Some days I feel like I'm seriously just going to lose my mind. I hope Eric had a great birthday, but even with the grandest of gestures things, sometimes things still just go wrong.
I ran out of wrapping paper last night after having already been to Walmart TWICE yesterday. (and don't ask me what happened to the stockpile I created 2 months ago for Leo's birthday for emergencies such as this! I swear there is a black hole hidden somewhere in this house.)
When your kids already have every single thing they could possibly want, it makes picking out gifts for two birthday boys (Jason and Eric) born 3 years and 2 days apart, extremely difficult. Hence, returning to the store for a second attempt to even find something to wrap for them. I'm not going to say they don't have a lot because that would be a lie, but boys (unlike girls) like what they like. It comes down to a handful of things: Legos, electronics, super hero's, sports equipment, comics, and DVD's... and because I'm such a girly girl, I'm no expert in any of those subjects.
On my way home, I was alerted to the fact that Mark had left the interior light on in his Jeep and his battery was dead. It was so dead it couldn't even been jumped so since it was already 9:00 and WAY past everyone's bedtime, we left the Jeep for the night and vowed to deal with it tomorrow, only to realize that my AAA membership had expired in June. Womp... womp.
Then, our picnic birthday lunch at school today was interrupted by multiple giant daddy long legs and swarms of buzzing bees... and ended with me picking up Leo from school to make a run for the M.I.A wrapping paper stash. He had a major tantrum in the car because he was T-H-I-R-S-T-Y-Y-Y-Y-yyyyyy. I wouldn't stop on our 5 minute car ride home to buy him a drink to quell his tormenting thirst. I made the mistake of trying to video tape it on my phone to show him how ridiculous he was acting, but that only made him angrier ( don't worry we were suddenly stopped by a train.) I know it didn't put me in the A+ mom bracket, but sometimes I have to get creative with these kids. I'm not going to post it, but I know I got my point across.
It's at this point that I just have to mention that Mark also had to work tonight. He just started his new job as a cashier at Walmart. (ironic, I know... right?!) He needed to take another vehicle to work since his was parked in a lot and out of commission, so I rushed home from wrapping paper shopping, after the bee and daddy long leg infested lunch, and handed him my keys so he could take Tony's old car to work, not knowing that he had also taken HIS set of keys for the Jeep to work with him... leaving us with NO keys. Thankfully AAA (upon renewing today for $85 online) also unlock's doors as part of their services... picked our lock AND installed the new battery for an additional $130. I spent $215 on invisible luxuries today and I didn't even need to leave my neighborhood!
Fortunately for me, Nathalie was home to bake Eric's birthday cake while I was running all over town pulling my eyebrows out. Yet still, I managed to overlook one minor detail... frosting.
In a house that is stocked with enough pantry staples to feed a small army for a week... there wasn't a single container of frosting to be found. We were holding off on the birthday cake until Mark was home to celebrate with us so I ran up to Walgreens and paid almost $4.00 for the convenience of obtaining a $0.97 tub of flavored lard at almost 9:00 at night. They can charge those prices too, because when you need birthday cake frosting pronto... well? You just need it pronto. No amount of quarters or dollars will separate you from your glory of delivering on a terrible family rendition of "Happy Birthday" that your newly 11 year old son has been looking forward to all day, and I'd be gosh darned if we were going to sing it over a naked cake! (Can you even deny my black hole theory at this point?!)
I'd like to say that the night ended with a sweet, well versed rendition of Eric's "night you were born" story, but just before he blew out his candles, Jason pulled his infamous trick of trying to blow out all of the candles before the birthday kid could, that ultimately ended in a 20 minute power struggle between me and Tony Vs. Jason... and a pretty teary eyed Eric, who might have just been egged into misery by a set of itchy watery eyes.
Eric suffered a pretty bad allergy attack throughout the day. I think he might be allergic to freshly cut grass because ALL of the neighbors tonight (and the neighborhood landscapers) were out cutting our lawns before the rain while trying to beat garbage day to the curb... and he was simply miserable. His gorgeous blue eyes were just red and swollen beyond recognition.
My "night you were born" story took a little twist tonight and strayed from all of the specific details that I would have normally included in the past leading up to their birth, even omitting how the breaded chicken parmesan sandwich that my mom and Tony had brought back for me after going out to dinner, was the final inspiration for pushing through a difficult "sunny side up" birth. I was hungry, and I wasn't going to eat that sandwich cold!
Tonight I told Eric about the actual first night we spent alone in that hospital room over Labor Day weekend in 2003.
I told him that I must have kissed him a million times that night when it was just us in that overly air conditioned hospital room on a late August afternoon, just like today. I told him how I held him quietly in my arms, and how he fit so perfectly cradled inside of my elbow all through the night. I told him how I cried over him, because he was the first baby born without my dad waiting in line to hold his new little grandson.
We both shed some tears, but it's only because growing up isn't easy. Especially when you realize you're in the heat of it, and your constantly looking back through the rear view mirror of days gone by.
Sometimes things don't go the way we plan, so you just have to learn to roll with the punches. Deviate from the plan and release yourself from your own expectations so you can enjoy all of the twists and turns in the road, because God only knows... there's going to be a lot of them!
Happy birthday Rice. Love you forever!