Wednesday, June 29, 2005

It's your party and I'll cry if I want to

It was Ernesto's birthday today and the kids and I were busy getting a little family party in order before he made it home from work. Okay, I was busy getting things together and trying to find ways to either involve or divert David and Sofi while I worked. We spent the early part of the morning wrapping his presents and I didn't bother trying to keep the Scotch tape from the kids because they were having a ball taking really long pieces of it and wrapping them around the packages several times. If you don't already know this, tape is a great source of distraction for any child that can't/won't sit still. This is why we are always out of tape at our house. And even if I don't give it to David or Sofia to use for a project, they inevitably find it because mommy is not good at hiding things.

I decided to make a "fancy" dinner and for me that means something that involves following a recipe of some kind. I brought the kids to the store to get some ingredients for a particular sauce that was going to serve as both a marinade and au jus for a meat dish I was making. I felt pretty cool asking the butcher for advice on different cuts of meat and wandering around the market picking up all my fancy ingredients. People must have thought I was some young, impressive personal chef to a famous family vacationing in the Green Mountains. That is if it weren't for the two naughty little monkeys pulling one another's hair from inside the little seats of the bright blue and yellow bumper car-converted shopping cart I was pushing around Hannaford's. It's really hard to look cool maneuvering that through the aisles. Believe me, I've tried.

Anyway, I got my stuff and we headed home. David was about to fall asleep right before we pulled into the driveway and he never did make it down for a nap. That is until about 4:30 which is WAY TOO LATE for a kid to take a nap, unless of course their bedtime is 10pm or later. David is usually up from his nap by 2 or 2:30, so this did not bode well. I had everything just about done and Ernie called to say he'd be home a little early. David was passed out in the big, comfy chair, legs sprawled over the armrest and I thought I'd give him a few more minutes before Sofia and I woke him up. She had wandered into the living room and turned to me with her fingers to her lips, but I told her we'd have to wake him soon. A few minutes later we nudged him and gave him little kisses on his knees but he didn't wake up so Sofia started to kind of tickle him and the whole scene was out of a Norman Rockwell painting or something and then all of a sudden...


We had not woken David, but a primordial beast of some kind that had been dragged kicking and screaming from the deepest, longest slumber ever and boy...was he pissed.

Despite my best efforts David continued to wail for the next ten minutes and then Ernie arrived home and I shouted out "Happy Birthday, Daddy!" while David continued to caterwaul and the tears were flowing like you wouldn't believe and we were all ready to eat but David would just not stop crying and he finally choked out with a voice full of gravel: " I ...Just...can't stop...crying!!! AUGHHHH!!!" And I knew he was telling the truth. I think he wanted to stop, but he was so overtired and overwhelmed he just couldn't help it.

Ernie did a great job calming him down, though. He did a mind-over-matter bit with him and that had him take great deep breaths while lifting his arms over head chanting "Do-do-do...I'm not gonna cry anymore...Do-do-do...I'm not gonna cry anymore..." and after a few minutes of this the tears were gone and David seemed pleasantly surprised at his quick recovery. He even danced a wee little jig.

So the dinner and birthday party were a success, despite the earlier upsets, and I think I even made a meal that would have made Alton Brown proud. Ernie was even a little impressed. Now that's good eats.

Ernie opened his gifts after David told him what most of them were and though it took a while, we did eventually get the kids to bed. All in all, I think it was a good time. After all, it's not a party until someone freaks out and there's a little singing and dancing, right?

Kudos to you, Ernie, for bringing David back to us and exorcising whatever that thing was. You are a great Daddy and that's why we celebrate you! Happy 25th honey!!

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