Saturday, October 13, 2007

Sugar, Archery, and Vomit: Happy Birthday, Sam!

Many apologies for the length of this post. If you are not related to me, I fully expect you to scan the photos and then wait for my next post. My mom, my mother-in-law, and my sister, however, are required to read the whole thing. There will be a quiz.

Somehow, while I was busy aging, Sam did too. My little dude, who was born, like, a week ago, turned six years old yesterday. That's big-kid age. He's not a baby, he's not a toddler, he's not even a pre-schooler. He's six.

Good God.

My total astonishment that I could somehow have a six-year-old aside, I was super pleased to discover that his birthday fell on a Saturday this year. What that means is that instead of dragging it out over a week of parties and actual birthdays, his celebration was contained in one day.

One incredibly exhausting day, but one day nonetheless.

Pancakes at IHOP started our day. Then it was back to our house to prepare for Sam's party.

This party took the shape it did largely because Alex and I looked up from our daily lives a couple weeks ago and realized it was already October and that Sam was fully expecting a party. Okay, I guess we'll have it at our house. We can't count on good weather, so we'll do it inside. We don't know any of the kids or families from kindergarten, so we'll invite old buddies from preschool. We can't think of a single damn thing for a theme, so we'll send out invites that look like recipe cards and call it a cooking party. We don't want to actually have to cook pizzas that the kids make, so we'll have them decorate cupcakes and make sundaes.

We have ourselves a party!

I would like to take this moment to pat myself on the back for actually honest-to-God baking for this party. I'm the queen of the store-bought cake, and am actually thrilled that when you send cupcakes to school they have to be from the store. But I needed bald cupcakes for the kids to decorate. I'm such a non-baker that I actually considered ordering naked cakes. Then I came to my senses. And I baked. And not only did I bake, but I baked heart-shaped cupcakes:

Can't you just feel the love oozing out of those little delicacies?

We were all set up and kids started to arrive. With my three and a couple of extra little siblings, we had an even dozen kids. NOT a baker's dozen, because I'm not a baker. (Oh, I crack myself up.) They played for awhile and then I pulled out the potholders and fabric paints I had ready for the kids to paint.

Whose dumb idea was it to give 12 kids aged two to six fabric paints inside my house? Oh, that's right. Me.

No, it actually went really well, except that some of them finished painting their potholders in about five minutes flat so I had to give them the aprons I hadn't planned to let them paint on. I had intended to let them wear them during the cake and sundae part of the party, but this seemed to be a better use for them. They made some beautiful creations: spiders and butterflies, abstract designs, their names. One kid informed me that the red lines radiating down his apron were blood because it was a Halloween apron. Jack decorated his potholder and then folded it in half, making an incredible mirror image. The only thing is that some of those potholders and aprons aren't going to dry for about a week because of the pools of paint on them. But they'll be cute when they finally do solidify.

More playing, some pizza. Then the main event: I presented the cupcakes and we sang happy birthday and then I brought out the stuff: sprinkles, frosting, ice cream, chocolate sauce, sprinkles, blue and green sugar crystals, cherries, sprinkles. Sprinkles.

Oh, and Reddi-Wip.

Here's an idea for a party. Don't do anything except give each child a can of Reddi-Wip. These 12 kids went through an entire two cans of this stuff. Watching these small people discover how to work the cans and seeing them delight in it piling up on their plates and in their bowls is perhaps the most entertaining thing I've seen this year. Go out right now, but a can of Reddi-Wip and give it to your child. You won't be disappointed.

Anyway, back to the story. The kids sat and happily crammed sugar into themselves for a half hour while the grown-ups that were there watched with mouths agape. Then I had 12 kids running manically up and down my stairs, in and out of rooms, up and off of all our play equipment. Oh, they were hepped up. And they moved in a pack too. I was in the basement with a friend, while Alex was upstairs with a few other parents. There would be a flurry of craziness when the herd of kids swooped in and then silence after they stampeded back upstairs.

Needless to say, after the party we had some mandatory quiet time while Quinn took a nap. We let Sam open his presents after Quinn woke up. He was delighted with everything. (Sam was, not Quinn. Quinn was decidedly surly. More on this later.) I continued in my tradition of buying gifts for my children that I would regret giving them ten minutes after they unwrapped them. (See: the three plastic swords I got Jack for his birthday.) I'm not regretting the blunt-arrow archery set I got Sam yet, but I fear that I might regret it at some point in the near future. Sam and Jack, however, were ecstatic.

While Alex was outside teaching them to [gulp] shoot, Quinn continued to get surlier. I laid him down on the couch and put a blanket over him only to have him throw up all over it minutes later. Who's the saddest?

He threw up a few more times and was lethargic all afternoon leading me to believe that he might be really sick. But by dinner he was all better and wanted to eat dinner (and after-dinner cake), leading me to believe that maybe he just ate himself sick at the party. Maybe two-year-olds aren't meant to be given unlimited access to sugar. Hmmmm.

And because I'm a firm believer in (store-bought) cakes after birthday dinner, I'd gotten Sam a super cool Darth Vader cake from the store. Maybe this is why I've got those extra pounds to lose. Perhaps I should have been content with the pancakes and the cupcakes and the ice cream. I don't think they ate a single healthy thing today. It was shocking, even for the Stimey household.

But look how happy that cake made him:

And when Alex asked, "How much do you think George Lucas gets per cake?" Sam answered, "Delicious!"

Happy birthday, my big boy. You're a special little big dude.


  1. Wow!! What a day!! I'm glad the party went well.

  2. I wish I could have been there! What fun. Y.M.

  3. Happy Birthday, Sam! What a cake!

  4. Hey, we aren're related and I LOVED this post! OMG, the sugar high at your house...ROFLMAO! Hope Quinn is fine now?

  5. This was hilarious. So take off the disclaimer meant for non-relatives. Sounds like the party was very fun, and I do plan to steal some of your ideas, since I also have a 6 year old bd party coming up and am completely at a loss for a theme. Thanks!

  6. AND vomit! Now THAT'S a party!! And there wasn't even alcohol served. Right?

  7. Oh, I call my boy my little dude!

    I second Nicksmom and say I loved this post!

    Hope my party for Boo, a week from Sunday is as successful as yours. Even if it did end with vomit.

  8. which all bows you use? i love recurve bows

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