Friday, October 24, 2008

The Kool-Aid House

"My heart is smiling."

"I know. Mine too, Lola." I admitted to my daughter as we placed the last batch of sugar cookies in the oven.

"I just can't wait." She threw her hands up, the chubby fingers stained from food coloring dye.

I watched as she slithered out of her tied apron and happily strutted away turning the radio volume back up again. The counters needed to be scrubbed and cleaned from the afternoon of baking cupcakes, brownies, and sugar cookies. The 80's white tiled floor was begging to be washed for it was freckled with brown sugar and a rainbow of sprinkles. And. And the broken glass from the measuring cup that flew off the counter top as Lola aggressively mixed the batter.

"How many more days?"

"Just a few, Gorgeous. Just a few." I replied as I carefully swept the glass off the floor.

Jay is equally as excited and has been counting down the days since his kindergarten teacher announced it was October. "October?!? October is the month of our huge party." Over the weekend he took the liberty of drawing a hundred ghosts for "decoration" and placed the plastic rats in well sought out places. He pointed to where the over sized spiders should hang. "Bug! Bug! Ewwwww.... BUG!" Fifi screams every time we cascade down the stairs into our foyer. Lola counted the bats hanging from each one of our chandeliers twice and begged me to drape the lights with more fake spider webs. "More is better!"

Our first Halloween party took place when we moved out of our starter home, a quaint 1,000 foot bungalow on the city's edge, and into a typical suburban colonial with attached garage and place for a minivan. When my husband carried me in through the threshold (okay he didn't actually carry me through, it just sounds nice in the movie edition I have playing in my head) I decided that it would become the "Kool-Aid" house.

The house that is always filled with children's laughter.

I love love love love love LOVE love loooooooove love hosting a party for no reason than just to get together.

We have thrown this party since Jay was an infant and our Halloween party has become our thing. So much our thing that nearly every single person on the guest list can attend. Oh vey. I do love you all. So much our thing that our guests, who do not all overlap in social circles, are now on first name bases with one another after seeing each other year after year. "Oh, you mean Maggie the women you taught with?" Sadly, we can not invite everyone we have crossed paths with and as the numbers stand tonight I will be hosting TWENTY THREE families. FORTY SIX adults with their children and I am pretty sure that no one has just one child. Oh vey. It has become so much our thing that we budget for it and sell things on ebay like crazy, months before. Ha. Welcome to our house party paid for by crazy ebay bidders willing to spend $65.00 for a gently used infant bumble bee costume.

The Kool-Aid house will be filled with 100 of our closest friends and neighbors this Saturday.

"We need to make a list, Mama!" Jay sat across from me at Bob Evans during breakfast with a crayon in his hand. "We need to make a list of all the songs and contests the DJ will play."

I feverishly scribbled down the chicken dance, the macarena, the electric slide, a bubble gum blowing contest, limbo, freeze dance, and simon says. Did you get that all down Music by Morris? Since that Sunday morning breakfast Jay and Lola have been practicing their dancing skills every stinking day.

There are so many great things about hosting a huge party. Filling our home with laughter. Connecting with friends. Bottles of Syrah. Modeling to our children that a home is lived in and loved. Showing our children that being friendly produces friends. Laughing the night away. Dancing in stilettos. Filling our home with the laughter of our friends.

And. Most importantly. Looking forward to something great. I can not even begin to describe the feeling of excitement in our house right now as we prepare to fill our home with laughter. It is contagious.

We have really become that Kool-Aid house that I dreamt about.

73classy comments:

thethirddegree said...

I am so there in spirit. It's neat to see that the kids are already so excited to be able to play hosts with their super-cool mama!

Rhea said...

As long as that freaky pitcher of talking kool-aid doesn't show up, you're good.

Chickadee said...

We SO cannot wait. We might be almost as excited as your family!

Stephanie said...

that's awesome! I hope your party is a huge success! Are there costumes involved? My Punky is super excited, too, as she's going to be a "princess." And Halloween parties were so my thing because...BWAH HA HA HA HAAAAAA, it's my birthday, too! No joke!

