Monday, February 28, 2005

The Socializing Weekend! A Party! Dinner! Way Too Many Exclamation Points!

But really, if your social life was as humdrum as mine, you'd be festooning your title with exclamation points, too.

It was an unusually busy weekend for us. On Saturday we went to a first-birthday party. With the unique chaos that a gaggle of little kids brings, I was wondering how Sean would handle the crowd. He surprised us---he walked into a room filled with kids and adults, none of whom he knew (or at least remembered), and greeted them with an enthusiastic "Hi, everybody!" He even participated in a "parade" as the kids ran around in a circle.

At cake time, though, the turtle returned to his shell. Sean wouldn't sing "Happy Birthday," and instead beat a hasty retreat into a different room to play by himself. I am so sympathetic to this tendency (remind me to tell you about my party phobias some day). Sean also had a little trouble with the "gift" concept; he couldn't understand why James got to keep all those presents, particularly the one we gave him, and asked if he could bring them home.

Jeff and I still remark over how our experience of attending parties has changed: we look after one child each, we switch off so that we can take turns gulping down some food, and we usually don't get to have conversations more involved than: "Hi, how are you? How are the kids/work/? Allie, where are you going? Sorry, I'll be right back."

On day 2 of the Big Social Event Weekend, we had dinner at a friend's house. I hadn't seen her in several months, and it was great to catch up. And drink wine, which I rarely do. Hooray for grown-up activity! Sean again got to play with other kids, and Allie got to meet an actual dog. She loves dogs in theory, but the closest she'd ever gotten to one was viewing our neighbor's dog from the window (and since this dog NEVER stops barking when he's outside, he gives Allie lots of opportunities to say "Woof woof" while pointing out the window). Our friend's dog is sweet but huge; true to form, the size didn't faze Allie in the least. She had such a good time and was so excited by this experience that she didn't fall asleep until 10:30.

So, on balance, perhaps exclamation points really aren't warranted. But it WAS fun.