Holidays make me so giddy now. It's weird. I guess my lack of enthusiasm stemmed from young adult aloofness. But, my family always came together at holidays and made it fun for us, so I guess it shouldn't surprise me at all that I wanna do the same for the chiquita.
Our Easter came in three parts this year.
The first was a neighborhood celebration in Stepford, Bunnypalooza. It sounded like a fun idea and the girlie was so very excited. View the excitement:
|Running to the park to see the Easter Bunny (which to my knowledge, she has no real concept of).|
The little one ran from the car (a block away), and into the event field, filled with gusto. There was a crowd, and jumpy castle things, and people she knew, and tents!, oh tents!, and more jumpy castles and-- yes, excitement.
I--as a mother, looked past the bright and shiny, and saw the crowds, and the lines. I tried to steer Leeloo towards the open craft tent - but no, she saw the great big (with slide and climbing log) bounce house.
So we went into line. And we waited. And she ran about. And came back and we waited. And she ran to the front of the line and I coaxed her back and we waited. And she tried to pull me to the front of the line, but I convinced her to hold our ground, and we waited. And about 20 minutes later (two toddler lifetimes), we were next.
This was a big bouncy castle, like the penthouse version. I sized up all the kids in front of us and they looked around Leeloo's size, so I felt ok about it. She pulled off her socks and shoes and clambered up the bouncy slope into the abyss.
This is where my mommy vision went into 5 second slow motion cycle: She's in...she's smiling...she's balancing...I can jockey for position and see her clearly...she looks unsure...she sees me...she smiles...she's balancing... she's jumping!...she's giggling!...she's so happy...she's - what?
There was a blur of blond and then a grunt. Leeloo was down and an 8-yr old little girl pushed herself up off of her and bounced away. My girlie is tough. She has brothers that knock her about constantly so she can take a whollup. This time, she froze, assessed the damage, made eye contact with me and said "ow, mami, ow head", then started to cry. She made her way out, wailing. I held her and moved away from the castle, trying to soothe her, but really it just made her even more upset. She was holding her head in pain but so sad that she wasn't back in the castle. I suppose I should be grateful for her resolve, but at that point I was not gonna shove her back into the melee. More upset.
Eventually (after ten minutes or so of her crying and cuddling and running back to the line and cuddling and pleading for more), I bribed her with a cookie.
The egg hunt for 1-2 year olds happened simultaneous to her meltdown. So once I calmed her down they were on to the 3-5 year hunt. The hunt was in a small fenced yard--maybe 50'x50'--with only one side opened. There was no real "hiding" of the eggs, just groups lying on the ground. In front of the one open side there were parent and kids and older siblings lined up ready to go. When they finally gave the hunt order it was chaos. At first we couldn't get passed the parents standing and watching, the we couldn't make it around the kids getting the eggs, so in desperation I picked the girlie up and like a running back tried to take her to our goal--an untouched egg-filled corner. With great maneuvering we got there, but as soon as I set her down the eggs were gone, mostly picked up by older siblings who were "helping". We left with an empty basket.
After that I decided to abandon Bunnypalooza and head down towards the playground. Eventually all her little friends made it there and she had a great time with them, but it took an hour or so of me watching them to let the frustration subside.
The second egg hunt we attended was much smaller. The day before Easter our complex decided to do there own little hunt. We bounded down and waited for the doors to open.
|Waiting with Wawa.|
After meeting creepy bunny she had to wait again. I'm all about teaching my daughter patience - but seriously, there is only so much you can ask a 2 year old to endure.
The second egg hunt happened in a much smaller area. But the chiquita was still no match for the older kids. Her abuelita and I managed to steer her towards one egg but that was all. Luckily she didn't really think that she was missing anything. Especially since the hunt was at the pool. I let her put her feet in, but she was all in (fully dressed), in minutes. Time to start swim lessons again!
The day started with her basket:
|Contents: Coloring books, a birdhouse, box full of "jewels" and small little things.|
|Her first jewelry box.|
|Best matchbox car ever.|
|Grandpa joined us for Easter morning.|
After eggs we got dressed and put all our things together to head to the park where we invited all her friends for a picnic. All week my mom and I worked to make small gifts for the kids. We ended up with super cute chickies and sock bunnies.
|Little felt chicks in eggs.|
|Sock bunnies from my own recycled socks.|
|Ripley loves her little bunny.|
The park was wonderful. We have a small circle of families that we do a lot of things with. All of our kids are the same ages and they see each other many times throughout the week. The kids play so well together and the parents are all very nice and genuine. We are lucky to have a good circle.
Our picnic was fairly simple. We had snacks, bubbles, little paper airplanes, sidewalk chalk, and our own egg hunt. The night before I went out and bought more eggs, determined that the kids would not be left wanting. I admit now that I went a little overboard, and I'm ok with it.
|Michaels had the best bubble wand.|
|Flying a paper kite with her Uncle.|