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natal day

a few days ago paul saw a commercial for a giant cupcake pan and declared that he wanted that for his birthday cake.

in a panic, i told cam that we had to find that pan in a store because it was too late to order it. finally made it to a target friday night. they didn't have the exact pan (silicone), but they did have a very similar one made of metal. so we bought it, a box of cake mix and a container of frosting. (i would have preferred to do it all from scratch, but you can't have everything.) i planned to make the cake that night.

but then paul announced that he wanted to help make the cake, so that nixed the nighttime bake-off. and cam's parents suggested we go to disneyland, so that threw us into a puddle of confusion. not that we had firm plans for saturday, but we did think a family lunch party was in the works. paul agreed to disneyland (and to bring nola rather than leave her with the in-laws), so we tentatively decided to come by afterwards with cake.

fast-forward. paul no longer wants to help with cake, throws tiny fit about the giant cupcake pan being too small. paul wants pancakes for breakfast. i wake cam and get him to go out to buy round cake pans (because i have one square and a loaf pan). i throw cake ingredients into the mixer and cook pancakes with a baby girl on my hip. paul watches tv. when cam returns, it comes out that paul no longer wants to go to disneyland. cam and i instantly become frustrated and stressed-out wrecks. (yay, parenthood!) we dither around for a while (yes disney, no disney, yes grandpa's house, no grandpa's house), and then finally hit on a plan to just go to grandpa's house after lunch for cake and ice cream and presents. much easier and lower on stress because we (and they) don't feel obligated to make a big lunch.

paul was snitty. so much so that he and cam went back to bed for a minute or two so they could start the day over. it sort of worked.

we went a bit crazy on the presents. cam's dad and uncle went similarly crazy and bought model planes. as i scraped tiny nubs of plastic off the sides of tiny plastic parts with an x-acto knife, i remembered why i don't always like sewing. there's only so much leeway... cooking is more my speed. improv. dash of this, sprinkle of that. much better than 1/4" seam allowances and x-acto knives! but re the model planes -- it's a nice idea in theory, but paul is still a little boy, and these can only take so much playing. go ahead and call missing pieces and broken bits "battle damage" because he can accept that when his stuff breaks or goes missing. but when we get upset with him for not respecting his belongings, well, how much did we respect our stuff when we were that age? i'm sure we all went through periods of acting like our parents were made of money.

nola had a lot of fun. cam's sister had a friend visiting, and by the end of the day nola was comfortable enough to be carried by her all over the place.

cam and i snuck out to buy a birthday present for a next-door neighbor kid -- paul will be going over there for a birthday party on sunday afternoon. we wanted paul to come along to pick the present, but he threw a mini-fit. secretly i was glad, and it worked out fine because he told us to get legos and we found a nice little lego set that wasn't too old or too expensive.

one thing i've known about but yet didn't really see until today was paul's devotion to his new friends. i swear, once we got to cam's parents' house, i think i saw paul for a total of one hour out of five. it's so cute, but it's also a little irritating. like when we went to pick him up on friday night, he CRIED when he saw us and complained we were too early. um, buck up, kid, it's already bedtime. but i am pleased he has friends because i was a little concerned about his lack of connection to people his age.

the day worked out well, better than i was expecting. still think disney would have been nice, though.



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