Wednesday, January 27, 2016

The Life Cycle of Hosting a Simple......Slumber Party

All of you who have hosted one know exactly how it goes.

It all starts off about two months before your kid’s birthday you ask her what she is thinking about for their birthday.  They answer is always, Sleepover!!!  Like the Pavlovian dog that you are, you get this weird feeling in your stomach, maybe even wince a bit, possibly cock your head to the side wondering if you heard right and then think to your self didn’t we have one of these last year?  Yes, yes, we definitely had one of these last year.  You say, “what ever you’d like” knowing full well that you will try every approach to try to convince her that she’ll want to do something else. 

4 weeks before her birthday, you realize that you have to send out a save the date for her party and ask her again, "so, what were you wanting for your birthday?  Shall we go painting, or roller skating, or jumping, or (god please get excited about any of these)" and she says “sleepover!!!!” and then you pull out the piece de resistance and say…"what about…chuck e. cheese??  And she pauses (you get hopeful for the possibility of hosting a party NOT in your home) and then looks and says “nah.  You said I could have whatever I want and I want a sleepover”.  Oh, alright, fine. sigh.   Sleepover. 

You hit “send” on the invitation so now it is real. Like childbirth, you’ve forgotten about it.  The details are vague and so long ago and you’ve conceded to another kid.

I get optimistic and actually start to think how great it’ll be- the kids are older… is going to be so much cheaper than a party party….we will play pictionary…..have a dance party….it’ll really be the best birthday. 

The day comes and guests arrive at 3pm and everyone puts their stuff in their spot.  A nice and rolled up sleeping bag, a pillow, a bag and timid smiles. You’re like, these girls are amazing, why did I ever not want to have a slumber party?  I’m such a bitch.  Look at my kid, she is so happy.  They’re all having fun and laughing and getting along.  This is going to be super easy. 

Whew.  What time is it?  Oh, it’s 4pm.  Wow, I really thought it was later. 

Me- Ok, “who wants to play Pictionary?!?!” 
Them- Not us, we are playing with the toads and the dog! 
Her- Not me, I am writing in a diary. 
Them- Not us, we are playing marching band with all of the instruments in your house..
The other one- I’m hungry! 
Me- Oh, ok, maybe later. 

My hopes for containment fail me.  Oh well, they are having so much fun.

The time comes when they all yell in unison- We are hungry!  We want dinner. My birthday girl specifically said that the menu should be only Macaroni and Cheese (from the box) with NO SALAD OR VEGETABLES and bread.  Basically, carby and colorless is the theme.  Oh and gummy bears for dessert. And then cake and whipped cream. 

Stop passing and inhaling the whipped cream around the table.....that's nitrous oxide!!! YOur parents will be very upset if I return addicts to them.   Gah!

Kids have now separated into dyads and the oh-so-difficult triads.  They’re getting tired, but, don’t you DARE mention that to them.  They are all going strong still. 
I suddenly stop and look around and it looks like an outdoor concert after the concert has ended.  All I am seeing is pieces of paper, cups, plates, crayons, socks, shoes, blankets, toads, beads, scissors, pens, macaroni, stationery, glitter, marker caps, popcorn, crumbs everywhere.  Holy mess.  We clean.  They “help”.

We have them get into their pajamas and brush their teeth and get them selves sorted and claim a space on the living room floor.  Ahhhh, this is so great, you think.  Now they’re relaxed, ready for the movie.

Movie ends.  9pm- when the slumber party really begins.  Everything else has been pie up to now.

10pm- Second wind- this is when kids start to get weird and loopy. They start wanting their mommies, tattle telling on each other (even bffs), where they’re hungry again (but you ate so. much. food.), where they want new spots on the sleeping bag floor, where they have to pee, when they have to poop.

Getting them ready for bed, take two.   Set them up cozily.  Put another movie on.  Wistfully anticipate that most will not even make it through this next movie and they’ll just drop off, one by one.  It’s so late.  They have to be tired.  They played so hard earlier.  For so long. 

Movie ended and I tiptoe out of my room to shut off the television and turn off all of the lights and I see them ALL awake.  They looked like bush babies.

actual picture of a sleepover guest taken with my phone  #nofilter

No sleepover would be complete without both ridiculous parents periodically coming out of their room to shush, and remind them to “whisper”, etc.   Futile efforts, for sure. 


12:30am, the big kahuna……me, coming out of my room, crazy haired, wearing only bra and panties, not giving a rat’s ass who sees what and I say “You people are ridiculous. Tomorrow you will still be expected to be daughters, and sisters and be part of a family.  I will just Sit. Right. Here.”  Now, secretly, you know you’ve waited your entire life to be this level of buzzkill.  To be the one to shut’er down.  You’re finally the scary adult.  The girls took turns looking up from the mess of blankets and bags on the floor like little prairie dogs.  One by one they fell.  No residual giggling or weird noises.  Finally they were silent enough that they fell asleep.  1am.  A bunch of 7-8 years olds.  1am!!

I walked back into my room, door ajar, and got back into bed.  I heard one girl cough and I said “Don’t even think about it”. 

Zzzzzzzzz.   We all sleep.

6am comes quicker than you wanted it to (doesn't it always?).

It starts off slowly….one tiny voice, then a few whispers here and there, then it crescendos to all out laughter and party time.  My husband and I are trying to stay in bed as long as we can until I overhear one kid say…I know how to make eggs and bacon…where are your pans?  Ok, we're up!!!!

As we begin to clean up, the “can you help me roll this up” wedding reception line begins.  Who in the hell ever created these sleeping bags that you had to manhandle to get back in their bag home?  The elastic bands for a better/tighter roll are a farce. 

Me- who’s sock is this?  What about this shirt?  Where is your other shoe?  Etc etc.
We finally get it all cleaned up.  

It is five minutes before the parents come to pick up kids when I look at the clean living room and they are all getting along and happily playing..…pictionary!

Then, everyone has left, your kid is happy and zapped of energy and whilst floppily playing with new toys she says “I want to do that for my next birthday too”! 

You’ll forget that you’re super tired and like childbirth....the details will grow blurry and lather, rinse, repeat, you’ll be doing this all again next year because it made her so happy.

PS-yes, I haven't written in the blog in a very long time.  2016 is the year of revamping old and fun habits, like this one.  And night club dancing. And baking.  And blogging about it all.

Yes, I also know that I no longer look like my picture and my profile info and tagline should be changed.  Out of respect for the person who started this blog, I will keep it just as is.
Bar-b :)