Friday, May 03, 2013

Pyjama Party

In this month's BYU Alumni email, Cute Girls Hairstyles was featured since the creator is a BYU graduate. I actually think I may have stumbled upon her blog years ago when Rachel was little but the timing just wasn't right for me to become an avid reader (perhaps because Rachel's never really enjoyed having her hair brushed). I pulled it up a couple of days ago and watched a few videos while I was nursing Benjamin. Miriam soon wandered over to join me and was absolutely hooked.

"Let's watch another one!" she'd say after each video ended.

I don't even know how many we watched but now Miriam's all about hair. Yesterday morning she requested that we do "just plain straight hair with two braids—one on this side and one on this side. Then womp, womp, put them over my head. With two headbands."

She described (and pantomimed) the Double Braid [Sparkly] Headband and sat perfectly still while I did her hair. Her hair's a little wavy because yesterday we had it in another hairdo we'd found on CGH.

It turned out pretty cute but she took it out while she was "napping" and when she woke up she asked if she could watch a few more hairstyle videos while Benjamin finished up his nap. I let her sit at the computer and watch a few while I did laundry until she found the hairstyle for the afternoon. I let the laundry sit while I did her hair in the requested fashion. She loved it and wore it all afternoon, all evening...and all day today (we just tightened up the elastics and were good to go (we spent all day doing yard work outside so there was no temptation for her to watch hairstyle videos)).

Anyway, here's her finished hairdo...and her gussied up giraffe.

The giraffe's hairstyle is called "Indian Stagville Giraffe."

I threw my hair up into a double braid headband (sans sparkly headbands).

Benjamin has learned how to comb his own hair but dislikes having things on his head and around his face so while he is trying to comb his hair he keeps blinking and squinting like he's going to get poked in the eye or something. It's pretty funny.

For our Relief Society meeting last night we had a Pyjama Party. All the girls were invited—from babies to grandmothers—and Rachel and Miriam were thrilled that they'd get to come to Relief Society with me instead of going to nursery (which is where Benjamin went (with Daddy because Andrew's awesome and signs up for nursery so that I don't have to drive in the dark)).

Before we left I did a fancy "stacked braid" in Rachel's hair—another thing we learned watching CGH videos. I did it while she was eating dinner and didn't say what I was doing but when Andrew noticed that I was braiding differently than I usually do he said, "What are you doing?"

"She's doing a stacked braid," Miriam explained. "You do a normal braid on the bottom but feather it out and then you take the feathers and do a Dutch braid with them."

It was jaw-dropping.

We might have an upcoming beautician in the family and that's alright with me because goodness knows that I could use a hairstylist in my life. Raise of hands: who hasn't cut their hair in the past two or more years? Anyone else? Just me. Oh.

Here we are at the church, just about to go in:

And here's one with Rachel being a little less goofy and Miriam being a little more goofy:

The girls have been on pins and needles waiting for this party. They were so excited to be there!

Rachel hooked up with some of her friends right away and the girls decided they wanted to "run around" the church for a little while. The church is in a loop—with classrooms on the "outside" of the loop and the chapel and cultural hall on the "inside" of the loop. The girls like to wander in circles giggling about who knows what and stopping to get drinks from the drinking fountain and so forth.

This particular evening there was quite the gaggle of girls: Rachel and Miriam, Grace and Lily, Rylee and Meggan, Wendy and who knows who else...I can't remember.

They'd only been gone for a few minutes when Rachel ran back into the cultural hall bawling like a baby. The other girls followed minutes later.

"What's wrong?" I asked.

"I was trying to catch up to the other girls," Rachel blubbered, "When someone told me to stop running in the halls."

"So what did you do?" I asked.

"I stopped," she said.

"That was good of you," I said. "It's always good to obey your elders (when they tell you to do something that's right)."

That's my caveat for that rule. You should obey your elders (even strangers) but not all grown ups can be trusted (even the ones you know) so only obey if what they tell you is good/right.

Help me find my puppy? No.

Stop running in the halls at church? Yes.

Get into my van and I'll give you candy? No.

Stop sticking that straw in your ear? Yes.

