Beach Birthdays: Not for the Weak

Birthday Week is over, and I think I am breathing again. Except that from the 3.5 days I was without internet access (hotel *said* there was free Wi-Fi, but it did NOT work EVER for me!), I amassed 13,000+ emails. That's right. There's not an extra "0" there. 13-THOUSAND emails. I've got it whittled down to 12, 510 as I write this.

Friday was hell. No, actually, it was Hell - capital "H." I ran around all morning doing last minute errands, packed up all of our stuff in super anal organized fashion (man we had a LOT of stuff!), did all of the last minute food prep, went for an oil change for the car, picked up hubby from work (he was *supposed* to have the day off to help in the morning. Grrrr), drove to the beach, checked in. Hung out on the beach for a bit (that part of the day was great), went back to hotel, attempted to decorate the cake and cookies, then spent the entire night trying desperately to get baby Tickle to go to sleep. She wouldn't have it. We did stories, rocked her, sang to her, let her walk around for a bit, gave her more milk, took her for a drive even, and she slept maybe a total of 4 hours. Total. Then, of course, it was time to "wake up" which was a silly thought since we barely went to sleep! Boo, thankfully, got some sleep. He was the only one.

(Pic below of dino egg cake + dino cookies)

Saturday, the day of Boo's birthday beach celebration, was a marvelous day. It wasn't sunny but it also wasn't windy at all (odd for the coast) nor did it rain at all. It was just right for us. We set out Boo's cake (which melted, by the way, in our hotel room after I had decorated it. PISSED was I. It looked like CRAP!), all of the food we brought, the cookies, and set out the sand buckets and shovels and dino toys for the kids' party favors. Friends and my parents arrived and Boo had a great time. Granted, he protested when it was time to sing Happy Birthday and blow out the candles, but we were fine with that. If you didn't know Boo, you'd probably be all sad that he missed out on that, but Boo is his own person and he does what he wants when he wants, and this was birthday celebration #3 for him last week, so hubby and I really didn't push the matter with him too much. He had a GREAT time and still talks about it. It was so nice of his friends and our friends to come out to the beach for Boo's birthday. He spent the rest of the day and night playing with his new toys, we went out to dinner with my folks, watched crazy people hold bonfires on the beach right outside our hotel room (it was freezing at night!), and then, by some miracle, both kids slept super soundly that night.

Will we do a destination kids birthday party again? Probably not. I absolutely love entertaining, cooking, baking, organizing, organizing some more, and putting together parties. But moving a kids party someplace that requires even more prep work days beforehand, packing, and additional "what if" planning is too much even for this crazy mama. So many people I know told me "what a great idea! Less stress!" To which I say a big fat "HA!" Is anything about a kids party or traveling with kids NON-stressful? Now multiply that stress times, oh, about a million. That's how stressful this weekend was for me.

Was it worth it though? (pause). Yes. I think so. Boo got the birthday party he has been talking about for the past 8 months. Tickle got to play on the beach that she loves so much. The ocean calms her, and it's so interesting to see her on the beach. They got to fly kites, build sand castles, search for seashells, watch the seagulls, build sand pits/forts, and just run around on the sand. For us as parents, it was just lovely to watch them be so happy and in love with a place that we have loved for so long.

But yes, I am glad to be back among working technology, and no birthday celebrations to plan for 11 more months. Even my 12, 510 emails in my inbox can't faze me now...! :)