|Anders, Peter, Lars and Drew Feasting on Gluten-Free Cupcakes|
Lars's birthday is always a drawn-out affair. His actual birthday is the day after Christmas, which is never a good day to throw a party, so I always aim for the first weekend after school resumes to ensure a good turnout. Lars opted for a sleepover party this year, which was a first for us. So we had a total of six little boys "sleeping" (hah!) at my house last night for Lars's 11th birthday party. Lars invited three of his classmates, and Anders invited one of his best buddies as well. Other parents had braced me with battle stories of sleepover parties gone by, but all things considered, I think our night went pretty well.
|Sam, Anurag and Anders|
|Wonder Woman favors for 5th grade boys? I don't think so...|
Yesterday morning when I said I had to go to the party store to take care of goody bags, Bernie surprised me by announcing that he had already taken care of that. Umm, Love -- you do know those are Wonder Woman treat boxes, don't you? Bernie said, "What? No they aren't! Those are just stars!" I pointed out the Wonder Woman crown and he was all, "They won't even notice." Hmmm... I decided to invoke my Queen of the Universe Veto Powers on this one. I got Pokémon balloons and party favors instead, and added glow sticks and rock star temporary tattoos along with the leftover Halloween candy that went into each box.
|Mom to the Rescue!|
Someday, my son owes me a huge thank you for this, don't you think? If we're ever in a life-or-death situation where Lars can only save one parent, I'm totally going to bring up the Wonder Woman party favors. ;-)
The boys played a lot of Playstation and Nintendo DS games, stopping only for pizza and cupcakes. On the advice of moms who'd been in the sleepover trenches before me, I confiscated electronic devices at 11 PM and enforced a lights-out policy at midnight. I had the four fifth grade boys sleeping downstairs in the living room, away from the toys in Lars's bedroom, and away from the two third graders, who slept in Anders' bedroom.
|"The Tell-Tale Heart," illustration by Harry Clarke|
I offered to read a bedtime story to the 5th grade boys and was delighted when they took me up on it. I read them The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe, the one where the narrator is recounting how he killed an old man, dismembered him, and concealed the body under the floor boards of his room just because he didn't like the way his eyeball looked. It turned out to be a good pick -- none of the boys had heard or read the story before, it was suitably scary in the semi-darkness, and a couple of their vocabulary words from school were in the story. I told them they would definitely run into that story in school again someday, and they'll think, "Hey, that's the one Lars's mom read to us!"
At about 12:30 I told them they could continue whispering as long as I couldn't hear them from upstairs, and when the boisterous boy energy still had not subsided by one o'clock in the morning, I called downstairs, "Boys, you need to start discussing which one of you should be the first to leave." I was thinking they could vote on which child got relocated to another room like on the Survivor television series, but I think they misunderstood and thought I was threatening to actually send someone HOME because they quieted down immediately and I didn't hear another peep for the rest of the night. Bernie heard something around 2:30 in the morning, though, and when he snuck downstairs he caught Lars with my iPhone, entertaining his friends with YouTube videos. I was not pleased about this, and I'll be changing my iPhone password today.
This morning we had pancakes, waffles, and scones, and even coaxed a few parents inside to sit down and have coffee with us when they came to collect their children, which was nice. It's a good group of boys, and we enjoyed getting to know them all a little better.
Now that Lars's birthday is behind me, the holiday season finally feels over. I usually like to leave my Christmas decorations up until Epiphany, but since we decorated a week early this year I'm tired of looking at Christmas trees already. The rest of this weekend will be spent undecorating the house, doing laundry, and cleaning up the clutter that accumulated over the holidays and getting reorganized and back to normal. But first, I need a NAP!