4 generations

On Sunday we had a big dinner at my Grandma’s on my mom’s side. My Aunt Keren made chicken with a delicious secret lemon sauce. Her secret was Splenda. Even though I hate Splenda, I couldn’t even tell it was in the sauce. My Aunt is tricky like that because she is always looking for ways to keep my Grandma healthy. Sugar is forbidden.

As you can see, we are fighting genetics when it comes to weight gain in this family. I hate to even bring this up because I really love my big happy family…why spoil a lovely family portrait by talking about weight issues. Unfortunately, I can’t help myself. It is a big issue in my family. I worry about it all the time. Genetics are a bitch. I think Baby Bug might have a chance of escaping this curse because her Daddy comes from a family with the opposite problem. They are all too skinny. But I don’t know. I think weight gain trumps skinniness just like brown eyes and brown hair dominate over blue eyes and blonde hair. I guess we’ll see. So far I take after my own father who is only moderately over-weight but every day I look in the mirror and I see more and more of my own mother and my mom looks like my grandma just ten years ago.

Enough about that. We are all struggling and doing the best we can. The important thing is that we are happy. Like the pillow on my Grandma’s bed says, “Ewes not fat, ewes just fluffy.” (It has a picture of a female sheep on it.)

I’d been wanting to take a picture of Baby Bug with my Grandma for a while now. It was a perfect sunny day so we took a couple shots out in my Grandma’s garden. (Green thumbs run in the family too.) This is a picture of four generations of first borns. And right above our head was another mother.

Crazy 8th Birthday Carnival Party

It’s the day of the big party and you have two hours to do all of the following:

1. decorate the yard with streamers and balloons
2. pop the popcorn
3. ice the ice cream cone cupcakes
4. load up the bubble machine
5. mow the lawn
6. wipe the weather crud off the white plastic lawn chairs
7. clean the house
8. put toilet paper and guest towels in the bathroom
9. set up the games
10. wrap the presents
11. clean the cat boxes
12. find the carpet so you can vacuum
13 find the party girl and her sister and get them in the bath tub
14. find their party clothes and dress them
15. get yourself dressed and presentable
16. read the directions for the cotton candy machine
17. buy the missing ingredients to make cotton candy
18. pen the dogs up so they don’t slobber all over the guests
19. fix the drip system
20. weed the rose garden
21. put up the hammock
22. buy gold fish
23. feed a crying baby
24. fire up the grill and start the makings for a bbq dinner
25. remove cars parked on lawn
26. sweep up dog hair and trash off driveway
27. make a party cd and hook up mal-functioning boom box
28. make party punch
29. fill water balloons
30. I could go on and on….

You must be crazy right? Or related to me and my crazy family getting ready for Rapunzel’s carnival themed birthday party. So what were we doing two hours before the big event?

We were out to breakfast at a sit down diner with a slow waitress.

That’s what we do in this family. You can’t put on a crazy over-done children’s birthday party without a proper breakfast. Usually I’m having a nervous breakdown two hours before these crazy shindigs my family always seems to be putting on. I’m the one freaking out over what the guests are going to think when they discover that my family is not neat, clean or organized and my mom’s house could easily be a very entertaining episode of Clean Sweep. I’m usually the one stashing dirty laundry in the dishwasher and hiding dishes in the shower because I’m so desperate to put on some kind of appearance of orderliness no matter how false it may be. My family drives me crazy. CRAZY CRAZY CRAZY.

But you know what? I’ve been through this many times now and this year I have a baby that demands all of my attention. I just had to let go and let it be. Because even though it seems like the most impossible feat ever, I have to remember that every single time they do pull it off and we always have a really good time. I just have to sit back and enjoy the chaos. Breath in. Breath out.

It was a fantastic party. I don’t know how we could possibly top it, save for a trip to Paris or something. It was just non-stop fun.

We didn’t have time to decorate the yard properly so we let the kids “teepee” the yard with streamers. I think that was probably one Rapunzel’s most favorite parts of her party. I made a party cd and we blasted it from a boom box on the window sill into the yard while she and a few neighbor kids hurled rolls of colored streamers over branches and zig zagged between the trees. It was a royal mess but completely hilariously fun.

CC did it all. She came up with the theme. She made the invitations. She made all the plans and spent all the money. She bought the prizes, she made the ice cream cone cup cakes, she bought the bubble blowing machine, the hula hoops, the charades game and about five zillion presents for Rapunzel. You’d think she was related to me by blood. She really knows how to put on a good party.

Rapunzel loved it.

And so did Baby Bug.