Katie said...

AAWW, That's SO wonderful!! I hope you have a blast!! :)

Flea said...

Sounds fantastic! And I say hire the freaky pitcher of talking Kool Aid to make an appearance. :)

Chelsea said...

That is so cool! I dream of having a huge party someday. I'm sort of a chicken when it comes to parties - i.e. "will people mingle enough? will people feel awkward? but I don't dance..." etc etc. Can't afford it right now anyway.
Have an awesome night!

Cecily R said...

The Kool-Aid house is a PERFECT way to describe it...and I am not surprised in the least that yours is just that.

WIsh I could be there for your party!!

Kelley said...

Sounds amazing! I have big parties in October, kids birthdays, but sounds like it will be nothing compared to yours!

Can't wait to see the pics babe!

Texan Mama @ Who Put Me In Charge said...

I am curious to know, though, how you can prepare without freaking out? I love to host a party too. But in recent years, with all the children underfoot, my husband always reminds me how crazy I get when I have to clean the toilets and make the food (not in that order!) and vacuum the carpet and mop the floor and put out decorations and and and!!!! I LOVE having fun at our house but it's not easy getting ready for it with all the kids running around, messing what was just cleaned. Do you have any tricks you'd be willing to share?

Anonymous said...

Oh Mommy, I wish I could start over again and be just like you. Hind sight is 20/20 right? You are such a fun mom. To texan mama: don't sweat the small stuff, don't stress about cleaning a house that is only going to get dirty again from the party. Wait and clean it after everyone leaves, that way YOU can enjoy it. No one will notice if your carpets aren't vacuumed or the floors aren't mopped, etc.,etc. If they do, tell them it's from the party. Have fun both of you.

carrie said...

Yay! We are attending the annual "Pumpkin Party" at our friends house on Saturday too -- it is the best party of the year and the whole family starts counting down the days in July, I think!!!

Have a fantabulous party!

Rachel said...

Aww -- what a wonderful metaphor for your family's environment. I have friends that are like that -- the "Kool-aid House" here in Houston. I wish I was more willing and eager to do that myself. I definitely admire Mamas like you gals!

Following In My Shoes

DysFUNctional Mom said...

This makes me smile! I hope the party is great.

Prefers Her Fantasy Life said...

Sounds like fun. We always host a new year's party for friends and their kids. The only down side is standing outside in the cold watching the teen and his fireworks.

The cold is the downside, I mean. Well, and hoping no one loses an eye.

Have fun!!

Megryansmom said...

Welcome back. Your party sounds like so much fun. Be sure and post lots of pictures, and speaking of pictures, how many albums did you get done over the 6.5 days you were gone? Just curious.

Naomi said...

Ditto MegRyan's Mom ...

Welcome back ... did you get all accomplished that you hoped to?

Party sounds wicked fun! Enjoy it!

Tracey said...

I have always wanted to do a big BIG Halloween party. Alas, I am too cheap to spend money on parties that don't have the word "birthday" in them... ;)

Wish I knew you 6 years ago so I could make the list!! Have fun! And the kids are right: More spiders. More IS better....

Smart A$$ Mom said...

When my sister visited us in Ohio, she was flabbergasted how we were able to host all the neighborhood children-all.the.time. That doorbell rang constantly. I loved every stinking minute of it!!

secret agent mama said...

Ok, so here's the deal I am going to make with you.

Next year, you throw this party again, and next year I will be there. Just as long as you let us crash on a floor somewhere before we follow thru to Buffalo.

Deal?

Enjoy the party, Lichni na Mishi!

Raising Z said...

This sounds wonderful. We are still searching for "our thing". It seems like all the holidays are taken :) Maybe we will have to have a party for no reason at all...like you said.Enjoy the party:)

Clare said...

it sounds like it is going to be a great party, and so magical for the kids. what are you and the hubby going to dress up as? we usually have a big party in the summer, but decided against it this year...i love having people over though and cooking and decorating. wish we lived around the corner!!

