Note: Sadly, 2010 was the final season for the Marinwood Christmas House. It won't be back this year, so enjoy these photos from last Christmas.
Last year, the most exciting holiday news in Marin was that the famous Marinwood Christmas House was back! At the time it was rumored to be a one-time-only event, undertaken in honor of the late Charles "Dooley" Stitham, who put together this impressive display for decades and who passed away in 2009. We're glad to report that it's here again this year and as awesome as ever!
Anyone who grew up in Marin—especially in San Rafael and Novato—in the past 40 years certainly has fond memories of this amazing decorated house. It was the Christmas House; the one all others aspired to be and the most amazing Christmas house ever. Lighted and decorated and full of colorful animated figures, dolls, toys, and holiday scenes, the Marinwood Christmas House is another of Marin's holiday must-sees. It's open daily through New Year's Day 5–10 pm.
Last year I reported on the sad demise of Oakland's venerable Mother's Cookies, and specifically lamented the fact that my children would be unable to experience the childhood wonder that are the Mother's Circus Animal Cookies. Well, mourn no longer, because Mom is back in the game!
Well, actually, Kellogg's is. You see, they apparently bought the intellectual property rights and cookie recipes from the now-defunct Mother's, and just this week have reintroduced the brand to California's store shelves. Cookie lovers rejoice! We, and our children can once more enjoy the shocking pink and white amorphous animal cookies (is it a chimp or a buffalo? No, wait, it's a kangaroo…) covered with candy sprinkles. Apparently other Mother's cookie types are making it back into grocery stores, too. But really—who cares? It's the Circus Animals that really matter.
Apparently it's also the 95th anniversary of Mother's cookies, too. And it's Mother's Day this Sunday. So why not celebrate with Circus Animal cookies?
It's not as if I led a deprived childhood, but there were some toys that I desparately wanted as a kid and never got. Of course now that I have kids, I can finally indulge those desires of long ago by getting them the stuff I never had! And who said being a grownup is no fun? Although there are plenty of adults in their 30s and 40s who have no problem in buying themselves toys (or "investing" in "collectibles") more suitable for someone a few decades younger, I always thought the idea was just a little unseemly. This is not to say that I didn't occasionally indulge myself in toys, as anyone who's seen my desk at work will attest.
It's actually kind of funny to look at myself and my fellow parents and to see how we're seemingly immature—call it deferred adulthood—compared to our parents, and in turn to compare them to parents of previous generations. I'm addicted to Mad Men on AMC, and I find it interesting, and even a little frightening, to look at a character like antihero Don Draper in his suits and ties and hats and Coupe de Ville and to think that he's supposed to be around my age, and of course is played by an actor my age, but seems so much older than I, and I'm sure many others, see themselves.