The house filled with relatives and not one fight broke out. Wait, these were mostly Jason's side of the family, where there have been fights but the 'difficult' topics have been moved to the side and those who can't not bring it up have stopped coming around. Translation: they are just as screwed up as every other family, but we're living in a peaceful era these days.
Lucy's Denver grandparents flew in Wednesday and immediately started the process of getting familiar with the ever changing child. My mom arrived Thursday and it didn't take too long for Lucy to be comfortable with the "strangers" who had moved into our house. I wonder at what age she starts having memories of these people who love her so very much. It doesn't take her long to relax and play but (vainly so) it is pleasing how much she still runs to mama when she can. As long as I stay out of her line of sight she's happy. With multiple grandparents in the house I can get stuff done. By stuff I mean, hanging party decorations.
Thursday was Lucy's actual birthday and to celebrate she had an appointment with Dr. Robin, our pediatrician. The appointment went well, we got the ok to feed her anything we want (peanut butter, fish…) with safety in mind. It will be a while before she is given a handful of peanuts or other choking hazards. Lucy cried during the weigh in (but what girl doesn't) but then recovered until the dreaded peak into her ears and mouth. We calmed her again but there were the shots… poor little peanut. The only "upside" to the shots is that she screams so much that we get a good look at her teeth. (a small consolation.)
Lucy was kind enough to be happy during a lunch out and then took a lengthy nap. We let her open a gift and gave her a slice of birthday cake. We figured that doing it on her actual birthday with a small audience would be less stressful than the major event Saturday with 26 of her closest friends and family looking on. Oh, we did that too, but it was a lot less fun for her.
Friday, after a morning of play we dumped the one year old at "school" and we went to John Howie Steak House for lunch. We also ran some errands to prepare for the big event the next day. Jason and his dad made spaghetti sauce for 26 and in doing so cleared our spice cupboard. If you need us next weekend we'll be downtown at Penzy's purchasing oregano, fennel and basil.
Saturday we finished cleaning the house (which means taking all those little things that live on the counters and hiding them in places where they will never be found again) and prepared for the onset of the party guests. Our first guest arrived at noon and the last person left around seven. These are great people who break up into loud and happy groups. We pulled together lunch while keeping Lucy happy and visiting with our guests. It takes a village to feed a village. Even with the sauce made ahead and warming in a huge crock pot finishing the pasta, the bread and whipping up a massive Caesar salad was coordinated effort. (Huge thanks to Jas' mom who handwashed and tore the lettuce) and made me look like the hero when I whipped up a fresh salad in no time flat.
We fed the people, and then opened gifts. Lucy enjoyed opening the boxes, but probably would have been happy to stop after the first box was opened. There was a rather large influx of toys into her world Saturday. We're in discussions about how to limit the overwhelming nature of 20 new toys. Some items may be 'set aside' for a bit and I think we'll weed out some of the stuff that isn't as popular. We'll see, there is still a hope that our entire main floor does not become a 100% dedicated kid space.
The birthday cake plan at the party didn't go as well as I had envisioned. She cried when we plopped her down, she calmed enough to endure being serenaded and I was careful to keep the cake with the candle out of reach… well, not careful enough. Her little hand was reaching towards the lit candle and I blew it out as fast as I could, but she grabbed the hot smoking wick and burned her little thumb. Bad Mama! No permanent damage was done, but I feel terrible.
Once the public display portion of the party was over, Lucy was happy again. Clearly this party was more about our survival of the first year vs. a party for Lucy. Next year we will keep it to a dull roar, perhaps a present from mommy and daddy and dinner.
Sunday we finished reclaiming the house and I had to get ready to leave. I left on a 5:00pm flight to San Francisco. Thankfully, Jason's mom is hanging out at our house until Wednesday. While Lucy comes down off the disruption of her schedule it will be handy for Jason to have some help. This morning that meant that she was able to take a long long nap before going to school. Hopefully tonight, when she's back in her own room and back on a 'schedule' that she'll sleep better tonight.
We're superbly blessed with a happy child who is bright, no health issues and she brightens our world every day. I loved Lucy at day one, but at year one I'm excited about her personality, her humor and the life she has ahead of her.