In which I win the lottery

By which I mean the Hamilton lottery, of course. The only one that counts!


The musical has a lottery system by which you enter for a chance to win Hamilton tickets for a “Hamilton” (Hamilton is on the $10 bill). I have dutifully entered this lottery for every performance for about THREE YEARS. You can imagine my surprise when I actually won!

Not only are the tickets super cheap, but they are very good tickets. I vaguely knew they were very good, but I didn’t realize they were FRONT ROW good until we got there!


Now, I know what you’re saying: haven’t you seen Hamilton before? Yes. *ahem* Three times before. BUT I ASK YOU, who would appreciate these seats more than me?


Okay, maybe one person, but I brought her with me!

Being this close was a TOTALLY different experience seeing the show, and really just unlike anything I have ever experienced. The seats are not good for actually seeing the show in the sense that you are almost too close. Anything that happens near the back of the stage is not visible. (Although it was really funny when they were on the rotate-y stage thing because you couldn’t see it and it seemed like they were just floating along by magic!)


Given that I’ve seen the show a number of times before and know the story and music forwards and back (and can probably “see” it with my eyes closed at this point), that wasn’t really a problem for me personally. And it was vastly, vastly outweighed by the awesomeness of how close people were when they came to the front of the stage. Aaron Burr in particular comes out to the very front often, and when he did, he was an arm’s length from me, at most.

I mean, I was so close I could have reached over and played the piano!

Because I was in the first row, I totally forgot there was anybody else in the theater. It was so intimate, like they were playing just for me. The lights were in my eyes, the bass was in my chest, and I totally forgot there was like 1000 of my closest friends sitting behind me; it was like they didn’t exist.


Oh hai there, where did you come from?

The thing is, there are so many things you notice when you’re that close. The acting is so much more pronounced when you can see their faces! And there are these moments with the crowd: sometimes they would lock eyes with someone and just give them a look. For example, there was one part where one of the dancers came up from the orchestra pit, and he kind of startled the woman sitting just to my right. After that he kept like winking at her and stuff. It was great! But you totally wouldn’t have even known that was happening if you were even a few rows back.

There are a million little things you can’t see unless you’re that close: little, hilarious quirked eyebrows, or expressions of grief, or tons and tons of sweat and spit. Seriously. We didn’t get spit on, but people on either side of us did.

Okay, but that got me thinking about what consummate professionals these people are. This is just a random Wednesday night, and each and every one of them is giving it their all, selling it with emotion, sweating it out, singing so hard their faces are turning red. FOR THE SECOND TIME THAT DAY! Just absolutely bringing it, nonstop (you see what I did there?)



Another funny thing about being so close is you really just focus on the most random things. Like there is a person dancing two feet in front of you so you’re just staring at them, unable to look away. And then all of a sudden you’re like, “Oh, there is singing on the other side of the stage, what am I doing?!”

Anyway, the whole experience was utterly magical, and easily one of the best nights of my life. When it was over I was extremely reluctant to leave and just kind of lingered by the stage, hoping to prolong the magic. I’ve probably never been that close to ANY musical act, but to have it be the greatest musical of all time…


Thank you Hamilton lottery for giving us a night we will never forget!!

Quote Monday is quite convincing

Sara: “Ollie said, ‘Tell Dad I love you 5000 times’ or something.”
Me: “Is it possible he said, ‘3000’?”
Sara: “Oh yeah, 3000.”
Me: “Did he… Did he possibly say, ‘I love you 3000’?”
Sara: “Yeah, maybe. Why?”
Me: 😍

Evelyn: “I’m sure next year we’ll go to <thing>. It’s up to your advisory teacher, but I’m sure our class will go…I know how to convince people to do things.”

I already feel sorry for her future teacher. You should ask her 4th grade teacher about the time she wanted to do pajama day…

Sara, pointing to a mosquito bite on her face: “Did you see that bug bite right there?”
Alex: “Maybe that’s just your fat cheek!”
Alex: “I never saw your face get so red before!”

Quote Monday learns the world is a scary place

Alex: “Why was that lady wearing funny skin?”
Sara: “She was old.”

