Lilith 2017

A1D1913E-6844-45DC-B485-6E0E01EDD01D.JPGLilith, my angel, I love you with all my heart. I love the hiccup’ing snorts of your bellylaugh, I love the strange stormy grey of your eyes. I love your fart jokes and your songs, I love our late night talks. I love everything about you, from your taste in shoes to your moral fiber. I love your kindness and your strength of character, I love your sense of humor and your sense of justice.

I love you, I love being your mom.

Happy birthday, Lilith.

++ LILITH 2017

  • Admete

    On the last day of school, some of the families get together at the beach to celebrate the onset of summer break. It was cold, grey, and overcast, but that was hardly daunting for this little Oceanid. Lilith and her friends splashed and played in water I couldn’t put a toe into. She boogie boarded for the first time that day and fell in love. The beach bunny I have now is a far cry from the Tiny Virgo who wouldn’t go near the sand because she didn’t want her Doritos to get dirty.

    Driftwood and sea salt submerged in a marine layer, a touch of sweet carnation, bright neroli, and a sandy strip of kelp.

  • Apocalyptic Horseprincess

    Lilith has always enjoyed the company of monsters. She grew up at Dark Delicacies, and two of her favorite toys when she was a baby were a Freddy Krueger rubber mask and a matching Freddy doll (with razor hands that were blunted by Grandma Sue so Lil didn’t poke an eye out). She has fears just like any other kid, but her monster friends help protect her from “real life” dangers. When she gets scared late at night, we talk about her ghost friends that roam the house, the vampires that live in our basement, the werewolves that hang out in the yard, the zombies that keep spare brains in our garage freezer, and all the other monsters (imaginary monster friends?) that love her and keep her safe from “real world” dangers.

    When we vend at horror-centric conventions, the monsters are always so nice to Lilith. At Midsummer Scream, she gets tons of high-fives from shambling ghouls and radioactive plant horrors, and she gets hugs from demented clowns and slobbering werebeasts.

    Ever since Lilith was in kindergarten, we’ve helped with her school’s Halloween party, so she’s grown up loving setting up and working in haunted houses and horror mazes.

    This photo is from this year’s Midsummer Scream. Lilith was inspecting a headless horseman scene, getting ideas for this year’s Halloween maze.

    Crushed mint and neon lime, sour candy powder, and wild plum.

  • Baby’s First Con Panel

    On July 20th, Lilith went to her first SDCC panel. As a carny kid and the tiniest Lab Rat, she’s been to tons of cons and events, and we’ve been taking her to San Diego Comic Con since birth. While she’s always had a good time, this was the first year that she was independently invested in her enjoyment there. She tore up the vending area, played video game demos, went looking for Arthas’ ice cream shop, and sat through several panels of her choosing. It was an experience that was truly /hers/ for the first time, and that was a really amazing piece of magic that I was privileged to witness.

    The scent of the soft pretzel we hid in our backpack, plus a bit of leftover chocolate chip cookie.

  • Brunch Witches

    Dressed in her witchy best for brunch with the fam!

    Pumpkin pancakes and berries in cream.

  • Cemetery Creep

    This summer, Brian got married at the Mountain View Mausoleum. As a side benefit, the Barrials got to spend hours skulking around its beautiful, cavernous halls in the weeks leading up to the event. Lilith loves the vast quietness of the mausoleum almost as much as she enjoys playing tag in the cemetery, and wandered the halls doing impromptu math equations to figure out how old people were when they passed.

    I love this little cemetery creep with all my cobwebby heart.

    Marble-white musk, orris root, and vanilla blossom.

  • Closet Raid

    Funny how much better Lilith looks in my clothes than I do! This is the scent of generations of children raiding their parents’ closets: my grandmother and mother’s Chanel No. 5, my father and grandfather’s Lilac Vegetal, my Snake Oil, and Lilith’s lavender blossoms.

  • Dancing Among the Tombs

    Autumn at Lilith’s favorite cemetery, Lafayette No. 1.

    Osmanthus and jasmine, Spanish moss and dandelion, Snake Oil and Dorian.

  • Daybreak

    Just a photo of Lilith and Pickle that I took one morning. I love this little human so, so much.

    Last night’s lavender drops and a whiff of Pickle’s vanilla coconut pupper shampoo.

  • Do All the Good You Can

    Lilith has been involved with our humanitarian and philanthropic work for several years, helping with fundraising events like our food, toy, and feminine napkin drives; she has taken the initiative a few times now, setting up her own fundraisers for the UNHCR and Pasadena Humane Society. This year, we decided that she’s old enough to do the footwork, and she volunteered with us twice in serving those currently experiencing homelessness. This photo is from Christmas Day 2017: Lilith spent several hours helping us distribute food, toiletries, and sleeping bags in Hollywood.

