puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
puppies ebay certificate
LAST 10 MINUTES print heading

LAST 10 MINUTES

03.01.14

1911278_10152270910583234_480429777_o

 
If you trace the lineage of how a family grows through the years it is never a straight line. It is a series of chance encounters, crazy decisions in the name of love, and big leaps of faith and commitment.

39 years ago today, Janet Paddock and Steve Cook brought into the world Stephanie. I imagine Janet, being a nurse and all too aware of everything going on in her body, still beingastonished at what she had created. I imagine Steve going down the halls of the hospital holding this new gift for the world in awe and wonder.

Shephie was born of love. Showered with love. Dusted with love. And she was going to be raised and spoiled with love. Stephie grew up carrying that love on the inside, and her heart on her sleeve.

By one of the wildest coincidences of my life, one night almost eleven years ago we met. I didn’t know I was looking for this kind of love, because I could never have imagined it. But when I saw it and felt it, there was no possibility of letting it go.

Every single day since I have learned about love, and so many other things from Stephie. I joke that she is always right, and I really believe that. She is the most understanding, the most inspired and really in a sea of craziness, an island of kind reason. Having our boys, she has showered that love on a whole new generation. If you could hear just the sound of her voice with them, you were understand everything I am talking about.

We are not together for this birthday. We are going to do our family’s great time honored tradition of time shifting and celebrate later this week in NY.

If any of you see Stephie today, please give her the biggest hug. If you are in a different town, please just write the date on anything and send it to her ( and since it is 2014, hashtag it: #03.01.14 ).

For inspiration, check out this video we did a couple of years ago in NY:http://langestudio.com/videos/030110

It feels alittle queer sending birthday wishes out in 2014. When we are together it is real hugs in real time.

And…if we are lucky….real love always.

Happy Birthday Stephie!!

Stephie is @stephanielange on Instagram and Stephanie Lange on Facebook.

#03.01.14

03.01.14 Posted in Everything Is Connected, Personal Work, Something I love

Print this post
 

My father at 90

2010.04.04_01_146
My father would be 90 years old today.

He was born January 24, 1924.

He died in our arms January 24, 1998.

We used to tease that we started missing each other before each visit, knowing how quickly the time would pass and it would be over.

Every time we left each other, often at an airport, he would slip me $5. When I went to summer camp. When I went to college. When I moved to New York. $5 slipped into my palm at the last minute. Never more. Never less. When we were searching for a middle name for Jackson, we came up with Finn, which is a slang term for 5 dollar bill.

When I think of my father I think of how sweet he was. How much fun he seemed to be having. How much in the moment he was. I have written (and posted) about my father a lot. I loved him so much. And he loved me. And best – we not only lived it, but told each other.

As much as I have missed him since he has been gone, having my boys and being with Stephie has made me miss him even more. He would have been such a rich part of our family – and they would have thrilled and loved him to no end.
It is a cruel trick when someone dies that they are frozen in time.
They continue to have birthdays, but are no longer here. They never age in your mind, but they are harder to imagine. What would my father look like at 90? How much fun we he be? How much would he love these boys of ours and Stephie?

I can answer.

My father would be handsome and super fun.
He would be bursting with so much love he would light up the sky.
He would still have tickets to every Steeler game and Jackson would be next to him tugging at his terrible tweed coat. On his lap would be Asher singing out loud with those blue eyes that match my father’s, and on the other side, I would be the happiest man in the world. Knowing it was not the game but being together.

My Dad would be doing his damnedest to keep up with my mother.

It is never the destination, it is always the journey.

The attached photo is of Jackson in 2010 sitting on the lawn of the house I grew up in. He is sitting in the exact spot I used to wait for my father to come home from work. It used to seem like forever for his car to come around the corner and into the driveway. Then, when he came out of the car and hugged me, it was like he had been there forever. Behind Jackson are his two grandmothers, Aline and Janet.

01.23.14 Posted in Everything Is Connected, Personal Work, Something I Thought

Print this post
 

Peter Pan

2013.091080

 

This morning I put on the Peter Pan original Broadway cast album for the first time since I was a child.   Mary Martin’s 1954 version , for Asher who was eating breakfast with me.  He started singing it back to me right away, like he already knew all the words. I had forgotten how big a part of my childhood that album was. Could barely hold back tears listening to him crow.

What I wrote above is what I posted on Facebook.    The truth was I was sobbing uncontrollably.   How can those songs be so deep inside that when they surface so many years later, and your son is singing them back to you, it is like a well burst inside?

 

 

 

 

 

10.03.13 Posted in Personal Work, Something I Heard, Something I Thought

Print this post
 

Peaches in my father’s garden

2013.08.04_146

Last night I was reading about Alex Rodriguez having lived his whole life in the shadow of a father who abandoned him at age 9.    Was thinking about the garden his father failed to plant.   The seeds of trust and honor that never fertilized.

I then read my good friend, Mark Epstein’s piece in the NY Times Sunday Review.  First, I love Mark.   Just love him.   He is so much crazier and brilliant and funny than he lets on.  Maybe our favorite time together was squeezed into my little Alfa convertible driving around San Diego with the top down, with the music cranked (we were listening to the most subversive of Dan Bern), like we were the rock stars we are afraid to be. Ok, we are rock stars, just don’t dress the part.   The Jew-Bu rock star shrink who can make you feel like you are completely alive and the photographer rock star who was hiding behind his camera until just last week when he came out with a metal funnel for a megaphone.

Mark wrote about the traumas we anticipate and recover from.   He wrote about his mother recovering from his father dying, then sharing a secret of another husband in another life she had buried.   He wrote that allowing grief to breathe is ok.

