There was a knock at the front door a few weeks ago. I’ve mentioned before that we don’t just throw open the door without asking who it is first. It could be those crazy delivery guys so I asked, “Who is it?” “It’s Angela, Bianca and Carla.” (Not their real names) I could hear Grampy in the office giggling! I opened the door to three of the girls from across the street. Angela, the oldest of the three, explained that Carla was having her 6th birthday party on Saturday. Could Amara come? Amara wasn’t here but I knew she would want to go so I told the girls yes. The plan was she would come over early that afternoon, go to the party, and then spend the night with us.
The morning of the party arrived and so did the super gigantic bouncy water slide! We have rented bouncy houses before but I had never seen anything like this. Actually, I hadn’t really seen it. They had set it up in their front yard with the back of the slide facing us. Did I mention it was huge? It was three more hours before the party, we were already hearing squeals of delight, and I knew Amara was going to have a blast.
When they got here, Amara came running into the house asking if she could go change. She keeps a bathing suit here and she couldn’t wait to get it on and get out the door! She ran to her room to change as Bianca came to the door to see if she was ready yet. I just love that she has these great friends in our neighborhood. I walked Amara and the presents over as soon as she was ready. Amara had gotten Carla a Birthday Barbie – of course! I gave their Mom my phone number and told her to either call me or send Amara back across the street whenever they were done. I wondered over an hour or so later just to take some pictures and to check on everyone. That slide was awesome! They would climb up one side of it, which had a strong river of water coming down it that made it extra fun. At the top was a bouncy platform where they could propel themselves into the air and down the other side of the slide and end up in the 2-foot deep pool below. They had lots of parental supervision, too!
They were having a great time and I went back to the house where I could sit at my desk and listen to them. Amara came home a few hours later with a big piece of cake for Grampy and I to share. Well actually, she came to change into dry clothes so that she could go back for more hot dogs and “two piñatas, Grandma”. I was smart and threw her suit and towel in the dryer. Two hours later she came back to put it on again. They were back to playing on the slide. It was a warm gorgeous day out. Amara finally came home completely exhausted at around 7:30. She’d had three hot dogs and cake so she wasn’t really hungry. At 8 PM, she announced she’d changed her mind and would like that pizza after all! So we ordered pizza! After all, it was a birthday weekend!
Amara slept really well that night but by 8:30 Sunday morning, she was up, dressed with her bathing suit under her shorts and wanted to go see if the girls were up. The deflated water slide was calling to her. She was hopeful. Being the old fashioned Grandma that I am and knowing that the parents had probably gotten to bed late; I told her we had to wait until after 9 AM. When she finally got to knock on the door they weren’t completely awake but they were up and putting on bathing suits. The water slide was going to be picked up so we were headed back to our house. They’d had some of their cousins at the party and they had spent the night. Angela is 12 and she was taking advantage of having one of her older cousins around to hang out with so she wasn’t coming over. Instead, we got a new playmate, Daria, their 7-year-old cousin so I still had four girls. Within a few minutes, we had dragged out the Jacuzzi tubs, the chalk and the soakers. A few minutes later, I was drenched! For being new to our little group Daria did not hesitate to see how wet she could get me! I may have intentionally turned my back on her a couple of times so that she could get me good and feel like part of the group as all the other girls screamed with joy. They like it when I get wet. We were all having fun.
I have some interesting conversations with these girls. Carla, the 6-year-old birthday girl wants to have a sleepover. Here. All of them. A six year old, 2 seven year olds and a nine year old. I asked her where they would all sleep. I asked her if she had a sleeping bag. She looks up at me with her big brown eyes “Do you have a sleeping bag?” I told her I do not. I have a vacu-seal cube in the garage that has spare blankets in it. Somehow she had scoped them out already. She pointed to them as she exclaimed “We could make sleeping bags.”
Now I did learn one lesson very quickly – 9 AM is too early! None of these kids had eaten anything and everyone was starving. Carla really wanted to have another tea party. Those sandwiches had been so good. I was out of peanut butter. Daria wanted to know if I would make her pancakes! She told me she was hungry as she rubbed her belly. I was not foolish enough to take on those four girls alone in my kitchen while I made them pancakes! They got Popsicles. I did go over and ask their Dad first if it was OK!
When they had chalked, drenched and eaten their Popsicles they wanted to adjourn to the backyard! I am about 90% convinced we are going to have to get a new swing set! The old one is dying and Amara and her friends don’t seem ready to give it up anytime soon! At least here, they can use it year round. They hula hooped and jumped rope. Someone suggested we play Marco Polo and somehow I was it! Once again, I don’t know who was having more fun, them or me. They were giggling and running by and poking me as they dashed away. Can you see my grin?
Was it really only two hours? It felt so much longer. By 11 AM Amara was starving and we really had planned to make pancakes together so she decided it was time to send the girls home. We only had an hour before The Kids would be here to pick her up. We made pancakes and colored them purple and green. I warmed up the syrup and some peach filling that I had frozen when we made the pop tarts. Amara poured and flipped the pancakes and Grampy joined us for a wonderful late breakfast of pancakes, coffee and orange juice. We had to skip the bacon this weekend, as there just wasn’t enough time. Next visit!