    Madagascar vanilla and sweet patchouli with Yule pine, white fig, and almond blossom.

  • Do You Like Clowns?

    Lilith has been watching Drag Race with me since she was teething, and she has worked with us at every Drag Con. She loves filming promo videos with Tom for the Nobodies events. She loves watching drag makeup tutorials, UNHhhh, and Alaska’s videos, and one of her goals in life is to pull off a reveal like Violet Chachki’s tartan runway look on the first day of school. So when she heard that Bob the Drag Queen was looking for a little girl for a comedy video, she was all over it. She loves Bob, she loves drag, and she loooooooooves being a big funny ham on stage. I’m the worst stage mom in all of Los Angeles history, and she has no headshots and no reel—so I sent over a funny photo of Lilith jetlagged and one of her Nobodies vids, and somehow she got the gig. It was one of the best days of her life. Bob and the crew were incredibly nice and friendly, and Lilith had the time of her life. To say thank you, she drew this picture for Bob of the two of them together on a bus bench.

    Raspberry ice cream and a smear of black cherry lip gloss.

  • Ego Sum Lux Mundi

    Doing her work at the grotto, the International Shrine of St Jude at Our Lady of Guadelupe Chapel in New Orleans.

    Frankincense and myrrh with golden amber, green apple pulp, and white pear.

  • Gas Masks and Snails and Puppy Dog Tails

    My offspring loves crossbows, gas masks, and kittens. She loves unicorns and rainbows and rhinestones and glitter, insects and Spongebob and fart jokes and whoopee cushions. She has a Nerf arsenal that would make her great-great-great-great-great (so many greats) Grandpa Attila proud, and a sea of big-eyed, rainbow-poofy plushies you could (probably literally) drown in. She loves fashion dolls as much as she loves anatomical models, Legos as much as she loves jewelry, and Hamlet as much as she loves My Little Pony. I love the diversity of her interests, and that—over the years—she is finding peace with loving what she loves, regardless of what anyone else might think.

    Cotton candy and jellybeans with sugar cookie crumbles and vanilla frosting.

  • The Goddess of Mischief

    Lilith has a ton of empathy for the God of Mischief. I think many kids identify with Loki because they know what it’s like to be passed over, to be ignored in favor of a shinier relative or friend, and what it feels like to not be as strong or powerful as some of your peers. He may be evil(ish), but he has a sense of humor and a grasp of irony that kids relate to, and that’s worth its weight in Alfheimian gold nuggets.

    Thor is great and all, but Loki has /gone through some shit/, and Lilith respects that.

    But what are the main reasons why Lilith digs Loki? “He looks like me, and he’s really funny.”

    Girl!Loki costume by Chrissy Lynn!

    White lavender and sweet amber, green oudh, and inky musk.

  • Heck on Wheels

    Sometimes I make a perfume just because I love this kid.

    Red velvet confetti cupcakes and bubblegum.

  • Huntress

    This was the day that we discovered that Lilith was likely a sharpshooter crossbowman in another life. She was startlingly accurate, even with the handicap of using a clumsy carnival weapon.

    Funnel cakes, baked apples, and strawberry cream.

  • Little Photojournalist

    Lilith Barrial, budding photojournalist, at the Cathedral-Basilica of St. Louis, King of France, New Orleans, LA. She’s been snapping photos since she was a toddler; we have whole photo albums of blurry photos of shoes and pavers from those days. She loves taking her powder pink instax on trips, and loves to document playdates with her friends.

    Cathedral incense and rock candy.

  • NYC Snowball Fight

    Last winter, we took Lilith to New York for the first time. We were en route to the march in Washington, DC, with our friends, and made a few pit stops on the way. This photo was taken a split second before I got snowballed in the face at the East 72nd Street Playground. The handsome devil in the background is one of Lilith’s best friends in the world, Kyle.

    Snowballs and vanilla ice cream.

  • Paying Her Respects

    Lilith’s annual visit to St. Louis Cemetery No. 1.

    Star jasmine and tobacco leaf.

  • Pew! Pew!

    There is nothing that sparks joy for me quite like sharing something I love with Lilith. She’s been playing console games with me on and off since she was five, though she took a break from Diablo for a while after Brian bailed on her to chase after a treasure goblin.

    Blue raspberry slushy, a bowl of strawberries, and microwavable popcorn.

  • Poke!