Tiaras and Tantrums said...

photographer momma, high hell wearing momma, baker momma, cook momma, daning mommar, scrapbooker momma, party- throwing momma - super blogger momma - You are fantastic - YOU SHINE OHMOMMY!

mommynotes said...

Cute! I know it will be loads of fun!

The White House said...

That sounds amazing and enchanting! I hope it is wonderful and that the laughter is euphoric! See you there!

The White House said...

Just kidding about the "see you there," part! I think 48 adults (including two you have never met) plus three kids under four years (you also have never met), just might make you wet your britches with laughter.

Vic said...

I'd love to be able to do that, but 20 adults in our tiny house would be a push, without even starting to bring kids in. One day...

Tara R. said...

How very exciting! I love being a Kool-Aid house too, just not on such a grand scale. I'm the cool skaterkid mom and the hip soccer mom. Good luck with the party and I hope we get to see some photos later.

Lisa said...

So if I drive to Ohio, can you add another family to the guest list?!?!?

Have a fabulous time - it really sounds great!

Allison Says said...

How fun! I hope everything goes smoothly and everyone has a great time!

Enjoy :)

Kathryn said...

That is just awesome! I am hoping that if we get this new house it will become a party house like yours. It sounds like a ton of work, but all very worth it. :) What memories you are making for your kids. :)

Mandy said...

That's cool......cool-aid, ha-ha!!!

We do an annual Halloween party, not nearly as big as that though. Whew!!!

Have lots of fun preparing for the BIG partay!!!

Crystal D said...

And YOU made it happen! You should be so proud of yourself. Becoming the kool-aid house doesn't just appear because you want it. All that fun and love comes from you. I hope your party is super fun and even more so than you can imagine.
I can't wait to see the pictures. Don't forget to take lots of pictures!!

A Whole Lot of Nothing said...

Pictures pictures pictures please! Have a great time!

the planet of janet said...

awesome. i'm looking forward to photos.

Hey it's Amy Shipp said...

That is wonderful! Of course yours is "the Kool aid house" I wish we could come to your party!! :D I can't wait to read all about it.

Jill said...

Ohhhh I just adore parties! Have fun - and show photos!

Krystyn said...

That sounds like a blast...too bad we aren't in the same social circle!

LceeL said...

Now THAT is something really, really nice. I hope all goes well and as planned. It sounds as though it would be fun.

Steph @ Diapers and Divinity said...

You are so brave. I think mine is just the carpets stained with Kool-Aid house. :) oh well.

Don Mills Diva said...

It sounds awesome!

Maybe next year I'll make the trip from Toronto - it totally sounds wirth it.

Jessica said...

I am so sad we will be out of town. Have a big glass of vino for me!

I too love, love, love to have people over to celebrate....really more or less celebrate anything :)

Keri said...

I always wanted to strive to be that house... that cool house where every child wants to be... where the friends want to hang out...
Hopefully I will also become the kool-aid house.

* TONYA * said...

I love hosting big parties.

It seems though that my invitation to yours got a little lost in the mail ... mmmmmm.

Have a fantastic time.

Jenera said...

I don't know if I envy you or pity you, lol. I'd have a nervous breakdown hosting an event of that caliber.

kittyconcerto.com said...

Awh, dreams do come true. Sounds like its going to be a fantastic party! Live it up!

Blessings From Above said...

"My heart is smiling"...I LOVE that sentiment.

Have a great time!!!

Anonymous said...

I loved your post. I currently live in our starter home with my husband and 6 month old son...and our house is entirely too small to hold any more than a few guests at a time.

I can't wait until we move out and get our Kool-Aid house too.

Tee aka The Diva's Thoughts said...

Aaawww how cute is that! Have a great party! Give us all the details and we want pictures.

Hailey said...

oh how i wish we were friends in real life... so that i could attend this fab party with all of these fab people. :-)
have fun!!

Chelsea said...

Oh yeah! What are you dressing up as?

the MomBabe said...

