Friday, October 08, 2010

auntie shelby's god squad adventure

as most of you know, adam and i have assembled a team of spiritual advisors/mentors for our daughter, in the hope that she will someday become a spiritually-minded person herself. who are we to choose a religion for our daughter? she should have the right to choose for herself which path will bring her closest to god, and so in that vein we have invited a handful of people to share spiritual activities and reflections with gracie.

one of the people we are blessed to have in gracie's god squad is her auntie shelby, who lives in denver. so when we were back home in colorado over the summer, gracie and i spent a couple of days with shelby so that shelby could pass on some of her wisdom and reflections to her little goddess-daughter. (and also so that i could see shelby, who is one of my best friends ever!)

one of the activities that shelby enjoys doing year after year is going to the renaissance festival and collecting things for her altar back home. gracie and i happened to be coming to town during the last weekend of the colorado renaissance festival, so we took the opportunity to drive up to larkspur to see shelby and wander through the renfest (which i also hadn't been to in almost 10 years i think!).

we didn't see very much of the faire since they didn't really have sidewalks in medieval times and my little umbroller was difficult to push up the rocky mountainside, but what we did see was definitely worth it. we had a feast fit for a king under the shade of a ponderosa pine: turkey drumsticks the size of your arm, roasted corn on the cob, french fries dripping in grease and testosterone, and ice cold beers. we saw the king and queen, along with their court, parade through the park and process to the podium for a jousting tournament. gracie and i watched a brother/sister act tell bad jokes, juggle, and do some acrobatics. gracie got to ride on a pony, feed the animals, and get a ride on a magical butterfly being pushed by a "wench."

after we had enough of the faire, we made our way over to our campground for the night: the jellystone campground just north of larkspur. NOT QUIET. wow. like, the loudest night of sleep (if you could call it "sleep") that i'd ever had! but shelby loves to camp, and she found a great deal on renting a yurt, and it seemed like another good goddess-mama activity to share with gracie. so, we toughed it out. usually, when i say "tough it out" i mean sleeping on the cold, hard ground and having to dig a ditch for your bathroom, hiking your gear in to your site and keeping things in bear-safe containers. but not this place! by toughing it out i mean somehow convincing your mind that the roaring traffic on i-25 and the constant train engines barrelling down the tracks literally FEET away from your thin canvas walls is some sort of white noise to lull you asleep. neither of us really wanted to do anything that night because we just couldn't get comfortable with all the noise noise noise (i feel like the grinch saying it, but the dude does have a point). plus, it was threatening to rain. so what did we do? we tapped into their wireless internet and watched a movie on netflix.

gracie was in HEAVEN! trains rumbling past every 5 minutes, sleeping on an air mattress in a yurt, watching a MOVIE on mama's laptop, holding a flashlight, peeing outside... omg, she loved every minute of it! so for that reason, shelby and i toughed it out. and i'm glad we did, too: it was the first time in MONTHS -- maybe over a year -- when gracie actually snuggled up to me ALL NIGHT LONG. she is NOT a snuggle bug, this girl of mine. so it was really a special treat for me to spoon with her and cuddle through the long, loud night.

the next day we had a relatively unexpected happy-ning: teresa (another one of gracie's goddess-mamas) was passing through denver on her way home from a camping trip in grand junction with her mom. her flight was in the early afternoon, so we agreed to meet for brunch at shelby's house before she went to the airport. so shelby, gracie, and i all went to the natural food store and picked up organic mango juice, a fancy-ass quiche, some gorgeous bread, delectable cheese, and... hmmm.... i forget it all. but you get the point. we ate together in shelby's dining room, then went out back to appreciate her amazing and inspiring garden, complete with pergola and koi pond! (i wish i had a green thumb like shelby. all i can grow are radishes and weeds.)
thank you, auntie shelby, for sharing your love of the ren fest and camping and brunch with my daughter! and thank you, teresa, for making a serendipitous trip to colorado so we could see you and so you could teach some yoga to gracie -- another PERFECT god-squad activity!

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