Wednesday, June 06, 2012

the hostess-in-training

Ella and I hosted our neighborhood playgroup this afternoon. The trouble with hostessing when you are two years old is that you can't actually know that you're hostessing until about half an hour before the party. Otherwise, you'll be too excited and you won't be able to sleep. Which would ruin your nap, which would make you so tired during your party that you'll lie down on the floor in the living room.

But that didn't happen.

(As an aside, I have learned not to tell Ella about any plans for the future. She has no concept of time, so if I tell her she has a swimming lesson next week, she's "socks and shoes!" and standing at the door ready to go to the pool. That nap/party thing did happen, because in a moment of amateurish weakness over Memorial Day weekend, I told her, "After you take a nap, we're going to a party at your friend's house." It worked to get her into the crib, but then she just kept saying, "Friend's house, friend's house, friend's house." Even when I told her that her friend was napping so she could grow big and strong, so she couldn't play yet. Also, just in case you're wondering, it's silly to mention watermelon if you're not 100% sure that there is watermelon available immediately.)

As with any party, you expect there to be a certain amount of attrition for a playgroup. Kids get sick or tired or impossible-to-be-with-and-not-fit-for-company. It happens. You also expect people to be fashionably late. Or she's-still-napping late, or we-had-to-change-a-diaper-again late, or I-couldn't-find-matching-shoes late. It happens.

For a little while, after I set up the juice boxes, pretzels, watermelon and water bottles, I thought maybe no one was coming.

Ella and I went into the backyard to blow bubbles while I watched the door (she had been standing at it saying, "friends!" at one point, pointing and saying, "people!" because the painters working on the house across the street were standing on the sidewalk). I wondered what the chances were that she would forget that I told her her friends were coming over, if no one did.

I decided we should do what any good hostess would do while contemplating the party-that-wasn't.

We started drinking.

I can probably count on one, maybe two, hands the number of juice boxes Ella has consumed in her life. This juice is organic 100% juice in a size just right for toddlers. That's how you can tell I'm a first-time parent. Whatever happened to Capri-Sun and Hi-C?

This is good stuff, Mommy! I don't care who comes over, can I have more juice?
 Luckily, people did start coming over. First, an adorable little 10-month-old and her mommy. Then, two of our boy friends came by with their mommy. Ella gave a tour of the house and gleefully shrieked when she realized she got to start sharing her toys. (I'm serious. She's good at sharing. So far.)

Look, guys! I have a car with a screwdriver and a wrench, and it sings! And blocks! And drums! And drumsticks! Oh, wait. The mommies hid the drumsticks...

You're turn!
After a while, our needs-to-take-a-nap friend's mom came over with her mommy and her little sister. That's when things really got going. And by going, I mean, running!

Ella and Bella took turns pushing the grocery cart. I wish I had a video of Bella stopping and saying, "It's your turn to push the cart, Ella."

Ella was having even more fun than usual running through the house, which generally involves making a sound something like what you hear when you talk into a spinning fan and your voice warbles "running! running! running!"
By the end of the playgroup she was spent. Lying on the floor, looking up at me and saying, "Eat! Eat! Eat!" because the mommies started talking about what we were going to do for dinner spent.

I'll just lie here while you try to figure out what to do with those stickers and books. I'm sure you'll figure it out. I'm in no rush.
All in all, we love hosting playgroups. We are a party-hosting kind of family, this Anderson clan. The only bummer about today's playgroup is that we still have so many juice boxes leftover.

1 comment:

B. Wilson said...

Definitely hilarious. I particularly love the first couple paragraphs.

Your picture commentary says it all. Ella was obviously exhausted after all that!