Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Charlotte's fan club

This past weekend Charlotte and I had two parties - on Saturday my brother and his fiancee had a big "bridal barbeque" (or, you know, a cook-out) and my friend Kelly had her bridal shower on Sunday. Chris and Megan live out in the Syracuse area, and so do Megan's parents, so they had the party in their very large, very nice backyard. Matt, Charlotte and I went out on Friday so we could settle in a little and visit before it got too crazy. Megan's parents, Bruce and Carla, were so psyched to see Charlotte - it's gonna be a while before Chris and Megan make them grandparents, and Megan's brother is even younger, so Charlotte's all the grandbaby they're gonna get for now. They were awesome and Charlotte warmed right up to all the gushy attention.

Matt and I had been looking forward to this party for a number of reasons: pig roast, hanging out with Bruce and Carla, seeing my family, playing outside, firepit, booze, etc...but one of the other things we were looking forward to was hanging out with other babies. I think I've mentioned it before, but Matt and I don't have any close friends with babies - we know some people who have just started having babies, but no one in our immediate circle of friends has kids. Chris and Megan's friends are on a completely different timetable, so there were two kids there who were pretty close to Charlotte's age. Conner, who is 13 months, and Lucas, who is two weeks younger than Charlotte. Matt and I were looking forward to seeing her play with them and just to talk to other people who are (hopefully) as obsessed with their kids as we are with ours.

All the parents were really cool, but since Conner's mom was the matron of honor and had other duties to attend to, we mostly hung out with Lucas's parents. Lucas and Charlotte were kind of fascinated with each other. Mostly Charlotte, I will admit. Lucas's Mom, MK, watches her sister's kids, so Lucas is used to other kids. Charlotte kept pointing at him and looking at me, like, "Holy shit, look at the baby!" She also would pat his arm, and he would smile at her and me. It was truly cute. However, when it came to toys, Charlotte was much more ambitious. She went after the older baby's toys. She particularly loved his little push n' sit whatever mickey mouse thing - Conner liked to push it around, and maybe ride it. Charlotte was obsessed with all the buttons, particularly the silly little shifter. Her uncle Josh is happy with this - he thinks she might be into performance automotives. I think he's already preparing to teach her to drive standard and help her find a rally car.

We got lots of compliments on how cute Charlotte is, which is always sweet, but does leave me feeling a little weird sometimes. She was also complimented for being "good" and friendly, which sits a little better. I don't know - I know that she's just a little baby, and there isn't a whole lot to comment on, but I really wish we could avoid the whole thing where girls always get complimented on their looks. I just worry about body image and things like that so much - yeah, she's only 10 months old now, but where is the line, and when do we cross it? I'll save that worry for another day, I guess.

The other fun thing about hanging out with other babies was the whole sharing of stuff - Charlotte played with Conner's toys, MK borrowed our umbrella stroller to wheel Lucas around to convince him to sleep, we all shared high chairs. I'm such a dork, but it made me happy.

(Charlotte and Matt playing with MK and Lucas)

Sunday my sister and I headed out from Syracuse with Charlotte to go to Kelly's bridal shower. It was hot and weird and altogether a little harder to get excited about that party - we were tired and partied out, though it was nice to see Kelly's future-sisters-in-law. They and her future mother-in-law are awesome people, and Charlotte did enjoy sitting with T and D, and also watching Kelly's "niece" Sadie, who is either 3 or 4, I forget. T had actually given us Sadie's old car seat, which we just installed last week, and we love it. Somehow, even though it looks much bigger, it takes up less room in the car. And it has armrests and Charlotte looks so silly and grown-up in it, just casually draping her arm over the armrest.

The party was lovely and kind of elegant, but there were a lot of people I didn't know and Charlotte got hot and cranky and refused to drink anything even though she was pouring sweat. She then took a sip of my lemonade and spilled it all over herself, so it was time to go. We wrapped up the trip with a wardrobe change, and we took off for home.

We have four more parties this summer - holy crap.

Oh, and we did finally find a sunblock. JASON umbrella mineral sunblock, SPF 30. It smells fruity, but she wore it all weekend without a rash, through about 5 different applications. My one complaint is that if it gets supersaturated and stops rubbing in, it gets all over clothes, and doesn't actually absorb into them, but I guess that is kind of the whole point, right? And it's not JASON's fault that all my clothes are black.

(Here's Charlotte in the pool that Carla got for her and the other babies. Charlotte was the only one who actually went swimming, and she would have stayed there forever, even though she was covered in goosebumps!)

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