I know I have commented before on how I love the colors of Tirana. Today I wanted to share the city in stripes.
The truth is that I have no knowledge of these producers or any connection to this film. I saw a mention of their crowd sourcing campaign last week and was touched by the content and some of the scenes. But, then, I did nothing with it.
The idea, however, of having increased representation of cross-racial, international, queer families, has stuck with me. So, I decided to share.
Baby Steps is a global, cross-cultural film about building a non-traditional family with the most traditional of values.
Plot Outline: Danny, a Taiwanese-American man, and his partner Tate long to have a baby, but the complex world of surrogacy is further complicated by Danny’s well-meaning but extremely meddlesome Ma who wants to control every aspect of the process all the way from Taipei…
Please find the indiegogo crowd-sourcing site with more info on the movie here.
At Preschool, Little Elephant is learning about foods, or, as she says, FOODIE! They did an art project about carrots where they cut out leaves and the carrot in the appropriate colors and pasted them on paper. Then, they smudged “dirt” (okay, coffee grounds) on top.
Tonight on Skype, we were talking about it. I explained that the art was teaching her how carrots grow in the ground and what a fun idea it was. She ruefully looked at me: “No, Mommy! Carrots grow in COFFEE!”
Of course! How did I miss that.
A friend and colleague is in town from Kosovo. Instead of having her to the house, per routine, I decided we should go out to dinner. No kids around would allow us to have more meaningful conversation and, plus, I could do it after Little Elephant hit the hay.
I choose a tiny little restaurant that I like because of its lack of menu, fabulous food, and the ability to hear your table mate. Also, assuming you eat early enough (which I generally do), it usually isn’t too smoky. We arrived, sat down, and 5 minutes later, the Prime Minister walked in. Given that the restaurant has about ten table, we were just next door. Certainly made me look like the good host and like I know where to eat in this city. Shh! Don’t tell her that it was a fluke!
Meal and company was often. Hopefully she will come back so we can test out other places in the city.
We have no winter weather here in Albania— in fact, we probably have less snow/ rain than is needed to be able to maintain the hydroelectric power system we survive on. On the one hand, I am loving this non-winter. On the other hand, there is a nostalgia as I look at the forecasts in the states. Granted, it is a nostalgia that can only be when there is no chance of sever cold weather anywhere in my future. This photo is from the 2010 blizzard in DC.
Dear Little Elephant,
This month, you are getting a second letter. Why? Because you reached a really big first: First Day of Pre-School. In fact, I was planning to hold of. I love Liza and so do you. She is a great nanny, teacher, companion, and friend. But about 6 months ago, a school opened up near by and all your little friends started attending. You spend more and more time alone and the truth is that you miss them. I caved and off to school you are going.
Two weeks ago, I went to visit the school and meet the teacher. I wanted to make sure it was a good learning opportunity, where you could explore and ask questions and create. No reason in paying for child care twice if the second was only watch my kid. Turns out, I liked the teacher. The class is diverse with some kids further ahead and able to get you speaking. Also, they are actually focusing on curriculum and instilling good lessons.
After meeting the teacher and deciding it was okay, I called you over. Liza came too. You loved it! In fact, after trying out all the bikes and the slide and going inside, you were set to stay. Testing you, Teacher asked if you knew what this was (holding out a plastic fried egg). Energetically, you responded, “yes, an egg”. Teacher praised you, impressed you knew the word. Only, she had interrupted you. ”This is yolk. This is white. I like white actually.” you continue.
We were supposed to start last week, but there were delays. You got a cold, we had a doctors appointment, Mommy was asked to be on TV. Last week, you looked up at me and said, “Mommy, will I go to school?” ”Yes.” “Will S be there?” “Yes.” “Good, I will never be lonely again!” Little Elephant, those words broke my heart and compelled me to make first day come sooner.
Today, you started. Daddy wanted Liza to come with you. We met her on the way there, but you summarily sent her off to make sure Harley (the dog) was not lonely. As we started in, you got a little nervous, clutching to the door but still moving forward. Then, as S, one of your best friends rounded the corner and cheered your name, you forgot all fear. You never looked back as you moved in to the classroom. You talked to kids you didn’t know and shared toys. You sat down on the ladybug to play with the toy S discarded. You didn’t look up. You were in your element. We are peas in a pod. I asked for a kiss and was granted one. But then you were back. New friends, new things to concur.
I picked you up after lunch. You were still sitting and feeding yourself. Today may also have been the first time in your life you have agreed to wear a bib. But, I guess the other kids were doing it. When I said I was there to bring you home, you protested. “No, I want to stay.” 30 minutes of negotiations later, nearly succumbing to sleep at the table, you agreed to come home for Mommy Milk as long as we got to return tomorrow.
You are truly my child. A little mini-me. Only so much more. So amazing. I love you so much!