Thursday, December 31, 2009

My Betty Draper Moment

Yesterday I threw a cookie-making/cookie-decorating party for six kids aged five and under (plus a baby) and their moms and a dad.

It was equal parts chaos and joy, but worth all the mess to hear the house filled with little-kid squeals and giggles (well, except when the squeals turned more scream-ish and there were too many monkeys jumping on the beds). It was a sticky, sugary, dough-y mess, and everyone got their hands dirty. By five-and-under standards, a rockin' good time. Plus of course all my kids' toys are like new to their playmates, and everyone knows, as one mom remarked, that other kids' toys are the best toys.

The house was a something of a mess of course when it was all over, but parents pitched in a bit before leaving, and for once I really didn't mind picking up after everyone -- perhaps because, as a working mom, I don't do this sort of thing every day. Mrs. Don Draper of MAD MEN I am soooo not.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Let's Hear It For Coexistence!

I'm tired of reading about the latest skirmishes in the alleged "War On Christmas," the obsession of people who don't get that church and state are, have always been, and according to our Founding Fathers, always should be, separate. Whenever I hear about some blowhard complaining that he was shopping in a big national chain store and was wished "Happy Holidays," instead of "Merry Christmas," and he thinks this is some kind of crime, I just get depressed by the blowhard's ignorance, and the spreading of intolerance he and his argument represent. "Happy Holidays" could mean "Happy Christmas and New Year's," since New Year's comes right after Christmas. This is a holiday season; it includes Winter Solstice, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, New Year's. And including these other holidays and wishing joy to those who may celebrate them only takes something away from Christmas in the mind of the blowhard. Yes it's the time when the Birth of Christ is officially observed. But there are a lot of other observances, and occasions for celebrating or gift giving, right around the same time. And gee, a lot of the people who celebrate these OTHER days happen to be, um, Americans, when last I checked.

But on a happier, cheerier note...

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Not Just Another Disney Princess

Took the kids to see Disney's newest animated feature, THE PRINCESS AND THE FROG.

Spent the first ten minutes just sitting there marveling at a Disney Princess who doesn't look like any previous Disney Princess. Granted, she's not technically a princess. But she DOES win the heart of a genuine prince, so close enough.

Now I suppose JASMINE and MULAN were big steps forward in terms of minority inclusion in the Disney Princess pantheon, Jasmine being some sort of ""1001 Nights" Middle Easterner (though ALADDIN's location was changed from Baghdad to the presumably more palatable, fictional Agrabah), and Mulan being Chinese. But somehow their ethnicity didn't stir an emotional chord with me the way the new gal, TIANA's, does.