WARNING: This blog post may be boring and disgusting but you might actually like it if you stick with it. For those that don’t have the patience, here’s an outline to assist in skimming:
- Following up on Keana’s 5th birthday/visitors (Iana and Olivia)
- Easter weekend Part I (The Rogers Gathering)
- Projectile vomit (Best Friday Night Ever)
- Easter weekend Part II (Rough Start with a Strong Finish)
1. In my last post I said I’d let you know how Keana’s birthday party went, so here it is. Let’s just say it turned out better than we imagined. For one, we thought that only one friend was coming, but it turned out that the other two girls Keana invited showed up at the last minute; we were probably more excited than Keana was in some ways. As a parent you can start to see all those social perils unfolding, even at this young age, of who gets invited, who doesn’t, who shows up, who doesn’t, and what that might mean as far as whether or not they like you, etc. And in this case, there were competing birthday parties that day, so we weren’t sure the best way to explain that one. Keana seemed fine with just having one friend there, but I think deep down inside she was disappointed and Sarah and I felt especially bad because maybe if we had sent out the invite sooner the outcome might have been different. Luckily, in the end, all turned out well. The girls, even Maia and the other 2-year-old, all played really well together and enjoyed our little treasure hunt and piñata. Sarah had to give it a good bashing first though, cause there was no way these five-year-olds were going to even make a dent in that thing. I sat video-taping and laughing wondering how many parties in the world had the same unbreakable piñata. And of course, The Cake. The Cake was amazing. Grandma Jennie picked it up from La Boulangerie and upon request, it was chocolate, and not too sweet, but still rich, moist, and overall scrumdiddidlyumptious (as we say in our house). Our guests stayed from 11-after3 and we were exhausted, but Keana was happier than ever.
The next day, Keana’s actual birthday, was pretty mellow. Keana went to school, though she did try and talk me out of it. They do a special celebration though, and I knew she would be upset if she missed it (all the special attention in front of her peers), so I persuaded her to go. I took the day off work though, and after school we enjoyed some time as a family, followed by Keana’s favorite dinner, roast chicken, and some of that awesome left-over cake. It was a little hard for me to relax because I knew the next day I would fly to DC for NWP’s annual Spring Meeting (where our teachers lobby for funding from their representatives). This trip was also a longer one- I got back March 28 in the afternoon- and when I returned, Iana and her baby Olivia were visiting. Keana had the week off school for spring break, so she and Maia got lots of good time with their little cousin. Olivia is really starting to grab things, roll around, and smile, so I think it was especially fun for the girls. And I’m not going to lie, it was pretty fun for Sarah and I too. Olivia adores Sarah and has the biggest smile whenever she sees her (and a cheerful squeal or growl isn’t uncommon either).
2. On Friday we had a Rogers’ get-together up at Sarah’s Grandma Bev’s house that overlooks Millerton Lake. In attendance were Great Grandma Bev (of course), Great Uncle David (who the girls don’t get much chance to see, but something we’re going to work on), Grandpa Robert and Nana Cin, Tia, and Olivia. It was a lot of fun, but the car ride home was NOT. About two minutes into the 40 min. ride, Maia began screaming and crying and nothing would comfort her. In order to not let the screaming disturb my driving and/or drive me totally insane, I often try to focus on a piece of music or some other train of thought. This particular night, I was thinking how it was Friday night, and once upon time that meant something. It meant around 5 or 6 you would start scheming the entertainment for the night. Who’s around? What’s the dinner plan? Would it be live music after? A movie? A bar then some dancing? Maybe even a night trip to the outdoors somewhere? Now it’s a mad-dash home before the kids melt down, and on Friday, it was already too late. Kid was melting down. Poor Maia was just plain pissed off. After what seemed like hours, we finally arrived home and both kids were hungry, of course. We fed them some left-over hamburger that we brought home and some yogurt, and put them to bed.
3. Then, not long after we got Maia and Keana to bed, Keana called out. I went into her room and she looked worried. Something’s wrong with her throat she said. I began to worry she was having an allergic reaction to something and attempted to assess whether or not her throat was sore or if it felt like it was closing up. I called for Sarah, then had her stand up to see if it was just the position she was in. In the span of three seconds, I saw The Look in her eyes…I grabbed her to move her to the toilet…and…projectile vomit spewed forth on my shoulder, arm, leg, and cascaded onto the cat, who unfortunately happened to be rubbing up against my leg at exactly the wrong moment. The nastiness continued to flow onto the rug, her toys, then eventually all over her little toilet we keep in her room for night-time convenience. Like waves of disgusting it seemed to just keep coming and coming. Oh man oh man. Luckily, after that one blowout of the decade, Keana calmed down and appeared to be completely fine. Sarah and I got to work like a machine, trading off cleaning up the worst mess in recent memory and sitting with Keana to be sure it wasn’t going to happen again. Long night doesn’t begin to define it.
4. Saturday Morning Keana was fine though, and we prepared to head up to “the round house”, a small round house up in the hills near Friant/O’Neals. It’s actually where we got married, so it holds a special place in our hearts. Anyway, Jacque (our current midwife) and Frank Moschella own it, and host an Easter celebration every year there. I guess it’s usually a two-day affair, but this year we just did Saturday. It was great to see all the old family friends and I think Sarah especially enjoyed catching up with everyone and showing off her pregnant belly. Tia (Iana) and Olivia left first to head back to Long Beach and it was almost a teary good-bye. I have to admit, I got a little misty looking at the little chunk-a-munk Olivia, thinking of how much she’ll have changed and grown before we see her again, and how seemingly small and vulnerable she and Iana looked heading out the door to the open road. Anyway, we tried to enjoy ourselves and be conscious of the time, having just endured the same car ride with Maia screaming the night before, and wanting to avoid another terribly long one. Ten minutes down the road, it began. Again, Maia screamed bloody hell practically the whole way home. I put on Kind of Blue and she screamed through So What and Green on Blue (it was on shuffle) before finally falling quiet to Flamenco Sketches. Sarah had to hold her hand too, a deadly combination with the subtle stylings of Miles.
And today. Well, today was not a picture-perfect Easter. Maia was awake from 1 a.m.–3 a.m., followed by Keana waking up between 4 and 5. Needless to say, I awoke pretty grumpy with zero coffee to be found. Maia and I hung out though till 10, which was fine/fun, when Keana and Sarah got up, but Maia and Keana instantly began fighting over Easter bags they got yesterday. Papa growled, apologized, then had to head out for coffee before things deteriorated any further. We finally had our “special breakfast” of Belgium waffles and sausage around noon and the girls went out to look for the baskets that Grandma Jennie had carefully assembled for them, and that I had hid in the backyard. Sarah and I did not rally for Easter this year, so we were especially thankful for Grandma’s collaborative efforts with The Bunny. Sarah and Maia went down for a nap around 1:45 p.m., and after prepping the chicken with rosemary, garlic, salt, and pepper, Keana and I followed and had an amazing nap. This amazing nap was followed by an even more amazing dinner. Although the day started rough, with a little help, I think it was still a special one for everyone and we’ve certainly ended on a positive note.