It's a confusing principle to put into practice—that not all strangers are bad, that not all grown ups are good, that you should obey your elders...but not always.

Anyway, Rachel obeyed. That was right. I told her that she didn't need to be so upset. None of the other girls were crying and they'd all been reprimanded as well.

"Well, they didn't hear what she said next. She just kind of like said it quiet after she told us to stop running and I just don't like hearing grown ups talk that way."

"What did she say?" I probed.

"She said, 'Tsk! Their parents don't take any responsibility.' And she said it in a mean way. She said both in a mean way. She told us to stop running in a mean way and she talked badly about you in a mean way and I don't like that at all!"

I explained to her that sometimes grown ups sound meaner than they're trying to be. The line between firm and just-plain-mean is rather thin. I told her we should give the reprimander the benefit of the doubt—she might have come across as mean but she was really just trying to express to the girls her desire to have them treat the church building with respect.

I see where she's coming from, and I explained this to Rachel. Some people feel that we should behave reverently in the church. All the time.

"Then why did you say I could run through the halls with my friends?" she asked, as if accusing me of getting her into trouble in the first place.

The reason is simple: I don't think we need to be reverent in the church building all the time.

On Sunday? Certainly.

In the chapel? Definitely.

At a weekday Relief Society meeting? Not so much.

I mean, first of all, we invited approximately fifty children to an adult meeting and then filled the cultural hall (gymnasium) with tables, so where were they supposed to run around? It's been raining every day for a solid week. They needed to run around together. And better through the church's loop of hallway than around our walk-through kitchen loop...right? Rachel usually only sees her church friends on Sundays because they all go to different schools. She behaves on Sunday. I say let 'er rip on Thursday.

Also, we often do irreverent activities at church. For example, at our Halloween party, several classrooms were turned into carnival activities. The primary room was a haunted house, for crying out loud! How reverent is that? Not at all.

A couple of months ago we did an exercise class for our Relief Society meeting. Granted, it was in the gymnasium. But it was in the section of the gymnasium that is used for overflow during sacrament meeting. Where's the distinction there?

In Cairo we'd do a weekly yoga class at the church building and we had to walk through the chapel in our exercise clothes to get to the sun room where we held our class.

In other places, women have met at the church and used the hallway as an indoor track so they didn't have to walk outside.

Church buildings are more for than quietly sitting. They also double as community centers.

So, yes, we need to be reverent when the activity is reverent. And there are places that we always treat reverently. But, no, I don't agree that walking (or even running) around the halls with your friends is an inappropriate thing to do in the church hallways.

As far as whether or not it was irresponsible of the parents to allow our children to do that? Well, I don't think it was. The girls in the group ranged in age from 3 to 10. They tend to look out for each other and don't get into too much mischief—I mean, it's not like they're leaving graffiti on the walls or anything.

If my children running amok (ie: in circles around the church) on a weekday evening happens to annoy someone and they feel that makes me an irresponsible parent then, I suppose, that's that. I happen to feel it is equally irresponsible of adults to run amok on a weekday evening and making my children feel awful.

Rachel sat on my lap and sobbed until I whispered in her air (with very little patience) that if she didn't cut it out I would send her to the nursery to hang out with all the boys. She took a deep gulp of air and moaned, "Okay." She managed to change her attitude around and had a great time but was still so upset about whatever happened in the hallway between her and whoever it was she ran into in the hallway. (She's not even sure herself because it was dark; but I'm sure it was all a big misunderstanding).


So, we had a wonderful evening together, the girls and I. There were so many activities to choose from that the girls were a little overwhelmed.

Rachel wanted to do the painting first because she didn't "want to do anything too girly." Miriam was happy enough to follow along—they had pink paint and glitter, so...yeah.

Rachel made a blue heart and put an R in the middle with rhinestones. Miriam made a pink heart and randomly placed her rhinestones all over. It looks like a constellation stuck in a cotton-candy pink sky.

Miriam wanted to make a bracelet next but Rachel didn't because she "doesn't like jewelry," but when she saw all the fun beads she decided to make a bracelet for me...because I love wearing jewelry (I don't).