::Showing Alex octopus tentacles for eating::
Alex, in horror: “I didn’t know octopuses were real!!”

Later, under his breath to Oliver: “Are scary pirates also real??”

Me: “…that’s how coolness works. The coolest person is the one that–”
Ollie: “Does what everybody else does?”

Quote Monday goes way back

Evelyn: “When you and mama got married, did they not have color pictures? Is that why the pictures from your wedding are black and white?”

::Ollie playing with an old play record player::
Ollie: “My mom had that when she was little because they didn’t have electricity back then.”

Alex: “Can you read the poem that I wrote?”
Me: “You can’t really write words until you know how to read.”
Alex: “No, but you can read words, so you can read it.”

Me, playing pretend with Alex: “There’s water over here. Be careful, there are sharks! And alligators!”
Alex: “And penguins!!”

The (unfortunately) true story of how Alex broke his thumb

Alex is doing this thing lately where he doesn’t want to be in pictures. I don’t know if it’s a phase, or if it’s a product of being in the generation where your parents have a camera in their pockets at all times, or what.

In any case, we were just finishing up a great weekend of camping, and we wanted to get a picture of all the kids together. “I don’t want to be in the picture!” insisted Alex with his grumpiest, most adorable face. “I have an idea,” said Sara. “What if you are in the picture but you pull your sweatshirt up over your face?”

Naturally this made sense using twisted, kid-logic, and Alex quickly agreed. The kids all lined up on the metal stairs of the slide

Now, Sara had a premonition about this somehow and she was like, “He is going to fall down. Somebody hold on to him.” I’m not sure how she knew what was going to happen next, but she was right.

For some reason, with his eyes covered up by his sweatshirt, Alex was suddenly, like, totally disconnected from reality? He immediately lost his balance, but somehow didn’t know it, so he just went face first, straight down the stairs, without even putting his hands out to catch himself. It was like, without the tether of his sight, he could no longer tell up from down, or whether he were standing still or pitching forward?

Kids are weird, man.

(Sara says kids are not weird and not being able to balance when your eyes are closed is Totally. A. Thing. which is why she was worried about it in the first place!)

Immediately after I was more concerned with his face, since I had watched him totally face plant on the metal. But throughout the rest of the day it was pretty clear something was wrong with his thumb. He just refused to use it at all. It was obviously swollen, but we didn’t know if it were sprained, or broken, or just smooshed, or what.

But you know where this is going:


(That little fat baby hand on that x ray 😭)

You know, somehow we managed to go the last 11 years without any of the kids breaking any bones, and then suddenly in the last 6 months, not one but TWO kids breaking bones. 😦 This is a trend I would like to stop now.

Alex has been a trooper so far, but no playgrounds for 3 weeks is going to be a hard way to go into the summer.


Quote Monday is living its best life

Me: “Next week you won’t see me because I’ll be in California all week.”
Alex, pumping his fist: “Yeah! I’ll be having my best life!!”

Alex: “You know you have two eyes and under that a nose and then a mouth? Does that look like a fire hydrant?”
Sara: “…Maybe?”
Alex: “Your face looks like a fire hydrant.”

Ollie: “Cowboys are always very helpful.”
Alex: “Maybe not this cowboy.”
Alex: “People LOVE this cowboy, even though he doesn’t help.”

Sara: “What happened to his eye?”

Alex: “His mother punished him for killing someone.”

Quote Monday Contains Avengers Spoilers!

You have been warned!

Ollie, whispering: “I don’t want to get Alex in trouble, but he’s under the table eating my cookie.”

Alex: “I like books about fighting…and car crashes!…and fires! …and I don’t have ANY books about car crashes or fires!”

Alex: “Can we do jokes? Knock knock.”
Me: “Who’s there?”
Alex: “I eat mop.”
Me: “I don’t want to do that one anymore.”
Alex: “Okay, I’ll do it with myself. Knock knock, who’s there, I eat mop, I eat mop who? Ha ha ha!”

Me: “When iron Man died, I cried.”
Sara: “I’m sure it was really sad in the movie, but when you say it out loud I have to laugh.”