Thursday, January 10, 2008

The Big Birthday Party and Baptism Adventures

Hopefully none of the dozens of people who were in and out of this house for Ashton's birthday and baptism were too shocked to see my Christmas tree still standing in the living room until a couple days ago - but I really didn't have a bit of time to get it out of here until then. I spent all day Monday and Tuesday getting Christmas put away and cleaning up my very dirty house after so many visitors and parties and dinners and events. It seemed like the holiday festivities would never end this year as Ashton's birthday and baptism brought all the celebrating well into January!

Ashton hasn't had a "real" birthday party with friends for years - it usually falls at the end of Christmas break and we always seem to be heading back from post-Christmas activities with relatives and his birthday just gets smooshed in there. So this year we did it up right. He had an "Inventor Party" and he and 8 of his friends spent the evening taking apart old electronic equipment (Jared raided the dumpster pile at the DI) and creating various "inventions" using the many different inventor and building sets Ashton has accumulated. Along with some pizza, present-opening and cake and ice cream, it was the party of Ashton's dreams. Grandma, Grandpa, Grammie, Grandfather and Charity all showed up to participate in the fun and it was quite an evening! We were all SO excited to see Jared's dad, Lynn, who's had a really rocky time with a heart attack and a couple strokes recently. It was touch and go for a while before Christmas and we hardly dared hope that he's make it down for Ashton's baptism - but he did - and he looked great. It pretty much totally wore me out to do this party in the midst of getting ready for Ashton's baptism and recovering from Christmas, but seeing Ashton and all the other kids having so much fun plus hearing one of Ashton's guests say "Ashton, you have the coolest mom ever!" made it all OK.

The kids had so much fun building with the
various magnetic and electronic sets we've accumulated
Taking apart a TV, VCR, tape deck, blender, etc was a big hit.
Ashton was SO excited about each present he got -
so fun to see all the kids light up with each gift.
Like Ashton's "Inventor" cake? I know, I know, I'm an amazing cake decorator. Every birthday cake is a delicious homemade chocolate cake topped with a toy or two that at least loosely fits the theme of the party. Ashton and Isaac made this molecule structure sort of thing to put on the cake. One kid declared "That's an ugly cake! I never seen a cake like that!" but then he made up for it by exclaiming as he ate, "wow, ugly cakes are way yummier than them pretty cakes with the flowers!" I guess this kid's never tried a homemade cake before. We had quite an assortment of kids from Ashton's class at the party, most of whom where pretty "wowed" by our house and 3 of whom told me they'd never tried carrots before when I offered them alongside the pizza. Ashton told them they HAD to try carrots and they did - and asked for more. Apparently carrots are now very popular with his class - he told me he had to give away all his carrots at lunch today because everyone was asking for them. Funny stuff.
At the end of the party, Ashton was showered with gifts from his grandparents and got his first set of scriptures (embossed with his name in gold) and his first journal. Then in his overtired state he got pretty snippy and rude with me during the process of getting ready for bed and in my overworked and under-appreciated state, I got pretty mad at him and he declared that he was "just not good enough to get baptized" and wanted to call the whole thing off. I tried to smooth things over but Ashton said "I've made my decision and I'm not not ready to get baptized! I'm not good enough!" What do we do with this situation? Hmmmm. Got all the relatives here, got the program made up, got the sick Grandpa to drive for 8 hours to be here... After some quick prayers for inspiration, Jared and I were able to diffuse the situation and put Ashton to bed feeling pumped up a bit and ready to start the next day fresh. Phew!

We had a nice breakfast and got everyone to the stake center a full 15 minutes early, amazingly (partially thanks to planning to go get Ashton's nonmember friend Lupe whose mom called to cancel at the last minute but we were all ready early so that we'd be able to pick him up. I guess Lupe couldn't wake up. I can't imagine having a kid who couldn't wake up at 9:30am!). Ashton and Jared were already there when the rest of us arrived, all dressed in white. Look what a big kid I have! Amazing to see my little baby boy getting baptized all of a sudden.

The little meeting was nice - I think - I'm not totally sure what was said because I was mostly trying to wrestle down the twins who were at an all-time peak of wildness for some reason. I think they knew they had me outnumbered with Jared sitting with Ashton and Grammie and Grandfather giving talks so they thought they'd take advantage of the situation. They were both stinky just as the service was about to begin so I took them out and changed them then tried to catch snippets of mom's seemingly great talk and Dad's good remarks between keeping the twins occupied with toys and trying to keep Isaac from talking loudly - he was not being very good. And then Eliza started in with whining about something. Maybe everyone was acting out because Ashton was getting so much attention - but whatever the deal was, it was NOT fun for me and I didn't exactly get to gaze at Ashton and contemplate what a good boy he is or how much he's growing up... Oh well.

