Thursday, April 3, 2014

Party Animal

Standing front and ceremony as the belly dancer
strutted her stuff

This past weekend was our cousin Jared's bar mitzvah.

Originally, I planned to bring Calliope to the service and the luncheon following, then whisk her home to Brooklyn for a nap before dropping her for the evening with friends and returning to Manhattan by myself.

But as the date approached, I realized that there probably was no way for me to accomplish all that and be back in Manhattan in time for the party. And it also didn't sound like a lot of fun for me to scurry back and forth between outer-ish Brooklyn and Manhattan.

So I nervously created an involved plan that kept us both in Manhattan, and figured that I would see how she did at the evening party. And that that would help guide my plans for my brother's upcoming wedding.

Calliope was tired after having my immediate family for dinner on Friday night -- their first time seeing my not-so-new place, since they all live out of town. Though she loved having them all visit. So there were some meltdowns on Saturday morning. We arrived at the synogogue more than an hour late -- on purpose, since it was three hours long. Calliope snuggled into the baby carrier (with the hood covering her head) and I stood on the sidelines of the women's section (this was an Orthodox shul) and swayed for a good forty-five minutes. She never slept but she got nicely hypnotized and seemed to have her good mood restored. We were thus able to stay in the sanctuary for the entire service, which far exceeded my expectations.

After that, we went downstairs to the luncheon. True to form, she only ate bread, and the PB&H I brought along... and then pulled her shoes off and began scampering around the room with her cousins. Next we crossed the street into Central Park for some playground time. I took off her fancy dress, preparing to put on her back up dress (more suited for playing) but she pushed my hand away and insisted on wearing just a shirt and tights. Until she saw another child playing without shoes on. Then the shoes and tights came off... and she started to take off her underwear as well. That's where I drew the line. So our first nice day in spring and she's running around in underpants and a shirt. Oh well.

Playing in shirt and underpants in Central Park 

Eventually we took the train to far northern Manhattan, where she finally fell asleep on my friend's bed. My friend and I had more than an hour to talk and catch up before Calliope woke up. Then we hopped on the subway and headed downtown again.

To my great surprise, Calliope shrugged off my hand and took off for reverberating, dark dance floor with her cousins. She shimmied and swirled all night long.

It was the strangest feeling. I wasn't quite sure what to do with myself. Two and a half seems a little young to be left unsupervised... but she was clearly in her element. When she wasn't dancing with Eliana, age 9, she was wandering hand in hand with her soon-to-be-cousin Ezra. I pulled her reluctant self off the dance floor at 10 pm when Grammy was tired and ready to go home with us, but Calliope was still going strong. I can see I have a lot to worry about for the teenage years!

The aftermath -- napping on Mommy the next day (hasn't happened since infancy)


  1. I think kids can really surprise us when it comes to going with the flow. Felix usually surpasses my expectations, and actually had his first big dance floor adventure at 15 months, before he was even walking. New adventures are good for their developing brains. :)

  2. Glad it all went well. Jordyn did surprisingly well at the wedding we went to in January, too, dancing all night long! Love that you got a snugly nap the next day!!

  3. So awesome Abby!! And that snuggly nap made it all worth it I bet. I still love when Tate falls asleep on me. I figure there will come a time all too soon when he won't, so I'm going to enjoy it for as long as I can!!