How to exhaust your parents

As I write this post, my feet are aching, my back is throbbing with a sciatica flare up, and all I really want is to go to bed! Why, you ask? Today we hosted a party with 17 kids 7 and under for my daughter’s 5th birthday party. From 11:30 to 4:30, this house was full of pint sized speed freaks. They ran, screamed, laughed hysterically, shouted for “mommy” just to have three or four parents come running, and bounced, bounced, bounced! I have to say, the party was a resounding success, but you can ask my friends, I have been stressing about this thing for two weeks. 

I do not like to throw parties, even though I paradoxically enjoy entertaining. I know, weird. I have a deep seated fear that no one will show up, and when I only had 5 responses after the invitations had been out a week, I was getting a few gray hairs I’m sure. But, during the past five days the responses started rolling in and I actually doubled my food order. It is always better to have too much than not enough, in my book. I quit worrying about whether people were coming and began worrying about whether the goody bags were good enough, whether the party would get boring, whether the parents would rather be anywhere else than at the party, etc. 

The bounce house was again a huge hit! We got one with a slide on the side and a basketball hoop inside and there were a couple boys who barely came out long enough to have cake. We had a “pin the braid on Rapunzel” game and each child decorated a crown to take home. In addition, my friend Samantha brought her magical box of feathers and beads and put feathers and fun stuff in all the girls’ hair and even worked in a couple colored mohawks on the boys. 

This party could not have run as smoothly as it did with out the help from a couple people. First, a huge thank you to my mother-in-law Marie! She is so good to me. Even though I intentionally had paper and plastic plates and silverware, Marie went around and made sure things were picked up and the food was handled. Secondly, my sister Kathy was there to help with the games, help put crowns together or back together, take notes of who gave what presents, and make it so John and I could enjoy the party too. 

After the last kids left, the house was bizarrely quiet. We didn’t actually know quite what to do. So we just sat there. :-)

On Monday February 13, we will celebrate the best, most amazing and fullfilling 5 years of our lives. It is funny how you think to yourself “I’m successful, have a decent car, a little money in the bank, life is good.” Then you have a child and everything – literally every aspect of your former life – begins to pale in comparison. I could go to the mall whenever I wanted? Sure, but why would I want to do that when I can feel the warmth of my daughter’s kiss on my cheek after she tells me she loves me. 

From this

to this, in five short years.

Happy birthday Melody! More pictures in the gallery.

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