Sunday, February 23, 2014

How to make really really big bubbles, and find your whoosah

One of my most favorite things to do ever, is blow really big bubbles. This isn't something that I do just for my kids, though that's what everybody (everybody being the neighbors) assumes- I really just do it for myself. Blowing bubbles, makes me happy. Plain and simples. I am bubble obsessed.

Yes, my babes get an enchanted fairy tale slaying the dragon sort of joy each time they steal a stick from a tree and lunge at the big ferocious floating orb, but... honestly the kids are kind of over it. At least until other kids spot the action from down the street, and then, and usually only then, do my kids suddenly regain interest in an otherwise forgotten sport. And bubble popping is totally a sport.

Well, but no, not the baby- shes still wayyy into all things bubble related. Putting her hands into the soap, dipping the sticks into the bucket, tasting the foam that floats on top as a result of the continuous splashing and stirring- oh the foam is the best part! The bigger shes gotten, the harder its been for me to go out and actually enjoy making bubbles, because of the hands going into the soap, and dipping the sticks into the bucket, and rubbing bubbly knuckles into now burning eyes. I can't even form a single bubble before my curious 1 year old is picking up and putting the wrong end of the wands into the mixture and then pulling them out quickly and flinging solution all over me... and the cat, and the street, and herself, while simultaneously poking her sister in the eye and tangling her strings with mine. Lately its sort of a disaster.

But when its not a disaster, its a whole lotta awesome! Like- fairy godmother dancing on the sunset kind of awesome. Forget all of your worries and just breathe, awesome. Not a care in the world, favorite song playing in the background, when the air smells like your best childhood memory, awesome.

I can't even tell you how many times my husband has come home from work, and we've gotten immediately into the car and gone straight down to the beach, so I could roll up the waist on my skirt, sink my toes into the sand, and let the waves crash over my toes while I release bubble by bubble into the air, and kiss the sun goodnight. This is just something that I have to do.

At the beach. In the street. In the park. Bubbles are good for the soul.

I still remember the first time we experienced really really big bubbles. We were with our peaceful parenting group at the Moanalua Gardens here in Honolulu, a place that we meet regularly, and off in the distance between the trees, was a man moving so gracefully through the spaces, like the greens were his ballroom, and his marvelous handmade wands were his partner.

All of the kids were amazed.

I, was amazed.

He explained how it was therapeutic for him. How he worked long hard nights, and if he got off at the right time of morning, and the winds were right, how he would come to the gardens to blow bubbles to clear his mind. And just like that, it all made so much sense. And I thanked him for sharing his bubbles with all of us, and I walked away with a desire to do the same.

A few months before that, a good friend of mine, Heather, had made me a bubble wand that I had yet to use. I remembered where I had hung it on our lanai, so when I got home from the gardens that afternoon I went straight to it, and began my peaceful journey to a better me. ...does that sound lame? I'm okay with sounding lame.

Seriously, I had no idea how happy blowing big bubbles would make me. If you're not blowing giant life sized bubbles, you're missing out.

Once I got the hang of my wand, which didn't take long, I decided I needed to make a few of my own. This way I would have more than one, and I could experiment with different styles, but also- I really wanted to share with my friends, the way that Heather, and the man at the gardens had shared with me. And then I customized them with colorful tapes for the kids. Bubble wands galore!

I didn't use a tutorial to make mine, I asked my husband to figure it out and then show me (I have a hard time following written instructions- I'm a demonstration learner), but I went in search of a tutorial similar to the method we use, and this one was the closest thing I could find. We bought a whole lot of wooden dowels from Home Depot, as well as our eyelet hooks and washers (make sure your eyelets are big enough and your washer is heavy enough), and our rope we ended up purchasing at walmart, because we couldn't find an absorbent enough cotton kind anywhere else. The rope really does make a difference.

Okay but more important than having your bubble wand, and finding your whoosah, is- the bubble solution. I've tried several solutions you guys. Recipes calling for cornstarch (which end up turning to glue when left overnight). Recipes calling for baking powder (this is just wrong, don't do it). Recipes calling for glycerin (no). My tried and true recipe that I always always go to, shared with me by the talented bubble man in the park who started it all...

Really really big bubbles recipe
-1 quart miracle bubble mix
-2 cups blue dawn dish soap
-10 cups cold water
And you guys it is as easy as that. Depending on the winds and humidity, you might need to adjust how much of each you put in- for example: on extra windy days I add a little bit more blue dawn, and lessen the water. Things like that. with it, become familiar with it.

So while blowing big bubbles is an awesome thing for kids... its not just for them. Make a wand, buy a wand, get a wand... mix up some good bubble solution, get outside into the fresh air, and blow all of your worries away. Find your flow and free your mind.

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