of what makes life good? What if we created parent-child days?

I know...I know, places already do this, like Chili's! Chili's recently hosted a father-daughter night in which dads and daughter could enjoy a dinner together, but then they could wander off to a station to make cute princess tiaras and decorated picture frames. Staff at Chili's were snapping pictures of these moments and printing them on demand so fathers and daughters left their evening with a completed memento that reminded them of a fun night out together.

That artsy foam sticker decorated frame and the cheapy little picture is now one of the main treasures that sits atop my husbands desk.

I think we could use more of these moments. I think our community could make it happen! What if a buncha different businesses teamed up to make the opportunity for more family celebration? What if? 

I think there would be a little more joy in the world, a little more bonding in the world, and a little more feeling special in the world. 

I think little girls would feel adored and I think little boys would feel valued. I think moms and dads would feel lifted up and would be reminded that THIS is the meat of life. I think it would be good for us.

Oh, and let's be clear, this isn't just for the littles. The truth is, we never EVER outgrow the need to feel adored and valued. This is for us adult children, too.

I am a grown, middle-aged woman with gray hair... but when my mom and I go have coffee together, I may as well be 12 years old. I love feeling like I am my mom's little girl, even being in my 40's!  I love being at her side and hearing her talk to me, talk with me, and having all her focus on just the two of us.

I will also never outgrow hearing my mom say she is proud of me. Equally, I will never tire of her asking about my life. Likewise, she will never outgrow hearing me tell her that I love and appreciate her,and boy do I appreciate her! (Love you, Mom!!)

So what if the community recognized we all need more family time and they created more moments for us to make it happen? More events and reasons for us to be with one another in fabulous settings?

What if a local upscale restaurant decorated the tables in pink flowers and had pretty wine glasses filled with Koolaid so dads could take their daughters on a "fancy" date? What if mom's helped their little ladies put on their most beautiful dresses and and daddies knocked on the door and asked them out? (ohhh, this might be right up Mile Wine Company's alley!!)

What if a local burger joint (MooMoo's?) provided a mom-son dinner special for two burgers and shakes? The mom-son duo could enjoy a meal before heading to a movie together! A movie theater could get in on the theme by having reserved seating for mother-son's! What if  a place that is known for having fabulous live music (Whirlow's?) offered up a special menu just for "mom and son" or "dad and daughter"?

I think this idea is a winning combo that could provide opportunities to celebrate our families as well as create the opportunity to support local businesses! And NONE of it needs to be a competition! Everyone, all businesses could offer something, providing a wide variety of options to suit different family dynamics!

Working together is a whole other issue I could discuss. Just ask me about the time my daughter was in a play at Stockton Civic Theater for a full 4 days straight. Each night people were looking for flowers and gifts to adorn their little budding actors and actresses. Each night I found wilted bunches of flowers and ridiculous prices :( Why not team up and make special, affordable bouquets and dinner specials that celebrated our community's live theater and the children and families that delighted sold out crowds? Why not?

But back to the original idea (I told you, I am an idea girl, a million more thoughts are popping around my head RIGHT NOW!). Could we create opportunities in the community that would help us to become stronger and healthier families? Together? As a team? And make it holiday like? I think so.  I think every 3 months there should be another special opportunity to take our families out and celebrate and to be welcomed specifically by businesses. Pishaw... we celebrated asparagus as a community, I think we could do even better to celebrate relationships! Win Win, I say. When? When?

In the meantime, here are some fun things you can do with the kiddos for your very own date nights. You will see that while the titles may include a gender -- the activities are interchangeable! Girls can do Boy things and Boys can do Girl things... the gift is doing what suits THEM and what is unique to YOU. 





Some suggestions:

  • Put away the phone! Unless it is to take selfies/usies.  Selfies and Usies are highly encouraged on date nights!
  • Get in the game! Don't take the kiddos and sit on the sidelines -- get involved! Swing on the swing, play the game, don the laser tag gear -- GET IN THE GAME!
  • Smile - a lot! Laugh - even more! Show them that you are having fun. Tell them you are having fun. Have Fun!
  • Let the kids pick the places to eat, let them pick the foods to eat, let them choose the radio station, let them be an equal in the fun-making.
  • Set the tone. Put away the authority and bring out your inner child. They know who you are, but surprise them with more of the kid side they may not see as often.
  • If possible, take only one child. That one-on-one time is important. But SET A DATE with the other kids so they know their time is coming.
  • Tie the date into their real life. Have a child learning the drums - take them to a concert! You get the idea.
  • At the end of the date -- thank them! Thank the child for a great time! Have them plan the next one!



Thursday, September 18, 2014

RINGLING BROS. and BARNUM & BAILEY in Stockton!

SO.MUCH.FUN! 

We took the kiddos to the circus in Sacramento and WHAT A NIGHT! With a 3 year old (days away from 4) and a 9 year old, the circus was a COMPLETE HIT! Every part was entertaining to someone, if not everyone, including the over 40-year-old Dad! 

We had seats about the middle way up and could see everything perfectly! The music, LIVE MUSIC, could be heard beautifully and the colors, costumes, and lighting made all our faces full of smiles.

The show kicked off with the spectacular China National Acrobatic Troupe Unicycle performance and I was amazed. I don't know what impressed me most, that they could pile so many people onto one bike or that they all stayed happy and smiling while doing so. I would surely have looked all kinds of worried, if not downright fearful, if I were any one of those bike-ro-bats ( I just made that word up on the spot).

