May 29, 2013

Our first block party ... after 13 years

We've been in our house for 13 years, but last Saturday was the first time we've been invited to and been able to GO to our neighborhood block party.

It takes place in the cul-de-sac behind our house, and every family pitches in a little bit. We took Asian Slaw, one of my favorite side dishes. They throw hot dogs on the grill and they boil shrimp, and everybody brings a side dish or dessert.

There was some gooooood food there.

 Our kids all gravitated toward the fruit kabobs. I think Jake and Amelia each ate five.

I didn't eat any of the shrimp, but word on the street was that it was delicious.

My friend Megan's husband Stephen was one of the grillmasters of the evening ... and our Neighbor We'd Never Met, Guy Locker, was his partner in crime. The crime being the shirts they wore.

We all brought our own chairs, and people spread out everywhere ... and pets roamed free. It was a great time.

Amelia is obsessed with canned drinks right now. She's never had one, but she picks up our empty cans and pretends to drink out of them.

I do what I can to keep my children from eating directly off the streets, but clearly they just don't listen to me. Luckily only 40 or 50 people witnessed her eating this cookie off the ground.

After supper, the kids played in the surrounding yards; I was reminded of when I was young and we'd just pick up playing with whomever was around.

Have toys, will play. So simple.

Being in that protected little cove, it was easy for the adults to relax and visit while the kids played nearby.

Of course OUR children had to turn innocent games of Corn Hole (I HATE THAT NAME) into beanbag dodgeball, but I've resigned myself to the degeneration of pleasant party activities into something more closely resembling The Hunger Games at this point in my life.

Amelia was BESIDE HERSELF when she stumbled upon a Toy Story camping chair in the big circle. I thought she was going to try to drag it home behind her.

Instead she just spent 10 minutes having me call out each character's name so she could point to them individually.

 When I finally managed to tear her away, she ran over to join the boys in the Lockers' yard.

No matter what's being thrown, hit or flung, Amelia gets right in there with the big kids. Never crosses her mind that she shouldn't be there, that she wouldn't belong.

There were lots of young girls there, but Amelia didn't gravitate toward them at all. She headed straight for the rough-and-tumblers.

Being here this year made me want to be here again next year ... the block party was a lot of fun! And next year Amelia might be big enough to try to take some of those boys DOWN.

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