Sunday, March 9, 2008

Birthday cakes are EVIL !

Hey !


Wow, This weekend has just whizzed by. I can't believe that it's Sunday night already - and I'm no where near being prepared for Monday. Of course, regardless of what kind of weekend I have, being unprepared for Monday seems to be the one constant.

After having a houseful of kids last night, who really have no concept of how Day Light Savings Time works, nor the effects that it has on people over the age of 30, I grudgingly crawled out of bed at 11:00 AM this morning. The fact that Roy, who went to bed at a normal hour, was already up with all the kids meant nothing. My house was the typical Sunday morning train wreck and I had only an hour to get myself together, load up the kids in the car, and get to Chuck E. Cheeses for Caleb's Birthday party. Before I could even wrap my mind around all the steps required to pull off such a feat, my hubby informed me that he had a call that he had to take care of, and he would meet us at the party. Okay, no problemo.

Jasmin had planed a three year old's fantasy birthday for Caleb - which means it was total insanity. I don't know how, but we somehow managed to get there ten minutes early, just as Jasmin, Jason, and Caleb arrived. Caleb came bounding in dressed for the occasion, his blonde hair spiked, wearing an orange sweat suit, a t-shirt that said "My parents are EXHAUSTED !", and a big smile. After we all had our left wrist stamped with the secret, glow in the dark code, that supposedly insures that no one leaves with a kid that doesn't belong to them; We made our way through the Chaos to find our reserved table, already decorated with balloons, party plates, and cups.

As if the noise of a couple hundred screaming children wasn't enough, all the party tables are located directly in front of the stage where a 9 foot tall animated mouse danced and sang along to bouncy 1980's dance videos, (starring Chuck E. Cheese, himself) that played on several giant T.V. screens. As the Children arrived, they were each given a cup full of tokens to to feed the various arcade games and rides. In return, the games spit out tickets for high scores to be exchanged for worthless junk toys at the redemption booth. Exactly the sort of thing that kids love !! It's always fun to watch the occasional greedy, spoiled child running from game to game, their hands, and every available pocket, overflowing with literally hundreds of tickets. They're usually the ones that are wailing that they still don't have enough tickets to buy the giant blow up octopus, or whatever it is that they must have.

While Jasmin and Jason greeted the guests, Heather and I took turns shepherding Caleb as he ran from place to place plunking his tokens into the hungry slots. Of course he had no idea how any of the games worked, he just picked the loudest, brightest machines with the most buttons to push.

It's funny how all the kids run out of tokens about the same time, and come wandering back to the table one by one, just in time for pizza. You would think that they would have all kinds of stories of arcade adventure to share, but half an hour in the game area leaves them absolutely famished ! They all wolfed down their pizza just in time for the Happy Birthday song, and a trio of candles. Jasmin started to worry that they were running out of time, so she started cutting the cake and handing the slices of cake to me, to pass around to all the guests. By the time that everyone was served a chunk of chocolate, sugar frosted, heaven, with blue dye #3, Jasmin had several extra pieces cut. I set them aside for anyone who might want seconds, and snatched a tiny piece for myself.

Roy had finally arrived, and I stood next to him as I watched Caleb tear into his gifts. As everyone smiled and commented on his gifts, I savored every sweet, creamy bite. Eventually, my mind started to drift, recalling how birthday cake was always a special treat at our house when I was growing up.

My great Aunt Bea who cooked, cleaned, and cared for, myself and my 3 brothers, was a wonderful cook, but not terribly creative. She specialized in down home, country cooking. Things like basic meat and potato meals. The meat was almost always fried, and she knew 101 ways to prepare potatoes. (mashed, boiled, deep fried, potato cakes, potato soup, potato salad, etc) And we always had couple of vegetable dishes at each meal, nothing very fancy, but always tasty. However, when it came to baking sweets and pastries, she either didn't have the time or interest. My mom has always been (and still is) a sugar freak, but not home made, store, or bakery bought sweets. Birthday cakes were always special ordered from Madame J's Bakery, and the cake was always the most magical part of birthdays.

By the time that Caleb was done opening his gifts, I looked down and realised that I had eaten THREE tiny (kids sized) pieces of Birthday cake !! To be honest, it wasn't that much, and I tried to convince myself that it was probably okay, since I didn't have time to eat breakfast; but deep down, I knew that I would pay for it later.

I returned home ( with my normal number of children - two ) around 3:00. Before I even pulled into the drive, I was starting to feel that familiar high blood sugar sleepiness and unquenchable thirst. About two blocks from the house, I mentioned to the kids that I needed to take the dogs out for a long walk when we got home, you know, "since the weather was so nice . ." When I screw up, my mind starts trying to squirm out of the inevitable consequences. I rationalized that a couple two mile walks, behind a couple pairs of over excited big dogs, would would help me to burn off some of the calories, or inspire my body to produce some insulin . . . or something ! The last thing I wanted to do was spend a beautiful Sunday afternoon sleeping off birthday cake !
Have I ever mentioned that my dogs are psychic ? All I have to do is think the word "walk", and they start bouncing around with that "look" in their eyes. They had "that look" before I even walked through the door. By the time that I slammed down a can of diet coke, which did nothing except make me feel full, and even sleepier, they were whimpering, and jumping up on me frantically. I had every intentions of grabbing my sweater, putting on my sunglasses, and walking the dogs. Instead, a little voice in my head said "You can't take them out while their so excited, they will drag you for blocks ! Maybe if you lay down for just a second, they will calm down?" So I laid down on my bed, and the dogs jumped up and started licking my face and crying madly. I shooed them away by waving my arms at them and making promises. Just as they were starting to settle down, and my eyes were starting to flutter closed, Roy came home. The dogs ran full speed, over my body, to the door . Instead of rolling over and pulling up the blankets, I actually got up and let them drag me around the neighborhood for two hours. THEN, I came home, crawled into bed, and slept until 8 PM. Which is why I am sitting here at 3 AM blogging. Damn birthday cake! Stupid Day Light Savings Time !!! My sleep schedule is screwed again !!!

I think that I've rambled on long enough. I'm going to TRY to go to sleep now. It really was a lovely birthday party - I just wish that I had a little more self control !

Good night. Hope you all have a wonderful week !
Love,
Susan

1 howled back:

mel said...

Oh those birthday parties must be the western world over..the same! we have them here too, not chuckie cheese and not the concert part but the screaming, chasing crazy token parties and games and five million cherubs high on additives and food colouring. It's a lot of fun (NOT) but as a parent you just feel compelled to do it, crazy huh? the kids love it don't they.

I dont' know what it is about me or you...even when we know what the consequences will be, we use our brain to talk ourselves out of it. I couldn't say no to the cake either. Last night I couldn't even say no to a kit kat easter chocolate bunny block that was meant to be for easter . I had to eat the whole thing and then I was up till midnight buzzing around on too much stimulates. weeeeeeeee

have a great day today,

love mel x