Recently pregnant people shouldn't be allowed to plan their child's birthday parties. Or be at them. They, in fact, should be far, far away from anything remotely emotional, like at a conference for international arbitration, or an empty, dark room piping Muzak out of tan computer speakers.
Hormones, combined with a 4:30AM bedtime after a neurotic cookie-decorating/party-planning frenzy, had me tearing up every few minutes during the party and filling up with feeling of deep regret. Deep regret not about my parenting choices or the emotional damage I've caused my child, but instead about the facts that I didn't make the decorations I'd planned, that big bunny wanted nothing to do with his birthday cake, that I put too much pasta in the pasta salad (thus, throwing off the flavor/pasta ratio and rendering the salad uniformly bland), that I didn't get as many photos as I'd wanted, and that no one told me my suspenders were a couple centimeters off-center in the back.
Yeah. I know.
It wasn't until this morning, sitting with friends over coffee while our toddlers, well, toddled, that I came to the realization that my disappointment was selfish; it had everything to do with me and nothing at all to do with the kid. He had a spectacular second birthday, wasn't at all overwhelmed by the houseful of adoring fans (20+ adults and 20+ kids), had his daddy home from work, ate fifteen or so cookies cut into his favorite things, was showered with sweet and thoughtful loot that he's been holding onto with white knuckles since, and went to bed an extraordinarily happy boy. Oh, and the birthday cake rejection? It was because he only wanted more of those cookies.
Recording that list feels so good.
Happy Monday, vrienden. Here's to letting everything but the positive fall away.
p.s. Last year's bash can be re-lived HERE.
p.p.s. On the menu: spinach artichoke dip | strawberry cake made in this pan, with vanilla buttercream frosting (with a smidge of cream cheese added) | cutout cookies with royal icing (I found this tutorial incredibly helpful.)
*photos c/o Anthony Milkus