Well, we did it. We hosted the entire neighborhood in our backyard on Saturday night. All 25 homes were invited and I believe 12 families came. Some of the whole weekend was admittedly a blur...so I could be off by a standard deviation of +-2 families.
I have to say I've gotten old and lazy and not used to serious work in my current occupation as queen of all things on the cul-de-sac. I started working my ass off on Friday night with runs to Trader Joes and the local grocery. I woke early Saturday morning and took the Muffin Man and the little ladies to the Costco. It was almost all I had to keep the Muffin Man on track through the Costco aisles where he seemed more interested in $350 slip and slides than ground beef or ground sirloin. We opted for the ground sirloin burgers even though they posed a $3.00 higher price tag, thank you very much. The girls were slurping down free samples of Sara Lee strawberry cake quicker than I could toss napkins into the back of the cart. After Costco, I offered to run to get ice...at yet another store.
This is the part that put me over the edge. Upon arriving at home I schelped 10 bags of ice to the backyard and deposited them in coolers. Next was emptying all sorts of liquid refreshments into the coolers. Then carefully labeling "adult" and "kidlet" coolers. Wouldn't want to have 2 fourteen year old Johhnys accidently dipping into the beer cooler. The muffin man tightened all screws on the swing set...why this could not have been done previously in the week I haven't been able to figure out. Since he was casually weilding a screwdriver I was forced to set up all tables and chairs. I then heard my back pop in the lower right quadrant while flipping a banquet table. Ouch. But no time to sit and rest. Table covers were placed on tables and the marquee was set up.
Off to the kitchen to make centerpieces of lemons, limes and oranges in glass containers filled with water. They were very pretty if I don't say so myself. (Although one neighbor did comment and asked what was up with the vases of water and fruit. To which I snappily replied, "Decoration, Dude." )
It was now 3:30pm and I was in desperate need of a shower. I hauled both children into the bedroom with me and told them each to comb the other's hair while I showered. At 3:37 I hopped out of the shower to see the end result of a talcum powder fight. I cleaned it up while threatening them both within an inch of their little lives. 3:39pm and I am sweating again. 3:42 I am sweating profusely since I chose to blow dry my hair. 3:54 I wipe off lipstick since I look like a heaving wet ball of perspiration with red lips. Not a nice combination. However, there was a consolation prize...my linen skirt fit nicely since I spent most of the day sweating off three pounds. BONUS!
Walk downstairs while shouting at the Muffin Man to please do something with HIS children. Hit flashing button on answering machine to hear 2 families RSVP 1 hour before party saying they are coming and if this poses a problem please call them back. WTF? I love the midwest.
People arrive as I am popping advil for my back. Honestly it was sort of non-eventful after it all got underway. Which I suppose I consider a success. There was the family that showed up with lots of children, I mean a half dozen, sporting their flagrant "Choose Life" tee shirts. I thought was sort of funny as they sat next to the ultra worldly well traveled super liberal sociology college professor. I noticed he was running for another beer after spending 20 minutes under the mother's thumb while she spewed her conservative "Catholic Identity" diatribe. Hilarious since I did not actually have to participate in that one.
My darling neighbors stayed and helped pull a 1/2 ton of crap out of the backyard into my kitchen under the threat of serious thunderstorms which ultimately did not happen.
At 10:15 I chased Ava up the stairs and told her I would see her at 10:00 tomorrow morning. Ha, yeah right. At least she passed out quickly. I then headed for the cooler of water sucking down 3, yes 3 bottles of water before staring at the tv in complete zombie like state. I limped off to bed and tried to remember such a physical day. Really, that was all I could think about.
The next morning..
One vow. Next party will be slightly more intimate as they say. As in less than 10 people.
All in all I think we did our part for world and neighborhood peace and good relations.
I'm off to eat leftover baked beans.