Thank goodness he spared me for his friend birthday party this year and I didn't have to come up with ideas for a "Canadian" party (read all about it here). He wanted a baseball party where he and his friends actually played baseball. Considering that last year's party involved renting a snow-making machine, baseball was a pretty easy assignment.
|I have to admit, snow in August was pretty cool.|
Meanwhile, (because God forbid I just work on one thing at a time), I was making arrangements to return our Gerbil Exchange Student, Ella Cookie, to the Baby's former preschool teacher. Ella Cookie has been living with us since the end of May and it was time to say farewell.
The Baby's teacher and I exchanged several emails regarding arrangements for Ella Cookie and it was decided that another teacher at the school who lives on our street would pick up Ella Cookie today (Monday) and take him to school. Yeah! Not that Ella Cookie hasn't been a good guest, but I'm ready to have the enormous glass fish tank full of rodent accouterments out of our study.
So, early Sunday morning I went into the study and saw that Ella Cookie was lying very still on the side of the tank. Having watched the BrainPOP video discussed here, I was pretty sure that Ella Cookie was not sleeping. Although there were no flies, she looked pretty, well, dead.
I was conflicted. In fact, I had three thoughts running through my head simultaneously: 1. I'm sad that Ella Cookie is dead, 2. What am I going to say to the kids? 3. Why the fuck couldn't it have lived one more fucking day so I didn't have to deal with this.
The Boy and the Girl were up and I decided to just tell them right away.
Me: Um, so you know on BrainPOP how Tim and Moby saw the dead cat, and, well, Ella Cookie's dead.
Boy: I don't want to see it.
Girl: (making her fingers into Xs and putting them over her eyes) Like, dead, dead? Are you sure? I don't think you can tell.
Me: He's not breathing. He's dead.
It went pretty well until the Girl actually saw the K scoop the body out of the tank, toss it in a bag and take it outside to bury it. She got pretty upset and said that the only thing that would make her feel better is if we got her a dog. Because when you're burying a pet, the thing you want to think about is getting another pet. I emailed the Baby's teacher and she was very nice and told me that Ella Cookie was almost four, which pretty much made Ella Cookie the oldest lived gerbil ever. It was his time.
|Screen shot from Ella Cookie's feature film, The ELLA COOKIE Tales,|
in which he escapes from his cage, drinks wine, eats cheese, and takes
a bubble bath with a "friend" in our neighbor's sink.
So, when someone who knows what she is doing decorates cupcakes to look like baseballs, they look like this:
|A Little Drama Designs|
If you want to know how to do it the right way, go read that other blog. I just made the girls pull apart two packs worth of Twizzlers and I cut the pieces apart to what looked like the right length. Obviously, the other way would have looked better, but then the girls wouldn't have been able to help and the Baby would have cried. Wonky cupcakes seemed like a better choice.
So, no rain for the party, but it was hot as Hades and I brought 48 waters and 24 Gatorades for 14 kids and five adults. We went through all but about five waters. It was hot. Here are some pictures from the party:
|I wish I'd had more time to decorate the pavilion, but I'm pretty|
sure none of the boys noticed or cared.
|The party was from 2-4, so we just had snacks.|
We had two kids with peanut allergies, so I skipped
peanuts and Cracker Jacks and just went with
two kinds of popcorn.
|Blowing out the candle.|
|Watch the Baby slyly lick the frosting off this cupcake.|
|She doesn't know I'm watching her...|
|Available at Orvis.|
After kickball, we had cupcakes and the parents picked up the kids. I have a history of forgetting to give out favors, so I had to awkwardly force the favors on the parents as soon as they arrived. Here are the favors:
I know this looks pretty fancy, but the shirts were all on sale at Old Navy for under $5 and I had a $10 off coupon. I bought the ribbon at Michael's for about $3.00 and that way I didn't need to get big gift bags. If I had more time and was particularly crafty, I would have tried to sew a baseball on the shirt. So, yes the shirts were a little more expensive, but compared with renting a snow making machine, this party was majorly cheap. And, as a parent, I'd appreciate a shirt that I might actually use over a bunch of plastic made-in-China trinkets that will be sucked up in the vacuum or lost in a heating grate. Yes, t-shirts sewn by children in Bangladesh was certainly the way to go.
We returned home hot and exhausted from the afternoon and emotionally drained from the morning's loss of Ella Cookie. The K basically collapsed in bed and the children opened the Boy's gifts and screamed at each other because they were so tired and cranky.
To finish off the day, within about a 30 minute period, the Boy got a nosebleed that bled all over the carpet:
and then broke the refrigerator door:
|The note is for me because I keep opening the door|
and making it worse.
The rug is even more ruined that it was from the Baby's painting project from last fall and the red Popsicle drips from last summer. The refrigerator repairs will cost about $350. Sigh. Thank goodness we went with a cheaper party this year. And to think that my biggest worry was that it might rain!