    On December 30th, Lilith went with a gaggle of her Grownups, her plush alligator, Crocky (there’s a story there), and one of her besties, Camilla, to get their ears pierced by the wonderful people at Studio City Tattoo. When the needle went through, she didn’t scream and she didn’t cry… she growled “FFFFFFFFFffFFfffFfffFffffffffffaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhh” in an attempt to repress the impulse to yell FUCK in the middle of the tattoo shop. Tom and I got new piercings in solidarity, but Crocky, Teddy, and Brian all declined.

    Coconut and red currant, red musk, and a pop of surgical steel.

  • Potamides

    Thanks to the much-needed winter rains this year, my little river nymph was finally able to see the creeks in Eaton Canyon as something other than dry, fawn-beige, tumbleweed-strewn strips of sandwash. In the past, she’s always been ambivalent about hiking, but something about the rushing streams and sparkling waters enchanted her, and she fell in love.

    Honeysuckle and honey, water lilies and white sage.

  • The Spectral Flower Girl

    The ghosts swarm.
    They speak as one
    person. Each
    loves you. Each
    has left something

    With love to Rae Armantrout for the poem.

    Black lilies, red roses, and baby’s breath.

  • Storyboard: Julius Caesar

    Lilith has been taking kiddo Shakespeare classes for the past four years, and absolutely loves them. Last year, they did a mini-series focusing on Julius Caesar, King Lear, and the Tempest. The kids analyze the plays, and perform scenes from them; then, at the end of the cycle, they put together a play of their own based on the themes in the works of Shakespeare that they have studied. Their play this time around was entitled Evil Bunny.

    Lilith performed as Marc Antony, and showed off her orator skills. Hearing Lilith speak at Caesar’s funeral gave me the chills. She came to bury Caesar, not to praise him.

    Macerated myrrh, rose petals, and iris with frankincense and a splash of blood.

  • Storyboard: The Tempest

    Lilith has been taking kiddo Shakespeare classes for the past four years, and absolutely loves them. Last year, they did a mini-series focusing on Julius Caesar, King Lear, and the Tempest. The kids analyze the plays, and perform scenes from them; then, at the end of the cycle, they put together a play of their own based on the themes in the works of Shakespeare that they have studied. Their play this time around was entitled Evil Bunny.

    Lilith played Ariel and Miranda, and said she liked playing Miranda more. She said it’s easy to relate, because her mom is a lot like Prospero.

    I’m still trying to figure out whether that’s a compliment or an insult.

    Ivy and lime rind, marigold and moss.

  • Valuable, Powerful, Deserving

    In a hotel in Baltimore, Lilith helped me color in my sign for the Women’s March in DC. She had made her own two signs — brimming with Girl Power and featuring a unicorn, of course — but finished in time to help me get mine all dolled up.

    There are many criticisms of the march that are valid, but I will tell you this: being able to show my daughter thousands upon thousands of people that were demanding a government built on justice, compassion, and acceptance was something incredibly powerful. The experience she had meeting other children who were there in the hopes of a kinder, brighter future was invaluable. It was a pivotal moment, this ability to demonstrate for her /how to show up/ and how to /work/ for a better country and a better future for marginalized and under-represented groups. It was incredible being there in Washington with her, and I will never forget it. I hope this experience helped to reveal her own inner strength to her, and the strength she can find in her allies.

    Golden amber, vanilla oudh, and orange blossom.

  • Vampire Princess

    Last Halloween, Lilith wanted to be Maleficent, so we hooked her up with a Maleficent costume. The horns were imbalanced, though, and she was frustrated, so she decided to wear the rest of the costume—sans horns—and be a vampire. She looked amazing (in my motherly opinion), but when the time came to trick or treat, her voluminous skirts and flowing cape made it difficult for her to keep up with the other kids. We tried knotting it, hiking it up, everything…and in the end, she vowed never to wear another costume that she can’t run and jump in.

    Blood musk and lavender with bourbon vanilla, plum oudh, black patchouli, and Romanian wildflowers.

  • Winter at the Capitol

    It was a cold, cold day, and a thick fog obfuscated everything. It was tremendously symbolic in myriad ways.

    It’s funny. Lilith was two months old when Obama was elected, and I remember how I felt that night as the election returns were coming in. When his presidency was announced, it was like a fist surrounding my heart unclenched, and I could breathe again. With Lilith in my arms, I inexplicably wept with relief, suddenly believing with all my heart that she was safe, and that her future—all of our futures—were on a trajectory of kindness and justice buoyed by hope. The country is flawed and imperfect, but we were on our way to making things right.

    Then November of 2016 happened, and in January, a thick fog descended on the National Mall and the fist clamped around my heart again.

    The hope and valor of iris blossoms twined with chrysanthemum’s bold fearlessness, violet’s vigilance, oleander’s caution, and white and red roses for unity.

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