After 5 hours of rehearsal and an hour at the radio station, Lolli and I finally got home Saturday and started getting her things ready for her party Sunday. All of the boxes were ready to go in the dining room, I just needed to load them into the car. I decided that I should do a couple of organizational projects to make the party go smoother and put together a sign in list where I could keep track of parents' names and numbers if their kids were being dropped off at the party. I also made some little punch cards for each child to ensure they each had a chance to play the games we had and that they all got their goodie boxes at the end of the party.
Since it was birthday weekend, even though her birthday wasn't officially until Sunday, I let Lolli open her gifts from me Saturday Night. I had gotten her some Monster High Dolls. Lolli isn't into Barbie, but she digs the darker more interesting Monster High Dolls. At this point she had amassed 6 of the 20 different characters. We spent the rest of the night taking shoe boxes and making each of the characters a personalized box that could serve to hold that character's personal items and also be their "bed." It was fun to spend the time collaborating and raiding my linen drawer for "bedding" materials for the project. We fell into bed sometime around 11pm ready to sleep!
Sunday morning started early with a planned 8am call to one of the grandparents to open gifts, then a 9am Skype date with her dad to open more gifts and in between and after making pancakes for birthday breakfast and getting showered and ready for the day. Her Dad further enhanced her Monster High Collection with a great skirt (worn for the birthday party), a poster, 2 more character dolls and Draculara's car. Make that 8 of 20 in the collection.
And we were off for the big party, to be held in the game room of a local Yogurt place. We got there and were able to haul everything from the car, set up and get organized just before the first guest arrived. Whew! Lolli told me that I could "take the day off" since I had "worked" all of her other birthdays. She let me know that she was going to host her party and I didn't need to do anything, she'd take care of it all. I asked her if I could "please" do a few things just so I knew she still needed me around and she graciously allowed me the opportunity to keep busy. Seventeen kids came and everyone had a great time. All of the kids got to play the games and win prizes. They enjoyed pizza and cupcakes and yogurt, there was karaoke.....I'd like to say we all enjoyed it......really I'd like to.
All in all, it was a great party. Laurel was a consummate hostess, getting on mic several times to direct activities, keeping her friends busy and full of Capri Sun or pizza. We had one sad moment where a couple of little girls sang "Firework" by Katy Perry and I saw Laurel crumble from across the room. She ran to me with big tears in her eyes and a trembling lip. She and her best friend Stephanie used to sing that song together and Steph had moved away at the start of school. Laurel misses her terribly. We went out on the patio and talked a few minutes. I let her sit there and collect herself and another little girl came up looking for her. I explained that she was a little sad and why and the girl offered to go talk to her, grabbing a Capri Sun and tissue on the way. A few minutes later Laurel returned, all smiles. Apparently the girl had two best friends move away and knew just what to say to help her feel better.
Tons of laughs, smiles, gifts and moments of silliness later and we were home, car unloaded, accompanied by a little girl who arrived late for the party and came for a play date after as a make good. We had a few hours to relax before it was time for me to head back to the theater for another rehearsal late into the night. When my alarm rang this morning I had slept 5 hours and did not want to get up. My boss (and morning show partner) sicked out of work today which is a good thing because that means I can leave a bit earlier and catch a nap before yet another rehearsal. The good news is we only have 2 weeks until the show starts. And I'll be done with rehearsal in time to cook a normal dinner this evening and have a normal night at home and make my juice for tomorrow. It seems like a luxury!
It was strange not to be Facebooking photos and details of the party and the day. I have no idea if she had birthday wishes on her Facebook page or not, I am sure she does. I guess I'll find out in a couple of weeks.
These moments of catching my breath.....of my breath catching in my throat....of busy and happy and sometimes the feeling that time is slipping too quickly by me....these moments remind me that there is nothing I cannot do. I am Kali the 8 armed goddess with each hand holding something precious and wonderful. I am Athena with enough wisdom to make it through any challenge. I am imperfect but perfect in my love for this child and she has made me a much better woman than I otherwise would have been.