Friday, January 16, 2015

Birthday Party Countdown ~ Friday

With Jannah-Rae sick a few days before her party I was really worried we would have to cancel the celebration. When we went to the doctor yesterday, one of the questions I had asked her was whether she thinks we should carry on with our plans. She did not see a reason why not, since the party was still five days away and suggested to see how Jannah-Rae fared on Saturday before making the final decision. So when she woke up feeling slightly like her "old" self, I decided to commence the party preparations, but instead of touting one child like originally planned, I had both of them at hand and had to navigate much while they napped.

Being up at four thirty in the morning meant that they both took an early morning nap. During that time I baked the first two of the four cakes. I had measured all the dry ingredients the week before into plastic containers so it was rather easy to add the wet ingredients, mix, pour and bake. As soon as I started, though, the door bell rang and I had to tend to the dryer delivery people while mixing the chocolate cake but that was not an issue as they knew exactly where to go and what to do. But with all their noise, the kids woke up a few minutes into the nap and were all over the kitchen in no time. Yousef, who did not really understand that the cakes were for later, threw a fit when he was denied a piece of the freshly baked cake. I appeased him with M&Ms and then decided to head out as soon as he was finished from his treat. Our route was leading us to two places: H-Mart and A Ton of Fun.

Months before I had reserved child-size tables and chairs for the party. After calling around to potential indoor party venue, I had decided that holding the party at home was both more fun and more economical. Yet I was faced with an pertinent issue: how was I going to seat over a dozen two and five year olds? Our house was sparsely furnished and the floor was not comfortable enough. Besides it was winter and the hardwood floors would be cold. So the idea of a picnic lunch was scrapped. I needed table and chairs, and I needed to rent them. I did an online search and found two companies that carried child-sized furniture. I called the first one and went with it. Today I would have to pick the material up.

When I had arranged for the pick-up time with the company I had thought I would down to one child with ample room in the car for the long table and the numerous chairs. But when today came, I found myself having to adjust both my schedule and mode of transportation. Jeff and I made a one-time exception and allowed JR to sit in the front seat on the way back from the rental company, a twenty five minute drive on two freeways. Luckily there was no traffic and JR was well aware of the dangers of sitting in the front seat so she stayed put and focused. We made it home in plenty of time for another nap!

Before heading to A Ton of Fun, we stopped at H-Mart to purchase our supplies for the fruit and vegetable platters. Cherry tomatoes, baby carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, sugar snap peas, celery and cucumber constituted our choice for vegetables. As for fruit, we settled on apples, bananas, grapes, pineapple and kiwi. I had wanted some cantaloupe or honeydew but we did not see any we liked. With our two bags in hand, we headed out into the cold and on our way.

Once home with the kids in bed, I prepped the vegetables and baked the second batch of cakes. I chopped the celery and onion for the tuna salad and washed and dried the platters. I covered the cooled cakes and refrigerated the produce. I brought the chairs in and wiped them down and sorted the decorations in preparation for tomorrow.

When Jannah-Rae woke up she asked to be given a role, and I had the perfect part for her to play: put together the "Party" sign. With a brush, pink paint, a sticker and glitter glue, she set about her task. Before long she had finished the sign that would direct out guests away from the front door and towards the garage door; the party would commence in the basement with free play and organised games while the kitchen/dining area upstairs were reserved for food and cake in the second hour of the celebrations. Once complete she moved on to allocating the party favors among her guests and organising our "Pin the Tail on the Donkey" game.

All that was left to do today was one last stop at the store to buy milk and juice for drinks and cream cheese for the frosting. That we did after picking Jeff up from work. Our day was now officially over. Tomorrow would be dedicated to assembling the cakes.

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