After Elly's birthday she kept asking when her party was. She had been expecting a big party like the big kids get, I was wrong. I berated myself and vowed to make it up to her with a great 5th birthday party. I truly did feel like I had really dropped the ball and let that baby girl down. I foolishly thought that she would forget about that heartbreak... she didn't. A belated party was planned. I thought that maybe if we put it off long enough we could have her party in the yard. As you may well know warm weather forgot to visit us until recently. Finally I set a date, and we made and distributed invitations to Elly's friends.
Last night I baked chocolate cupcakes. While the cupcakes were baking I cleaned the house. Here's the thing about my cleaning skills, I don't really process any. My cleaning mantra is "good enough". What good enough really means is "I don't think anyone will catch botulism from this, we are good to go, bring on the more fun tasks". "Good enough", is well, good enough usually for us, but we had parents coming who had never been into our house. With Elly we are starting from scratch. It's not like with the big kid's friends who have been their friends forever and their parents either are good hearted and see past my extreme lack of cleaning skills or they talk behind my back, either way I'm good with it.
After I had spooned the pudding into the little hole, I put the top back onto it (I told you we would come back to that). I very carefully iced the top of the cupcake that I had replaced, careful not to pick up any of the crumbs in the the icing.
Last but not least I added the all important sprinkles and a cherry for the top. They were a hit, but let's be honest, it really wouldn't matter what they looked or tasted like. The very fact that they were chocolate cupcakes already made them a hit with 4 year old girls.
I got up this morning ready to work. The sun was out shining, I smiled, although the forecast called for rain, the weatherman had been wrong ... famous last words. I set about chopping up veggies, and fruit for the trays. I had bought the most adorable little butterfly dishes and filled them up with fruits and veggies. I made ham sandwiches, and turkey sandwiches. I used my butterfly cookie cutter to cut out the ham, and a tulip cookie cutter for the turkey. They looked cute and it was so much easier to distinguish which was which.I laid the food out once the princesses got to the house. There were two little girls and Elly. They danced and pranced around the yard, giggling, little heads together. I had bought adorable little plastic wine glasses at the dollar store and filled them with Shirley Temples, carefully slicing up oranges to put on the side of the glass, and maraschino cherry on the side. The little girls faces lit up when I handed them their fancy glasses.
Everyone had just gone up and filled their plates when it began to mist rain. I knew it was just going to blow over. The sky on the other side of the horizon was bright and light blue. I think the word for what I was feeling is called delusional. It shortly began to pour. We grabbed food and shuffled the little princesses into the house. In through the disastrous laundry room we went and led them into the living room that had looked so much cleaner this morning (until I saw it with fresh eyes). They sat and ate their slightly damp lunches when what should appear through the picture window but that dirty traitor the sun. It was at that point that I stupidly tempted fate, "Hey girls it looks like the sun has come back outside, did you want to do your craft outside?"
The little girls finished their princess masks that they had started outside, and then big girls helped the little princesses make necklaces. It was then time for cupcakes and gifts and then it was time for the glass carriages to take the other princesses home. I gave a cheery wave goodbye to everyone, and then cracked open a cooler. I had made it through.
Elly of course acted horrid throughout the party. She turned deaf no matter what I asked her to do, a defiant look upon her angelic little face, had there not been witnesses she might have been a little more obliging. Instead I tried to firmly tell her what she needed to do, only to be met with a stubborn gaze while she did whatever she wanted. I kept waiting for a wise guy voice like the thugs from the Sapranos use "What are you going to do about it old woman?" I could hear said without the use of vocal communication. It is at times like this that I wish I could outfit my children with shock collars, and give them a little zap when they don't listen. Don't get me wrong, not cruel shock collars, but ones that gave a little gentle zap that would remind them to do what they were told, but alas if you put a shock collar on children, Children's Aid frowns upon that. I very much wanted to shout in her face, but again I used restraint (man I just can't wait for her to hit the pre-teens it's going to be so much fun).
Free, that is what I right now, FREE. I am free of obligations. Tomorrow I can sleep in, no great hysterical rush to try to clean this rat's nest. I have nothing that I urgently need to sew, no party's to plan, no wait I do, but that's not for another month, it can wait for the day before. I have the summer to recharge my batteries and try not to kill the kids.