Upholding my Promise

I promised to live a more "Open Door Policy" life. I vowed to welcome friends and neighbors into my home, no matter what Class Tornado it was. To step over the laundry piles in the hall, push the toys off the sofa, sit down, slow down, put on another pot of coffee and talk. This was my 2008 New Year's Resolution. Well, last night I stuck to my word under less than ideal circumstances. Here's how it all went down.
The day began with the long drive over to Paso for a 2 hour swim playdate. We left Paso at 11:30 and barreled down the grade to Cuesta Swim Lessons in San Luis. Everything went amazingly well, we were actually on time, I had snacks and water, I forgot Ana's swimsuit, Shelby hadn't melted into a screaming banshee...yet.
The rest of the afternoon was spent at home until I realized we needed baby formula and pink high heels (when you have a Princess for a 3 year old you'll understand). So we finished the grocery list and headed to the Dollar Store for a bribe. "If we get high heels for you, then you can wear them ALL AROUND the grocery store while mommy shops!" THREE HOURS LATER, we were headed home. That's when the plan hit a road block, or rather, we were run off the road by a friendly mom carting two active toddlers who landed in our driveway and stayed for dinner. First of all, we had crossed paths with this family for the past two years: at library, at dance class, at birthday parties. So they weren't perfect strangers. And when they landed in our driveway I embraced my resolution, left a trunk full of groceries in the car and led them into my F-5 Tornado house. The kids played, we had water, the kids played, we had a beer, the kids played, John came home, the kids played, I formulated a late dinner plan and popped the question, "Would you like to stay for dinner?" It was nearing 7 pm already, what are you doing? This requires courses, cleaning, and doesn't include menu items like PB&J or raw carrots. Nevertheless, I was genuinely overjoyed when she finally accepted. I really have made some progress this year.
Nevermind the fact that we BBQ'd an enormous tri-tip and later found out she was vegetarian. Not a problem that her 2 year old inhaled 2 BOWLS of goldfish AND a vat of mac n'cheese (he did look a little orange in the face when they left). And my F-5 Tornado was gathering speed and demolishing every corner of my house (where did all those toys come from? where did the floor go?). We chatted up Disneyland details, poured some wine and doubled the fruit salad. When 9:00 arrived Shelby hit a wall. Remember the aforementioned screaming banshee? Well, that'd be her, right there in the middle of the disaster zone. "Herb, clean up on Aisle, uh, well, clean up on EVERY Aisle and bring security while you're at it. We have a Level 10 meltdown at Checkout 3." My sweet little princess, still decked out in her Tinkerbell Gown and sparkly new high heels grew fangs, a set of Pavarotti sized lungs and breathed fire. 9:22. SYSTEM SHUT DOWN. Bedtime! Bedtime! We couldn't say goodnight and goodbye fast enough. By the time the house was dark and quiet (and somewhat recognizable), it was after 11:00. And the best part?
It's 8:06, the morning after, and BOTH KIDS ARE STILL ASLEEP!!!! Eat your hearts out, people.

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