Ahh, how fun!

vickypad said...

Ok, Hi this is the first time I've posted. Love your blog. What did you decied on the bday party thing? I hate when people want to tell me that I have gone over the top for a bday. Please, how does one go over the top celebrating their childs year of life? How? theres no such thing, I've spent more on shoes, please. I've never not pd the bills or not stopped tithing to throw a party, but if I can afford to rent the cotton candy machine , by darn it I am. Just wondering what you decided. Mine are 3 and 4. Im also married to a dentist. I stay at home with them just an FYI. 5 years into it I'm finally ok with it. Great job on the boot camp, I did it in the spring. It was great. Vicky

Eloise said...

Your Halloween party sounds wonderful! I host an annual Valentine luncheon, and my friends start calling me in December asking if I've set the date yet because they don't want to have a conflict with it. Sounds like you have a similar following with your party! I look forward to hearing all about it and hope you will take and post a lot of pictures.

Hope that your preparations go well and that your party is the best ever.

Karen said...

That's awesome! I love your Kool-Aid house, and your kids have such great parents modeling so many wonderful qualities.

And I love that your kids say things like "my heart is smiling."

vickypad said...

oh yeah, great party. good luck we hosted halloween parties in our starter home also. we got every family to bring a pumpkin. Dads and kids would carve them outside, gave moms a time out. Then moms would come out and decide which was was most creative, etc. We'd also have a hay ride in our neighbor hood (Country Club) LOL. the neighbors loved us. Notice I wrote starter house.LOL Vicky

Best of Luck. I think the most we erver hosted was about 18 families, 46 Wow. way to go!

LaskiGal said...

Now that sounds like a great way to celebrate . . . and what a very cool tradition to share with your children.

So, who is in charge of clean up???

Half Gaelic, Half Garlic! said...

Sounds like a wonderful party and a great tradition!

We also love to entertain....our biggest event is St Patrick's Day....everyone looks forward to it each and every year...and for some reason the invite list keeps growing!!

Hope everyone has a wonderful time at the Kool-Aid house!

Desiree Fawn said...

Wow, sounds awesome! Have a fantastic partay :D

MommyTime said...

This sounds so fabulous. I love entertaining too -- though we don't have anything this large scale going on. It's great how much your children are involved too. I hope you have a wonderful, fantastic time!

just jamie said...

You're frickin' amazing!

Mama Smurf said...

I hope you'll share lots of photos with us!

Nap Warden said...

Yay Halloween! Have fun:)

Huckdoll said...

I bet you guys are all having a ball as I write this! Hopefully, the Kool-Aid jug doesn't come bursting through the wall ;)

molsmonkey said...

love it!!! and we love the party! i just got home, put the kids to bed, and i am reflecting on what a nice time i had...thank you so much for being such a great hostess,and friend! we love you!

Tootsie Farklepants said...

Thank goodness for people like you! See, I like to GO to the party. Not necessarily THROW the party. It's win-win.

Karen MEG said...

I CANNOT wait to read about this bash, babe!!! You are the Kool-aid house... I wish I lived just around the corner ;).

Good luck with all the preps, this is so exciting for you, especially now that the kids are so involved and excited!!!!

Shannon said...

Kook-aid house, indeed :-) What a fantastic party, I bet it will be fabulous. Can't wait to hear about it and see pictures!

Laura said...

Sounds awesome! Hope you post photos!!!!

Marinka said...

I'm on my way over! Love the Kool Aid house!

CC said...

Can I come too?

I am so jealous. We had a fall party. No one came. No. one. But the worst part is that only a few people bothered to RSVP, so we cleaned up the house and prepared...just in case.

And I tried to sell my daughter's adorable costume from last year for $8. Couldn't even get that. It's sitting on my desk right now feeling unloved.

Me = jealous.

But I want to be Kool-Aid house too! One day....

April said...

I wish you were my neighbor.

Jaina said...

One day I'll have a Kool-Aid house too. How fun for your whole family. :) I hope you have a great party!

 

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