When it was time to head into the baptism room, the twins ran away and with the help of our good friend Justin Lanoue and my mom, they were tackled and delivered to the baptism room. And they were both stinky again. What luck! But they could wait for the few minutes required for a baptism. Ashton was beautiful there in the water, so serious, so ready. I think he smiled and that Jared gave him a hug when he came up out of the water but I'm not quite sure because of the twins' distractions. Both of Ashton's grandpas were the witnesses. Then it was time for me and mom to take the twins out for another diaper change before they totally grossed out everyone in the room. Mom and I took them kicking and protesting to the car to get the diapers and wipes and then into the mothers room. I worked on Si and lucky mom got Ollie who proved to be coated in a thick layer of poo all the way down his legs and up his back - his shoulders were covered. I don't think I've seen a blowout that bad for years! I'll spare you the details, but mom and I spent a frantic few minutes trying to clean Ollie up as best we could with paper towels and a little bathroom sink and he was NOT pleased about it "I scared! I scared! I scared!" Poor guy. Poor us. We made it back to the room for the confirmation just as Ashton and Jared finished getting ready - with Oliver wearing only socks and a diaper. Found out later that mom and Justin both got a fair amount of poo on their clothes from grabbing Oliver as needed. Great times.

The confirmation was very nice (I think - hard to tell with Silas squirming in my arms - wish I could have taken notes - oh well). After putting Silas down and seeing that he was willing to sit on his own, I did get a chance to capture a still frame in my mind of Ashton's peaceful, reverent, handsome face between the priesthood holders who surrounded him for the blessing. It was one of those quick moments when all seems right with the world.
Click on this if you actually want to see it - turned out pretty small.
Ashton with his two wonderful grandpas

We capped off the day with a big lunch of soup and bread and left-over birthday cake and Ashton blew out candles one more time. It was so great to have both sets of grandparents here! And so nice to have some time with Charity before she leaves on her mission next week. She and I went on a beautiful but very blustery and rainy walk during the afternoon and then I got to go to the temple with her, Mom, Dad and Jo that evening. We'll all miss that Charity a lot!

Isaac remarked a couple days after Ashton's baptism that Ashton was being "really extra nice lately" and he really has tried to keep his baptismal covenants and be a good boy. He's such a great, interesting, funny, quirky, smart, quick kid. But he's also very forgetful and easily distracted which can cause some issues here and there... Good thing he's not perfect or he'd show us all up I guess. I sure love my big boy!


shawni said...

Sar you are going to cherish this forever having it all written down. What a whirlwind of a baptism Ashton had. Man, should I be glad I didn't stay and have to have been in charge of Oliver's diaper changing? Anyway, Ash looked like he was glowing and happy even after all the craziness. Sure love you.

Teddy Jane said...

Okay so I know it's probably been like 15 years since I've seen or talked to you but this is Teddy! Way back from good old Augusta Way! I have kept in touch with Charity and was reading her cute blog and saw all of you cute Eyre family blogs! What a joy it has been to see where life has taken you. Your children are absolutely gorgeous! I can't believe all those toe heads. Your family is beautiful. I am going to give you our blog and hopefully we can keep in touch throughout the years. I still have so many memories with your wonderful family. You guys are truly amazing! I am married believe it or not to the best guy in the whole world! He is from St. Louis and we met up at the U. We are taking off to dental school this fall (probably to Arizona it's looking like). Hope to keep in touch with you. Happy new year!
Love always,
Teddy Jane Elder

Teddy Jane said...

Well it's been a long time, and hopefully you remember who I am! This is Teddy from good old Augusta Way times, probably about 15 years ago! I saw your name on Charity's blog and have enjoyed looking through it so much! Your family is adoreable! Good thing you popped out 5 in 5 years because kids don't seem to get much cuter than that! Talk about five adorable toe heads! Well I would love to keep in touch and so I'm going to give your our blog address. You might not even know it, but I am married to the most fun, wonderful man in the whole world! It's been almost a year and a half now and we are taking off to dental school this fall! Let's keep in touch, and Happy New Year!

P.S. I wrote a comment already and I don't think it worked, if so...I apologize if you got two comments from me. I'm kind of new at this still!


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