Then came the CAGE OF WHEEELS as I like to call it, or the CAGE OF INSANITY! Seven professionally skilled motorcyclist thought it would be entertaining to all ride up and in to a metal cage ball to ride in circles, defying gravity, and missing each other by mere inches.  My son, the one that LOVES all things motorcycle, was in pure delight... for awhile. Then he cried a little. I think he could tell that there was an element of risk and danger... but really... isn't that what makes it so great! THEY ESCAPE DANGER EVERY SINGLE TIME because they are professionals. 

I could go on and on about every act because each one was fantastic, but really the best way to experience everything I am talking about is to GO TO THE SHOW! GO!! Go grab some tickets (affordable and fun) to the show and see the Greatest Show on Earth in person! I really don't think you will be disappointed!

Opening night for Stockton is Friday, September 19th at 7pm! I will be going AGAIN! The kids persuaded me, or maybe I persuaded them, I forget. Doesn't matter. Bottom line is, I need my fix for acrobats and clowns! OH... and the MEN ON HORSES... don't get me started ::sigh::

 




Here's a few of my pictures from the Sacramento show.
Hope to see you at the Stockton show this weekend!







Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Life Lessons and Circus Tickets

Today I was reminded of several life lessons, lessons that I seem to relearn A LOT! 
  1. I hate when used Rice Krispy cereal is poured in the sink, left to dry ALL.DAY.LONG. Those little, evil, carbohydrate, rice puffs are the worst to pick out of the sink.  I will NEVER by that cereal again. Or at least for several months. Like, SEVERAL! 
  2. If you own a dog you will never own clean floors again. Just roll with it. There will be dirt paw prints, sloppy drinking water, dog hair fluffs, and occasional, nearly dead, insect doing donuts on your kitchen floor trying to escape the playful mouth of... let's say... a German Shepard.  A German Shepard named Holly.
  3. You can't make people like you. They either will or they won't and it really is ok either way because ultimately all that matters is that YOU like you. And your husband or spouse -- they should like you to, at least most of the time.
  4. Your little boy will occasionally pee on toilet seat. YOUR part of the seat. It will happen. And it will be gross. But your little boy will eventually grow up and you will miss the little things they did. Not the peeing on the seat little things, you will NEVER miss that. But other little things. Invest in Clorox wipes.
  5. Laughing is important. We all need to REALLY work on less yelling and more laughing. Yelling is just not productive. AT ALL. Well, unless your little boy is wandering away from you and toward something dangerous. In that case yell. But the communication that just seems to be done in a loud angry voice, get rid of that. Try to laugh more. Yelling hurts. Laughing doesn't. Well it does if you get going pretty good, that can hurt, but it feels good, too. Like getting a tattoo.

  6. And finally...

  7. Even your worst week can be made awesome if you have something to look forward to. Like going to a circus. I am SO looking forward to this week coming to an end because on Friday, I get to go to the circus. The Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus LEGENDS show.  I am excited! Me, the husband, the kiddos, even the one that pees on my seat, we are all going to Sleep Train Arena this Friday to be dazzled! 

And you know what -- you can, too! And you can even go to the opening night in Stockton FOR FREE by entering a raffle. It's easy! And you have several ways to enter for several chances to win! End your NEXT WEEK right by celebrating in the stands and enjoy mesmerizing acrobats, gut wrenching dare devils, tasty cotton candy, and more!

a Rafflecopter giveaway






Disclosure: I am a Feld Family Ambassador, and in exchange for my time and efforts in attending shows and reporting my opinion within Mom About The Town’s blog, as well as keeping you advised of the latest discount offers, Feld Entertainment has provided me with complimentary tickets to Feld shows. The opinions expressed represent my fair and honest opinion.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Win A Family Four Pack!

Popcorn, peanuts and cotton candy! It's all coming to town - along with spectacular show entertainment by the ever popular Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. The brand new "Legends" show is is coming to Stockton in less than two weeks!!

My family has been to the circus several times and I can't wait to take them again! Each year we "oooh" and "ahhh" over the incredible acrobat performances, daredevil stunts, and overall theatrical production! I AM SO EXCITED! YOU might be, too! Especially with this fantabulous Mom About The Town offer!

This year I am excited to share the circus with a lucky family of four that wins the Mom About The Town Circus Giveaway! A lucky family of four will with a raffle drawing that gives them 4 fun tickets to opening night of the Stockton show on Friday, September 19th at 7:00pm!





THE GIVEAWAY: One (1) Family 4 Pack of Tickets to the Stockton, Friday, September 19 Opening Night Show (7PM start). If you are a US legal resident that lives in the Stockton area and vicinity and can make it to the opening night, here’s your chance to bring your family and kids to see the show!
Contest Duration: September 8, 2014 – September 14, 2014 12AM PST
Rules and Conditions:
  • Verify that you are at least 18 years old
  • US legal resident
  • Family Four Pack of tickets will be left under winner’s name at the Stockton Arena Box Office, Will Call Window
  • Tickets can be picked up anytime after 6:00 p.m. on Opening Night at the Arena Box Office
  • You must show photo ID in order to receive the tickets
  • There are no exchanges, substitutions or refunds allowed for these special tickets
  • Feld Entertainment is neither a sponsor nor endorser of this promotion

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Good luck! Please leave a comment if you have questions or email me directly at momaboutthetown{atsymbol}gmail{dot}com!