My brother, mother, and I were all around my father, holding his hands as he took his last breath at home in 1998.   The first thing my mother said to all of us right at that moment was, “He was a great guy.”  She then packed up his clothes and got on with her life.   It was not that she didn’t miss him.  It was not that she felt cheated that he was gone on his 74th birthday and she is now about to celebrate her 85th birthday.  It was just that my father had planted so many seeds and was still alive in that garden he had planted inside all of us.  We just had to appreciate all that was still alive about him, not just the part that was gone.   Not that we did not mourn.  Not that missing him will ever go away.   It is just when they say, “stay hydrated” – they are talking about watering seeds in the private gardens our father’s planted.    Meanwhile, my mother has her foot pressed hard on the reaper and is still harvesting like each day is peak season.  The grim reaper is at bay, afraid of the scarecrow.

This morning Jackson crawled into bed and I planted a seed for his garden.  The seed about playing by the rules, not cheating, never telling lies.   He got it, but there is only so much seed sewing you can do with a 5 year old.    We switched to talking about the peaches that appeared this weekend. Jackson does not like peaches.  I told him the peach I had last night literally knocked my socks off.   Told him if he took a single bite it might knock all his clothes off.   Then we headed downstairs.  Crawled slowly around the corner of the kitchen on our knees until Asher finally discovered us with peaches in his mouth and the milk from his cereal dribbling down his chest.   We all started laughing.   Was laughing more when we were all eating peaches, socks flying off of Stephie’s feet, and the rest of us dancing around naked.  Indulge those peaches in the next couple of weeks.   Each one is a beautiful perfect seed from my father’s garden.

Soundtrack for this post – while I am listening to “Blurred Lines” this summer like some addiction – Robin Thick, Prince, and many others all circle back to Sly Stone.   Listening to, “Just Like A Baby” – from There’s A Riot Going on.

Then….just as I was about to hit publish just now, I stumbled on this other Dan Bern song, “Kid’s Prayer,”  which ends with this advice:

Talk to your kids

Play with your kids

Tell them your dreams

And your disappointments

Listen with your kids

Listen to your kids

Watch your kids

Let your kids watch you

Tell your kids the truth

Best as you can tell it

No use telling lies

Your kids can always smell it

Cook for your kids

Let your kids cook for you

Sing with your kids

Teach your kids the blues

Learn their games

Teach them yours

Touch your kids

Find out what they know

Be sad with your kids

Be stupid with your kids

Learn with your kids

Cry with you kids

Be yourself with your kids

Be real with your kids

Embarrass your kids

Let them embarrass you

Be strong with your kids

Be tough with your kids

Be firm with your kids

Say “No” to your kids

Say “Yes” to your kids

Take it easy on your kids

You were a kid

Not so long ago

There are things you know

Your kids will never know

There’s places they live

Where you will never go

So dance with your kids

Paint with your kids

Walk with your kids

Tell stories to your kids

Watch movies with your kids

Eat popcorn with your kids

Tell secrets to your kids

Stop for rainbows with your kids

One day your kids

Won’t be kids

And maybe they’ll have kids of their own

Let’s hope they talk to their kids

Play with their kids

Tell them their dreams

And their disappointments

 

amen.

08.05.13 Posted in Everything Is Connected, Personal Work, Photos, Something I Saw, Something I Thought

Print this post
 

Live Lobster

2013.07.21_129_1

2013.07.21_154

 

 

 

In the mountains this summer, at a dinner called “Dinnerpoloza” organized by marketing wiz Claudia Batten, we sit down and throw the dice.    Looking under the table Claudia sports tight red stretch pants (definitely not Boulder standard issue spandex), black shoes with red soles and a very sparkly shirt. Claudia explodes with ideas and fun and that down-under accent that makes all of the rest of us sound so normal.

She is with the great sculptor Mark Castator who picks the wine and passes his newest sculpture installations around on his phone. We talk Game of Thrones, tumblr hashtags, and a 14′ table in the works.

We are joined by John Bradley and Missy Schwartz new to Boulder via SF and Wired Mag. We go around the table pulling the best ideas from behind our ears, then sharing. Hidden gems. No NDA’s.   Talk like everything we are drinking is not making us gay. Stephie was being friends with Mr Hendrik’s and some cucumber that was as summer as you can get. Uh oh….I am actually not feeling so clear, do I fake it or submit to the buzz? The talk circles around 3 married couples who are really happy together. Like a big skinny dip. In Boulder on this night, at this table, we are feeling very alive and gay and straight.

It all evolves ( and there is no D at the beginning of evolve) into Honey Boo Boo who taught me about the importance of posture when I shot her last month and have not slouched since. Have to share the tips about posture.

Two nights later in the mountains, we are at Bill and Elizabeth’s mountain house looking out at the most beautiful night.  Full moon.  Friends from the east who also settled out west. Kids bouncing all over. Elizabeth is working margaritas and massaging the kale salad. Corn is shucked and steaming. What is missing from this summer? Lobster. Fresh live lobster. It is the only thing I am missing. Not missing the beach. Not missing hot steamy days in the city. Find an Asian market in Broomfield. Right above the nasty box of big live frogs is the tank of live lobsters. I ask the man who doesn’t speak of word of English where they are from. He answers with one word, “Boston.” Right answer. “I’ll take 4″ So here is the scene last up in the mountains: The sun setting over 14 peaks and the full moon rising. 4 dishes of melted butter. 2 lobster crackers (this is NOT the well supplied beach larder). Some wine and salad and corn. And a trumpet.

 

And this song is playing in my head….. Your Heart is a Black As Night

07.24.13 Posted in Everything Is Connected, Personal Work, Photos, Something I Heard, Something I Saw

Print this post
 
click here
click here

RSS FeedTwitterFacebook