So, the kiddo's sixth b-day is just around the corner and I promised myself that I wouldn't go overboard this year, so we're going to keep it down to about 400 guests on a yacht in the local pond. Just kidding - I got this brilliant idea for a COOL party and so now I have something new to think about all the time, use as an excuse to ignore my responsibilities and basically obsess over like a drooling psycho: the birthday party.
It's an Indiana Jones them and we're having it at the local park. The invitations, which I finally finished last night, are a take off on the Raiders of the Lost Ark poster, only it says Raiders of the Lost Park - get it? And there's a pic of kiddo dressed as Indiana Jones waving his whip and wielding his gun (all you gun haters take a deep breath, you're talking to a girl who had a gun rack on her Scooby Doo bicycle and drives a car called the CALIBER! Welcome to the rural midwest!)
So in order to get the picture, we had to get the stuff to dress him up like Indiana Jones, right? We had a hat, which he has been wearing all summer long. We had the whip, the gun, the sword and the "pouch" which is DEFINITELY not a purse because you can't put skulls and dusty stuff in a purse - you have to put them in a pouch. Truth be told it is an old leather front flap Liz Claiborne purse circa 1987 that I found at a junk store for less than a buck...but no one needs to know that my kiddo is carrying a man bag.
Thus began the scavenger hunt for tan pants, dark brown shirt and leather bomber jacket. Ask me how it went, go ahead, ask me... NOT VERY FREAKIN' WELL! I made a call to Farm Girl (because I am privileged enough to have her PERSONAL phone number) to ask if she could help out and she offered me a fringy leather coat. "It's a cowboy coat..." she explained while visions of my son's seventh birthday party, you know the one where everyone has to come dressed as one of the Village People, began slide-showing through my brain.
So we found the tan pants - two sizes too big, but we could fix that, I thought. We found the shirt and it was a girls' shirt that was about four sizes too big but I cut the bottom off of it, rolled the sleeves and it looked pretty authentic. I gave up on the jacket - too hot anyway.
We got the kiddo dressed and to the park. Halfway across the walkway to the playground (I had a vision mind you, an artistic brilliant perfect obsessed mommy vision) his pants just fall off, seriously, crumpling to his knees. Thank God the shirt was long enough to cover up ShortRound (couldn't resist).
Then kiddo saw it...the most feared and reviled of all citified vermin: the squirrel. Last summer, kiddo was attacked by a squirrel, well, not so much attacked as threatened verbally while feeding the ducks at the park: short version - kiddo had bread, ducks not interested, squirrel very interested, kiddo got bored but still had bread and tried to walk away, squirrel went into bread recon mode and chased my little guy whilst he screamed "Squirrel, help, squirrel, he's gonna eat me." Anyway, kiddo caught sight of the squirrel and it was over. He took off like a lit-up greyhound, the squirrel headed for the nearest tree, which just happened to be in the direction kiddo was running. Needless to say, kiddo panicked, pants fell down around ankles, kiddo is desperately trying to run with his pants around his ankles, finally collapsing in dramatic relief on the purple plastic slide.
It was fabulous...and we got a great picture which I will share later. But why, you ask, go to so much trouble for a sixth birthday party? Is my kiddo spoiled rotten? Yes, but with encouragement and attention. Is my kiddo a brat? Not too bad... Am I trying to keep up with the Joneses or impress people? If you ever looked behind my refrigerator you would know that impressing others is of no importance to me. Kiddo had a rough go of it, born three months premature. Every birthday is a victory as far as I'm concerned and every parent should feel that way about their child. And whether you show it with goofball birthday parties or picture snapping obsessive compulsive disorder or turning your home into a scrapbook of your family, realize that the small things that turn into huge pains for you are the huge things that turn into amazing memories for your child.