Going Back, Giving Back

Yesterday, we headed back to my former workplace, PJA, in Harvard Square. I miss all the awesome people there, so it was a treat to get to see many of them. So much has changed since I left a couple of months ago: Meaghan got pregnanter; Lauren has started putting chia seeds on her oatmeal; and Phil has started having lunch at Zoe’s instead of Café Sushi. (Phil, I think I saw the Café Sushi hostess stabbing herself with the check spindle as I walked by.)

We were lucky enough to get special guests, Amy and Dez, to join us for lunch. They were very gracious about ignoring George’s not-so-subtle attempts at taking their lunches (“I’d really like some eggs!”) and listening to Hazy’s detailed synopsis of Stink and the Shark Sleepover.

This shot had an extremely high level of difficulty, so we still get a high score despite George’s expression.
Dave, here’s proof that George was at one point wearing a tie for Tie Friday.

We also did Year 2 of our Bags for the Homeless program. This year, we did tote bags instead of backpacks, mostly due to time constraints but also because I figured we might have some repeat customers. We bought some essentials at Family Dollar and then baked some chocolate chip cookies, because those are essential too.

All these items went in the bags, except for the Ghostbusters Slime, which I didn’t think they’d need. But what do I know?
Hazy wanted to write, “Sorry we can’t afford to buy you a house, but we can afford this stuff.” but I modified it slightly.
I’m gonna look at this picture of this sweet little angel next time Hazy abuses George.
Look at these sweethearts! How are these the same people who caused me to yell, “See how my hands are in the air?! It’s because I just don’t care!” in a whine-induced rage?

I try to teach the kids that when you do good things, good things happen to you. So, thank you universe, for not turning me into a liar. After we handed out our bags, one homeless guy (whom I see all the time and never talks) could not get over that we were giving him the bag, and insisted upon giving us a free Spare Change newspaper. That’s a big deal for him because he makes money off of selling them and a big deal for the kids because they love newspapers. Then, we walked by Petali florist and it was Free Rose Day! The florist was super nice and also gave us a beautiful rainbow spinagig lawn ornament.

Stopping and smelling

To make things even better, we then went out for ice cream with my old PJA West Coast ECD, Chris Frame.

“Make your most sophisticated faces.” (Moments later, this sophisticated gentleman spilled my entire iced tea on the lady at the table next to us.)

And as a special treat, I let the kids do a second round of Vend-a-Friend, a project I helped out on, where you get assigned to a friend group at PJA and get a themed tchotchke from the vending machine. For the second time, Hazy got “hooligans.”

Three hooligans (Todd, we’re sorry you weren’t around for a guest appearance to represent your people.)

One of the hooligans skipped his nap (hint: it wasn’t Chris), but still managed to make it through the day without a major meltdown. I think having a constant influx of sugar helped (you’re welcome for the parenting tip!). At dinner, George said he wished he’d be homeless someday. Why? “So people would bring me cookies.” I’m really nailing these life lessons, guys.




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