After bracelets we went to a lip gloss making class. Rachel didn't understand that it was a making class and was afraid that she'd have to *gasp* put it on. Miriam was up for anything—making it, wearing it, whatever. Rachel's on this kick lately where she doesn't want to do anything "too girly," as if doing girly things is somehow demeaning. I personally feel that girls can be girly and still assertive and successful and I'm trying to show Rachel that even though I'm not incredibly "girly" myself.

Miriam is all girl. Except the other day when she, dressed in a white skirt, ran and jumped on the neighbour's freshly cut lawn while she was "getting her wiggles out" and landed on her bum and got grass stains all across her backside. Other than that she's just a little princess.

She made one tub of lip gloss. Rachel made two. She was all over it!

She made one for each of her teachers at school (next week is teacher/staff appreciation week, which, while I think showing gratitude important, the way her school is celebrating is almost embarrassingly over the top (and here's a list of gifts to get for your teacher, and this is the day you should bring your teacher a sweet treat, and this is the day you should bring your teacher a thank you card, and so forth. Seriously? That's a little bit awkward. Like fishing for compliments. And what about Christmas gifts and Valentine's Day and end-of-the-year thank yous, not to mention good ol' fashioned "I'm feeling grateful now"?)) so that she could bring them to them next week.

The recipe was so simple. Vaseline + juice crystals. That's it.

Personally, I'm not sure I want to spread that on my lips but the girls had so much fun making it. And if Rachel's teachers go home and throw them away, I'm sure they'll at least effuse gratitude in her presence.

After making lip gloss, the girls wanted to do manicures. Even Rachel, who at the beginning of the evening scoffed and said she didn't want to paint her nails, was jumping up and down with excitement at the prospect of visiting the manicure table.

I painted Miriam's nails two different shades of pink. Then I painted Rachel's nails purple and blue. Then I let them each paint one of my hands. I hate putting polish on my nails (though I don't mind covering up my toenails with the stuff) but I don't mind letting the girls give me a manicure once a year. Maybe.

They painted my nails how Auntie Josie does hers. Because Auntie Josie is a star!

Here's a picture Daddy took of us at home right before bed:

After nails it was about time to leave but the girls were distraught because we hadn't made it to bath salts or hair braiding classes or to the photo booth! We quickly ran over to watch the end of a bath salts class and I told the girls we could do it at home since I wanted to get some epsom salts for my tomato plants, anyway. We could reserve some to make bath salts with (add food colouring and essential oils, shake, finished).

I assured Miriam that we could practice braiding at home. All we've been doing lately is looking at hair tutorials so I'm pretty sure that counts as braiding class.

And as far as the photo booth goes, well, we walked by just as the sister in charge was trying to give away some of the props to the younger guests at the pyjama party. She'd gotten some leis and flower clips and crazy headbands to use as props for the photo booth...but only has one boy left at home...and he's kind of over the dressing up stage. So we got to take some props home with us!

Here's Rachel posing at our "photo booth" at home:

And here's Benjamin, an unwilling photo booth victim:

He hates having anything on his head so much that he'll often check for things up there, just to make sure his head is bare. Recently he discovered that his ears are on his head. He spent a fair amount of time at dinner this evening trying to get those to come off. The nerve of those ears being on his head.

(Note to self: Maybe watch for an ear infection? I don't know. None of my kids has ever had one.)

Benjamin had a fun time hanging out with Daddy in the nursery. When they came to find us, Benjamin was as happy as a clam, chowing down Andrew, who'd grabbed a leftover piece (we were served pizza and M&Ms because that's "sleepover food"), kept holding it up for Benjamin to take a little bite of.

"What? He's almost one!" Andrew said. 

It sure was a fun evening for us all. Miriam told me today that she wants to "go back to that girl party again tonight." I told her that the thing about parties is that they only come around every so often. She then asked if we could recreate last night's party for her birthday. I told her we'd see. 

It was a lot of fun and the activities were just simple enough that I might be able to pull off planning a "girly" party for her one of these days...

1 comment:

  1. How fun! You look smashing with your nails painted. :)

    And I love that Benjamin was trying to remove his ears.